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Elizabeth Warren wants to know why disgraced hedge fund manager allowed back into banking

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U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren, a firebrand of strong financial regulation, wants to know why securities regulators approved Steve Cohen’s new firm as an investment adviser after barring the billionaire from managing other people’s money until 2018.

In a letter sent on Thursday to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the Massachusetts Democrat said the regulator’s decision to approve the firm, Stamford Harbor Capital L.P., makes “a mockery of the SEC’s core mission to ‘protect investors.'”

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“The Commission has permitted a recidivist hedge fund manager, well-known for his former company’s willingness to evade and ignore federal law, to once again profit from – and potentially exploit – investors,” she wrote, adding it is “the latest example of an SEC action that fails to appropriately punish guilty parties, deter future wrongdoing, and protect investors.”

In 2012 Cohen was implicated in an insider trading scandal at a unit of SAC Capital Advisors, a hedge fund he founded. The SEC in January reached a settlement with Cohen prohibiting him from serving in a supervisory role at any broker, dealer, or investment adviser until 2018, addressing charges related to the SAC subsidiary.

Earlier this month the SEC granted registration to the new entity, which Cohen owns.

A statement from a Stamford Harbor spokesman said Cohen will “not supervise the activities of anyone acting on its behalf,” thus allowing him to abide by the agreement he reached with federal regulators.

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The firm will initially focus on investments in private companies that are illiquid, or can be difficult to sell quickly, according to filings. But it could also seek or accept outside capital in the future.

Warren said the firm had a “shell management structure” and the SEC should ensure “that future settlement agreements cannot be so easily undermined.”

She asked for a complete list of “other individuals or firms who, like Mr. Cohen, were barred from managing funds (or barred from other activities by SEC) yet are presently indirectly involved in those activities with SEC-registered entities.”

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(Reporting by Lisa Lambert; editing by Andrew Hay)


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Jealous Trump rages against Obama’s Netflix deal in early morning Twitter rant

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President Donald Trump betrayed his apparent jealously over Barack Obama's production deal with Netflix in a new Twitter rant.

The former president and first lady Michele Obama made their Hollywood debut last month with the documentary "American Factory" released through joint venture with Netflix and their production company, Higher Ground.

Trump questioned that deal in a pair of tweets complaining about an impeachment inquiry launched against him last week by the House Judiciary Committee.

"House Judiciary has given up on the Mueller Report, sadly for them after two years and $40,000,000 spent - ZERO COLLUSION, ZERO OBSTRUCTION," Trump tweeted. "So they say, OK, lets look at everything else, and all of the deals that “Trump” has done over his lifetime. But it doesn’t work that way."

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Steve Mnuchin has a mysterious link to Epstein pal accused of procuring young models: report

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According to a report from the Daily Beast, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin's name appears on legal documents for a modeling agency run by a friend of convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein who also has been accused of sexual assault.

The reports states that years ago, "Mnuchin [was] listed as the official state point of contact for Next Management Corporation, a company formed in 1988 by modeling-industry insiders Jean-Luc Brunel" at a time when Brunel was accused of drugging and raping at least three models. Brunel has also been accused of supplying young models to Epstein -- a charge he has denied.

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Netanyahu, Gantz spur supporters on eve of tense Israeli polls

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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his main opponent Benny Gantz sought to galvanise supporters Monday on the eve of a tense election with the political fate of the country's longest-serving premier in the balance.

The vote on Tuesday will be Israel's second in five months after Netanyahu suffered one of the biggest defeats of his political career when he failed to form a coalition after April polls.

Opinion polls indicate another tight race that may see ex-defence minister Avigdor Lieberman, Netanyahu's former right-hand man who is now a rival, play a kingmaker role with his campaign to "make Israel normal again."

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