Constellation brought the near-collap...

Constellation brought the near-collapse on itself

There are 42 comments on the Baltimore Sun story from Sep 19, 2008, titled Constellation brought the near-collapse on itself. In it, Baltimore Sun reports that:

If regulators and politicians had just gotten out of Constellation's way, the thinking goes, this week's credit crisis wouldn't have threatened the company with bankruptcy.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Baltimore Sun.

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Alexandria, VA

#1 Sep 19, 2008
Thanks for telling the truth Jay. It kind of shoots holes all through the Ehrlichites attempt to blame it all on the legislature and O'Malley.

MD republicans need to get a new schtick. They are like broken records or a dog that only knows one trick.

Manchester, MD

#2 Sep 19, 2008
I shot plenty of holes in Jay Hancock's report, but he deleted my comments.

So much for a FREE PRESS in JACK BOOT LIB Maryland! HAH!

Manchester, MD

#3 Sep 19, 2008
#1: The PEPCO merger

#2: Deregulation

#3: The FPL merger

All of these could have solved this problem and provided energy rate relief for consumers.

Even the Baltimore Sun said in ONE article BURIED DEEP within the paper's archives that the Ehrlich plan was better.

Then the paper endorsed this mess. Go Figure.

I assume these comments will also be deleted too, so read them while you can.


Manchester, MD

#4 Sep 19, 2008
This problem was created by the Democrat monopoly anti-business climate that Maryland creates.

When will people realize this?

When we all either work FOR the government OR are all on government assistance ???

We're getting pretty close now.

Say goodbye to another Fortune 500 company Maryland!

Baltimore, MD

#5 Sep 19, 2008
I guess Mayo Shattuck will be out of a job for making poor decisions, huh?

United States

#6 Sep 19, 2008
If CEG had stuck to the business of producing and delivering electricity and gas at a rate that was fair to consumers and provided a reasonable profit for reinvestment in infrastructure - instead of playing it like a Wall St. casino - this wouldn't have happened. It's called regulation. I can't understand the thinking of people who feel that more of the same would have prevented this disgrace, unless that thinking is so locked into ideology that it doesn't make allowances for reality. Regulation would have prevented this and if people can't see now, after the implosion of the entire financial system, that it's the only thing that prevents these excesses, then nothing will. But that's OK - most rational people are coming to understand that regulation is an absolute necessity in a capitalist system.

Washington, DC

#7 Sep 19, 2008
Why do you think Shattuck was at CEG? It's the same reason he was at Alex Brown. Sell, Sell, Sell!

Miami, FL

#8 Sep 19, 2008
The Baltimore Sun & local radio talk show hosts have decided that Gas & Electric is a Right of the People. So let the government buy the power plants. Two years ago FPL was ready to buy Constelllation Energy for nearly triple ($13 Billion) the price, but Warren Buffet is the "savior?" The State of Marland stopped it - the stockholders were making too much profit. But, its okay for them to take a loss, because this is the only was to "save" the company.

Are they kidding...Buffet will sell off BGE, BGE Home and all the parts of Constellation Energy ASAP. Go find a Baltimore Investor stupid enough to buy a company that the "po folks" of Baltimore have a Right to the "product" (gas & electric) for below cost

Good-bye to Baltimore City's last Fortune 500 Company.
Freddy Lejeune

Burtonsville, MD

#9 Sep 19, 2008
Yhe reason I bought CEG is for dividend income since I am retired. The answer tothe main question of dividends, a reason traditionally people have bought shares i n utilities is for dividends. It traditionally was called even the poor widow's eggnest. Will CEG pay the inctreased dividend it had nnpinced to SEC a few month agp as of 10/1? That is the main questiobn affecting shareholders. I am a retired economist.
Freddy Lejeune

Burtonsville, MD

#10 Sep 19, 2008
Woll CEG pay dividend on October 1?
Freddy Lejeune

Burtonsville, MD

#11 Sep 19, 2008
I have done some rearch on CEG. If you check inside trading you will notice that any trading by the Board of Directors aznd Excutive Managment , including the vice chairman, wwas to seel the shares as early as May.Vice Chairman sold srocks accring close totwo million dollars at 83 dollars a share. When CEG announced record quarterly profit and increased the dividend in Julyat the time the shares were at 83 dollars, people instead of buying th e stock, instead were selling the stock in spite of the good news. CEG was accused since as lack of transparency. Even Enronnish has been mentionned in some quarters. What is the real story about the Executive Management of CEG . Are they above board or engaged in acts that require investigation? Are they potential prison inmates as the Enron crowd?
Bob C

Baltimore, MD

#12 Sep 19, 2008
A $47 million severance-hold the Mayo-responsible!
Joe Carrigan

Mechanicsburg, PA

#13 Sep 19, 2008
Have the Maryland legislators received contributions or lobbying favors from Constellation and did the possible loss of those contributions enter into the legislators' decision to oppose the merger with FPL?

United States

#14 Sep 19, 2008
I am constantly amazed at the innate idiocracy of the Repub kool-aiders. I wish you all would just drink from the vat and leave us alone.

The FPL merger would have been an unmitigated disaster. Probably not for the stock holders and definitely not for management, but every customer of Constellation would have paid the price. It would have combined 2 incompetently run companies into one. Was this in an effort to true to prove the old adage 2 wrongs make a right?

Constellation management played a shell game for years. Selling their own gas and electric futures to internal shell companies. Consumers ultimately paid the cost of the manipulated price. When those immoral and probably illegal deals were exposed, Constellation sunk like a rock.

The real crime here is that deregulation was used by the corporations to further limit competition not increase it. They used the cash flow to eliminate the competition not increase infrastructure.

The real failing is that 21st century American capitalism is no longer working. The focus is not on producing something real and useful but to increase wealth through worthless mergers and market manipulations. Just as lawyers are accused using the law as a play tool and thus wrecking the legal system; the Wall Street money managers played with our financial system like it was a game of Monopoly.

Your attacks on Jay Hancock come from the normal sewer tactics of the Republican attack and propaganda machine. Repubs act just like corporate America ... keep feeding us your lies because once the truth is exposed your party is toast.

Baltimore, MD

#15 Sep 19, 2008
BGE should never have been allowed to be taken over by Constellation. Yes, utilities should be socialized. Yes, in a modern industrial (urbanized) society, utilities ARE a right.

San Jose, CA

#16 Sep 19, 2008
So Mayo Shattuck sells another Baltimore Fortune 500 company. This time it took him two tries. I hope there is some way for him not to receive his 50 million dollar golden parachute. I hope even more he retires to Florida, or goes back to Massachusetts before he heads another Baltimore company to slaughter.

Baltimore, MD

#17 Sep 19, 2008
Enron was run into the ground and a couple of their key executives got up to 25 years - would it be too much to ask for 5 -10 for Mayo? He (and the BOD) need to be held accountable for bad/risky/greedy business decisions. To pay him the reported $47million parachute is insane. He should be paying back the shareholders who he robbed.

Brooklyn, MD

#18 Sep 19, 2008
Look, at the end of the day CEG was going to hit its revenue estimates, it was still making money, it was still providing electricity to its customers. This was a paper crisis initiated by short sellers and a bond rating agency that is trying to cover its behind because it screwed up the ratings for all of those "mortgage backed securities." Once again, the only people who suffer are us suckers who are not players in the game.

Given the alternatives, Mr. Buffet's actions are a relief. Let's see if MD can get it done.
Paul from Rosedale

Rosedale, MD

#19 Sep 19, 2008
Let's be realistic.
If the people of MD want the utility to be socialized, come up with the $4.7 billion. The State can then own the utility and Martin can be its CEO. Mike Miller and Mike Bush can be the Co-Chairs. And little Mr. Pipkin can be the utility bulldog.
I had a large position in CEG stock when these guys killed the $13 billion deal with FPL. I still own a small position now -- and will get $26.50 per share instead of $70 per share thanks to these guys. I know people who have been hurt -- widows and employees of CEG that have significant holdings. It's a tragedy.
It's not a republic vs democrat thing. I was a democrat all my life. In January of this year, I switched. When I was a democrat what they were doing was wrong, now that I'm a republican it's still wrong.

Gwynn Oak, MD

#20 Sep 19, 2008
so I guess we no longer have to hear

"BGE Home... not a part of BGE (a regulated Utility)"

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