Article: Former Glencore Oil Trader Charged With Manipulation of Fuel Prices

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Former Glencore Oil Trader Charged With Manipulation of Fuel Prices

Dave Michaels, 23 March 2021

WASHINGTON—A former oil trader at mining company Glencore PLC was charged with manipulating fuel oil prices, in a case that echoes claims investigated in Europe seven years ago.

The ex-trader, Emilio Heredia, was charged under a document that prosecutors typically use when a defendant is to plead guilty. He is to be arraigned Tuesday in San Francisco federal court on one count of conspiracy related to trading through a process managed by oil-price benchmark publisher S&P Global Platts. Mr. Heredia directed other traders to submit orders that would push up or down prices, to engineer a move that would improve the profitability of other transactions in physical fuel oil, according to the charging document filed in court last week. Continue reading “Article: Former Glencore Oil Trader Charged With Manipulation of Fuel Prices”

Article: Former Glencore trader charged in global oil price manipulation scam

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Former Glencore trader charged in global oil price manipulation scam

THOMAS BIESHEUVEL AND JAVIER BLAS, 23 March 2021

(Bloomberg) –A former Glencore Plc trader was charged by U.S. authorities with conspiracy to manipulate a key oil price benchmark, the latest sign that prosecutors around the world are stepping up their scrutiny of the notoriously opaque commodity trading industry.

U.S. prosecutors alleged that Emilio Heredia, a former Glencore employee, directed buy and sell orders that would push fuel oil prices up and down. That allowed the companies he worked for to profit from the price swings, between 2012 and 2016, according to a filing at a U.S. District Court in San Francisco on March 15.

The investigation is the latest legal setback for Glencore, already embroiled in a wide-ranging probe by the U.S. Department of Justice on allegations of bribery and money laundering. The UK, Swiss and Brazilian authorities are also investigating the commodity trader. Continue reading “Article: Former Glencore trader charged in global oil price manipulation scam”

Article: China tells Alibaba to sell off media assets in tech crackdown

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China tells Alibaba to sell off media assets in tech crackdown

Mark Sweney and Helen Davidson, 16 March 2021

Beijing has ordered e-commerce company Alibaba to sell off media assets including Hong Kong’s South China Morning Post (SCMP) as the Chinese government looks to crack down on the growing public influence held by the country’s sprawling tech conglomerates.

Alibaba has become the lightning rod in the crackdown on big tech after founder Jack Ma, one of China’s most popular, outspoken and wealthiest entrepreneurs, delivered a blunt speech last year criticising national regulators that reportedly infuriated the president, Xi Jinping.

Following the comments, Chinese regulators blocked the $34bn stock market flotation of Alibaba online payments subsidiary Ant Group, which would have been the biggest share offering in history, and Ma disappeared from the public eye for three months. Last week, it emerged that regulators are reportedly preparing to hit Alibaba with a record fine in excess of $975m over anti-competitive practices.

China’s protectionist business regime, which shuts out foreign companies including Google and Netflix, has enabled a group of homegrown conglomerates to flourish as the country looks to build the next wave of global tech champions to challenge Silicon Valley.

Beijing has struggled to maintain control over their activities and wider influence with Alibaba’s media empire expanding to buy SCMP, Hong Kong’s premier English-language newspaper, in 2016 and holding stakes in social network Weibo, video streaming service Youku and Yicai Media Group, one of the country’s most influential news outlets.

“What is interesting here is that the Chinese Communist party has done a good job of cultivating huge tech giants, national champions,” said Jamie MacEwan, a senior media analyst at Enders Analysis. “But there has always been a split under the surface between those who want to encourage the great tech leap forward and a growing unease among those worried about these huge companies and the big public figures at the head of them, like Ma, outgrowing the patronage of the [Chinese communist] party.”

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Article: GameStop Update | Armstrong Economics

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GameStop Update | Armstrong Economics

Martin Armstrong, 15 March 2021

Gamestop has rallied back during the week of March 8th after all the hoopla. Cyclically, it was 13 years down and it was due for a bounce. Even our pattern recognition models picked up the rally starting in August 2020. Quite frankly, this has all the hallmarks of manipulation, but not what you may think. The classic manipulation is to pump up a market touting some player but the pros have already been in the market. This is how the Buffet manipulation of silver was done in 1998 and even the entire Hunt Brothers silver rally back in 1980. Continue reading “Article: GameStop Update | Armstrong Economics”

Article: Government agencies probe GameStop pump over potential illegal manipulation

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Government agencies probe GameStop pump over potential illegal manipulation

DUNCAN RILEY, 11 February 2021

U.S. government agencies have launched federal investigations into whether the social-media-driven activity around GameStop Corp.’s share price rise in January constituted illegal market manipulation.

According to a report today in The Wall Street Journal, both the U.S. Department of Justice and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission are formally investigating the pump of GME stock, and the Securities and Exchange Commission is also reviewing the matter.

The investigation by the justice department is being led by the department’s fraud section and the San Francisco U.S. attorney’s office who have sought information about the security activity from brokers and social media companies that were at the center of the trading frenzy. Subpoenas are said to have been issued for information to brokers including Robinhood Markets Inc. that was widely used by those buying up GameStop and other shares such as AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. Continue reading “Article: Government agencies probe GameStop pump over potential illegal manipulation”

Article: Russian cybercriminal sentenced to 12 years for ‘massive hacking campaign’ impacting 100 million US citizens

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Russian cybercriminal sentenced to 12 years for ‘massive hacking campaign’ impacting 100 million US citizens

Jessica Haworth, 08 January 2021

A Russian citizen has been sentenced to 12 years in prison for his involvement in a “massive” computer hacking campaign that saw the theft of 100 million individuals’ data.

Andrei Tyurin, 37, of Moscow, was handed a 144-month detention order by a New York court yesterday for his part in the cybercrime operation against US financial institutions, brokerage firms, news publishers, and other targets. Continue reading “Article: Russian cybercriminal sentenced to 12 years for ‘massive hacking campaign’ impacting 100 million US citizens”

Article: Russian Hacker Jailed in U.S. for $19M Fraud

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Russian Hacker Jailed in U.S. for $19M Fraud

The Moscow Times, 08 January 2021

A Russian hacker was sentenced to 12 years in a U.S. prison Thursday for consumer data theft worth $19 million from 100 million customers of over a dozen financial service companies, the Justice Department said.

Andrei Tyurin, 37, pleaded guilty in 2019 after his extradition from the country of Georgia the previous year, admitting to computer intrusion, wire fraud, bank fraud and illegal online gambling offenses. The U.S. accused him of making criminal profits from financial sector hacks between 2007 and mid-2015. Continue reading “Article: Russian Hacker Jailed in U.S. for $19M Fraud”

Article: GE CEO Slams Whistleblower Report As ‘Market Manipulation’

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GE CEO Slams Whistleblower Report As ‘Market Manipulation’

Rachel Sandler,  15 August 2019

In response to a whistleblower report claiming to have uncovered massive accounting irregularities at General Electric, CEO Larry Culp said the author of the report, who previously raised concerns about Bernie Madoff’s ponzi scheme years before it was brought down, is engaging in “market manipulation” and stands to gain by tanking GE shares.

Harry Markopolos claims in the 175-page report that GE is falsifying financial statements to cover up massive losses related to its long-term-care insurance unit and the company’s oil and gas business, adding that GE is using many of the same accounting practices Enron did. Continue reading “Article: GE CEO Slams Whistleblower Report As ‘Market Manipulation’”

Article: WSJ editorial board calls for Mueller’s resignation and accuses Clinton campaign and DNC of collusion

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WSJ editorial board calls for Mueller’s resignation and accuses Clinton campaign and DNC of collusion

Sonam Sheth , 29 October 2017

The Wall Street Journal’s editorial board called this week for a full Russia investigation — not into President Donald Trump’s campaign, but into the Democratic Party, the FBI, and the special counsel Robert Mueller. Continue reading “Article: WSJ editorial board calls for Mueller’s resignation and accuses Clinton campaign and DNC of collusion”

Article: Former Royal Bank of Scotland trader linked to currency market fixing

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Former Royal Bank of Scotland trader linked to currency market fixing

Jill Treanor, 12 OCtober 2013

Electronic messages that Royal Bank of Scotland handed to the City regulator in connection with potential manipulation of the £3tn-a day currency market are reported to have been sent by the bailed-out bank’s former trader Richard Usher.

The messages are said to be among those handed to the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) by the bank, which is 81% owned by the taxpayer.

Usher, who could not be reached for comment, is now the head of spot trading at JP Morgan in London. He has been listed as a member of a Bank of England committee that polices a voluntary code of group practice for the markets.

The regulatory review by the FCA, which has not yet escalated its inquiries into a formal investigation, implies no wrongdoing by Usher, according to the Bloomberg news agency, which revealed his identity.

The analysis of the electronic messages is the latest move by regulators to test the integrity of benchmarks used to price financial products in the light of the Libor-rigging scandal as well as manipulation of gas prices. The investigation was triggered by reports in the Guardian last year.

The FCA said in June it was looking at foreign exchange markets after Bloomberg reported that traders at some banks were sharing information about their positions through instant messages. These were said to be a way to manipulate an index compiled by WM/Reuters and based on prices of currencies for a 60-second period.

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