800 more chips on the table
800 chips of $1m each are on the Merill Lynch table. Temasek had earlier bought US$4.4 bil worth of Merrill Lynch shares and with the additional $800 mil through exercising its option, it now holds near to 10% of Merrill Lynch. Would this large holding qualify Temasek to have a say and the management of the company? Or we are so trusting to let the Merrill Lynch managers to run the show at will and believing that they will manage the company for our interest? What are the safeguards to protect our investments? It is incredulous to put in so much money and did not have a say in the company. Today paper reported that 'Temasek is currently sitting on paper losses of US$1.2 bil from its investments in Merrill Lynch and Barclays.' As long term investments, the returns will come in in a matter of time. As for concerns on the long term time frame and lack of disclosure on grounds of secrecy, investments in such high profile institutions cannot go unnoticed. These organisations are subject to public scrutiny in their own countries and any mismanagement or poor showing will be exposed quite quickly as in this case. They may hide and delay as much as they like, but they can't hide forever or for too long. The truth will be out sooner than expected.