Grubman Is Reportedly Out at Salomon

Jack Grubman, the Salomon Smith Barney telecom analyst who to many has become a symbol of all that was wrong on Wall Street, reportedly has resigned from the firm after reaching a mutual agreement with his employer.

The story first appeared in The Wall Street Journal. Grubman was well known for maintaining his bullish views on the telecom sector, even months after the prospects of many companies on his beat were battered by a spending slowdown that still shows few signs of letting up.

Most recently, Grubman came under scrutiny for downgrading the shares of WorldCom to a sell rating just a day before the company announced almost $4 billion in accounting irregularities. (Since WorldCom's initial disclosure, the company has admitted to additional accounting errors, which now total more than $7 billion.)

According to the Journal, Grubman sent a letter to Salomon executives indicating that his departure is effective immediately. The letter reportedly said he resigned after a "long and careful consideration and with deep regret."

Grubman also said he was sorry he failed to predict the telecom market's decline, and said he understood "the disappointment and anger felt by investors as a result of that collapse." He also said he was proud of the work he and other analysts did, according to the report.

Grubman was called before Congress to answer questions about WorldCom, and he was largely unapologetic. His cozy relationship with several companies he covered, plus revelations that he sometimes attended board meetings and essentially served as an adviser to some telecom executives, solidified his standing as the poster boy for conflicts of interest between investment bankers and research analysts.

Salomon is a unit of financial services giant Citigroup ( C).

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