Greenspan Nominated for a Fourth Term

WASHINGTON - President Clinton nominated Alan Greenspan on Tuesday for a fourth four-year term as Federal Reserve Board chairman.Mr. Greenspan, whose term ends in June, was initially appointed in 1987 by President Reagan and reappointed by President Bush. As lawmakers applauded the nomination, Senate Banking Committee Chairman Phil Gramm scheduled a confirmation hearing for Jan. 26.

"Chairman Greenspan has guided the Federal Reserve with a rare combination of technical expertise, sophisticated analysis, and old-fashioned common sense," President Clinton said.

Mr. Greenspan, 73, thanked the President for his support and told reporters he has not considered retirement because of the "unimaginable intellectual interest" the job provides.

- Katharine Fraser


Hedge Fund Exec Starting Money Manager

NEW YORK - Bank analyst Thomas K. Brown, known for his controversial and sometimes bearish views on bank stocks, left the New York hedge fund Tiger Management on Tuesday to form his own money management firm.The new firm, Second Curve Capital, will have three parts: a money management unit, for which he expects to raise $200 million this year; a Web site, called bankstocks.com, that will carry analytical articles; and a unit to manages his speaking engagements. "Second curve" is a term that Mr. Brown used as a bank analyst to describe innovative companies.

Mr. Brown said that he plans to buy and short-sell bank stocks. He also plans to purchase shares of vendors to financial companies such as Atlanta-based S1 Corp., which provides front-end software for Citigroup Inc., and Redwood City, Calif.-based Broadvision Inc., which provides software for Charles Schwab.

Mr. Brown, formerly of Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette, has been at Tiger since May 1998.

- Tania Padgett


Mich. Utility Drops Charter Application

WASHINGTON - CMS Energy Corp. has withdrawn its application for a federal savings bank charter, the Office of Thrift Supervision reported Tuesday.The Dearborn, Mich.-based utility's Oct. 7 application was too late to qualify for an exemption from a provision in the Nov. 12 financial reform law that bars the OTS from granting charters to commercial companies. The law set the deadline for May 4. Five commercial company applicants, including Ford Motor Co. and Federated Department Stores Inc., made the deadline.

The two other applicants that missed the deadline, Dillard's Inc. and Wal-Mart Stores Inc., withdrew at the end of November. Yet CMS asked for a suspension until yearend while it pursued an exemption from lawmakers, the OTS said. The company sought the extension "just to preserve our options. As the year ended, we realized no miracle was forthcoming, so we withdrew," a CMS spokesman said.

- Katharine Fraser


E-Wallet Firm Buys Gift Registry System

SAN FRANCISCO - Brodia.com, which has delivered digital wallet technology to several major credit card banks to make their Internet shopping easier, announced the acquisition of WishConnect, an on-line gift registry system.The terms of the transaction between the San Francisco companies were not disclosed. Brodia said WishConnect can accomodate gift choices from any merchant and for any occasion.

"Brodia currently gives shoppers the tools they need to tell merchants which products interest them," said Brodia chief executive Ron Martinez.

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