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According to the Collins English Dictionary 10th Edition fraud can be defined as: "deceit, trickery, sharp practice, or breach of confidence, perpetrated for profit or to gain some unfair or dishonest advantage".[1] In the broadest sense, a fraud is an intentional deception made for personal gain or to damage another individual; the related adjective is fraudulent. The specific legal definition varies by legal jurisdiction. Fraud is a crime, and also a civil law violation. Defrauding people or entities of money or valuables is a common purpose of fraud, but there have also been fraudulent "discoveries", e.g. in science, to gain prestige rather than immediate monetary gain
*As defined in Wikipedia

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Goldman Sachs Hides Risk Levels

From the WSJ:

Big Banks Mask Risk Levels

Quarter-End Loan Figures Sit 42% Below Peak, Then Rise as New Period Progresses; SEC Review

Major banks have masked their risk levels in the past five quarters by temporarily lowering their debt just before reporting it to the public, according to data from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
A group of 18 banks—which includes Goldman Sachs Group Inc., Morgan Stanley, J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., Bank of America Corp. and Citigroup Inc.—understated the debt levels used to fund securities trades by lowering them an average of 42% at the end of each of the past five quarterly periods, the data show. The banks, which publicly release debt data each quarter, then boosted the debt levels in the middle of successive quarters.

Excessive borrowing by banks was one of the major causes of the financial crisis, leading to catastrophic bank runs in 2008 at firms including Bear Stearns Cos. and Lehman Brothers. Since then, banks have become more sensitive about showing high levels of debt and risk, worried that their stocks and credit ratings could be punished.


Read the rest here.


Anonymous said...

Don't try this at'd already be in jail....

One of the most botched cases of conflict of interest abuse by a Federal Reserve official will forever remain the purchase of Goldman Sachs shares by Goldman Board Member, and FRBNY Board Member (the squid likes to keep its Federal Reserve puppets closely supervised) Stephen Friedman: an act strictly forbidden by the Fed itself. The action was so indefensible it led to Friedman's quitting shortly after disclosure of his transgression leaked. Yet the reasons why Friedman managed to effect this purchase of 37,000 shares of GS on December 17, 2008 is because he was granted a "waiver" by the Fed.

Anonymous said...

Ain't this the truth....

"Misrepresentation of the facts and figures abounds. Through the years I noticed a common denominator amongst the kleptocracy and slippery sons of privilege: when the going gets tough, they cheat, even more than usual. And they become righteously indignant if you call them on it. As one pampered son said to me, "If the professors are not smart enough to stop me, why should you care?"

That is how they got through university, and how they get through life. They cheat on their taxes, on their wives, their community, their civic obligations, their business dealings, their friends, and even themselves. And they spend a lot of time and money trying to stuff the hole in their being with possessions, both things and people, to try and create the illusion of substance and self-worth. And so often they have learned this from their parents either through abuse or example. There must surely be a special place in hell for anyone who twists such a pathetic half-life out of the gift of a child."

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