The Robin Hood Foundation’s annual gala, in which hundreds of Wall Street’s wealthiest bankers, ex-bankers (ahem, philanthropists), and hedge funders donate their spare change to deserving needy charities, succeeded in raising $72 million in economically-robust 2007. This year’s haul? A paltry $56.5 million. What gives, guys? We thought the subprime mortgage crisis and dwindling job market and skyrocketing oil prices were supposed to affect the poors, not the top dogs! “It was more subdued,” said Jamie Niven, the Sotheby’s vice chairman who runs the auction each year. “It was remarkable how much money was raised considering the horrendous problems people are having in these different markets.”
Of course, it wasn’t a totally grim affair. “You’re down, but it’s not that bad,” one guest quoted Paul Tudor Jones, the hedge fund manager who founded Robin Hood, as saying. “Your worse day is certainly a dream for most people.” Thanks, Paul. It’s good to know at least someone out there can enjoy the Mario Batali-cooked dinner for 10 you auctioned off for $1.3 million.