CL Financial bailout – A Matter of Interest

CL Financial bailout – A Matter of Interest

The matter of interest is at the very centre of the collapse of CL Financial and the subsequent $25 Billion bailout, which has been conducted on terms deeply inimical to the Public Interest.

clf-bailout

The mis-match between the high cost of CLF’s borrowings and the low return on its varied investments caused that group’s collapse. The bailout was agreed to commit an undefined quantity of scarce Public Money to rescue those investors at the riskiest end of the financial market, most of whom had invested in short-term Annuities. Of course the Executive Flexible Premium Annuity (EFPA) was an insurance product approved as required by law, it would be untrue to attach any other meaning to those investments which we now know to have totalled about $11 Billion. I have always thought of Annuities as long-term investment products in the 15-20 year range, but CLF redefined terms we had thought were settled.

But the bailout itself, apart from refunding the capital of those riskiest of investors, went several steps further – Continue reading “CL Financial bailout – A Matter of Interest”

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CL Financial bailout – hide and seek

This title denotes the search for truth and the meaning of that truth. The main issue to be confronted this week is the attempt to once again create an alternative narrative, this time in relation to interest charged on the Public Money spent in this bailout.

Every year, I observe The Season of Reflection, between Emancipation Day on 1st August; Independence Day on 31st August and Republic Day on 24th September. There appears to be a meaning in the sequence of these holidays in terms of both the years and dates. Some notion of progress from the barbarism of Slavery to the undignified bad-old days of Colonialism to the better days we now experience as citizens of a Republic. But that progress did not come just so, there had to be real pressure for change.

Searching for progress and understanding requires us to go deep, even if only for a spell, hence The Season of Reflection.

This Season opens at a charged moment in the riveting CL Financial bailout, which I described last week as a bold-faced snatch-and-grab. Of course I was referring to the attempt by the shareholders to regain control of the CLF group without a binding agreement in place to ensure repayment of the $15 Billion in Public Money spent in this bailout. Continue reading “CL Financial bailout – hide and seek”