From The Trader’s Desk: Category is: Anger! Bring it to the Runway! Billions S4E5

Those who try to burn him pay
You don’t do that to Johnny Blade
He’s the meanest guy around his town
One look and he will cut you down
Johnny Blade – Black Sabbath

Happy Friday, and welcome to the Trader’s Desk!

It seems this week’s episode, the category is anger, lots and lots of anger! Let’s explore why everyone is so damn pissed, so everybody, Bring It To The Runway!

Also, there was some new “fin-speak” in this week’s episode. I have updated the Glossary with new definitions. Most are not integral to the story lines, so I won’t be going into too much detail about them here. As always, if there is something you would like me to explain, please comment below!

A brief comment about the Chuck/Axe bromance: Does Chuck know who he has gotten into bed with? Axe wants to put Taylor in a “fucking cell” now! Chuck has names higher on his hit list, but Axe does not care: “I did earn your seat as much as you did.” Axe will be friends with Chuck as long as he does what Axe tells him to do, and Chuck has been known to thrown anyone under the bus as long as it advances his interests. Is this the first signs of this buddy movie coming to an end? Continue reading “From The Trader’s Desk: Category is: Anger! Bring it to the Runway! Billions S4E5”

From the Trader’s Desk: Die With Your Boots On! Billions S4 E4

If you’re gonna die, die with your boots on
If you’re gonna try, well, stick around
Gonna cry, just move along
If you’re gonna die, you’re gonna die
Die With Your Boots On – Iron Maiden

Damianista and I were lucky enough to get an early screening of this week’s episode (thank you sis!!) at the Classic Car Club of Manhattan. Along with sitting on Axe’s private jet, eating “ortolan”, and playing a few hands of Blackjack, we were also fortunate enough to meet and chat with Dollar Bill and Bryan Connerty themselves, Kelly AuCoin and Toby Leonard Moore. Not only are they great actors, they are true gentlemen! It was an amazing night all around, and I’m so grateful to have shared it with Damianista!!

Continue reading “From the Trader’s Desk: Die With Your Boots On! Billions S4 E4”

From the Trader’s Desk: The Best of Frenemies – Billions S4 E3

You’ll take my life but I’ll take yours too
You’ll fire your musket but I’ll run you through
So when you’re waiting for the next attack
You’d better stand there’s no turning back
The Trooper – Iron Maiden

Hello from the Trader’s Desk! This week, everyone is waiting for the next attack, be it from a friend, an enemy, or a chicken!

As seems to be the new normal, The War Council (Axe, Wags, Wendy) discussing taking down Taylor and TMC. Hall is not having the easiest time getting into TMC security. His counterpart there is someone whom Hall says “is a good man” and “thorough”. (Could Cook have been one of Hall’s minions at one time?) Hall is going to have to earn his paycheck on this assignment. He comes bearing a gift – a thumbdrive with TMC’s positions and trading patterns! It’s not the MOAB  Axe needs, but he can use the info to front-run TMC and take a little of their alpha. Wendy has a better idea: really go big on positions TMC wants to increase, taking a lot of little pieces of profit. Taylor will notice, and because they are such a perfectionist, will try to figure out the problem, taking them off their game. This is where Wendy has value: not knowing the market or stocks, but knowing the way Taylor thinks. Even Hall is impressed by Wendy! Continue reading “From the Trader’s Desk: The Best of Frenemies – Billions S4 E3”

From the Trader’s Desk: Runnin’ with The Devil – Billions S4 E2

I live my life like there’s no tomorrow
And all I’ve got, I had to steal
Least I don’t need to beg or borrow
Yes I’m livin’ at a pace that kills

Runnin’ With the Devil – Van Halen

Greetings from the Trader’s Desk! I’m going to do things a bit different today. Instead of doing an in-depth recap (my partner in crime Damianista has done an amazing one), I’ll be giving my observations of the various relationships we saw this week. Also, on a good news front, I’ll be having surgery to remove my chemo port this week, and I’ll be on the disabled list for a day or so, so this will have to be a bit condensed. As always, if there is some “fin-speak” you need explained, please let me know!

I want to start with an explanation of what Private Equity is, since it was a big part of the Axe/Rebecca storyline. Private equity is composed of funds and investors that directly invest in private companies. For example, if a firm or an individual invested in Uber (a private company) they will have gotten in early, before the company goes public and IPOs. These investors now have a percentage (or shares) in the company. When the company does go public, the investment could have increased significantly, and now the shares can be sold publicly. Investing in private equity is not a guarantee – sometimes you need to kiss a lot of frogs before you get your Prince! Continue reading “From the Trader’s Desk: Runnin’ with The Devil – Billions S4 E2”

Keep Yourself Alive – Billions S4 E1 “Chucky Rhoades’s Greatest Game”

Keep yourself alive
Keep yourself alive
It’ll take you all your time and money
Honey you’ll survive
Keep Yourself Alive – Queen

Happy Friday from the Trader’s Desk! Are you ready for some Billions? Yeah, me too. Let’s get down to it, shall we?

Before we get into the Axe/Taylor storyline, I’d like to say that I truly enjoyed Chuck’s! It was fun, and so New York. Not just the different restaurants, but the type of horse-trading Chuck does is typical high-power moves New Yorkers do all the time!

Last season, I started many of my posts with lyrics from songs that I thought were appropriate for the episode. That tradition continues with a Queen song, “Keep Yourself Alive”. It seemed like everyone this episode was doing “whatever it takes” to keep themselves alive, whether it be their political career or being the big dog of the hedge fund world. And oh, what lengths they will go!

We open with a flash-forward of 27 hours: Wags doing what Wags does best – partying. The debauchery is Wagner level, until Wags gets drugged and thrown into a closet. How did we get here? Continue reading “Keep Yourself Alive – Billions S4 E1 “Chucky Rhoades’s Greatest Game””