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Bailed Out Banks are Financing Cluster Bomb Production

October 30, 2009

A new report from IKV Pax Christi and Netwerk Vlaanderen was recently release that might give more cause for rage directed at US banks. The report is entitled “Worldwide investments in Cluster Munitions: A Shared Responsibility.” One of the more revealing aspects of this report was the fact that some of the US-based banks that were bailout out by taxpayers last year are also financing the production of Cluster Bombs.

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The report found that since January 2007 at least 138 financial institutions from 16 different countries have invested in eight producers of cluster munitions. These companies include: Alliant Techsystems ATK (USA), Hanwha (South Korea), L-3 Communications (USA), Lockheed Martin (USA) Poongsan (South Korea), Roketsan (Turkey), Singapore Technologies Engineering (Singapore) and Textron (USA).

Banks and other financial investment companies were found to be involved in the Cluster Munitions industry in three ways:

  • Investment banking services to companies producing cluster munitions: HSBC, Goldman Sachs, Merril Lynch, Deutsche Bank and JP Morgan Chase provided the largest amount of investment banking services since Jan. 2007
  • Loans to companies producing cluster munitions: Twelve of the largest banks provided 58% of the loans. Bank of America, Citigroup, JP Morgan Chase, Barclays and Goldman Sachs provided the largest amount of loans since Jan. 2007
  • Asset management services that invest in companies producing cluster munitions: Fidelity, Vanguard Group, AXA, BlackRock and T Rowe Price Group provided the largest asset management services based on their portfolio (by summer 2009).

The US banks and other financial institutions that benefited from the taxpayer bailout last year and are funding cluster bomb munitions are Goldman Sachs, Merril Lynch, Bank of America, Citigroup and JP Morgan Chase. Many of these same institutions also gave their CEO’s huge bonuses, despite the taxpayer bailout and now it is documented that they are war profiteers as well.

We mentioned in a posting last week about the US use of Cluster Bombs in the occupation of Afghanistan, despite the fact that over half of the world’s nations are signatories to the Convention on Cluster Bombs. As of now, the US is not a signatory to that convention.

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