American Bankruptcy Institute Update

August 30, 2005

In This Issue


Consumer Confidence Better Than Expected

U.S. consumer confidence unexpectedly rose in August as an improving job market outweighed rising gasoline prices, the Conference Board reported today. The Conference Board said that its consumer confidence index rose in August to 105.6 from a revised 103.6 in July. Analysts had predicted a decline in August to a reading of 101.5, Reuters reported.

In a separate report from the Commerce Department, new orders in July at U.S. factories sustained the largest drop since April 2004, although the decline was not as dramatic as expected. Demand for a wide range of long-lasting manufactured goods plunged. Read the full story.

Forbes Expects Oil Price to Dip to $35

Steve Forbes, the American publishing executive, said today he expects the price of oil to fall as low as $35 a barrel within a year, blaming the current price spike largely on speculation, the Associated Press reported yesterday.

Forbes, in Sydney for a conference of global business leaders sponsored by his organization, said that U.S. inflation was helping fuel the rise “and the rest of it is a sheer bubble of speculation. I think in 12 months we are going to see oil down to $35, $40 a barrel,” he said.

As Hurricane Katrina lashed the U.S. Gulf Coast on Monday, oil hit $70.80 a barrel, before retreating. “It is a huge bubble, I don’t know what’s going to pop, but eventually it will pop,” Forbes said of the oil price.

ABI’s New Online Consumer Education Center Prepares Public for New Bankruptcy Law

ABI’s new and improved Consumer Education Center is up and running.

The user-friendly Consumer Education Center Web site contains information critical to the decision-making process for consumers considering bankruptcy, including:

  • “Should I File for Bankruptcy?”—complete with the “Consumer Bankruptcy Checklist” of important considerations,
  • Comprehensive bankruptcy FAQs that take the consumer from the decision-making process all the way through exiting bankruptcy,
  • Links to pertinent resources, including major credit counseling organizations and a host of “financial literacy” sources,
  • A directory of certified bankruptcy attorneys and
  • An ABI-produced video program, “Taking Charge of your Finances,” on the basics of household budgeting and bankruptcy options.

Check it out today!

“Best of Central States Bankruptcy Workshop” Registration Now Open

The “Best of ABI” Webinar, “Preclusion Issues: Been There, Done That,” will be held on September 21, 2005, at 2:00 p.m. EDT.

Among the featured presenters will be:

  • Hon. Susan Pierson Sonderby, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Northern District of Illinois, Chicago
  • Timothy F. Nixon, Godfrey & Kahn SC, Green Bay, Wis.
  • Robert B. Millner, Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal LLP, Chicago
  • Robert D. Gordon, Clark Hill PLC, Detroit

Register today!

The “Best of ABI” series brings the highest-rated sessions from each ABI conference right to your office. We provide a special web interface for this program, allowing participants to interact online with presenters through Q&As, file-sharing and dynamic polling. ABI offers the latest distance learning technology in order to provide you with this innovative learning experience. CLE/CPE credit will be available in certain states.

The “Best of ABI” archive includes past programs that you can register for and access 24/7/365.

Detroit Bankruptcy Conference Provides Intensive New-Law Education

ABI’s Detroit Bankruptcy Conference, “Practice Under the New Bankruptcy Law” brings together the area’s top insolvency professionals for one day of intense learning. The event will be held on November 11, 2005, at the Novi Sheraton. Topics will include:

  • U.S. Trustee Implementation: Entering, Getting Through and Exiting the Process
  • The Means Test: An In-depth Analysis
  • Chapter 13 Changes
  • What Debtors Get to Keep (and Not): Homestead Exemption; Household Goods; Privacy Issues
  • The New Super-Creditor: Domestic Support Changes
  • The New World of Chapter 11: Small Business Rules, Strategies in Real Estate Cases, Lease Rules, Preference and Reclamation Issues and Ethics
  • Tax Changes

Register today and earn up to 7 hours of CLE credit.

Register Now for ABI’s New Investment Banking Program

An “all-star” cast of industry leaders will play the roles of the major constituents as they work through a case study in this day-long program. In the new format and location, the 2005 ABI Investment Banking Program will offer a unique approach to understanding the role of investment bankers in insolvency and restructuring contexts. See how creditor and debtor dynamics affect a case as the players seek the highest value for an insolvent company. Join us for this year’s program, to be held in Las Vegas at the Four Seasons Hotel, September 8–9, 2005.

Moderators and Program Co-chairs:

  • James D. Decker, Houlihan Lokey Howard & Zukin
  • Peter S. Kaufman, Gordian Group LLC

“Representing” Parties-in-Interest:

  • Board of Directors: Laura Davis Jones, Pachulski, Stang et. al
  • Debtor/Management: William K. Snyder, Corporate Revitalization Partners LLC
  • Trade Creditors: Peter M. Gilhuly, Latham & Watkins
  • Senior Lender: Mitchell E. Drucker, CIT Group Inc.
  • Private Equity Investor: Joel B. Piassick, Harbert Management
  • Bondholders: Jeffrey S. Sabin, Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP
  • CRO: Rebecca A. Roof, AlixPartners LLC
  • U.S. Trustee: Ilene J. Lashinsky, Region 14, Arizona
  • Judge: Hon. Wesley W. Steen, S.D. Texas

Register today!

London Calling: ABI’s International Insolvency Symposium

ABI’s first program in Europe, to be held September 23, 2005, in London, at the renowned Savoy Hotel, will bring together top international speakers to discuss the issues of the moment in international insolvency and restructuring. The event has attracted significant support from the industry’s leading professional firms in the United States and Europe.

Sir Gavin Lightman, Chancery Division High Court of Justice, London, will present the keynote address: Views from the Bench. Other symposium sessions will include International Forum Shopping, Hands Across the Pond: Identifying Best Practices, Restructuring Trends in Europe, and Managing an International Reorganisation.

Register today for this exciting international program.

Mark Your Calendar to Participate in the New Bankruptcy Law Series’ Final Webinar!

The Judges’ Perspective—September 22, 2 p.m. EDT

This Webinar will be a special roundtable featuring a panel of leading bankruptcy judges:

  • Second Circuit: Hon. Elizabeth Stong, Eastern District of New York
  • Fourth Circuit: Hon. Douglas Tice, Eastern District of Virginia
  • Fifth Circuit: Hon. Barbara Houser, Northern District of Texas
  • Sixth Circuit: Hon. Steven Rhodes, Eastern District of Michigan
  • Ninth Circuit: Hon. Samuel Bufford, Central District of California
  • Tenth Circuit: Hon. James Starzynski, District of New Mexico
  • Eleventh Circuit: Hon. Mary Grace Diehl, Northern District of Georgia

Register today.

Young And New Members Committee Newsletter Now Available Online

Read about the Third Circuit Court’s reversal on the District Court’s negation of guarantees and YNMC leadership changes, and get the ABI 2005 Winter Leadership Conference agenda in the August issue of the Young and New Members Committee Newsletter.

Prepare for the Certification Exam

The new bankruptcy law provides that courts will take into account board certification when awarding attorney fees under §330. The American Board of Certification is offering its exams several times this fall (covering current law). You can prepare for the exams with a handy and affordable CD-ROM prepared by board-certified ABI members. The CD includes materials on consumer bankruptcy, business bankruptcy, ethics and creditors’ rights. Sample exam questions and answers are also included. Member price is $195. Buy the CD-ROM in ABI’s online store!

ABI World Tutorial Highlights Search Engine

A new online tutorial focuses on the capability of ABI’s search engine. The tutorial features a visual demonstration of how to use the online search engine and locate documents quickly and easily on a particular bankruptcy topic within the thousands of articles, reports, publications, court documents and many other sources available at the ABI World web site. This is the third in a series of tutorials that will highlight the many resources and services available at ABI World.

Latest Job Postings at ABI Career Center

Check out the ABI Career Center. The Center is a one-stop site for job seekers and employers in the insolvency community. Career Center resources are available free to both employers and job seekers. New positions are featured daily. The latest listings include: