Books That Matter
See what books the Project On Government Oversight is reading to learn more about nuclear weapon mishaps, government surveillance, militarized cops, wounded soldiers, Wall Street crashes and more in our 2014 Winter Reading List.
“The cavalier attitude of traders who are managing the savings and retirement funds of other people was unexpected and troubling to see. After Amaranth’s traders lost billions of dollars, while they were getting out of their remaining holdings, they tossed around a football, made jokes to one another and offered no apologies. Why pension funds continue to pour money into hedge funds, which charge enormous fees, have not beaten the performance of the S&P 500 index for years and which take enormous risks with clients money, is hard to understand.”
-Barbara Dreyfuss, the author of Hedge Hogs: The Cowboy Traders Behind Wall Street’s Largest Hedge Fund Disaster, in her Q&A with POGO.
Hedge Hogs also appears on POGO’s Books That Matter: 2014 Winter Reading List.
On Tuesday (Sept. 24), the Wall Street Journal reported that JP Morgan was offering the government $3 billion to settle (paywall) an unspecified number of criminal probes after the Department of Justice threatened to file suit in an investigation of its pre-crisis mortgage dealings. Yesterday, it reported that regulators are looking for something like $11 billion in compensation (paywall), including $7 billion in penalties and $4 billion in consumer relief.
These numbers are still in flux, but depending on how many cases the payment resolves, it would likely be the largest single-bank payout in the history of financial regulation, supplanting HSBC’s $1.92 billion money-laundering penalty.
But despite the conspicuous nature of the announcement, JPMorgan is still admitting only to non-scienter-based charges under Sections 13(a) and 13(b)(2) of the Exchange Act. Basically, the bank should have made more accurate public filings and had better internal controls. Serious issues, for sure, but a long way from fraud-based charges…
If you were wondering why the new House bill on bank bailouts seemed like it was written by Citigroup, it’s because it was literally written by Citigroup.
“Citigroup’s recommendations were reflected in more than 70 lines of the House committee’s 85-line bill.”
we totally need more government to protect us from this though
More banks writing their own rules.