This Day On The Street
Continue to site
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Stanford Bank Seized by Venezuela

By Ben Fox

ST. JOHN'S, Antigua -- Venezuela on Thursday seized a failed bank controlled by Texas billionaire R. Allen Stanford after a run on deposits there, while clients were prevented from withdrawing their money from Stanford International Bank and its affiliates in a half-dozen other countries.

The Venezuelan government said it would immediately put the Caracas-based Stanford Bank SA up for sale and guarantee the remaining savings of some 15,000 Venezuelans, most of them small depositors.

Stanford Scandal

A group of wealthy Venezuelans also hold $2.5 billion in assets at the Antigua-based Stanford International Bank, but their investments are outside the purview of Venezuelan law and will not be protected by Caracas, Banking Superintendent Edgar Hernandez said.

Banking regulators throughout Latin America are scrambling to contain the damage after the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission charged Stanford and three of his companies on Tuesday with committing an $8 billion fraud that lured investors with promises of "improbable and unsubstantiated" high returns on certificates of deposit and other investments.

Depositors walked away empty-handed Wednesday from the bank's headquarters in Antigua after rushing to the Caribbean island only to be told their accounts were frozen and no money could be released.

"I have my life savings here and I'm scared," said Reinaldo Pinto Ramos, 48, a Venezuelan software firm owner who flew in by chartered plane from Caracas with other investors to check on their accounts.

Stanford, 58, is a larger-than-life figure in the Caribbean, using his personal fortune -- estimated at $2.2 billion by Forbes magazine -- to bankroll public works and cricket tournaments.

1 of 4

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • Actionable options commentary and news
  • Real-time trading community
SYM TRADE IT LAST %CHG
AAPL $131.78 -0.20%
FB $80.14 -0.50%
GOOG $539.78 -0.00%
TSLA $251.45 1.62%
YHOO $43.07 -0.71%

Markets

DOW 18,126.12 -36.87 -0.20%
S&P 500 2,120.79 -2.69 -0.13%
NASDAQ 5,097.9760 -8.6170 -0.17%

Partners Compare Online Brokers

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs