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Wall Street’s Felon Banks to Go Live with their Own Stock Exchange this Month

Courtesy of Pam Martens, Wall Street on Parade

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens

New York Stock ExchangeMembers Exchange (MEMX), a brand new stock exchange, has announced that it will begin live trading of select stocks for the first time on September 21 with a full phase-in on September 29.

Criminal histories are, apparently, no barrier to running a stock exchange in the United States to the deeply conflicted way of thinking of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which issued its approval to operate the exchange on May 5.

Investors in the new stock exchange are some of the most serially-charged Wall Street banks, including JPMorgan, Goldman Sachs, and UBS, along with the hedge fund, Citadel Securities. BlackRock, which is up to its neck in the Federal Reserve’s deeply conflicted bailout programs, is also an investor, as is the high-frequency trading firm, Virtu Financial, and others.

JPMorgan Chase has been criminally investigated by the U.S. Department of Justice at least four times in the past seven years. A criminal probe in 2013 looked at how the bank had used bank depositors’ savings to gamble in exotic derivatives in London, eventually losing $6.2 billion. That case was known as the London Whale and ended in the bank paying $900 million in fines. No criminal charges were brought against the bank.

In 2014, JPMorgan Chase was charged with two criminal felony counts for how it mishandled the business account of Ponzi mastermind, Bernie Madoff. JPMorgan’s compliance staff looked the other way at screaming red flags of money laundering in the Madoff account for decades. Bank employees told authorities in the U.K. that it thought Madoff might be running a Ponzi scheme. It filed no such concerns with U.S. regulators. The bank pleaded guilty to both felony counts.

In 2015, the Justice Department brought another criminal felony count against the bank, this time for engaging with other banks in rigging foreign exchange markets. The bank again pleaded guilty. In both the 2014 and 2015 cases, JPMorgan Chase was given a deferred prosecution agreement by the Justice Department.


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