Tag Archives: business and government finance

Friends No More: Facebook to lift Australian news ban | World | Instant News

Frydenberg described the agreed amendments as “clarification” of the government’s intent. He said his negotiations with Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg were “difficult”.

A European publisher lobby group that is among those working with Microsoft said the deal shows that such legislation is possible – and not just in Australia.

“Recent changes prove that regulation works,” said Angela Mills Wade, executive director of the European Publishers Council. “Regulators from all over the world will be assured that they can continue to draw inspiration from the Australian government’s determination to withstand the unacceptable threat of commercial gatekeeper power. “

Facebook said it would now negotiate a deal with an Australian publisher.

“We are satisfied that the Australian government has agreed to a number of changes and guarantees that address our major concerns about allowing commercial deals that recognize the value our platform provides publishers with the value we receive from them,” Facebook regional managing director William Easton said.

“As a result of this change, we can now work to continue our investment in public interest journalism and restore news on Facebook for Australians in the coming days,” Easton added.

Google, meanwhile, has listed Australia’s largest media company in content licensing deals through its News Showcase. The platform says it has handled more than 50 Australian titles and more than 500 publishers worldwide are using the model, which launched in October.


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Draghi brings market knowledge, desire to tame the Italian crisis | Business news | Instant News

MILAN (AP) – The former head of the European Central Bank who helped save the euro has now been drawn to lead Italy, the eurozone’s third-largest economy, out of the worst pandemic and recession since World War II.

Mario Draghi won global accolades as head of the European Central Bank for eight years, managing monetary policy for 19 euro-using economies, with an economy worth 12 trillion euros ($ 14.4 trillion). Draghi, 73, not only has an insider understanding of the financial rulebook Italy must follow, but he also respects those whose patience Italy may need during difficult months and years to come.

“When Draghi picks up the phone to call the White House, President Joe Biden will answer. Because that is Mario Draghi, ” deputy manager of Milan’s leading daily Corriere della Sera, Daniele Manca, said Wednesday. “The same goes for (German Chancellor) Angela Merkel and (Chinese President) Xi Jinping.”

A seasoned treasurer who became Italy’s central bank and later Europe’s top central bank, Draghi brought gravity, crisis management and market knowledge to the task of regulating Italy from the pandemic and the resulting economic crisis. President Sergio Mattarella appointed him to form a broad-based government after bickering among Italy’s coalition parties over the viral response that caused Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte to resign.

Speaking on Wednesday at the presidential palace in Rome, Draghi listed the priorities facing Italy: “tackling the pandemic, completing the vaccine campaign, offering a response to the daily problems of citizens, relaunching the country.”

Financial markets welcomed the prospects for Draghi’s government. Italy’s borrowing costs on debt, the second highest in terms of GDP in Europe, slumped, while stocks advanced 2%. One financial analyst summed up sentiment with the subject line: “We love Mario Draghi!”

Draghi isn’t afraid to find bold solutions to big problems. When the eurozone faced a crisis of confidence in 2012, he famously told a conference in London that the ECB would do “whatever is necessary to safeguard the euro. And believe me, that’s enough. “That promise, supported by a new ECB policy, helps stabilize markets that threaten to split the euro.

He took a pragmatic approach during the financial crisis. He expanded the range of the ECB’s stimulus policies to include large-scale bond purchases. He is also overseeing the ECB’s move to become the main banking watchdog after the bank failed to play a key role in eurozone issues.

His most recent tenure leading the ECB, which ends on 31 October 2019, is well positioned to help Italy overcome its difficulties as well as some 200 billion euros in EU recovery funds.

If Italy needs to take advantage of ECB bond market bottlenecks, which aim to keep euro nations’ borrowing costs from soaring to unaffordable levels, there is nothing better than Draghi: he’s overseeing the design of the barrier and opening in 2012.

He will also be very familiar with the complexities of European bailout funds created during the eurozone debt crisis.

Draghi joined the ECB as its third chairman in 2011, just as Italy is hit by a debt crisis. As ECB-appointed president, Draghi and later ECB head Jean-Claude Trichet intervened in Italian politics in an August 2011 letter to then Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi demanding reforms to cut deficits, boost growth and tackle the financial market crisis that threatens to split the euro.

The ECB then began buying Italian bonds to stabilize government borrowing costs in what appears to be an unstated quid pro quo. The ECB denies any agreement. ECB bond purchases did not ease government pressure as Berlusconi’s efforts at economic reform faltered; Berlusconi stepped down in November 2011 and was replaced by technocrat Mario Monti.

Born in Rome, Draghi graduated from the University of La Sapienza there with a degree in economics and obtained a Ph.D in 1976 at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he studied under Nobel laureate Franco Modigliani. Among his fellow students at MIT was Ben Bernanke, candidate for head of the Federal Reserve. He teaches at the University of Florence, and is also a high-ranking official at the World Bank, based in Washington.

Draghi served from 1991 to 2001 as a high-ranking official in the Italian Ministry of Finance, under governments of various orientations, from the conservative Berlusconi to the former communist Massimo D’Alema. He oversaw the privatization of Italy’s state-owned industry and helped Italy organize its finances to join the euro as a charter member in 1999.

Many in Italy hope Draghi will be available to take over when President Sergio Mattarella’s term ends in 2022, untainted by Italian politics. The ceremonial role has largely proved key in helping to manage the all too frequent political crises in Italy, which require deft negotiations and undeniable knowledge of the Italian constitution and institutions.

While it cannot be ruled out that Draghi could replace Mattarella as president in just about a year, the odds are slim given the size of the task facing Italy and the time of crisis.

Draghi comes with some luggage. As a central banker who was involved in overseeing the strict austerity policies imposed in several European countries during the crisis, he has been viewed with skepticism in some angles as someone against financial interests. The stint at investment bank Goldman Sachs will only magnify the criticism.

Few Italians can afford to risk success abroad being successful at home. Monti, a former EU commissioner, is widely credited with helping Italy recover from the 2011 debt crisis, but his legacy was blurred when he formed his own party and ran in the next national election.

Any of Draghi’s reigns are likely short-lived. The current parliamentary mandate has been extended for another two years. But analysts say Draghi’s tenure may be shorter.

“The very plausible scenario is that, once vaccinations are over and the economy starts to recover, the parties withdraw their support and call for new elections,” said chief Italian economist for Oxford Economics, Nicola Nobile. That will most likely happen next spring, after the new president is appointed.

McHugh reported from Frankfurt.

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.


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L3Harris Technologies Awarded $ 233 Million Contract to Support Australia’s Major Defense Force Modernization Initiative | Instant News


The Australian Defense Force has awarded a $ 233 million (USD) L3Harris Technologies (NYSE: LHX) contract to provide secure communications and advanced night vision goggles technology to support the country’s major modernization initiatives.

This press release features multimedia. Check out the full release here: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20210126005226/en/

The Australian Defense Force has awarded L3Harris Technologies a $ 233 million (USD) contract to deliver secure communications and advanced night vision goggles technology to support the country’s major modernization initiatives. (Photo: Business Wire)

L3Harris was awarded a three-year FFP contract worth $ 115 million under the Direct Commercial Sales (DCS) arrangement for the Australian Defense Force’s Delphic – Cryptographic Modernization program. L3Harris will deliver tactical radios, waveforms, and extras that support emerging cryptographic modernization standards.

The company was also awarded a $ 118 million contract to provide advanced night vision goggle technology to enhance Army’s ability to find and deal with threats – increasing their situational awareness, mobility and safety. This award follows the successful delivery of L3Harris’ night vision technology for Tranche 1 of the Land 53 program in 2020.

The L3Harris will feature the Fused Night Vision System (FNVS), which combines the latest night vision capabilities – combining image intensification technology with thermal imagery to provide soldiers with enhanced situational awareness, targeting and identification capabilities in all battlefield conditions and light levels. When combined with the L3Harris battery pack, the FNVS sends critical battlefield information straight into the eyes of soldiers.

Both contracts include full in-country support and repair capabilities in Australia.

“This major modernization program extends L3Harris’ long-term partnership with the Australian Defense Force, supports mission requirements for advanced secure communications and night vision capabilities, and will also enhance our expanded technical support capabilities in Australia,” said Dana Mehnert, President of Systems Communications, L3 Harris.

About L3Harris Technologies

L3Harris Technologies is an agile global innovator in defense and aerospace technology, providing end-to-end solutions that meet customer mission critical needs. The company provides advanced commercial and defense technology in the air, land, sea, space and cyber domains. L3Harris has annual revenues of approximately $ 18 billion and 48,000 employees, with customers in more than 100 countries. L3Harris.com.

Forward-looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements that reflect management’s current expectations, assumptions and forecasts of future economic performance and conditions. The statement is made under the safe harbor provisions of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.The company warns investors that forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results and future trends to differ materially of the matters disclosed or implied in the forward-looking statements. A statement about the value or expected value of an order, contract or program, about a system or technology capability that is forward looking and involves risks and uncertainties. L3Harris denies any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise.

See the source version at businesswire.com:https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20210126005226/en/

CONTACT: Natalie Ciao

Communication system

[email protected]

585-500-2394 Jim Burke


[email protected]




SOURCE: L3Harris Technologies

Business Wire Copyright 2021.

PUB: 01/26/2021 09:00 AM / DISC: 01/26/2021 09:01


Business Wire Copyright 2021.


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Benefits of Louisiana food stamps growing under virus relief packages | Government-and-politics | Instant News

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) – Families in Louisiana are eligible for a 15% increase in their food stamp allowance through June, under a federal coronavirus aid package passed by Congress.

The state says any increases due to people receiving benefits through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, known as SNAP or more commonly as food stamps, start transferring to benefit cards on Fridays.

The latest federal coronavirus law does not extend eligibility for food stamps. But Times-Picayune / The New Orleans Advocate Report that state officials said several important provisions would increase the reach of SNAP.

Shavana Howard, assistant secretary for the Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services, said the program will no longer count extended federal unemployment benefits as income, which previously put SNAP out of reach of 44,165 applicants between March and July and ousted 2,185 households that received it. allowance. Howard said many students who also did not qualify for food stamps because a portion of their parents’ income was calculated for them to qualify this time.

“I am very excited to see Congress actually acting on people who really need help,” Howard said.

In Louisiana, a family of three previously would receive a maximum ration of $ 535 per month, but will now receive $ 616 for eligible food purchases.


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Ivanka Trump starts stalled food pandemic program under congressional investigation | National | Instant News

PHILADELFIA – After allowing a vital feeding program created during the pandemic to end before the holidays, the Trump administration plans to restart this month at the urging of Ivanka Trump, the president’s daughter and adviser.

While anti-hunger supporters are grateful for the intervention, they complain that the program has been mismanaged. They say it benefits farmers and distributors more than those in need, and that food deliveries are often delayed and sometimes damaged. Congress has investigated these allegations.

Starting January 19, the US Department of Agriculture will add $ 1.5 billion to the Farmer’s to Family Lunchbox program, the distribution of food to Americans in need. It started in May with more than $ 3 billion in funding and ends in mid-December. Additional money for the program was included in the COVID-19 assistance package as part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act passed on December 21.

Every week for more than seven months, the Food Sharing Program distributed 42,000 boxes to about 200,000 people in Philadelphia and surrounding counties in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, according to executive director George Matysik.

Calculating its distribution differently, Philabundance provided a total of 622,660 Farmers to Family boxes – the equivalent of 12,064,325 pounds of food – during the same time period, according to Kate Scully, director of government affairs for the hunger relief agency.

The boxes are available at city-designated feeding stations in Philadelphia, as well as at soup kitchens in the area.

Nationwide, the Trump administration says it has distributed 3.3 billion food items made from lunchboxes, each containing about 35 pounds of meat, milk and produce. The president ordered a letter that read, “I prioritize the delivery of nutritious food from our farmers to our needy families across America.” This caused a stir among supporters and others who say Trump is politicizing hunger.

Appreciating Ivanka Trump for lobbying US Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue for additional funding to restart the program, Matysik said, “There is not much desire from the White House to continue running this program, but Ivanka, along with Congress, are moving it up front.”

In a statement, the president’s daughter said, “I am proud to share, thanks to the efforts of the Trump administration, the Farmer to Family Lunchbox program. [can] … continue to feed needy families, [and] provide jobs and support our small farmers. During these unprecedented times, this Administration will continue to fight for American families and will always put them first. “

Perdue said in a statement that the box would “greatly help American families access nutritious and healthy food as we recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Even though lunchboxes were accepted, their thawing was sometimes hampered by problems.

Over the summer, members of Congress noted that in order to deliver boxes of food, the USDA uses its Agricultural Marketing Services, not Food and Nutrition Services. Marketing services help farmers sell produce, while nutrition groups manage food aid programs.

This may have caused serious delays as distributors unaware of the food bank’s needs were assigned to deliver the boxes, anti-hunger proponents said. In many cases, the food never makes it to the food bank, or when it does, it goes bad.

Also, proponents say that the government pays a high price for the food – as much as $ 60 per box when it should be closer to $ 20, according to a report by National Public Radio.

“Operating this program for us has become a roller coaster,” said Kait Bowdler, director of food sourcing for Philabundance. “It’s a difficult place for us. On the one hand, it’s amazing how much extra food we can provide. But there are a lot of problems with logistics and dependability.

“We want to be careful biting the hand that feeds us.”

She said the lunchboxes were delivered late or didn’t show up at all, or that “the quality wasn’t what we expected. But there are also times when the food was simply outstanding.”

In August, US Representative James Clyburn, DS.C., announced that the Selected Subcommittee on the Corona Virus Crisis would investigate allegations of mismanagement in the program.

Meanwhile, at a lunchbox hearing in July, US Representative Marcia Fudge, D-Ohio, was frustrated by what she saw as the USDA’s inability to answer questions about the program.

“Do they give [recipients] rotten food, what do I hear in some of these cases? “he said.” It is full of waste, fraud and abuse. “

In a statement, Kate Leone, chief government relations officer for Feeding America, the country’s largest food charity (of which Philabundance is a part), questioned whether the food box initiative was being used more as a job support program for food distributors and producers. apart from being a means of helping the hungry.

“Ivanka is really highlighting the small business side more than the needy side,” Leone said.

After studying the hiccups in the program, Deborah Weinstein, executive director of the Human Needs Coalition in Washington, DC, criticized the Trump administration for allowing lunchboxes to expire in December.

“Food banks should stop providing food to people who depend on them for the holidays,” said Weinstein, whose organization is a non-profit alliance of national groups promoting public policy for low-income Americans.

“People are starving.”

The problem is growing because the government puts more emphasis on helping farmers and breeders by relying on the Agricultural Marketing Office, he said. And while “we are not against helping them,” he said, “it is the Food and Nutrition Services that have the best skills in distributing food. You have to remain vigilant when feeding hungry Americans.”

Weinstein pointed out that when Trump threatened to veto the Consolidated Allocation Act last month, the defunct lunchbox program would continue to go dark.

“That’s a scary thing,” he said.

Weinstein and other proponents have said that increasing the food stamp allowance (now known as the Supplementary Nutritional Assistance Program, or SNAP) would be a more efficient way to feed starving Americans than shipping boxes. The Consolidated Allocation Act includes a temporary 15% increase in SNAP benefits, despite the Trump administration’s efforts to reduce it.

As the pandemic rages on, the need to help hungry people is a foregone conclusion, Weinstein said.

On Wednesday, the US Census Bureau released a finding showing that in mid-December, 30 million Americans reported that they “sometimes or often” didn’t have enough to eat during the week. That’s 4 million more than at the end of November.

Weinstein concluded, “The situation has become very urgent.”

(c) 2021 Philadelphia Investigator

Distributed by the Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

Copyright 2021 Tribune Content Agency.


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