Continuing the analysis of the 9/11/2001 terrorist blitzkrieg, this program analyzes the suspicious stock market action in the days preceding the attacks.
1. The program begins with discussion of allegedly suspicious insider trading in the stocks of the parent companies of United Air Lines and American Air Lines in the days immediately preceding the attack. (“Airline Stock Deals Under U.S. Probe” by Christian Berthelsen; San Francisco Chronicle; 9/18/2001; pp. A1-A9.)
2. Activity in the trading of United’s stock was 25 times its normal level according to Options Clearinghouse Corporation. (Ibid.; p. A9.)
3. Two online brokerage companies (TD Waterhouse and NFS, a subsidiary of Fidelity of Boston) are assisting with the investigation. (“Brokers Help Probe” by Christian Berthelsen; San Francisco Chronicle; 9/21/2001; pp. B1-B4.)
4. The Chicago Board Options Exchange is helping with the deal. (“New Scrutiny of Airlines Options Deals” by Christian Berthelsen; San Francisco Chronicle; 9/19/2001; pp. D1—D3.)
5. Next, the program highlights a rumor of allegedly suspicious action in the stock of a company controlled by Cantor Fitzgerald, a bond firm that was devastated in the attack. (“Possibly Suspicious Trading Alerts U.S., German Officials” by Floyd Norris and Edmund L. Andrews [New York Times]; San Jose Mercury News; 9/17/2001; p. 4C.)
6. Some German analysts believe that trading of stock in big insurance companies was suspicious as well. (Idem.)
7. In addition to the transactions noted above, German market analysts detected what they believed to be unusual and noteworthy action in oil and gold options. (“Suspicious Trading Seen in Attacks” by William Drozdiak [Washington Post]; San Jose Mercury News; 9/23/2001; p. 4A.)
8. An analysis by the San Francisco Chronicle found that short selling in the stocks of United and American Air Lines “outpaced the rise in short selling for all stocks on the New York Stock Exchange—or other major airline stocks as a group on the Big Board.” (“Data Shows Heavy Airline—Stock Short Selling” by Christian Berthelsen; San Francisco Chronicle; 9/22/2001; pp. C1—C2.)
9a. The airline industry found itself facing a severe crisis as a result of significant changes in insurance coverage in the wake of the 9/11 attacks. (“Airline Chaos Looms as Insurers Cancel War Cover” by the international staff; Financial Times; 9/21/2001; p. 1.)
9b. Ernest Backes is arguably Europe’s top expert on money laundering. He is of the opinion that the profits from the short selling went into the Swiss accounts of an organization founded by the late Francois Genoud. The organization referred to is the Bank Al-Taqwa, as Backes made clear in an e-mail sent to Mr. Emory.
Financial expert Ernest Backes of Luxembourg has [studied] white-collar crime in the field of banking for many years. According to him, there are indications of unusual transactions with which the groups [associated with] bin Laden could have earned money. ‘You can, for example, examine whether, within a certain time period there’s been an attack against the securities of a given airline company. Since these securities are safe in a ‘clearing system,’ you can’t get an overall view, who the owner was at a given time.’ . . . According to Backes’ information, the trail leads to Switzerland, to the accounts of an organization that ws founded by the late lawyer Francois Genoud and evidently still survives. Says Backes, ‘One of the grounds for accusation is that this Swiss attorney had the closest connections with the Bin Laden family, that he was an advisor to the family, one of its investment bankers. It’s known for certain, that he supported terrorism and was the estate executor for Hitler and part of the terror milieu.’ [Emphasis added].”
(“Insider Trading Prior to the Terror Attacks in the US?: Speculating on Terror—Who Profited from the Attacks?” by Rolf Bovier & Pierre Matthias; Bayerische Rundfunk Online (BR-Online); 9/25/2001.)
9c. The stunning volume of the suspicious trades was detailed in an article in the right-wing National Review, although the author [predictably] pulls his punches at the end of the article. Note that there was a lot of suspicious trading in the Standard & Poor’s 500 put options. Standard & Poor’s is owned by the McGraw family, who are generations-long allies  of the Bush family.
Were the September 11 hijackers insider traders as well as murderers? The 9/11 Commission’s report has belatedly put paid to the rumor that Osama bin Laden and his accomplices speculated in the stocks and options of vulnerable companies in the weeks before the attacks. The potential profits garnered from such manipulation would have been in the millions.
Truth to tell, if one looked at the trading figures — especially with the benefit of hindsight — for early September, there was a lot to be suspicious about.
Trading in AMR — the ticker for American Airlines’ parent — rang alarm bells, especially in regard to frenetic put-option activity before September 11. A put, in brief, is a contract to sell a certain number of shares at a previously agreed upon “strike” price sometime in the future. The price of the put depends on a number of factors, not least of which is the price of the underlying security. Cautious investors buy puts as insurance if they believe a stock they hold might fall, while speculators exploit their high volatility and relatively low cost to leverage profits if the stock does dive. (A call option is the same, but in reverse, and is oriented towards the bullish).
Some 4,516 put contracts — which could be potentially leveraged into controlling more than 450,000 shares of AMR — traded hands the afternoon before the attacks (compared to 748 calls). Thus, about 85 percent of the day’s options activity involved puts — a massive imbalance rarely seen. When the markets opened for the first time after September 11, AMR plummeted by 39 percent, which would work out to be $4 million profit for the holder or holders of those puts (assuming the “insiders” had bought 4,000 of the contracts). Put it this way, on September 10, 2001, somebody, somewhere, was very, very bearish about AMR’s near-term prospects.
Derivatives trading in UAL (United Airlines’s parent) on the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) on September 6 (and into the next day) exhibited identical characteristics: 4,744 puts on UAL, compared to just 396 calls. By September 10, short interest (essentially, a wager that a stock’s price will fall) in UAL jumped by 40 percent over its level of a month previously. As for AMR, its short interest increased by 20 percent.
The deeper we delve into the murky world of futures the darker the picture apparently becomes . . . One hedge-fund manager whispered to the New York Times that he’d heard that major short-selling had been happening in eSpeed (ESPD), the electronic bond-trading network controlled by Cantor Fitzgerald (whose offices were high up in 1 World Trade Center). There was probably something to this rumor. Between August 7 and Friday, September 7, ESPD fell by $5.85 (or 42 percent) to $7.95.
Or what about the zealous buying of 17,955 short-term S&P 500 index puts at 1,050 points — the “strike price,” essentially — on Monday, September 10, 2001? Those investors were gambling that the S&P, which closed at 1,092.54 at 4pm that day, would fall by at least 42 points by September 21, when the options were scheduled to expire. Without such a significant decline, the options would be worthless. (Hey, options trading is highly risky, but potentially very profitable). More eerie stuff turned up in Britain and Germany. In London, investigators detected what seemed to be huge bets on a decline in airline stocks, while in the latter, the price of Munich Re, a reinsurance company that would be hit by claims resulting from the attacks, plummeted amid a surge of puts-buying. . . .
10. Most of the second half of the broadcast consists of analysis of a book that highlights stock market manipulation in connection with the assassination of President Kennedy.
11. A rare 1967 text discusses a group of hardened international criminals of German/Argentine background, who allegedly used sophisticated mind control techniques to assassinate President Kennedy and collapse the commodities market on the same day. (Were We Controlled? by Lincoln Lawrence; Copyright 1967 [HC]; University Books, Inc.; ISBN 67-15098; pp. 21-23.)
12. The deliberately arranged coincidence of these two events is believed to have earned the group a half-billion dollars—in 1963, that was worth a lot more than it is today. (Idem.) “The Group” described in the account bears a strong resemblance to the Bormann organization  frequently discussed in these programs.
13. Utilizing the technique of R.H.I.C./E.D.O.M., the perpetrators manipulated Anthony (Tino) De Angelis, owner of the Allied Crude Vegetable Oil Refining Corporation, order to scandalize the commodities market. (Ibid.; pp. 105-106.)
14. Allied was selected because its collapse would affect more than fifty banks and because of its connection to the Bunge corporation, an Argentine based commodities trading firm that was among the most important in the world. (Ibid.; pp. 107-108.)
15. Next, the program delineates a “grain caper” in which between three and five million dollars was netted by the conspirators. It is believed that this sum constituted the “walking around” money by the conspirators. (Ibid.; p. 117.)
16. The broadcast then sets forth details about the Bunge Corporation, the powerful commodities firm that possessed an ultra-modern communications network that was essential for the split-second financial manipulations necessary to effect the conspiracy. (Ibid.; pp. 118-121.)
17. Following discussion of Were We Controlled, the program highlights the fate of the personalities who brought the story into print. The book was written by radio personality Art Ford, who was used as a “cutout” by “”Lincoln Lawrence” (a nom de plume.) (The Man Who Knew Too Much by Dick Russell; Copyright 1992 [HC]; Carroll & Graf; ISBN 0-88184-900-6; p. 676.)
18. Martin Scheiman, the lawyer used by “Lawrence” to pay out royalties was found shot in the head after the book was published (a supposed suicide.) (Ibid.; p. 677.) Damon Runyon Jr., who wrote the story up in an unpublished article for the National Enquirer also allegedly committed suicide by jumping off a bridge. (Idem.)
19. Researcher Mary Ferrell believed a similarly grim fate ultimately befell “Lawrence” and that Art Ford also felt his life to be in danger. (Ibid.; pp. 677-678.)
20. Next, the program discusses apparent links between the Bin Laden organization and an underworld milieu in Ciudad del Este—an area where Brazil, Argentina and Paraguay meet. (“Paraguay Outpost Seen as Hardliner Hideout” by Thomas Catan; Financial Times; 9/21/2001; p. 8.)
21. Finally, the program concludes with an article about the Republicans’ blocking of a bill introduced by the Clinton administration that would have traced the Bin Laden financial conduits. (“Roadblocks Cited In Efforts to Trace Bin Laden’s Money” by Tim Weiner and David Cay Johnston; New York Times ; 9/20/2001; pp. A1-B2.)