Tuesday 27 May 2008

House Of Cards - P2

A Norwegian brokerage firm said Wednesday that it would file for bankruptcy protection after losing its license because of accusations that it made four remote towns victims of subprime lending problems in the United States.

Norway's main financial regulator said the firm, Terra Securities, violated the "good code of conduct" by failing to adequately inform four towns near the Arctic Circle of possible risks related to complex investment securities that it sold them.

The four Norwegian towns — Rana, Hemnes, Hattfjelldal and Narvik — lost about 350 million kroner, or $64 million, from investments that had fallen to less than 55 percent of their original value.

The towns invested 451 million kroner in collateralized debt obligations created by Citigroup and sold by Terra Securities.

Norway's finance minister, Kristin Halvorsen, said at a news conference in Oslo that the government was unlikely to bail out the towns, Bloomberg News reported.

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