AceFinanceNews – UNITED STATES(CHICAGO) – As Democrats across the country make an election-year push to raise the minimum wage, they often point to fast food workers, baristas and others who are struggling to raise families, pay rent or get through school – some on as little as $7.25 per hour.

First, though, they are out to help themselves. 

Looking to motivate younger people, minorities and others in their base to go to the polls on Nov. 4, the party has put questions on the ballot in five states asking voters whether the minimum wage should be increased.

The issue is also a near-constant topic on the campaign trail, as Democrats work to identify themselves as stalwarts for the middle class and to paint Republicans – who typically oppose raising the wage because they say it will lead to job cuts – as uncaring.



#acefinancenews, #chicago, #democrats


#AceFinanceNews – October 19 – Oil profits are being tested. Crude prices have face-planted to their cheapest level since 2010, threatening the balance sheets of companies and the budgets of nations.

Source: Bloomberg New Energy Finance

Source: Bloomberg New Energy Finance

Take Canada’s controversial oil sands.

With crude prices teasing $80 a barrel for the first time in years, about 25 percent of the synthetic crude produced from the sands is no longer profitable, according to the International Energy Agency.

Stocks of smaller oil companies, which tend to focus on supplies that are expensive to extract, aregetting crushed. Bond holders who have lent to oil prospectors are getting worried they won’t get paid back.

But maybe the biggest question remaining is whether the bounty of U.S. fracking, which made America the world’s biggest oil and gas producer, will wither in the field.

The answer so far: not so much. Here’s a list of break-even points for some of America’s biggest shale-oil regions. Note that most regions continue to be profitable below $80, including the Bakken and Eagle Ford formations, two of the most important sources.

Much of the Eagle Ford play would still be profitable with $50 oil.



#canada, #crude, #fracking, #oil, #tar-sands


#AceFinanceNews – UKRAINE (Kiev) – October 19 – Ukraine’s president confirmed that an agreement had been reached with Russia on a provisional price for gas deliveries during the winter months at Friday talks in Milan, AFP reports.

On the basis of consultations, I can say that Ukraine will have gas, will have heating,” Petro Poroshenko said in an interview to Ukrainian television on Saturday.

According to the president, the new price will be $385 dollars (300 euros) per 1,000 cubic meters, down from the current price of $485.


#kiev, #petro-poroshenko, #russia, #ukraine


#AceFinanceNews – UNITED STATES (Miami) – October 18 – A jury in Miami convicted a Lima, Peru, man on 26 felony charges of conspiracy, fraud and attempted extortion arising from his operating call centres in Peru that lied to and threatened Spanish-speaking victims into paying fraudulent settlements, the Department of Justice announced today. 

Juan Alejandro Rodriguez Cuya, 35, was convicted by a jury after less than two hours of deliberation following a two-week trial before U.S. District Court Judge Patricia A. Seitz in Miami federal court. His co-defendant at trial, Maria Luzula, 52, of Miami, pleaded guilty to all of the charges against her midway through the trial.  Luzula is Cuya’s mother.

Cuya and Luzula both face a statutory maximum of 20 years in prison on each count. Both defendants remain in custody pending their sentencing on Jan. 22, 2015, and Dec. 18, respectively.

“The defendants targeted and preyed upon the Spanish-speaking community – and the evidence of the harm that their fraud caused on individual victims is heart-wrenching,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Joyce R. Branda of the Justice Department’s Civil Division.  “The Justice Department is committed to prosecuting those who defraud consumers for their own personal gain.”

According to evidence presented at trial, the defendants’ employees in Peru used Internet-based telephone calls to threaten Spanish-speaking victims in the United States. 

The Peruvian callers falsely accused the victims of having refused delivery of certain products and claimed that the victims owed thousands of dollars in fines and that lawsuits would be brought against them. 

In reality, the victims had never ordered these products and nothing had been delivered.

Acting Assistant Attorney General Branda commended the U.S. Postal Inspection Service for their investigative efforts and thanked the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida for their contributions to the case.  The case was prosecuted by Trial Attorney Phil Toomajian and Assistant Director Richard Goldberg of the Civil Division’s Consumer Protection Branch.



#department-of-justice-doj, #lima, #miami, #peru, #spanish, #united-states

‘ Jim Paulsen Tells CNBC Markets Might End-Up in a Full-blown Ten Percent Correction ‘

#AceFinanceNews – October 16 – Wells Capital Management’s Jim Paulsen told CNBC on Thursday that the ongoing stock selloff could get “a little scarier yet” and that markets might end up in a “full-blown” 10 percent correction.

“Until yesterday, this corrective process has been looked at more as a good thing, a healthy refreshing pause, refreshing values for the long-term bull,” Paulsen told CNBC’s “Squawk Box.” “And that’s certainly not how we feel this morning. It gives you a sense we’re getting closer to the bottom here.”

Paulsen’s comments came as U.S. stock index futures signalled another morning of selling on Wall Street.


MecklerMedia’s Inside Bitcoins Conference in Association with KINTEX Announces First Major Cryptocurrency Trade Show in South Korea, December 12-13

#AceFinanceNews – NEW YORK – October 16 – On Oct. 15, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — MecklerMedia (OTCQX: MECK) announced that the Inside Bitcoins Conference and Expo taking place in Seoul on December 12-13 will be South Korea’s first major cryptocurrency event.

Inside Bitcoins Seoul will be co-produced by MecklerMedia and the Korea International Exhibition Center (KINTEX).

The event will feature a lineup of both local and international experts, including Jacob Hansen, CEO & Co-Founder, CrowdCurity; Prof. Hoh Peter In, Ph.D. Professor, Department of Computer Science, College of Informatics, Korea University; Zennon Kapron, Managing Director, Kapronasia; Mr. Casey Ilsun Kim, CEO, InfraBasic and Adjunct Professor, Hanyang University Business School; Tony Lyu, CEO, Korbit; and more.

Early bird prices will expire on October 31, so attendees are encouraged to register before then for the best rate. For complete information on Inside Bitcoins Conference and Expo, visit

If your company is interested in sponsoring or exhibiting, contact us at

About MecklerMedia: 

MecklerMedia (OTCQX: MECK) is the producer of conferences including Inside 3D Printing, Inside Bitcoins, and AllFacebook Marketing Conference. MecklerMedia produces over 25 conferences annually. The MecklerMedia news sites and newsletters, including Inside Bitcoins News, 3D Printing Industry, and provide up-to-date coverage on emerging industries to help drive business forward.

SOURCE: Meckler Media

CONTACT: Press Inquiries:

Web Site: Meckler Media

#afn2014, #bitcoin

‘ Africa’s transformation depends on how well we mobilize inputs and promote infrastructure through Africa50’

#AceFinanceNews – NEW YORK – On 16 October 2014 / PRN Africa / -The Ninth African Development Forum (ADF) opened on October 13 in Marrakech with the call by the African Development Bank Group (AfDB) for stronger emphasis on infrastructure and for ownership of the Africa50 Fund, “a profit-driven entity seeking to provide risk-adjusted returns to its investors, while building Africa of the future.”

Speaking on behalf of the Bank Group, Operations Vice-President, in charge of Agriculture, Human Development and Governance, Aly Abou-Sabaa, said he believes in Africa’s transformation.

He said many countries in the region are hungry for infrastructure investments, and now is the best time for African governments and their development partners to focus on fast-tracking resources.

Abou-Sabaa said infrastructure is vital for transformation, but added that “other sectors are central, including agriculture, good governance, health, education systems.

“Africa’s transformation cannot occur with weak governance, health or education systems or within a context of prevailing food insecurity,” he said. He also addressed various unforeseeable crises prevailing in the region, including HIV-AIDS, malaria and Ebola.

The Vice-President explained that in spite of agriculture contributing up to 25% of Africa’s GDP and employing about 60% of the population, the continent still imports US $25 billion worth of food every year. “The Bank is promoting participation of anchor investors in private sector investment in agriculture,” the Vice-President stated.

Infrastructure, a gap of US $50 billion annually: 

The big challenge is that Africa invests only 4% of its collective GDP in infrastructure, compared with China’s 14%. For the continent’s future to be rosy, its premier development finance institution – the AfDB Group – has made every effort to help bridge the infrastructure gap.

Abou-Sabaa expounded on the Bank’s estimates, observing that “the annual financing need for African infrastructure is about US $95 billion, of which only US $45 billion is currently invested each year, from African governments, development finance institutions and the private sector.”

Building on these facts and figures, Abou-Sabaa argued that Africa’s transformation largely depends on how well countries mobilize inputs from a range of stakeholders, promote infrastructure through new vehicles such as the Africa50 Fund, invest in their human capital, and foster good governance to enable a business-conducive environment.

Africa50 Fund to directly inject US $10 billion in projects:

He also said the Bank has created Africa50 Fund, headquartered in Casablanca, as the new game-changing solution to stimulate and drive the African infrastructure market.

The Africa50 Fund, “seeks to reconcile governments’ strategic objectives of meeting the substantial investment needs in infrastructure and the attractiveness of African assets to the growing sources of domestic and international capital,” Abou-Sabaa said.

More importantly, the long-term strategic aim of Africa50 is to invest directly US $10 billion in projects, and facilitate total project investments of US $100 billion by crowding in private-sector players and enticing investors.

The Bank Group in recent years has put much emphasis on the key role played by the private sector in implementing infrastructure projects, especially in the power and transport sectors, for the development and transformation in Africa.

AfDB strongly believes in Africa’s transformation:

The Operations Vice-President vividly called for a significant involvement of the private sector, as well as more bankable projects with viable local financial markets capable of leveraging project investments.

Stressing the need for sustainable tax systems and systematic analysis of new and innovative ways of mobilizing domestic resources, the Vice-President offered the Bank’s assistance to African countries in reforming their tax systems and in modernizing revenue administration systems including, where appropriate, systems automation.

The opening session also heard keynote addresses from the Kingdom of Morocco, Ivoirian President Alassane Ouattara, Senegalese President Macky Sall, as well as Cape Verde’s Prime Minister, José Maria Pereira Neves.

The ADF in Marrakech brings together more than 800 participants, comprising political leaders, government officials, academics, key players of the private sector and civil society organization as well as national and international media.

The ADF is a flagship biennial event of the UN Economic Commission for Africa, convened in collaboration with the African Union Commission, the African Development Bank and other key partners. The event, which runs from October 12-16 in Marrakech, offers a multi-stakeholder platform for debating, discussing and initiating concrete strategies for Africa’s development.

SOURCE: African Development Bank (AfDB)


#africa, #africa50-fund, #african-development-bank-groupafdb, #marrakech


#AceFinanceNews – NEW YORK – October 14 – Many thousands of Americans who lost their homes in the housing bust, but have since begun to rebuild their finances, are suddenly facing a new foreclosure nightmare: debt collectors are chasing them down for the money they still owe by freezing their bank accounts, garnishing their wages and seizing their assets.

By now, banks have usually sold the houses.

But the proceeds of those sales were often not enough to cover the amount of the loan, plus penalties, legal bills and fees. The two big government-controlled housing finance companies, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, as well as other mortgage players, are increasingly pressing borrowers to pay whatever they still owe on mortgages they defaulted on years ago.

Using a legal tool known as a “deficiency judgement,” lenders can ensure that borrowers are haunted by these zombie-like debts for years, and sometimes decades, to come.

Before the housing bubble, banks often refrained from seeking deficiency judgements, which were seen as costly and an invitation for bad publicity.

Some of the biggest banks still feel that way.

But the housing crisis saddled lenders with more than $1 trillion of foreclosed loans, leading to unprecedented losses.

Now, at least some large lenders want their money back, and they figure it’s the perfect time to pursue borrowers: many of those who went through foreclosure have gotten new jobs, paid off old debts and even, in some cases, bought new homes.



#fannie-mae, #foreclosed, #freddie-mac, #new-york


#AceFinanceNews – UNITED STATES – October 13 – So why is this happening? Partly because the United States keeps producing more and more oil, but also partly because some conflict-ridden countries are starting to pick up production.

Libya, for one, is boosting its oil output after civil war and internal tensions had shut things down for a spell. Iraq’s oil sector is slowly recovering.

All that new crude is flooding the market, causing global prices to dip.

Meanwhile, potential economic slowdowns in both Germany and China are driving down forecasts for oil demand (and reducing prices further).


#china, #germany, #global, #iraq, #libya, #oil, #prices, #united-states


#AceFinanceNews – WASHINGTON – October 12 – World financial leaders are pledging to act boldly and ambitiously to give a weak and uneven global recovery some momentum, but they have often fallen short in the past when trying to follow through on their promises.

The pledge from the International Monetary Fund’s policy-setting committee comes after a week of volatile swings in the financial markets – powered by concerns that parts of Europe may be sliding into another recession.

Source: Extract Courtesy of AP 


#economy, #europe, #imf, #international-monetary-fund-imf, #pledge, #pledging, #washington