Three years ago, in February 2013, traders were outraged upon learning that the National Futures Association refused to ban former MF Global chief Jon Corzine from trading with other people’s money, rejecting a motion brought before that body’s board of directors to do so. The decision was a blow to a vocal group within the commodities trading world who – noting that Corzine has not been held accountable by the government for alleged crimes – wanted to see him publicly upbraided by his peers in the market.
All that changed today when Corzine agreed to pay a $5 million civil fine to settle a lawsuit by the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission over the 2011 collapse of the former New Jersey governor’s brokerage, MF Global Holdings. More importantly, under the settlement disclosed on Thursday, Corzine also agreed to be barred for life and never again work for a futures commission merchant, or register with the CFTC in any capacity.
Jon Corzine, former Governor of New Jersey and CEO of Goldman Sachs, took over the helm of MF Global in March 2010. When revenue at the bank failed to live up to expectations, Corzine developed a scheme to place a massive $6BN bet on the sovereign debt of the aptly named PIIGS (Portugal, Italy, Ireland, Greece, Spain) through a financial structure known as a “Repo to Maturity”. To summarize the strategy for all you aspiring CEO’s, when you find it difficult to generate organic revenue growth sometimes the better option is to just bet your entire firm on a single, massively-levered trade on the sovereign debt of countries on the verge of insolvency.
– Vapor Capital Asset Mismanagement LP: Jon Corzine Planning Hedge Fund Launch (ZeroHedge, April 19, 2015):
Shortly after Jon Corzine not only destroyed MF Global but “vaporized” $1.6 billion in supposedly segregated client funds which were illegally commingled with operating cash, Jon Corzine had a brief encounter with the legal system including several kangaroo court sessions in Congress, which ultimately led to absolutely nothing for two simple reasons.
– You Can’t Make This Up: MF Global Sues PWC, Blames It For Its Collapse (ZeroHedge, March 29, 2014):
File this one in the “you can’t make it up” category. Over two years after the MF Global collapse, in which the primary dealer headed by Jon “I don’t recall” Corzine all but admitted it had engaged in the cardinal sin of any financial intermediary, i.e., commingling money, to cover up a trade gone horribly bad and which resulted in the disappearance of some $1 billion in client funds until such time as the bankruptcy process managed to “liberate” funds from other part of the company, MF Global has suddenly figured who is at fault: not the CEO, not his brown-nosing lackey, not some janitor meant to be scapegoated precisely in a situation such as this, not even the infamous “glitch” – no, the party that is accountable for the firm’s theft of client funds, and horrible investing decisions that led to its bankruptcy, are the accountants.
No really: yesterday MF Global Holdings sued PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP for $1 billion, alleging accounting malpractice helped bring down the brokerage company.
Like we said, you can’t make this up. From Bloomberg:
More links are down below.
– Jon Corzine will not face criminal charges over MF Global: report (MarketWatch, July 8, 2013):
There will be no criminal charges for former New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine over the use of customer funds leading up to collapse of MF Global.
The criminal probe into whether there was wrongdoing on the part of Corzine by the Department of Justice will now be dropped due to lack of evidence, said a report in The New York Post, citing a person with knowledge of the matter.
– Apparently This MF Global “Clusterfuck” Does Not Deserve Criminal Charges (ZeroHedge, July 1, 2013):
We salute the CFTC for finally, if belatedly, doing the right thing and going after Jon “the bundler” Corzine. However, we wonder, just how is the following documented exchange between Edith O’Brien, MFG’s assistant treasurer, and some MF Global employee, not considered crime-worthy by Eric Holder? Or is the US Attorney General too busy to answer, having to come up with his own alibi to avoid going to jail for lying to Congress under oath?From the MF Global Civil, not Criminal, Complaint
Just prior to 6:30 p.m. ET, O’Brien told Employee #2 on a recorded telephone line that the Firm would not be in compliance with customer segregation rules because funds were not being returned to customer segregated accounts:
O’BRIEN: It is a total clusterfuck . . . . They have to move half a billion dollars out of BONY to pay me back . . . . Tell me how much money is coming in and I will make sure it gets posted. But if you don’t tell me, then tomorrow morning I am going to have a seg problem . . . . I need the money back from the broker-dealer I already gave them. I can’t afford a seg problem.
YouTube Added: 21.03.2013
And again, it makes no difference whether elite puppet Republicans or elite puppet Democrats govern America.
The people get screwed all of the time:
– George Carlin: The American Dream (Video)
An absolute MUST-SEE!!!, …
… especially for all real Americans out there.
– House Republicans Find Corzine Guilty Of MF Global Collapse, Missing Funds; Democrats Refuse To Endorse Findings (ZeroHedge, Nov 14, 2012)
– Max Keiser And Gerald Celente On MF Global Bankruptcy Implications – The JP Morgan Connection – Goldman Sachs – CME (‘Chicago Mafia Exchange’) – Gold, Silver – Syria, Iran – Entire Financial System Collapsing, One Big Global Ponzi Scheme – False Flag, WW III – Bank Holiday, Economic Martial Law – ‘YOUR MONEY ISN’T SAFE’
If Nostradamus were alive today, he’d have a hard time keeping up with Gerald Celente.
– New York Post
When CNN wants to know about the Top Trends, we ask Gerald Celente.
– CNN Headline News
There’s not a better trend forecaster than Gerald Celente. The man knows what he’s talking about.
Those who take their predictions seriously … consider the Trends Research Institute.
– The Wall Street Journal
A network of 25 experts whose range of specialties would rival many university faculties.
– The Economist
– One Year Later – Santelli Rips Apart ‘Connected’ Corzine (ZeroHedge, Oct 31, 2012):
There remains more than $1.6 billion of customer funds unaccounted for and whether you believe PwC (as Forbes notes) were duped or not, one year on from MFGlobal, one thing is for sure – there is no more hated character in the pits of Chicago than Jon Corzine. CNBC’s Rick Santelli says it all in this blockbuster rant against the incredible reality that this ‘connected’ individual has got away with monetary murder. Must watch – but beware your blood pressure… as he concludes “we haven’t heard the end of this – Chicago will find the answers!”
YouTube Added: 15.09.2012
– Janet Tavakoli: Understanding Derivatives and Their Risks (ZeroHEdge, Sep 15, 2012):
Global financial markets are awash in hundreds of trillions of dollars worth of derivatives. By some estimates, the total amount exceeds one quadrillion.
Derivatives played a central role in the 2008 credit crisis, as they had a brutal multiplying effect on the magnitude of the carnage. As a bad asset was written down, oftentimes there were derivative contracts written against it that resulted in total losses 10x greater than the initial write-down.
But what exactly are derivatives? How do they work?
– What To Do When Every Market Is Manipulated (ZeroHedge, Aug 16, 2012):
Hint: cut the strings
If you don’t know who the sucker at the card table is, it’s you.
~ old gambler’s saying
What do the following have in common?
LIBOR, Bernie Madoff, MF Global, Peregrine Financial, zero-percent interest rates, the Social Security and Medicare entitlement funds, many state and municipal pension funds, mark-to-model asset values, quote stuffing and high frequency trading (HFT), and debt-based money?
The answer is that every single thing in that list is an example of market rigging, fraud, or both.
YouTube Added: 10.08.2012
– Gary Gensler Explains How CFTC Allowed PFG To Steal $200 MM In Client Funds 8 Months After MF Global (ZeroHedge, July 25, 2012):
Former Goldman appartchik Gary Gensler is about to take the stage (again) and explain why the CFTC should exist at all after allowing not only MF Global but a few weeks ago, Peregrine Financial, to steal hundreds of millions in client money without any regulatory supervision at all. All we can say here is: Free Corzine!
– The Chronology Of A Collapse: Santelli’s Primer On The PFG Debacle (ZeroHedge, July 12, 2012):
There remains some confusion about the timing of actions around the PFG Best disaster. From withdrawn salary cuts to liquidation-only orders to forced liquidations from Friday to today, CNBC’s Rick Santelli provides a succinct and shocking insight into what real money accounts and brokers have dealt with and continue to try to comprehend. The sad truth about where the money went is summed up by his guest that “we’re just hearing rumors; it could be, on a percentage basis, worse than MF Global.”
– PFG Is Now MFG(lobal) Part 2 As $220 Million In Segregated Client Money Has Just Vaporized (ZeroHedge, July 9, 2012):
UPDATE 2: Have no fear though since as recently as January 2012, the CFTC did not find any “material breaches of customer funds protection requirements” at FCMs (firms like PFGBest)
UPDATE 1: Account-holders may not be so surprised to find who is the custodian for the PFGBest FX accounts: none other than huge MFGlobal fans, JPMorgan!
Remember when the entire segregated account fiasco was supposedly fixed in the aftermath of the November 2011 MF Global bankruptcy, and where regulators: the CFTC, the SEC, the CME, and anyone you asked, swore up and down this would never happen again? Turns out that 7 months later, the spirit of MFG has struck again, only this time with one letter switched: it is now known as PFG, as we suggested first 3 hours ago when we broke the story. From the just filed affidavit by Lauren Brinati who is working with the National Futures Association, which in turn has just filed notice prohibiting PFGBest from operating further, and freezing all of its accounts:
– Double or Nothing: How Wall Street is Destroying Itself (ZeroHedge, May 12, 2012)
There’s nothing controversial about the claim— reported on by Slate, Bloomberg and Harvard Magazine — that in the last 20 years Wall Street has moved away from an investment-led model, to a gambling-led model.
This was exemplified by the failure of LTCM which blew up unsuccessfully making huge interest rate bets for tiny profits, or “picking up nickels in front of a streamroller”, and by Jon Corzine’s MF Global doing practically the same thing with European debt (while at the same time stealing from clients).
As Nassim Taleb described in The Black Swan these kinds of trades — betting large amounts for small frequent profits — is extremely fragile because eventually (and probably sooner in the real world than in a model) losses will happen (and of course if you are betting big, losses will be big). If you are running your business on the basis of leverage, this is especially dangerous, because facing a margin call or a downgrade you may be left in a fire sale to raise collateral.
– Missing $1.6 Billion MF Global Funds: Traced!(New York magazine, April 25, 2012):
The high-stakes game of lost-and-found for the missing $1.6 billion MF Global funds apparently reached a conclusion on Tuesday. According to CNN Money, investigators hunting the funds in the wake of the Jon Corzine–led brokerage firm’s collapse located the massive sums of customer money. “We can trace where the cash and securities in the firm went, and that we’ve done,” James Giddens, a trustee overseeing MF Global’s liquidation, told the Senate Banking Committee on Tuesday, adding that the investigation is “substantially concluded.”
Gerald Celente on MF Global etc. :
– No.1 Trend Forecaster Gerald Celente: The Entire Financial System Is Collapsing! – This Is FASCISM! (Video, March 26, 2012 )
More on JPMorgan here:
– Regulators: JPMorgan illegally let Lehman Bros. count customers’ funds as its own (Washington Post, April 4, 2012):
JPMorgan Chase illegally allowed Lehman Brothers, the investment bank whose 2008 bankruptcy brought the financial system to the brink of collapse, to count customers’ money as its own, according to federal regulators.
The arrangement boosted the amount that Lehman could borrow from JPMorgan, where the customers’ money was deposited, regulators charged Wednesday.
Then, at the height of the financial crisis, JPMorgan refused to release the customer funds for about two weeks, until regulators ordered it to do so, regulators charged.
The charges were spelled out in an enforcement action against JPMorgan by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).
Without admitting or denying wrongdoing, JPMorgan agreed to pay $20 million to settle the civil case.
The matter adds another dimension of alleged lawbreaking to the history of Lehman’s downfall. It was also another vivid illustration that, even in highly regulated modern financial firms, basic controls can break down.
Last fall, the big brokerage firm MF Global collapsed with as much as $1.6 billion of customer funds missing and unaccounted for. There, too, it appears that clients’ money was treated as if it belonged to the firm.
YouTube Added: 27.03.2012
However, with that said, we are manipulating the silver futures market and playing a smaller (but still massively manipulative) role in manipulating the gold futures market. We have a little over a 25% (give or take a percentage) position in the short market for silver futures and by your definition this denotes a larger position than for speculative purposes or for hedging and is beyond the line of manipulation.
On a side note, I do not work directly with accounts that would have been directly impacted by the MF Global fiasco but I have heard through other colleagues that we have involvement in the hiding of client assets from MF Global. This is another fraudulent effort on our part and constitutes theft. I urge you to forward that part of the investigation on to the respective authorities.
– Max Keiser And Gerald Celente On MF Global Bankruptcy Implications – The JP Morgan Connection – Goldman Sachs – CME (‘Chicago Mafia Exchange’) – Gold, Silver – Syria, Iran – Entire Financial System Collapsing, One Big Global Ponzi Scheme – False Flag, WW III – Bank Holiday, Economic Martial Law – ‘YOUR MONEY ISN’T SAFE’ (Video)
– MF’s Corzine Ordered Funds Moved to JP Morgan, Memo Says (Bloomberg, Mar 23, 2012):
Jon S. Corzine, MF Global Holding Ltd. (MFGLQ)’s chief executive officer, gave “direct instructions” to transfer $200 million from a customer fund account to meet an overdraft in a brokerage account with JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM), according to a memo written by congressional investigators.
Edith O’Brien, a treasurer for the firm, said in an e-mail quoted in the memo that the transfer was “Per JC’s direct instructions,” according to a copy of the memo obtained by Bloomberg News. The e-mail, dated Oct. 28, was sent three days before the company collapsed, the memo says. The memo does not indicate whether that phrase was the full text of the e-mail or an excerpt.