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Science journal issues expression of concern over chemistry paper

first_imgThis is a computer graphic of an RNA molecule. Credit: Richard Feldmann/Wikipedia Research integrity—what it means, why it is important and how we might protect it The paper outlined a way to use RNA to grow crystals of palladium metal, which opened the door to the idea that RNA might be involved in processes in nature that resulted in the production of inorganic materials. After it was published in Science, Franzen alerted the university to discrepancies in the work, possibly due to intentional misconduct. After several months, the university conducted an investigation into the allegations made by Feldheim and eventually found that the researchers had failed to properly index their electron microscopy data, contradicting statements in their paper—more negligence than misconduct. Apparently not satisfied with that result, Feldheim contacted officers at the University of Colorado, after Eaton and Felhdeim moved there—the university’s research-integrity official looked into the matter and concluded that the issue was more one of a disagreement between colleagues than an example of misconduct.Several years later, after the paper had been cited over 135 times, the National Science Foundation got involved—the work by the team was looked at in more detail and the result was a report that suggested the trio had overstated their findings and omitted details. A recommendation of misconduct was made. The agency did not make such a judgment but did produce a letter reprimanding the researchers and banned them from receiving research funds from the NSF until they take “specific actions to correct publications containing the misleading results,” to remedy the errors.The expression of concern by McNutt is meant to alert other researchers to the possibility of errors in the paper, warning them that it might not be a good idea to use or cite the paper in their own research efforts, and to notify readers that the journal is working with the authors to gain a better understanding of what occurred. Once that happens, the journal intends to either print a retraction or a correction. Journal information: Science (—The journal Science has published an “editorial expression of concern” by its editor-in-chief, Marcia McNutt, regarding a research paper the journal published back in 2004. The paper titled “RNA-Mediated Metal-Metal Bond Formation in the Synthesis of Hexagonal Palladium Nanoparticles” by Bruce Eaton and Daniel Feldheim, chemists at North Carolina State University and grad student Lina Gugliotti was partially discredited after a colleague at the same university, Stefan Franzen, filed a complaint with the school challenging the work done by the research trio. Explore furthercenter_img Citation: Science journal issues expression of concern over chemistry paper (2016, January 22) retrieved 18 August 2019 from © 2016 More information: M. McNutt. Editorial expression of concern, Science (2016). DOI: 10.1126/science.351.6271.348-a L. A. Gugliotti. RNA-Mediated Metal-Metal Bond Formation in the Synthesis of Hexagonal Palladium Nanoparticles, Science (2004). DOI: 10.1126/science.1095678NSF Office of Inspector General, Closeout Memorandum: This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Goldman Sachs Earnings Suffer the Aftershocks of RMBS Settlement

first_img Share January 20, 2016 618 Views Earnings Statement Goldman Sachs Residential Mortgage-Backed Securities Settlement 2016-01-20 Staff Writer As expected, fourth quarter earnings for Goldman Sachs took a huge blow as a result of last week’s announced settlement for $5.1 billion to resolve claims of mortgage-backed securities fraud. The investment banking firm’s Q4 2015 net earnings totaled $765 million, approximately one-third of the $2.17 billion net earnings reported for the prior-year quarter, according to the firm’s Q4 and full year 2015 earnings statement released Wednesday.Goldman Sachs’ net earnings for the full year of 2015 were $6.08 billion, down from $8.48 billion in 2014. Earnings per common share were reported at $12.14 for 2015, having been reduced by $6.53 due to the RMBS settlement.Despite the substantial decline in net earnings and earnings per common share, Goldman Sachs Chairman and CEO Lloyd Blankfein characterized the results as “solid.”“We are pleased that our diversified business mix allowed us to deliver solid results in a year characterized by uneven global economic activity,” Blankfein said. “Looking ahead, we believe our strong global client franchise leaves us well positioned to generate superior returns over the long term.”“Looking ahead, we believe our strong global client franchise leaves us well positioned to generate superior returns over the long term.”Lloyd Blankfein, Goldman Sachs Chairman and CEOThe settlement, announced on Friday, January 15, concluded an investigation by the Presidential Mortgage-Backed Securities Working Group of the U.S. Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force (RMBS Working Group) relating to Goldman Sachs’ securitization, underwriting and sale of residential mortgage-backed securities from 2005 to 2007. The fraud allegations were brought about by the U.S. Department of Justice, the New York and Illinois Attorneys General, the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), and the Federal Home Loan Banks of Chicago and Seattle. As part of the settlement, Goldman Sachs admitted no wrongdoing and no executives from the firm will be prosecuted.Goldman Sachs paid significantly more in non-compensation expenses for both Q4 and the full year 2015 as a result of the settlement. For the full year, non-compensation expenses rose by 30 percent up to $12.36 billion due to the higher net provisions for mortgage-related litigation and regulatory matters in 2015 than in 2014 ($4.01 billion compared to $754 million), according to the firm’s announcement. Non-compensation expenses for Q4 2015 were $4.14 billion, which was a 64 percent increase from the year-ago quarter and a 68 percent leap from Q3—again due to higher net provisions for mortgage-related litigation and regulatory matters. In both cases, the increases were partially offset by lower depreciation and amortization expenses.U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) blasted the settlement, calling it a “farce” on herFacebook page earlier this week.“In the 2008 financial crisis, we lost trillions in wealth and millions of people lost their homes and their jobs because of Wall Street recklessness,” Warren wrote. “Today, Goldman Sachs announced it will pay $5.1 billion for its role in precipitating the economic collapse by misleading investors about the quality of the junk mortgage securities they peddled. Seven years later. No admission of guilt. No individuals are going to jail. A payment that’s barely a fraction of the billions investors lost—and the trillions our economy lost—because of this fraud. And over half of it could be tax deductible! That’s not justice–it’s a white flag of surrender.”Click here to see Goldman Sachs’ entire Q4 and full year 2015 earnings statement.last_img read more