What’s really going on

going-down-the-drainEconomic Recovery?  Don’t believe a word of it.   Here is what is really going on:

From Michael Snyder:

  • In America today, only 47% of adults have a full-time job.
  • According to one recent survey, 76% of all Americans are living paycheck to paycheck.
  • At this point, one out of every four American workers has a job that pays $10 an hour or less.
  • The U.S. economy continues to trade good paying jobs for low paying jobs. 60% of the jobs lost during the last recession were mid-wage jobs, but 58% of the jobs created since then have been low wage jobs.
  • Back in 1980, less than 30% of all jobs in the United States were low income jobs. Today, more than 40% of all jobs in the United States are low income jobs.
  • At this point, an astounding 53% of all American workers make less than $30,000 a year.
  • According to a study that was released by the Center for Economic and Policy Research, only 24.6% of all jobs in the United States qualify as “good jobs” at this point. [..]
  • … the three criteria used to define what a “good job” is are:

1 The job must pay at least $18.50 an hour. According to the authors, that is the equivalent of the median hourly pay for American workers back in 1979 after you adjust for inflation.
2 The job must provide access to employer-sponsored health insurance [..]
3 The job must provide access to an employer-sponsored retirement plan. [..]

 Meanwhile, over at  JP Morgan things are going great.  JPMorgan’s total assets amount to $2.509 trillion, its derivatives exposure is $70-$80 trillion, so it’s too big to fail and systemically important.  In other words, they can’t just be shut down because the system depends on them.  Pulling JPMorgan would crash the whole system.

Although they have paid billions to settle charges, they face a bewildering and shameful array of ongoing investigations.  Here is what is really going on:


(1) Manipulating the market in the London Whale trading debacle


(2) Rigging energy prices in California and the Midwest


(3) Improperly foreclosing on homeowners


(4) Bilking credit card holders by fixing prices and interest rates The bank said it will pay about $1.2 billion to settle charges that it conspired with MasterCard and Visa to rig credit-card swipe fees.


(5) Rigging municipal bond operations in 31 states


(6) Gouging some 6,000 active-duty service members on their mortgages


(7) Mis-selling interest-rate swaps to the city of Milan, Italy in 2005


(8) Enron – The bank and some of its executives are still being sued over the bank’s relationship with the fraud-based energy giant, more than a decade after its failure


(9) Aiding and abetting Bernie Madoff’s Ponzi ; the Madoff bankruptcy trustee and others have also sued the bank to get back some Madoff clients’ money


(10) Its relationship with failed brokerage firm MF Global ; it is also being sued for allegedly aiding and abetting MF Global misuse of customer money.


(11) Involvement in $215 million worth of missing clients’ money in the collapse of Iowa brokerage firm Peregrine Financial Group


(12) Allegations that it knowingly sold faulty US mortgage securities ; after [direct discussions between the bank’s chief executive, Jamie Dimon, and Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr.], JPMorgan reached a tentative agreement with the Justice Department to pay a record $13 billion


(13) Manipulating EURIBOR (and yen Libor) rates , in a case in which the EU’s Competition Commission is set to impose up to €5 billion in fines to a group of at least 6 banks


(14) Manipulating WM/Reuters rates ; JPMorgan is one of 7 banks that have confirmed investigators in the U.S. and Europe are investigating their foreign exchange trading and manipulating of WM/Reuters rates (an industry-wide standard used in determining closing prices in the $5.3 trillion-a-day foreign exchange market, published hourly for 160 currencies and half-hourly for the 21 most-traded. )


(15) Manipulating Libor rates In the bank’s own words in 2012: “JPMorgan Chase has received subpoenas and requests for documents and, in some cases, interviews, from the DOJ, CFTC, SEC, European Commission, UK Financial Services Authority, Canadian Competition Bureau, Swiss Competition Commission and other regulatory authorities and banking associations around the world.”


(16) In a separate case: Colluding to artificially lower the Libor rate ; between 2007 and 2010, in legal action brought by US mortgage provider Fannie Mae, which alleges that the collusion led it to lose money on interest rate swaps, mortgages and mortgage-backed securities, with a $332 million loss just from interest rate swaps. Fannie seeks to recoup $800 million.

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