Posts belonging to Category global finance



EU wants Apple to pay taxes

EU takes Ireland to court for not claiming Apple tax windfall

The European Commission said on Wednesday it was taking Ireland to the European Court of Justice for its failure to recover up to 13 billion euros ($15.3 billion) of tax due from Apple Inc (AAPL.O), a move labeled as “regrettable” by Dublin.

The Commission ordered the U.S. tech giant in August 2016 to pay the unpaid taxes as it ruled the firm had received illegal state aid, one of a number of deals the EU has targeted between multinationals and usually smaller EU states.

http://www.reuters.com…  Thu.,  05  October 2017

Uber is one step closer to a massive investment from SoftBank

Uncertain future for Travis Kalanick

A deal between Uber and SoftBank is nearly done. Today (Oct. 4) Uber announced in a statement it would move forward with a proposed investment from Japanese tech giant SoftBank which could close “in the coming weeks,” and also voted in favor of a number of corporate governance reforms. The decisions bode poorly for Uber founder Travis Kalanick, who has sought to retain his influence over the company after stepping down as CEO in June, and could pave the way for broader changes in Uber’s international operations.

SoftBank, which said in August it’s interested in investing in Uber, hasn’t made public the size of its proposed investment, but a person with knowledge of the deal said that SoftBank, along with other investors, will invest $1.25 billion directly in Uber at a $69 billion valuation, and will also purchase 14% to 17% of outstanding shares from existing investors. The person also added that Uber will go public by 2019, something which Uber’s new CEO hinted at in August.

http://www.qz.com…  Wed.,  04  October 2017

First big Wall Street firm to deal directly in the cryptocurrency market

Goldman Sachs Explores a New World: Trading Bitcoin

Goldman Sachs is flirting with the idea of setting up a bitcoin trading shop. The Wall Street powerhouse is in the very early stages of potentially setting up a bitcoin trading operation, according to a report by The Wall Street Journal’s Paul Vigna, Telis Demos, and Liz Hoffman. “In response to client interest in digital currencies we are exploring how best to serve them in this space,” a Goldman spokeswoman told The Journal.

If Goldman follows through, it will be the first blue-chip financial services firm to break into the cryptocurrency market, which this year has exploded in value. Goldman’s C-Suite has kept pretty quiet about digital coins. The rest of Wall Street has mixed reviews. On one hand, JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon called bitcoin “a fraud” and likened it to the tulip-bulb bubble of the 1600s. On the other, James Gorman, Morgan Stanley’s CEO, has taken a more moderate position on bitcoin, saying last week it was “more than just a fad.”

http://businessinsider.com…  Tue.,  03  October 2017

Raising trade tensions between Europe and China

Complaint against dumping of e-bikes by Chinese companies

European producers of electronic bikes (e-bikes) have filed a complaint with the European Commission against cheap Chinese e-bike imports, saying that they are sold in the bloc at excessively low prices with the help of unfair subsidies. The European Bicycle Manufacturers Association (EBMA) lodged the complaint alleging dumping of e-bikes by Chinese companies which they say are flooding the market at prices sometimes below the cost of production. The Commission has until late October to determine whether to start an investigation.

The EBMA is also preparing a related complaint alleging illegal subsidies and asking for registration of Chinese e-bike imports, which could allow eventual duties to be backdated. Such an investigation would be the latest in a string of probes into Chinese exports ranging from solar panels to steel and could raise trade tensions with Beijing, particularly with a subsidy inquiry into the support provided by the Chinese state.

http://www.reuters.com…  Mon.,  02  October 2017

J-Coin

Japan wants to launch a new digital currency: J-Coin

A consortium of Japanese banks are set to launch a new national digital currency in a bid to wean citizens off cash, the Financial Times reports.  The FT says that a consortium led by Mizuho Financial Group and Japan Post Bank plans to launch the new digital currency in time for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

The new project, which has the support of Japan’s central bank and regulators, aims to develop technology to allow Japanese people to pay for goods and services with their smartphone.

http://www.businessinsider.comWed.,  27  September 2017

Apple shares flirt with correction territory

Suppliers asked to scale back shipments of parts for upcoming iPhone X

Shares of Apple Inc dipped on Monday and flirted with correction territory following a report that the company had told suppliers to scale back shipments of parts for its upcoming iPhone X.

Digitimes, citing unnamed sources, reported that Apple suppliers were shipping just 40 percent of the components originally ordered for the premium phone, which goes on sale in early November.

That added to concerns on Wall Street about demand for Apple’s new devices after the launch on Friday of the iPhone 8, a less expensive model than the iPhone X, drew smaller crowds than previous launches.

http://www.reuters.comTue.,  26  September 2017

Will Trump reappoint Yellen?

Central Bank’s massive bond-buying program worries Republicans

From her early days as Federal Reserve chair, Janet Yellen has been the target of criticism from Republicans worried that the central bank’s massive bond-buying programs and near-zero interest rates engineered by her predecessor would be the ruin of the country. With little more than four months left in her term and questions swirling over whether the White House will ask her to stay on for another four years, Yellen has turned that story around.

The Fed has raised rates faster than markets had thought possible this year and, on Wednesday, it announced its $4.5 trillion bond portfolio would begin to shrink in October. All the while, unemployment has plunged to boomtime levels and inflation has remained well in check. Now Yellen’s stock appears to be rising, both among her critics and on a real-money exchange where traders can place bets on who they think will be the next Fed chair.

http://www.reuters.comFri.,  22  September 2017

Norway’s sovereign fund is now worth $1,000,000,000,000

The growth in the fund’s market value has been stunning

The fund’s managers announced Tuesday that currency shifts had helped push its value above $1 trillion for the first time.

“The growth in the fund’s market value has been stunning,” fund chief Yngve Slyngstad said in a statement. “I don’t think anyone expected the fund to ever reach $1 trillion when the first transfer of oil revenue was made in May 1996.” For comparison: $1 trillion is roughly the size of Mexico’s economy. Norway is a major oil producer, and it has plowed its energy earnings into the fund in order to fund pensions and other government expenses.

http://www.cnn.com…  Wed.,  20  September 2017

Toys R Us files for bankruptcy

Hundreds of millions in debt

Toys R Us, facing imminent deadlines to pay off hundreds of millions in debt, said Monday that it has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.   The move comes on the cusp of the all-important holiday season, a period in which many retailers earn nearly half of their annual revenue, and a time of year that is particularly lucrative for the giant toy seller. The filing was long in the making.

The filing also strikes at the heart of one of the nation’s most iconic retailers, a household name for more than a generation. Toys R Us pioneered big-box toy retailing generations ago, a national chain that displaced many smaller, neighborhood toy stores. The company emphasized that its roughly 1,600 locations will remain open and it will continue to work with suppliers to make sure its shelves remain well-stocked with games, gadgets, and other toys.

http://www.usatoday.com…  Tue.,  19  September 2017

The bright future of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in China

Machine learning is the key

The present global verve about artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning technologies has resonated in China as much as anywhere on earth. With the State Council’s issuance of the “New Generation Artificial Intelligence Development Plan” (新一代人工智能发展规划) on July 20, China’s government set out an ambitious roadmap including targets through 2030. Meanwhile, in China’s leading cities, flashy conferences on AI have become commonplace. It seems every mid-sized tech company wants to show off its self-driving car efforts, while numerous financial tech start-ups tout an AI-driven approach. Chatbot startups clog investors’ date books, and Shanghai metro ads pitch AI-taught English language learning.

The surge of showmanship and investment in the private sector is paralleled by a new focus among officials and policy thinkers in academia, civilian and military sectors of government, and major companies. Questions about how to regulate AI, and how to develop and use it ethically, have become a major topic for China’s digital policy brain trust in recent months.

http://www.newamerica.org…  Mon.,  18  September 2017