• Gold Money
    05/26/2016 - 14:27
    Here’s a question that might have you pondering: Is gold a commodity? More importantly, are we doing a disservice to the gold industry by calling gold a commodity? These may sound like silly...

Andrew Cuomo

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JFK, Roads Closed, Northeast Paralyzed After Up To 20 Inches Of Snow Drop; Wind Chill Hits -40; 100 Milllion Affected





Snow and cold weather... in the Northeast... in January. Surely, such an unprecedented development in the New Normal should predictably justify explaining away at least a 1% miss of Q1 GDP (which when inventory destocking is factored in, will likely come in negative). Still, 20 inches of snow dropping in one night is somewhat abnormal, especially when one adds a blast of cold air to accompany them, and explains why even the area major airport hubs - JFK in New York and Logan in Boston - are all closed currently, while key NYC transportation hubs, I-84 and the LIE, closed at midnight and won't open until 8 am.

 
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New York Declares State Of Emergency Ahead Of Nor'easter Snowstorm





 
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Wall Street's Latest Investment: Ex-Convicts





Either the Volcker Rule is making Wall Street's menu of investment choices so unbearably limited, or traditional assets are so overpriced Wall Street won't even touch them with other people's money, but when it comes to allocating capital the smartest conmen in the room are coming up with some truly unorthodox products. Such as investing in ex-convicts in the form of 2000 newly released prisoners.

 
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Frontrunning: July 17





  • Bernanke Seeks to Divorce QE Tapering From Interest Rates (BBG)
  • China launches crackdown on pharmaceutical sector (Reuters)
  • Barclays, Traders Fined $487.9 Million by U.S. Regulator (BBG) - or a few days profit
  • Barclays to fight $453 million power fine in U.S. court (Reuters)
  • When an IPO fails, raise money privately: Ally Said to Weigh Raising $1 Billion to Pass Fed Stress Tests (BBG)
  • Bank of England signals retreat from quantitative easing (FT) ... Let's refresh on this headline in 6 months, shall we.
  • Russia's Putin puts U.S. ties above Snowden (Reuters)
  • Smartphone Upgrades Slow as 'Wow' Factor Fades (WSJ)
  • Snowden could leave Moscow airport in next few days (FT)
  • New Egypt government may promote welfare, not economic reform (Reuters)
 
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Frontrunning: January 14





  • Guess who doesn't believe in the "great rotation out of bonds and into stocks": Abe Aids Bernanke as Japan Seen Buying Foreign Debt (BBG)
  • AIG Sues Federal Reserve Vehicle in Dispute Over Lawsuit Rights (WSJ)
  • JPMorgan Said to Weigh Disclosing Whale Report Faulting Dimon (BBG)
  • Ugly Choices Loom Over Debt Clash (WSJ)
  • Credit Suisse to cut bonus pool by 20 percent (Reuters)
  • Brazilian Bikini Waxes Make Crab Lice Endangered Species (BBG)
  • EU redrafts plan for bank rescue funding (FT)
  • JCPenney stock plunges after bad holiday (NY Post)
  • Regulator Comments Buoy Shanghai Stocks (WSJ)
  • Japan voters back PM Abe's efforts to spur growth, beat deflation (Reuters)
  • Cameron averts row over Europe speech (FT)
  • Swatch Buys Harry Winston Jewelry Brand for $1 Billion (BBG)
 
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Guest Post: Feinstein's Gun Control Bill Will Trigger The Next American Revolution





To put this in the most basic terms: registration and restriction equals revolution.  Count on it.  It is not a matter of what we "want", it is a matter of what is necessary.  Without a citizenry armed with weapons of military application, we lose our last deterrent to tyranny, and thus, we lose everything.  When backed into a corner, a victim has two options: he can lie down and die, or, he can fight regardless of the odds.  Sadly, this is where we are in America; fear, servitude, subservience, or civil war.

 

 
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After The Flood Comes The Freeze: "Tens Of Thousands Need Housing" Says Cuomo, As Nor'Easter Approaches





First the flood, now the freeze (and the lack of fuel and gas and heating just making it much worse). And for tens of thousands of residents of New York and New Jersey this means that as many as 40,000 will need to find alternative housing, especially ahead of Wednesday when a Nor'easter formation is expected to hit the Tristate area and bring even more freezing rain and cold to the region. From Reuters: "Tens of thousands of people affected by superstorm Sandy could soon need housing as cold weather descends on the state of New York, Governor Andrew Cuomo said on Sunday. Cuomo, in a televised press conference nearly a week after the storm hit the U.S. East Coast, said the fuel shortages are improving but problems will persist for "a number of days."" Elsewhere, and also from Reuters: "Victims of superstorm Sandy on the U.S. East Coast struggled against the cold early on Sunday amid fuel shortages and power outages even as officials fretted about getting voters displaced by the storm to polling stations for Tuesday's presidential election. Overnight, near-freezing temperatures gripped the U.S. northeast. At least two more victims were found in New Jersey, one dead of hypothermia, as the overall death toll from one of worst storms in U.S. history climbed to at least 112. Fuel supplies continued to rumble toward disaster zones and electricity was slowly returning to darkened neighborhoods after a storm that hit the coast last Monday. New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg said it would be days before power is fully restored and fuel shortages end."

 
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Video Of The MTA In Action: How Whitehall Station Went From Flooded To Dry In 4 Days





On October 30, the day after the worst natural disaster in New York history struck and flooded virtually all of downtown, Governor Andrew Cuomo tweeted the following dramatic picture of Whitehall station, which was then completely submerged underwater. A few days later, Whitehall station is almost dry. Watch this MTA video to see how they did it in 3 short days.

 
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The East Coast In Pictures: The Morning After





Stunning pictures of the devastation the east coast wakes up to the morning after.

 

 
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Escape From New York Becoming Problematic As Holland, Brooklyn Battery Tunnels Close





Remember the wetsuit purchased many years ago for that trip to Hawaii and never used once? It may be time to find where it is and clean it up, as "escaping from New York", in a worst case scenario is getting so problematic, swimming through the Hudson or East Rivers may soon be the only option. Moments ago, in a press conference, Andrew Cuomo reported that while the storm is behaving as predicted, as of 2pm today both the Holland and Brooklyn Battery tunnels will be closed. And if these are down, the Lincoln and Queens-Midtown can't be far behind, especially if the flood continues as expected.

 

 
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Frontrunning: October 1





  • Trade Slows Around World (WSJ)
  • Debt limit lurks in fiscal cliff talks (FT)
  • Welcome back to the eurozone crisis (FT, Wolfgang Munchau)
  • Euro Leaders Face October of Unrest After September Rally (Bloomberg)
  • Dad, you were right (FT)
  • 25% unemployment, 25% bad loans, 5% drop in Industrial Production, and IMF finally lowers its 2013 Greek GDP forecast (WSJ)
  • Global IPOs Slump to Second-Lowest Level Since Financial Crisis (Bloomberg)
  • France's Hollande faces street protest over EU fiscal pact (Reuters)
  • EU Working to Resolve Difference on Bank Plan, Rehn Says (Bloomberg)
  • China manufacturing remains sluggish (FT)
  • Samaras vows to fight Greek corruption (FT) ... and one of these days he just may do it
  • Leap of Faith (Hssman)
  • Germany told to 'come clean’ over Greece (AEP)
 
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JPM Admits CIO Group Consistently Mismarked Hundreds Of Billions In CDS In Effort To Artificially Boost Profits





Back on May 30 we wrote "The Second Act Of The JPM CIO Fiasco Has Arrived - Mismarking Hundreds Of Billions In Credit Default Swaps" in which we made it abundantly clear that due to the Over The Counter nature of CDS one can easily make up whatever marks one wants in order to boost the P&L impact of a given position, this is precisely  what JPM was doing in order to boost its P&L? As of moments ago this too has been proven to be the case. From a just filed very shocking 8K which takes the "Whale" saga to a whole new level. To wit: 'the recently discovered information raises questions about the integrity of the trader marks, and suggests that certain individuals may have been seeking to avoid showing the full amount of the losses being incurred in the portfolio during the first quarter. As a result, the Firm is no longer confident that the trader marks used to prepare the Firm's reported first quarter results (although within the established thresholds) reflect good faith estimates of fair value at quarter end."

 
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The Second Act Of The JPM CIO Fiasco Has Arrived - Mismarking Hundreds Of Billions In Credit Default Swaps





As anyone who has ever traded CDS (or any other OTC, non-exchange traded product) knows, when you have a short risk position, unless compliance tells you to and they rarely do as they have no idea what CDS is most of the time, you always mark the EOD price at the offer, and vice versa, on long risk positions, you always use the bid. That way the P&L always looks better. And for portfolios in which the DV01 is in the hundreds of thousands of dollars (or much, much more if your name was Bruno Iksil), marking at either side of an illiquid market can result in tens if not hundreds of millions of unrealistic profits booked in advance, simply to make one's book look better, mostly for year end bonus purposes. Apparently JPM's soon to be fired Bruno Iksil was no stranger to this: as Bloomberg reports, JPM's CIO unit "was valuing some of its trades at  prices that differed from those of its investment bank, according to people familiar with the matter. The discrepancy between prices used by the chief investment office and JPMorgan’s credit-swaps dealer, the biggest in the U.S., may have obscured by hundreds of millions of dollars the magnitude of the loss before it was disclosed May 10, said one of the people, who asked not to be identified because they aren’t authorized to discuss the matter. "I’ve never run into anything like that,” said Sanford C. Bernstein & Co.’s Brad Hintz in New York. “That’s why you have a centralized accounting group that’s comparing marks” between different parts of the bank “to make sure you don’t have any outliers” .... Jamie Dimon's "tempest in a teapot" just became a fully-formed, perfect storm which suddenly threatens his very position, and could potentially lead to billions more in losses for his firm.

 
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Andrew Cuomo To File Fraud Charges Against Ernst & Young For Lehman Repo 105 Involvement





It was only a matter of time: back in March, following revelations of the Lehman Repo 105 scam, we speculated that the days of Ernst & Young are numbered. Back then we said "we are confident that (again, with the assumption that we live in some
semblance of a sane/ration world), E&Y's Financial Services Office
is done...
and quite possibly the entire firm. Integrity is the number one
currency for an auditor, and just like Anderson, E&Y's just went out
in a puff of green-colored smoke." Today we learn that Andrew Cuomo is about to make E&Y's life a whole lot more difficult. Per the WSJ "State Attorney General Andrew Cuomo is close to filing the case, which
would mark the first time a major accounting firm was targeted for its
role in the financial crisis." Too bad - E&Y was surely hoping that just like everything else in this corrupt country, out of sight would mean out of mind, and soon everyone would forget about the firm's involvement in the biggest bankruptcy in history. Better luck next time...

 
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Full Suit By Andrew Cuomo Against Ken Lewis And Joe Price





In short, in the process of acquiring Merrill, the Bank’s management misled its shareholders, the public, its board and its lawyers by concealing Merrill’s disastrous fourth quarter financial results in order to secure the shareholders’ uninformed approval of the deal. The Bank’s management then salvaged this potentially crippling situation by extracting billions in taxpayer bailouts by misleading the federal government. They did this, in part, by threatening federal officials that they would terminate the Merger Agreement based on a material adverse change—virtually the same material change they failed to disclosed to their shareholders prior to the vote. This action seeks redress under New York’s Martin Act for this conduct. - Andrew Cuomo

 
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