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We'll make a killing out of food crisis, Glencore trading boss Chris Mahoney boasts

Oxfam said companies like Glencore were "profiting from the misery and suffering of poor people who are worst hit by high and volatile food prices", adding: "If we are going to fix the ailing food system then traders must be part of the cure."


The United Nations, aid agencies and the British Government have lined up to attack the world's largest commodities trading company, Glencore, after it described the current global food crisis and soaring world prices as a "good" business opportunity.

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Simon English: In the surreal place called Planet Banker, those in charge are never to blame

Welcome to Planet Banker, a surreal place where a seeming lack of oxygen seems to affect the eye-sight and hearing of the inhabitants.

Why are we going on about that cocaine money-laundering thing when their continued capital strength is such a source of reassurance?

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Super rich hold $32 trillion in offshore havens

Super richRich individuals and their families have as much as $32 trillion of hidden financial assets in offshore tax havens, representing up to $280 billion in lost income tax revenues, according to research published on Sunday.

The study estimating the extent of global private financial wealth held in offshore accounts - excluding non-financial assets such as real estate, gold, yachts and racehorses - puts the sum at between $21 and $32 trillion.

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How the Mormons Make Money

Mormon ChurchLate last March the Mormon Church completed an ambitious project: a megamall. Built for roughly $2 billion, the City Creek Center stands directly across the street from the church’s iconic neo-Gothic temple in Salt Lake City.

The mall includes a retractable glass roof, 5,000 underground parking spots, and nearly 100 stores and restaurants, ranging from Tiffany’s (TIF) to Forever 21. Walkways link the open-air emporium with the church’s perfectly manicured headquarters on Temple Square. Macy’s (M) is a stone’s throw from the offices of the church’s president, Thomas S. Monson, whom Mormons believe to be a living prophet.

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Was the price of oil rigged too?

Oil pricesConcerns are growing about the reliability of oil prices, after a report for the G20 found the market is wide open to “manipulation or distortion”. Traders from banks, oil companies or hedge funds have an “incentive” to distort the market and are likely to try to report false prices, it said.

Politicians and fuel campaigners last night urged the Government to expand its inquiry into the Libor scandal to see whether oil prices have also been falsely pushed up.

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24% of senior financial execs consider unethical or illegal conduct needed for success

Sr. execs OK greedJust in case recent headlines didn’t offer a clue, a new study revealed what most people already think: Unethical behavior and illegal business practices seems to be part of a Wall Street job description.

A survey of senior executives at financial firms in the U.S. and the U.K., released Monday, found that nearly a quarter of respondents, or 24%, said they consider engaging in unethical or illegal conduct as a necessary ingredient for success in the financial world.

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Imagining a Universe Without Central Banks

Yesterday, the saints at central banks in China, Europe and the UK said they would perform what could only be a miracle. The world economy wheezes, rattles and shakes because it has been poisoned by too much debt. The central bankers offer a cure — more debt!

The US had no central bank before 1913. It had higher rates of GDP growth back then. It had a stronger currency too — the dollar of 1913 was worth about the same as a dollar of one hundred years earlier. Now, it’s worth about 3 cents…and disappearing fast. On the surface of the argument, it would appear that America’s central bank has actually made things worse. Maybe that is a coincidence; post hoc ergo propter hoc…and all that. But maybe there is a cause and effect relationship. Maybe a central bank CAUSES the economy to produce less wealth…and CAUSES the currency to lose value.

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