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555 California St. in San Franciso, California, is partially owned by the Trump Organization. Morgan Stanley is a tenant.

The Palmer Report was temporarily suspended from twitter, apparently because they had “asserted that Donald Trump would spend the rest of his life in prison.” Reportedly others have been suspended, as well [1]. This raises the question of if Twitter is defending Donald Trump? If so, why? While the obvious answer is that Trump is good for Twitter business, it raises the question of who owns Twitter? Do they have Trump or Russia ties? The answer is yes. Is this why people are being suspended? Not necessarily, but it is worth noting.

Below are some connections between some of Twitter’s major owners and Russia and/or Trump. There are almost certainly more. Russian sanctions? What sanctions? The same attitude kept sanctions from working against Hitler. Sanctions could have prevented or shortened World War II, if they had been allowed to work. The current sanctions have too many loopholes, but there is something called the spirit of the law, which is beyond the letter of the law. If the sanctions were more thorough and the spirit of the sanctions followed, Crimea would have been returned to the Ukraine years ago. Boycott those who continue to invest or do business with Russia, to the extent possible. Ditto for Trump connections.

Vanguard Group, Inc., owns 7.13% of Twitter, Morgan Stanley Investment Management owns 5.84% (up 35.18%) and BlackRock holds 3.61% (up 9%). [2] These are some of the large owners where Russian and/or Trump connections were found. Others may or may not have some, as well.

As reported by Bloomberg, in August 2017, BlackRock was buying up VEB (Vneshecombank) in secondary markets. VEB isn’t allowed to sell new long-term debt in euros or dollars, but they are reportedly allowed to buy those issued priort to 2014. BlackRock’s holdings increased to $124 million in comparison to around $1 million when sanctions against Russia were first introduced. As of August 2017, Vanguard Group was still holding $9.5 million in VEB, down from $61 million in 2014.[3]

Remember VEB? https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2017/05/26/russia-veb-bank-in-nyc-served-as-cover-for-spy-for-spy-recruiting-trump-advisor-kushner-met-with-veb-head-in-december/

Vanguard Group Inc. had recently bought shares in Russia’s Rusal, at the time Deripaska was sanctioned.[4] They apparently still have them.

The Trump-Mnuchin treasury stated that “the path for the United States to provide sanctions relief is through divestment and relinquishment of control of RUSAL by any Specially Designated Nationals, including Oleg Deripaska.” [5] This looks like a shake-down/asset-stripping of Deripaska. For whose benefit? To let him take the fall in the Trump Russia Affair? Is it to benefit Potanin? Or, perhaps to benefit Vanguard Group and/or others? The stock value has plummeted and it will be cheap to purchase. If it stays public the value would increase again once sanctions are lifted. If private, the aluminum mining business is valuable, in and of itself.

Ireland is apparently being used to skirt around some of the impacts of sanctions. The Irish Independent reported that “Moscow bank uses Dublin SPV route to expand lending” by Jake Rudnitsky and Donal Griffin, 9 May 2018. Morgan Stanley was among the biggest buyers, they report. [6] The bank is CREDIT BANK OF MOSCOW (public joint-stock company) and the Irish (shell) company is “CBOM Finance p.l.c., a public company with limited liability incorporated under the laws of Ireland“. The bank has close connections to Rosneft. [7]

Morgan Stanley still has its offices in Russia. As well, it is a tenant at 555 California Street, which is owned by Vornado Realty Trust (70%) and the The Trump Organization(30%) [8]

Vornado Realty Trust is a real estate investment trust formed in Maryland, with its primary office in New York City. The company invests in office buildings and street retail in Manhattan….” They own(ed) “43–47% of 666 Fifth Avenue (~53–57% owned by Kushner Companies…” [9] However, Vornado are reportedly trying to sell their part back to Kushner Companies (Jared Kushner family). [10]

Morgan Stanley, BlackRock and Vanguard could benefit from various Trump policies, as well. More generally, government policy impacts them. In short, they may want to brown nose Trump. See some fines paid by Morgan Stanley and US Senator Heinrich statement on Dodd Frank rollback further below. [11]

Update: “The files show that in 2011, VTB funded a $191m investment in Twitter“. See: “Russia funded Facebook and Twitter investments through Kushner investor Institutions with close links to Kremlin financed stakes through investor in Trump son-in-law’s venture, leaked files reveal” by Jon Swaine and Luke Harding https://www.theguardian.com/news/2017/nov/05/russia-funded-facebook-twitter-investments-kushner-investor

US Senator Heinrich diagram – see link at note 11.

Top photo 555 California Street exported from Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/555_California_Street

[1] “Twitter reinstates Palmer Report and apologizes“, by Bill Palmer | 9:30 pm EDT May 28, 2018 Read the article here: http://www.palmerreport.com/analysis/twitter-reinstates-palmer-report-apologizes/10440/

[2] As reported by CNN Money: http://money.cnn.com/quote/shareholders/shareholders.html?symb=TWTR&subView=institutional

[3] “Russian Bank Linked to Trump Storm Lures BlackRock, Fidelity” By Alastair Marsh and Sally Bakewell August 7, 2017 https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-08-07/russian-bank-at-center-of-trump-storm-lures-blackrock-fidelity

Morgan Stanley Russia: https://www.bloomberg.com/research/stocks/private/snapshot.asp?privcapId=41267970

[4] “Panicking Investors Wonder If U.S. Ire Dooms All Russian Stocks” By Natasha Doff April 9, 2018, 9:09 AM EDT Updated on April 10, 2018, 12:00 AM EDT https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-04-09/panicking-investors-wonder-if-u-s-ire-dooms-all-russian-stocks

[5] https://www.treasury.gov/resource-center/faqs/Sanctions/Pages/faq_other.aspx#576

[6] “Moscow bank uses Dublin SPV route to expand lending” by Jake Rudnitsky and Donal Griffin, 9 May 2018. https://www.independent.ie/business/irish/moscow-bank-uses-dublin-spv-route-to-expand-lending-36888003.html

About Credit Bank of Moscow: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Credit_Bank_of_Moscow

[7] Excerpted from Prospectus: “U.S.$600,000,000 7.50% Loan Participation Notes due 2027 to be issued by, but with limited recourse to, CBOM Finance p.l.c. for the sole purpose of financing a subordinated loan to CREDIT BANK OF MOSCOW (public joint-stock company) Issue Price: 100%
CBOM Finance p.l.c., a public company with limited liability incorporated under the laws of Ireland,….. Joint Lead Managers
The date of this Prospectus is 3 April 2017….
Although none of CBM’s subsidiaries is a U.S. person, some entities, as well as the Issuer, are EU persons and are therefore required to comply with the EU sanctions, including not conducting business with any sanctioned persons. None of the proceeds of the issue of the Notes will be used to fund activities or persons that are subject to sanctions introduced by the U.S. and the EU. As many other Russian banks and credit institutions, in the ordinary course of business CBM transacts with Vnesheconombank (VEB), Gazprombank, Sberbank and VTB, which are CBM’s correspondent bank counterparties. All transactions with these financial institutions are reviewed for sanctions compliance purposes. The prevailing part of transactions with these banks are Rouble transfers limited to the territory of the Russian Federation, thus, are permissible pursuant to applicable law
.” CBOM FINANCE P.L.C. – U.S.$600,000,000 7.50% Loan Participation Notes due 2027 (03 April 2017)“, is from Irish Public Sector Information licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) licence. Find the entire document here: https://www.centralbank.ie/regulation/industry-market-sectors/securities-markets/prospectus-regulation/prospectuses/cbom-finance-p.l.c (Emphasis our owm.)

[8] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/555_California_Street

[9] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vornado_Realty_Trust

[10] https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/06/nyregion/kushners-vornado-666-fifth-avenue.html

[11] “Morgan Stanley Agrees to Pay $2.6 Billion Penalty in Connection with Its Sale of Residential Mortgage Backed Securities“, Thursday, February 11, 2016

FINRA Sanctions Morgan Stanley $13 Million in Fines and Restitution for Failing to Supervise Sales of UITs For Release“:  Monday, September 25, 2017

From US Senator Heinrich, Joint Economic Committee, Democratic web site:
Dodd-Frank Roll Back Bill: A Windfall for Big Banks

Just 10 years after the worst financial crisis in over a century, the Senate is considering a bill that would dramatically roll back important market protections on our nation’s largest banks. The Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (S.2155) would undo many of the safeguards put in place under Dodd-Frank, threatening to once again leave Main Street on the hook for poor decisions on Wall Street.

The bill’s chief proposal is to unwind the Dodd-Frank established oversight tools—Enhanced Prudential Standards (EPSs)—that allow regulators to monitor financial institutions, like those that collapsed during the financial crisis. These tools enable regulators to better assess a bank’s health and prevent large financial institutions from spreading risk at taxpayers’ expense.

The bill would increase the asset threshold at which EPSs apply from $50 billion to $250 billion, effectively deregulating 25 of the 38 largest banks. Among those excluded would be foreign banks operating in the United States that have repeatedly betrayed the trust of American consumers and engaged in illicit banking practices.

And though the bill would maintain most EPSs for banks with more than $250 billion in assets, some of those standards would be lightened, including requirements for “stress tests” that help regulators pinpoint threats before they snowball into a crisis. To date, several banks have failed these tests and have been required to improve their risk positions.

The bill would compromise the gains made under Dodd-Frank at a time when the largest banks are bigger than ever and the current economic landscape is mired in uncertainty, with the GOP tax bill likely to worsen income inequality and hike taxes on working families by the time it is fully implemented. Protections put in place under Dodd-Frank encourage banks to focus on acting as economic engines serving consumers, small businesses, and underbanked communities. Without these protections, banks are freer to gamble with taxpayer funds, creating dangerous financial products with little benefit for the average American.

Banks are not buckling under the weight of burdensome regulation. A Dodd-Frank roll back would give a free pass to banks that received billions of dollars in bailout funds during the crisis, despite the fact that nearly two-thirds of Americans agree that big banks should still be subject to tough oversight. Risking the financial security of American consumers to give Wall Street another break, just a decade after the Great Recession, would be short-sighted and risky. https://www.jec.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/democrats/2018/3/dodd-frank-roll-back-bill-a-windfall-for-big-banks