Daily Archives: June 28, 2014


NY AG’s Complaint Against Barclays In Connection With Marketing And Operation Of Its Dark Pool

The complaint alleges Barclays has dramatically increased the market share of its dark pool through a series of false statements to clients and investors about how, and for whose benefit, Barclays operates its dark pool. Contrary to Barclays’ representations that it has implemented special safeguards to protect clients from “aggressive” or predatory high-frequency traders, Barclays is accused of operating its dark pool to favor high-frequency traders.

“The facts alleged in our complaint show that Barclays demonstrated a disturbing disregard for its investors in a systematic pattern of fraud and deceit,” Attorney General Schneiderman said. “Barclays grew its dark pool by telling investors they were diving into safe waters. According to the lawsuit, Barclays’ dark pool was full of predators – there at Barclays’ invitation.”

The complaint alleges that Barclays falsified marketing material purporting to show the extent and type of high frequency trading in its dark pool. For example, Barclays removed from a marketing document intended for institutional investors the dark pool’s then-largest participant – a high frequency trading firm Barclays knew engaged in predatory behavior in the dark pool. In response, one employee stated: “I had always liked the idea that we were being transparent, but happy to take liberties if we can all agree.”

Barclays heavily promoted a service called Liquidity Profiling, which Barclays claimed was a “surveillance” system that tracked every trade in Barclays’ dark pool in order to identify predatory traders, rate them based on the objective characteristics of their trading behavior, and hold them accountable for engaging in predatory practices.

Contrary to those promises, the complaint alleges that:

Barclays has never prohibited any trader from participating in its dark pool, regardless of how predatory its activity was determined to be;
Barclays did not regularly update the ratings of high-frequency trading firms monitored by Liquidity Profiling;
Barclays “overrode” certain Liquidity Profiling ratings – including for some of its own internal trading desks that engaged in high-frequency trading – by assigning safe ratings to traders that were otherwise determined to be toxic.
The complaint further alleges that, contrary to Barclays’ representations that it protects clients from aggressive or predatory high-frequency trading in its dark pool, Barclays in fact operates its dark pool to favor high-frequency traders and has actively sought to attract them by giving them systematic advantages over others trading in the pool. As alleged in the complaint, this included:

Falsely underrepresenting the concentration of aggressive high-frequency trading in its dark pool;
Misrepresenting its “Liquidity Profiling” service – which Barclays claimed protected investors from predatory behavior – by failing to provide many of the benefits marketed with the service; and
Claiming that Barclays does not favor its own dark pool when routing client orders to trading venues, while in fact doing just that. As alleged in our Ccomplaint, Barclays falsified an analysis of how it routed a major client’s orders.
A copy of the complaint can be viewed  here.


Courthouse News commentary: What is wrong with this country? God help us

Courthouse News:


What is wrong with this country? With this Congress?
     Have we no sense at all?
     In Rwanda today people are resettling into their houses, learning to live with neighbors who killed their parents, their husband and children.
     People are learning to do that in Bosnia, in Serbia, Croatia and Herzegovina.
     Throughout the Middle East, opportunists and religious fanatics are slaughtering neighbors they once chatted with over the back fence, because of a religious dispute that began 1,380 years ago.
     Russians are killing Ukrainians with the blessing of the Russian state.
     Do you think it can’t happen here?
     We’ve already had one civil war. Do we need another?
     Why do so many members of Congress, after gerrymandering their safe seats, and taking billions of dollars from corporations they allow to write our laws, spend so much time stirring up hatred against half of what they presume to call their country?
     Is it worth it to do this – to stir up civil hatred – for a few more years in Congress?
     More than 51 million people today live as refugees in foul conditions, driven from their homelands by wars, most of them based on religion.
     More people live as refugees today than at any time since World War II ended.
     U.S. congressmen and senators are paid hundreds of thousands of dollars a year. They have enormous staffs, lucrative retirement benefits, and get enormous “speaking” fees from the businesses they fail to control.
     Surely they know this is happening.
     Surely they know what can happen from stirring up religious, racial, linguistic, national and political prejudices. One hundred million deaths in the 20th century alone. More than that.
     So why do the 535 members of Congress continue to do this?
     To pad their easy cushions?
     For the momentary fame it brings them?
     People are killing one another all over the world today because of the way the killers presume their victims think.
     Yet U.S. politics has become based, more and more, upon demonizing The Other Guy because of the way We Think The Other Guy Thinks.
     Thinking has nothing to do with it.
     In the country with the most permissive gun laws of any developed nation in the world, where someone is killed or commits suicide with a gun every 15 minutes, year round, is it reasonable to claim that the president is “coming for our guns”?
     Yet for some reason, this fear-mongering claim “works.”
     Violence always has been part of the natural order and always will be.
     But the function of government in a civilized society should not be to stir up violence – and even if that is the government’s function, in wartime, against a foreign enemy, responsible governors will not foment violence against their own citizens, for light and transient reasons.
     Socrates despised democracy, if you can believe Plato. And Socrates was one of the greatest teachers in the history of the world.
     Socrates called citizens a herd. He had no faith in them, nor in his own government. Socrates’, or Plato’s, plan for a republic, was fascist, based upon the myth of a good dictator.
     I find Plato’s Republic revolting. Yet the only thing that distinguishes it from Republican dogma today, in its claims to “purity,” “god” and “truth,” is the replacement of The Party for the Benevolent Dictator, and the façade of elections.
     I’m an atheist, and a loyal American.
     God help us.

Another petition from an employee that was fired because because he spoke out about GMOs

Here is the message that blogger Matthew Swaye posted on my blog:
matthew swaye1h

I’ve been let go from a job I loved because I spoke out about GMO’s. I’m hoping you’ll stand with me in solidarity. Please consider signing my petition for reinstatement?
Eternal Optimism,

Reinstate me as an employee and let me get back to the good work I was doing. Knowing about heath and caring about children should not be fireable offenses.

[Your name]

Here is his Facebook:




What follows is an interview with David Rozier, husband of the now-incarcerated foreclosure fighter KarenRozier.  In this short piece, David gives an account of what happened in a Los Angeles courtroom on Monday, June 23, 2014–along with some idea of why it happened, filling in some details that many observers have wondered about.

A number of observers have noted striking similarities between the case of Mary McCulley and that of the Roziers.  A few of the most glaring:

1) in both cases there are accusations involving guns;

2) bank attorneys and judges claim to feel threatened via email and Facebook;

3) there are victories by the homeowners in each case;

4) there are unrelenting pro se plaintiffs in each case (and/or representation by public defenders);

5) US Bank is involved in both cases; and

6) homeowners have been hauled off to jail on questionable, trumped-up charges.

Specifically, the…

View original post 1,584 more words


Ocwen settlement claim forms mailed

Ocwen settlement claim forms mailed

The 2,446 Ocwen Wisconsin customers who lost their homes to foreclosure between Jan. 1, 2009, and Dec. 31, 2012, will soon receive information about how to file a claim for payment under a settlement with the company.

The exact amount of individual payments is projected to exceed $1,000 each, but will depend on the total number of borrowers who file a claim. 

Information was mailed earlier this week. The deadline for all claims is Sept. 15. Payment checks are expected to be mailed in December of 2014.


Wells Fargo is leading US banks in the push from mortgages to car loans

Wells Fargo is leading US banks in the push from mortgages to car loans

Auto lending has been a big part of the US banking industry’s revenues of late, and nowhere more noticeably than at Wells Fargo.



Wells has been striving to gain market share in auto loans as other consumer areas, like its core home lending business, have been slipping (though it’s still the US’s biggest mortgage lender). So far it’s been a success. The bank has now emerged as the country’s biggest auto lender, surpassing Ally Financial, formerly the car loan arm of General Motors.



Wells Fargo took the title by recording an auto lending portfolio of $52.6 billion in the first quarter, compared to Ally’s $51.92 billion, according to SNL Financial.



No Money, No Water: Detroit’s Shutting Off H2O to 150,000 Residents

As Yahoo reports, The Motor City is playing serious hardball with residents who have fallen behind on paying their water bills.


Detroit’s Water and Sewerage Department has begun turning off the taps of 150,000 residents who are at least two months behind on payments. People are being left without a drop to drink and no ability to bathe or use the toilet. Now a coalition of water and human rights activists has banded together to ask the United Nations to step in and end the disconnections.


Last week, advocates from the Detroit People’s Water Board, Food and Water Watch, Blue Planet Project, and Michigan Welfare Rights Organization submitted a comprehensive report to the U.N.’s special rapporteur that details the dire situation facing folks whose water has been cut off.


“Sick people have been left without running water and working toilets. People recovering from surgery cannot wash and change bandages. Children cannot bathe, and parents cannot cook,” write the report’s authors. And “families concerned about children being taken away by authorities due to lack of water and sanitation services in the home have been sending their children to live with relatives and friends, which has an impact on school attendance and related activities.”