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Investments / The Ticker

Mortgage-bond traders forced to take leave

Big banks tell traders to skip work

JPMorgan

According to Businessweek, mortgage-bond traders at JPMorgan Chase (JPM), Morgan Stanley and Royal Bank of Scotland Group (RBS) were placed on leave in recent weeks or months.  

JPMorgan’s Ben Morganstein and Inga Norton, Morgan Stanley’s Nicholas Bonacci, and Adam Siegel of RBS were told not to come to work, the people said, asking for anonymity because the matter is private. It’s unclear why or if the actions are connected, the people said.

Former Jefferies Group LLC bond trader Jesse Litvak, 39, was convicted last month of securities fraud for lying to clients about what he charged them to trade mortgage bonds. Other banks including New York-based JPMorgan received requests for information from U.S. officials about mortgage-bond trading after Litvak’s arrest, people briefed on the matter said in January.

 

A 16-count indictment was delivered in January against 38-year old Jesse Litvak for allegedly defrauding customers on residential mortgage-backed securities trades.

The indictment is the result of an investigation by Christy Romero, Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program and U.S. Attorney David Fein out of Connecticut. 

"The charges paint a picture of Litvak shamelessly lying to dupe the government into overpaying for mortgage securities with bailout funds," said Special Inspector General for TARP Christy Romero at the time.

In March, Litvak was convicted, in a rare ruling against a specific mortgage bond trader.

Source: Businessweek
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