Receiving Wide Coverage ...
No Bank 'Too Big to Jail': U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder declared in his weekly video address Monday, "There is no such thing as too big to jail." The Justice Department has been facing criticism that federal prosecutors have failed to bring criminal charges against Wall Street banks out of fear of destabilizing the financial system, the Washington Post notes. Justice Department officials have said cases relating directly to the financial crisis have proven hard to make, Politico reports, adding that Holder caused a stir when he suggested at a March 2013 Senate hearing that prosecutors have to be careful about pursuing some large banks because charging them criminally could do serious damage to the financial sector. In Monday's video, Holder says: "Rather than wall off banks from prosecution, the potential for such severe consequences simply means that federal prosecutors conducting these investigations must go the extra mile to coordinate closely with the regulators that oversee these institutions' day-to-day operations." The video comes as the Justice Department is weighing criminal charges against Credit Suisse for allegedly helping U.S. citizens evade taxes and BNP Paribas for processing transactions in violation of U.S. sanctions, the Financial Times notes. The Swiss Bank is said to be close to resolving the allegations with an agreement that may include a penalty of more than $1 billion and a guilty plea, Bloomberg News reports.
UBS Earnings Beat Estimates: Amid ongoing restructuring efforts, Swiss bank UBS posted better-than-expected profit of 1.05 billion Swiss francs, or about $1.2 billion, for the first quarter of 2014. Analysts had forecast a profit of 838 million francs, the Wall Street Journal notes. UBS said it will overhaul its legal structure with a new group holding company that will make it easier to break up the bank in a crisis. It will also set up a Swiss subsidiary to house its domestic retail, corporate and Swiss-booked wealth management businesses, while setting up an intermediate holding company for its U.S. activities, the Financial Times reports. While the bank is in the midst of a huge overhaul that has seen it cut thousands of jobs and reshape itself into a smaller, more profitable organization focused on wealth management, employee head count was up slightly quarter-over-quarter, the WSJ notes, and the wealth management division saw its pretax income declined 7%, the New York Times reports.
Wall Street Journal
The California State Teachers' Retirement System voted against keeping four members on Bank of America Corp.'s (BAC) board of directors, the Journal reports. The move is largely symbolic (the pension fund owns approximately 0.3% of total outstanding BofA shares), but the decision to vote against four of the five directors who sit on BofA's audit committee was in response to the bank's announcement last week that it had miscalculated capital levels, the paper says.
New York Times
A hearing was held Monday to consolidate the more than 20 lawsuits alleging five banks are rigging the price of gold for their own benefit. A twice-daily conference call between the banks is held to set a benchmark price for gold. But according to one of the suits, "The 'great flaw' of the gold fixing process is that the member banks trade on the information exchanged during the call to manipulate the price of gold and gold derivatives before publication of the gold fix to the wider market," the Times reports.