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Financial news I consider important, with my opinion, which is worth as much as you paid for it.
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Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Americas choice, corruption or law

When reading the links below, there is a theme, everywhere there is the smell...the stench...of entrenched corruption, or just plain old incompetence. I am actually pleased to see all of this, since it is finally getting SOME public attention. I'll be mildly optimistic when the rule of law is enforced, corruption is chased out of the system (well, 70% of it). Talk is cheap, we need ACTION, need rule of law. The choice is ours.

For companies that report earnings WITHOUT taking into account billions of money given to them, is outright misrepresenting the health of their companies. All of these companies should report ZERO earnings, until the taxpayer is 100% paid back. It's a farce that a company can have a reported profit after given 87 billion dollars. Heck, I'll open a hot dog stand, give me 1 million, I'll show a profit.

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It is refreshing to hear a law enforcement official state the obvious, and that is the US government is not doing their job. Click for full video talking to Elliot Spitzer, quote:

Spitzer said "Instead of having lunch with investment bankers, the SEC should start investigating them. The SEC and other regulators should not be given new tools to make the markets safe, they should begin using the tools they have."

Maybe Goldman Sachs Really Is a Giant Vampire Squid (video click), basically Paulson looked for guidance from GS CEO during 2008 crisis. There is no conflict of interest, so stop investigating, trust them already!

Of course, Jim Cramer believes that the US government looking for guidance from Goldman Sachs is good for the western world. (video click)

Forbes story on "Why You Can't Trust Those Jobs Figures", my spin, FINALLY some media attention on the magic behind the numbers. It is easier to cheat than to work on fixing root cause.

AIG logs first quarterly profit since 2007 - My spin, keep in mind AIG owes the US taxpayer over 87 BILLION (and that isn't counting the paper the FED has as "collateral" for loans...I suspect the collateral may be overstated by a tiny bit)

Freddie Mac announces 11 cents a share loss - My spin - US government has already sank 50 billion into Freddie in direct losses, once again, not counting collateral for loans given by the fed on paper I suspect has values over stated. The US government has 150 billion more lined up.

The Senate Ethics Committee said Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd of Connecticut and fellow Democrat Kent Conrad of North Dakota didn’t violate ethics rules in refinancing their home mortgages with Countrywide Financial Corp. - My Spin - having special considerations for loans while representing the taxpayer to me is a conflict of interests, but what do I know?

Nasdaq, Bats to Stop Allowing Flash Orders for Stocks Sept 1st - My spin - if Flash orders are bad (ILLEGAL!) why not stop immediately?

Judge weighs in on BOA settlement with SEC on Merrill Lynch bonuses
A federal judge criticized on Monday a proposed settlement between the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and Bank of America Corp (BAC.N) over the payment of bonuses to Merrill Lynch & Co executives.

The largest U.S. bank agreed on August 3 to pay $33 million to resolve an SEC civil lawsuit accusing it of misleading shareholders by not disclosing it authorized the payment of up to $5.8 billion of bonuses to Merrill employees. About $3.6 billion was ultimately awarded and the bank did not admit wrongdoing.

Judge Jed Rakoff of the federal court in Manhattan put the settlement on hold, wanting to determine if it was fair to the public.
- My spin, I'd be shocked if anything comes of this.


Other (non corrupt) News

Bank of England warns UK may face lost decade, similar to Japan - My spin , if England is lucky!
Japan's Future: "It's Going to Be Scary" - My Spin - Japan has had 2 "lost decades" in their financial institutions and stock markets. Japan refused to write down losses, which the US is following in footsteps. It is a pretty interesting future for Japan.......

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