Jackson Finance Mess Will Take Years to Untangle

Singer left behind perplexing jumble of assets and debts
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 27, 2009 6:05 AM CDT
Guests of pop star Michael Jackson ride on one of the amusement park attractions at his Neverland Ranch, 2004.   (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill, File)
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(Newser) – Michael Jackson's death has left Sony execs groaning over the jumbled state of the singer's finances, the New York Times reports. Jackson was a shrewd investor and negotiator but was prone to wild spending sprees, according to some of the many financial advisers he hired and fired. Sorting out the pile of assets—and debts—Jackson left behind is expected to take years.

"He was a fantastic visionary on the business front,” one former financial adviser said. “He just couldn’t deal with his personal finances.” He added that the singer's heirs are unlikely to be left in the lurch despite the debts, as the next year will undoubtedly see huge amounts of money coming into the estate from music sales—and no spending from Jackson.