Final note: Trading stock for food

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TEXT OF KAI'S FINAL NOTE

Kai Ryssdal: The financial crisis has hit a lot of people hard, of course. Including New York restaurateurs who count on bankers and traders for a good part of their business. So one of them -- Smith & Wollensky's on Third Avenue in Manhattan -- is trying something new.

Micheal Stillman: I mean as long as they bring in an original stock certificate and a separate Stock Power with signature, and a Medallion, they're good to go.

That's Micheal Stillman. He runs the company that manages the New York Smith & Wollensky's. And the idea is pretty easy. No cash needed, they'll trade stock certificates for food. Not all shares are created equal, though.

Stillman: You know, it really depends on what stock. And we're actually trying to coordinate which stocks might buy which things. And we've been doing a little research and there may be something up on our Web site soon that you can tally.

We asked Mr. Stillman about one of the weaker of the big banks, Citigroup. A share of which could be had for $3.18 cents today.

Stillman: I would say Citi might be a half-a-baked potato. But Goldman will still buy you a nice Porterhouse or three.

Half-a-baked potato. Best line ever.

About the author

Kai Ryssdal is the host and senior editor of Marketplace, public radio’s program on business and the economy.

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