Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Blood Money

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs failed to inform 6 million soldiers and their families of an agreement enablingPrudential Financial Inc. to withhold lump-sum payments of life insurance benefits for survivors of fallen service members, according to records made public through a Freedom of Information request.
Since 1999, Prudential has used so-called retained-asset accounts, which allow the company to withhold lump sum payments due to survivors and earn investment income on the money for itself.
Prudential held $662 million of survivors’ money in its corporate general account as of June 30, according to information provided by the VA. Prudential’s general account earned 4.2 percent in 2009, mostly from bond investments, according to regulatory filings. The company has paid survivors holding Alliance Accounts 0.5 percent in 2010. (David Evans, Bloomberg News)
Not content with sweetheart deals from the Veterans Administration, the financial vampires at Prudential Financial conspired to earn large profits from the deaths of our fallen servicemen and servicewomen. Is there no sense of shame remaining on Wall Street?


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