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2003-04-29

Is a Better World Possible? As Wall Street Brokers Face Record Fines, John Cavanagh, Victoria Tauli-Corpuz and Martin Khor Examine Alternatives to Economic Globalization

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Prosecutors yesterday announced a $1.4 billion settlement with the nation’s largest investment firms.

At firm after firm, brokers and analysts convinced investors to buy billions of dollars worth of stock in companies they knew were going to do badly.

Some investment houses received secret payments from companies when they gave a strong recommendation to buy stock in that company.

The SEC accused three firms in particular of fraud: Citigroup’s Soloman Smith Barney, Merrill Lynch and Credit Suisse First Boston.

The settlement bars Citigroup’s CEO, Sanford Weill, from even communicating with his firm’s stock analysts without a lawyer present. Citigroup is Wall Street’s biggest bank.

Soloman Smith Barney and First Boston were accused of "spinning"- selling terrific stock offerings to senior executives who turned around and sold the shares for a guaranteed profit.

Today we will look at the connection between war and economic globalization. In our firehouse studio we are joined by three of the leading voices in the global justice movement all of whom have helped write the new book "Alternatives to Economic Globalization — A Better World is Possible."

The book is being billed as an answer to the critics who assert that the anti-corporate globalization movement has failed to put forward alternative proposals.

  • John Cavanagh, Director at the Institute for Policy Studies, Vice President of the International Forum on Globalization Board. He worked as an international economist for the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (1978-1981) and the World Health Organization (1981-1982). He directed IPS’s Global Economy Project from 1983-1997. He is the co-author of 10 books and numerous articles on the global economy.
  • Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, founder and executive director of the Philippines-based Indigenous Peoples’ International Centre for Policy Research and Education. She is also a member of the International Forum on Globalization.
  • Martin Khor, Director of Third World Network / International Forum on Globalization.

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