The Top 25 U.S. Banks Have 222 Trillion Dollars Of Exposure To Derivatives

By Michael Snyder The recklessness of the “too big to fail” banks almost doomed them the last time around, but apparently they still haven’t learned from their past mistakes.  Today, the top 25 U.S. banks have 222 trillion dollars of exposure to derivatives.  In other words, the exposure that these banks have to derivatives contracts is approximately equivalent to the gross domestic product of the United States times twelve.  As long as stock prices continue to rise and the U.S. economy stays fairly stable, these extremely risky financial weapons of mass destruction will probably not take down our entire financial system.  But someday another major crisis will inevitably happen, and when that day arrives the devastation that these financial instruments will cause will be absolutely unprecedented. During the great financial crisis of 2008, derivatives played a starring role, and U.S. taxpayers were forced to step in and bail out […] Read More

The Fed to Americans: Buy US Debt or Lose Your Savings to the Banks

BY DAMON GELLER The war on your savings & retirement continues. In a stunning move, Charles Schwab has started informing its clients that “at least 80% of the fund’s net assets will be invested solely in U.S. government securities…” and removed from money market funds. In other words, Schwab is the first of many brokerages to cave to alarming government pressure and begin permanently unwinding trillions in money market-funds, rotating them into government debt. Why? Because our insolvent government needs YOU to finance its unsustainable $19 trillion debt. Luckily, there’s still one way to protect your savings & retirement before the entire house of cards crashes down. Negative Interest Rates Force You to Buy US Treasuries damon_geller_authorAs widely reported, the Federal Reserve is moving steadily toward negative interest rates, or NIRP. In other words, you pay the banks to hold your hard-earned savings. Negative rates are the Fed’s desperate, […] Read More

How Government Takes Away Your Right To Do Something And Sells It Back To You As A “License”

Government licensing as an extortion racket and depressor of prosperity Government has, for thousands of years, refined its methods of extracting wealth from people, perhaps with no greater efficiency than in 20th century America. The Federal Reserve, corporatism, and consumerism proved a winning combination for achieving what is known as The Great Fleecing. While this brought about the largest transfer of wealth in history from the middle class to the 1 percent, through taxes it has also fueled the growth of an incomprehensible leviathan. The Pentagon alone “spends” (actually borrows from the Fed) $600 billion a year using our tax dollars to perpetuate endless war, and it’s never been audited. The federal tax code is a nightmare for most ordinary people, but this complexity is for the benefit of government’s corporate partners in extortion. The feds are always fiddling with taxes for the supposed benefit of American citizens—such as […] Read More

Jail the Banksters? Bernanke Now Claims “Wall Street Execs Should’ve Been Held Accountable”

It is not uncommon to hear people in the streets, on blogs or on talk radio arguing that the gangs of Wall Street should have been jailed — or even hung — for their crimes against the American people. But to hear that kind of talk from a former Federal Reserve chairman is surprising… even if it is well after the fact. Though you could be forgiven for assuming most politicians and bankers have no conscience at all, there are apparently many in the halls of power who carry a guilty conscience for their role in selling out the country, and undermining its recovery at every level. Few have more guilt to carry than the functionaries at the Federal Reserve, the quasi-governmental central bank that now looms so large over the economy, and has so much to do with why the financial world is facing devastating failure all over […] Read More

The Occult Truth Behind Capitalism

In 2008, the loss of 11 billion dollars by the world’s largest investment company, AIG, and the bankruptcy of the US investment bank Lehman Brothers, triggered a domino effect of financial consequences which brought the entire capitalist system within a hair’s breadth of total collapse. But, as the events leading up to the financial crisis were slowly unveiled, it became ever clearer that the crisis was caused, quite knowingly, by the bankers themselves. The Cause In the years leading up to the economic crisis in 2008, banks increased the funding for the riskiest loans (called subprime loans), from $30 billion a year to over $600 billion a year, rigged even higher interest rates on those loans, and then, while the bankers were making billions of dollars of profits off the borrowers’ high interest repayments, they made further profits betting against their customers ever being able to pay back the […] Read More

Signs Of Financial Turmoil Are Brewing In Europe, China And The United States

Submitted by Michael Snyder via The Economic Collapse blog, As we move toward the second half of 2015, signs of financial turmoil are appearing all over the globe.  In Greece, a full blown bank run is happening right now.  Approximately 2 billion euros were pulled out of Greek banks in just the past three days, Barclays says that capital controls are “imminent” unless a debt deal is struck, and there are reports that preparations are being made for a “bank holiday” in Greece.  Meanwhile, Chinese stocks are absolutely crashing.  The Shanghai Composite Index was down more than 13 percent this week alone.  That was the largest one week decline since the collapse of Lehman Brothers.  In the U.S., stocks aren’t crashing yet, but we just witnessed one of the largest one week outflows of capital from the bond markets that we have ever witnessed.  Slowly but surely, we are […] Read More

These five global banks are paying $5.7 billion in fines over rate rigging

Source: Forbes Five of the world’s largest banks, including JPMorgan Chase & Co and Citigroup Inc, were fined roughly $5.7 billion, and four of them pleaded guilty to U.S. criminal charges over manipulation of foreign exchange rates, authorities said on Wednesday. A fifth bank, UBS AG, will plead guilty to rigging benchmark interest rates, the U.S. Justice Department said. U.S. banks JPMorgan Chase and Citigroup will pay $550 million and $925 million in criminal fines, respectively, as part of their guilty pleas. British banks Barclays Plc will pay $650 million in criminal penalties and Royal Bank of Scotland Plc $395 million. Each will plead guilty to one felony count of conspiring to fix prices and rig bids for U.S. dollars and euros in the foreign exchange spot market. Euro dollar traders at four of the banks described themselves as members of “The Cartel” and used an electronic chat room […] Read More

Nomi Prins: The Clintons & Their Banker Friends

In the coming months, however many hours Clinton spends introducing herself to voters in small-town America, she will spend hundreds more raising money in four-star hotels and multimillion-dollar homes around the nation. The question is: “Can Clinton claim to stand for ‘everyday Americans,’ while hauling in huge sums of cash from the very wealthiest of us?” This much cannot be disputed: Clinton’s connections to the financiers and bankers of this country – and this country’s campaigns – run deep. As Nomi Prins questions, who counts more to such a candidate, the person you met over that chicken burrito bowl or the Citigroup partner you met over crudités and caviar? Via TomDispatch.com, The Clintons and Their Banker Friends The Wall Street Connection (1992 to 2016) [This piece has been adapted and updated by Nomi Prins from chapters 18 and 19 of her book All the Presidents’ Bankers: The Hidden Alliances […] Read More

The Six Too Big To Fail Banks In The U.S. Have 278 TRILLION Dollars Of Exposure To Derivatives

The very same people that caused the last economic crisis have created a 278 TRILLION dollar derivatives time bomb that could go off at any moment.  When this absolutely colossal bubble does implode, we are going to be faced with the worst economic crash in the history of the United States.  During the last financial crisis, our politicians promised us that they would make sure that “too big to fail” would never be a problem again.  Instead, as you will see below, those banks have actually gotten far larger since then.  So now we really can’t afford for them to fail.  The six banks that I am talking about are JPMorgan Chase, Citibank, Goldman Sachs, Bank of America, Morgan Stanley and Wells Fargo.  When you add up all of their exposure to derivatives, it comes to a grand total of more than 278 trillion dollars.  But when you add […] Read More