Wednesday , 17 April 2024

Believe It Or Not: 147 Financial Institutions Control 40% of the Global Economy

Are the big banks really as powerful as some people say that they are?  Do they really 27106control the global economy?  If you asked most people, they would tell you that governments control the global economy but the fact is that the campaigns of our politicians are funded by the ultra-wealthy, the big banks and the large corporations that they control.  Others would tell you that the Federal Reserve and the rest of the central banks around the world control the global economy but the truth is that the Federal Reserve was established by the bankers and for the benefit of the bankers.  As you will see below, at the very core of the global economy there exists a “super-entity” of financial institutions that control an almost unimaginable amount of wealth and power.  These financial institutions, and the ultra-wealthy individuals behind them, are really the ones that are pulling all the strings.So writes Michael Snyder ( in edited excerpts from his original article* entitled Who Controls The Global Economy? Do Not Underestimate The Power Of The Big Banks. 

[The following article is presented by  Lorimer Wilson, editor of and and the FREE Market Intelligence Report newsletter (sample here – register here) and may have been edited ([ ]), abridged (…) and/or reformatted (some sub-titles and bold/italics emphases) for the sake of clarity and brevity to ensure a fast and easy read. This paragraph must be included in any article re-posting to avoid copyright infringement.]

Snyder goes on to say in further edited, and in some cases paraphrased, excerpts:

In this world money equals power, and the borrower is the servant of the lender.  When you follow the pyramid all the way to the top, it begins to become very clear who really is in control.

In business schools all over America today, instead of dreaming of starting new businesses and contributing something positive to society, most business students are dreaming of going to Wall Street and getting rich.  Wall Street, however, doesn’t actually create or build anything of value for society.  Instead, the bankers make most of their profits by essentially pushing money and paper around.  In a recent article, Chris Martenson commented on this…

“Today, some of the most celebrated individuals and institutions are ensconced within the financial industry; in banks, hedge funds, and private equity firms. Which is odd because none of these firms or individuals actually make anything, which society might point to as additive to our living standards. Instead, these financial magicians harvest value from the rest of society that has to work hard to produce real things of real value.

While the work they do is quite sophisticated and takes a lot of skill, very few of these firms direct capital to new efforts, new products, and new innovations. Instead they either trade in the secondary markets for equities, bonds, derivatives, and the like, which perform the ‘service’ of moving paper from one location to another while generating ‘profits’ or, in the case of banks, they create money out of thin air and lend it out at interest of course.”

Just because they aren’t adding much value to society, however, does not mean that these big banks are not extremely powerful.  In fact, anyone that underestimates that power of these monolithic financial institutions is being quite foolish.

A team of researchers at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich studied the relationships between 37 million companies and investors worldwide, and what they found was absolutely stunning [source here]. [They identified 43,060 transnational corporations [TNCs] and the share ownerships linking them. Then they constructed a model of which companies controlled others through shareholding networks, coupled with each company’s operating revenues, to map the structure of economic power which revealed a core of 1318 companies with interlocking ownerships. Each of the 1318 had ties to two or more other companies, and on average they were connected to 20. What’s more, although they represented 20 per cent of global operating revenues, the 1318 appeared to collectively own through their shares the majority of the world’s large blue chip and manufacturing firms – the “real” economy – representing a further 60 per cent of global revenues.]

When the team further untangled the web of ownership, it found much of it tracked back to a “super-entity” of 147 even more tightly knit companies – all of their ownership was held by other members of the super-entity – that controlled 40 per cent of the total wealth in the network. In effect, less than 1% of the companies were able to control 40% of the entire network.

So exactly who are the companies that are at the core of this “super-entity”? Well, almost all of them are banks or financial institutions.  The following is a list of the 26 “most connected” companies from the study [of which 50% are banks]:

  1. Barclays plc
  2. Capital Group Companies Inc. (Investment Management)
  3. FMR Corporation (Financial Services)
  4. AXA (Investments & Life Insurance)
  5. State Street Corporation (Investment Management)
  6. JP Morgan Chase & Co (Bank)
  7. Legal & General Group plc (Investments & Life Insurance)
  8. Vanguard Group Inc. (Investment Management)
  9. UBS AG (Bank)
  10. Merrill Lynch & Co Inc. (Bank)
  11. Wellington Management Co LLP (Investment Management)
  12. Deutsche Bank AG (Bank)
  13. Franklin Resources Inc. (Investment Management)
  14. Credit Suisse Group (Bank)
  15. Walton Enterprises LLC
  16. Bank of New York Mellon Corp (Bank)
  17. Natixis (Investment Management)
  18. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (Bank)
  19. T Rowe Price Group Inc. (Investment Management)
  20. Legg Mason Inc. (Investment Management)
  21. Morgan Stanley (Bank)
  22. Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. (Bank)
  23. Northern Trust Corporation (Investment Management)
  24. Société Générale (Bank)
  25. Bank of America Corporation (Bank)
  26. Lloyds TSB Group plc (Bank)…
[From my further research on the above much of this information came from an article by Chris Martenson entitled Bankers Own the World which can be read in its entirety here.]

Are you starting to get the idea? The global economy truly is completely dominated by banks and other financial institutions.

In the United States, the big banks are not just content to own other companies anymore.  Now, some of our largest banks are actually starting to get directly into businesses such as “electric power production, oil refining and distribution, owning and operating of public assets such as ports and airports, and even uranium mining”. 

The following is an excerpt from a letter that several members of the U.S. Congress recently sent to Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke:

“We write in regards to the expansion of large banks into what had traditionally been non-financial commercial spheres. Specifically, we are concerned about how large banks have recently expanded their businesses into such fields as electric power production, oil refining and distribution, owning and operating of public assets such as ports and airports, and even uranium mining.

Here are a few examples. Morgan Stanley imported 4 million barrels of oil and petroleum products into the United States in June, 2012. Goldman Sachs stores aluminum in vast warehouses in Detroit as well as serving as a commodities derivatives dealer. This “bank” is also expanding into the ownership and operation of airports, toll roads, and ports. JP Morgan markets electricity in California.

In other words, Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, and Morgan Stanley are no longer just banks – they have effectively become oil companies, port and airport operators, commodities dealers, and electric utilities as well. This is causing unforeseen problems for the industrial sector of the economy. For example, Coca Cola has filed a complaint with the London Metal Exchange that Goldman Sachs was hoarding aluminum. JP Morgan is currently being probed by regulators for manipulating power prices in California, where the “bank” was marketing electricity from power plants it controlled. We don’t know what other price manipulation could be occurring due to potential informational advantages accruing to derivatives dealers who also market and sell commodities. The long shadow of Enron could loom in these activities.” You can read the rest of their letter right here

What can we do about it? Not much.

Do you think that the media will tell us the truth about all of this?  I wouldn’t count on it.  At this point, there are just six giant media corporations that control more than 90% of the news and entertainment that you see on your television and those six giant media corporations are very hesitant to do anything that will damage their corporate owners or their corporate advertisers.

Do you think that our politicians will do anything about all of this?  I wouldn’t count on it.  In national elections, the candidate that raises more money wins more than 80% of the time.  Our politicians know where their bread is buttered, and as history has shown most of them are very good to the guys with the big check books.

As I said at the top of this article, money is power, and according to a report that was released last summer, the global elite have up to 32 TRILLION dollars stashed in offshore banks around the globe. The global economy belongs to them. We are just living in it. Hopefully, however, if enough people start waking up, someday we will see some significant changes…

Please feel free to share what you think by posting a comment below.

[Editor’s Note: The author’s views and conclusions in the above article are unaltered and no personal comments have been included to maintain the integrity of the original post. Furthermore, the views, conclusions and any recommendations offered in this article are not to be construed as an endorsement of such by the editor.]

* (Copyright © 2013 The Economic Collapse)

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