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    Alert

    H.R.3482 – New Cosponsor – Representative Steve Scalise [R-LA1] has signed on to co-sponsor H.R.3482 – Restoring Main Street Investor Protection and Confidence Act

    S.1725 – New Cosponsor – Senator Robert “Bob” Casey [D-PA] has signed on to co-sponsor the sister Senate bill S. 1725

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    Alert:

    Congressman Leonard Lance [R-NJ7] signs on to support H.R. 3482 – Restoring Main Street Investor Protection and Confidence Act.

    If your representative is currently not co-sponsoring H.R.3482 (click here for a list of current co-sponsors), please take a moment now to write to your congressman at www.fixsipcnow.org

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    ALERT:

    H.R.3482 New Co-sponsors– Congressman Michael Burgess [R-TX26] and Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter [D-NH1} have signed onto support H.R. 3482 – Restoring Main Street Investor Protection and Confidence Act.

    If your congressional representative has not yet signed on to H.R.3482 (click here for list of current co-sponsors), please call and write your representative urging they take action and sign on. Visit www.fixsipcnow.org to submit your letter on-line and for your representative’s contact information.

    S.1725 New Co-sponsors – Senator Mark Pryor [D-AR] and Senator Bill Nelson [D-FL] have signed onto support S.1725 – Restoring Main Street Investor Protection and Confidence Act.

    If your Senator have not yet signed on to S.1725 (click here for the list of current co-sponsors), please call and write your Senators urging they take action and sign on.

    Click here to submit your letter on-line and for your Senator’s contact information.

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    Tables turned: Madoff letter to U.S. judge appears to be fake

    Bernard Madoff’s massive Ponzi scheme relied on reams of fake trading documents to fool regulators for decades. Now he may be the victim of a forgery himself, after a U.S. judge on Wednesday denied a bizarre motion supposedly filed by Madoff that claimed the U.S. intelligence agencies used “bio-electric sensors” to influence the case against him. The letter, which was made public alongside the judge’s order, appeared to be a fake. Madoff’s signature did not match his typical one, and the letter contained numerous typing mistakes and a handwritten rant. More on Reuters here.

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    Kotlikoff: Investors at Risk of Wipeout, SIPC a Fraud

    Economist Laurence Kotlikoff is calling on all Americans to close their brokerage accounts immediately because of the risk of a total wipeout — a risk he says stems from a massive Wall Street insurance scam perpetrated by the Securities Investor Protection Corp. (SIPC). “SIPC, a brokerage ‘insurance’ arm of Wall Street, has been and remains today engaged in insurance fraud,” Kotlikoff told ThinkAdvisor in a telephone interview. “SIPC claims to insure brokerage accounts. Nothing could be farther from the truth. What it’s really doing is placing all brokerage account holders at extreme risk.” More on Think Advisor here.

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    Picard Can’t Appeal ‘Good Faith’ Madoff Clawback Ruling

    U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff refused on Monday to let the liquidating trustee for Bernard L. Madoff’s defunct firm seek appellate review of a decision weakening clawback suits against investors affected by the Ponzi scheme, saying the cases should not “languish” while the Second Circuit tackles a narrow question of law. Ruling against both Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities LLC trustee Irving Picard and the Securities Investor Protection Corp., Judge Rakoff declined to allow an appeal of a May decision that put the onus on Picard to plead adequately that investors affected by the notorious $65 billion fraud showed a lack of good faith. Picard had asked for an interlocutory appeal on the grounds that the suits could be sent back to “square one” if the appeals court later reversed Judge Rakoff’s holding that the defendants could challenge the assumption that they were sophisticated market participants who, while not necessarily aware of the scheme, breached their duty to investigate suspicious Ponzi scheme returns. More on Law360 here.

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    ALERT:

    Vitter: Appeal for Stanford Ponzi Scheme Victim Fails, Highlights Need to Reform SIPC
    Click here for Senator Vitter’s statement following the July 18th Appeals Court Ruling in the SEC vs SIPC appeal for Stanford Ponzi Scheme Victims. Click here for a copy of the ruling.

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    Taking a Broker to Arbitration

    If you have a problem with your investment broker and you cannot resolve the dispute on your own, you probably won’t get your day in court. But you will be heard, most likely in a conference room somewhere, before a panel of arbitrators. The moment people open a brokerage or investment account, they most likely — and perhaps inadvertently — waive their right to sue. The fine print of most customer agreements almost always contains a clause that says the customer agree to resolve any future disputes through arbitration, largely through the forum operated by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Wall Street’s self-regulatory organization, known as Finra. The mandatory nature of these agreements — which are increasingly appearing in other consumer financial products as well and have been repeatedly blessed by the Supreme Court — is a frequent complaint of consumer advocates. And if you try to avoid brokers’ so-called predispute arbitration clause, you may have little choice but to stow your savings in a mattress. More in the New York Times here.

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