$250 million a year

… from Galleon to Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan. The bill was for brokerage services, but it seems Galleon was actually paying for information that wasn’t Goldman’s or Morgan’s to sell. And no one blew the whistle.

is what Galleon paid the investment banks that acted as its brokers, including Goldman Sachs and J.P. Morgan.

For that, Galleon expected, and got, more than brokerage. It got information about trading by the banks’ other clients, which Galleon could use to its advantage and the disadvantage of the firms that thought Goldman and Morgan were working for them. And no one blew the whistle.

If you suspected that those enormous bonuses investment bankers pay themselves weren’t actually being earned, you can chalk up a little bit more evidence.

It appears that this wasn’t “insider trading,” as defined by law. As always the scandal isn’t what’s illegal, it’s what’s legal.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: Markarkleiman-at-gmail.com

3 thoughts on “$250 million a year”

  1. On the contrary, those enormous bonuses were indeed being earned. See how much value Morgan and Goldman added for Galleon.

    This scandal, along with the one about Goldman secretly buying CDS's against mortgage-backed securities it was underwriting as AAA, show just how much of the profit in the financial market is produced by deliberate information asymmetries. (Which of course free market fundamentalists say should not exist.)

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