Daily Archives: January 14, 2016

Judge’s finances show history of unpaid debt, IRS liens, foreclosures

Foreclosures, liens and unpaid debts.

These dominate the financial record of Palm Beach County Circuit Judge Martin Colin and his wife, Elizabeth Savitt, a professional guardian. The couple have enormous power over the life saving of seniors no longer competent to care for themselves because of dementia or medical illness.

The pair’s financial difficulties peaked in the Great Recession. Then in 2011, Savitt became a paid professional guardian and much of their financial distress dissipated, including when Savitt paid off a $308,000 foreclosureon a Delray Beach house that was set to be auctioned off in March.

So where has all the money gone?

Colin earns a $146,000 annual salary as a circuit judge. Savitt was previously a tennis pro and a 2007 affidavit from a post-divorce proceeding show assets as high as$1.27 million.

Despite this, Colin’s financial records show he has repeatedly borrowed money from clients from his days as a divorce attorney.

Read on.

Allied Irish, Citigroup settle litigation over rogue trader

Citigroup Inc (C.N) has settled long-running litigation in which Allied Irish Banks Plc (ALBK.I) accused it of helping rogue currency trader John Rusnak rack up a $691 million loss.

U.S. District Judge Deborah Batts in Manhattan on Thursday ordered the dismissal of the 12-1/2-year-old case, in which government-controlled AIB sought $500 million of compensatory damages plus punitive damages.

Terms of the settelement were not disclosed. The dismissal averts a trial scheduled to begin on Jan. 25, over a fraud that was at the time one of the largest on record to involve unauthorized trades.

Read on.

Really? A Badly Behaved Banker’s List?

There’s talk of a master list being created that would list Wall Street bankers who’ve run into ethical issues on the job.
It could develop into a pretty long list. And then what next? Which other group would be targeted? Supposedly the purpose of this list would be to help companies avoid hiring the repeat offenders who move from firm to firm. New York Federal Reserve President William Dudley recently floated the idea to a gathering of bankers and regulators, in an ongoing effort to improve Wall Street’s culture, which Dudley has called “an apparent lack of respect for law, regulation, and public trust that persists within some large financial institutions.”
Yes, absolutely there is cause for concern; the issues are ongoing.
Regards,
Richard

J.P. Morgan’s Dimon Sounds Caution on Economy

J.P. Morgan Chase & Co.’s bankers and traders took pay cuts. Bad energy loans are piling up. And Chief Executive James Dimon said major parts of the economy are “obviously” going to get worse.

But the nation’s biggest bank by assets still posted quarterly results that beat expectations and full-year profits that came within a hair’s breadth of being the biggest ever on Wall Street.

The results show that the persistent hand-wringing over the state of the banking industry and the health of the economy hasn’t hurt J.P. Morgan much, though both concerns are likely to persist and possibly deepen in 2016.

Read on.

How Rep. Scott Garrett’s anti-gay views are splintering Wall Street

The Congressman is biting the hand of the banksters that bankrolls him..

Housingwire:

Bloomberg does a deep dive into Garrett’s anti-gay views and the impact those views are likely to have on his continued status as a U.S. Congressman.

The whole thing (and it is a long piece) is well worth your time, but here are few choice excerpts.

The controversy around Garrett began last year, when at a private caucus meeting, he declared that he was going to withhold “hundreds of thousands of dollars” from the National Republican Congressional Committee because of its support for gay candidates.

And according to the Bloomberg piece, Garrett controls a lot of money:

From Bloomberg:

Garrett’s committee is vital to Wall Street. “The rules of the road for handling money and anything with the SEC go through this committee,” says Marcus Stanley, policy director of the nonprofit Americans for Financial Reform. “There’s a ton of money at stake.” In Washington, the committee is known as the ATM, because banks and hedge funds shower the chairman with contributions. After the Dodd-Frank financial law forced hedge funds to register with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Garrett, already the recipient of more Wall Street money than almost any other member of the House, got millions more. The banks pay to have a voice, ensure they’re at the table when new rules are discussed, and insinuate themselves into the chairman’s good graces.

According Bloomberg, most of the money that Garrett collects from Wall Street is supposed to be passed along the Republican Party’s campaign fund, but Garrett’s anti-gay declaration “threw a wrench” into the process.

Again from Bloomberg:

At a private caucus meeting, (Garrett) got into a heated dispute with his colleagues by declaring that he’d withhold hundreds of thousands of dollars in National Republican Congressional Committee dues to protest the party’s support for gay candidates. His outburst immediately caused a rift in the caucus. “I was shocked,” says Richard Tisei, a Massachusetts businessman who was one of the candidates Garrett objected to. “The first time I ran, I was nervous my sexuality would be a problem. But everyone was just great. John Boehner, Paul Ryan—they went out of their way to let me know it wasn’t. Eric Cantor pulled me aside and said, ‘You know, I’m the only Jew in the caucus, so I understand better than anyone how important it is to have you down here to broaden and diversify our ranks.’ ”

But Garrett’s views aren’t only causing a problem within his own party, where many Republicans, perhaps sensing the shift in public opinion about gay rights, have begun to embrace gay candidates.

According to Bloomberg, Wall Street, which acts as one of Garrett’s largest benefactors, is apparently experiencing a crisis of conscience over Garrett’s views.

Again from Bloomberg:

The political fallout from Garrett’s remarks pales compared with the anguish it’s created in some corners of Wall Street. The financial industry ranks among the biggest donors to the Republican Party. But it has also been a pioneer in advancing gay rights. Garrett’s reelection race presents banks and investors with a fascinating—and excruciating—moral dilemma: Do they follow their financial interests and continue supporting a chairman whose antiregulatory views largely jibe with their own? Or do they honor their professed commitment to LGBT equality by cutting off that support and potentially angering a powerful industry overseer?

According to the Bloomberg report, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, UBS,Citigroup, and others on Wall Street were among Garrett’s largest campaign donors in his last re-election campaign, but Garrett’s statements on gays and lesbians are leading Wall Street to re-consider its support of Garrett.

MONEY MONSTER – Official Trailer

Let’s hope CNBC Cramer watches this movie. Interesting that there are more Wall Street movies as well as TV series.

Deadly Clear

COMING This May, MONEY MONSTER
Follow the Money with George Clooney & Julia Roberts.

Published on Jan 12, 2016

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Ted Cruz Forgot To Mention That Wall Street Financed His Senate Bid

As Ted Cruz tells it, the story of how he financed his upstart campaign for the United States Senate four years ago is an endearing example of loyalty and shared sacrifice between a married couple.

“Sweetheart, I’d like us to liquidate our entire net worth, liquid net worth, and put it into the campaign,” he says he told his wife, Heidi, who readily agreed.

But the couple’s decision to pump more than $1 million into Mr. Cruz’s successful Tea Party-darling Senate bid in Texas was made easier by a large loan from Goldman Sachs, where Mrs. Cruz works. That loan was not disclosed in campaign finance reports.

Those reports show that in the critical weeks before the May 2012 Republican primary, Mr. Cruz — currently a leading contender for his party’s presidential nomination — put “personal funds” totaling $960,000 into his Senate campaign. Two months later, shortly before a scheduled runoff election, he added more, bringing the total to $1.2 million — “which is all we had saved,” as Mr. Cruz described it in an interview with The New York Times several years ago.

Read on.