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Roubini warns of catastrophe for Goldman Sachs

Published time: November 08, 2011 19:59
Edited time: November 08, 2011 23:59
Former White House economist Nouriel Roubini

Former White House economist Nouriel Roubini

Last week economic expert Nouriel Roubini reportedly said that the collapse of the eurozone was imminent and the crumbling of the international economy would follow in due time. Now, days later, Roubini is warning of a disaster on Wall Street.

Through a series of Twitter messages posted to the Web on Monday, the manager of the Roubini Global Economics firm told his followers that Goldman Sachs and other major financial institutions could soon experience a fate similar to MF Global Holdings Ltd, the Wall Street powerhouse that filed for bankruptcy last week following a ratings downgrade.

"What happened to MF Global could happen to Jefferies, Barclays, Goldman Sachs & Morgan Stanley.Leverage & maturity mismatch can lead to runs," Roubini tweeted to his audience of over 100,000 followers on November 7.

Added Roubini, shadow banking systems, brokers and dealers with high leverage and maturity mismatch and a lack of LOLR safety nets among banks has allowed the institutions to be as exposed to collapse just as much now as ever before. Following last week’s news for MF Global, Roubini predicts that the other Wall Street banks could go bankrupt as well.

In the past, Roubini successfully predicted both the housing boom and recession that devastated the American economy for years and continues to have an effect on the country’s poor financial standings.

In the case of MF Global, the bank depended far too much on short-term financing in order to back up its long-term asset leverage and maintain capital to support operations. Following a recent revelation that MF Global held onto more than $6 billion worth of European debt, a credit downgrade ensued and investors were quick to halt their support. The company saw its shares drop by 66 percent over the course of four days and, almost literally overnight, the institution went under. Now around 3,000 employees — and billions of dollars in investments from shareholders and creditors — are no more.

As RT reported last week, Roubini is rumored to have told visitors to a private party he held recently that there is a “significant risk of a Eurozone breakup” in the near future. Recently he had offered a 50-50 chance of a collapse.

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