Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte pledged in his maiden speech that his government will push through populist measures ranging from a “citizen’s income” for the poor to tax cuts and curbs on immigration, as he called for a stronger, fairer Europe “to prevent its decline.”Conte used a speech to the Senate on Tuesday to promise “a new wind of change” based on a program of fiscal expansion drawn up by the euroskeptic Five Star Movement and League that risks breaching European Union budget rules. Investors took fright last week at the prospect of an Italian government that could challenge the fiscal regulations binding the single currency, but Conte made no mention of the euro, nor did he make any reference to scrapping a pension reform that raised the retirement age. Instead, he tried to soothe markets -- with little effect: Bonds dropped as he laid out his program. “Eliminating the difference in the economic growth between Italy and … [Read more...] about Italy’s New Prime Minister Unnerves Investors With ‘Revolutionary’ Agenda
New bankruptcy law
In a post-Cambridge Analytica world where tech giants have to be increasingly touchy when fingers are pointed at privacy issues, Facebook has issued a rebuttal to allegations that parts of its tech are still leaking data to third parties. Over the last ten years, Facebook has reached data-sharing partnerships with at least 60 mobile device manufacturers, including Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, BlackBerry and Samsung, in advance of Facebook apps taking off to enable developers to create features like address books and instant messaging. Most of these legacy partnerships remain in effect, although Facebook has ended 22 of them since it began winding down access in April this year. According to a report from the New York Times, these partnerships are now raising concerns about another potential privacy scandal, as Facebook allegedly permitted device companies access to the data of users’ friends without explicit consent. This occurred even after the social network had declared it would … [Read more...] about Facebook denies new data privacy allegations over its decade-old mobile device APIs
Contested by taxi drivers across the land, with the support of the Left Bloc, the new laws sought to legalise this new horizon, App-based business model that is hugely popular with customers but hated by cabbies. Macelo Rebelo de Sousa has kicked the legislation back to government in a shock move that has won wild applause from taxi drivers and leaves an embarassing gap in the government’s plans for Portugal projected image to be one of a modern, go-ahead place, fit for a new world of technology businesses. The president looked at the new law and has made it clear that, "the purpose of reaching a balanced solution has not been fully achieved," i.e. ‘this is unfair.’ The President’s veto blocks a law that has the full approval of the Socialist Party and, in a rare move, its right wing opposition. The Left Bloc and the Communist Party had voted against the bill which left taxi drivers in a poor position, still tied with archaic red tape and … [Read more...] about New ‘Uber law’ rejected by President
By and April 24, 2018, 6:00 PM EDT India’s revamped bankruptcy process is in full swing and investors from Blackstone Group LP to Oaktree Capital Group LLC are salivating over an estimated $210 billion of stressed assets that are up for grabs. But the courtrooms handling the thousands of bankruptcies are lacking a key component: Judges.Ten benches with a combined 26 judges and technical staff are hearing more than 2,500 insolvency cases, the latest official data show. Based on the workload a year ago, researchers estimated India needs about 80 benches over five years. That estimate is starting to look conservative, as tighter rules introduced by the banking regulator in February are poised to tip hordes of additional deadbeat borrowers into bankruptcy.A streamlined bankruptcy process is crucial for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s attempts to come to grips with a simmering banking crisis that’s sucking energy out of India’s economy. Any failure to resolve … [Read more...] about Bankruptcies Are Booming in India, But Where Are the Judges?
Want to screw up a good law? Just try to make it a great one.That's what India did last November when it added a number of restrictions on who could bid for assets in a bankruptcy. The idea of the new regulations was to make it hard for errant owners to regain control of businesses without first settling their dues.But the morality was legal overkill; and that's now evident in the farce that the insolvency of Essar Steel India Ltd. has become.Rather than helping creditors with the best possible recovery for the $8 billion that's trapped in a 10-million-tons-a-year metals business, the bidding war has disintegrated into a contest to prove rivals ineligible. It'll be unfortunate if India's next steel king is decided not on the wrestling mat -- but via walkovers.Rival investor groups led by VTB Capital and ArcelorMittal were the two contestants in the first round. But the creditors' committee deemed both buyers to be ineligible, and went for a second round of bids. However, in a … [Read more...] about India Turns a Bad-Loan Tragedy Into a Bankruptcy Farce