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failRobert Jenkins (ex Bank of England): “The charge sheet of misdeeds - both acknowledged and alleged is lengthy”

November 20, 2015

On Tuesday, November 17, 2015 Better Markets Senior Fellow Robert Jenkins delivered the keynote address at the Finance Watches Conference on “Confidence, ethics, and incentives in the financial sector”.  His speech “When Timidity Triumphs…” highlights the challenges within our banking system when financial institutions are “too big to fail, bail and jail,” and the need to restore accountability in our financial system.

As Mr. Jenkins said in his speech:

“[B]efore considering what’s to be done let us recall the magnitude of what financiers did. The charge sheet of misdeeds - both acknowledged and alleged is lengthy. Here is a partial list:

  • Mis-selling of payment protection insurance
  • Mis-selling interest rate swaps
  • Mis-selling credit card theft insurance
  • Mis-selling of mortgage-backed securities
  • Mis-selling of municipal bond investment strategies
  • Mis-selling of structured deposit investments
  • Mis-selling of foreign exchange products
  • Fraud related to the packaging and selling of mortgage-backed securities that institutions knew to be “toxic waste”
  • Misleading statements to investors involving capital raising rights issue
  • Misleading investors in the sale of collateralised debt obligations
  • Abusive small business lending practices
  • Predatory mortgage practices
  • Abusive or in inappropriate foreclosure practices
  • Aiding and abetting tax evasion
  • Aiding and abetting money laundering for violent drug cartels
  • Violations of rogue-regime sanctions
  • Manipulation of Euribor
  • Manipulation of FX markets
  • Manipulation of gold fixing (London)
  • Manipulation of commodity markets via metals warehousing practices
  • Manipulation of electricity markets (California/JPM)
  • Manipulation of the swaps market benchmark index (Isdafix)
  • Collusion relating to credit default swap market dealing in violation of US anti-trust laws (“settlement” reached with authorities to resolve allegations)
  • Filing false statements with the SEC (London Whale)
  • Keeping false books and records (London Whale)
  • Reporting failures relating to Madoff
  • Withholding of critical information from Italian regulators
  • Bribing civil service employees in Japan
  • Mis-reporting related to Barclays emergency capital raising
  • Stealing confidential regulatory information by a banker
  • Collusion with Greek authorities to mislead EU policy makers on meeting Euro criteria
  • Financial engineering with the aim of moving Italian debt off-balance sheet
  • Manipulation of risk models with the aim of minimizing reported Risk Weighted Assets / capital requirements

And currently under investigation…

  • Manipulation of precious metals markets (gold/silver/platinum/palladium - Switzerland)
  • Manipulation / collusion of the US Treasury Market auction/client sales
  • Manipulation of energy markets
  • Short changing clients a second time in not paying settlements in full
  • Violations connected with emergency fund raisings
  • Electronic FX trading related market manipulation (NY DFS investigation)
  • Falsifying customer data and records
  • Misleading clients over dark pools
  • Misleading shareholders ahead of RBS rights issue
  • Misleading shareholder information with respect to Lloyds takeover of HBOs
  • Conspiracy to force small businesses into bankruptcy to the benefit of the lender
  • Insertion of illegal rate floors in Spanish mortgage lending
  • Faking customer files to justify predatory foreclosure practices
  • Misleading profit and capital statements based on questionable accounting practices

You can download Mr. Jenkins full speech, When Timidity Triumphs…, here.