Monday, April 03, 2006

NFB Comment-Remember the Employee Impact

A rather poignant comment from a potentially affected North Fork employee reminds us of the human toll of restructuring and takeovers. The search for "redundancies" and cost savings has a real human impact as companies merge.

The question of "Why Now?" is exactly the feeling of thousands of employees of the North Fork Bank who are looking at a pink slip in 6 to 12 months. While they had heard the rumors in the past of Fleet, BOA, or Barclays making a play for NFB, most of the employees thought they had until John Kanas retired, and that seemed unlikely.

It is hard for me to make excuses as both an employee and shareholder of NFB for the tough times of rising interest rates after 20 years in banking in NY.

The successful banks have always weathered storms and cycles. Rising interest rates hardly merit a second glance.

Maybe the question should be "Why Capital One?",the infamous sub-prime lender with the funny ads with marauding invaders of interest.

Right now, NFB VP's are gathering their numbers and stats for COF's review with the hopes that their areas can be saved with the least amount of casualties. No one expects the bank to survive as it is today.

While my bias is obvious as I stand to possibly loose more than a few dollars on my stock value, this deal doesn't make sense for NFB. It does look like somebody went down to the crossroads and made a Robert Johnson type of pact with the devil for wealth and fame.


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