Members: Andrea Fumagalli, Akseli Virtanen, Tiziana Terranova, Florin Flueras, Alina Popa, Harri Homi, Tere Vaden, Teppo Vesikukka, Valentina Desideri, Jaromil, Sakari Virkki, Stefano Lucarelli, Jan Ritsema, Gianluigi Biagini, Sari Stenfors, Brett Scott, among others.
We established Robin Hood in June 2012 in the middle of the financial crisis. The lesson from our background analysis was clear: The financialization of the economy is a fact. The financial market has nothing to do with free competition. The number of banks in the world has decreased in the last 30 years by 40%. Only 10 big investment banks control over 90% of the entire derivative market whose size is estimated to be around 1200-1400 million billion dollars (over 20 times the entire world GNP). The power to create money is in the hands of the financial market, but we have no access to it. Our ability to pay taxes, assume debt, and take on austerity measures creates direct vehicles for financial asset accumulation. Our money is obliged to take part in the market, but we never profit from it. We just carry the risks. There is a deep asymmetry between those who are able to create money by transforming it into financial capital (income not tied to the necessity of work) and those whose only access to money is to work (possibly at any cost) – or first to take debt, and then work.
Could we bend the financialization of the economy to the advantage of precarious workers? Could we challenge the debt mechanism of control, the command to submit to any work and the limited options we have for financing our living? Could we think of sharing the means of creating money that financial capital has in its use, of putting them to work for us also? Could we think of a relation to money, not as binding us with debt and to capital relations, but as a means of freedom, escape, and increased independence? Could we appropriate the power of money, not only as a means of payment and exchange, but as a power to command the future?
We think we can. Robin Hood is a counter-investment cooperative of the precariat. We operate a massive data-mining algorithm – we call it the “Parasite” – which logs into the brains of the bankers at Wall Street without them realizing. We know who are the best players. We know exactly what they do and when. Robin Hood is our means to share this knowledge. In the first year, the value of our portfolio rose 30.74%. We were the third best hedge fund in the world. Now, after the second year, we are up 40.15% and have about 0.65M$ assets under management.
Robin Hood’s business is minor asset management. This means sharing and democratizing the power of finance: building on its basis a possibility for basic income, for the production of commonfare, for radical project funding, for no interest loans for financing one’s studies or life, all in the form of an investment cooperative. We call it minor asset management, a possibility for political operation of building from our minor assets financial out-onomy in cooperation.