'Dump Trump': Tens of thousands join global march

'Dump Trump': Tens of thousands join global march
Demonstrators arrive on the National Mall in Washington, DC, for the 'Women's March on Washington' on January 21, 2017 (AFP Photo/Andrew CABALLERO-REYNOLDS)

March for Science protesters hit the streets worldwide

March for Science protesters hit the streets worldwide
Thousands of people in Australia and New Zealand on Saturday kicked off the March for Science, the first of more than 500 marches around the globe in support of scienceThousands of people in Australia and New Zealand on Saturday kicked off the March for Science, the first of more than 500 marches around the globe in support of science

Bernie Sanders and the Movement Where the People Found Their Voice

"A Summary" – Apr 2, 2011 (Kryon channelled by Lee Carroll) (Subjects: Religion, Shift of Human Consciousness, 2012, Intelligent/Benevolent Design, EU, South America, 5 Currencies, Water Cycle (Heat up, Mini Ice Ace, Oceans, Fish, Earthquakes ..), Middle East, Internet, Israel, Dictators, Palestine, US, Japan (Quake/Tsunami Disasters , People, Society ...), Nuclear Power Revealed, Hydro Power, Geothermal Power, Moon, Financial Institutes (Recession, Realign integrity values ..) , China, North Korea, Global Unity,..... etc.) -

“ … Here is another one. A change in what Human nature will allow for government. "Careful, Kryon, don't talk about politics. You'll get in trouble." I won't get in trouble. I'm going to tell you to watch for leadership that cares about you. "You mean politics is going to change?" It already has. It's beginning. Watch for it. You're going to see a total phase-out of old energy dictatorships eventually. The potential is that you're going to see that before 2013.

They're going to fall over, you know, because the energy of the population will not sustain an old energy leader ..."
"Update on Current Events" – Jul 23, 2011 (Kryon channelled by Lee Carroll) - (Subjects: The Humanization of God, Gaia, Shift of Human Consciousness, 2012, Benevolent Design, Financial Institutes (Recession, System to Change ...), Water Cycle (Heat up, Mini Ice Ace, Oceans, Fish, Earthquakes ..), Nuclear Power Revealed, Geothermal Power, Hydro Power, Drinking Water from Seawater, No need for Oil as Much, Middle East in Peace, Persia/Iran Uprising, Muhammad, Israel, DNA, Two Dictators to fall soon, Africa, China, (Old) Souls, Species to go, Whales to Humans, Global Unity,..... etc.)
(Subjects: Who/What is Kryon ?, Egypt Uprising, Iran/Persia Uprising, Peace in Middle East without Israel actively involved, Muhammad, "Conceptual" Youth Revolution, "Conceptual" Managed Business, Internet, Social Media, News Media, Google, Bankers, Global Unity,..... etc.)


.
A student holds a sign reading "Don't shoot, listen!!!" during a protest
on June 17, 2013 in Brasilia (AFP, Evaristo)

FIFA scandal engulfs Blatter and Platini

FIFA scandal engulfs Blatter and Platini
FIFA President Sepp Blatter (L) shakes hands with UEFA president Michel Platini after being re-elected following a vote in Zurich on May 29, 2015 (AFP Photo/Michael Buholzer)
"The Recalibration of Awareness – Apr 20/21, 2012 (Kryon channeled by Lee Carroll) (Subjects: Old Energy, Recalibration Lectures, God / Creator, Religions/Spiritual systems (Catholic Church, Priests/Nun’s, Worship, John Paul Pope, Women in the Church otherwise church will go, Current Pope won’t do it), Middle East, Jews, Governments will change (Internet, Media, Democracies, Dictators, North Korea, Nations voted at once), Integrity (Businesses, Tobacco Companies, Bankers/ Financial Institutes, Pharmaceutical company to collapse), Illuminati (Started in Greece, with Shipping, Financial markets, Stock markets, Pharmaceutical money (fund to build Africa, to develop)), Shift of Human Consciousness, (Old) Souls, Women, Masters to/already come back, Global Unity.... etc.) - (Text version)

… The Shift in Human Nature

You're starting to see integrity change. Awareness recalibrates integrity, and the Human Being who would sit there and take advantage of another Human Being in an old energy would never do it in a new energy. The reason? It will become intuitive, so this is a shift in Human Nature as well, for in the past you have assumed that people take advantage of people first and integrity comes later. That's just ordinary Human nature.

In the past, Human nature expressed within governments worked like this: If you were stronger than the other one, you simply conquered them. If you were strong, it was an invitation to conquer. If you were weak, it was an invitation to be conquered. No one even thought about it. It was the way of things. The bigger you could have your armies, the better they would do when you sent them out to conquer. That's not how you think today. Did you notice?

Any country that thinks this way today will not survive, for humanity has discovered that the world goes far better by putting things together instead of tearing them apart. The new energy puts the weak and strong together in ways that make sense and that have integrity. Take a look at what happened to some of the businesses in this great land (USA). Up to 30 years ago, when you started realizing some of them didn't have integrity, you eliminated them. What happened to the tobacco companies when you realized they were knowingly addicting your children? Today, they still sell their products to less-aware countries, but that will also change.

What did you do a few years ago when you realized that your bankers were actually selling you homes that they knew you couldn't pay for later? They were walking away, smiling greedily, not thinking about the heartbreak that was to follow when a life's dream would be lost. Dear American, you are in a recession. However, this is like when you prune a tree and cut back the branches. When the tree grows back, you've got control and the branches will grow bigger and stronger than they were before, without the greed factor. Then, if you don't like the way it grows back, you'll prune it again! I tell you this because awareness is now in control of big money. It's right before your eyes, what you're doing. But fear often rules. …

Wall Street's 'Fearless Girl' statue to stay until 2018

Wall Street's 'Fearless Girl' statue to stay until 2018
The " Fearless Girl " statue on Wall Street is seen by many as a defiant symbol of women's rights under the new administration of President Donald Trump (AFP Photo/ TIMOTHY A. CLARY)



“… The Fall of Many - Seen It Yet?

You are going to see more and more personal secrets being revealed about persons in high places of popularity or government. It will seem like an epidemic of non-integrity! But what is happening is exactly what we have been teaching. The new energy has light that will expose the darkness of things that are not commensurate with integrity. They have always been there, and they were kept from being seen by many who keep secrets in the dark. Seen the change yet?

In order to get to a more stable future, you will have to go through gyrations of dark and light. What this means is that the dark is going to be revealed and push back at you. It will eventually lose. We told you this. That's what you're here for is to help those around you who don't see an escape from the past. They didn't get their nuclear war, but everything else is going into the dumper anyway. … “

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Saturday, May 31, 2014

PwC partners under fire for private property investment club

DutchNews.nl, Saturday 31 May 2014

(NOS)
Eleven partners at the Dutch arm of accountancy group PwC have set up a property investment partnership to the tune of €4.5m, the Telegraaf reported on Saturday.

PwC has confirmed the report but says ‘partnerships within partnerships’ are undesirable and that it will pressure partners, including two members of the management board, to sell their interests next week, the Telegraaf said.

The company will then ban internal investment clubs although individuals will still be able to invest in property.

The Hague

In total, 11 PwC partners were involved in buying a block of flats and other residential property in The Hague for €4.5m.

The managers say they will use the income from their investment to build up a pension because investing in shares is ‘virtually impossible’. Investing in shares leads to a conflict of interest and so partners opt for long-term, stable investments, a PwC spokesman told news agency ANP.

Earlier this year, the chairman of PwC competitor KPMG resigned, partly because he was the driving force behind a private investment club.

Related Article:


Sunday, May 25, 2014

When Propaganda Fails, Humanity Awakens…The Fall of Mainstream Media

The Dollar Vigilante, Jeff Berwick, May 18, 2014


It doesn't happen often, but The New York Times (NYT) has truthfully reported on something recently.

On what did it report? Well, on itself, and how alarmed it is due to its own increasing irrelevance in the face of new sources of information.

NYT is well-aware of the "New Media," as a 96-page internal report, sent to top executives last month, makes clear. Obtained by Buzzfeed, the report "paints a dark picture of a newsroom struggling more dramatically than is immediately visible to adjust to the digital world, a newsroom that is hampered primarily by its own storied culture."

The report ignores its traditional mainstream (MSM) competitors and takes a closer look at new digital companies like First Look Media, Vox, Huffington Post, Business Insider and Buzzfeed.

“They are ahead of us in building impressive support systems for digital journalists, and that gap will grow unless we quickly improve our capabilities,” the report states. “Meanwhile, our journalism advantage is shrinking as more of these upstarts expand their newsrooms.”

“We are not moving with enough urgency,” it says.

A central issue for NYT is “a cadre of editors who remain unfamiliar with the web.”

“Many desks lack editors who even know how to evaluate digital work,” the report continues.

A few suggestions NYT is looking into is a TED talks-style event series and an expanded op-ed platform, including location-based local news and information.

But it is too late...

STATING THE OBVIOUS

At the very least, thank you, NYT, for stating the truth even though it was an internal document not meant for the public.. And, even if it was already painfully obvious. Still it took bravery for such a dinosaur to admit its own obsolescence. 

The paper's model is obsolete, but even worse than the model has been the paper's lack of interest in the truth. As the US empire has grown more out of control, more dangerous, and more insane, the NYT has functioned as a fourth branch of government, a gatekeeper for a totalitarian world a la 1984 or Brave New World. But the gig is up. The world knows NYT's complicity in erecting a sick and deranged world, and unless the paper breaks major news stories and outs itself as an undeniable friend of freedom, it will continue to lose revenue. No more can NYT expect to serve the elite and its bottom line at the same time.  In the age of the internet, what David Rockefeller was once grateful for is no longer possible:

"We are grateful to the Washington Post, the New York Times, Time Magazine and other great publications whose directors have attended our meetings and respected their promises of discretion for almost forty years...It would have been impossible for us to develop our plan for the world if we had been subjected to the lights of publicity during those years. But, the world is more sophisticated and prepared to march towards a world government. The supranational sovereignty of an intellectual elite and world bankers is surely preferable to the national autodetermination practiced in past centuries."

Mainstream media is definitely dying, and this is a VERY good thing. The root of the word government combine as "to control minds."  The root of the word "govern" is control and the root of "ment" is mind.  Without control over minds via the media, the government will lose all control. More young people now get their news from the internet than television. In mere years most everybody will get their news from the internet because nobody will trust the mainstream:

 

This data shows that it is really only those over 65 years old who are still completely brainwashed.  Not all, of course.  But many or most.  The good news is they will be dying soon along with their interest in voting.

Newsweek (which I call Newspeak) has released its last print issue. You'll remember one of Newsweek's last attempts to be relevant again was uncovering the wrong Satoshi Nakamoto as the creator of bitcoin. They found some guy with the right name in the phone book...You know, "quality journalism"...

Clearly the only valuable part of MSM media sites is in the comments section which debunks 90% of the articles published. Popular Science was so overwhelmed by people bringing facts into many of their articles that the site shut off its comments section.

CNN's viewership is at a record-low (the network recently laid off 40 journalists), while CNBC has suffered a viewership collapse as well... and this with the Dow at all time inflated highs.  Imagine if the stock market were going down how low these numbers would be. 


But once Larry King said that CNN would be better off showing re-runs of Spongebob Squarepants 24 hours a day, you knew it was over...


Larry King left CNN because he knew it would collapse. He left CNN for the Russian government propaganda channel, RT, because it is more respected and features more truth about the West. Twenty years ago, this would be have been unheard of for Larry King! A career-ender! Not today...Nope. Today it is a respect-earner. Oh, how things have changed...

THE NEW MEDIA TAKEOVER

The New Media has taken over. Alex Jones is almost a household name and groups like Luke Rudkowski's We Are Change have revolutionized how people get information. (Editor's Note: We Are Change offers "Change Media University" to learn how to become a real investigative journalist that we highly recommend.  Forget traditional school).For years now the most popular MSM personalities, like Glenn Beck, have followed the playbook of new media personalities in a bid to remain relevant. Now, in order to remain relevant people like Glenn Beck need to quote or interview people in the "alternative media".


It was not all that long ago that John Kerry and Zbigniew Brzezinski said that the internet, simply put, is making it hard for them to govern. Secretary of Statism, John Kerry, before a group of State Department workers told the audience that the world has been "complicated" by "... this little thing called the internet and the ability of people everywhere to communicate instantaneously and to have more information coming at them in one day than most people can process in months or a year."

According to Kerry, the internet "makes it much harder to govern, makes it much harder to organize people, much harder to find the common interest."

Z-Big echoed his sentiment, saying that public access to information stopped war with Syria.

Bill Clinton, laughingly even suggested the need for a "Ministry of Truth" over the internet, run by the US federal government, that would censor anything it did not deem to be "truth".

In 5-10 years people will look at you funny if you tell them you watch mainstream media. Why? Because there is no real information nor substance on mainstream media. If you want to know what's happening in your world, and what's important, then stay tuned to The Dollar Vigilante Blog and The Dollar Vigilante Newsletter where we break down The End Of The Monetary System As We Know It (TEOTMSAWKI) in a manner upon which you can act. More than editorials, the TDV team is determined to augment our reader's lives beyond the capacity of the dinosaur mainstream media.

Anarcho-Capitalist.  Libertarian.  Freedom fighter against mankind’s two biggest enemies, the State and the Central Banks.  Jeff Berwick is the founder of The Dollar Vigilante, CEO of TDV Media & Services and host of the popular video podcast, Anarchast.  Jeff is a prominent speaker at many of the world’s freedom, investment and gold conferences as well as regularly in the media including CNBC, CNN and Fox Business.

Related Articles:


"Recalibration of Free Choice"–  Mar 3, 2012 (Kryon Channelling by Lee Caroll) - (Subjects: (Old) SoulsMidpoint on 21-12-2012, Shift of Human Consciousness, Black & White vs. Color, 1 - Spirituality (Religions) shifting, Loose a Pope “soon”, 2 - Humans will change react to drama, 3 - Civilizations/Population on Earth,  4 - Alternate energy sources (Geothermal, Tidal (Paddle wheels), Wind), 5 – Financials Institutes/concepts will change (Integrity – Ethical) , 6 - News/Media/TV to change, 7 – Big Pharmaceutical company will collapse “soon”, (Keep people sick), (Integrity – Ethical)  8 – Wars will be over on Earth, Global Unity, … etc.) (Text version)

“…6 - The News

Number six. I'll be brief. Watch for your news to change. It has to. When the media realizes that Human Beings are changing their watching habits, they're going to start changing what they produce for you to watch. Eventually, there's going to be something called "The Good News Channel," and it will be very attractive indeed. For it will be real and offset the drama of what is today's attraction. This is what families at night, sitting around the table, will wish to watch. They'll have something where the whole picture of a situation is shown and not just the dramatic parts. You will hear about what's happening on the planet that no one is telling you now, and when that occurs [we have no clock, dear one], it's going to compete strongly with the drama. I keep telling you this. Human nature itself is starting to be in color instead of black and white. Watch for it. And that was number six ….”


"The Recalibration of Awareness – Apr 20/21, 2012 (Kryon channeled by Lee Carroll) (Subjects: Old Energy, Recalibration LecturesGod / Creator, Religions/Spiritual systems  (Catholic Church, Priests/Nun’s, Worship, John Paul Pope, Women in the Church otherwise church will go, Current Pope won’t do it),  Middle East, Jews, Governments will change (Internet, Media, Democracies, Dictators, North Korea, Nations voted at once), Integrity (Businesses, Tobacco Companies, Bankers/ Financial Institutes, Pharmaceutical company to collapse),  Illuminati (Started in Greece, with Shipping, Financial markets, Stock markets, Pharmaceutical money (fund to build Africa, to develop)), Shift of Human Consciousness, (Old) Souls, Women, Masters to/already come back, Global Unity.... etc.) (Text version)

“…  Government

Let us speak of government. We're not speaking of your government, but of any government - the way it works, how it survives, how it has survived, the way it campaigns, and how it elects leaders. It's going to change.

Years ago, I told you, "When everybody can talk to everybody, there can be no secrets." Up to this point on this planet, government has counted on one thing - that the people can't easily talk to each other on a global scale. They have to get their information through government or official channels. Even mass media isn't always free enough, for it reports that which the government reports. Even a free society tends to bias itself according to the bias of the times. However, when you can have Human Beings talking to each other all at once, all over the planet without government control, it all changes, for there is open revelation of truth.

Democracy itself will change and you're going to see it soon. The hold-outs, the few countries I have mentioned in the past, are doomed unless they recalibrate. They're doomed to be the same as they have been and won't be able to exist as they are now with everyone changing around them.

I mentioned North Korea in the past. Give it time. Right now, the young man is under the control of his father's advisors. But when they're gone, you will see something different, should he survive. Don't judge him yet, for he is being controlled.

In government, if you're entire voting base has the ability to talk to itself without restriction and comes up with opinions by itself without restriction, it behooves a politician to be aware and listen to them. This will change what politicians will do. It will change the way things work in government. Don't be surprised when some day a whole nation can vote all at once in a very unusual way. Gone will be the old systems where you used to count on horseback riders to report in from faraway places. Some of you know what I am talking about. Government will change. The systems around you, both dark and light, will change. You're going to start seeing something else, too, so let's change the subject and turn the page. ”

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Ex-JPMorgan CEO Fang Fang said to have cut deal with prosecutors

Want China Times, Staff Reporter 2014-05-24

JPMorgan Chase's office in Hong Kong. (Photo/CFP)

Former JPMorgan Chase China CEO Fang Fang has reportedly cut a deal with prosecutors and revealed how the investment bank hired the offspring of senior officials in return for favors, reports Shanghai's China Business News.

Fang is said to have decided to cooperate after Hong Kong's Independent Commission Against Corruption pressed charges against him. His move has allegedly prompted many at the bank to hire independent lawyers for their own protection.

The commission and the bank both refused to comment on the development; the commission declined to provide details on when Fang was arrested, on what charge and whether Fang has become an informant. A source familiar with the commission said it can only detain suspects for 48 hours and will only reveal information about cases if it has made a breakthrough.

The bank and seven other international investment banks — Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, Citigroup, UBS, Credit Suisse, Merrill Lynch and Deutsche Bank — have been investigated by the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

Fang retired suddenly on March 24 this year when rumors of an investigation began to spread. Two days after his resignation, a dozen of the commission's officials accompanied him to his office at JPMorgan Chase and took his computer records and documents, China Business News said.

Fang has become a key figure in the US probe into whether the investment bank and its staff violated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act in the country. He was reportedly arrested by the commission on suspicion of hiring the offspring of senior Chinese officials. Fang was later released on bail and barred from leaving the country.

Fang has not kept a low profile during the investigation and has continued to take part in the activities of Hua Jing Society, the society club he chairs, such as giving a speech at the University of Hong Kong about his experience in investment banking, and visiting a military camp with students.

People close to the former CEO said Fang has mentioned in emails hiring Tang Xiaoning, son of the chairman of the state-owned China Everbright Group, but stressed that the appointment was in line with corporate policy and passed strict reviews of the company's HR and legal departments. The sources also said similar appointments took place from 2002 but no one realized that they might violate regulations or even criminal laws.

Between Tang's term in JPMorgan Chase between August 2010 and March 2012, Everbright International, China Everbright Limited and China Everbright Bank did business with the investment bank. China Everbright Limited raised HK$2.38 billion (US$306 million) through the bank and China International Capital Corporation Limited (CICC)'s Hong Kong branch in August 2012. However, a person familiar with the deal said JPMorgan Chase only received 20% of the commission and the remainder was taken by the Chinese company.

A source familiar with the financial sector said internal documents and emails would provide the key evidence determining whether Tang's appopintment can be linked to illegal profits.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Dutch pension firms flex their muscles against giant US pay deals

DutchNews.nl, Thursday 22 May 2014

Dutch pension funds are becoming increasingly active on Wall Street and are opposing the gigantic remuneration packages given to the bosses of some companies they invest in, the Financieele Dagblad says on Thursday.

The paper makes the claim after questioning officials at pension fund managers APG, MN, PGGM and PNO Media which have invested tens of billions of dollars in US firms.

'We are opting for a more critical standpoint than many other investors,' PGGM, which runs the Dutch health service pension fund, told the Financieele Dagblad. 'And you can see that in our voting behaviour.'

No votes

Last year, PGGM voted against 60% of the bonus proposals placed before it, the FD says. APG has done so in more than 50% of cases, including the deal offered Oracle chief executive Larry Ellison.

PGGM and APG's main objection to the huge share options given to US company bosses is that they are not based on performance, but on length of service.

US companies such as Oracle pay little attention to such shareholder criticism, the FD says.

However, opposition is growing. David Shammai, responsible for remuneration issues at civil service pension giant APG, says that 'resistence has led to companies more often engaging in discussion with their shareholders'.

Faryda Lindeman of pension asset manager MN told the paper there is progress. 'The US public and executives have been made more aware of the objections of large investors,' she said.
Related Article:


Tuesday, May 20, 2014

US slaps Credit Suisse with $2.6 billion fine for aiding tax evaders

Deutsche Welle, 20 May 2014

One of Switzerland’s largest banks, Credit Suisse, has pled guilty to helping US citizens hide money. The banking institution must now pay a steep fine, but will still be able to operate in the US.


The US Department of Justice (DOJ) fined Credit Suisse $2.6 billion (1.598 Swiss francs, 1.9 billion euros) after it pled guilty to a felony charge of aiding tax evaders on Monday. The verdict was met with praise by US Attorney General Eric Holder, who said that banks should expect the DOJ to respond with full legal force "as has happened here."

"This case shows that no financial institution, no matter its size or global reach, is above the law," Holder said. "A company's profitability or market share can never and will never be used as a shield from prosecution or penalty."

The Swiss bank, the country's second largest institute, admitted to intentionally having helped roughly 22,000 US clients conceal their money abroad illegally. According to an investigation by a committee of the US Senate, between $10 billion and $12 billion had been hidden from the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

In a statement issued after the ruling, Credit Suisse said that its operations would continue to run normally.

"We deeply regret the past misconduct that led to this settlement," its CEO, Brady Dougan, added in the statement.

The fine levied on Credit Suisse includes payments to the IRS, the DOJ and the New York State Department of Financial Services, the US state where the Swiss bank is primarily licensed.

kms/crh (AP, AFP, Reuters, dpa)

Offshore Secrets

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-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

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Asian logging companies 'use British islands for tax dodging'
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Offshore tax-dodging piece shows anti-Chinese bias: report
Chinese oil giants make use of offshore shell companies in Caribbean
China's cash haven in the British Virgin islands – the key points
China's princelings storing riches in Caribbean offshore haven


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Gibraltar tries to lure London hedge fund bosses with promise of low taxes
Dutch savers have €1.1bn in Luxemburg and Austria: tax office
Dutch finance ministry denies Starbucks tax secrecy claims
100 of UK's richest people concealing billions in offshore tax havens
The 'who's who' of European tax havens
Accountancy firms 'use knowledge of Treasury to help rich avoid tax' – MPs
The nation at the heart of the offshore scandal: Britain
Leaks reveal secrets of the rich who hide cash offshore




Sunday, May 18, 2014

Mass exodus of executives at China's listed firms this year

Want China Times, Staff Reporter 2014-05-18

Shanghai Jahwa Corporation general manager Wang Zhuo, one of thousands
of executives at China's listed companies to have stood down already this year.
(File photo/CFP)

A total of 2,743 executives employed at listed firms in China have stood down so far this year as of May 14 this year, with an analysis saying that their resignations were mainly the result of operational pressures, being placed under investigation by authorities or due to internal conflicts, in addition to more innocuous reasons.

On Thursday alone, six companies issued statements announcing the resignation of some of their executives.

In recent years it has not been uncommon to see executives leave their jobs due to business expansion, corporate restructuring and mergers among listed firms, but the number of people who have resigned so far this year is unusually large, said an analyst.

"During the first quarter of this year, the performance of public firms was bad and many companies reported losses. Although seasonal factors were involved, they will still face mounting pressure in the future," said a market analyst from Huatai United Securities.

The number of executives who chose to leave their companies in April grew substantially at 1,101, but the pace had slowed down in May.

The Huatai analyst said that as April was the first month following the first quarter, some might choose to go as they failed to achieve a specific performance target.

In addition, managerial personnel at some companies may also have been forced to resign because of internal conflicts or restructuring in the company.

The growing crackdown launched by Chinese regulators in the market is another reason for the wave of resignations. Some executives had no choice but to resign because they were being investigated for suspected wrongdoing.

Another market analyst said that as executives are the key staff members at listed companies, their resignations would inevitably affect the companies' business. However, the analyst also pointed out that internal conflict can be a more serious problem as it hurts the companies' management and can impact sales.

The executives being investigated for violations also have a major influence on their companies' performance because such cases usually involve mergers and acquisition of assets, which could drag down stock prices significantly, the analyst added.

Related Article:


Saturday, May 17, 2014

French Societe Generale rogue trader Kerviel hesitates on his way to jail

Deutsche Welle, 17 May 2014

Convicted rogue trader Jerome Kerviel, walking back to France to begin his jail term, has stopped on the Italian border. He wants immunity for witnesses who may appear in court on his behalf.


Convicted trader Jerome Kerviel, facing a three-year prison term on his return to France, announced Saturday that he would be staying in Italy for the time being. French authorities had given him until Sunday to present himself at Menton police station to begin his sentence.

The 37-year-old was judged to be solely responsible six years ago for having run up 50 billion euros (68 billion dollars) in unauthorized trades which led to an eventual 4.9 billion euros in trading losses at his former bank Societe Generale. The losses brought the French bank to the brink of bankruptcy.

In court Kerviel admitted exceeding trading limits, faking documents, and entering false data into computers but said his bosses must have known what he was doing.

Kerviel said on Saturday he would not cross into France until he had received a response to his request for French President Francois Hollande to grant immunity to potential witnesses who could testify in his favor in connection with the bank's near collapse.

"I will wait for Francois Hollande's response on the Italian side," Kerviel said just meters from the French-Italian border near the Riviera town of Menton. "If they want to come and get me, let them come."

Walk of shame

An appeal ruling in March upheld his jail term but scrapped an order for Kerviel to return the money he was judged to have lost. The court said that there would be a civil case to decide on a new figure.

Last January as he was waiting for the results of his appeals, he was helped by a prominent French bishop, Monsignor Jean-Michel di Falco Léandri and went to Rome for a public audience with Pope Francis.

Inspired by the encounter, and the Pope's attack last year on capitalism's "idolatry of money," Kerviel decided to walk the 1,400 kilometers home, promoting the Pope's message of a flawed financial system. It was this walk which brought him to the border on the French Riviera on Saturday.

Sunflowers reveal new political consciousness among Taiwan's youth

Want China Times, Kuo Chien-chih, Tsui Tzu-ti and Staff Reporter 2014-05-17

The Legislative Yuan in Taipei on April 10 as the student protesters prepare
to leave after their three-week sit-in. (Photo/Yao Chih-ping)

Taiwan's young people are increasingly aware of political issues and have surpassed the custom of making decisions according to their own political party affinity instead of what is right and wrong, writes our sister paper China Times.

The recent Sunflower Student Movement that occupied the country's parliament for over three weeks in opposition to the handling of a controversial trade pact with China sent shockwaves through the country's political arena with its efficiency and power of mobilization. The most popular group among those who protested at the Legislative Yuan were the Black Island Nation Youth Front, which included prominent leaders of the students' movement Lin Fei-fan, Chen Wei-ting and Wei Yang.

Lai Yu-fen, spokesperson for the Sunflower Movement, said the Black Island Nation Youth Front has long paid attention to important social issues and has taken action against what it believes to be wrong. Taking the cross-strait trade-in-services agreement as an example, the group closely followed its development and sent people to monitor each public hearing that the ruling Kuomintang held about it to take notes. They also gathered large amount of information in order to work out a common stance, write communiques and produce packages of information with background on diverse issues, and finally to spread them online.

As members of the group are scattered around the country, they rely heavily on the internet for communication, Lai said. They would assign tasks and have each department study, interview, spread information, hold meetings and protest at key sites.

Members of the group are mostly students of humanities subjects, according to Lai.

Attempts were made to link the group's activities to the opposition Democratic Progressive Party, with claims made that the group's leading figures formerly worked for former DPP chairwoman Tsai Ing-wen. Tsai's office issued a statement however saying that she does not know either Chen or Lin.

Noting that social activists have grown dissatisfied with Taiwan's partisan politics that does not address issues of concern to them and that indeed they took steps during their recent sit-in protest to keep the DPP at arm's length, the deputy chief of the party's youth division Chou Yu-hsin said the DPP will need to actively "politics in life" and cooperate with young people in different fields.

At the beginning of Taiwan's democratic journey, people protested because they wanted an end to political persecution under martial law and the right to elect their leaders. Now they are protesting to obtain justice in areas related to people's livelihoods, environmental protection, bullying in the military and free trade agreements, Chou said, and the best way to gather more young people into political movements is to invite them to "cooperate and discuss," and then take action.

GSK China bribery probe should sound alarm for foreign firms

Want China Times, Xinhua 2014-05-17

GSK's offices in Tianjin, July 25, 2013. (Photo/XIinhua)

The latest development in the GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) China bribery saga is teaching foreign firms in China a fresh lesson on business integrity.

After more than 10 months of investigation, the case is ready to be handed over to prosecutors, authorities said Wednesday.

Police investigating the case have stated that the British drugmaker offered bribes to boost sales and inflated drug prices to allow for bribery expenses and high profits.

The probe not only revealed why some imported drugs in China are disproportionately expensive, but illustrated what happens when a company chooses to focus solely on profits instead of taking their corporate responsibility and their customers seriously.

Drugs are more than just commodities. They epitomize the social responsibility of manufacturers who work to cure diseases and relieve pain through research and development.

GSK's practices in China tainted both the company's reputation and its credibility worldwide. Mark Reilly, former head of GSK China, is believed to have pressed his sales teams to bribe hospitals, doctors and other medical institutions and organizations through various means, gaining billions in illegal revenue.

The company manipulated prices to disguise real costs. The actual cost of a box of Heptodin is 15.70 yuan (US$2.55). It is declared as 73 yuan (US$11.70) at customs and priced at 142 yuan (US$22.78) as factory price. In contrast, the drug sells at about US$2.89 in South Korea, US$4.17 in Canada and US$4.81 in the United Kingdom, according to a document acquired by Xinhua.

No matter how a company tries to disguise its practices, the truth will come out eventually.

Patients and the government had to foot the bill for these expensive drugs. The health of patients might also be at stake as some doctors had the incentive to prescribe excessive amounts to get more kickbacks.

GSK's practices eroded its corporate integrity and could cause irreparable damage to the company in China and elsewhere. The case is a warning to other multinationals in China that ethics matter. Increasingly attractive to foreign investors, more and more companies see China as their most important market.

These investors should learn to respect the Chinese market, at the very least by providing quality products at reasonable prices, abandoning discrimination and honoring their due corporate responsibilities.

For those profiteers, the market will eventually make its own choice.

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“…I'm in Canada and I know it, but I will tell those listening and reading in the American audience the following: Get ready! Because there are some institutions that are yet to fall, ones that don't have integrity and that could never be helped with a bail out. Again, we tell you the biggest one is big pharma, and we told you that before. It's inevitable. If not now, then in a decade. It's inevitable and they will fight to stay alive and they will not be crossing the bridge. For on the other side of the bridge is a new way, not just for medicine but for care. Paradigms that have not yet been thought of, which don't represent any system that currently exists, will be created and developed by young minds who have concepts that the seniors don't know about. Things that don't have integrity today will fall over tomorrow. Just get ready. It's all part of what's on the other side of the bridge. And the old energy won't like it, and they will object. …”

Friday, May 16, 2014

Pfizer executives cashed in shares weeks before bid for AstraZeneca

Boss Ian Read among senior figures at US drug firm to offload stock on 26 February and 3 March, regulatory filings shows

theguardian.comJennifer Rankin, Friday 16 May 2014

Pfizer's chief executive, Ian Read, sold $10.6m in shares in February. There is
 no suggestion of wrongdoing by any of the executives. Photograph:
Luke Macgregor/Reuters

Pfizer executives made millions by cashing in their shares in the US pharmaceutical firm, just weeks before renewing a £63bn bid for AstraZeneca.

Ian Read, Pfizer's chief executive and public face of the takeover bid, sold $10.6m in shares on 26 February, according to regulatory filings. Frank D'Amelio , chief financial officer, sold $8.9m of stock on the same day. Other Pfizer executives offloading shares included Loretta Cangialosi, the firm's principal accounting officer and controller, who sold $3.1m in shares on 3 March. Mikael Dolsten, the president of research and development, got rid of $2.1m worth on the same day.

Pfizer made its first overture to AstraZeneca's board in January, when it proposed talks for a merger. After the British-Swedish drugmaker turn down the offer, Pfizer renewed its advances on 28 April.

Pfizer's share price has fallen by 9% since Read sold his for $31.99 a share in February. Its shares were trading on Friday at around $29. This is the typical result of making a takeover bid and there is no suggestion of wrongdoing by any of the executives.

A company spokesperson said: "These sales were within guidelines and during a permissible period. The executives remain in compliance with their stock ownership requirements."

Shishir Malde, an expert in finance and accounting at Nottingham Business School, said the share sale was not surprising. Companies bidding for a rival usually see their share price fall, reflecting market scepticism about the success of mergers, he said.

"The vast majority of mergers and acquisitions are not successful because acquirers tend to be overconfident about how much they need to put into bringing the two companies together," said Malde. "The bigger the animal, the harder it is."

Academic research has shown that at least 70% of big mergers and acquisitions end in failure, leaving shareholders no better off than before the tieup.

Bidding companies, Malde said, often discover "skeletons in the closet" once the takeover is completed, which can lead them to renege on promises. In 2010 the US food firm Kraft closed Cadbury's Somerdale factory, breaking a pledge made during merger talks that it would be kept open.

Malde said there were three groups of people who always benefited from mergers: the directors of the bidding company, the shareholders of the target company and the middlemen, the bankers and lawyers. "If those three groups want it to happen, there is little anyone can do to stop it," he added.

The share sale was revealed as Sweden's government stepped up the pressure on AstraZeneca shareholders to reject Pfizer's offer. Writing in the Wall Street Journal, a trio of Swedish ministers said Pfizer's guarantees on jobs and research were insufficient.

"We are worried about Pfizer's semi-hostile takeover process for AstraZeneca, and what the effects would be for Sweden and the UK. The Swedish government has learned to judge companies based on what they do rather than what they say," said the article by its ministers for finance, Anders Borg, enterprise, Annie Lööf, and education and research, Jan Björklund.

"Pfizer has a history of quickly and sharply cutting staff in the wake of acquisitions," they wrote. Dismissing Pfizer's claim that it had created 124,000 jobs since 1999, a period when the US firm went on a buying spree that included taking over Sweden's Pharmacia in 2003, the ministers said: "The net increase in Pfizer's workforce has only been roughly 25,000 since 1999, meaning that nearly 100,000 employees have lost their jobs at Pfizer."

AstraZeneca began in 1999 when Sweden's Astra merged with the UK's Zeneca, itself a descendant of the British chemical company ICI. The Anglo-Swedish firm employs 6,700 in the UK and 5,900 in Sweden. The Swedish government collects more corporation tax from AstraZeneca than any other Swedish company.

On Thursday AstraZeneca's chief executive, Pascal Soriot, told the Guardian that the drugmaker could be damaged by Pfizer's tax avoidance plans. He also criticised Pfizer's intention to split the business into three separate divisions.

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“…I'm in Canada and I know it, but I will tell those listening and reading in the American audience the following: Get ready! Because there are some institutions that are yet to fall, ones that don't have integrity and that could never be helped with a bail out. Again, we tell you the biggest one is big pharma, and we told you that before. It's inevitable. If not now, then in a decade. It's inevitable and they will fight to stay alive and they will not be crossing the bridge. For on the other side of the bridge is a new way, not just for medicine but for care. Paradigms that have not yet been thought of, which don't represent any system that currently exists, will be created and developed by young minds who have concepts that the seniors don't know about. Things that don't have integrity today will fall over tomorrow. Just get ready. It's all part of what's on the other side of the bridge. And the old energy won't like it, and they will object. …”