Anyone hoping for an answer to key questions was disappointed. Corzine, a former senator, knows the rules of the game. His response to questions concerning the missing funds was to the point: “I simply do not know where the money is…..”
Though he declined protection of the Fifth Amendment, he passed on some questions claiming he had no accurate information. While his answers may not have helped investors or clients, yesterday’s testimony slowed down the rush to judge him as solely responsible for the firm’s collapse.
The PR Verdict: “B Minus” for Corzine who while accepting some responsibility for the firm’s failure also pointed to a multitude of mitigating factors.
Corzine’s key achievement was walking the fine line between taking partial responsibility without inviting full liability. With the odds stacked against him, he laid the ground-work for attributing the genesis of the bankruptcy to mismanagement prior to his arrival at Global MF. Over several hours, as uncomfortable as it may have been, he moved the dial in his favor.