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TheStreet Open House

Freeport's Energy Deal: The Real Reason Behind It

This means perverting any and every news item that carries the clear message that commodities prices are going higher. So a story about an energy-intensive copper producer spending $9 billion to hedge against soaring energy costs is transformed into "a bold bid to diversify into the U.S. energy sector."

This leaves still one question unanswered for inquiring minds. If this was actually a prudent, logical move by Freeport; why did its share price immediately get hammered after the announcement of this deal? One could offer at least two alternatives to the drivel presented by the Corporate Media.

At the top of the list is simple manipulation. Between Wall Street's abominable trading algorithms and Washington's Plunge Protection Team, if the Powers That Be decide that a certain stock listing should be driven down (or up) over any short-term period, it's simply a matter of picking a number, and then point-and-click.

With Wall Street and Washington both having huge incentives to get investor dollars out of commodity markets (and into various forms of banker scams, like U.S. Treasuries), this tag-team could have easily kneecapped Freeport as retribution for drawing attention to economic dynamics, which this cabal wants to conceal at all costs.

Of course, they aren't the only ones who might be looking to "punish" the company after this announcement. The other prime suspects responsible for the plunge in Freeport's share price could be enraged (former) shareholders. Senior management stands to collect hundreds of millions of dollars for themselves for spinning back in the same corporate asset that the company spun out: McMoRan Exploration -- the "McMoRan" in what used to be Freeport-McMoRan.

It's certainly understandable that many shareholders would be overwhelmed with nausea as they contemplated senior management reaping millions for correcting a past mistake. Presumably, management also rewarded themselves with fat bonuses when McMoRan Exploration was originally spun out.

This highlights a much broader issue of corporate governance: the need to pass a law against any sort of bonus, commission or other incremental salary gain being paid to any member of senior management of a corporation for doing nothing more than pulling out their checkbook and writing a check. That subject, however, will have to be left for another day.

-- The writes owns no shares of any companies mentioned.

This commentary comes from an independent investor or market observer as part of TheStreet guest contributor program. The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of TheStreet or its management.
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