Markets Wake Up to a Dicey Global Economy Outlook; Dow Plunges

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: August 14, 2019 ~ If you are long stocks, this is one of those mornings when you may be tempted to pull the covers over your head and take a mental health day away from financial news. As of 8:44 a.m. this morning, Dow futures were registering a plunge of 394 points; the big Wall Street bank stocks were down about 3 percent in pre-market trading; news was out in the Eurozone that its largest economy, Germany, had contracted by 0.1 percent in the second quarter. Eurostat further dampened the outlook with a report that “in June 2019 compared with May 2019, seasonally adjusted industrial production fell by 1.6% in the euro area (EA19) and by 1.5% in the EU28.” The drumbeat of bad economic news led to a flight to safety into U.S. Treasuries, with the 30-year Treasury Bond reaching an all-time low … Continue reading

Shhh! Don’t Tell the Public There Was a Frightening “Glitch” in Stock Markets Yesterday

Nightly Business Report Had to Guess Where the U.S. Stock Market Closed on August 12, 2019

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: August 13, 2019 ~ Where did the U.S. stock market actually close yesterday? It’s pretty much an open question. To give you an idea of just how bad the so-called “glitch” was yesterday, Bill Griffeth, the co-anchor of the CNBC show, the Nightly Business Report, had to deliver this warning to his viewers before reporting the prices of the closing stock market indexes yesterday. “By the way, toward the close, there was a technical issue with trading computers. It’s not clear if all of the volume was reported or if some of the prices of the indexes were affected. You might see different numbers elsewhere but these were the numbers we had of the close today.” (See video below of the program.) Griffeth’s quaint phrase “technical issue with trading computers,” is not accurate. It was not a problem with trading computers but rather the … Continue reading

Jeffrey Epstein’s Death Adds to the JPMorgan Body Count

Jes Staley

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: August 12, 2019 ~ Jeffrey Epstein, the accused pedophile and sex trafficker of underage women to powerful men around the world according to allegations in court documents, was found dead in his jail cell at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan on Saturday morning. The Justice Department is reporting the death as a suicide, despite the fact that Epstein should have been monitored by police around the clock because of an earlier attack or attempted suicide just weeks before in his jail cell. Epstein had close ties to JPMorgan Chase. He now joins a dizzying roster of suspicious deaths connected to JPMorgan Chase – particularly among its technology executives, who allegedly jumped to their death from JPMorgan buildings; died in two separate cases of murder-suicides in seven months; died of alcohol poisoning or, in the most recent case of Doug Carucci in March of … Continue reading

Malaysia Indicts 17 of the “Untouchables” at Goldman Sachs

Malaysia Attorney General Tommy Thomas

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: August 9, 2019 ~ When it comes to serial and systemic frauds perpetrated by big banks on Wall Street, the U.S. Department of Justice typically punts. It will either not charge the bank itself or it will issue a felony charge along with a non-prosecution agreement that lets the bank settle the charges without a trial. These tactics by the Justice Department are why Wall Street crimes remain serial and systemic in nature. This morning, the Attorney General in Malaysia stunned Goldman Sachs with an indictment of 17 of its former and current executives. That came on the heels of criminal charges filed last December by Malaysian authorities in the same matter against three Goldman Sachs subsidiaries and two former Goldman employees, Tim Leissner and Roger Ng. Indictments announced this morning included charges against Richard J. Gnodde, Goldman’s top international banker in London and … Continue reading

L Brands’ Lawyers Have a Lot More to Worry about than just Jeffrey Epstein

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: August 8, 2019 ~ The Chairman and CEO of L Brands, Leslie (Les) Wexner, came out yesterday with a statement accusing Jeffrey Epstein of swindling “vast sums of money” from Wexner and his family. L Brands is the parent of retail chains Victoria’s Secret, Bath and Body Works, and Pink. Epstein is the accused sex trafficker and assaulter of dozens of underage girls who has mansions in multiple locations but is currently occupying an 8′ x 8′ jail cell in Manhattan while he awaits trial. Pretty much anyone who was closely connected to Epstein is under some form of investigation, including his sex trafficking co-conspirators who solicited underage girls for him; the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s office that allowed his private limo and driver to pick him up six days a week from his jail cell for a so-called daily 12-hour “work release” program … Continue reading

Central Banks Are in Panic Mode — for Good Reason

Federal Reserve Building in Washington, D.C.

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: August 7, 2019 ~ On July 30, 2019, the day before the U.S. central bank, the Federal Reserve, cut interest rates by one-quarter of one percent, the yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note closed the day at 2.06 percent. Early this morning, the yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury stood at 1.65 percent, a stunning decline of 41 basis points in 8 days. A yield evaporation on U.S. sovereign debt that resembles a snow cone in July is not consistent with a strong economy. It is consistent with a seriously sputtering economy and a stock market out over its skis in terms of valuation. In addition to the collapsing yield in the benchmark 10-year, we now have a seriously inverted yield curve with the 3-month T-bill yielding 2.01 percent this morning versus the 10-year T-note yielding 1.65 – a difference of 36 basis … Continue reading

U.S. Financial System Rests on 5 Mega Banks; and They Tanked Yesterday

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: August 6, 2019 ~ By the closing bell of yesterday’s broad stock market selloff, the Dow Jones Industrial Average, which had been down over 900 points in the afternoon, closed with a loss of 767 points or 2.90 percent. The Standard and Poor’s 500 Index closed even deeper in the red with a loss of 2.98 percent. But those losses looked mild compared to what happened to four of the biggest banks on Wall Street yesterday. Bank of America, parent of the giant retail brokerage chain, Merrill Lynch, closed with a loss of 4.42 percent. Morgan Stanley, which had been pummeled in the big bank selloff in December, lost 3.87 percent while Goldman Sachs was not far behind with a loss of 3.67 percent. The bank with the most foreign exposure and a monster bailout in 2008, Citigroup, which in a fair and efficient … Continue reading

Wall Street to Come Under Scrutiny in September House Hearings

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: August 5, 2019 ~ Maxine Waters, the Chair of the House Financial Services Committee, has announced a roster of hearings coming this September. Two of the hearing topics particularly caught our eye as both timely and critical. On Tuesday, September 24, the Committee will hold a hearing titled: “Oversight of the Securities and Exchange Commission: Wall Street’s Cop on the Beat.” If Chair Waters wants to really open eyes as to what the SEC has become – Wall Street’s bad cop on the beat – she will invite the following individuals to give testimony that day: James Kidney, Darcy Flynn, Gary Aguirre, and Harry Markopolos. Testimony from these individuals will show that while the SEC has, throughout its history, had dedicated and honest career attorneys who want to stop the crimes and corruption on Wall Street, there always seems to be a roadblock thrown … Continue reading

The New York Fed Bailed Out Financial Gangs on Wall Street and Ended Up Owning a Gang-Riddled Mall in Oklahoma City

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: August 2, 2019 ~ On April 3, 2008 Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and the President of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, Tim Geithner, appeared on a panel of witnesses before the U.S. Senate Banking Committee. The subject of the hearing was the Federal Reserve’s unprecedented actions the prior month to bail out the collapsing investment bank, Bear Stearns, and facilitate its purchase by JPMorgan Chase. Putting Bear Stearns into the hands of JPMorgan Chase, now a three-count felon, was like returning a garden snake to a pet store and walking out with a python. The New York Fed had crafted a deal where $30 billion of toxic assets were going to be purchased from Bear Stearns to prevent JPMorgan from bearing the risk of sizeable losses when it took over the firm. The New York Fed put up $28.82 billion in … Continue reading

Bernie, It’s Time to Audit the New York Fed

New York Fed Headquarters Building in Lower Manhattan

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: August 1, 2019 ~ On July 21, 2011 the investigative arm of Congress, the Government Accountability Office (GAO), released the first-ever government audit of the Federal Reserve in its 98-year history. The audit came about as a result of the determined efforts of Senator Bernie Sanders to force transparency on the secretive Wall Street bailout actions of the Federal Reserve during the 2008 financial crash and the years that followed. Sanders successfully tacked an amendment on the Dodd-Frank financial reform legislation of 2010 that mandated a top-to-bottom audit of how much the Fed had spent on its bailout and the financial institutions to whom it went. Sanders issued a statement saying this on the day the findings were released: “The first top-to-bottom audit of the Federal Reserve uncovered eye-popping new details about how the U.S. provided a whopping $16 trillion in secret loans to … Continue reading

Democratic Debate July 30, 2019: Highlights that Sizzled

Democratic Debate Hosted by CNN, Tuesday, July 30, 2019

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: July 31, 2019 ~ Last night’s Democratic Debate could have covered all the positions in the field at Yankee Stadium and had one player left over. In fact, the debate roster should have been limited to nine contenders instead of ten because former Maryland Congressman John Delaney was clearly batting for the other team. Time and time again, Delaney sounded like a die-hard Republican. And Delaney was aided and abetted by CNN moderator Jake Tapper, who phrased one question to Senator Bernie Sanders this way: Tapper: “Let’s start the debate with the number-one issue for Democratic voters, health care. And Senator Sanders, let’s start with you. You support Medicare For All, which would eventually take private health insurance away from more than 150 million Americans, in exchange for government-sponsored health care for everyone. Congressman Delaney just referred to it as bad policy. And previously, … Continue reading

Citigroup Is the Latest Casualty in Wall Street’s Trading Nightmare

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: July 30, 2019 ~   Here’s how to sum up the stock (equity) trading slowdown on Wall Street in one sentence: there are too many trading firms chasing too few investors wanting to trade. Wall Street has spent tens of billions of dollars over the past decade jazzing up its artificial intelligence/micro-second trading technology and too little time building confidence among the American people that Wall Street is a safe place to handle investment savings. The average American has moved the stock allocation portion of their portfolio to low-cost, passive index funds because of the risks and high fees in Wall Street’s proprietary funds. Hedge funds are now sitting on their hands as they bleed assets, shell-shocked from attempting to trade a market that can flip on a dime with each new Tweet from the President of the United States. Bloomberg News reported last … Continue reading

JPMorgan and Sidley Austin Were Involved in the Mysterious $6.7 Billion Company Chaired by Jeffrey Epstein

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: July 29, 2019 ~ Jeffrey Epstein, the accused sex trafficker of underage school girls, presided over a $6.7 billion offshore company as its Chairman from November 9, 2001 to at least March 19, 2007, a period during which he is accused of committing his sex trafficking crimes against minors. The company is Liquid Funding Ltd. and it had two offshore connections: it was incorporated in Bermuda on October 19, 2000 by the Appleby law firm, known for setting up offshore companies in secrecy jurisdictions like the Isle of Man, Guernsey, Cayman Islands, and Jersey. Liquid Funding’s investment manager was Bear Stearns Bank Plc in Dublin, Ireland – a non-U.S. regulated institution, which was later merged into JPMorgan Bank Dublin. A Securities and Exchange Commission filing by Bear Stearns, prior to its epic collapse in 2008, indicated that Bear Stearns owned 40 percent of Liquid … Continue reading

The Company Under Scrutiny in the Jeffrey Epstein Case Has Semi-Nude Young Females on its Board of Directors’ Page

Photo that Sits Atop L Brands' Board of Directors' Page

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: July 26, 2019 ~ The above photo is a screen shot taken at 7:45 a.m. this morning of a larger photo of semi-nude young females that appears above the Board of Directors’ page of the L Brands’ website. L Brands is the company founded by Leslie (Les) Wexner, its Chairman and CEO for the past half century. L Brands owns the retail chains Victoria’s Secret, Bath and Body Works, and Pink. Since July 6 when Jeffrey Epstein was arrested and indicted for sex trafficking of underage girls and sexually assaulting dozens of them at his homes in Manhattan, Palm Beach and elsewhere, there have been steady media reports linking Epstein to L Brands and Wexner, including reports that Epstein attempted to involve himself in the selection of models for Victoria’s Secret, potentially luring his future victims. That backdrop makes the above photo, which presents … Continue reading

82% of Wall Street Bank Analysts Have a Buy Rating on Citigroup: Run for Cover

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: July 25, 2019 ~ If you are buying stocks based on what your stockbroker (a/k/a “financial advisor”) is telling you the research analysts at his brokerage firm are recommending, our headline above should provide a cautionary warning. On July 21, Philip Van Doorn, a reporter for Dow Jones’ MarketWatch, published a chart showing that 82 percent of bank research analysts on Wall Street have a “buy” rating on the stock of Citigroup. According to MarketBeat.com, among the stock analysts making “buy,” “outperform,” or “overweight,” recommendations on Citigroup are those receiving a paycheck from Goldman Sachs, Credit Suisse, Morgan Stanley, JPMorgan, Deutsche Bank, UBS, and Bank of America – all of whom have a vested interest in wanting Citigroup – and each other — to stay strong because they are all interconnected as derivative counterparties. All of these banks are in a unique position to … Continue reading

Elizabeth Warren Says Another Economic Crash Is Coming: Is She Right?

Senator Elizabeth Warren at Democratic Debate June 26, 2019

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: July 24, 2019 ~ On Monday, Democratic presidential contender Senator Elizabeth Warren posted a column on Medium that carried the provocative headline: The Coming Economic Crash — And How to Stop It. Warren’s column came just 11 days after we titled our own article: Is There a Stealth Financial Crisis? Alarm Bells Are Ringing. Warren wrote about economic trends like the fact that the U.S. manufacturing sector is already in recession and the staggering amount of household and corporate debt. We wrote about the striking similarities to the early warning signs that ushered in the 2008 financial crash and those happening right now: like being locked out of withdrawing money from a mutual fund because of a run on the fund and an inability to find a buyer for its illiquid investments; and a major international bank firing a big chunk of its labor … Continue reading

JPMorgan’s Jamie Dimon Has Gone to Defcon 1 Over Bank’s Ties to Jeffrey Epstein

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: July 23, 2019 ~ Yesterday afternoon, Jamie Dimon had his world rocked. And not in a good way. Dimon is the Chairman and CEO of the largest bank in the United States, JPMorgan Chase, which has over 5,000 retail branches blanketing the U.S. and has scooped up $1.6 trillion in deposits, much of it from moms and pops who have no idea that the bank is a three-time felon. When you’re a 3-count felony bank and still on probation until January of 2020, you really don’t want to see your name appear in the New York Times connected to the most radioactive felon in the United States right now, Jeffrey Epstein, the man newly indicted on July 6 on charges of sex trafficking of underage girls and sexually assaulting dozens of them. But that’s what happened yesterday afternoon. The New York Times published a … Continue reading

Jeffrey Epstein Chaired a $6.7 Billion Company that Documents Suggest May Have Received a Secret Federal Reserve Bailout

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: July 21, 2019 ~  According to a database created by The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists containing files leaked from the law firm Appleby, Jeffrey Epstein, who is under indictment as a sex trafficker and assaulter of underage girls, was the Chairman of Liquid Funding Ltd. from November 9, 2001 to at least March 19, 2007. The offshore business had been incorporated in Bermuda on October 19, 2000 and according to the Fitch ratings firm, it had $6.7 billion in outstanding liabilities in 2006. In a regulatory filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission in February 2003, Bear Stearns, the Wall Street investment bank that Epstein had resigned from under murky circumstances in 1981, confirmed that it was a 40 percent owner of Liquid Funding Ltd., writing as follows: “At November 30, 2002, the Company had an approximate 40% equity interest in Liquid Funding, Ltd. … Continue reading

Senator Compares Facebook’s Libra Association to Spectre in James Bond Movie

Spectre Logo

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: July 17, 2019 ~ Yesterday the U.S. Senate Banking Committee assembled to hear Facebook’s David Marcus explain how the company wants to create a global digital currency called Libra, to be run by a Switzerland-based global organization called the Libra Association, made up of 27 members from the fields of payment systems, technology, telecommunications, blockchain services, venture capital, nonprofits and academic institutions. Given Facebook’s serial history of abusing the privacy rights of its users and selling their data without their permission, not to mention its role in facilitating Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, we immediately went to check out the names of the nonprofits that had signed up to monitor this sprawling international monetary system cooked up in a Facebook lab in a year’s time. We were hoping to see names like American Civil Liberties Union, Public Citizen, Consumer Federation of America, … Continue reading

Jeffrey Epstein’s Curiously Nimble Trading in LinkedIn Stock Raises Red Flags

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: July 16, 2019 ~ Is Jeffrey Epstein, the accused sex trafficker and sexual assaulter of dozens of underage girls potentially guilty of financial crimes as well? His criminal profile suggests that may well be worth investigating. Bernie Madoff knew he was no genius and could never compete with the physics and math geniuses employed by the major trading firms on Wall Street. So he simply generated fake investment statements to reassure his thousands of clients of his trading prowess and didn’t buy one stock for their portfolios over the decades he was looting their assets, according to prosecutors. But the criminal profile that emerges for Jeffrey Epstein is that of a man so arrogant and confident of his genius that he felt he could beat anybody – by hook or by crook, or by hiring ruthless lawyers to intimidate and compromise Federal prosecutors. Armed … Continue reading

Tax Filing Suggests Child Sex Offender Jeffrey Epstein Made His Wealth Flipping Hot IPOs on Wall Street

Jeffrey Epstein Mug Shot from Palm Beach County Sheriff's Dept

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: July 15, 2019 ~ Jeffrey Epstein is variously called a “billionaire,” a “hedge fund manager,” or a “financier” in the hundreds of articles that have appeared in print this month. But no one can say with any certainty how Epstein obtained his wealth or exactly how much wealth he actually has. We’ve located a highly interesting ledger from one of his nonprofit tax filings which shows he was able to get his hands on highly preferential hot IPOs (Initial Public Offerings) and flipped them on their first day of trading. We’ll explore that in detail shortly, but first some background. Jeffrey Epstein is due in Federal Court in Manhattan this morning to argue his case for being allowed to serve his time until trial under house arrest in his opulent $77 million mansion on the upper East Side rather than the drab confinements of … Continue reading

Charts Suggest the Dow Index Is Being Painted to Get “New Highs” in the Market

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: July 12, 2019 ~ What we need today is a real life character like Vinny Gambini in the movie My Cousin Vinny to take over the questioning for the U.S. Senate Banking Committee – like Ferdinand Pecora did in the early 1930s to root out the systemic frauds in the stock market of that era. Gambini would haul the heads of equities trading for each of the major Wall Street banks and their Dark Pools to a hearing, put them under oath, and grill them about the highly suspicious trading activity that is going on in today’s markets. Let’s start with what happened yesterday. In the face of punk earnings forecasts for the rest of this year and a growing global economic slowdown, the Dow Jones Industrial Average hit a historic milestone, closing above 27,000 for the first time. But the rising tide didn’t … Continue reading

Is There a Stealth Financial Crisis? Alarm Bells Are Ringing.

Withdrawals from His Flagship Fund on June 3, 2019 (Photo from Publicly Released Video)

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: July 11, 2019 ~ Shhh! Don’t wake the Wall Street bank regulators from their decade-long slumber to whisper in their ear that the same critical signs they ignored in 2007 and early 2008 are rearing their ugly heads again. Let’s take a look at the clear warning signs that began in July 2007 and then contrast them against what is happening today. On July 17, 2007 Bear Stearns announced that two of its hedge funds, which had held about $1.5 billion in investor capital in the first quarter of the year, were now mostly worthless. On August 9, 2007 BNP Paribas, France’s largest publicly traded bank, announced it was freezing customer withdrawals from three of its funds, effectively preventing customers from accessing $2.2 billion. It cited “evaporation of liquidity,” and the inability “to value certain assets,” as a reason. Fast forward to today: On … Continue reading

With Three Felony Counts Already, Did JPMorgan Chase Really Need to Own a Ship Containing 20 Tons of Cocaine?

MSC Gayane Container Ship

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: July 10, 2019 ~ Jamie Dimon, Chairman and CEO of the Wall Street mega bank, JPMorgan Chase, has weathered one scandal after another during his tenure, including the bank pleading guilty to an unprecedented three criminal felony counts in the past five years. Now the bank is back in the news for owning a massive container ship which was seized last week in the Philadelphia seaport by U.S. Customs and Border Protection following the discovery of 20 tons of cocaine located in containers on the ship on June 17. The cocaine is estimated to have a street value of $1.3 billion. The container vessel is the MSC Gayane and was being operated by the global shipping firm, Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC). The vessel is the largest ever to be seized in the 230-year history of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, according to the CBP’s … Continue reading

Following Deutsche Bank’s News, Every Major Wall Street Bank Closed in the Red Yesterday

Deutsche Bank Headquarters in Frankfurt, Germany

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: July 9, 2019 ~ As of early this morning, Deutsche Bank’s restructuring plan is looking a lot like the lifeboat plan for the Titanic. Research analysts have expressed skepticism that the plan will work and the bank’s stock performance is backing up that assessment. In overnight trading in Frankfurt, the stock had cumulatively lost 10 percent of its value in less than two days of trading since the details of its restructuring were made public. Deutsche Bank’s shares also trade on the New York Stock Exchange, which opens at 9:30 a.m. Deutsche Bank is widely known to be a major derivatives counterparty – meaning its fate could have a spillover effect on other major banks which have taken the opposite sides of its derivatives trades. Notably, every major Wall Street bank closed in the red yesterday with two, Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs, outpacing … Continue reading