Russia, Ukraine and the West

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  • Vangelovski
    replied
    Originally posted by Risto the Great View Post
    Joe Biden just announced the US is going to be supporting the pensions in Ukraine. I am absolutely positive Ukraine will owe nothing in return. I am Forrest Gump.


    No, you're Mr $400 an hour.

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  • Risto the Great
    replied
    Joe Biden just announced the US is going to be supporting the pensions in Ukraine. I am absolutely positive Ukraine will owe nothing in return. I am Forrest Gump.

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  • Vangelovski
    replied
    Originally posted by Phoenix View Post
    Every reply of yours is always an engagement of some sort of futile battle with semantics and the surgical dissection of every single word and phrase that was written by someone on the run as mere commentary, you always demand others to provide you the equivalent of a PhD dissertation...
    What semantics? RtG claimed corporations control governments, then provided a completely irrelevant article and then provided an article that actually refuted what he was saying. You come in with some whinge about semantics. Do you also charge $400 an hour for your half a cents worth?

    Corporations and/or special interest groups control and/or influence governments...End of Story...to argue ANYTHING to the contrary is to divorce yourself from reality.
    Control and influence are two completely different things. I'd tell you to refer to a dictionary but you probably won't because it may or may not have been published by a corporation. No one said corporations don't influence government. Influence isn't necessarily a bad thing. Corporations are a part of society and the economy and should gave a genuine say in the laws that govern them. But there is of course, undue influence. No denying that. But control. No. No corporation controls government. That is a gigantic leap and you'd need your head examined.

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  • kompir
    replied
    Originally posted by Phoenix View Post
    Every reply of yours is always an engagement of some sort of futile battle with semantics and the surgical dissection of every single word and phrase that was written by someone on the run as mere commentary, you always demand others to provide you the equivalent of a PhD dissertation...all while you stand comfortably behind what was reported in the Hindustan Times.

    The lofty professional standards that you like to hold others accountable to, don't readily apply to your good self.

    Corporations and/or special interest groups control and/or influence governments...End of Story...to argue ANYTHING to the contrary is to divorce yourself from reality.

    The entire US political system is influenced by lobbyists working on behalf of corporations and/or special interest groups to control and/or influence government and this very process results in varying degrees of corruption (in all of its forms)...the same is true for every political system, to argue otherwise is a complete and utter nonsense and seems to be just a need to be ridiculously disagreeable.
    And that is just the overt government everyone sees and interacts with, the government in the shadows (the Fed and MIC (military industrial complex)) which controls the real power base in the US is DIRECTLY owned by private interests AND is guilty of crimes and corruption orders of magnitude worse than the criminality committed by the overt government.
    Last edited by kompir; 02-18-2023, 02:47 AM.

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  • kompir
    replied
    Originally posted by Risto the Great View Post
    Forrest. You're just not getting it. Probably a vaccine side effect.
    The ambiguity in the various statutes is deliberate and gives govco and the banks a double advantage:

    - it gives them plausible deniability when questioned.
    - it gives them the ability to arbitrarily define what is a financial instrument and thus the ability to take depositor funds.
    Last edited by kompir; 02-18-2023, 02:38 AM.

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  • Phoenix
    replied
    Originally posted by Vangelovski View Post
    ...YOUR claim was that corporations control government. That article said absolutely NOTHING to support YOUR claim...
    Every reply of yours is always an engagement of some sort of futile battle with semantics and the surgical dissection of every single word and phrase that was written by someone on the run as mere commentary, you always demand others to provide you the equivalent of a PhD dissertation...all while you stand comfortably behind what was reported in the Hindustan Times.

    The lofty professional standards that you like to hold others accountable to, don't readily apply to your good self.

    Corporations and/or special interest groups control and/or influence governments...End of Story...to argue ANYTHING to the contrary is to divorce yourself from reality.

    The entire US political system is influenced by lobbyists working on behalf of corporations and/or special interest groups to control and/or influence government and this very process results in varying degrees of corruption (in all of its forms)...the same is true for every political system, to argue otherwise is a complete and utter nonsense and seems to be just a need to be ridiculously disagreeable.

    Leave a comment:


  • Risto the Great
    replied
    Forrest. You're just not getting it. Probably a vaccine side effect.

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  • Vangelovski
    replied
    Originally posted by Risto the Great View Post
    The article shows plenty. It shows how our concepts of perfect markets do not exist and how notions underpinning our capitalist model such as "competition" are compromised.
    Who said it was perfect? You're comprehension skills are getting worse by the day. YOUR claim was that corporations control government. That article said absolutely NOTHING to support YOUR claim.

    SPOILER ALERT: THIS IS A FACTCHECK


    Read how what I said has been refuted here.
    Yes, you did just provide an article that REFUTES what YOU said. Thanks. And you still keep insisting that what you said is true while providing evidence for the opposite.

    In short, I fact checked the fact checking link above and my verdict is the false claim is false.
    WTF?!?!?!?!

    Originally posted by Risto the Great View Post
    Listen, I charge $400 an hour normally.
    Tell us more Mr $400 an hour...
    Last edited by Vangelovski; 02-17-2023, 07:23 PM.

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  • Risto the Great
    replied
    The article shows plenty. It shows how our concepts of perfect markets do not exist and how notions underpinning our capitalist model such as "competition" are compromised. But for you, life is pretty simple. Simple is as simple does.

    About the banking. Listen, I charge $400 an hour normally. I can work through it all with you for a fee. But for the benefit of others, I submit the following:

    SPOILER ALERT: THIS IS A FACTCHECK


    Read how what I said has been refuted here. Moronic people with the mental development and clarity of say Forrest Gump, would accept it as fact. But let's dig in for a moment:

    WHAT WAS CLAIMED
    The government can take any deposits in excess of $250,000 from your bank account and instead you can receive shares in the bank.

    OUR VERDICT
    False. The claim is based on opinions that have been investigated by a parliamentary committee and found to be unsupported.

    A motivational speaker with a Facebook following of more than 20,000 people has claimed an Australian law introduced in 2018 allows the federal government to “drain your bank account” of deposits over $250,000 in the event of a financial crisis.

    It’s not the first time such claims have been made. A similar argument was made by a minor party senator who proposed a law change in 2020 to stop “failed banks taking our money”. However a parliamentary committee which examined the matter found there are already legal protections for bank deposits and the change was unnecessary. Experts in finance law also told AAP FactCheck the claim is “confused”, “extreme” and a strained reading of the legislation.

    The claim is made by Espen Hjalmby in a video on his Facebook account on February 24. In the video (2min 30sec mark) he tells his followers to Google “Bail in law 2018 Australia”. Entering that phrase into a Google search brings up as the first result a link to a web page of fringe political organisation the Australian Citizens Party. The web page refers to a piece of legislation, the Financial Sector Legislation Amendment (Crisis Resolution Powers and Other Measures) Bill 2017 that became law in March 2018.

    At the 2min 55sec mark, Hjalmby says in reference to federal parliament: “They snuck in a new law, snuck it in the back door with some of the people voting it in awake and voting it in, the rest were asleep … a law that says the government has a legal right to drain your bank account of anything above $250,000.”

    Hjalmby’s claim mirrors language used by the Australian Citizens Party (formerly called the Citizens Electoral Council) and One Nation senator Malcolm Roberts – the politician who sought the 2020 amendment – in arguments that the 2018 legislation allows for failing banks to take money from deposit accounts to maintain stability in a financial crisis.

    The basis for Hjalmby’s claim that the law was “snuck in” while some parliamentarians were awake and others asleep is not clear. The final reading and vote on the legislation occurred around lunch time, at 12.30pm on February 14, 2018.

    As explained in this ABC News report, the “bail-in” referred to by Hjalmby is the opposite of a government bail-out of banks during a financial crisis. Where a bail-out refers to the government’s guaranteeing of Australians’ bank deposits, a bail-in refers to a scenario in which the bank shores up its financial survival by taking deposits and exchanging them for shares.

    In February 2020, Senator Roberts introduced the Banking Amendment (Deposits) Bill 2020 into parliament. The bill aimed to “stop banks in financial trouble from stealing our savings”, according to his media release, by amending the Financial Sector Legislation Amendment (Crisis Resolution Powers and Other Measures) Bill 2017. But a Senate committee inquiry into Senator Roberts’ bill, after taking advice from the federal Treasury and regulator the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority, rejected concerns that deposit accounts of bank customers could be subjected to any kind of bail-in or write-off in a financial crisis.

    In its final view the committee stated: “The committee concurs with the advice of the Treasury and APRA that the explicit protection of deposits in the Banking Act – the objects clause, priority repayment, and the Financial Claims Scheme – is inconsistent with a concern deposit accounts could be subject to any kind of conversion, write-off or bail-in.”

    Legal experts told AAP FactCheck there is no truth to Hjalmby’s claim.

    Associate Professor Andrew Godwin, from the University of Melbourne, said the legislation empowered APRA to direct certain types of “hybrid securities” to be compulsorily converted into shares in the bank, and that the argument was about whether that could extend to bank deposits.

    “In my view this is a strained interpretation as bank deposits up to $250,000 are guaranteed under the deposit guarantee scheme that the government introduced during the Global Financial Crisis,” he said in an email.

    Dr Godwin said the target of the bail-in power was hybrid securities, such as contingent convertible bonds, that are issued by banks to investors in the knowledge that they are subject to bail-in.

    “Those who argue that the legislation is ambiguous claim that the reference to ‘hybrid securities and other instruments’ could capture bank deposits. Although there may be legitimate arguments as to the technical meaning of ‘instruments’, I think it is far-fetched to interpret the legislation in this way,” he said.

    UNSW Scientia Professor Ross Philip Buckley, from the Faculty of Law & Justice, told AAP FactCheck the Australian government could not order the conversion of people’s bank deposits into shares.

    “An extreme and strained reading of a phrase in the Financial Sector Legislation Amendment (Crisis Resolution Powers and Other Measures) Act 2018 (Cth) could lead to that result but it is not a reading any Australian court would adopt,” he said in an email.

    Associate Professor Will Bateman, a legal expert from ANU, said the claim had “no truth”.

    “There is no truth in the statement of the social media influencer regarding the use of regulator powers to ‘bail-in’ deposit accounts at Australian banks,” Dr Bateman said in an email.

    “Australia has a system of deposit insurance under which the government agrees to insure the contents of deposit accounts up to $250,000/customer/ADI in the unlikely event of a bank failure. That system is called the Financial Claims Scheme. The Australian banking regulator, APRA, is under a legal duty (s12, Banking Act 1959 (Cth) to protect depositors which would preclude the use of ‘bail in’ powers in respect of deposit accounts.”

    Dr Bateman said Australia also has constitutional protections that prevent the government acquiring property, including deposit accounts without providing ‘just terms’, or compensation, under section 51 (xxxi) of the Constitution.

    “Those protections prevent the situation described by the influencer from occurring in Australia,” he said.
    Some clues for the less intellectually capable:


    (No definition of "financial instrument")

    an instrument converts into one or more ordinary shares or mutual equity interests of an entity including by redeeming or cancelling the instrument or rights under the instrument, and replacing the instrument or rights with ordinary shares or mutual equity interests (as the case requires)

    Politicians introducing this banking theft said "this only applies to those complicated hybrid securities, not mum and dad's money in their bank accounts." The problem with that is they didn't exclude CASH DEPOSITS in the legislation. And financial instruments include CASH.

    Of particular concern is the belief that the first $250K deposits are protected. I don't even believe that is the case, because the money will be converted into shares and the bank won't be broke. Therefore the $250K bailout won't even be triggered.

    So, we have a "strained" reading of the legislation. And some professor "thinks" it won't apply. But here's the problem, my professional background enables me to use my experiences with taxation law to confirm that the black and white of legislation wording is commonly repurposed to capture future events. If anyone is interested, they could look at s100A and its application to trusts as absolute proof of that.

    In short, I fact checked the fact checking link above and my verdict is the false claim is false. But morons think everything is ok

    BTW the fact check link was provided by AAP ..... AAP is owned by "philanthropists" nowadays.

    Classic me signing off.
    More available (for a fee)

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  • Vangelovski
    replied
    Originally posted by Risto the Great View Post
    Don't want to respond to the content, Forrest? Harvard beneath you? You better get back to Facebook for your factual content.


    That article has nothing to do with your claim that corporations control government. It has nothing to do with your retarted theory that somehow the NY Times publishes whatever BlackRock wants it to because it may, or may not, own 10% of the paper. It was completely irrelevant to everything.

    Maybe you can tell us some more of your crackpipe theories? You have a thread for that don't you? How about America and its evil corporations causing the earthquake in Turkey? Or the balloons that were shot down - who sent them? Illuminati, Bilderbergs, Trilateral Commission, the Rothchilds, Klaus? What about how the gas companies forced the Albanese Government to put a price cap on gas so they make less money?

    Remember the one where you said "the banks" were pissed off that the government was guaranteeing deposits and that the IMF forced it to change legislation but that never actually happened? Some shit about shareholders, which aren't even mentioned in the Banking Act, which is the enabling legislation for the Financial Claims Scheme (you know, that bank deposit guarantee thing)? That was classic you.
    Last edited by Vangelovski; 02-17-2023, 07:17 AM.

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  • Risto the Great
    replied
    Don't want to respond to the content, Forrest? Harvard beneath you? You better get back to Facebook for your factual content.

    Leave a comment:


  • Vangelovski
    replied
    RtG,

    Are you suffering from some sort of mental breakdown? Your rant is completely incoherent. You've just become the new Prolet.
    Last edited by Vangelovski; 02-17-2023, 04:23 AM.

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  • Risto the Great
    replied
    Originally posted by Vangelovski View Post
    Maybe you should have read the other ones too. Or did your own Google search. Here's some more (there's pictures in the Forbes one that might help you):

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/sebasti...h=4abd76c61b96
    The Ukrainian military posted this on their Facebook page. Were there any dick pics? And it “seemingly” has a date stamped on it. Seriously, are you actually Forrest Gump pretending to be someone who knows what they are talking about?

    Reuters did all the fact checking for Covid vaccines. They were pretty much wrong on every count. They are a captured organisation. I’m gonna assume you believe everything you read in your favourite journals. I’m even gonna assume you’re vaccinated.

    Originally posted by Vangelovski View Post
    You've managed to say absolutely nothing here and provided a fake example. According to APRA's website, the Australian Government does cover the deposits of up to $250,000: https://www.apra.gov.au/financial-claims-scheme-0
    You, with your “forrestgumpian” comprehension skills didn’t understand the nuance of what I said. It is a common theme with you. I told you the government covers the deposits. I also told you it will never have to pay them because the mechanism to bail in the depositors money and convert them into shareholders will ensure banks never go broke. You don’t really have a head for business do you?

    Originally posted by Vangelovski View Post
    But lets break it down further:

    1. You failed to name a single corporation.

    2. You made a socialist assumption that the government should guarantee bank deposits with taxpayer money. Why? When a person deposits their money into a bank, they are effectively making an investment by loaning that money and expecting a return (interest). There are no guarantees in life and anything can happen. Banks can and do go bankrupt and people who give them their money can and do lose it. It's a calculated risk.

    3. Why would "the banks" care if the government was guaranteeing bank deposits with its own (taxpayer money)? It's not "the banks" money. When and how did the "the banks" get involved in changing this legislation? Which ones exactly were involved? How does that even equate to "control" of government? Can you provide any evidence as opposed to hearsay, rumors and conjecture?

    4. If by the IMF you mean the International Monetary Fund, that's not a corporation or a bank. It's an international organisation made up of member countries that provide emergency funds. There is no private profit involved.

    5. Again, everything your saying is a complete load of crap. APRAs website says the complete opposite:


    So? What empty-headed drivel will you conclude with that? Who owns the other 92%? How many thousands of shareholders and institutional shareholdings own Blackrock, equating to millions of mum and dad investors? Who's controlling what exactly, how are they controlling it, and what evidence do you have?
    ”A socialist assumption” coming from a government employee gives me infinite mirth. I never said it was right or wrong. I said it was effectively removed … wait for it … in favour of banking corporations. How do you like them peaches, Forrest?

    In any case, you asked why the banks would care if the government guaranteed deposits. Well, Forrest, it’s like this. The banks just got a whole lot safer in Australia than anywhere else in the world. The shareholders loved the shit out of that and the shares increased in value. It’s pretty complicated stuff. Not as complicated as picking which cardigan to wear to work, but you will catch on one day.

    You even think the IMF doesn’t run with agendas. You probably don’t even notice that suspect uncle who gives candy to the children but awkwardly pats them all on the arse too long.

    You think a relatively small shareholding interest means nothing. Well Forrest, let me tell you something. I said 8% directly and suggested they owned more indirectly. 10% shareholding represents a substantial interest.

    substantial shareholder means a person who is entitled to exercise, or to control the exercise of, 10% or more (or such other percentage as may be prescribed by the Listing Rules) of the voting power at any general meeting of the Company;
    As an example: In the UK, At least 10%: right to call for a poll vote on a resolution. More than 10%: right to prevent a meeting being held on short notice (in private companies).

    Harvard did a little piece on control. You see, Forrest, it’s like a box of chocolates. You never know each box is owned by Blackrock until you sound like an idiot with a yokel accent as you wave the American flag around shouting “democracy will prevail”.

    Many critics claim that anti-trust enforcement has dangerously weakened since the 1980s, often citing the dominance of the tech giants as evidence of this. Others have noted rising concentration outside of tech: two-thirds of U.S. industries became more concentrated between 1997 and 2012. But a different form of monopoly has largely escaped the limelight. An emerging body of research alleges that trusts have returned in a more insidious form as ‘horizontal shareholdings’: investors that own significant shares in several competing firms. For example, there is substantial common ownership among U.S. airlines. Between 2013 and 2015, the seven shareholders who controlled 60% of United Airlines also controlled 28% of Delta, 27% of JetBlue, and 23% of Southwest. Together these airlines have over half of domestic market share. Theory and evidence suggests that horizontal shareholding harms competition, consumers, and the economy.


    How Big a Problem Is It That a Few Shareholders Own Stock in So Many Competing Companies?
    by Jacob Greenspon
    February 19, 2019, Updated February 22, 2019

    Many critics claim that anti-trust enforcement has dangerously weakened since the 1980s, often citing the dominance of the tech giants as evidence of this. They argue that any benefit gained from Google’s free services or Amazon’s low prices is outweighed by their chokehold on suppliers, their possession of mountains of personal data, and more. Others have noted rising concentration outside of tech: two-thirds of U.S. industries became more concentrated between 1997 and 2012.

    But a different form of monopoly has largely escaped the limelight. An emerging body of research alleges that trusts have returned in a more insidious form as ‘horizontal shareholdings’: investors that own significant shares in several competing firms. For example, there is substantial common ownership among U.S. airlines. Between 2013 and 2015, the seven shareholders who controlled 60% of United Airlines also controlled 28% of Delta, 27% of JetBlue, and 23% of Southwest. Together these airlines have over half of domestic market share. Theory and evidence suggests that horizontal shareholding harms competition, consumers, and the economy.

    Increasing common ownership

    Companies are traditionally thought of as having unique owners that try as hard as they can to drive up their market share and profits at the loss of their competitors. But when a firm is predominantly controlled by shareholders who also own that firms’ competitors, those common owners try to maximize the value of their entire portfolio — encompassing competing firms in the same industries — rather than the value of any one firm. Otherwise, any profits they gain from one firm will be roughly matched by losses at its competitors.

    Consider two food trucks across the street from each other, both owned by their respective chefs. If one chef decided to cut their prices, they would direct customers away from their competitor across the street and thus increase their own profits. This is business as usual. But if both food trucks were instead owned by the same group of local investors, these owners would not support one truck cutting its prices because it would simply shift business from one outlet to another, with a lower total profit to the investors.

    Competing U.S. airlines share many of the same owners and, although the effects on competition are perhaps inadvertent, the outcomes are directionally the same as the example describes. With an overlapping (but distinct) set of shareholders, a firm that takes market share from its commonly-owned rival will earn its owners some profit but, since they also own shares in the rival firm that has just lost profits, the total earned by the common owners will be smaller than if each company was owned separately. What is important for competition is therefore the relative influence horizontal shareholders have on a firm compared to other owners that are more incentivized to increase that firm’s profits because they are not also invested in competing firms.

    In many industries the same institutional investors are the largest owners of many competing companies. This is true for the largest U.S. banks and in retail pharmaceutical, where Vanguard and BlackRock are the largest (non-individual) owners of CVS, Walgreens Boots Alliance, and Rite Aid (with State Street not far behind in two of the three). In supermarkets, too: Vanguard, BlackRock, Capital Research, Fidelity, and State Street are the five largest owners of Kroger, five of the six largest owners of Costco, and four of the seven largest owners of Target. The three largest shareholders of Apple are also three of the top four (non-individual) owners of Microsoft.

    In fact, in many of these industries common ownership is even higher than it first appears because some large stockholders, such as J.P Morgan Asset Management, may be owned in part by other institutional owners. The following chart shows by just how much common ownership has increased in U.S. industries between 1994 and 2013. In fact, the probability of two competing firms in the S&P 1500 having a large horizontal shareholder increased from 16 to 90 percent.

    Diversification versus competition

    This reflects a more general shift towards passive investment strategies such as index funds that rely on portfolio diversification. One of either Blackrock, Vanguard, or State Street is the largest shareholder in 88% of S&P 500 companies. They are the three largest owners of most DOW 30 companies. Overall, institutional investors (which may offer both active and passive funds) own 80% of all stock in the S&P 500. Their representation among the top 10 shareholders of U.S. corporations has skyrocketed since the 1990s.

    This is not all bad. Institutional investors have grown so much because they offer small-scale savers the opportunity to invest in diversified funds with economies of scale. Indeed, horizontal shareholdings initially grew with the rise of institutional investors following legislative and tax rule changes in the late 1970s and early 1980s that created retirement savings accounts. BlackRock and Vanguard are “only the most recent incarnation” of a longer-term rise in diversified investment strategies. But it is impossible to have complete portfolio diversification, shareholder representation, and competition.

    The necessary flip side to portfolio diversity is increased common ownership. Although theory predicting negative effects of horizontal shareholdings dates to at least 1984, only recently has a substantial amount of research emerged that articulates how common ownership leads to anti-competitive actions, provides corroborating empirical evidence, and proposes policy responses.

    Anti-competitive incentives for managers and funds

    The common owners of rival firms do not benefit when the firms compete by cutting prices or expanding output. In fact, they may even “soften competition” among firms in their investment portfolio. To begin with there is the potential of active efforts to stymie competition, such as encouraging the signing of anti-competitive agreements or passing sensitive information between two commonly-owned competitors. Of course, this sort of collusion is already likely to be prosecuted under current anti-trust practices. More worrying is the unintentional collusion through the owners’ corporate governance communications, the information flows between the firms and owners, and the incentives to lessen competition that common ownership brings, without any coordination or communications among the ostensibly competing firms.

    Let’s look at the interplay between the shareholders of large corporations and the managers that actually run them. Managers need shareholders to vote for their corporate initiatives and their re-election. To accomplish either, smart managers will maximize the weighted average of their shareholders’ profits from across their diverse portfolio of stockholdings. This way they will gain the votes of shareholders’ whose profits they boost by increasing the value of both the manager’s firm and the other companies held by that shareholder. It would be “remarkable” if firm managers did not pay attention to the profit interests of their leading shareholders given the various sources of corporate accountability such as executive compensation incentives, takeovers, control contests, labor markets, and direct communications.

    Horizontal shareholding therefore hurts competition because, as Einer Elhauge of Harvard Law School has argued, it reduces “each individual firm’s incentives to cut prices or expand output by increasing the costs [to shareholders, and thus managers] of taking away sales from rivals.” These issues are easy to imagine with direct investors (such as activist hedge funds) who typically have more concentrated holdings and thus greater ability to influence practices within a company or industry.

    Some experts argue that institutional investors, particularly index funds, have little incentive to influence firms to behave anti-competitively because the direct and indirect costs incurred when influencing a firm to increase its value exceed their rewards (the annual fee charged on the market value of the index fund). But it is near-costless for index funds to influence a firm to behave anti-competitively through voting on general corporate governance matters that apply to all corporations in their portfolio. Moreover, proxy advisory firms lessen the effort that index funds need to exert by providing them with company research and vote administration services, and even guiding their voting.

    Proxy firms could also shield indexes from the indirect costs of their efforts (aggravating corporate managers and causing them to divert their corporation’s pension assets to other funds), since the indexes are simply following the proxy’s guidance. Finally, the incentives to lobby for anti-competitive behavior are even greater for active funds, which are a much larger share of horizontal shareholdings. And although money managers at an institutional investor look after a relatively small portfolio, the shareholder voting rights of all funds within the institutional investor fund family are usually exercised jointly. The “rise and consolidation of intermediated asset management” increases the shareholder power of large diversified owners and reduces portfolio firms’ competitive incentives.

    The harms of common ownership

    Horizontal shareholding clearly has negative consequences for competition. But do the damages reach further? Since the 1980s anti-trust policy has focused on one goal: consumer welfare. Fears of the economic, political, and social harms of concentrated economic power have been narrowed in anti-trust jurisprudence to questions about how consumers are affected.

    Several studies have found clear empirical evidence that anti-competitive horizontal shareholdings lead to increased consumer prices. A ground-breaking study found that the degree to which airlines serving a particular route are commonly owned is correlated with ticket prices on these routes (controlling for possible confounding factors). Ticket prices increase anywhere from 3% to 12% due to common ownership. Similarly, common ownership among banks in a particular county is associated with higher fees and lower deposit interest rates. Increased horizontal shareholding between an incumbent pharmaceutical brand and a generic entering its market made it 12% more likely that the firms would agree to pay the generic firm to stay out of the market, which led to higher returns for the incumbent because prices remained high.

    One consequence of this is increased economic inequality. Higher prices result in higher returns to capital for horizontally competing firms, which mainly benefit the Americans higher up the income distribution who disproportionately own stocks. Yet all of society bears the costs of less competitive goods and services. This means that “the potential beneficiaries of anti-competitive behaviour — investors — are often wealthier than the consumers who pay the higher prices.” In fact, as the chart below shows, the increase in common ownerships from 1985 to 2015 coincides with the rise in wealth inequality. These relationships are not too far-fetched. After all, typical market share measures of concentration are associated with increased inequality. U.S. sectors where concentration rose the most experienced the largest declines in the labor share of firms’ profits.

    There is also solid evidence that common ownership skews executive compensation and dampens corporate investment. Horizontal shareholders maximize profits when managers have weaker incentives to increase their firm’s profits and lower costs, since this would come at the cost to commonly-held rival firms. The result is executive compensation being based more on the performance of a firm’s total industry rather than the firm itself.

    Horizontal shareholding also drives the “historically large gap between corporate investment and profits.” This gap is larger in concentrated industries and, within any industry, the investment-profit gap is driven by firms with high horizontal shareholding levels. Lower corporate investment contributes to inequality by depressing employment and wages, which disproportionately harms the non-wealthy. Finally, there is no possible efficiency defense. Horizontal shareholding does not result in increased efficiencies to firms, unlike standard mergers, because operations are not combined to create economies of scale. The benefits from common ownership are to stockowners and to investment funds.

    Taking action against horizontal shareholders

    Several policies have been proposed to counteract the harms of horizontal shareholdings. The U.S. agencies responsible for anti-trust have so far expressed disinterest in prosecuting any horizontal shareholdings, although the Federal Trade Commission held a hearing in December to study the matter. Some studies skeptical of the harmful effects of common ownership have been amplified by finance industry-funded groups, but have been effectively rebutted.

    Current anti-trust legislation provides a basis for prosecuting horizontal shareholdings by banning stock acquisitions that may substantially lessen competition. Some argue that any horizontal shareholdings calculated to result in highly concentrated industries should be investigated for their effects on consumer prices. Others think the government should publicly offer investors a “safe harbor” from prosecution if they either limit their active holdings of a firm to a small stake or own the shares of only one firm per industry. This would allow free-standing index funds that commit to pure passivity to not be limited in size. A less drastic suggestion (but which would require new legislation) is to take away tax advantages enjoyed by retirement funds that are invested in mutual funds with a significant number of shares in more than one firm in an industry. These funds could still offer diverse investment portfolios, but only across industries rather than across competing firms in an industry.

    These policy proposals merit substantial consideration. A popular anti-trust movement successfully defeated corporate trusts once in the U.S., so there is hope that meaningful action against resurgent monopolists is possible.
    Blackrock and Vanguard probably own Bubba’s Shrimp business now. Along with all its competitors. Oh, they own Ukraine too.

    I urge you to take off those braces around your legs, Forrestovski and run. Run like there is no tomorrow. Embrace the new world where democracy went wrong. Where decisions were made by faceless men in back rooms and compromised politicians rubber stamped their requirements, RUN, FORRESTOVSKI, RUN!

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  • Vangelovski
    replied
    Originally posted by Risto the Great View Post
    I went straight to the Hindustan times link. It’s where I typically get my best information from. Though, I must admit, I felt a little underwhelmed. Is this what you are relying upon:
    Maybe you should have read the other ones too. Or did your own Google search. Here's some more (there's pictures in the Forbes one that might help you):

    The purported Russian documents, stamped January 18, 2022, establish call signs and radio frequencies for operations for 15 days between Feb. 20 and March 6, and include maps detailing plans to seize the city of Melitopol. Throughout January, Putin insisted he had no plans to invade Ukraine.




    Clearly you have no understanding of military operational plans. There are thousands of hours of work that goes into them. They include hundreds and sometimes thousands of pages of documents, maps, lists and photographs that are disseminated among the officer corps so that everyone knows what they need. This type of information is captured in battle all the time so its shocking that your so shockingly unaware of it. Read a book. A newspaper. A website. Anything.

    But beyond the captured documents it was blatantly clear that Russia intended to take all of Ukraine in a blitz campaign when they simultaneously opened up three fronts (north, east and south) and headed directly for Kiev.

    I believe Russia knows it would be demonised if it were to attack randomly and indiscriminately instead of being seen to be a liberator for the oppressed Russian minority. But I rely on logic instead of the Hindustan times.
    Russia has been indiscriminately bombing Ukrainian civilians and infrastructure. Its a weekly occurrence. All over the news, which you clearly don't read/listen to because all news outlets are corporations...except of course for RT. Its Russian Government owned. Must be good. The point around the missiles is that the Russians simply don't have the capacity, as opposed to intent.

    I will give you one. After the GFC, the government wanted to make people feel safe with their banks. They guaranteed your first $250K in deposits should the bank go broke. In 2017, the IMF said “You bitches want a AAA credit rating? Then the banks gotta keep everyone’s money if they go broke y’all.” And, Lo and behold, legislation was passed in 2018 to ensure banks will keep your money and turn depositors into shareholders. The bank owes nothing to shareholders. Therefore the government will never need to bail out the $250K deposits.
    You've managed to say absolutely nothing here and provided a fake example. According to APRA's website, the Australian Government does cover the deposits of up to $250,000: https://www.apra.gov.au/financial-claims-scheme-0

    But lets break it down further:

    1. You failed to name a single corporation.

    2. You made a socialist assumption that the government should guarantee bank deposits with taxpayer money. Why? When a person deposits their money into a bank, they are effectively making an investment by loaning that money and expecting a return (interest). There are no guarantees in life and anything can happen. Banks can and do go bankrupt and people who give them their money can and do lose it. It's a calculated risk.

    3. When and how did the "the banks" supposedly get involved in changing this legislation (which was never actually changed)? Which ones exactly were involved? How does that even equate to "control" of government? Can you provide any evidence as opposed to hearsay, rumors and conjecture?

    4. If by the IMF you mean the International Monetary Fund, that's not a corporation or a bank. It's an international organisation made up of member countries that provide emergency funds. There is no private profit involved.

    5. Again, everything your saying is a complete load of crap. APRAs website says the complete opposite:


    Originally posted by Risto the Great View Post
    BTW Blackrock directly owns over 8% of NY Times. Indirectly is another issue.
    So? What empty-headed drivel will you conclude with that? Who owns the other 92%? How many thousands of shareholders and institutional shareholdings own Blackrock, equating to millions of mum and dad investors? Who's controlling what exactly, how are they controlling it, and what evidence do you have?
    Last edited by Vangelovski; 02-17-2023, 01:09 AM.

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  • Risto the Great
    replied
    Originally posted by Vangelovski View Post
    You would have if you read that NY Times article I shared.
    BTW Blackrock directly owns over 8% of NY Times. Indirectly is another issue.

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