Jan 16

Stock Market Down

Analyst: Here Comes the Biggest Stock Market Crash in a Generation:

You don’t have to listen very hard to hear the bears growling on Wall Street, London, or Paris these days. Indeed, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down another 300 points on Wednesday to just under 16,200

With the U.S. stock market sagging, oil off to its worst start ever, and the China’s economy continuing to deteriorate, bearish analysts have a wealth of evidence to point to.

And they don’t come much more bearish than Albert Edwards, strategist at Société Générale. He’s not had much nice to say about the global economy in years, and recent events have only hardened his convictions that the world is headed for disaster, and will take the prices of equities down with it. How much? Edwards predicts the U.S. stock market could plunge as much as 75%. That would be worse than during the financial crisis, in which stocks from their peak to trough dropped a brutal 62%. Continue reading »

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Feb 24

From the article:

Under scrutiny are Bank of Nova Scotia , Barclays PLC, Credit Suisse Group AG , Deutsche Bank AG , Goldman Sachs Group Inc., J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., Société Générale SA, Standard Bank Group Ltd. and UBS AG , according to one of the people close to the investigation.”

Ten Banks, Including JPM, Goldman, Deutsche, Barclays, SocGen And UBS, Probed For Gold Rigging (ZeroHedge, Feb 23, 2015):

No matter how many times the big banks are caught red-handed manipulating precious metals, some failed former Deutsche Bank prop-trader (you know who you are) will take a vociferous stand based on ad hominem attacks and zero facts that no, what you see in front of you is not precious metal rigging at all but a one-off event that has nothing to do with a criminal banking syndicate hell bent on taking advantage of anyone who is naive and dumb enough to still believe in fair and efficient markets. Continue reading »

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Dec 19


Russia Busts “Gold-Selling” Rumors, Reports It Bought Another 600,000 Ounces Taking Gold Holdings To New Record High (ZeroHedge, Dec 19, 2014):

Yesterday, when we reported the latest rumor of Russian gold selling, this time out of SocGen, we said that “it should be noted that SocGen and its “sources” have a conflict: in an indirect way, none other than SocGen is suddenly very interested in Russia stabilizing its economy because as we wrote before,Russia Contagion Spreads To European Banks : French SocGen, Austrian Raiffeisen Plummet” which also sent SocGen’s default risk higher in recent days. So if all it will take to stabilize the RUB sell off, reduce fears of Russian contagion, and halt the selloff of SocGen stocks is a “source” reporting what may or may not be the case, so be it.”

Moments ago, as if to deter further speculation that Russia is indeed converting hard money earned from real resources for fiat paper, the Russian monetary authority made it quite clear, that at least in November, Russia not only did not sell any gold, but in fact bought another 600K ounces in the month of November. Continue reading »

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Dec 18

I do not believe anything a Rothschild puppet bankster tells me, and that includes Societe Generale, especially if they are telling us vague, unsubstantiated BS like …

It appears possible that the Central Bank of Russia has started to sell off some of its gold reserves in December, with some sources reporting that official gold reserves dropped by $4.3 billion in the first week of the month.”

“It appears possible …” Yeah, right!

Why not sell those soon to be worthless U.S. Trashury (sic) holdings instead …

China, Russia Dump US Treasurys In October As Foreigners Sell Most US Stocks Since 2007 (ZeroHedge, Dec 15, 2014):

As for Russia, after selling $9.7 billion in October (a process which certainly continued in November) its latest total is just $108 billion, or just modestly higher than the $100 billion hit in March after the Ukraine conflict first broke out, and the second lowest total Russian Treasury holdings since 2008.

… and BUY gold and ask China to do the same.

Selling Russia’s gold? Putin might as well shoot himself in the foot (unless he too is an elite puppet).

Related info:

Is Ruble Collapse Act of War-Paul Craig Roberts

Grandmaster Putin’s Golden Trap:

Putin chess

Very few people understand what Putin is doing at the moment. And almost no one understands what he will do in the future.

No matter how strange it may seem, but right now, Putin is selling Russian oil and gas only for physical gold.

Putin is not shouting about it all over the world. And of course, he still accepts US dollars as an intermediate means of payment. But he immediately exchanges all these dollars obtained from the sale of oil and gas for physical gold!

How long will the West be able to buy oil and gas from Russia in exchange for physical gold?

– And what will happen to the US petrodollar after the West runs out of physical gold to pay for Russian oil, gas and uranium, as well as to pay for Chinese goods?

No one in the west today can answer these seemingly simple questions.

And this is called “Checkmate”, ladies and gentlemen. The game is over.


The above article was translated buy Kristina Rus – which originally appeared in Russian  at http://investcafe.ru/blogs/mbcy/posts/46245#


Russia Has Begun Selling Its Gold, According To SocGen (ZeroHedge, Dec 18, 2014):

A few days ago, we first reported a rumor that was floating around Wall Street desks, and which, according to some, was the “reason” that gold was being kept lower even as sovereign risk was exploding around the globe. The rumor was that Russia was selling its gold holdings:

This led to Bloomberg speculating, and us rhetorically asking, if “Putin’s next step will be to sell gold

“Russia is at a critical juncture and given the sanctions placed upon them and the rapid decline in oil prices, they may be forced to dip into their gold reserves, if it happens it will push gold lower.” That is what, according to some people Bloomberg has quoted, is in the cards.

While some suggest the accumulation was “tradition” it is still nonetheless an impressive aggregation of the barbarous relic:

Russian Gold Reserve

So given the efforts to build this gold-backing for their nation’s currency, do we really expect Putin to now dump his physical: or perhaps more strategically suggest a true gold-backed currency and jawbone the currency that way?

So what is the truth? Well, we won’t for sure until the next official report by the Central Bank of Russia hits the IMF database,  but in the menatime, SocGen just reported that the selling may have started: Continue reading »

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May 14

Gold fix teaser_0

–  From Rothschild To Koch Industries: Meet The People Who “Fix” The Price Of Gold (ZeroHedge, May 14, 2014):

Earlier today many were stunned when the historic, 117-year old, London Silver Fix announced that in three months it would no longer exist. However, silver is only one half of the world’s two best known precious metals. Which is why we decided to take a long, hard look at that other fix: gold.

The reason for this particular inquiry is because in the aftermath of the rapid and dramatic departure of the world’s largest bank by outstanding notional derivatives, and Europe’s biggest bank by any metric, Deutsche Bank, from the precious metal fix, something felt out of place: almost as if the participants of the “fixing” process which for so many years took place in the office of none other than Rothschild on St. Swithin’s Lane in London, were suddenly scrambling to disappear without a trace.

In conducting our research we hope to not only memorialize just who are these particular individuals who “fix” gold using nothing but publicly available information of course – because after all it is not as if they have anything to hide or fear – but to connect some of the very peculiar dots behind the scenes of what to some, is the original, and most manipulated market in history – that of gold. Continue reading »

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Oct 23

Chart Of The Day: “Japan Has No Alternative But To Print And Print And Print” (ZeroHedge, Oct 22, 2013)

Today’s Chart of the Day comes by way of SocGen’s Albert Edwards who in one image shows why, with gross debt issuance needs between budget funding and rolling maturities at 60% of GDP, Japan has no choice but “to print and print and print

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Apr 06

Sprott: Why SocGen Is Wrong About Gold’s Imminent ‘Demise’ (ZeroHedge, April 5, 2013):

A Retort to SocGen’s Latest Gold Report

Société Générale (“SocGen”) recently published a special report entitled “The end of the gold era” that garnered far more attention than we think it deserved.  The majority of the report focused on SocGen’s “crash scenario” for gold wherein they suggest that gold could fall well below their 2013 target of US$1,375/oz. It also included a classic criticism that we’ve heard so many times before: that the gold price is in “bubble territory”. We have problems with both suggestions.

To begin, the report’s authors appear to view gold as a commodity, rather than as a currency. This is a common misconception that continues to plague most gold market analysis. Gold doesn’t really work as a commodity because it doesn’t get consumed like one. The vast majority of gold mined throughout history remains in existence today, and the total global gold stockpile grows in small increments every year through additional mine supply. This is also precisely why gold works so well as a currency. Total gold supply can only grow marginally, while fiat money supply can grow exponentially through printing programs. This is why gold’s monetary value is so important – it’s the only “currency” in play that is immune to government devaluation.

Chart A illustrates the relationship between the growth of central bank balance sheets in the US, EU, UK and Japan and the price of gold. This relationship has an extremely high correlation with an R2 of about 95%. As central banks increase the size of their balance sheets through ‘open market operations’ to buy bonds, mortgage-backed securities (“MBS”) and the like, they inject more fiat dollars into their respective banking systems. As gold has a relatively stable supply, if there are more dollars available, the price of gold should rise in dollar terms. It’s really a very simple and intuitive relationship – as it should be.

Source: Bloomberg and Sprott Asset Management LP

This relationship between central bank printing and gold has existed since the beginning of the gold bull market in 2000. In fact, this relationship shows that for every US$1 trillion increase in the collective central banks’ balance sheets, the price of gold has generally appreciated by an average of US$210/oz.

Continue reading »

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Mar 25

Next Up For Cyprus: Depression (ZeroHedge, March 25, 2013):

From SocGen:

Depression for Cyprus: Our Cypriot GDP forecast entails a drop of just over 20% in real GDP by 2017. This forecast had already factored in much what was agreed, but did not account for the additional uncertainty shock generated by the past week’s appalling political mess. Risks are clearly on the downside and Cyprus will in all likelihood require additional financial assistance further down the road. Accounting for less than 0.3% of euro area GDP, any downward revision to Cyprus will be barely visible on the euro area aggregate.

So much for the hope of recreating Iceland, and actually growing in 2-3 years. Congratulations Cyprus – you may have a depression for the next four years, but at least you have the (and helped Merkel win the September election).

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Feb 02

Who Runs The World? Solid Proof That A Core Group Of Wealthy Elitists Is Pulling The Strings (Economic Collapse, Jan 29, 2013):

Does a shadowy group of obscenely wealthy elitists control the world?  Do men and women with enormous amounts of money really run the world from behind the scenes?  The answer might surprise you.  Most of us tend to think of money as a convenient way to conduct transactions, but the truth is that it also represents power and control.  And today we live in a neo-fuedalist system in which the super rich pull all the strings.  When I am talking about the ultra-wealthy, I am not just talking about people that have a few million dollars.  As you will see later in this article, the ultra-wealthy have enough money sitting in offshore banks to buy all of the goods and services produced in the United States during the course of an entire year and still be able to pay off the entire U.S. national debt.  That is an amount of money so large that it is almost incomprehensible.  Under this ne0-feudalist system, all the rest of us are debt slaves, including our own governments.  Just look around – everyone is drowning in debt, and all of that debt is making the ultra-wealthy even wealthier.  But the ultra-wealthy don’t just sit on all of that wealth.  They use some of it to dominate the affairs of the nations.  The ultra-wealthy own virtually every major bank and every major corporation on the planet.  They use a vast network of secret societies, think tanks and charitable organizations to advance their agendas and to keep their members in line.  They control how we view the world through their ownership of the media and their dominance over our education system.  They fund the campaigns of most of our politicians and they exert a tremendous amount of influence over international organizations such as the United Nations, the IMF, the World Bank and the WTO.  When you step back and take a look at the big picture, there is little doubt about who runs the world.  It is just that most people don’t want to admit the truth.The ultra-wealthy don’t run down and put their money in the local bank like you and I do.  Instead, they tend to stash their assets in places where they won’t be taxed such as the Cayman Islands.  According to a report that was released last summer, the global elite have up to 32 TRILLION dollars stashed in offshore banks around the globe.

U.S. GDP for 2011 was about 15 trillion dollars, and the U.S. national debt is sitting at about 16 trillion dollars, so you could add them both together and you still wouldn’t hit 32 trillion dollars. Continue reading »

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Jun 22

Here We Go: Moody’s Downgrade Is Out – Morgan Stanley Cut Only 2 Notches, To Face $6.8 Billion In Collateral Calls (ZeroHedge, June 21, 2012):

Here it comes:


But the kicker:


And there you have it – the reason for the delay were last minute negotiations, most certainly involving extensive monetary explanations, by Morgan Stanley’s Gorman (potentially with Moody’s investor Warren Buffett on the call) to get only a two notch downgrade. And Wall Street wins again.

Recall, from MS’ 10-Q:

“In connection with certain OTC trading agreements and certain other agreements associated with the Institutional Securities business segment, the Company may be required to provide additional collateral or immediately settle any outstanding liability balances with certain counterparties in the event of a credit rating downgrade. At March 31, 2012, the following are the amounts of additional collateral, termination payments or other contractual amounts (whether in a net asset or liability position) that could be called by counterparties under the terms of such agreements in the event of a downgrade of the Company’s long-term credit rating under various scenarios: $868 million (A3 Moody’s/A- S&P); $5,177 million (Baa1 Moody’s/ BBB+ S&P); and $7,206 million (Baa2 Moody’s/BBB S&P). Also, the Company is required to pledge additional collateral to certain exchanges and clearing organizations in the event of a credit rating downgrade. At March 31, 2012, the increased collateral requirement at certain exchanges and clearing organizations under various scenarios was $160 million (A3 Moody’s/A- S&P); $1,600 million (Baa1 Moody’s/ BBB+ S&P); and $2,400 million (Baa2 Moody’s/BBB S&P).”

So instead of $9.6 billion, MS will face only $6.8 billion in collateral calls.


Still the firm is not out of the woods: Continue reading »

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Jun 21

Big Bank Downgrade By Moody’s Imminent (ZeroHedge, June 21, 2012):

Even as Moody is now about a week late on its Spanish bank downgrade where the banks are rated higher than the sovereign (which obviously is kept in check to prevent yields on bonds from soaring even more), here comes the next wholesale bank downgrade:

  • Moody’s expected to announce ratings downgrade for UK banks this evening – Sky Sources
  • Exclusive: Big news – I’m told Moody’s will announce downgrades of some of world’s biggest banks, incl in UK, after US mkts close tonight. – Sky’s Mark Kleinman

Looks like that fabricated 2 notch Margin Stanley downgrade (because 3 notches just won’t do – those 4 months of Gorman-led “negotiations” made that painfully clear) is about to strike. The real question is: What Would Egan Who Do?

From Sky:

Some of Britain’s biggest banks are poised to have their credit ratings downgraded by Moody’s as soon as tonight as part of a wider reassessment of the health of the global banking industry, I can reveal.

Moody’s is expected to outline its verdicts about the creditworthiness of banks including Barclays, HSBC, JP Morgan and Royal Bank of Scotland.

Continue reading »

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May 30

RIT Capital Partners, Chaired By Lord Rothschild, And Rockefeller & Co. Announce Strategic Partnership (MarketWatch, May 30, 2012):

LONDON and NEW YORK, May 30, 2012 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ — RIT Capital Partners plc (“RIT”), chaired by Lord (Jacob) Rothschild, and Rockefeller Financial Services, Inc., the parent company of Rockefeller & Co., Inc., today announced the creation of a strategic partnership that brings together two of the most recognised and respected names in the investing world.

David Rockefeller, honorary director and retired chairman of Rockefeller & Co., stated: “Lord Rothschild and I have known each other for five decades. The connection between our two families remains very strong. I am delighted to welcome Jacob and RIT as shareholders and partners in the ongoing development of our investment management and wealth advisory businesses.”

In acquiring the 37% equity interest previously held by Societe Generale Private Banking, RIT will become a significant minority investor in Rockefeller Financial Services, Inc. alongside the Rockefeller family, related entities and the management team. The firms intend to collaborate on investment solutions and other areas of shared expertise to further serve the needs of their clients and investors.

RIT is a London-listed investment trust with net assets of some 1.9 billion pounds Sterling. In March 2012, RIT announced a partnership with Edmond de Rothschild Group (“EdR”) through which EdR become shareholders in RIT alongside Lord Rothschild’s family interests. Baroness Ariane de Rothschild became Honorary Vice Chairman of RIT, with Lord Rothschild becoming Honorary Vice Chairman of Edmond de Rothschild SA, the French holding company of Edmond de Rothschild Group.

Rothschilds buy into Rockefeller wealth business (Reuters, May 30. 2012):

Two of the most glamorous names in global finance are linking up, with the Rothschild banking dynasty agreeing to buy a stake in the Rockefeller group’s wealth and asset management business to get a long-sought foothold in the United States.

Rothschild’s London-listed RIT Capital Partners (RCP.L) said on Wednesday it was buying the 37 percent stake from French group Societe Generale’s (SOGN.PA) private banking arm for an undisclosed sum.

The transatlantic union brings together David Rockefeller, 96, and Jacob Rothschild, 76 – two family patriarchs whose personal relationship spans five decades.

Rockefeller & Co traces its origins back to 1882 when it was founded as one of the world’s first family offices by John D. Rockefeller to manage his personal wealth.

Since then it has developed into a wealth advisory group administering assets of $34 billion.

The Rothschild banking dynasty began when Mayer Amschel Rothschild started a business in Frankfurt in the late 18th century.

Continue reading »

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Dec 16

S&P slaps ten Spanish banks with downgrade (Sydney Morning Herald, Dec. 16, 2011):

Standard and Poor’s downgraded Thursday the credit rating of 10 Spanish banks after applying new criteria, and warned it may lower their short-term scores further.

The 10 banks had their ratings lowered and remained in “creditwatch with negative implications”, indicating the risk of a further downgrade, Standard and Poor’s said in a statement.

S&P cuts ratings of 10 Spanish banks‎ (Reuters, Dec. 15, 2011):

Standard & Poor’s cut the credit ratings of 10 Spanish banks on Thursday and said they remained on watch for a possible further cut subject to a review of Spain’s sovereign rating.

Fitch cuts ratings on 8 major banks‎ (AP, Dec. 15, 2011):

NEW YORK (AP) — Fitch Ratings on Thursday downgraded its viability ratings on eight of the world’s biggest banks, citing increased challenges facing the banking sector due to weak economic growth and heightened regulation.

The firm lowered its viability ratings for Bank of America Corp., Barclays PLC, BNP Paribas, Credit Suisse AG, Deutsche Bank AG, The Goldman Sachs Group Inc., Morgan Stanley and Societe Generale.

Continue reading »

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Dec 10

Flashback ( on ECB’s Mario Draghi):

ECB’s Mario Draghi: We Need Fiscal Union (= EUSSR), Not Bank Intervention

Former Goldman Sachs Managing Director Mario Draghi Appointed European Central Bank President!

Mario Draghi (Wikipedia):

Draghi was then vice chairman and managing director of Goldman Sachs International and a member of the firm-wide management committee (2002–2005). A controversy existed on his duties while employed at Goldman Sachs. Pascal Canfin (MEP) asserted Draghi was involved in swaps for European governments, namely Greece, trying to disguise their countries’ economic status.


French banks downgraded by Moody’s (Telegraph, Dec. 9, 2011):

Moody’s has downgraded BNP Paribas, Societe Generale, and Credit Agricole warning their creditworthiness is being damaged by the fragile operating environment for European banks.

The agency cut its ratings on the long-term debt of BNP and Credit Agicole by one notch to Aa3, concluding reviews that began in June and were continued in September. Societe Generale’s long-term debt was cut by one notch to A1.

The downgrades were driven by the increasing difficulties the banks were having in raising funding and the worsening economic outlook, Moody’s said.

The news comes a day after the European Banking Authority (EBA), warned the region’s banks must find €114.7bn of extra capital in order to withstand the euro zone debt crisis and restore investor confidence.

Moody’s said its ratings did take into account the fact that all three French banks were likely to benefit from state support if the crisis deepened.

“Liquidity and funding conditions have deteriorated significantly,” said Moody’s, adding that the banks have historically relied on wholesale funding markets.

“The probability that the will face further funding pressures has risen in line with the worsening European debt crisis.”

Eurozone banking system on the edge of collapse (Telegraph, Dec. 9, 2011):

Senior analysts and traders warned of impending bank failures as a summit intended to solve the European crisis failed to deliver a solution that eased concerns over bank funding.

The European Central Bank admitted it had held meetings about providing emergency funding to the region’s struggling banks, however City figures said a “collateral crunch” was looming.

“If anyone thinks things are getting better then they simply don’t understand how severe the problems are. I think a major bank could fail within weeks,” said one London-based executive at a major global bank.

Many banks, including some French, Italian and Spanish lenders, have already run out of many of the acceptable forms of collateral such as US Treasuries and other liquid securities used to finance short-term loans and have been forced to resort to lending out their gold reserves to maintain access to dollar funding.

“The system is creaking. There is a large amount of stress,” said Anthony Peters, a strategist at Swissinvest, pointing to soaring interbank lending rates.

Continue reading »

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Dec 04

See also:

Gerald Celente Endorses Ron Paul For President – ‘The Entire Economic System Is Collapsing’ – ‘Fascism Has Come To America In Every Form’ (Video – Nov. 29, 2011)

Have You Heard About The 16 Trillion Dollar Bailout The Federal Reserve Handed To The Too Big To Fail Banks? (The Econonomic collapse, Dec. 2, 2011):

What you are about to read should absolutely astound you.  During the last financial crisis, the Federal Reserve secretly conducted the biggest bailout in the history of the world, and the Fed fought in court for several years to keep it a secret.  Do you remember the TARP bailout?  The American people were absolutely outraged that the federal government spent 700 billion dollars bailing out the “too big to fail” banks.  Well, that bailout was pocket change compared to what the Federal Reserve did.  As you will see documented below, the Federal Reserve actually handed more than 16 trillion dollars in nearly interest-free money to the “too big to fail” banks between 2007 and 2010.  So have you heard about this on the nightly news?  Probably not.  Lately Bloomberg has been reporting on some of this, but even they are not giving people the whole picture.  The American people need to be told about this 16 trillion dollar bailout, because it is a perfect example of why the Federal Reserve needs to be shut down.  The Federal Reserve has been actively picking “winners” and “losers” in the financial system, and it turns out that the “friends” of the Fed always get bailed out and always end up among the “winners”.  This is not how a free market system is supposed to work.

According to the limited GAO audit of the Federal Reserve that was mandated by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, the grand total of all the secret bailouts conducted by the Federal Reserve during the last financial crisis comes to a whopping $16.1 trillion.

Continue reading »

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Nov 29

SocGen Sees $600 Billion QE3 Starting In March 2012 Sending Gold Up Between $1900 And $8500/Oz (ZeroHedge, Nov. 28, 2011):

SocGen has released its much anticipated Multi Asset Portfolio Scenario/Strategy guide titled simply enough “Patience: bad news will become good news” where, as the insightful can guess, the French bank makes the simple case that the worse things get, the stronger the response by global central banks will be. Here is the key quote for those worried that : “A major liquidity crisis should not occur this time, as we think we are on the eve of major QE in the UK, US and (a bit) later on in the EZ.” We don’t disagree and if there is anything that can send BAC higher it will be the announcement of QE3. Of course, BAC will first drop to a $2-3 handle so question is who has the balance sheet to hold on to the falling knife. The next question is “How big will QE3 be”? Well, according to SocGen, the Fed will preannounce it in the January 2012 FOMC statement, the monetization will last from March 2012 until the end of the year, and will buy a total of $600 billion. We believe the actual LSAP total (not to be confused with the “sterilized” QE3 known as Operation Twist) will be well greater, probably in the $1.5 trillion range as the Fed will finally say “enough” to piecemeal solutions. As to what to do, besides going long some financial stock and hoping it is not the one that is allowed to fail, SocGen has some simple advice: “Buy gold ahead of QE3 as money creation has a strong impact on prices” – in other words just as we suggested yesterday courtesy of the Don Coxe correlation chart. Why gold and not BAC? Because, “Gold is highly sensitive to US QE, as every dollar of QE goes into M0, triggering the debasement of the USD. Gold = $ 8500/Oz: to catch up with the increase in the monetary base since 1920 (as it did in the early 80s). Gold = $1900/Oz: to close the gap with the monetary base increase since July 2007(QE1+QE2).” So go long a bank that may well go bankrupt and return nothing before it at best doubles, or go long a real asset, which will always have value and may quadruple in short notice? The answer seems simple to us…

From SocGen:

Continue reading »

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Nov 01

See also:

The European (Non-)Bailout Explained (Video) … And Why Europe ‘Is Screwed’: ‘Dumb Money’ Refuses To Play Along: China State Media Says It Won’t Rescue Europe

Jim Rogers Says New Greece Deal Can’t Save Europe

Nigel Farage On Freedom Watch: Eventually Events Will Be Too Big For Any Bailout (Video – Oct. 26, 2011)

- Bilderberg Merkel Warns Of War In Europe If Euro Fails – EU Summit Seals 1 Trillion Euro Deal – Banks Agree On 50% Write-Off Of Greek Debt

Eurozone debt crisis: Markets dive on Greek referendum (BBC News,Nov. 1, 2011):

US and European markets have fallen following Monday’s announcement of a Greek referendum on the latest aid package to solve its debt crisis.

Eurozone leaders agreed a 50% debt write-off for Greece last week as well as strengthening Europe’s bailout fund.

But the Greek move has cast doubt on whether the deal can go ahead.

New York’s Dow Jones ended the day 2.5% lower, after a mid-afternoon rally on hope that Greek MPs may block the referendum proved short-lived.

One of Mr Papandreou’s MPs, Milena Apostolaki, resigned from the ruling Pasok parliamentary group on Tuesday, leaving the government with a two-seat majority in parliament.

Six other party members have called for Mr Papandreou to resign, according to the state news agency.

There are doubts whether the government will last long enough to hold the referendum, pencilled in for January.

A confidence vote is due to take place in the Greek parliament on Friday.

Banks down

Earlier in the day, London’s FTSE 100 had ended trading down 2.2%, while the Frankfurt Dax fell 5% and the Paris Cac 40 some 5.4%.

Shares in French banks saw the biggest falls, with Societe Generale down 16.2%, BNP Paribas 13.1% and Credit Agricole 12.5%.

Other European banks also fared badly for the second day, with Germany’s Commerzbank and Deutsche Bank and the UK’s Barclays and Royal Bank of Scotland all 8% to 10% lower.

In the US, Bank of America fell 6.3%, while Morgan Stanley was down 8% at the close of trading.

Continue reading »

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Oct 21

The 1318 transnational corporations that form the core of the economy. Superconnected companies are red, very connected companies are yellow. The size of the dot represents revenue (Image: PLoS One)

Revealed – the capitalist network that runs the world (New Scientist, Oct. 19, 2011):

AS PROTESTS against financial power sweep the world this week, science may have confirmed the protesters’ worst fears. An analysis of the relationships between 43,000 transnational corporations has identified a relatively small group of companies, mainly banks, with disproportionate power over the global economy.

The study’s assumptions have attracted some criticism, but complex systems analysts contacted by New Scientist say it is a unique effort to untangle control in the global economy. Pushing the analysis further, they say, could help to identify ways of making global capitalism more stable.

The idea that a few bankers control a large chunk of the global economy might not seem like news to New York’s Occupy Wall Street movement and protesters elsewhere (see photo). But the study, by a trio of complex systems theorists at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich, is the first to go beyond ideology to empirically identify such a network of power. It combines the mathematics long used to model natural systems with comprehensive corporate data to map ownership among the world’s transnational corporations (TNCs).

“Reality is so complex, we must move away from dogma, whether it’s conspiracy theories or free-market,” says James Glattfelder. “Our analysis is reality-based.”

Continue reading »

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Oct 13

Credit Suisse Buries European Banks, Sees Deutsche Bank And 65 Other Bank Failing Latest Stress Test, €400 Billion Capital Shortfall (ZeroHedge,Oct. 13, 2011):

A day after Credit Suisse killed the Chinese bank sector saying that the equity of virtually the entire space may be worthless if NPLs double, as they expect they will to about 10%, the Swiss bank proceeds to kill European banks next. Based on the latest farce out of Europe in the form of the third stress test, which is supposed to restore some confidence, it appears that what it will do is simply accelerate the flight out of everything bank related, but certainly out of anything RBS, Deutsche Bank, BNP, SocGen and Barclays related. To wit: “In our estimation of what could be the “new EBA stress test” there would be 66 failures, with RBS, Deutsche Bank, and BNP needing the most capital – at €19bn, €14bn and €14bn respectively. Among the banks with the highest capital shortfalls, SocGen and Barclays would need roughly €13bn with Unicredit and Commerzbank respectively at €12bn and €11bn. In the figure below we present the stated results. We note RBS appears to be the most vulnerable although the company has said that the methodology, especially the calculation of trading income, is especially harsh for them, negatively impacting the results by c.80bps.” Oops. Perhaps it is not too late for the EBA to back out of this latest process and say they were only kidding. And it gets even worse: “We present in this section an overview of the analysis which we published in our report ‘The lost decade’ – 15-Sep 2011. One of our conclusions was that the overall European banking sector is facing a €400bn capital shortfall which compares to a current market cap of €541bn.” Said otherwise, we can now see why the FT reported yesterday that banks will be forced to go ahead and proceed with asset firesales: the mere thought of European banks raising new cash amounting to 75% of the entire industry’s market cap, is beyond ridiculous. So good luck with those sales: just remember – he who sells first, sells best.

And the scary charts:

1. Capital Shortfalls under Stress Test part Trois (9% min. CET1 ratio)

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Sep 14

French bank ratings downgraded by Moody’s (BBC News, Sep. 14, 2011):

Credit rating agency Moody’s has downgraded two French banks after reviewing their exposure to Greek debt.

Credit Agricole was cut from Aa1 to Aa2 and Societe Generale from Aa2 to Aa3.

A third bank, BNP Paribas, was kept on review for a possible downgrade.

Continue reading »

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Sep 12

French banks hit as SocGen ditches assets (Reuters, Sep. 12, 2011):

PARIS (Reuters) – Societe Generale said it would cut costs and sell assets to free up 4 billion euros in fresh capital on Monday, although the surprise move failed to stem a sell-off in French bank shares, driven by fears of a Greek debt default.

A rapid decline in French bank stock prices since the beginning of the summer has led to speculation that the French state may have to intervene and recapitalize its banks, in the same way as the British and other governments were forced to during the first wave of the financial crisis.

Continue reading »

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Sep 11

French Banks Poised for Moody’s Downgrade (Bloomberg, Sep 11, 2011):

BNP Paribas (BNP) SA, Societe Generale SA and Credit Agricole SA (ACA), France’s largest banks by market value, may have their credit ratings cut by Moody’s Investors Service as soon as this week because of their Greek holdings, two people with knowledge of the matter said.

Moody’s placed the three banks’ ratings on review in June to examine “the potential for inconsistency between the impact of a possible Greek default or restructuring and current rating levels,” the rating company said at the time. Cuts are likely as the review period concludes, said the people, who declined to be identified because the matter is confidential.

Continue reading »

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Aug 23

YouTube Added: 22.08.2011

Wall Street Aristocracy Got $1.2 Trillion in Fed’s Secret Loans (Bloomberg, Aug 22, 2011):

Citigroup Inc. (C) and Bank of America Corp. (BAC) were the reigning champions of finance in 2006 as home prices peaked, leading the 10 biggest U.S. banks and brokerage firms to their best year ever with $104 billion of profits.

By 2008, the housing market’s collapse forced those companies to take more than six times as much, $669 billion, in emergency loans from the U.S. Federal Reserve. The loans dwarfed the $160 billion in public bailouts the top 10 got from the U.S. Treasury, yet until now the full amounts have remained secret.

Fed Chairman Ben S. Bernanke’s unprecedented effort to keep the economy from plunging into depression included lending banks and other companies as much as $1.2 trillion of public money, about the same amount U.S. homeowners currently owe on 6.5 million delinquent and foreclosed mortgages. The largest borrower, Morgan Stanley (MS), got as much as $107.3 billion, while Citigroup took $99.5 billion and Bank of America $91.4 billion, according to a Bloomberg News compilation of data obtained through Freedom of Information Act requests, months of litigation and an act of Congress.

Continue reading »

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May 30


Greek Central Bank Accused of Encouraging Naked Short Selling of Greek Bonds (Financial Times)

And remember that the biggest Greek CDS speculator has been the state-controlled Hellenic Post Bank with help from (Yes, you’ve guessed it!) Goldman Sachs:

State-controlled Hellenic Post Bank (TT) bet against Greece (Kathimerini)

Fragwürdige Finanzgeschäfte Griechen wetten auf eigene Pleite (Sueddeutsche Zeitung)

The state-controlled Hellenic Post Bank was betting on Greece going bankrupt!

What will happen if Greece dafaults:

Here Is What Happens After Greece Defaults


Former Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury Dr. Paul Craig Roberts: Revolution is the Only Answer (For Greece, Ireland etc.)


The following article will be constantly updated at ‘Covering Delta’, so please visit the link  and read the article there.

Accusations of Treason in the Greek Parliament (Covering Delta):

Leaving aside for a moment the obvious questions of criminality and treason that have arisin from the details of the Memorandum of Understanding between the Greek government and the Troika (IMF/EU/ECB), which concedes total sovereign authority of the Greek state over the fate of its own citizens to foreign banks, let us turn to recent allegations made in Parliament against the Prime Minister of Greece himself, George Papandreou.

Recently, in an interview on Greek television, Member of Parliament for New Democracy, Mr. Panos Kammenos, made allegations that if true, could very well constitute treason for the Greek Prime Minister, members of his staff and possibly members of his own family. These allegations were repeated by Mr. Kammenos on the floor of parliament and given support by the leader of LAOS, Mr. George Karatzaferis. These allegations are therefore, not made lightly, and have now been plainly put forth before the Greek people. They can no longer be ignored, and the Prime Minister is obliged to respond to them.

The gist of the allegations rest on the charge by Mr. Kammenos, that the Greek Prime Minister, Mr. George Papandreou and members of his team, presided over the sale of 1.3 billion dollars worth of credit default swap contracts (CDS on Greek sovereign debt) on or around December of 2009, shortly after coming to power. The 1.3 billion dollars worth of insurance protecting against a Greek default was bought during the spring and summer of the same year, by the Hellenic Postbank, a public banking arm of the Greek government. It is unclear what the intentions of the Postbank were when it purchased the credit protection. Clearly, the previous government that was in power at the time (New Democracy or N.D.) understood that Greece was headed towards a fiscal crisis, otherwise they would not have purchased the insurance. However, we do not know if the move was initially made with the intention of reaping private profit, or simply as a hedge by the government itself against it’s own default.

[*Note: I have been made aware of a possible discrepancy between the numbers cited by Mr. Kammenos and those cited by Mr. Tombras in his law suit. Specifically, the subject at issue is the notional value of the CDS purchased and then sold by Hellenic Postbank. The size of the bank’s balance sheet would not warrant as large a hedge as the 60 billion in notional CDS (implied by Kammenos), which would imply that either the bank was net-short it’s own government’s debt, or that some mistake has been made by those looking over the books. This would affect the profit potential for the position, but would not change the fundamental fact that insurance protection was sold from public to private hands. – i.e. it has no bearing on the allegations]

Continue reading »

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Apr 29

Back in March of 2009 Zero Hedge, once again a little conspiratorially ahead of its time, solicited reader feedback on a key topic: CDS pricing manipulation, involving in addition to key cartel banks, such “independent” pricing services as MarkIt. We said: “Zero Hedge has received some troubling info (like there isn’t enough) regarding major pricing discrepancies between certain securities pricing services.

The services include companies such as IDC, Advantage Data, Markit and others. While I will not disclose which one may be a culprit, the allegation is that one (or more) are providing substantially above market pricing levels, specifically as pertains to distressed securities.” Then back in August 2010, we followed up by explaining that it is the ongoing price manipulation scheme, in addition to other factors, that allows Goldman Sachs (and other CDS dealers to a much lesser extent) to constantly generate massive profits from trading an opaque off-exchange product like CDS. It took two years and a month for others to take notice of this inquiry, although naturally not in that slum of corruption and market manipulation, the United States of America, but in Europe. Bloomberg reports: “Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS), JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) and other 14 other investment banks face a European Union antitrust probe into credit-default swaps for companies and sovereign debt, regulators said. …The European Commission said it opened two antitrust probes. It will check whether 16 bank dealers colluded by giving market information to Markit, a financial information provider.” So while some post flow charts explaining the hilarity behind conspiracy theories, others actually expose the facts that today are a conspiracy and tomorrow are a full blown criminal investigation.

From Bloomberg Apr 29, 2011:

“Lack of transparency in markets can lead to abusive behavior and facilitate violations of competition rules,” said the EU’s antitrust chief, Joaquin Almunia, in an e-mailed statement. “I hope our investigation will contribute to a better functioning of financial markets.”

Global regulators have sought to toughen regulation of credit-default swaps saying the trades helped fuel the financial crisis. Lawmakers in the EU plan to encourage the use of clearinghouses and transparent trading systems. CDS are derivatives that pay the buyer face value if a borrower defaults.
Possible Collusion

JPMorgan, Bank of America Corp. (BAC), Barclays Plc (BARC), BNP Paribas (BNP) SA, Citigroup Inc. (C), Commerzbank AG (CBK), Credit Suisse Group AG (CSGN), Deutsche Bank AG (DBK), Goldman Sachs, HSBC Holdings Plc (HSBA), Morgan Stanley, Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc (RBS), UBS AG (UBSN), Wells Fargo & Co. (WFC), Credit Agricole SA (ACA) and Societe Generale (GLE) SA will be investigated for possible collusion in giving “most of the pricing, indices and other essential daily data only to Markit.”

Continue reading »

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Jun 08

“No doubt I committed errors,” he wrote. “I overrode the usual methods, loaded false data to disguise gains, as well as losses. In a word, I pushed the system to its limit… But [what] was happening around me? [A] giant fraud perpetrated by all the trading floors in the world. To get good results, any tricks were permitted. The golden rule of the banking culture was simple: if you win, you are in the right; if you lose you are wrong and you’re out.”

Jérôme Kerviel, a former junior trader at Société Générale, goes on trial in Paris today.

If you want to hide a leaf, find a forest. Jérôme Kerviel, alleged to be the world’s biggest rogue trader, will attempt to hide a €5bn leaf in a multi-trillion euro forest when he goes on trial in Paris today. Mr Kerviel’s defence will be horrendously complex – and very simple. His lawyers will admit that what he did in 2007-8 – to bet more than the value of France’s second largest bank on a series of trades on stock exchange futures – was insane. However, they will also argue that his actions were rational, even tacitly approved, within a global banking culture which had, itself, broken off relations with reality.

Put another way, the chief exhibits in Mr Kerviel’s defence will be the subprime mortgage crisis and the global financial meltdown of 2008-9.

His legal team will be led by the star of the French bar, Maître Olivier Metzner. They will argue that Mr Kerviel, 33, was not a “rogue” trader at all. He never tried to steal a centime of the hundreds of billions of euros that flickered across his computer-screen.

Although he repeatedly broke the rules of his bank, Société Générale, and pulverised his nominal trading limits, so did many of his colleagues, Mr Metzner will say. Thousands of computer records of Société Générale trades in 2007 suggest that Mr Kerviel and his colleagues had been bending the rules for 12 months before he was “caught”. So long as he was making huge profits – including a €1.5bn (€1.2bn) “surplus” in 2007 – his supervisors said nothing.

In other words, Mr Kerviel and his lawyers will try to turn France’s financial trial of the century into something even bigger: a trial of the world banking industry. They may succeed. Continue reading »

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Mar 27

A Wall Street sign hangs near the New York Stock Exchange in New York, on Dec. 18, 2009. (Bloomberg)

March 26 (Bloomberg) — JPMorgan Chase & Co., Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. and UBS AG were among more than a dozen Wall Street firms involved in a conspiracy to pay below-market interest rates to U.S. state and local governments on investments, according to documents filed in a U.S. Justice Department criminal antitrust case.

A government list of previously unidentified “co- conspirators” contains more than two dozen bankers at firms also including Bank of America Corp., Bear Stearns Cos., Societe Generale, two of General Electric Co.’s financial businesses and Salomon Smith Barney, the former unit of Citigroup Inc., according to documents filed in U.S. District Court in Manhattan on March 24. Continue reading »

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Feb 19

Goldman Sachs and other big banks aren’t just pocketing the trillions we gave them to rescue the economy – they’re re-creating the conditions for another crash


On January 21st, Lloyd Blankfein left a peculiar voicemail message on the work phones of his employees at Goldman Sachs. Fast becoming America’s pre-eminent Marvel Comics supervillain, the CEO used the call to deploy his secret weapon: a pair of giant, nuclear-powered testicles. In his message, Blankfein addressed his plan to pay out gigantic year-end bonuses amid widespread controversy over Goldman’s role in precipitating the global financial crisis.

The bank had already set aside a tidy $16.2 billion for salaries and bonuses – meaning that Goldman employees were each set to take home an average of $498,246, a number roughly commensurate with what they received during the bubble years. Still, the troops were worried: There were rumors that Dr. Ballsachs, bowing to political pressure, might be forced to scale the number back. After all, the country was broke, 14.8 million Americans were stranded on the unemployment line, and Barack Obama and the Democrats were trying to recover the populist high ground after their bitch-whipping in Massachusetts by calling for a “bailout tax” on banks. Maybe this wasn’t the right time for Goldman to be throwing its annual Roman bonus orgy.

Not to worry, Blankfein reassured employees. “In a year that proved to have no shortage of story lines,” he said, “I believe very strongly that performance is the ultimate narrative.”

Translation: We made a shitload of money last year because we’re so amazing at our jobs, so fuck all those people who want us to reduce our bonuses.

Goldman wasn’t alone. The nation’s six largest banks – all committed to this balls-out, I drink your milkshake! strategy of flagrantly gorging themselves as America goes hungry – set aside a whopping $140 billion for executive compensation last year, a sum only slightly less than the $164 billion they paid themselves in the pre-crash year of 2007. In a gesture of self-sacrifice, Blankfein himself took a humiliatingly low bonus of $9 million, less than the 2009 pay of elephantine New York Knicks washout Eddy Curry. But in reality, not much had changed. “What is the state of our moral being when Lloyd Blankfein taking a $9 million bonus is viewed as this great act of contrition, when every penny of it was a direct transfer from the taxpayer?” asks Eliot Spitzer, who tried to hold Wall Street accountable during his own ill-fated stint as governor of New York.

Beyond a few such bleats of outrage, however, the huge payout was met, by and large, with a collective sigh of resignation. Because beneath America’s populist veneer, on a more subtle strata of the national psyche, there remains a strong temptation to not really give a shit. The rich, after all, have always made way too much money; what’s the difference if some fat cat in New York pockets $20 million instead of $10 million?

The only reason such apathy exists, however, is because there’s still a widespread misunderstanding of how exactly Wall Street “earns” its money, with emphasis on the quotation marks around “earns.” The question everyone should be asking, as one bailout recipient after another posts massive profits – Goldman reported $13.4 billion in profits last year, after paying out that $16.2 billion in bonuses and compensation – is this: In an economy as horrible as ours, with every factory town between New York and Los Angeles looking like those hollowed-out ghost ships we see on History Channel documentaries like Shipwrecks of the Great Lakes, where in the hell did Wall Street’s eye-popping profits come from, exactly? Did Goldman go from bailout city to $13.4 billion in the black because, as Blankfein suggests, its “performance” was just that awesome? A year and a half after they were minutes away from bankruptcy, how are these assholes not only back on their feet again, but hauling in bonuses at the same rate they were during the bubble?

The answer to that question is basically twofold: They raped the taxpayer, and they raped their clients. Continue reading »

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Feb 13

See also:

Societe Generale Chief Strategist Albert Edwards: Theft! Were the US & UK central banks complicit in robbing the middle classes?

‘The inevitable break-up of the eurozone.’

SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) — A bailout of Greece will only delay the inevitable breakup of the Eurozone because the one-size-fits-all interest rate policy imposed by the euro has left several countries in the region uncompetitive, Societe Generale strategist Albert Edwards said Friday.

Edwards, a noted bear, warned about the Asian currency crisis of the late 1990s before it happened. That turmoil led to Russia’s debt default and the collapse of hedge fund Long-Term Capital Management.

“The situation in Greece following hard on the heels of similar solvency issues in Dubai feels to me very much like the Russian default and LTCM blow-up in 1998,” SocGen’s /quotes/comstock/24s!e:gle (FR:GLE 39.00, -1.26, -3.13%) Edwards wrote in a note to investors Friday.

European leaders vowed this week to save Greece from a fiscal crisis that’s pushed the country’s relative borrowing costs to the highest level since the country joined the Eurozone more than a decade ago.

“Any ‘help’ given to Greece merely delays the inevitable break-up of the eurozone,” Edwards wrote.

Such concerns have triggered a slump in the euro in recent weeks. It’s also fueled a jump in relative borrowing costs for other countries in Europe with big fiscal deficits, such as Portugal, Ireland and Spain. With Greece included, this group has become known as the PIGS.

“The problem for the PIGS is that years of inappropriately low interest rates resulted in overheating and rapid inflation, even though interest rates might well have been appropriate for the eurozone as a whole,” Edwards explained. Continue reading »

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Feb 09

Goldman Sachs

David Fiderer’s below piece, originally published on the Huffington Post, continues probing the topic of Goldman and AIG. For all intents and purposes the debate has been pretty much exhausted and if there was a functioning legal system, Goldman would have been forced long ago to pay back the cash it received from ML-3 (which in itself should have been long unwound now that plans to liquidate AIG have been scrapped) and to have the original arrangement reestablished (including the profitless unwind of AIG CDS the firm made improper billions on, by trading on non-public, pre-March 2009, information), and now that AIG is solvent courtesy of the government, so too its counterparties can continue experiencing some, albeit marginal, risk, instead of enjoying the possession of cold hard cash. Oh, and Tim Geithner would be facing civil and criminal charges.

Yet as we look forward, we ask, who now determines the variation margin on Greek CDS (and Portugal, and Dubai, and Spain, and, pretty soon, Japan and the US), the associated recovery rate, and how much collateral should be posted by sellers of Greek protection? If Greek banks, as the rumors goes, indeed sold Greek protection, and, as the rumor also goes, Goldman was the bulk buyer, either in prop or flow capacity, it is precisely Goldman, just like in the AIG case, that can now dictate what the collateral margin that Greek counterparties, and by extension the very nation of Greece, have to post on billions of dollars of Greek insurance. Let’s say Goldman thinks Greece’s debt recovery is 75 cents and the CDS should be trading at 700 bps, instead of the “prevailing” consensus of a 90 recovery and 450 spread, then it will very likely get its way when demanding extra capital to cover potential shortfalls, since Goldman itself has been instrumental in covering up Greece’s catastrophic financial state and continues to be a critical factor in any future refinancing efforts on behalf of Greece. Obviously this incremental margin, which only Goldman will ever see, even if the CDS was purchased on a flow basis, will never be downstreamed on behalf of its clients, and instead will be used to [buy futures|buy steepeners|prepay 2011 bonuses|buy more treasuries for the BONY $60 billion Treasury rainy day fund].

In essence, through its conflict of interest, its unshakable negotiating position, and its facility to determine collateral requirements and variation margin, Goldman can expand its previous position of strength from dictating merely AIG and Federal Reserve decision making, to one which determines sovereign policy! This is unmitigated lunacy and a recipe for financial collapse at the global level.

This is yet another AIG in the making, with Goldman this time likely threatening to accelerate the collapse not merely of the US financial system, but of the global one, in order to attain virtually infinite negotiating leverage. Of course, the world will not allow a Greece-initiated domino, allowing Goldman to call everyone’s bluff once again. Continue reading »

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