This Is Why Donald Trump Is Angrily Tweeting About Banks And Fake News

"WRONG! It is because I didn’t need money."

Donald Trump has been dealt a blow in his battle to prevent scrutiny of his financial records, after a US court ruled he could not block a request to hand them over to Congress.

The ruling was “a resounding victory for the rule of law,” Elijah Cummings, the House Oversight Committee chairman, said in a statement, but the president told reporters the decision was “crazy” and that it would be appealed.

Trump is determined to stop a Democratic-led House committee from examining records from his accounting firm, Mazars LLP, and banks including Deutsche Bank and Capital One.

Why? Well, a report from The New York Times (NYT) and Trump’s reaction to it, in which he once again called the media the “ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE”, is a good place to start.

On Sunday, the NYT published a piece claiming anti-money laundering specialists at Deutsche Bank AG recommended a number of financial transactions involving entities controlled by Trump and his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, be reported to a federal financial-crimes watchdog.

The transactions, some of which involved Trump’s now-defunct foundation, set off alerts in a computer system designed to detect illicit activity.

According to the report, Deutsche Bank employees rejected their employees’ advice and the reports were never filed with the government.

Bank employees viewed the decision not to report the transactions as a result of a lax approach to money laundering laws. They said there was a pattern of bank executives rejecting reports to protect relationships with lucrative clients, according to the five employees interviewed by NYT.

<strong>Donald Trump speaks to the media yesterday.</strong>
Donald Trump speaks to the media yesterday.
Joshua Roberts / Reuters

What’s the deal with Deutsche Bank?

Deutsche Bank lent Trump and Kushner companies billions of dollars at a time when other banks wouldn’t go near them.

It stood almost alone in extending credit and managing money for Trump before he became president, as other banks avoided him because of his poor track record in paying back loans, Reuters reports.

The German lender has extended a substantial amount of capital to the Trump Organization in the past decade, according to documents and media reports.

A 2017 financial disclosure form showed that Trump had at least $130m of liabilities to Deutsche Bank.

Deutsche Bank has denied the claims in the latest NYT article but this doesn’t look good for them – or for Trump. Questions are now being raised about why Deutsche Bank willingly leant Trump money when others wouldn’t.

The president responded on Twitter in a lengthy thread, the gist of which is that he only used a select number of banks because he “didn’t need money” because he had “built a great business”.

But this, as we shall see, is a potentially dubious claim.

Why is it dubious?

No one knows very much about the details of Trump’s financial past, largely because he broke with presidential tradition and has consistently refused to publish his tax returns.

But another NYT investigation has managed to piece together what they look like using printouts from Trump’s official Internal Revenue Service tax transcripts – and they paint a bleak picture.

According to the report, from 1985-94, Trump businesses lost a whopping $1.17bn (£920m) – more than double any other individual US taxpayer in an annual IRS sampling of high-income earners.

Trump lost so much money that he was able to avoid paying income taxes for eight of the 10 years.

Obviously this throws doubt on the president’s claim of having “built a great business” but Trump said the Times story was based on “very old information” and a “highly inaccurate Fake News hit job!”

Why is the latest court ruling significant?

On Monday, a federal judge ruled the House Oversight Committee could demand Trump’s financial records from his accounting firm, Mazars LLP, to examine whether he has conflicts of interest or broke the law by not disentangling himself from his business holdings.

A judge in Manhattan will hear arguments this week in a similar lawsuit Trump filed to block subpoenas issued to Deutsche Bank AG and Capital One Financial Corp.

They will provide a clear picture of Trump’s business dealings including whether or not he borrowed money from any dubious sources.

Deutsche Bank, which was fined millions in 2017 in connection with a Russian money-laundering scheme, gave Trump a number of loans that have yet to be explained including $300m (£236m) shortly after he had sued the bank.

When will we get to see them?

This isn’t clear as Trump’s team will appeal the decisions. His lawyers have argued that Congress is on a quest to “turn up something that Democrats can use as a political tool against the president now and in the 2020 election”.