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'Bond King' tarnishes his crown: Gross is undermining PIMCO, Macke says

The Daily Ticker
The Daily Ticker
Daily Ticker

The PIMCO saga continues.

In a Reuters exclusive, PIMCO co-founder and co-chief investment officer Bill Gross accuses departing CEO Mohamed El-Erian of seeking to "undermine" him by talking to The Wall Street Journal about the tension between the two executives.

Gross is referring to a Feb. 24 WSJ article that reported a "showdown atop PIMCO," detailing for the first time clashes between Gross and El-Erian. The article's reporter, Greg Zuckerman, interviewed dozens of past and present employees of PIMCO for the article. There is no comment from El-Erian in the article or any indication that Zuckerman spoke to him.

Related: Bill Gross may be nasty, but returns have been great: "PIMCO showdown” reporter

Reuters reports that Gross told the news organization he had "evidence" that El-Erian "wrote" the article, and indicated he had been monitoring El-Erian's phoe calls. When asked about the evidence, Gross said: "You're on his side. Great, he's got you, too, wrapped around his charming right fingers."

Related: El-Erian: 2014 "certain to be better" for U.S. growth

A PIMCO spokesperson told Reuters that Gross did not make the statements and denies saying the firm listed to El-Erian's phone calls or that El-Erian "wrote" any previous media article.

"PIMCO is being undermined by Bill Gross himself, by being all chitty-chatty," says Breakout host Jeff Macke in the accompanying video. "We have no idea what Mohamed El-Erian's doing, but just the existence of this kerfuffle undermines PIMCO." 

Related: Bonds Will Bounce Back, Despite the Financial Media “Sullying Sentiment” Says Pimco

"Money doesn't rain down from the super-nice tree," adds Macke. "Of course [Gross] yelled at employees, of course there was tension between these guys. I wouldn't trust a firm where there wasn't tension."

It's the leaking of the details and Gross talking to Reuters about that undermines the firm, in Macke's view.

We reached out to PIMCO and a spokesperson had no comment. Zuckerman told The Daily Ticker he was unable to comment on the Reuters story. We reached out to El-Erian but have not received any comment.

Check out the video for more of Macke's colorful commentary on what this all means for PIMCO and the reality of doing business on Wall Street.

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