Wednesday, August 19, 2015

是他说服中共领导层 让人民币贬值

是他说服中共领导层 让人民币贬值 www.creaders.net | 2015-08-18 22:27:33  英国《金融时报》 | 1条评论 | 查看/发表评论 
  20世纪80年代初, 一个博士生敦促中共解除价格管制,允许进口电视机,吸引了中共最高层领导人的注意。这个出身于高级干部家庭,大有前途的博士生就是周小川。
三十年过去,身为中国任职时间最长的央行行长,周小川还在说服中国政府领导层相信经济改革的好处。上周他说服中共领导层让人民币贬值,这可能会是他漫长职业生涯的最高成就,此举为人民币的自由浮动、成为能够挑战美元的国际储备货币铺平了道路。
  中国央行(PBoC)上周二突然宣布下调人民币兑美元汇率近两个百分点(这是自1994年以来的最大降幅),让市场猝不及防,并形成了所谓的汇率战前景。对内,周小川向中国国家主席习近平提议这一举措时,称它关系到国家利益,是经济增长大幅放缓形势下提振经济的一个必要举动。对外,中国央行将这次贬值描绘成朝着人民币汇率市场化、人民币交易自由化迈出的一步。周小川希望这种描绘能防止引发竞争性贬值,同时说服国际货币基金组织(IMF)将人民币纳入其储备货币篮子。
  能够让国际市场和中共党内中流砥柱都认同他的改革,标志着周小川作为一名了不起的技术官僚,站上了自己政治权力的巅峰,即使他已准备退休。虽然周小川常被比作中国的艾伦?格林斯潘(Alan Greenspan),但央行行长这一位置在中国的影响力远不如在美国。加息或降息这样的大决定是由中共领导人作出的。但与大多数岗位一样,是人赋予位置以权力,而不是反过来。
  周小川与习近平以及其他许多高级领导人一样,也是“太子党”出身,这一点赋予他远超官方头衔的影响力。周小川出生于1948年,中华人民共和国成立前一年。他的父亲二战期间成为早期共产党员和地下工作者,后曾担任第一机械工业部副部长。
  除了官方生平简历,中共高层领导人的个人信息被认为是国家机密,关于周小川父亲个人生活的公开信息非常少,只知道他的妻子是前化工部高级官员。
  1966年,周小川从北京一所重点中学毕业,同年,文革开始了。据两名知情人透露,周小川曾是一个红卫兵组织的领袖,这是一个迫害教师、“坏分子”和“走资派”的残暴组织。只要是过去几十年曾见过周小川的人,都很难相信这位慈眉善目、温文尔雅、彬彬有礼的男士曾卷入过当年那些暴行。
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  1968年,与其他数百万叛逆的青少年一样,周小川被下放到了偏远寒冷的东北地区的一家国有农场,在那4年放逐生涯中,他靠着听被禁的古典乐唱片来支撑精神。1973年,周小川的父亲平反,他因此获准回到北京,开始了学术生涯。在上世纪80年代,他在美国短暂地学习了一段时期,回国后就加入了一群年轻的技术官僚当中,努力推动中国向西方开放。
  在1989年中国前国家主席江泽民上台后——江泽民曾经是周小川父亲的门生——周小川这颗政治明星真正开始冉冉升起。周小川在许多政府部门担任过一把手,包括中国证监会(CSRC)——他在证监会由于努力打击新生资本市场的腐败而被称为“周扒皮”。他的头衔又一次没有反映出他的真正影响力。对于上世纪90年代初中国股票市场的建立、上世纪90年代末银行的纾困和重组、2000年代初股票市场改革以及自那以后债券市场的培育,他都起到了不小的作用。
  周小川经常出席IMF的会议,他睿智、英语流利、富有幽默感而且网球打得还不错,这些都让西方人折服。美国前财长汉克?保尔森(Hank Paulson)说,2006年劝说自己接受本已拒绝的财政部长一职的就是周小川。但这些让周小川颇受西方精英欢迎的特质,在国内却往往对他产生不利的影响。在国内,周小川被指责过于自由化、过于“外国化”以及与美国走得过近。
  周小川自2002年担任中国央行行长以来,媒体曾多次错误地报道称——至少有两次是英国《金融时报》报道的——他的政治生涯即将结束。周小川还一直是海外中文媒体的抨击目标,曾遭受各种指责,从内幕交易到向外国人廉价出售中资银行。2010年,有谣言称,为了逃避因美国国债投资亏损遭受惩处,周小川已叛逃到美国,随后中国央行不得不发布了周小川与外国要人在北京会晤的照片。
  曾担任美国中央情报局(CIA)中国事务高级分析师、现在华盛顿战略与国际研究中心(Center for Strategic and International Studies)任职的克里斯托弗?约翰逊(Christopher Johnson)表示:“显然他有时会惹恼一些人,其中包括中国国家主席习近平。但他从未像现在这么重要,这么有权力。他很快就要退休了,因此没有什么可损失的,他绝对是铁了心要完成自己大半生致力的市场改革。”  (作者吉密欧为英国《金融时报》北京分社社长。 译者/何黎)
- See more at: http://news.creaders.net/china/2015/08/18/1571438.html#sthash.A44q0K46.dpuf

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

U.S. Index Futures Fall as China Devalues Yuan, Commodities Drop

U.S. Index Futures Fall as China Devalues Yuan, Commodities Drop

Updated on
U.S. stock-index futures slid, following equities’ biggest gain since May, as China’s currency devaluation sparked concern across global markets that the world’s second-largest economy is headed for a deeper slowdown.
General Motors Co. and Ford Motor Co. slipped more than 1.3 percent. Caterpillar Inc., Tiffany & Co. and Apple Inc. each lost at least 1.4 percent. Google Inc. advanced 5.7 percent after saying it will reorganize into a holding company to be called Alphabet Inc.
Standard & Poor’s 500 Index E-mini contracts expiring next month declined 0.7 percent to 2,084.75 at 8:44 a.m. in New York. Dow Jones Industrial Average futures slid 141 points, or 0.8 percent, to 17,412, after the underlying index on Monday snapped its longest losing streak since 2011.
“There’s more caution after a very strong day yesterday,” said Veronika Pechlaner, an investment manager at Ashburton Ltd. in Jersey, the Channel Islands. “The market is coming to terms on how much Asian exposure listed U.S. companies have.”
China devalued the yuan by 1.9 percent, the most in two decades, after data this month showed a plunge in exports, weaker-than-estimated manufacturing and a slowdown credit growth. The surprise move rippled through global markets, sparking selloffs in emerging-market currencies, commodities, and European auto and luxury stocks with exposure to China.

Commodities Retreat

Commodities declined amid speculation yuan weakness will erode the buying power of Chinese consumers. Alcoa Inc., the largest U.S. producer of aluminum, fell 2.4 percent. Exxon Mobil Corp. and Freeport-McMoRan Inc. lost at least 2 percent. Crude oil in the U.S. slumped 2.5 percent.
Investors will also look to corporate releases, as the earnings season draws to a close. Cisco Systems Inc. and News Corp. are among companies posting quarterly updates this week.
Of the S&P 500 members that have already reported, 74 percent beat profit estimates and about half topped sales projections. Analysts now project a more modest drop in second-quarter earnings, calling for a 2.1 percent fall instead of a 6.4 percent decline a month earlier.
Investors are also watching economic data to gauge when the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates for the first time since 2006. A report today showed worker productivity struggled to gain traction in the second quarter after slumping over the previous six months. The measure of employee output per hour increased at a 1.3 percent annualized rate from April through June. A Bloomberg survey of economists called for a 1.6 percent advance.
Unit labor costs, which are adjusted for efficiency gains, were forecast to be little changed, according to the Bloomberg survey median. They climbed 2.1 percent in the year ended June.
Among other shares moving on corporate news, Kraft Heinz Co. retreated 2.3 percent after quarterly sales missed estimates. Crane maker Terex Corp. jumped 22 percent after agreeing to merge with with Finnish competitor Konecranes Oyj.
Symantec Corp. added 2.5 percent after increasing its share buyback program, and as Carlyle Group LP said it will buy the security software maker’s Veritas data-storage unit for $8 billion in cash.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Favorite Hedge Fund Trade Turning Sour in U.S. Media Stock Rout

Favorite Hedge Fund Trade Turning Sour in U.S. Media Stock Rout

The love affair between hedge funds and media stocks is being tested.
Dragged down by concerns their revenue is at risk, cable television and movie stocks tracked by the 15-company Standard & Poor’s 500 Media Index tumbled 8.2 percent in two days, the biggest slump since 2008. The drop erased 2015’s gains for a group that has been a gold mine for professional investors, posting annualized returns of more than 33 percent since 2009.
Hedge funds have been near-constant champions of the industry, drawn in by its high cash generation and buybacks, takeover speculation and the straight-up momentum of the stocks themselves. This week’s retreat represents the sharpest rebuke to that thesis -- and one of its only setbacks in a bull market well into its seventh year.
“A lot of these funds are speculating on deals, they’re investors playing the spread and not fundamentals,” said Alpha Theory Advisors president Benjamin Dunn, who acts as adviser to hedge funds with about $6 billion in assets. “A few of these names are down big today and you got some pile-on effect with the smaller ones as well.”
Hedge funds own an average 9.7 percent of the 15 companies in the gauge, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. That’s a bigger stake than in any of the other 23 industry groups within the S&P 500. The positions largely reflect merger speculation, said Dunn, who is based in Crested Butte, Colorado.

Rally Rulers

More than technology or even biotech, media stocks have ruled the rally that restored $17 trillion to American equity prices since the financial crisis. Companies from CBS Corp. to Tegna Inc. and Time Warner Cable Inc. are among stocks with the 60 biggest increases during the stretch.
More than $110 billion in media takeovers have been announced in the past year, including Charter Communications Inc.’s pending $79 billion purchase of Time Warner Cable Inc. In the same period, media companies in the index repurchased an average $2.22 billion of their own shares, more than any other industry in the S&P 500 apart from technology.
“People are buying other names in the space hoping valuations will increase for competitors and peers,” Scott Houlihan, a merger-arbitrage research analyst at Purchase, New York-based OTA Limited Partnership, said by phone. “Then again, you get a day like this where the whole sector gets devalued, and if you’re not hedged somehow you get punished.”

Major Holders

Disappointing results from Walt Disney Co. after the close of trading Tuesday sparked the rout. Selling spread to other television and publishing companies as quarterly reports from CBS Corp. to 21st Century Fox Inc. and Viacom Inc. were marked by shrinking U.S. ad sales and profits propped up by stock buybacks. Viacom fell 14 percent Thursday, its biggest drop since October 2008, while Fox slid 6.4 percent.
ValueAct Holdings LP, an activist investment firm run by Jeffrey Ubben, disclosed a 5.5 percent stake in Fox’s Class B shares on June 6, while Elliott Management Corp., a hedge fund run by Paul Singer, is the seventh-biggest holder of the stock, with a 1.9 percent stake as of March 31.
A spokesman for Elliott declined to comment, and Briana Zelaya of ValueAct didn’t immediately respond to a phone call seeking comment.
Tensile Capital LLC, a San Francisco-based fund, owns 1.2 percent of News Corp.’s Class B shares as of the end of the first quarter, making it the eighth biggest holder. It was the third-largest U.S. public equity position for the firm at the end of the first quarter, accounting for 9.8 percent of that portfolio.
Arthur Young, portfolio manager at Tensile, declined to comment.

Evaporating Value

The fourth-biggest stake in Viacom’s Class A shares is with Ionic Capital Management LLC, according to a March 31 regulatory filing. Ionic’s largest U.S. stock position is another media company, Media General Inc., which makes up 5 percent of the firm’s disclosed stock holdings. Media General slumped 11 percent on Thursday.
Caroline Quinn, associate director of investor relations at Ionic, didn’t immediately return a phone call seeking comment on the stock moves.
Until Tuesday, media shares were the best-performing stocks of the bull market, rising 531 percent to eclipse automakers, retail stores and banks. The industry’s market capitalization was about $650 billion, compared with $135 billion in March 2009.
That value is evaporating. In just five stocks -- Disney, Time Warner Inc., Fox, CBS and Comcast Corp. -- almost $50 billion of value has been erased in two days.
“It’s been a rough few days,” said Walter Todd, who oversees about $1.1 billion as chief investment officer for Greenwood Capital Associates. “People are shooting first and asking questions later. As an investor in Disney and Time Warner, this indiscriminate selling, to me, is just nuts.”

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Almost Everyone Is Downgrading Yelp Today

Almost Everyone Is Downgrading Yelp Today

Shares of Yelp Inc YELP 27.66% plunged more than 25 percent after the company reported its second quarter results that included a full year fiscal 2015 guidance coming in below expectations.

Oppenheimer: Yelp's Competition To Blame

Jason Helfstein of Oppenheimer commented in a note that Yelp's revised guidance reflects "difficulty" in hiring new salespeople, sales productivity, and the discontinuation of brand advertising, all caused by competition from programmatic ad platforms.
Helfstein added the company's guidance suggests a "reduced salesforce productivity" from plus 12 percent year-over-year in the first half of 2015 to plus 5 percent in the bottom half. The analyst also noted that Yelp's plan to spend $10 million a quarter in the bottom half of the year to drive user engagement adds risks to the company's long-term margins.
Related Link: Yelp Crashes On Bad Guidance, Downgrades
Bottom line, Helfstein stated that he believes in the underlying value of Yelp's reviews to consumers. However, until the company can prove S&M leverage in its results, investors will assume 20 percent terminal margins, down from a previous 40 percent.
Shares were downgraded to Perform from Outperform with a removed $60 price target.

Morgan Stanley: The Bear Case Is ‘Playing Out'

Brian Nowak of Morgan Stanley commented in a note that Yelp's second straight quarter of "mis-execution," lower sales hiring and sales productivity, coupled with the "surprising" elimination of the branded ad business and rising sources of margin pressure has resulted in a "more cautious outlook" and evidence that the bear case "playing out."
Nowak said his "more cautious view" is further supported by the simple fact that "fewer sales people + lower productivity = fewer local ad dollars." In fact, the analyst's previous bullish thesis was based on Yelp's ability to continue hiring more local sales people and the company's target of 30 percent growth in hiring is below his 35 percent expectations.
Bottom line, Yelp's elimination of its brand advertising will be a headwind to EBITDA margins while the company's struggles to fill its salesforce creates a "structural challenge" to its long-term sales force productivity.
Shares were downgraded to Equal-Weight from Overweight with a price "significantly reduced" to $25 from a previous $53.

JMP: Stepping To The Sidelines Until Trends Improve

Ronald Josey of JMP Securities commented in a note that Yelp's 83 million reviews and 18 million mobile app users are "highly proprietary" and "not easily replicable." However, the company's decision to exit its high-margin brand advertising business and slower planned hiring for its sales force "alters" the company's growth trajectory and profitability.
Josey continued that investors should move to the sidelines until the company can show improving trends in overall traffic and engagement as well as stabilization across its core local advertising business.
Shares were downgraded to Market Perform from Market Outperform with no assigned price target versus a previous price target of $56 which was assigned on April 30.

Cantor: Expectations Reset, Opportunity Remains ‘Substantial'

Youssef Squali of Cantor Fitzgerald commented in a note that Yelp's opportunity in the local online ad market remains "substantial."
The analyst noted that the number of companies with the scale, brand and network effect to capitalize in the local online ad market is "limited" and Yelp's positioning makes it a "prime beneficiary" as an operator and acquisition target.
Commenting on Yelp's decision to eliminate its brand advertising segment will result in a near-term hit to its top line and profitability, but the decision could actually enhance user engagement and the company's value proposition over the medium and long-term.
Shares remain Buy rated with a price target lowered to $50 from a previous $68.
Related Link: Yelp Could Have Been 'Ridiculous,' Disappointed Instead

SunTrust: Risk/Reward Profile ‘More Favorable Here'

Bob Peck of SunTrust Robinson Humphrey commented in a note that perhaps Yelp's risk-to-reward profile is now "more favorable" with forecasts being "slashed" which allows a better setup to meet or beat moving forward.
Peck pointed out that Yelp's Core Local is still a greater than $400 million run-rate business growing greater than 40 percent into "ever easing comps" while Eat24 is a greater than $35 million run-rate business growing greater than 70 percent. In addition, the analyst suggested that short covering could also "lend support."
Share remain Buy rated with a price target raised to $37 from a previous $52.

Elsewhere On The Street

Analysts at Bank of America downgraded shares to Underperform from Neutral with a price target lowered to $25 from a previous $55.
Analysts at Cowen downgraded shares to Market Perform from Outperform with a price target lowered to $25 from a previous $55.
Analysts at Raymond James downgraded shares to Market Perform from Outperform.
Analysts at Topeka downgraded shares to Hold from Buy.

Latest Ratings for YELP

DateFirmActionFromTo
Jul 2015Credit SuisseMaintains
Outperform
Jul 2015JMP SecuritiesDowngradesMarket OutperformMarket Perform
Jul 2015Brean CapitalReiterates
Buy
View More Analyst Ratings for YELP
View the Latest Analyst Ratings
Posted-In: Brian Nowak Cantor Fitzgerald Eat24 Jason HelfsteinAnalyst Color Top Stories Analyst Ratings Trading Ideas
 

Tableau Software (DATA) Trading With Heavy Volume Before Market Open

Tableau Software (DATA) Trading With Heavy Volume Before Market Open

Editor's Note: Any reference to TheStreet Ratings and its underlying recommendation does not reflect the opinion of TheStreet, Inc. or any of its contributors including Jim Cramer. Trade-Ideas LLC identified Tableau Software ( DATA) as a pre-market mover with heavy volume candidate. In addition to specific proprietary factors, Trade-Ideas identified Tableau Software as such a stock due to the following factors:
  • DATA has an average dollar-volume (as measured by average daily share volume multiplied by share price) of $84.9 million.
  • DATA traded 262,114 shares today in the pre-market hours as of 9:12 AM, representing 32.7% of its average daily volume.

EXCLUSIVE OFFER: Get the inside scoop on opportunities in DATA with the Ticky from Trade-Ideas. See the FREE profile for DATA NOW at Trade-Ideas More details on DATA: Tableau Software, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, provides business analytics software products in the United States, Canada, and internationally. DATA has a PE ratio of 3186. Currently there are 18 analysts that rate Tableau Software a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 4 rate it a hold. The average volume for Tableau Software has been 982,900 shares per day over the past 30 days. Tableau Software has a market cap of $6.4 billion and is part of the technology sector and computer software & services industry. The stock has a beta of -0.29 and a short float of 4.9% with 3.04 days to cover. Shares are up 47.5% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Monday. EXCLUSIVE OFFER: See inside Jim Cramer's multi-million dollar charitable trust portfolio to see the stocks he thinks could be potential winners. Click here to see his holdings for 14-days FREE. TheStreetRatings.com Analysis: TheStreet Quant Ratings rates Tableau Software as a sell. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its disappointing return on equity and feeble growth in its earnings per share. Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • The company's current return on equity has slightly decreased from the same quarter one year prior. This implies a minor weakness in the organization. Compared to other companies in the Software industry and the overall market, TABLEAU SOFTWARE INC's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • TABLEAU SOFTWARE INC has experienced a steep decline in earnings per share in the most recent quarter in comparison to its performance from the same quarter a year ago. The company has reported a trend of declining earnings per share over the past year. However, the consensus estimate suggests that this trend should reverse in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, TABLEAU SOFTWARE INC reported lower earnings of $0.04 versus $0.15 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($0.39 versus $0.04).
  • The change in net income from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the Software industry average, but is less than that of the S&P 500. The net income has significantly decreased by 78.1% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from -$5.63 million to -$10.03 million.
  • The gross profit margin for TABLEAU SOFTWARE INC is currently very high, coming in at 91.84%. Regardless of DATA's high profit margin, it has managed to decrease from the same period last year.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly increased by 144.33% to $35.00 million when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, TABLEAU SOFTWARE INC has also vastly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of -29.04%.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

12年来的历史性一刻 伊朗核协议谈成了(图)

12年来的历史性一刻 伊朗核协议谈成了(图)

京港台:2015-7-14 23:06| 来源:观察者网 | 评论( 2 )  | 我来说几句
12年来的历史性一刻 伊朗核协议谈成了(图) 来源:倍可亲(backchina.com)
中东棋局的关键一子终于落下。今天(14日),经过近10年的谈判,伊核问题六国与伊朗达成历史性协议,后者同意限制核计划,换取国际社会减轻制裁。至 此,伊朗与美国主导的西方势力长达12年的对抗终现松动。国际原油市场率先做出反应,美国基准原油报价在短时间内下滑了1.2美元。
  综合外媒报道,欧盟外交和安全政策高级代表莫盖里尼与伊朗外交部长扎里夫于当地时间14日在维也纳宣布,伊朗和伊核六国就伊核问题达成全面协议。
  据新华国际客户端消息,该全面协议由正文及五个技术附件组成,五个技术附件分别涉及核、制裁、民用核能合作、联委会及实施等五方面内容。以下是部分要点:
  ——伊朗重申在任何情况下都不会寻求、开发和获得任何核武器。
  ——成功落实全面协议将使伊朗在《不扩散核武器条约》相关规定下完全拥有和平利用核能的权力,伊朗的核计划也将与《不扩散核武器条约》其他签约国受到同样对待。
  ——伊朗将把离心机的数量削减三分之二,从约1.9万台减少至6104台。
  ——国际社会对伊朗的武器禁运将再持续5年。
  ——国际原子能机构人员可以在24天内进入伊朗境内被认为可疑的地点。
  ——国际原子能机构核实伊朗核计划的和平性质后,联合国、美国以及欧盟将解除对伊朗的经济和金融制裁。
  ——如果伊朗方面违反协议,相关制裁将在65天内恢复。
  ——伊朗有权对国际核查人员的核查要求提出异议,由伊朗和六国人员组成的仲裁机构将做出裁定。
  ——伊朗阿拉克重水反应堆将重建,仅用于和平目的。
  另据外媒此前披露的草案内容,伊朗还同意15年内将铀浓缩浓度限制在不超过3.67%的范围内,联合国对伊朗的弹道导弹制裁将保留8年。
  据悉,全部文本将从14日起向公众开放,新决议案将立即递交联合国安理会通过。新协议将在安理会批准后90天内生效。如国际原子能机构证实伊朗执行所有商定步骤,欧盟将同时解除对伊的经济和金融制裁。
  伊朗外长扎里夫表示,协议是经由艰苦的努力才达成的。他表示,这份“双赢”的协议结束了“一场没有必要的危机,同时,为讨论影响国际社会的重大问题开启了天地”。扎里夫承认,虽然最后的协议并非完美,但这仍是“历史性时刻”。
  莫盖里尼则表示,这次协议的达成,显示了“外交手段、协调、合作可以克服数十年的紧张和对抗”,“翻开了国际关系的新篇章”。
  美国总统奥巴马、伊朗总统鲁哈尼均在第一时间发表了各自的看法。奥巴马认为,该协议“切断”了伊朗获取核武器的各条路径,他同时警告国会,如果想要阻拦伊核协议,他将对国会的决定予以否决。鲁哈尼认为,协议满足了伊朗主要核谈目标,开启了伊朗与世界关系的“新篇章”。
  伊朗国家电视台还直播了奥巴马的讲话,此举自1979年两国交恶以来共两次,上次是4月2日伊核框架协议达成。
  而就在西方媒体将“历史性一刻”写入新闻之际,同日,一直反对伊核协议的以色列总理内塔尼亚胡表示,协议是个“历史性错误”,因为伊朗将会获得大笔资金,继续在区域和世界范围内进行恐怖侵略,“伊朗将会获得一条通向核武器的稳妥之路”。
  此外,伊朗在海湾地区多年来的对手沙特和阿联酋均悄然表达了担忧之意,认为伊朗在与西方达成和解后,实力增强,将会打破区域平衡。
   伊朗核谈的突破的确来之不易。此前,伊核问题六国(观察者网注:中、美、英、法、俄、德)与伊朗的最新一轮谈判进行了长达一年半,最终协议原定6月30 日达成,但在6月30日、7月7日、和7月10日三个谈判期限前都未能消除分歧,谈判期限不得不一延再延。这轮谈判一个特别需要解决的问题,主要是伊朗要 求解除联合国安理会对伊朗的武器禁运。
  而更早一轮的谈判(第3轮)要追溯到2013年,当时,由于分歧严重,伊朗与六国未能达成全面协议。同年11月签订的临时协议,尽管减轻了对伊朗的制裁,但仍保留了大部分制裁措施。
   自2003年伊朗宣布成功提炼出铀以来,联合国已通过四个制裁伊朗的决议,美欧还出台了制裁法案。联合国对伊朗制裁主要集中在禁止伊朗参与国外核领域的 投资、运输和金融活动。美国则切断伊朗所有金融机构与美国银行体系的联系,包括向伊朗能源、贸易公司和央行提供物质支持的今后的制裁。2006年开始,伊 核问题六国开始与伊朗展开谈判。
  伊朗石油或将“解禁” 涌入国际石油市场
  随着争吵了十余年之久的伊朗核问题有望彻底解决,未来可能有更多伊朗石油“解禁”,涌入国际石油市场。
  伊朗拥有全球10%原油储备和近五分之一天然气储备,是世界第四大产油国,OPEC第二大产油国,石油出口占其财政收入的40%-50%。目前,12项能源制裁和20项金融制裁封锁了伊朗石油出口的大门。
   比如,随着国际社会在伊核问题上不断施压,2011-2013年间,中国与伊朗的石油贸易随之缩减。2013年5月,中国从伊朗进口日均43.5万桶原 油,比2011年底的日均55万桶减少了21%。从2011年下半年起,中国三大石油公司也都放缓了在伊朗的石油作业。
  但在伊核问题临时协议自去年1月生效之后,中国2014年从伊朗进口的原油迅速恢复,其规模创下2011年以来的最高纪录。中国海关总署1月公布的数据显示,中国2014年从伊朗进口了2750万吨原油和凝析油,日均高达55万桶,同比增长28.3%。
  这一趋势有望在今年继续。据伊通社援引伊朗海关数据显示,仅在今年2月,伊朗对华原油出口就达204万吨,日均出口53.24万桶,环比增长13.5%。
  业内人士预测,如果制裁在今年年底前暂停,那么今年就会有大量的伊朗石油流入到国际市场,日本、韩国、中国、印度和土耳其将乐于跟伊朗签署新的购买协议,增加原油购买量。
  2014年年初,伊朗石油部长赞加内曾表示,一旦制裁取消,伊朗石油出口量能够立即恢复到每天400万桶的满负荷出口能力。

Friday, July 10, 2015

Greece Reform Proposals: June vs. July

Greece Reform Proposals: June vs. July

Greek voters just rejected one set of bailout proposals. What's the difference this time around?
Greece’s reform proposals are strikingly similar to the ones Greek voters overwhelmingly rejected at a referendum only earlier this week. Yet, there are a few differences, some crucial and others less substantial.
Here is a list of where the two proposals converge and where they still stand apart:

Financing and Debt

Greece is asking for three-year loans of at least 53.5 billion euros ($59.9 billion) to cover its financing needs between 2015 and 2018. It is also seeking debt restructuring and reprofiling of its long-term debt due after 2022. The earlier proposals were in return for a five-month extension of an existing bailout program for loans of as much 15.5 billion euros and didn’t involve any debt restructuring. Fiscal targets remain the same with primary budget surplus seen at 1, 2, 3, and 3.5 percent of the gross domestic product between 2015 and 2018, even amid signs that the economy may have deteriorated under capital controls and shuttered banks for nearly two weeks.

Tax Reforms

With few exceptions, the Greek government adopts the creditors’ proposal on sales and corporate tax rates. The government is seeking to eliminate sales tax discounts on islands gradually by the end of 2016 instead of immediately, starting higher-income islands that are popular tourist destinations. It also seeks to keep hotels under a reduced 13 percent rate instead of the standard 23 percent.

Pension Reforms

The government is in agreement with the creditors in eliminating early retirement benefits and envisages savings of 0.25-0.50 percent of GDP in 2015 and 1 percent of GDP in 2016, effective from July 1, in line with demands under the earlier proposals. It proposes implementing a “zero-deficit” clause for supplementary and lump-sum pension funds, adopted in 2012, from October instead of immediately. While it agrees to phase out a supplementary allowance for low pensions by the end of December 2019, it wants to start phasing-out these benefits from March 2016 instead of starting immediately.

Fiscal and Structural Measures

Greece wants to increase advanced income tax payment on corporate income to 100 percent and gradually for individual businesses by the end of 2017, as part of steps to close loopholes for tax avoidance. It also proposes to eliminate preferential tax treatment for farmers by the end end of 2017. The creditors wanted these steps to be implemented by the end of 2016.
The government appears to backtrack on its own earlier proposals for military spending cuts, offering to reduce spending by 100 million euros in 2015 and 200 million euros in 2016. It had earlier suggested to cut military spending by 200 million euros in 2016 and 400 million euros in 2017. The creditors have sought an immediate cut in annual military spending by 400 million euros.
It offers instead to extend implementation of a luxury tax on recreational vessels in excess of five meters instead of in excess of 10 meters.

Labor Reform

Government insists to legislating changes to collective bargaining agreements this fall; creditors don’t want any changes to already agreed labor framework and demand that any changes be negotiated with the three creditor institutions first -- the European Central Bank, the International Monetary Fund and the EU.

Privatizations

This is where the government appears to fully adopt the creditors’ demand for all agreed sales of state assets to proceed, including transferring the state’s shares in the Hellenic Telecommunication Organization SA to the asset sales fund and selling regional airports under terms already agreed with a venture led by Fraport AG, the winning bidder already selected by the previous government.