This will get approximately no attention today, but a federal court in Australia ruled that Standard and Poor’s, the credit rating agency, lied to investors when they awarded their highest, triple-A rating to derivative securities that lost their value within two years of purchase. The court ruled for a series of local councils in Australia, which accused S&P of botching the credit ratings and duping them into purchasing the securities.
|By: David Dayen Monday November 5, 2012 3:19 pm|
|By: David Dayen Thursday October 25, 2012 9:30 am|
I’ve taken a closer look at the US Attorney from the Southern District of New York’s $1 billion lawsuit against Bank of America – particularly their subsidiary Countrywide – for “the hustle,” the program of selling mortgages with practically no underwriting and passing them on to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. And there’s something interesting right on the first page. The lawsuit isn’t called “The US v. Countrywide Financial Corp.,” but “The US, ex rel. Edward O’Donnell v. Countrywide Financial Corp.”
Who’s Edward O’Donnell?
|By: David Dayen Monday October 22, 2012 5:05 pm|
I would say that William Cohan has had enough. The author of several books about the financial sector cannot believe that nobody on Wall Street has been held to account for the crisis that caused the Great Recession. And though it pains him to end up on the same side as Elizabeth Warren, to whom he delivers a sneering aside, and though the op-ed as a whole gives far too much respect to the idea that “these things happen” in capitalism, overall Cohan summons a good deal of moral force here.
|By: David Dayen Monday October 15, 2012 6:45 am|
It strains credulity that only this small servicer thought to computerize the signatures, and that this practice is confined to Green Tree Servicing. Recall that, back in February, after the signing of the foreclosure fraud settlement, you could find job listings for Wells Fargo that suspiciously sounded like robo-signers. The settlement claimed to end servicing fraud, that the new standards would make servicing a clean business. Clearly the smaller operators aren’t complying, and it doesn’t make sense that the big industry players, who set the standards, would go off in a completely different direction.
|By: Center for Constitutional Rights Wednesday October 10, 2012 11:05 am|
With the DOJ’s failure to prosecute the Bush Six and other torturers, Spain has a legal obligation to ensure impunity does not cross borders
|By: David Dayen Wednesday October 10, 2012 8:15 am|
I mentioned in passing yesterday this federal civil lawsuit against Wells Fargo for its conduct on some FHA loans. “Mentioned in passing” is all that the suit deserved, but I see that the PR shop at DoJ tried to turn this into a big deal, with the media playing along. So maybe I should put together a short and sweet FAQ on this lawsuit, to place it in the proper context.
|By: David Dayen Monday October 8, 2012 6:30 pm|
Much like a winning sports team, everyone wants to be part of a winner and nobody wants to be part of a loser. If there’s a perception that things are getting done in a political office, and that the office is rising to prominence, in a general sense people want to associate themselves with that. Maybe these staff departures have their particular reasons, and maybe they’re just climbs up the political ladder. The mayor of New York City or the Obama campaign or the New York Governor may be perceived as a step up from the New York Attorney General. I don’t know how Blake Zeff’s departure “to write about the presidential race” fits with that explanation, or all the lawyers leaving. But if the office was nailing corrupt actors left and right and gaining a reputation for toughness and accountability, I just don’t think this would be happening.
|By: David Dayen Monday October 8, 2012 1:35 pm|
The financial fraud task force can file civil suits for the next 10 years, and they still won’t understand how this will not satisfy homeowners who had everything they’ve ever worked for taken away from them, and who see no complementary losses on the side of those who caused this tragedy in their lives.
|By: David Dayen Wednesday October 3, 2012 9:28 am|
Much thanks to FT Alphaville for highlighting my storyabout Eric Schneiderman’s lawsuit against JPMorgan Chase over Bear Stearns’ dodgy mortgage-backed securities deals. As I have stressed, nothing in this case indicates there’s been much new investigation at all, or participation from the federal task force. It borrows liberally from a lawsuit by mortgage bond insurer Ambac, which was filed by Karla Sanchez, a former litigator who now works in Schneiderman’s office as the Deputy AG for Economic Justice.
|By: David Dayen Tuesday September 25, 2012 9:35 am|
It turns out that the myth of high-stress positions of power is unfounded. Our lords of industry, our masters of the universe get along just fine. And if you had the benefits of a golden parachute to fall back on with none of the threats of accountability for your performance, you would too.