Below is a trailer to the documentary ‘The Price We Pay’. The present-day reality of big-business tax avoidance has been extremely prevalent in the news. Multinationals have been depriving governments of trillions of dollars in tax revenues by hiding profits in offshore havens. Tax havens, originally created by London bankers in the 50s, today put over half the world’s stock of money beyond reach of public treasuries. Tax avoidance by big corporations and the wealthy are leading to historic levels of inequality and placing the tax burden on the middle class and the poor.
The level of global youth unemployment has been a problem for many years. Although there is no easy fix the recent Global Employment Trends for Youth report does mention the increase in investments in worthwhile employment for young people. Guy Ryder, Director-General, International Labour Organization (ILO) highlighted some of the many ways that countries, with ILO support, are aiming to tackle the youth employment challenge:
• Recommending that government policies support employment and lift aggregate demand, including public employment programmes, wage and training subsidies, sectoral programmes, counter-cyclical fiscal policies and youth entrepreneurship interventions.
• Labour-market training and work experience programmes targeting young people so that they don’t leave the labour force. To achieve this there needs to be quality apprenticeships, informal or formal, is another solution for ensuring school-to-work transition, and a top priority for the ILO. In countries where apprenticeship systems are strong, youth unemployment rates are no higher than those for adults.
• Forging partnerships for scaling up investments in decent jobs for youth. Combining the strength of international organizations, governments, employers and workers to implement global policies can really make a difference.
Young people are often the most robust advocates for those very ideas we all support: an end to child labour and forced labour, equality in the workplace, ecological sustainability and decent work. We can all benefit from that energy and sense of solidarity and social justice.
In the interests of inclusive economic growth and an equitable transition to a more sustainable world, a sharper international focus on the issue of youth unemployment must be adopted. With the right will, we can develop policies to develop the skills and jobs that young people need and deserve.
Real Madrid topped Deloitte’s money league for the 11th successive year with $577m. The combined revenue of the top 20 teams rose by 8% – $7.16bn – from 2013/4 season.
“There are a number of metrics, both financial and non-financial, that can be used to compare clubs including attendance, worldwide fan base, broadcast audience and on-pitch success. In the money league we focus on clubs’ ability to generate revenue from matchday (including ticket and corporate hospitality sales), broadcast rights (including distributions from participation in domestic leagues, cups and European club competitions) and commercial sources (including sponsorship, merchandising, stadium tours and other commercial operations), and rank them on that basis.” Deloitte Football Money League 2016
Barcelona’s achievements in the 2014-15 season have translated to financial success. The European champions have jumped ahead of Manchester Utd, with revenue of $560.8 as compared to $519.5.
However Deloittee predict that Manchester Utd will be making a big push for the top spot next year for the following reasons:
- £75m kit deal with Adidas
- £47 million-per-year shirt sponsorship deal with Chevrolet
- £5.1bn television deal starting in 2016-17 season
The wealth of the English Premier League, mainly due to TV rights, means that 17 of the wealthiest 30 clubs are from the EPL. West Ham Utd sneak in at 20th place but Deloitte noted the success of English clubs was due to two reasons:
- the relative equality of distribution rights in the English Premier League
- the performance of the pound against the euro.
Paris St Germain and Bayern Munich who dominate their domestic tournaments are 4th and 5th respectively but to find an Italian club you have to go down to 10th place with Juventus the Serie A winners last season. AC Milan a regular in the top 10 have now dropped down to 14th place.
Below is a promotional video from the BBC. It gives a very good summary of the likely effect of the US Federal Reserve raising interest rates on the rest of the world – including India, Brazil, African economies, Asia and Europe. Some very good graphics explaining the impact.
What a difference a year makes for Indian low cost airline Spicejet. On the verge of shutting down in December 2014 with $300m of debt with suppliers refusing to refuel planes unless paid upfront and staff not been paid their monthly salaries, the airline has made a remarkable recovery. Today it is filling 93% of available seats and has made a profit in the last 4 quarters.
What has been the cause of the turnaround?
- Aircraft fuel expenses dropped nearly 35 percent
- Demand has increased – compared to the previous year Indian airlines carried 20% more passengers in 2015.
- Negotiated better terms with aircraft-leasing firms
- Cut jobs and managers pay
- Scrapped unprofitable routes
Measures to reduce inefficiencies of Spicejet
- Reducing the time to second-tier cities and thereby making it possible to fit in an extra flight a day.
- Steel brakes on wheels of Boeing 737 were replaced with lighter carbon brakes
- In-flight magazines reduced – less weight
- Meals served in cardboard boxes instead of plastic trays – reducing fuel consumption
- Planes were filled with just enough fuel within safety margin
- Landing gear was deployed 8km from touchdown instead of 14km – reduce drag
- Taxi on the runway using just one engine – more fuel efficient
- Stocks of spares parts are now more readily available so planes spend less time on the ground
Although the airline still has a long way to go to reduce its debt its recent performance has enabled it to think about long-term expansion.
Following on from my previous post, the increase in the supply of oil is starting to cause problems with regards to storage. According to The Economist (see graphic) US petroleum stocks rose by 4m barrels last week which is an 80 year seasonal high. Add this to the anticipated increase in supply from Iran after the sanctions were lifted and you have a significant increase in supply. However with reduced demand where is the supply going to housed? At this time of year, with the Northern Hemisphere winter, oil stocks usually dwindle but supply actually increased in Q4 2015 by a record 1.8m barrels a day according to the International Energy Agency. It wasn’t so long ago that investors were buying oil and keeping it in oil tankers waiting for the price to rise.