Economic News

Economic News

Another Deutsche Banker Commits Suicide

Another Deutsche Banker Commits Suicide

Another Deutsche Banker And Former SEC Enforcement Attorney Commits Suicide

By Tyler Durden

Back on January 26, a 58-year-old former senior executive at German investment bank behemoth Deutsche Bank, William Broeksmit, was found dead after hanging himself at his London home, and with that, set off an unprecedented series of banker suicides throughout the year which included former Fed officials and numerous JPMorgan traders.

Deutsche Banker Commits Suicide

Image credit: Markus Bernet (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-2.5, via Wikimedia Commons

Following a brief late summer spell in which there was little if any news of bankers taking their lives, as reported previously, the banker suicides returned with a bang when none other than the hedge fund partner of infamous former IMF head Dominique Strauss-Khan, Thierry Leyne, a French-Israeli entrepreneur, was found dead after jumping off the 23rd floor of one of the Yoo towers, a prestigious residential complex in Tel Aviv.

Just a few brief hours later the WSJ reported that yet another Deutsche Bank veteran has committed suicide, and not just anyone but the bank’s associate general counsel, 41 year old Calogero “Charlie” Gambino, who was found on the morning of Oct. 20, having also hung himself by the neck from a stairway banister, which according to the New York Police Department was the cause of death. We assume that any relationship to the famous Italian family carrying that last name is purely accidental.

Here is his bio from a recent conference which he attended:

Charlie J. Gambino is a Managing Director and Associate General Counsel in the Regulatory, Litigation and Internal Investigation group for Deutsche Bank in the Americas. Mr. Gambino served as a staff attorney in the United Securities and Exchange Commission’s Division of Enforcement from 1997 to 1999. He also was associated with the law firm of Skadden, Arps, Slate Meagher & Flom from 1999 to 2003. He is a frequent speaker at securities law conferences. Mr. Gambino is a member of the American Bar Association and the Association of the Bar of the City of New York.

Thierry Leyne, the French-Israeli entrepreneur who last year started an investment firm, Commits Suicide

Thierry Leyne – Image credit: LSK

As a reminder, the other Deutsche Bank-er who was found dead earlier in the year, William Broeksmit, was involved in the bank’s risk function and advised the firm’s senior leadership; he was “anxious about various authorities investigating areas of the bank where he worked,” according to written evidence from his psychologist, given Tuesday at an inquest at London’s Royal Courts of Justice. And now that an almost identical suicide by hanging has taken place at Europe’s most systemically important bank, and by a person who worked in a nearly identical function – to shield the bank from regulators and prosecutors and cover up its allegedly illegal activities with settlements and fines – is surely bound to raise many questions.

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Posted by Red Pill Reports in Economic News
Bitcoin Exchange in Sydney as Australian Interest Soars

Bitcoin Exchange in Sydney as Australian Interest Soars

Bitcoin Exchange Goes Live in Sydney as Australian Interest Soars

By Andrew Saks-McLeod

Establishing in Sydney, new Bitcoin exchange Independent Reserve seeks to bring secure and robust means of conducting business via virtual currency

There has been a recent drive toward acceptance of Bitcoin by Australian enterprises, following in the footsteps of North America, Israel, Switzerland and Great Britain with a view to expanding the availability of virtual currency across Australia.

Bitcoin exchange goes live in Sydney as Australian interest soars

The Sydney Harbour Bridge in Australian dust storm. Image credit: Mrcricket48 at en.wikipedia

Today, Sydney became home to a brand new Bitcoin exchange, which is operated by Independent Reserve and offers a fast, secure and robust method of utilizing cryptocurrency.

Despite the Australian Tax Office’s less than favorable treatment of taxation rulings relating to Bitcoin-related transactions recently, and the subsequent backlash by Australian Bitcoin proponents, Australia looks set to become the next jurisdiction in which Bitcoin prepares to gain ground and flourish.

Independent Reserve understands that Bitcoin is on the verge of becoming a mainstream financial instrument and currency, with the firm’s CTO Adrian Przelozny having stated that the new virtual currency exchange is “robust, secure and easy to use.”

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Posted by Red Pill Reports in Economic News
The Swiss Want Bars.. Of Gold Not Chocolate!

The Swiss Want Bars.. Of Gold Not Chocolate!

The Swiss Want Bars.. Of Gold Not Chocolate!

By Chirag Mehta

India is a country at stark contrast to Switzerland. We are not talking about the obvious reference to development, or who makes better chocolate, but in terms of how the two nations exhibit democracy.

India is the largest democracy in the world, Switzerland, nowhere near but how vibrant the democracy needs to be seen….

Swiss want bars.. Of gold

Image credit: Szaaman (Own work) [Public domain]

In India, people are discouraged from opting for their preferred investment i.e. Gold by imposing tariffs and restrictions on imports of gold. Whereas at the other extreme is Switzerland where people not only have a right to choose where they can park their saving but also challenge the way the government runs its finances and what should make up the government reserves! Yes, I am talking about the Swiss Gold Initiative where a 100,000 people have signed a petition making way for a referendum on gold related policies, on which people will cast their decisions.

The referendum has arisen through a popular initiative called ‘Save our Swiss Gold.’ In Switzerland, citizens can propose changes to the Swiss constitution through a mechanism called a ‘popular initiative’, even if parliament is against the proposal. The ‘Save our Swiss Gold’ initiative is set to highlight the important issues of sovereign gold reserves and who has possession and controls them. On a broader scale, it may lead to an important debate about each country’s national patrimony and their gold reserves.

The Referendum
On the ballot is a measure to prohibit the country’s central bank, the Swiss National Bank (SNB) from further gold sales, to repatriate gold owned by the government but held in different countries back to Switzerland, and to mandate that gold make up at least 20 percent of the SNB’s assets.

What’s driving the cause?
Switzerland has, for hundreds of years, been a bastion of sound monetary policy and low inflation. But this has gradually changed in the last 100 years since the creation of the Fed in the US and especially during the past 15 years when the Swiss government quietly removed the 40% gold backing from the revised Federal Constitution which was adopted by popular vote in 1999.

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Posted by Red Pill Reports in Economic News
Entrepreneur Creates Super Low Cost, Cashless Grocery

Entrepreneur Creates Super Low Cost, Cashless Grocery

Entrepreneur Creates Super Low Cost, Cashless Grocery

By Joshua Cook

An entrepreneur in Great Britain is creating the first cashless supermarket, appealing to people on government aid and in poorly-paid jobs.

Stelios Haji-Ioannou is the creator of easyFoodstore budget supermarket. He also created bargain airline easyJet and windowless rooms at easyHotel.

Cashless GroceryThe no-frills food and service will also eventually not take cash. A spokesperson for the store told the Daily Mail that its easier to process card payments than to cash up every day and pay a security firm to bank it.

The company also said that to compete with stores like ALDI the wages will be low.

‘We are aiming to be a low-cost supermarket so we need to keep costs low, property rent has got to be low, stock prices have got to be low and, inevitably, we will be looking towards the bottom end of the salary scale for employees,” said a spokesman.

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From Wikipedia
Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou (Born 14 February 1967) is a British entrepreneur of Greek-Cypriot origin, currently resident in Monaco. He is the scion of a wealthy, shipowning family, but is best known for setting up easyJet, a low-cost airline and the Stelmar shipping line, with start-up funds provided by his father. easyJet’s foundation in 1995 marked the beginning of a series of ventures marketed under the “easy” brand.

Posted by Red Pill Reports in Economic News
One of Five Companies will run the Gold Fix

One of Five Companies will run the Gold Fix

One of Five Companies will run the Gold Fix

By Cecilia Jamasmie

Five are the groups that have been shortlisted by the London Bullion Market Association (LBMA) to manage a new electronic gold fix that will replace the century-old price setting mechanism.

One of Five Companies will run the Gold Fix

London Bullion Market Association

Broker Autilla Ltd (Sapient), the Chicago Mercantile Exchange jointly with Thomson Reuters, U.S. derivatives bourse Intercontinental Exchange, the London Metal Exchange and broker ICAP’s online platform EBS will present their proposals this Friday, the LBMA confirmed in a statement.

A winner is expected to be chosen in November and the fix is to go live between the end of the year and early 2015, the LBMA added.

The decision will be closely watched by Chinese investors, which reportedly approached the LBMA last week to be part of the silver pricing benchmark.

The banks are contemplating whether to also take part in the twice-daily gold pricing sessions, but first they want to know will run the gold fix.

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Posted by Red Pill Reports in Economic News
Switzerland Is Only Country That Would Vote For Bigger Gold Reserves

Switzerland Is Only Country That Would Vote For Bigger Gold Reserves

Switzerland Is Only Country That Would Vote For Bigger Gold Reserves

By Neils Christensen, of Kitco News

If there is one country in the world that would vote yes in a referendum to force its central bank to increase its gold reserves, it would be Switzerland, said one Liechtenstein fund manager.

Gold ReservesRonald-Peter Stoeferle, fund manager at Incrementum AG and author of the In Gold We Trust report, said that he is not surprised there is a campaign to increase the country’s gold reserves as the yellow metal has had a long tradition of being linked to the Swiss franc.

“Switzerland used to have the highest gold reserves per-capita in the world up to about 10 years ago,” he said. “A lot of people still believe that gold is the foundation and the backbone of a strong currency.”

Stoeferle is in a unique position regarding the gold vote because Liechtenstein, which borders Switzerland, uses the Swiss franc as its currency. The vote, if passed, could have an impact on the country’s currency because it would impact the Swiss National Bank’s foreign reserves. Although Liechtenstein doesn’t get a say in the Swiss referendum Stoeferle has been following the initiative closely.

On Nov. 30, Swiss citizens will go to the polls to vote on three areas; whether or not the Swiss National Bank should increase its gold reserves to 20%, that the central bank should stop selling its precious metals and that all its gold should be held within the country.

With less than two months to go, Stoeferle explained that the Swiss gold referendum has now started to attract a lot of attention across the globe; however, he added that it is still too early to determine how popular the initiative is among the Swiss populace. He added that the campaign, started by the Swiss People’s party in April of 2013 after they collected more than 100,000 signatures to force the referendum, is expected to begin in earnest on Oct. 21.

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Posted by Red Pill Reports in Economic News
Here’s Why US Banks Are Now Extremely Vulnerable

Here’s Why US Banks Are Now Extremely Vulnerable

Forget Ebola – Here’s Why US Banks (and your savings) Are Now Extremely Vulnerable

For a casual observer of the US economy (most “experts”), you could say that things look pretty good. Unemployment is at its lowest rate in six years. Earnings of S&P 500 companies are higher than ever, while their debt is lower than it’s been in the last 24 years.

Nonetheless, rather than getting excited for good economic times, the big commercial banks are all battening down the hatches. They’re preparing for bad times ahead.

US Banks Are Now Extremely Vulnerable

Image credit: Merzperson

I often stress the importance of being prepared, so in theory, that should be a great sign.

But then, you look at what they are “defensively” investing in, and you see that what they consider as prudence is simply insanity.

What banks are stockpiling these days are US government bonds, and they’re not doing this casually, they’re going nuts for them.

In just the last month alone American banks increased their holdings of US treasuries by $54 billion, to a record $1.99 trillion.

Citigroup, for example, held $103.8 billion worth of bonds at the end of June, up 19% from the end of last year.

This is like preparing for an earthquake by running out and buying whole new sets of porcelain dishes and glass vases.

All it’s going to do is make things more dangerous, and even if you somehow make it through the disaster, you have a million more shards to clean up.

With government bonds you are guaranteed to lose both in the short-term and the long-term. Bonds keep you consistently behind inflation (even the deceptively named TIPS—Treasury Inflation Protected Securities), so the value of your savings is slowly being chipped away.

But that’s nothing compared to the long-term threats of the US government not being able to repay the loans.

Facing $127 trillion in unfunded liabilities – which is nearly double 2012’s total global output – and with no inclination to reduce those numbers at all, at this point disaster for the US is entirely unavoidable.

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Posted by Red Pill Reports in Economic News
Stocks Plunge Again

Stocks Plunge Again

STOCKS PLUNGE AGAIN: Here’s What You Need To Know

by

Stocks finished lower for the third straight day on a Columbus Day holiday trading session that saw US equity markets remain open while bond markets and banks were closed for the day.

Stocks bounced around for most of the day before nosediving into the close, just as they did on Friday, with all of the major indexes falling more than 1.3% as the Dow lost more than 210 points.

Stocks Plunge AgainOver the past three days the S&P 500 has lost 4.8%, the largest three-day decline since November 2011.

First, the scoreboard:

  • Dow: 16,321, -223, (-1.3%)
  • S&P 500: 1,874.8, -31.3, (-1.6%)
  • Nasdaq: 4,213.6, -62.6, (-1.4%)

And now, the top stories on Monday:
1. With banks and the bond market closed, there were no economic-data releases on the US calendar. Overnight, however, trade data out of China came in better than expected, as exports rose 15.3% in September compared to a year ago.

2. The 2014 Nobel Prize in Economics was awarded to French economist Jean Tirole for his analysis of market power and regulation. Business Insider’s Shane Ferro has a breakdown of some of Tirole’s most recent work, which helps to explain how CEOs come to command outsize compensation.

3. Shares of GoPro fell more than 9% on Monday amid both broad market weakness and new reports that indicate a GoPro could have been responsible for the seriousness of the skiing accident involving Formula One driver Michael Schumacher. GoPro did not respond to Business Insider’s request for comment on Monday. Shares of GoPro, however, have been notably weak over the past few days as the Nasdaq has been the biggest loser among the major indexes. GoPro shares are now down more than 15% over the past five days.

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Posted by Red Pill Reports in Economic News