Daily Archives: July 6, 2012

JPM employee accused of stealing more than $100k from the accounts of an Alzheimer’s sufferer

Courthouse News Service. See court document..


NEW ORLEANS – A JPMorgan Chase Bank employee stole more than $100,000 from the accounts of an Alzheimer’s sufferer, the man’s guardian claims in Federal Court.


One man’s ATM-access crusade is a headache for many banks facing Americans with Disabilities Act lawsuits

Robert Jahoda is a man on a mission. A Pennsylvania resident prone to litigiousness, he travels around the western portion of the state hunting for automated teller machines that don’t meet federal standards for serving the visually impaired. When he finds one, Jahoda, who is blind, brings a class action lawsuit against whoever owns it.

Jahoda sued at least 18 banks and credit unions in less than two months, following the March 15 deadline for compliance with the latest set of updates to the Americans with Disabilities Act. Ambridge, the Western Pennsylvania town where Jahoda lives, is about 65 miles from the ATMs owned by one of his most recent defendants.

The main allegation in his complaints is that the machines aren’t yet equipped with Braille instructions or the speech-enabling functions now required under the ADA. Without the speech mode, he argues, blind people can’t tell whether they’ve pressed an incorrect key during a transaction. This can put ATM users’ personal information at risk, as the vision-impaired may be left with “no choice but to repeatedly reveal their private PINs to others to complete an ATM banking transaction,” according to complaints filed in federal court in Pittsburgh.

Read on

Beyond Barclays: Laying out the Libor Investigations

So who else is being investigated?

Revelations about other banks have been trickling out over the past year:

·       UBS previously made agreements to cooperate with several [21]international [30]investigations [31]in exchange for leniency on potential criminal charges.

·       Citigroup was also a target of investigation. Earlier this year, it emerged [32] that a few traders at Citigroup and UBS tried to manipulate Libor rates for the Yen.

·       The Times of London reported [33]that Royal Bank of Scotland could soon be hit with a fine of up to $150 million for related charges.

·       Bank of America also reportedly received [34] a subpoena last year from regulators as part of the investigation. JPMorgan Chase, Credit Suisse, HSBC and others were also [35] on the Libor-setting panel during the period being investigated.

·       Last fall, European regulators seized documents [36] from Deutsche Bank and others regarding manipulation of the Euribor.

Private lawsuits over Libor are already underway. Last summer, Charles Schwab filed a suit [37] alleging anti-trust violations against many Libor-setting banks and at least one class action [38] has been filed alleging that Libor manipulation meant banks paid “unduly low interest rates to investors.”

Read more from Propublica.

UK Serious Fraud Office To Begin Criminal Probe Into Liborgate

From Reuters:

Britain’s fraud-busting agency on Friday said it had agreed to investigate the Libor interest rate-rigging scandal, which on Tuesday led to the departure of Barclays chief executive Bob Diamond.

“The SFO Director David Green QC has today decided formally to accept the Libor matter for investigation,” the Serious Fraud Office said in a brief statement.

The SFO said Monday it would decide within a month whether to press criminal charges over the Libor affair, amid concerns banks understated their borrowing costs to make it appear they were in better financial health than they were.

Source: Zerohedge

Germany’s Bafin Holding Libor Inquiry on Deutsche Bank: Reuters


From Reuters:

German markets regulator BaFin is conducting a special probe of Deutsche Bank (DBKGn.DE) as part of a wider investigation into possible manipulation of the London Inter Bank Offered Rate (Libor), two people familiar with the matter said on Friday.

The German regulator declined to comment specifically on whether it was probing Deutsche Bank, but said it was in looking into suspected manipulation of Libor rates by banks.

“We are making use of our entire spectrum of regulatory instruments, so far as this is necessary,” a spokesman said.

Deutsche Bank shares extended losses after the news and traded 4.3 percent lower at 1523 GMT.

Results from the probe are expected to emerge in mid July, one of the sources said.

They said the investigation was a so-called special probe initiated by the regulator, which is more severe than routine probes which are initiated by a third party, for example a bank.

Deutsche Bank declined to comment but referred to its quarterly report which said the bank has received various subpoenas and requests for information from certain regulators and governmental entities in the United States and Europe, in connection with setting interbank offered rates for various currencies.

These inquiries relate to various periods between 2005 and 2011. At the time, Deutsche Bank said it is cooperating with these investigations.

Botched transfer leads to foreclosure nightmare by BofA and LPS Field Services

A red scarf draped over a bannister is one of the few clues that Sidnetta Smith and her children lived in the sandy-gray, two-story Conyers home.

It was taken by a bank, even though that bank didn’t hold a valid mortgage on it.

Bank of America has since tried to rescind its April 2010 foreclosure. But hitting the reset button can’t undo uprooting her kids or replace family photos, jewelry and kids’ honor roll certificates.

“I miss it. I miss it a lot,” a stoic Smith, 41, said of the still-vacant home on Wall Street.

Smith’s case highlights how few protections borrower advocates say Georgia offers during foreclosure. Georgia, like most states, has no “judicial review” in which a judge verifies basic facts before a bank can take a house. In the “non-judicial” system, bankruptcy or a lawsuit are the main means of disputing a foreclosure.

Advocates for borrowers say it’s impossible to know how many improper foreclosures have occurred because no one is monitoring the validity of the paperwork.

Read on.


LIBOR Rate: If You Have Credit Card Debt or an ARM You Need to Know


Here is a buzz word for you that you might have heard during the Sub Prime crisis. The word is “LIBOR”. LIBOR stands for London Inter-bank Offered Rate. LIBOR is the short term interest rate at which banks borrow funds from each other Although we have seen Fed Chairman, Ben Bernanke, lowering rates quite significantly, we are seeing some concerns with LIBOR which is indicative of a potential credit tightening between banks. If banks won’t loosen the purse strings to other banks, then the loans to consumers can become more of an adversity. Typically the LIBOR rate isn’t that far off from the Fed Funds Rate. The Fed Fund rate is the interest rate on “overnight” loans between banks. However, due to this liquidity problem we have had, the banks have become concerned about lending to each other. Hence the LIBOR has been rising independently from the Fed Funds Rate.

Why Should You Be Concerned?

If you don’t have an Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM) or if you pay off your credit cards on time, then you don’t have to be concerned unless you just want to know about the “whys?” on our dilemma with this credit crunch. However, if you do have an Adjustable Rate Mortgage and you have a high balance on your credit card where you don’t think you are going to pay it off any time soon, then I’d say, pay attention to this. The reason is that it is tied into the LIBOR rate, not the Fed Funds rate. It might create a hardship for you, if you are in these type of situations. So before you go for a new mortgage, ask if it is tied to the FED Funds Rate or the LIBOR Rate. And be aware that if the LIBOR rate goes up, so will your credit card interest rate.

Read on.