Sep 18

muppets-kermit-dead

- Goldman’s Former Head Of Housing Research Predicts Housing Crash, Recession Within Three Years (ZeroHedge, Sep 17, 2014):

When a former Goldman executive and the prior head of its housing research team comes out with a shocking analysis so contrary to what the same individual would do in his “former life” when he would be extolling the “inevitable” rise of home prices from here to eternity and beyond, and also throw in an open letter to none other than president Obama, predicting at least a 15% crash in home prices in the next three years, a move which would without debt catalyze the next US recession, it is time to pay attention. Meet Joshua Pollard, who in February 2009 took over coverage of US Housing at Goldman Sachs.  His point, in short: “House prices are 12% overvalued today. They have already started to decline. Today’s misvaluation matches the excess of 2006-07, just before the Great Recession… 5 of the last 7 US recessions were led by a weakening housing market… I am lamentably confident that home prices will fall by 15% within three years.” Or, as some may call it, crash.

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Jul 21

- Goldman Managing Director Found Dead In Apparent Kite Surfing Accident (ZeroHedge, July 21, 2014):

Police are still investigating the tragic death of 39-year-old Goldman Sachs Managing Director Nicholas Valtz this weekend. As Bloomberg reports, Valtz, a “novice kiteboarder,” was found dead yesterday by family members who went searching for him after he didn’t return from a kiteboarding outing. While there is no accusation of suicide in this case, it sadly brings the number of young financial services executives deaths to 16 this year.

20140721_valtz

As Bloomberg reports,

Nicholas Valtz, a managing director in cross-asset sales at Goldman Sachs in New York, was found in Napeague Harbor off the coast of Long Island, according to the East Hampton police. Valtz, 39, was a “novice kiteboarder” and was found floating in the water secured to his kite, police said in a statement released yesterday. Other kite gear was found in a grassy area of the harbor, police said. Continue reading »

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Jul 13

muppets-kermit-dead

Summary:

Recall that it was Goldman’s David Kostin who in January admitted that “The S&P500 Is Now Overvalued By Almost Any Measure.” It was then when the Goldman chief strategist admitted there was only 3% upside to the bank’s year end target of 1900.  Well, that hasn’t changed. In his latest note Kostin says that “S&P 500 now trades at 16.1x forward 12-month consensus EPS and 16.5x our top-down forecast… the only time S&P 500 traded at a higher multiple than today was during the 1997-2000 Tech bubble when margins were 25% (250 bp) lower than today. S&P 500 also trades at high EV/sales and EV/EBITDA multiples relative to history. The cyclically-adjusted P/E ratio suggests S&P 500 is now 30%-45% overvalued compared with the average since 1928.” And this is where Goldman just goes apeshit full retard: “we lift our year-end 2014 S&P 500 price target to 2050 (from 1900) and 12-month target to 2075, reflecting prospective returns of 4% and 6%, respectively.

Wait, what???

- Goldman Admits Market 40% Overvalued, Economy Slowing, So… Time To Boost The S&P Target To 2050 From 1900 (Zerohedge, July 12, 2014):

One has to give it to Goldman Sachs: the bank which until a few years ago just couldn’t lose a penny, is about to report earnings which will, even if they beat Wall Street’s estimate, be an embarrassment to the bank that openly used to run the world until very recently. The reason, aside from the moribund economy, is that trading volumes have plummeted at an unprecedented pace as i) nobody trusts the centrally-planned capital markets any more and ii) valuations are, despite what permbulls can say on TV stations with record low viewership, so ridiculous few if any would actually go long here. Continue reading »

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Jul 03

- India’s Central Bank Will Sell Gold on the Market in Exchange for Gold at the Bank of England (Liberty Blitzkrieg, July 2, 2014):

India’s gold policy over the last several years is about as dysfunctional as any government policy I have ever seen, and that’s saying a lot. In case you need a reminder, here are a few posts I have written on the subject:

The Times of India: “Almost Every Passenger on a Flight from Dubai to Calicut Was Found Carrying 1kg of Gold”

Gold Smuggling Increases 7x in India and Surpasses Illegal Drug Trade

Indian Temples Fight Back Against Government Gold Grabbing Plot

In a nutshell, Indians were buying too much gold for their government’s comfort, so the “authorities” stepped in with duties and import restrictions in an attempt to stifle the trade. So smuggling soared.

Fast forward to today. It appears the government has finally realized they can’t stop their citizens penchant for gold, so they have decided to dump central bank gold onto the market. What is incredible to me is that they are justifying this with a so-called “swap” into phantom gold at the Bank of England. The favored global hub of shady, rent-seeking, banker oligarchs.

What’s even more interesting about this is the fact that so many Central Banks seems to be swapping or selling their gold to Western interests. Most notably Ecuador selling to Goldman Sachs, which I highlighted in the piece: Ecuador to Transfer More Than Half its Gold Reserves to Goldman Sachs in Exchange for “Liquidity.”

Now from Reuters:

MUMBAI, July 2 (Reuters) – India’s central bank said on Wednesday it has sought quotes from banks to swap gold in its own vaults for international-standard gold, aiming to improve the management of its reserves.

Continue reading »

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Jun 26

- Up To $80 Billion Gold-Backed Loans Are Falsified, Chinese Auditor Warns (ZeroHedge, June 26, 2014):

As the probe into alleged fraud at Qingdao continues to escalate (with liquidity needs growing more and more evident as Chinese money-market rates surge), Bloomberg reports that China’s chief auditor discovered 94.4 billion yuan ($15.2 billion) of loans backed by falsified gold transactions, in “the first official confirmation of what many people have suspected for a long time – that gold is widely used in Chinese commodity financing deals.” As much as 1,000 tons of gold may have been used in lending and leasing deals in China and Goldman reports that up to $80 billion false-loans may involve gold. As one analyst noted, this was unlikely to have a significant impact on the underlying demand for gold in China and as we have pointed out before, any unwind of the Gold CFDs would lead to buying back of ‘paper’ gold hedges and implicitly a rise in prices.

As Bloomberg reports,

China’s chief auditor discovered 94.4 billion yuan ($15.2 billion) of loans backed by falsified gold transactions, adding to signs of possible fraud in commodities financing deals.

As much as 1,000 tons of gold may have been used in lending and leasing deals in China, where commodities including metals and agricultural products are used to get credit amid lending restrictions, according to World Gold Council estimates. Continue reading »

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Jun 25


Added: Mar 30, 2014

Description:

http://usawatchdog.com/zero-prosecuti… Fraud expert and former regulator Professor William Black says, “Even today, we are well into 2014, and the Department of Justice record is intact. There have been zero prosecutions of the elite officers who led the epic epidemic of fraud. It was the most destructive in world history, zero of them even unsuccessfully prosecuted, much less prosecuted.”

What is the result of massive rampant unprosecuted fraud? Professor Black says, “If you don’t have any accountability, you not only make certain that there is going to be a next blow-up, but it will be worse. . . . We have effectively removed the criminal laws for a particular elite class of frauds.”

Join Greg Hunter of USAWatchdog.com as he goes One-on-One with Professor William Black of UMKC.

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Jun 14

- 12 Numbers About The Global Financial Ponzi Scheme That Should Be Burned Into Your Brain (Economic Collapse, June 11, 2014):

The numbers that you are about to see are likely to shock you.  They prove that the global financial Ponzi scheme is far more extensive than most people would ever dare to imagine.  As you will see below, the total amount of debt in the world is now more than three times greater than global GDP.  In other words, you could take every single good and service produced on the entire planet this year, next year and the year after that and it still would not be enough to pay off all the debt.  But even that number pales in comparison to the exposure that big global banks have to derivatives contracts.  It is hard to put into words how reckless they have been.  At the low end of the estimates, the total exposure that global banks have to derivatives contracts is 710 trillion dollars.  That is an amount of money that is almost unimaginable.  And the reality of the matter is that there is really not all that much actual “money” in circulation today.  In fact, as you will read about below, there is only a little bit more than a trillion dollars of U.S. currency that you can actually hold in your hands in existence.  If we all went out and tried to close our bank accounts and investment portfolios all at once, that would create a major league crisis.  The truth is that our financial system is little more than a giant pyramid scheme that is based on debt and paper promises.  It is literally a miracle that it has survived for so long without collapsing already. Continue reading »

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Jun 08

From the article:

“Of course, since neither facts, nor news, nor events, nor anything matters in a centrally-planned market, just BTFATH.”


follow the money

The Mystery Grows: Goldman Finds That Virtually Everyone “Sold In May” (ZeroHedge, June 8, 2014):

The great mystery of the endlessly levitating market continues to confound everyone, even Goldman Sachs. Because while the market soared in May (and has continue to surge in June) contrary to the sell in May mantra, when peeking beneath the market’s covers, Goldman has found that most investor groups did just as they are supposed to do for this time of the year: they sold!

From Goldman’s David Kostin: Continue reading »

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Jun 02

You can’t make this stuff up!

Related info:

- THE BLAZE: What Really Happened To The German Gold Housed In The United States? (Video)

Gold_being_melted


- Ecuador to Transfer More Than Half its Gold Reserves to Goldman Sachs in Exchange for “Liquidity” (Liberty Blitzkrieg, June 2, 2014):

This is a great example of how the game works. In a world in which every government on earth needs “liquidity” to survive, and the primary goal of every government is and always has been survival (the retention of arbitrary power at all costs), the provider of liquidity is king. So what is liquidity and who provides it?

In the current financial system (post Bretton Woods), the primary engine of global liquidity is the U.S. dollar and dollar based assets generally as a result of  its reserve currency status. Ever since Nixon defaulted on the U.S. dollar’s gold backing in 1971, the creation of this “liquidity” has zero restrictions whatsoever and is merely based on the whims and desires of the central planners in chief, i.e., the Federal Reserve. As the primary creator of the liquidity that every government on earth needs to survive, the Federal Reserve is thus the most powerful player globally in not only economic, but also geopolitical affairs.

The example of the so-called sovereign nation of Ecuador relinquishing its gold reserves to Goldman Sachs for “liquidity” which can be conjured up by the Fed on a whim and at zero cost tells you all you need to know about how the world works (read my post: Why Fiat Money is Immoral).

Now from Bloomberg: Continue reading »

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May 27

Related info:

- The Elephant In The Room: Deutsche Bank’s $75 TRILLION In Derivatives Is 20 Times Greater Than German GDP


- The Size Of The Derivatives Bubble Hanging Over The Global Economy Hits A Record High (Economic Collapse, May 26, 2014):

The global derivatives bubble is now 20 percent bigger than it was just before the last great financial crisis struck in 2008.  It is a financial bubble far larger than anything the world has ever seen, and when it finally bursts it is going to be a complete and utter nightmare for the financial system of the planet.  According to the Bank for International Settlements, the total notional value of derivatives contracts around the world has ballooned to an astounding 710 trillion dollars ($710,000,000,000,000).  Other estimates put the grand total well over a quadrillion dollars.  If that sounds like a lot of money, that is because it is.  For example, U.S. GDP is projected to be in the neighborhood of around 17 trillion dollars for 2014.  So 710 trillion dollars is an amount of money that is almost incomprehensible.  Instead of actually doing something about the insanely reckless behavior of the big banks, our leaders have allowed the derivatives bubble and these banks to get larger than ever.  In fact, as I have written about previously, the big Wall Street banks are collectively 37 percent larger than they were just prior to the last recession.  “Too big to fail” is a far more massive problem than it was the last time around, and at some point this derivatives bubble is going to burst and start taking those banks down.  When that day arrives, we are going to be facing a crisis that is going to make 2008 look like a Sunday picnic.

If you do not know what a derivative is, Mayra Rodríguez Valladares, a managing principal at MRV Associates, provided a pretty good definition in her recent article for the New York Times: Continue reading »

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Apr 30

Bill-Gates-Monsanto


Rothschild

The following is a comment by reader vjklmno:

ROTHSCHILDS THROUGH MONSANTO, GOLDMAN SACHS, EXXON, GOOGLE, OBAMA, NATO, RENZI AND MERKEL PUSH FOR NEW WORLD ORDER

” WTO: Global trade to gain speed in 2014 and 2015 14 April 2014
…………………
The agency’s director general, Roberto Azevedo, said that just waiting for an automatic increase in trade was not enough.
He called for new trade liberalisation agreements, in particular the negotiations known as the Doha Round. ” http://www.bbc.com/news/business-27025011

AMONG THESE NEW TRADE LIBERALISATION AGREEMENTS THERE ARE THE TTIP (TRANSATLANTIC TRADE AND INVESTMENT PARTNERSHIP) AND THE TPP (TRANS-PACIFIC PARTNERSHIP).

” The threat of the US-EU trade deal http://morningstaronline.co.uk/a-6dea-The-threat-of-the-US-EU-trade-deal

Friday 28th Februay 2014

Continue reading »

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Apr 23

- Goldman Sachs Stands Firm as Banks Exit Commodity Trading (Blomberg, April 23, 2014):

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS), whose three top executives began their careers at the firm in the commodity-trading unit, is poised to gain market share as pressure from regulators drives competitors to scale back.

Barclays Plc (BARC), the U.K.’s second-largest bank, said that it’s exiting commodities businesses other than trading precious metals and derivatives tied to oil, U.S. gas and commodity indexes. In January, the London-based bank cut jobs in the group that traded raw materials and in February shut power-trading desks in the U.S. and Europe.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) last month announced the $3.5 billion sale of its raw-materials trading unit to Mercuria Energy Group Ltd. and Morgan Stanley (MS) plans to sell its physical oil business to Russia’s OAO Rosneft. Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Barclays and JPMorgan were the biggest traders of commodity derivatives among banks, according to a Greenwich Associates survey last year.

“The more banks that exit commodities trading, the less competitive it becomes for the banks which stick with it,” Jeffery Harte, an analyst at Sandler O’Neill & Partners LP, said in a phone interview. Goldman Sachs has “the bigger franchise to be a winner. It now has a much bigger piece of a much smaller pie.” Continue reading »

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Apr 14

From the article:

“Because one can just as easily make the case that as the global financial house of cards, teetering since the great financial crisis of 2008, and upright only thanks to the explicit “wealth effect” support of the final backstop – the world’s money printers – any protracted downward move which implicitly crushes the faith in the monetary religion, and crushes the uber-leveraged smart money community, will make the “drawdown” in both momo and S&P500 stocks in March 2000 seem like a pleasant walk in the part compared to what may be coming.”


- “Shadows Of March 2000″ – Goldman On The Great Momo Crash Of 2014 (Zerohedge, April 14, 2014):

Behold the great momo basket which after being the source of so much joy for momentum chasers over the past year, has mutated into the source of so much sorrow over the past two weeks.

Momo basket

We have bad news for hedge funds who, like Hugh Hendry in December of last year, threw fundamentals and caution to the wind and, with great reservations, jumped into this momo bandwagon in which mere buying beget more buying until nobody knew why anyone bought in the first place… and then everything crashed, leading to the worst day for hedge funds in a decade: according to Goldman’s David Kostin, whose job is to be a cheerleader for the intangible “wealth effect” leading to all too tangible Goldman bonuses: “The stock market will likely recover during the next few months… but not momentum stocks.”

Behold the (not so) great Momo crash of 2014:

SPX momo GS

First the bad news: according to Goldman not only will the momo stocks not rebound to previous highs and resume their leadership role, but clients increasingly are wondering if this is the second coming of the dot com bubble burst.

Conversations we are having with clients: Momentum reversal and the shadow of 2000

Our client discussions this week focused on two topics: Momentum reversal and comparisons between today and March 2000. Two questions dominated: “When will the reversal end?” and “Will the sell-off in momentum stocks drive a market-wide price decline as occurred in 2000?”

During the past month, momentum has plunged by 7%, a 10th percentile ranking of all monthly momentum returns since 1980. We define “momentum” as the relative performance of the best vs. worst performing S&P 500 stocks during the prior 12 months. We identified 46 similar distinct 10th percentile “drawdowns” with an average one-month return of -8% and a cumulative -10% return during six months.

Historical experience suggests the S&P 500, but not momentum, will likely recover during the next few months. Following the drawdowns, S&P 500 posted a 6-month return averaging +5% and delivered a positive return 70% of the time. Momentum declined by a further 4% on average, and 60% of the time the stocks posted a negative return.

Analysis of historical trading patterns around momentum drawdowns shows: (a) roughly 70% of the reversal is behind us following a 7% unwind during the last month; (b) an additional 3% downside exists to the momentum reversal during the next three months if the current episode follows the average historical experience; (c) if the pattern followed the path of a 25th percentile event a further 7% momentum downside would occur, or about double the reversal that has taken place so far; and (d) whenever the drawdown ends, momentum typically does NOT resume leadership. The best performing stocks during the 12 months leading up to the start of the drawdown do not subsequently outperform (see Exhibit 2).

MOMO performance after momo crash_0

So what are the good news? Well, Goldman is bullish on the non-MOMO stocks, which it sees as rising during the next 6 months by, if history is any precedent, 5%. Of course, the market merely regaining its all time highs by October will hardly please the investor community which is used to 20%+ return year after year. After all someone must benefit from the Fed’s ludicrous actions.

S&P 500 Index performance during 46 momentum reversals since 1980 suggests the broad market will likely rise steadily during the next six months by an average of 5%. Based on a current S&P 500 index level of 1815, a 5% rise would lift the index to just above 1900 which is our year-end 2014 forecast. A 25th percentile trajectory implies a flat equity market during the next six months while tracking at the 75th percentile would see S&P 500 climb by 15% to 2090 by the end of 3Q (see Exhibit 3).

S&P performance after momo crash

But most interesting is Goldman’s attempt to deny that this is the second coming of March 2000:

One historical momentum drawdown has come up repeatedly in recent conversations with clients: March 2000. The current sell-off in high growth and high valuation stocks, with a concentration in technology subsectors, has some similarities to the popping of the tech bubble in 2000.

Veteran investors will recall S&P 500 and tech-heavy Nasdaq peaked in March 2000. The indices eventually fell by 50% and 75%, respectively. It took the S&P 500 seven years to recover and establish a new high but Nasdaq still remains 25% below its all-time peak reached 14 years ago.

We believe the differences between 2000 and today are more important than the similarities and the recent momentum drawdown is unlikely to
precipitate a more extensive fall in share prices:

  • Recent returns are less dramatic. Although the trailing 12-month returns are similar (22% today versus 18% in 2000), the trailing 3-year and 5-year returns are much lower (51% vs. 107% and 161% vs. 227%, respectively).
  • Valuation is not nearly as stretched. S&P 500 currently trades at a forward P/E of 16x compared with 25x at the peak in 2000. The price/book ratio is 2.7x versus 6.Xx. The EV/sales is currently 1.8x compared with 2.7x in 2000.
  • More balanced market. The reason it is called the “Tech Bubble” is that 14% of the earnings of the S&P 500 came from Tech in 2000 but it accounted for 33% of the equity cap of the index. Today Tech contributes 19% of both earnings and market cap. Top five stocks in 2000 were 18% vs. 11% today.
  • Earnings growth expectations are far less aggressive. Bottom-up 2014 consensus EPS growth currently equals 9%, close to our top-down forecast of 8%. In 2000, consensus expected EPS growth equaled 17%.
  • Interest rates are dramatically lower. 3-month Treasury yields were 5.9% in 2000 vs. 0.05% today while ten-year yields were 6.0% vs. 2.7% today. The yield curve was inverted by 47 bp. Today the slope equals +229 bp.
  • Less new issuance. During 1Q 2000, 115 IPOs were completed for proceeds of $18 billion. In 1Q 2014, 63 completed deals raised $11 billion.

All great points, yet one thing is conspicuously missing and perhaps Goldman can clarify:

  • how much debt as a percentage of global GDP was held by the world’s major central banks then and now, and
  • how much consolidated global leverage, including shadow banking in both the US and China, as well as how many hundreds of trillions of derivatives notional outstanding existed then… and now

Because one can just as easily make the case that as the global financial house of cards, teetering since the great financial crisis of 2008, and upright only thanks to the explicit “wealth effect” support of the final backstop – the world’s money printers – any protracted downward move which implicitly crushes the faith in the monetary religion, and crushes the uber-leveraged smart money community, will make the “drawdown” in both momo and S&P500 stocks in March 2000 seem like a pleasant walk in the part compared to what may be coming.

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Apr 11

From the article:

Perhaps, like Goldman, Fidelity knows that “unless things change, there’s going to be a massive crash – a flash crash times ten…”


- The HFT Blowback Continues: Fidelity Creates New Trading Venue (ZeroHedge, April 10, 2014):

In what the firm believes will be an improvement over other so-called dark pools because it will be a collaboration among big mutual-fund firms, WSJ reports that the giant fund manager is quietly building a new trading venue designed to let big money managers sidestep many of the problems that they argue lead to unfair or costly trading – i.e. avoid the HFT predation. Fidelity, with $1.95 trillion of assets under management, is in the initial stages of planning the trading venue and has just begun to pitch the idea to other large asset managers. It seems 5 years of vociferous exposure and a Michael Lewis book may be beginning to starve the HFTs of their prey.

As WSJ reports,

Continue reading »

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Apr 06

- All The Presidents’ Bankers: The Hidden Alliances That Drive American Power (ZeroHedge, April 5, 2014):

The following is an excerpt from ALL THE PRESIDENTS’ BANKERS: The Hidden Alliances that Drive American Power by Nomi Prins (on sale April 8, 2014).  Reprinted with permission from Nation Books. Nomi Prins is a former managing director at Goldman Sachs.

Lloyd Blankfein, James Dimon, John Mack, Brian Moynihan

NIXON’S BANKERS: When What Was Good for Wall Street Was Good for the President

Wall Street’s War

While the protests against the Vietnam War intensified in the first years of the Nixon administration, the financial elite was fighting its own war—over the future of banking and against Glass-Steagall regulations. National City Bank chairman Walter Wriston was a steadfast warrior in related battles, as he fought with Chase chairman David Rockefeller for supremacy over the US banker community and for dominance over global finance.

Rockefeller’s sights were set on a grander prize, one with worldwide implications: ending the financial cold war. He made his mark in that regard by opening the first US bank in Moscow since the 1920s, and the first in Beijing since the 1949 revolution.

Continue reading »

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Mar 31

Prepare for collapse.


- High Frequency Trading: Why Now And What Happens Next (ZeroHedge, March 31, 2014):

For all the talk about how High Frequency Trading has rigged markets, most seem to be ignoring the two most obvious questions: why now and what happens next?

Continue reading »

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Mar 23

- Which Firm Controls “The World’s Most Powerful Address”? (ZeroHedge, March 23, 2014):

For the answer of which firm is responsible, and has the largest number of current and former tenants occupying the building located at 15 CPW which we profiled before, and which Bloomberg TV defines as the “world’s most powerful address” – a location whose residents control nearly half a trillion in assets under management – fast forward to 3:20 in the clip below. Hint: listen for the “dog whistle.” 

(click here if the video does not appear)

For those curious, here are some additional facts about 15 CPW courtesy of Curbed. Continue reading »

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Mar 21

- Goldman Doubles Down Its Hate On The Best Performing Asset Of 2014: Gold (ZeroHedge, March 21, 2014):

As gold completes its golden cross today and remains by far the best-performing asset of 2014, we thought it intriguing that Goldman Sachs’ commodity group would issue a strong “sell your gold” recommendation… of course, when Goldman’s clients are selling, who is buying? As a reminder, the last time the bank was extremely bearish on gold (about a year ago), our skepticism at the time was well warranted as Goldman was in fact the largest buyer of gold in the following quarter.

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Mar 05

See also:

- NOT The Onion: Fabrice ‘Fabulous Fab’ Tourre To Teach Economics Class At University Of Chicago


- “Fabulous Fab” Fired From Financial Faculty (ZeroHedge, March 4, 2014):

Just six brief days after we discussed the somewhat stunning fact that none other than Fabrice “Fabulous Fab” Tourre was set to each an economics course at the University of Chicago, it appears the prestigious school has had second thoughts. As WSJ reports, a university spokesman explained, “as preparations continue for the Spring Quarter, Fabrice Tourre will no longer be assigned as an instructor for Honors Elements of Economic Analysis,” decling to comment on the specifics of the sudden change. We are sure there is an ‘ethics’ course that needs a TA.

Via WSJ,

Mr. Tourre, the former Goldman Sachs trader found liable for defrauding investors, will no longer teach an honors economics course to undergraduate students at the University of Chicago. The move is an abrupt change, considering Mr. Tourre , nicknamed as the “Fabulous Fab,” had been slated to begin teaching the course during the spring quarter, which begins later this month. Continue reading »

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Feb 27

- Fabrice “Fabulous Fab” Tourre to Teach Economics Class at University of Chicago (Liberty Blitzkrieg, Feb 26, 2014):

Just in case you thought for a second that the sorry discipline we call economics couldn’t stoop any further into the gutter of academic idiocy and irrelevance, think again. It’s now being reported that ex-Goldman Sachs trader Fabrice “Fabulous Fab” Tourre (recently convicted on six counts of securities fraud) will be teaching an honors economics class at the “prestigious” University of Chicago.

There’s nothing like an esteemed University setting the already culturally accepted example that ethics are for suckers. Stealing, cheating and corruption are the values most exalted in today’s world. It doesn’t matter how you achieve your wealth, as long as you attain it. After all, it’s not as if you’ll ever get in trouble for it as long as you work for a “Too Big to Jail” bank.

From the UK’s Telegraph:

Fabrice Tourre, the former Goldman Sachs trader convicted on six counts of securities fraud six months ago, will teach an honours class in economics at the University of Chicago this spring.

Continue reading »

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Feb 13

Banks are no longer just financing heavy industry. They are actually buying it up and inventing bigger, bolder and scarier scams than ever

- The Vampire Squid Strikes Again: The Mega Banks’ Most Devious Scam Yet (Rolling Stone, Feb 12, 2014):

Banks are no longer just financing heavy industry. They are actually buying it up and inventing bigger, bolder and scarier scams than ever

all it the loophole that destroyed the world. It’s 1999, the tail end of the Clinton years. While the rest of America obsesses over Monica Lewinsky, Columbine and Mark McGwire’s biceps, Congress is feverishly crafting what could yet prove to be one of the most transformative laws in the history of our economy – a law that would make possible a broader concentration of financial and industrial power than we’ve seen in more than a century.

But the crazy thing is, nobody at the time quite knew it. Most observers on the Hill thought the Financial Services Modernization Act of 1999 – also known as the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act – was just the latest and boldest in a long line of deregulatory handouts to Wall Street that had begun in the Reagan years.

Continue reading »

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Feb 06

- New York regulator demands bank documents as investigation widens (Guardian, Feb 5, 2014):

Goldman Sachs and Barclays among banks investigated after reports some traders shared information about currency positions

New York state’s top financial regulator has demanded documents from more than a dozen banks including Barclays, Deutsche, Goldman Sachs and RBS as a probe widened into trading practices in the $5.3tn-a-day global foreign exchange markets.

Benjamin Lawsky, New York’s financial services superintendent, made the move following the banks’ decision to fire or suspend at least 20 traders following reports that employees at some firms had shared information about their currency positions with counterparts at other companies.

Continue reading »

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Feb 05

… and pray for the Fed to print MORE ‘heroin’.

My outlook for all the ‘muppets’(clients) out there that still trust Goldman, JPMorgan, Fidelity or …:

muppets-kermit-dead

Here is what happened to the ‘muppets’ before:

1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

Related info:

- Marc Faber: ‘Insiders Are Selling Their Shares Like Crazy … I Own PHYSICAL Gold Because The Old System Will Implode. Those Who Own Paper Assets Are DOOMED.

The greatest financial/economic collapse in world history is coming.

The entire financial system will collapse.

I would NOT want to be invested in (toilet) paper assets and get completely wiped out.


- Goldman to Fidelity Call for Calm After Global Stock Wipeout (Bloomberg, Feb 4, 2014):

Panic is making an enemy of telephones for Catherine Yeung, the director for equities at Fidelity Investment Management Ltd. in Hong Kong.

“My children hate that BlackBerry,” said Yeung, whose clients have been calling amid two weeks of declines that erased $3 trillion from global stocks. She’s advising calm, noting that profits are rising and shares just got a lot less expensive.

Continue reading »

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Jan 16

- Average Pay Of Goldman Banker Rises To $383,374 On Expectations Beat Despite Plunge In Order Flow (ZeroHedge, Jan 16, 2014):

Yesterday Bank of America beat thanks to (among other things) ye olde “plunge in the effective tax rate” gimmick which let it beat EPS by two cents instead of missing by three. Today it was Goldman’s turn to “beat” lowered EPS expectations of $4.18, posting a substantial beat of $4.60. So did Goldman also fudge its tax rate? Not exactly: instead, what Goldman did was to reduce its compensation benefits from $2.4 billion to $2.2 billion, which meant the firm’s compensation margin declined from 35.2% to a tiny 24.9% of revenue. Had Goldman kept the comp margin flat it would have missed EPS by about 50 cents. However, unlike the other “banks” Goldman at least did post a notable beat in GAAP revenues (it was reluctant to use a non-GAAP top line, hear that Jamie?) as well, with Q4 sales rising from $6.7 billion in Q3 to $8.8 billion, on expectations of $7.8 billion. However, compared to a year ago, the top line was 5% lower, while Net Income of $4.60 was 21% lower than a year earlier.

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Jan 14

- Why Is Goldman Sachs Warning That The Stock Market Could Decline By 10 Percent Or More? (Economic Collapse, Jan 13, 2014):

Why has Goldman Sachs chosen this moment to publicly declare that stocks are overpriced?  Why has Goldman Sachs suddenly decided to warn all of us that the stock market could decline by 10 percent or more in the coming months?  Goldman Sachs has to know that when they release a report like this that it will move the market.  And that is precisely what happened on Monday.  U.S. stocks dropped precipitously.  So is Goldman Sachs just honestly trying to warn their clients that stocks may have become overvalued at this point, or is another agenda at work here?  To be fair, the truth is that all of the big banks should be warning their clients about the stock market bubble.  Personally, I have stated that the stock market has officially entered “crazytown territory“.  So it would be hard to blame Goldman Sachs for trying to tell the truth.  But Goldman Sachs also had to know that a warning that the stock market could potentially fall by more than 10 percent would rattle nerves on Wall Street.

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Jan 09

Goldman-Muppets

- Muppets Crucified After Goldman Closes One Of Its “Top Trades For 2014″ At A 13.5% Loss Less Than A Week Into 2014 (ZeroHedge, Jan 7, 2014):

That didn’t take long.

On December 2, in its fourth Top Trade recommendation of the year, Goldman urged its clients to go “Long China Stocks, Short Copper.” This is how we decribed the trade: “Goldman is selling China equities (via the HSCWI Index), while buying copper (via Dec 2014 futs), or at least advising its flow clients to do the opposite while admitting that “for the long China equity/short commodity pair trade to “work” best, these two assets, which are usually positively correlated, will have to move in opposite directions.” For that and many other reasons why betting on a divergence of two very closely correlating assets will lead to suffering, read on. Finally – do as Goldman says, or as it does? That is the eternal question, one whose answer is a tad more problematic since the author in this case is not Tom Stolper but Noah Weisberger.” One week into the new year we have the answer.

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Dec 23

New-World-Order-13

- On The 100th Anniversary Of The Federal Reserve Here Are 100 Reasons To Shut It Down Forever (Economic Collapse, Dec 22, 2013):

December 23rd, 1913 is a date which will live in infamy.  That was the day when the Federal Reserve Act was pushed through Congress.  Many members of Congress were absent that day, and the general public was distracted with holiday preparations.  Now we have reached the 100th anniversary of the Federal Reserve, and most Americans still don’t know what it actually is or how it functions.  But understanding the Federal Reserve is absolutely critical, because the Fed is at the very heart of our economic problems.

Since the Federal Reserve was created, there have been 18 recessions or depressions, the value of the U.S. dollar has declined by 98 percent, and the U.S. national debt has gotten more than 5000 times larger.  This insidious debt-based financial system has literally made debt slaves out of all of us, and it is systematically destroying the bright future that our children and our grandchildren were supposed to have.

If nothing is done, we are inevitably heading for a massive amount of economic pain as a nation.  So please share this article with as many people as you can.

The following are 100 reasons why the Federal Reserve should be shut down forever: Continue reading »

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Nov 21

- Is Venezuela Selling Gold to Goldman Sachs? (Liberty Blitzkrieg, Nov 20, 2013):

The following article was published in the Venezuelan newspaper El Nacional, and it appears to imply that the struggling South American nation has agreed to sell or swap the gold it still holds overseas at the Bank of England to Goldman Sachs.

This is one of the major problems with gold. Despite what some may say, it is probably the most manipulated asset on the planet. Given the fact that so much of the gold is in the hands of sovereign nations and Central Banks that can be pressured by the U.S. empire, this is what happens. In fact, as I have said on many occasions, many of the Central Bank purchases we hear about do not consist of countries actually moving gold to within their borders, but rather just paper purchases. This does nothing to tighten supply/demand for gold. The main countries who’s Central Banks actually appear to buy and deliver gold within their borders are China, Russia, Iran, and well, Venezuela. Until that changes, gold will be relatively easily manipulated, which is exactly why I support Bitcoin and why is taking off as it has.

From a sentiment perspective I think gold is buy, but personally I am waiting to see if we get one more major flush.

Here are excepts from the article courtesy of GATA. I believe it is a google translation and the actual sourced article in Spanish can be found here.

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Oct 11


Carmen Segarra outside the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, on Oct. 10, 2013. In a wrongful termination lawsuit, Segarra says she was fired by the Fed after she refused to change a finding Goldman Sachs had inadequate controls over conflicts of interest.

- Goldman “Whistleblower” Sues NY Fed For Wrongful Termination (ZeroHedge, Oct 10, 2013):

After seven months of investigating Goldman Sachs’ legal and compliance divisions, former NYFed examiner Carmen Segarra found numerous conflicts of interest and breach of client ethics (specifically related to three transactions – Solyndra, Capmark, and the El Paso / Kinder Morgan deal) that she believed warranted a downgrade of Goldman’s regulatory rating. Her bosses were not happy, concerned that this action would hurt Goldman’s ability to do business, and, she alleges, they urged her to change her position. She refused, and as Reuters reports, she was fired and escorted from the building. “I was just documenting what Goldman was doing,” she said. “If I was not able to push through something that obvious, the [NY Fed] certainly won’t be capable of supervising banks when even more serious issues arise.”

Via Reuters,

A former senior bank examiner at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York filed a wrongful termination lawsuit on Thursday, saying she was fired after refusing to alter a critical examination of Goldman Sachs Group Inc.

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Oct 11


Carmen Segarra outside the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, on Oct. 10, 2013. In a wrongful termination lawsuit, Segarra says she was fired by the Fed after she refused to change a finding Goldman Sachs had inadequate controls over conflicts of interest. (Nabil Rahman for ProPublica)

- NY Fed Fired Examiner Who Took on Goldman (ProPublica, Oct 10, 2013):

In the spring of 2012, a senior examiner with the Federal Reserve Bank of New York determined that Goldman Sachs had a problem.

Under a Fed mandate, the investment banking behemoth was expected to have a company-wide policy to address conflicts of interest in how its phalanxes of dealmakers handled clients. Although Goldman had a patchwork of policies, the examiner concluded that they fell short of the Fed’s requirements.

That finding by the examiner, Carmen Segarra, potentially had serious implications for Goldman, which was already under fire for advising clients on both sides of several multibillion-dollar deals and allegedly putting the bank’s own interests above those of its customers. It could have led to closer scrutiny of Goldman by regulators or changes to its business practices.

Before she could formalize her findings, Segarra said, the senior New York Fed official who oversees Goldman pressured her to change them. When she refused, Segarra said she was called to a meeting where her bosses told her they no longer trusted her judgment. Her phone was confiscated, and security officers marched her out of the Fed’s fortress-like building in lower Manhattan, just 7 months after being hired.

“They wanted me to falsify my findings,” Segarra said in a recent interview, “and when I wouldn’t, they fired me.”

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