Saturday, February 17, 2018

After FATF and EU scrutiny comes U.S. tax reform

Even for a jurisdiction used to an ever-changing regulatory landscape, the end of 2017 particularly tumultuous time for the Cayman Islands financial services industry.

Money problems: the global currency system needs reform

For a country like Cayman whose currency is tied to the U.S. dollar and therefore to the whims of the U.S. Federal Reserve’s monetary policy actions, the Cayman Investment Summit had a decidedly gloomy message: the U.S. dollar-led global currency system is in urgent need of reform and central banks have essentially no power to affect monetary or economic goals.

Inflation, quantitative easing and US interest rates

There are two forces holding down long-term interest rates in the U.S. currently, despite above-trend economic growth which might otherwise point to higher rates. The first is the U.S. Federal Reserve’s balance sheet expansion, or quantitative easing as it is known in the markets. The second is a pronounced slowdown in measured and expected inflation over the course of 2017.

Lessons from Ivan: BVI financial sector faces long road to recovery

After Hurricane Ivan ravaged the Cayman Islands on Sept. 11-12, questions persisted for days about whether the island’s financial services industry would also be devastated.
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A solution for de-risking?

Government officials and industry professionals have long stressed the importance of regulatory compliance for their firms and for the wider financial services industry in the Cayman Islands.

Inflationary dynamics: Clear as mud

Addressing the National Association for Business Economics (NABE), Federal Reserve Chairman Janet Yellen delivered a striking tone on the inflationary debate. Reiterating the “mystery” surrounding the recent low inflation readings, the chairman’s candid remarks did very little to stir markets.

Disruption: How stock portfolios can benefit from technological change

Electric cars manufactured by Tesla are still a rarity on the roads in the Cayman Islands, but on the stock market, the U.S. carmaker already is firmly in the fast lane.

Brexit and the Cayman Islands – preparing for impact

The current consensus on the possible impact of Brexit on the Cayman Islands and indeed the Caribbean is simply that it all depends on the final Brexit deal negotiated between the U.K. and the EU. But there are a number of reasonable implications and we need to prepare for them.

RBC economist: Inequality drives the economy and politics

2016 has been a tumultuous year. Democracy itself has faced a crisis, and the political establishment has been shaken. Voters in the U.S. and the U.K. expressed their desire for change, regardless of the form this change is going to take and at times fueled by xenophobic sentiment.

A tale of two countries

2016 heralded unprecedented shifts in our global political landscape. The watershed moment, it can be argued, was Britain’s vote to abandon the 23-year-old European Union. As news reports of this historic vote surfaced, shock waves ricocheted across global financial markets, sending all the major indices into tailspins.

Wall Street starts 2017 with tailwind

Thanks to a series of new record highs, the leading U.S. stock market indices had a very successful end of the year. The recent momentum also puts the market in a good position heading into 2017.

After Brexit vote, pound resumes its long-term decline

The British Brexit vote has caught many market participants off guard, particularly in the foreign exchange market.

US elections: What really matters from an investor’s perspective

The U.S. presidential election not only produces controversial headlines in the media, but also raises concerns for many investors.

Emigration and immigration

During the height of the Cold War, the Berlin Wall was built to keep the citizens of East Germany from leaving. We cheered as it and similar barriers to emigration from the Soviet to the Free World fell in 1989. But the right to leave awkwardly confronts the right of countries to choose who may or may not enter. The right to leave has little meaning if you have no place to go.

Physical security: Think global, act local

Stuart Bostock’s Security Centre Ltd. has protected a dozen high-profile personalities, and continues to prosper in the face of global threats – bombings, personal attacks and multiple casualties.

Overseas territories fight reputation in ownership debate

There has been a flurry of activity over the past six months in the halls of the Financial Services Ministry in Cayman and its counterparts in the United Kingdom and the other overseas territories on how and when to share company ownership information with law enforcement and tax authorities overseas.

Shipping industry not buoyed by low fuel costs

In February, the Baltic Dry Index, which assesses the prices of moving major raw materials by sea, dropped to an all-time low of 290 points.

Bermuda: An island divided over immigration reform

Linking arms in front of Bermuda’s parliament building, a large group of committed protesters earlier this year shut down debate on a controversial immigration reform bill that promised to offer “pathways to status” for expatriates in the territory.

Effects of Brexit on overseas territories uncertain

On June 23, a referendum will be held in the U.K. for voters to decide whether the country should leave or remain in the European Union.

Presidential elections: Do they affect performance of economy, financial markets?

Elections are, by their nature, uncertain, which is why they are held in the first place.
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