An Infographic on 2012 Bank Scandals

The end of 2012 wouldn't seem right without another incredibly high fine for incredibly horrible banking behavior, so we should welcome the latest $1.5 billion fine that hit UBS  (NYSE: UBS  ) for manipulating the LIBOR rate. 

How does it stack up among other banks this year? Take a look at an infographic covering 2012's banking scandals:

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Read/Post Comments (21) | Recommend This Article (36)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

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  • Report this Comment On December 20, 2012, at 6:12 PM, ynotc wrote:

    For all of the talk about competition and free and transparent markets what we really have is big business successfully lobbying government to create oligarchies.

    These oligarchies then lobby government to put the tax payer on the hook so they can take inordinate risks with no personal downside.

    These banks should be broken up to remove the potential for systemic armeggedon that they represent.

  • Report this Comment On December 20, 2012, at 6:17 PM, chuckm303 wrote:

    It must be nice to manipulate and make money and know your in a fail safe position, and know that no matter how you conduct risky business there is no consequence on what you do in the market place because your ass ets are covered. Who says you need a gun to steal and hurt people when you can do it with a push of a button and a mouse or finger. they must enjoy what they are doing because they will pay in the end, on the night they don't wake up.Thats when they will pay.

  • Report this Comment On December 20, 2012, at 8:44 PM, tjhandcfm wrote:

    Forgive my theological take on all this. One can't buy one's way into heaven nor one's way out of hell. "Thou shalt not steal" covers a lot of bases. When people are wiped out and destroyed by greed driving manipulation that does in fact destroy living standards, and destroyed lives ( some people are driven to suicide) those responsible will have to answer to God.

    Many people deny God because it removes consequence from their conscience. "What does it profit a man to gain the world, and in doing so, lose his soul?"

    "Scrooge" is alive and well in a never -ending morality play set on this worlds' stage. I do believe that we are seeing the result of financial/intellectual in-breeding that has taken place exclusive of morality and ethics.

    In essence, the good-old-boy system is populated by too many liked-minded border-line sociopath investment bankers who have no morality. No morality is what it is to lose one's soul.

    God is watching.

  • Report this Comment On December 20, 2012, at 9:23 PM, cooncreekcrawler wrote:

    Life is not fair. And it would not be fair to direct all the sundry kooks and nuts to the big banks instead of the Newtowns and other areas of misdirected terror. But I would accept that unfairness more than that of the slaughter of children.

    If I were God, and had to accept evil in the world, and forced to accept unfairness, I would direct my obliviousness to the megabanks. The degree of criminality and callousness we suffer at their bequest is simply insufferable. I would always chose to save the children.

    But either God doesn't care or cannot do anything about it. So we must do the best we can to correct it. And that is a lot of work and we are working on it. The suffering goes along with it and it will never end.

    Of course this all totally emotional, one too many beers balderdash. But I feel better.

  • Report this Comment On December 20, 2012, at 9:55 PM, brittlerock wrote:

    I don't care about fines - and neither do the bankers. They will just pass them along to the customers as a cost of business. We need to see some prosecutions and bankers in prison with very long sentences, preferably with someone real big with 24" biceps named Buba for a cellmate.

  • Report this Comment On December 20, 2012, at 10:24 PM, cooncreekcrawler wrote:

    Yo, brittlerock. I concur.

  • Report this Comment On December 20, 2012, at 10:34 PM, Rebud wrote:

    It's getting more difficult every day to hear someone brag about America and condemn some other country for its failures. We go to war for personal reasons, can't find descent people to run our government and have as shady a financial system as any other on this planet. Class warfare is just around the corner I think. Won't the politicians and wall streeters be surprised when it turns out to be real.

    Woe are we.

  • Report this Comment On December 20, 2012, at 10:52 PM, maiday2000 wrote:

    Maybe we should sue the Secretary of the Treasury as well? He was fully aware that this was the way business was done when he was the Chairman of the NY Fed and did nothing about it then, and nothing about it for three years as the SECTREAS.

  • Report this Comment On December 20, 2012, at 10:52 PM, cooncreekcrawler wrote:


    Hold your head up. Fix what YOU can and get a good night's sleep. Situations change quickly and predictions are notoriously inaccurate---actually, mostly bulls..t designed to fill a page and sell ads.

    Fool on.

  • Report this Comment On December 20, 2012, at 11:09 PM, eldetorre wrote:

    Banks and corporations are not people.

    When people commit crimes and are caught they go to jail, penalties are often stiffer than harm created would merit to act as punishment and disincentive for others.

    Corporations pay negligible fines, disproportionate to the harm they have created, keeping the risk to reward ratio comfortable enough to incentivize further transgressions.

  • Report this Comment On December 21, 2012, at 2:57 AM, Tiingall wrote:

    I am not at all surprised to read about the fraudulent and criminal behaviour of the bankers. But it is very useful to have the details compiled like this.

    Together with the recent Fool article on the culpability of the accounting "profession" I have some very useful material to backup my regular complaints to my bank about charges, poor service and low interest on deposits. Our money is disappearing to pay the corporate fines. And a lot of the bank employees are ignorant of what scams their bosses are perpetrating.

    Nor do most of them realise their bank bosses are shedding staff to help pay their losses and fines. Their job could be next if they don't complain and collect the information to pass to law enforcement agencies to convict their corrupt bosses.

    I recall a recent BBC news tagline that HSBC has allocated 300 million pounds as a contingency to pay for future corporate fines. This suggests that the psychopaths who command the bank have a deliberate business strategy to make money by crime and fraud, and pay the fines. Clearly the fines are not big enough. Or perhaps it is that they are not personal enough.

    I also recall a 2008 French study that identified some tens of thousands of additional child deaths PER WEEK because aid agencies and governments no longer have funds for their work. In a year at 20K a week that is over 1 million child deaths a year. A kill rate which a "normal" terrorist can only dream about. Why are the bankers not already sitting in prison in the Hague waiting trial for "Crimes Against Humanity".

    I expect a lot of people would like to see some justice now, not wait "for the night they don't wake up". The meek will not inherit the earth if they cannot stand up against injustice and evil. People are brave enough to do it in the Middle East, what's wrong with America? Biblical history has set the precedent regarding "throwing the money lenders out of the temple". Perhaps it's time to again invoke that practice. If justice and the regular process of democracy cannot achieve success against these deadly financial terrorists, then perhaps it's time to follow an earlier president (woops precedent), and send in a few Seal teams.

    If we borrow depositor/investor funds from the vault for a business purpose and we make bad decisions, the bank takes our home or other assets to - rightly - replace the depositors' money we borrowed. When will the same standard be applied to the bankers themselves?

    They have managed to separate power and responsibility in their daily working lives. They have the power to make decisions with our deposited or invested money, but not the accountability/responsibility that should go with that power.Instead, we - and the children dying of simply treated diseases - take responsibility for their gross financial negligence, and their deliberately planned criminal activity.

    Banks are no longer private businesses when they expect the public purse to be used to bail them out. The are a public institution, and the people who work there should be personally accountable to the public. The rules about daily activity and accountability should be set by the public, not the bankers; who have proved themselves both financially incompetent and incapable of restraining their personal greed.

    They were given the opportunity to operate more freely - with fewer constraining regulations - and they demonstrated they are incapable of being trusted to function - responsibly or professionally - without those rules. So their scams, games and trickery should be stopped.

    What are hedge funds but gambling? What are a lot of the recently created banking activities but gambling? We all know that with gambling, only the house wins; and so it is with gambling by banks. The community loses; big time, while those who operate the house, win, big time.

    If for no other reason, it's certainly time to stop the banks gambling away our financial future. If the natural forces of the market, the law and democratic processes cannot achieve it, then people and governments might be driven towards biblical, social revolution, war of independence or Navy Seal style solutions.

  • Report this Comment On December 21, 2012, at 6:18 AM, Tiingall wrote:

    Take a look at this article to get some more insight:

    For some time I've been wondering whether the Keynesian theory of economic cycles I was taught in school and studied in University might be an idealogical hegemony. The above article seems to explain why.

    Have a good read. And keep putting your Foolish investment money directly into good businesses. Do not give it to the crooks and scam artists in Wall Street, the City or any of the banks to invest for you. You only give them more power.

  • Report this Comment On December 21, 2012, at 8:13 AM, devoish wrote:


    Skimmed quickly, that was interesting.

    Best wishes,


  • Report this Comment On December 21, 2012, at 8:40 AM, 1pOwedyank wrote:

    And to think I was saving it for marriage.

  • Report this Comment On December 21, 2012, at 10:02 AM, jacintosmith wrote:

    We retired/fixed income sorts have lived long enough to have watched this evolution toward greed take an exponentially stronger hold of our nation than ever before. The highest echelons of the banking community have lost touch with the reality 98% of us face and will not change as long as they are championed by our government representatives who are not obliged to reveal their personal finances.

  • Report this Comment On December 21, 2012, at 4:25 PM, gghillx wrote:
  • Report this Comment On December 21, 2012, at 5:04 PM, rockysan wrote:

    Elizabeth Warren for President

  • Report this Comment On December 22, 2012, at 8:30 PM, donbcms wrote:

    It's a wonder that NOBODY looked into the dragging down of HCBK's stock to make a sweet deal for their BUYOUT?? MTB sure made out, but top Brass @ HCBK did too. Only loss, older, smaller HCBK stockholders. (MTB- NO prior branches in NJ??)

  • Report this Comment On January 05, 2013, at 12:56 PM, Watchbird wrote:

    Beware of Wells Fargo Financial National Bank and their "Home Projects VISA offerings to contractors for home improvement projects. The hook is a 6 months same as cash however the contractor is ill experienced or qualified to disclose the true essence of this program. It is housed in a VISA card with monthly statements requiring minimum payments that arrive on 2 pages of 8 1/2" x 14" double sided fine print with any pertinent or time changing due dates buried within and especially dangerous for senior citizens aging eyes. In essence it side steps all the highlighted requirements prescribed in the truth in lending laws.

    Should the final date be missed by ONE DAY due to late mail, which is common occurrence these days, or the due date is an odd one (common) like not the 15th or the end of the month the greedy Wells Fargo group will charge a whopping interest rate for the FULL SIX MONTHS on top of the balance.

    Make no mistake, this is the name of their game! Some banks should be made to fail. May the good ones be supported to thrive. My personal choice of a fine and upstanding credit card financial organization: American Express!

  • Report this Comment On January 05, 2013, at 8:59 PM, rjfox wrote:

    If idiot American's keep complaining, but continue to vote politicians back into office (you know, the ones making these bad decisions) nothing will change. Why would they? Americans have only themselves to blame.

  • Report this Comment On January 21, 2013, at 11:40 PM, MikeNPat12 wrote:

    did you all note that the good guys are all republicans and the bad guys are all democrats in the above article???

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