Tuesday, 27 October 2009
Monday, 26 October 2009
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: BAE Systems PLC has tapped Linda Hudson as chief executive officer and president of its massive U.S. operations, a move that gives her a high-profile role as the first female chief executive of a major defense contractor.
BAE Systems Inc., which has about 56,000 employees and annual sales of approximately $20 billion in 2008, is the U.S. arm of the U.K.-based defense giant. She also was named to parent company BAE Systems PLC's board and as its chief operating officer.
A longtime defense executive, Ms. Hudson had been president of BAE's land and armaments group, which makes armored vehicles and played a key role rushing thousands of blast-resistant trucks to Iraq and Afghanistan.
In June, retired Marine General Tony Zinni was named chairman of BAE Systems Inc. and had been acting as chief executive officer on an interim basis after Walt Havenstein left to run another government contractor, SAIC Inc. Mr. Zinni will remain chairman.
The move is effective immediately. >>> August Cole | Monday, October 26, 2009
Thursday, 22 October 2009
TIMES ONLINE: Top executives at US companies that have not yet repaid billions of dollars of taxpayers' bailout money will be forced to take pay cuts of up to 90 per cent after a ruling by President Obama's pay czar.
The most senior 25 employees at Citigroup, Bank of America, American International Group, General Motors, Chrysler, as well as the financing arms of the two car companies, will see their basic salary fall to just 10 per cent of previous pay, with some earnings replaced with shares in the company that cannot be sold for several years.
The result of the measures will be an average remuneration reduction of 50 per cent.
The move is designed to link the personal self-interest of board members with the long-term health of the company and will be closely watched in the UK, as ministers grapple with how to limit the excesses of bonus culture at British banks. >>> Rebecca O'Connor | Thursday, October 22, 2009
Monday, 19 October 2009
THE TELEGRAPH: City pockets are bulging with bonuses, says Boris Johnson. Have the banks no shame?
If you pressed a rifle into the hand of the man in the street and asked him to choose between two targets – an MP or a banker – who do you think would get the bullet? Tricky, eh? It is hard to know which of these two formerly respectable professions has fallen further in public esteem.
Some people might hesitate, like Buridan's ass, the rifle barrel weaving indecisively between two such luscious hate-objects. Most people would simply call for two bullets.
But then let me ask you a slightly different question. Which of the two species has managed to steer itself most effectively through the crisis? Which type of cockroach has scuttled through the nuclear blast of public disapproval? On the face of it, there is an obvious answer, and it is getting more blatant by the day.
Most of the MPs I know seem to be in a state of nervous collapse. Some of them are on suicide watch. Some of them face the task of sacking their wives and selling the house, or possibly the other way round. Some face penury. Never has Parliament been subjected to such protracted humiliation at the hands of the people.
Then look at the bankers, the bankers whose high-rolling risk-taking triggered the recession that has so exacerbated public rage at MPs. The bankers seem to be waltzing off with a song on their lips and their hands in their pockets – at least, their hands would be in their pockets if they were not stuffed with money. And when I say stuffed, I mean bulging, bursting, ballooning with the biggest bonuses you ever saw.
London estate agents say they cannot believe the wheelbarrows of dosh that are suddenly crashing through their doors. Savills says the number of buyers from the financial services sector has risen by 48 per cent in the third quarter of this year, purely in the expectation of yet another ginormous Christmas bonus.
A knuckle-cracking realtor in Knight Frank's Kensington office says he has never seen anything like it: email after email from the boys and girls at Goldman Sachs. "We did our first Goldman's deal in June," he tells the FT, "and we are now doing five times as many for its employees as for any other bank." >>> Boris Johnson | Monday, October 19, 2009
Thursday, 15 October 2009
TIMES ONLINE: Investment bankers are about to enjoy a record bonus season as confidence surges in the financial markets.
Just 12 months after the global economy was brought close to collapse by reckless lending — forcing banks to turn to taxpayers for help — stock markets in London and New York are enjoying one of the strongest bull runs in decades and investment banks are preparing to announce huge profits.
In Britain, job losses slowed in the three months to August. Unemployment rose by 88,000 to 2.47 million, the lowest rise since July last year, and youth unemployment fell slightly. China reported strong trade figures and oil hit a high for the year.
Goldman Sachs, which employs 5,500 people in London, is expected to report a sharp rise in third-quarter profits today. Analysts estimate that, barring a major setback, the average London worker at Goldman will receive about $748,000 (£467,000) in salary and bonuses — 13 per cent higher than 2007 and more than double the 2008 average. >>> Patrick Hosking and Christine Seib | Thursday, October 15, 2009
Tuesday, 6 October 2009
NZZ ONLINE: Für die Feinunze Gold wird derzeit ein Preis von exakt 1036.40 Dollar bezahlt. Dieser neue Höchstwert überbietet den bisherigen Rekordpreis um 5.60 Dollar aus vom März vergangenen Jahres.
Der Goldpreis ist auf einen neuen Rekordstand geklettert. Die Dollarschwäche trieb den Preis für eine Feinunze (etwa 31 Gramm) in der Spitze auf 1036.40 Dollar. Damit wurde die alte Rekordmarke vom März 2008 bei 1030.80 Dollar übertroffen. >>> sda/dpa | Dienstag, 06. Oktober 2009
THE INDEPENDENT: Gold price at record high as Independent story sends global markets into a frenzy
The price of gold is surging on world markets amid fears that the old economic order based on the supremacy of the US dollar could be breaking down.
A new spike has sent the cost of the precious metal to a level not seen before. The dollar slid sharply after yesterday's report in The Independent that Gulf Arab states are secretly planning to stop trading oil in dollars, and a senior UN official said that the US should be stripped of its position as the main source of currency reserves for other countries.
The developments come on top of speculation that the Obama administration is operating a policy of benign neglect of the dollar, engineering a devaluation that could help repair some of the economic damage caused by the recession.
Not since the collapse of the Bretton Woods system in 1971 has gold been treated as the equivalent of a world currency, but The Independent reported that it could form part of a basket of currencies that would be used for oil trading by the end of the next decade.
Aram Shishmanian, the chief executive of World Gold Council, said: "The financial and economic instability of the past 18 months has brought gold's historical role into sharp focus and has continued to increase its prominence among policy advisers, central banks, and investors around the world.
Across the world, investors have been reaching for gold as an alternative to the dollar and to other US assets, fearing that the American currency is headed inexorably lower.
The dollar index – which measures the greenback against other currencies – fell 0.7 per cent yesterday and the dollar was lower against all major currencies except the British pound. >>> Stephen Foley in New York | Wednesday, October 07, 2009
THE INDEPENDENT: Such large financial movements will have major political effects in the Middle East
The plan to de-dollarise the oil market, discussed both in public and in secret for at least two years and widely denied yesterday by the usual suspects – Saudi Arabia being, as expected, the first among them – reflects a growing resentment in the Middle East, Europe and in China at America's decades-long political as well as economic world dominance.
Nowhere has this more symbolic importance than in the Middle East, where the United Arab Emirates alone holds $900bn (£566bn) of dollar reserves and where Saudi Arabia has been quietly co-ordinating its defence, armaments and oil policies with the Russians since 2007.
This does not indicate a trade war with America – not yet – but Arab Gulf regimes have been growing increasingly restive at their economic as well as political dependence on Washington for many years. Of the $7.2 trillion in international reserves, $2.1trn is held by Arab countries – China holds about $2.3trn – and the nations interested in moving away from dollar-trading in oil are believed to hold over 80 per cent of international dollar reserves.
Saudi Arabia's denials of any such ambitions were regarded by Arab bankers as a normal part of Gulf politics. The Saudis, of course, managed to deny that Iraq had invaded Kuwait in 1990 – even when Saddam Hussein's legions stood along the Saudi frontier, until the US broadcast the news of Iraq's aggression to the world. >>> Robert Fisk | Wednesday, October 07, 2009
Monday, 5 October 2009
TAGES ANZEIGER: Der Optimismus an den Börsen ist vorbei, die Bären geben die Stimmung an. Leider haben die Pessimisten gute Argumente.
Der Zustand der Weltwirtschaft ist zu vergleichen mit einem Patienten, der einen schweren Herzinfarkt erlitten hat. Sein Zustand ist jetzt wieder mehr oder weniger stabil, doch er ist noch längst nicht der alte. Dasselbe gilt für die Weltwirtschaft. Eine Finanzkrise schüttelt man nicht ab wie eine harmlose Grippe, sie hinterlässt Spuren. So hat der Internationale Währungsfond (IWF) in seinem jüngsten Bericht dem World Economic Outlook, 88 Finanzkrisen der letzten 40 Jahre untersucht. Das Resultat ist wenig ermutigend: In den meisten Fällen war der Output der betroffenen Wirtschaften auch nach sieben Jahren noch gegen zehn Prozent unter dem Niveau bevor die Krise ausgebrochen war.
Langsam werden die Schäden der Krise sichtbar. Sie sind gewaltig. Die OECD, ein volkswirtschaftlicher Thinktank, schätzt, dass in den 30 reichsten Ländern gegen 25 Millionen Arbeitsplätze vernichtet worden sind. Viele der betroffenen Arbeitnehmer haben wenig Chancen ihren Job wieder zu erhalten. Das wird die Nachfrage über längere Zeit schwächen. Drittens >>> Von Philipp Löpfe | Montag, 05. Oktober 2009
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: DUBAI -- Global issuance of sukuk, or Islamic bonds, rallied during the third quarter with the value of sukuk issued rising 82% in the latest sign that confidence is returning to capital markets.
Data from Zawya.com's Sukuk Monitor shows the value of Islamic bonds issued world-wide for the third quarter rose to $6.2 billion, from $3.4 billion for the same quarter of 2008.
Investors are putting more faith in the sukuk market, seen as a more stable platform to raise capital, as the financial crisis eases and global market conditions improve rapidly, bankers say.
Sentiment over the $3.5 billion sukuk due in December by Nakheel, a real-estate unit of government-owned Dubai World, has improved in recent weeks after Sheik Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai's ruler and prime minister of the United Arab Emirates, said the emirate can meet debt obligations, estimated at as much as $80 billion.
Both conventional and Islamic deals were successfully placed, as investors became more comfortable with the economic environment.
Total global sukuk issuance stood at $13.5 billion at the end of September, data from Zawya's Sukuk Monitor shows. That is close to the total global market for primary Islamic bonds in 2008, which raised $15.2 billion, according to Zawya.com.
Mukhtar Hussain, global chief executive officer of HSBC Amanah told Zawya Dow Jones in a recent interview that the volume of Islamic bonds issued globally this year could hit $15 billion as the financial crisis eases and global market conditions improve rapidly. >>> Mirna Sleiman | Monday, October 05, 2009
Sunday, 4 October 2009
MAIL ONLINE: Labour last night faced humiliation with the prospect of Britain missing out on a place in a new elite club of economic superpowers.
Reports in the United States claim President Barack Obama is keen to establish a top table of global economies which would leave Britain on the sidelines.
The proposal will put further pressure on Chancellor Alistair Darling and Prime Minister Gordon Brown as Britain also faces dismissal from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
The so-called Group of Four (G4) would comprise the biggest global economies: America, Japan, China and the Eurozone countries.
It would have enormous clout over international economic affairs, an arena in which Britain has for many years punched above its weight.
Ironically, if the G4 were made up entirely of individual countries and not the Eurozone, the UK would gain admittance as its national economy is in fourth place internationally.
The proposal has yet to be finalised but international financial sources last night dismissed Britain’s hopes that the Eurozone place at the table could be broadened to comprise the whole European Union.
A key qualification for membership is the ability to deliver on monetary commitment and currency pledges. The Eurozone shares a currency but the EU does not.
Conservative MP Graham Brady, a member of the Treasury Select Committee, said: ‘This is especially embarrassing for a Prime Minister who presided over Britain’s economy since 1997 and used to pride himself on his economic mastery.’
The snub would mean the loss of Britain’s independent voice in high-level economic diplomacy for the first time since the economic summits of the mid- Seventies, held in the wake of the 1973 oil crisis. >>> Dan Atkinson, Mail On Sunday Economics Editor | Saturday, October 03, 2009
Thursday, 1 October 2009
LE TEMPS: Bill Gates reste l’homme le plus riche des Etats-Unis, selon le classement du magazine Forbes publié jeudi. Sa fortune est estimée à 50 milliards de dollars. Il devance l’investisseur Warren Buffett.
Les Américains les plus riches sont un peu plus pauvres en 2009. Même la fortune de Bill Gates, toujours en tête du peloton, a fondu de 7 milliards de dollars, selon le classement des 400 Américains les plus fortunés publié mercredi par Forbes . Le fondateur de Microsoft dispose d’une fortune estimée à 50 milliards de dollars.
Au total, la richesse de ces 400 personnes s’élève en 2009 à 1270 milliards de dollars contre 1.570 milliards en 2008. Trois-cent milliards de dollars sont partis en fumée dans les douze derniers mois. Les dix premiers du classement ont perdu collectivement 39,2 milliards, précise le magazine Forbes dans un communiqué.
Les bourses chancelantes, la chute de l’immobilier, les escroqueries et les divorces sont à l’origine de l’appauvrissement de 314 milliardaires. Ces facteurs en ont fait disparaître 32 de la liste. Parmi ces derniers, on note l’ancien financier Allen Stanford, en prison pour escroquerie, et un vice-président du géant d’internet Google, Omid Kordestani, exclu du classement après un divorce onéreux. Numéro deux sur la liste, l’homme d’affaires et investisseur Warren Buffett …>>> ATS/AFP | Jeudi 01 Octobre 2009