`House of Cards' Author Weighs In on Ace Greenberg

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July 25 (Bloomberg) -- Alan C. “Ace” Greenberg, who as CEO of Bear Stearns transformed a small bond shop into the fifth-largest U.S. securities firm before it collapsed in 2008 in one of the key events of the global credit crisis, has died. He was 86. Bloomberg View Columnist Bill Cohan reflects on his legacy on “Taking Stock.” (Source: Bloomberg)

Greenberg and then-ceo jimmy came, we join bill:, whose book "-- bill cohan, whose book "house of cards" covers the fall of bear stearns.

Talk about what in for him -- what interaction you had with him.

From what i understand, you talked with him after the book was done.

Once he heard i was speaking with jimmy came -- cain for the book, he did not want any part of that.

I think he thought i was going to write the jimmy cayne story.

But after the book came out, he called me, out of the blue.

He was a guy who answered his own phone.

I read that a few times, that he would open -- that he would answer his phone.

But after the book, he told me how much he liked the book.

He told me he regretted that he had not spent time with me talking about the book, and we had lunch two or three times at the j.p. morgan chase cafeteria -- once in the executive dining room.

He loved to be in those dining rooms.

He loved people to come by and acknowledge him, and pay homage to him.

It was fascinating.

He loved this firm.

He built it from a small firm into a powerhouse on wall street.

This is a guy who did not retire.

He loved it.

You had these conversations after the book.

The financial crisis was a tough thing, to see what happened to his farm.

Of course.

Of course.

I mean, look --lewis and ace greenberg built this firm, and alan schwartz, your previous guest, who i have great admiration for.

His was a swashbuckling firm.

It was not institutional in the way goldman sachs, morgan stanley, or j.p. morgan chase did.

It was the embodiment of these guys and what they were trying to do.

Of course there were power struggles along the way.

Jimmy and ace had legendary power struggles.

I think they together built this incredible firm.

It was difficult for ace, as you would expect, like losing a child.

Having has firm go down the tubes in such a rapid way, in one week in march of 2008, was beyond anything he could have predicted.

He was not happy.

As rodg cohen said, faced with not many choices, he understood the right thing to do was sell the farm ultimately.

We mentioned some of the struggles with jimmy cayne.

Did ace regret that in afterward?

He had worked closely together.

He regretted it may be in recent years.

I have not seen him in a couple years.

When jimmy's sold the last remaining vestiges of his stock -- he had been worth a billion dollars in bear stearns stock, and ended up with $60 million.

This text has been automatically generated. It may not be 100% accurate.


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