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« Is Stephen Friedman Guilty Of Insider Trading? | Main | How The NY Fed, Under Stephen Friedman & Tim Geithner Pressured AIG Officials To Withhold Details Of Payments To Goldman Sachs, Other Counterparties »
Tuesday
Jan102012

GAO Report: Federal Reserve Is Riddled With Corruption And Conflicts Of Interest, Stephen Friedman Is Targeted

Source - Sen. Bernie Sanders

WASHINGTON, Oct. 19 - A new audit of the Federal Reserve released today detailed widespread conflicts of interest involving directors of its regional banks.

"The most powerful entity in the United States is riddled with conflicts of interest," Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) said after reviewing the Government Accountability Office report. The study required by a Sanders Amendment to last year's Wall Street reform law examined Fed practices never before subjected to such independent, expert scrutiny.

The GAO detailed instance after instance of top executives of corporations and financial institutions using their influence as Federal Reserve directors to financially benefit their firms, and, in at least one instance, themselves.  "Clearly it is unacceptable for so few people to wield so much unchecked power," Sanders said. "Not only do they run the banks, they run the institutions that regulate the banks."

Sanders said he will work with leading economists to develop legislation to restructure the Fed and bar the banking industry from picking Fed directors. "This is exactly the kind of outrageous behavior by the big banks and Wall Street that is infuriating so many Americans," Sanders said.

The corporate affiliations of Fed directors from such banking and industry giants as General Electric, JP Morgan Chase, and Lehman Brothers pose "reputational risks" to the Federal Reserve System, the report said. Giving the banking industry the power to both elect and serve as Fed directors creates "an appearance of a conflict of interest," the report added.

The 108-page report found that at least 18 specific current and former Fed board members were affiliated with banks and companies that received emergency loans from the Federal Reserve during the financial crisis.

In the dry and understated language of auditors, the report noted that there are no restrictions in Fed rules on directors communicating concerns about their respective banks to the staff of the Federal Reserve. It also said many directors own stock or work directly for banks that are supervised and regulated by the Federal Reserve.  The rules, which the Fed has kept secret, let directors tied to banks participate in decisions involving how much interest to charge financial institutions and how much credit to provide healthy banks and institutions in "hazardous" condition. Even when situations arise that run afoul of Fed's conflict rules and waivers are granted, the GAO said the waivers are kept hidden from the public.

The report by the non-partisan research arm of Congress did not name but unambiguously described several individual cases involving Fed directors that created the appearance of a conflict of interest, including:

  • Stephen Friedman - In 2008, the New York Fed approved an application from Goldman Sachs to become a bank holding company giving it access to cheap Fed loans. During the same period, Friedman, chairman of the New York Fed, sat on the Goldman Sachs board of directors and owned Goldman stock, something the Fed's rules prohibited. He received a waiver in late 2008 that was not made public. After Friedman received the waiver, he continued to purchase stock in Goldman from November 2008 through January of 2009 unbeknownst to the Fed, according to the GAO.
  • Jeffrey Immelt - The Federal Reserve Bank of New York consulted with General Electric on the creation of the Commercial Paper Funding Facility. The Fed later provided $16 billion in financing for GE under the emergency lending program while Immelt, GE's CEO, served as a director on the board of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  • Jamie Dimon - The CEO of JP Morgan Chase served on the board of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York at the same time that his bank received emergency loans from the Fed totalling $390 billion, and was used by the Fed as a clearing bank for the Fed's emergency lending programs. In 2008, the Fed provided JP Morgan Chase with $29 billion in financing to acquire Bear Stearns. At the time, Dimon persuaded the Fed to provide JP Morgan Chase with an 18-month exemption from risk-based leverage and capital requirements. He also convinced the Fed to take risky mortgage-related assets off of Bear Stearns balance sheet before JP Morgan Chase acquired this troubled investment bank.
  • In another disturbing finding, the GAO said that on Sept. 19, 2008, William Dudley, who is now the New York Fed president, was granted a waiver to let him keep investments in AIG and General Electric at the same time AIG and GE were given bailout funds. One reason the Fed did not make Dudley sell his holdings, according to the audit, was that it might have created the appearance of a conflict of interest.
  • To Sanders, the conclusion is simple. "No one who works for a firm receiving direct financial assistance from the Fed should be allowed to sit on the Fed's board of directors or be employed by the Fed," he said.

To read a more detailed analysis of the GAO report prepared for Sen. Sanders, click here.

To read the full GAO report, click here.

---

Listen to the final 90 seconds.

I discuss the allegations with Larry Doyle.

 

Background:

 

 

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Reader Comments (18)

Oct 24, 2011 at 7:51 PM | Registered CommenterDailyBail
Bloomberg Investigates Former NY Fed Chairman Stephen Friedman Over Controversial Purchases Of Goldman Shares

http://dailybail.com/home/bloomberg-investigates-former-ny-fed-chairman-stephen-friedm.html
Oct 24, 2011 at 7:51 PM | Registered CommenterDailyBail
Eric Holder anyone???? Tip of the corrupt iceberg!!!!
Oct 24, 2011 at 8:08 PM | Unregistered CommenterJosie
Here was Sanders' reaction after the initial report came out in July of this year:

For example, the CEO of JP Morgan Chase served on the New York Fed's board of directors at the same time that his bank received more than $390 billion in financial assistance from the Fed. Moreover, JP Morgan Chase served as one of the clearing banks for the Fed's emergency lending programs.

In another disturbing finding, the GAO said that on Sept. 19, 2008, William Dudley, who is now the New York Fed president, was granted a waiver to let him keep investments in AIG and General Electric at the same time AIG and GE were given bailout funds. One reason the Fed did not make Dudley sell his holdings, according to the audit, was that it might have created the appearance of a conflict of interest.

To Sanders, the conclusion is simple. "No one who works for a firm receiving direct financial assistance from the Fed should be allowed to sit on the Fed's board of directors or be employed by the Fed," he said.

http://sanders.senate.gov/newsroom/news/?id=9e2a4ea8-6e73-4be2-a753-62060dcbb3c3
Oct 24, 2011 at 8:18 PM | Registered CommenterDailyBail
I don't know if the shocking part of this is that it's not a surprise or if it's that these zero moral value dirtbag of a human types get to keep operating as if they aren't doing this or like no one knows yet.....and we all DO KNOW!!!

The Government (OUR GOVERNMENT) does nothing to stop them, they talk, they have dialogs, they negotiate, they plan and scheme how to spin this to make it look like the government is doing something and they're not. We all know they're all in bed together and against us 99%ers.

We're the little guys who are "TOO SMALL TO HEAR" and they are all "TOO BIG TO FAIL", well guess what, at least we know about you and how you really see us as nothings to you all and it's going to stop.

If anyone of 995ers did something like this, we'd be put out of business right away and our assets would be seized and then it would take months for us to get into court to defend ourselves. But these guys......they get more money from the government, what kind of a message does that send to the people??? What do I tell my kids??? How do keep and honest and faithful stance on America when all I can see is it bending over 99% of the people and you know how that ends!!

These kinds of things can't be allowed to continue, especially when it's discovered and reported on, there has to be absolute proof of this, so why are these guys that destroyed the lives of millions of americans by stealing our futures allowed to continue?? How is this possible in America?? What's happened to this country??

Everyday I read more and more news about how big business and banks have destroyed our economy and soon the world economy, I see where the government hands out billions (yes billions) to these same criminals that got us here and nothing changes it just gets worse, when is there going to be real justice in America???

Why do the people not get any real help, even when the government bailsout these large institutions they say the people own it, but we still get screwed because the people who should have been fired and thrown in jail get to keep their jobs and then get a BONUS of all thing!???!!! WTF?!?!?!?!

And if they manage to pay back the government, we the people DON'T EVER SEE a dime! Why is that, I don't see a reduction in taxes, or my home loan, or my kids college tuition, or even the deficit. Seriously, I couldn't do worse and know nothing about politics.

It's a sad day for America! I thought venting would make me feel better, I'm just more mad!! Grrrrr!!
Oct 24, 2011 at 8:21 PM | Unregistered CommenterWANMAN
"Everyday I read more and more news about how big business and banks have destroyed our economy and soon the world economy, I see where the government hands out billions (yes billions) to these same criminals that got us here and nothing changes it just gets worse, when is there going to be real justice in America???"

Sooner than you think. That's why Wall Street is pissing its pants over the historically unprecedented #Occupy movement. That's why seemingly everyone wants its demands.

Not gonna happen. It's through the deliberative process, through debate and voting, that the movement will eventually center on what's wrong. It's only a matter of time.

And that is what is driving the pejorative slant against the movement, nothing else.
Oct 24, 2011 at 8:43 PM | Unregistered CommenterCheyenne
Since the Fed was conceived in subterfuge and born in conflict of interest, it can never be better than what it is, a collusion of government and criminal activity. Government harbor predators within it's agencies.

http://georgesblogforum.wordpress.com/2011/09/05/unnatural-law-legality-vs-humanity-update-09052011/
Oct 24, 2011 at 9:13 PM | Unregistered CommenterGeorge Forfa
It kink of make one wonder why they do not want to be audited. I am sure this guy is nothing compared to the real stealing that is going on. The federal reserve has pushed over 10 trillion dollars out the discount window to other bankers. There is billions in interested being made with the trillions of dollars. There is a reason for those big gated communities which will not even allow you to enter. I am sure we will never know the true story.
Oct 24, 2011 at 10:38 PM | Unregistered Commentertom dee
We did not get any of the profits

We do not have to share the losses
Oct 24, 2011 at 11:42 PM | Unregistered CommenterMary
Put these guys on trial and END THE FED!
Oct 25, 2011 at 7:07 AM | Unregistered CommenterRob
Anyone who thinks that by voting you can end the sickening fetid corruption of all of your institutions has their head stuck somewhere where the sun don't shine. Have you forgotten your glorious leaders have already corrupted the voting process with their voting machines that count your vote the way they want it counted? Of course you have - you're couch potato Americans with the long term memory of gnats and an indoctrinated delusion that you live in a democracy.
Oct 25, 2011 at 11:03 AM | Unregistered Commenterarthurdecco
Anyone notice the common tribal thread here? Or is it just me?
Oct 25, 2011 at 11:30 AM | Unregistered Commenterrobertsgt40
("Have you forgotten your glorious leaders have already corrupted the voting process with their voting machines that count your vote the way they want it counted?")

Don't worry about the voting machines, they're just a backup. The fact is, nobody makes it to the primaries unless they are bought and paid for by the Elite Special Interests. The corporate MSM Propaganda Mills make sure establishment renegades like Ron Paul and others don't get enough airtime for anyone to realize They may be the best choice for the future of the Country and the American People.

We need to scrap the whole mess, recall the den of thieves called the Presidential administration and U.S. Congress, and put a $5000.00 bounty on criminal Wall Street Executives and Lobbyists. The Middle Class might get a little of the money the bastards stole back that way, and some revenge for several decades of being being raped by a bunch of parasites
Oct 25, 2011 at 2:19 PM | Unregistered CommenterSagebrush
I say what about the trillions Bank of America just rolled over on the American taxpayers? The powers that be are well aware of the risk to global economies the EU poses right now. So the "solution" is that we back them - so our economy tanks along with them? Grrrr. From what I can find, the recent action of the BoA is illegal, as well as insane!!!
Oct 25, 2011 at 5:42 PM | Unregistered CommenterMike Templewind
You must realize that in today's world the foxes are in control of the entire hen house. The government, the corporations, the banks are all in this together. There will never be anyone (of interest) ever arrested or brought before a court. Any reported or investigated action will always end with no action taken. A den of thieves rarely go against each other.

History has proven time and time again, that not one dictator or power source (bankers) have ever in all of man's history ever given up their grip of power without a bloody and violent revolution from the people. Never!

The wars that have always been fought away form these shores will soon be here on our soil.
Oct 26, 2011 at 3:22 AM | Unregistered CommenterGeorge
Anyone notice the common tribal thread here? Or is it just me?
Oct 25, 2011 at 11:30 AM | robertsgt40

6 Mo. ago I asked if its just Dar, or is the American People starting to lash out. Not just on the "DB", but evan up-town, down-town too.........Its now whare just about everyone is up tight about something....

My fear is Ann losing her job. She was fired from Middle Mang. back in June, and took the job she was trying to hire someone for. Now a new employee, if the billing office at the Hospital has to let one go, Ann will be out the door.

I worry that we will get the letter in the mail telling us our cabin, that has only 5 yrs. to go till its payed off, is in forclosuer. We could be one of the ones that did nothing wrong, but on the street.

So, like many, I wake up pissed off becouse of whare this country is headding. Yes, "Road Rage" is everywhAre today. Its "Worse'er,er" .................
( My Word ) on the DB, becouse most of us know what comes next...? The goverment got what it wanted yesterday, Violance, in 2 citys. I Pray it calms down or the first Dommino has been put in moation.........." ? " !
Oct 26, 2011 at 12:40 PM | Unregistered CommenterTexas Dar
What the English want, they get. The "president" like most "presidents" before him is a freemason. Freemasons are satanist black magic child killers TOTALLY LOYAL TO THE BRITISH COMMONWEALTH (EMPIRE). What you see in the news about nations and such is ALL LIES. You are slaves, owned by the most corrupt system in history. They'll dump whatever they want in the water,, in the air, in your food, in your "medicines", they take your children at night, they plot mass death of your families using manufactured false flag terror, nuclear weapons, bio-weapons and more, inflate your worthless currency, strip your rights and they envision 1000 years of a boot stamping on your face over and over.

http://theforbiddenknowledge.com/hardtruth/uspresidentasmasons.htm
Oct 26, 2011 at 3:46 PM | Unregistered Commentervuvyvyu

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