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The Big Banks’ Green Bafflegab

The Big Banks’ Green Bafflegab

Look behind their pro-climate ads and do what they do. Follow the money.

There must be a basement somewhere on Bay Street full of English majors. Every day they churn out great reams of verbiage about “environmental, social and governance strategy” and fill annual reports with a dozen different ways to say that the big five Canadian banks care about the environment.

Except the numbers tell a different story, and if you want to know the truth, then the old adage “follow the money” will steer you in the right direction, passing quickly through all the green bafflegab and arriving at the conclusion that the banks are sacrificing our climate to make a profit.

The latest news is a recent pledge by TD to achieve a “target of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions associated with our operations and financing activities by 2050,” trumpeting that it’s the first Canadian bank to do so. Sounds good, yes?

But dig deeper and there’s no mention that since the Paris Agreement TD has financed more than C$135 billion in fossil fuel projects, the eighth largest amount out of all the banks on the planet. What will TD’s net-zero pledge do to alter this climate-killing practice? It doesn’t say. But judging from the collective shrug from the oil patch, probably not much.

What TD does say is that it will “work closely with clients” rather than decide that certain clients probably shouldn’t be clients. Notably, Suncor, Cenovus and Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. all also have 2050 net-zero pledges, so presumably TD will continue to finance them, whose products rapidly fill our atmosphere with “green” carbon while our life-support systems fail.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

This Is What Central Bankers Think Of Retail Investors

This Is What Central Bankers Think Of Retail Investors

We previously covered the recently burst mega-Ponzi scheme fraud, Ezubao, the biggest in Chinese history which conned more than 900,000 investors out of $7.6 billion in less than two years under the guise of being a P2P lending platform, in this is what happens when “Chinese Investors Find Out They Got Fleeced By A $7 Billion Ponzi Scheme” and in “We Need To Rise Up”: Bilked Chinese Investors Call For Nationwide Uprising After Massive Ponzi Uncovered.”

Of course this being China, even the Ponzi schemes are next level: as we noted before, police had to use two excavators and dug for 20 hours to unearth 80 bags of evidence that Ezubo executives had buried six meters underground on the outskirts of Hefei, a city in the eastern province of Anhui.

Then overnight, Reuters added some more juicy details to this epic fraud: executives at Ezubao’s parent company, Yucheng Group, now say it was “a complete Ponzi scheme”, which used investor funds to support a lavish lifestyle, the official Xinhua News Agency reported this week.

Among gifts that Yucheng Chairman Ding Ning gave his president, Zhang Min, were a $20 million Singapore villa, a $1.8 million pink diamond ring, luxury limousines and watches and more than $83 million in cash, Xinhua stated.

Amazing, but the real question is just how many other Ezubao are lurking. The short answer: many.

China’s P2P and the online finance industry also serve as a critical channel for the emerging small business and consumer market, which is often ignored by banks and mainstream financial institutions. iResearch predicts China’s unsecured consumer finance market alone will triple in size by 2019, reaching outstanding loans of over $1.7 trillion.

By November, there were over 3,600 P2P platforms as the industry raised more than 400 billion yuan, according to the China Banking Regulatory Commission (CBRC). More than 1,000 of those were problematic, it said.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Olduvai IV: Courage
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Olduvai II: Exodus
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