Dr. Joseph P. Farrell
January 28, 2017
It has been a while since we’ve talked about those mysterious bankster deaths, many of them having all the hallmarks of “bankercides (i.e., murder by suicide), and it’s been even longer since we’ve talked about all that “missing money” sloshing around in the system somewhere, an amount of money in the trillions. Well, Mr. W.D. sent the following article, and it has my high octane speculation running in high gear and overtime, but we’ll get back to that, because I want to paint in very broad strokes today. The article that he shared concerns a looming storm centered around Europe’s largest bank, Deutsche Bank, and some shenanigans that reach out to engulf Italy and, I suspect, pretty much everyone else. But as I said, we’ll get back to that. Here’s the lengthy article by Vernon Silver and Elissa Martinuzzi that appeared on Bloomberg Business Week:
Of course, a mere $462,ooo,ooo looks like chump change to a bank as large and powerful as Deutsche Bank, but there are even vaster sums involved in this disappearing act. The story begins, according to the article, at a meeting held at Deutsche Bank’s London branch headed by Italian banker Michele Faissola:
On Dec. 1, 2008, most of the world’s banks were still panicking through the financial crisis. Lehman Brothers had collapsed. Merrill Lynch had been sold. Citigroup and others had required multibillion-dollar bailouts to survive. But not every institution appeared to be in free fall. That afternoon, at the London outpost of Deutsche Bank, the stolid-seeming, €2 trillion German powerhouse, a group of financiers met to consider a proposal from a team led by a trim, 40-year-old banker named Michele Faissola.
The scion of an Italian banking family, Faissola was the head of Deutsche’s global rates unit, a division that created and sold financial instruments tied to interest rates. He’d been studying the problems of one of Deutsche’s clients, Italy’s Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena, which, as the crisis raged, was down €367 million ($462 million at the time) on a single investment. Losing that much money was bad; having to include it in the bank’s yearend report to the public, as required by Italian law, was arguably much worse. Monte dei Paschi was the world’s oldest bank. It had been operating since 1472, not long after the invention of the printing press, when the Black Death was still a living memory. If investors were to find out the extent of its losses in the 2008 credit crisis, the consequences would be unpredictable and grave: a run on the bank, a government takeover, or worse. At the Deutsche meeting, Faissola’s team said it had come up with a miraculous solution: a new trade that would make Paschi’s loss disappear. (Emphasis added)
The crucial point to focus on here is not only Faissola’s connection to the Banca Monte dei Paschi di Sienna, the world’s oldest bank, in continual operation since the Renaissance, but also his position as head of Deutsche Bank’s global rates unit, which, the article also notes, “created and sold financial instruments tied to interest rates,” for later on in the article, we learn that Deutsche Bank is under investigation for its role in helping to rig the LIBOR (London Inter-Bank Offered Rate), which Wikipedia notes is ” the primary benchmark, along with the Euribor, for short-term interest rates around the world.” (See Wikipedia: Wikipedia LIBOR):
This month the bank agreed to pay $7.2 billion to resolve a U.S. probe into its subprime mortgage business, admitting it misled investors. Deutsche has paid more than $9 billion in further fines and settlements related to claims of tax evasion; violating sanctions against Iran, Libya, Syria, Myanmar, and Sudan; rigging the $300 trillion Libor market; and other alleged breaches of the law.
Having a division that creates and sells financial instruments “tied to interest rates” such as the widely used LIBOR is a handy thing to have around, particularly if one is also engaged in rigging that very London Inter-Bank Offered Rate!
In any case, Faissola had approached Deutsche Bank with what can only be regarded as a “scheme” to help the troubled Banca Monte dei Paschi di Sienna, and this is where it gets interesting. As the article notes, Faissola proposed a “sure-thing, moneymaking bet with Deutsche Bank and use those winnings to extinguish its 2008 trading losses” by engineering a two-step trade, with one transaction bet which would make immediate gains, and the second transaction staged over time “that was sure to lose”, and of course, Deutsche Bank would profit from fees in both trades. But as the article also observes, as Faissola was pitching his plan – the details of which we’ll get to in a moment, doubts were being raised within the bank about the plan’s structure:
Outside the room, one of Faissola’s longtime colleagues was raising questions about the deal. William Broeksmit, a managing director who specialized in risk optimization, was concerned about the winner-loser construction. A Chicago-born son of a United Church of Christ minister, Broeksmit had decades earlier been a pioneer in interest rate swaps, the financial instruments that had rewritten the possibilities—and profitability—of investment banking. But Broeksmit, 53, was also against reckless derivative deals, which is how he viewed Faissola’s proposal, according to a person familiar with his thinking. Eleven minutes after the meeting began, Broeksmit e-mailed one of its attendees with a warning about the Paschi trade and its “reputational risks.”
If the name William Broeksmit sounds familiar, it should for he’s one of those “suicided” bankers, as the article also notes, for when the whole plan exploded into public view in Italy in 2013, it was accompanied by two more of those suspicious “banker deaths”, one of whom was William Broeksmit, and the other was David Rossi, of Banca Monte dei Paschi di Sienna:
Among the casualties was David Rossi, Paschi’s communications chief. At about 9 p.m. on March 6, a bank employee noticed that Rossi was missing from his fourth-floor office. A window had been left open. Authorities found Rossi’s body in a courtyard below. Rossi, 51, wasn’t himself the subject of any inquiries, but his home had been searched two weeks earlier by police. His death was at first ruled a suicide, but the inquest has been reopened based on evidence his wife presented, including security video that shows Rossi fell out backward.
Several months after Rossi’s death, in January 2014, Broeksmit was supposed to meet his wife of almost 30 years at a cafe near their home in the South Kensington neighborhood of London. He didn’t show. When she returned home, she found his body hanging from the leash attached to a door. In a dog bed, he’d left suicide notes, including one addressed to Jain, his longtime colleague. The New York Post reported last year that the note to Jain contained an apology. A summary of Deutsche Bank’s own review of the suicide, seen by Bloomberg Businessweek, doesn’t mention the note and says the review found no direct link between Broeksmit’s death and his work at Deutsche.
Why Broeksmit? Well, perhaps because he had been given broad authority within the big German bank on its “management approval committee, where Broeksmit had influence. Top management,” the article notes, “had just handed Broeksmit broad authority to police risk across the firm…”. And there’s more, for as news began to come out publicly about the details of the scheme, the German banking regulatory authority, BaFin began an audit in January 2014, and as Bloomberg Business Week states, even though the report “has never been make public,” Bloomberg managed to obtain a copy, just how, we’re not told, but we may be sure it involved big players, perhaps in the intelligence community. The audit began on Jan 27, 2014, the day after Mr. Broeksmit “was found at his London home, hanging from a dog leash.”
As the article also notes, when Deutsche Bank moved aggressively to enter the world of investment banking, it hired Edson Mitchell from Merrill Lynch. Mitchell brought in Broeksmit, and Anshu Jain, “a prodigy at selling such risky, fee-laden products to hedge funds.” Mitchell died in a plane accident three days before Christmas in 2000.
I don’t know about you, but three banker deaths, all tied to the same bank, seems a little more than just “coincidence.”
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About Joseph P. Farrell
Joseph P. Farrell has a doctorate in patristics from the University of Oxford, and pursues research in physics, alternative history and science, and “strange stuff”. His book The Giza DeathStar, for which the Giza Community is named, was published in the spring of 2002, and was his first venture into “alternative history and science”.