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'Drunken' Broker Sent Oil to 8-Month High in 2009: Report

Source: CNBC

On June 30, 2009, oil mysteriously jumped by more than $1.50 a barrel during the night, to reach its highest price in eight months, the kind of swing that is caused by a major geopolitical event.

The amazing, true cause of this price spike has now been released by a Financial Services Authority investigation (FSA).

Although not authorized to invest company cash in trades, Steve Perkins, a long standing, senior broker at PVM Oil Futures, had managed to spend $520 million on oil futures contracts throughout the night, the FSA said.

On the morning of the 30th, an admin clerk called Perkins to ask why he had bought 7 million barrels of crude during the night. Perkins had no recollection of the transactions, and it turned out that he had made the trades during a “drunken blackout," according to the FSA.

By the time PVM realized the transactions had not been authorized by a client, they had incurred losses of $9,763,252.


The FSA has said that they will re-approve his license after the five-year period, if he has recovered from his drinking problem, although they warned that,“Mr Perkins poses an extreme risk to the market when drunk.”

Read more: http://www.cnbc.com/id/49197769

Romney Fundraiser Host Used Controversial Tax Strategy

Source: CNBC

Marc J. Leder, the private-equity chief who hosted Mitt Romney’s secretly taped fundraiser, used a controversial tax strategy that’s come under scrutiny from the New York Attorney General, according to court documents and people familiar with the matter.

According to court documents filed as part of his 2009 divorce, Leder created a system for turning hundreds of millions of dollars in ordinary income into investments that would be taxed at a much lower rate.

The strategy, known as “a management fee waiver,” may have lowered his tax bill by millions of dollars over time, according to the documents.

Leder’s private equity firm, Sun Capital Partners, is one of more than a dozen private-equity firms being investigated by New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman to see whether they used management fee waivers to avoid taxes, according to people familiar with the matter.

Read more: http://www.cnbc.com/id/49103957

CNBC: The stock market has done better under Obama than with any other recent president.


Guess Which President Has Been Best for Stocks?

The U.S. economy may not be recovering as fast as President Obama likes, but at least he can make one claim: The stock market has done better under his watch than with any other recent president.

Since Obama's inauguration on Jan. 20 2009, all three major U.S. stock indexes are up more than 60 percent. The Nasdaq Composite [.NCOMP 3135.36 -0.45 (-0.01%) ] alone has soared a whopping 105 percent.


The president also would have to credit Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke for much of the recovery. The central bank's quantitative easing, which was launched in reaction to the financial crisis, has pushed interest rates so low that stocks have looked attractive by comparison.

Even so, the market has performed better during Obama's 43 1/2 months in office than in any of the five prior administrations. In fact, the S&P 500 has outperformed most of the major world indexes during his presidency.

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