Subscribe: RSS Feed | Twitter | Facebook | Email
Home | Contact Us

Posts Tagged ‘Susan Antilla of Bloomberg’

What’s Driving Today’s Vote?

Posted by Larry Doyle on November 2nd, 2010 9:08 AM |

Will there soon be a run on U-Hauls in Washington DC?

Later this evening we will learn just how many incumbents in Washington are sent packing. In the process, we will assuredly hear from political pundits on both sides of the aisle as to what Americans are saying with their vote. In my opinion, we can dismiss the pundits and the politicians alike. While we are at it, we can throw a heap of cold water over the media as well. How so? Why’s this?

The simple fact is the rage coiling within the American populace has been developing for well over a year and today that rage will be released. The force multiplier of that rage will send a message to Washington and every corner of our great nation that Americans are beyond fed up with politics as usual and the crony capitalism that has flourished within that system. This rage is far different than anything I have ever witnessed in my lifetime. I highlighted it a year ago. While the reality of the rage was clearly evident in late 2009, our political representatives from both sides of the aisle did little to nothing to address it. Today they will pay the price for their lack of attention to the American public.

Let’s take a quick look back to the pulse of our nation in November 2009. Has that pulse remained the same? (more…)

Bloomberg’s Susan Antilla Exposes Lehman’s Charade

Posted by Larry Doyle on March 15th, 2010 10:54 PM |

Journalism is not dead.

I find it easy to critique financial journalists and journalism these days for not digging to expose the charades within the Wall Street-Washington incestuous liaisons; however, a few journalists are not beholden to the financial industry, do dig, and truly distinguish themselves in the process. The two finest journalists in this realm both happen to work at Bloomberg. One is Jonathan Weil. The other is Susan Antilla.

While many journalists have written about the finer points of repo financing and how Lehman cooked their books, Susan Antilla took the time to delve deeper into Anton Valukas’ expose on the inner workings of Lehman. (more…)

Sense on Cents 2009 Halls of Fame and Shame

Posted by Larry Doyle on January 4th, 2010 9:47 AM |

For those who missed last evening’s No Quarter Radio’s Sense on Cents with Larry Doyle Hall of Fame and Shame Induction, I am compelled to provide a recap and listing of all those honored or dishonored — depending on one’s perspective. What was the measuring stick to make these assessments? Very simply, the pursuit and promotion of truth, transparency and integrity as we navigate the economic landscape.

Some names you will immediately recognize, others you may not. Additional information about these individuals can be found via the search window (located above the right sidebar) at Sense on Cents. The names appear in no specific order of priority or importance. With no further adieu . . .

Sense on Cents 2009 Hall of Shame Inductees

1. Bernie Madoff
2. Nicholas Cosmo: ran financial scam at Agape World
3. Tim Geithner: tax cheat amongst other things
4. Larry Summers: arrogant, condescending, and sleep deprived
5. Auction-Rate Securities dealers and managers, especially Oppenheimer Holdings, E-Trade, Schwab, Pimco, Van-Kampen, Blackrock
6. The Wall Street Journal
7. George Soros
8. Chris Dodd (D-CT): reasons too numerous to mention
9. The Board of FINRA
10. Franklin Raines and Leland Brendsel: former CEOs of Fannie and Freddie
11. Wall Street management, especially Lloyd Blankfein of Goldman Sachs
12. Frank Dipascali: a special place in hell for Madoff’s CFO
13. Rahm Emanuel
14. Jimmy Cayne: CEO of Bear Stearns
15. Dick Fuld: CEO of Lehman Bros.
16. Congress collectively
17. Barney Frank (D-MA): reasons too numerous to mention, but start with “I want to roll the dice…”
18. Bank Stress Tests: a total sham
19. Allen Stanford
20. Steven Rattner: car czar
21. Bruce Malkenhorst: receiving a 500k pension from Vernon, CA
22. Barack Obama: just another politician (more…)

When Did Cheating Become Acceptable?

Posted by Larry Doyle on October 28th, 2009 4:13 PM |

There have been cheaters and con artists throughout history. While I do not present myself as an economic historian, I think it would be interesting to review the depth of cheating and scandals today relative to other eras. The challenge for many individuals and businesses is competing honestly yet coming up short in the process. What is one to do?

We witness this cheating throughout society. From the steroid scandals in sports to financial frauds on Wall Street and at every point in between, the lack of real moral integrity has eroded our economic foundation. The excuse commonly utilized by cheaters is the need to keep up with the competition.

I lost all respect for Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots when it was revealed he cheated. What was the common refrain around the NFL? “If you’re not cheating, you’re not really trying.” (more…)

SEC Advisor Highlights Wall Street-Washington Incest

Posted by Larry Doyle on September 22nd, 2009 12:19 PM |

I have always held Bloomberg reporter Jonathan Weil in very high regard. I now regularly look for commentary by Bloomberg’s Susan Antilla, as well. Why? Ms. Antilla pursues truth and transparency in her writing and pulls no punches in the process.

This morning, Ms. Antilla calls for the SEC’s enforcement division to be rolled into the Department of Justice. She writes What the SEC Might Look Like If It Did Its Job:

Some things get so hopelessly broken they can’t be fixed. I’ve been wondering if the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is one of them.

Make no mistake, the ineffectiveness of the SEC is not merely reflected in its dismal performance on the Madoff fiasco. For a long time, the money from Wall Street has purchased cover in the halls of Washington. That cover is primarily in Congress with the resulting pressure applied on those within the SEC. Antilla engaged Barbara Roper for further details and highlights:

Considering the blinding evidence of dysfunction, it occurs to me that enough is enough. Why not just shut the place down? I asked Barbara Roper, director of investor protection at Consumer Federation of America and a member of the SEC’s Investor Advisory Committee, formed in June.

Roper says the Kotz report “calls into question the agency’s ability to fulfill its basic functions,” which sounds to me like a pretty good reason to put it out of its misery. Roper argues, though, that replacing it with something new would only result in more of the same.

“There is a reason it is the way it is,” she says, “and it’s because of the deference that Congress and various administrations have to the financial services industry.” Thus, we’d just get another impotent agency if we started from scratch, she says. (LD’s highlight)

Ms. Roper’s use of the term “deference” is translated in financial layman’s terms as “incest.”

What does one do in any incestuous relationship? Keep the perpetrators as far away from the victims as possible. How would that be accomplished? Move the enforcement of financial rules and regulations outside of the purview of the SEC. Antilla nails it and writes:

If all we can do is try to overhaul the agency we’ve got, lawmakers could start by considering making the SEC spin off its enforcement division, says Peter Henning, professor of law at Wayne State University Law School in Detroit.

Some financial regulators — rulemakers, for instance — need to interact with the brokerage industry. But Henning says enforcement needs independence and would be better off as part of the U.S. Department of Justice.

That way, after people in the division of market regulation “notify the pit bulls” in enforcement about suspicious activity, the SEC has no further role in the investigation and can’t be pressured by the target firm to go easy.

Antilla further highlights the disparate treatment accorded the Wall Street power brokers relative to the ordinary American investor. Antilla writes:

And the industry clearly has clout. In 2006, the SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations actually set up a hotline for firms that were feeling put out about being investigated. Amazingly, the hotline offers regulated firms “senior-level attorneys” to help resolve complaints.

The investing public, in the meantime, is relegated to filling out an online form when it has a complaint. An improved SEC might consider giving investors access to the top people and letting the brokerage firms sit there and fume if they don’t like the way they’re being treated.

Susan Antilla is to be commended for exposing the Wall Street-Washington incest at its core. I salute her. Where are the rest of her media colleagues? The interests of the American public will only be prioritized when our elected officials in Washington crawl out of the pockets of those on Wall Street.


Related Sense on Cents Commentary:
   Future Financial Regulation: Not a Question of Sufficiency but of Transparency and Integrity (May 18, 2009)

Recent Posts