Best of the Week
Most Popular
1.China Crash, Greece Collapse, Harbingers of Stock Market Apocalypse Forecast 2015? - Nadeem_Walayat
2.Gold Price Awaiting Outcome of Greece Crisis - Clive_Maund
3.Gold Price Peculiar 6 Month Cycles - Rambus_Chartology
4.Gold Price Just a Little Bit More - Bob_Loukas
5.8 Unprecedented Extremes Indicate a Stock Market Bubble in Trouble - EWI
6.Gold And Silver – Without Either, You Will Be Greeced - Michael_Noonan
7.Lies, Damned Lies and Statistics - James_Quinn
8.China Crash, Greece Crisis Harbingers of Stocks Bear Market? Video - Nadeem_Walayat
9.Gold and Silver Record Shorting - Zeal_LLC
10.Markets Big Deflationary Downwave Quick Reference Guide... - Clive_Maund
Last 5 days
The Fed Can't Stop the Commodity Bear Market - 1st Aug 15
Meet the Leader Who Turned Google Into a “Buy” - 1st Aug 15
The Greek Coup: Liquidity as a Weapon of Coercion - 1st Aug 15
Gold’s Amazing Resiliency - 31st July 15
Silver – A Century of Prices - 31st July 15
Demand for Gold Bullion Surges – Perth Mint, and U.S. Mint Cannot Meet Demand - 31st July 15
Reasons Why the Greek Crisis Will Only Get Worse - 30th July 15
The War On Cash: Why Now? - 30th July 15
Greece - The IMF Experts Flunk, Again - 30th July 15
Threat Of Cyber Warfare the “Other Reason To Own Physical Gold” Warns Rickards - 30th July 15
The 5 Biggest Myths and Lies about the Middle East - 30th July 15
Greece, Diversion, and the New World Order - 30th July 15
Ibuprofen Warning - The Pain Killer that can Kill You! - 29th July 15
More Ritholtz on Gold, and Another Response - 29th July 15
Crude Oil Price Is Lower – and You’re Richer - 29th July 15
U.S. Home Sales Market Is Dead – This Chart Proves It - 29th July 15
Greece- What Happens When Economists Talk Politics - 29th July 15
The Gold - U.S. House Prices Ratio As A Valuation Indicator - 29th July 15
Will Crude Oil Price Decline Continue? -Video - 28th July 15
Gold & Silver Money Has Devolved Into Debt and Plastic - 28th July 15
Buy and "Own Gold Krugerrands" Says Money Expert Jim Grant, Very Bullish on Gold - 28th July 15
How to Protect Yourself from China's Crashing Stock Market - 28th July 15
Quantum Geopolitics - 28th July 15
Gold Mining Stocks to Weather the Storm - 28th July 15
Stock Market Bulls Beware! - 28th July 15
Will Chinese Stock Market Crash Affect the US? - 27th July 15
Crude Oil Price Under $48! - 27th July 15
Are We Seeing a Trend Reversal with U.S. Interest Rates? - 27th July 15
How to Know When the Gold Bear Market is Over - 27th July 15
Gold Bear Market Phase III - 27th July 15
Silver Bull Hammer Buy Signal - 27th July 15
Gold Cracks Support and Plunges to New Lows - How Low Will Price Go? - 27th July 15
Commodity Markets Breakdown Of 2015 Is Now A Fact - 26th July 15
Gold Price at a Five-Year Low: Here’s What to Do - 26th July 15
Stock Market Primary III Inflection Point - 26th July 15

Free Instant Analysis

Free Instant Technical Analysis


Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

Stock Market Bubble in Trouble

LIBOR This - HooHa: Finally, A Few Bankers Face Criminal Prosecutions For Conspiracies

Politics / Banksters Dec 22, 2012 - 03:23 PM GMT

By: Danny_Schechter

Politics

New York, New York: When most mainstream media outlets discuss conspiracy theories, it is usually to debunk the views of dissenting and critical thinkers who are routinely denounced as simplistic, paranoid or worse. 

You have frequently seen the mantra questioning their motives and conclusions as if the idea of people or officials acting together covertly to advance their interests in illegal ways is something new in history.


Until recently, US press outlets characterized conspiracy arguments as rants that lacked any factual basis, engaged in guilt by association and stretched the facts.

The only conspiracy charges they tended to look at uncritically were criminal complaints against the Mafia under anti-racketeering statutes like the RICO statutes. Prosecutors loved these cases because normal concerns with  protecting  the rights of defendants didn’t apply when hearsay evidence was permitted.

But now, four years after the financial crisis, prosecutors have finally discovered what critics have been alleging repeatedly:  that big banks were  crooks, engaging, engaging among other illicit practices,  in secretive, illegal and conspiratorial schemes to rig baseline interest rates and manipulate credit markets,

It has now been admitted that traders at two major financial institutions were fixing LIBOR—the London Interbank Offered Rate, used to set the interest rates of $800 trillion worth of financial products, including credit cards and mortgages.

That figure again: $800 trillion!

The banks: Barclays and UBS. At first, regulators got them to agree to pay fines in so-called “settlements,” which are viewed by these institutions as a cost of doing business.

Barclays shelled out $450 million, but UBS went further paying a whopping $1.5 billion fine. They also admitted to fraud and bribery. (Usually banks settle such complaints with out any admission of responsibility).

The Brits took the money, but US prosecutors went further and also lodged criminal charges against two former UBS senior traders for the Libor manipulation. They are the first individuals to be charged in what Reuters called “the wide-ranging investigation that involves more than a dozen big banks.”

(Note: Only two were charged, and neither works for UBS anymore. The Naked Capitalism site scoffed: “"So far, the top echelon of UBS is unaffected by this epic scandal. Until we see executives suffer (and fines are insufficient if they remain wealthy), it’s a no-brainer that this type of behavior will continue, albeit in different businesses and new guises.")

The practices were “absolutely rampant” between 2005 and 20 10, according to the Daily Beast which also noted:

“Both the Barclays and UBS settlements show a combination of systemic corruption—senior officials who did not seem to care about illegal activity going on—and a tight-knit, foulmouth fraternity among the traders themselves. While the Barclays boys talked about buying each other Bollinger, (ie. pricey champagne), the UBS fixers deployed nicknames, profanity, and a total disregard for the fact that their communications with each other might one day be made public. “

The Wall Street Journal couldn’t ignore the story and reported that regulators “alleged” a vast conspiracy, even after the banks admitted to some of what they had done.  Rupert Murdoch couldn’t resist his tabloid training by having two UBS stars quoted in large type on the front page:

•Said a Broker to a Trader: “”Mate your getting bloody good at this Libor game...think of me when yur on your yacht in Monaco won’t yu.”

•Said The Man Called “Trader A:” I need you to keep it as low as possible..if you do that…I’ll pay you, you know, “$50,000, $100,000 dollars.. whatever you want…I’m  a man of my word.”

Notice these violations of banking regulations are always presented as victimless crimes or crimes that only affect investors, never people who lose jobs or homes or how they impact on the economy worldwide,

Most of the coverage does not link all these financial crimes to the larger effect and impact they have had on the world.

Last June, Congresswoman Maxine Waters tried to raise these issues with Ben Bernanke, the Chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank asking him to take action. He retreats into bland and passionless responses. It didn’t seem he was in much of a hurry to anything. (Watch her efforts on You Tube” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GJX-0944ass&feature=player_embedded

Months later, other regulators in Britain and the US acted but also in a low-key way.

These prosecutions are highly selective and show a real unwillingness to crack down on bank crimes, even when they involve drug running.

Former NY State Governor Eliot Spitzer, and a former prosecutor who went after Wall Street commented on a refusal to go after the HSBC Bank on these charges, “"The decision to not prosecute in this instance belies everything that the government has ever done with regard to drug prosecutions everywhere.  

“I mean, when you think about the way they behave toward ordinary people who get caught up in drug cases, where they seize all your property and they use absolutely the maximum sentences they can possibly avail themselves of, and in this case they catch a bank that launders billions of dollars for Colombian and Mexican drug cartels … for years on end, and they can’t find something to charge these people with?"

"If the law doesn’t apply equally to everybody, then you don’t really have a system of law.  

It’s not just the banks or governments. The media seems to just be admitting that many banks are run like criminal enterprises.

I and other in the independent media have been making these points for years, as the website Zero Hedge noted:

•Fraud caused the Great Depression and the current financial crisis, and the economy will never recover until fraud is prosecuted

•Criminal fraud is the main business model adopted by the giant banks.

•Largely because they are out-of-control criminal enterprises, economy cannot recover unless the big banks are broken up.

•The Obama administration has made it official policy not to prosecute fraud. Indeed, the "watchdogs" in D.C. are so corrupt that they are as easily bribed as a policeman in a third world banana republic.

•Instead of prosecuting, the government throws money at them

•As Nobel prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz noted years ago:

"The system is set so that even if you're caught, the penalty is just a small number relative to what you walk home with. The fine is just a cost of doing business. It's like a parking fine. Sometimes you make a decision to park knowing that you might get a fine because going around the corner to the parking lot takes you too much time."

Slowly, these concerns are working their way into the media but without much of the larger framework presented in a dire global economic report on just how deeply the world economy has been wounded.

The UN reported that it will take until 2017 before jobs come back to pre crisis levels, if they ever do, Global recession could easily deepen given the problems with the US, European and, now, the Chinese economies.

Much of this tracks back to the financial crimes that are just officially being acknowledged. It’s important to remember the warnings of Vanity Fair’s Graydon Carter who, years ago,  referred to the criminal practices of big bankers, when he said: “Never have so few done so much to so many.” 

Also note that none of this “back story” is ever referenced in the reporting on the so-called “fiscal cliff” negotiations. It is rarely mentioned how much of the money owed is in interest due banks. We keep hearing reports about our economic woes without any discussion of what is behind it.

News Dissector Danny Schechters film and book Disinformation. For more information, Http://www.plunderhecrimeofourtime.com.

News Dissector Danny Schechter has made a film and written a book on the “Crime Of Our Time.” (News Dissector.com/plunder.) Comments to dissector@mediachannel.org

© 2012 Copyright Danny Schechter - All Rights Reserved


Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisors.


© 2005-2015 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

Biggest Debt Bomb in History