Was The "Collapse" Of MF Global Premeditated? A Conspiracy Theory Thought Experiment

Tyler Durden's picture

 Derivatives, unlike stocks where the equation has always been murky, are for the most part zero-sum products: one's gain is someone else's loss (net of commissions) unless of course the entire system collapses in a daisylinked chain reaction (think AIG). And MF Global's bankruptcy, by dint of being a derivatives broker, and the resulting massive losses to both shareholders and clients, means that some entity, on the other side of all these failed bets, made off like a bandit. Which bring us to a rather disturbing theory proposed by Walter Burien of CAFR1.com who has floated the rather the chilling idea, and what some may call an outright conspiracy theory, that by scuttling MF, Corzine effectively helped some shell company (or companies) which were controlled by a "cabal" of his closest confidants (we will let readers come up with their own theories who the former CEO of Goldman Sachs may have been close with) to make the offsetting profit that resulted from the accelerated and massive losses borne by MF's stakeholders in the vicious liquidation. As Burien says: "A government and media cover up would just focus on MFG's loss. A true and open investigation would be focused on "who" took the other side of the coin; the profit." And now that we know that Corzine allegedly lied to the Senate, just how much deeper does his transgression go, and did his really hand over the company on a silver platter to some anonymous "Hold Co" by taking on massive risks he knew were going to blow up in his face, albeit knowing the "other" side of the trade would compensate him for it? After all, Corzine's legacy may have been forever tarnished, but if there was one thing the man knew after all those mostly successful years at Goldman, it was risk. So did he really blow up MF on a idiotic risk miscalculation bet within two years of joining, purely by mistake, or is there something more?

From CAFR1

"Collapse" of MF Global?


Corzine MFG

Corzine is a thief. He lost by trading activity the house's (MF GLOBAL) money to the tune of a billion dollars and then dipped into the client's money for 700 million dollars (almost a 2-billion dollar loss). It is the #1 criminal infraction that can be committed in the commodity futures market by using client's funds for a house posistion and with something of this magnitude the CFTC would have gotten an arrest and seizure order against Corzine from day-one when discovered if it was for other than the politically connected Corzine.

Here is the BIG point that needs to be immediately passed on to the public. In a situation like this the "loss" to MFG is just one side of the coin. The other side of the coin is who made the profit that counter balances with the loss.

If Corzine had this set up as an intentional sting operation,  in advance a shell trading company is established and for example purposes we will call it Hong Kong Trading Partners LTD. (HKTP) held in Singapore. The sting goes like this:

As Corzine through MFG takes a derivative futures market position HKTP takes the exact corresponding opposite position tit for tat to what MFG is entering into. The market goes against MFG creating a loss but now the equal profit is growing in HKTP.

MFG increases their position and HKTP likewise does the same and the market again goes "against" MFG and "for" HKTP.

Now for the play-out of the sting. It is announced MFG has taken this large position with their own funds and also did the primary no-no of using client's funds to back it.

Well, procedure is clear in this type of situation: "Forced liquidation of all positions held by MFG"

What this does is give HKTP the liquidity to get out of their position from MFG's forced liquidation without causing an adverse movement to HKTP's position when being liquidated. MFG's forced liquidation is HKTP's volume needed to get out of their position and lock in their profit. Wealth transfer complete; MFG and a few of their clients decimated, and none outside of the sting are the wiser if no one carefully looks at who was playing the other side of the position against MFG.

If Corzine and a few of his buddies set up a sting as noted above, as far as they are concerned, they did not loose 1. something billion dollars for MFG and MFG's clients, what they did was they transferred 1. something billion dollars to themselves through a shell global trading company(s).

In most cases when a sting like this plays out it is not just one shell company used to play the other side of the coin, usually it is spreed out between ten or more shell trading companies.

A government and media cover up would just focus on MFG's loss. A true and open investigation would be focused on "who" took the other side of the coin; the profit.

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Seasmoke's picture

i thought Corzines trade in itself did NOT lose any money ????????????....if so, it has to be something else

Pladizow's picture

What are the chances of this being the next episode of "American Greed" on CNBS?

FEDbuster's picture
Scavenging Soros: Market Speculator Buys Up $2 Billion of MF Global’s Debt


Too easy?


strannick's picture

If Corazine ends up in the clink, using his holding co. profits to pay for cigarettes and protection, then he's really bunged up his risk assesment, and needs to fire his actuary.

Then again, a Wall Street banker going to jail is a far more fantastic, outlandish notion than purposely blowing up your own company for profit.

I wonder how the US Military feels about this coup d'etat in motion, and serving fraudsters like Corzine, and slick buffoons like Obama, and harpies like Secretary of State Clinton

Since the US is a banana republic in all but Treasury bond yield, how long til some general says 'enough'?

ShankyS's picture

Can you spell Presidential Pardon? I'd suspect he's convicted by the end of Obummer's term and the according pardon comes right on cue. I would not be srprised if O was in on the action. Call it the ultimate fraud. 

ISEEIT's picture

"the Chicago way" comes to mind. I've long held that the 'progressive' movement, at the political level is merely an organized criminal gang. Graft is the blood that keeps the whole scheme afloat. The democratic party is nothing more than a scaled up version of your local SEIU mobster affiliate. Not saying the republican establishment is any better, just pointing out that criminal gangs run our country (and the world for that matter). 

If there is really any difference then it would be in underlying philosophy. Street 'progressives' have their hearts in the right place but commit the same basic error that 'street conservatives' commit; that is both demand for government to enforce by law or regulation moral/ethical restraints to individual Liberty.

In short they both wish to expand turf and utilize the cover of government to tilt the balance of power toward their individually favored path.



The dempublican con artist love to speak of revolution and or transformation.


Take the game away, take the credit card away and take your Liberty back.

Ron Paul.

We can do this people.


whatsinaname's picture

if Ron Paul gets elected will it not be bad for gold prices ?

Lore's picture

Quite the opposite. His policy would allow PMs to find a MARKET price.

Popo's picture

What's with the "honorable" title?

..or the use of a title at all?

Jena's picture

No.  If Ron Paul gets elected it will be good for gold prices.

Lost Wages's picture

He would have to go to a gold standard to fix the debt crisis and with the money supply the way it is, depending on which figure he used, M1 M2 M3, it could be anywhere from $12,500-$44,000/ounce. Jim Rickards and Max Keiser both talk about this.

smiler03's picture

Or I could grow another penis, slightly larger but complimenting my existing one and then fly circles around the Moon with my new gossamer wings.

Just sayin'

Teapot_Dome's picture


If we go back to a gold standard like Ron Paul wants I wouldn't be shocked if gold prices went up by a factor of 5.


It would be interesting too to see the President of the United States of America being completely ignored by the media.

Judge Arrow's picture

Were it so.  But, the fibrosis of corruption is all that keeps the body propped up and going here, there and well, everywhere. Should Paul get his wish and can implement even 10% of what he speaks of, the crash, boom, bang that you hear will be the gunfire around you. It is unfortunate but the shit is so thick that it is going to take brain surgery to pull the vital organs out of it and make a new financial entity work again. But a mad doctor with guns blazing, as much as I like that, will only cause chaos. To get there will take a decade just to keep a river of blood out of the streets, and that is looking on the bright side. Long bourbon, lead, gold, and shit.

Widowmaker's picture

Nah, I junked you because changing the money supply is just like a replacement credit card - 7 days or less.

The only thing that matters is relevancy of the new "money" -- will people buy it like they do the present debt based fiat(s)?

Ignorance is bliss's picture

Nixon moved us off the Gold standard overnight. Will there be some chaos and pain? Sure.. However, the alternative is a continuation of an all seeing all powerful corrupt Gov't monstrosity passing laws that essentially lock good Americans up forever and perhaps even advocate torture behind their veils of secrecy. History marches on...man stays the same. Looking at history as our guide, we need to be very afraid of our recent Gov't power grab. The devil needs to be put back in the bottle at all costs.

buyingsterling's picture

"...both (liberals and conservatives) demand for government to enforce by law or regulation moral/ethical restraints to individual

Last I checked, no big liberal politicians were pushing for drug legalization with any fervor. On virtually every important measure of liberty - property rights, the right to self defense, freedom of speech, freedom of religion - there are vast differences between liberals and conservatives.

In general, the left feels comfortable only if they are able to boss everyone around and loot openly. Republicans are comfortable only when people are aren't looting from them directly and not interfering with their secretive looting. Conservatives want to be left alone, and don't care what you do with your private parts, as long as you keep them to yourself. True conservatism means local control. The left equates that with homophobia, racism, and misogyny. You don't have to like any of the above mindsets, but to say they're the same simply isn't accurate.

People make the mistake of thinking that because conservatives are openly opposed to rampant anal sex and abortion, they want to restrict individual liberty. Even if you buy that, they're not for centralized control over _even those_ liberties. The left is for central control of everything.

saiybat's picture

Both Democrats and Republicans are real big on centralization. It's not just the left doing it. There's a big move toward a more centralized economy and both the Republicans and Democrats are pushing hard for it. I don't call them liberals or conservatives because those words don't mean in the mass delusion of politics what they are supposed to mean. Politics is all rhetoric and no matter what they say there is the constant push for more centralization in all aspects of governance. What does centralization ultimately lead to? Totalitarianism. There is no left or right and it's all a farce; there is only centralization and decentralization that has any historical relevancy. What you call a liberal and a conservative now will not be the same thing it 10 years from now, atleast in rhetoric because it needs to be constantly updated. A historian doesn't look at the demagoguery going on in past regimes, they look to how centralized the regime was and the effect of what the state did. George Washington back then if such a political system existed would be called a left wing extremist and today he'd be a right wing extremist. How would you even classify Julius Caesar in the politics of today? You can't but what he did was centralize all authority to himself.

Henry Hub's picture

Well now there's the solution to all our problems: a military coup d'etat. Just what this country needs. /sarc

Once you go down that road there is no turning back. Look throughout history. "some general saying enough..." is the end of the American Republic (democracy/freedom) and the start of military dictatorship. I hope I never live to see it.

el Gallinazo's picture

I think you have it ass backwards.  Isn't it usually generals who convert republics into banana republics?  The last general who told the American public the truth was one 5 star named Dwight D. Eisenhower on the way out the door 50 years ago.  It's probably General Betrayus who is now well positioned to say "enough" to the last vestages of the Republic.  See you at the KGB "FEMA" internment camps.  

I am sick of all this "blue team" - "red team" shit.  Wise up.  They are both working for the same franchise, the one up on the hill that sends the slops down the slide which tees into the left and right congressional troughs where all the pigs feed.

johansen's picture

That is a good question, how does the US Military feel about it.

For about 3 months in the office where I worked, I had a paper printed out and afixed to the side of my desk, clearly visible to all that walked in. It said: "Save a country, hang a banker." A superior took it down, I suspect on a complaint, or by direction.

This is a topic i would prefer to discus over secure channels. for the moment i will say: perhaps one out of 50 know what is going on.

kiwidor's picture

Wishful thinking on your part.  One doesn't get to be a general by being independently minded or altruistic towards civvies.

CIABS's picture

it's always good to try to figure out what really happened, but this example is pretty amateurish, and for various reasons unlikely.

corzine and chris flowers did not remain tight with goldman sachs.  corzine was ousted, and flowers resigned while at the height of his powers, when someone (probably paulson) blocked him from being included on the committee that was going to manage goldman's IPO, despite the fact that flowers ran the financial institutions investment banking practice for the firm.

corzine does not come close to fitting the neville chamberlain profile of a man who is willing to utterly discredit himself publicly and permanently in order to advance a secretive agenda on behalf of his elite cronies (which is what i believe chamberlain did).  on the contrary, i believe that corzine vowed the day he was ousted by goldman to get his revenge.  i believe he aspired to become president of the u.s.  he won a senate seat but then gave it up in order to run for governor, at a time when four of the last five presidents had been governors, but none of those five had ever been senators.  after losing the election for a second term as governor, he became a wall street CEO and wanted to turn his firm into a miniature goldman sachs.  at this point he was probably angling for the job of treasury secretary.  from that position he might have revived his presidential hopes and run in 2016 to succeed obama.

things seemed to be on track, and we should ask whether he unnecessarily set himself up for what has happened, or whether what he did was not actually as risky as it now seems.  if his bets did not lose money, as he claims, then perhaps the fall of MF was more a matter of its being maneuvered into failure through regulatory moves, ratings downgrades, and margin calls.  the motive, of course, was to prevent corzine from becoming treasury secretary and perhaps president afterward.

strannick's picture

Maybe its as simple as his CDS didnt payout because Greece was claimed not to have defaulted. Would be awfully naive of him to think his CDS were sancrosant and automatically payable though,

ISEEIT's picture

Might have been sheer narcisstic over-reach. He was lobbying for P.D. status. That is a very small, elite syndicate. They may not have much appreciated an uninvited wanna be attempting to get in on the 'pool'?

MayIMommaDogFace2theBananaPatch's picture

it's always good to try to figure out what really happened, but this example is pretty amateurish, and for various reasons unlikely.

You're talking about the example you've provided right?

Raymond Reason's picture

There is also a theory that the Comex defaulted, and MF Global bankruptcy was the fix. 

Sakka's picture

Seconded, the situation with Calente seems to make sense.

CIABS's picture

the comex explanation is possible.  if true, it would relate to the timing of the MF failure and add a motive.  i don't believe that corzine voluntarily self-destructed in order to bail out the comex and the metal shorts.

Dave Thomas's picture

Not by a long shot, the "American Greed" examples are tiny enough to warrant the full faith and credit of the US of A.


I.E. They didn't organize the heist.


Freddie's picture

Former NJ governor Democrat Jon Corzine let his pal Democrat bill Clinton loot MF Wordlwide to the tune of $50,000 a month with the approval of the muslim democrat. Democrat Bernie Madoff would be proud.  

ClassicalLib17's picture

I'm suspicious of the origin of your plus one, freddie. 

MayIMommaDogFace2theBananaPatch's picture

You are allowed to touch yourself, here, it is true.

ISEEIT's picture

Seriously. What's up with you Freddie? I'm thinking you might be of the same mold as robotrader. In house entertainment? Is that you Marla?

Strut's picture

Please see my post here for my take on your BS

WhatCouldGoWrong's picture

Commodity trading by it's vey nature is a zero sum game. When this crap first hit the news, my immediate reaction was; "whose on the other side of the trade?". I posted, at the time, my questions about the unseen machinations of this BS... and I'm still searching for an answer to the following question;

How many MFG customers were standing for delivery at the COMEX for PM's?  Were the contracts for delivery more than the available inventory? If contracts standing for delivery were more than available stocks, it would be far easier to wipe out the customers (contracts) by dissolving (blowing up) a company than admitting the system was insolvent. Easier?... it would be absolutely necessary!. Corzine might just be a good soldier doing his duty for the TPTB system. May 6th was a wakeup call to those that have assets at risk in the equity space. MFG is far more than a wakeup call... this is the horrible sceaching of ice on the hull of the Titanic. MFG is not a business failure, it is the first unraveling in a systemic failure. Beware, my friends, beware....

gorillaonyourback's picture

BINGO!!!!!!!     u win the prize of most illucidated  :)   

Strut's picture

100% on point.


"who is on the other side of the trade?"

... JPM first and foremost. We already saw JPM registered silver inventory go up almost exactly the amount of "missing" 1.4 MILLION ounces once registered to MFG right before the collapse.


The BIG question isn't commingling, its right here in the COMEX BS under everyone’s noses. 


P.S. MFGI is going to get interesting too.

hamstercheese's picture

any post that sounds plausible and makes me think "Holy Shit!" deserves acute attention.  If you continue on your line of reasoning (the calculus equivalent of defining 'the limit' of an intregal) a generalization can be predicted...no one will be safe in any paper assets in the long run.  The money printers armed with financial engineered WMDs can manipulate the price of anything, force liquidations, steal from accounts, erode wealth via inflation and taxes....honestly, ladies and gentlemen...the hypothesis this whole financial system made of toilet paper is eroding becomes more and more plausible to me each and every day.  You will not be able to own anything, no wealth whatsoever.  And if you take physical delivery of any wealth they will outlaw it for the benefit of the common good, and if you refuse they will make an example of you. 

Enough of anonymous corporate or governmental lables...we need names...names.

4horse's picture

take a wild fucking guess


corzine.paulson.bernanke.dimon.blankfein . . . mere hirelings



United States . . .  ?  . . . this is the Ukraine: fin de seicle PNAC < 20th

philipat's picture

To quote an Irishman, I wouldn't put anything past these Fuckshites!!

whatsinaname's picture

My thoughts exactly from day one !!

LeonardoFibonacci's picture

Erect the gallows, lads.  Once a century or so, it becomes obvious its time to use them again.

Widowmaker's picture

Same as the US Constitution, but entire states need to do the pushing -- start by cutting uncle sams fiscal tits.

I'll take Homeland Security and Education.

Buck Johnson's picture

This man has been in the financial game (the top of the game) for decades, and for him to do what he did and get sand bagged bullshit.  This was done for a reason, I just don't know why.