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  1. #31
    fxb trading is offline Member
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    Who should you trust with your money?

    How many of you reading this have or had a bank account with HSBC? My guess is that more of you have banked with them than any other major bank. And why shouldn’t you. After all, they were known for being the world’s local bank and are amongst the biggest in the world.

    They’ve been around so long and are so big that trusting them is implicit. You don’t even bother looking at the library of licences they hold for the myriad of financial services they offer.

    But have they earned your trust?

    Cairn Energy trusted HSBC to carry out a $3.5 billion foreign exchange deal for them in 2011.

    The Financial Times reported recently that US prosecutors have accused HSBC of turning an illicit profit from the exchange by exploiting the confidential information they had of Cairn’s sizeable order.

    It’s a practice also referred to as scalping and authorities claim it earned HSBC over $8 million at Cairn’s expense.

    It’s far from an isolated incident.

    Reuters reported in December 2012 that HSBC agreed to pay a record $1.92 billion in fines to US authorities for allowing itself to be used to launder drug money flowing out of Mexico and terrorist organisations as well as other offences which were loosely described as banking lapses.

    HSBC benefited from a deferred prosecution agreement from the Justice Department and Chief Executive Stuart Gulliver said at the time of the judgement: “We accept responsibility for our past mistakes. We have said we are profoundly sorry for them, and we do so again. The HSBC of today is a fundamentally different organization from the one that made those mistakes.

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  2. #32
    fxb trading is offline Member
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    Bitcoin takes a big stride away from fringes of finance

    CME Group’s announcement on Tuesday (October 31) that it intends to offer futures on Bitcoin this month sent the cryptocurrency surging past $6,400 for the first time; the group’s move has been viewed as bringing Bitcoin a step closer to acceptance within mainstream finance by placing it alongside the CME’s stable of futures on interest rates, stock indices, commodities and currencies.

    Bitcoin’s price has soared from $966 at the start of the year, breaking through the $5,000 mark for the first time on October 11 before settling at $6,362.65 in afternoon trading on October 31, up by 4% for the day.

    Futures are derivatives contracts that investors and companies typically use to speculate on prices or hedge risk against turns in the market. Other major markets like stocks, bonds, commodities and currencies all have derivatives based on them. CME’s futures option would allow investors to hedge bets that the price of bitcoin will rise, something that is difficult at present.

    CME Group, the world’s largest derivatives exchange, explained that the futures will be cash-settled and based on the CME CF Bitcoin Reference Rate, a Bitcoin price index it launched last year.

    The news comes as a surprise because in September CME president Bryan Durkin told Bloomberg: “I really don’t see us going forward with a futures contract in the very near future.”

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  3. #33
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    Starbucks might be about to surprise Wall Street


    For years Starbucks Corporation’s (SBUX) shares have mirrored their phenomenal success, but recently the coffee giant has come under attack from the likes of McDonalds and other fast food giants as well as indie coffee shops which has been reflected in the value of their share price.

    After reaching a peak price of $64.87 in June, Starbucks shares are down 1.41% overall this year. However, Starbucks has expanded into new territories and brought greater convenience to its clients with the use of innovation which has prompted some analysts to predict that the coffee-making giant will surprise Wall Street when it releases its fourth quarter earnings on November 2.

    Starbucks experienced tremendous growth between 2011 and 2016 with sales growth above 5%. It all changed in the third quarter of 2016 when sales growth was just 4% while for the first time transaction growth was flat. For the next quarter, sales growth remained below 5% while transaction growth was negative (-1%).

    Starbucks’ growth has been affected by competition from indie coffee shops and traditional fast food giants who have widened their menus to capture some of the coffee drinking market.

    Indie coffee shops are opening everywhere and have taken away the trend-focused millennials market, while the price-focused crowd is now going to McDonalds for their coffee.

    Changing consumer preferences have had a big influence on Starbuck’s recent performance. The competition has expanded their menu options and physical store locations to better reach a wider customer base which has drawn consumers away from Starbucks and resulted in the slow down of sales growth.

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  4. #34
    fxb trading is offline Member
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    Alibaba’s global perspective sends share price soaring

    Alibaba’s (BABA) ongoing experimentation with new ways to lure shoppers into spending their money, diversification and expansion into new territories has earned widespread approval in the markets, pushing its share price to record highs of $192.12 ahead of their quarterly earnings report (November 2).

    The Chinese e-commerce giant’s shares have more than doubled in value this year (see chart) with much of Alibaba’s growth being fueled by the internet retailing boom in China. The move into cloud computing is currently loss-making, but with the number of users almost doubling to 1 million in a year and expansion into Malaysia and India it is expected to turn that around. Also, Alibaba’s diversification into groceries, digital entertainment and financial services are showing potential for future growth.

    Alibaba’s goal is to reach 2 billion customers around the world within 20 years. In some cases, it has begun with digital payments, as in India. In others it has invested in e-commerce sites, as with Lazada, in South-East Asia. But it intends to build a broad range of services within each market, including payments, e-commerce and travel services, and then link local platforms with Alibaba’s in China.

    Alibaba’s recent success has, in part, been helped by Beijing’s severe restrictions on foreign internet companies which has allowed them to benefit from the boom in e-commerce while only contending with domestic competition.

    However, at the core of Alibaba’s success has been innovation. Sales events like its ‘11.11 Global Shopping Festival’ have been phenomenally successful and provide a platform upon which Alibaba experiment with new forms of retail and customer engagement which rely extensively on interactivity, technology and consumer analytics.

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