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Aug 19, 2013

China's New Leadership Takes Hard Line in Secret Memo: NYT Global Update August 19, 2013:

August 19, 2013
Compiled 20:45 GMT

Global Update


China's New Leadership Takes Hard Line in Secret Memo

A document released to Communist Party cadres enumerated what it called subversive social currents, including Western-inspired notions of human rights, that must be fought.

Egyptian Court Is Said to Order That Mubarak Be Released

While the authorities could find a way to keep former President Hosni Mubarak in detention and his release did not appear imminent, the development risked adding a volatile new element to Egypt's crisis.

Sea Level Could Rise 3 Feet by 2100, Climate Panel Finds

A summary of the next big United Nations climate report emphasizes that the basic facts giving rise to global alarm about climate change are more established than ever.

Video: Bodies on the Border

Forensics experts in Arizona struggle to identify the bodies of migrants who perished while attempting to cross illicitly from Mexico into the United States.

Op-Ed Contributor

Misrule of Law

Xu Zhiyong's fight made him one of China's best-known human rights advocates, and it has now landed him in prison.

North Korea Agrees to Talk About Reunions for Families

Revival of a humanitarian program would be another step toward a thaw on the divided Korean Peninsula after months of tension.

How American Hopes for a Deal in Egypt Were Undercut

Egypt's military crackdown has left President Obama in a no-win position: risk a partnership that has been the bedrock of Middle East peace, or stand by while allies try to hold on to power by mowing down opponents.

Jamaica Fights to Break Grip of Violent Past

The island nation is emerging as a bright spot in the fight against drugs and organized crime that extends across the region.

Business Meetings Move Poolside (Don't Overdress)

Cabanas, long a fixture in Beverly Hills and Miami Beach, have become hot hotel amenities in other cities, where they offer a relaxed setting to get a deal done.

Banks Fall Short of Planning for the Worst, Fed Finds

The Federal Reserve described significant shortcomings in large banks' responses to so-called stress tests, which aim to ensure that they can withstand economic shocks.

Public Funds Take Control of Assets, Dodging Wall Street

The shift is motivated, in no small part, by the high fees and lackluster performance that many hedge funds and private equity firms have delivered to their biggest clients in recent years.
The Idea

An Inventor Wants One Less Wire to Worry About

In college, Meredith Perry wondered why wireless devices needed wires for recharging. That question has led to her work on a way to transmit electrical power via sound waves.
Bits Blog

Children Lost in War Zones and Disasters Find Their Families With an App

Lost children separated from their families because of conflicts in places like Uganda and Sudan can now be reunited with their families much faster - in hours instead of weeks.

Most of U.S. Is Wired, but Millions Aren't Plugged In

The Obama administration is concerned that 60 million are shut out of jobs, government services, health care and education, and that the economic effects are looming larger.

Others Are Imitating, but Only Barcelona Is Dominating

Barcelona crushed Levante, 7-0, in its league opener, and while Real Betis can play a style similar to the Catalan giant, it still ended up losing to Real Madrid, 2-1.

Another Gold for Bolt as World Championships End

Usain Bolt secured his third gold medal of the world championships by running an upbeat anchor leg to secure the men's 4x100-meter relay for Jamaica.

Bolt Completes a Double and Russian Women Break Through

Usain Bolt claimed a victory in the 200 meters and Russian women broke the American grip on the 4x400-meter relay at the world championships on Saturday.

Second Act for the Temple of the Stars

A faded Los Angeles synagogue, built by Hollywood moguls on the eve of the Depression, is regaining its splendor with a dazzling $150 million reconstruction.

Manning's Lawyers Urge a Lenient Sentence

Defense lawyers said Pfc. Bradley Manning, who awaits sentencing for his role in disclosing government documents to WikiLeaks, could once again be a productive member of society.

U.S. Workers Are Grounded by Deep Cuts

Tangible examples of the resulting spending cuts abound five months after lawmakers failed to reach an agreement on how to reduce the nation's debt.
Op-Ed Columnist

The Egyptian Debacle

Islamist ire has been fed and the perception of Western hypocrisy reinforced by a failure that is also America's.
Op-Ed Columnist

One Reform, Indivisible

In looking at Obamacare, Republicans trip over the three-legged stool.

Is the government trying to break up JPMorgan?: CNBC News August 19, 2013.

Robyn Beck | AFP | Getty Images
Any doubt that the rules have changed for the way megabanks do business around the world should be removed now.
News over the weekend that regulators had launched a probe into JPMorgan Chase's hiring practices in China provide further evidence that too-big-to-fail banks are in the firing line.
The bank is suspected of hiring the children of a prominent Chinese officials in an effort to curry favor among officials there, according to reports first filed by The New York Times's DealBook blog.
Peddling influence in China is hardly a new business trend.
Prosecuting big-league Wall Street banks for doing so is.

Continue reading:

DealBook P.M. Edition August 19, 2013.: Banks Fall Short of Planning for the Worst, Fed Finds

Monday, August 19, 2013
Banks Fall Short of Planning for the Worst, Fed Finds The Federal Reserve described significant shortcomings in large banks responses to so-called stress tests, which aim to ensure that they can withstand economic shocks.
    Standard Deduction: A Trophy Owner Also Familiar With Turmoil While Jeff Bezos's purchase of The Washington Post may be the product of trophy hunting, he has demonstrated the skills needed to navigate tumultuous environments, says Victor Fleischer.
    White Collar Watch: End of the Options Backdating Era The string of options-backdating cases showed how difficult it was to prosecute senior executives for corporate misconduct that involves arcane accounting issues, says Peter J. Henning.
    Re/Max Files for I.P.O. as Housing Market Continues Upswing Re/Max Holdings, one of the country's biggest real estate brokerages, filed to go public on Monday, preparing to follow its rival Realogy Holdings onto the public markets.
    Deal Professor: How Judge's Ruling Ends Legal Threat to Dell Buyout Carl C. Icahn once threatened "years of litigation" over the Dell buyout, but a judge's statements on Friday are a vindication for the Dell board and the procedures it put in place, says Steven M. Davidoff.
    Statoil Sells North Sea Assets to Austrian Rival Statoil, Norway's state-controlled oil company, said on Monday that it would sell a package of North Sea assets to OMV, a smaller Austrian producer, for $2.65 billion.
    CVC Capital Buys Online Payment Company The acquisition of the Skrill Group, which serves about 35 million account holders worldwide, is the third deal in a week for CVC Capital Partners.
    Atlas Copco of Sweden to Buy Edwards Group The Swedish engineering company Atlas Copco agreed on Monday to buy the British industrial company Edwards Group for up to $1.2 billion.
    Breakingviews: Moody's U-Turn on Hybrid Bonds It's another reason for companies to issue either debt or equity, or a mix of each, but not something pretending to be the best of both, writes Neil Unmack of Reuters Breakingviews.
    Corporate Earnings Companies reporting results on Tuesday include J. C. Penney, Home Depot, Best Buy, BHP Billiton and Glencore Xstrata.
    In the United States On Tuesday, Kodak is seeking court approval of its bankruptcy plan.
    Overseas On Tuesday, the European Commission reports on euro zone construction.


Wall Street at Close Report by MarketWatch August 19, 2013: U.S. stocks end lower; yields hit 2-year highs

U.S. stocks end lower; yields hit 2-year highs

By William L. Watts, MarketWatch 
NEW YORK (MarketWatch)U.S. stocks dropped on Monday after a choppy trading session, with the energy and financial sectors leading the S&P 500 lower, as Treasury yields hit fresh two-year highs. 

The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA -0.47% fell 70.73 points, or 0.5%, to end at 15,010.74, with 23 of its 30 components ending in negative territory.
The S&P 500 SPX -0.59% declined 9.77 points, or 0.6%, to 1,646.06.
This was the fourth consecutive session of declines for both the Dow industrials and the S&P 500, marking the longest losing streak since Dec. 28, 2012, when the market fell for five straight trading days.
More than 640 million shares traded on the New York Stock Exchange and composite volume topped 2.8 billion. The Nasdaq Composite COMP -0.38%  fell 13.69 points, or 0.4%, to 3,589.09. 

Markets pricing in end of bond buys
Paul Vigna joins the News Hub with a look at today's market action, including three stocks to watch. Photo: Getty Images.

“It feels like interest rates have probably overshot to the upside,” with the yield on the 10-year note likely headed toward the 3% level, said Randy Frederick, managing director of active trading and derivatives at the Schwab Center for Financial Research in Austin, Texas. Read: 3 reasons to be bullish on stocks and 3 reasons to be bearish.
Treasury yields continued to push higher, exploring territory last seen in July 2011. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note 10_YEAR +1.84% rose seven basis points, or 0.07 percentage point, to 2.89%.
Rising yields can undercut stocks due to fears that higher borrowing costs will slow economic activity. Yields have been on the rise since this spring, when Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke indicated the Fed could begin scaling back its $85 billion-a-month bond-buying plan later this year. 

While stocks recovered from a June pullback fueled by concerns over the Fed’s plans, markets stumbled last week as Treasury yields continued to rise.
Stocks fell Friday, leaving the Dow with its biggest weekly percentage drop and point loss of 2013, while the S&P 500 saw its biggest weekly point loss.
Analysts are debating whether a decision by the Fed to begin scaling back its bond-buying program should be viewed as a negative factor for stocks.
“I happen to be in the camp that thinks good news is, in fact, good news and that investors are overreacting to the prospect of tapering,” said Jerry Webman, chief economist at Oppenheimer Funds, in a note to clients.
In fact, market expectations that the Fed will begin to cut back its purchases may have grown so strong that failure to act soon could be a bigger negative for stocks, because it would raise questions about the underlying strength of the economy, he said.
Schwab’s Frederick, however, argued that prospects for a data-inspired Fed tapering combined with a range of other potentially negative factors, including renewed budget strains and further fiscal tightening due to the sequester, set the stage for further stock weakness. He sees scope for a retest of the June lows. A failure to taper in September, while not likely, would probably spark a relief rally in equities, he said.

Michael S. Derby/Dow Jones Newswires
Central bankers and economists will gather at Jackson Hole, Wyo., later this week.
With no major economic data due on Monday, investors are looking ahead to the release Wednesday of the minutes of the latest meeting of Fed policy makers, as well as the Kansas City Federal Reserve’s annual retreat in Jackson Hole, Wyo., at the end of the week.
Bernanke, however, won’t be attending, likely undercutting its influence, and leaving investors to obsess all the more over yields.
Meanwhile, the minutes of the Federal Open Market Committee’s July 30-31 meeting will be released at 2 p.m. Eastern on Wednesday. The summary will be scanned for information on how many policy makers were prepared to slow asset purchases, economists said.
It is a light week for economic data, with July existing-home sales due on Wednesday and new-home-sales figures set for release on Friday. Weekly jobless claims on Thursday could also sway markets after a larger-than-expected drop in first-time applications for benefits reported last week.

Intel gains

Shares of Intel Corp. INTC +1.67% rose 1.7%, making it the biggest gainer on the Dow. The rise came after Piper Jaffray analyst Auguste Gus Richard raised the stock’s rating to neutral from underweight, citing potential gains from the corporate market and the coming release of Windows 8.1.
Facebook Inc. FB +1.97% shares rose 2% to $37.81 after Evercore Partners analyst Ken Sena raised his price target to $45 from $34.
Shares of Apple Inc. AAPL +1.08% maintained upside momentum after the company posted its strongest weekly performance since October 2011 last week after Carl Icahn trumpeted the company’s merits on Twitter. Apple shares rose 1.1% on Monday.
Dollar General Corp. DG +3.09% rose 3.1%, turning in the strongest performance in the S&P 500. J.P. Morgan analysts raised the stock to overweight from neutral, citing a “sustainable mid-teens-plus [earnings per share] compounding-growth story unfolding.” See: Monday's Movers.
J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. JPM -2.74% fell 2.7%, making it the largest loser in the Dow. News reports said U.S. regulators are looking into the bank’s hiring practices in China.
Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. CLF -4.77% dropped nearly 5%, making it the biggest loser in the S&P 500. The decline comes after a nearly 4% drop on Friday.
In other markets, Asian stocks closed mostly lower, while European stocks traded with modest but broad-based losses.
Gold futures dropped $5.30, or 0.4%, to settle at $1,365.70 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange.
Oil prices ended slightly lower, while the dollar traded mixed against other major currencies. The Indian rupee, meanwhile, made headlines as it sank to an all-time low versus the dollar as efforts by the Indian government to stem panic selling failed to do the trick. 

William L. Watts is MarketWatch's senior markets writer, based in New York. Follow him on Twitter @wlwatts.

Wall Street at Close Report by CNBC August 19, 2013.

Stocks log first 4-day losing streak in 2013, Dow ends near 15000

Stocks kicked off the week with a thud, with the Dow and S&P 500 logging their first four-day losing streaks this year, as Treasury yields hit a two-year high amid ongoing worries over when the Federal Reserve might start to reduce its asset purchases.
"All of last week, people were trying to make the story match the market move," said Art Hogan, managing director at Lazard Capital. "If the pullback last week was due to tapering worries, then I think we may have overdone it. I was more concerned about the actual negative news—weak guidance from Cisco and earnings misses from Macy's, Wal-Mart and Kohl's."
Name Price Change %Change
DJIA Dow Jones Industrial Average 15010.74
-70.73 -0.47%
SandP500  SandP 500 Index 1646.06
-9.77 -0.59%
NASDAQ Nasdaq Composite Index 3589.09
-13.69 -0.38%

The Dow Jones Industrial Average declined to close near the psychologically-important 15,000 level, dragged by JPMorgan and Alcoa. Last week, the index suffered its worst weekly decline of 2013, shedding 2.2 percent.
The SandP 500 and the Nasdaq also finished in the red. The Dow and S&P 500 are on track for their biggest monthly declines since May 2012.
The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX), widely considered the best gauge of fear in the market, jumped above 15.
Most key S&P sectors fell into negative territory, led by energy and financials.

Fed tapering and the economy
Investors are looking ahead to Wednesday's Fed minutes. John Silvia, Wells Fargo Securities and Ward McCarthy, Jefferies & Company, provide insight on how possible taper talk could impact the economy. 
"The movement in the market is a bit exaggerated when volume is light and that's going to be the case over the next couple of weeks," said Hogan. "We don't have much this week but we do have a real concentration of information on Wednesday and Thursday including the Fed's meeting minutes…until we get some news in terms of what tapering is going to look like, we may be sideways this week." With no major economic data on tap Monday, trading will likely be light as investors look ahead to the minutes of the last Fed meeting, which will be released on Wednesday, for clues as to when the central bank will start scaling back its $85 billion per month stimulus program. (Read more: September or December taper – does it really matter?) In Asia, China's benchmark index, the Shanghai Composite, climbed 0.8 percent as sentiment recovered, following last week's trading error at Everbright Securities. Plus, the Japanese Nikkei reversed earlier losses after posting a wider-than-expected monthly trade deficit, which cast some doubt on Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's aggressive economic policies. (Read more: That 6% rally in China? Blame a trading goof) On the earnings front, Saks posted a winder-than-expected quarterly loss after weak sales of shoes and handbags caused the department store chain to mark down prices. Saks became the latest retailer to post lackluster sales. Last week, Macy's, Nordstrom, Kohl's and Wal-Martall posted lower-than-expected sales. In July, Saks reached a deal to be acquired by Canada's Hudson's Bay. Urban Outfitters and Bob Evans are schedule to post results after the closing bell. Intel rallied after Piper Jaffray lifted its rating on the semiconductor company to "neutral" from "underweight" and raised its price target to $22 from $20. Google ticked higher on the ninth anniversary of its IPO. The search-engine giant's stock has skyrocketed an impressive 900 percent since going public in 2004 at $85 apiece. Only nine other stocks have outperformed Google in the last nine years. Priceline, Apple, Netflix and Salesforce are among notable names. JPMorgan Chase declined following weekend reports that U.S. authorities have opened a bribery investigation into whether the bank hired the children of Chinese officials to help it win lucrative business.
In the bond markets, yields on 10-year benchmark Treasurys briefly touched 2.90 percent, the highest since July 2011 amid Fed tapering concerns. So far this month, U.S. bond mutual funds and ETFs have seen outflows of $19.7 billion, according to TrimTabs. "Heavy bond fund redemptions and the backup in bond yields should concern all investors, not just bond investors, because the U.S. economy is a highly leveraged economy that will not easily tolerate higher borrowing costs," TrimTabs CEO David Santschi said in a report. (Read more: Bond exodus accelerates as yields creep nearer 3%) Most homebuilders traded in the red, dragged by KBHome and Beazer. Brent crude oil rose above $110 a barrel as the loss of Libyan oil exports tightened supply and as ongoing violent unrest in Egypt stoked fears for exports from other oil producers in the Middle East and North Africa. Oil prices are likely to drift higher this week, CNBC's weekly sentiment survey showed. However, price gains may be limited, as analysts said the uptick in political instability in Egypt had already been priced in. "There is still too much oil," said Thomas McMahon, director of the Pan Asia Clearing Enterprise and former chief executive officer of the Singapore Mercantile Exchange. "But cheap dollars, technical disconnect and Egypt seems to be sweeping this aside. Common sense and supply demand will prevail but maybe not this week."
—By CNBC's JeeYeon Park (Follow JeeYeon on Twitter:

Indian gold imports set to resume after 4-week halt as export rule is clarified: GATA | THE GATA DISPATCH AUGUS 19, 2013.

Indian gold imports set to resume after 4-week halt as export rule is clarified

By Siddesh Mayenkar and A. Ananthalakshmi
Monday, August 19, 2013

MUMBAI -- Indian traders said they will start importing gold again over the next week or so after the central bank clarified a new rule that brought the flow of the precious metal into the world's top gold consumer to a standstill at the end of July. A resumption of imports would ease tight domestic supply and prices ahead of a festival and wedding season that kicks off next month. Indian imports would also support benchmark international gold prices, which hit a two-month high on Monday.

For the complete story:

BIV Today's Business News August 19, 2013: Reliance Group buys Pat Anderson insurance agencies.

Sports and Leisure

Vancouver law firm partners with
BC Lions

Vancouver’s McMillan LLP has signed a two-year partnership with the BC Lions Football Club, the law firm announced ... READ MORE



Former Canfor CEO takes the reins at struggling Catalyst

 A former Canfor CEO will take the top job at battered Catalyst Paper Corp., the company ... READ MORE

Film and Entertainment


Rainmaker lists on
TSX Venture, announces
$1.2 million loss

Vancouver animation studio Rainmaker Entertainment Inc. announced losses $1.2 million for the first half of 2013, but says it is on track to ... READ MORE

Retail and Manufacturing


E-commerce pays off
for London Drugs

Richmond-based retailer London Drugs says its bet on e-commerce is paying off, with sales growth tripling since it relaunched ... READ MORE

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Expanded section of Okanagan’s Highway 97 opens to traffic

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Central 1 Credit Union

Reliance Group buys Pat Anderson insurance agencies

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Provincial government’s C3 legislation is designed to promote investment in social enterprises, but its many regulations threaten to ... READ MORE

TF Metals Report: A big fat zero for Comex gold deliveries: GATA | THE GATA DISPATCH AUGUST 19, 2013

TF Metals Report: A big fat zero for Comex gold deliveries

2p ET Monday, August 19, 2013

The TF Metals Report's Turd Ferguson writes that Comex gold deliveries have declined sharply and that JPMorganChase is taking nearly all of them, having recently switched from a huge net-short position on the Comex to a huge net-long one. Ferguson figures that this foretells higher prices. His commentary is headlined "A Big Fat Zero" and it's posted at the TF Metals Report here:

CHRIS POWELL, Secretary/Treasurer
Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee Inc.