post by Yale political science lecturer Jim Sleeper? Yale University Press Secretary Tom Conroy is adamant Yale will not be getting any financial gain from the partnership with NUS, apart from reimbursement of expenses. The NUS spokesperson parrots similar script, "Yale University is reimbursed only for work done in connection with Yale-NUS College."
But both are not denying the fact that Yale trustee Dr Charles Ellis, and member of Yale Corporation, is currently an adviser emeritus to the Government of Singapore Investment Corporation's Investment Strategies Committee. [Please note corrections and updates kindly provided by Mr Sleeper below.]
Sleeper makes it clear: "My post does not say that there has been any agreement to allow Yale to participate in restricted investment opportunities. It merely quotes someone saying that he is convinced that that is a possibility." And that quote qualifies the potential financial gains for Yale as "what you call insider trading: Yale will be cut in on prime investments that Singapore controls and restricts through its sovereign wealth fund. These will be only investments, not payments, so there's some risk. But ... Yale's endowment will swell by several hundred million in consequence of its getting in on these ventures".
Insider trading has long been regarded as reprehensible as far as securities regulation is concerned in Singapore - it is worse than the extra egg that goes with the char kway teow, local parlance for justifying unsolicited discounts in condominium purchases. The main regulatory frame work is the Securities and Futures Act (SFA), which has replaced the repealed Securities Industries Act (SIA). The relevant Section 218 of the SFA lists the types of prohibited conduct by connected persons in possession of inside information. The most important of the provisions regulating insider trading is Section 219 of the SFA, which adopts an "information-connected" approach towards insider trading:
Prohibited conduct by other persons in possession of inside information
219.—(1) Subject to this Division, where —
(a) a person who is not a connected person referred to in section 218 (referred to in this section as the insider) possesses information that is not generally available but, if the information were generally available, a reasonable person would expect it to have a material effect on the price or value of securities; and
(b) the insider knows that —
(i) the information is not generally available; and
(ii) if it were generally available, it might have a material effect on the price or value of those securities,
subsections (2) and (3) shall apply.
It is fair to conclude that someone, anyone, may be convinced that participation in restricted investment opportunities is a real possibility, given the unique position afforded to Dr Charles Ellis as adviser emeritus to the GSIC Investment Strategies Committee. It is up to Dr Ellis to prove everyone wrong. Meanwhile, it would be pertinent to watch if Yale's endowment will be swelling by several hundred millions in the near future. As the idiom goes, forewarned is forearmed.
All this while I had been wondering why the heck would Yale University ever want to set up a branch in Singapore, given our apparently such a poor record for respecting and upholding civil liberties ?ReplyDelete
So looks like someone tried to led the cat out of the bag to hint at the prize catch for Yale ? So now the big question is whether to believe both NUS & Yale that Yale was more than happy to be reimbursed only for all their troubles and yet risk their own reputation ?
Alan Wong is right. Why would an ivy-league university set up shop in Singapore, a well known dictatorship? Unless there is a carrot dangling in front of the Yale governing board. Yale in singapore is not the same as the Yale in US. It is still a local University with local characteristics. Don't expect any mind expanding experience when you come in.ReplyDelete
Duke receives $350million from 3 ministries in Singapore.Delete
But I thot Yale loves Singapore's long tradition of academic freedom.ReplyDelete
That is why they come here.
We are the hub of LIBERAL;
Yale is coming here to help liberalize our ISA also.
//..The Singapore venture has compromised Yale deeply not because Singapore is such an evil place in the larger scheme of things - it's an authoritarian, corporate city-state ...//ReplyDelete
Now is this where you can call in the CPIB to investigate?
I mean, how financially skewed are they against the white-collars of executives in real life? I would go after those seafood chefs, ministerial corrupt officials etc, but do they have a clue how to go after those well hidden behind the banks and institutions such as MAS, SWF etc?
In fact, we should be told where is our CPF money. CPIB may as well start its investigation at the same time.Delete
I have done a simple calculation but still could not understand why our Reserves is still so low. Lets say we have 2 million working adults (out of 6 million)and each contributing $500 per month (self & Company), CPF should have collected $1b or $12b in a year. Since CPF started, we should have tens of Trillions somewhere, even after some payout. So how come our national reserves is still in hundreds of billions and not trillions?
Columbia and NYU are the largest landowners in Manhattan and they each have billion dollar endowments. And the interesting anecdote is “Yale will be cut in on prime investments that Singapore controls and restricts through its sovereign wealth fund”.Delete
Dear Professor Balding, could that be your missing trillion?
When IMF needed money, they called Singapore. When UBS and Merrill Lynch needed capital, they called Singapore.Delete
Dear Professor Balding, could that be your missing trillion?
From Jim SleeperReplyDelete
Thank you very much for this magnificent post.
One correction: Charles Ellis is no longer a member of the Yale Corporation, but he did work with and for the Singapore Government Investment Corporation while a trustee of Yale. He is the husband of Yale University Secretary Linda Koch Lorimer, who one of is Yale President Richard Levin's closest advisers.
A current member of the Yale Corporation, Charles Waterhouse Goodyear IV, was CEO-designate of Singapore's Temasek sovereign wealth fund in 2009 but was not yet a Yale trustee at that time.
So a pattern emerges here -- I've said more about it in other posts at Huffington Post -- that gives the European university official's prediction a certain plausibility. I noted that prediction and its plausibility in the post that you've kindly linked. But the post is mainly about the awkwardness of Yale, a liberal-arts university, venturing into a partnership with a university and government whose current as well as past record on civil liberties is what I described. My expression of this deeper political and pedagogical concern seems only to have stupefied Yale's press office into silence.
But there was no silence. The mainstream press has rubbished it as another conspiracy one would read in fiction book.ReplyDelete
Even if such an investment deal were to exist or come through for Yale, there is no way one could tell given the massive and global apparatus of the SWF. How good and independent is our CPIB really?
"Do you believe everything you read in the Straits Times?" - PM Lee Hsien Loong, April 2007Delete
Yale’s claim Charles Ellis does not have investment interests in SG, and it was reported (uncritically once again) by the Straits Times & CNA is false to begin with.
Mr Charles Ellis is still a Senior Advisor in Greenwich with branch office in Singapore. The MSM couldn't even get their facts right.
What I say in the comment above is that Yale was silent about the main point of my post, which was not that it is about to participate in something like insider trading or that it is about to obtain some preferred investor status -- although I reported that prediction -- but, rather, that Yale has compromised its commitment to liberal education by collaborating educationally and administratively with a regime whose current abuses of civil liberties and prompts to self-censorship are as I described. That so many of these comments are anonymous, while so little criticism of the government is ever made by people over their own names, establishes my point. Yale's response to this point has been silence, accompanied by displacement of its discomfort into loud charges that I made claims about investment strategies that I have not made.ReplyDelete
You are right. This is a country of Anonymous. The named persons have all been sued, bankrupted, and jailed.Delete
As long as they will not demolish ISA, restore Civic Liberty Right to Free speech, Free Press, Freedom of Information Act etc, I will never trade my anonymity away.
Give me anonymity or give me death!
Meanwhile, back in the uncensored U.S., we get a cornucopia of falsehoods:ReplyDelete