Taibbi on HSBC: Blood Money
Posted by Larry Doyle on February 15, 2013 7:22 AM |
There are few writers today who hit as hard as Rolling Stones’ Matt Taibbi. That is a good thing for those who actually care about free market capitalism, let alone a sense of moral decency.
Two months ago, the European based bank HSBC was hit with a $1.9 BILLION fine for allowing — if not promoting — its operations to be used as little more than a laundromat by a host of very unsavory characters for a protracted period. Huge story, right? RIGHT!
Where are the major media outlets to dig in, unearth the dirt, clean out the residue in this laundromat, and bring the unbridled truth to the public? I will tell you where the media is: in the tank.
Leave it to Taibbi to make the contacts and expose the dirt, the grime, and the blood that was (is?) HSBC. In a Sense on Cents classic, Taibbi writes>>>>>>>>>
The deal was announced quietly, just before the holidays, almost like the government was hoping people were too busy hanging stockings by the fireplace to notice. Flooring politicians, lawyers and investigators all over the world, the U.S. Justice Department granted a total walk to executives of the British-based bank HSBC for the largest drug-and-terrorism money-laundering case ever. Yes, they issued a fine – $1.9 billion, or about five weeks’ profit – but they didn’t extract so much as one dollar or one day in jail from any individual, despite a decade of stupefying abuses.
People may have outrage fatigue about Wall Street, and more stories about billionaire greedheads getting away with more stealing often cease to amaze. But the HSBC case went miles beyond the usual paper-pushing, keypad-punching sort-of crime, committed by geeks in ties, normally associated with Wall Street. In this case, the bank literally got away with murder – well, aiding and abetting it, anyway.
Nothing shocks me anymore on this topic, but there are few exposes that I have read that go so far as this in detailing just how deeply embedded criminal elements penetrated a major money center bank.
This is a MUST read. Hats off to Matt Taibbi for writing Gangster Bankers: Too Big to Jail.
He takes some nice shots at UBS, as well. Why would anybody STILL want to do business with these institutions?
They’ve changed? Read the story.
I thank the reader who brought this story to my attention.
I have no business interest with any entity referenced in this commentary. The opinions expressed are my own. I am a proponent of real transparency within our markets so that investor confidence and investor protection can be achieved.