By Mac Slavo / SHTFplan.com
Editor’s Note: You will rarely, if ever again, see a brokerage firm close their doors not as a result of losing all of their customers’ money, but rather, preemptively in order to prevent them from being wiped out. That’s exactly what Ann Barnhardt of Barnhardt Capital Management did Thursday morning when she advised clients that her firm was liquidating all customer brokerage and options accounts. In a series of letters published on her web site, disseminated by Zero Hedge, and brought to us by The Daily Crux, Ms. Barnhardt takes the unprecedented step of shutting down her firm in order to prevent losses in what she says is a system that “is no longer functioning with integrity and is suicidally risk-laden.”
The reasons for her taking the steps she did to save client investments are, in our opinion, nothing short of heroic (prompting even Rush Limbaugh to give her kudos) given recent developments in the global economic crisis that include the collapse of government primary dealer MF Global and the untennable situation in Europe. While most Wall Street tycoons and brokers continue to manage money in a highly leveraged marketplace on the verge of collapse while talking their books on financial news shows in an effort to instill confidence in their customers who are swallowing the hopium hook, line and sinker, Barnhardt will have none of it and chose, instead, to pull the plug and get her customers out.
This is an absolute must read warning for all American investors. Though Barnhardt’s firm dealt primarily in futures and options trading, she cautions that ALL markets have been infected with systemic contagion, including the underlying cash commodities – known in layman’s terms as the physical delivery of goods. With the recent collapse of MF Global, the details of which suggest direct fraud and theft of customer accounts, and the government’s lack of any serious response, Barnhardt seems to think there is a real possibility of cascading, system-wide failures in the broader financial sector.
Look out folks, because if she is right then we’re in serious trouble – and soon. The takeaway is, if you’re not sure what is happening in the markets then get out and get your money to safety, otherwise it will soon be added to the asset pool of the organizations complicit in orchestrating the destruction of our financial markets and economic system.
Without further ado, prepare to be blown away:
Dear Clients, Industry Colleagues and Friends of Barnhardt Capital Management,
It is with regret and unflinching moral certainty that I announce that Barnhardt Capital Management has ceased operations. After six years of operating as an independent introducing brokerage, and eight years of employment as a broker before that, I found myself, this morning, for the first time since I was 20 years old, watching the futures and options markets open not as a participant, but as a mere spectator.
The reason for my decision to pull the plug was excruciatingly simple: I could no longer tell my clients that their monies and positions were safe in the futures and options markets – because they are not. And this goes not just for my clients, but for every futures and options account in the United States. The entire system has been utterly destroyed by the MF Global collapse. Given this sad reality, I could not in good conscience take one more step as a commodity broker, soliciting trades that I knew were unsafe or holding funds that I knew to be in jeopardy.