October 18, 2017 nº 1,915 - Vol. 14

"The wages of sin are unreported."

Read Migalhas LatinoAmérica in Spanish every Tuesday and Thursday. Visit the website at la.migalhas.com

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  • Top News

As Party gathers, Xi Jinping displays a firm grip on power

When Xi Jinping strode out in the Great Hall of the People five years ago as China’s new leader, his tight smile barely hid the atmosphere of smoldering crisis. The Communist Party elite had been battered by infighting and scandals involving power grabs, bribery and even murder. Military commanders and state security chieftains — the guardians of one-party rule — had grown grossly corrupt. Critics openly accused Mr. Xi's predecessor, Hu Jintao, of dithering as popular ire spread. On Wednesday, Mr. Xi opened another Communist Party congress, this time as the nation's most powerful leader in decades, all but certain to receive a second five-year term. And after spending his first term tightening control on society, he is expected to enshrine his authoritarian vision for revitalizing the party — and perhaps position himself as indispensable to its survival. (Click here)

Brazil's crusading judge Sergio Moro passes corruption fight to others

As Judge Sergio Moro, who has headed the epic Car Wash corruption probe, prepares to finish the work under his jurisdiction, he stressed that success ultimately depends the very politicians who perverted Brazil's political mores to change the laws and prevent their successors from doing the same thing.

  • Crumbs

1 - Rio Tinto charged with fraud by US authorities. (Click here)

2 - Facebook buys app for teens to be nice. (Click here)

3 - UK inflation at highest since April 2012. (Click here)

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  • MiMIC Journal

China begins huge Communist meeting

The gathering determines who leads China and the country's direction for the next five years. The congress, which also decides on a roadmap for China for the next five years, is expected to finish next week. Shortly after the congress ends, the party is expected to unveil the new members of China's top decision-making body, the Politburo Standing Committee, who will steer the country.

Human cost of China's economic reforms

Health risks and job losses are among the harms many in China face in the push for economic change. Thousands of factories have been closed but that's as much about their polluting effect than their productive inefficiency. There have been consolidations in various sectors of the myriad state-owned enterprises. The (almost all state-owned) banks have come in with debt for equity deals - something close to a bail out - for the most troubled companies.

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  • Historias Verdaderas

Demanda

El Tribunal Contencioso Tributario de Quito, Ecuador, procesa seis demandas relacionadas con las declaraciones impositivas de Sinohydro Corporation, la compañía china que construyó la hidroeléctrica Coca Codo Sinclair, por US$ 2.250 mlls. (Presione aquí)

OHL

OHL vendió todas sus concesiones - salvo las que están en proceso de liquidación - al fondo australiano IFM Investors por US$ 2.775 mlls., de los que OHL ingresará únicamente US$ 2.235, por los ajustes de precios de deuda, de tipo de cambio y de caja aportada a proyectos. La constructora española comunicó anoche a la CNMV el cierre de la operación, firmado por el 100% de sus concesiones.

  • Brief News

Opioid law draws scrutiny after Trump's pick for drug czar steps aside

Trump's pick to be the nation's drug czar, Rep. Tom Marino, withdrew from consideration Tuesday after news reports focused attention on his role in pushing legislation that weakened the Drug Enforcement Administration's power to investigate bulk shipments of prescription opiods. Adding to the backlash, some members of Congress now say they will try to reverse Marino's bill, and the Department of Justice plans to assess whether the 2016 law restricts investigations.

Supreme Court to hear AmEx antitrust case

The Supreme Court intervened in a high-stakes case for the credit-card industry, saying it will review a government antitrust challenge to American Express rules that bar merchants from steering customers to cards that charge lower fees.

Federal Judge in Hawaii blocks Trump's third attempt at travel ban

Trump's latest bid to impose travel restrictions on citizens from eight countries entering the US has suffered a court defeat. A federal judge slapped a temporary restraining order on the open-ended ban before it could take effect this week. US District Judge Derrick Watson, who blocked Trump's last travel ban in March, issued the new restraining order. Judge Watson wrote that the new policy "suffers from precisely the same maladies as its predecessor". He said "it lacks sufficient findings that the entry of more than 150 million nationals from six specified countries would be 'detrimental to the interests of the United States'". Judge Watson added that it ignores an earlier federal appeals court ruling that found the president's previous ban exceeds the scope of his authority. (Click here)

Reversing Brexit would boost economy, says OECD

Reversing the Brexit process would boost the UK economy, the international economic body, the OECD has said. A new referendum or a change of government leading to the UK staying within the EU would have a "significant" positive impact on growth, the OECD said. It also warned "no deal" would see investment seize up, the pound hit new lows and the UK's credit rating cut. It said the outcome of the Brexit negotiations was hard to predict.

Spain top court: Catalonia referendum law void

Spain's Constitutional Court unanimously ruled Tuesday that Catalonia's referendum on independence was illegal as the regional law upon which it was based was illegal under Spain's Constitution. Spain's Constitution prohibits any region in Spain from seceding and mandates that all Spanish citizens must have a voice in the country's national sovereignty. Earlier this month, the court ordered the suspension of Catalonia's planned parliamentary session on independence next week warning of prosecution if they proceeded with the session. Catalan officials have spoken out over secession failures and the jailing of regional officials as "repression over dialogue." Since the jailing of pro-independence leaders on Monday, protests have arisen across the country. The Catalan government has asked the EU to help with the conflict stating that the jailing of the two independence leaders is "an attack on fundamental rights."

Eurocrats can't stand Poland's Law and Justice Party

Since Poland's last parliamentary elections in November 2015, members of the losing Euro-federalist party, Civic Platform, have accused the ruling Law and Justice Party of violating the Polish Constitution and steering the country toward authoritarianism. The charge has been loudly repeated by European Union officials. But what critics call authoritarianism is merely an attempt to reclaim for the Polish state the basic instruments of power held by governments in France, Germany and every other European state

Europe rights court: Russia opposition leader's conviction arbitrary

The European Court of Human Rights ruled Tuesday that the conviction of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny for fraud and money laundering was arbitrary and unfair, and granted damages. The court also found that Navalny's brother, Oleg Navalyy, was also unfairly and arbitrarily convicted for the same offenses. "[T]he Court concludes that in the determination of the criminal charges against the applicants the offence set out in Article 159.4 of the Criminal Code, in force at the time of their conviction, was extensively and unforeseeably construed to their detriment." (Click here)

Brazil's Batista brothers face insider trading trial

A federal court in Brazil has confirmed that brothers Joesley and Wesley Batista, who are the controlling shareholders in Brazil's largest meatpacking firm JBS, will face trial for alleged insider trading. They are accused of selling JBS shares at top prices in the weeks before revealing damaging information about their company's bribery scheme. Their revelations caused stocks to plummet. Both are already in detention.

Bombardier to partner Airbus on C-Series jets

European aerospace firm Airbus is to take a majority stake in Bombardier's C-Series jet project. Bombardier has faced a series of problems over the plane, most recently a trade dispute in the US that imposed a 300% import tariff. Airbus and Bombardier's chief executives said the deal - which will see Airbus take a 50.01% stake - would help to boost sales. The deal also gives Airbus the right to buy full control of the C-Series project in 2023. This deal is liable to further scrutiny from the US administration that may see it as an attempt to dodge their trade tariffs. (Click here)

Switzerland voters to decide on burqa ban

The Swiss government said that voters will decide whether to ban the burqa and other full-face coverings after a successful petition by far-right groups, who cited the "dignity of women." Activists, including the Swiss Peoples Party, collected more than the 100,000 signatures required to put the proposal on the national ballot under Switzerland's system of direct democracy, which lets voters decide major policy issues.

More than half the EU is still racing to comply with MiFID rules

More than half of the European Union's 28 countries are still scrambling to put MiFID II financial-market rules on their books, adding to industry confusion as firms race to comply with the new requirements before the Jan. 3 start date. In seventeen countries, including Spain, the Netherlands and Portugal, policy makers are still working to convert the revised Markets in Financial Instruments Directive into national law or regulations, according to the European Commission and reporting by Bloomberg. That matters because until it's on a country's books, the directive doesn't directly apply to companies or individuals there.

Compliance clamors for more board training

Organizations that fail to train to their boards on compliance can face unnecessary risks, yet a survey of ethics and compliance professionals found 28% of respondents said they offer no ethics and compliance board training.

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