No One Would Listen: A True Financial Thriller

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9781455819119: No One Would Listen: A True Financial Thriller
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Bernie Madoff was a king of the financial world and a beloved philanthropist. But very few people knew that he was quietly running the largest hedge fund in the world, a fund that eventually spread to over forty nations and handled tens of billions of dollars.

Harry Markopolos was a little-known number cruncher at a Boston equity derivatives firm analyzing investment products. A marketer for that firm, Frank Casey, handed Harry a prospectus outlining Madoff’s strategy and asked him to create a similar product. Harry sat down and looked at the numbers. The numbers didn’t add up. For the next ten years, the investigative team Markopolos recruited warned the government, the industry, and the financial press that the largest and most successful hedge fund in the industry was a total fraud and that the respected and admired Bernie Madoff was a crook. But no one would listen.

This is the thrilling, complete story of the pursuit of the greatest financial criminal in history. The incredible investigation takes listeners inside the financial industry, revealing the never-before-told stories behind the headlines. No One Would Listen is the frighteningly true story of massive fraud, governmental incompetence, and criminal collusion that has changed thousands of lives forever—as well as the world’s financial system.

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Harry Markopolos and his team of financial sleuths discuss first-hand how they cracked the Madoff Ponzi scheme

No One Would Listen is the exclusive story of the Harry Markopolos-lead investigation into Bernie Madoff and his $65 billion Ponzi scheme. While a lot has been written about Madoff's scam, few actually know how Markopolos and his team-affectionately called "The Fox Hounds" by Markopolos himself, uncovered what Madoff was doing years before this financial disaster reached its pinnacle. Unfortunately, no one listened, until the damage of the world's largest financial fraud ever was irreversible.

Since that time, Markopolos openly has testified and questioned the enforcement and fraud investigation capabilities of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), shared a sliver of this page-turning story with 60 Minutes, and become perhaps the world's most visible and insightful whistleblower on fraud and conflicts of interest in financial markets.

Throughout the book, Markopolos and his Fox Hounds tell their first-hand story of investigating Madoff-with the help of bestselling author David Fisher. They explain how they discovered the fraud, and then how they provided credible and detailed evidence to major newspapers and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) many times between 2000 and 2008, only to have his warnings ignored repeatedly by the SEC.

  • Provides a firsthand account of how Markopolos uncovered Madoff's scam years before it actually fell apart
  • Discusses how the SEC missed the red flags raised by Markopolos
  • Describes how Madoff was enabled by investors and fiduciaries alike
  • The only book to tell the story of Madoff's scam and the SEC's failings by those who saw both first hand

Despite repeated written and verbal warnings to the SEC by Harry Markopolos, Bernie Madoff was allowed to continue his operations. No One Would Listen paints a vivid portrait of Markopolos and his determined team of financial sleuths, and what impact they will have on financial markets and financial regulation for decades to come.

A Timeline of a Take-Down
Amazon-exclusive content from author Harry Markopolos

How long did it take to uncover and expose a $40 billion crook? Ten years.

1998-1999
· 1998: My Firm “discovers” Bernie Madoff
· Late 1999: I am asked to reverse engineer Madoff’s returns

2000
· I knew he was a fraudster in 5 minutes
· May: Submission to SEC Boston Regional Office’s Director of Enforcement with 12 Red Flags

2001
· January: Team Member Frank Casey recruits MAR Hedge investigative journalist Michael Ocrant onto the team during a chance meeting in Barcelona, Spain
· March: My 2nd SEC Submission on how I think Madoff is running the scheme and his investment process
· I offer to go undercover to assist the SEC
· Apr: Michael Ocrant interviews Madoff
· May: MAR Hedge publishes Madoff expose, “Madoff Tops Charts; skeptics ask how”; Barron’s publishes, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell: Bernie Madoff is so secretive, he even asks investors to keep mum”

2002
· Jun: Key trip to UK, France & Switzerland; met with 20 Fund of Funds & Private Client Banks: 14 have Madoff and report “special access to Madoff”; two have admitted Madoff losses – Dexia Asset Management and Fix Family Office; 12 have not admitted Madoff losses and all 12 were turned into SEC Chairwoman on Feb. 5, 2009; off-Shore funds attract three types of investors who won’t report losses or file SIPC claims with the US government

2003-2004
· E-mail records of investigation lost; attempting to recover data from non-functioning hard drives

2005
· Jun: Frank Casey discovers Madoff attempting to borrow money from European banks (first sign that Madoff scheme is in trouble)
· Oct: Boston SEC’s Ed Manion arranges for 3rd SEC Submission
· Oct: Meeting with Boston SEC Branch Chief Mike Garrity, who quickly investigates, finds irregularities, and forwards my submission to SEC’s New York Office
· Nov: Boston Whistleblower calls NYC Branch Chief Meaghen Cheung and reveals his identity
· Nov: 29 Red Flags submitted
· Dec: I doubt NYC SEC’s ability, fear for my life, and contact Wall Street Journal and go to local law enforcement for protection

2006
· Jan: Integral Partners’ $40 million derivatives Ponzi Scheme goes to trial five years and five months after discovery, causing us to further doubt SEC competence
· Sep: Chicago Board Options Exchange VP tells me that several OEX option traders also think Madoff is a fraudster; if SEC had called the CBOE’s marketing office, they would have cooperated

2007
· Feb 28: Neil Chelo obtains a Madoff portfolio which shows zero ability to earn a return
· Jun: Casey obtains Wickford Fund LP prospectus showing Madoff is short of cash and offering a 3:1 leverage via bank loans, another clear warning sign that Madoff is running short of cash
· Jul: Chelo obtains Fairfield Greenwich Sentry LP financial statements for 2004 – 2006 and discovers three year-end audits with three different auditors in three different countries!
· Aug: Chelo conducts a 45 minute telephone interview with Fairfield Greenwich’s head of risk management; hedge funds all lose money except for Madoff!

2008
· Apr 2: Undelivered e-mail to Sokobin, SEC’s Director of Risk Assessment, entitled, “$30 Billion Equity Derivatives Hedge Fund Fraud in New York”
· Dec 11: Madoff runs out of money, turns himself in
· Dec 12: SEC insider calls me and warns “watch your back, Operation Cover-up has begun.”

2009
· Feb 4: My U.S. House testimony followed by SEC’s senior staff and FINRA acting CEO
· Sep 4: 477-page SEC IG Report on the Madoff Fiasco released
· Sep 10: I testify before US Senate Banking Committee with SEC IG

From the Back Cover:

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

"How to improve financial regulation and reduce the federal budget deficit, all in one fell swoop? Fire the SEC. Hire Harry Markopolos."
James Grant, Grant's Interest Rate Observer

Praise for the New York Times bestselling... USA Today bestselling... Wall Street Journal bestselling...

NO ONE WOULD LISTEN

"Harry Markopolos is a hero . . . The silver lining in the Madoff collapse, if there could be such a thing, is that for at least one moment in time, the SEC has been exposed. And for his role in making that happen, Harry Markopolos deserves all of our thanks."
From the Foreword by David Einhorn, President and founder, Greenlight Capital, author of Fooling Some of the People All of the Time

"Reading Markopolos's fascinating account of his relentless pursuit of the man behind the world's largest fraud scheme, I could not help but marvel at the resemblance to my own story. Both Markopolos and I were by turns dogged, shocked, frustrated and treated like pariahs. . . . his account is a salutary tale and the detailed regulatory lessons offered in the epilogue deserve attention. Let us hope, this time, he gets it."
Sherron Watkins, The Enron Whistleblower, as reviewed in the Financial Times

"No One Would Listen shows what it was like to see flames when most people did not. On five separate occasions starting in 2000, Mr. Markopolos made submissions to the Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) about Mr. Madoff. His most detailed report, in 2005, outlined 30 reasons to suspect Mr. Madoff of being a fraud. The SEC's failure to follow up properly was horribly costly. The frustration of the outsider could not be better expressed."
The Economist

For additional information and resources, visit www.noonewouldlisten.com

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