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A first-hand account of the oversight of the big banks in the wake of the financial crisis, from the Federal Reserve examiner who refused to be silenced In 2011, Carmen Segarra took a job as at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York supervising for Goldman Sachs. It was an opportunity, she believed, to monitor the big bank's behavior in order to avoid another financial crisi A first-hand account of the oversight of the big banks in the wake of the financial crisis, from the Federal Reserve examiner who refused to be silenced In 2011, Carmen Segarra took a job as at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York supervising for Goldman Sachs. It was an opportunity, she believed, to monitor the big bank's behavior in order to avoid another financial crisis. Segarra was shocked to discover, however, the full extent of the relationship between Goldman and the Fed. She began making secret recordings that later became the basis of a This American Life episode that exposed the Fed's ineffectiveness in holding banks accountable. In Noncompliant, Segarra chronicles her experience blowing open the doors on the relationship between the big banks and the government bodies set up to regulate them. As we mark the tenth anniversary of the 2008 financial crisis, Noncompliant shows us how little has changed, and offers an urgent call for real reforms.


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A first-hand account of the oversight of the big banks in the wake of the financial crisis, from the Federal Reserve examiner who refused to be silenced In 2011, Carmen Segarra took a job as at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York supervising for Goldman Sachs. It was an opportunity, she believed, to monitor the big bank's behavior in order to avoid another financial crisi A first-hand account of the oversight of the big banks in the wake of the financial crisis, from the Federal Reserve examiner who refused to be silenced In 2011, Carmen Segarra took a job as at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York supervising for Goldman Sachs. It was an opportunity, she believed, to monitor the big bank's behavior in order to avoid another financial crisis. Segarra was shocked to discover, however, the full extent of the relationship between Goldman and the Fed. She began making secret recordings that later became the basis of a This American Life episode that exposed the Fed's ineffectiveness in holding banks accountable. In Noncompliant, Segarra chronicles her experience blowing open the doors on the relationship between the big banks and the government bodies set up to regulate them. As we mark the tenth anniversary of the 2008 financial crisis, Noncompliant shows us how little has changed, and offers an urgent call for real reforms.

30 review for Noncompliant: A Lone Whistleblower Exposes the Giants of Wall Street

  1. 4 out of 5

    Blue Critter

    Good read, provides a much needed insider perspective. I was disappointed by the subjectivity. A lot of the book is spent describing meetings with Goldman-Sachs, Federal Reserve Bank, and other regulatory staff. Mostly the descriptions are interpretations of body language, facial expression, and tone of voice of attendees. Things are better later in the book, possibly because she could rely on audio recordings of the meetings. Other discrepancies are troubling. She refers to the head of the Feder Good read, provides a much needed insider perspective. I was disappointed by the subjectivity. A lot of the book is spent describing meetings with Goldman-Sachs, Federal Reserve Bank, and other regulatory staff. Mostly the descriptions are interpretations of body language, facial expression, and tone of voice of attendees. Things are better later in the book, possibly because she could rely on audio recordings of the meetings. Other discrepancies are troubling. She refers to the head of the Federal Reserve Board not as the Chairman, but as president. She names an official as Sean Gerald O'Reilly, but the footnote is to Gerald Corrigan. She claims her salary is from taxpayers, but the Federal Reserve is self-funded. OK, maybe this is nitpicking, or perhaps they needed to publish quickly before they were hit by a restraining order. Some of the best comments are toward the end and are about the legal system "... the US court system is a forum for men of means to settle their differences ... The general population turns to the courts in the hopes it's something more than that ... sometimes it is - just enough times to keep hope alive ... I knew better and was under no such illusions." Since this is a book review, perhaps the discussions can cover some of the "coulda, shoulda" topics.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Rob Tsai

    Carmen Segarra, a trained attorney, joined the Federal Reserve Bank of New York to regulate the banking industry, in particular around compliance and conflicts of interest policies. She was appointed to supervise Goldman Sachs, and she shares her story of trying to investigate whether Goldman had a conflicts of interest policy and other compliance regulations — and she shares how she was stymied by her own colleagues and supervisors at the Federal Reserve, some of whom went on to later work for G Carmen Segarra, a trained attorney, joined the Federal Reserve Bank of New York to regulate the banking industry, in particular around compliance and conflicts of interest policies. She was appointed to supervise Goldman Sachs, and she shares her story of trying to investigate whether Goldman had a conflicts of interest policy and other compliance regulations — and she shares how she was stymied by her own colleagues and supervisors at the Federal Reserve, some of whom went on to later work for Goldman. A few of her investigations centered around conflicts of interest around representing both sides of an M&A transaction (Kinder Morgan / El Paso), as well as an acquisition of the Spanish bank Santander (which had a closing condition that the buyer, Goldman, notify and get prior approval from the regulators — which they failed to do). Segarra was eventually fired, for not kowtowing to her colleagues and bosses. I’m not sure they were her direct supervisors, as the Fed apparently had set up an organization structure where there were Relationship Managers that owned the relationship with the bank being regulated, and there were the Risk/Compliance Specialists that were tasked with the investigations and the findings. Even just reading about that organization plan, I’m not sure how anything could get done — and Segarra suspects that was the point. From her telling, the Relationship Managers were keen on protecting Goldman’s interests and subverting the investigations that the compliance and risk teams were doing. And it was the Relationship Managers that blocked her from doing her job. The most frustrating thing to read was when she filed a wrongful termination lawsuit, the judge who was ordered to preside over it, Ronnie Abrams, failed to disclose a conflict (that her husband was a lawyer for Goldman Sachs), and the judge ruled against Segarra. If you liked reading Michael Lewis’ The Big Short, this could be a welcome addition to your queue.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Mark Koppelkam

    Odd duck gets thrown into hot mess that is the Federal Reserve. They have such a great record of oversight (not). What could go wrong for a conscientious employee? Way too much minute by minute office drama for me. Important story though.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Patricia Curren

    Being unfamiliar with banking terms, this book was a slow read for me, but so incredibly worth it. This account of a woman who was hired to be certain Goldman Sachs was following our country's banking regulations is a frightening tale of how the big banks are still not conforming to those regulations, even after the economic disaster of 2008. At great sacrifice to herself, Carmen Segarra did her level best to work within the system. She was thwarted at every turn. To ensure no spoilers, I won't Being unfamiliar with banking terms, this book was a slow read for me, but so incredibly worth it. This account of a woman who was hired to be certain Goldman Sachs was following our country's banking regulations is a frightening tale of how the big banks are still not conforming to those regulations, even after the economic disaster of 2008. At great sacrifice to herself, Carmen Segarra did her level best to work within the system. She was thwarted at every turn. To ensure no spoilers, I won't go further into her story, but the events described in this book are a must read for all of us as consumers of American banking products.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Seth

    Noncompliant is an infuriating and frustrating true story of the incompetence of the regulatory arm of the NY Federal Reserve. The author was a senior examiner in charge of overseeing Goldman Sachs at the NY Fed for a little over seven months before being fired for trying to do her job. The book details that since the beginning of her career at the NY Fed her job was systematically obstructed, how the NY Fed colluded with Goldman Sachs, how her career came to an end, and how her life will never Noncompliant is an infuriating and frustrating true story of the incompetence of the regulatory arm of the NY Federal Reserve. The author was a senior examiner in charge of overseeing Goldman Sachs at the NY Fed for a little over seven months before being fired for trying to do her job. The book details that since the beginning of her career at the NY Fed her job was systematically obstructed, how the NY Fed colluded with Goldman Sachs, how her career came to an end, and how her life will never be the same. [Thanks to NetGalley.com and the publisher for an ARC]

  6. 4 out of 5

    Donnagordon9

    Although this book is about exciting as you’d expect a book about the banking industry to be, it is an important book. We all need to be aware of the dishonesty and corruption that are described in this book. When such things are ignored, they then thrive. Dishonesty and corruption should never be allowed to thrive.

  7. 5 out of 5

    John Machata

    Scary expose showing how big financial players like Goldman Sachs violate laws and regulations in order to profit from blatantly illegal market manipulation and governmental agencies like the Federal Reserve who fail to execute their obligation to curtail such activity.

  8. 5 out of 5

    David Riseley

    Sometimes I wasn't sure how credible the author was. I believe her story but sometimes I could see how the other people at the table could dislike working with her. I listened to the audiobook version from Hatchet. The affected accent of the reader and her manner of reading was a negative. Sometimes I wasn't sure how credible the author was. I believe her story but sometimes I could see how the other people at the table could dislike working with her. I listened to the audiobook version from Hatchet. The affected accent of the reader and her manner of reading was a negative.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Warren Mcpherson

    An inside story of the resistance of Goldman Sachs to ethics or regulation told from the perspective of a lawyer hired as a Federal Reserve regulator. The book sticks to the evidence, the reader is left to contemplate the implications. The story is well told and powerful.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Anandh Sundar

    Regulatory capture arises due to revolving doors and information asymmetry. In this book, an ex NY-FED bank examiner narrates her story on how the Goldman Sachs banking risk review was derailed by her colleagues. Unlike movies, this one does not have an happy ending but is an eye opener.

  11. 5 out of 5

    A Barron

    I’ve often wondered how a person navigates through an environment of systematic corruption. How does a person cope with mounting pressure? What factors ultimately led the person to seek justice? Who can the person trust? Carmen Segarra provides a page-turning true story packed with repetitive meetings, attempts to intimidate and Federal doublespeak. Thankfully, she was able to tap into her previous industry experience, collegiate network and family for comfort and guidance through the whole ordea I’ve often wondered how a person navigates through an environment of systematic corruption. How does a person cope with mounting pressure? What factors ultimately led the person to seek justice? Who can the person trust? Carmen Segarra provides a page-turning true story packed with repetitive meetings, attempts to intimidate and Federal doublespeak. Thankfully, she was able to tap into her previous industry experience, collegiate network and family for comfort and guidance through the whole ordeal. Recommend. This book is for anyone interested in the importance of economic transparency and accountability, which is critically owed to the US consumer.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Tara

  13. 5 out of 5

    Edoardo

  14. 4 out of 5

    Daniel Beunza

  15. 4 out of 5

    Lexey

  16. 5 out of 5

    Alexa Stark

  17. 4 out of 5

    Jignesh Khadela

  18. 4 out of 5

    Duncan

  19. 4 out of 5

    Willem J Roux

  20. 4 out of 5

    Lynn Wheeler

  21. 4 out of 5

    Markus

  22. 5 out of 5

    Bryan D.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Allison6876

  24. 5 out of 5

    Gracie Raver

  25. 5 out of 5

    Yuanyuan Tang

  26. 4 out of 5

    Maximilien Guerrero

  27. 4 out of 5

    M

  28. 5 out of 5

    Fred Etzinger

  29. 4 out of 5

    Ben Armel

  30. 5 out of 5

    Joan Fujimura

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