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BofA in $16.5 billion deal with U.S. over mortgage bonds: source

OWoN: Guilty as hell, and no one goes to jail or loses their bonuses.

Guess someone has to pay for BO's golf games. While you lose your homes.

image: Reuters/Mike Blake

20 August 2014

Bank of America Corp is expected to pay more than $16.5 billion to end investigations into mortgage securities that the bank and its units sold in the run-up to the financial crisis, in a deal that could be announced as early as Thursday, a person familiar with the matter said.

The bank has been hammering out the final details of the record-breaking accord with the U.S. Department of Justice and is expected to pay around $9 billion in cash and the rest in assistance to struggling homeowners.

A $16.5 billion payout would be the largest in a series of soaring penalties against banks for a range of misconduct, including violating U.S. sanctions and inappropriately marketing mortgage securities.

An agreement in principle was reached earlier this month after a phone call between the bank's chief executive, Brian Moynihan, and Attorney General Eric Holder.

The negotiations have been driven by an investigation into securities sold by Merrill Lynch, which the bank agreed to acquire in 2008 at the height of the financial crisis, people familiar with the matter have said.

Representatives of the Justice Department and Bank of America declined comment.

(Reporting by Aruna Viswanatha, additional reporting by Peter Rudegeair; Editing by Karey Van Hall and Steve Orlofsky)



  1. These sanctions are no more than a slap on the wrist...."lawlessness."

  2. Mortgage Fraud: Too Big to Jail – Bank of America’s Sweetheart Settlement with US Department of Justice

    On Thursday, the US Department of Justice (DOJ) announced that it had reached an anticipated $16.7 billion settlement with Bank of America. The settlement related to charges that BoA and two banks it purchased, Countrywide Financial and Merrill Lynch, knowingly sold toxic mortgage assets to investors prior to the 2008 financial meltdown.

    The $16.7 billion price tag is a deception. A majority of the money is either tax deductible or designed to support BoA while costing it nothing. Forbesmagazine noted that the actual cost is “minimal compared with the relief of having a major piece of outstanding legal risk moved into the rearview mirror.” It wrote that the bank will only be hit with a $4.5 billion dollar setback in third-quarter earnings.

    In exchange, the bank’s top executives will be virtually immune from prosecution. The settlement follows several other back-door agreements between the Obama administration and Wall Street’s top banks, including JP Morgan Chase’s $13 billion settlement, which had been the largest before yesterday’s announcement.

    US Attorney General Eric Holder described the deal as a “historic step forward in our ongoing effort to protect the American people from financial fraud.” He claimed that the deal would “hold accountable those whose actions threatened the integrity of our financial markets and undermined the stability of our economy.”

    Wall Street investors rendered their own verdict on the deal by sending Bank of America shares up 4 percent.

    The Associate Attorney General, Tony West, speaking alongside Holder, said, “This morning we demonstrate once again that no institution is either too big or too powerful to escape appropriate enforcement action by the Department of Justice.” West suggested that the key concern of the DOJ is not justice but public relations. He stated, “But the significance of this settlement lies not just in its size; this agreement is notable because it achieves real accountability for the American people.”

    The deal in no way holds accountable the top bankers of BoA. For starters, the settlement does not reveal any significant facts about what happened and who was responsible for it. No individual bankers are taken to task, let alone fingered for prosecution. The deal, like its predecessors, was worked out in secrecy between the Obama administration and the bank. As in the previously record deal with JP Morgan Chase, BoA will continue to be given implicit immunity from criminal prosecution.

    According to Dennis Kelleher, CEO of Better Markets, the settlement “conceals the key facts from the American people.” Kelleher continues in his press statement, “Banks do not commit crimes; bankers do. Until those individuals, including executives are held personally and meaningfully accountable, everyone should expect more crime from Wall Street.”

    Kelleher asks, “How many tens of billions of dollars did Bank of America’s customers, clients, investors and others lose due to years of knowing, systemic fraud? How much did Bank of America make from its illegal actions? How many Bank of America employees, supervisors and executives were involved in or aware of the fraudulent conduct? How many still work at the bank? How much of the tens of billions in bonuses paid to those individuals was the result of the illegal conduct?”

    Kelleher concludes, “DOJ allowing banks to use shareholders’ money that is tax deductible while concealing illegal conduct and individual involvement is not punishing or deterring crime. In fact, it rewards past crimes and incentivizes future crimes. Trying to trick the American people into thinking they are tough on crime while Wall Street laughs all the way back to the bank is not justice.
    (Read entire article at link above)

  3. On another related banking issue:

    Shadow Banking: 2,061 of Citigroup’s “Subsidiaries” Go Missing

    Vatic Note: Is this so Citigroup won't have to pay back the TARP scam? This below is why Kaiser goes bonkers on his TV Financial News program. I knew there were a lot of irregularities and criminal actions in the markets by these Rothschild/Rockefeller players, but I had no idea until now, why Kaiser would literally foam at the mouth when discussing these guys and their criminality. I had no idea it was that bad. Kaiser is both informative and entertaining. I laugh as much as I cry. Here is a great example. (Watch this all the way through, and you would see why I say Putin is in with the bankers)

    Boy, did the taxpayer ever get ripped off. Add this to the missing gold from Fort Knox and the refusal of the Fed Reserve to allow an audit of our gold, and what we have here is a massive fraud and theft probably the biggest in world history. I bet that is the case. Read this below and see just how creative these guys are when it comes to criminal activity. Why can't they use that talent to do something good for society for a change. Oh, thats right, they are missing a soul/spirit, they can't feel, so they can't think about the context in which they exist. Too bad, what a waste.
    (Read entire article at above link)


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