Investors hope the second quarter will be better than the first, when markets went on a rollercoaster of writedowns, trading scandals and record oil prices. Here is a roundup of CNBC Europe's best videos of the first quarter.
The Federal Reserve's aggressive rate cuts won praise from many Wall Street investors but Jim Rogers, CEO of Rogers Holdings, condemned the Fed's moves as 'socialism for the rich' saying the central bank was trying to save the financials at the expense of the U.S. dollar. Rogers stated that if he were in Bernanke’s shoes, he would abolish the Federal Reserve, resign and let the markets sort themselves out. Click here to listen to the full interview with Rogers.
Global markets received a shock when Societe Generale announced a 4.9 billion euros writedown caused by rogue trader Jerome Kerviel. This was one of the largest trading losses in world history and sent the stock markets into turmoil, but Kerviel's lawyer, Guillaume Selnet, said Societe Generale was at fault for complacency. Selnet accused the bank of ignoring early signs of alarm regarding Kerviel’s trading, as long as he was bringing money to the bank. Click here to see the interview with Kerviel’s lawyer.
The nationalization of UK bank Northern Rock was "robbery under the law," according to John Wood, founder of SRM global – the lender’s largest shareholder. Despite Prime Minister Gordon Brown's assurances that nationalization was the only option for the troubled financial, Wood said there were at least three other private sector options. Northern Rock shareholders condemned the UK government's nationalization decision in February and vowed they would, "pursue this to the bitter end in every court we can," Wood said. Click here to listen to more of Wood’s view on Northern Rock.
The price of oil spiked to an all-time high reaching $111 a barrel in March, with OPEC's president blaming the oil price on the mismanagement of the US economy. The cartel's delegates met in both February and March to discuss solutions to the high prices, but the decision to leave output unchanged surprised some market players. Click here to watch CNBC's Steve Sedgewick discuss the issues of oil supply and demand with OPEC’s president and other key figures in Vienna.
The German tax evasion probe widened after 150 German suspects were investigated for hiding money in foreign banks like LGT bank in Lichtenstein. Prosecutors in the German city of Bochum netted 163 Germans in the investigation. The U.S., U.K., France and the Netherlands joined the tax evasion crackdown as well, while Denmark and others condemned the way by which Germany acquired the tax evasion information. Phillip Davies from Brunel Centre for Intelligence and Security Studies joined CNBC to discuss the details of the investigation process. Click here to learn how Davies said the investigations will be carried out.