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Varcoe: Risks rising on Alberta's multibillion-dollar pipeline investment – Calgary Herald

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The Dakota Access ruling has also shown that even existing pipelines can face legal uncertainty.

“Even if you have the pipeline running and in service, they can ask you to get rid of it,” said Coleman.

Despite the potential pitfalls ahead, other experts feel the gamble is worth it.

Richard Masson, former CEO of the Alberta Petroleum Marketing Commission, believes the rationale behind the investment still stands.

Demand for Canadian heavy oil remains strong with Gulf Coast refiners, while competing production from Venezuela and Mexico has dwindled.

The province decided to use its only leverage — its commercial options — to propel the project ahead.

“The fundamental business case is there,” Masson said.

“On balance, it’s a big risk decision, but . . . I would still say it’s the right call. We need Keystone XL.”

Chris Varcoe is a Calgary Herald columnist.

cvarcoe@postmedia.com

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China's property investment in July quickens to over one-year high – The Guardian

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BEIJING (Reuters) – China’s July property investment grew at the quickest clip since April last year, underpinned by solid construction activity and easier lending as the economy gradually recovers from the coronavirus crisis.

Real estate investment in July rose 11.7% from a year earlier, quickening from 8.5% growth seen in June, according to Reuters calculations based on data from the National Bureau of Statistics on Friday.

For January-July period, property investment grew 3.4% on an annual basis, faster than a 1.9% uptick in January-June.

China’s property market was among the first to recover after reopening of the economy this year on cheaper credit as well as relaxation on urban residential curbs, with some analysts warning of a potential bubble in a handful of big cities.

But others have dismissed the suggestions of a possible bubble and say a full-blown rebound may take longer to arrive as consumer confidence remains soft.

Property sales by floor area rose 9.5% in July from a year earlier, versus a 2.1% growth in June.

New construction starts measured by floor area increased 11.3% on-year last month, compared with June’s 8.9% uptick.

Funds raised by China’s property developers returned to growth of 0.8% in the first seven months, better than a 1.9% drop in the first half of 2020.

(Reporting by Lusha Zhang, Roxanne Liu and Ryan Woo; Editing by Shri Navaratnam)

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Public warned over investment scams using fake celebrity endorsements – Yahoo Canada Sports

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Fake endorsements from celebrities like Ed Sheeran, Martin Lewis and Richard Branson are being used to promote bogus investments. (Ben Pruchnie/PA Archive/PA Images)
Branson said ‘hundreds’ of fraudsters have found to be impersonating him or his team. Photo: Ben Pruchnie/PA

Brits are being warned not to fall for scams in which criminals use fake celebrity endorsements to promote investments.

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) said it has removed over 30,000 malicious links in just four months.

Emails and advertisements encourage people to visit these websites, which host fake news articles about “get rich quick” schemes featuring fraudulent celebrity endorsements. They are asked to click on a link to “invest”, but the money is really being sent to cyber criminals, NCSC explained.

Some of these spoof articles have contained “endorsements” from the likes of Brit singer Ed Sheeran, Virgin boss Richard Branson, and The Money Expert’s Martin Lewis.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="READ MORE: Level of cryptocurrency scams ‘unprecedented in modern markets’” data-reactid=”27″>READ MORE: Level of cryptocurrency scams ‘unprecedented in modern markets’

“We have dealt with hundreds of instances of fake sites and fraudsters impersonating me or my team online. We are working in partnership with organisations such as NCSC to report these sites and do all we can to get them taken down as quickly as possible,” said Branson.

“Sadly, the scams are not going to disappear overnight, and I would urge everyone to be vigilant and always check for official website addresses and verified social media accounts.”

NCSC said it is taking “unprecedented action” to remove these scams, which are on the rise, from the internet as part of its Active Cyber Defence programme. Cyber criminal activity cost the UK £197m in 2018 alone, it added.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Members are encouraged to report anything they find dubious to NCSC’s&nbsp;Suspicious Email Reporting Service (SERS). Many of the scams have already been detected this way, with Brits filing over 1.8 million reports to the SWERS since its launch in April, resulting in more than 16,800 malicious links being blocked or removed from the internet.” data-reactid=”31″>Members are encouraged to report anything they find dubious to NCSC’s Suspicious Email Reporting Service (SERS). Many of the scams have already been detected this way, with Brits filing over 1.8 million reports to the SWERS since its launch in April, resulting in more than 16,800 malicious links being blocked or removed from the internet.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="READ MORE: The latest money scams you should be aware of” data-reactid=”32″>READ MORE: The latest money scams you should be aware of

To use the service, simply forward “suspect” emails to report@phishing.gov.uk, and any malicious links contain therein will be taken down or blocked, NCSC said.

Commander Clinton Blackburn, from the City of London Police, said: “These figures provide a stark warning that people need to be wary of fake investments on online platforms. Celebrity endorsements are just one way criminals can promote bogus schemes online. People should not be fooled by images of luxury items such as expensive watches and cars, and posts on social media showing extravagant lifestyles, which are often used to persuade you to invest.

“To those of you who might be tempted, remember not every investment opportunity is genuine. Criminals will do all they can to make their scams appear legitimate. It is vital you do your research and carry out the necessary checks to ensure that an investment you are considering is legitimate.

“If you think you have been the victim of a fraud, make sure you report it to Action Fraud.”

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Toshiba shareholder 3D Investment wants independent probe into AGM vote: letter – TheChronicleHerald.ca

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By Makiko Yamazaki

TOKYO (Reuters) – A major investor in Japan’s Toshiba Corp 6502.T> has called for a third-party investigation into the conglomerate’s annual shareholder meeting, saying its vote was not fully recognized in a potential breach of governance.

The demand from Singapore-based 3D Investment Partners is likely to sharpen scrutiny of the treatment of Toshiba’s foreign investors. It follows a contentious, but failed, attempt by foreign shareholders to elect some new independent directors to Toshiba’s board at the July 31 meeting.

3D said voting rights representing a 1.1% stake in Toshiba were not reflected in the results of the meeting, according to an Aug. 9 letter from the hedge fund to Toshiba’s outside directors seen by Reuters.

The fund, which holds a 4.2% voting stake and ranks among Toshiba’s top five shareholders, had nominated two candidates as independent directors and publicly said it would vote against Chief Executive Nobuaki Kurumatani.

“Such administration of shareholders meetings by Toshiba (including the manner of processing voting forms) was at least improper and was questionable from the viewpoint of corporate governance,” 3D said in the letter.

3D said it was told one of its voting forms did not reach the Tokyo office of Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank 8309.T>, Toshiba’s designated administrator, until July 31, which was after the voting deadline.

Yet the form had been mailed from a post office in Tokyo on July 27, meaning the delivery time should have been just one day, 3D said, citing the post office’s website.

Another voting form mailed from the same post office on July 28 reached Sumitomo Mitsui Trust a day later, and was in time for the meeting, 3D said.

“We don’t comment on communications with specific investors, but vote counting was done by our shareholder registry administrator and we are conducting investigations with the administrator,” Toshiba said in a statement.

“At the moment we’ve been told that counting process was done properly.”

A spokesman for Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank said it could not comment on specific cases.

SHAREHOLDER SCRUTINY

The incident is likely to raise fresh questions about the relationship between foreign investors, who make up 60% of Toshiba’s shareholders, and the company.

Reuters previously reported the Japanese government delayed approval until the last minute for another Singapore-based fund to vote at the same meeting.

Toshiba CEO Kurumatani held on to his job, but a breakdown of voting results from the meeting showed a precipitous slide in support to just 58% from 99% a year earlier – a rare rebuke of a Japan Inc chief executive.

3D’s 1.1% vote, even if counted, would not have changed the outcome. But the fund said it was “strongly concerned that many other shareholders might have been hindered in exercising their voting rights”.

It asked for a third-party investigation into whether shareholders’ voting rights had been processed properly.

The fund said it would consider starting proceedings to force Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank to disclose evidence and provide information to the Tokyo Stock Exchange if Toshiba did not “properly respond” to its request.

Toshiba has been under pressure from foreign hedge funds since it sold 600 billion yen ($5.6 billion) of stock to dozens of such funds during a crisis stemming from the bankruptcy of its U.S. nuclear power unit in 2017.

(Reporting by Makiko Yamazaki; Editing by David Dolan and Muralikumar Anantharaman)

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