tagged w/ bankers
On July 1, student loan interest rates are set to double - from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent. On Wednesday, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., introduced her first piece of legislation on the Senate floor: students paying back federally subsidized loans would have an interest rate of .75 percent. That's the same rate that major banks are charged for borrowing money from the government. Her argument is that students shouldn't have to pay nine times as much interest as banks for their loans.
Her statement, via Americablog:
Big banks pay interest that is one-ninth the rate that students will pay. That is wrong. It doesn’t reflect our values. We shouldn’t be profiting from our students who are drowning in debt while we’re giving great deals to big banks. We should be investing in our young people so they can get good jobs and grow this economy, so let’s give them the same great deal the banks get….
If the Federal Reserve can float trillions of dollars to large financial institutions at low interest rates to grow the economy, surely they can float the Department of Education the money to fund our students, keep us competitive, and grow our middle class.
She continues to explain how her own student debt repayments were equal to her rent back in 1989, which caused her to put off major purchases like buying a home.
What do you think? Should students get the same interest rate as the banks? Or are they apples and oranges when it comes to borrowing money?
Should students get to pay the same interest rate as banks? On July 1, student loan interest rates are set to double - from 3.4 percent to 6.8... more
From the video description:
It’s hard not to appreciate how thoroughly Irish journalist Vincent Browne shuts down these banker’s multiple attempts to weasel their way out of answering his questions. Don’t miss a short speech that does journalists everywhere proud at 1:40, and find out what left our hapless banker friends at a loss for words at 3:18.
http://youtu.be/nTo28Ss_qp8From the video description: It’s hard not to appreciate how thoroughly Irish... more
Published: Thursday, 28 Feb 2013 | 3:37 PM ET
By: John Carney
Senior Editor, CNBC.com
So is the EU cap on banker bonuses going to devastate London's financial sector?
Almost certainly not. Investment bankers will just react to this the way they react to every rule imposed upon them: They'll innovate right around the rule.
The proposed rule would cap bonuses at twice a banker's salary. Since salaries are often a fraction of bonuses, this rule would seem to be set to slash banker compensation.
Of course, if the rule did work, there would be an enormous flight of talent out of European banks. JP Morgan Chase, Goldman Sachs and Citigroup would just poach all the top performers.
But it won't work because it's too easy to avoid. The Financial Times' Lex commentary service explained one way Thursday morning:
Your fixed, cash salary will be increased from €500,000 to €10m per year, roughly in line with your average total compensation for the past five years, to be paid monthly into an escrow account. By signing your contract you agree that from this escrow account a monthly net payment equivalent to €500k per year will be paid into your personal bank account.
At year-end, you are entitled to the balance of your cash salary in the escrow account subject to strict clawback provisions detailed in this contract. For example, if 100 per cent of your various targets are achieved you will receive €9.5m, on a sliding scale to zero based on the formula enclosed and consistent with Article 88 of European rules implementing Basel III. Whatever money remains in escrow at year end will transfer to the bank's general account.
In other words, you just increase the salary to the anticipated bonus, hold it in escrow until year's end, and then subject it to a clawback for underperformance.
Alternatively, you form a special purpose vehicle to which you sell the rights to half of the future profits from a trading desk. The traders on the desk earn shares in the vehicle as part of their regular salary. At the end of the year, the SPV dividends out its profits to the traders. As an added bonus, this might make the dividends subject to capital gains rather than income taxes. Also, doing this would allow a bank to reduce its publicly disclosed compensation expenses and appear to comply with the law.
The ways around the cap are probably infinite. This is a rule with no teeth.
http://www.cnbc.com/id/100508101Published: Thursday, 28 Feb 2013 | 3:37 PM ET By: John Carney Senior Editor,... more
What do Bankers and Corrupt Politicians have planned next? Whole countries turned into dens of vice and crime for their enjoymentThe Spanish government’s plans to create ‘Euro Vegas’ in Madrid raise fears of turning the place into Sin City, boosting prostitution and gambling.The Spanish government’s plans to create ‘Euro Vegas’ in Madrid... more
If you've ever worked your tail off for tips, this will tick you off. =)
If you've never worked for tips, but you tip like this guy...don't make a habit of frequenting the same place twice - you may end up with "special sauce" in your food. Just sayin'.
Full Story: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/02/24/banker-1-percent-tip-receipt_n_1299280.html?icid=maing-grid10%7Chtmlws-main-bb%7Cdl1%7Csec1_lnk2&pLid=138350&ref=fb&src=sp&comm_ref=falseIf you've ever worked your tail off for tips, this will tick you off. =) If... more
WARNING: Due to the Highly Controversial Nature of this article, it is recommended that you do not read this article, if you have a hard time accepting original ideas. The truth can hurt you, but it can also set you free:
” A newspaper is a device for making the ignorant more ignorant and the crazy crazier. ”
- H. L. Mencken
http://anarchadia.com/2011/12/10/the-truth-about-ron-paul/WARNING: Due to the Highly Controversial Nature of this article, it is recommended... more
By Muriel Kane
Friday, January 6
Filmed in glorious black and white, this Twilight Zone-style parody turns out in the end to be a pitch for passing a financial transaction tax on Wall Street trading.
But the sight of an angry mob of little old ladies and bankrupt small business owners pursuing a guilt-stricken banker with calls to “tax the 1% who ruined our economy” is more than worth the price of admission.
This video was uploaded to YouTube by ProtestInTheUSA on January 3, 2012.
"I hate to be the one to say it, but Folks need to quit crying about what they want and start taking it back!!! They don't care about you, they have no fear of you, take a look around and see that this passing of the NDAA is proof positive they will indeed Get Rid of You!!!!"By Muriel Kane Friday, January 6 Filmed in glorious black and white, this Twilight... more
These are the first pictures of the People's Court in London where the 1% will be tried. Through these doors the bankers of London may for the first time be tried for their crimes. Suspects will be charged and tried in fair trails where evidence will be presented and challenged by defence lawyers. Another World Exclusive: first picture of the court chamber where the banking executives will face the people's law. Nearly four years after the crisis exploded not a single banker anywhere in the world has faced justice. http://www.freeturbine.com/index.php/news/recent-politic/item/first-photos-of-people-s-court-where-bankers-will-be-tried-in-londonThese are the first pictures of the People's Court in London where the 1% will be... more
The 57,000 Page Tax Return
by Alex Tabarrok
The NYTimes reported earlier this year that through an extraordinary use of tax breaks and clever accounting:
[General Electric] reported worldwide profits of $14.2 billion, and said $5.1 billion of the total came from its operations in the United States. Its American tax bill? None. In fact, G.E. claimed a tax benefit of $3.2 billion.
The Times highlighted the skill of GE’s dream team:
G.E.’s giant tax department, led by a bow-tied former Treasury official named John Samuels, is often referred to as the world’s best tax law firm. Indeed, the company’s slogan “Imagination at Work” fits this department well. The team includes former officials not just from the Treasury, but also from the I.R.S. and virtually all the tax-writing committees in Congress.
More recently from The Weekly Standard we find what kind of effort it takes to pay no taxes on $14 billion in profits:
General Electric, one of the largest corporations in America, filed a whopping 57,000-page federal tax return earlier this year but didn’t pay taxes on $14 billion in profits. The return, which was filed electronically, would have been 19 feet high if printed out and stacked.
(FYI, the length of GE’s tax return has doubled since 2006 when it (first?) filed electronically at an equivalent of 24,000 pages.)
GE’s tax bill illustrates both why our corporate tax rate is too high and too low. The nominal rate is too high which encourages a real rate which is too low.
Consider the resources that GE spends to lowers its tax bill, not just the many millions spent on clever accounting and accountants and the many millions spent on lobbying but also the many inefficient ways that GE structures its businesses just to avoid paying taxes and the many millions it invests in socially wasteful projects just in order to produce privately valuable tax credits. Now add to that the allocational inefficiencies of taxing some firms at different rates than others and you have a corporate tax system which wastes a lot of resources and raises relatively little revenue. Indeed, a corporate tax system with a tax rate of zero could well be preferable as it would waste fewer resources and raise not much less revenue.
Hat tip: TaxProf blog.The 57,000 Page Tax Return by Alex Tabarrok The NYTimes reported earlier this... more
Proof that not much has changed since this time for all of our supposed progress. The same problems with income disparity, class war, unemployment, and those who think problems can fix themselves or "trickle down" to others. And this is because we are still doing things the same way hoping for a different outcome. The same two party system, the same greed, the same campaign rhetoric, the same empty promises, the same catering to the 10 who can buy the country rather than keeping their oaths to the millions who make it work.
I posted this because I thought of the Bonus March after seeing Mayor Bloomberg's actions in NYC regarding the Americans occupying Zuccotti Park and the actions of others. Their Hoover mentality also reflects a time when we saw high unemployment, homelessness due to failing mortgages and the corrupt greed of those who then took advantage of the less fortunate. **That is why Americans are out in the parks now for those who seem to have forgotten their own history.**
This is not a just society. This is not a society that strives for equality. This is a society that thrives on the needs of the many being sacrificed for the wants of a few. And it is failing all of us, especially our children and all of us have had a hand in it because we continue to place trust in those who do not care about anything but continuing to cater to those 10. So we now see Americans taking a stand to make it right and hold those who will not take responsibility for their corrupt actions accountable. Just like veterans did when they held their Bonus March on Washington DC and built their shantytowns in the Capitol. And it was the right thing to do then and it is the right thing to do now.
So to all of the mayors in all of these cities, to the jackbooted Homeland Security Dept., to this administration that is silent on this, to those from the last USSC appointed administration who precipitated this and to all those who think that you are on the right side of history... history has already proven you wrong. Shame on you all for forgetting that.
We won't.Proof that not much has changed since this time for all of our supposed progress. The... more
AS PROTESTS against financial power sweep the world this week, science may have confirmed the protesters' worst fears. An analysis of the relationships between 43,000 transnational corporations has identified a relatively small group of companies, mainly banks, with disproportionate power over the global economy.
The study's assumptions have attracted some criticism, but complex systems analysts contacted by New Scientist say it is a unique effort to untangle control in the global economy. Pushing the analysis further, they say, could help to identify ways of making global capitalism more stable.
The idea that a few bankers control a large chunk of the global economy might not seem like news to New York's Occupy Wall Street movement and protesters elsewhere (see photo). But the study, by a trio of complex systems theorists at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich, is the first to go beyond ideology to empirically identify such a network of power. It combines the mathematics long used to model natural systems with comprehensive corporate data to map ownership among the world's transnational corporations (TNCs).
"Reality is so complex, we must move away from dogma, whether it's conspiracy theories or free-market," says James Glattfelder. "Our analysis is reality-based."
Previous studies have found that a few TNCs own large chunks of the world's economy, but they included only a limited number of companies and omitted indirect ownerships, so could not say how this affected the global economy - whether it made it more or less stable, for instance.
The Zurich team can. From Orbis 2007, a database listing 37 million companies and investors worldwide, they pulled out all 43,060 TNCs and the share ownerships linking them. Then they constructed a model of which companies controlled others through shareholding networks, coupled with each company's operating revenues, to map the structure of economic power.
The work, to be published in PLoS One, revealed a core of 1318 companies with interlocking ownerships (see image). Each of the 1318 had ties to two or more other companies, and on average they were connected to 20. What's more, although they represented 20 per cent of global operating revenues, the 1318 appeared to collectively own through their shares the majority of the world's large blue chip and manufacturing firms - the "real" economy - representing a further 60 per cent of global revenues.
When the team further untangled the web of ownership, it found much of it tracked back to a "super-entity" of 147 even more tightly knit companies - all of their ownership was held by other members of the super-entity - that controlled 40 per cent of the total wealth in the network. "In effect, less than 1 per cent of the companies were able to control 40 per cent of the entire network," says Glattfelder. Most were financial institutions. The top 20 included Barclays Bank, JPMorgan Chase & Co, and The Goldman Sachs Group.
John Driffill of the University of London, a macroeconomics expert, says the value of the analysis is not just to see if a small number of people controls the global economy, but rather its insights into economic stability.
Concentration of power is not good or bad in itself, says the Zurich team, but the core's tight interconnections could be. As the world learned in 2008, such networks are unstable. "If one [company] suffers distress," says Glattfelder, "this propagates."
"It's disconcerting to see how connected things really are," agrees George Sugihara of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in La Jolla, California, a complex systems expert who has advised Deutsche Bank.
Yaneer Bar-Yam, head of the New England Complex Systems Institute (NECSI), warns that the analysis assumes ownership equates to control, which is not always true. Most company shares are held by fund managers who may or may not control what the companies they part-own actually do. The impact of this on the system's behaviour, he says, requires more analysis.
Crucially, by identifying the architecture of global economic power, the analysis could help make it more stable. By finding the vulnerable aspects of the system, economists can suggest measures to prevent future collapses spreading through the entire economy. Glattfelder says we may need global anti-trust rules, which now exist only at national level, to limit over-connection among TNCs. Sugihara says the analysis suggests one possible solution: firms should be taxed for excess interconnectivity to discourage this risk.
One thing won't chime with some of the protesters' claims: the super-entity is unlikely to be the intentional result of a conspiracy to rule the world. "Such structures are common in nature," says Sugihara.
Newcomers to any network connect preferentially to highly connected members. TNCs buy shares in each other for business reasons, not for world domination. If connectedness clusters, so does wealth, says Dan Braha of NECSI: in similar models, money flows towards the most highly connected members. The Zurich study, says Sugihara, "is strong evidence that simple rules governing TNCs give rise spontaneously to highly connected groups". Or as Braha puts it: "The Occupy Wall Street claim that 1 per cent of people have most of the wealth reflects a logical phase of the self-organising economy."
So, the super-entity may not result from conspiracy. The real question, says the Zurich team, is whether it can exert concerted political power. Driffill feels 147 is too many to sustain collusion. Braha suspects they will compete in the market but act together on common interests. Resisting changes to the network structure may be one such common interest.
When this article was first posted, the comment in the final sentence of the paragraph beginning "Crucially, by identifying the architecture of global economic power…" was misattributed.
The top 50 of the 147 superconnected companies
1. Barclays plc
2. Capital Group Companies Inc
3. FMR Corporation
5. State Street Corporation
6. JP Morgan Chase & Co
7. Legal & General Group plc
8. Vanguard Group Inc
9. UBS AG
10. Merrill Lynch & Co Inc
11. Wellington Management Co LLP
12. Deutsche Bank AG
13. Franklin Resources Inc
14. Credit Suisse Group
15. Walton Enterprises LLC
16. Bank of New York Mellon Corp
18. Goldman Sachs Group Inc
19. T Rowe Price Group Inc
20. Legg Mason Inc
21. Morgan Stanley
22. Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc
23. Northern Trust Corporation
24. Société Générale
25. Bank of America Corporation
26. Lloyds TSB Group plc
27. Invesco plc
28. Allianz SE 29. TIAA
30. Old Mutual Public Limited Company
31. Aviva plc
32. Schroders plc
33. Dodge & Cox
34. Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc*
35. Sun Life Financial Inc
36. Standard Life plc
38. Nomura Holdings Inc
39. The Depository Trust Company
40. Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance
41. ING Groep NV
42. Brandes Investment Partners LP
43. Unicredito Italiano SPA
44. Deposit Insurance Corporation of Japan
45. Vereniging Aegon
46. BNP Paribas
47. Affiliated Managers Group Inc
48. Resona Holdings Inc
49. Capital Group International Inc
50. China Petrochemical Group Company
* Lehman still existed in the 2007 dataset used
Graphic: The 1318 transnational corporations that form the core of the economy
(Data: PLoS One)
SHARE AND LET YOUR VOICES BE HEARDAS PROTESTS against financial power sweep the world this week, science may have... more
President Obama is on the brink of cutting a backroom deal that would give bankers broad immunity for illegally throwing tens of thousands of Americans out of their homes. : politicsTo help expose the looming cash-for-immunity deal between the Obama administration and big banks, there will be a march from Liberty Square to the U.S. Court House Building at Foley Square on November 5th.
The march will gather at 2:00pm on the east side steps at Liberty Square (Zuccotti Park), and will arrive at Foley Square at 3:00pm. Join the Facebook event page
President Obama is on the brink of cutting a backroom deal that would give bankers broad immunity for illegally throwing tens of thousands of Americans out of their homes. The Administration is pressuring state attorneys general to abandon an ongoing investigation into the massive "robo-signing" fraud, in exchange for a relatively small payoff by the banks.To help expose the looming cash-for-immunity deal between the Obama administration and... more
In a nation where problem's are resolved on TV programs within a thirty to sixty minute time frame and products that can cure everything from hair loss to relationship problems are marketed to people who have become so impatient that they can't wait for a meal longer than it takes for the person at the drive through to hand them their order it's no wonder that the initial response to the Occupy Wall Street movement has been one of confusion. The fact that there are so many people with so many different issues and no quick answers has led some to the conclusion that the lack of structure and a recognizable leader is a sign of weakness. Others have gone as far as to dismiss the movement by resorting to cliches about protestors rooted in what they perceive were the more destructive aspects of the activism of the 1960's. The truth is that the shear volume of issues in itself is reason enough for the protest. People have become fed up with not having a say in how their lives and their Country are run. The majority of people do not want handouts. What they do want is an equal opportunity to live and be as productive as they can. When 99% of American citizens are forced to pay more of their income in taxes than the 1% who pay little to none of theirs is it any wonder people are enraged? The image of the protestors as pot smoking hippies who want everything handed to them may be a convenient talking point but it couldn't be further from the truth. It is a Peoples protest and despite what some in power or the media may think it is not something that will go away just because the weather starts to turn bad or they stop talking about it. It may appear to be chaotic and disorganized on the surface but at it's root it is the reason this nation works. Whenever Politicians and self serving Business People have lost track of who and what we are as a nation it is in our best interest to remind them in the loudest and most creative ways we know how. Democracy is chaotic and loud and creative and far better than any of the alternatives. Stand Strong, Speak Loud and never let the Bully's win!In a nation where problem's are resolved on TV programs within a thirty to sixty... more
There's a lot of rumination over Occupy Wall Street and its growing raft of branch offices. Depending on your rhetoric, The Occupiers are doing righteous battle with corporate greedheads and associated serfs. The right sees them as a gold brickers who want to lynch Fortune 500 CEOs, crooked politicians, and their assorted Tea Partyish fellow travelers. It doesn't matter if a person's perception is right or wrong, it only matters they have it.There's a lot of rumination over Occupy Wall Street and its growing raft of... more
Tony D rewrites today's headlines so you don't have to read the news!
September 20, 2011 | Advertisement Editor's note: Today is the fifth day demonstrators have staged an "occupation" of Wall St. and other parts of lower Manhattan in protest of America's staggering economic inequality and the influence of big finance on our politics. As of Tuesday night, 16 people had been arrested. There are also reports that law enforcement has confiscated camera equipment. Below, writer Chaz Valenza describes 11 things you can do to help out the protesters.
These patriot occupiers are fighting for 99 percent of us. Those who are unemployed, uninsured, underemployed and totally insecure in the face of ever increasing social and financial inequities. They are standing up for those who cannot be there right now.
Here's the good news -- you can help, right now today -- no matter where you are.
1) Spread the word -- there's something going on. People have started a movement -- they're occupying Wall Street. Hundreds of people have been camped out in lower Manhattan for four days!
2) If you're in New York and can only spare a little time or money: bring American flags, cardboard, markers, water, etc. down to Liberty Park.
3) If you're in the New York area and have a day, a morning, an afternoon, go down there. The weather appears to be holding. Take the day off and just go. I know it sounds hard to believe but you will be heard. This is an open general assembly effort and you will get your say and be a real participant.
4) If you are a little ways from NYC, organize foursomes to go to NYC for the day. It will cost you the train/bus/car fare. Take nothing but some food and water and your body.
5) Too far to get to NYC? Sign this petition and I will read your name and comments in Liberty Park this week, I promise. Break Up Goldman Sachs Now!
6) Be subversive against the big money interests wherever you are and encourage others to do the same. Don't give the banksters 4 percent of every purchase you make with a credit or debit card -- use cash. See: UseCashMovement
7) Be subversive: max out your credit card on large ticket items and return them the next day. (This one is right out of the Saul Alinsky playbook.)
8) Move your money from a big bank to a credit union.
9) Picket a local branch of a bank. When the press asks you what the heck you think you're doing, tell them it's in solidarity with Occupy Wall Street.
10) Send food to the protesters in Liberty Park through a New York friend or go to the live stream chat for information on local eats that will take your order. (Yes, you'll have to use your credit card, big spender!)
11) Do you know anybody who knows anybody who knows a writer, a celebrity, etc. who will show their face at the protest? Get to them now.
Bonus Support Idea 12) Spread the word again, and repeat!September 20, 2011 | Advertisement Editor's note: Today is the fifth day... more
Obama needs to dump those corporate insiders and appoint Matt Taibbi as his US Secretary of the Treasury and do away with all of Geithner's insider deals that did nothing but benefit the wealthy...
http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address=385x617163Obama needs to dump those corporate insiders and appoint Matt Taibbi as his US... more