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Posts Tagged ‘Bernie Madoff’

Can Whistleblowers ‘Cross-Examine’ the SEC? Part II

Posted by Larry Doyle on January 10th, 2012 6:37 PM |

My commentary the other day entitled Can Whistleblowers ‘Cross-Examine’ the SEC? received a fair bit of attention and some rather interesting comments. In light of the very fluid developments within the realm of financial regulation, I strongly recommend that post.

The primary concern I raised within that commentary – and hence the title – was that a key panel at the upcoming 39th Annual Securities Regulation Institute consists solely of industry insiders. Why might that be such a concern?

Well, one of the main critiques of our financial regulatory system made by many, including Harry Markopolos, has been the revolving door between our regulators and the industry.

Why is a revolving door such a concern? Stick with me here.  (more…)

A Sad Tale of Wall Street’s Orphans

Posted by Larry Doyle on December 1st, 2011 7:56 PM |

A lead editorial the other day in the Wall Street Journal highlighted:

“Federal Judge Jed Rakoff’s rejection Monday of a $285 million settlement between Citigroup and the Securities and Exchange Commission is playing in some circles as a great populist victory against Wall Street. But it looks to us more like a rebuke of the cozy relationship between regulators and the regulated that too often leaves justice as an orphan.

Justice as an orphan sounds eerily similar to the fact that “success has many fathers, but failure is an orphan.”

Is there any greater failing in our nation than a lack of justice? I think not.  (more…)

Judge Rakoff: “Truth is Confined to Secretive, Fearful Whispers”

Posted by Larry Doyle on November 28th, 2011 6:53 PM |

Many participants in our financial markets and political circles clearly have little interest in allowing a full exposition of facts and figures on a wide array of topics. Why let those trifling principles get in the way of maximizing profits and currying favor for political gain, right?

“That’s not how we roll” here at Sense on Cents.  Truth, transparency, and integrity are ALWAYS the order of the day.

Our prized virtues may not be embraced in our nation and the world at large, but that does not mean we should or will ever forsake them.  (more…)

A Chance to Expose the Wall Street-Washington Incest

Posted by Larry Doyle on June 7th, 2011 6:55 AM |

Truth, transparency, and integrity.

The compromising of these virtues may be the cost of doing business in our nation but make no mistake the price we collectively pay is enormous. Whether in Washington or on Wall Street, the ability to compromise our prized virtues has truly been raised to an art form.

From derivative transactions which disguise unprecedented levels of risk to bond indentures which require advanced legal degrees to interpret, our ‘friends’ on Wall Street with assistance from ‘their’ friends in Washington have displayed little regard for the aforementioned virtues which are the foundation for real ‘sense on cents’.

More often than not,though,the violation of our virtues is viewed in an impersonal light. Wall Street and Washington are behemoths. The American public and investors at large are faceless. In my opinion, our financial services industry and government would just as soon keep it this way.

Let’s challenge them. (more…)

Amerivet Wins Round in Amerivet v. FINRA

Posted by Larry Doyle on March 5th, 2011 10:01 AM |

Jack Dempsey vs. Luis Angel Firpo - Sept. 14, 1923 Did the Wall Street regulator FINRA have funds from its own internal investment portfolio invested directly or indirectly in Bernie Madoff’s Ponzi scheme? Did FINRA effectively front run the auction-rate securities market in 2007 when it liquidated a position of approximately $647 million ARS from that same internal portfolio?

Do you think investors and all Americans would like to know the answers and details to these questions and much more? Do you think we deserve to know these answers? You think?

After developments this week, we are that much closer to learning answers to these questions and potentially much more about Wall Street’s regulator FINRA. How so? Let’s navigate.

The donnybrook legal battle continues between Amerivet Securities of Moreno Valley, California and the Wall Street self-regulatory organization FINRA. For those keeping score, the latest round this week was a decided victory for Amerivet. Why do I believe this specific case and the allegations made by Amerivet are so important?   (more…)

Lieutenant Colonel Elton Johnson on Way to Afghanistan Calls Out Finra…AGAIN!!

Posted by Larry Doyle on February 11th, 2011 7:07 AM |

I first wrote about Wall Street’s self-regulatory organization, FINRA (the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority) in January 2009. At that point and ever since I have believed strongly that for a revitalization of the health and confidence of our capital markets, our economy, and ultimately our nation itself that FINRA needed to become a MUCH more transparent organization. Regular readers of Sense on Cents know how passionately I feel.

Regrettably, though, outside of those regularly involved in the financial industry, I believe few people in our nation even know who FINRA is or what they do regulating Wall Street. I strongly believe that reality needs to change. Who would seem to share my belief? Amerivet Securities’ Lieutenant Colonel Elton Johnson, a member of the United States Army Reserve. (more…)

Did JP Morgan Aid and Abet Bernie Madoff? Time for Jamie Dimon ‘To Put Up or Shut Up’

Posted by Larry Doyle on February 4th, 2011 8:33 AM |

Just the facts.

A week ago at The World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Jamie Dimon, chief of JP Morgan, railed on the widespread vilification of bankers by the general public. The Wall Street Journal highlighted Dimon’s comment in writing, A Banker’s Plaintive Wail:

“A plaintive cry from one of the world’s top bankers on behalf of his industry pierced through an otherwise tame Thursday morning panel discussion here in Davos:

“I don’t lump all media together,” said Jamie Dimon, chief executive of J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. “There’s good and there’s bad. There’s irresponsible and ignorant and there’s really smart media. Well, not all bankers are the same. And I just think this constant refrain ‘bankers, bankers, bankers,’  — it’s just a really unproductive and unfair way of treating people. And I just think people should just stop doing that.”

Mr. Dimon argued that J.P. Morgan was one of the good banks..

On one hand, I agree with him. I have worked with many fabulous bankers throughout my career and count many of them as close personal friends. None of them actually run a major banking organization.

If  Mr. Dimon wants to be distinguished as ‘one of the good guys’ and JP Morgan as ‘one of the good banks,’ he now has his opportunity to ‘put up or shut up.’ How so? Let’s reenter the world of Bernie Madoff. (more…)

Darrel Issa Introduces Legislation to Restore FOIA at the SEC

Posted by Larry Doyle on September 18th, 2010 12:14 PM |

LD’s edit: Thank you to a Sense on Cents reader, Transparency, for informing us that Senate Judiciary Committee Approves Bill To Repeal SEC FOIA Exemptions.

Thanks to a loyal reader of Sense on Cents for sharing this press release put forth earlier this week. Not that the Republican Party does not have a LOT to answer for in terms of the final Financial Regulatory Reform, but at least on this front, I commend Darrell Issa (R-CA) for introducing this legislation.

Issa Introduces the SEC Freedom of Information Restoration Act

President Obama at Signing of Financial Reform Bill:  “It demands accountability and responsibility from everyone…It demands accountability and responsibility from everyone…And we all win when folks are rewarded based on how well they perform, not how well they evade accountability.” (more…)

SEC Probe of Money Managers Should Also Include FINRA

Posted by Larry Doyle on September 13th, 2010 10:11 AM |

In reading a Bloomberg commentary this morning, I could not help but think that policy implementations the SEC would like to impose upon money managers also need to be imposed in retrospect upon its regulatory kin at the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA).  Let’s navigate. Bloomberg writes, SEC Probes Money Managers for Conflicts in Choosing Hedge Funds:

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, stepping up its oversight of investment advisers, is examining whether asset managers that channel money to hedge funds are acting in investors’ best interest.

The agency asked money managers for information about their “due diligence” in selecting alternative investments such as hedge funds, private equity and venture-capital funds, according to a letter from the SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations obtained by Bloomberg News.

Longtime readers of Sense on Cents are well aware that in my reading and review of FINRA’s 2007 Annual Report (embedded in this link), I asked for information and disclosures regarding FINRA’s own internal investment portfolio. (more…)

Is FINRA’s Board Tone Deaf?

Posted by Larry Doyle on August 20th, 2010 3:15 PM |

When might a voting process with overwhelming returns be negated by the wishes and desires of the powers that be? Am I speaking of those who may occupy bully pulpits in third world nations? No, that guess would not be close. 

Am I referring to political leaders who are protected by military and business minions? Nope, still quite cold.

How about a board that is more affiliated with an organization’s executives than with its members? We are getting warmer.

What about financial regulators and a board who have the reputation of being much more closely aligned with major players within the financial industry than their rank and file members and American investors at large? Bingo!!

Let’s get more specific. A week ago, FINRA’s member firms voted overwhelmingly in favor of seven non-binding proxy proposals put forth by Amerivet Securities. In light of the vote and the overwhelming results, one would have thought that FINRA’s board would have absolutely no choice but to fully address these proposals. To do otherwise, one would think that the FINRA board might run the risk of further alienating its membership while sending a message to the American public at large that transparency and disclosures are virtues this financial regulator speaks of but does not truly practice.  (more…)






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