That’s pretty good work really

Or perhaps a commons committee being lied to, your choice:

Isil is making millions of dollars for its war chest by playing foreign currency markets under the noses of bank chiefs, it was revealed today.
The terror group is earning up to $20m (£14.29m) a month by funnelling dollars looted from banks during its takeover of the Iraqi city of Mosul into legitimate currency markets in the Middle East.
It then makes huge returns on currency speculation, which are then wired back via unsuspecting financial authorities in Iraq and Jordan, a parliamentary committee was told on Wednesday.
Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant’s (Isil) extraordinary venture into white collar crime is now a major source of income, along with oil smuggling and extortion from people living in Isil-controlled areas.

That they’re running money through the legitimate financial system I’ve no doubt. But that they’re making a profit on it? Most, most, unlikely.

Because n00bs usually get fleeced when they enter currency and stock markets, not make a profit.

The hearing was told that Isil finance chiefs would play the international stock markets using cash looted during their 2014 take over of Mosul, in which the group got its hands on an estimated $429m from the city’s central bank.
They also used money “siphoned off” from pension payments that are still being made by the Iraqi government to civil servants living in the city.
The details were revealed to the hearing by John Baron, the sub-committee’s chair, who demanded to know whether the British government – which has pledged to help cut off Isil’s finance networks – was taking proper action against it.
“The cash that Isil has looted, along with siphoned off pension payments, is routed into Jordanian banks and brought back into the system via Baghdad,” he said. “That allows the system to be exploited by Isil, in that they take a turn (profit) on the foreign currency actions and siphon that cash back.”

And you don’t “take” a turn in using the currency markets, you “pay” a turn. that is, you lose money, the bid/offer spread.

In short this report is total bollocks. The question is, is it the committee or the newspaper getting it wrong?

10 thoughts on “That’s pretty good work really”

  1. It may be true but a statistical phenomenen. There’s always a chance of ending up ahead on any transactions. And by the nature of their ‘enterprise’ they may well be ‘the other way’ from the usual players in the market. If you’re buying when others are selling & selling when they’re buying it’s good way to make money.

  2. The question to ask is whose purpose is served by this report.

    “Terrorists are in the money markets”= “Therefore we must know even more about everybody’s finances”. And/or “Cash should be abolished”.

    That sort of style.

  3. The powers that be want to scare us with ISIS. They don’t really believe ISIS is a threat. Ironically, they’re wrong.

  4. Bloke in North Dorset

    “….. along with siphoned off pension payments……”
    AKA taxes. Perhaps a bit steep at 100% but aren’t there some in this country who want to do the same and “invest” it in their pet projects? Something to do with a Courageous State that knows better than individuals what’s best for them, as I understand it. A bit like radical Islam.

    As to the currency markets, if its money laundering they could be rigged as a way of funding ISIL.

  5. Interested

    ISIS by itself is not yet a threat to us as a whole, although it is a threat to individuals of us. It may become a threat if it gets serious dirty weaponry.

    However, ISIS in league with the snivelling scum who infest our media, politics and public (dis)services is a threat.

  6. Are they saying that there was $429m in cash in the bank in Mosul? Because surely thats the only way they are getting their hands on any money ‘in’ a bank once its been looted. They are hardly likely to be able to take over a banks electronic systems and them get some other bank outside the warzone to accept a transfer are they?

  7. Agreed, Jim.
    Unless the Iraq bank had some seriously shit accounting.

    I question whether ISIS needs to launder money at all, being a “state” that can start its own bank.

  8. @BF

    Yep, it all depends. Sure, as a rag tag bunch of twats driving round the ME in stolen Humvees and Toyotas, no threat. Though we still really ought to take them seriously.

    Infiltrating the UK, with the aid of treasonous fifth columnists, self-haters and naiive do-gooders, is a different matter.

  9. @Jim: Agreed. Any loot will have been in the form of physical assets – dollar bills, treasury bills, gold. I doubt that they make any money in the markets, but some friendly ME institution is making a hefty turn laundering their swag. If you start with nothing and steal $429 million which you turn into clean money at the rate of $20 million a month, then it all looks like profit.

  10. “Because n00bs usually get fleeced when they enter currency and stock markets, not make a profit.”

    Undoubtedly, but look at it this way – all the money they’re funneling is a) stolen in the first place and b) worthless paper to them.

    Even if they lose 3/4 of it they still come out ahead.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *