Ex-RBS Trader in U.K. Probe Said to Be JPMorgan’s Usher
Richard Usher, JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s (JPM) chief dealer in London, wrote instant messages while he was at Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc that U.K. regulators are scrutinizing as part of their investigation of alleged currency manipulation, two people with knowledge of the matter said.
The messages to traders at other firms included details of his trading positions, said one of the people, who asked not to be identified because they weren’t authorized to speak publicly. The spot currency trader left Edinburgh-based RBS in 2010, and his departure was unrelated to the probe, the person said. The regulator’s review doesn’t imply wrongdoing on Usher’s part, the other person said. The people didn’t say how many other traders’ communications are being scrutinized.
S&P Subpoenas Federal Reserve Board as Part of U.S. Suit
McGraw Hill Financial Inc. (MHFI)’s Standard & Poor’s unit seeks information from the board of governors of the Federal Reserve to bolster its defense against U.S. claims it misled investors in mortgage-backed securities.
The credit rating company said it served subpoenas on the Federal Reserve board as well as the Federal Open Market Committee and the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, according to a filing today in federal court in Santa Ana, California.
S&P is “seeking, among other things, information and analyses supporting or relating to specifically identified statements from high ranking government officials such as Ben Bernankeand Timothy Geithner about the housing market in 2006 and 2007,” it said in the filing, referring to the then-Fed chairman and the former head of the New York Fed. “S&P seeks to identify the data upon which the assessments, similar to those made by S&P, were made
N.Y. Fed Moves to Seal Documents in Ex-Bank Examiner’s Suit
A federal judge in Manhattan is pondering whether to grant the request of the New York Federal Reserve to seal the case brought by former senior bank examiner Carmen Segarra.
As reported by ProPublica last week, Segarra filed a lawsuit against the New York Fed and three of its employees alleging she had been wrongfully terminated last year after she determined that Goldman Sachs had insufficient conflict-of-interest policies.
On Friday, the Fed asked for a protective order to seal documents in the case as well as parts of the complaint. In a letter to U.S. District Judge Ronnie Abrams, New York Fed counsel David Gross said the information should be removed from the public docket because it is “Confidential Supervisory Information,” including internal New York Fed emails and materials provided to the Fed by Goldman.
“These documents show that at the time (Segarra) left the employ of the New York Fed, she purloined property of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System,” Gross wrote, citing Fed rules that prohibit disclosing supervisory information without prior approval of the Fed.
Gross argues that the Fed’s obligation to keep bank supervisory records secret outweigh the public’s right to know. “The incantation of a ‘public right to know’ cannot ever be a license to discharged employees that they may violate Federal law simply by filing a complaint in Federal court,” Gross wrote.
Segarra and her lawyer could not be reached for comment.
While Abrams considers her decision, Segarra’s lawsuit and appended documents have been removed from Pacer, the online records system for federal courts. The complaintand related documents are available via links in ProPublica’s story and have been published elsewhere online.
Lawmakers call for banks to rescue federal employees
Lawmakers urged financial institutions to work proactively with borrowers facing financial distress because of the government shutdown. For three weeks, federal employees have been out of the job without pay.
As the nation enters day 14 of the federal freeze, many government employees are beginning to feel the early signs of financial hardship.
Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif, spearheaded a concurrent resolution, along with 30 other policymakers, urging institutions such as banks and consumer reporting agencies to work with customers affected by the shutdown.
“The shutdown of the federal government has forced thousands of people into financial distress through no fault of their own,” Waters said. “Financial institutions should not penalize — or profit from — those affected by these difficult circumstances.”
The proposal calls on institutions to identify customers affected by the government halt and asks the entities to adopt flexible arrangements to help borrowers meet debt obligations.