WORLD FINANCE UPDATE:
The Australian market looks set to open flat after both the Dow and the S&P 500 closed steady on Wall Street.
At 0700 AEST on Tuesday, the share price futures index was up two points, or 0.04 per cent, at 5,668.
Meanwhile, the Australian dollar had led all three of the commodities currencies higher against the US dollar as oil prices ended the day in positive territory, BK Asset Management’s managing director of FX Strategy Kathy Lien said.
The local currency was trading at 75.82 US cents at 0700 AEST on Tuesday, from 75.71 on Monday.
WASHINGTON – US President Donald Trump praised the Supreme Court’s decision to review the legality of his temporary ban on travellers from six Muslim-majority countries and all refugees, and to allow it to be partly implemented in the meantime.
LONDON – UK Prime Minister Theresa May has unveiled details of her plan to protect the rights of EU citizens living in Britain, saying the government would work to offer them the same health, medical and educational benefits as British citizens.
WASHINGTON – Demand for long-lasting US factory goods fell by the most in 18 months, and a key category that tracks business investment also slipped, evidence that manufacturing output is barely growing.
OSLO – Fishing fleets dump about 10 per cent of the fish they catch back into the ocean in an “enormous waste” of low-value fish, Australian and US scientists say.
LOS ANGELES – Four of the world’s biggest tech companies – Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter and YouTube – have teamed up to form a new coalition to make their services “hostile to terrorists and violent extremists.”
For More Information: News
Cape Town – So you’ve seen your dream car advertised at an enticingly low monthly installment and you’re wondering what’s the catch. Chances are it’s a deal with a balloon payment tacked onto the end. These sneaky deals can put you into a fancier car than your bank balance strictly allows, but before you jump into that sweet-looking deal, make sure you know all the twists and turns of this financial road.
When you take out vehicle finance the bank pays for the car and you pay the bank back over a period of time, with a whole lot of interest added to the original debt, to make it worthwhile for the bank. Trouble is, the payments are high because you’re paying off the original loan (the principal) and the interest at the same time, which limits how much you can spend on your new wheels.
So the banks have invented an attractive-looking way to let you drive a more larney car for the same monthly payment, by deferring part of the principal until the end of the finance period.
That way you’re only paying the interest and part of the principal every month, which makes it much more affordable – but at the end of the contract you have to come up with the rest of the principal in one huge cash payment – the residual or balloon payment.
Let’s put some numbers to that:
It’s bonus month, so you have an extra R10 000 you can put down as a deposit, and you’ve worked out that you can spend R4000 a month on your new car. According to Wes Bank’s Repayment Calculator, you can buy a nice little mid-level hatchback for R180 000 and pay it off over 60 months at 13.5 percent interest, and the monthly payments will come to R4007.62.
But you don’t want to be seen driving a ‘nice little mid-level hatchback’; you’ve got your heart set on a hot hatch that costs R260 000 – or R5848.40 a month. Ouch. Not gonna happen.
Then the salesman at the dealership suggests that you finance it over 72 months with a residual payment of 40 percent – that way the monthly payment will be only R4232.23. Okay, it’s R230 a month more than you budgeted for, but you can swing it, and a couple of days later you drive out of the dealership in your funky new wheels.
But here’s the kicker:
Six years down the line, you have to come up with a lump sum payment of R104 000, which is about what your six-year-old hatchback is worth, providing you’ve looked after it. Or worse. Your car could have depreciated below that point, in which case you’ll end up owing the bank even after you’ve sold the car.
But there are two different types of residual-payment finance deals: ownership and non-ownership residuals.
In an ownership deal, you’re responsible for that R104 000, come what may. Either you’ll have to refinance the residual, which will cost you R3638.29 a month over 36 months – that means your R260 000 car will be nine years old by the time you’ve finished paying for it, and it will have cost you a grand total of R435 699.
Or you can sell it to pay for it, which gets you out of debt but leaves you without wheels, or you can trade it in on a new car and start all over again.
If however, the deal you signed six years ago was a non-ownership residual payment contract, the car goes back to the bank, and it’s their problem to sell it on and recoup the R104 000 that the car still owes them.
In effect, you’ve been renting the car for six years and, once again, you’re out of debt – but without wheels. There might also be certain restrictions you have to comply with, like a mileage ceiling on the vehicle to ensure the resale value.
Status comes at a price
Balloon payments have a place – especially if you have a large family and need a bigger car than you can afford to pay for, or if your business needs a van or a bakkie that’s above your cash flow.
It’s important to remember that you don’t have to go through the bank of the car dealer’s choice. You can ask for different quotes from other banks and you are in a position to take the best deal for you, not the dealership.
For More Information: Motoring Staff
Under the agreement between Boeing and Sace CDP Group, the Italian government agency said it may offer up to $1.25 billion worth of Dream liner jet loan guarantees to airlines around the world this year.
Coming just ahead of the Paris Air Show at Le Bourgeois later this month, Rome-based Sace’s loan guarantee deal is a welcome development for Chicago-based Boeing (NYSE: BA).
No export financing for jet deals is currently being approved by the Export-Import Bank in the U.S. after Republicans blocked them and President Donald Trump threatened to shutter the agency last year.
So far in 2017, Boeing has reported 23 Dream liner sales, though jet makers typically keep bigger deals to announce at the summer air shows and year end.
The financing could help boost sales of Boeing’s flagship, new jet, which has struggled to gain profitability in its early years. Boeing has been shedding jobs in Everett, where the Dream liners are built.
Hainan Air announced that it will purchase 13 Boeing 787-9 (and six 737 Max-8s) in 2018-2019 for an estimated $4.2 billion at list prices, but the China-based airline said it still needs to borrow $2 billion to finance part of the deal.
The Italian export agency said its loan guarantees offer Boeing and the Italian aerospace sector “a shared platform for facilitating the financing of aircraft purchases of mutual interest.”
“The agreement we are announcing strengthens our relationship with an international aerospace giant that has chosen Italy as one of its principal partners,” Alessandro Decio, CEO of Sace CDP Group, said in a news release.
For Boeing, such loan guarantees can mean the difference between completing a big jet deal with an airline or not. But the Italian government has its own interests at play, too.
For More Information: Andrew McIntosh
When the city of Lawrence, Kan. wanted to borrow $650,000 to pay for a new fire truck for its local fire department, it didn’t use traditional banks and bonds to borrow money. Instead it turned to Silicon Valley upstart Neighborly, a two-year old marketplace that connects cities with investors to fund civic projects like schools, parks, and bridges.
Each year, U.S. cities borrow hundreds of billions of dollars to finance civic projects. This debt is typically in the form of municipal bonds, which investors buy for the monthly interest and relative security. Neighborly is a service for marketing these municipal bonds, an estimated $3.8 trillion market.
On Tuesday, Neighborly revealed exclusively to Fortune that it has raised $25 million in additional funding co-led by Palantir co-founder Joe Lonsdale’s firm, 8VC; and Emerson Collective, the organization started by the wife of the late Apple CEO Steve Jobs, Laurene Powell Jobs. Existing investors including Ashton Kutcher’s Sound Ventures, Maven Ventures, Bee Partners, and Stanford University also participated in the funding round. This investment brings the company’s total funding to $35 million.
“We’re modernizing access to public finance,” Neighborly CEO Jase Wilson, said about his company’s business.
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Traditionally, cities use brokers and underwriters to find traditional institutional investors to buy bonds like large banks and financial institutions, explained Wilson. His company, a registered broker itself, has put that search online.
It’s not just large banks that buy the bonds on Neighborly. It’s also people who live in the cities asking for funds. For example, with a Cambridge, Mass. project, residents who live in all five zip codes in the Massachusetts town bought bonds.
It’s worth noting that that for some projects, Neighborly can only round up a relatively small amount of capital. For example, in March the city of Cambridge, Mass. borrowed $58 million, of which $2 million came through Neighborly. The rest was raised from investors outside its service.
“There’s so many better ways that public finance can work using technology,” Mondale said, in an interview with Fortune. “The old processes are a lot more expensive, and only puts the money in the hands of people on Wall Street.”
Neighborly makes money by charging a 1% commission based on the deal size. That compares with the average 2% charged by other companies for most public finance projects, said Wilson. The other benefit, Wilson says, is that city residents can participate in funding their own neighborhood’s projects.
Neighborly declined to reveal its revenue.
Butcher echoed Mondale’s belief about Neighborliness’s opportunity in a statement to Fortune. “They are doing the right thing. They are returning the opportunity of bonds back to the people that stand to gain from them the most.” He continued that he “can see a world where this is not only the best way to get things done, but the only way.”
For More Information: Leena Rao
Irish non-bank lender Finance Ireland said it had a record growth year in 2016, returning a profit before tax of €6.3m.
This compares with a per-tax profit of €3.3m for 2015, while lending volumes rose by 82% year-on-year.
Net assets increased 81% to €72.4m, with year-end cash balances up 21% to €44.8m.
The company also completed a number of milestones last year, including the completion of a €30m equity placement with the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund, and reaching lending of €100m to Irish SMEs with the support of the Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland.
Finance Ireland – which is active in commercial mortgage lending, car finance, leasing and agree-finance – employs 92 people.
The firm’s founder and CEO Billy Kane said the results show “that Finance Ireland is providing a credible alternative in the Irish banking landscape, with strong market presence in the SME, property, motor and agree-finance sectors.
For More Information: rte.ie
What most consumer finance needs is for key information to be made simple and salient
Japan and China will hold their first bilateral financial dialogue in two years to discuss risks to Asia’s economic outlook, such as the protectionist policies advocated by US President Donald Trump and tension over North Korea.
Chinese Finance Minister Xiao Jie, who missed a trilateral meeting with his Japanese and South Korean counterparts on Friday for an emergency domestic meeting, has flown in for the bilateral dialogue on Saturday, seeking to dispel speculation his absence had diplomatic implications.
Xiao and Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso will discuss issues ranging from North Korea’s nuclear and missile program to the two countries’ economic outlook and financial cooperation, when they meet on the sidelines of the Asian Development Bank’s annual meeting in Yokohama.
Senior finance officials from both countries will also hold a separate round of talks, Japanese Finance Ministry officials say.
Relations between Japan and China have been strained over territorial rows and Japan’s occupation of parts of China in World War II, though leaders have recently sought to mend ties through dialogue.
Still, China’s increasing presence in infrastructure finance has alarmed some Japanese policymakers, who worry that Beijing’s new development bank, the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), may overshadow the Japan-backed ADB.
Japan and China do agree on the need to respect free trade, which is crucial to Asia’s trade-dependent economies.
Finance officials from Japan, China and South Korea agreed to resist all forms of protectionism in Friday’s trilateral meeting, taking a stronger stand than G20 major economies against the protectionist policies advocated by Trump.
China has positioned itself as a supporter of free trade in the wake of Trump’s calls to put America’s interests first and pull out of multilateral trade agreements.
Japan has taken a more accommodation stance toward Washington’s argument that trade must not just be free but fair.
For More Information: WORLD BREAKING NEWS
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Republican drive to overhaul financial regulations on Wednesday turned into a contentious debate over Democratic efforts to cast a spotlight on President Donald Trump’s business empire and his refusal to release his tax returns.
House Republicans are working to undo much of the 2010 Dodd-Frank law that put the stiffest restrictions on banks and Wall Street since the 1930s Depression. Democrats don’t have the numbers to stop their efforts in the House, but they are intent on making them pay a price if any conflicts of interest emerge for Trump down the road.
A House panel spent much of the day Wednesday debating an amendment that would bar the GOP replacement for the law from going into effect until the Office of Government Ethics certifies that the changes in the bill would not directly benefit Trump or any of his appointees with influence over federal regulations.
“As members of Congress develop a public policy, you have a responsibility to ensure this president is not benefiting,” said Rep. Maxine Waters, the top Democrat on the House Financial Services Committee. “Why hasn’t he shown his tax returns? That would help us understand whether or not he’s benefiting from any of our work.”
Republicans called the amendment as “partisan as it gets.”
“One thing after the next, I see my colleagues on the other side do everything in their power to undermine this president and it’s wrong,” said Rep. Lee Zeldin, R-N.Y.
Presidents are not subject to the conflict-of-interest laws that their own appointees must follow, but until now they have followed them anyway to set an example. Trump is blazing a different trail by refusing to give up a financial interest in his company while turning over the reins to his adult sons and a senior executive.
Some ethics experts have called for Trump to sell off his assets and place his investments in a blind trust, an entity that his family would not control. That’s what previous presidents have done.
On the second day of its contentious, marathon session, the GOP-led Financial Services Committee also rebuffed Democratic attempts to protect the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the five-year-old agency which enforces consumer protection laws and scrutinizes the practices of virtually any business selling financial products and services. That ranges from credit card companies to mortgage services to auto lenders.
Democrats said that when they created Dodd-Frank, they wanted to make the consumer agency as independent from political influence as possible.
Republicans complained that Congress has too little say over how the bureau operates.
“It’s about checks and balances,” said Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas, the chairman of the Financial Services Committee. “This is part of what we do.”
Democrats also tried to preserve a new federal rule targeting consumers’ retirement investments and the advice they receive from financial professionals. The Republican overhaul bill would repeal a Labor Department rule requiring brokers who recommend investments for retirement savers to meet the stricter standard that applies to registered advisers: They must act as “fiduciaries” — trustees who are obliged to put their clients’ best interests above all.
For More Information:- KEVIN FREKING
On Monday morning, President Donald Trump floated the idea of a so-called 21st century Glass-Steal Act, in which the largest banks in the United States would be broken up.
As it turns out, some of the most powerful minds in finance view such a maneuver as a “dream scenario” as President Trump enacts his agenda of tax cuts, financial deregulation, healthcare reform and infrastructure spending. Ken Griffin, the billionaire founder of hedge fund giant Citadel said at the Milken Global Institute conference in Beverly Hills, California he is in favor of a bank breakup.
“My fantasy is we actually break up the big banks,” Griffin told an audience of big name investors and corporate executives. Griffin argues that the size and scale of banks has made them noncompetitive and prevented innovation in the industry. Other sectors, where power isn’t concentrated at the top, allow for entrepreneurs and private investors to bring new models.
“Banking is shielded from good governance by the Federal Reserve, banking is shielded by innovation by the Fed,” Griffin said, citing regulations such as a 10% cap on ownership. But Griffin isn’t much of a believer that bank breakup is in the cards, despite Trump’s proclamations. “I wish we would end too big to fail in the banking system, but of course we are not.”
About the Trump administration’s first 100 days, Griffin said that while little real legislation has been accomplished, the business-friendly tone set by Washington augurs well for the economy. “If you look at a checklist for accomplishments it is a little thin. But there is a tone at the top, and it is a new day in America,” Griffin told the audience of hundreds at the Beverly Hills Hilton.
The weight of regulation in industries ranging from financial services to energy has been lifted, he said, “That is a really positive for America.” Griffin said the deregulate bias may help accelerate growth after a recovery he says failed to raise living standards in the country. “What is frustrating about this recovery is it hasn’t been as strong as it needs to be to raise living standards.”
Concerns Griffin has ranges from the tough work ahead to enact legislation, in addition to a mature business cycle that may eventually risk tipping into recession. He held his most pointed comments to the anti-immigrant tone in Washington. “I am terrified,” Griffin said. “Our entire country is built on the intelligence and work ethic of immigrants.”
For More Information:- Antoine Gara