Wall Street looks starkly different today from the way it looked on Monday morning.
Two days after Hurricane Sandy wreaked havoc on the East Coast and killed 18 people in New York City, downtown Manhattan is still without power. The New York Stock Exchange reopened on Wednesday after a two-day shut down – the longest it has stayed closed due to brutal weather conditions since 1888.
Seven subway lines are flooded, no trains are running in or out of New York City and millions have been left without electricity or internet access, making it impossible for many people to head into to their offices.
That didn’t stop Morgan Stanley CEO James Gorman from reportedly walking three miles to get from the company’s Times Square office to his home in Manhattan, Bloomberg reports.
Wilson Ervin, a senior adviser to Credit Suisse Group AG CEO Brady Dougan, reportedly wore black water-repellent pants and a yellow raincoat when he went to the bank’s office at 11 Madison Ave to work on evaluations of managing directors and financial regulation, according to Bloomberg.
Bankers didn’t escape the wrath of the storm. Gordon Smith, the co-CEO of consumer and community banking at JPMorgan Chase & Co, reportedly had to deal with a tree that knocked out the third floor of his Summit, New Jersey, home.
“He has a 60-foot tree on his house that’s knocked out his third floor, he’s been up all night,” Todd Maclin, his co-CEO, said Oct. 30. “I’m currently trying to get him a 150-foot crane so we can pull the tree off.”
Citigroup’s bank offices at 111 Wall St. were damaged. “The building experienced severe flooding and will be out of commission for several weeks,” new CEO Michael Corbat wrote in a memo to employees yesterday.
The bank is now assessing when buildings at 388 and 390 Greenwich St. can open, since it is also dealing with power failures and transit shutdowns.
Meanwhile, Goldman Sachs COO Gary Cohn said he is currently assessing the risk of having two buildings in close proximity, after Hurricane Sandy flooded the bank’s offices in Manhattan and across the Hudson River in Jersey City, New Jersey.
“We have a bunch of conference calls going on trying to get people to where they need to be,” Cohn said on Tuesday in an interview with Bloomberg TV. “Sales and trading personnel are the people that will be our No. 1 priority to get into the building.”