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Quick Hits: Madoff Swag Hits eBay

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Brief scrutiny of today's headlines.

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Kids collect baseball cards. Teens collect hubcaps. Adults collect stamps. Some mass murderers collect body parts.

And now: The Bernie Madoff collection.

The alleged $50 billion Ponzi schemer put his name on T-shirts, umbrellas, tote bags, beach towels and even a cigar humidor to promote his fund. The mundane items are now offered on eBay (EBAY) to those who want a low-price, risk-free piece of the alleged scam.

Some call interest in the items sad, but funny in a gallows-humor sort of way. Maybe so, but who can live without a Madoff-branded cooler, golf cap, flashlight or binoculars?

No one would confuse this stuff with designer clothes and bids for most items didn't reach $50. Still, that's a good deal more than Madoff's fund was worth.

However, bidding on a fleece jacket -- oh, the irony -- has climbed over $600.

There's also a backpack. Some speculate Bernie used it to haul off the loot - but keep an eye out for that Madoff dump truck.

There's also a photocopy of a financial statement Madoff sent to a client on December 3rd. This could be an item for the Smithsonian or the Securities and Exchange Commission, because Madoff was arrested December 11th.

Leave it to the shrinks and sociologists to determine what it all means in the grand scheme -- oops, that word again -- of things.

One thing for sure: It's a way to squeeze a little value out of what's been a catastrophe for some investors and -- who knows -- that fleece jacket just might be a hit at the opera.
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No positions in stocks mentioned.
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