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Sun, 22nd January 2017

Anirudh Sethi Report

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Archives of “christianity” Tag

Former UN Secretary-General’s Brother/Nephew Indicted In U.S. On Bribery Charges

Less than two weeks after stepping down as U.N. Secretary-General, a move many interpreted as an indication of his intention to run for the Presidency of South Korea, two of Ban Ki-Moon’s relatives have been indicted in the U.S. on charges of bribery.  According to the Daily Mail, Ban Ki-Moon’s brother, Ban Ki-sang, and nephew, Joo Hyun “Dennis” Bahn who is a New York real estate broker, have been indicted for an alleged scheme to bribe a Middle Eastern official to use his country’s sovereign wealth fund to purchase a struggling $800 million real estate complex in Vietnam.  Joo Hyun Bahn has been arrested in New York City and is expected to appear in court later today according to the office of U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara.

 Two relatives of former U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon have been indicted on U.S. charges that they engaged in a scheme to bribe a Middle Eastern official in connection with the attempted $800 million sale of a building complex in Vietnam.

Joo Hyun “Dennis” Bahn, a New York real estate broker who is Ban Ki-Moon’s nephew, and his father Ban Ki-sang, Ban Ki-moon’s brother who was a senior executive at South Korean construction firm Keangnam Enterprises Co Ltd, were charged in an indictment unsealed on Tuesday in Manhattan federal court.

Bahn is in custody and expected to appear in court later on Tuesday, a spokeswoman for Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said. Defense lawyers could not immediately be identified.

Moon

Yesterday Sensex Rallied 777 :Properties of the number 777

Symbolism

  • This number joins together the principles of the man, 700, the cosmic plans, 70, and their image in the Archetype, 7, according to R. Allendy. It is the universal organization, 7 + 7 + 7 = 21, the general evolution.
  • Represent the celestial perfection, 7, on the 3 plans of the manifestation: matter, astral (mental or soul) and spirit.
  • It is the number of the sacred work of the sons of God for the establishment of the Kingdom of God on the Earth, mainly for the period of the seventh millennium after Adam where it is written that Satan will be chained for thousand years.
  • In esotericism, 777 means that virgin spirits (those to which God gave the life with the mission to rise towards the Creator, until to absorb themselves again in Him) will know 777 incarnations during seven revolutions that the wave of life accomplishes around the seven globes of the seven world periods. The symbolism of this number is therefore the ascension of the soul through the physical body.
  • According to the tradition of Himalayan masters, 777 is the number of the celestial man and symbolizes the transmutation which takes place at the time where the man becomes conscious of the necessity to cover the path of initiation, and that he perceives, even of an elementary manner, that the goal is in God.
  • The purity – does not father and is not fathered.

Vatican agrees to enforce tax evasion legislation

The Vatican has agreed to implement US legislation designed to curb offshore tax evasion, offering further evidence of the desire of Pope Francis to clean up the finances of the Catholic Church and stamp out the Holy See’s reputation as a haven for illicit activity.

In what was dubbed a “historic event” by Archbishop Richard Gallagher, the equivalent of the Vatican’s foreign minister, the Holy See signed a deal to apply within its walls the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (Fatca), enacted by president Barack Obama in 2010.

The first intergovernmental deal between the US and the Vatican – will force the Institute for Religious Works (IoR), also known as the Vatican Bank, to transmit information on accounts held by American taxpayers in the city-state back to US authorities.

In implementing Fatca, the Vatican joins just 62 other countries that have such deals with the US – while many others have resisted the pressure to comply.

In a statement, the Archbishop said:

Pope Assassination Plot Prompts Vatican to Tighten Security

Ekaterina Blinova — The Vatican’s security forces have been placed on high alert after a plan to attack the head of the Roman Catholic Church was intercepted by intelligence services.

 “On the horizon we see shadows and dangers which worry humanity,” Pope Francis said regarding the possible attack on the Holy See, as cited by Agence France Presse.

“As Christians we are called not to lose heart or be discouraged,” the pontiff added.

The Independent reported that both Israel’s Mossad and the American CIA have repeatedly warned the Pope about a possible Islamist plot aimed at the assassination of the head of the Roman Catholic Church.

Pope Francis blasts ‘haggard’ Europe

Pope Francis launched a withering attack Tuesday on a “haggard” Europe, urging it to reclaim global leadership after years of crisis and to take in migrants before the Mediterranean becomes a “vast cemetery”.

The Argentine pontiff addressed the European Parliament and Council of Europe during a lightning visit to Strasbourg, during which he called for urgent economic and social change.

Francis, the first non-European pope for more than a millennium, took a harsher tone than the last pontiff to visit the French city, John Paul II, in 1988 at the end of the Cold War.

“Europe seems to give the impression of being somewhat elderly and haggard, feeling less and less a protagonist,” the 77-year-old pope told the European parliament.

“We encounter a general impression of weariness and ageing, of a Europe which is now a ‘grandmother’, no longer fertile and vibrant.”

Are We In LEGO-land?…Ben Inker

GMO is often accused of being a “glass half empty” investor, and I admit that in a year that has seen the S&P 500 rise 8.3%, MSCI All-Country World rise 3.7%, and the Barclays U.S. Aggregate rise 4.1% through the third
quarter, the words “Purgatory” and “Hell” are unlikely to come to mind to most investors when opening their brokerage statements. It has been a dull year, perhaps, but certainly not a hellish one. So what is bringing Danteesque visions of damnation into our slightly warped minds? As is often the case, our moods are driven far less by a look in the rearview mirror and more by what we see through the windshield. A little over a year ago, my
colleague James Montier wrote about the current opportunity set for investors and referred to it as the “Purgatory of Low Returns.” He called it Purgatory on the grounds that we assume it is a temporary state and higher returns will be available at some point in the future. But as we look out the windshield ahead of us today, it is becoming clearer that Purgatory is only one of the roads ahead of us. The other one offers less short-term pain,

Pope Francis sacks entire Vatican financial watchdog board

Pope Francis has dismissed the five-man board of the Vatican’s financial watchdog in a break with the corruption scandals that have engulfed the heart of the Catholic Church in the past.

Four new experts from Switzerland, Singapore, the United States and Italy will replace the all-Italian board of the Financial Information Authority (AIF). The outgoing members were due to serve five-year terms until 2016 and were associated with the Vatican’s discredited financial old guard.

Reformers inside the Vatican had been pushing for the Pope to appoint professionals with an international background to work with Rene Bruelhart, a Swiss lawyer who heads the AIF and who has been pushing for change.

“Bruelhart wanted a board he could work with and it seems the pope has come down on his side and sent the old boy network packing,” a Vatican source told Reuters. Read More 

The Power of Habit-Book Review

A new year is right around the corner, and with it will come the usual host of resolutions—sadly, rarely kept. To be more precise, more than 40% of Americans make New Year’s resolutions and just 8% achieve their goals. Sometimes the goals they set are too daunting, sometimes too vague. And, perhaps the biggest problem with the whole resolution business is that people focus on goals rather than processes.

In 2012 Charles Duhigg, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist for The New York Times, wrote The Power of Habit, which spent 62 weeks on the paper’s best seller lists and was named one of the best books of the year by The Wall Street Journal and theFinancial Times. It is now being reissued with an afterword by the author.

I reviewed the book when it first came out and thought I would write a new post now that I have the reissued edition. But then I reread my original piece and decided that I probably couldn’t improve on it. So instead I’ll republish it here.

* * *

“All our life, so far as it has definite form, is but a mass of habits,” William James wrote in 1892. Well, that might be a bit of an overstatement: a researcher in 2006 knocked that “mass” down to “over 40 percent.” Whatever the percentage, we are creatures of habit. In The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do and How to Change It (Random House, 2012) Charles Duhigg explores the work that neurologists, psychologists, sociologists, and marketers have done over the past two decades to figure out how habits work and how they change. It’s a fascinating tale. Read More 

Economic data due for release in China over the weekend

Chinese statisticians do it on the weekend too.

On Saturday at 0130GMT:

  • October CPI y/y: expected is +3.3%, prior was +3.1%
  • October PPI y/y: expected is -1.4%, prior was -1.3%

Then, on Sunday at 0130GMT:

  • October Industrial production YTD y/y: expected is 9.6%, prior was also 9.6%
  • October Industrial production y/y: expected is 10.0%, prior was 10.2%
  • October Fixed Assets Investment (excluding rural) y/y: expected is +20.2%, prior was +20.2%
  • October Retail sales YTD y/y +13.0%, prior was +12.9%
  • October Retail sales y/y +13.4%, prior was +13.3%

Interview with Kyle Bass on Gold, Hugely Profitable Asymmetric Bets on US Subprime and Europe, and his next Asymmetric Bet on Japan

At times the interviewer is openly hostile to Bass, blaming him for making money on the US mortgage mess, then again when Greece blew up.

Bass defends himself quite nicely.

His latest play is an asymmetric bet on Japan, based on demographics, interest rates, and ability to service debt. I happen to agree with Bass, that it is just a matter of time before the Yen blows up. I must also point out people have been predicting this for a decade. 

Bass finishes on a strong note “Buying gold is just buying a put on the idiocy of the political cycle. … Capitalism without failure is like Christianity without Hell. You have to have atonement for ridiculous levels of spending both the US and Europe have gone through. The spending idiocy of the world is going to catch up to itself. And that’s where we are today.”

It’s an excellent but lengthy interview (about 23 minutes), well worth a play. 

Click above and Listen !