The merger between the Deutsche Börse and the London Stock Exchange has been vetoed by the European Commission because of competition concerns, ending a third attempt in 17 years to unite the financial hubs of London and Frankfurt. In a statement on Wednesday, EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said Britain's decision to leave the 28-nation bloc had played no role in banning the tie-up.
Total economic losses from natural catastrophes and man-made disasters amounted to $ 175 billion in 2016, almost twice the $ 94 billion seen in 2015, the latest sigma study from the Swiss Re Institute says. The losses in 2016 - both economic and insured - were the highest since 2012 and reversed the downtrend of the last four years. This was due to a high number of sizable disaster events, including earthquakes, storms, floods and wildfires in 2016, across all regions. Some events struck areas with high insurance penetration, which accounted for the 42% increase in insured losses. That also means that many people in those areas were better equipped to recover from the shock of a disaster, for example with prompt settlement of their insurance claims.
Around the time of the S&P 500’s launch in 1957, a remake of the Hollywood musical Anything Goes opened in cinemas across America. The movie featured Cole Porter’s eponymous song, which began with the words “Times have changed”.
Startups in the music industry are nowadays flourishing, trying to answer some of the questions that the same technology that allows their existence is posing. Data security, secondary ticketing, royalties, hit songs: every topic has someone covering it in more or less successful ways. The social media help ask these questions but also spread the word about these startups, while many of them get a kickstart from incubators. Marketplus will run a special in the following weeks regarding these startups. This week Marketplus will look into GUTS, a company developing a platform for the sale and resale of tickets to shows and events, using the blockchain technology. In the Netherlands, where GUTS is based, the live music industry is expanding, according to advisors DDMCA and the number of visitors to concerts and festivals grew from 1.6 to 2.9 million people from 2011 to 2016, while the revenues went from 46 to 140 million euros.
London may be on the cusp of falling down from its post as top financial center of the planet, finds a new report, although rival European cities still lag far behind. The Z/Yen Global Financial Centers Index (GFCI), released last week, retained London’s top spot but uncovered widespread feelings of uncertainty among financial professionals, especially as concerns over potential fallouts from Brexit continue. The report’s ranking of 88 financial hubs placed London at the top, followed by New York City and three Asian cities: Singapore, Hong Kong and Tokyo.
Switzerland has to deliver to Austria the information over billionaire Frank Stronach's financial situation, as the Federal Court (TF) confirmed today, rejecting a lodged appeal by 84-year-old Austro-Canadian man. The Austrian authorities sent Bern in November 2015 a request for administrative assistance. Vienna wants to determine whether the 84-year old billionaire has paid the taxes.
The UK could be a “serious competitor” to Switzerland as a low-tax business location in a post-Brexit world, Mr Mauer, the Swiss finance minister said: “That is perhaps the chance - that we have a partner in the same position, which on important issues is close to us.” On Wednesday, UK Prime Minister Theresa May will kick off two years of formal negotiations with 27 EU governments. She still wants tariff-free, friction-less trade with Europe but prioritizes the right to impose immigration limits above all else. Mr Maurer said: “The UK has lots of advantages and if they are used cleverly to decouple from the EU, as well as the new freedom in a good bilateral relationship, then the UK could develop very positively, I’m convinced of that.” If no favourable deal is struck, the tax rate could be dropped even lower to attract business, chancellor Philip Hammond has recently said.
German citizens still possess the world's most powerful passport, according to new research, the 12th annual edition of the Henley & Partners Visa Restrictions Index, which is produced in partnership with the International Air Transport Association (IATA). The ranking takes into account how many countries can be visited without applying for a visa. German passport holders can travel to 176 out of a possible 218, while Britons can visit 173; for the fourth year in a row, it has been crowned “world’s most powerful passport.” The UK topped the 2015 rankings, alongside Germany, but ceded that spot after several countries relaxed visa restrictions to the latter. It was leapfrogged by Sweden last year and now lags behind Denmark, Finland, Italy, Spain and the US.
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