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Tag Archives: big banks

Banks Enabling Fraud Beware: DOJ is on the Case

Posted in Banks and Financial Services, Consumer Protection

Four years ago, I began representing victims of fraudulent schemes who filed suits against banks for providing the financial services that were essential to perpetrating the fraud.  We developed our case on the theory that the banks (some of the largest in the land) aided and abetted the fraud.  These cases seemed like “no brainers.” … Continue Reading

WATCH IT: PBS’s The Untouchables Asks Why No Wall Street Executive Have Been Criminally Prosecuted for Loan Fraud

Posted in Banks and Financial Services

The Untouchables, PBS’ Frontline investigation into why no Wall Street executives have gone to jail for activities connected to the housing and financial sector in 2008, recently aired.  I took the time to watch it and strongly encourage each one of you to do the same –paints a very clear picture, in less than an… Continue Reading

The Insider Trader Circle Tightens Around Billionaire Steven Cohen and His Hedge Fund, SAC Capital

Posted in Banks and Financial Services

An article in the New York Times’ Dealbook shines a spotlight on a situation I’ve been keeping a close watch on for some time now:  billionaire Steven A. Cohen and his group/company/fund, SAC Capital Advisors.  This is the hedge fund that was found to have achieved 30% investment returns for the past two decades, or,… Continue Reading

SEC Takes a Bold Stance Against Auditors

Posted in Banks and Financial Services

Yesterday the SEC took a relatively unique stance against two auditors at KPMG.  Yes, that’s right, the auditors; not the bank itself or the bankers that led their Nebraska-based bank into bankruptcy.  While the SEC cannot file charges or impose fines upon auditors, by instituting administrative proceedings for engaging in improper professional conduct the SEC… Continue Reading

Criminal Charges for Criminal Activity in the Financial Industry: Finally

Posted in Banks and Financial Services

Well its about time.  For the first time in over twenty years, a major financial institution pleaded guilty to criminal charges brought by the DOJ (the last time was in 1989 when Drexel Burnham Lambert pleaded guilty to six counts of fraud).  Yesterday, the DOJ announced that: “UBS Securities Japan Co. Ltd. (UBS Japan), an… Continue Reading

Aiding Drug Lords, Terrorists, and Rogue Nations Should Not Be Profitable… Ever

Posted in Banks and Financial Services

A few months ago we were astounded to see HSBC actually apologize for its money laundering scheme, in which it “aided drug lords, terrorists, and rogue nations” by helping them launder money through HSBC banks.  Today’s New York Times reports that HSBC’s earnings are down $3.3 Billion for the last quarter. Some of these expenses… Continue Reading

Bankers – Not Banks – Must Be Regulated As Professionals

Posted in Banks and Financial Services

Bankers behaving badly, ho hum.  We’ve written about it time and again.  One day it’s manipulating the LIBOR rate to cheat their own customers, the next day its packaging questionable mortgages into risky securities and oops failing to disclose what they know to investors; or providing banking services, aid, and comfort to one Ponzi schemer… Continue Reading

Bankers and Politicians Disapprove of Dodd-Frank, but Is There Really an Alternative?

Posted in Banks and Financial Services

Following recent lawsuits, court decisions, and presidential debates, more Americans than ever are becoming familiar with the Dodd-Frank Act, which was passed in 2010 to increase the government’s ability to regulate big banks.  Many politicians and lobbyists have argued for repealing the Dodd-Frank Act, but a recent New York Times editorial poses an interesting question:… Continue Reading

The Devil is in the Details: Federal Reserve Governor Daniel Tarullo Addresses Systemic Risk

Posted in Banks and Financial Services

There has been a lot of discussion lately over whether or not our nations HUGE banking and financial institutions should be broken up. Current and former Wall Street insiders, scholars, regulators and a host of others have all offered their opinion – and over the past few months the tide seems to have been shifting… Continue Reading

Government Prosecutors Get Creative to Hold Wells Fargo Accountable for Mortgage Fraud

Posted in Banks and Financial Services

The United States filed suit against banking and mortgage giant Wells Fargo Tuesday, for allegedly lying to the Federal Housing Administration about mortgages Wells Fargo approved during the housing boom.  Not only did Wells Fargo approve mortgages for people who would not likely be able to pay them, they told the FHA that the mortgages… Continue Reading

The Volker Rule: Politicians and Lobbyists Attempt to Influence the Fed from Behind Closed Doors

Posted in Banks and Financial Services

It isn’t exactly breaking news that big bankers don’t like the Volcker rule. After all, it is designed to protect consumers, and ideally the industry itself, from engaging in risky trades that could, if successful, line the pockets of bankers. So it should come as no surprise that the industry is fighting to get some… Continue Reading

Turning Independence On Its Head: Proposed Bill S. 3468 Would Paralyze the CFPB, the SEC, the EPA …

Posted in Banks and Financial Services, Consumer Protection

Moderate and respected  Senators Rob Portman (R-OH), Mark Warner (D-VA), and Susan Collins (R-ME) issued a press release on August 1st describing their proposed bill S. 3468, the “Independent Agency Regulatory Analysis Act of 2012.”  For all intents and purposes the bill seeks to take the “independence” out of “Independent Regulatory Agencies”.  That’s right.  Who… Continue Reading

Consumer Advisory Board: Great Name, Now What Will it DO?

Posted in Banks and Financial Services, Consumer Protection

The CFPB recently announced the creation of their new Consumer Advisory Board. Created under the Dodd-Frank act, the Consumer Advisory Board is intended to be “a key resource” for the CFPB according to director Richard Cordray. But will this new advisory board really be an asset to consumers, or just another piece of showy government… Continue Reading

Does Banking Complexity Make Your Eyes Bleed?

Posted in Banks and Financial Services

I’ve heard a lot of people describe the current state of our country’s largest financial institutions.  I frequently hear things like “too complex,” “too big,” or “in desperate need of an overhaul.”  But Sallie L. Krawcheck, former head of Bank of America’s wealth management division, gave a description yesterday that takes the cake: “It is… Continue Reading

Citigroup Complains to the SEC About Conflicts of Interest, Just Not its Own

Posted in Banks and Financial Services

It is fascinating to watch the banking and finance industry pointing fingers at each other for the botched Facebook IPO. Yesterday, attempts to shift blame and recover some losses led to some wonderful quotes from Citigroup. The New York Times’ Dealbook recently summed up Citigroup’s position: “Citigroup on Wednesday also criticized Nasdaq’s claim that its… Continue Reading

Recidivist Money Launderer Standard Chartered Bank Walks Away With A Slap on the Wrist

Posted in Banks and Financial Services

It’s easy to take pot shots at regulators.  They didn’t find out soon enough; they need to be tougher.  Sure, when you are on the sidelines or reporting on Monday morning, it’s easy to criticize.  But the recent case of Standard Chartered Bank is baffling and worthy of second guessing to be sure.  They were… Continue Reading

Too Bad the SEC Can’t Put Citigroup in Jail

Posted in Banks and Financial Services, In the Courts

I’m still trying to understand the SEC’s decision making process in deciding to charge Mr. Brian H. Stoker, former Citigroup banker, in connection with a subprime mortgage-related debacle at Citigroup. In this offering, Citigroup bet against one of its own securities, which subsequently lost most of its value and has since been described using bad… Continue Reading

Big Banks as the Organized Mob?

Posted in Banks and Financial Services

At what point will banking scandals stop being scandalous and start garnering of-course-they-did-that reactions?  The last couple weeks we saw the Libor scandal unfold to include a growing number of large, well known names in banking.  Their rate-fixing activities are likely going to lead to a number of lawsuits – dozens have already been filed… Continue Reading