Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Bill Clinton’s Advice to President Obama on Jobs

- The Daily Ticker
Asked what specific advice he has for Obama, Clinton suggests the President focus on creating jobs in two ways: public-private business partnerships and clean energy.

IMF: World economy enters 'dangerous new phase'

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The world economy has entered a "dangerous new phase," according to the chief economist of the International Monetary Fund. As a result, the international lending organization has sharply downgraded its economic outlook for the United States and Europe through the end of next year.
The IMF expects the U.S. economy to grow just 1.5 percent this year and 1.8 percent in 2012. That's down from its June forecast of 2.5 percent in 2011 and 2.7 percent next year.

Monday, September 19, 2011

The Coming Collapse: “We Can Buy Time, But We Can’t Change the Outcome”

The Ayn Rand Institute held its annual "Atlas Shrugged Revolution" dinner Thursday night in New York City.
In attendance were a number of financial luminaries and hedge fund managers, including Peter Schiff of EuroPacific Capital, John Tamny of RealClearMarkets, Dmitry Balyasny of Balyasny Asset Management and Scott Schweighauser of Aurora Investment Management.
The setting was the tony St. Regis Hotel on Fifth Avenue but there was nothing pleasant about the primary message coming from both the speakers and those in attendance: Western civilization is heading for hell and a hand basket, just like Rand predicted in her seminal novel.
In the accompanying video, ARI president Yaron Brook tells Henry why Rand's devotees believe the global economy is "heading for collapse."
In a nutshell, Brook believes politicians and policymakers have "no solutions" for the problems facing the globe.
"The fundamental problem," Brook says, is with the philosophical belief our society has that governments can solve problems and more rules and regulations are the answer to our economic ailments.
Barring "real structural change" to our economic underpinnings toward self-reliance and truelaissez-faire capitalism, "we can buy time, but we can't change the outcome," Brook says.
And what will that outcome be? A repeat of the Great Depression in the 'best'-case scenario, he says. And the worse-case? A repeat of the fall of the Roman Empire.
"I don't expect that, I think we'll rebound," Brook says. "But we have to remember that…civilizations in human history have declined, they've disappeared."
Aaron Task is the host of The Daily Ticker. You can follow him on Twitter at @atask or email him ataltask@yahoo.com

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Traders React to Global Central Bank Bailout

Stocks surged in the U.S. and Europe early Thursday while Treasury prices tumbled on news of a coordinated easing by global central banks.
"The Governing Council of the European Central Bank has decided, in coordination with the Federal Reserve, the Bank of England, the Bank of Japan and the Swiss National Bank, to conduct three US dollar liquidity-providing operations with a maturity of approximately three months covering the end of the year," the ECB said in a statement.
Translation: The world's central bankers will provide as much money as necessary until year-end to stem a brewing funding crisis among European banks. The move follows a report yesterday that two European banks were unable to get short-term dollar funding in private markets and were forced to tap the ECB for $575 million.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Tanzania Revenue Authority Promises Less Port Congestion

Following the departure and takeover of all TISCAN operations earlier this month by the Tanzania Revenue Authority (TRA), the Authority has pledged to increase efficiency in cargo clearance at the Dar es Salaam port.

According to the TRA, this move, which follows the expiration of the company's Build Operate and Transfer (BOT) contract, has been designed specifically in an effort to help unify customs operations and ease port congestion.

Some of the services that the TRA currently offers its clients include pre-arrival declaration processing, cargo scanning, computerized risk management and capacity building.

In the seven years since its establishment in the country, TISCAN was able to successfully employ innovative, custom-made services in order to ease the import of trade while, at the same time, securing government revenues.

Prior to the take over from TISCAN, the TRA Customs Department was in charge of handling the Pre-Arrival Destinations (PAD) documents for cargo not exceeding USD 5,000 as well as special consignments.

Bank of Tanzania Optimistic About Weaker Currency

THURSDAY, 10 MARCH 2011 00:58
The Central Bank of Tanzania (BoT) has indicated in recent reports that it is not concerned about a possible further decline in the Tanzania shilling because a weaker currency could potentially help boost the country’s exports.

“The depreciation of the shilling is not excessive,” said Benno Ndulu, the governor of the Bank of Tanzania, during a recent conference in Dar es Salaam, “Over the last five years the shilling has depreciated by 20 percent, which translates annually into 4.5 percent each year.”

Governor Ndulu went on to explain that the difference in inflation between Tanzania and their trading partners currently stands at approximately 5 percent, which helps to explain the level of depreciation.

Belgian Firm Invests Sh4.5 Billion in Pride Tanzania

Dar es Salaam — Incofin Investment Management, a private Belgian company that invests in microfinance institutions (MFIs) through six investment funds, has recently made debt investments totalling $8.75 million in four African MFIs, including Pride Tanzania.

The company said in a statement late this week that it has invested Sh4.5 billion ($2.75 million) in the local organisation, which specialises in financing micro- and small-scale enterprises. The other beneficiaries of the Incofin investment are Lift Above Poverty Organisation (Lapo) of Nigeria; Sinapi Aba Trust (Sat) of Ghana; and First Allied Savings and Loans Limited (FASL), also of Ghana.

"All of the investments have been made through Incofin's Rural Impulse Fund II, which invests in MFIs that primarily serve rural areas and are deemed commercially viable," company noted in the statement.

"Incofin invested Sh4.5 billion (Sh2.75 million) in Pride Tanzania. As of December 31, 2009, Pride reported to the US-based non-profit Microfinance Information Exchange (MIX) total assets of $38.9 million, a gross loan portfolio of $26.9 million, return on assets (ROA) of 3.12 per cent, return on equity (ROE) of 24.2 per cent and approximately 73,000 active borrowers," it added.


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Tuesday, September 6, 2011