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Amid Kenya power struggle, IMF says investment program in crisis – The Journal Pioneer

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By Duncan Miriri

NAIROBI (Reuters) – Hundreds of mismanaged infrastructure projects have stalled in Kenya and it will cost around $10 billion to revive them, the IMF said in a report whose findings point to a growing power struggle at the heart of government.

Amid mounting public anger over ballooning state debt and a series of graft scandals, President Uhuru Kenyatta on Tuesday confirmed acting finance minister Ukur Yatani in the post after its previous incumbent, Henry Rotich, was charged with financial misconduct – an accusation he denies.

The government has acknowledged that some past investment projects did not pass muster, and Yatani told a budget preparation meeting on Wednesday that available resources would be “dedicated only to projects and programs that will ensure higher economic and social returns.”

Yatani, an ally of Kenyatta while Rotich was closer to Deputy President William Ruto, has won support from voters since provisionally taking over at the ministry in July.

The International Monetary Fund report, published on Wednesday, lays bare the scale of the task Yatani now faces.

It said an estimated 500 projects – around half of the total – had ground to a halt due to “non-payment to contractors, insufficient allocation of funds to projects, and litigation cases in court.”

The state would need to raise around 1 trillion shillings ($10 billion) to complete them, the report said.

Kenya has ramped up public investment projects since 2010.

But that increase “occurred without enough screening for project viability and readiness before they entered the budget,” the IMF said.

“There has been a subsequent squeeze on ongoing projects in the absence of fiscal space, which is now accruing large costs to the government.”

The fund named no specific projects, but construction of roads, markets and stadiums has stalled all over the country.

Unpaid bills from the infrastructure department to suppliers and contractors totaled 78 billion shillings as of June, the IMF said.

Yatani said the government was reconstituting its planning and project monitoring unit to “ensure timely completion of projects and realization of value for money.”

His confirmation as finance minister was part of a government reshuffle that adds to signs of a rift between Kenyatta, who must step down when his second five-year term finishes in 2022, and Ruto, who considers himself the heir apparent but has begun to fall out of favor.

(editing by John Stonestreet)

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Enforcement Notice – Hearing – IIROC Begins Disciplinary Action Against Former St. Catharines Investment Advisor Dean Martin Jenkins – Canada NewsWire

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ST. CATHARINES, ON, March 30, 2020 /CNW/ – The Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) will set a date for a disciplinary hearing  in the matter of Dean Martin Jenkins.

It is alleged that Mr. Jenkins recommended and facilitated the off-book purchase of high-risk syndicated mortgage investments for numerous clients without telling his employer of his involvement with these products or his clients’ investments. He received compensation of at least $54,000 as a result of his clients’ off-book purchases.

Specifically, the discipline hearing concerns allegations that:

(a)        Between November 2013 and February 2016, Mr. Jenkins facilitated off-book investments for several clients without the knowledge or approval of his Dealer Member, and received remuneration for the investments, contrary to Dealer Member Rules 18.14 and 29.1.

IIROC formally initiated the investigation into Mr. Jenkin’s conduct in October 2018. The alleged violations occurred while he was a Registered Representative with the St. Catharines branch of Edward Jones Inc., an IIROC-regulated firm.  Mr. Jenkins is no longer a registrant with an IIROC-regulated firm.

The set date appearance is open to the public, unless the Hearing Panel orders otherwise.  Members of the public who would like to attend the appearance should contact IIROC’s National Hearing Coordinator at [email protected] to obtain the details.  The date for the discipline hearing will be made available at www.iiroc.ca.

Set Date Appearance:  The hearing will be held by way of teleconference on April 30, 2020 at 10:00 a.m.

The Notice of Hearing and Statement of Allegations which sets out the allegations is available at:

http://www.iiroc.ca/documents/2020/20e6040c-6139-4e87-be73-2dd7c9106017_en.pdf

Documents related to ongoing IIROC enforcement proceedings – including Reasons and Decisions of Hearing Panels – are posted on the IIROC website as they become available. Click here to search and access all IIROC enforcement documents.

*  *  *

IIROC is the pan-Canadian self-regulatory organization that oversees all investment dealers and their trading activity in Canada’s debt and equity markets. IIROC sets high quality regulatory and investment industry standards, protects investors and strengthens market integrity while supporting healthy Canadian capital markets. IIROC carries out its regulatory responsibilities through setting and enforcing rules regarding the proficiency, business and financial conduct of more than 170 Canadian investment dealer firms and their more than 29,000 registered employees, the majority of whom are commonly referred to as investment advisors. IIROC also sets and enforces market integrity rules regarding trading activity on Canadian debt and equity marketplaces.

IIROC investigates possible misconduct by its member firms and/or individual registrants. It can bring disciplinary proceedings which may result in penalties including fines, suspensions, permanent bars, expulsion from membership, or termination of rights and privileges for individuals and firms.

All information about disciplinary proceedings relating to current and former member firms is available in the Enforcement section of the IIROC website. Background information regarding the qualifications and disciplinary history, if any, of advisors currently employed by IIROC-regulated firms is available free of charge through the IIROC AdvisorReport service. Information on how to make investment dealer, advisor or marketplace-related complaints is available by calling 1 877 442-4322.

SOURCE Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) – General News

For further information: Enforcement Contact: Charles Corlett, Director, Enforcement Litigation, 416 646-7253, [email protected]; Media Contact: Andrea Zviedris, Manager, Media Relations, 416 943-6906, [email protected]

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Vancity Community Investment Bank partners with Toronto, Ottawa and Hamilton community foundations to deliver rapid-response support during pandemic – Yahoo Finance

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Canada’s first and only impact bank ensuring the most vulnerable aren’t forgotten in crisis

Traditional territory of many Indigenous Nations, including the Haudenosaunee and the treaty territory of the Mississaugas of the Credit and TORONTO , March 30, 2020 /CNW/ – Vancity Community Investment Bank (VCIB), Canada’s first values-driven national bank and a subsidiary of Vancouver City Savings Credit Union (Vancity), has partnered with three of Ontario’s largest community foundations to provide rapid-response funds aimed at supporting those most affected by COVID-19 and its economic consequences.

Vancity Community Investment Bank (CNW Group/Vancity Community Investment Bank (VCIB))
Vancity Community Investment Bank (CNW Group/Vancity Community Investment Bank (VCIB))

In Toronto , VCIB and Toronto Foundation have joined forces to launch the Better Toronto Coalition and Fund. The bank has also partnered with Ottawa Community Foundation to fund the COVID-19 Rapid Response Fund, and with the Hamilton Community Foundation to fund the Pandemic Response Fund. In total, VCIB has provided $100,000 to-date to seed and grow these funds designed to provide immediate support to community organizations delivering essential services like food, shelter and healthcare to vulnerable populations.

The unique approach targets grassroots non-profits that are both operating on the frontlines of COVID-19 and feeling its economic consequences as key funding sources dwindle with programming and fundraising events cancelled or postponed.

“Grassroots non-profits often operate on tight margins,” said VCIB CEO Jay-Ann Gilfoy . “Our goal as a community-first bank is to get frontline organizations the resources they need so they can focus on meeting the urgent needs of vulnerable populations.”

“The economic fallout will have an impact on charities in every sector that we serve,” said Hamilton Community Foundation President & CEO Terry Cooke . “Our message to the community is that we are here to help for the long term.”

Funding will be offered as unrestricted, flexible grants that enable charities and non-profits to maintain or expand services to those affected by quarantine, closures, shortages, access to services, loss of income, or other economic impacts.

“We’re convening concerned Torontonians so that we can learn together about the unequal impacts of COVID-19,” said Toronto Foundation President & CEO Sharon Avery . “We’re committed to acting quickly on those learnings to fund the small but mighty non-profits that are in the trenches supporting the city’s most vulnerable.”

“Priorities are changing by the hour, and these funds are designed to respond to the most pressing needs,” said VCIB VP of Impact Banking Jake Stacey. “Our mission has always been to use the tools of finance to create positive change for groups who need it most, and partnerships with community foundations will allow us to help vulnerable sectors lacking other assistance.”

“While we cannot control this new reality, we can come together to respond,” said Ottawa Community Foundation President & CEO Marco Pagani . “Thank you to Vancity Community Investment Bank for joining us to help fund our community response.”

In addition to the philanthropic community, VCIB is working to mobilize other organizations to participate in these initiatives.

About Vancity Community Investment Bank (VCIB) 
VCIB is an Ontario -based schedule 1 national chartered bank. As Canada’s first values-driven bank, VCIB partners exclusively with organizations that drive social, economic, and environmental change. The bank is committed to connecting these visionary enterprises with the financial solutions they require, enabling them to grow, prosper and foster change. VCIB’s first focus is on lending for social purpose real estate (affordable housing, co-op housing, co-working spaces, green and heritage buildings), as well as meeting the deposit needs of not-for-profit organizations, foundations, and social enterprises. For more information, visit vcib.ca, tweet us at @BankVancity and connect with us at Facebook.com/BankVancity.

About Vancity  
Vancity is a values-based financial co-operative serving the needs of its more than 534,000 member-owners and their communities, with offices and 59 branches located in Metro Vancouver, the Fraser Valley, Victoria , Squamish and Alert Bay , within the unceded territories of the Coast Salish and Kwakwaka’wakw people. With $27.4 billion in assets plus assets under administration, Vancity is Canada’s largest community credit union. Vancity uses its assets to help improve the financial well-being of its members while at the same time helping to develop healthy communities that are socially, economically and environmentally sustainable. 

About Toronto Foundation
Established in 1981, Toronto Foundation is one of 191 Community Foundations in Canada . We pool philanthropic dollars and facilitate charitable donations for maximum community impact. Our individual, family and organizational Funds number more than 500 and we administer more than $400 million in assets. Through strategic granting, thought leadership and convening, we engage in city building, mobilizing people and resources to increase the quality of life in Toronto . Visit www.torontofoundation.ca/.

To learn more about or donate to the Better Toronto Coalition and Fund, visit: torontofoundation.ca/better-toronto-coalition/

About the Ottawa Community Foundation
Established in 1987, the OCF is a charitable organization created by and for the people of Ottawa . Working directly with its community of donors, partners and stakeholders, the OCF is committed to acting as a catalyst for positive, systemic and sustainable change in Ottawa and beyond. Priding itself on enabling generous citizens to enhance the quality of life in their community while achieving their own charitable objectives, the OCF currently manages assets worth more than $160M and has provided over $123M in grants to the community since its inception. Visit www.ocf-fco.ca/nlcc-2019/.

To learn more about or donate to the COVID-19 Rapid Response Fund, visit: www.ocf-fco.ca/covid19/

About Hamilton Community Foundation
Hamilton Community Foundation has been working to drive positive change in Hamilton since 1954. We do this by helping people give in a way that has meaning to them and impact in the community, providing grants and financing to charitable organizations and initiatives and bringing people together to address priority issues that affect Hamiltonians. Visit www.hamiltoncommunityfoundation.ca.

To learn more about or donate to the Pandemic Response Fund, visit:
www.hamiltoncommunityfoundation.ca/covid19/

SOURCE Vancity Community Investment Bank (VCIB)

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View original content to download multimedia: http://www.newswire.ca/en/releases/archive/March2020/30/c9761.html

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Investment fee transparency: Are you overpaying? – Kelowna Capital News

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Do you feel you’re not getting good value for the investment fees you pay? If so, you’re not alone.

“A lot of investors out there, especially retirees, don’t understand the fees they pay and the services they receive for those fees,” said Kelowna-based financial advisor Tanya Wilson.

“There’s a lot of variation in fees charged for various investment services and many are often not fully disclosed,” Wilson said, adding she wishes there was more education for investors about appropriate costs for services.

Without a standard in place, Wilson shared some advice for people looking to invest without paying an unfair toll on their return.

Transparency is key

First, discuss fees and services when first meeting with a new advisor and expect to see a transparent breakdown on statements.

“At Raymond James we have the utmost transparency,” the certified financial planner said of herself and her client service specialist, Mallory Pearson. “People know exactly what they’re paying for, exactly what they’re getting.”

Fees do depend on the account size but should also reflect the sophistication and complexity of services provided, such as financial, tax and estate planning, tax optimization strategies and behavioural coaching.

“I’ve taken on many new clients who questioned their old advisors once they realized the fees they were paying for inadequate service,” Wilson said.

Culture of independence

When Wilson started in the financial industry, she worked within the bank/credit union system.

“I used to say that I felt I was a product distribution channel for the bank’s profit centre,” she said.

With that in mind, she encouraged would-be investors to seek out an independent advisor who could provide unbiased advice.

For example, since Raymond James doesn’t have proprietary products to sell, their advice is completely focused on the needs of their clients, rather than hitting sales quotas. “We are not subject to the issues that bank employees have, where they have targets for products to sell,” she said. “Instead, we have full autonomy to truly understand our clients and to provide the most appropriate strategies, solutions and investments, from a completely open and unlimited product shelf.”

Thoughtful, deliberate approach

Creating a financial plan is an important opportunity to get to know clients personally and build trusted, lasting partnerships.

“We don’t follow a cookie-cutter investment approach, we cater to each individual’s needs,” Wilson said of her team. “Developing your plan requires a solid understanding of your goals, investment experience, risk tolerance and more. Most importantly, your required rate of return to achieve your objectives.”

For example, Wilson said a client in his 70s recently considered a high-risk investment opportunity he’d learned about through a friend. “He was blinded by the high return potential but didn’t have a clear understanding of the risks.”

Because of her client-focused, caring approach, Wilson knew the retiree’s unique situation and felt the high-risk investment was unsuitable. “The five years before and after retirement are known as the ‘retirement risk zone,’ and they’re the most important years to make sound investment decisions.

“He can’t return to work at this point in life if he experiences significant losses and the investment wasn’t liquid to allow for retirement income withdrawals, so simply couldn’t meet his needs,” Wilson said. “His biggest focus should be on ensuring he has enough money to live the retirement lifestyle he wants to live for the rest of his life. Too often I see investors allowing emotions to dictate their investment decisions.”

Working together, Wilson created a budget outlining his projected expenses until he turns 100. Then, she determined his required rate of return to achieve that lifestyle, and recommended a structured income plan and balanced investment portfolio.

To schedule a consultation or learn more about Wilson’s hands-on, holistic approach to retirement and investment planning, or to risk management, tax-efficient investment strategies, estate preservation and transfer, or corporate investment strategies, fill out the raymondjames.ca/tanyawilson/contact-us.aspx or call 250-869-2447.

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