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  • Investors Likely to be Cautious in October - 4 October 2010
  • Despite the fact that US stock markets enjoyed the best September in decades, ending the month on an upbeat note, analysts are cautioning against getting too optimistic as the final quarter of 2010 gets underway. September's success is attributed mainly to actual economic readings being higher than forecasts. However, investors need to bear in mind that economic forecasts were somewhat pessimistic following dismal market performance in August amidst fears of a double-dip in the economy. So, while September’s economic readings were better than expected, they were by no means great.

  • A Brief History of Competition Law – Part 1 - 30 September 2010
  • It is readily accepted in modern times that vigorous competition is healthy for a country’s economy. As competitors focus their efforts on persuading consumers to buy their particular product or service, suppliers are obliged to live up to certain standards and to honor their warranties and promises, because failure to do so will send the consumer to their competitors. Competition also ensures that customers are getting the best value for their money, and antitrust laws enforced by regulating authorities prevents competitors from colluding to set prices.

  • What Recession? Forbes Names Wealthiest Americans - 23 September 2010
  • With high-profile talk show hosts focusing on the plight of ordinary American citizens in the economic downturn, trying in their own way to help people cope, one may be led to conclude that hard times have hit everyone to a lesser or greater degree. However, with the release of Forbes magazine’s annual list of the 400 wealthiest Americans, it’s become clear that this is not the case. Despite the ailing economy, which is battling a rocky road to recovery, the Forbes list reveals that the rich got even richer in the past year. Meanwhile, as is highlighted by home foreclosures, unemployment benefit claims and drop in consumer spending, it appears that some of the middle-class has joined the ranks of the poor, and the poor got poorer.

  • Dow Jones Sustainability Index - 20 September 2010
  • Ethical consumerism – also referred to as green consumerism or moral purchasing - along with fair-trade practices and a focus on sustainable development, spurred on by a growing concern for the environment, is resulting in an increasing number of investors taking into account a company's commitment to upholding ethical and green principals in their day to day business when making investment decisions. A useful tool in determining which companies fit the bill in this regard is the range of Dow Jones Sustainability Indexes (DJSI) which closely track the performance of top sustainability-driven companies on a worldwide scale.

  • Information Asymmetry - 16 September 2010
  • Information asymmetry – where one party has superior information, putting the other party at a disadvantage - is often seen as the underlying cause of business transactions failing to meet expectations. Quoted examples of information asymmetry include "moral hazard" and "adverse selection", with the former being the change in behavior of one of the parties in relation to the level of risk, and the latter referring to a situation where a bad choice is made because of a lack of information available to the person making the choice.

  • Basel III Aims For 2013 Implementation - 13 September 2010
  • Consisting of representatives from twenty-seven countries, the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (BCBS) provides a forum for discussion and cooperation with regard to standardizing banking regulations of member countries. The BCBS was initially created by the central bank governors of the Group of Ten (G-10) nations – which consists of eleven member nations, being United States, United Kingdom, Sweden, the Netherlands, Japan, Italy, Germany, France, Canada and Belgium, with Switzerland joining later. Other member nations participating in the BCBS are Australia, Argentina, Brazil, China, Hong Kong SAR, Indonesia, India, Korea, Mexico, Luxembourg, Russia, Singapore, Audi Arabia, South Africa and Turkey.

  • Markets Respond to Tax Concessions, Job Creation Proposals - 9 September 2010
  • Many consider the $350 billion job creation/recovery proposal offered by President Barack Obama as being 'too little, too late', nonetheless stocks were boosted by his speech outlining the plan as investors grabbed onto some hope for an increase in the pace of economic recovery - despite the Federal Reserve's observation that the economy is once again slowing down. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose to 10,387 (46 points/.045 percent), with the Standard & Poor's 500 closing at 1,099 (7 points/0.6 percent) and the Nasdaq Composite ending Wednesday at 2,229 (20 points/0.9 percent).

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