martes, 8 de noviembre de 2016

2016/11/08 - Political Anticipation - LEAP Press review

US presidential campaign: an indicator of the state of the country
The financial world is beginning to worry openly... Over 10,000 billion dollars of sovereign bonds currently have negative rates (nearly the Euro zone’s GDP, to give an idea of the scale). Yet, the motivation of an investor who buys a negative rate bond is not to lose money: he hopes that rates will drop again, and he will make a profit by selling it (since it would become more interesting in a low rate environment). This spiral, or rather the fear of a jam when rates rise, creates great anxiety for Bill Gross, for example, who is warning of the explosion danger of nothing less than a "supernova" . George Soros, on the other hand, is betting on the imminent ... (Read the report / GEAB 106) 

Total signs first post-sanctions Western energy deal with Iran
France's Total has signed a deal with Iran to further develop its part of the world's largest gas field, becoming the first western energy company to sign a major deal with Tehran since the lifting of international sanctions earlier this year. Total confirmed on Tuesday it had signed a heads of agreement with National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) for the Phase 11 development of South Pars in the Gulf, which extends into Qatari waters where it is known as the North field... (Reuters)

UN: Russia’s Role in Syria Raises Questions About Bid for Human Rights Council
The United Nations General Assembly will select new members for the Human Rights Council in elections to be held in New York on October 28. Russia is running against Hungary and Croatia for a chance to represent the Eastern European group at the world’s foremost human rights body. The undersigned organizations urge all member states, when deciding which Eastern European candidate to support, to question seriously whether Russia’s role in Syria – which includes supporting and undertaking military actions which have routinely targeted civilians and civilian objects... (Human Rights Watch)

Brexit Trumps Trump
Donald Trump has promised voters his very own kind of Brexit upset. For investors, the real thing is still more troubling. Key gauges of investor uncertainty and market volatility are lower now than they were in the run up to Britain's vote to leave the European Union in June. Take Europe's economy. The Baker, Bloom and Davis composite index of economic policy uncertainty, which draws on everything from newspaper coverage to economic forecasts shows Europe is still in greater turmoil than the U.S... (Bloomberg)

Lift-off for China’s €10 billion fund for Eastern Europe
China has set up a €10 billion (HK$86 billion) investment fund to finance projects in Central and Eastern Europe, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China said in a statement issued on Sunday. The China-Central Eastern Europe fund will be run by Sino-CEE Financial Holdings a company established by the bank earlier this year. The company was formally launched by Premier Li Keqiang during a visit to Riga... (SCMP)

EU agrees zero tax rate is not enough to define tax haven: Padoan
European Union finance ministers agreed that countries applying a zero tax rate cannot automatically be considered tax havens, Italy's finance minister said on Tuesday, a move that may reduce the scope of a EU blacklist of offending jurisdictions. "We have find an agreement on the fact that if a jurisdiction applies zero tax rates, this can be considered as an indicator of possible unfair practices, but it would not be enough to define a jurisdiction as non-cooperative," Pier Carlo Padoan told a news conference... (Reuters)

European expansionism: turned down flat
The European integration, which has turned into an expansionary process after the fall of the Berlin Wall – Europe being unable to manage its neighbourhood other than by trying to integrate it, presently provides a good example of the internationalist model and the limits that it reached. The Ukraine, Turkey, Russia… had futures only within the EU, futures of ecstatic communion around the European values according to the European institutions, an economic upgrade vector according to the candidates. Ideologies, hidden agendas, lies and manipulations, have all rushed into the crazy European conquest of the 1990s and 2000s... (Excerpt from the GEAB No 105 / May 2016)

Tesla to Buy Germany's Grohmann Engineering Amid Model 3 Ramp-Up
What if it were possible to create a government bond for the euro area that was seen as a safe asset, without that meaning Germany has to stand behind the debts of others? Consider it done, almost. The European Safe Bond is, in theory, a parcel of euro-area government debt of different risk grades that would provide the 19-nation currency bloc with a single “safe asset” that's not linked to the fate of any individual member. Previously, the perception of all European government debt as safe, when it clearly wasn't, was one of the things that caused the sovereign debt crisis... (Bloomberg)

Estonian government could collapse, faces no confidence vote
Estonia’s coalition government could be threatened with collapse this week after two junior coalition partners called on the prime minister to resign yesterday (7 November) and the opposition called for a vote of no confidence. The prime minister of the smallest Baltic state, with a population of just 1.3 million, Taavi Rõivas has little room to manoeuvre to save his fractious coalition government... (Euractiv)

Mikheil Saakashvili quits as governor of Ukraine's Odessa region
Mikheil Saakashvili, the former president of Georgia, has resigned as governor of Ukraine’s Odessa region, citing corrupt officials and a lack of political will for reform in the country’s leadership. Saakashvili staged his resignation on Monday by calling an outdoor press conference and pouring vitriol on the man who appointed him, President Petro Poroshenko... (The Guardian)

Juncker's Barrosogate response is too little, too late
European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker will ask his team to consider tightening the rules on former members’ conduct during a college meeting next week (16 November). But the move already seems unlikely to calm a four-month long row over the handling of his predecessor, Jose Manuel Barroso, who landed a top job with US investment bank Goldman Sachs last July. Juncker wants the college to double the spell during which commission ex-bosses have to seek permission for post-office employment to three years... (EUobserver)

Park Geun-hye: Scandal is all my fault and mistake
In an extraordinary display of abject apology during a moment of supreme crisis, South Korean President Park Geun-hye took sole blame on Friday for a “heartbreaking” scandal as suspicion grew that she allowed a mysterious confidante to manipulate power from the shadows. Park also vowed to accept a direct investigation into her actions, but the opposition, sensing weakness, immediately said that if she doesn’t accept a prime minster chosen by the parliament and withdraw from dealing with domestic affairs, it will push for her to go... (AlJazeera)

EU says committed to 'broad, ambitious' FTA with India
The European Union remains committed to a "broad and ambitious" free trade agreement (FTA) with India, but hopes that the "stalemate" on the issue would be resolved soon, a senior EU trade official said today. Addressing the Trade and Investment Partnership Summit (TIPS) 2016 organised by the Europe-India Chamber of Commerce (EICC) in Brussels, Jolana Mungengova - member of the Cabinet of EU Trade Commissioner - expressed hope that the "stalemate" would be overcome soon... (Economic Times)

Regional economic unions (2016-2017): Between Apparent Failure and Underlying Recovery
It seems that everything is going wrong for regional integrations. South America's MERCOSUR trading bloc has completely stopped functioning, due to the marginalisation of Venezuela which currently holds the presidency of the Common Market, but that no one is following anymore. Another alliance currently chaired by Venezuela, the much less known NAM (Non-Aligned Movement), is also not functioning for the same reason: summit cancelled, frozen agenda. Then of course the European Union, considered in complete disintegration following Brexit, has all the media focus. Within the EU, the Eurozone – which, in our view is a champion for the revival of the European construction process - has not seen its heads of states meet in a Euro Summit since June 2015... (Read the report in the GEAB 107)

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