Allen Stanford

Special Counsel Mueller Adds Another Obama Ally To His Team

With each passing day, it's looking increasingly like the only people qualified to serve on Special Counsel Mueller's investigative team are lawyers who have either directly worked for and/or contributed to the campaigns of Barack Obama and/or Hillary Clinton.

Frontrunning: June 15

  • Greece is Relevant: Central Banks Warn Greek-Led Euro Stress Threatens World (Bloomberg)
  • Greece is very Relevant: World Economies Prepare for Panic After Greek Polls (Reuters)
  • ECB's Draghi flags euro risks, spurs rate cut talk (Reuters)
  • And as usual, beggars can be choosers... Hollande Urges Common Euro Debt, Greater ECB Role (Reuters)
  • Wait and flee - Electoral uncertainty sends the economy into suspended animation (Economist)
  • The EU Smiled While Spain’s Banks Cooked the Books (Bloomberg)
  • Osborne’s £100bn Plan for UK Economy (FT)
  • Two Cheers for Britain’s Bank Reform Plans: Martin Wolf (FT)
  • BOJ Holds Policy Ahead of Greek Vote with Eye on Global Markets (Bloomberg)
  • China Hits Back at U.S. Criticisms at WTO (Reuters)

Obama Advisor, And Goldman Sachs Client, Gene Sperling Filibusters CNBC With "Shared Sacrifice" Speech In Response To Ryan Budget

Earlier we shared some perspectives on the just released Ryan 2013 budget. Shortly thereafter it was the turn of Obama aide and National Economic Council director Gene Sperling to give his spin. In what can only be characterized as an epic filibuster of none other than CNBC, Sperling spoke in length, literally, about shared sacrifice, about how math fails to matter in a new normal (and nominal) world, how trillions and trilions in underfunded welfare benefits (which even Goldman sees as untenable) are really just a matter of perspective, but mostly about how net tax revenues running below debt issuance (as reported here yesterday) are 'viable.' We leave our readers to make up their own minds. We just want to add the following highlights from a Bloomberg October 2009 article, which just may provide some more color on where and what Mr. Sperling's true allegienaces are.

Frontrunning: March 7

  • Key rate for $350 trillion market in limbo - Libor Links Deleted as U.K. Bank Group Backs Away From Rate (Bloomberg)
  • Rift Grows Between Germany's Bundesbank and ECB (Spiegel)
  • Athens issues threat to bond holdouts (FT)
  • SNB to Reveal Board Members’ Currency Transactions After Hildebrand Furor (Bloomberg)
  • Sarkozy Floats New Corporate Tax (WSJ)
  • Super Tuesday Ensures a GOP War of Attrition (WSJ)
  • Martin Wolf - The pain in Spain will test the euro (FT)
  • Refinancing Fees Are Reduced for Some F.H.A. Borrowers (NYT)

Allen Stanford Found Guilty Of Being Not Too Big To Fail; In Other News Jon Corzine Walking Free

In case anyone cares:


Of course, his real crime was not realizing that if you are going to get busted for ponzinomics, you better make sure everyone goes down with you. In the meantime, rejoice, sheep, for the theater of Ponzi crime and punishment continues. Then again one wonders: why are the perpetrators of the biggest Ponzi of all time, i.e., the central bankers, walking free? Or Jon Corzine for that matter?

Frontrunning: January 25

  • Angela Merkel casts doubt on saving Greece from financial meltdown (Guardian)
  • Germany Rejects ‘Indecent’ Call to ECB on Greece, Meister Says (Bloomberg)
  • Obama Calls for Higher Taxes on Wealthy (Bloomberg)
  • Fed set to push back timing of eventual rate hike (Reuters)
  • Recession Looms As UK Economy Shrinks By 0.2%, more than expected (SKY)
  • King Says BOE Can Increase Bond Purchases If Needed to Meet Inflation Goal (Bloomberg)
  • When One Quadrillion Yen is not enough: Japan's first trade deficit since 1980 raises debt doubts (Reuters)
  • Sarkozy to quit if he loses poll (FT)
  • U.S. Shifts Policy on Nuclear Pacts (WSJ)
  • ECB under pressure over Greek bond hit (FT)

Which US Banks Are Managing Billions For The $32 Billion Libyan Sovereign Wealth Fund?

Following the previous post taking a tangential if insightful peek into Gaddafi's personal eccentricities, we next look at something far more important, where once again courtesy of Wikileaks disclosure, we find that the Libyan Sovereign Wealth Fund (Libyan Investment Authority, or LIA), whose holdings were first dissected on Zero Hedge, and whose AUM is supposedly a massive $32 billion, has "several American banks each managing USD 300-500 million of the LIA's funds." Perhaps now that UniCredit has plunged by 12% in the past few days due to the recognition of Libya's involvement in the bank it is time for the US banks who manage billions in capital for the LIA, to step up. After all even most of the country's ambassadors have vocally recused themselves of any association with the government. Perhaps our banks can show a comparable level of objectivity and at the loss of a few million in management fees clean their conscience, before someone does it for them. Also curious is the fact that the LIA appears to have had its own direct involvement with a certified ponzi after having been approached by both Stanford (with a rumored investment by the LIA being the end result) as well as the one, the only, original (post-modern) ponzmaster, Bernie Madoff.

Is Mary Schapiro's Reign Of Negligent Incompetence About To End?

The Syndicate Encouraging Corruption lately has been far more busy begging for money from the Tim Geithner's gargantuan budget than performing any enforcement, analysis, or regulation, case in point today's second attempt to kill any investigation into the ML/BAC merger. We hope some Congressional or Senate committee will finally find the guts to subpoena any and all communication between BACML, or any other banks, and the SEC related to this proposed settlement, to uncover just what the SEC's motives are to fast-lane yet another case involving the endless corruption on Wall Street. Luckily Cuomo is still there to pursue the punishment of real wrongdoing, since America is now completely unable to rely on the $1 billion publicly funded organization, which, at least on paper, "works in American investors' interest"... and by American investors we assume the agency does not refer to Goldman Sachs or Bank Of America. Yet judgment day for Mary Schapiro may soon be coming. Larry Doyle at Sense on Cents notes that next week FINRA's board of directors will finally address alleged wrongdoings by Schapiro. We join Larry in asking: "Will the Board realize it ultimately needs to be accountable to ALL its member firms and, by extension, to the American public at large? Will the Obama administration compel the Board to provide the transparency America so badly wants?"

Goldman's $4 Billion High Frequency Trading Wildcard

A recent story in Advanced Trading goes after some of the minutae of High Frequency Trading and provides a glimpse of the total value that HFT may provide to behemoth PT powerhouses such as Goldman Sachs. The article presents a very valuable perspective on just why HFT is so critical these days, especially when cash traders go for 6 hour Starbucks breaks between 10 am and 3:30 pm: "high frequency trading firms, which represent approximately 2% of the 20,000 or so trading firms operating in the US markets today, account for 73% of all US equity trading volume. These companies include proprietary trading desks for a small number of major investment banks, less than 100 of the most sophisticated hedge funds and hundreds of the most secretive prop shops, all of which operate with one thing in mind—capture profit opportunities by being smarter and faster than the closest competition." And as the market keeps going up day in and day out, regardless of the deteriorating economic conditions, it is just these HFT's that determine the overall market direction, usually without fundamental or technical reason. And based on a few lines of code, retail investors get suckered into a rising market that has nothing to do with green shoots or some Chinese firms buying a few hundred extra Intel servers: HFTs are merely perpetuating the same ponzi market mythology last seen in the Madoff case, but on a massively larger scale. When it all blows up, the question is whether the SEC will go after the perpetrators of this pyramid with the same zeal that it pursued Madoff himself. We think not.

Overalottment: June 18

  • Schapiro says SEC to force more disclosure on "dark pools" (Bloomberg)
  • Senate attacks role of Fed in Geithner reform (FT)

Overalottment: June 18

  • Schapiro says SEC to force more disclosure on "dark pools" (Bloomberg)
  • Senate attacks role of Fed in Geithner reform (FT)
  • George Orwell deja vu headline presented tonight compliments of Bloomberg: Yen Weakens as Signs Global Slump Easing Spur Demand for Yield (Orwellberg)