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Financial Services, Insurance and Banking

“Project Omega” Reveals Secrets Of Dark Pools Stock Trading
Pratap Chatterjee
August 14th, 2015

Investment Technology Group (ITG), a U.S. stock broker, paid a $20.3 million fine for running a secret operation named Project Omega to take advantage of “dark pools” trading orders made by its clients. Experts say that Barclays and Credit Suisse may also soon pay fines for dark pools trading scams.

Barclays bank protest. Photo: Global Justice Now. Used under Creative Commons license.


Music Video Asking Unilever to Clean Up Mercury Waste in India Goes Viral
Pratap Chatterjee
August 7th, 2015

A music video asking Unilever, an Anglo-Dutch consumer goods giant, to clean up mercury waste from their former Indian factory notched up two million views in less than a week, prompting a reply from the company CEO. 'Kodaikanal Won't,’ the video by Sonia Ashraf, parodied Nicki Minaj’s song 'Anaconda.’
Still from 'Kodaikanal Won't’ a video by Sonia Ashraf.


Soma Oil & Gas Faces UK Criminal Investigation for Somalia Deals
Richard Smallteacher
August 5th, 2015

British regulators are investigating Soma Oil & Gas, a UK-based company, for allegedly paying bribes to the Somali government in exchange for exploration rights. Under scrutiny is the payment of $580,000 for “capacity building arrangements” at the Ministry of Petroleum in Mogadishu, according to Financial Times sources.
President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud of Somalia at a conference in London. Photo: Foreign and Commonwealth Office. Used under Creative Commons license.


Outsourcing the Kill Chain: Eleven Drone Contractors Revealed
Pratap Chatterjee
August 3rd, 2015

Hundreds of private sector intelligence analysts are being paid to review surveillance footage from U.S. military drones in Central Asia and the Middle East, according to a new report from the Bureau of Investigative Journalism.
Imagery analysts. Photo: U.S. Air Force.


Shell’s Plans to Drill for Oil in the Arctic Blocked by Greenpeace Climbers
Richard Smallteacher
July 31st, 2015

Greenpeace temporarily blocked Shell from drilling for oil in the Arctic by blocking the path of a specialized ice-breaking ship in Portland, Oregon. Thirteen climbers suspended themselves from a bridge while hundreds of local supporters paddled below in kayaks forcing the company to delay operations for almost two days.
Greepeace climbers hang off Portland bridge. Photo: Sam Churchill.. Used under Creative Commons license.


Drugs Tested By GVK Biosciences Banned From European Union
Pratap Chatterjee
July 27th, 2015

Hundreds of drugs tested in India have been banned from sale in the European Union after French inspectors found flaws in clinical trials conducted by GVK Biosciences, a company based in Hyderabad. The Indian government has threatened to take legal action against the ban under international trade rules.
Pills. Photo: Used under Creative Commons license

War & Disaster Profiteering

French Tribunal Investigates Qosmos Over Surveillance Software Use In Syria
Fatima Hansia
July 21st, 2015

Qosmos – a French technology company – is being investigated for acting as an “assisted witness” in alleged torture in Syria. The specialized crimes unit of the Paris Tribunal has agreed to study the use of Qosmos surveillance software by Bashar Al-Assad’s regime, following complaints filed by two human rights NGOs.
The aftermath of a bombing in Syria. Photo: Freedom House. Used under Creative Commons license.

Food and Agriculture

Agrica’s Tanzania Rice Scheme Has Devastated Local Farmers, Say NGOs
Richard Smallteacher
July 7th, 2015

A flagship rice plantation in Tanzania run by UK investors has allegedly destroyed the livelihoods of local smallholder farmers, driven them into debt and impacted the local environment, according to a new report published by the Oakland Institute. The report was co-authored with Greenpeace Africa and Global Justice Now.
KPL plant and fields. © Greenpeace


EuroZone Profiteers: How German and French Banks Helped Bankrupt Greece
Pratap Chatterjee
June 29th, 2015

Almost none of the huge amount of money “loaned” to Greece has actually gone there, writes Joseph Stiglitz, former World Bank chief economist. CorpWatch's EuroZone Profiteers report sheds light on how some of it was used to pay off bad loans made by private-sector banks in France and Germany.
Cartoon by Khalil Bendib