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    Don't Believe the Headlines – Big Banks Are Still Screwing You

    When it comes to big banks' bad behavior and the fines they pay to settle "allegations" - which are actually civil charges and which would be criminal charges if applied to any other business or in any parallel universe - things aren't even close to what they seem.

    Sure the headlines scream victory, at least monetary victory, for some ripped-off consumers, some hard-charging regulators, and our vaunted (NOT) Justice Department.


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  • How I Know JPMorgan (NYSE: JPM) Was Complicit in the Biggest Ponzi Scheme Ever Yesterday JPMorgan was ordered to pay yet another fine to atone for its bad behavior, this time for its role as an enabler of Ponzi scheme master Bernie Madoff. Since 2009, JPMorgan has paid more than $30 billion in fines for various misdeeds. That kind of consistent misbehavior is no accident. Some might even call it criminal...
  • The Tragic Truth Behind the $13 Billion JPMorgan "Fine" JP Morgan

    Let's address two tragedies today.

    The first is how Jamie Dimon & Co. and all the guilty big banks get away with murder.

    The second is something I want to share with you because 50 years ago today, President John Fitzgerald Kennedy was assassinated. It isn't a conspiracy theory about who did it, but a likely theory about what happened and the conspiracy to cover that up.

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  • The JPMorgan Settlement: $7 Billion Is Tax Deductible JP Morgan JPMorgan has become the poster child for the excesses of Wall Street. So when the government managed to extract a $13 billion settlement from the Too Big to Fail bank over transgressions related to the kind of mortgage-backed securities that helped cause the 2008 financial crisis, it appeared that finally some justice had been done. But now we find out that JPMorgan still has an ace up its sleeve...
  • Congress Just Played a Trick on American Taxpayers capitol After the debacles of 2008, you'd think that Congress would be looking for more ways to restrict Wall Street's excesses. But for some reason, the House just passed a bill that does the exact opposite - it actually reduces restrictions that were put in place to try to prevent a repeat of the nightmares of 2008. You won't believe why they thought this would be a good idea...
  • What the JPM Settlement Means for Wall Street Court lady justice When you see a Wall Street rogue like JPMorgan get slapped with a $13 billion fine -- the largest ever for a Wall Street Bank -- it sure seems like justice has been done. But it's awfully hard to hurt a Too Big to Fail Bank with fines, no matter how enormous. Here's something that would really get their attention...
  • JPMorgan (NYSE: JPM) Talks $11 Billion Settlement; Q3 Earnings at Risk Human Hand

    JP MorganChase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) finds itself in front of regulators yet again for misdeeds.

    Chief Executive Officer (CEO) James Dimon was in Washington yesterday (Thursday) attempting to broker a settlement over the bank's sale of substandard mortgages.

    Dimon met with U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder about a possible $11 billion settlement in attempts to end criminal and civil charges over JPM's questionable mortgage practices. The U.S. Justice Department said earlier in the week it could file a lawsuit over one of the bank's pending mortgage cases.

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  • How JPMorgan and the London Whale Can Sink Your Portfolio Whale JPMorgan lost billions on a few big derivatives bets. As abstract as this sounds, events like these can threaten your portfolio if you aren’t careful…

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  • Bank of America and JPMorgan, Oh How Illegal Activity Pays Banker gloating

    What a surprise. The big banks are not playing by the rules -- the rule of law, that is.

    News last week revealed that Bank of America Corp. (NYSE:BAC) and JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM) are dirty, dirty, dirty.

    The Justice Department announced that it is pursuing a civil lawsuit against Bank of America on the grounds that the bank lied about the quality of the mortgages underlying its mortgage-backed securities (MBS) prior to the housing collapse and financial crisis. The Justice Department is still on a high from its successful civil lawsuit against Goldman Sachs Group Inc.'s (NYSE:GS) mid-level toxic securities shill, Fabrice Tourre.

    The charges allege out-and-out fraud in Bank of America's soup-to-nuts loan origination and securitization of mortgages. Loans, bad from the start, were knowingly bundled and securitized into trade-able MBS, unbeknownst to buyers.

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  • Abuses at McDonald’s and JPMorgan Chase Help Keep America Poor Hamburger Fast food joints pay workers with debit cards whose fees eat up their wages. Guess who cashes in on this scam. Wall Street, of course…

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  • Five Scandals That Made JPMorgan Wall Street's Worst Villain People shock

    Wall Street's Big Banks are hardly known for their good deeds, but JPMorgan Chase (NYSE: JPM) may be the worst of the lot.

    For a bank that used to be considered a model citizen among Wall Street institutions, the reversal of reputation has been stunning.

    According to The New York Times, at least eight federal agencies are currently investigating JPM. And JPMorgan has more regulatory sanctions against it than any other major U.S. bank.

    The damage to JPMorgan's reputation has gotten so bad that it has started to negatively affect the nation's largest bank by assets.

    Increased regulatory scrutiny brought on by the scandals has slowed or halted about 60 new projects in JPMorgan's consumer unit, for example. The turmoil also has touched off a series of high-profile departures from the bank.

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  • Why JPMorgan Wants to See More Americans on Food Stamps Food stamp program

    Every time an American signs up for food stamps in one of 23 states, JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) adds to its revenue stream.

    That because JPMorgan Chase contracts to operate as the processor of the Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) cards in those states. JPMorgan earns a fee for each recipient, ranging from 31 cents to $2.30, depending on the state, every month for the term of the contract.

    JPMorgan's seven-year Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, the official name for the federal food stamp program) contract with New York state, for example, brought in more than $126 million of revenue to the big bank.

    Florida has paid JPMorgan more than $90 million since 2007. Pennsylvania's seven-year contract exceeded $112 million.

    It brings a whole new meaning to "corporate welfare."

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  • JPMorgan (NYSE: JPM) Earnings Preview: Five Things to Watch The JPMorgan Chase (NYSE: JPM) earnings report due tomorrow (Friday) gives CEO Jamie Dimon a chance to put the huge trading losses from the "London Whale" behind him.

    The "London Whale" trades are the are hedged strategy that went bad and cost the bank nearly $6 billion. JPM took the majority of the hit in the second quarter.

    JPM stock tumbled in the weeks that followed after details were uncovered and trading losses swelled. Since then, shares have staged a notable recovery rising from $34.59 on July 11 to the recent price of $42.25.

    Now JPM earnings have a chance to shake off the scandal and impress investors.

    Expectations have grown for Friday's numbers, with the consensus estimate raised from $1.16 per share to projections of $1.21 per share. Estimates have increased in the last three months from $1.04.

    Analysts are predicting earnings of $4.74 per share for the fiscal year, with revenue for the year to come in at $97.76 billion.

    The fresh forecasts are 18.6% better from the same quarter a year ago when JPM posted earnings of $1.02 per share.

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  • JP Morgan (NYSE: JPM) Earnings Pinched by Trading Blunder Despite a $4.4 billion loss stemming from bad credit bets, JPMorgan Chase (NYSE: JPM) still posted a profit of $4.96 billion for the second quarter.

    Total losses from the botched trades have reached $5.8 billion, according to Dough Braunstein, JP Morgan's CFO. And it's not over - CEO Jamie Dimon said in the earnings conference call Friday (today) that the fiasco could result in $700 million to $1.7 billion in further losses.

    "We learned lessons that will make a stronger company," a contrite Dimon said.

    And what expensive lessons they were. The company revealed that the loss on credit derivatives executed by traders in its London's chief investment office (CIO) swelled to $4.4 billion in the second quarter, up from the $2 billion loss it first reported in May when the trading gaffe was exposed.

    Dimon nevertheless assured the analysts that JP Morgan has the crisis under control.

    "We think we've boxed this," Dimon said.

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  • JPMorgan (NYSE: JPM) Earnings: What to Watch It's fitting the JPMorgan (NYSE: JPM) earnings report will be delivered on Friday the 13th, since this has been a scary quarter for the bank and its stock.

    Ever since JPMorgan, the largest U.S. bank by assets, revealed a trade gone bad in London that caused billions of dollars in losses, shares have waned and industry forecasters have grown more bearish on shares.

    The consensus estimate heading into Friday's release has dropped over the last three months to 79 cents a share from 91 cents.

    Those mean estimates would be a 36.2% drop in earnings from the same period a year ago, when JPMorgan turned in an impressive $1.27 a share amid a struggling U.S. economy. Revenue is predicted to stumble 20% year-over-year to $21.93 billion for the second quarter, coming in at $96.58 billion for the year.

    Investors and regulators will be most interested Friday in the bank's update on the full extent of the trading losses incurred in what has now been dubbed the "London whale trade." The losses are predicted to be sustainably larger than previously reported, now somewhere in the range of $4 billion to $6 billion.

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