Sunday, March 8, 2015

Banksters of America

Still freaking outrageous after these many years.

Great summary by Malcolm Berko:

Visit Google and type in "Bank of America fraud," and then read and weep. Next type in "Bank of America fines and penalties." You'll quail at the innumerous details about BAC's allegedly intentional illegal activities, all of which were said to be approved by management, the executive committee and the board of directors. Those accusations include, but are not limited to, email fraud, foreclosure fraud, consumer loan fraud, debit and credit card fraud, defective mortgage fraud, currency and commodity manipulation, money laundering, fraudulently overstating its capital ratio, defrauding Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and colluding to rig international benchmark levels used by fund managers. To settle, BAC paid billions in fines and legal fees. Still, management and the board, disdainful of those fines, look down their chins (not their noses) at investors and regulators. 
BAC's biggest fine, $16.65 billion, was for knowingly selling shoddy mortgages and intentionally misrepresenting their quality. 
This bank shouldn't be called Bank of America. That gives America a bad name; rather, BAC should be renamed Bank of the Mafia. I'd never recommend a bank that's run by a crew of crooks who knowingly bilked middle-class Americans out of billions of dollars. This mortgage fraud by BAC, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, UBS, etc., is the primary reason the market crashed in 2008. And in the aftermath, not a single member of BAC's management, which engineered this fraud, its executive committee, which encouraged it, or its board of directors, which approved it, paid a fine or spent an hour in jail. It's good to have well-paid friends in Congress. 
The ongoing problem with public companies is that mutual funds, pension plans and institutions expect management to grow revenues, earnings and dividends every year because those metrics increase the prices of stocks. If a company fails to do so, its overcompensated CEO will be out of his or her job. And in our crazy capitalistic economy, BAC's banksters are expected to provide shareholders with annual gains regardless of the intense competition from their competitors. That's tough to do, especially when your competition is equally degenerate and the economy can't generate enough activity to improve revenues, earnings and dividends.

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