At an annual comedy dinner sponsored by the New York Financial Writers’ Association (NYFWA), Wall Street banking behemoth BNY Mellon distributed an ad giving OWS the respect it deserves:
“We don’t mean to brag, but we’ve been Occupying Wall Street for 227 years.”
BNY claims to have $1.2 Trillion under management and a whopping $25.9 Trillion under “custody.”
In February, 2009, it was reported that BNY Mellon received $3 billion in bailout funds plus a $20 million kicker to act as a master custodian for all banks receiving government bailouts—including itself.
Thanks to its bailout, the bank was able to follow through with its own boss’s bonus of $7.5 million plus $1.2 million “in perks for his jet, chauffeur, parking, club dues and home security.”
An enormous balance sheet like $25 Trillion must include a fat pile of derivatives investments, the very instruments that have collapsed Lehman, Bear Sterns, and MF Global so far. If so, the last laugh could yet come on Mellon.
NYFWA’s event, Financial Follies, was hosted at $400 a seat, or $3,500 per table. Considering the media coverage it’s received, OWS’s greatest success so far may be in fattening the financial journalists.