Archive for the ‘Goldman Sachs’ Category
So, even if there IS a prosecution and a conviction, the bankers still get out of jail. Remember Sergey Aleynikov?
A federal appeals court reversed the conviction late Thursday of Sergey Aleynikov, a former Goldman Sachs programmer found guilty of stealing proprietary code from the bank’s high-frequency trading platform.
The United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit overturned the conviction and ordered the trial court to enter a judgment of acquittal. A judgment of acquittal generally bars the government from retrying a defendant.
This one’s over.
The opinion is not yet available; the reversal came just hours after oral orgument was heard.
It appears that the reversal turned on whether the code was intended for use “in interstate commerce”, which was the premise of the statute under which the government charged him.
If you remember at the time there were allegations that Goldman was able to read trade data before the trades executed, and speculation was that the code Sergey wrote might have been involved in that.
In any event the prosecution appeared to be a “directed attack” carried out by Goldman using their influence with the government.
But today, Sergey has had his conviction tossed in a fashion that pretty much precludes him from being retried, and as such it must be assumed that his felony record has been expunged and he is, and will remain, a free man.
There comes a time when the rip-off schemes become so in your face that there is no longer any attempt to hide them with tricky 5,000 page contracts and inside deals (such as the CDO^2s that blew up in so many people’s faces — while the banks that created them designed them to do exactly that.)
Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) plans to issue four certificates of deposit linked to stocks as record low interest rates drive investor demand for the potentially higher-yielding CDs.
Why wouldn’t you just buy DIA (Diamonds) and be done with it? That’s an ETF that closely tracks the DOW and has very low expenses. If you want the risk of being in the market, then you should get both sides – the upside and the downside.
The problem is here:
The four-year CD tracks the monthly percentage change in the Dow, with gains capped at 1.5 percent to 2 percent and no floor on the declines. That means if the Dow advanced 5 percent, the monthly return would be recorded as no more than 2 percent, while a drop of the same amount would be taken in full.
In other words in the event of a big rally in the market on the month Goldman will keep much if not most of the profit. In the event of a big crash, you will eat the loss.
Why would anyone buy such a product? There’s no reason to do so, and if there’s any sort of fiduciary responsibility associated with the seller I’d love to see their argument justifying how this isn’t a raw violation of that responsibility.
Since this is listed as a “CD” I presume it falls under FDIC coverage if Goldman fails. That too is an interesting premise since these “devices” are put together by combining zeros (a form of bond) with derivatives to create a “synthetic” financial construct that should (in theory) always provide them with more cash flow than the “CD” pays (thus, in theory, it is always a winner for The Squid)
The obvious problem of course comes when the derivative counterparty can’t pay…..
The not-so-obvious problem is that in the derivative market for every winner there is a loser. So if Goldman is always the winner, who would be dumb enough to take an always-losing bet? Well, nobody once they figure it out, which means that somewhere there is likely a scheme in here much like the old CDO games — we just haven’t found it yet.
The FDIC is supposed to protect depositors, not firms that set up hinky derivative structures with depositor funds…..
Just As I Predicted Last Quarter, The World’s First FDIC Insured Hedge Fund Takes A Fat Trading Loss
The graphic below pretty much sums up Goldman’s most recent quarter…
An unmitigated disaster, and worse than practically everybody on the Street anticipated, save that brash-ass blogging dude brandishing those old fashioned analytical weapons of choice… Two months or so ago (Monday, 22 August 2011), I penned the public blog post that also relased my most recent research on Goldman Sachs - The Squid Is A Federally (Tax Payer) Insured Hedge Fund Paying Fat Bonuses That Can’t Trade In Volatile Markets? Who’s Gonna Tell The Shareholders and Tax Payer??? - as excerpted:
The chart below demonstrates how the volatility of the revenues from the trading and principal investments trickles down into volatility of the total revenues and profits of Goldman Sachs. I don’t call Goldman the world’s most expensive federally insured hedge fund for nothing!
And for those who haven’t been following my Squid Hunting series, there’s a lot more to come from those boys at 200 West Street. If you want to know what will happen next, just look at the first few pages of the lastest Goldman subscription docs (click here to subscribe):
After all, eventually someone must query, So, When Does 3+5=4? When You Aggregate A Bunch Of Risky Banks & Then Pretend That You Didn’t?
|I’m Hunting Big Game Today:The Squid On The Spear Tip, Part 1 & Introduction||
Summary: This is the first in a series of articles to be released this weekend concerning Goldman Sachs, the Squid! In this introduction (for those who do not regularly follow me) I demonstrate how the market, the sell side, and most investors are missing one of the biggest bastions of risk in the US investment banking industry. I will also…
|Hunting the Squid, Part2: Since When Is Enough Derivative Exposure To Blow Up The World Something To Be Ignored?||
Hunting the Squid, Part2: Since When Is Enough Derivative Exposure To Blow Up The World Something To Be Ignored?
Welcome to part two of my series on Hunting the Squid, the overvaluation and under-appreciation of the risks that is Goldman Sachs. Since this highly analytical, but poignant diatribe covers a lot of material, it’s imperative that those who have not done so review part 1 of this series, I’m Hunting Big Game Today:The Squid On The Spear Tip, Part…
|Reggie Middleton Serves Up Fried Calamari From Raw Squid: Goldman Sachs and Market Perception of Real Risks!||
For those who don’t subscribe to BoomBustblog, or haven’t read I’m Hunting Big Game Today:The Squid On The Spear Tip, Part 1 & Introduction and Hunting the Squid, Part2: Since When Is Enough Derivative Exposure To Blow Up The World Something To Be Ignored?, not only have you missed out on some unique artwork, you’ve potentially missed out on 300%…
|Hunting the Squid, part 4: So, What Else Can Go Wrong With The Squid? Plenty!!!||
Yes, this more of the hardest hitting investment banking research available focusing on Goldman Sachs (the Squid), but before you go on, be sure you have read parts 1.2. and 3: I’m Hunting Big Game Today:The Squid On A Spear Tip, Part 1 & Introduction Hunting the Squid, Part2: Since When Is Enough Derivative Exposure To Blow Up The World Something To…
|I actually show up in person!|
My next post should also include research on the next bank that we have found that has been (again) overlooked by the market, the media and the sell side. Can we expect the same that we saw in BNP, Bear, Lehman, etc.? Well, paying subscribers shall find out forthwith.
I can be reached via the following channels, or directly via email:
Goldman Sachs is doing it again. Goldman is telling the public that everything is going to be just fine, but meanwhile they are advising their top clients to bet on a huge financial collapse. On August 16th, a 54 page report authored by Goldman strategist Alan Brazil was distributed to institutional clients. The general public was not intended to see this report. Fortunately, some folks over at the Wall Street Journal got their hands on a copy and they have filled us in on some of the details. It turns out that Goldman Sachs secretly believes that an economic collapse is coming, and they have some very interesting ideas about how to make money in the turbulent financial environment that we will soon be entering. In the report, Brazil says that the U.S. debt problem cannot be solved with more debt, that the European sovereign debt crisis is going to get even worse and that there are large numbers of financial institutions in Europe that are on the verge of collapse. If this is what people at the highest levels of the financial world are talking about, perhaps we should all start paying attention.
There is a tremendous amount of fear in the global financial community right now. As I wrote about the other day, the financial world is about to hit the panic button. Things could start falling apart at any time. Most of these big banks will not admit how bad things are publicly, but privately there is a whole lot of freaking out going on.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Brazil believes that “as much as $1 trillion in capital may be needed to shore up European banks; that small businesses in the U.S., a past driver of job production, are still languishing; and that China’s growth may not be sustainable.”
Perhaps most startling of all is what the report has to say about the debt problems of the United States and Europe.
For example, this following excerpt from the report sounds like it could have come straight from The Economic Collapse Blog….
“Solving a debt problem with more debt has not solved the underlying problem. In the US, Treasury debt growth financed the US consumer but has not had enough of an impact on job growth. Can the US continue to depreciate the world’s base currency?”
Remember, this statement was not written by some guy on the Internet. A top Goldman Sachs analyst put it into a report for institutional investors.
The report also goes into great detail about the financial crisis in Europe. Brazil writes about how the euro is headed for trouble and about how dozens of financial institutions in Europe could potentially be in danger of collapse.
But in any environment Goldman Sachs thinks that it can make money. The following is how Business Insider summarized the advice that Brazil gave in the report regarding how to make money off of the impending collapse in Europe….
- Buy a six-month put option on the Euro versus the Swiss Franc, thus betting the Euro will drop against the Franc (the Franc being the currency that an official Goldman report recently referred to as the most overvalued in the world)
- Buy a five-year credit default swap on an index of European corporate debt—the iTraxx 9. This is a bet that some of these companies will default, and your insurance policy, the CDS, will pay off
This is so typical of Goldman Sachs. They will say one thing publicly and then turn around and do the total opposite privately.
For example, prior to the financial crisis of 2008, Goldman Sachs was putting together mortgage-backed securities that they knew were garbage and marketing them to investors as AAA-rated investments. On top of that, Goldman then often privately bet against those exact same securities.
The CEO of Goldman Sachs has even acknowledged that the investment bank engaged in “improper” behavior during 2006 and 2007.
For much more on the history of all this, please see this article: “How Goldman Sachs Made Tens Of Billions Of Dollars From The Economic Collapse Of America In Four Easy Steps“.
So will Goldman Sachs ever get into serious trouble for any of this?
No, of course not.
Yeah, they will get a slap on the wrist from time to time, but the reality is that the top levels of the federal government are absolutely littered with ex-employees of Goldman Sachs. Goldman is one of the “too big to fail” banks and they are going to continue to do pretty much whatever they feel like doing.
Sadly, the power of the “too big to fail” banks just continues to grow. At this point, the “big six” U.S. banks (Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, Bank of America, and Wells Fargo) now possess assets equivalent to approximately 60 percent of America’s gross national product.
Goldman Sachs was the second biggest donor to Barack Obama’s campaign in 2008, so don’t expect Obama to do anything about any of this.
We have a financial system that is deeply, deeply corrupt and all of that corruption is a big reason why things are falling apart.
Sadly, the 54 page report mentioned above is right – we really are facing a global debt meltdown and we really are heading for an economic collapse.
You aren’t going to hear the truth from the mainstream media or from our politicians because “keeping people calm” is much more of a priority to them than telling the truth is.
The debt crisis in the United States is unsustainable and the debt crisis in Europe is unsustainable. Right now we are in the calm before the storm, and nobody knows exactly when the storm is going to strike.
But let there be no doubt – it is coming.
The amazing prosperity that we have enjoyed for the last several decades has largely been a debt-fueled illusion. It was a great party while it lasted, but now it is coming to an end and the aftermath of the coming crash is going to be absolutely horrific.
Keep watch and get prepared. We don’t know exactly when the collapse is going to happen, but it is definitely on the way and now even Goldman Sachs is admitting that.
Goldman Sachs Plunges in Late Trading on News CEO Blankfein Hires High-Profile Defense Attorney; Perjury Regarding Testimony Before Congress Proposed
Shares of Goldman Sachs hit the skids in late trading so much so that people were asking “what’s up?”
GS – Goldman Sachs 15-Minute Chart
Reuters explains in Goldman CEO hires high-profile attorney
Goldman Sachs Chief Executive Lloyd Blankfein has hired Reid Weingarten, a high-profile Washington defense attorney whose past clients include a former Enron accounting officer, according to a government source familiar with the matter.
Blankfein, 56, is in his sixth year at the helm of the largest U.S. investment bank, which has spent two years dodging accusations of conflicts of interest and fraud.
The move to retain Weingarten comes as investigations of Goldman and its role in the 2007-2009 financial crisis continue.
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission scored a $550 million settlement against the bank in a fraud lawsuit in July 2010, but other investigations continue.
“Why do you bring in someone like that?” said the source, who was not authorized to speak publicly. “It says one thing: that they’re taking it seriously.”
Blankfein has not been charged in any civil or criminal case, and it was not immediately clear why he hired Weingarten.
One former federal prosecutor, who was not authorized to speak publicly, said Blankfein may have hired outside counsel after receiving a request from investigators for documents or other information.
The Senate report raised questions about inconsistencies between testimony from Blankfein and other Goldman executives to Congress and emails unearthed in the Senate investigation. The subcommittee’s chairman, Senator Carl Levin, has said the question of whether Blankfein and others committed perjury is up to the relevant federal agencies.
The former prosecutor cautioned that perjury cases were difficult to prove, adding that prosecutors would not bring charges unless they had a “rock solid case.
GS – Goldman Sachs Monthly Chart
Whatever the reasons, Goldman Sachs is revisiting a share price last seen in 2009.
I truly hope they nail Lloyd Blankfein and the New York Fed along with him. Do [not] count on it. No one has paid a price yet.
Note: That was supposed to say do “not” count on it. I accidentally left out the “not” and just added it in.
Mike “Mish” Shedlock
Has Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) turned the House Oversight Committee into a bank lobbying firm with the power to subpoena and pressure government regulators? ThinkProgress has found that a Goldman Sachs vice president changed his name, then later went to work for Issa to coordinate his effort to thwart regulations that affect Goldman Sachs’ bottom line.
In July, Issa sent a letter to top government regulators demanding that they back off and provide more justification for new margin requirements for financial firms dealing in derivatives. A standard practice on Capitol Hill is to end a letter to a government agency with contact information for the congressional staffer responsible for working on the issue for the committee. In most cases, the contact staffer is the one who actually writes such letters. With this in mind, it is important to note that the Issa letter ended with contact information for Peter Haller, a staffer hired this year to work for Issa on the Oversight Committee.
Ok, so who is this guy? Just a staffer, right? Uh……
Haller, as he is now known, went by the name Peter Simonyi until three years ago. Simonyi adopted his mother’s maiden name Haller in 2008 shortly after leaving Goldman Sachs as a vice president of the bank’s commodity compliance group. In a few short years, Haller went from being in charge of dealing with regulators for Goldman Sachs to working for Congress in a position where he made official demands from regulators overseeing his old firm.
You’re joking right?
Oh, maybe you’re not.
Where’s my pitchfork and torch – or more importantly, where’s yours?
This nation deserves an all-on economic and political collapse. I don’t want to see one, as I know that what comes from it will be horrifying, but we have no argument at a moral, ethical or for that matter Biblical level for avoiding it any longer.
PS: For those who think this is some sort of smear job by ThinkProgress click that link above on “adopted”. That’s a saved copy of the web site from the law firm that publicly discloses the name change and guy’s CV. He didn’t even try to hide it – as of this morning, the same content is there. Yes, I looked.