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Thursday, 21 March 2013

Thursday, March 21, 2013 Posted by Hari No comments Labels:
Posted by Hari on Thursday, March 21, 2013 with No comments | Labels:

Barclays quietly announces £38.5m fat cat bonuses on busy budget day, hoping nobody notices
Barclays promised it was "changing" after being fined £290m last year for its role in the Libor-rigging scandal. But it has just awarded its investment bank chief Rich Ricci £17.5m and CEO Antony Jenkins £5.3m. Ricci’s payday was dwarfed by the £44m he collected in 2010. Barclays were accused of sneaking out its news on budget day, in the hope that the media wouldn't notice. GUARDIAN

(But did Rich Ricci notice? £44m in 2010, £17.5m now? Probably not...)

Morrisons wants government to crack down on big corporates that dodge tax
Dalton Philips, CEO of the supermarket giant, said he was concerned about the tax transparency of other large corporates who were dodging tax, giving them an unfair trading advantage, and wanted the Government to require those operating here to disclose payments. ‘We believe that this will encourage those companies that are concerned about their reputation to ensure they pay their fair share,’ he said. DAILY MAIL

(“Our reputation, eh? How about we used a fraction of the dodged tax to pay for another glossy marketing campaign saying how much we love you all,” said a chorus of the marketing directors of all the tax dodging corporates...)

UK water companies avoid paying tax using £3.4bn loophole
Water companies are loading up with debt to offset profits and avoid tens of millions in tax. One third of the money we pay for our water bills now goes on paying the debt interest and dividends. Meanwhile, water bills are rising by 3.5% on average to £388 a year, for “infrastructure investment”. The UK Treasury nearly closed the “Eurobond loophole” last October, then decided against it. When asked to criticise the tax dodge, Ofwat preferring to focus on its job as the water regulator, saying “…if companies don’t deliver, we take action. In the last seven years, companies have had to pay out more than £550 million [in fines], from their own pockets, where they have let customers down.” TELEGRAPH

(Errr… and how does that money get into their own pockets, Ofwat? Of-Twat, more like it...)

Tenants use payday loans to pay rent
One quarter of the private tenants surveyed said they have had rent increases averaging £300 in the last year as wages remain stagnant. Almost two thirds are struggling to pay their rent or have fallen behind. So tenants are resorting to "drastic" measures such as using payday loans and credit cards to pay their rent. Some desperate parents have been forced to borrow cash from their children. TELEGRAPH

(All together now with the government’s Plan A mantra: “It’s immoral to have our children pay for a crisis we created!”)

Payday lender shut down by OFT over identity fraud
MCO Capital has become the first payday lender to be shut down by the Office of Fair Trading, after it failed to stop fraudsters taking out loans using more than 7,000 stolen identities. The firm had been writing to people asking unequivocally for repayment, despite knowing they may not have taken out the loans. It had simply ignored OFT requests to stop this practice. The OFT first started action against MCO Capital in the summer of 2012, over four years after it began trading. GUARDIAN

("Like any good fraud, the point is simple. It’s not to avoid getting shut down. It’s to make as much money as you can before you get shut down. Hey, you might not get shut down at all!" said hundreds of other other payday lenders...)

Retail Prices Index (RPI) “will no longer be designated as a national statistic”
The Office of National Statistics (ONS) has downgraded the importance of the RPI inflation measure, in favour of CPI. CPI is almost always lower than RPI. Pressure group Save Our Savers said: "By manipulating the measures used to report inflation, [the chancellor] is able to reduce Government spending that is index-linked to it. The fact that inflation is also eroding the value of Britain's savings seems to be of no concern to him at all." TELEGRAPH

(NEWS LATEST: ONS downgrades “statistics” in favour of “lies” and “damned lies”…)

Botnet "fake clicks" costs advertisers $6m a month
Security researchers have discovered a web botnet programme which is costing display advertisers around $6m (£3.9m) per month by falsely viewing billions of pages and adverts on about 200 sites owned by a small group of publishers. The suspicion is that the botnet has been created by those publishers and/or related ad agencies to earn money from the clicks. GUARDIAN

HSBC faces new money laundering claims in Argentina
Argentina has alleged that HSBC used "fake receipts" to facilitate money laundering and tax evasion, and launder 392m pesos (=$77m or £50m). Last year, HSBC agreed to pay US authorities $1.9bn (£1.2bn) in a settlement over money laundering, the largest paid in such a case. BBC NEWS

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