Jed Rakoff

Backdoor Disarmament? Feds Propose "Banning Sale Of Firearms To Medical Marijuana Card Holders"

"...have often wondered if/when the softening on the War on Drugs would be used as a weapon of disarmament. This is an interesting ploy by the feds to use the move towards decriminalizing marijuana as a means of barring Second Amendment lovers from purchasing guns – since it will be argued that marijuana introduces a dangerous or ‘irrational and unpredictable’ element. Of course, they don’t ban alcoholics or prescription pill poppers from purchasing weapons, but I’m sure that many people would be interested in doing so if they could."

In Duel With Valeant, Ackman; Is Judge David Carter The "New Jed Rakoff?"

In his rejection of an SEC settlement with Citigroup, Judge Jed Rakoff vowed to "see that the truth emerges." After presiding over the most high-profile insider trading cases since the crisis -- including Raj Rajaratnam and Rajit Gupta -- Judge Rakoff has come to symbolize the mantra that "nobody is above the law." In determining that Valeant and hedge fund manager Bill Ackman must face insider trading charges for their failed takeover of Allergan, U.S. District Judge David Carter may be the "new Rakoff."

Frontrunning: April 8

  • Shell Will Buy BG Group for $70 Billion in Cash and Shares (BBG)
  • IMF warns of long period of lower growth (FT)
  • Wall Street sanguine as it heads into worst earnings season in six years (Reuters)
  • Switzerland First With 10-Year Bond at Negative Yield (WSJ)
  • U.S. Dot-Com Bubble Was Nothing Compared to Today’s China Prices (BBG)
  • Rahm Emanuel Re-Elected as Mayor of Fiscally Ravaged Chicago (BBG)
  • Oil falls on U.S. stock build, record Saudi output (Reuters)
  • White South Carolina policeman charged with murdering black man (Reuters)
  • German Factory Orders Drop for Second Month (BBG)
  • A third of Republicans support Iran nuclear deal (Reuters)

Frontrunning: August 6

  • So that's what Obama meant by "costs" - Italy Recession, German Orders Signal Euro-Area Struggle (BBG)
  • Russia worries, weak German data weigh on Europe (Reuters)
  • Hedge Funds Betting Against Banco Espírito Santo in Line for Big Gains (WSJ)
  • Bankers Called Up for Ukraine War as Rolls-Royce for Sale (BBG)
  • Double Punch for 'Inversion' Deals (WSJ)
  • Statist Strongmen Putin-Xi See History’s Capitalism Clash (BBG)
  • China bans beards, veils from Xinjiang city's buses (Reuters)
  • BATS to Settle High-Speed Trading Case (WSJ)
  • Second Ebola patient wheeled into Atlanta hospital for treatment (Reuters)

Vietnam Shows How To Clean Up The Banking System: Ex-Banker Faces Death Penalty For Fraud

The lack of prosecution of bankers responsible for the great financial collapse has been a hotly debated topic over the years, leading to the coinage of such terms as "Too Big To Prosecute", the termination of at least one corrupt DOJ official, the revelation that Eric Holder is the most useless Attorney General in history, and even members of the judicial bashing other members of the judicial such as in last night's essay by district judge Jed Rakoff. And naturally, the lack of incentives that punish cheating and fraud, is one of the main reasons why such fraud will not only continue but get bigger and bigger, until once again, the entire system crashes under the weight of all the corruption and all the Fed-driven malinvestment. But what can be done? In this case, Vietnam may have just shown America the way - use the death penalty on convicted embezzling bankers. Because if one wants to promptly stop an end to financial crime, there is nothing quite like the fear of death to halt it.

Frontrunning: April 4

  • Helicopter QE will never be reversed (Evans-Pritchard)
  • Bank of Japan Launches Easing Campaign under new leadership (WSJ)
  • Draghi Considers Plan B as Sentiment Dims After Cyprus Fumble (BBG)
  • Spain threatened by resurgent credit crunch (FT)
  • U.S. Dials Back on Korean Show of Force (WSJ)
  • Gillard Urges Aussie Firms to Emulate German Deutschmark Success (BBG)
  • Bank watchdog warns on retail branches (FT)
  • Xi's Russia visit confirms continuity of ties (China Daily)
  • Portuguese Government Survives No-Confidence Vote (WSJ)
  • Mortgage rates set for fall, Bank of England survey shows (Telegraph)
  • Russia’s bank chief warns on economy (FT)
  • Fed member hints at summer slowing of QE3 (FT)

Frontrunning: March 16

  • Tapping oil from the SPR may be trickier than ever (Reuters)
  • Why Quantitative Easing Is The Only Game in Town: Martin Wolf (FT)
  • Lacker Says Fed May Need to Raise Target Interest Rate in 2013 (Bloomberg)
  • Japan Debt-Financing Concern Clouds BOJ’s Bond Buying (Bloomberg) No worries - US will just buy Japan's bonds
  • IMF Approves €28bn Loan to Greece (FT)
  • Banks Want Fed to Iron Out 'Maiden' (WSJ)
  • China 'Wealth Exodus' Underestimated (China Daily)
  • Geithner Calls For Reforms to Boost Growth (FT)
  • China Adds Treasuries For First Time Since July on Europe Woes (Bloomberg)
  • Osborne Weighs 50p Tax Rate Cut To 45p (FT)

FDIC FOIA Discloses Pandit Future Could Promptly Converge With That Of Ken Lewis

It was immensely refreshing to find an actual probing piece of investigative journalism coming out of Reuters, instead of the traditional regurgitated, opinion-based, fluff-filled, secondary source monologues (we prefer the British spelling) we have become accustomed to seeing out of the Thomson Reuters behemoth. In a rare example of how even the MSM gets it right sometimes, Matt Goldstein has done an admirable job of connecting the dots based on a FOIA request he had submitted to the FDIC, in which the insolvent (as of today) Deposit Insurer has provided Goldstein with a unique glimpse into the daily travails and activities of its boss, Sheila Bair, and how they may have a direct bearing on the future of none other, than a very troubled Chief Executive Officer.

Is Mary Schapiro Set For Another Showdown With Judge Rakoff

One of the pieces we highlights in today's frontrunning was commentary by Susan Antilla at Bloomberg, discussing the perfect world in which the SEC wasn't merely yet another tentacle of the Wall Street syndicate, slapping wrists and issuing statements now and then to remind of its worthless existence. One of Susan's points brilliantly Swiftian in its simplicity: "Considering the blinding evidence of dysfunction, it occurs to me that enough is enough. Why not just shut the place down?" Many would say this is such an obvious observation that it has escaped the thinking of the majority. Yet when this market bubble pops, which it eventually will, unless the Fed can somehow find a way to bring the value of the dollar to 0, a furious America will once again demand the heads of those who were supposed to oversee the irrational exuberance in progress. At that point Mary's tenure will be over, yet the travesty that is the SEC will likely continue in some form. However, there is a chance for an earlier resolution. Judge Rakoff, who so far has been the critical voice of sanity in a corrupt world, may cross paths with Mary even before her ultimate downfall. And he is not happy with the "regulators"

Why The SEC Is Irreperably Conflicted On The Issue Of High Frequency Trading

Dear Senator Kaufman, we at Zero Hedge applaud your effort to bring transparency to, and evaluate the various new forces that, for better or worse, determine the modern market landscape. However, we would like to bring to your attention a fact which renders your entire approach of seeking fair and unbiased commentary from the SEC irrevocably moot. The reason is that the SEC, in alignment with many of the very industry players who may be abusing market structure for their own tiered benefit, stands to benefit significantly from an increased amount of daytrading volume across all markets, and, in fact, based on actions as recent as 4 months ago by the SEC, the regulator is well aware of the monetary benefits that ever-increasing churn creates for the commission and is fully intent on capitalizing on them. We thus suggest you bypass any protocol that has an SEC intermediation and go directly to penning a Bill which, we trust, will prove to be more fair and objective than anything the SEC would ever provide you with. The reason for the SEC's insurmountable conflict of interest is the so-called Section 31.