|US: Food Problems Elude Private Inspectors|
by Michael Moss and Andrew Martin, New York Times
March 5th, 2009
When food industry giants like Kellogg want to ensure that American consumers are being protected from contaminated products, they rely on private inspectors. With government inspectors overwhelmed by the task of guarding the nation’s food supply, the job of monitoring food plants has in large part fallen to an army of private auditors, and problems are rife.
|INDIA: Pricewaterhouse Revamps Indian Unit|
by Heather Timmons, New York Times
March 5th, 2009
The auditor PricewaterhouseCoopers is overhauling its operations in India two months after starting an investigation into fraud at Satyam Computer Services, a software and outsourcing firm whose chairman said in January that he had falsely claimed assets of $1 billion in cash and overstated operating margins.
|IRELAND: U2 rattled by claims of tax dodging|
by Michael Seaver, Christian Science Monitor
March 3rd, 2009
The band that loves to rail against global corporate malfeasance is being criticized at home over allegations of tax dodging. The controversy stems from 2006, when the band moved its publishing company to the Netherlands to avoid a potential multi-million-euro tax bill after the Irish government capped artists' tax-free earnings at €250,000 ($315,000).
|ECUADOR/CANADA: Canadian Mining Firm Financed Violence in Ecuador: Lawsuit|
by Jennifer Moore, Tyee Online
March 3rd, 2009
Three villagers from the valley of Intag in northwestern Ecuador are suing Copper Mesa Mining Corporation and the Toronto Stock Exchange. They allege not enough has been done to reduce the risk of harm being faced by farmers and community leaders who have faced violent threats and attacks for opposition to a large open-pit copper mine in their pristine cloud forests.
|US: Ex-Leaders at Countrywide Start Firm to Buy Bad Loans|
by Eric Lipton, New York Times
March 3rd, 2009
Countrywide Financial made risky loans to tens of thousands of Americans, helping set off a chain of events that has the economy staggering. So it may come as a surprise that a dozen former top Countrywide executives now stand to make millions from the home mortgage mess, buying up delinquent home mortgages that the government took over, sometimes for pennies on the dollar, at newly-formed PennyMac.
|EUROPE: Europe to Allow Two Bans on Genetically Altered Crops|
by James Kanter, New York Times
March 2nd, 2009
European Union governments delivered a blow Monday to the biotechnology industry, allowing Austria and Hungary to maintain national bans on growing genetically modified crops from Monsanto. The market for genetically engineered crops is worth several billion dollars worldwide.
|CHINA: Morgan Stanley’s Chinese Land Scandal|
by David Barboza , New York Times
March 1st, 2009
In a Securities and Exchange Commission filing, Morgan Stanley said it had fired an executive in its China real estate division after uncovering evidence that he might have violated the United States Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which bars American business people from bribing foreign officials.
|SWITZERLAND: UBS Names Grübel as New CEO|
by Carrick Mollenkamp, Wall Street Journal
February 26th, 2009
UBS AG, the Swiss bank battered by massive write-downs and its role in a U.S. tax-evasion scheme, announced the surprise departure of chief executive Marcel Rohner. Mr. Rohner's sudden departure comes after UBS agreed earlier this month to a $780 million settlement with the U.S. Justice Department of a criminal inquiry into the bank's role in the tax evasion.
|MEXICO: U.S. Is Arms Bazaar for Mexican Cartels |
by James C. McKinley, Jr., New York Times
February 25th, 2009
Phoenix-based gun dealer George Iknadosian of X-Calibur Guns will go on trial on charges he sold hundreds of weapons, mostly AK-47 rifles, to smugglers, knowing they would go to a drug cartel in the western state of Sinaloa. The guns helped fuel the gang warfare in which more than 6,000 Mexicans died last year.
|US/WORLD: Smokeless Tobacco to Get Push by Venture Overseas|
by Kevin Helliker, Wall Street Journal
February 4th, 2009
Swedish Match AB and Philip Morris International Inc. announced a joint venture Tuesday to market smokeless tobacco world-wide. The venture combines a world-wide giant in smokeless, Swedish Match, with the world's second-largest purveyor of cigarettes, PMI, an Altria Inc. spinoff.
|US: Tobacco Trial Opens in Florida, First of Many Suits|
by Associated Press, Wall Street Journal
February 3rd, 2009
The first of about 8,000 lawsuits blaming the health problems and deaths of Florida smokers on tobacco companies went to trial Tuesday. The key to the case is proving whether now-deceased Stuart Hess was addicted to cigarettes made by Richmond, Va.-based Philip Morris, a unit of Altria Group.
|US: Bank of America Board Under Gun From Critics|
by Louise Story and Julie Creswell, New York Times
January 27th, 2009
As Bank of America's board meets next week, shareholders have turned up the pressure on CEO Kenneth D. Lewis. Their scrutiny has also turned an unusual spotlight on the oversight role played by the bank's board members.
|US: Troubled Times Bring Mini-Madoffs to Light|
by Leslie Wayne, New York Times
January 27th, 2009
In the wake of the Bernard Madoff Ponzi scheme scandal, the SEC has brought cases involving losses of over $200 million since the beginning of October last year, including one against the disgraced Democratic donor Norman Hsu and North Carolina-based Biltmore Financial.
|US: New Rules on Doctors and Medical Firms Amid Ethics Concerns|
by Barry Meier, New York Times
January 24th, 2009
The Physician Payments Sunshine Act, reintroduced in the U.S. Senate on Thursday, would require device and drug makers to report all financial links with doctors on a federal Web site. The medical field has been troubled by federal investigations over the issue of frequently undisclosed financial ties between companies and physicians.
|US: Rubin Leaving Citigroup; Smith Barney for Sale|
by Eric Dash and Louise Story, New York Times
January 9th, 2009
Robert Rubin will resign from the beleaguered Citigroup. As Treasury secretary during the Clinton administration, Mr. Rubin helped loosen Depression-era banking regulations that made Citigroup's creation possible. He also helped beat back tighter oversight of exotic financial products during that time.
|US: Madoff Case Faces Crucial Disclosure Deadline|
by Diana B. Henriques, New York Times
December 30th, 2008
Judge Louis L. Stanton of United States District Court has established Wednesday as the deadline for Bernard L. Madoff, who is accused of operating a $50 billion Ponzi scheme, to provide federal securities regulators with a full accounting of his and his New York firm’s assets — from real estate to art works to bank accounts.
|US: Bank of New York Mellon Will Oversee Bailout Fund|
by Eric Dash, New York Times
October 15th, 2008
The Bank of New York Mellon was named the master custodian firm overseeing the Treasury Department’s $700 billion bailout fund. It will hold and track the distressed assets that the government will buy as well as run and report on the auctions used to buy the assets. Government officials called it the “prime contractor of the purchase program.”
|US: U.S. May Take Ownership Stake in Banks|
by Edmund L. Andrews and Mark Landler, New York Times
October 8th, 2008
In fresh efforts to stem persisting turmoil in the credit markets, the US Treasury Department is considering partial nationalization of numerous U.S. banks. Insurance giant A.I.G. will also receive a further injection of $37.8 billion.