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Chase Bank Limits Cash Withdrawals, Bans International... Before you read this report, remember to sign up to http://pennystockpaycheck.com for 100% free stock alerts Chase Bank has moved to limit cash withdrawals while banning business customers from sending...

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Richemont chairman Johann Rupert to take 'grey gap... Billionaire 62-year-old to take 12 months off from Cartier and Montblanc luxury goods groupRichemont's chairman and founder Johann Rupert is to take a year off from September, leaving management of the...

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Cambodia: aftermath of fatal shoe factory collapse... Workers clear rubble following the collapse of a shoe factory in Kampong Speu, Cambodia, on Thursday

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Spate of recent shock departures by 50-something CEOs While the rising financial rewards of running a modern multinational have been well publicised, executive recruiters say the pressures of the job have also been ratcheted upOn approaching his 60th birthday...

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UK Uncut loses legal challenge over Goldman Sachs tax... While judge agreed the deal was 'not a glorious episode in the history of the Revenue', he ruled it was not unlawfulCampaign group UK Uncut Legal Action has lost its high court challenge over the legality...

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Baroma Inc. (BRMA: OTC Pink Current) | BAROMA DTC

Category : Stocks

BAROMA, INC. OBTAINS DTC APPROVAL TO BEGIN ELECTRONIC TRADING
Miami, FL, May 1st –
Baroma, Inc. (OTCMarket: BRMA) today announced that DTC approved electronic trading for the Company’s stock. Baroma’s stock is traded on the Over The Counter Exchange and OTC Markets under the stock symbol, BRMA. The Company owns and operates BAROMA Healthcare International, LLC d/b/a Baroma Health Partners; the first Medicare approved Accountable Care Organization (ACO) based in Miami-Dade County, FL participating in the Medicare Shared Savings Program. The Company’s three-year agreement with The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) allows for the ACO to receive up to half of the savings generated by quality improvement through coordinated care and cost saving initiatives for the Medicare-Fee-For-Services population in South Florida.
Scott J. Backer, CEO of Baroma, commented, “We are very pleased to have been approved by DTC to begin electronic trading. We are expecting excellent financial results for 2013 and are growing our provider network month after month. We have partnered with leaders in health IT, care delivery and regulatory reporting throughout the country and expect continued growth as we expand to other high value markets nation-wide. Baroma has an excellent outlook for our first year’s performance under the MSSP, with our projected population shared savings with Medicare will be approximately $36 million of which we expect, from the trend of January and February reports, revenues approximately at $18 million EBITDA without calculating our expected month to month growth. A PE (price earnings ratio) of fifteen would put our share price in the range of $.90.”
Since January Baroma has more than doubled its network of participating physicians which is estimated beneficiaries of over 10,000 Medicare fee-for-service beneficiaries. In Miami-Dade County, historically one of the nation’s most costly county for Medicare, generating a savings for this population is less difficult than in other service areas. “Targeting waste, fraud and abuse are one of the many strategies we have implemented since our contract took effect in January.” Says Baroma COO Marisela Rodriguez.
Established as an effort to assist at-risk health networks and health plans in minimizing the medical expense, Baroma has developed their ACO delivery model based on the best practices successfully implemented in managed care.
“Our goal is to use tools such as newly developed IT resources in accordance with more developed and coordinated practices implemented in the managed care world to drive innovation in healthcare delivery. Preventative medicine is at the forefront of our initiative to reach the three principle goals of the MSSP: better care for individuals, better health for populations, and slower growth in expenditures for Medicare.” Said Baroma CIO Ricardo Matos.
For more information, please view: www.baromahc.com
Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward-Looking Information
This news release contains “forward-looking statements”, as that term is defined in section 27a of the United States Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and section 21e of the United States Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Statements in this news release, which are not purely historical, are forward-looking statements and include any statements regarding beliefs, plans, expectations or intentions regarding the future. Except for the historical information presented herein, matters discussed in this news release contain forward-looking statements that are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such statements. Statements that are not historical facts, including statements that are preceded by, followed by, or that include such words as “estimate,”
Baroma, Inc. 18495 South Dixie Highway | Unit 269 | Miami, FL 33157 | (888) 315-4490
“anticipate,” “believe,” “plan” or “expect” or similar statements are forward-looking statements. Risks and uncertainties for the company include, but are not limited to, the risks associated with mineral exploration and funding as well as the risks shown in the company’s most recent annual and quarterly reports on Form 10-K and Form 10-Q respectively, and from time-to-time in other publicly available information regarding the company. Other risks include risks associated with the regulatory approval process, competitive companies, future capital requirements and the company’s ability and level of support for its exploration and development activities. There can be no assurance that the company’s exploration efforts will succeed and the company will ultimately achieve commercial success. These forward-looking statements are made as of the date of this news release, and the company assumes no obligation to update the forward-looking statements, or to update the reasons why actual results could differ from those projected in the forward-looking statements. Although the company believes that the beliefs, plans, expectations and intentions contained in this news release are reasonable, there can be no assurance those beliefs, plans, expectations or intentions will prove to be accurate. Investors should consider all of the information set for herein and should also refer to the risk factors disclosed in the company’s periodic reports filed from time-to-time with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission. This news release has been prepared by management of the company who takes full responsibility for its contents. None of FINRA nor the SEC has approved or disapproved of the contents of this news release. This news release shall not constitute an offer to sell of the solicitation of an offer to buy nor shall there be any sale of these securities in any jurisdiction in which such offer, solicitation or sale would be unlawful prior to registration or qualification under the securities laws of any such jurisdiction.
Investor Contact: finance@baromahc.com | (888) 315-4490

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The false-alarmists behind this shrinking population panic | Dean Baker

Category : Business

Policy-making elites would have us believe a smaller workforce spells the end of prosperity. Actually, it spells redistribution

The retirement of the baby boom cohorts means that the country’s labor force is likely to be growing far more slowly in the decades ahead than it did in prior decades. The United States is not alone in facing this situation. The rate of growth of the workforce has slowed or even turned negative in almost every wealthy country. Japan leads the way, with a workforce that has been shrinking in size for more than a decade.

Slower population growth is affecting the developing world as well. Latin America and much of Asia are seeing much slower population growth than in prior decades. In China, the one-child policy adopted in the late 1970s has virtually ended the growth in its labor force.

According to many media pundits, this picture of stagnant or declining labor forces is cause for panic. After all, it means that countries will be seeing an increase in the ratio of retirees to workers. Countries around the world will be suffering from labor shortages. And with even developing countries experiencing slower population growth, there will be nowhere to turn to make up the shortfall.

The only part of this picture that should, in fact, be scary is the failure of people involved in economic policy debates to have even a basic understanding of economics and arithmetic. There is no reason why the prospect of a stagnant or declining workforce should concern the vast majority of people. Rather, from the standpoint of addressing global warming and other environmental problems, this is great news.

First, a bit of arithmetic would be useful. People involved in economic policy-making tend to have problems with arithmetic, which is why they failed to recognize the housing and stock bubbles. Some simple sums can quickly show that the concerns about falling ratios of workers to retirees are ill-founded. In the United States, the social security trustees project that the ratio of workers to retirees will fall from 2.8 in 2013 to 2.0 in 2035.

It’s pretty simple to figure out the impact of this decline. Let’s assume that an average retiree consumes 85% as much as the average worker. This means that our 2.8 workers must produce enough goods and services to support the equivalent of 3.65 workers. That would imply each worker gets to keep 76.7% (2.8/3.65) of what they produce, with the rest taken away through taxes or other mechanisms to support pesky retirees.

When the ratio of workers to retirees falls to 2.0 then each worker will get to keep 70.2% (2.0/2.85) of what they produce. This implies a drop in the share of output going to workers of 8% over the next 22 years.

While that would depress living standards, we will also be seeing an increase in potential living standards from rising productivity growth. If productivity grows at the rate of 1.5% annually – roughly the rate it has been growing over the last two decades – then productivity in 2035 will be almost 40% higher than it is today. This means that the fall in the ratio of workers to retirees will take back less than a quarter of the potential gains from productivity growth. (It’s true that most workers have seen little benefit from productivity growth over the last three decades, but this points again to the importance of intra-generational distribution; it’s not a reason to be distracted by demographic nonsense.)

And this story puts the situation in the worst possible light. After 2035, productivity will continue to grow, but the ratio of workers to retirees will be little changed for the rest of the century. Why, exactly, are we supposed to be so scared?

The story is even more ridiculous for China, where productivity per worker has been increasing by more than 5% annually. This translates into an increase in output per worker of more than 160% over two decades. Do we seriously expect workers in China to be terrified if 10-15% of these gains are pulled away to support a larger population of retirees?

Of course, there is a story of labor shortages in this picture – in the sense that it will be difficult to find workers for the lowest-paying and least productive jobs. With a stagnant or declining labor force, workers will have their choice of jobs. It is unlikely that they will want to work as custodians or dishwashers for $7.25 an hour. They will either take jobs that offer higher pay or these jobs will have to substantially increase their pay in order to compete.

This means that the people who hire low-paid workers to clean their houses, serve their meals, or tend their lawns and gardens will likely have to pay higher wages. That prospect may sound like a disaster scenario for this small group of affluent people, but it sounds like great news for the tens of millions of people who hold these sorts of jobs. It should mean rapidly rising living standards for those who have been left behind over the last three decades.

And that is the basic story of fears over stagnant or declining populations. The people who hire help – the very same who also dominate economic policy debates – are terrified over the prospect that they will have to pay workers more in the future.

But the rest of us can sit back and enjoy watching them sweat as ordinary workers may finally start to see their share of the gains of the economic growth of the last three decades.

VIDEO: ‘World needs to work together to feed itself’

Category : Business

US food giant Cargill chief executive Greg Page says the world is producing more than enough food to feed the global population, despite challenging weather events.

Originally posted here: VIDEO: ‘World needs to work together to feed itself’

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Census in pictures: from suffragettes to arms protesters

Category : Business

See how the census has changed through the ages

Follow this link: Census in pictures: from suffragettes to arms protesters

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Latin America’s income inequality falling, says World Bank

Category : Business

Region now has as many middle class people as those who are poor thanks to rapid growth in incomes, study reveals

Income inequality is falling in Latin America even as it rises elsewhere in the world, according to a World Bank study that encourages government intervention to reduce the wealth gap.

Over the past 15 years, more than 50 million people have risen into the middle class, which is now – for the first time – about the same size as the population of poor in the region, says the report, which was unveiled on Tuesday.

For decades, Latin America was notorious for some of the widest income gaps in the world, but a combination of favourable economic conditions and interventionist policies by left-leaning governments in Brazil and other countries has brought it more closely in line with international norms.

“This is not just a statistical anomaly. It is a significant reduction in inequality,” said the World Bank’s regional chief economist, Augusto de la Torre.

He said Latin America remains one of the most unequal regions in the world, but it one of the only places where the gap is closing.

“There is some sort of convergence. Latin America is approaching the norm of advanced economies, but unfortunately, advanced economies are approaching the norm of the Latin America model,” De la Torre said during an online press conference to mark the release of the report

He said the main reason for the reduction in inequality is not a compression of income from the rich at the top, but because of a rapid growth in the incomes and spending power of those at the “bottom of the population pyramid”.

About 30% of the region’s population is now in the middle class, which the World Bank defines as those who have less than a 10% chance of falling back into poverty. This is similar to the proportion who are classified as poor. In between is the biggest group, the 38% who are considered “vulnerable” because they live just above the poverty line on an income of between $4 and $10 a day.

The authors of the report emphasised that the gains are still fragile because many people could easily slip back into poverty. Some have increased their spending power through greater access to credit rather than higher-paying jobs. A substantial factor in the economic gains of recent years has been extra demand for commodities from China, which has slowed this year.

“It is a remarkable phenomenon. But we in Latin America must not sing victory yet because it has been accompanied by very strong tail winds in the last few years, very favourable international conditions,” said De la Torre. “If they become much less benign, we must be particularly vigilant to pursue policies that preserve what we have gained.”

The report, titled Economic Mobility and the Rise of the Latin American Middle Class, recommends improvements in public education and healthcare as a way of consolidating the upward mobility of the population. Currently, one of the biggest gaps is not in spending power, but in access to decent social services. In many countries, poorer families have no choice but to put their children in low-standard schools and their sick in poorly-funded hospitals, while the middle class spend substantial sums on private education and health care.

The World Bank’s president, Jim Yong Kim, emphasised the role played by the private sector, which he said creates 90 percent of jobs in developing countries.

But he said the great strength of the story in Latin America was that countries that have self-consciously focussed on reducing inequality have also experienced rapid economic growth.

The recently appointed head of the World Bank – a major lender to developing nations – said he has passed on the same message this week to Haiti, which has the worst inequality in the region and the worst access to education and healthcare in the region.

He described Haiti’s current system as a brand of “market-based capitalism that nobody wanted to see”.

“I made very clear to them that the evidence from the rest of Latin America is that their path to growth has to include many, many more people. It has to open access to the market, to education and to health services to a much broader sector of society. That is not because equality is good and inequality is bad; it is because that is the path to growth,” Kim said.

VIDEO: Latvia pushes to join eurozone

Category : World News

Latvia is pushing ahead with plans to become the 18th member of the eurozone on 1 January 2014 despite scepticism among the population

See the rest here: VIDEO: Latvia pushes to join eurozone

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Letters: Employment figures puzzle solved

Category : Business

No one, least of all distinguished Guardian journalists, should be beguiled by claims that the economy is “starting to recover” (Cameron hails surprise rise in employment, 18 October) – primarily on the basis of rising employment levels alone, since this ignores the fact that the UK working age population has been growing consistently over time. No one would say Norway has a worse performance than Spain because it has only 2.5 million in work while Spain has 18 million. And the same applies to comparisons of UK performance over time when the population has been growing – by around 1 million since 2008 and by around 6 million since 1971. More people means more jobs, even in economies in neutral. So it makes little sense to compare performance, even over relatively short time periods, using levels when populations are changing.

The employment rate – ie the level divided by population – is a much better guide in these circumstances and that has been broadly flat, allowing for sampling variation, over the last three years – much more consistent with the flat GDP data. Add this to a fall in real wages in this downturn – not just at the bottom but across the distribution – which has traded off some jobs for incomes, unlike in previous downturns, and the employment puzzle becomes less of a mystery.
Professor Jonathan Wadsworth
Economics department, Royal Holloway College, University of London

• If Larry Elliott and the raft of government statisticians find the unemployment figures puzzling (Report, 18 October), there clearly must be a problem. However if one assumes there are 30 million employed people and their working life is 30 years, then there are 900,000 to be replaced in one year alone, neglecting any planned expansion by the economy in 2013 which, to me at least, it is clear will occur given the current recovery in the American market.

Given that in the early part of the year uncertainty was perhaps greater than it is now, it’s not unreasonable that 500,000 people should have found work in the last three months. That companies, emboldened by the coalition’s desire to reduce the cost of employment, should opt for part-time working should surprise no one.
Dr Simon Harris
Wrexham

• Larry Elliott’s theory that employment has risen in a recession because wages and hours have fallen sounds remarkably like the internal devaluation that he has often assured us would not be necessary with a freely floating currency, and that John Gray, on another page (Comment, 18 October), claims would lead to social breakdown if it happened in the eurozone.
John Hall
Bristol

• If I employ a full-time worker at £12,000 a year, I pay a further £550 to the chancellor as my contribution to national insurance. When that worker leaves I can replace them with two part-timers at £6,000 and not pay any of that £550. If I replace three full-timers with six part-timers I save £1,650. If any one of those part-timers is sick or wants time off, I have five other experienced workers anxious to take up overtime and extra shifts. Further, my six part-timers are unlikely to become eligible for statutory sick pay because of “waiting day” arrangements. In addition, workforce turnover ensures they are unlikely to ever become eligible for redundancy payments if things get any worse than now.

Also, no one in Treasury forecasting seems to have noticed that when I convert three full-timers, as above, to six part-timers, the Treasury loses a total of about £5,400 in income tax, employee’s and employer’s NI. Thus we can have an expanding workforce that pays less tax.
Russ Russell
Weston-super-Mare, Somerset

• My husband was forced from self-employment into employment (in the same company) at 50% of his previous income. Elsewhere, employees in private sector roles have simply had their pay cut. In both cases, they’re sure they won’t find better elsewhere in the current climate, in their sector. Then there are the people I know who have finally taken a lower-paid job after a period of unemployment, desperate to provide for a family. None of them appears in the unemployment figures, but they haven’t got spending money anymore. At work, but not kick-starting Britain.
Alison Carter
Lindfield, West Sussex

Who are the 47%? The US in percentages map

Category : Business

The US has become a land of percents: the 1% v the 99%, the 8% unemployed or the 15% in poverty – or the 47% Mitt Romney says don’t pay taxes. See the population mapped

Excerpt from: Who are the 47%? The US in percentages map

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The era of cheap food may be over

Category : Business

A spike in prices caused by poor harvests and rising demand is an apt moment for the west to reassess the wisdom of biofuels

The last decade saw the end of cheap oil, the magic growth ingredient for the global economy after the second world war. This summer’s increase in maize, wheat and soya bean prices – the third spike in the past five years – suggests the era of cheap food is also over.

Price increases in both oil and food provide textbook examples of market forces. Rapid expansion in the big emerging markets, especially China, has led to an increase in demand at a time when there have been supply constraints. For crude, these have included the war in Iraq, the embargo imposed on Iran, and the fact that some of the older fields are starting to run dry before new sources of crude are opened up.

The same demand dynamics affect food. It is not just that the world’s population is rising by 1% a year. Nor is it simply that China has been growing at 9% a year on average; it is that consumers in the big developing countries have developed an appetite for higher protein western diets. Meat consumption is rising in China, India and Brazil, and since it takes 7kg of grain to produce 1kg of beef (and 4kg to produce 1kg of pork), this is adding to global demand.

Farmers have been getting more efficient, increasing the yields of land under production, but this has been offset by two negative factors: policies in the US and the EU that divert large amounts of corn for biofuels and poor harvests caused by the weather.

If the World Bank’s projections are anything like accurate, further massive productivity gains from agriculture are going to be needed over the next two decades. There will be an extra 70m mouths to feed every year, which will result in a 50% increase in demand for food by 2030. Meanwhile, the amount of arable land per person will continue its long-run downward trend.

The extent of this challenge has been highlighted by the extreme drought in the US this year. Failure of the maize harvest – down by more than 100m tonnes on what was expected – has had a knock-on impact on wheat, which has not been affected by the lack of rain. Prices of both crops have jumped by $100 a tonne this summer. The latest data from the World Bank showed that food prices rose 10% between June and July and have now exceeded the previous peak in early 2011.

It will take time for these increases to have their full impact on consumers. In the short run, the cost of meat will not be affected because there is glut caused by livestock owners slaughtering their herds in order to save money on expensive feed. But by the end of the year, food will be dearer.

Central banks are unlikely to tighten policy in response to higher inflation, since the increase is seen as an external shock that will have a depressing effect on the spending power of consumers. They should not, however, assume that the spike will be a one-off, since grain stocks are at such low levels that bad harvests in 2013 would see rocketing prices, probably accompanied by panic-buying, export bans and food riots.

A recent report from Oxfam said the US should expect further severe droughts in the coming decades. “The US experienced $14bn-dollar disasters in 2011 – an historical record – including a blizzard, tornadoes, floods, a hurricane, a tropical storm, drought and heatwaves, and wildfires.” The current year has already seen wildfires, a windstorm, heatwaves in much of the country and the most severe drought in half a century.

This seems to be an apt moment for the west to reassess the wisdom of biofuels. The US ethanol distilleries used 120m tonnes of maize in 2011 and there have already been calls from the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation for the reduced maize crop to be used for human food. There is also growing political opposition in the US to the country’s Renewable Fuel Standard, which mandates 15.2bn gallons of biofuels for 2012, of which 13.4bn gallons can come from corn-based ethanol. Unsurprisingly, livestock and poultry producers have been at the forefront of calls for the mandate to be suspended.

The whole point about biofuels was that they were supposed to be a cost-free and a pain-free way for developed nations to show that they were responding to climate change. Rising crop yields meant there would be enough grain left over each year to turn into ethanol, and this would mean western consumers could do their bit to save the planet without in any way compromising their living patterns. That now looks like a highly questionable assumption.

So what happens next? A lasting solution to the food question will require either action on the demand side, action on the supply, or more likely both. The two obvious ways of limiting demand are to check population growth or to change dietary habits so that meat consumption is reduced. Neither is going to be easy to achieve.

On the supply side, the short-term response should be to find alternatives to biofuels. Longer term, the hope is that the pressures of a rising population coupled with the incentives provided by rising food prices lead to a second green revolution that will dramatically increase yields in those parts of the world – such as sub-Saharan Africa – where they are currently low. One of the few beneficial impacts of high commodity prices is that farmers will be able to afford to buy fertilisers for their land.

A recent study by Fidelity looked at some of the other recent developments to boost food supply, including precision agriculture – the use of high technology to apply the optimum amounts of seed, water and fertiliser for maximum efficiency – and a wider use of biotechnology and GM crops. The report also highlighted what is known as “fast food” from animal cells, a process by which scientists “create artificial meat by delivering an electric charge to the animal muscle cells in a mixture of amino acids, which causes the cells to multiply”.

Given the predicted growth in consumption in developing countries, Fidelity says this could become an “environmentally acceptable option” as traditional meat becomes more expensive. Whether this approach is “environmentally acceptable” remains to be seen. The Fidelity report does, however, clarify one point, namely that hard choices have to be made.

The current assumption seems to be that the world can have a rising population, ever-higher per capita meat consumption, devote less land to food production to help hit climate change targets and eschew the advances in science that might increase yields. This is the stuff of fantasy. It is possible to have more intensive farming using the full range of technological breakthroughs in order to feed a bigger, meat-hungry population. Or it is possible to have lower yields from a more organic approach to feed a smaller population eating less meat. But not both.