glencore

Goldman Bankers Get Rich Betting On Food Prices As Millions Starve

Goldman Sachs made more than a quarter of a billion pounds last year by speculating on food staples, reigniting the controversy over banks profiting from the global food crisis.

Less than a week after the Bank of England Governor, Sir Mervyn King, slapped Goldman Sachs on the wrist for attempting to save its UK employees millions of pounds in tax by delaying bonus payments, the investment bank faces fresh accusations that it is contributing to rising food prices.

Goldman made about $400m (£251m) in 2012 from investing its clients’ money in a range of “soft commodities”, from wheat and maize to coffee and sugar, according to an analysis for The Independent by the World Development Movement (WDM).

This contributed to the 68 per cent jump in profits for 2012 Goldman announced last week, allowing it to push up the average pay and bonus package of its bankers to £250,000.

The extent of Goldman’s food speculation can be revealed after the UN warned that the world could face a major hunger crisis in 2013, after failed harvests in the US and Ukraine. Food prices surged last summer, with cereal prices hitting a record high in September.

Christine Haigh of the WDM said: “While nearly a billion people go hungry, Goldman Sachs bankers are feeding their own bonuses by betting on the price of food. Financial speculation is fueling food price spikes and Goldman Sachs is the No 1 culprit.

Goldman makes its “food speculation” revenues by setting up and managing commodity funds that invest money from pension funds, insurance companies and wealthy individuals in return for fees and commissions. The firm invented these kinds of funds and continues to dominate the market, together with Barclays and Morgan Stanley. Swiss trading giant Glencore hit the headlines in August when its head of agriculture proclaimed that the US drought will be “good for Glencore”.

Banks and hedge funds typically argue that speculation makes little or no difference to food prices and point out that no definitive link has been proved. But there is a growing consensus that the influx of cash into food has increased demand so much that it has inevitably pushed up the prices.

Since deregulation allowed the creation of the commodity funds that allowed many speculators to invest in agriculture for the first time, institutions such as Goldman have channelled more than $200bn of cash into the area. This investment has coincided with a significant and sustained rise in global food prices.

Glencore unit in court over corruption case


The case, which also involves other companies including Dutch grains firm Codrico, is the culmination of a probe that has been running for more than seven years, involving a former EU agriculture official who is accused of giving out market-sensitive information on prices and quotas.Former EU agriculture department official Karel Brus is accused of passing confidential information relating to EU export subsidy application decisions to a French farming lobbyist between 1999 and 2003.A police source said on Wednesday that a 12,000 euro ($16,400) luxury Christofle cutlery set was among the gifts given by one of Glencore’s co-defendants to an EU official. The source said he also received holidays and other offerings.Glencore, the world’s largest diversified commodities trader, said ahead of its listing earlier this year that its subsidiary Glencore Grain Rotterdam, a former employee and a current employee had been charged in the case.It said the investigation was probing a public official, the European Commission’s Directorate General for Agriculture and others for “violation of professional secrecy, corruption of an international civil servant and criminal conspiracy”.The case involves a total of 17 defendants who are alleged to be involved in the conspiracy in some way, including Union Invivo, a French agricultural cooperative.There will be four hearings per week after the case starts in earnest in March or April next year, officials said.Officials hope to conclude the case by the end of June, but there is a preliminary hearing pencilled in for the middle of January to finalise some of the details.The investigation started in 2004 following a complaint by the European Anti-Fraud Office, the police source said. It covers facts dating from 1999 to 2003.Glencore declined to comment. Invivo and lawyers for Codrico were not immediately reachable for comment.


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How the Swiss get rich at Zambia’s expense

Zambia sits on Africa’s largest reserves of copper and a single Swiss Company is making billions from mining this resource. Zambians, however, see nothing of this wealth, and most live on less than a dollar a day. How is that possible?

More posts of Exploitation of africa

via This is Africa

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Patrick Clair - Glencore


Commodities speculation has a very human cost.
This video was produced for the documentary series HungryBeast on Australia’s ABC1.


Directed by: Patrick Clair
Written by: Scott Mitchell
Production Company: Zapruder’s Other Films

www.patrickclair.com

The Glencore Letter Exposed

With the present letter, we wish to advise you of certain factors to be considered in your coverage of our client, Glencore International AG…

Any discussion of, for example, marital infidelity on the part of one of the executive team, or pending fraud charges on the part of two others will not be tolerated and will lead to the severest of legal penalties…

In a similar vein, journalists are strongly advised not to make any mention of albino Latvian midget nuns, the Great Jello Stampede of 1987, or a reported financial interest that one of the executives might allegedly have in a Namibian table tennis fixing…

Read the whole fantabulous satire at the Opaki Factor!

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BRILLIANT ANIMATION! HUNGRY BEAST: Glencore

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Glencore. A motion graphics project Released on vimeo 12 days ago by Patrick Clair.

I find this kind of motion graphics highly inspiring. Important messages for real things happening. It is a practice of Ethics implemented with the visual aesthetic. Much respect Patrick, I’m glad someone is doing this.

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One of Capitilism’s greatest members

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Glencore by Patrick Clair

Commodities speculation has a very human cost.
This video was produced for the documentary series HungryBeast on Australia’s ABC1.
Directed and Designed by: Patrick Clair
Written by: Scott Mitchell
Production Company: Zapruder’s Other Films

vimeo

by Patrick Clair 

Tony Hayward has been recently hired by a company called Glencore. Don’t feel bad if you haven’t heard of it. It has been trying for years to be invisible to the naked eye. It was briefly in the news back in the Clinton years when its founder, Marc Rich, violated federal law by trading oil with Iran and went on the FBI’s most wanted list. Things cooled off fairly quickly because President Clinton pardoned Rich as Bill was on the way out of the White House door. Rich was, well, rich. He gave money to the Clinton campaign. I’m not saying. I’m just saying.


So Glencore ends up being one of the biggest, if not the biggest, commodities traders in the world. It handles everything from metals to fuel and has operations all over the globe. It doesn’t have a very nice record in some parts of the world where it has been accused of mistreatment of workers, pollution and very much worse. Now Glencore is putting its money in northern Minnesota. It is has just become the principal investor in a mining operation planned for Hoyt Lakes. 

Seems like a match made in heaven, amirite?

Also: oh helllllllll nawwwwwww. GTFO of my state you bastard! 

Un paso importante para lograr mas transparencia en la explotación de los Recursos Naturales en Colombia es la publicación no solo de los gastos (egresos); sino especialmente de los ingresos o ganancias de las compañias involucradas. Solamente con un informe financeiro con un balance real se puede empezar un debate sobre la justicia social. #InolvidableFICCI55 #glencore #drummond #elcerrejon #grupoprodeco #calenturitas #lajagua

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Glencore beast file.