Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

NY Times: Trustee Says Mets Saw Madoff as House Money

Maybe Wilpon and Katz meant to say they invested in the Vanguard Dividend Appreciation Index Fund…

Saul Katz called it the Madoff “vig.”

Vig, or vigorish, is a gambling term, meaning the money a bookmaker collects on every bet taken, regardless of the outcome — a kind of dependable handling fee.

To the court-appointed trustee suing Katz and Fred Wilpon, the owners of the Mets, the Madoff “vig” was, quite simply, evidence of the men’s implausibly unyielding faith in Bernard L. Madoff’s steady investment returns, and the men’s dependence on those returns to help finance their businesses and deepen their personal wealth.

The trustee, Irving H. Picard, asserts that Katz and Wilpon took out bank loans just to invest the borrowed money with Madoff, confident that their returns would be better than the interest on the loan. That was the vig at work.

Katz and Wilpon, according to the trustee, structured player contracts to draw out the timing of their payments. They would then invest the money they owed the players with Madoff and make a profit across the many years of the contract payments. That, too, was the vig. ...

Finally, instead of paying disability insurance premiums for key players on the team, the trustee says, Katz and Wilpon put the money into an account — called “Saul’s cookie jar” — to pay injured players. That, as well, was the vig. ...

The vig was described by David Katz, one of Saul’s sons, during a sworn deposition in late 2010 when he was questioned about one way that the family company, Sterling Equities, made money with Madoff.

“You borrow money at 5 percent and you’d make 10 percent,” David Katz said. “You’d make a ‘vig,’ as my father would say, on the Bernie investment.”

The lawyer deposing Katz, according to a transcript of the proceeding, briefly appeared confused by the term.

“You’d make a vague?” the lawyer asked.

Katz said, “Vig, vig, vigorish.”

“Oh, vig, as in v-i. ...,” the lawyer responded.

Katz said: “Oh, don’t even ask. Sorry.”

bobm Posted: February 21, 2012 at 12:12 AM | 4 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: business, mets

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. will Posted: February 21, 2012 at 12:08 PM (#4065454)
Take away everything they have, and let them live on their Social Security......That would be justice.
   2. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: February 21, 2012 at 12:36 PM (#4065474)
Further evidence that "investing" is usually indistinguishable from gambling. "Investing" that isn't gambling I would call "saving".
   3. Swedish Chef Posted: February 21, 2012 at 12:45 PM (#4065486)
Further evidence that "investing" is usually indistinguishable from gambling. "Investing" that isn't gambling I would call "saving".

The only difference between gamblers and savers is that savers don't believe they risk losing their money, but there are no safe havens.
   4. Xander Posted: February 21, 2012 at 12:56 PM (#4065496)
It's just so amazing that the the rationale which motivated the deferred Bonilla payments was based on the principles of the largest economic scam in the history of the world. That's basically the only way that contract structure makes sense.

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
The Id of SugarBear Blanks
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogDaniel Bryan's 'YES!' chant has spread to the Pirates' dugout
(68 - 11:04pm, Apr 17)
Last: andrewberg

NewsblogChris Resop - The Most Interesting Reliever in the World
(16 - 10:58pm, Apr 17)
Last: JLAC is engulfed in a harmless burst of flame

NewsblogOMNICHATTER for April 17, 2014
(127 - 10:57pm, Apr 17)
Last: Davo Dozier (Mastroianni)

NewsblogDesign Room: Top 10 Logos in MLB History.
(12 - 10:55pm, Apr 17)
Last: if nature called, ladodger34 would listen

NewsblogGeorge Brett, Inspiration for the Song “Royals”, Meets Lorde
(27 - 10:50pm, Apr 17)
Last: Greg K

NewsblogOT: NBA Monthly Thread - April 2014
(303 - 10:42pm, Apr 17)
Last: NJ in DC

NewsblogOrioles launch D.C. invasion with billboard near Nationals Park
(11 - 10:30pm, Apr 17)
Last: Where have you gone Brady Anderson?

NewsblogMLB: Offense's performance vs. Brewers favors Matheny's interpretation of stats
(6 - 10:14pm, Apr 17)
Last: Walt Davis

NewsblogRobothal: What a relief! A’s could use bullpen differently than other teams
(4 - 9:50pm, Apr 17)
Last: cardsfanboy

NewsblogOT: The NHL is finally back thread, part 2
(135 - 9:46pm, Apr 17)
Last: zack

NewsblogEscape from Cuba: Yasiel Puig’s Untold Journey to the Dodgers
(3 - 9:30pm, Apr 17)
Last: base ball chick

NewsblogMinuteman News Center: Giandurco: This means WAR
(68 - 9:08pm, Apr 17)
Last: zenbitz

NewsblogGleeman: Mets minor league team is hosting “Seinfeld night”
(138 - 8:59pm, Apr 17)
Last: Moe Greene

NewsblogOTP April 2014: BurstNET Sued for Not Making Equipment Lease Payments
(1584 - 7:52pm, Apr 17)
Last: Publius Publicola

NewsblogPrimer Dugout (and link of the day) 4-17-2014
(15 - 7:43pm, Apr 17)
Last: Eric J can SABER all he wants to

Demarini, Easton and TPX Baseball Bats

 

 

 

 

Page rendered in 0.2506 seconds
52 querie(s) executed