Tag Archives: Natixis Global Asset Management

This last day

This last day should be a day of reflection, a day of consideration. I feel none of these things as I am observing the mistakes that Marine Le Pen is now making. I get why she would get the referendum vamped up and get stronger waves towards Frexit, yet her call to leave NATO makes a lot less sense. For one, NATO still does mean the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, France is part of that North Atlantic, she has a duty of care there (a lot less so for the EC, the EEC or the Euro for that matter). She does make a point when we look at the expansion into Eastern Europe. Let’s face it, when we look into the original line, there was Germany which goes a lot to the south, then basically it is Italy. Getting into Eastern Europe makes a lot less sense. Let’s not forget, the Americans at present no longer have the means to play this game. A fact Lockheed needs to take into consideration, even if the price of the F-35 is given without an engine ($133 million, without engine), making it basically the most expensive paperweight in history. In addition, it came with a truckload of issues in 2014, whilst the 2015 report states “the majority of the fixes and for capability deficiencies being discovered are being deferred to later blocks rather than being resolved“, with new items of concern added. I found the additional quote form the 2015 report “inherent design problems that are only becoming more obvious and difficult to fix” most amusing, so if Marine Le Pen has in mind to not go anywhere near a Lockheed design, that would make sense. Now I do not want to brag, but with all my flying hours in the Microsoft Flight Simulator (2004), I might actually beat that latest flawed Lockheed F-35 with my experience in a Mikoyan MiG-35 (OK, I am bragging a little as I have never flown ANY jet in my life). What is the issue is that the politicians have not kept a good accord on the military abilities of the armed forces, not the people mind you, but the equipment they get stuck with. As such we see a 1.5 trillion dollar project showing more holes than an IKEA Pasta insert (named ‘Stabil’, which is hilarious as it is also means stable in Swedish). A project $160 billion over budget and 7 years behind schedule, and these were the numbers in 2014. A defence project that was too big to kill and that is what the NATO partners have to content with?

So why these topics? The world is changing, it is changing faster than ever before and the minders of the store have been so selfish in regards to their own personal needs (read: visibility of self via ego) and achievements that the duty they had was pushed under the rug. This is how I personally see the F-35 project.

The financial sector in the UK alone these financial boys (girls also) had the bulk of the £44bn in bonuses this year, so did your quality of life increase any (the topic jump will make sense in a few moments)? Now, even as wealth increased, it did not do so to that extent. It is not that fair to just have a go at the financial sector, apart from the fact that they ended up with bonuses of 1900% more than the amount all the others got, so balance is not that much in play. That view is shown stronger as we look at Forbes this week (at http://www.forbes.com/sites/francescoppola/2016/12/28/greece-the-game-is-on-again/#2585dbd946e5), the quotes that matter here are “Euclid Tsakalotos, the normally mild-mannered Finance Minister, accused the IMF writers of “economizing on the truth”. He pointed out that the main reason why so few Greeks pay income taxes is that their incomes have crashed, and that nearly half of Greek pensioners are living below the poverty line” and “The IMF’s case is that pension cost as a proportion of GDP is now unsustainable, and further, that the creditors are not going to agree to debt relief while pension cost remains so high. It is probably right on both counts. But once again, what really matters is the psychological framing“, in that regard I will be on the side of the Greeks, but not on the side of Greece. You see when their previous governments got loans and misrepresented their value, they had zero consideration on what pensions were in regards to the loans that they were getting under false pretense, in that regard, did any of those politicians go to jail? Did they refund 90% of their incomes? I am certain that the answer to both is ‘No!’, in addition those elected officials are sitting pretty and nowhere near the poverty line. Yet in all this the hardship is not over, in addition, the facts (as I personally see them) requires a little more digging, especially when I read “Attica Bank, the country’s fifth-largest lender, was poised to install a new management team he thought was capable of turning round the struggling lender” which were the thoughts of Yannis Stournaras, the governor of the central bank of Greece, which was followed by “While he was in the air, the government in Athens reversed the decision to award the job to Mr Pantalakis. It was his introduction to a web of allegedly related events, ranging from a raid on his wife’s business to an unsuccessful bid for TV rights backed by Attica loans“, this gives the implied issues on Yannis Stournaras, which gives more cause concern when we see “A confidential report on Attica carried out this year by the European Central Bank, the Eurozone’s top bank supervisor, and seen by the Financial Times, cited “severe findings” of poor governance and inadequate controls on lending. With some 70 per cent of its loans rated as non-performing, Mr Stournaras and others believed Attica urgently needed a professional banker at the helm. Government sources denied any intervention in the process to select Attica’s CEO” (at https://www.ft.com/content/aab0aaba-c6db-11e6-8f29-9445cac8966f). The implications are on a few levels especially in the light of ‘government sources denied‘, there is a mess on a few levels and the idea that personal needs were adamant in decisions is not without probable cause. The levels that are in question cannot be set because too much information is missing, but there are issues, make no mistake about that.

These issues connect, not directly but in the view of national voters, governments have made absolute shambles of their nations giving power to those with key wealth management options, in that need those who need to be at the helm are politicised and set to markers that are off the table and outside of the scope of visibility to scrutinise, whilst the presentations are showing markers that do not fit the person best suited for the job, in that Greece is not the only place with such issues. In the UK Mark Carney is facing similar issues, yet in the opposite direction. The best person for the job is the one the elected government seems to have an issue with. The independent (at http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/bank-of-england-mark-carney-theresa-may-attack-monetary-policy-tory-conference-speech-a7380016.html) gives us “Mr Carney argued that the monetary policy pursued by the Bank in recent years has had a positive impact that is “without parallel”, despite the Prime Minister using her speech to claim it had led to “bad side effects”“, in addition we see “Since quantitative easing was first introduced in the economy in 2009 … there’s been 2.6 million jobs created, GDP is up 16 per cent, per capita income is up 9 per cent and this is following a trauma in the economy“, we might see this as good news, but the good news is in the UK not dripping down to the other people just yet. In addition, the dangers will change if sharp budgets are not maintained. Getting the debt down is an absolute first, it will have additional benefits down the road, yet the initial benefit is that money could go to other destinations than paying for the interest of the debt, the interest of a debt amount that is currently in excess of 1.6 trillion. This was not the first attack, Michael Gove had a go at England’s Marky Mark in October. It is always nice when a person is called arrogant, especially when that person has proven to be amongst the very best in his field on the planet. I myself had had some issues in the past with Mark Carney, yet not against the man, but the economic issues that the UK faced because of actions (read objectives) pushed for by politicians, however his speech in the House of Lords showed him to be the expert he is and he nearly got me away from the Brexit team. Yet Mark Carney himself states it very well when he said: “Politicians have done a very good job of setting up the system. Where it can be difficult, sometimes, is if there are political comments on our policies as opposed to political comments on our objectives“, in this we see the issue that is part of the problem. as the politicians set up the objectives, they are then confronted with the policies from technocrats and those two groups do not see eye to eye, so friction goes back and forth, the Lockheed F-35 lightning is an excellent example here, in addition that part got an extra iteration as the military requirements were added by yet another group (read: the military). In all this the political objective is hampering the essential need against ‘it needs to be done by date X for no more than amount Y‘, which gives us the political joke that the NHS IT project was. A present from the Labour government which boiled down to a £11.2 billion wrapper around an empty box. Two projects set through objectives that ended up being off the wall and the back and forth friction that resulted in something unmanageable and non-functional. I reckon the political side of both events needs a new level of scrutiny, one that we have not considered before. In that regard having people like Mark Carney around is essential for the wheels of a state to remain functional, because if there is one clear thing, it is that America lost that oversight some time ago, before this Democratic Administration, the previous republican one lost sight of the needs and the accountability of the intelligence network and data processing side no later than 2006, we can all agree that the 2007-2012 total budget of $435 billion was money massively spent in all the wrong ways. This was shown in a Foreign office document that was quoted in an article stating “Army officials, though, said Palantir wasn’t up to the job. Now, a 57-page report by the Pentagon’s acquisitions arm basically says the Army was wrong to dismiss the Palantir system. The study instead gives Palantir high marks on most of the Army’s 20 key requirements for the intelligence system, including the ability to analyse large amounts of information, including critical data about terrorist networks and the locations of explosive devices, and synchronize it in a way that helps troops on the ground combat their enemies more effectively“, so there too billions were spent when millions could have sufficed. When the EGO of an individual with the power to decide is on the line, the results could be disastrous. In my personal view, if we accept the wrongful spending of 25 billion, how many extra troops could have been saved by adding fire support groups to those in IRAQ in those years? How many of the 4486 fatalities could have been prevented?

Politicians, advisors and ego are a really dangerous combination in many ways, even as we look at what is coming now, we need to be mindful of the changes that some are pushing for. Even if we are in favour of dropping the EC altogether, pushing NATO boundaries might not be the best solution. France might be privy to one of the better intelligence machines, that machine is also dependent on the intelligence it is fed from allies, an essential element that will fall away when NATO does, Marine Le Pen should be very mindful of that.

Yet this year and more important 2017 will go beyond Frexit. There is still a large debate on the Netherlands making any move away from the European Community, the numbers require people to be realistic on what will happen, yet those numbers are nowhere near the numbers Brexit had, so it is still unlikely that this will happen at present, no matter how certain Frexit will be. Italy might not have any manoeuvring space, it requires a massive infuse of funds, when we see the Reuters quote “An Italian government official told Reuters on Tuesday that €20bn earmarked for the rescue of the Italian banking system should suffice“, we need to wonder in how much trouble Italy is. This question is raised as we see Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena will issue €15 billion of debt next year (source: RTE). So we see another iteration where “The Treasury may have to put up around €6.6 billion to salvage the lender, including €2 billion to compensate around 40,000 retail bond holders“, so, how exactly is it acceptable that people ‘invest’ with a risk, yet when that risk comes calling, they still get compensated? How did any of us ever sign up for that?

Anyone who mentions that it is for the good of all is of their rocker plain and simple. Here too we see connection between France and Italy, mainly that the Natixis Global Asset Management (NGAM) thought it was a good idea to list Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena as a major purchase right next to Ubisoft. I reckon a little less ‘lack of nationalism’ and putting all of that cash in addition to the other amount into Ubisoft might have been a decently better idea. I feel certain that next year when we see the ‘Top Ten Holdings’ in the Natixis report will not make mention of Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena, which could just be me though.

So in this last day we see that we have quite the collection of choices to deal with, some good and many bad ones. Yet no matter what is happening, no matter what will fall, there is a decent indication that unless changes are made 2017 will not be a good year. I might be too negative to see some level of collapse in Q2 (no later than Q3) in the next year, yet the proper setting and if the key players are willing to forego ego and focus on cooperation, they would be setting the stage for a lucrative 2018, that is beside the initial technological presentations of the new age of G5. G5 will be the pushing power in IP, especially Trade Marks, yet that path is also loaded with new growth opportunities for IT and developers as they start setting the tone of what 5G could personalise, it will be the first firm push to switch providers to SaaS. That is almost without question, the degree to it happening is very much depending on actual cooperation. In that the Telco providers need to realise as per immediate that thinking SaaS whilst selling Paas and charging IaaS, which sounds nice on bonus day. Yet the boomerang effect is that clients will walk away a lot faster and they will also automatically entice 10 personal connection to not seek the services of the telecom provider being that stupid. Infrastructure as a Service is almost a thing of the past. It seems weird, because there should be space for it, yet in our new outfits we see that infrastructure is a long term commitment and with annual mobile purchase the people have learned to be as flexible as possible, so the limited mobiles that some sell (32Gb instead of 64Gb editions) is why people are realising to walk away from those offering limitations instead of solutions. It is at times harder with Platform as a Service. You see, PaaS might sound nice when we see Apple and SAP connecting, yet the bulk of the revenue will be the smaller fish in the pond, the small players will be 80% of the revenue, one can argue the actual taxable cake of government will be largely depending on those players and for them IaaS is a laughable solution when they are trying to get as much as possible in the first few years and those smaller players want as much flexibility as possible taking to some extent PaaS from the table. SaaS will be solution of choice and those now adhering to that need will fall short in 2018 and they are unlikely to be part of anything in 2019. In that we see the government need of objectives that cater to what the SME’s need. A mere application of supply and requirement. You might think that this is not connected to the previous parts, but it is. When we see the NHS, Banks and government, their needs to address their audience, they need to consider that no matter the infrastructure or platform for communications, they all need to see that their clientele is no longer rigid, no longer bound to certain paths for the simple reason that the infrastructure of places like the NHS can no longer deal with. It is by definition a mobile customer base that needs addressing, this means, or at least implies that the SaaS solutions require a wider setup, other paths of non-repudiation and a very different approach to data, its quality, its controls and the application of the results in any report or estimation towards costings and profit. It is a path of contribution, which is set as revenue minus costing.

For the better part an entirely new path in a setting that has for too long been about a rigid collection of data, which when compared to a setting in a flexible framework no longer holds a candle and will come with the implied death of data quality. in these places there will be a growing need for a data team that has the sole purpose of managing the quality of data, this path is one that IT has never worked on to the degree it had, because in the past systems were set in concrete and after the correct data pass had been made, the data usually would not require ‘resetting’ it in another framework, a change that will be almost evident in the systems we will see start in the next 4 years. There, for some the problem becomes that they have never contemplated the changes, which now also means that once they go into the deep of it all, the time required and the resources required will be a lot more draining than ever before. It is in that path that we see the danger of politicians and technocrats in the required path of objectives and policies. As there is plenty of evidence that so far this track record is not that great, we will see a squandering of funds and a dangerous curve of unprotected data whilst no one will be actually held accountable for the transgressions against those consumers aka victims.

So on this last day there is no way that any solution will be found, just take in the information and next week wonder what on earth is about to hit you, there is some speculation in this, yet I believe that the ‘objective callers’ (read: politicians) will rely on the word ‘glitch’ a lot more than ever before, it might just become the most popular word for 2017.

 

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How pointless can a politician be?

That is the first part in the consideration that we see when we see the latest hype for journalists to ignore the reality of the events as they play. This presented reality was given to us today (at http://www.theguardian.com/news/2016/apr/13/mossack-fonseca-raided-offices-investigators-panama), when we consider the article. The title is only part of the deception we are confronted with. ‘Mossack Fonseca raided as investigators meet in Paris to launch tax probe‘, the first level of entertainment. The next is the quote “under the command of prosecutor Javier Caravallo, who specialises in organised crime and money laundering“, really? What education does this man have? The legality of off shore banking has been made so complex that the bulk of the Harvard professors cannot make head or tails of it. So, this Javier Caravallo, a mere prosecutor can figure it out? Who are the journalists kidding here? Mind you, this is not me trying to bring insult to a prosecutor, and I have no knowledge of Javier Caravallo, or have any issues with this man. Yet, if we can agree that Marky Mark of the British Bank (aka Mark Carney), former Governor of the bank of Canada and current Governor of the Bank of England cannot get his head around the off shore cash ‘storage’ issues, can we all agree that Javier Caravallo is out of his depth (and not by a little)?

We then get the quote “The raid comes after the leak of Mossack Fonseca’s huge database provoked international concern about the offshore industry“, which is a truth, yet there are issues, there are massive questions and they need addressing, yet in that similar way the issue is that the US is involved in this as well (personal observation). The fact that Florida is a growing tax haven and that states such as Delaware, Nevada, South Dakota and Wyoming, in particular, are competing with each other to provide foreigners with the secrecy they crave, which is a quote I got from CBS (at http://miami.cbslocal.com/2016/04/06/us-is-emerging-as-a-tax-haven-alongside-switzerland-caymans/), this all is also linked to a Bloomberg article I discussed a few days ago in the article titled ‘Delusional‘ (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2016/04/07/delusional/). It seems that this loud sabre rattling is more about empowering the Rothschild Empire than it is about Mossack Fonseca. The fact that the Guardian remains silent on that part 50 shades of gold, gives me the impression that this is about chastising towards hypocrisy and not about the news at all, this is not even about decent reporting of the news. Which, in my personal mind, gives me the impression that the editorial levels Katharine Viner has gone to regarding certain players is about to hit a new all-time low (but that could just be me).

Yet we are not done here, because this form of comedy is about to get new players. Australian Commissioner Chris Jordan, who in the Guardian article is introduced as a person with a “global mindset for tackling tax evasion and aggressive tax avoidance”. That might be true, it might not. For now we cannot tell because there are elements the press is anxiously avoiding, meaning that the politicians could be aiming to do the same thing.

You see, linked to this is an article from July 2013 (at http://www.theguardian.com/business/2013/jul/14/us-tax-avoidance-google-amazon), where we see “senior officials in Washington have made it known they will not stand for rule changes that narrowly target the activities of some of the nation’s fastest growing multinationals“, 2013? Fastest growing multinationals? I personally think that these are senior ‘spokespeople’ that are in the pockets of large corporations, is that such a stretch? Consider the way that the US tax havens have been avoided by the press at large (apart from Bloomberg and a few CBS articles), consider that all these actions against Mossack Fonseca came from criminal activities, whilst so far not one clear piece of evidence is given that laws have been broken. (a 0.2% infringement does not constitute crime), in addition consider that the largest transgressor of financial ‘morality’ flushed 15 trillion (estimated loss from 2008) into the sewers and we learned this week that one of the principle parties in that event got a mere fine of 5 billion (at http://www.theguardian.com/business/2016/apr/11/goldman-sachs-2008-financial-crisis-mortagage-backed-securities), meaning that the 8 year hardship the American people and Europe at large is paid off with a mere one year of bonuses, which is a true source of hilarity, because it truly gives vision, in my personal view that the US Department of Justice is no longer anything else than a joke.

The final quote is the kicker “The deal, however, includes no criminal sanctions or penalties and is likely to stir additional criticism about the Justice Department’s inability to hold bank executives personally responsible for the financial crisis“, I believe it to be even worse. If any fact ever emerges that the US in any form or size was, as speculated by some cyber specialists, to be behind the Panama Caper, than the transgressions that will massively rule in favour of the Rothschild enterprise will leave the mark that the US government could end up being the most corrupt one in the history of this world, how interesting that the press at large is steering clear of that little titbit.

So what kind of comedy are we seeing unfold?

A slapstick? A piece of presentation where bankers throw pies of money at each other, whilst charging the crowd for every pie, the receiver of the pie pays nothing, the taxpayer pays for the event whilst the cash stuck to the suits of bankers who will charge the government for cleaning the cash and cleaning the suits. A free for all where only the banker ended up smiling and the people paid whilst not getting any entertainment value at all (and a cleaning bill added to their tax papers)

A Farce? The improbable situation where we all look to the left where no crime was committed, we get the quote to ponder ‘A wonderful thing about true wealth is that it just destroys any kind of justice or equality‘, which is shown as the ‘criminals’ involved only pay 0.015% of the damages, the rest is paid for by those watching the damage outside the theatre.

A Satire, where we see presenters mock Mossack Fonseca, whilst they all laughingly carry the bags of ‘evidence’ into Rothschild Trust North America LLC and stating after the delivery that the carried laughter was not guilty of being un-American.

Last there is the Parody, which is exactly like the previous event, but it now just claims that the money shelves in Nevada are just so much prettier than the ones in Panama.

We ignore the Revue, as most politicians can’t sing and in addition, we prefer those who can sing not to do so!

So there are the moments of comedy, the question becomes, which version are we attending here? In this we need to look at Chris Jordan. You see, there is an additional part in this, which we see when we contemplate that this will be chaired by Mark Konza who is the head of the international tax department at the Australian tax office. You see, there is another side in all this. The side I mentioned earlier is also the biggest problem. You see, the Americans are being kept out of all this. This is in part of being confronted with a lame duck inhabitant of a not so circular white building. The quote to mind is “It occurred on the eve of a meeting in Paris of senior officials from the world’s tax authorities, who are intent on analysing the documents as part of new global strategy to crack down on offenders“, which sounds nice, but it is just an empty statement. That view can be fortified when you realise that after the President of the United States wasting the time of any officials in the Hague, we get the fact that after those events (as stated in the Guardian), that “opposition from the US forced the watering down of proposals“, which is what will happen again, but now in another way. You see, in the final moment of presidency, that person tends to be useless (not by choice), as the new president is about to be elected and can undo whatever this president leaves behind. Instead of setting the meetings until AFTER the elections, we see Saber rattling and empty actions. America is part of the problem here and until a strong legislation is placed, the only thing that this tax overhaul will do is play into the hands of Rothschild Wealth management.

Is that where we are heading to?

You see, no matter how we feel about it, we are presented a mere play where the bankers behind the screens are laughing out loud, and they aren’t even hiding that sentiment anymore. As trillions go into trusts and shelters we see no improvements, we see no changes. Until several fundamental changes are set into laws, all actions that happen beforehand are merely wastes of time. It only propagates the false image of the politician, the emptiness of sincerity of the bankers and the injustice of governments supporting these actions. That is the issue at hand and the press publications on a near global scale are ignoring this.

When you read the paper tomorrow, wonder where the US is and why the papers and politicians remain silent on all that.

Finally there is one additional point to make. It was initially mentioned by the Independent last Friday (at http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/panama-papers-banks-must-declare-links-to-mossack-fonseca-by-next-week-a6972971.html) where we see “Banks must declare links to Mossack Fonseca by next week“, is that not interesting? You see they are not the only players. As stated, there is Rothschild Trust North America LLC and one of the larger players namely Natixis Global Asset Management. Are those mentions not equally important? You see, if this becomes a game of discrimination, what laws can be enforced? Common law has been very clear on that over the decades. It is even a bigger issues in France where we see: “Some French politicians have intervened, demanding that the French government permits US citizens in France the right to hold a bank account that is accorded to every other resident in the country. The national ombudsman, the Défenseur des droits, has also been asked to investigate cases of discrimination by French banks” an issue that played one year ago, which makes me wonder what additional infusion Natixis Global Asset Management received over the last year. In all that, will the tax commission be a comedy, or a mere circus with Chris Jordan and Mark Konza as ringmasters, because at this point, the Americans will stay in the shadows as much as possible.

 

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