Accounts – Utah BBQ Thu, 11 Aug 2022 12:52:23 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Accounts – Utah BBQ 32 32 EURO Resources Invests US$7.15M to Acquire Silver Stream Fri, 19 Mar 2021 08:45:12 +0000


Paris, France, March 1, 2021: EURO Resources SA (“EURO” or “the Company”) (Paris: EUR) is pleased to announce today that it has entered into a binding letter of intent with Orezone Gold Corporation (“Orezone”) to acquire 50% of the payable silver production (the “Silver Stream”) at Orezone’s Bomboré Project (“Bomboré”), located in Burkina Faso, West Africa , for $7,150,000.

Bomboré is one of the largest unmined gold deposits in Burkina Faso. The 2019 feasibility study highlights Bomboré as an attractive, shovel-ready gold project with an expected annual gold production of 118,000 ounces over a mine life of over 13 years. Assay data and metallurgical studies suggest that there is a silver component to the Bombore deposit, with EURO’s review of assay data indicating that the silver to gold ratio is approximately 1:1.

The Silver Stream allows EURO to receive 50% of the silver production payable over the life of the mine. The agreement also includes a guaranteed minimum delivery obligation in favor of EURO of 37,500 ounces of silver per year, until delivery of 375,000 payable ounces of silver.

Transaction Highlights

  • Expanded Asset Base and Short-Term Cash Flow: Orezone is fully funded for the construction of Bomboré with the first gold pour scheduled for the third quarter of 2022.
  • Long life, low cost operation: The 2019 feasibility study described a 13.3-year operation at Bomboré producing a total of approximately 1.6 Moz of gold at an All-In Sustaining Cost (AISC) of $730/oz with an AISC of 672 USD/oz in the first ten years. Historical assay data indicated a silver to gold ratio of approximately 1:1. EURO will receive 50% of the silver production payable to Bomboré over the life of the mine.
  • Exploration and expansion potential: EURO will benefit from the future expansion of the Bomboré project, which has been designed by Orezone to accommodate future throughput expansion. Significant exploration potential exists around Bomboré, which includes several mining exploration permits totaling approximately 14,934 hectares, which has the potential to extend the mine life beyond the 13.3 years described in the report. 2019 feasibility study.

Money Flow Conditions

The definitive silver purchase agreement (the “Stream Agreement”) will be entered into with Orezone’s subsidiary in Burkina Faso. In accordance with the terms of the broadcast agreement:

EURO will make a cash payment of $7,150,000 to Orezone upon stream close (defined below) in return for purchasing 50% of the payable silver produced at Bomboré for the life of the mine.

  • Orezone has granted a payment guarantee in favor of EURO to secure its obligations under Silver Steam which will require Orezone to provide a minimum annual payment, from the date of declaration of commercial production by Orezone, equivalent to 37,500 ounces of silver. In the event of a shortfall in annual silver deliveries, to the extent that a catch-up payment is required, Orezone will make an initial catch-up payment only on the later of the following dates: (a) the fifth anniversary from the date of the initial delivery of cash under the stream agreement and (b) the repayment of the senior secured term loan for the Bomboré development to ensure that the aggregate minimum annual payment has been satisfied for each of the previous years. Thereafter, Orezone will only be required to make catch-up payments on an annual basis until 375,000 ounces of silver have been delivered or paid for, after which time the minimum annual payment guarantee will no longer apply.
  • If, during the first five years of mine life, the Bomboré processing plant achieves an average sulphide ore production rate of 3,300,000 tpy, Orezone has the right to buy back 50% of the Silver Stream from EURO for US$7,150,000.
  • EURO has a right of first refusal, for the life of the mine, on any other silver production from Bomboré that has not been purchased by EURO in accordance with the Silver Stream.
  • The realization of the Silver Stream is subject to the usual conditions precedent for a transaction of this nature.

Expected closing

The acquisition of the Silver Stream is expected to close in the second quarter of 2021 (“Stream Closing”) and EURO intends to fund the $7,150,000 investment with current cash on hand.

Bombore Project

Orezone Gold Corporation (TSX.V: ORE OTCQX: ORZCF) is a Canadian development company that owns a 90% interest in Bomboré, one of the largest undeveloped gold deposits in Burkina Faso. The 2019 Feasibility Study highlights Bomboré as an attractive, shovel-ready gold project with an expected annual gold production of 118,000 ounces over a mine life of over 13 years at an AISC of US$730/oz with an after-tax payback period of 2.5 years at an assumed rate. gold price of US$1,300/oz. Bomboré is supported by a mineral resource base of over 5 million ounces of gold and has significant expansion potential.

Orezone plans to develop Bomboré in two phases: Phase 1 is focused on free-dig oxides as a CIL operation with no crushing and minimal milling with average recoveries of 87% and Phase 2, which is expected to begin in the third year of mining, focus on the underlying high grade sulphides with a separate crushing and grinding circuit with additional feed to the same CIL circuit as the oxides. This phased expansion will reduce initial capital and increase annual production and recovered ounces over the life of mine.

For more information on Bombore, please visit

About the EURO

EURO is a French company whose principal assets are a royalty on production from the Rosebel gold mine in Suriname (the “Rosebel Royalty”), a royalty on the Paul Isnard concessions and marketable securities. The Rosebel gold mine is 95% owned by IAMGOLD Corporation (“IAMGOLD”) and operated by IAMGOLD. The Paul Isnard Concession Royalty is a net smelter production royalty on future production from the Paul Isnard Concessions and an area of ​​interest surrounding the concessions in French Guiana, held under a joint venture agreement between Orea Mining Corp. . and North Gold SE.

EURO has approximately 62.5 million shares outstanding. As of January 31, 2021, IAMGOLD France SAS (“IAMGOLD France”), an indirect wholly-owned subsidiary of IAMGOLD, held approximately 89.71% of all outstanding issued shares of EURO. As of January 31, 2021, IAMGOLD France held 56,058,191 shares representing 112,116,382 voting rights, or 94.25% of EURO’s voting rights. This threshold crossing results from an allocation of double voting rights.

Statements regarding forward-looking information: Certain statements contained in this press release are forward-looking statements. Investors are cautioned that forward-looking statements are inherently uncertain and involve risks and uncertainties.. There can be no assurance that future developments affecting the Company will be those anticipated by management.

Not for distribution to United States news services or for dissemination in the United States. The titles referred to herein have not been registered in the United States Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the Securities Act), and may not be offered or sold in the United States or to a United States person absent registration or an applicable exemption from the registration requirements of the Securities Act.

Additional information relating to EURO Ressources SA is available on SEDAR at Any other request for information should be sent to:

]]> Why the Former LSE Rolet CEO’s SPAC Golden Falcon Is Listed in New York — Quartz Fri, 19 Mar 2021 08:45:12 +0000

Xavier Rolet, the former CEO of London Stock Exchange Group, jumped into the boom of “blank check” companies. But instead of going public in London at his former employer, the special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) he joined raised funds in New York.

“The US market is really the market that knows how to gauge future growth,” he said in a phone interview. And regarding SPACs: “It’s a structure that gives you the speed, the ability to invest and helps convert and monetize some promising private companies that have successfully positioned themselves to take advantage of technological changes in a post-Covid world,” Rolet said.

SPACs have been on fire in the United States, bringing in more money last year than in the entire previous decade. They are called “blank check” companies because they get funds from investors in an IPO go out and find promising investment targets. And while Rolet thinks SPACs will remain popular in the US, he says there will have to be changes in Europe before tech investment catches up across the Atlantic. The United States had more than 190 SPAC deals last year, according to Refinitiv data. Europe had three.

Rolet is one of the directors of Golden Falcon Acquisition Corp., a SPAC which raised $300 million on the New York Stock Exchange late last year and focuses on tech and fintech targets based in Europe, Israel, the Middle East or North America, according to a filing. Makram Azar, a former executive of British bank Barclays and private equity firm KKR, is the chief executive of Golden Falcon.

SPACs have been around for years, but their popularity has exploded along with a wider frenzy in IPOs. After raising funds through a public offering, the funds are held in a trust account, where they can typically remain for 18-24 months while the SPAC looking for an acquisition. Shareholders can vote against the deal if they don’t like it and get their money back. Investors may receive interest on their funds during research.

SPACs haven’t always been a good deal for people betting on them—research suggests that many end up trading for less than their IPO price. Typically, they are structured in such a way that the management team gets shares that dilute investors’ participation, and investment banking fees also eat away at their investment. That said, blank check companies have lately attracted high-society management teams with Fortune 500 leadership experience. Harvard Law research indicates that transactions sponsored by higher quality managers tend to perform better, and some recent structures have been more investor friendly.

Why Europe doesn’t have a SPAC boom

But Rolet, a Frenchman who started his career in finance at Goldman Sachs, doesn’t think Europe will get its own SPAC boom for tech companies until there are regulatory and tax changes.

“Europe just doesn’t have the equity capital markets that understand and value innovation appropriately,” Rolet said. “And as a result, it continues to suffer significantly in terms of retention of tech companies because they have an easier time growing in the United States.”

Reuters/Mike Blake

Xavier Rollet.

Rolet led the London Stock Exchange Group for almost a decade, and he has a lot of good things to say about entrepreneurship in Europe – “the targets in Europe, clearly, are many,” he says. He even thinks that there is a lot of capital. The problem, he says, is that institutional investors in the EU lack the expertise to invest in technology. The tax system encourages debt investments and may penalize equity investments. Regulations make it difficult for insurance companies, for example, to increase their equity holdings. He says that’s why big institutions lack the talent and know-how to invest in next-gen tech startups.

“I’m not talking about family offices, private banks, they understand that because that’s how they make their money,” he said. “But institutions lack expertise in technology. They really do, overall, compared to the United States.

“Lost Decade”

Funding and opportunities for cash mega towers, is seen as one of the main reasons Europe hasn’t spawned a tech titan the size of Google or Tencent. But there are signs that the region has recently narrowed the gap. After a ‘lost decade in the 1990s’, the share of European tech companies in global market capitalization has increased over the past 20 years, according to data compiled by Atomico, a venture capital firm. The company’s research shows that 15 of the 16 European companies that have added more than $1 billion in market capitalization in the past five years have done so from a European public market.

Alex Watkins, co-head of equity capital markets in Europe, the Middle East and Asia for JPMorgan, said the pipeline for European IPOs this year is “weighted towards growth companies, with a strong representation of technology”. He says SPACS will be a big topic in 2021. “They’re definitely coming to Europe,” Watkins said.

Goldman Sachs analysts believe the European tech economy is “at a tipping point,” according to a research report released this month. The investment bank cited a more favorable situation political backdrop, the digital acceleration of Covid and a faster pace of venture capital investment, which has doubled in the past three years (although still three times lower than in China and the US) . At least 20% of funds from the EU’s €672.5 billion ($818 billion) Recovery and Resilience Facility, which is designed to help the region’s economy rebound from the pandemic , are intended for digital transformation.

PSPC Support

In the UK, a lot of hope is placed on the government list review. Post-Brexit Britain has little scope for agreement for financial services with the EU, and a revamped market for IPOs could help the country compete with mainland markets as well as those in Hong Kong and New York. The review will look at things like dual-class shares, which some tech founders have favored as a way to keep control of their businesses.

Alasdair Haynes, founder and CEO of European stock market Aquis Exchange, said he would make SPACs a topic of discussion in the review. “We support Spacs,” he said.

For Rolet, the UK review highlights the promise of the SPAC boom. “The fact that the UK is responding and looking to upgrade and modernize its own regulatory framework is a testament that this is going to be with us for some time to come,” he said. “It will only work in markets where there is a large pool of sophisticated investors, who really understand the technology. You can have the perfect, most competitive regulatory framework, but if you don’t have the investors, if the understanding of technology and innovation is not there, the liquidity will be elsewhere.

The all-female cast explores female desire and the female gaze Fri, 19 Mar 2021 08:45:11 +0000

As Orpheus led Eurydice out of Hades, why did he turn to look for her just before leaving, and thus lost her forever? Was it because he had chosen a poet that the memory of his love was enough, or was it perhaps Eurydice herself who called him to turn? The Greek myth is at the center of Céline Sciamma’s work Portrait of a lady on fire, which won Best Screenplay at this year’s Cannes Film Festival and had its UK premiere at the BFI London Film Festival. Sciamma was invited to talk about her career as a director and screenwriter during the festival’s Screen Talk, and discussed her latest film in more detail.

Located in 1760 in Brittany, on the northern coast of France, Portrait of a lady on fire tells a beautiful love story between two young women. The film explores the different stages from desire to love and finally how we let go until this love becomes a memory.

The film opens in an art class, as a tutor, Marianne (played by Noémie Merlant), teaches young female artists to look at their subject to draw. Marianne is a young female artist, who learned her trade from her artist father, painting portraits of the wealthy for a living. The title of the film is the title of a painting that she made and that one of her students took to her class. The painting depicts a female figure against a dark background with her dress on fire. As Marianne contemplates her painting with envy, the film is about to tell us who this mysterious figure is, and how this painting was born.

Marianne met the lady on fire when she was invited by a countess (played by Valeria Golino) to paint the portrait of her daughter, Héloïse (played by Adèle Haenel), who has just left a convent after the death of his sister. The mother intended this portrait for her daughter’s fiancé who lives in Milan. As Héloïse refused to pose for the previous painter, the mother asks Marianne to pretend to be a walking companion for her daughter, and to draw her from memory without Héloïse knowing it. Sciamma takes her time to reveal Héloïse’s face. Anticipation sets in, like Marianne who is eager to discover her subject.

Deftly, however, Sciamma doesn’t make its protagonist fall in love with its subject matter at first sight like so many movies we’ve seen before. It is not the typical story of the painter falling in love or coveting the image of the model. Marianne observes, scrutinizes Héloïse’s face, but her first drawing of her fails. The film suggests that the desire between the two women does not begin when Marianne watches Héloïse to capture every detail of her face in memory. The desire begins rather when Héloïse looks back. After Marianne reveals her true purpose, Héloïse agrees to pose for her. It is at this moment, when Héloïse poses for Marianne to paint her that the desire rises between the two women.

Portrait of a lady on fire is a film about the gaze, but understanding that the gaze goes both ways – “a reverse shot” as Sciamma herself calls it, of two subjects gazing at each other, both being the object of the gaze of the other. As Héloïse rightly points out to Marianne in the film: while the painter observes his model, who does she think the model is observing.

More importantly, it’s a film about the female gaze. In fact, there are no male characters. The film depicts a female space, in which men are out of frame. This is an all-female film exploring female desire from a woman’s perspective. It is, after all, the story of a woman painter at a time in history when the artistic works of women were ignored, and therefore assumed to be non-existent. A time, indeed, when the female gaze was not even considered, and to a certain extent, it still struggles to this day to be considered.

During Sciamma’s Screen Talk during the London Film Festival, the filmmaker explained how Portrait of a lady on fire, she wanted to create a lesbian love story, which she misses. She thought about how the male gaze has always portrayed lesbian love stories as conflicted and tragic, and she decided that these films should now be portrayed from a female point of view.

“I really wanted to film desire, the rise of desire,” she said. “When you remember what it was like to fall in love,” she continued, “you remember the choreography. You remember the steps that led you to that kiss. Those unique steps, this is what Sciamma wanted to film. There is a particular choreography, certain steps to be taken, from desire to love. For the dance to work, a specific rhythm must be maintained. For desire to transpire on film , this rhythm must also exist in the construction of the film itself.Sciamma explained how she would ask her actresses to take a specific number of steps in a scene, or to breathe at a certain rhythm, ending a scene with a exhalation or inspiration.

Sciamma told the Screen Talk audience that she did a lot of research on the period of the film, “so the film is not anachronistic at all, the character of the painter is absolutely accurate. I worked with an art sociologist who specializes in women painters of this period,” she says. The character of Marianne is therefore inspired by real women painters who existed at that time in France. The film is an attempt to find the stories of these women artists who have been lost and forgotten. “I discovered that there were so many women artists at the time, and they were erased from art history,” Sciamma continued, “and discovered their body of work, discovered how it was missing from the history of art, but also from our lives.” The fact that these images are absent from our history “impacts the way we live and our culture,” she said.

This is Sciamma’s first period drama, and the first time she has used professional actors. All of his previous works have been contemporary social dramas with the performance of amateur actors. water lilies (2007), Tomboy (2011) and Youth (2015) were all coming-of-age films that centered on female experiences. All of her films, including her latest, have one common denominator: each explores female subjectivity in a totally timeless way. Discuss the resounding success of Tomboy, Sciamma told Screen Talk that she was looking for “that kind of timeless feeling”, “not trying to go with the documentary side of what youth is like today”, but rather the mythology of childhood, so everyone can connect. In all of her films, Sciamma continued, she strives to “make films where there is room for you (the viewer)”.

Portrait of a lady on fire is not another Blue is the hottest colora film about a lesbian love story told through the male director’s male gaze that won Abdellatif Kechiche the Palme d’Or at Cannes in 2013. Portrait of a lady on fire is a film about women directed by a woman for women, which invites male and female viewers into the female gaze.

In the discussion the characters have about the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice, it is Marianne who suggests that perhaps Eurydice called on Orpheus to turn around. With this explanation, Eurydice is no longer the passive victim, but an active participant in the story, choosing her fate. Portrait of a lady on fire is due out in UK cinemas on February 28, 2020. It is distributed in the UK by Curzon. Sciamma’s film will be available in theaters in the United States on December 6, 2019.

2 scientists win Nobel Prize in Chemistry for ‘genetic scissors’ Fri, 19 Mar 2021 08:45:11 +0000

STOCKHOLM (AP) — Two scientists won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry on Wednesday for developing a genome-editing method akin to “molecular scissors” that offers the promise of one day curing inherited diseases and even cancer.

Working on both sides of the Atlantic, Frenchwoman Emmanuelle Charpentier and American Jennifer A. Doudna have developed a method known as CRISPR/Cas9 which can be used to modify the DNA of animals, plants and micro-organisms with very high precision.

“There is enormous power in this genetic tool, which affects us all,” said Claes Gustafsson, chairman of the Nobel Committee for Chemistry. “It has not only revolutionized basic science, but has also resulted in innovative crops and will lead to groundbreaking new medical treatments.”

Gustafsson said that as a result, any genome can now be edited “to repair genetic damage”, adding that the tool “will provide humanity with great opportunities”.

But he warned that “the enormous power of this technology means that we must use it with great care”.

It has already raised serious ethical questions in the scientific community. Most of the world became more aware of CRISPR in 2018, when Chinese scientist Dr. He Jiankui revealed that he had helped create the world’s first genetically modified babies, in an attempt to create resistance to future infection with the AIDS virus. His work has been denounced worldwide as dangerous human experimentation due to the risk of causing unintended changes that can be passed on to future generations, and he is currently in prison.

In September, an international group of experts released a report saying it is still too early to try to create genetically modified babies, as the science is not advanced enough to guarantee safety, but they have charted a course. for all countries wishing to consider it.

“I was very moved, I must say,” Charpentier, 51, told reporters by phone from Berlin after hearing about the prize, announced in Stockholm on Wednesday by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences.

Asked if this was the first time two women had won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry together, Charpentier said that while she thought of herself as a scientist first and foremost, she hoped it would encourage others.

“I hope this sends a positive message to young girls who would like to follow the path of science,” she said.

Doudna told The Associated Press of her surprise to receive the call early in the morning.

“I literally just found out, I’m in shock,” she said. “I was sleeping soundly.”

“My greatest hope is that it will be used for good, to uncover new mysteries in biology and for the good of humanity,” Doudna said.

Harvard’s Broad Institute and MIT have fought a long court battle over patents on CRISPR technology, and many other scientists have done important work on it, but Doudna and Charpentier have been honored with awards most regularly. for turning it into an easily usable tool.

The prestigious award comes with a gold medal and a cash prize of 10 million crowns (over $1.1 million), courtesy of a legacy left over a century ago by the prize’s creator, Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel. The amount was recently increased to account for inflation.

On Monday, the Nobel Committee awarded the prize in physiology and medicine to Americans Harvey J. Alter and Charles M. Rice and British-born scientist Michael Houghton for discovery of the hepatitis C virus which ravages the liver. Tuesday’s physics prize went to Roger Penrose of Britain, Reinhard Genzel of Germany and Andrea Ghez of the United States for their breakthroughs in understand the mysteries of cosmic black holes.

The other prizes recognize outstanding work in the fields of literature, peace and economics.

German cities brace for €500m in losses following Greensill Bank collapse Fri, 19 Mar 2021 08:45:11 +0000

The impending collapse of Greensill Bank sent shockwaves through German municipalities, which held up to 500 million euros with the lender who was not subject to Imposed by the ECB negative interest rates — but not covered by deposit insurance.

Last week, German financial watchdog BaFin froze the operations of the Bremen-based bank and deposit a criminal complaint for potential manipulation of the balance sheet, a few days before the London owner Greensill Capital filed for insolvency.

People familiar with the matter expect a formal liquidation of Greensill Bank, one of the few German lenders to accept large deposits without charging negative interest rates, within days.

Public sector customers of Germany’s private sector banks ceased to be covered by the country’s deposit insurance system in 2017 in a change prompted by costly bailouts of municipalities that have done business with defunct lenders such as Lehman Brothers and Maple Bank.

Verena Göppert, deputy director of the German Association of Towns and Villages, said the decision was “a mistake because it cannot be properly justified”.

German municipal Greensill depositors include Hessian state capital Wiesbaden (€20 million), university town of Giessen (€10 million), Cologne Opera (€15 million) and the wastewater treatment plant for a suburb of Hanover (8.5 million euros).

They are also one of the 16 federal states of Germany. Thuringia, in eastern Germany, deposited 50 million euros.

Heike Taubert, Thuringia’s Social Democrat Finance Minister, said the state had used Greensill Bank as part of liquidity management “to avoid the high fees imposed by the ECB”.

The ECB has since 2014 cut interest rates into negative territory in a bid to revamp the lackluster eurozone economy.

Many banks – including local savings banks or municipally owned Sparkassen – have started charging institutional depositors 0.5% per annum. However, unlike public sector deposits in private banks, those in savings banks are insured against the bankruptcy of the lender.

“If we deposited all our cash of €200 million with our local savings bank, it would cost us €1 million a year,” Axel Imholz, the treasurer of Wiesbaden, told the Financial Times. He added that Greensill Bank had unqualified audits, a high credit rating and was supervised by BaFin. “We can’t send our own auditors to the banks,” Imholz said.

The situation in Cologne is particularly bad because the money deposited with the Greensill Bank was borrowed for the construction and renovation of the local theater and opera house – a 600 million euro project which should be completed by 2024.

City at the end of last year received a €100m tranche of the loan, which was parked with several different lenders as it was not immediately needed, she told the FT.

Thomas Fillep, the treasurer of Osnabrück who has 14 million euros in deposits at the Greensill Bank, is already calling for a bailout from the federal government.

“We hope Berlin won’t leave us out,” he told the FT, saying Greensill Bank’s problems appeared to have been caused by internal misconduct and the city needed to be able to rely on the banks. “We can’t put the money in a safe,” he said.

Fillep also pointed to the fact that Greensill Bank was supervised by BaFin, which should have ensured that its internal workings were in good faith and that the bank’s probability of default was in line with that of “the best lenders at the time”.

For Osnabrück, losing 14 million euros would be nothing short of a “catastrophe”, he said, adding that the heavily indebted city had “saved and saved” for years to put its house in order. his finances.

Monheim, a town of just 44,000 people north of Cologne that faces a loss of 38 million euros, is trying to organize a political initiative coordinated by Greensill’s public sector clients.

However, Thiess Büttner, professor of economics at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, refutes the idea of ​​a bailout of municipalities.

Pointing out that the exclusion of public sector customers from the private banking sector deposit insurance scheme “was communicated well in advance,” he said cities had “tried to get higher returns by accepting higher risks” and now have to pay the price.

BaFin said strict confidentiality rules prevented it from disclosing Greensill Bank’s special audit sooner than it did. The watchdog also pointed out that the new rules were “clearly stated” in 2017. Asked by the FT if it was willing to help municipalities suffering losses in the Greensill debacle, the German finance ministry pointed to the current regulatory framework.

Many municipalities are already strapped for cash. “German cities are already under enormous financial pressure from the Covid-19 pandemic,” Göppert said, pointing to falling tax revenues and rising spending.

Emmerich, a town of 30,000 near the Dutch border in western Germany, is worried about 6 million euros, or about a third of its entire cash. “City Council has already begun to assess whether certain planned expenditures for 2021 can be postponed,” a spokesperson said.

Put your money to work: ready for the ghost month? Fri, 19 Mar 2021 08:45:11 +0000

MANILA — Businesspeople typically brace for ghost month, a time when customers stop buying products or postpone plans to avoid bad luck.

This year, the month of ghosts begins on August 22 and ends on September 19, 2017. According to Chinese legend, the month of ghosts is when evil spirits are released from hell and roam the earth, bringing bad luck everywhere or they will. This is why superstitious businessmen, and there are surprisingly many of them, keep a low profile during this period.

Unfortunately, this usually also means a slowdown in business. Cash flow could suddenly be tight. If you are a stock market investor, you may find that the market is in the doldrums. If you’re in sales, you might suddenly find your regular customers postponing their purchases, causing you to miss your goals. You might even find that it’s harder to collect money from your customers, simply because they’re holding themselves back.

Entrepreneurs aren’t the only ones being hit hard by ghost month superstitions. If you’re an employee, you might find that some of your bosses refuse to start projects, simply because they don’t think it’s a good time to start one.

Put your money to work: ready for the ghost month?  2

That’s why you need to be prepared for ghost month and other similar events, when everyone seems to be in slow down mode. While the best way to deal with ghost month is to prepare for it in advance, there are also ways to help you get through it with less difficulty.

Here are 7 ways to help you cope with the ghost month:

1. Stick to the basics. During a downturn, it’s best to prioritize the most important expenses instead of buying non-essential items. You can cut back on dining and entertainment expenses right now and just focus on food, utilities, transportation, and medical needs for now. Find ways to reduce expenses through cost-cutting techniques.

2. Defer major expenses. While uncertainty reigns, it may be good to postpone large expenses that are not urgent. If you’re considering buying a new laptop but aren’t sure about your cash flow, you can defer it to the next month or when your sales are on track and your cash flow situation has improved.

3. Don’t miss paying the bills. When you’re in a cash crunch, it’s tempting to put off paying bills. Don’t. This will cost you much more in penalties and finance charges. Late payment charges can start at P400. You may want to pay only the minimum amount due on your credit card at this time, but be sure to honor all commitments to keep your credit in good shape.

4. Accept additional tasks. If you need extra money, be creative and find other sources of income to help you through this time. You might want to sell stuff on the side, offer tutorials, or run errands for people in exchange for a fee. Use your ingenuity so you can survive Ghost Month and similar downturns in the future.

5. Avoid unnecessary debt. The phantom month may prompt you to take out a loan to pay for your living expenses. While it’s not inherently wrong to borrow money, don’t do it unless absolutely necessary, such as in medical and other emergencies. Instead, try limiting your spending or postponing purchases until business picks up.

6. Start an emergency fund. The ghost month is a recurring phenomenon, and you will encounter many other slowdowns. For this reason, you may want to consider creating an emergency fund that you can use the next time it happens. Start at around 3-5% of your income. If you earn 20,000 P per month, it will be between 600 P and 1,000 P per month. Open a savings account where you can regularly deposit a fixed amount so that you have money to use the next time the ghost month arrives.

7. Stay positive. There’s nothing like having a positive attitude and disposition to get through those lows. Be aware that these are temporary and with a bit of belt tightening you can get over this bump. As things move slowly, focus on preparing for what might come your way. Don’t be discouraged, knowing that Ghost Month will soon be over and things will eventually get better.

Not everyone believes in the ghost month, but when it comes to business and especially financial transactions, preparation is key. You may not be religious, but the people you deal with may be. In such cases, err on the side of caution and be ready for anything. There is nothing to lose by simply being careful.


Grow Your Money is an editorial partnership between and Citi Philippines to promote financial education and provide useful information to Filipinos on how to better manage their personal finances.

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Citi, make your money work, personal finance, August, September, ghost month, superstition

Arkansas woman charged with nearly $2 million COVID-19 relief fraud Fri, 19 Mar 2021 08:45:11 +0000

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be out of date. Please look at the timestamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

LITTLE ROCK, Arkansas — An Arkansas woman is accused of siphoning off nearly $2 million from the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), money she allegedly used to fund a lavish shopping spree and pay off a student loan.

Ganell Tubbs, 41, of Little Rock, applied for COVID-19 relief funds through the PPP on behalf of two companies, The Little Piglet Soap Company, LLC and Suga Girl Customs, LLC. Neither company is in good standing, according to the Arkansas secretary of state, and both have Tubbs’ home phone number and address as contact information on file.

A Press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office says Tubbs claimed that Suga Girl Customs paid $1,385,903 in salaries and allowances during the first quarter of 2020. She submitted the PPP application on April 30 and was approved for a loan of $1,518,887.

Tubbs received the money on May 5 and two days later spent $8,000 paying off a student loan, according to the indictment. A week later, prosecutors say she shopped online, spending about $6,000 on products from Apple, Michael Kors, Sephora, Northface, Nike and others.

Tubbs’ second PPP application for The Little Piglet Soap Company on May 5 landed him a loan of $414,375, according to the press release.

“Many businesses across Arkansas are struggling to stay open during this COVID-19 pandemic, so our office has zero tolerance for anyone who fraudulently uses federal funds intended to help businesses through this difficult time,” said said FBI Special Agent in Charge Diane Upchurch. “Alongside our federal and state partners, we will remain vigilant against fraudsters and ensure PPP funds are used as intended.”

Tubbs faces two counts of bank fraud, two counts of misrepresentation on a loan application and one count of participating in a monetary transaction with the proceeds of illegal activities.

The Role of BSP in Economic Recovery and Monetary Policy Lessons Fri, 19 Mar 2021 08:45:10 +0000

Goodmorning ladies and gentlemen.

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) welcomes this opportunity to discuss its role in cushioning the negative impact of the COVID-19 crisis. We are indeed happy to help the national government steer the country on a path of gradual and sustainable recovery. I will also share key monetary policy lessons, which I believe will be very helpful to the country moving forward.

The shock of the COVID-19 pandemic is unprecedented.

After posting 84 consecutive quarters of growth, real GDP fell 0.7% year-on-year in the first quarter of 2020.

In the second quarter of 2020, real GDP contracted by 16.9%. In the third quarter of 2020, real GDP also declined, but at a slower pace of 11.5%. Since the start of the year, real GDP growth has been –10.0%. The slowdown in the pace of GDP contraction is expected to continue in the fourth quarter of 2020.

Let me emphasize that crafting rapid, timely and well-calibrated policy responses requires a clear understanding of the nature of the shock.

What we are experiencing is a public health crisis. As such, the primary response of policy makers should be to contain the virus and provide adequate care for those infected.

The shock called for a bold and coordinated response from the national government. To mitigate the adverse effects of the pandemic, fiscal and monetary policy authorities need to play distinct but complementary roles.

In particular, fiscal policy plays a crucial role as it can respond in a more targeted way to the most affected sectors of the economy.

In the meantime, the role of the monetary authorities has been to ensure that credit and financial markets function well and that there is sufficient liquidity to support domestic demand.

Given the brutality and scale of the pandemic, PASB has deemed it necessary to provide additional emergency support to the government’s extensive health and fiscal programs related to COVID-19.

The BSP deployed a wide range of monetary instruments and extraordinary liquidity-enhancing measures to support the economy. BSP cut the policy rate by a cumulative 200 basis points (bps). The policy rate cut is aimed at bolstering market confidence amid stronger headwinds from the pandemic.

We also cut Reserve Requirement (RR) ratios by 200 basis points to calm markets and support bank lending to the retail and corporate sectors.

In line with the efforts of the whole of government, PASB provided interim advances to NG within the time and limits prescribed by law. In March 2020, BSP entered into a £300 billion short-term repurchase agreement with the Office of the Treasury (BTr).

The arrangement was fully settled at the end of September 2020. A further provisional advance of £540 billion was further extended in October 2020 and was fully settled on December 18, 2020.

Meanwhile, the BSP also purchased government securities (GS) in the secondary market. This is part of BSP’s immediate monetary policy response to help bolster domestic liquidity and restore market participants’ confidence to continue participating in GS’s primary auctions. These actions helped address temporary volatilities in the GS market, maintaining market interest to continue to hold GS, which in turn helped NG meet its funding needs for its COVID-related programs. 19.

In total, the BSP policy and liquidity easing measures have injected around £2 trillion of liquidity into the financial system, or around 10% of the country’s nominal GDP level in 2019.

BSP has also implemented a wide range of regulatory relief measures aimed at:

  • extending financial relief to borrowers from BSP-supervised financial institutions,
  • encourage bank lending;
  • promote continued access to credit and financial services;
  • and support the continued provision of financial services.

We also made it possible for new loans to micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) to count towards banks’ compliance with reserve requirements. This is to encourage banks to continue lending to critical small businesses and large businesses. This will also ensure sufficient domestic liquidity and credit to support economic activity under the containment measures.

Loans to MSMEs used as an alternative to meeting reserve requirements (RR) reached 134.8 billion as of November 26, 2020. This represented a 9.8% share of total RRs, while large corporate (LE) loans used for compliance purposes reached £29.1bn (or 2.1% of total RRs). The BSP also approved a limit on loans to MSMEs and large enterprises used as a compliance alternative at 300 billion pesos and 425 billion pesos, respectively.

Supported by the BSP’s liquidity enhancement measures, the latest data suggests that there is ample liquidity in the financial system. Domestic liquidity increased by 11.8% (year-on-year) to around 13.5 trillion pesos in October 2020, compared to 12.2% in September.

Domestic liquidity dynamics and market functioning have improved thanks to the BSP’s liquidity enhancement measures. The Monetary Board (MB) believes that maintaining a dovish stance has been key to securing favorable financing conditions to support economic activity and market sentiment.

With adequate liquidity in the financial system, domestic interest rates have gradually declined over the past few months.

In line with its financial inclusion initiatives, PASB also continued to promote the use of digital financial platforms. This is in line with our vision to move from a cash-heavy to a cash-light economy.

As part of the digital payments transformation roadmap for 2020 to 2023, BSP aims to (1) strengthen customer preference for digital payments by converting 50% of total retail payment volume to digital form; and expand the proportion of financially included people to 70% of Filipino adults and (2) encourage innovations that will boost the speed of real-time payments.

We have also supported digital payment initiatives such as the use of electronic funds transfers through Instapay and PESONet, as well as the expansion of low-cost access points through treasury agents or third-party outlets. In the short term, we are ready to further pursue these digital payment initiatives.

Let me emphasize that the implementation of measures to deal with the impact of the pandemic has provided valuable lessons.

First, the experience of the crisis forced central banks, including the BSP, to be more agile. This pandemic differs from other episodes of crisis in that it had a strong and rapid influence on domestic and global demand.

The COVID-19 crisis has also taught us that there are limits to what monetary policy can do. When interest rates are low and private demand is persistently weak, the transmission of financing conditions to private spending may be reduced.

It is therefore crucial that monetary policy ensures favorable financing conditions for the whole economy.

This limitation of monetary policy highlights the critical role of targeted fiscal policy responses and underscores the need for a whole-of-government approach to combating the pandemic.

At the same time, banks’ continued risk aversion and weak loan demand continue to contribute to weak lending activity. Preliminary data shows that growth in outstanding universal and commercial bank loans, net of reverse repurchase agreements (RRPs) with BSP, slowed to 1.9% in October from 2.6% (revised) in September. The general slowdown in bank lending growth reflects low business confidence and heightened uncertainty amid continued disruptions to business operations. This phenomenon of weak credit activity in the midst of the crisis can be observed in the same way in other economies.

Survey of Bank Credit Officers (SLOS) Q3 2020 results show majority of banks surveyed continued to report tighter overall credit standards in Q3 2020, although fewer compared to the second quarter of 2020, based on the modal approach. Based on the Diffusion Index (DI approach), banks reported a sharp tightening in overall underwriting standards for corporate and household loans in the third quarter of 2020.

The banks surveyed attributed the tightening of credit standards largely to (1) a less favorable economic outlook, (2) a deterioration in the profitability of the bank’s portfolio and borrower profiles, and (3) a reduced tolerance risk, among other factors.

Nevertheless, improving mobility indicators indicate that businesses and households are beginning to adapt to the post-pandemic operating environment. This could support the recovery of economic activity in the short term.

In this slide, we show mobility changes as monitored by Google for the entire country. From the graphs, we can see that as of December 29, 2020, visits to places such as grocery stores, pharmacies and parks have approached their pre-COVID levels. Visits to retail and leisure also continue to improve. Meanwhile, mobility at transit stations is still stable as transportation options have remained limited.

For 2021, the economy is expected to rebound, with growth of 6.5 to 7.5%. This is based on the Development Budget Coordination Committee projections as of December 2020.

Growth is expected to be driven by increased public spending and the adoption of structural reform programs such as the Business Recovery and Tax Incentives for Businesses Bill (CREATE) and the Transfer Bill. Strategic Financial Institutions (FIST).

PASB remains mindful of economic developments and financial conditions, including the potential impact of a prolonged COVID-19 health crisis. In view of this, BSP reaffirms its commitment to complement broader government efforts to combat the pandemic.

BSP continues to have ample monetary policy leeway to address potential risks to liquidity and growth from the health crisis.

We will continue to support the government while recognizing the crucial role of sustained and targeted fiscal interventions in reviving demand.

Additionally, let me assure you that when national developments warrant a recalibration or withdrawal of political support, PASB will ensure a smooth normalization of its time-bound measures.

PASB must continue to adhere to disciplined, evidence-based policymaking. In the face of this pandemic, we will pursue our mandate to promote price stability and financial stability conducive to sustainable growth and employment.

Thanks a lot.

SoFi plans IPO via SPAC Fri, 19 Mar 2021 08:45:10 +0000

Silicon Valley start-ups Social Finance (SoFi) Reaches Merger Agreement With Blank Check Company Social Capital Hedosophia Holdings Corp. V to file an initial public offering (IPO).

“SoFi is on a mission to help people achieve financial independence to achieve their ambitions. Our ecosystem of products, rewards, and membership benefits all work together to help our members make their money well,” CEO of SoFi Antoine Noto said in a Press release Thursday (January 7).

Social Capital Hedosophia is one of three ad hoc acquisition companies (SPAC) on the lookout for investment opportunities. The deal would give SoFi a post-money valuation of over $8.65 billion, with the aim of bringing FinTech companies to the public markets. The deal is expected to bring in up to $2.4 billion in cash.

SoFi’s technology platform Galileowhich it acquired in April, helped position the startup at the crossroads of the digital transformation of banking and financial services.

“SoFi’s innovative, member-driven platform has demystified financial services for millions of Americans and simplified the process for those looking to apply for loans, invest their money, obtain insurance and refinance their debt. among many other tasks that were previously obscure and unnecessarily complicated,” said Chamath Palihapitiya, co-founder and CEO of Social Capital Hedosophia V.

Palihapitiya added that SoFi members advanced a “virtuous cycle of compound growth,” which also led to profits and varied revenue streams.

SoFi has partnered with Samsung and Mastercard to launch a new no-fee cash management account feature. Samsung Money by SoFi users will be able to get discounts on a variety of Samsung products, from Galaxy smartphones to washing machines, refrigerators, and more.

Noto – a former investment banker at Goldman Sachs – expressed his wish to go public via a after-sales service. Founded in 2011, SoFi sought to leverage loans after the 2008 financial crisis, focusing on refinancing student loans.



About: Results from PYMNTS’ new study, “The Super App Shift: How Consumers Want To Save, Shop And Spend In The Connected Economy,” a collaboration with PayPal, analyzed responses from 9,904 consumers in Australia, Germany, UK and USA. and showed strong demand for one super multi-functional app rather than using dozens of individual apps.

SBA offers relief funds – Nursery Management Fri, 19 Mar 2021 08:45:10 +0000

Prior to the outbreak of the novel coronavirus in the United States, sales were skyrocketing for SummerWinds Nursery locations in Arizona and California. In fact, they were 20-30% higher than last year. “Now Arizona has slowed down, but we’ve seen the weather in California and Arizona – rain like we did last year at this time,” said Frank Benzing, president and CEO. , adding that Arizona “largely holds together.”

In California, however, he said, “The world is almost at a standstill. Sales this week are down 75% from the same week a year ago.

Earlier this week, the company’s management team discussed whether or not to close its doors, weighing what was best for the public and its employees. Finally, on Tuesday, they decided to stay open.

“We think we’re a good source of food supply to plan your own, especially in the hot weather, not to mention we’re a good respite for people going for a walk. It’s like walking in a park,” Benzing said. “And you can still do that in California; just keep a social distance.

In Dallas, the weather was rainy, so business would have been slow anyway, says Mark Ruibal, owner of Ruibal’s Plants of Texas. But landscapers are still picking up their plants and heading for jobs. “And since we do all of our own cultivation and we have a large stash of plants and we’re going to plug in as much as we can,” he said.

The plan for the future is to promote that Ruibal’s is always open for business. Since there is plenty of space in the nursery, people can keep their distance while browsing.

“We are going to kind of insist that you have to have something to do at home as well anyway. You might as well go out and plant a garden or plant your flowers and be as normal as possible,” Ruibal said.

Liz Lark-Riley, general manager of Rockledge Gardens in Florida, said the IGC has yet to see a significant drop in sales and continues to meet its sales targets. The company is up 6.3% since the start of the year, but down 8.14% since the month and 22.5% since the start of the week.

“Our goal right now is to spread as much positivity and beauty as possible, even if people can’t get in,” she said. “All of our social media has been focused on beauty and kindness and just giving people a sense of hope, normalcy and beauty right now.”

Financial planning.

Cash supplies at Ruibal’s factories in Texas are okay at this time, but senior executives are cutting back on the cash they take home to ensure their employees will be taken care of, according to Ruibal.

“If it gets to the point where it’s been three, four, five weeks without anyone showing up, we’ll try to complement everyone as much as possible,” he said. “Of course, we will reduce our hours a bit from what they normally would be in the spring, just to give us a little more cushion to get through. So we will be there for our people as much as possible for as long as we can.

SummerWinds has stopped all orders and today they only have restocks for their vegetable and herb plants. So far, garden centers report that the supply chain is working very well.

Lark-Riley said Rockledge Gardens began repaying its line of credit after last summer and in January in a bid to reduce debt. “We actually keep doing it knowing that if we need to, we can back out of it later,” she said. The company recently decided to make a large payment on its line of credit to continue this effort.

“We just feel very, very lucky to be where we are. And obviously things change quickly and we’re paying attention to that, she said.

Find out how garden centers find new ways of doing things delivery, curbside pickup and online classes here.