Trials and tribulations

Well, there have been more than a few clouds of late over at New York structured finance stalwart, Thacher Proffitt & Wood. The firm’s over dependency on this area cost it dearly when the market crashed.

Now that same skill set has helped it pick up instructions on one of the highest-profile pieces of work in the US, the government-led rescue of west coast bank IndyMac (See story). As we exclusively reveal, the firm’s structured finance group chair Steve Kudenholdt is leading the team advising the FDIC on its bail-out of the bank.

Of course, one of the beauties of law firms is that as long as there’s activity – be it up or down – there’ll be work for someone, somewhere.

Which means the other big US credit crunch story of the week – the trials and tribulations of mortgage lenders Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac – has also generated work for another of New York’s top firms, in this case Sullivan & Cromwell.

The firm’s chairman Rodgin Cohen is staying tight-lipped about it but is understood to be leading the firm’s team on the matter.

Proof that the real estate market may be dead, but the lawyers live on.