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Tag Archives: New York Times

Whistleblower Files Suit and, Suddenly, Former Employer is Willing to Talk

Posted in Banks and Financial Services, In the Courts

Whistleblowers often risk retaliation in their quest to report wrongdoing.  Retaliation can take the subtle form of poor performance reviews or another “just missed promotion,” or the more extreme form of outright firing someone.  As the New York Times reports, Mr. Jason Williams experienced retaliation in the form of reduced pay and verbal abuse. Williams… 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

Not-Guilty Plea Could Lead to Courtroom Showdown and Spotlight on SAC Capital

Posted in Banks and Financial Services, In the Courts

This could get interesting. In November of last year Mathew Martoma, a former SAC portfolio manager, was charged with insider trading in Federal District Court of Manhattan. The facts surrounding his case are shocking and exposed an entire industry that almost seems to be based exclusively on what looks suspiciously like facilitating insider trading. Martoma… 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

Wal-Mart’s Shockingly Corrupt Behavior Looks Familiar

Posted in Corporations

Yesterday I expressed my disappointment in the DOJ for their Deferred Prosecution Agreement with HSBC bank, for its terrorist-financing, money-laundering activities.  Today it looks like the DOJ just might get another chance to prove that it isn’t afraid to crack down on corporate bad guys.  Thanks to some impressive investigative reporting at the New York… Continue Reading

Federal Judge Offers Sharp Rebuke to Wall Street and Praise to the CFTC

Posted in Banks and Financial Services, In the Courts

Yesterday I wrote about how Wall Street is starting to move away from lobbying against Dodd-Frank, to actually implementing it.  Today, I find myself writing about another sign that Wall Street is losing its battle against Dodd-Frank, and this time it comes from a federal judge.  For Wall Street, used to winning in court, this… Continue Reading

Insider Trading in Four Easy Steps: “Network” with Experts for $1000 an Hour

Posted in Banks and Financial Services

Bet you saw this one coming. The plot thickens.  We learned last week that SAC Capital Advisors conducted “the most lucrative insider trading scheme ever,” allowing the fund to produce returns of 30% for the last twenty years.  As a result of the scheme’s discovery, Mathew Martoma, a former SAC portfolio manager, was charged with… 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

We Need High Speed Regulation for High Speed Trading

Posted in Banks and Financial Services, Consumer Protection

It says something about your investment regulations when other countries are looking at you for examples of what not to do. It seems the regulators who’ve learned the most from our recent trading debacles (ie: the Flash Crash, Knight Capital) are the regulators of other countries. Electronic trading sprang up, along with the computer age… 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

Bank Officer: “Will No One Rid Me of This Troublesome Mortgage-Backed Security?!”

Posted in Banks and Financial Services, Corporations

The decision by both the Justice Department and the SEC to close investigations into various questionable actions taken by Goldman Sachs reveals an interesting tension in our regulatory laws: between what we think is the “right” or “moral” code of conduct for the banking industry verses what is legal under existing laws and regulations.  In… 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

Software Problems Are Market Problems: A Dangerous Gap in SEC Regulations

Posted in Banks and Financial Services

I know, it doesn’t seem possible, but it looks like Wall Street investment firms are getting even better at losing money. Trading firms are even developing computer program that lose money for them. At least that’s what happened when Knight Capital released their new trading platform, containing a major bug, earlier this week. The bug… Continue Reading

Can We Stop History From Repeating Itself?

Posted in Banks and Financial Services

I came across a quote from a speech F.D. Roosevelt gave in 1936 while reading an opinion piece by Jesse Eisinger in the New York Times and was struck by how timely it seemed.  So I read FDR’s entire speech and now I think you should too.  The phrase “history repeats itself” is a phrase… Continue Reading

Breaking News: Regulators Knew About Libor Rate Manipulation—And Did Nothing

Posted in Banks and Financial Services

Breaking news.  The Regulators knew as far back as 2008 that the LIBOR rate was being manipulated.  This latest development in the metastasizing Libor scandal is mighty disturbing. The esteemed New York Federal Reserve Bank, on the regulatory “front line” for policing the banking industry, released documents that showed regulators in both the US and… Continue Reading

The Food and Drug Administration’s Surveillance of Employee E-mails: Intimidating Whistleblowers While Invading Employees’ Privacy

Posted in Whistleblowers

As Senator Charles E. Grassley puts it, “the FDA is discouraging whistle-blowers.” How? By monitoring their employees using a computer program called SpectorSoft. Much like parents would monitor the internet usage of their young children, the FDA is screening personal email of a select few employees who raised safety concerns about certain medical devices in… Continue Reading