By Noelani Kirschner / ShareAmerica March 10, 2020 The U.S. announced sanctions targeting Russian oil company Rosneft’s trading unit, Rosneft Trading S.A., on February 18 and the Venezuelan state-run airline Conviasa on February 7.Both actions aim to stop the flow of money to the Nicolás Maduro regime and compel Maduro to allow free and fair elections.Rosneft Trading S.A. facilitates the “trading, processing, and transport of raw materials, in particular unrefined petroleum and petroleum products,” between Venezuela and other countries, according to the U.S. Department of the Treasury. In this way, the Russian oil company props up the regime, which enables Maduro to further repress the Venezuelan people.State-run airline Conviasa ferries “Maduro and his inner circle to confer with dictators, authoritarian regimes, and other criminals around the world,” said U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in a statement.Under these sanctions, U.S. citizens may not charter, contract, refuel or purchase anything from the airline.“The United States remains firmly committed to the people of Venezuela and to the cause of freedom there,” said the U.S. State Department’s special representative to Venezuela, Elliott Abrams. “We look forward to the day when Venezuela is free and all our sanctions can be lifted.”
What’s the difference between a successful planning session and an unsuccessful planning session for your credit union or bank?Execution. Execution makes all the difference.As strategic planning season gears up for financial institutions around the country, remember that what makes a planning session a win is not how great the catered lunch is or how detailed your SWAT analysis is. Rather, what determines a win is how well your team is able to execute the strategic plan throughout the coming year. continue reading » ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr
In the past weeks, COVID-19 (“Coronavirus”) has affected nearly every aspect of day-to-day life. To combat the pandemic, businesses have already taken many steps. Most have needed to work toward constant cleanliness and reassure customers through email. The travel industry has offered incentives for customers to keep traveling, while constantly providing updates on the virus. Business emails, news programs, social media and even grocery store small talk cannot avoid the topic. As such, people around the world have given and received information and advice on almost every facet of the virus, from preventative measures and latest cancellations to the status of toilet paper at Costco.Sometimes it seems as if there is as much misinformation as there is information. While most of us do our best to filter through the advice they find helpful or ludicrous, that general sense of public unease and concern offers an opportunity for scammers to shine. Financial institutions must consider whether they are inoculating themselves for the onslaught of crime designed to take advantage of the confusion.The Virus of Coronavirus Scams Financial institutions might think that COVID-19 is out of their control or focus. But amid the chaos and confusion, it is the duty of all financial institutions to protect customers from the scams that have likely already started. continue reading » 14SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr
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Indonesian men in their 30s are beginning to feel more comfortable with women earning more than them, an economist has said.Aviliani of the Institute for Development of Economics and Finance (INDEF) told a discussion on Dec. 18 that, contrary to widely held assumptions, many of today’s women are not doubtful about their competence when given an opportunity for higher income and/or responsibility.“What they are not confident about is the spouse and family support” as men, particularly of the older generation, still lack confidence when their wives earn more. Dossy said that, while tagging along Bluebird director Noni Poernomo and having to “take over” her responsibilities for a day, she noticed Noni’s energy and communication skills in managing the taxi company from early morning to evening before meeting her children. Such energy and skills, Dossy said, looked essential not only in a male-dominated company but also in navigating the family-owned business. Though it looked very tiring, Dossy said, it also motivated her to progress in her career.A study published last July in the Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies revealed that women’s workforce participation remained stagnant at around 51 percent from 1996 to 2013.A 2014 report from the World Bank showed that only 9 percent of top managers at private firms in Indonesia were women, though more women are filling management positions, other surveys show.Read also: In ASEAN, gender equality still very much a ‘tick-the-box’ issueOn Dec. 18, three IBCWE members were presented certificates for gender equality: Lifestyle retailer PT Mitra Adiperkasa, tire maker PT Gajah Tunggal, both publicly listed, and textile and garment manufacturer PT Dan Liris.The certificate, called Economic Dividends for Gender Equality (EDGE), is based on a global assessment methodology and business certification standard for gender equality. The standards include equal pay for equal work and gender balance in junior level recruitment to top management.Gajah Tunggal director Catharina Widjaja told The Jakarta Post she was motivated to have the company strive for gender equality so that men and women “could complement each other” in the male-dominated business. Though highly challenging, the male staff were “curious”, she said, in the firm’s subsequent efforts to promote and recruit women amid the stereotype that women are largely uninterested in science and manufacturing.“Some of the men have daughters, and they also hoped their girls could get more opportunities” to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, Catharina said.Women participates in the international women’s day 2020 in Sarinah, Central Jakarta, on Sunday 8 March 2020. The community demands gender equality rights on international women’s day, and rejects Omnibus Law. (JP/Donny Fernando)While some of the female staff declined promotions over fears of struggling to juggle career and family, Catharina said support from the IBCWE was crucial to help management continue to show support for working mothers. Among other things, the firm has a breastfeeding room and daycare center.Meanwhile company leaders Erik Meijer of Telkomtelstra and Suresh Subramanian of Kantar Indonesia said they had found that investing in more encouragement for women was “good for business”. Diversity brought new ideas, Subramanian said.Meijer said that, contrary to the widespread perception that women often asked for leave to tend to family matters, his female staff were very hesitant to ask for such permission compared to the men. Other speakers at the event included participants of role plays staged in businesses called “Women take over: Leading in a day”, facilitated by the IBCWE, in which female staff members tagged along female leaders and acted as their bosses for a day.Meida Kurniawati, a staff member at publicly listed garment manufacturer PT Pan Brothers, and Dossy Irani, a marketing sponsorship staff member at taxi operator PT Bluebird, also said women’s doubts about seeking income and developing a career stemmed mainly from family and society rather than their own ability or lack thereof.Meida said she found that being emotional, considered a weakness of women, could be turned into a strength.She cited study results showing high emotional intelligence as a preferred leadership trait. “Being emotional can be positive, not just being angry”, Meida said, referring to the stigma of temperamental female bosses. Women’s strengths included the willingness to share and show empathy, she said.Read also: More than a woman in business: Shinta Kamdani talks leadership in economy Men born after 1990 were more likely than older men to regard women as equals, Aviliani said.The 1974 Marriage Law legalizes the traditional view that men are breadwinners, as it states, “the husband is the head of the household and the wife is a housewife”.Read also: ‘Feminism is not for Indonesia’: Conservative Muslims’ recipe for women’s empowermentAviliani was addressing the third anniversary of the Indonesian Business Coalition for Women Empowerment (IBCWE), which has 20 corporate members. Topics :
Jupiters Resort will add another accommodation tower with 700 rooms under a proposed expansion of the Gold Coast hotel and entertainment venue.The resort’s owner, Star Entertainment Group, has revealed it has begun the planning process for a new tower, which will be approximately 200m high and feature a 4.5-star hotel.The second tower, to be built in partnership with Hong Kong-based Chow Tai Fook Enterprises and Far East Consortium, will be in addition to the new six-star, 17-storey luxury suite hotel tower currently under construction at the site, as well as the refurbishment of the hotel’s almost 600 existing rooms.Read the full story on Commercial NewsMore from news02:37Purchasers snap up every residence in the $40 million Siarn Palm Beach North12 hours ago02:37International architect Desmond Brooks selling luxury beach villa1 day ago
“The trade bodies are generally a force for good, funnily enough,” he added, while conceding that not all individual companies were “great”. “The trade bodies, on the whole, realise the [risk of] reputational damage to their industry.”Asked how he proposed to achieve such transparency when other countries, such as the US, had battled for a decade without achieving great results, he said: “I don’t dismiss the difficulty of defining what is included in costs and charges, getting transparency and drawing a line somewhere – I think that will be an ongoing battle.”Webb also spoke more broadly of the reforms he had overseen since being named minister in 2010, more recently focused on changes to ensure the adequacy of auto-enrolment default funds.“The first thing I had to do was reinvent the state pension system, and funnily enough, make it look pretty much like everyone else’s,” he said, noting that that involved a shift to a flat-rate payment.“Not revolutionary for you, I suspect, but revolutionary for us,” he added.Webb also credited the Netherlands for helping devise some of his reform ideas, noting that he had seen the term ‘defined ambition’ in the country and decided to use it for his proposals to reintroduce greater risk-sharing.“Now that the UK talk about defined ambition, people think I’ve come up with some very clever phrase – so don’t let on,” he said.He also acknowledged there would not be great appetite for recently unveiled proposals for a flexible defined benefit (DB) system that could see employers begin to offer DB pensions lacking, for example, indexation.“That’s going to be a minority sport, that’s going to be the best firms, the biggest firms who want to do more,” Webb said.He further noted that the current contribution levels under auto-enrolment were not high enough, but said it was more important to get workers saving at all before worrying about the adequacy of savings rates. Getting the UK pensions industry to cooperate on fee transparency will be an “ongoing battle” and not concluded overnight, the pensions minister Steve Webb has admitted.Speaking at the WorldPensionSummit in Amsterdam, the Liberal Democrat MP told delegates the Department for Work & Pensions had already identified a number of fees it would like to ban – a reference to last month’s consultation on the feasibility of imposing a charge cap.But he added that, beyond attempts to ban certain costs, transparency would be the goal.“Our financial services industry is beginning to work on transparency and consistency of disclosure,” he said.
“At the same time we saw the American central bank raising interest rates for the first time in a long period, and warning of further rate rises to come in 2017,” he said.MP Pension, which has assets of around DKK89bn (€12bn) and 118,000 members, is undergoing changes following the collapse of its joint administration and investment arrangement with the Architects’ Pension Fund (AP) and the Pension Fund for Agricultural Academics and Veterinary Surgeons (PJD).The three pension funds were run by Unipension for several years, but AP and PJD decided to move their schemes to labour-market pensions provider Sampension, with MP Pension continuing alone.Meanwhile, Pædagogernes Pension (PBU), the Danish pension fund for education practitioners, reported an 9.6% return for 2016, which it claimed was the best pensions return among all schemes where returns were based directly on underlying investment performance.In 2015, the pension fund made a 3.7% return before pensions return tax. In absolute terms, PBU’s 2016 return was DKK8.4bn.Sune Schackenfeldt, PBU’s chief executive, said: “We have delivered returns though good old-fashioned means — simply by pulling on the right levers at the right time.”Schackenfeldt said PBU had to be able to deliver on both the “hard” and the “soft” bottom-lines — the latter being about ethics and a responsible investment policy. “Education practitioners do not earn very much money, and therefore they do not put away much in savings,” he said. “Because of this, it is really important that we as a pension provider perform on the hard parameters such as returns and costs.”Schackenfeldt took up the top role at PBU last August, having been hired away from Denmark’s biggest commercial pension provider PFA Pension, where he was a director. MP Pension, the Danish labour-market pension fund for academics, reported an upswing in investment returns in 2016 compared to the year before, with investments generating a profit of 8.6% — almost twice the 4.4% return posted for 2015.Niels Erik Petersen, CIO of MP Pension, said: “Overall, we are very pleased with the result for 2016, which contained many major events both economically and politically.”The pension fund reported that high-yield and emerging markets bonds had contributed to the total investment result with returns of around 15%.Petersen said financial markets had been marked by a high level of nervousness in 2016, particularly in the run-up to the EU membership referendum in the UK and the US presidential election.
The Dutch Pensions Federation is to investigate the possible consequences of new tax rules for direct property investments in the Netherlands.The trade body said that it was worried about a sentence in the coalition agreement stating that “direct investments in property will no longer be allowed as a consequence of the abolishment of dividend tax”.This seems to imply that future direct investments will be subject to the Netherlands’ 21% rate of corporate tax. Dividend tax is 15%, and can be reclaimed by pension funds.“We have been surprised by the announced measure, in particular given the cabinet’s wish of increased local investments by pension funds,” a spokesman for the federation said. “If the measure has a negative impact on pension funds’ returns or the investment climate in the Netherlands, we will take action.”The €456bn asset manager APG – which has provided feedback to the Pensions Federation – explained that its direct investments in real estate were in part placed in “fiscal investment institutions”, known as FBIs, which are exempt from corporate tax.This was to prevent pensioners from being taxed twice, as they also pay tax on the benefits they receive.Michiel de Wit, fiscal expert at APG, argued that the proposed measure in the coalition agreement would mean that Dutch investors were paying for tax revenues no longer paid by foreign investors as a result of the abolishment of the dividend tax.De Wit couldn’t say whether such a tax change would encourage APG – asset manager for the €396bn civil service scheme ABP – increase its property investments abroad.“Although we do run a number of FBIs ourselves, we have much less say in investment choices of listed vehicles, such as Wereldhave and Vastned.”He highlighted that Wereldhave and Vastned – investment companies specialising in European shopping centres and retail properties – lost 2.5% and 3.5% in value, respectively, since the coalition accord was presented on 10 October.APG’s worldwide property stake is €40bn, of which €2.4bn (6%) has been locally invested.
38 Views no discussions Share Sharing is caring! Tweet LifestyleRelationships Ladies should make their own money in case of a divorce by: – October 4, 2011 Share Share Image via steakpinball/FlickrIn Massachusetts, it used to be that a man could marry a woman, divorce her three years later, have no children, and still owe her alimony for the rest of his life, even if she remarried. Now it’s capped. And good riddance to it, too.The fact is, a woman is just as capable of getting back on her feet, getting a job, and living her life after a divorce as a man is. The idea that she needs a lifetime of his money is sexist.Of course, there are exceptions. Women who have been married a long time, have children, and put their career on the shelf in order to raise those kids need an economic boost to get back on their feet. But the answer is actually simple: Don’t do that.I was a stay-at-home mom for three years, so I am certainly well-versed in the reasons to stay home with a child. But the fact is, it did put my husband and me in an imbalance.Every time I wanted to buy a pair of shoes, I had to ask him. I didn’t have my own money. It was “household money,” sure. And he rarely played the “I make the money” card. But he had it to play.As women, it’s silly to pretend like divorce can’t happen to us. And when a woman has a child, her earning potential goes down significantly just because of that fact alone. So why would she voluntarily give up what little money she makes, too?There are ways to be involved with a child and still make a little money on the side. It doesn’t have to be all or nothing. A woman can teach a night course or work from home or work part-time. There are many, many options that don’t equal daycare and a full-time job. But this idea that families can survive on one income alone and the man should be the breadwinner and provide for a woman and his children for the entire course of her life is a little 1950s.Sure, alimony is needed to help a woman get back on her feet after devoting herself to her family to help her husband develop his career or finish his school, etc. Every divorce is complicated and individual. But the cases in which “lifetime alimony” is needed are likely few and far between.In the end, even in a marriage, we are responsible for ourselves and keeping our skills fresh. It’s hard to claim victim-hood 20 years after a four-year marriage ends. Marriage isn’t foolproof. It’s important to keep skills fresh and is just as much his responsibility as hers.Do you think lifetime alimony is outdated?Written by Sasha Brown-Worsham on CafeMom’s blog, The Stir