Harry Markopolos for SEC Chairman

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Seriously, why not?

The guy is 2-for-2 (Madoff and Stanford) and probably can name more. He certainly has the tools and qualifications to go after fraud in a real, meaningful way. He also appears to be selfless, honest, and incorruptible.

This guy is a fucking Elliot Ness.

Obama? Why not?

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Harry Markopolos

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

This guy (the Madoff whistleblower) has joined my pantheon of heroes along with Captain Sullenberger.

He is honest, competent, and selfless. He is tearing the SEC apart.

Watch on CNBC.


The Wall Street Fix

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Michael Lewis (of Liar’s Poker fame) and David Einhorn (of shorting Lehman fame) have published an op-ed in today’s NY Times. It diagnoses and provides solutions to Wall Street’s problem(s).

The bottom line (emphasis added)?

Our financial catastrophe, like Bernard Madoff’s pyramid scheme, required all sorts of important, plugged-in people to sacrifice our collective long-term interests for short-term gain. The pressure to do this in today’s financial markets is immense. Obviously the greater the market pressure to excel in the short term, the greater the need for pressure from outside the market to consider the longer term. But that’s the problem: there is no longer any serious pressure from outside the market. The tyranny of the short term has extended itself with frightening ease into the entities that were meant to, one way or another, discipline Wall Street, and force it to consider its enlightened self-interest.

The piece goes on the expose the well known cozy relationships between Wall Street, the credit rating agencies, and the SEC, and to criticize Treasury, the Fed, and Congress for poor ad hoc solutions driven by short-term market considerations and industry lobbying.

It ends with a series of “perfectly obvious” changes to be made to the financial system. These are a manifesto for action. Digest them and begin regurgitating to everyone. A movement must be built.

I hope Barack Obama is reading this piece. I’m forwarding the Chuck Schumer (not likely to be helpful) and Hillary’s replacement (it better not be Caroline Kennedy).

On Wall Street, the fix is in.

It’s time to fix the fix.


Goldman Subpoenaed; Short-Sellers Targeted

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Acting quickly to investigate the spreading of false rumors in financial markets, the SEC has subpoenaed Goldman Sachs, Deutsche Bank, Merrill Lynch, and more than 50 hedge funds to trace the source of rumors that have destroyed the value of Bear Stearns and Lehman Bros. stock.

This move comes as SEC Chairman Christopher Cox has ordered a temporary halt to “naked” short-selling in a handful of financial stocks (the order takes effect on July 21, see list here). “Naked” short-selling allows investors to sell a stock without actually owning or borrowing it. This enables the investor to drive down the price with nothing more than a bunch of sell orders. The temptation for manipulation is great, and naked shorting with the intention of driving down prices is illegal (you see, when you short, you just have to hope).

At any rate, this is all good stuff and should put some of the shorters back on their heels and give these financial stocks a little room to breathe.