On November 2, Egan Jones cut Jefferies ratings to BBB- from BBB, prompting the New York -based company's shares to tumble 20% to post crisis lows below $10 a share. It sparked a fight between two reputable but small players, which has culminated in today's heavyweight uppercut jab by Jefferies and its chief executive of over a decade, Rich Handler.
In Monday's letter, Jefferies wrote "throughout the month of November, Jefferies has been barraged by a group of people maliciously spreading rumors, half-truths and outright lies through every means possible." The biggest half-truth Jefferies highlighted was an alleged exposure to peripheral European debt.In a Nov. 2 report, Egan Jones wrote that "we are concerned about the values included in the $2.7
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