Posted by Kendall Harmon

The daughter of a 92-year-old priest who is paying interest on a loan agreed with the Church of England Pensions Board at 8.6 per cent - more than twice the cur-rent average - has questioned the morality of the scheme.

In 1985, the Revd Eric Quin took out a shared-equity loan in order to purchase a three-bedroom cottage in Cheshire for £45,750. With his wife, he paid £20,750 to put down a 45-per-cent deposit. The Pensions Board paid the remainder, £26,500, on the understanding that it would be entitled to 55 per cent of the final sale price.

The initial interest rate was three per cent - much lower than the 12-per-cent mortgage rate at the time. This rate was gradually increased in line with the pensions of all the fund's members. Mr Quin is now paying interest at a rate of 8.6 per cent. The property has risen in value to £200,000.

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifePersonal FinancePensionsStock MarketThe Banking System/Sector* International News & CommentaryEngland / UK* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted April 4, 2014 at 5:30 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The man responsible for the Church of England’s £6bn endowment has defended plans to increase its investment in hedge funds, arguing that not all of the industry has “devil’s horns”.

Andreas Whittam Smith, First Church Estates Commissioner, told the Financial Times that the Church’s own ethical watchdog sanctioned short selling, providing it was done in a responsible way.

He added that the group “does not have ethical concerns about short selling per se as an investment practice,” and “did not make an ethical distinction between seeking to profit from a rise in the value of a security as against seeking to profit from a fall.”

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsHousing/Real Estate MarketStock Market

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Posted March 9, 2014 at 6:53 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Church of England is ramping up the exposure of its £6bn endowment to alternative investments such as hedge funds and private equity in a move that will cement its position as one of the UK’s largest single investors in these types of assets.

The Church Commissioners who manage the endowment will meet next month to decide on the fund’s allocations and are set to increase its exposure to alternative investments, which also include residential property and farm land, according to a Church spokesman. Alternatives already account for almost a third of the fund.

Read it all (if necessary another link may be found there).

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsStock Market* International News & CommentaryEngland / UK* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted March 4, 2014 at 3:51 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

There are still many things to love about Argentina, from the glorious wilds of Patagonia to the world’s best footballer, Lionel Messi. The Argentines remain perhaps the best-looking people on the planet. But their country is a wreck. Harrods closed in 1998. Argentina is once again at the centre of an emerging-market crisis. This one can be blamed on the incompetence of the president, Cristina Fernández, but she is merely the latest in a succession of economically illiterate populists, stretching back to Juan and Eva (Evita) Perón, and before. Forget about competing with the Germans. The Chileans and Uruguayans, the locals Argentines used to look down on, are now richer. Children from both those countries—and Brazil and Mexico too—do better in international education tests.

Why dwell on a single national tragedy? When people consider the worst that could happen to their country, they think of totalitarianism. Given communism’s failure, that fate no longer seems likely. If Indonesia were to boil over, its citizens would hardly turn to North Korea as a model; the governments in Madrid or Athens are not citing Lenin as the answer to their euro travails. The real danger is inadvertently becoming the Argentina of the 21st century. Slipping casually into steady decline would not be hard. Extremism is not a necessary ingredient, at least not much of it: weak institutions, nativist politicians, lazy dependence on a few assets and a persistent refusal to confront reality will do the trick.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchHistory* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsStock MarketForeign RelationsPolitics in General* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted February 16, 2014 at 1:29 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Church of England has appointed a New York-based specialist to screen its portfolio of assets in the wake of its embarrassing Wonga debacle last year.

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin WelbyAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)* Culture-WatchGlobalizationReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsStock Market* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted January 31, 2014 at 6:59 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The gruelling hours were even more important, however. In his valedictory emails, perhaps wary of the cliché, Mr El-Erian avoided saying he wanted to spend more time with his family. But that is, in fact, his main reason for leaving, according to people close to him.

One tells me that on an average day Mr El-Erian’s alarm clock goes off at 2.45am. He usually gets to the office by 4.15am, gets home to his family about 7pm, eats, goes to bed by about 8.45pm and does it again.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalization* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketPersonal FinanceStock Market

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Posted January 28, 2014 at 4:28 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

True to their "live to work" reputation, some baby boomers are digging in their heels at the workplace as they approach the traditional retirement age of 65. While the average age at which U.S. retirees say they retired has risen steadily from 57 to 61 in the past two decades, boomers -- the youngest of whom will turn 50 this year -- will likely extend it even further. Nearly half (49%) of boomers still working say they don't expect to retire until they are 66 or older, including one in 10 who predict they will never retire.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchAging / the ElderlyMarriage & FamilyMiddle AgePsychology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketPersonal FinancePensionsStock MarketThe U.S. GovernmentMedicareSocial SecurityPolitics in General* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted January 21, 2014 at 6:15 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

There is no simple fix for an entrenched culture of overwork at professional services firms. The fact that an entry-level analyst at a Wall Street bank is required to sacrifice his or her personal life to the job – sitting at a desk until dawn, eating order-in food and correcting invisible errors in spreadsheets – has been built into the system.

“They know they have signed up for long hours but, until they get there, they don’t realise how disruptive it is. Your friendships deteriorate and your boyfriend or girlfriend is angry because they have not had a meal with you for a month. You lose touch with your family. It’s miserable,” says Kevin Roose, the author of Young Money , a forthcoming book on Wall Street’s first- and second-year recruits.

It is, of course, an elite problem. Despite everything, thousands compete for such jobs, hoping the Faustian pact will pay off. Goldman Sachs, which has tried to reform how it treats junior employees, received 17,000 applications for its 2014 intake of analysts and recruited 330.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchHealth & MedicineLaw & Legal Issues* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketStock Market* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted January 16, 2014 at 3:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

American consumers in 2013 were more upbeat than at any time in the previous six years as views on the economy, finances and the buying climate improved.

The Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index...averaged minus 31.4 for 2013, the highest since 2007, when it was minus 10.5. The weekly index fell for the first time since mid-November, dropping to minus 28.7 for the period ended Dec. 29, from minus 27.4.

An improved job market, higher stock prices and rising home values lifted sentiment at the end of the year and helped drive holiday retail shopping. Stronger wage and employment growth would help propel bigger gains in confidence and encourage Americans to boost spending, which accounts for almost 70 percent of the economy.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchPsychology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeHousing/Real Estate MarketLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketPersonal FinanceStock MarketThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

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Posted January 3, 2014 at 5:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Archbishop Welby, speaking on the Today programme on Radio 4, said that a review of the investment had been completed. He said: “They are working out how they can dispose of those shares without disposing of millions and millions of pounds of investment at a loss because they have a responsibility to pensioners.”

The Archbishop also admitted that there has been a “change in attitude” towards the Christian faith in Britain and that Church membership was in decline.

He said that he was nevertheless “extremely hopeful” for the future of the Church of England because of new initiatives such as the “Fresh Expressions” scheme, where congregations meet in unorthodox venues such as pubs, clubs and skateparks.

Read it all (subscription required).

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin Welby* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock Market* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted January 1, 2014 at 4:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

U.S. investors are generally wary about stocks as a way for Americans to build wealth, as 37% say the stock market is an "excellent" or "good" way for average Americans to grow their assets, while 46% consider it "only fair," and 16% call it "poor." Large class investors -- those with $100,000 or more in investable assets -- are significantly more upbeat about the market's value as a wealth generator than those with less than $100,000 of such assets, but still only 50% rate it positively.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchHistoryPsychology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyPersonal FinanceStock Market* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted December 22, 2013 at 1:15 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Although the Fed expects to keep reducing the program "in measured steps" next year, the timing and the course isn't preset. "Continued progress [in the economy] is by no means certain," Mr. [Ben] Bernanke said. "The steps that we take will be data-dependent."

If the Fed proceeds at the pace he set out, it would complete the bond-buying program toward the end of 2014 with holdings of nearly $4.5 trillion in bonds, loans and other assets, nearly six times as large as the Fed's total holdings when the financial crisis started in 2008.

Still, officials—worried that investors would quake at the thought of less Fed support—went to lengths to demonstrate that they would keep interest rates low for years to come, even after the bond-buying program ends.
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Filed under: * Culture-WatchHistory* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsHousing/Real Estate MarketLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketPersonal FinanceStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe U.S. GovernmentBudgetFederal ReserveThe National DeficitPolitics in General* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted December 19, 2013 at 8:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

While plenty of baby boomers, born from 1946 to 1964, have become affluent and many elderly around the U.S. face financial hardship, the wealth disparity of this father and daughter is emblematic of a broad shift occurring around the country. A rising tide of graying baby boomers is less secure financially and has a lower standard of living than their aged parents.

The median net worth for U.S. households headed by boomers aged 55 to 64 was almost 8 percent lower, at $143,964, than those 75 and older in 2011, according to Census Bureau data. Boomers lost more than other groups in the stock market and housing bust of 2008, and many also lost their jobs in the aftermath at a critical point in their productive years.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchAging / the ElderlyChildrenMarriage & FamilyMiddle AgePsychology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyHousing/Real Estate MarketLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketPersonal FinancePensionsStock MarketThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--The U.S. GovernmentMedicareSocial Security

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Posted December 18, 2013 at 6:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Wall Street faces more intensive government scrutiny of trading after U.S. regulators issued what they billed as a strict Volcker rule today, imposing new curbs designed to prevent financial blowups while leaving many details to be worked out later.

The Federal Reserve, Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. and three other agencies formally adopted the proprietary trading ban. The rule has been contested by JPMorgan Chase & Co., Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and their industry allies for more than three years.

Wall Street’s lobbying efforts paid off in easing some provisions of the rule. Regulators granted a broader exemption for banks’ market-making desks, on the condition that traders aren’t paid in a way that rewards proprietary trading. The regulation also exempts some securities tied to foreign sovereign debt.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--Politics in General* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted December 10, 2013 at 4:18 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Pope Francis called for renewal of the Roman Catholic Church and attacked unfettered capitalism as "a new tyranny", urging global leaders to fight poverty and growing inequality in the first major work he has authored alone as pontiff.

The 84-page document, known as an apostolic exhortation, amounted to an official platform for his papacy, building on views he has aired in sermons and remarks since he became the first non-European pontiff in 1,300 years in March.

In it, Francis went further than previous comments criticizing the global economic system, attacking the "idolatry of money" and beseeching politicians to guarantee all citizens "dignified work, education and healthcare".

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalization* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsHousing/Real Estate MarketLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketStock MarketThe Banking System/Sector* International News & CommentaryEurope* Religion News & CommentaryOther ChurchesRoman CatholicPope Francis * TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted November 26, 2013 at 8:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

..before realtors get too confident about the future, it is worth looking at some sobering research from the International Monetary Fund, buried deep inside this autumn’s Global Financial Stability Report. This analysis, which looks at mortgage real estate investment trusts (M-Reits) – which invest in packages of mortgage bonds – did not make headlines when the IMF met last month, because M-Reits are a fairly specialist sector. That is a pity, given that the IMF says the rapidly expanding world of M-Reits has the potential to deliver nasty surprises if, or when, US interest rates rise.

Most notably, even a modest increase in rates could spark fire sales of mortgage-backed bonds, which would raise mortgage interest rates sharply for consumers. And that could not just hurt housing markets but produce knock-on waves of instability in other areas of finance.

“Rapid M-Reit deleveraging has important spillover implications,” the IMF report warns.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalizationHistory* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsHousing/Real Estate MarketStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--The U.S. GovernmentFederal Reserve* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

1 Comments
Posted November 8, 2013 at 6:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Elite business-school graduates are increasingly heading to work in technology over finance as the lingering aftereffects of the financial crisis—along with Wall Street's long hours and scaled-back pay—sends newly minted M.B.A.s elsewhere.

At Harvard Business School, 18% of job-seeking students landed tech-sector spots this year, up from 12% in 2012. A similar shift is under way at the business schools at Yale University and Cornell University, where the share of graduates going into tech more than doubled over the past two years.

Meanwhile, just 27% of Harvard Business School graduates took jobs in finance this year, down from 35% last year. That figure dropped to 16% from 27% at the MIT Sloan School of Management.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchEducationScience & TechnologyYoung Adults* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCredit MarketsLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketStock MarketThe Banking System/Sector* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted November 7, 2013 at 7:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Religious faith is a “powerful and increasingly influential global reality” which must be taken seriously, especially in the City of London, according to the Archbishop of Canterbury.

The Most Rev Justin Welby said God and mammon – material wealth or greed – are not mixable, but this did not mean there was no place for faith in the City.

“That’s on the authority of Jesus Christ who said you can’t serve God and mammon. God and the City, by contrast I think, are eminently mixable.”

He was speaking at a Mansion House dinner hosted by Roger Gifford, a senior banker and Lord...

Read it all (subscription required).

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin Welby* Culture-WatchReligion & CultureUrban/City Life and Issues* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsStock MarketThe Banking System/Sector* International News & CommentaryEngland / UK* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted October 29, 2013 at 7:02 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

With just two days to go before an Oct. 17 deadline to raise the nation’s debt limit, 51% of the public views a rise in the nation’s debt limit as “absolutely essential” in order to avoid an Half View Debt Limit Increase as Essential, More than a Third Say it is Noteconomic crisis, while 36% think the country can go past the deadline without major problems.

Public concern over breaching the debt limit deadline has risen only slightly from a week ago, when 47% said a rise in the debt limit was essential and 39% said it was not.

Those who see no dire economic consequences resulting from going past Thursday’s deadline are not only skeptical about the timing – most say there is no need to raise the debt limit at all. Nearly a quarter of all Americans (23%) – including 37% of Republicans and 52% of Tea Party Republicans – believe the debt limit does not need to be raised at all.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalization* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsHousing/Real Estate MarketLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketPersonal FinanceStock MarketThe U.S. GovernmentBudgetThe National DeficitPolitics in GeneralHouse of RepresentativesOffice of the PresidentSenate* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted October 16, 2013 at 6:28 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

When the Archbishop of Canterbury was embarrassed by the revelation earlier this year that the Church had invested indirectly in Wonga – after he had announced plans to take on the payday lender – it served as a bleak reminder that even the best-intentioned investor can be let down by their so-called ethical investments.

If you are looking to put your spare cash to good use by investing "ethically", be warned that you could face similar nasty surprises unless you keep a keen eye on the investment criteria. A close examination of the ethical fund sector shows investments in some unexpected areas. They include oil companies operating in tar sand fields, deemed harmful by some environmentalists; arms manufacturers; and businesses that have exposure to fur and animal testing.

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin Welby* Culture-WatchGlobalizationLaw & Legal Issues* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsStock Market* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted October 14, 2013 at 7:28 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

What started as a mad dash to strike a deal to lift the federal debt limit slowed to a crawl over the weekend as stalemated Senate leaders waited nervously to see whether financial markets would plunge Monday morning and drive the other side toward compromise.

Republicans seemed to think they had more to lose. After talks broke down between President Obama and House leaders, GOP senators quickly cobbled together a plan to end the government shutdown — now entering its third week — and raise the $16.7 trillion debt limit. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) then asked Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) to elevate negotiations to the highest level.

On Sunday — with the Treasury Department due to exhaust its borrowing power in just four days — Reid was wielding that leverage to maximum advantage. Rather than making concessions that would undermine Obama’s signature health-care initiative, as Republicans first demanded, Democrats are now on the offensive and seeking to undo what has become a cherished prize for the GOP: deep agency spending cuts known as the sequester.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalization* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe U.S. GovernmentBudgetFederal ReserveThe National DeficitPolitics in GeneralHouse of RepresentativesOffice of the PresidentPresident Barack ObamaSenate

4 Comments
Posted October 14, 2013 at 5:45 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The global financial crisis has strengthened the Church of England's drive for more ethical business practices by making companies and shareholders more receptive to change, according to the man who manages its investment fund.

With about 5.5 billion pounds ($8.8 billion) of financial and property assets, the Church has greater clout than many hedge funds. But it has often struggled to make its voice heard.

That is starting to change, according to First Church Estates Commissioner Andreas Whittam Smith.

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)* Culture-WatchGlobalizationReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock Market* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted October 12, 2013 at 1:32 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

A senior Chinese official has warned that the "clock is ticking" to avoid a US default that could hurt China's interests and the global economy.

China, the US's largest creditor, is "naturally concerned about developments in the US fiscal cliff", vice finance minister Zhu Guangyao said.

Washington must agree a deal to raise its borrowing limit by 17 October, or risk being unable to pay its bills.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalization* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsEuroEuropean Central BankG20 Stock MarketThe U.S. GovernmentBudgetThe National DeficitForeign RelationsPolitics in GeneralHouse of RepresentativesOffice of the PresidentPresident Barack ObamaSenate* International News & CommentaryAsiaChina

2 Comments
Posted October 7, 2013 at 4:50 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Anglican Diocese of Wellington has voted to remove all of its investments in companies which extract or produce fossil fuels.

The decision came at a meeting of delegates in Palmerston North this weekend and follows a similar decision by the Anglican synod in Auckland.

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesAnglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock MarketEnergy, Natural Resources* International News & CommentaryAustralia / NZ* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted September 22, 2013 at 3:09 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Seeing a more uneven economic climate than they expected and the potential for fiscal discord in Washington, Federal Reserve officials got cold feet Wednesday and decided to keep their signature easy-money program in place for the time being.

The move, coming after Fed officials spent months alerting the public that they might begin to pare their $85 billion-a-month bond-buying program at the September policy meeting, marks the latest in a string of striking turnabouts from Washington policy makers that have whipsawed markets in recent days.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalization* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsHousing/Real Estate MarketLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketStock MarketThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--The U.S. GovernmentFederal Reserve

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Posted September 19, 2013 at 5:30 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Earlier today, I spoke with Larry Summers and accepted his decision to withdraw his name from consideration for Chairman of the Federal Reserve.

Larry was a critical contributor to the radical deregulation that was one of many causes of the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. It was in no small part because of his lack of expertise, false wisdom, and inept leadership that the economy crashed and burned and even today is still failing to be to back to its full growth potential.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchHistory* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--The U.S. GovernmentFederal ReservePolitics in GeneralOffice of the PresidentPresident Barack Obama* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

1 Comments
Posted September 15, 2013 at 6:14 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Twitter Inc. said it has confidentially submitted an S-1 form to the Securities and Exchange Commission to begin the process for an initial public offering, a long-awaited move by the microblogging service.

In a tweet on Thursday, the San Francisco-based company said, "We've confidentially submitted an S-1 to the SEC for a planned IPO. This Tweet does not constitute an offer of any securities for sale."

A Twitter spokesman declined to comment.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchBlogging & the Internet--Social NetworkingGlobalizationScience & Technology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeStock Market

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Posted September 12, 2013 at 5:25 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Church of England has invested up to £10m in one of the world's major arms firms, which supplies systems and technology for unmanned drones and jets to conflicts around the world. The discovery, on the eve of what is set to be the biggest day of protests against DSEi – the UK's leading arms fair – in Docklands, London, tomorrow, has led worshippers to accuse church leaders of profiting from conflict.

The Church Commissioners and Church of England Pensions Board are both shareholders in General Electric (GE), with shareholdings up to £10m. Yesterday, the Church defended the investment, claiming less than 3 per cent of GE's business was based in arms sales.

But the firm, along with its key subsidiary General Aviation, is a leading supplier of "integrated systems and technologies" for combat aircraft, military transport, helicopters, land vehicles and unmanned aerial vehicles – better known as drones.

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock Market

1 Comments
Posted September 8, 2013 at 3:32 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

R&L: Why did you want to write this book? Tell us what crony capitalism means to you and give us a sense of its greatest threat.

Peter Schweizer: I wanted to write the book because for years I've been involved in policy and the philosophical debate in D.C. concerning the growth and size of government. I've come to the conclusion that while that debate is important and needs to continue to take place, the bottom line is that whether conservatives or liberals are in charge, the government continues to expand.

We've got to change the incentive structure that exists in Washington, and that incentive structure is driven by cronyism, where the state and private sector intersect. If I were to define crony-capitalism, I really use the term cronyism because I don't think that it speaks of capitalism per se, but cronyism is essentially where economic decisions in terms of who accumulates wealth and who doesn't, is not based on merit, it's not based on economic prowess or success or meeting needs in the marketplace. It's based on political connections and relationships whereby you are able to either manipulate the state to your advantage, and to the disadvantage of your competitors.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchHistoryLaw & Legal IssuesReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe U.S. GovernmentPolitics in General* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted August 20, 2013 at 7:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The work of Richard Rothman, a professor at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, is more fundamental: to save lives. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta predicts flu outbreaks, once it examines reports from hospitals. That takes weeks. In 2009, a study seemed to suggest researchers could predict outbreaks much faster by analyzing millions of Google searches.

Spikes in queries like "My kid is sick" signaled a flu outbreak before the CDC knew there would be one. That posed a new question for Dr. Rothman and his colleague Andrea Dugas:

Could Google help predict influenza outbreaks in time to allow hospitals like the one at Johns Hopkins to get ready?

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchBlogging & the InternetHealth & MedicineScience & Technology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock Market

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Posted August 13, 2013 at 8:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Beth Glover was a juror on the trial of former Goldman Sachs trader Fabrice Tourre. When the lawyers were discussing the mortgages tied to the securities at the center of the case, Glover realized that, for all intents and purposes, they were talking about her mortgage.

"When they were looking at the subprime mortgage groupings, I think I would have been in one of those," Glover told me. "I didn't have as great as FICO score at that time."

Glover's an Episcopal priest. She says she saw the devastation the financial crisis caused to her parishioners. They lost homes and jobs. Church programs had to be cut for lack of funds.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryMinistry of the Ordained* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--

0 Comments
Posted August 11, 2013 at 12:22 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The survey stopped short of singling out the UK government for giving a lack of clarity, saying that it was a Europewide and worldwide problem. But Ms Pfeifer conceded that “mixed messages are not helpful,” when asked about the current UK government’s record.

Some 69 per cent of fund managers surveyed said they were only appointing executives with a strong focus on climate change, a significant rise on a year ago. Meanwhile, 53 per cent of asset managers said they had either sold, or decided not to invest in, at least one company in the past year because of concerns about climate change, both moral and economic.

The survey included the views of 84 investment firms in 10 countries, including The Church Commissioners for England, BNP Paribas and the California Public Employees’ Retirement System.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock MarketEnergy, Natural Resources* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted August 7, 2013 at 8:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Federal Bureau of Investigation has discovered vulnerabilities in the government's system for preventing market-moving economic reports from leaking to traders before public release.

Law-enforcement officials found "a number of operational vulnerabilities" involving "black boxes" used by several departments to control the release of sensitive economic data such as the monthly unemployment rate, according to a report by the inspector general at the Commerce Department.

The report said it was possible to subvert the system, which was designed to prevent media companies from sending economic data to traders early.

Read it all(or if necessary another link is there).

Filed under: * Culture-WatchBlogging & the InternetLaw & Legal IssuesScience & Technology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsStock MarketThe U.S. Government* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted August 6, 2013 at 2:01 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Once again, the Church of England was in the headlines for all the wrong reasons. The Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, below, its relatively new leader, denounced the demons of payday lending, vowing to defeat them with the church's own credit unions. Yet almost instantly it emerged that his own organisation had played a role in their creation through its huge investment funds.
For those of us who take little interest in this declining institution beyond wondering how it remains an established church in our multi-cultural age, it is just the latest farce involving bungling bishops and clerical contortions.

Yet this weekend, even Catholic-born atheists such as me are forced to concede that the current resident of Lambeth Palace is emerging as one of the most distinctive voices in the country. His deft political touch, sharp media abilities and displays of decent humanity could even help restore his church to the role expected by its followers after decades during which it failed to capitalise on its centrality to national life.

Read it all.


Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin WelbyAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyPersonal FinanceStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorPolitics in General* International News & CommentaryEngland / UK

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Posted July 30, 2013 at 3:25 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Church of England’s ethical finance chief has defended its investment policy despite its stakes in businesses blamed for pollution, tax dodging, animal cruelty and child labour.

“Life is not perfectly good or perfectly bad,” Edward Mason said after it was revealed that the Church had been unwittingly bankrolling the payday lender Wonga. “Everything is a mess.”

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, has ordered a review of the Church’s multibillion-pound investments to identify inconsistencies with its moral teachings.

Read it all (subscription required).

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin WelbyAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock Market* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted July 29, 2013 at 5:15 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

...before we laugh at the foolishness of the Church, we should reflect on how we are all implicated in this hypocrisy. Many of our pensions schemes and banks are invested in this billion industry built on the backs of the poor.

Welby's courageous leadership on the issue of usurious lending practices is in stark contrast to the supine political leaders of all parties who have consistently failed to address the problem of legalized loan sharks. And Lord Maurice Glasman is exactly right to point out the challenge Welby's action poses to the Labour Party and the left more generally. Through the leadership of Compass, Stella Creasy MP, London Citizens and the indefatigable Damon Gibbons - who since 1999 has worked on this issue through the Debt on your Doorstep campaign - some are starting to wake up to the nightmare that the kind of exploitative financial practices Wonga represents.

The silence of many on the left should be a source of deep shame, as usury is a profound challenge to all those committed to strengthening democracy and challenging oppression. Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin Welby* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifePersonal FinanceStock Market* International News & CommentaryEngland / UK* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted July 28, 2013 at 6:29 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The head of the Church of England said on Friday he was embarrassed to find out that his organisation had invested indirectly in a short-term loan company which he had vowed only days earlier to drive out of business.

The discovery of the relatively small investment was a major setback for Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, after he launched a scathing attack on "payday" lenders who charge high interest rates on short-term loans that are typically repaid when borrowers receive their wages.

But the former oil executive and a member of Britain's Banking Standards Commission said he would push ahead with his campaign to compete with, and eventually render obsolete, a business he labels "morally wrong".

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin Welby* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsPersonal FinanceStock Market* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted July 27, 2013 at 4:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Church of England has admitted it invests in one of Wonga’s key financial backers, a day after the Archbishop of Canterbury revealed his plans to take on the payday lender he describes as “morally wrong”.

The church, which claims to have a strong ethical investment policy that explicitly bans companies involved in payday lending, invests in Accel Partners, the US venture capital firm that led Wonga’s 2009 fundraising, the Financial Times has learnt.

A Lambeth Palace spokesperson said: “We are grateful to the Financial Times for pointing out this serious inconsistency of which we were unaware. We will be asking the Assets Committee of the Church Commissioners to investigate how this has occurred and to review the holding in this pooled investment vehicle.”

Read it all (if necessary another link is there).

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin WelbyAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifePersonal FinanceStock Market* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

1 Comments
Posted July 26, 2013 at 6:07 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Investors have poured more money into US equity funds this week than at any time since the 2008 financial crisis, with the value of the benchmark S&P 500 index soaring to a record $15tn....

Some $19.7bn was invested in global equity funds in the past week, the most for six months, while $700m was pulled from bond funds, according to Bank of America Merrill Lynch citing EPFR figures. The amount put in US equity funds was the most since June 2008, the bank said.

Read it all (another link there if needed).

Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalization* Economics, PoliticsEconomyStock Market* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

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Posted July 19, 2013 at 7:59 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Two more Portuguese ministers from the junior ruling coalition party were ready to resign on Wednesday, local media said, deepening turmoil that could trigger a snap election and derail Lisbon's exit from an EU/IMF bailout.

Multiple newspaper radio and television reports said Agriculture Minister Assuncao Cristas and Social Security Minister Pedro Mota Soares will follow their CDS-PP party leader Paulo Portas who tendered his resignation on Tuesday. Party officials were not available to comment as the party's executive commission was in a meeting.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalization* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsEuroEuropean Central BankStock MarketForeign RelationsPolitics in General* International News & CommentaryEurope--European Sovereign Debt Crisis of 2010Portugal

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Posted July 3, 2013 at 7:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Global markets have fallen sharply after the Federal Reserve signalled it may begin to scale back its stimulus of the US economy later this year.

On Wall Street, the Dow Jones dropped 354 points, or 2.3%, to close at 14,758, while the S&P 500 had its worst day since November 2011, shedding 2.5%.

European stock markets were down 3% or more by the close....

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalization* Economics, PoliticsEconomyStock MarketThe U.S. GovernmentFederal Reserve

2 Comments
Posted June 20, 2013 at 6:40 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Federal Reserve chairman, Ben S. Bernanke, said on Wednesday that the central bank intended to reduce its monetary stimulus later this year — and end the bond purchases entirely by the middle of next year — if unemployment continued to decline at the pace that the Fed expected.

Mr. Bernanke said that the Fed planned to continue the asset purchases until the unemployment rate fell to about 7 percent, the first time that the Fed has specified an economic objective for the bond-buying. The rate stood at 7.6 percent in May.

The Federal Reserve also struck notes of greater optimism about the economic recovery, saying in a statement released after a two-day meeting of its policy-making committee that the economy was expanding “at a moderate pace,” the job market was improving and risks to the recovery had “diminished since last fall.”

Read it all.

Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsHousing/Real Estate MarketLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--The U.S. GovernmentFederal Reserve

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Posted June 20, 2013 at 4:40 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

During the testosterone-fuelled boom years, Christian faith was about surviving in the City, but since 2008 and the revelation that it was all built on sand, Christians have been saying unequivocally that the gospel is non-negotiable, that working in commerce isn’t about surviving as a Christian but about transforming the way we do business, that Christianity is disruptive of systemic greed and corruption: that, in short, their work serves their faith and not the other way round. They are converting markets, not just people. These are the new Power Christians.

Welby is their spiritual, as well as titular, leader. Born in 1956 into a privileged, if eccentric family, he has managed a tension between descent from a powerful Conservative dynasty (on his mother’s side, he is a scion of the Butler family, which gave us Rab Butler, the deputy prime minister to Harold Macmillan) and skeletons in the family cupboard (it was seen fit to conceal his paternal Jewish-immigrant lineage from him until he became an adult).

This background may have contributed to Welby the Outsider, part of the establishment but also a thorn in its side. It is no surprise that the relentlessly bourgeois HTB couldn’t contain him. Note that he considerably widened not only his social but his theological circle after he left the Knightsbridge church. Via Africa and the Middle East, he arrived as dean of Liverpool Cathedral, where he operated what he and Dr Williams have dubbed a “mixed economy” of traditions. Now add that eclecticism – one might even call it a catholic taste in denominations – to the can-do attitude of the City whizz-kid and you have someone who can tap effortlessly in to the energy of any kind of Christian witness....

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin Welby* Culture-WatchReligion & CultureUrban/City Life and Issues* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsStock MarketThe Banking System/Sector* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted June 7, 2013 at 8:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

European governments are figuring out that taxing financial transactions won't be a magical money machine and that the proposed levy might even damage the European economy.

Reuters first reported Thursday that EU officials are scaling back a transaction tax proposal supported by 11 countries that is supposed to take effect in January. The levy could instead be introduced on a "staggered basis," one official told the news agency. The first phase might only tax sales and purchases of shares, not bonds or derivatives transactions, and at 0.01% instead of 0.1% as currently proposed. A rate of zero is more appropriate.

Enthusiasm for the tax has been dimming for a while, including in governments that have previously backed it. Christian Noyer, the Governor of the Banque de France, said in Paris on Tuesday that the levy will raise "nothing at all." One unnamed EU official told Reuters that a scaled-back transaction tax would reap revenue of less than €3.5 billion. The full-fledged levy, as proposed by the European Commission in February, was supposed to rake in €31 billion a year.

Read it all (if necessary another link may be found here.

Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsEconomyCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsEuroStock MarketTaxesThe Banking System/SectorPolitics in General* International News & CommentaryEurope--European Sovereign Debt Crisis of 2010

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Posted June 3, 2013 at 5:31 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

European countries plan to scale back a proposed financial transactions tax drastically, initially imposing a tiny charge on share deals only and taking much longer than originally intended to achieve a full roll-out.

Read it all.


Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsEconomyCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsStock MarketTaxesThe Banking System/Sector* International News & CommentaryEurope* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted May 30, 2013 at 6:40 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

There is no evidence that an FTT would moderate market volatility — and attenuate sudden shifts of mood on financial markets.

A recent report by Anna Pomeranets from the Bank of Canada concluded that there have been instances when an FTT led to an increase in volatility — most significantly on the New York Stock Exchange and the American Stock Exchange, between 1932 and 1981, where increases in the FTT were associated with rising volatility, increased bid-ask spreads, and lower trading volumes.

Similarly, the idea that capital is under-taxed in current tax regimes is mistaken.

Read More At Investor's Business Daily: http://news.investors.com/ibd-editorials-viewpoint/052913-658027-financial-transaction-tax-in-europe-will-not-raise-much-money-and-may-hurt-growth.htm#ixzz2UmJX6SiT
Follow us: @IBDinvestors on Twitter | InvestorsBusinessDaily on Facebook


Read it all.

Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsEconomyCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsStock MarketTaxesThe Banking System/Sector* International News & CommentaryEurope

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Posted May 30, 2013 at 6:24 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

A U.S. economy that was supposed to be barely hanging on is starting to look surprisingly robust.

Housing prices rose faster over the past year than they have in the past seven, according to data out Tuesday. Consumer confidence hit its highest level in five years. The stock market rallied another 0.6 percent as measured by the Standard & Poor’s 500, leaving it just short of an all-time high reached last week. And the national retail price of gasoline fell for six days straight through Monday and is down 16 cents a gallon since late February.

It adds up to this reality: In a year when tax increases and spending cuts by the federal government were expected to bleed life out of the economy, the strengthening housing and financial markets are proving to be more powerful than acts of Congress.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeHousing/Real Estate MarketLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketPersonal FinanceStock MarketThe U.S. GovernmentFederal ReservePolitics in GeneralHouse of RepresentativesOffice of the PresidentSenate

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Posted May 29, 2013 at 8:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Employers kept hiring at a steady pace in April and the government revised up job tallies for February and March, easing fears that the economy is tumbling into a spring slump and propelling blue-chip stocks to record highs.

Nonfarm payrolls rose by 165,000 last month and the jobless rate ticked down to 7.5%, the lowest level since December 2008. The Labor Department also significantly raised hiring estimates for the two prior months, by a combined 114,000 jobs.

But the job gains in April, which were tilted toward the retail and business-services sectors, come alongside mixed signals for the economy almost four years into the recovery. While the housing and auto sectors are accelerating after years of industry turmoil, other major sectors are showing signs of trouble. In short: The Federal Reserve is looking for more broad-based and sustained job growth before easing up on its easy-money policies.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketPersonal FinanceStock MarketThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--The U.S. GovernmentFederal Reserve

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Posted May 3, 2013 at 3:16 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Justin Welby, the new leader of nearly 80m Anglicans around the world, has won a respectful hearing for his ideas on banking and the British economy. Even if they disagree with the details, people have generally not reacted by saying "this man hasn't a clue what he is talking about" or "he should go back to singing hymns."

On April 21st, the archbishop of Canterbury suggested that big, unhealthy banks should be broken up into regional ones, as part of a "revolution in the aims" of banks designed to make sure that they served society as well as their own narrow interests. That sounded very like the proposal made last month by Ed Miliband, the Labour leader, for local lenders modelled on the German system. It comes at a time when the government faces hard decisions about the future of the Royal Bank of Scotland after its rescue by the tax-payer. Given the immediacy of the issue, some people will accuse the archbishop (who lists his hobbies as French culture, sailing and politics) of making narrow political points rather than broad moral ones.

But he also had some longer-term ideas on the financial sector. Drawing on his experience as a member of a parliamentary Banking Standards Commission, he said senior positions in banking ought to form a regulated profession which required qualifications.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin Welby* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted April 29, 2013 at 11:11 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Speaking on Radio 4... [on Saturday], the Archbishop of Canterbury stressed the implications of Christian ethics for the City of London

The Christian Gopsel has "always had strong social implications" and been concerned with "the common good", the Archbishop of Canterbury said....

In an interview for Radio 4's Week in Westminster, Archbishop Justin said his main mission wasn't to inject morality back into British business. But he said that how the City of London - which “is so important and so full of very gifted people” – behaves in relation to the common good is a major concern not just for the Church but for society generally.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin Welby* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsStock MarketThe Banking System/Sector* International News & CommentaryEngland / UK* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted April 29, 2013 at 5:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Justin Welby, the archbishop of Canterbury, laughs when it is suggested that he has a mission to raise moral standards in the City. “My key mission is to lead the Church in worshipping Jesus Christ,” he says.

He points out, however, that Christian teaching concerns the “common good”, and he is concerned about “how the City of London, which is so important and so full of very gifted people”, relates to this concept.

Dr Welby is in a unique position to do something about it. Outside the cathedral he enjoys two political pulpits from which to shape the debate: in the House of Lords and on the cross-party parliamentary banking commission.

Read it all (another link ).

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin Welby* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsStock MarketThe Banking System/Sector* International News & CommentaryEngland / UK* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted April 28, 2013 at 11:45 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The City of London has been affected by a "culture of entitlement" at variance with what others think reasonable, the new Archbishop of Canterbury has said.

But the Most Reverend Justin Welby told the BBC business morality was in many ways much better than in the past.

He also defended his description of the UK's economic situation as a depression rather than a recession.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin Welby* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsStock MarketThe Banking System/Sector* International News & CommentaryEngland / UK* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted April 27, 2013 at 10:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Security experts at Twitter were fighting a seemingly losing battle yesterday against the Syrian Electronic Army, a shadowy group that sparked panic on financial markets this week by faking a news report about an bomb attack on the White House.

The group, which purports to support the regime in Damascus, hacked the Associated Press news agency’s Twitter account and reported that explosions in the White House had injured President Obama, sending markets into a tailspin, and wiping $136 billion (£89 billion) off the [value of the top 500 U.S. stocks in seconds]....

Read it all (requires subscription) and there is a lot more there from the WSJ.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchBlogging & the Internet--Social NetworkingMediaScience & Technology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyStock Market* International News & CommentaryMiddle EastSyria

0 Comments
Posted April 26, 2013 at 6:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

There has never been any doubt that Trinity Church is wealthy. But the extent of its wealth has long been a mystery; guessed at by many, known by few.

Now, however, after a lawsuit filed by a disenchanted parishioner, the church has offered an estimate of the value of its assets: more than $2 billion.

The Episcopal parish, known as Trinity Wall Street, traces its holdings to a gift of 215 acres of prime Manhattan farmland donated in 1705 by Queen Anne of England. Since then, the church has parlayed that gift into a rich portfolio of office buildings, stock investments and, soon, mixed-use residential development.

Read it all from today's New York Times.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)TEC Parishes* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchReligion & CultureUrban/City Life and Issues* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsHousing/Real Estate MarketStock Market* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.* TheologyEthics / Moral TheologyPastoral Theology

13 Comments
Posted April 25, 2013 at 6:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Culture change in financial services will not be achieved by "light touch" or "heavy touch" regulation, Archbishop Justin said at a Westminster discussion organised by the Bible Society.

Instead the banking sector must adopt "an aim of service to society and not mere rent-seeking, and a culture of virtue based in the realities of daily life and not a fantasy nirvana," he said.

Describing what this change of culture might look like, the Archbishop said it would require "a ruthless honesty and a deep willingness to be made very uncomfortable indeed through listening to things one does not want to hear".

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin Welby* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsEuroEuropean Central BankHousing/Real Estate MarketLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketPersonal FinanceStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--Politics in General* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted April 23, 2013 at 5:45 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Commodity prices have been falling since September, culminating in a rout over the past two weeks. That is a classic warning for the global economy.

It is becoming ever clearer that the roaring boom in global equities since last summer has priced in an economic recovery that does not in fact exist. The International Monetary Fund has had to nurse down its global growth forecasts yet again. We are still stuck in an old-fashioned trade depression, with pervasive over-capacity in manufacturing plant and a record global savings rate of 25pc of GDP.

German car sales fell 17pc in March. That should puncture the last illusions that Germany is about to pull Europe out of a self-inflicted slump.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalization* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeHousing/Real Estate MarketLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketPersonal FinanceStock MarketThe U.S. GovernmentFederal Reserve* International News & CommentaryAsiaJapan

0 Comments
Posted April 18, 2013 at 11:32 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsEconomyStock MarketTaxesThe U.S. Government* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.England / UKEurope

0 Comments
Posted April 11, 2013 at 12:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

France's experiment with the Tobin Tax has proved a spectacular flop. Its finance ministry admits that the scattershot levy on financial transactions has raised just a third of the money expected since August.

Total takings will be a paltry €800m in 2013, but that overlooks the much greater damage inflicted on French finance, industry and the government's own tax base. "France is shooting itself in the foot," said Paul-Henri de La Porte du Theil, head of French finance industry AFG.

Jean-Yves Hocher from Crédit Agricole said it would cost his company €17bn. One French banker told Les Echos that the tax was "a weapon of mass destruction that is going to ruin our financial sector".

Read it all.



Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeStock MarketTaxes* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.England / UKEuropeFrance

0 Comments
Posted April 11, 2013 at 11:35 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Americans seem to be falling in love with stocks again.

Millions of people all but abandoned the market after the 2008 financial crisis, but now individual investors are pouring more money than they have in years into stock mutual funds. The flood, prompted by fading economic threats and better news on housing and jobs, has helped propel the broad market to within striking distance of its highest nominal level ever.

“You’ve got a real sea change in investor outlook,” said Andrew Wilkinson, the chief economic strategist at Miller Tabak Associates.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchPsychology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeStock Market

0 Comments
Posted January 26, 2013 at 4:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Late one night 20 years ago, when I was an oil executive rather than an Anglican bishop, I had run out of steam and patience toward the end of a complex multinational acquisition. We came to yet another bit of box ticking and I suggested we skip it, because we knew the material was accurate.

“Justin,” our wise investment-bank director said quietly, “you know that’s not how we do it.”

Under pressure, everyone is prone to make bad decisions and that story remains in my mind as I sit on the U.K.’s Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards, listening to people talk about banks, bankers and their failures.

Read it all.


Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury --Justin Welby* Culture-WatchGlobalizationLaw & Legal IssuesReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketStock MarketTaxesThe Banking System/Sector* International News & CommentaryEngland / UK* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

4 Comments
Posted January 17, 2013 at 7:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

"Dozens of companies have been delisted from our exchanges due to economy irregularities and outright fraud," said Dan David, vice president of GeoInvesting, LLC, a firm that monitored the Asian investment craze. "They raised hundreds of millions, some companies, that is outright money that was taken from investors that they'll never see again."

[Mary] Schapiro said the SEC opened 40 cases against Chinese firms during her tenure, targeting financial schemes she described as "brazen" and "extraordinary." Schapiro, who stepped down in December, said that when she asked Chinese Vice Premier Wang Qishan for help during a trip to Beijing in July her requests were rebuffed.

"We haven't yet achieved a level of cooperation that makes it possible for us to get access to Chinese companies the way we need," Shapiro said. "We will fight hard to try to secure recovery for U.S. investors. But it's harder when we don't have the cooperation of the foreign government."

Read it all and watch the video report (recommended)

Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalizationLaw & Legal Issues* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock Market* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.AsiaChina* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

1 Comments
Posted January 11, 2013 at 6:15 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Financial adviser Jeffrey Smith recently watched a once-confident client scrawl his fears across a legal pad during a discussion of stock investments: "Congressional stalemate," "unemployment," "European crisis," "corruption."

The client, retiree Nicholas Zerebny, later recalled how his thoughts strayed to Edvard Munch's "Scream" paintings. In the middle of the page, Mr. Zerebny drew a crude version of the iconic screaming face.

"That's how I feel right now," he told Mr. Smith.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchPsychology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifePersonal FinanceStock MarketThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--

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Posted December 11, 2012 at 1:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

....seasoned Washington hands say that once this rather gloomy back and forth has played out - and it might take another week or more - the work towards reaching a solution that both sides can sell to their parties and their lawmakers will begin in earnest.

A deal by Christmas, a week before the fiscal cliff deadline, remains uncertain but not out of the question. The so-called fiscal cliff is a combination of U.S. government spending cuts and tax increases due to be implemented under existing law in early 2013 that may cut the federal budget deficit but also tip the economy back into recession.

The pattern of little happening until very close to a holiday is well-established on Capitol Hill. The past three pre-Christmas seasons brought important eleventh-hour developments on health care in 2009, tax cut extensions in 2010 and the payroll tax holiday in 2011.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeHousing/Real Estate MarketLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketPersonal FinanceStock MarketTaxesThe U.S. GovernmentBudgetMedicareSocial SecurityThe National DeficitPolitics in GeneralHouse of RepresentativesOffice of the PresidentPresident Barack ObamaSenate

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Posted December 3, 2012 at 3:26 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Justin Welby, a former oil executive, may have hoped to have left the problems of Mammon behind on his appointment as Archbishop of Canterbury, but he could be plunged into an immediate cash crisis.

The Church of England’s pension deficit could reach £500m by the end of this year, putting a huge financial burden on congregations, an independent pensions consultant has warned.

John Ralfe said congregations, who already pay £68m annually to support the Clergy Pensions Scheme’s 24,000 members, will have to find £108m a year if an existing plan to eliminate the deficit over 12 years is not extended.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsPersonal FinancePensionsStock Market

2 Comments
Posted November 26, 2012 at 6:15 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Finance chiefs of the world's 20 leading economies are ringing alarm bells over the U.S. fiscal cliff and Europe's debt woes at a meeting in Mexico this weekend as they look to push back deficit reduction targets to help boost growth.

Unless a fractious U.S. Congress can reach a deal, about $600 billion in government spending cuts and higher taxes are set to kick in on January 1, threatening to push the American economy back into recession and hit world growth.

"The Americans themselves acknowledge that this is a problem," a G20 official said on condition of anonymity. "The U.S. administration says it doesn't want to fall off the fiscal cliff, but right now it can't tell us how exactly it will address it because that issue is on ice ahead of the election."

Read it all.

Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsG20 Housing/Real Estate MarketLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketPersonal FinanceStock MarketTaxesThe Banking System/SectorThe U.S. GovernmentBudgetThe National DeficitPolitics in GeneralHouse of RepresentativesOffice of the PresidentSenateUS Presidential Election 2012

0 Comments
Posted November 5, 2012 at 6:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

We do not wish to distress you Only to appeal to you.

Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

We stand here as Occupiers, as women, Queers, disabled, grandmas, young, old, as women of all faiths and none in solidarity with all other groups who are marginalised by economic injustice.

Even when times are good women, along with our children, are usually those who suffer the most. In times of economic crisis our inequality is amplified but we refuse to be victims.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)* Christian Life / Church LifeParish Ministry* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesReligion & CultureUrban/City Life and Issues* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

3 Comments
Posted October 15, 2012 at 6:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Four women who chained themselves to the pulpit of St Paul's cathedral cut through the bolts after six hours on the advice of police, avoiding arrest...

he women wrapped chains around their waists after a prayer that Church officials had invited them to give. One, Josie Reid, chained herself to her wheelchair.

The action came on the anniversary of the Occupy protest last year when protesters took over the square outside.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)* Christian Life / Church LifeParish Ministry* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesReligion & CultureUrban/City Life and Issues* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

1 Comments
Posted October 15, 2012 at 5:45 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

When Facebook Inc. (FB) filed its proposal Feb. 1 to go public, it touted the effectiveness of ads linked to customers’ friends, citing research from Nielsen, the audience-counting company.

arbara Jacobs, an assistant director for corporation finance at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, was skeptical, as she and her staff vetted the filing to ensure Facebook had disclosed all material information to investors. The claim appeared to be drawn from marketing materials, not a Nielsen study, she wrote to Chief Financial Officer David Ebersman, 42.

She gave him an ultimatum: Produce the study and provide Nielsen’s consent for use of the data -- or don’t use it, she wrote to Ebersman on Feb. 28. Facebook dropped the reference after initial resistance.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchBlogging & the Internet--Social NetworkingLaw & Legal Issues* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe U.S. GovernmentPolitics in General

0 Comments
Posted October 10, 2012 at 4:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The older Americans get, the more likely they are to suffer cognitive decline. Roughly 14 per cent of people over 71 have some level of dementia, according to the National Institutes of Health, a part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. For those in their 90s, the rate rises to 37.4 per cent.

Many older folks have spent a lifetime managing their finances and take pride in it. They may hold onto their checkbooks and brokerage statements more tightly than they do their car keys.

Take the parents of John M. Smartt Jr., a Knoxville, Tennessee certified public accountant and investment adviser, who have been married for almost 70 years. Just last week they finally agreed to merge their separate checking accounts and allow Mr. Smartt to write checks for them.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchAging / the ElderlyChildrenHealth & MedicineMarriage & FamilyPsychology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCredit MarketsPersonal FinanceStock Market* TheologyEthics / Moral TheologyPastoral Theology

0 Comments
Posted October 4, 2012 at 5:30 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

When Jeanne Majors, 63, took an early retirement in December 2005, she assumed that she would pick up a part-time job and be in good financial shape. She didn't know that her future would quickly fall apart.

Majors, who is single and lives in Brooklyn, N.Y., learned the hard way about the retirement obstacles that most women face today. When the economy slid into the recession, she lost her part-time job and could not find another.

"They wanted somebody young," Majors says. "Or if I was a man, somebody would have hired me at my age. I'm not sorry that I retired, but things didn't turn out the way I wanted it to. Everything went bust."

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchAging / the ElderlyWomen* Economics, PoliticsEconomyPersonal FinancePensionsStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe U.S. GovernmentMedicareSocial Security

2 Comments
Posted September 28, 2012 at 8:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Germany is set to advance a bill Wednesday imposing a spate of new rules on high-frequency trading, escalating Europe's sweeping response to concerns that speedy traders have brought instability to the markets.

The measure seeks to require traders to register with Germany's Federal Financial Supervisory Authority, collect fees from those who use high-speed trading systems excessively, and force stock markets to install circuit breakers that can interrupt trading if a problem is detected.

The new rules, which also grant the regulator the power to compel firms to detail their trading practices, will apply to anyone trading in Germany, no matter where they are based. If it is approved in cabinet, the bill will move to the Bundestag, the lower house of the German Parliament. The bill is widely expected to pass later this year.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesScience & Technology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock MarketPolitics in General* International News & CommentaryEuropeGermany

0 Comments
Posted September 27, 2012 at 11:10 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

...Rajoy is the victim of his electoral success: his majority government, ironically, is weaker for not including regionalist partners. The Catalan government sees the dissatisfaction with Madrid’s handling of the crisis as an opportunity: it may give the regionalists enough of a boost at the polls to force Madrid to hand them more autonomy, in other words, control of taxes. If Catalonia had control over its own taxes, the argument goes, the region would not have needed a bailout.

Rajoy’s choices are limited: he either refuses Catalan demands for more autonomy and risks enflaming Catalan nationalist sentiment, or agrees to increased autonomy, and risks enflaming Spanish nationalist sentiment.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsEuroEuropean Central BankHousing/Real Estate MarketLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--Foreign RelationsPolitics in General* International News & CommentaryEurope--European Sovereign Debt Crisis of 2010FranceGermanyGreeceSpain

0 Comments
Posted September 26, 2012 at 8:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The bishop who chaired the panel responsible for exposing the devastating truth about the Hillsborough disaster has called for a national debate to establish accountability and to allow those in positions of authority to win back trust.

As Liverpool play a highly-charged game at Anfield against Manchester United this weekend, the Bishop of Liverpool, the Right Rev James Jones, said that society was at a “crossroads”. His report, published last week, finally disclosed the extent of the cover-ups and lies told as authorities attempted to deflect blame for the 96 deaths.

He called for discussion that would help to restore accountability and trust to the police and other authorities. “It is timely for us to reconsider how people in positions of power, whoever they may be, behave in a transparent and accountable manner because to do so will then win back the trust which is so vulnerable at the moment in our society,” said the Bishop....

Read it all (requires subscription).

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury Anglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)CoE Bishops* Culture-WatchHistoryLaw & Legal IssuesPolice/FireUrban/City Life and Issues* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorPolitics in General* International News & CommentaryEngland / UK* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted September 23, 2012 at 12:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Over 200 people from the UK’s leading businesses met in London this morning to search for a new blueprint for doing better business in Great Britain. They were seeking to unite corporate purpose with personal values so that businesses better serve society. The conference explored the themes of the business need for change, the inevitability of a conflict between profit maximisation and developing common good, and the distinctive practical contribution of a faith based ethical framework to personal and corporate responsibility.

The conference was facilitated by the Archbishop of Westminster, Vincent Nichols.

“I think one of the most vivid images that we had this morning was that a duty of business is to contribute to the adhesiveness of a society – to its ‘glue’ is the phrase that we used – because if a society doesn’t have some glue, then it’s bad for business,” Archbishop Nichols said. “Because it’s difficult to understand that society. It’s difficult to get to appreciate what its needs are and what therefore what business can creatively respond to.”

Listen to it all (a little over 9 minutes).

Filed under: * Culture-WatchReligion & CultureUrban/City Life and Issues* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock MarketThe Banking System/Sector* Religion News & CommentaryOther ChurchesRoman Catholic* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted September 18, 2012 at 4:16 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

While the front pages of our newspapers have been dominated the Olympics and Paralympics, the business pages continue to reflect the human and economic costs of a business ethos that culminated in the financial crisis and subsequent loss of trust in banking and business.

Four years or more after the crisis broke, we are still talking of the lessons to be learnt – but not much nearer identifying what exactly they are, let alone applying them.

I was encouraged by several prominent business leaders to explore whether the Church was able to provide a forum for further reflection on this situation, so we could together move on.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesPsychologyReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--* International News & CommentaryEngland / UK* Religion News & CommentaryOther ChurchesRoman Catholic* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted September 18, 2012 at 6:45 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryMinistry of the Ordained* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal IssuesPolice/Fire* Economics, PoliticsEconomyLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketStock MarketThe Banking System/Sector* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

5 Comments
Posted September 18, 2012 at 6:15 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

In June, it seemed as if any day might bring about the collapse of the Greek economy and with it, the entire euro zone and its decade-old currency. Then in July and August, it seemed as if everyone was on vacation. Now they’re back — finance officials and political leaders have been flying all over Europe to meet with one another — and along with them the crisis that has been raging for the last two years. Here is a guide to the new season’s most intriguing (and terrifying) [seven] story lines....

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalization* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsEuroEuropean Central BankStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--Foreign RelationsPolitics in General* International News & CommentaryEurope--European Sovereign Debt Crisis of 2010

0 Comments
Posted August 29, 2012 at 6:15 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

South Carolina's pension fund investments have generated far less over the past year than hoped, but officials say there's no cause for alarm.

Preliminary numbers from the state's Retirement System Investment Commission show a return on investments of 0.6 percent for the fiscal year ending June 30. The state assumes a 7.5 percent annual return when calculating what it needs to keep the system solvent long-term.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchAging / the Elderly* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCredit MarketsLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketPersonal FinancePensionsStock MarketThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--Politics in GeneralState Government

0 Comments
Posted August 25, 2012 at 7:31 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Reporting six months ago on the announcement of an initial public offering by Facebook, this paper sounded a warning to the social networking site. "An increasing number [of users] are likely to feel bruised as they are confronted with the bitter truth that they are mere fodder for a machine that means business," wrote our consumer correspondent. A marketing expert added: "It takes clever leadership and in-depth understanding of where you can introduce business elements without destroying your value for users."

Last week, stock in the company slumped to a new low. Many investors jumped at the first opportunity to offload their shares, reducing the value of the company to £34bn, from £104bn at its debut. To some who use Facebook, it was just desserts.

In many ways, the rise and potential fall of Facebook can be seen as a metaphor for the internet. It was invented in 2004 by a team of college students to fulfil a need that nobody knew they had, and quickly became one of the biggest companies in the world. It went "cash flow positive" in September 2009 with an annual advertising revenue of hundreds of millions of dollars. But although the internet has been around for longer than Facebook's founder, Mark Zuckerberg, still nobody really knows how to use it. Or to "monetise" it, as the reports in the past week's business pages put it.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchBlogging & the Internet--Social NetworkingLaw & Legal IssuesPsychologyScience & Technology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeStock Market* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

3 Comments
Posted August 21, 2012 at 11:08 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Apple Inc. surpassed Microsoft Corp. Monday as the largest U.S. company ever, measured by stock-market value.

Apple hit the new milestone—$623.52 billion—at a time when its influence on the economy, on the stock market and on popular culture rivals that of some of the most powerful companies in U.S. history: General Motors Co., GM -0.64% whose Corvette and Impala typified a confident postwar manufacturing giant; Microsoft, whose technology heralded the arrival of the personal computer and the early Internet age; and International Business Machines Corp., IBM -0.36% whose buttoned-down rigor inspired rivals to reach for greatness.

"It is one of those iconic companies," says Richard Sylla, professor of financial history at New York University's Stern School of Business. "When I think about these companies, their products were used by all kinds of people and their leaders were considered geniuses."

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchHistoryScience & Technology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeStock Market* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.

0 Comments
Posted August 21, 2012 at 8:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

he Church Commissioners and the Church of England Pensions Board have today announced the sale of their shares in News Corporation on the advice of the Church's Ethical Investment Advisory Group (EIAG). The total shareholding sold was worth £1.9 million. As a result, none of the three national investing bodies of the Church of England hold shares in the company.

The Church of England first raised concerns with the Board of News Corporation in the aftermath of the phone hacking allegations that surfaced in July 2011. After a year of dialogue between the company and the EIAG, the Church of England was not satisfied that News Corporation had shown, or is likely in the immediate future to show, a commitment to implement necessary corporate governance reform.

Read it all.

Update: One blogger was surprised:
Talking of which, I realised today that I am too much of an idealist. I’m afraid I found myself genuinely shocked by reports that the Church of England is selling its £1.9m stake in News Corp, as a protest against its lack of contrition over phone-hacking. The Church? Shares? In News Corp? A helpful man on Twitter called Paul Harrison furnished me with the info that the Church of England costs £1bn per annum to run, of which three quarters is covered by fundraising and donations, with the shortfall plugged by the stock market. This still shocks me a bit. I must have really thought that churches were funded via the collection plate. What a quaint, unspoiled, John Major-like picture of England I must cling to!


Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)* Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock Market* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted August 7, 2012 at 4:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Run by the Rohr Jewish Learning Institute, which is affiliated with the Chabad-Lubavitch movement of Orthodox Jewry, “Money Matters” is offered at more than 350 locations in 22 countries this year, and is proving to be one of the most popular courses JLI has ever offered, said Rabbi Efraim Mintz, JLI’s executive director.

“When students first come to the course, they may respect the Torah (the Hebrew Bible) and the Talmud (a 2,000 year-old compendium of Jewish oral law and biblical commentary), but few see it as something relevant to the here and now,” Mintz said.

“But soon, they are mesmerized and surprised by its applicability to the business issues of the day.”

Read it all.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryStewardship* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeHousing/Real Estate MarketLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketPersonal FinanceStock Market* Religion News & CommentaryOther FaithsJudaism* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted August 6, 2012 at 11:10 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

When computerized stock trading runs amok, as it did this week on Wall Street, the firm responsible typically can jump in and hit a kill switch.

But as a torrent of faulty trades spewed Wednesday morning from a Knight Capital Group trading program, no one at the firm managed to stop it for more than a half-hour....

Several market insiders said that they were bewildered, because in a market where trading losses can pile up in seconds, executives typically have a simple command that can immediately halt trading.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchScience & Technology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock Market

1 Comments
Posted August 4, 2012 at 2:05 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

A trading glitch Wednesday morning led to some puzzling stock movements on Wall Street, prompting reviews by the New York Stock Exchange and securities regulators.

"Irregular trading" in 148 stocks led the exchange to review activity after the opening bell, the exchange's operator, NYSE Euronext, said in a statement....

The issues appear to stem from a "technology issue" at Knight Capital Group, a major Wall Street brokerage firm based in Jersey City, N.J.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchPsychologyScience & Technology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifePersonal FinanceStock Market

0 Comments
Posted August 1, 2012 at 5:05 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Presbyterians in favor of divestment said that their church could not in good conscience hold stock in companies that they said perpetuate an unjust occupation and undermine the search for peace between Israel and the Palestinians. But opponents said that divestment would unfairly vilify Israel, and accomplish little but further polarization.

Arthur Shippee, a delegate from southern New England, said: “What divestment will achieve is this: We will add a whisper soon lost in the storm, but we will further the divisions in our church when we have our own serious problems to address, and we will precipitate divisions with the synagogues within our communities whom we work with frequently on a variety of issues. This will be perceived as picking on Israel, and how could it not?”

Speaking in favor of divestment and against the pro-investment resolution, Tim Simpson, a delegate from the Presbytery of St. Augustine in Jacksonville, Fla., said: “The Palestinians aren’t asking us for a check, sisters and brothers. The Palestinians are asking us for justice. They’re asking us for dignity. How can you write a check to a people who don’t control their own water?”

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock MarketForeign RelationsPolitics in General* International News & CommentaryMiddle EastIsraelThe Palestinian/Israeli Struggle* Religion News & CommentaryOther ChurchesPresbyterian

0 Comments
Posted July 6, 2012 at 5:46 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Faced with slowing growth in its advertising business, Facebook is considering throwing open its social network to children, in the hope that their parents will pay for games and other content on the site.

The plan is also designed to limit the company's legal risk over the already-widespread use of the site by minors, millions of whom might be on Facebook after lying about their age.

News that chief executive Mark Zuckerberg, pictured, is considering legitimising and expanding the use of the site by children comes as Facebook shares fall further below their flotation price. The stock slipped below $27 in early trading in New York yesterday, compared to the $38 at which they were sold to new investors two-and-a-half weeks ago, as investors continued to fret about slowing advertising income from its website and the even narrower options for monetising traffic on its mobile site.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchBlogging & the Internet--Social NetworkingChildrenEducationMarriage & FamilyScience & Technology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeStock Market

0 Comments
Posted June 6, 2012 at 8:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Exactly 30 minutes into the problem-solving the researchers interrupted each group. They entered the room bearing a plate of cookies. Four cookies. The team consisted of three people, but there were these four cookies. Every team member obviously got one cookie, but that left a fourth cookie, just sitting there. It should have been awkward. But it wasn't. With incredible consistency the person arbitrarily appointed leader of the group grabbed the fourth cookie, and ate it. Not only ate it, but ate it with gusto: lips smacking, mouth open, drool at the corners of their mouths. In the end all that was left of the extra cookie were crumbs on the leader's shirt.

This leader had performed no special task. He had no special virtue. He'd been chosen at random, 30 minutes earlier. His status was nothing but luck. But it still left him with the sense that the cookie should be his.

This experiment helps to explain Wall Street bonuses and CEO pay, and I'm sure lots of other human behavior. But it also is relevant to new graduates of Princeton University.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchEducationPhilosophyPsychologyYoung Adults* Economics, PoliticsEconomyStock MarketThe Banking System/Sector* TheologyAnthropologyEthics / Moral Theology

0 Comments
Posted June 6, 2012 at 5:15 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Facebook Inc.’s initial public offering, plagued by trading errors and a 16 percent drop in the share price, will push more individual investors out of a stock market they already distrust after the financial crisis.

“This is clearly the latest in a long string of events that is eviscerating the confidence investors have in the market,” said Andrew Stoltmann, a Chicago attorney who represents retail investors. “The perception is Wall Street jiggered this IPO so the underwriters made money, Facebook executives made money and the small investor got left holding the bag.”

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchPsychology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock MarketThe Banking System/Sector* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

6 Comments
Posted May 25, 2012 at 4:03 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The immediate future of the global economy, including Australia, now depends on Europe, and whether it can restore confidence to markets. If European leaders can resolve their tangle of problems, growth is ahead of us. If they can't, all bets are off.

Pessimism comes more naturally than optimism. It is now five years since we first heard the phrase ''the sub-prime crisis'', which rang the end of a golden era of debt-financed growth. Since then, we've had years of recurring crises, summits and resolutions that promised to solve the problems, but haven't.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalization* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsEuroEuropean Central BankStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--* International News & CommentaryAustralia / NZEurope--European Sovereign Debt Crisis of 2010FranceGermanyGreece

0 Comments
Posted May 22, 2012 at 5:15 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Facebook Inc.took eight years to stage one of the most anticipated initial public offerings ever. The anticlimax came Friday, as Wall Street bankers struggled to prevent the newly minted stock from ending its first day with a loss.

he stock had been widely predicted to soar on its first day. Instead, up until the closing moments of the trading session, Facebook's underwriters battled to keep the stock from slipping below its offering price of $38 a share. Such a stumble would have been a significant embarrassment, particularly for a prominent new issue like Facebook, the most heavily traded IPO of all time.

In the end, the bankers succeeded. When trading on Nasdaq ended at 4 p.m., the social network's stock was up just a hair, 0.6%, at $38.23.

The roller-coaster day—Facebook's shares started out jumping roughly 11%, before cooling off—was also beset by trading glitches and a 30-minute delay in the opening of trading. Nasdaq OMX Group Inc.didn't respond to requests for comment.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchBlogging & the Internet--Social NetworkingScience & Technology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock Market

0 Comments
Posted May 20, 2012 at 5:56 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

It’s a teachable moment, but what’s the right lesson? Already, the $2 billion-plus trading debacle at JPMorgan Chase has inspired a powerful storyline. Nothing has changed since the financial crisis, it’s said. Big banks remain out of control, gambling recklessly. If Jamie Dimon’s bank, reputed to be one of the best-managed, can get into trouble, what can we expect of the others? Government regulations and regulators need to be tougher to counteract bankers’ greed and incompetence.

The storyline is marred only by this: Everything in it is exaggerated, misleading or wrong.

Let’s take stock. Here are four propositions that defy conventional wisdom.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--Politics in GeneralHouse of RepresentativesOffice of the PresidentSenate

0 Comments
Posted May 17, 2012 at 7:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

That the losses would only dent the quarterly profits at one of the world’s largest banks, and that they were revealed by the bank’s own management, did not diminish the chorus on Capitol Hill for tighter controls. The charismatic and often outspoken Dimon, who has argued rigorously against strict financial regulations, fielded calls Friday from several lawmakers and regulators at the bank’s Midtown Manhattan headquarters.

The biggest blow-up between Wall Street and Washington since 2010, when Congress passed the Dodd-Frank Act to tighten oversight of the financial industry, comes just as regulators are drafting new rules governing banks. A signature feature of the law is the Volcker Rule, a prohibition on banks engaging in speculative bets. The authors of the act say the measure might have prevented JPMorgan’s bad trades had it been in effect.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorPolitics in GeneralHouse of RepresentativesOffice of the PresidentPresident Barack ObamaSenate

0 Comments
Posted May 12, 2012 at 10:04 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. told traders several months ago to make bets aimed at shielding the bank from the market fallout of Europe's deepening mess. But instead of shrinking the risk, their complicated bets backfired into losses of as much as $200 million a day in late April and early May, people familiar with the situation said.

Regulators in the U.S. and U.K. are examining what went wrong, who is responsible and whether J.P. Morgan should have told investors about the losses sooner, according to people familiar with the matter.

While attention has focused on large positions taken by a trader nicknamed "the London whale," he and other traders were carrying out instructions from a bank executive, these people said.

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Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsStock MarketThe Banking System/Sector* International News & CommentaryEurope--European Sovereign Debt Crisis of 2010* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted May 12, 2012 at 9:42 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

A statement posted on the Occupy London website on Tuesday said that there would be a “teach-in” at 1 p.m. on Saturday at St Paul’s, “organised by Tent City University, the educational arm of Occupy London. It is aiming at promoting informed political action and exploring viable economic alternatives before we pay a visit to City institutions that caused and continue to profit by the [financial] crisis.”

It said that the global day of action would involve “citizens using peaceful, creative ways to deliver their own messages to the financial and corporate élite of the City”. The protesters would “continue to exercise our right to peacefully assemble in public spaces”.

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalArchbishop of Canterbury Anglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted May 11, 2012 at 7:29 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

[CEO Jamie] Dimon said the losses were caused by "errors," "sloppiness" and "bad judgment."

"This was a unique thing we did," Dimon said. "Obviously it had a lot of problems. It was a bad strategy. It became more complex, it was poorly managed."

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchPsychology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock MarketThe Banking System/Sector* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted May 10, 2012 at 4:58 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Much depends on the reaction of investors in debt issued by European nations, said Dimitri Papadimitriou, president of the Levy Economics Institute at Bard College. If they fear that the crisis response is losing momentum, they will likely demand higher interest rates — not just from Greece, but from other nations seen as carrying too much debt.

The result would be rising borrowing costs for Greece as well as countries that haven't received bailouts, like Italy and Spain. Rising borrowing costs sent global stock markets diving last year. Uncertainty about the path forward in Europe may mean a return to extreme market volatility after several months of relative calm.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalization* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsEuroEuropean Central BankStock MarketThe Banking System/SectorThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--Foreign RelationsPolitics in General* International News & CommentaryEurope--European Sovereign Debt Crisis of 2010FranceGermanyGreece

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Posted May 6, 2012 at 5:00 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Delegates and visitors gathered under the brilliant Tampa sun for a noon rally against the privatization of prisons, led by the United Methodist Task Force on Immigration.

Participants in the April 28 rally sang “We Shall Overcome” while carrying signs saying, “Profit from Pain is Inhumane.”

The rally celebrated the establishment of a new investment screen adopted by the United Methodist Board of Pension and Health Benefits. That screen, adopted in January, forbids board investments in companies that derive more than 10 percent of their revenue from the operation of prison facilities.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchPrison/Prison MinistryReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock Market* Religion News & CommentaryOther ChurchesMethodist* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted April 28, 2012 at 5:05 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Prosecutors have uncovered more financial fraud in church networks than they ever imagined. "It took the financial downturn. Money was drying up—the new investors were not coming in, so Ponzi schemes collapsed," IRS Special Agent in Charge for Criminal Investigations Ken Hines told Christianity Today.

Hines, based in Seattle, has helped expose Ponzis for more than 20 years. He has seen first-hand how the church environment has proven to be an ideal context for affinity fraud. "When you go to church, you don't expect to get lied to or deceived or manipulated into losing your life's savings...."

The sickening net effect of fraud puts a dark cloud over pastors and other leaders in local churches....If a faithful church member cannot trust his or her own pastor, whom can they trust?

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Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeParish MinistryMinistry of the OrdainedStewardship* Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCredit MarketsCurrency MarketsPersonal FinanceStock Market* TheologyEthics / Moral TheologyPastoral Theology

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Posted April 15, 2012 at 6:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

When the European Union's finance ministers met in Copenhagen on 30 March they gave the clearest indication yet of what has been clear to most observers for months: that the 27 member states cannot agree a tax on financial transactions. A tax on share deals modelled on the UK's stamp duty might be possible, but a wider tax on financial trades is off the agenda for the foreseeable future. The German finance ministry, one of the strongest supporters of the tax, admitted as much at the meeting, calling for work to focus on a tax on share transactions.

Since June 2011, when the European Commission announced it would propose an FTT, it had been obvious that the plan would not fly...

Apparently heedless that the object was immoveable, José Manuel Barroso, the Commission president, last week made yet another attempt to exert irresistible force in support of the tax. He told members of national parliaments and the European Parliament that the revenue raised by the tax would allow member states a cut of up to 50% in their contributions to funding the EU.

Perhaps Barroso's intransigence is inspired by the unfortunate fact that the FTT proposal was central to the Commission's plans for financing the EU's multiannual financial framework (MFF) for 2014 to 2020. Removing the idea of an EU-wide tax from the agenda leaves a big hole in Barroso's plans for financing the MFF.

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Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeEuroEuropean Central BankStock MarketTaxesThe Banking System/SectorThe Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--Foreign RelationsPolitics in General* International News & CommentaryEurope

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Posted April 5, 2012 at 6:30 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Does this mean we should not enjoy all the earthly riches and goods? No. Enjoy them. Earn them. It is a misconception that one has to be poor to be spiritual, and that hard work should not be rewarded. What is important is finding the balance between greed and having enough, and defining what a joyful life means to us....

So how are we to correct the negative traits of capitalism? A Robin Hood tax, or Tobin tax, has been suggested. Yet there is a risk that such a tax is more likely to hit investors than banks. And it is not yet clear how it would discourage risky behaviour by banks.

We cannot tax ourselves out of this and hope that this will solve the problem because we are not addressing the root cause of the behaviour. We are in self-denial because we are treating the symptoms, not healing the patient.

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesAnglican Church of Southern Africa* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifeLabor/Labor Unions/Labor MarketPersonal FinanceStock MarketThe Banking System/Sector* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

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Posted April 5, 2012 at 6:15 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]




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