London Mayor Sadiq Khan is to launch the United Kingdom’s comprehensive inquiry into the surge of real estate investments that had flooded London’s housing market as it may increase gentrification and make house costs completely unbearable for London residents and investors.

According to Mr Khan:

“It’s clear we need to better understand the different roles that overseas money plays in London’s housing market, the scale of what’s going on, and what action we can take to support development and help Londoners find a home,” Khan told the Guardian.

“That’s why we are commissioning the most thorough research on this matter ever undertaken in Britain – the biggest look of its kind at this issue – so we can figure out exactly what can be done.”

The angle of ‘dirty money’ and money laundering Mr Khan and investigators are also putting at play.

About 60% of apartments overlooking the Thames river are owned by foreign buyers. Certain offshore companies owned a quarter of the unoccupied flats in the area.

Most middle to upper class Chinese individuals and companies owned several properties in the city.

Charles Pittar, chief executive of, a website that aims to pair Chinese investors with property developers overseas, said he expected a major jump in investors looking for a return in Britain, adding: “The UK market, particularly post-Brexit, is really picking up.

“Our thesis – and this is supported by quite a lot of evidence – is that in many ways the international Chinese investment journey is probably just starting … The exciting thing about China is that there are 168 cities with more than a million people. So this is just such a huge market.”

Europe has charged tech giant Apple the largest tax penalty to be paid in Europe amounting to €1.1bn (£94m) as Ireland gave it an unfair advantage in its country in exchange for creating millions of jobs.


The European Commission has tasked Apple to repay the same amount in back taxes to Ireland.

Ireland had given Apple an illegal state aid to create more jobs in the country. Ireland often attracts huge multinational companies because of their low taxes. After a three-year probe into Apple’s Ireland operations, investigators found that both sides had broken the EU law.

The law states that national tax authorities are not allowed to give tax vacations as it is considered illegal state aid. Ireland had made the rulings in 1991 and 2007 that allowed Apple to minimise its tax bill in the country.

“A state aid ruling against Ireland is likely to bring the country’s corporation tax regime back into focus,” said Dermot O’Leary, an economist at Goodbody Stockbrokers in Dublin. “However, the commission investigation relates to two rulings given to Apple in 1991 and 2007. So, a critical issue will be how the final decision relates to the current Irish tax code or to previously amended policy.”

The commission in January ordered Belgium to recover about 700 million euros in illegal tax breaks from at least 35 companies, including Anheuser-Busch InBev NV and BP Plc. And last year, for example, Starbucks Corp. was ordered to pay 30 million euros in back taxes to the Dutch government.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) had downgraded its forecast for global growth this year and the following year by 0.1 per cent, marking down to 3.1 per cent this year and 3.4 the following year.

The Brexit had acutely heightened the risk of global economic uncertainty next to other complications cited by the G20 summit in Chengdu. The countries cited “geopolitical conflicts, terrorism and refugee flows” among the biggest problems the western world is facing today.

The G20 concluded that re-negotiations with the United Kingdom must happen and materialise quickly to minimise the possibility of uncertainties.

Finance Chiefs from the G20 said they would use all policy tools to aid the maintenance and growth of the global economy. This includes monetary easing, fiscal spending and structural change to boost growth.

The communique sent by the chiefs said the action can be taken individually and collectively.

They said it would be a priority to bring in those left out of economic prosperity to help resolve the global economic issues of today.

The embattled IMF managing director, Christine Lagarde – who faces prosecution in France on accusations of neglecting her duties as a government minister – abruptly cancelled a news conference after the meeting, citing scheduling conflicts.

“Lacklustre growth of the post-crisis era continues,” she said in a statement. “Structural reforms are particularly critical.”

28. June 2016 · Write a comment · Categories: Business · Tags: ,

As much as 20 per cent of the Pound Sterling’s value had dropped to its lowest in 30 years after the vote to leave the European Union.

The value of the sterling, along with the UK’s economy, had started to contract after British Prime Minister David Cameron had announced his resignation following the results of Brexit.

The implications have been large. Despite chances that the UK could remain in the EU’s market with a new agreement similar to Norway’s framework, the economic struggle for the United Kingdom is just beginning.

Conservative Leadership Candidate and UK Finance Minister George Osborne believes he isn’t fit to lead the Conservative party at this time. This is after the resignation of Prime Minister David Cameron.

“It isn’t in my nature to do things by half-measure, and I fought the referendum campaign with everything I’ve got. I believed in this cause and fought hard for it,” he wrote in The Times. “So it is clear that while I completely accept the result, I am not the person to provide the unity my party needs at this time.”

The Labour camp is currently experiencing a coup as 150 Labour MPs had called him to resign following the Brexit vote. Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn had also sacked Shadow Foreign Secretary Hilary Benn of instigating a coup.

About 11 members of Corbyn’s cabinet had resigned following his sacking of Benn.

In the Conservative party, former London Mayor Boris Johnson had tried to paint himself as the next leader of the Conservative party. Despite analysts saying that the plan to penetrate the EU market once again is impossible, he says the UK can continue to access the European single market and limit freedom of movement after the Brexit.

British Prime Minister and campaigner David Cameron along with Finance Minister and BoE Chancellor George Osborne said that Britain should stay in the European Union as households would face the largest shortfall in the value of their homes.

It would also mean costly foreign holidays for voting for an EU exit.

Opinion polls showed that Britons are leaning towards an “in” decision and it could jeopardise Britain’s economic recovery.

“It would be like surviving a fall and then running straight back to the cliff edge. It is the self-destruct option,” Cameron said.

Brexit campaigners said the UK Treasury supporting the Prime Minister’s campaign had produced flawed and inconsistent reports.

According to former Thatcher Administration Conservative Prime Minister Nigel Lawson, the EU stay campaigners said they are assuming a disaster and has spelled out the details.

The former Prime Minister said:

“What they’ve done is they assumed a disaster and then spelled out the details,” Nigel Lawson, a finance minister under the late Conservative Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in the 1980s, told BBC TV.

“They’ve done this in order to scare the pants off the British people because they can’t find anything positive to say about the European Union.”

By hitting a “soft” patch with the US economy, the US Federal Reserve showed itself to be in no rush to increase its interest rates, much to the relief of investors.

The US Central Bank’s rate-setting committee said a better labour market offset economic growth.

Meanwhile, the Central Bank committee said inflation still dominated most of the US’ economic growth. It also had concerns with the country’s slowed economic growth and the gloomy global economic forecast as well.

After the announcement, the dollar remained unchanged. However, investors are confident that there’s a 23 per cent probability that the Federal Reserve’s lending rate can rise in two months to June up from 21 per cent.

Investors expected an interest rate rise due to global concerns regarding the huge global equities sell-off due to the dropping stocks in China.

The Federal Reserve’s changed policy along with China’s slight recovery had helped ease investors’ concerns.

Meanwhile, US interest rates are very close to zero. Should the US economy become further undesirable, it may use “unconvential policy tools”.

Generally, analysts accept that the Federal Reserve is refraining from issuing forward guidance and is trying to ‘wait-and-see’ through the entire situation.

The Federal Reserve is fighting for the stability of the US economy despite its continuous stall spanning more than three years.

With minimal growth spurts dispersed throughout the last three years, consumers are still wary of spending on real economy services. Increased population savings is evidence of inflation, something the Fed will need to fight in the coming months.

Shoppers have remained cautious during a time slowdowns need to be offset. Due to the huge unemployment rate in the country, it is up to the Fed to continue injecting money to reduce inflation.

However, experts believe it might be straining out as it would require the raising of interest rates to ensure further stabilisation.

Analysts said that should the US fail to resolve its economic troubles, the Chinese stock troubles could possibly trigger further economic spirals worldwide.

Some experts had updated their economic outlook to gloomy post-US economic report.

With labour productivity at a huge low and labour costs increasing, unemployment rates have rapidly increased.

The huge surge in unemployment could mean huge overseas employment numbers, which can boost developing countries’ export of workers.

Investors wait until the Fed’s decision to increase the rate hike.

In a meeting of 800 trustees of pension plan boards and hedge funds, most said that the global economy, while having a gloomy outlook, is relatively stable.

The eighth annual EnTrust Investment Summit was a conference closed to the press. However, the fund featured names such as Daniel S. Loeb from Third Point, Nelson Peltz from Trian and Bill Ackman from Perishing Square, among others.

Hedge fund “stars” have attended the gathering. One insider gave the scoop of things happening inside.

Despite capital markets selling off this year, there was no talk of doom and gloom. The US economy is growing, maybe not as rapidly as people would like, but growing nonetheless. There’s job creation happening. Companies are still earning money. It was that sort of assessment.

“It was OK. You know when you come back from a party and it was like, ‘It was OK’? That was the general theme,” the attendee told us.

The consensus is that everyone’s strategy is “wait.” The fund managers feel the US market is strong. The headwinds are China and commodities. The view is that the US market and economy is still strong relative to the other parts of the world. It’s a good place to be.

Yes, there are pockets of concern, with any weakness mostly having to do with energy. If oil stays low that’s a problem. No one there was forecasting $20 though. Some of the fund managers are seeing opportunities in credit, particularly for oil services companies.

As for the election, the consensus was that it’s a scary thing that folks appear to be in favor of Donald Trump, the Republican frontrunner. To the fund managers, it shows how disenfranchised American people are feeling.

Toward the end of one of the panels, the conference was momentarily interrupted by the Hedge Clippers, a group that wants to tax the wealthy elite. It didn’t really faze anyone, though. They took a coffee break while the protesters were escorted from the premises.

Source: BusinessInsider

For its actions in Crimea last 2013, the Russian economy is in recession for a second year after the West economically sanctioned the country. The falling oil prices upon the re-entry of Iran had made it worse for Russia’s oil economies.

It was the fastest noted recession in the last six years since 2015. Russia’s GDP had dropped by 3.7 per cent the previous year. Rosstat, a state-run statistics agency, said Russia’s GDP only grew by 0.7 per cent in 2014.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said in a statement in December 2015 that the economic crisis has peaked. However, analysts, including Capital Economics’ William Jackson said the Russian economy is still “extremely weak.”

The Russian Rouble had performed badly in the market, outperforming Argentinian Peso only by a few margins.

The Russian Central Bank is considering a potential change in interest rates, held up at 11pc for the last three meetings.

Lifting the economic sanctions could only do very little. According to analysts, Russia’s main enemy is the falling prices of oil. Energy industries in the country are struggling to keep production down to avoid extreme surplus.

Iran’s lifting of sanctions and capability to sell their oil to the world market contributes to the oil surplus introduced initially by Saudi Arabia.

Oil is now at $20-30 a barrel.

Google Fiber’s aim is to bring hyper-speed fibre-optic internet connections to the United States. Gabriel Stricker is Google’s newest policy and communications handler for the company. Fibre was initially headed by Dennis Kish in 2010. Under his direction, Google Fiber expanded from Austin to Salt Lake City.

Google intends to bring Fiber to more people as it announces expansions to LA and Chicago. Alphabet, Google’s larger holding company that handles Google’s advertising, Android business and online business. The assignment of Stricker to Google Fiber indicates Fiber’s form into a business from its beginnings as an experiment for faster internet access for consumers.

Alphabet CFO Ruth Porat said most of its efforts went into the Google businesses and they would improve their efforts further as Google continues to expand. Access and Energy will contain Alphabet’s Fiber efforts.

Stricker is not new to Google completely. Being one of the communications group leaders, Stricker had helped Google have a spot in the world’s online industry during its fast-growth days.

Google’s position as a huge global content provider allows everyone to make sense of Google’s offer for super fast internet especially now that net neutrality is becoming a huge issue in many countries.