Tag Archives: BANKS

UK watchdog to clamp down on insurance loyalty penalties

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LONDON, Feb 18 (Reuters) – Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority said on Tuesday it was finalising “remedies” to stop home and car insurance companies penalising loyal customers.

The watchdog said the “loyalty penalty” cost longstanding customers an extra 1.2 billion pounds ($1.56 billion) in 2018.

More than four in five adults in Britain have one or more insurance products, and consumers who stay with their existing insurer at renewal almost always pay higher premiums than those who switch or negotiate, the FCA said in Sector Views, its annual review of key concerns for the year ahead.

The FCA also said high-risk retail investment products were exposing consumers to more risk than they can absorb, the FCA said.

“Some of the highest-risk products are often marketed directly to retail consumers with poor communication of the risks involved and implications that the investments are regulated, when this is not the case,” it added.

Many new payments firms had been able to enter the market and grow quickly, and some of their products had offered no protection for consumers.

Sector Views are used by the FCA to shape its business plan for the coming financial year and determine whether to open new market investigations and use its powers to intervene.

$1 = 0.7696 pounds
Reporting by Huw Jones; editing by John Stonestreet

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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US shares fall; S&P 500 ends with 2nd straight weekly loss

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Wall Road capped a uneven week with a second straight weekly loss for the S&P 500 Friday as worries a couple of potential escalation within the commerce warfare between the U.S. and China erased early positive aspects.

Know-how firms led the broad slide as traders weighed a report saying the Trump administration is contemplating methods to restrict U.S. investments in China. Bloomberg cited unnamed folks acquainted with the administration’s inside discussions.

Uncertainty over the long-running commerce warfare has fueled volatility out there and stoked worries that the impression of tariffs and different ways employed by the nations in opposition to one another is hampering U.S. financial and company revenue progress.

The likelihood that the U.S. is weighing one other method of making use of strain on China dampened traders’ already cautious optimism that the world’s two largest economies may make progress as their representatives resume negotiations subsequent month.

“Right here we’re, simply two weeks out, and now we’re doing issues to kind of ruffle feathers once more,” mentioned Randy Frederick, vp of buying and selling & derivatives at Charles Schwab. “That sort of spooked the market.”

The S&P 500 index fell 15.83 factors, or 0.5%, to 2,961.79. The benchmark index completed the week with a 1% loss. Even so, it stays 2.1% beneath its all-time excessive set in July.

The Dow Jones Industrial Common dropped 70.87 factors, or 0.3%, to 26,820.25. The Nasdaq, which is closely weighted with expertise shares, misplaced 91.03 factors, or 1.1%, to 7,939.63.

Buyers additionally shifted cash out of smaller firm shares, which pulled the Russell 2000 index down 12.85 factors, or 0.8%, to 1,520.48.

Bond costs had been little modified. The yield on the 10-year Treasury word held at 1.68%.

The foremost U.S. inventory indexes had been holding on to modest positive aspects early Friday even after traders sized up blended financial information on shopper spending and sturdy items orders.

The Commerce Division mentioned that spending by U.S. shoppers rose simply 0.1% in August, the smallest achieve in six months, at the same time as incomes elevated at a strong tempo. A separate report confirmed orders to U.S. factories for big-ticket manufactured items rose barely in August, although a key sector that tracks enterprise funding plans declined.

The financial stories adopted information on Thursday indicating that the U.S. financial system grew at a modest 2% annual fee within the second quarter, a sharply slower tempo than earlier the 12 months.

The market principally moved sideways as traders digested the financial information, however it gave up these modest positive aspects by noon as merchants discovered the U.S. is contemplating limiting U.S. investments in China.

Wall Road has been very delicate to the ups and downs within the commerce dispute. Shares rose Wednesday after President Donald Trump advised reporters that China desires “to make a deal very badly,” including that “it may occur ahead of you assume.”

That optimism light from the markets Friday as traders thought of the implications of the U.S. weighing extra powerful measures solely a few weeks away from new commerce talks.

“We go proper again to the identical previous negotiating ways,” Frederick mentioned. “It is negotiating with a stick, somewhat than a carrot.”

Negotiators are resulting from meet subsequent month in Washington for a 13th spherical of talks geared toward ending the dispute over commerce and expertise that threatens to tip the worldwide financial system into recession.

Each side have taken conciliatory steps this month forward of the commerce talks, strikes that stoked optimism amongst traders. Chinese language importers have set offers to purchase American soybeans and pork. And the Trump administration postponed a deliberate Oct. 1 tariff hike on Chinese language imports to Oct. 15.

Know-how shares, that are significantly delicate to swings within the commerce battle, accounted for a lot of the promoting Friday. Microsoft slid 1.3% and Adobe dropped 2.2%. Micron Know-how led the sector’s slide after the chipmaker issued a weak revenue forecast and a gross sales warning, citing the commerce warfare. The inventory slumped 11.1%, the largest decliner within the S&P 500.

Communications shares additionally took heavy losses. Twitter misplaced 2.6% and Activision Blizzard fell 3.5%.

The market has been in a hunch all week as traders pull again amid commerce warfare worries, stories of sluggish financial progress and an impeachment inquiry into President Trump.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq bore the brunt of the promoting. It completed the week with a 2.2% loss. Smaller firm shares had a very tough week. The Russell 2000 ended the week down 2.5%.

For some shares, this week has been their worst of the 12 months. Fb is off 6.8% for the week after media stories suggesting the Division of Justice is contemplating opening an antitrust investigation into the social media firm.

Monetary shares bucked the broader market slide Friday, with Wells Fargo main the way in which. The financial institution’s shares climbed 3.8% after it named its third CEO in as a few years. Charles Scharf, at the moment CEO of Financial institution of New York Mellon, will take over from C. Allen Parker. The corporate has been concerned in a sequence of scandals since 2016 with the uncovering of hundreds of thousands of pretend checking accounts its staff opened to satisfy gross sales quotas.

LATAM Airways surged 31.1% after Delta Air Traces invested $1.9 billion within the airline, which focuses on Latin American routes. The funding offers Delta a 20% stake within the firm.

Benchmark crude oil fell 50 cents to settle at $55.91 a barrel. Brent crude oil, the worldwide customary, dropped 83 cents to shut at $61.91 a barrel. Wholesale gasoline fell 1 penny to $1.65 per gallon. Heating oil declined 2 cents to $1.94 per gallon. Pure fuel fell 1 cent to $2.40 per 1,000 cubic ft.

Gold fell $8.80 to $1,499.10 per ounce, silver fell 26 cents to $17.55 per ounce and copper rose 2 cents to $2.58 per pound.

The greenback was unchanged at 107.81 Japanese yen from Thursday. The euro strengthened to $1.0941 from $1.0928.

Main inventory indexes in Europe completed broadly greater.

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AP Enterprise Author Damian J. Troise contributed.

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S&P 500 finishes flat; smaller company stocks notch gains

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Major U.S. stock indexes ended mixed Monday as large companies gave up early gains and smaller companies closed broadly higher.

The S&P 500 ended virtually flat as losses in technology and health care stocks outweighed gains in financials and other sectors. The Russell 2000 index of smaller company stocks, which has lagged the S&P 500 this year, outpaced the rest of the market.

Investors are taking a shine to smaller-company stocks in hopes that they’ll be better shielded from the fallout of the costly trade war between the U.S. and China than large multinationals.

“If you’re making your product or service in the U.S. and selling it to U.S. customers, you’re somewhat more insulated from the global trade volatility and the slower growth that’s spawning from that globally, too,” said Ben Phillips, chief investment officer at EventShares.

The S&P 500 inched 0.28 points lower, or less than 0.1%, to 2,978.43. The index, which has finished higher the past two weeks, is within 1.6% of its all-time high set in late July.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 38.05 points, or 0.1%, to 26,835.51. The Nasdaq fell 15.64 points, or 0.2%, to 8,087.44. The Russell 2000 climbed 19.06 points, or 1.3%, to 1,524.23.

The broader market has bounced back the past two weeks following a bout of volatility brought on by the trade war as Washington and Beijing imposed new tariffs on more of each other’s imported goods. Investors worry the escalation of tariffs may be dampening global economic growth and threatening to nudge the United States into a recession.

Traders are hoping for a deal between the world’s two largest economies and were encouraged last week by news that talks will resume in October.

A mixed bag of economic data has also kept Wall Street focused on central banks and whether they will continue taking measures to shore up economic growth. On Friday, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said the central bank doesn’t expect a recession and will take necessary actions to maintain growth.

Economists expect the Fed to cut interest rates when it meets next week. Separately, the European Central Bank is expected to unveil new monetary stimulus measures on Thursday to help shore up the region’s economy.

U.S. stock indexes appeared set to extend their gains from last week in early trading Monday, led by gains in banks and communications companies. But the momentum faded by midmorning and the major indexes veered between small gains and losses the rest of the day.

At the same time, the Russell 2000 continued to climb. It’s 13% gain year-to-date is still far behind the 18.8% increase in the S&P 500. That’s one reason why the smaller-company stocks are looking attractive right now.

“People are rotating out of the more expensive stuff, some of the things that are probably risky in a downturn, like tech, and going into some more traditional value,” Phillips said.

Among the winning small-cap stocks Monday were video-game retailer GameStop, which jumped 10.4%, and prison operator GEO Group, which rose 2.6%.

Payment processors helped weigh down technology sector stocks. Visa slid 2.3%, Mastercard fell 2.8% and PayPal lost 4.2%. Drugmakers led the slide in health care stocks. Merck fell 3.6% and Abbott Laboratories dropped 2.1%.

Rising bond yields gave banks a boost. Lenders rely on higher yields to set more lucrative interest rates on loans. JPMorgan Chase rose 2.5% and Bank of America gained 3.3%.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury rose to 1.64% from 1.55% late Friday in a sign that investors remain confident that the economy will continue growing. They also shifted money out of safe-play sectors like utilities and makers of consumer products.

Energy stocks climbed as the price of U.S. crude oil rose 2.4%. Oilfield services company Schlumberger jumped 5.9% and Halliburton gained 4.5%.

Benchmark crude oil rose $1.33 to settle at $57.85 a barrel. Brent crude oil, the international standard, gained $1.05 to close at $62.59 a barrel.

AT&T rose 1.5% after activist investment manager Elliott Management, which has a $3.2 billion stake in the telecom company, sent a letter to AT&T’s board, noting that its stock has badly lagged the broader market over the past 10 years and urged it to shed businesses and trim costs. AT&T said it will review the proposals.

Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae each soared 42.8% after an appeals court overturned a ruling that supported the government’s practice of collecting most of the profits generated by the mortgage finance giants.

Last week, the Trump administration unveiled a plan for ending government control of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The companies nearly collapsed in the financial crisis 11 years ago and were bailed out by the government.

In other commodities trading Monday, wholesale gasoline rose 1 cent to $1.58 per gallon. Heating oil climbed 3 cents to $1.93 per gallon. Natural gas rose 9 cents to $2.59 per 1,000 cubic feet.

Gold fell $4.00 to $1,502.20 per ounce, silver rose 5 cents to $18.02 per ounce and copper fell 1 cent to $2.61 per pound.

The dollar rose to 107.16 Japanese yen from 106.89 yen on Friday. The euro strengthened to $1.1052 from $1.1028.

Major stock indexes in Europe also ended mixed Monday as economic growth concerns and Britain’s potentially chaotic exit from the European Union weigh on investors. Stocks in Asia finished broadly higher.

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AP Business Writer Damian J. Troise contributed.

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HSBC says CEO John Flint to step down

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HSBC on Monday introduced the shock departure of its Chief Govt Officer John Flint, 51, saying the financial institution wanted a change on the high to handle “a difficult international atmosphere.”

The change comes practically one-and-a-half years after Flint took the helm and was introduced together with its outcomes, initially scheduled for in a while Monday, which confirmed first-half pretax revenue rose 15.9%.

The lender additionally declared an extra buyback of $1 billion, defying some analysts’ expectations it’d pause its technique of returning additional capital to buyers.

“The board believes a change is required to satisfy the challenges that we face and to seize the very vital alternatives earlier than us,” Chairman Mark Tucker mentioned.

Noel Quinn, 57, the top of its World Industrial Banking unit will maintain the function of interim CEO, the lender mentioned in an announcement.

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Kuwait Bank Taps Ripple For Online Banking

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The National Bank of Kuwait (NBK) has announced that it will incorporate RippleNet blockchain into its online banking platform, offering 24-hour wire transfers to Jordan, with more countries being added soon.

NBK Direct Remit allows for instantaneous money transfers around the clock. It will cost customers KD 1 ($3.29 USD) per transaction when transferring to NBK Jordan, and KD 5 when transferring to other banks in the country. Transfers to NBK Jordan accounts will receive instant credit, while funds sent to other banks will go through Automated Clearing House (ACH).

This is just the latest partnership for Ripple, which now services more than 100 financial institutions (FIs).

“We are pleased to announce that Bexs Banco, AirWallex, Credit Agricole, Cuallix, Currencies Direct, dLocal, IFX, Krungsri, RAKBANK and TransferGo, among others, have joined RippleNet,” the company said in a statement earlier this year. “The newest members can count themselves among SBI Remit, SEB and Siam Commercial, [which] also use RippleNet to send cross-border payments.”

Earlier this month, Ripple partnered with UAE Exchange, the United Arab Emirates-based company, to offer cross-border remittances to Asia using blockchain technology.

“Blockchain holds tremendous promise for the industry, but there is progress to be made before we see it go fully mainstream,” said UAE Exchange CEO Promoth Manghat. “We expect to go live with Ripple by Q1 2019 with one or two Asian banks. This is for remittances to start with, from across the globe into Asia.”

Also in December, it was revealed that Ripple has teamed up with NEM, Fetch.AI, and EMURGO/Cardano to create Blockchain for Europe, which is focused on promoting the understanding of the technology, and the “true nature” and potential of blockchain.

“Ripple is delighted to be a founding member of Blockchain for Europe,” said Ripple Head of Regulatory Relations Dan Morgan. “This is a critical time for policymakers in Europe, as they seek to develop the right regulatory framework to capture the benefits of both digital assets and blockchain technology.”

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Zeitgeist: The Movie (2010)



Zeitgeist: The Movie is a 2007 documentary film by Peter Joseph. This movie was first presented as a public performance and was later published online, along with a website: This version includes…

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ZEITGEIST 2: ADDENDUM (FULL MOVIE!) – PLEASE SHARE



The followup to the original film by: Peter Joseph w/ focus on money, corruption, scandals & Jacque Fresco / The Venus Project. Zeitgeist 3: Moving Forward is available on my page as of Jan…

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