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If we were friends with rock-star hedge-funder John Paulson, we might have had the following conversation over Instant Messenger today.
Paul-Money: What up, Daily Intel.
Daily Intel: Dude, I'm super annoyed right now. I just got off the phone with my credit-card company. They increased my interest rate to 29 percent, and now they're saying they won't take it down because I was late on like one payment, which I'm not even sure I was. And naturally I got all overirritable with the service person even though it is not technically their fault, and then they put me on with the supervisor, and they were just like, 'Sorry, we can't help you. Have a nice life,' and then I just was left sitting there, impotent.
Daily Intel: Srsly. Remember when banks used to actually care about retaining their customers? Now they're just like, we will charge you and charge you until your balance balloons and you entirely give up hope that you will ever be able to pay it, then we'll just sell the debt to someone really super unscrupulous who will call you at all hours of the day and speak to you in a voice that sounds like the killer from Scream until you eventually are so broken that you negotiate some kind of payment plan that is like half of what you technically "owe" but reasonably close to the amount you actually spent, and then your credit is ruined and you have to live in a box.
Daily Intel: Anyway. Sorry to go on like that. What are you up to?
Paul-Money: Well. I bought 168 million shares of Bank of America, valued around $2.2 billion.
Paul-Money: I also picked up some smaller stakes in JPMorgan, Goldman, Capital One, and Fifth Third Bancorp.
Daily Intel: Wow. That's kind of crazy. I mean, you made all that money betting against the financials ...
Paul-Money: I know! Everyone in the office was like, dude, are you baked???!!! And I was like, yeah, but also, I just have a feeling the banks are going to start minting money again, somehow.
Paul-Money: Anyway, you want to get a beer later?
Daily Intel: Ugh, I'm broke, it's the 13th.
Paul-Money: My treat! Maybe we can go to Dorrian's. I read in the Post that they were shooting Gossip Girl there, and I like to go there ironically from time to time.
Daily Intel: Haha awesome. Okay, see you there.