Business

Intangible assets are changing investment

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Forecasting profits is not as helpful as it used to be WHEN you work as an equity analyst at an investment bank, your task is clear. The Economist It is to comb all the statements made by corporate executives, to scour the industry trends and arrive at an accurate forecast of the company’s profits. Achieve this and your clients will be happy and your bonus cheque will have many digits. But is all this effort worthwhile? Not as much as ... Read More »

Regional News Outlets: The real target of Poland’s New Media Law?

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Poland’s government has made no secret over the past 12 months of its plans to change media rules in a such way that could force some foreign owners out of the country. Emerging Europe Despite criticism from both the European Union and human rights groups including Amnesty, Poland’s Deputy Culture Minister Paweł Lewandowski said as recently as August 2017 that while the new law (which he is helping to draft) would stop short of ‘re-Polonizing’ the nation’s media, it would ... Read More »

Georgia Still on the World Bank’s Mind

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As the World Bank racks up 25 years in Georgia, Mercy Tembon, the bank’s regional director for the South Caucasus, Europe and Central Asia tells Andrew Wrobel that her organisation is as committed to the country’s future as ever. Andrew Wrobel Emerging-Europe Let’s start with the anniversary. What has the World Bank been doing here for the last quarter of a century? Yes, Georgia, along with the other countries in the region, joined the bank in 1992. Those were very ... Read More »

Japan exports, imports surge on strong demand in China, U.S.

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Japan’s exports rose 16 percent in November from a year earlier driven by robust overseas demand for cars and manufacturing equipment that is helping to sustain the longest economic expansion in more than 15 years. THE ASSOCIATED PRESS The Asahi Shimbun Customs data released Monday showed the trade surplus for the world’s third-largest economy slipping 23 percent from the year before to 113.4 billion yen ($1 billion), however, as imports jumped 17 percent thanks to a surge in purchases of ... Read More »

Insight: The Scots investors in the Bitcoin boom

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Some Scots investors in the cryptocurrency can barely believe their luck, writes Dani Garavelli Around 18 months ago, Norman, a pensioner from Inverness, was contacted about an investment opportunity: bitcoin. Dani Garavelli The Scotsman A financial dabbler, he had once been defrauded out of quite a large sum of money, so he was reticent about getting involved. But eventually he was persuaded to take the risk. He bought just over six bitcoins at just under £500 each, through a London-based ... Read More »

Footage released of battle to rid EEZ of N. Korean fishing boats

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The Japan Coast Guard wages a constant battle to chase North Korean fishing boats from Japan’s exclusive economic zone. YOSHITAKA ITO The Asahi Shimbun From July, it began using water cannons on a regular basis to warn such boats to leave, but those efforts seem to have had little effect. Instead, the number of boats operating in Japanese waters has increased, as well as those washing ashore, sometimes with dead crew members. On Dec. 15, the coast guard released photos ... Read More »

Japanese business to start paying workers in bitcoin

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Workers at the Japanese tech firm are free to choose whether or not they want a part of their salary to be paid in virtual currency Shafi Musaddique The Independent A Japanese business will begin paying its workers partially in bitcoin, in a bid to gain a better understanding of how the digital currency works, Agence France-Presse reports. Tech firm GMO Internet said it will pay up to 100,000 yen (£660) a month to approximately 4,000 employees via bitcoin from February next year, ... Read More »

Scotland set to lag behind UK with growth below 1% until 2022

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A gloomy outlook for Scotland’s economy over the next five years has been unveiled by the new Scottish Fiscal Commission SCOTT MACNAB The Scotsman Growth will lag behind the rest of the UK at less than 1 per cent between now and 2022, according to the body which was set up by the Scottish Government to provide economic forecasting. Its first report was published yesterday to coincide with the Scottish budget. “Scottish economic growth has been slower over the last ... Read More »

3 myths about the poor that Republicans are using to support slashing US safety net

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Republicans continue to use long-debunked myths about the poor as they defend lower taxes for the rich and deep cuts to the social safety net to pay for them. Michele Gilman In so doing, they are essentially expressing scorn for working class and low-income Americans. The Conversation Sen. Chuck Grassley, for example, recently justified reducing the number of wealthy families exposed to the estate tax as a way to recognize “the people that are investing, as opposed to those that are just spending every darn penny they have, ... Read More »

Cabin pressure: Are airline contractors cutting corners on safety to earn business?

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Former and current pilots at Air Georgian, which annually handles 62,000 Air Canada Express-branded flights, allege it has a troubling approach to safety and maintenance, but the airline said it is one of the country’s most audited airlines, and the results of those evaluations put it in “the top tier” of Canadian operators. Financial Post Staff Financial Post Tom Blackwell Alan Eugeni had been flying at Air Georgian for only a month when he said the first one happened. Landing ... Read More »

World trade is going through a seismic shift — and nobody knows how it will end up

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NAFTA, Brexit, countries around the world are redefining their trade relations, bringing uncertainty the global economy does not need Special to Financial Post Gordon Isfeld OTTAWA — In the gaps between NAFTA negotiations and U.S.-Canada interest-rate ponderings, Brexit remains a painfully present problem that could fill any economic void with even greater global uncertainty. At the same time, the slow slog of talks on the make-up of a new free-trade pact between North America’s three economies seems to have lost some of its direction ... Read More »

Government moves to curb modern slavery

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Slavery is the world’s second-biggest illicit market In the past, slaves were shackled in metal chains. Editorial Today, they are exploited in supply chains. The Sydney Morning Herald It might have been thought that slavery was a shameful but pretty much closed chapter of history. It’s not. It is the world’s second-biggest illicit market, behind drugs, with an estimated 45 million children, women and men treated as commodities (average price about $90). Forced labour generates an estimated $US150 billion  ($199b) ... Read More »

West Face files claim against mortgage lender Home Capital

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West Face claim says ‘investors who purchased common shares of Home Capital to close out a short position were excluded from compensation under settlement terms’ of a class action suit Barbara Shecter Financial Post Alternative asset manager West Face Capital Inc. has formally filed a lawsuit against Home Capital Group Inc. and three former executives, seeking $70 million in damages over claims the mortgage lender’s public disclosure was “inaccurate, incomplete and misleading.” In a 17-page statement of claim filed in ... Read More »

Greens single out 13 companies that paid no tax yet donated to major parties

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Richard Di Natale says Australian democracy ‘broken’ and system being propped up by Labor and Liberal parties Paul Karp The Guardian Thirteen companies that paid no tax in 2015-16 made $1.7m in political donations to the Liberal and Labor parties in that year, the Greens have complained. On Thursday the Australian tax office released fresh tax data that showed 36% of the 2,043 largest public companies and multinational entities in Australia paid no tax in 2015-16. An analysis by the Greens cross-referencing the ... Read More »

How Olive Oil Became Green Gold

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In the United States, profits from fraudulent oil can be more lucrative than dealing cocaine. Nicola Twilley and Cynthia Graber The Atlantic  Olive oil is not what you think it is. According to Tom Mueller, the author of Extra Virginity: The Sublime and Scandalous World of Olive Oil, an olive is a stone fruit like a plum or cherry—meaning that the green-gold liquid we extract from it “is, quite literally, fruit juice.” And, while we’re blowing your minds, have you ... Read More »

‘Death spiral’: half of Europe’s coal plants are losing money

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Air pollution and climate change policies are pushing coal-fired electricity stations to the brink, says a new report. Closing them would avoid €22bn in losses by 2030 Damian Carrington The Guardian More than half of the European Union’s 619 coal-fired power stations are losing money, according to a new report. As a result, the industry’s slow plans for shutdowns will lead to €22bn in losses by 2030 if the EU fulfils its pledge to tackle climate change, the report warns. ... Read More »