For nearly eight months, Americas Watchdog has been battling for all consumers and businesses victimized by Wall Street stock brokerage firms, investment bankers and U.S. banks involved in the sales of extremely high risk securities, called auction rate securities. According to Americas Watchdog, "While there have been a small number of settlements announced involving the retail clients, many sellers of auction rate securities have not been forced into a settlement. Even worse, many larger investors or businesses that were sold a bill of goods by a stock broker or U.S. bank investment advisor, will never see a settlement because of the size of their investment. And now bankruptcy's involving Lehman Brothers and Washington Mutual could change everything." Americas Watchdog says, "We want to hear from the auction rate securities victims who stand to lose millions, because they are being categorized as sophisticated investors. We consider fraud to be still be fraud, regardless if the investment was $25,000 or $250 million." Victims or businesses that have been victimized in the auction rate securities scandal with amounts above $10 million should call Americas Watchdog's Wall Street Fraud Watchdog at 866-714-6466, or visit their Web site at
According to Americas Watchdog, "We are not letting any Wall Street brand name stock broker, or any U.S. bank off the hook, relative to settlements with larger business or individual investors. The auction rate securities con job is a $330 billion financial disaster, and we are going to try to see to it that every penny gets refunded, regardless of the size of the investor." Large or small auction rate securities investors can contact Americas Watchdog's Wall Street Fraud Watchdog anytime at 866-714-6466, or they can visit their Web site at
Americas Watchdog is a leader in protecting U.S. shareholders and tax payers. According to the group, "Our nation is on the verge of bailing out the bank that knowingly bought a bankrupt Countrywide Home Loans in early July, as part of the $700 billion U.S. bank bailout. We estimate that toxic Countrywide Home Loans could easily be $50+ billion. And that now becomes a taxpayer responsibility? The story gets worse. Senate Finance Chairman Dodd has taken tens of thousands of dollars from the U.S. bank that purchased Countrywide, since the first of the year. How about the victims of the auction rate securities fraud Senator Dodd, or do auction rate securities victims have to pay you off too?" (source Hartford Courant 6-22-2008)
"As part of the $700 billion U.S. bank/Investment Banker bailout, instead of earmarking millions of dollars for Senator Obama's 'community activist group' Acorn, that really needs a thorough IRS audit and Department of Justice investigation, how about including $330 billion for auction rate securities victims -- they did not lie on a mortgage loan application and then discover they could not make the payments, or attempt to flip a house; it was their hard earned money."
Note to the National Press: Americas Watchdog states, "We are sure it's fun beating the crap out of Gov. Sarah Palin everyday, but every DC news organization knows about the money flooding into to U.S. Sen. Dodd's offices from banks and investment bankers (one in particular), how about a story about that? And a story about auction rate securities victims?"
Americas Watchdog says, "We do not want larger auction rate securities victims thinking they have been kicked to the curb. We do not want larger auction rate securities victims including individuals, businesses or organizations wasting money on outside legal counsel, only to discover the law firm is conflicted out, or is lacking in the necessary arbitration skills to recover their lost or frozen money. We have identified the most competent and capable securities arbitration law firms in the United States, and we will work with every victim to make certain they have the absolute best resources available to them."
Individuals, businesses, or organizations that are larger investors should call the Wall Street Fraud Watchdog anytime at 866-714-6464, or visit their Web site at
"Americas Watchdog is all about consumer & taxpayer protection. It is long over due."
As financial situations worsen, parents are having to cut back on personal luxuries in order to secure a better future for their children, according to new research out today by Family Investments, the UK's leading Child Trust Fund provider.
A less surprising figure in light of holiday companies such as XL going bust is that nearly half of the parents questioned (49%) have or will be cutting back on holidays to ensure their children's savings are not being neglected during the crunch. Only 6% of the parents questioned are not prepared to change their spending habits at all when it comes to saving for their child.
One in three children will be bearing the brunt of these cut backs however, as a third of parents will be cutting back on treats such as toys and sweets, in order to prioritise how their money is being spent on their child. For the majority of parents (66%) it is felt that any disposable income in this current economic climate should be put towards long term investments as opposed to everyday luxuries and treats.
Kate Baker, Head of Marketing at
On Friday, October 3, PLS Financial Services is hosting live V103-FM (WVAZ-Chicago) remote broadcasts during a voter registration drive at three of its Chicago-area PLS locations. On-air V103-FM personalities will encourage area residents to register so that they can participate in the upcoming elections.
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Headlining the event will be live V103-FM remote broadcasts -- featuring on-air personalities -- at each of the three locations. Broadcasting live from PLS locations will be Troi Tyler from 10am to 2pm at 5200 W. North Avenue (North and Laramie) in Chicago; Doug Banks from 2pm to 6pm at 1431 W. 127th Street in Calumet Park; and Ramonski and Joe from 6pm to 9pm at 2507 W. 95th Street (95th and Western) in Evergreen Park.
"We're thrilled to be partnering with V103-FM on our registration drive," said PLS President Bob Wolfberg. "Together, we're going to make sure that more of the citizens in the neighborhoods in which we operate are registered and can exercise their right to vote in November."
V103-FM is a Clear Channel Communications, Inc. station playing "Today's R&B and Old School."
PLS invites the public to visit its locations during the broadcasts to share in the excitement, and to help motivate community members who are not registered to vote. Listeners are encouraged to come to any one of the three participating locations on Friday to register. The official deadline for registration is October 6.
About PLS Financial Services:
Chicago-based PLS Financial Services operates more than 300 financial service centers in Alabama, Arizona, California, Illinois, Indiana, Mississippi, New York, Texas and Wisconsin, with more than 3,000 employees. It is one of the largest, oldest and most distinguished organizations in the check cashing industry, and is a Western Union money transfer network. PLS was recently named as one of Chicago's Largest Privately Held Companies, and also a member of 'Fast50' (Fastest Growing Companies) by Crain's Chicago Business®. The PLS brands include: PLS Loan Store, which provides consumer micro-loans; PLS Check Cashers, which offers check cashing, money transfer services, money orders and bill payments; PLS Vehicle Registration; and PLS Tax Service. More information about PLS is available from Barb Wolf at PLS Financial Services, 300 North Elizabeth Street, Chicago, IL 60607; telephone 312-491-7888.