Chairman Cox Bans Naked Short-Selling

Heh, Cox. Photo: Getty Images

FINANCE
• SEC chairman Chris Cox announced a plan yesterday to curb improper short-selling (such as "naked" short-selling, the practice of selling stock short without taking steps to borrow it) in an effort to protect Wild West trading from further weakening Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. [NYP]
• UBS is trying to save its wealth-management arm by upping the pay for its financial advisers, who have been leaving in droves to firms like Morgan Stanley, which is trying to build its wealth-management division. [NYP]
• Lehman Brothers tries to map out a course of action as its stock price keeps falling. [WSJ]
• But if they attempt to take themselves private, it could trigger a bank run like that which brought down Bear Stearns. [DealBreaker]

MEDIA
The Wall Street Journal is hiking its price to $2, which is double the price it was about a year ago. [Mixed Media/Portfolio]
• Meanwhile, speaking of rising prices, Howell Raines wonders why investigative journalists aren't looking into the soaring gas prices. [Portfolio]
• Are newspapers too obsessed with covering their own demise? You don't see Katie Couric talking about her ratings on air. [NYO]
• And why is everyone always piling on the ol' New York Times? [VF]

REAL ESTATE
• Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins were among the nearly 100 neighbors that offered their thoughts on the redevelopment of St. Vincent's Hospital at a six-hour public hearing. Sarandon, for her part, urged commissioners to slow down here and look at what the alternatives are." [NYT]
• Fragrance giant Coty is taking over a floor and change in the Empire State Building, which is now 80 percent leased. [NYP]
• Real-estate tycoon Barbara Corcoran, founder of the Corcoran Group, questions why people aren't buying homes right now. In fact, she thinks people should get out of their La-Z-Boy chairs and snap up some property. [NYO]
• Brooke Astor's former butler is on the deed for the Wildenstein mansion, which sold for $42.5 million. [NYO]

LAW
• You can now breathe a sign of relief: Viacom lawyers won't know your YouTube-viewing habits. [NYP]
• Law firms all over the country have been bracing themselves for a storm of bankruptcies — but the flood hasn't happened. [WSJ]
• The Milberg saga just keeps dragging on. Yesterday the firm defended a pay deal with co-founder Melvyn Weiss, who was sentenced to 30 months in prison for organizing a kickback scheme, in the wake of a Wall Street Journal editorial that criticized the firm's actions. [Law.com]
• If more Manhattan attorneys had cars, perhaps their license plates would be as clever as Seattle-based food-borne-illness lawyer Bill Marler's plates, which say "E Coli." Heh. [Law Blog/WSJ]