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Some Banks To Charge Monthly Fee For Debit Card Use In U.S.

Some banks in the United States, including the Bank of America, which is the biggest lender in the U.S. based on assets, have announced plans, or intend to do so soon, to charge a monthly fee, for some of their debit cards. The fees being mentioned are in the $3 to $5 per customer per month per card. The banks are trying to find ways to make up for the limit that has been mandated  after the Federal Reserve issued rules which have capped what are known as swipe fees. Beginning 1 October, swipe fees are capped at 21 cents, with an additional 0.05 per cent of each transaction, and a 1 cent adjustment related to fraud prevention. Since this is replacing a formula that averaged out at about 1.14 percent, … Read entire article »

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FBI Arrest Boeing Workers At Ridley Park, Pa

It was announced by the FBI at a news conference on Thursday that they have made 37 arrests in connection with prescription drugs being distributed and used by some workers at the Boeing military aircraft plant at Ridley Park outside Philadelphia in Pennsylvania. Of those arrested on Thursday morning all but one are or were at one time Boeing employees. The Ridley Park plant employs over 5,000 workers, and the majority of those arrested were connected to the production area of this plant. According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Philapelphia, 23 people were charged with the illegal distribution of prescription drugs. These drugs included Oxycontin and Actiq used to kill pain, as well as Xanax which is an anti-anxiety drug. The remainder of those arrested were charged with the misdemeanor of … Read entire article »

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Facebook To Help Small Businesses By Offering Information And Advertising Credits

In a joint project by Facebook, the United States Chamber of Commerce as well as the National Federation of Independent Business, NFIB, Facebook will be offering free seminars and webinars, along with case studies to small businesses throughout the United States, to help them increase their presence on the social networking site Facebook. They will also be giving out about 200,000 advertising credits to small businesses to help with their promotion on Facebook pages, beginning in January. This will be about $50 for each small business to use on ads in Facebook to promote their business or services. This new program which was announced on Monday will begin in October with Facebook officials and members of the other two business groups involved in the project, meeting with small businesses through their local … Read entire article »

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Boeing 787 Dreamliner Delivered To All Nippon Airlines Co.

On Sunday, the Boeing Co. announced that it has now completed the contractual delivery of the first 787 Dreamliner aircraft, with the formal documents being signed by Boeing and All Nippon Airlines Co. or ANA of Japan, over three years later than Boeing had originally scheduled. The Boeing 787 Dreamliner is a long range aircraft with a mid-size wide body, and twin engines and the aircraft seats between 210 and 290 passengers, depending on the seat arrangements. Boeing is excited about this jet airliner because they claim it is the most fuel efficient airliner according to Boeing, because it uses composite materials, plastic reinforced by carbon-fiber, for most of its construction rather than aluminum and so it is much lighter. Dreamliner had its first test flight in December 2009, and completed its … Read entire article »

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UBS Name Ermotti Interim CEO As Gruebel Quits Following $2.3 Billion Trading Loss

The Swiss Bank UBS announced on Saturday that Sergio Ermotti will act as the interim chief executive officer for the bank after the board accepted the resignation of Oswald Gruebel as CEO of UBS following the $2.3 billion trading loss announced the previous week. The president of UBS, Kaspar Villiger, said that the board were reluctant to accept Gruebel’s resignation, but they realize that it is his duty to assume the responsibility for the unauthorized trading. The board met in Singapore and are hoping to put measures in place which will prevent a similar offense happening in the future. Gruebel a German who is 67 had retired before he took on the job of CEO for UBS and led the bank through a difficult time, and back into profit during the two … Read entire article »

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NonCommunicable Diseases Causing Millions of Deaths Each Year

The World Health Organization, WHO, has released a new report which offers guidelines for addressing the economic impact which noncommunicable diseases, NCDs, have and suggests low cost methods for reducing the incidence of NCDs. It is released just before the first meeting of the United Nations to discuss chronic or non-communicable diseases, a two day meeting in New York, beginning Monday 19th September. The report, a joint project by the World Economic Forum, WEF, and the Harvard School of Public Health, focuses on four diseases, namely cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer and chronic respiratory diseases, and the impact they have on the global economy, as well as inexpensive options to combat these diseases which are threatening to bankrupt health systems throughout the world. With the current population growths and the rates of incidence … Read entire article »

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UBS Trading Losses Higher Than Reported

On Sunday, the Swiss banking company UBS said in a statement that equity index futures in the last three months with trading fraud and false accounting has led to losses of $2.3 billion, not the estimate of $2 billion that was reported previously. It also stated that no client positions were affected by the discovery of the fraud, and it has now set up an independent committee to begin investigating the trades and the risk systems in place in the bank. On Friday, in a court in London, England, Kweku M. Adoboli who is 31, was charged with one count of fraud and two counts of false accounting, and these dated back to October, 2008. Mr. Adoboli was arrested on Thursday morning at 3:30 a.m. after the police had been called … Read entire article »

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Air France-KLM To Get New Boeing 787s, Airbus A350s

The Air France-KLM board of directors have given the go ahead for the company to order up to 110 new air planes, the company announced on Friday, with 50 of these being a firm order. These will be made up of Boeing Co. 787 jets, and Airbus A350s, and the deal is being finalized with these manufacturing companies. In a statement Air France-KLM said “These new aircraft will reduce fuel consumption by over 15 percent and will give rise to a significant reduction in noise and gas emissions.” With a fuel bill this year of $5.7 billion to the end of March, all savings on fuel consumption will make a substantial difference to the company, who may pass these savings on to the passengers, in the form of lower fares. Air France-KLM … Read entire article »

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$2 Billion Fraud At UBS Leads To London Man’s Arrest

It was announced on Thursday with great surprise that UBS, a Swiss global financial services company which has its headquarters in Basel Zurich, Switzerland, has lost in the region of $2 billion because of unauthorized deals it has said were placed by a single trader. Kweku Adobli was arrested in London, but the news has stunned so many in the financial world. According to reports, UBS took on Maureen Miskovic, based in Zurich, as the chief risk officer at UBS at the beginning of 2011, someone with a good reputation who has shaken up the risk management at the bank, so it comes as even more of a shock that a rogue trader has been acting, supposedly alone, and has been able to use $2 billion in unauthorized deals. With investor confidence … Read entire article »

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Launch Of Missoni Crashes Target Website And Floods Its Stores

It was a Tuesday to remember when Target launched its Missoni fashion line yesterday, and the flood of visitors to the website caused it to crash while stores were flooded with customers hoping to benefit from some Italian fashion. In some places, customers lined up for a couple of hours to gain access to the Target store and the products sold fast. leaving very little left in the Missoni collection of fashion and home products. The website appears to be back online on Wednesday, and coping well with the new day of traffic. Target themselves were surprised by all the traffic, although they did expect that customers would be interested in the cheaper fashion that the Missoni line offers. Customers are way more cost conscious at present because of the economy and … Read entire article »

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HMV Struggling As Sales Fall Over Summer, But Plans Continue

The entertainment group HMV is going ahead with plans to overhaul the technology that it is offering in its stores, despite sales dropping over the summer, in the hope that ,long term, the sales will improve. HMV is now devoting about 25 per cent of its floor space to electronic gadgets such as tablets and iPods and headphones, which have begun to increase in sales in the six stores which have been converted so far, moving away from the sale of CDs and DVDs. Over half of the stores, 150 out of 256, will be changed over in the near future, as the company tries to improve sales which have dropped due to the decline of people buying actual CDs. However, HMV will be closing about 60 stores to conserve costs of … Read entire article »

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Groupon To Delay IPO Based on Economy, It Was Reported Tuesday

The online daily deal company Groupon as well as Zynga which creates games for Facebook were both reported on Tuesday to be delaying their initial public offerings, IPO in the United States because of recent market turbulence. Both companies had earlier expressed an interest in offering their IPOs in the fall of this year, shortly after the Labor Day holiday since this is a busy time for IPOs traditionally. H0owever, the current state of the markets has led to Groupon pulling back from selling shares, although the company is said to be expecting to launch IPOs when the conditions are more suitable, according to sources. Groupon was hoping to raise $750 million with their shares, while Zynga is hoping for $1 billion when they offer their IPO. However, neither company as … Read entire article »

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U.S. Postal Service $5.5 Billion Payment To Retiree Fund In Doubt

As is the case in Canada and other countries, the United States Postal Service is struggling to make ends meet due to a reduction in the amount of mail being sent, and it is very doubtful that they will be able to pay the $5.5 billion into a retiree health care trust fund which is required by 30 September. However, even if there is a default on this payment, there will be no interruption in mail delivery, payroll payments or the payments to suppliers, according to officials. The fund was ordered by the postal reform act in 2006, but postal officials now say that it does not reflect reality now, due to a reduced number of employees as the postal service has had to downsize, trimming some 250,000 jobs, and it … Read entire article »

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Insomnia Costing Companies In Productivity In U.S.

According to a nationwide survey, insomnia is affecting productivity in the workplace to the tune of $63 million in the United States alone, with workers too tired to function well on their tasks. And although many people with sleep deprivation still show up at work, it has been calculated that 252 million days of lost productivity occur every year in the U.S. which works out to about 8 lost days of productivity each year for each sleep deprived employee. The term chronic insomnia is defined most often as difficulty falling or staying asleep, or having sleep with a quality that is not restorative, on most nights for at least one month. Harvard Medical School professor of health care policy Ronald C. Kessler, PhD, was the leader for the study and noted that … Read entire article »

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Manufacturing In U.S. Eases Recession Concerns

Although the Institute for Supply Management, ISM, had its factory index fall in August from 50.6 from July’s level of 50.9, any numbers greater than 50 are thought of as positive and a signal of expansion. This is helping to ease fears that the United States is heading for another recession. It had been predicted that the level would drop to 48.5, so staying above 50 is a relief for many, although it is still the slowest rate of growth since July 2009. The United States is now recovering from setbacks which were related to the earthquake and tsunami in Japan in March which stopped vital parts being shipped from Japan for a while as Japan tried to recover from the devastating disaster and loss of power which occurred when the … Read entire article »

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Justice Department To Block AT&T Bid For T-Mobile USA

The United States Justice Department has filed to block the proposed $39 billion purchase by AT&T of T-Mobile USA from its owner Deutsche Telekom stating it has concerns about anti-competitiveness. With this announcement on Wednesday the shares of AT&T fell by over 3 per cent while Deutsche Telecom shares fell almost 7 percent, but the companies’ rival Sprint Nexel Corp had their shares rise by nearly 10 per cent. It seems to have come as a big surprise to AT&T that this merger is being blocked, as there is a break-up fee to T-Mobile USA if the deal does not go ahead as planned by September 2012. It is believed that this fee is in the region of $3 billion. The Deputy Attorney General James Cole announced the following at a news … Read entire article »

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Yoshihiko Noda Is New Prime Minister Of Japan

On Tuesday at the parliament in Tokyo, Japan, Yoshiko Noda was elected as the country’s new prime minister, their third prime minister in just two years and the sixth in five years, after Naoto Kan resigned from office effective on Monday. Mr. Noda won the election as the new leader of the Democratic Party of Japan which effectively makes him Prime Minister. he was previously the finance minster of Japan. The new prime minister will announce his cabinet later this week, it is expected, but he has already acknowledged that he faces many challenges, as he will try to help the country recover from the devastating earthquake and tsunami that hit north eastern Japan on 11 March this year. This has led to energy shortages as the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant … Read entire article »

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U.S. Canada Pipeline Moving Forward After Environmental Review

On Friday the United States State Department issued a statement about the environmental impact that a pipeline stretching all the way from the Oil Sands in western Canada to Texas and the Gulf Coast, in which it noted that the construction and operation of such a 1700 mile pipeline will have “limited adverse environmental impacts”. Although this assessment moves the project forward, it is by no means a green light to the project. A final decision on a permit to allow the Keystone XL pipeline to go ahead is expected to be reached by the end of this year. If it does go ahead, it would be the longest oil pipeline excluding China and Russia. During the past week, there have been protests at the White House against the project and there … Read entire article »

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