Archive for the ‘banking’ Category

Congress: Taxpayers Will Cover Citigroup’s Bad Bets

December 15, 2014

Congress: Taxpayers Will Cover Citigroup's Bad Bets

Unregulated derivatives trading crashed the U.S. economy back in 2008, and two years later Congress passed laws to prevent that from happening again. But Citigroup just wrote derivatives deregulation into the $1.1 trillion federal funding bill, and Congress passed it. Now Citi can blow people’s savings on bad exotic derivatives bets, and taxpayers will likely cover the losses.

Here’s what Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) had to say about that:

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Flamenco Flash Mobs Strike Spain’s Banks

April 21, 2013

Financial institutions across Andalusia are under percussive attack from Flamenco Flash Mobs. Guerilla performances of these indignados flamencos are political demonstrations, expressions of anger and frustration at the Spanish economic crisis. Like this performance in a branch of Bankia, they’re choreographed by the anti-capitalist group Flo6x8. 

More:

“Los “indignados flamencos” Flo6x8 arrasan en Internet con su bulería contra Bankia,” Vertele.com

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Iceland

December 20, 2012

Iceland

“Remember when the Icelandics did the unthinkable and, unlike Ireland, told bank creditors to take a hike? They also imposed capital controls and allowed the value of their currency to fall – the Icelandic krona has lost almost half of its value against the euro over the past five years.

The ‘experts’ queued up to assure us that these latter-day Vikings would be severely punished for their impertinence. While no one forecast that a hole would open up in the North Atlantic and swallow Iceland whole, some of the predictions came pretty darned close.”

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Ain’t Got No Home

August 24, 2012

Ain't Got No Home

The ProPublica team has researched the causes of the foreclosure crisis. You can read about it here, but there’s a video that explains it all, and you can dance to it:

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JPMorgan Chase: Banking as Betting

May 15, 2012

JPMorgan Chase: Banking as Betting

JPMorgan Chase & Co. had an awkward moment recently when it bet its hedges instead of hedging its bets. This resulted in a $2 Billion loss, some management changes, and loss of CEO Jamie Dimon’s ability to lobby against Wall Street reform with a straight face.

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Goldie for President!

November 29, 2011

Goldie for President!

“Goldman Sachs, the global investment bank and financial services firm, announced Friday morning that it is running for president of the United States.”

“… the conglomerate will forgo donations altogether and instead finance the campaign with a portion of the $10 billion in taxpayer-funded bailout money the investment bank received in 2009. “

— “Goldman Sachs announces presidential run,” K.M. Breay, Salon

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Citibank CEO to Protesters: ‘Call Me, Dudes!’

October 17, 2011

Citibank CEO to Protesters: 'Call, Me, Dudes!'

Citigroup CEO Vikram Pandit said he would be happy to talk with Occupy Wall Street protesters, calling their motives “completely understandable.” “Trust has been broken between financial institutions and the citizens of the U.S., and that is Wall Street’s job, to reach out to Main Street and rebuild that trust,” said the chief of the third largest U.S. bank. He made the remarks as he mingled with plain working folks at a breakfast organized by Fortune magazine. If you can’t make it to Mr. Pandit’s executive suite, Gawker obligingly provides his mobile phone number (646-512-4269) and suggests a few questions. Can’t get through? Try Mr. Pandit’s office phone (212-793-1201) or email him (vikram.pandit@citi.com).

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Banker Quotes Karl Marx

September 14, 2011

Banker Quotes Karl Marx

“Policy makers struggling to understand the barrage of financial panics, protests and other ills afflicting the world would do well to study the works of a long-dead economist: Karl Marx.”

“The wily philosopher’s analysis of capitalism had a lot of flaws, but today’s global economy bears some uncanny resemblances to the conditions he foresaw.”

“As he wrote in ‘Das Kapital,’ companies’ pursuit of profits and productivity would naturally lead them to need fewer and fewer workers, creating an ‘industrial reserve army’ of the poor and unemployed: ‘Accumulation of wealth at one pole is, therefore, at the same time accumulation of misery.’

The process he describes is visible throughout the developed world, particularly in the U.S. Companies’ efforts to cut costs and avoid hiring have boosted U.S. corporate profits as a share of total economic output to the highest level in more than six decades, while the unemployment rate stands at 9.1 percent and real wages are stagnant.

U.S. income inequality, meanwhile, is by some measures close to its highest level since the 1920s. Before 2008, the income disparity was obscured by factors such as easy credit, which allowed poor households to enjoy a more affluent lifestyle. Now the problem is coming home to roost.”

Who wrote that? The Senior Economic Adviser at UBS, the Swiss bank. Read it all:

“Give Karl Marx a Chance to Save the World Economy,” George Magnus, Bloomberg

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Teaching Kids to Consume

May 7, 2011

Teaching Kids to Consume

PNC Bank and public TV’s Sesame Street say they are teaming up to teach kids about money. David Sirota explains it another way:  “A bailed-out financial institution teams up with PBS to teach our kids how to spend money on useless crap.”

“‘Sesame Street’: Brought to you by PNC Bank,” David Sirota, Salon

“PNC” logo and the Sesame Street logo element and creature are property of their respective trademark owners and used here under the “Parody” provisions of the “Fair Use” doctrine.  Hey, if PNC hasn’t paid back all that Federal bailout money, taxpayers probably own some rights in their stuff anyway.

Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Fast Foreclosures

September 30, 2010

Fast Foreclosures

J.P. Morgan Chase acknowledged that employees signed off on thousands of foreclosure documents without really reading them. This was in response to a sworn statement by a Chase employee that her team signed off on 18,000 foreclosures a month without proper document review. The firm just froze the foreclosure of 56,000 homes until their documents are re-examined. 

Chase is not alone. An Ally Financial document processor admitted signing off on 10,000 foreclosures a month without reading the paperwork. “That’s barely a minute per case,” notes the Washington Post‘s Brady Dennis, “assuming he works a normal eight-hour day.”

Instead of oversight, banks have “robo-signers.” Still believe that financial institutions can regulate themselves?

 Update: “Robo-Signing: Documents Show Citi and Wells Also Committed Foreclosure Fraud,” Abigail Field, AOL Daily Finance.

 

Image (“American Dream, after Grant Wood”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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