OIW Trust Associates LLC

Representation l Protection l Administration

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

This Economic Indicator Has Never Been More Bearish

A key measure of global trade just hit an all-time low…

The Baltic Dry Index (BDI) measures the price of shipping materials such as iron, coal, and grains. It accounts for 23 different shipping routes and four ship sizes. It’s one of the most closely watched indicators for the global economy…

On Friday, the BDI closed at 498. It was the first time the index has closed below 500 in its twenty-year history.

The BDI hit an all-time record high in May 2008. It’s been falling ever since. The index is now down 96% from that point. It’s plummeted an incredible 59% since August alone.

Two things determine shipping rates: the number of ships and demand for shipping...

Shipping rates soared from 2002 to 2008. The BDI rose more than 12-fold during this period. Shipping companies thought the boom times would last, so they built more ships…

Then shipping rates collapsed in 2008. The industry built too many new ships, and global trade slowed dramatically. (As Casey readers know, oil tankers are the one exception to the bloodbath in shipping. The oil shipping business is booming right now.)

On Friday, Forbes reported that the global shipping industry still has 30% more capacity than it needs.

• The global economy is slowing...

Shipping giant A.P. Møller-Mærsk A/S (AMKAF) recently reported a 15% drop in sales during the third quarter. It was the fourth quarter in a row that sales dropped from the previous year.

Mærsk is the world’s largest shipping company. It moves about 15% of all manufactured goods shipped worldwide. If Mærsk is struggling, it’s because global trade is slowing.

Last month, the company also announced plans to lay off 4,000 workers. This will cut the company’s global workforce by 17%.

Mærsk’s CEO, Nils Smedegaard Andersen, said he’s cutting jobs because the global economy is slowing faster than people think.

We believe that global growth is slowing down...Trade is currently significantly weaker than it normally would be under the growth forecasts we see.

Last month, the International Monetary Fund cut its global GDP forecast from 3.3% to 3.1%. The organization also lowered its growth forecast for 2016 from 3.8% to 3.6%. According to Andersen, these new projections are still too optimistic.

•  Meanwhile, the price of copper hit a new six-year low on Friday...

Copper has been falling all year. Now it’s plummeting. Copper is down 14% in the past month alone. It’s now down 56% from its 2011 all-time high.

Plunging copper prices are another sign of a slowing global economy…

Copper is used to make smartphones, televisions, laptops, and other electronics. It’s used in plumbing and roofing parts. Copper is also waterproof, so it’s used in shipbuilding. When the price of copper drops, it means a wide range of companies are making fewer products.

•  Global machinery maker Caterpillar (CAT) just had its worst monthly sales decline in five years...

In October, Caterpillar’s global machine sales fell 16% from the year before. It was the company’s biggest sales decline since February 2010. Caterpillar’s machine sales have now declined 35 months in a row.

The chart below shows how Caterpillar is experiencing its longest streak of declining monthly sales since the Great Recession.

Caterpillar is the world’s largest publicly traded equipment and machinery manufacturer. Its customers are the companies that build houses, office buildings, bridges, and the rest of the “real” economy. This is why many investors consider Caterpillar a “canary in the coalmine” for the global economy.

It’s unlikely Caterpillar’s sales drought will end anytime soon...

Management expects annual revenues to drop 5% in 2016. If that happens, it will mark the fourth year in a row the company’s annual sales have dropped. That’s never happened in Caterpillar’s 90-year history.

•  Like Caterpillar, Europe’s weak economic data is pointing to a slowing global economy...

Europe is experiencing its weakest economic recovery in decades. During the second quarter, Europe’s economy grew half as fast as the U.S. economy. And at 10%, Europe’s unemployment rate is double the U.S. unemployment rate.

On Friday, European Central Bank (ECB) president Mario Draghi described the current recovery as “the weakest euro area rebound since 1998”...

The ECB has tried (and failed) to jumpstart Europe’s economy by cutting interest rates to zero. In March, the ECB went one step further and launched its first quantitative easing (QE) program. QE is when a central bank creates money from nothing and pumps it into the financial system. It’s basically another word for money printing.

Every month, the ECB’s QE program pumps €60 billion ($65 billion) into the Eurozone’s financial system. It’s scheduled to run “at least until September 2016.” At that point, the program will have pumped at least €1.14 trillion into Europe’s financial system.

•  Yet the ECB probably won’t stop at €1.14 trillion...

On Friday, Draghi said that the ECB will do whatever it thinks is necessary to boost economic growth “as quickly as possible.” He added that the ECB “will act by using all the instruments available within our mandate.”

Draghi already hinted the ECB might increase its QE program last month. His statements on Friday went much further. He’s essentially saying, “Get ready for more money printing.”

Source, Casey Research

Monday, November 9, 2015

Next financial crash is coming – and before we've fixed flaws from last one

The next financial crisis is coming, it’s a just a matter of time – and we haven’t finished fixing the flaws in the global system that were so brutally exposed by the last one.

That is the message from the International Monetary Fund’s latest Global Financial Stability report, which will make sobering reading for the finance ministers and central bankers gathered in Lima, Peru, for its annual meeting.

Massive monetary policy stimulus has rekindled growth in developed economies since the deep recession that followed the collapse of Lehman Brothers in 2008; but what the IMF calls the “handover” to a more sustainable recovery – without the extra prop of ultra-low borrowing costs – has so far failed to materialise.

Meanwhile, the cheap money created to rescue the developed economies has flooded out into emerging markets, inflating asset bubbles, and encouraging companies and governments to take advantage of unusually low borrowing costs and load up on debt.

“Balance sheets have become stretched thinner in many emerging market companies and banks. These firms have become more susceptible to financial stress,” the IMF says.

Meanwhile, the failure to patch up the international financial system after the last crash, by ensuring that banks in emerging markets hold enough capital, and constraining risky borrowing, for example, means that a new Lehman Brothers-type shock could spark another global panic.

“Shocks may originate in advanced or emerging markets and, combined with unaddressed system vulnerabilities, could lead to a global asset market disruption and a sudden drying up of market liquidity in many asset classes,” the IMF says, warning that some markets appear to be “brittle”.

So as the US Federal Reserve lays the groundwork for a return to peacetime interest rates, from the emergency levels of the past seven years, financial markets face what the IMF calls an “unprecedented adjustment”; and the world looks woefully underprepared.

The IMF’s warning echoes a chorus of others. The Bank of England’s chief economist, Andy Haldane, has argued that the world is entering the latest episode of a “three-part crisis trilogy”. Unctad, the UN’s trade and development arm, would like to see advanced economies boost public spending to offset the downturn in emerging economies. The Bank for International Settlements believes interest rates have been too low for too long, encouraging too much risk-taking in financial markets. All of them fear that the global financial system is primed for a crisis.

The IMF has not given up hope of what it calls a “successful normalisation” – it lays out a series of conditions that would need to be met, from a successful rebalancing of growth in China, to “safeguarding against market illiquidity” in financial markets.

Yet the failure of the world’s policymakers to get to grips with the shortcomings of the international financial system over the past seven years, despite the long shadow cast by Lehman and its aftermath, suggests that any measures enacted now are likely to be too little, too late. The message many may take home from Lima is, “batten down the hatches”.

Source; http://www.theguardian.com/business/2015/oct/07/next-financial-crash-is-coming-imf-global-stability-report


Sunday, November 8, 2015

2015 Financial Secrecy Index

Here’s a table of the top 50 jurisdictions in this year’s rankings with Switzerland (once again) topping the list.

Like clockwork, the Swiss come in first thanks to its tough bank secrecy laws and push to build “market share in some of the world’s more vulnerable and badly governed developing countries, which will therefore continue to suffer Swiss-sanctioned élite looting.”

Problems with the USA and the United Kingdom

Surprisingly enough, the USA moved up three spots in this year’s rankings, making it to the podium and receiving a bronze medal for its secretive financial system and lack of reciprocity.

According to the Tax Justice Network, despite the US confronting American tax evaders head-on via the implementation of FATCA and likeminded regulations, it fails when it comes to providing other jurisdictions with information on their citizens’ accounts in the US.

About the US the organization says, “It is more of a cause for concern than any other individual country – because of both the size of its offshore sector, and also its rather recalcitrant attitude to international co-operation and reform.”

John Christensen, Tax Justice Network’s Executive Director, adds, “The United States dealt global financial secrecy a devastating blow by forcing strongholds such as Switzerland to open up. But after this blistering start in efforts to protect itself, it is backsliding by failing to provide information in the other direction: refusing to participate directly in global transparency initiatives such as the multilateral automatic information exchange and, inexcusably, lobbying to block public country by country corporate reporting. The USA must finally overcome its historically rooted opposition to reasonable tax data sharing with its trade and investment partners.”

The United Kingdom does not fare much better.

In fact, if the Financial Secrecy Index combined the UK with its Overseas Territories or Crown Dependencies such as the Cayman Islands, British Virgin Islands and Bermuda, it would go home with a shiny gold medal. Even though the British government has pushed automatic exchange of information onto its territories, it “has failed to force them to create public registries of beneficial ownership, despite having the power to do so.”

Singapore and Hong Kong — No Interest in Common Reporting Standard

Both Hong Kong and Singapore earn high rankings as a result of their dislike for CRS and any sort of exchange of information.

Hong Kong, for instance, “hasn’t signed the multilateral agreement to initiate automatic information exchange via the CRS; it has a problematic record on corporate transparency; and unlike European countries it appears to have little appetite for country-by-country reporting or for creating registers of beneficial ownership.”

Luxembourg: Light at the End of the Tunnel?

Luxembourg, referred to as “Death Star of financial secrecy inside Europe” by the organization, improved its ranking in 2015, dropping four spots to number six.

What explains this improvement?

Tax Justice Network says it’s a combination of “the evolving international climate on transparency… with high-profile global scandals that have cast the tax haven in a highly negative light. These changes also coincide with the departure of Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker, arguably the most important architect of the secretive modern tax haven. “

Source  Tax Justice Network - TaxLinked - by

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Outpost Provisioning Receives 2015 Best of Cheyenne Award

Cheyenne Award Program Honors the Achievement

CHEYENNE October 21, 2015 -- Outpost Provisioning has been selected for the 2015 Best of Cheyenne Award in the Investment Management category by the Cheyenne Award Program.

Each year, the Cheyenne Award Program identifies companies that we believe have achieved exceptional marketing success in their local community and business category. These are local companies that enhance the positive image of small business through service to their customers and our community. These exceptional companies help make the Cheyenne area a great place to live, work and play.
Various sources of information were gathered and analyzed to choose the winners in each category. The 2015 Cheyenne Award Program focuses on quality, not quantity. Winners are determined based on the information gathered both internally by the Cheyenne Award Program and data provided by third parties.

About Cheyenne Award Program

The Cheyenne Award Program is an annual awards program honoring the achievements and accomplishments of local businesses throughout the Cheyenne area. Recognition is given to those companies that have shown the ability to use their best practices and implemented programs to generate competitive advantages and long-term value.

The Cheyenne Award Program was established to recognize the best of local businesses in our community. Our organization works exclusively with local business owners, trade groups, professional associations and other business advertising and marketing groups. Our mission is to recognize the small business community's contributions to the U.S. economy.

SOURCE: Cheyenne Award Program

Cheyenne Award Program
Email: PublicRelations@local-best.com

Friday, October 23, 2015

Federal Reserve blocks push to create bank to serve booming Colorado pot industry

DENVER (AP) — Colorado's attempt to create a bank to service its marijuana industry has suffered another setback by the federal government and could be facing an impossible dilemma.

The Federal Reserve — the guardian of the U.S. banking system — said in a court filing Wednesday that it doesn't intend to accept a penny connected to the sale of pot because the drug remains illegal under federal law.

The stance appears to mark a shift in the position of the federal government. Last year, the U.S. Treasury Department issued rules for how banks can accept pot money.

"We're frustrated," said Andrew Freedman, director of marijuana coordination for Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper. "We tried to do the most with the building blocks of instructions they sent us, set up the most rigorous solution. And we still are left with confusion."

The filing came in a legal battle between the Federal Reserve and the would-be Fourth Corner Credit Union, which was set up last year to serve Colorado's $700 million-a-year marijuana industry.

The credit union can't open without clearance from the Federal Reserve, which said in its filing that "transporting or transmitting funds known to have derived from the distribution of marijuana is illegal."

Colorado chartered the Fourth Corner Credit Union after the Treasury Department issued its guidance last year on marijuana banking. Fourth Corner was designed to give the industry in Colorado a safe place to bank while paying steep fees to account for all the hoops set up by the Treasury Department.

The credit union then needed permission from the Federal Reserve to access the national banking system and perform electronic transactions. No dice.

The credit union now wants a federal judge to step in and order the Federal Reserve to change its mind.

"It's a phenomenal question about executive action," said Peter Conti-Brown, a lawyer and banking historian at the University of Pennsylvania who is following the case.

On one hand, the Federal Reserve is standing in the way of the stated goal of the Treasury Department to "enhance the availability of financial services for, and the financial transparency of, marijuana-related businesses."

But by allowing pot industry money to mingle with funds from other national commerce, the Federal Reserve would be removing one of the final barriers to marijuana acceptance.

The federal government could hardly claim to consider weed illegal if its own banking system allows marijuana proceeds in the national banking system.

The Federal Reserve said in the latest filing that bankers won't be led away in handcuffs for taking marijuana money, but they don't have the right to put that money in the Federal Reserve.

By pushing for approval from the Federal Reserve, it was "as if Colorado enacted a scheme to allow trade in endangered species or trade with North Korea," the filing says.

The mixed signals have left Colorado's marijuana industry in a bind. Many shops still operate in cash, unable to accept credit cards or make other electronic transactions.

"We're still a Schedule I narcotic at the federal level," said Tyler Henson of the Colorado Cannabis Chamber of Commerce, which represents pot growers and retailers. "We can provide every Band-Aid imaginable at the state level, but until the federal government acts on this, we're stuck."

Deirdra A. O'Gorman, CEO of the still-unopened credit union, said she's more optimistic. A Federal Reserve account does not mean it is legitimizing an illegal industry, she said.

"We'll be able to figure this out sooner rather than later," O'Gorman said.

Conti-Brown, the banking expert, is doubtful. "I don't think the lawsuit is going to go anywhere," he said.

The presiding judge in the case, U.S. District Judge R. Brooke Jackson in Denver, has given no indication when he'll decide whether to hear the complaint filed by Fourth Corner.

By KRISTEN WYATT, Associated Press

Friday, October 16, 2015

If it moves, you can track it in real time GPS and locate it instantly from anywhere in the world on your mobile phone

 Use It or Lose It!

Introducing GPS tracking that allows you to send a 7-digit text command to the tracker from your Android or iOS Smartphone and receive a Google Maps link via text with real-time longitude and latitude and a map location
Our entry into the tracking segment of our business came out of internal needs for low-cost tracking solutions to support our protection services and overwatch on materiel convoys and pipeline construction sites by our civilian contractors in Iraq and Nigeria. 

Logistics begins as a nightmare and grows worse by the hour with hijackings (and IED's). The GUG-18VT system with T-Mobile service became a solution for us in Iraq and Nigeria and it continues to be today.

 If it moves, you can track it in real time GPS and locate it instantly from anywhere in the world. Monitor a single vehicle or an entire fleet: track watercraft l trailers & equipment l agriculture machinery l inventory as it moves through your supply chain l quickly locate and recover assets when their location is unknown or their movement is unauthorized.
Monitoring Children, Elderly and Alzheimer Patients or Vulnerable Family Members becomes much easier and effective with the use of use of the Geo Fence feature that allows you to receive alerts via SMS text messages when they wander outside a preset distance or location up to 1500 feet.

Pets are family and when they decide to go on a "walk-about" our GPS Pet Tracker will locate them real-time within about 10-30 feet, and Geo Fence settings will alert you via SMS text messages when they wander outside a preset distance or location.


Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Changing Times - Beneficial Owner Beware! UK Implements Act on Beneficial Ownership

During the 2014 G20 Brisbane Summit leaders adopted new High Level Principles on Beneficial Ownership Transparency, declaring that financial transparency, in particular the transparency of beneficial ownership of legal persons and arrangements is an extremely high priority.

Expressing its commitment to promoting greater corporate transparency, on March 26, 2015, the UK Parliament passed into law the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015.

Numerous fundamental changes to UK company law include, among others, the abolition of bearer shares and corporations acting as directors, and the establishment of a central public registry of those individuals who hold significant control of UK companies. These reforms are designed to increase transparency around who ultimately owns and controls UK companies.

The full impact of the Act on financial institutions in the UK and abroad, notably the United States and Europe, remains to be seen but it is widely expected to influence the customer due diligence undertaken as a matter of best practice when looking to enter into a transaction with a UK company.

This month the Act is expected to receive a staged implementation commencing and be fully implemented by April 2016.

The Act will require most UK companies to identify those “persons with significant control” (PSCs) over the company and maintain a register of those persons. The publicly available PSC register is expected to be fully searchable and freely available online.

A PSC is defined as an individual who ultimately owns or controls more than 25 per cent of a company’s shares or voting rights or, who otherwise exercises control over a company or its management. It is expected that the UK Government will issue guidance to assist companies in determining whether an individual fulfils such criteria.

Companies will be required to take necessary steps to identify people they know or suspect to hold significant control, or risk being convicted of a criminal offense. Similarly PSCs will be required, in certain circumstances, to disclose their interest in the company to the company or also risk being convicted of a criminal offense.

Unless an exemption applies, the Act will apply to all UK incorporated companies.

It should also be noted that the UK Secretary of State is afforded discretion under the Act to exempt any person (whether an individual or a legal entity) from the provisions of the PSC register. Such exemptions must not be granted unless the Secretary of State is satisfied that there are “special reasons” why that person should be exempted, however no guidance is provided in the Act as to what constitutes such “special reasons.”

Companies will be required to maintain a PSC register from January 2016 and provide this information to Companies House for inclusion on the public register from April 2016 onwards.

Furthermore, the European Union Council, on April 20, 2015, endorsed proposals to require member states to maintain a central register of information on the beneficial ownership of corporate and other legal entities. It would be at the discretion of member states as to whether such information would be publicized.

Under the proposals, beneficial ownership information would be accessible to competent authorities and financial intelligence units and, in the framework of the conduct of customer due diligence, to obliged entities.

The plan was endorsed as part of a package of measures aimed at preventing money laundering and terrorist financing. The following information on beneficial owners would be retained:

    Month and year of birth;
    Country of residence; and
    The nature and approximate extent of the beneficial interest held.

As for trusts, the central registration of beneficial ownership information will be used where the ownership of a trust has tax consequences.

Source: Mario Hajiloizis / Marina Hassapopoulou

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Fitch Rates Iraqi Debt as ‘Junk’

August 11, 2015

Fitch Ratings issued its first rating on Iraqi sovereign debt, giving it the fifth-worst junk grade, due in part to the cost of the civil conflict and the global slump in oil prices.
The rating comes as the country is planning a $5-billion bond issue towards the end of this year.
The international ratings agency has assigned Iraq a Long-term foreign currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) of ‘B-‘ with a Stable Outlook.

The agency has also assigned a Country Ceiling of ‘B-‘ and a Short-term IDR of ‘B’.


The ratings reflect the following factors:

Political risk and insecurity are among the highest faced by any sovereign rated by Fitch. Sectarian conflict has raged with varying intensity since 2003, ISIS militants currently effectively hold three of the 18 provinces, relations with the Kurdish regional government are volatile and governance indicators are exceptionally weak.

Iraq holds the world’s fifth largest oil reserves and significant amounts of gas. Oil production has risen rapidly to 3.3m b/d in May 2015, from an average of 2.4m b/d in 2010, with Iraq becoming the world’s second largest exporter in 2014. Production costs are low. The bulk of oil production facilities and infrastructure are away from areas of domestic insecurity. Investment is under way to further raise production capacity, although infrastructure bottlenecks remain a constraint and investment plans were set back by payment arrears in 2014.

Iraq’s fiscal position has deteriorated rapidly since 2013 and Fitch forecasts a double-digit fiscal deficit for 2015, owing to lower oil prices, higher military spending and costs associated with civil conflict. Savings buffers built during previous years of high oil prices have been largely eroded and the deficit will be financed by debt, likely including a eurobond and funding through an IMF rapid financing instrument that was approved in July. Rising oil production and prices should lead to a narrowing of the budget deficit in 2016, although it will remain large and another more substantive IMF programme is likely in 2016. We forecast a small deficit for 2017. The government has cleared the USD9bn of payment arrears to international oil companies that were run up in 2014.

Government debt is forecast by Fitch at 51% of GDP at end-2015, in line with the ‘B’ range median and sharply up on the end-2014 level owing to deficit financing and a contraction in nominal GDP. Debt/GDP is forecast to peak in 2016. Debt reflects the inclusion of funds (and accumulated interest) provided by GCC countries during the 1980-1988 Iran-Iraq war amounting to 22% of estimated 2015 GDP. Iraq faces no pressure to repay the GCC debt, which has not been subject to a haircut of 80% in line with terms to the Paris Club (in a 2004 restructuring covering debt under the pre-2003 regime).


Thursday, August 6, 2015

Sheriff Says Seizing Money and Property from Innocent People Does Not Violate Their Rights

County Officials: Forfeiture Laws Don’t Violate Rights
Law enforcement is not violating people’s constitutional rights by seizing cash, cars or other property from those alleged to be drug dealers, Canadian County Sheriff Randall R. Edwards told a mostly conservative group Monday.


Related Story

Canadian County, OK — An Oklahoma sheriff issued a string of misleading statements on Monday while criticizing a bill that would reign in the state’s abuse of civil asset forfeiture. Canadian County Sheriff Randall R. Edwards suggested that there is no violation of constitutional rights when authorities seize cash and property over alleged drug offenses, even when the person is not convicted of a crime.
Edwards bluntly stated, “We’re not violating your Fourth Amendment rights” by seizing cash and property from alleged drug dealers, even when they are never convicted of a crime.
Read more at http://thefreethoughtproject.com/oklahoma-sheriff-confiscating-money-property-innocent-people-violate-rights/#uCzeUZeIqUhK0W5t.99

Monday, August 3, 2015

IMF Approves $1.24bn Financial Support for Iraq

August 2, 2015

On July 29, 2015, the Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved SDR 891.3 million (about US$1.24 billion or 75 percent of quota) for Iraq under the Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI).

The purpose of this financial assistance is to help Iraq address present and urgent balance of payment and budget needs in 2015 related to the ISIS insurgency and a decline in oil prices. The IMF financing will support the authorities’ current economic program, which includes fiscal adjustment measures and structural reforms.

Following the Executive Board’s discussion of Iraq, Mr. Mitsuhiro Furusawa, IMF Deputy Managing Director and Acting Chair of the Board, issued the following statement:

“The twin shocks faced by Iraq from the ISIS insurgency and the drop in global oil prices have severely widened the government deficit and caused a decline in international reserves. The authorities’ policies to deal with the shocks, including sizable fiscal adjustment and maintenance of the exchange rate peg, go in the right direction.

“Access under the IMF’s Rapid Financing Instrument will help address Iraq’s urgent balance of payments and budget needs. However, large fiscal and external financing gaps remain.

“The large financing gap calls for the rigorous implementation of the authorities’ policies, but also additional fiscal adjustment measures and identification of domestic and internal financing. In this context, it will be important to implement the new electricity tariff schedule as soon as possible, or adopt compensatory measures.

“Looking ahead, the authorities should lay the ground for medium-term structural reforms that would better support macroeconomic policy management and boost the economy’s resilience to shocks.”

(Source: IMF)

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Emerging-market currencies are in free fall- China’s Stock Sale Ban

An index of the major developing-nation currencies fell to an all-time low this week, extending its drop over the past year to 19 percent, according to data compiled by Bloomberg going back to 1999. The Russian ruble, Colombia's peso and the Brazilian real have fallen more than 30 percent over the past year for some of the worst global selloffs.

China's economic slowdown is pushing down commodity prices, weighing on raw-material exporters from Brazil to Mexico and South Africa. Adding to the pain is the expectation that the Federal Reserve will soon embark on the first interest rate increase since 2006, threatening to lure capital away from developing nations.

``This combination of a soft landing in China and a Fed that will normalize rates soon poses significant risks to emerging markets, especially their currencies,'' Stephen Jen, a former International Monetary Fund economist who is now managing partner at SLJ Macro Partners in London, wrote in a July 23 note. Jen said he expects ``a violent sell-off in some emerging-market currencies in the second half this year.''

While currency depreciation tends to spur growth by making exports cheaper, so far this is not happening because global trade has stalled, according to Citigroup Inc. and UBS Group AG. The International Monetary Fund forecasts emerging markets will grow 4.2 percent this year, the slowest since 2009.

Source-Ye Xie

China’s Stock Sale Ban Draws Scorn From Templeton, Wells Fargo

 Templeton Emerging Markets Group calls it an act of “desperation.” UBS Wealth Management labels it “extreme.” And Wells Fargo Funds Management says it just “postpones the inevitable.”

China’s decision to ban major stockholders from selling stakes in listed companies has drawn skepticism from foreign investors. The money managers, with combined assets of almost $4 trillion, say the latest step to stem the country’s equity rout is just another measure to meddle in the market and won’t be enough to restore investors’ confidence.

“It suggests desperation,” Mark Mobius, chairman of Templeton Emerging Markets Group, said by phone. “It actually creates more fear because it shows that they’ve lost control.”

The China Securities Regulatory Commission said Wednesday that investors with holdings exceeding 5 percent as well as corporate executives and directors are prohibited from selling stakes for six months. The rule is intended to stabilize capital markets amid an “unreasonable plunge” in share prices, the CSRC said.

While China has already ordered government-owned institutions to maintain or increase stock holdings, the CSRC directive expands the sales ban to non-state companies and potentially foreign investors who own major stakes in mainland businesses.
ETF Plunges

Deutsche Bank will have to wait if it plans to sell its 20 percent stake in Beijing-based Huaxia Bank Co., a move that would help shore up the lender’s finances, according to Piers Brown, an analyst at Macquarie Group Ltd. Eduard Stipic, a spokesman for Deutsche Bank, declined to comment on Wednesday.

In a sign that foreign investors expect more losses, the biggest U.S. exchange-traded fund tracking mainland stocks tumbled a record 11 percent in New York. Deutsche X-trackers Harvest CSI 300 China A-Shares ETF has declined 23 percent over the past week. The Shanghai Composite jumped 5.8 percent at the close on Thursday, capping its biggest gain since 2009 as the government battled to restore investor confidence.

A 32 percent slump in the benchmark gauge has helped wipe out $3.6 trillion of market value in Chinese stocks since June 12 and prompted regulators to introduce support measures almost every night for more than a week. Other steps have included a suspension of initial public offerings and restrictions on bearish bets via stock-index futures. Policy makers have also made loans available to securities firms to buy shares.
‘Undermining Credibility’

In perhaps the most dramatic effort to stop the selloff, local exchanges have allowed more than 1,300 companies to halt trading in their shares.

“The measure can be effective in the short term because you are not going to allow people to trade,” said Jorge Mariscal, the emerging-markets chief investment officer at UBS Wealth Management, which oversees $1 trillion in invested assets. “But they are undermining the credibility on the soundness of the regulatory framework going forward. Things are a little extreme and counter-productive.”

As China’s record-breaking equity boom goes bust, President Xi Jinping is intervening in an attempt to prevent the rout from eroding confidence in his leadership. The moves have cast doubt on the Communist Party’s pledge less than two years ago to give market forces a bigger role in the economy, which is part of its largest reform drive since the 1990s.
Market Intervention

“When Xi Jinping stressed the ‘decisive role of market forces,’ I don’t think this is what he had in mind,” Jim Chanos, the founder of hedge fund Kynikos Associates who predicted the collapse of Enron Corp. in 2001, said by e-mail.

China isn’t the only market with a history of state intervention. During the 1998 Asian financial crisis, Hong Kong bought shares worth $15 billion to prop up the market. In the U.S., the Securities and Exchange Commission temporarily banned short selling on some shares during the global financial crisis in 2008.

While the authorities should “pull out stops” as much as they can during a crisis, China’s actions may backfire by scaring away investors, said Burton Malkiel, author of the investment classic “A Random Walk Down Wall Street” and an economics professor at Princeton University.

“I am not sure this is going to work,” Malkiel said by phone. “When the government does this, it might be a sign that ‘Oh my God, the government is panicked and we ought to get out even sooner.’’
Exchange Link

Under current mainland rules, a single foreign investor can own as much as 10 percent of a company’s issued shares. China has allocated investment quotas of about $138 billion through its so-called QFII and RQFII programs for foreign money managers, which include BlackRock Inc. and HSBC Global Asset Management.

International funds have gained unprecedented access to the mainland market through an exchange link with Hong Kong. Foreigners have sold a net 33.4 billion yuan ($5.4 billion) of Shanghai shares through the link over the last three days.

‘‘The extent to which they can apply this to foreign ownership interest remains to be seen,’’ said Brian Jacobsen, who helps oversee $250 billion as the chief portfolio strategist at Wells Fargo Funds Management. ‘‘They are grasping at straws to find a way to stop the selling pressure.’’

Source - Bloomberg

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

China Rallies Around Yuan as IMF Mulls Reserve-Currency Inclusion

The release of a report on renminbi internationalization comes as members of the IMF are on a visit to China

BEIJING—China’s central bank is preparing to take new steps to lift the global profile of the yuan as the International Monetary Fund reviews whether to grant it elite status as a reserve currency.
In a report issued late last week, the People’s Bank of China detailed moves it will take to encourage the IMF to take that step, putting the currency on a par with the dollar, euro, yen and pound sterling. Reserve status could potentially encourage other central banks to increase their holdings of the currency.

To win approval from the IMF, Beijing must make the case that the yuan can easily be used in international markets. Potential steps listed in the report include opening the door wider for foreign central banks and other institutional investors to invest in China’s bond market.

Although it didn’t specify a timetable, the People’s Bank of China also will give foreign entities greater freedom to sell yuan-denominated debt in China, and offer domestic companies more scope to issue such bonds overseas. Further, it will ease limits on Chinese individuals and companies investing in foreign assets.

The report on internationalization of the yuan—also known as the renminbi, or people’s currency—comes as a team from the IMF visits China this week to help assess whether to declare the yuan an official reserve currency. On Monday and Tuesday, the IMF team was scheduled to hold technical discussions in Shanghai with officials at the Chinese central bank and China Foreign Exchange Trading System, which oversees currency trading in China, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

Beijing’s push comes as it seeks to wield more influence over the global economy. Chinese officials hope that over time, reserve-currency status would increase demand for the yuan among central banks as Beijing challenges the U.S.’s political and economic dominance around the world.

“The SDR entry would give China a greater say in the international monetary system,” a Chinese central-bank official said on Monday. “No question. We’re making real efforts to make it happen.”
Efforts to win reserve-country status could also help accelerate the liberalization of China’s heavily regulated financial markets. PBOC Gov. Zhou Xiaochuan has said China will free up interest rates and the flow of capital across the border by the end of the year.

Gaining reserve-currency status for the yuan isn’t likely to affect how countries manage their foreign-exchange holdings right away, but “it potentially paves the way towards renminbi internationalization by encouraging institutional investors to catch up in this underinvested currency,” said Helen Qiao, an analyst at Morgan Stanley.
In its report, China’s central bank estimated that at the end of April, foreign central banks held approximately 666.7 billion yuan ($107.41 billion) in their foreign-exchange reserves. It was the first time the PBOC has disclosed such data.

The central bank didn’t detail how many yuan individual countries are holding, but the totals are rising. Over the past year, countries including the U.K. and Australia have begun adding the currency to their official reserves, though the yuan still represents only a sliver of the total.

According to IMF data, the world’s central banks had allocated more than $6 trillion of foreign-exchange reserves at the end of last year. More than 60% was in U.S. dollars, followed by 23% in euros, 4% in the yen and 3.9% in the pound sterling. China’s estimates rank the amount of yuan assets in global central-bank reserves right behind those of Canadian and Australian dollars. 
Senior IMF officials, including managing director Christine Lagarde, have indicated that the organization shares Beijing’s interest in giving the yuan reserve-currency status. The issue, officials have indicated, is when the currency will be added.

To be awarded reserve-currency status, the yuan must be “freely usable,” a term the agency has wide freedom to interpret. China’s efforts in recent years to foster greater international use of the yuan could help it to satisfy the IMF.Nearly 25% of China’s trade was conducted in yuan last year, official data show, up from 0.02% in 2009.

So far, China has won support from some IMF member countries, including Germany and Australia. U.S. officials, though, have signaled that the Obama administration won’t back China unless Beijing takes more measures to revamp and open its economy.

Beijing’s growing economic clout has added to tensions between China and the U.S. The White House suffered a diplomatic bruising earlier this year, when many U.S. allies rejected lobbying by the administration against a new Beijing -led infrastructure bank. They instead became founding members of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, or AIIB, which has been seen as a potential rival to the U.S.-led World Bank.

“It’s critical that the U.S. avoid another AIIB-like moment where it opposes a new Chinese initiative that is widely embraced by others and leaves the U.S. defeated and isolated,” said Scott Kennedy, a China analyst at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a Washington-based think tank.
In recent months, China has accelerated the overhaul by putting in place a long-awaited deposit insurance system and moving closer to freeing up interest rates, a step seen as critical to further changes. In addition, it has given foreign investors greater access to Chinese securities and made it easier for Chinese to invest abroad. Beijing is putting the final touches on a trial program to give Chinese residents and companies expanded, direct access to stocks, bonds and real estate in foreign markets.

“China is not far from realizing its goal of capital-account liberalization,” the PBOC said in its report, referring to free cross-border flows of funds for financial transactions.

source @ http://www.wsj.com/articles/china-rallies-around-yuan-as-imf-mulls-reserve-currency-inclusion-1434366682

Monday, June 15, 2015

Iraqi government delegation negotiate with international banks in Turkey for the issuance of sovereign bonds in global market

in the process of issuing sovereign government bonds in the global financial market.

According to a statement issued by the Ministry of Finance received by Shafaq News, the delegation includes Minister of Finance, Hoshyar Zebari , Minister of Oil ,Adel Abdul Mahdi , Minister of Planning , Salman al-Jumaili , Governor of the Central Bank , Ali al-Alaq , advisor to the Prime Minister for Economic Affairs , Mathehar Mohammed Saleh and senior advisers and experts of ministries and the central bank.

The statement added that the delegation began meetings with representatives of international banks, "Citibank" , "JP Morgan" and "Deutsche Bank" to review the financial , economic, political and security report on Iraq, as well as the international law office of Iraq.

The statement said that the delegation is scheduled to meet with the census and credit International Modine and Fitch Companies in order to determine the credit rating of Iraq in the international capital market.

The budget law for 2015, passed by the Iraqi parliament has authorized the government to issue sovereign government bonds by seven trillion dinars to cover the fiscal deficit in the budget.

source @ http://english.shafaaq.com/politics/14770-iraqi-government-delegation-negotiate-with-international-banks-in-turkey-for-the-issuance-of-sovereign-bonds-in-global-market.html

KRG: We have more than 3 trillion dinars as loans and advances on the citizens 

Shafaq News / An official letter issued by the Ministry of Finance in Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) revealed on Sunday, that the ministry has a debt to the citizens of more than three trillion dinars in the form of loans and advances delivered to them during the last period.

The letter, seen by Shafaq News noted that the debt includes loans and advances received by the citizens from the real estate, agriculture, industry, housing banks, explaining that it reached at the end of March to 3 trillion , 992 billion , 356 million , 869 thousand and 350 dinars , handed over to 230 thousand and 281 people.

He added that the amounts that citizens gave it back to the same date to the government was amounted to 957 billion, 779 million , 12 thousand and 289 dinars, indicating that the remaining funds among the citizens are 3 trillion , 34 billion , 577 million , 857 thousand and 61 dinars.

KRG suffers from a crisis of liquidity since the Iraqi government deducted its share of the Iraqi general budget in the era of former Prime Minister , Nuri al-Maliki since February 2014 because of differences with Erbil on the issue of exporting oil without federal government’s approval.


Saturday, June 13, 2015

Listen Live! Omar Humadi, Senior Advisor to Iraq's UN Ambassador expected to speak at "The D-Day Aftermath" Monday Evening.

Like Iraq, the Iraqi Dinar has been under siege ....under siege by Scoundrels who have engaged in a "Get Rich Quick" scheme to mislead great people and defraud investors in the Iraq Dinar. D-Day for one such Scoundrel was 3 June, 15 when the FBI took down the Sterling Currency Group and their co-conspirator Guru Promoters leaving thousands of victims in their wake.

The 48 page Amended Federal Complaint against the Sterling Scoundrels is not an indictment of the Iraq Currency.

The D-Day Aftermath is a call to action for a Dinarian gameplan.   A precursor to any successful gameplan is intelligence from reliable sources and no one is better suited to contribute than Mr. Omar Humadi, Senior Advisor Ambassador Mohammed Alhakim and the Iraqi Mission to the United Nations in New York.

Prior to his appointment as Senior Advisor, and drawing upon his expertise in US politics, Mr. Humadi has assisted the Iraqi Embassy in Washington, D.C. where he has played a leading role in defining bilateral relations with one of Iraq's most important allies. He has made numerous trips to Iraq in conjunction with this work and his family lives in Baghdad

Mr. Humadi was first introduced to the Dinarian community by us on the evening of August 7, 2013, and the information revealed at that time (while disputed by many "Guru Loyalists") was on-point then and proven true today.

You are invited to join us for a frank discussion on a serious subject.

MONDAY | JUNE 15th | 7:00 PM EST
Phone. 712-775-7035 | Code. 908702# | Mute/Un-mute. *6 | Bring questions for Q&A

Information and People for Diligent Outcomes

Friday, June 12, 2015

Zimbabwe exchanges 250,000,000,000,000 local dollars for US$1

12/06 08:46 CET

If you suffer from Arithmophobia (fear of numbers) you might want to stop reading now.
The Zimbabwean central bank is offering to convert Zimbabwean dollars into the foreign currency which in practice has been the only way of buying anything in the country for years.
Customers can exchange 250,000,000,000,000 Zimbabwe dollars for 1 US dollar, according to the Guardian.
To put that in context, if you earned a Zimbabwean dollar for every second of your life, you would have 1 US cent by the time you reached the age of 79,275 (yes that’s seventynine thousand two hundred and seventyfive).

However, if your money is in the bank already, or was printed after 2009 when foreign currency became officially accepted in the country, the exchange rate is not quite so good and you will need 35,000,000,000,000,000 Zimbabwe dollars to get one US dollar.
As a special offer, however, if your account has less than 175 quadrillion (175,000,000,000,000,000) in it, you can get $5 straight up.

You need to change your money before September or it is liable to become worthless.
The highest note Zimbabwe ever issued was the 100 trillion, now popular as a tourist souvenir but worth only 40 US cents.

source @ http://www.euronews.com/2015/06/12/zimbabwe-exchanges-250000000000000-local-dollars-for-us-dollar-1/
Zimbabwe slashes 16 zeros from currency but dollar still a joke

From next Monday Zimbabweans with have their mental arithmetic simplified for them with the news some zeros are coming off the currency.

Quite a lot of zeros. No less than 16, as the federal reserve attempts to end funny money by offering one new Zimbabwe dollar in exchange for 35 quadrillion old ones.

However the real hyperinflation rate is in fact worse. The money being replaced was only issued in 2008, when the exchange rate was one for 10 billion. The real hyperinflation rate has 25 zeroes attached.

This is now hyperinflation an elderly German would recognise, with all its attendant risks.
Since 2009 the dollar and other foreign currencies have been vital for Zimbabwe to remain afloat as confidence in the local currency and government’s economic policy of continually printing money has collapsed.

From being a nation of multi-billionaires Zimbabweans will be much poorer from next week; but then most people knew that already.

source @ http://www.euronews.com/2015/06/12/zimbabwe-slashes-16-zeros-from-currency-but-dollar-still-a-joke/


Thursday, June 11, 2015

As currency dies, Zimbabweans will get $5 for 175 quadrillion local dollars

Zimbabweans will start exchanging "quadrillions" of local dollars for a few U.S. dollars next week, as President Robert Mugabe's government discards its virtually worthless national currency, the central bank said on Thursday.

The southern African country started using foreign currencies like the U.S. dollar and South African rand in 2009 after the Zimbabwean dollar was ruined by hyperinflation, which hit 500 billion percent in 2008.

At the height of Zimbabwe's economic crisis in 2008, Zimbabweans had to carry plastic bags bulging with bank notes to buy basic goods like bread and milk. Prices were rising at least twice a day.
From Monday, customers who held Zimbabwean dollar accounts before March 2009 can approach their banks to convert their Zimbabwean dollar balance into dollars, Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) Governor John Mangudya said in a statement.

The process will legally end the local currency. Zimbabweans have until September to turn in their old bank notes, which some people sell as souvenirs to tourists.

Bank accounts with balances of up to 175 quadrillion Zimbabwean dollars will be paid $5. Those with balances above 175 quadrillion dollars will be paid at an exchange rate of $1 to 35 quadrillion Zimbabwean dollars.
The highest—and last—bank note to be printed by the RBZ in 2008 was 100 trillion Zimbabwean dollars. It was not enough to ride a public bus to work for a week.

The RBZ said customers who still have stashes of old Zimbabwean dollar notes can walk into any bank and get $1 for every 250 trillion they hold.

That means a holder of a 100 trillion bank note will on Monday get 40 cents. The RBZ has set aside $20 million to pay Zimbabwean dollar currency holders.

source http://www.cnbc.com/id/102752428

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

The State of Wyoming has the best LLC protection law in the nation

Given the recent attacks on single member LLC’s in Florida, Colorado and elsewhere, the best LLC law that was, has recently been updated. On March 5, 2010, when Governor Dave Freudenthal signed into law the 2010 Wyoming Limited Liability Company Act (2010 LLC Act or New Act), a comprehensive update to Wyoming’s LLC laws.

“The state of Wyoming again has the best LLC asset protection law in the nation.”
  •     A single member LLC is protected by charging order
  •     Better asset protection law than any other state
  •     Wyoming law does not allow any room for interpretation
  •     Wyoming Asset Protection Trust can be linked to the LLC for Estate Planning advantages
  •     Wyoming LLC is confidential and private
  •     Zero Wyoming state tax for an LLC
  •     Much lower cost than Nevada
Sole member and multi-member LLC’s protected

Wyoming has pioneered a new form of LLC that precludes creditors from any legal or equitable remedy other than a charging order against the LLC interest, even as to Single Member LLC’s.  The charging order is the “exclusive remedy.”  This means that you do not have to have 2 or more members in the LLC to get the charging order protection! Other remedies, including foreclosure and a “court order for directions, accounts and inquiries” are not available and may not be ordered by a court.

Why NOT Nevada or California?

Wyoming’s law is better than any of the other popular states.

California allows a court to charge the LLC interest; appoint a receiver; order foreclosure; and make all other orders, directions, accounts and inquiries the judgment debtor might have made or the circumstances require.

Nevada declares charging order to be the exclusive remedy, but gives the creditor rights of an assignee.

Delaware provides for charging order as exclusive remedy, but then also provides that it constitutes a lien on the debtor’s LLC interest. Wyoming does not even allow a lien!

Interpretation Not Required...Or Permitted!
Wyoming Law does not allow any room for interpretation. The law states...

“On application by a judgment creditor of a member or transferee, a court may enter a charging order against the transferable interest of the judgment debtor for the unsatisfied amount of the judgment. A charging order requires the limited liability company to pay over to the person to which the charging order was issued any distribution that would otherwise be paid to the judgment debtor.”

“This section provides the exclusive remedy by which a person seeking to enforce a judgment against a judgment debtor, including any judgment debtor who may be the sole member, dissociated member or transferee, may, in the capacity of the judgment creditor, satisfy the judgment from the judgment debtor’s transferable interest or from the assets of the limited liability company. Other remedies, including foreclosure on the judgment debtor’s limited liability interest and a court order for directions, accounts and inquiries that the judgment debtor might have made are not available to the judgment creditor attempting to satisfy a judgment out of the judgment debtor’s interest in the limited liability company and may not be ordered by the court.“

Estate Planning

To avoid having income frozen inside the LLC as a result of a charging order, the Wyoming Close LLC can be owned by a Wyoming Domestic Asset Protection Trust (DAPT), under which a trustee may make discretionary distributions to the debtor’s family and perhaps even directly to the debtor.

This type of planning is best done before it is needed. Significant potential benefit may be realized in terms of leverage against creditors, if ever needed.


If you desire privacy, keep in mind that Wyoming does not require the members or managers to be listed on the public record.

Tax implications for an LLC

Wyoming has no income taxes so a Wyoming LLC is not taxed by the state.  An LLC normally passes the taxes through to its owners and if those owners live in a state that taxes income, they would pay state taxes in that state.

Since an LLC normally passes the taxes through to its owners and if those owners are a Wyoming trust, there may be considerable tax advantages for clients who live in a state with state income tax.

Lower cost

Wyoming state fees are some of the lowest in the nation... especially since Nevada raised their fees and added taxes the beginning of June, 2015.

Since Wyoming has had limited liability companies available longer than any other state, has the strongest laws protecting the members and managers of an LLC, Wyoming is the obvious state of choice for establishing LLC corporations.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Iraq gets $833m IMF Emergency Funding

June 8, 2015 in Banking & Finance, Industry & Trade, Politics

An International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission led by Carlo Sdralevich visited Amman from May 27 – June 4, 2015 to discuss with the Iraqi authorities financial assistance to Iraq under the Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI). At the end of the visit, Mr. Sdralevich issued the following statement:
“The mission has reached a staff-level agreement with the Iraqi authorities for IMF emergency assistance of SDR 594.2 million (approximately US$833 million) under the RFI. Subject to IMF management approval, the staff-level agreement is expected to be submitted to the IMF Executive Board for consideration in July 2015.
Read entire story @  http://www.iraq-businessnews.com/2015/06/08/iraq-gets-833m-imf-emergency-funding/

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

FBI raids business selling dinars in Puerto Rico

Mendez visit the offices of Internet Management for a fraud investigation

The raid conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI, for its acronym in English) during the morning in a business that sells dinars, located on Roosevelt, Hato Rey Avenue, is related to a fraud investigation, He confirmed the press spokesman of the federal agency, Moses Quiñones.

"In general, we could say it's a case of fraud," the official told this newspaper.

He explained that a federal grand jury takes nearly a year investigating the alleged fraud which did not elaborate.
FBI agents, accompanied by the IRS and police officers in Puerto Rico, arrived at about 7:00 am at the offices of Internet Management Mendez. Quinones explained that could be there until noon.
He said that, in general, in raids seeking documents and computers.
So far, it is not anticipated that the FBI arrests perform this procedure.
Mendez Internet Management is dedicated to the sale of dinars. The business is best known for his radio and television programs, called "The Truth About dinars", and cyber dinarespr.com page.
Since 2005 to the present it is sold on the island this coin Iraq under the allegation that "in the near future" will increase its value, as described cyber company page.
It also specifies that Internet Management Mendez sold a minimum of 1,000 dinars for $ 2. It has emerged that there are people who have bought up to $ 150,000 in these dinars.
On the other hand, last night, the owner of the company, James A. Mendez, posted on his Facebook wall a hopeful message.
"Everything is there squaring .... We will have our victory ... !!" he wrote. He accompanied the citation with a photograph that shows a light at the end of a tunnel.


F.B.I. raids home and business in Brookhaven - Sterling Currency Group and Rhame Targets


The FBI raided a DeKalb County home and business Wednesday morning.

Our cameras were rolling at a currency exchange company on Buford Highway and a house on East Brookhaven Drive as agents removed boxes of evidence.

FBI agents, along with the Brookhaven Police Department, descended on the home before 7 a.m. and stayed through the day.

We first showed you the scene on Channel 2 Action News at Noon, and again on Channel 2 Action News at 5 p.m. as agents continued to go in and out of the home.

Agents were seen taking equipment in and removing plastic gloves when exiting the home.
All day neighbors were quiet, but curious. Some took pictures of what was happening at the corner house. Neighbors tell us businessman Ty Rhame lives in the home with his wife and young child.
Neighbors said Rhame is in the foreign currency business.

Rhame's business, Sterling Currency Group, was the location of the second raid involving Brookhaven police, the FBI and U.S. Marshals.

Channel 2’s Wendy Corona saw one marshal take a sledgehammer to Rhame's 4th floor unmarked office suite at the Druid Pointe Building.

When asked to elaborate on the details behind the search warrants and what officials were gathering in the raids, the FBI sent a statement saying they are "not in a position to discuss the details of those searches at this time."


Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Nevada Gets Tax Increase - The $1.1 billion package raises taxes on businesses and cigarettes...

Iraq's oil export in May reaches record level in decades

Published: 2015/6/2 11:50 • Updated: 2015/6/2 10:29

Baghdad (Forat) -Iraq's oil export in May, at 3.145 million barrels per day (bpd), was the highest in decades, the Oil Ministry said today.

In total, the country exported 97.504 million barrels in May, bringing in 5 billion U.S. dollars in revenue, at an average selling price of 55 dollars per barrel, the ministry said in a statement emailed to Xinhua.

The ministry attributed the amount of export, "unprecedented for decades," to its "extraordinary efforts."

"The ministry has made extraordinary efforts to increase the crude exports in a bid to compensate the delay of loading due to bad weather," the statement quoted ministry's spokesman Asim Jihad as saying.

In 2014, Iraq exported a total of 918.114 million barrels of crude oil, earning 84.215 billion dollars in revenue.

Iraq's economy relies on oil for more than 90 percent of its revenues.

In 2010, Iraq announced that its proven oil reserves had increased to 143.1 billion barrels, from the previous estimate of 115 billion barrels./End/

Thursday, May 21, 2015



It is official and justice has been served. A courthouse confidant and watcher just advised us that Internet Scoundrel, Anthony Renfrow plead guilty this morning to Count 1 of the Federal Indictment in connection with 14DailyPlus.com.

The Judge ordered a presentence background investigation.

Count 1

14. Paragraphs 1-13 are incorporated as though fully set out herein.

15. Beginning in or about March 2006, the exact date being unknown to the Grand Jury, and continuing to on or about May 16, 2007, both dates being approximate and inclusive, in the District of Kansas and elsewhere, the defendants, ANTHONY RENFROW and WILLIAM “BILL” FOX, knowingly and intentionally conspired and agreed together and with each other, andwith other persons known and unknown to the Grand Jury to commit the following offenses against the United States: wire fraud, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Sections 2 and 1343; and engaging in monetary transactions greater than$10,000, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Sections 2 and 1957.

 Object of Conspiracy

16. It was a part and object of the conspiracy that RENFROW, FOX, and their coconspirators, willfully and knowingly devised a scheme to defraud investors through14DailyPlus.com and to obtain money and property by means of false and fraudulent pretenses, representations, and promises, and, for the purpose of executing the scheme to defraud, knowingly and intentionally caused to be transmitted by means of wire communications in interstate and foreign commerce, writings, signs, signals, and sounds for the purpose of executing such scheme to defraud individuals in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Sections 2 and 1343.

17. It was a further part and object of the conspiracy that RENFROW, FOX, and their co-conspirators, knowingly engaged in monetary transactions by, through, and to financial institutions, affecting interstate commerce, in criminally derived property of a value greater than $10,000.00, through deposits, withdrawals, and transfers of U.S. currency, funds, and monetary instruments, such property having been derived fromwire fraud, which is a specified unlawful activity, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Sections 2 and 1957.

 Manner and Means

18. It was part of the conspiracy that the founder and promoters of 14DailyPlus.com established an Internet website that appeared as though individuals could make investments and reap large returns.

19. It was further part of the conspiracy that the founder and promoters of 14DailyPlus.com falsely promised 14% per day return on the purported investment.

20. It was further part of the conspiracy that the founder and promoters of 14DailyPlus.com solicited investments in amounts up to $9,000 cash.

21. It was further part of the conspiracy that the founder and promoters of 14DailyPlus.com falsely promised a greater return on the investment if more money wasinvested.

22. It was further part of the conspiracy that the founder and promoters of 14DailyPlus.com encouraged investors to reinvest all returns into the program.

23. It was further part of the conspiracy that the founder and promoters of 14DailyPlus.com regularly conducted conference calls via telephone and Internet to recruit individuals, encourage more investments, and reassure the soundness of theinvestments.

24. It was further part of the conspiracy that the founder and promoters of 14  DailyPlus.com deposited the invested funds into their personal accounts.

25. It was further part of the conspiracy that the founder and promoters of 14DailyPlus.com used the invested money for personal purposes and did not pay out returns to the “investors.”

Overt Acts

26. In furtherance of this conspiracy and to effect and accomplish the objects of it, one or more of the defendants or conspirators, both indicted and unindicted, committed, among others, the following overt acts in the District of Kansas and elsewhere:
Recruiting “Investors”

a. During a conference call with Matt Becker, Renfrow assured14DailyPlus.com investors their funds were safe and that no one would lose their funds or investment despite the delay in payments being made to the investors. Renfrow asserted the delay in payments of returns was due to problems associated with the Internet payment entities, and nothing more.

b. Fox recruited Eric Fellows to become part of 14DailyPlus.com by making an “investment” in 14DailyPlus.com, and then earning a “return” on that investment by merely viewing advertising sites established through14DailyPlus.com. The “earnings” were to be credited to the “investor’s” online account and it was recommended that earnings remain in the account.

c. Renfrow reported to Charles Lunsford that investors were not being paid because cyber thieves had compromised 14DailyPlus.com’s E-Gold account, so the funds were not available to be disbursed.

d. Fox told Aubrey Meyer that she could earn a 40% return on her investment with 14DailyPlus.com, and was assured she would at least get her initial investment returned.

e. Fox personally placed a telephone call to Robert Montgomery to congratulate him for recruiting others to join 14DailyPlus.com.

f. Renfrow personally met with James Oliver in Sacramento, California, and showed Mr. Oliver office space as a means of satisfying concerns whether 14DailyPlus.com was a legitimate business. Mr. Oliver participated in conference calls with Renfrow, who provided various reasons for lack of payments to the investors. Renfrow’s explanation for lack of payment included a tale that his E-Gold account had been “hacked,” so Renfrow was awaiting pay-out from another investment to then satisfy payments in 14DailyPlus.com.

g. During a conference call with Russ Pitts, Fox stated he had made$250,000 in six months through 14DailyPlus.com, and that his mother-in-law had made $60,000. Fox told Mr. Pitts that participants in 14DailyPlus.com would not be paid if they did not recruit other people to join 14DailyPlus.com.

h. During a conference call with Russ Pitts, Renfrow directed people to not refer to 14DailyPlus.com as an “investment.”

i. During a conference call with James Rizqalla, Renfrow reported problems with the 14DailyPlus.com website, which required some reorganization and delays in payments.

j. Fox recruited Art Ruby to become part of 14DailyPlus.com andencouraged Mr. Ruby to make the investment with cash.8

k. During a conference call with Art Ruby, Renfrow stated everyone who participated in 14DailyPlus.com would be paid, and when a participant in the conference call had specific questions about payments, then they were accused of not being a “team player,” and threatened with having their account closed. Explanations by Fox for delays in payment included health issues for Renfrow, SafePay Solutions, Inc. not releasing funds, or glitches with the Internet payment system.

l. During conference calls with Willis Smith, Renfrow encouraged people to invest with 14DailyPlus.com, and assured the participants that no one would ever lose money because the initial investment would always be returned. Renfrow explained payments were delayed until more people invested with14DailyPlus.com, so the capital fund would be increased and allow for returns to be paid.

m. During a conference call with Don Stroh, Renfrow stated no one would lose their money in connection with 14DailyPlus.com. Renfrow explained investments could be made by sending a wire transfer to Renfrow’s personal Bank of America account from the “investor’s” bank account or directly depositing funds into Renfrow’s Bank of America account at any local Bank of America branch.

There are 13 pages to Count 1 but by know, you should understand that magnitude of the violations of trust and confidence involved.

It is always a great day when internet scammers are caught and prosecuted. The Cloud of doubt and complete misrepresentation may finally clear from the Iraqi Dinar and the Dinar community.

Information and People For Diligent Outcomes

Iraq’s Missing Money

May 21, 2015 in Politics, Security
By Walid Khoudouri for Al-Monitor. Any opinions expressed are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.

Iraq is passing through a dangerous phase. There is a lot of waste and corruption and little transparency in state institutions. The security situation is deteriorating. And lately, there has been negative information about Iraqi officials responsible for the oil revenues during the last years. This has led to the dangerous situation that Iraq is [now] in.

It was shown that during the first week of May, the Iraqi parliament received, all at once, the final accounts of the eight years of the rule of former Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki for the 2006-13 period to “review and approve them.” This means that the previous years’ accounts had not been reviewed or approved. And parliament is now being asked to approve them all at once after Maliki lost the prime minister post.

The move to approve all the past years’ final accounts is considered an illegal act according to the norms of parliamentary systems and traditions. The main role of the legislative branch is to review and approve the previous year’s accounts, and then approve the new year’s budget submitted to parliament by the government or the executive branch. This is already provided for in the Iraqi constitution.

Earlier this year, parliament member Magda Tamimi declared that she was preparing studies indicating that hundreds of billions of dollars are missing from the state’s annual budgets during Maliki’s reign. Tamimi has access to state financial figures because she has been a member of the parliamentary Finance Committee during the current and previous sessions. She is conducting a study on corruption in state institutions.

 State budgets for the years between 2006 and 2013 were submitted, but not the budget for 2014. This is not strange, since the parliament at the time did not agree on the 2014 budget. And there was no budget for that year, which means that it is not possible to calculate and audit the budget of that year.

Page 2

Now there is fear that the major political blocs in parliament would agree to approve at the time all the final accounts for the past years and issue parliamentary resolutions in this regard. Sabah al-Saadi, a former member of the Parliamentary Integrity Committee, reportedly said that the budgets of the past years “have been spent but there is no reconstruction of infrastructure, no investments, no fixing of the electricity, no housing, and no solution to the water scarcity or other problems. …

The budgets that were spent from 2006 to 2012 amounted to $614 billion. That is in addition to the 2013 budget, for a total of $727 billion. This is enough money to build a completely new Iraq.” It is also noteworthy that the Iraqi parliament has failed to approve the 2014 budget and has returned it several times to the Council of Ministers to make amendments because of the presence of many irregularities.

The loss of hundreds of billions of dollars a year — in light of the extreme poverty that the country is still suffering from — is a major scandal. According to statements by current senior officials, there were many “spacemen” during Maliki’s rule. “Spacemen” are individuals that get registered as employees in the civil and military institutions but who do not show up for work or perform any work in official bodies while getting paid their monthly salaries. The top official in the state and the commander of the armed forces throughout this period was Maliki.

This information raises many questions, including: Will the chairman of the finance committee in parliament, Ahmad Chalabi, seek to obtain the approval of the parliament Speaker Salim al-Jabouri to start an investigation into this matter? Will the matter be discussed in public hearings of the finance committee and in the presence of media and civil society organizations?

In the absence of transparency, who is the ultimate beneficiary of these billions of dollars? Are they only Iraqi politicians, or was a large part of the money transferred to neighboring countries — especially Iran and Syria — to help those two countries bypass the international embargo imposed on them?

If the money were sent to only some politicians, this means local politicians have accumulated huge funds, which they can use in future political campaigns to return to power. If the money was transferred to neighboring countries, it means that the previous government paid for its survival throughout the period by helping Iran spread its regional influence and by helping the Syrian regime stay in power.