Law Firm Mossack Fonseca at Heart of Panama Papers to Shut Down

Law Firm Mossack Fonseca at Heart of Panama Papers to Shut Down

Mossack Fonseca, the law firm at the heart of the “Panama Papers” will be shutting down due to the economic and reputational damages on the firm.  Millions of documents and data was stolen and exposed from Mossack Fonseca, and leaked to the media in April 2016.  Names of powerful people including wealthy and politicians were leaked and exposed in the “Panama Papers” for using offshore corporations to evade or reduce taxes.

“ Law Firm Mossack Fonseca at Heart of Panama Papers to Shut Down “

In February 2017, Panama’s police arrested the law firm’s founders, Ramon Fonseca and Jurgen Mossack on money laundering charges.  They were released in April 2017.

Sources: Reuters, The Guardian, ICIJ

 

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About Mossack Fonseca

Established in 1977, we provide comprehensive international legal services. The firm provides services based on more than 35 years of experience. As part of its added value, the firm offers personal advice and a world-class online experience through a virtual Client Portal which is available 24 hours a day. Our web-based Client Information Portal application allows clients to request companies online, verify the status of companies, in addition to other transactions.

Visit: Mossack Fonseca

 

About Panama Papers

The Panama Papers are documents which were leaked from Mossack Fonseca, a Panama-based law firm which, according to its website, offers “comprehensive legal and trust services.” The website goes on to say that the firm offers “research, advice and services for the following jurisdictions: Belize, The Netherlands, Costa Rica, United Kingdom, Malta, Hong Kong, Cyprus, British Virgin Islands, Bahamas, Panama, British Anguilla, Seychelles, Samoa, Nevada, and Wyoming (USA).” Some of those jurisdictions have been labeled tax havens – including Panama.

Visit: Panama Papers by Forbes

 


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Credit Suisse Sued by Investor for Misrepresenting & Manipulating Products after Exchange-Traded Note Plunged 90%

Credit Suisse Sued by Investor for Misrepresenting & Manipulating Products after Exchange-Traded Note Plunged 90%

Credit Suisse had been sued by an investor for misrepresenting & manipulating the financial product that had plunged 90% in a market sell-off.  The note, VelocityShares Daily Inverse VIX Short-Term Exchange-Traded Note (ETN) was worth around $1.6 billion before the crash.  The swiss bank is alleged to liquidate its holdings to avoid losses.

” Credit Suisse sued for Misrepresenting & Manipulating Products “

The note tracks the CBOE Volatility Index, VIX, which is also known as the fear index.  In a statement to Reuters,  the product is only intended for sophisticated institutional clients and the bank had publicly available prospectus which had accurately and fully disclosed the risks of the investment in XIV (stock ticker).  XIV had booked more than 500% gain for the 2 years ending 1st February 2018.  The lawsuit, which seeks class-action status as well as unspecified damages is filed in U.S. District Court in Manhattan.

Sources: Reuters, Bloomberg

 

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About Credit Suisse

Founded in 1856, we today have a global reach with operations in over 50 countries and 48,200 employees from over 150 different nations. Our broad footprint helps us to generate a geographically balanced stream of revenues and net new assets and allows us to capture growth opportunities around the world. We serve our clients through three regionally focused divisions: Swiss Universal Bank, International Wealth Management and Asia Pacific. These regional businesses are supported by two other divisions specializing in investment banking capabilities: Global Markets and Investment Banking & Capital Markets. The Strategic Resolution Unit consolidates the remaining portfolios from the former non-strategic units plus additional businesses and positions that do not fit with our strategic direction. Our business divisions cooperate closely to provide holistic financial solutions, including innovative products and specially tailored advice.

Visit: Credit Suisse

 


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China Sovereign Wealth Fund CIC Sells Stake in Private Equity Group Blackstone

China Sovereign Wealth Fund CIC Sells Stake in Private Equity Group Blackstone

China’s Sovereign Wealth Fund, China Investment Corporation (CIC) had sold its shares in Blackstone Group, the world’s top 10 largest private equity group.  CIC had took a $3 billion (9% stake) in the US private equity group before it went publicly listed in 2007.

” China CIC Exits Blackstone Private Equity Group “

China Investment Corporation (CIC) was founded in 2007 with a capital of $200 billion. The sovereign wealth fund was established to diversify China’s foreign exchange holdings and seek maximum returns for its shareholder within acceptable risk tolerance.  It is the 2nd largest sovereign wealth fund and in 2017, is estimated to have more than $900 billion Assets under Management (AUM).  Norway’s Government Pension Fund is the largest sovereign wealth fund, with more than $1 trillion AUM.

Sources: SCMP, Bloomberg

 

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About Blackstone

Blackstone is one of the world’s leading investment firms. We seek to create positive economic impact and long-term value for our investors, the companies we invest in, and the communities in which we work. We do this by using extraordinary people and flexible capital to help companies solve problems. Our asset management businesses, with over $385 billion in assets under management, include investment vehicles focused on private equity, real estate, public debt and equity, non-investment grade credit, real assets and secondary funds, all on a global basis.

Visit: www.blackstone.com

 

About China Investment Corporation

Headquartered in Beijing, China Investment Corporation (CIC) was founded on 29 September 2007 as a wholly state-owned company incorporated in accord with China’s Company Law, with registered capital of $200 billion. The company was established as a vehicle to diversify China’s foreign exchange holdings and seek maximum returns for its shareholder within acceptable risk tolerance.

Visit: China Investment Corporation


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Healthcare Startup Theranos & Founder Elizabeth Holmes & Settle Charges with US Regulator for $700 Million Fraud

Healthcare Startup Theranos & Founder Elizabeth Holmes & Settle Charges with US Regulator for $700 Million Fraud

Healthcare startup Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes have settled charges with United States (US) regulator, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for misleading investors about its healthcare technology.  Elizabeth Holmes and Theranos had misled investors it had the technology to revolutionise blood testing and its products had been used by the US army in Afghanistan and to generate more than $100 million in 2014.

”  Startup Theranos & Founder Elizabeth Holmes & Settle Charges with US Regulator for $700 Million Fraud “

Elizabeth went to Stanford University in 2001 and dropout in 2004.  At only 19 years, she founded the startup in 2003 that promised to revolutionise blood testing and have since raised over $700 million from investors.  Theranos had announced that its Edison device could test for conditions such as cancer and cholesterol with only a few drops of blood from a finger-prick, rather than taking vials from a vein.

Theranos’ technology was never used by the US Department of Defence and generated only more than $100,000 in revenue in 2014.  Theranos’ proprietary analyser were built on modified and existing technology, and only a small number of tests were completed.

In the SEC settlement, she will lose control of Theranos and be fined $500,000.  She will also return approximately 18.9 million shares of stock and relinquish her super-voting equity rights. As part of the settlement, neither the Company nor Ms. Holmes admitted or denied any wrongdoing.

The charges were brought against Theranos, Elizabeth Holmes and its former president, Ramesh Balwani for providing false and misleading statements in investor presentations, product demonstrations and interviews.  In 2015, Elizabeth was estimated to be worth more than $4 billion.

Sources: BBC, The Guardian, Theranos

 

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About Theranos

Founded in 2003 by Elizabeth Holmes, Theranos, Inc. is a health technology company headquartered in Palo Alto, Calif. Its proprietary miniLab platform is designed to enable earlier disease detection and intervention by facilitating small-sample collection, testing and rapid communication of diagnostic information in distributed settings.

Visit Theranos

 


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UBS Appealing Against 18 Months IPO Lead Sponsor Suspension in Hong Kong

UBS Appealing Against 18 Months IPO Lead Sponsor Suspension in Hong Kong

UBS in Hong Kong is appealing against the 18 months suspension for IPO lead sponsors by Hong Kong’s securities regulator, Securities and Futures Commission (SFC).  This was disclosed in its annual report, and the Swiss bank is appealing against the decision.  The bank was also handed a fine of HK$119 million ($15.18 million) alongside the 18 months suspension.

“ UBS in Hong Kong Appeals against 18 months IPO sponsor suspension “

SFC had been investigating UBS role as a sponsor of IPOs listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.  UBS and Standard Chartered had sponsored China Forestry IPO in 2009, but in 2011, the company has been suspended for possible accounting irregularities.  China Forestyy is in liquidation and has been delisted from the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.  In 2017, SFC had decided to drop lawsuit against Standard Chartered and UBS over the 2009 IPO.    Standard Chartered sponsorship desk had since shut down.

If the appeal fails, UBS is still able participate as joint global coordinator, though the lesser role will also means a significant reduction in investment banking fees.

Sources: Reuters, SCMP

 

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About UBS

Headquartered in Zurich and Basel, the UBS Group is a global firm providing financial services to private, corporate and institutional clients. The UBS Group is present in all major financial centers and has offices in over 50 countries. The UBS Group employs approximately 60,000 people around the world. The UBS Group’s historical roots stretch back more than a century.

Visit: UBS

 


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Producer of Wolf of Wall Street to Pay $60 Million to US Government for Using Malaysia State Funds

Producer of Wolf of Wall Street to Pay $60 Million to US Government for Using Malaysia State Funds

Red Granite Picture, the firm that created “The Wolf of Wall Street” movie in 2013 starring Hollywood actor Leonardo DiCaprio, has agreed to pay $60 million to the United States government to settle a civil lawsuit for using funds that were misappropriated from Malaysia.  The $60 million settlement, is not an admission of wrongdoing or liability on the part of Red Granite, that includes funding 2 other films “Daddy’s Home” and “Dumb and Dumber To.”  Red Granite Picture is co-founded by the Malaysian prime minister Najib Razak’s stepson, Riza Aziz.

” $60 Million to be Paid in 3 Instalments within 1 Year “

The case was brought to the California Court in United States if the 3 films financed by Red Granite was using misappropriated funds from 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).  1MBD is a state fund founded in 2009 by Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, while Tycoon Low Taek Jho (Jho Low) is alleged to be the mastermind is channelling almost $4.5 billion into his own business interests, including financing Red Granite Picture.

The case is U.S. v. “Wolf of Wall Street,” 16-05362, U.S. District Court, Central District of California (Los Angeles).  Red Granite will pay in 3 instalments within 1 year.

  • $30 million within 30 days
  • $20 million within the next 180 days
  • $10 million within 360 days (after the first 180 days)

Sources: Reuters, Bloomberg

 

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About 1MDB

1MDB leads market-driven initiatives to assist the Government in propelling Malaysia towards becoming a developed nation that is highly competitive, sustainable and inclusive.

As a strategic enabler, 1MDB continues to explore areas that can catalyse new sources of growth and lay the groundwork for a brighter future.

Visit: 1MDB

 


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Tencent Pony Ma and Alibaba Jack Ma are the Top 20 Richest People in the World with $84.3 Billion

Tencent Pony Ma and Alibaba Jack Ma are the Top 20 Richest People in the World with $84.3 Billion

Founder of Tencent, Pony Ma and founder of Alibaba, Jack Ma are now the top 20 richest people in the world with a combined wealth of $84.3 billion.  They are the first Chinese to be in the top 20 list published by Forbes.

” Pony Ma and Jack Ma are the Top 20 Richest Man in theWorld with $84.3 billion net worth “

Pony Ma has a net worth of $45.3 billion while Jack Ma has a net worth of $39 billion.  The latest listing reported 2,208 billionaires (2,043 in 2017) and $9.1 trillion in total wealth ($7.7 trillion in 2017).  Forbes measure the value of various assets owned by including stocks, real estate, art and yachts.

 

2018 Forbes Top 20 Richest Man:

Rank Name Net Worth Key Business Citizenship
1 Jeff Bezos $112 B Amazon United States
2 Bill Gates $90 B Microsoft United States
3 Warren Buffett $84 B Berkshire Hathaway United States
4 Bernard Arnault $72 B LVMH France
5 Mark Zuckerberg $71 B Facebook United States
6 Amancio Ortega $70 B Zara Spain
7 Carlos Slim Helu $67.1 B Diversified Mexico
8 Charles Koch $60 B Koch Industries United States
9 David Koch $60 B Koch Industries United States
10 Larry Ellison $58.5 B Oracle United States
11 Michael Bloomberg $50 B Bloomberg LP United States
12 Larry Page $48.8 B Google United States
13 Sergey Brin $47.5 B Google United States
14 Jim Walton $46.4 B Walmart United States
15 S. Robson Walton $46.2 B Walmart United States
16 Alice Walton $46 B Walmart United States
17 Pony Ma Huateng $45.3 B Tecent China
18 Francoise Bettencourt Meyers $42.2 B L’Oreal France
19 Mukesh Ambani $40.1 B Reliance India
20 Jack Ma $39 B Alibaba China

Source: SCMP, Nikkei

 

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RBS will Pay $500 Million in Settlement for Mis-Selling Mortgaged Backed Securities 10 years Ago

RBS will Pay $500 Million in Settlement for Mis-Selling Mortgaged Backed Securities 10 years Ago

Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) has agreed to pay $500 million in settlement for deceptive practices and misrepresentations of residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS) leading up to the financial crisis in 2008.  The settlement includes $100 million in cash to New York State and $400 million worth of consumer relief for New York homeowners and communities, including funds to spur construction of more affordable housing and to purchase distressed properties to prevent predatory investors.

” RBS to Pay $500 Million in Settlements “

RBS admitted it continued to package and sell to investors RMBS backed by mortgage loan, despite being warned by due diligence vendors the mortgage loans did not comply with underwriting guidelines, and applicable laws and regulations.  RBS had also securitised a large numbers of loans for which no diligence was performed.  Reviews conducted after the defaults of the mortgage loans showed serious problems in the origination of the loans and the originator.

The settlement was led by Attorney General Schneiderman, a key figure in recovering billions of settlements.  He is the co-chaired of the collaboration that includes Department of Justice (United States)  and other federal entities to investigate those responsible for misconduct contributing to the 2008 financial crisis for the pooling and sale of residential mortgage-backed securities.

Sources: Reuters, AG NY

 

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About Royal Bank of Scotland

Today’s RBS and its brands are made up of hundreds of past banks. They were all different – large and small, city and country, traditional and innovative – and grew to serve the banking needs of unique communities all over the United Kingdom. Each one has left its mark on our identity today.  The Royal Bank of Scotland was founded in Edinburgh in 1727. It went on to become one of the biggest banks in Scotland.

Visit: Royal Bank of Scotland

 


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New York Stock Exchange & Affiliates to Pay $14 Million in Settlement for Disrupting Market Prices

New York Stock Exchange & Affiliates to Pay $14 Million in Settlement for Disrupting Market Prices

New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and 2 affiliated exchanges (NYSE Arca, and NYSE American) have agreed to pay $14 million in settlement for regulatory failures that have caused disruptive market events.

” NYSE and 2 Affiliates to Pay $14 million in settlement “

On 24th August 2015, the exchanges had implemented a total shutdown of two of the exchanges and applying price collars (circuit breakers) during unusual market volatility. They broke rules regarding business continuity and disaster recovery that includes implementing a market-wide regulatory halt and negligently misrepresenting stock prices as as “automated” despite extensive system issues.

The charges for the NYSE exchanges were brought by Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for violating Regulation SCI’s business continuity and disaster recovery requirement. Regulation Systems Compliance and Integrity (Regulation SCI) is a set of rules created by SEC to monitor the security & capabilities of the securities markets’ technology infrastructure.  The SEC’s investigations were conducted by the Market Abuse Unit and New York Regional Office.

Sources: SEC, Reuters, Forbes

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About NYSE Group

NYSE Group is a subsidiary of Intercontinental Exchange (NYSE:ICE), a leading operator of global exchanges and clearing houses, and a provider of data and listings services. NYSE Group includes exchanges, market data and connectivity services. The equity exchanges — the New York Stock Exchange, NYSE American and NYSE Arca — trade more U.S. equity volume than any other exchange group. NYSE is the premier global venue for capital raising, leading worldwide in IPOs, including technology IPOs. NYSE Arca Options and NYSE American Options are leading equity options exchanges.

Visit www.nyse.com/index.

 


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Former Deutsche Bank Trader Fined $250,000 for Libor Rigging

Former Deutsche Bank Trader Fined $250,000 for Libor Rigging

Former Deutsche Bank trader,  Guillaume Adolph have been fined £180,000 ($250,000) for Libor rigging by the UK Financial Conduct Authority for offences had occurred almost 10 years ago.  Libor is the London Interbank Offered Rate and is the leading reference for global interest rate.

” Former Deutsche Bank trader Fined £180,000 for Libor Rigging “

Between 2008 and 2010, Guillaume had made requests to Deutsche Swiss franc Libor submitters to adjust their quotes to benefit his own trading positions.  He was also Deutsche Bank’s primary yen Libor submitter, and had arranged with a trader at another bank to make yen Libor submissions, that in submission, to consider price submissions that may benefit his trading positions.

In 2015, Deutsche Bank had already been fined $2.5 billion by British and U.S. authorities for alleged rigging of Libor.  Other traders have since been fined and banned in the financial sector in the Libor rigging including former UBS and Citigroup trader Tom Hayes being sent to prison.

Sources: FCA, Reuters

 

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About Deutsche Bank

Deutsche Bank is a leading global investment bank with a strong and profitable private clients franchise. A leader in Germany and Europe, the Bank is continuously growing in North America, Asia and key emerging markets. With more than 78,000 employees in over 70 countries worldwide, Deutsche Bank offers unparalleled financial services throughout the world. The Bank competes to be the leading global provider of financial solutions for demanding clients creating exceptional value for its shareholders and people.

Visit: Deutsche Bank


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