Tag Archives: steve mnuchin

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Trump, Russia & Estonia Share Common Bond: 1927 Estonian Govt Bond Certificates

MarketsMuse Exclusive: The Trump-Russia-Estonia Government Bond connection, first disclosed three weeks ago by a MarketsMuse investigative report that linked US Treasury Secretary Mnuchin to a cache of rare, $1000 USD denominated 1927 Estonian Govt bond certificates, has a new layer of intrigue. According to Trump White House sources, last week Estonian Finance Minister Sven Sester visited the White House and held a one hour private meeting with Trump’s Secretary of Treasury Steven Mnuchin and Gary Cohn, Trump’s chief economic advisor. The meeting reportedly took place days after April 14, when President Trump ordered White House visitor logs  be kept secret from public disclosure for the first time since Richard Nixon held that office. In view of the current President’s gag order on disclosing names of lobbyists, foreign government agents and all other visitors to the White House, the loose-lipped White House whistle blower’s view of Estonia’s Sester and Trump team members meeting could not be independently confirmed. The topics discussed in this week’s rumored meeting were equally secret.

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At issue: 1927 Govt of Estonia Debt Certificate
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Estonia Finance Minister Sester (l), US Treasury Secretary Mnuchin (r)

As first disclosed three weeks ago, a rare collection of US dollar denominated bonds ($1000 face value) issued by the Government of Estonia in 1927  has purportedly wound up in the personal hands of Mnuchin. The bonds represent a portion of a $3.8 million sovereign debt offering that went into default after Russia annexed Estonia in 1940, thirteen years into the term of the issuance’s 40-year maturity, whereby each bond obligation came with a 7% per year interest payment promise.

!n 1991, when Boris Yeltsin was Russia’s leader, Estonia secured its independence from Russia and a new Government of Estonia was formed.  If the 1927 Estonian Govt Bond Certificates are somehow deemed to be legitimate debt obligations today, and whether Russian President Vladimir Putin will offer to pay a repatriation payment tp Estonia on behalf the Russian government, each USD $1000 certificate would now be worth more than $130,000, presuming the interest payment coupons from 1940-1967 remain affixed to the physical certificate. International experts who specialize in defaulted government debt peg the value of the Estonia bonds to be of a historical nature only, as evidenced by a listing of a small collection of certificates, which are being offered by the estate of a Wall Street investor who apparently purchased the bonds at a steep discount soon after Russia annexed Estonia in the late spring of 1940.

Aside from Mnuchin’s purported stash, the remaining certificates are thought to be the last known certificates of the three thousand $1000 face certs issued in 1927. A portion of that 1927 debt offering included eight hundred $500 face value certificates; the last know four certificates were sold on eBay for $279 each.

US Treasury Secretary Mnuchin’s early career roles includes a stint as a bond salesman for Goldman Sachs; he later played a role in acquiring subprime mortgage lender IndyMac in 2009 when it was auctioned off by the FDIC. Soon after, Mnuchin moved into the world of feature film production. Cohn, who prior to becoming the Director of Trump’s National Economic Council, led Goldman’s Fixed Income, Currency and Commodities (FICC) division before moving up to the role of the firm’s President and Chief Operating Officer. Continue reading

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Trump SecTreas Mnuchin Wants to Cash In Cache of Estonia Govt Bonds; Sources Claim

So-called President Trump’s Secretary of Treasury Steve Mnuchin is hoping to cash in on a cache of US $1000 dollar-denominated 1927 Republic of Estonia Bonds, according to credible sources who were privy to wire-tapped discussions between Mike Flynn, the one-time National Security Advisor to Donald Trump and Sergey Kislyak, the Russian Ambassador to the United States. The cache of Estonia Govt bonds is said to be worth as much as $200,000.

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SecTreas Steve Mnuchin carrying valuable documents to Trump Tower

The bond issuance from 1927 by the Republic of Estonia carried a 7% coupon with a 40-year maturity and the offering totaled US $3.7 million. Estonia paid interest on those notes up until the spring of 1940 when Russia invaded Estonia, and in June of that year, the government of Estonia ceded sovereign control to the then USSR. The debt obligations, which included a 10mil pound sterling tranche, were subsequently deemed by the Russian government as ‘no longer in force,’ and holders of the debt have pursued litigation for years thereafter. When Estonia’s independence of Russia was restored in 1991, new litigation was filed in US Courts by debt holders, but those efforts “barely made it out of the barn” according to a Florida-based attorney who attempted to re-start the claim process on behalf of individual investors who had purchased the bonds or inherited the holdings from family members.

At least one of  the very few other actual holders is apparently not aware of Mnuchin’s so-called effort, as evidenced by that individual’s offer to sell as many as seventy 1927 Estonia bond certificates on eBay for 20% of the $1000 face value.

*31 March 2017 -Story Update- Subsequent to the 11 March publication of this MarketsMuse exclusive story, transactions reported on eBay indicate multiple trades of increasing prices; the current bid-offer market for above-referenced 1927 Government of Estonia USD 1000 7% bond certificates has rallied from under $200 to current asking price of $289 Rumors as to whether price spike is related to former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn’s request for immunity from prosecution in consideration for his testimony regarding Russian connections remain unconfirmed.

Throughout and since the 2016 Presidential Primaries, there has been a broad assortment of revelations in which multiple former and current Trump Administration officials have been found to have had private discussions with Russian Ambassador Kislyak, as well as various others connected to the top echelon of the Russian government in the months leading up to and days after the 2016 presidential election. Mnuchin’s alleged effort to cash in on a cache of bonds now estimated to be worth at least $200,000 when calculating accrued interest on the notes is the latest in a series of Surreality TV-like episodes broadcast from the Trump-owned White House. Mnuchin is a former Goldman Sachs executive who has since dabbled in the creative-finance world of Hollywood film producer roles.

Wall Street historians who specialize in pre World War II bond and stock certificates have suggested that most sovereign debt certificates issued prior to WWII are now mostly valued based on ‘antique/collectible’ metrics. A spokesperson for the Museum of American Finance suggested “the 1927 Republic of Estonia bonds would only be an exception if a senior US government treasury official would have good reason to push the Russians into honoring the debt based on the ‘you break it, you own it doctrine’ invoked in such government take-over instances.”

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