Goldman Sachs

Europe Probing Goldman Sachs on Sovereign Credit Default Swaps

YES! Bloomberg is reporting 16 banks, including Goldman Sachs are being probed by the EU for anti-trust for manipulation of the the financial derivative, credit default swaps, market.

Goldman Sachs Group Inc., JPMorgan Chase & Co. and 14 other investment banks face European Union antitrust probes into credit-default swaps for companies and sovereign debt.

The EU is investigating whether 16 banks, including Citigroup Inc. and Deutsche Bank AG, colluded by giving market information to Markit Group Ltd., a data provider majority-owned by Wall Street’s largest banks. It will also examine if nine of the firms struck unfair deals with Intercontinental Exchange Inc.’s European derivatives clearinghouse, shutting out rivals.

“Lack of transparency in markets can lead to abusive behavior and facilitate violations of competition rules,” Joaquin Almunia, the EU’s competition commissioner, said in an e-mailed statement. “I hope our investigation will contribute to a better functioning of financial markets.”

Global regulators have sought to toughen regulation of the $583 trillion credit-default swaps market, saying the trades helped fuel the financial crisis. The EU’s probes add to separate investigations in the U.K. and U.S. into whether banks colluded to manipulate the London interbank offered rate.

Credit default swaps allow anyone, not directly involved in the underlying asset, to place bets on whether that underlying security, asset will default or not. Credit default swaps are used for speculation. In the case of sovereign debt, that causes the cost of financing that debt to increase, dramatically.

This is Just Too Much

Huffington Post is reporting the leading candidate for Obama's Economic council chief, made millions from Wall Street, significant consulting fees from Goldman Sachs, while we experienced economic Armageddon.

Gene Sperling, a leading contender for a top economic post in the White House, made millions on Wall Street even as the economy faltered.

The adviser to Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner is near the top of President Barack Obama's list of candidates to replace Larry Summers as director of the National Economic Council, HuffPost reports. By appointing Sperling, the president would fuel perceptions that his administration is overly close to Wall Street, installing a policymaker who has not only overseen monumental deregulation of the financial sector, but has also collected hefty paychecks from its leading firms.

The next NEC director will help determine the administration's economic policy over the next two years. Summers, who last week left his White House post for a Harvard professorship, met with the president almost daily to discuss economic decisions. Long sympathetic to Wall Street interests, Summers pushed for deregulation of financial instruments under President Clinton, a policy that experts -- and Clinton himself -- now say was misguided, contributing to the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression.

Even worse, Sperling is a Rubinite. This is the same bad trade deals, the same lack of financial regulation which has lead us to where we are today. With anemic economic growth, no jobs and an unemployment rate that just isn't dropping.

Goldman Sachs Paid Out $4.3 Billion of U.S. Taxpayer Money to Foreign Companies

Senator Chuck Grassley has received documentation from Goldman Sachs showing the top recipients of AIG money. The grand total is $4.3 billion. Below are the recipients and their amounts. As you can see, they are all foreign entities. In other words, U.S. taxpayer money, used to bail out AIG which in turn was used to pay off Goldman Sachs went straight out of the country and into foreign banks.

  1. DZ Bank AG Deutsche Zentrale-Genossenschafts Bank: $1.8 billion
  2. Banco Santander Central Hispano SA: $484 million
  3. Rabobank Nederland-London Branch: $182 million
  4. Zurcher Kantonal bank: $200 million
  5. Dexia Bank S.A: $105 million
  6. Calyon-Cedex Branch: $200 million
  7. The Hongkong & Shanghai Banking Corporation: $173 million
  8. Depfa Bank Plc: $126 million
  9. Sierra finance plc: $223 million
  10. PGGM Pensioenfonds: $47 million
  11. Natixis: $2 million
  12. Zulma finance plc: $416 million
  13. Stoneheath Re CRDV G: $68 million
  14. Hospitals of Ontario Pension Plan: $94 million
  15. Venice finance plc: $216 million
  16. KBC Asset Management NVD Star Finance: $191 million
  17. MNGD Pension Funds LTD: $69 million
  18. Infinity finance plc: $277 million
  19. Barclays Bank PLC: $27 million
  20. GSAM Credit CDO LTD: $13 million
  21. Signum Platinum: $38 million

Supreme Court nominee former Goldman Sachs employee

It's not often that someone gets nominated to the Supreme Court after working for an investment bank that already has far too much influence in Washington.

The White House said Friday that Elena Kagan's membership on an advisory panel for the securities firm Goldman Sachs Group Inc. wouldn't disqualify her for a position on the Supreme Court.

Make This Go Away! Goldman Sachs to Settle SEC Fraud Civil Case

The New York Post is reporting Goldman is going to settle:

It's almost a certainty that there will be a settlement," said a source.

As another person put it, the SEC has an "unlimited supply of ammunition" in the form of e-mails and records that it could release, and Goldman officials would like to avoid having those documents fired back at them the way they were on Tuesday.