3 Officials Of Real Estate Firm Arrested For Allegedly Duping Investors

3 Officials Of Real Estate Firm Arrested For Allegedly Duping Investors

The real estate firm officials allegedly diverted a fund of Rs. 191 crore deposited by investors (File)

New Delhi: 

Three officials of a private company were arrested by the Delhi Police on Saturday for allegedly duping investors.

The investigators found that the company officials allegedly diverted a fund of Rs. 191 crore deposited by the investors. Besides, they were also accused of failing to complete the project within the given period of time.

The accused have been identified as Surpreet Singh, Vijay Bahadur and Nirmal Singh. All of them hold the position of director in M/s Hacienda Project Pvt Ltd.

The company had booked apartments in a residential group housing project named Lotus 300 which comprises of 6 towers, at Sector 107 in Noida.

“The company had lured home buyers for an attractive offer to book residential flats. It also promised to complete the project in 39 months from the date of allotment letter in 2010. As the location of the project is ideal, a total of 328 home buyers invested in the project,” said an Economic Offence Wing official.

“The company has started the construction of the project in 2010 with stipulated completion time of 39 months. The project is yet to be completed and delayed by more than four years,” the official added.

[“source=ndtv”]

Online brokerage stocks could be signaling trouble ahead for broader market, economy

Westends61 | Getty Images

A sell-off in online brokerage stocks such as Charles Schwab and TD Ameritrade could be signaling trouble is ahead for the market and the economy. At the very least, they are indicating the Federal Reserve could be set to pause its interest rate increases, given the industry’s sensitivity to the central bank’s moves.

“They are early movers when it comes to a bear market or a recession,” said Richard Repetto, an analyst at Sandler O’Neill, in an interview.

“E-broker stocks generally price in Fed rate changes about 18 months in advance,” he added.

Charles Schwab shares are down 27 percent in the last six months, while TD Ameritrade and E*TRADE stocks are off by 18 percent and 31 percent respectively. Online broker stocks have dropped by 9 percent on average in December so far, compared to the 4 percent selloff in S&P 500.

If their moves are any guide to the direction of of the fed funds rate, they are predicting fewer rate hikes in the coming year, according to Repetto, who showed the correlation in a research note to clients. Since the Fed would reverse course in an economic slowdown, the group could be signaling more than just a pause in rate hikes.

Online brokers’ stock performance responds to rate changes because brokers usually profit directly form higher interest rates.

“Now all these guys have banks or bank-like structures. They earn a spread on the cash people leave on their account. When the fed funds rate goes up by 25 basis points, they only pay clients an extra 10 basis points and earn incrementally the extra 15 basis points,” Repetto explained.

Additionally, the margin loan rate investors pay to borrow from the brokerage also generally go up in line with the rising interest rates, he said.

To be sure, although markets have slashed their expectations following the stock market turmoil over the past two months, they are still foreseeing a 78 percent chance of a hike next week and a 38 percent probability of a rate increase in 2019, according to the CME’s tracker.

[“source=forbes]

India Claims Top Ten Of World’s Fastest-Growing Cities, Surat Leads

India Claims Top Ten Of World's Fastest-Growing Cities, Surat Leads

When it comes to the top 10 cities for economic growth, India is set to dominate over the next two decades, according to Oxford Economics.

Surat, a diamond processing and trading center in Gujarat, will see the fastest expansion through 2035, averaging more than 9 per cent, Richard Holt, Oxford’s head of global cities research, wrote in a report. All of the 10 fastest over that period will be in India.

While economic output in many of those cities will remain rather small in comparison to the world’s biggest metropolises, aggregated gross domestic product of all Asian cities will exceed that of all North American and European urban centers combined in 2027. By 2035, it will be 17 per cent higher, with the largest contribution coming from Chinese cities.

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Little will change at the top of the list of the world’s biggest cities between now and 2035.

New York, Tokyo, Los Angeles and London will defend their spots as Shanghai and Beijing — each boasting more than 20 million people — surpass Paris and Chicago. Guangzhou and Shenzhen in Southern China will also make the top 10, crowding out Hong Kong.

The fastest-growing African city is the Tanzanian port of Dar es Salaam, while the top spot in Europe is held by the Armenian capital of Yerevan, according to the report. San Jose — a proxy for Silicon Valley — will be best performer in North America.

[“source=ndtv”]

Hemp legalization included in new farm bill could ‘open the floodgates’ on nascent industry

Damian Farris, co-owner of Colorado Cultivars Hemp Farm, looks at the crop before it is harvested on September 5, 2017 in Eaton, Colorado. 

RJ Sangosti | Denver Post | Getty Images
Damian Farris, co-owner of Colorado Cultivars Hemp Farm, looks at the crop before it is harvested on September 5, 2017 in Eaton, Colorado.

The final 2018 Farm Bill is expected to be voted on as early as next week. The bill would legalize hemp cultivation and could be a catalyst for explosive growth in a nascent industry that some forecast could top $20 billion by 2022.

The long-awaited bill would remove industrial hemp from the federal government’s list of controlled substances, making it a lawful agricultural commodity. The hemp legislation introduced by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., earlier this year also allows states to become the primary regulators of hemp cultivation, enables researchers to apply for federal grants and makes the crop eligible for crop insurance.

“This open the floodgates for this industry to grow very rapidly and scale on a national level,” said Bethany Gomez, director of research for Brightfield Group, a cannabis market researcher based in Chicago.

The lion’s share of the roughly $800 million U.S. hemp market today is for products that include the non-psychoactive compound CBD, cannabidiol. Products infused with CBD are used for a wide range of medical conditions, ranging from epilepsy and multiple sclerosis to arthritis and chronic pain. Laws involving CBD products differ in each state.

Investor interest

Up to now, industrial hemp production in the U.S. has been restricted to mostly research and pilot programs although imports from Canada, China and Europe have helped fill domestic demand for everything from hemp seeds to fibers. The legalization of hemp cultivation could boost investor interest across the sector.

“In the long run, it’s all going to be managed and controlled by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, just like corn, soybeans and everything else,” said Chris Boucher, CEO of Farmtiva, a California-based hemp cultivation company. “It will also become an agricultural commodity, which in turn will allow crop insurance and Wall Street will be able to invest institutional funds into the hemp industry.”

Damian Farris, co-owner of Colorado Cultivars Hemp Farm, looks at the crop before it is harvested on September 5, 2017 in Eaton, Colorado. 

RJ Sangosti | Denver Post | Getty Images
Damian Farris, co-owner of Colorado Cultivars Hemp Farm, looks at the crop before it is harvested on September 5, 2017 in Eaton, Colorado.

House Agriculture Committee ranking member Collin Peterson, D-Minn., told reporters Tuesday the farm bill could be passed as early as next week.

“With any luck it’ll be passed by the end of next week, but knowing how things go around here it may drag into the week after,” said Peterson, who is expected to become chairman of the House agriculture panel in the new Congress.

A day earlier, Peterson told Minnesota Public Radio he was considering becoming a hemp producer.

“I may grow some hemp on my farm,” he said. “I’m looking at it. There’s a big market for this stuff that we’ve been ceding to Canada and other places.”

Hemp is a cannabis cousin of marijuana but it contains low levels of THC, the chemical that produces a “high” for pot users. Industrial hemp is used to make everything from apparel, foods and pharmaceuticals to personal care products, car dashboards and building materials.

“The vast majority of the market right now is going for CBD products,” said Brightfield Group’s Gomez. “You can find some hemp seed-based beauty products or hemp in some cereals and things like that, and there’s such usage on the fibers for like clothes and other industrial purposes, but that’s really minimal right now.”

Brightfield Group estimates the domestic hemp market could reach $22 billion in the next four years. The estimate factors in the hemp amendment in the farm bill becoming law.

Edible marijuana infused products by Dixie are displayed at the Cannabis World Congress Conference on June 16, 2017 in New York City. 

Spencer Platt | Getty Images
Edible marijuana infused products by Dixie are displayed at the Cannabis World Congress Conference on June 16, 2017 in New York City.

Hemp Industry Daily projects the hemp-derived CBD retail market will reach between $2.5 billion and $3.1 billion by 2022, which assumes growth in retail penetration but a scenario of no major change in current federal policies concerning hemp.

Tobacco states push hemp

“There are three words why we have hemp now, and those words are tobacco state Republicans,” said Kristin Nichols, editor at Denver-based Hemp Industry Daily, a publication owned by MJBizDaily. “There’s been strong support from lawmakers and politicians up and down in former tobacco states looking for a replacement crop.”

The hemp provisions in the 2018 Farm Bill were in the Senate version of the legislation sponsored by Senate Majority Leader McConnell. The Kentucky Republican put himself on the joint Senate-House conference committee formed to hammer out the details of the final farm bill.

“I know there are farming communities all over the country who are interested in this,” McConnell said in June when discussing the hemp legalization legislation before the Senate Agriculture Committee. “Mine are particularly interested in it, and the reason for that is — as all of you know — our No. 1 cash crop used to be something that’s really not good for you: tobacco. And that has declined significantly, as it should, given the public health concerns.

According to Nichols, cannabis generally grows well in areas where tobacco production once thrived, such as Kentucky and North Carolina. In the case of Kentucky, the state received over $2 billion in Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement funds and is using some of money to invest in growing its hemp industry.

Both chambers of Congress passed the farm bill in June but major differences between the bills caused a delay in finalizing an agreement. An agreement in principle on the bill was reached in late November.

Hemp legalization is just one element of the wide-ranging farm bill. The legislation also covers farm subsidies and food stamps as well as trade and rural development policy.

The House’s version of the farm bill didn’t originally include hemp legalization amendment. But the final version expected to be filed Monday and be voted on as early as Wednesday or Thursday in the House includes McConnell’s amendment.

The farm bill is usually renewed every five years and the last one expired Sept. 30. The previous farm bill, from 2014, relaxed hemp laws and allowed farmers in a handful of states, including Kentucky, to grow the crop as part of research projects.

“This will open up a lot of new markets for retailers who have been cautious,” said Lex Pelger, science director for Bluebird Botanicals, a Colorado-based company producing hemp derived CBD products. “What we’re doing is already legal under the 2014 Farm Bill, but the power of the 2018 Farm Bill is that it clearly clears hemp for general commerce.”

Easy to grow crop

Pelger said hemp is growing in Colorado despite the state not having a reputation as a farming hub. “It grows really well in a large range of climates and a large range of soils,” he said.

More than 77,000 acres of hemp were planted in research and development programs this year, according to VoteHemp, an advocacy group. That is up sharply from 2017 when there were nearly 26,000 acres of hemp crops planted.

At least 40 states have legalized industrial hemp farming or done pilot programs, usually research through a university or state agriculture agency. The hemp legislation also allows states to become the primary regulators of hemp cultivation, allows researchers to apply for federal grants and makes the crop eligible for crop insurance.

California is the nation’s largest agricultural state but so far has lagged when it comes to hemp production. Hemp can be more profitable to grow than tobacco or even some other key crops.

“You can make $20,000, $40,000 or $50,000 an acre on hemp, depending on percentage of your CBD,” said Farmtiva’s Boucher. He said fiber and hemp seed crops will produce less on per-acre basis but still be “maybe twice as much as corn.”

In October, Gov. Jerry Brown signed state legislation allowing industrial hemp cultivation in the state starting in 2019. Given the favorable climate in parts of California, farmers can get up to two crops per year of hemp plants.

“California is the big agricultural monster and if these farmers really get into hemp, they could take a good chunk of the supply chain,” said Farmtiva’s Boucher. “Unfortunately, we’re three or four years behind Colorado, Kentucky and Oregon and so we have some catching up to do.”

[“source=cnbc”]

Clutch Announces the Leading Web Design Agencies in the United States for 2018

 Clutch unveiled a list of the leading web design agencies across the United States today. These designers are experts in the latest design techniques and work closely with clients to ensure that their websites fit their unique style and business goals.

This report recognizes over 1,000 companies for their ability to deliver and commitment to client satisfaction.

“In today’s competitive digital landscape, having a unique and eye-catching design for your website is essential to stand out from the crowd,” Clutch Business Analyst DJ Fajana said. “These leaders have not only demonstrated creativity and a deep understanding of the industries they work in but also ensured that their clients are informed and happy throughout the entire design process.”

It’s free to get listed on Clutch, but only the most highly recommended companies are named as leaders in Clutch’s annual reports. These web designers have gone above and beyond to prove their industry expertise and ability to deliver.

Clutch’s research is ongoing. For a chance to be listed on Clutch’s 2019 report, apply now. It’s a free, two-step process that takes less than 20 minutes

[“source=ndtv”]

Indian Energy Exchange: Trading with higher volumes

Image result for Indian Energy Exchange: Trading with higher volumes– Policy support to push higher exchange volumes in the future
– Strong growth in volumes led by demand ahead of elections and recovery in manufacturing activities
– A strong moat around the business supported by the highest market share, and entry barrier

– Scalable business with extremely low capital requirements, generating free cash flow, zero debt and good return ratios

————————————————-

In a recent development, CERC issued an order to link DSM (Deviation Settlement Mechanism), which is often below the market price, to exchange price. This is a big positive move for India’s largest power trading exchange Indian Energy Exchange (IEX). The company’s management believes this initiative.

[“source=moneycontrol].

Microsoft’s CFO is keeping an eye on gaming now that it does $10 billion in annual revenue

Mark Zuckerberg, chief executive officer and founder of Facebook Inc., listens during the Viva Technology conference in Paris, France, on Thursday, May 24, 2018. 

Marlene Awaad | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Mark Zuckerberg, chief executive officer and founder of Facebook Inc., listens during the Viva Technology conference in Paris, France, on Thursday, May 24, 2018.

Stifel on Wednesday published a note saying it has lowered its rating for Facebook shares from “Buy” to “Hold,” saying political and regulatory blowback could restrict how the company operates in the long term.

“Facebook’s management team has created too many adversaries — politicians/ regulators, tech leaders, consumers, and employees — to not experience long-term negative ramifications on its business,” the firm said in a note.

The lower rating comes after a rough year in which Facebook has experienced numerous scandals, a 30-million user data breach, declining and stalling growth in key markets, an executive exodus and its worst stock performance since going public in 2012.

Stifel also published the latest results from an on-going survey of Facebook users.

The results showed 79 percent of those surveyed now believe Facebook’s impact on society is neutral or negative, compared to 73 percent in survey results published by the firm in January. The survey also found that 60 percent of respondents said they rarely or never used Facebook Stories, Marketplace or video, which are some of the company’s key new products.

Stifel said there is no downside to holding Facebook shares, but the firm no longer believes the company’s upside is what it once was.

“We believe Facebook will struggle to return to the company that it once was or that investors expected it to be in the long run,” the note reads. “We prefer Amazon, Alphabet, and Netflix, as U.S.-based mega caps with similar thematic trends and more stable operating environments.”

Facebook board: Sandberg's request to probe Soros 'entirely appropriate'
[“source=cnbc”]

Microsoft’s CFO is keeping an eye on gaming now that it does $10 billion in annual revenue

Microsoft Chief Financial Officer Amy Hood speaks at the annual Microsoft shareholder meeting in Bellevue, Wash., on Nov. 29, 2017.

Jason Redmond | AFP | Getty Images
Microsoft Chief Financial Officer Amy Hood speaks at the annual Microsoft shareholder meeting in Bellevue, Wash., on Nov. 29, 2017.

Microsoft has been in the gaming business since the turn of the century. Finally it matters to the company from a financial standpoint.

“Amy Hood, our CFO, she likes to tell me I’ve made the spreadsheet now, and she says that can be a good thing, and I’m on the spreadsheet. So she’s going to pay attention,” Microsoft’s executive vice president for gaming, Phil Spencer, said on stage at the Barclays Global Technology, Media and Telecommunications Conference in San Francisco on Wednesday.

Today Microsoft is one of the top public companies by market capitalization, alongside Amazon and Apple. Sales of Xbox consoles and online services means Microsoft is less dependent on revenue from other products, like Windows, Office and enterprise software. In its 2018 fiscal year, which ended on June 30, Microsoft surpassed $10 billion in gaming revenue for the first time.

Spencer, who joined Microsoft’s senior leadership team alongside Hood and CEO Satya Nadella last year, pointed to several investments the company has made in gaming recently, building on earlier moves like the $2.5 billion Mojang acquisition. and its purchase of game-streaming company Beam, which has since been rebranded to Mixer.

“We’ve acquired and started seven new first-party studios in the last year. We obviously don’t do that without tremendous support from Satya and Amy,” Spencer said. “We understand content is a critical component of what we’re trying to go build and the support from the company has been tremendous.”

One of Microsoft’s stated growth opportunities in the future is cloud-based gaming, which could make the technical limitations of consumers’ devices less important and expose Microsoft’s gaming content for wider consumption. Spencer talked loosely about its cloud gaming initiative, called, Project xCloud, on Wednesday.

“We focus first on an Android phone because there’s over a billion Android phones on the planet and it’s a place that the content that we’ve natively built up over the past decades on our platform hasn’t been able to reach,” Spencer said.

This strategy builds on Microsoft’s past efforts to bring richer capabilities to Android. But Google, the company behind Android, has started working on cloud gaming with its Project Stream initiative, Spencer said. And meanwhile Amazon, which is the leader of the cloud infrastructure market, has its own gaming division, he said.

“We’ll have multiple business models that will work with streaming, but the connection of streaming with the subscription model makes a ton of sense,” Spencer said. “You see it in music. You see it in video. So you can look at Project xCloud and you can look at something like Game Pass, and you can see there’s natural synergies.”

On stage, Barclays asked Spencer how Microsoft differentiates from gaming subscription offerings from EA and Sony.

“For us, it’s all about how we reach 2 billion gamers,” Spencer said.

“If you build the market around a couple hundred million people that are going to own a game console or a high-end gaming PC, then your business model diversity can actually narrow because your customers are narrow. But when you think about reaching a customer with this content where their only compute device could be an Android phone, you think about, well, what are all the ways that that person pays for content if they do at all today?”

Microsoft will bring its Game Pass subscription service to PCs, and eventually it will be available on every device, Spencer said.

[“source=cnbc”]

Facebook has created ‘too many adversaries,’ says analyst who just downgraded the stock

Mark Zuckerberg, chief executive officer and founder of Facebook Inc., listens during the Viva Technology conference in Paris, France, on Thursday, May 24, 2018. 

Marlene Awaad | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Mark Zuckerberg, chief executive officer and founder of Facebook Inc., listens during the Viva Technology conference in Paris, France, on Thursday, May 24, 2018.

Stifel on Wednesday published a note saying it has lowered its rating for Facebook shares from “Buy” to “Hold,” saying political and regulatory blowback could restrict how the company operates in the long term.

“Facebook’s management team has created too many adversaries — politicians/ regulators, tech leaders, consumers, and employees — to not experience long-term negative ramifications on its business,” the firm said in a note.

The lower rating comes after a rough year in which Facebook has experienced numerous scandals, a 30-million user data breach, declining and stalling growth in key markets, an executive exodus and its worst stock performance since going public in 2012.

Stifel also published the latest results from an on-going survey of Facebook users.

The results showed 79 percent of those surveyed now believe Facebook’s impact on society is neutral or negative, compared to 73 percent in survey results published by the firm in January. The survey also found that 60 percent of respondents said they rarely or never used Facebook Stories, Marketplace or video, which are some of the company’s key new products.

Stifel said there is no downside to holding Facebook shares, but the firm no longer believes the company’s upside is what it once was.

“We believe Facebook will struggle to return to the company that it once was or that investors expected it to be in the long run,” the note reads. “We prefer Amazon, Alphabet, and Netflix, as U.S.-based mega caps with similar thematic trends and more stable operating environments.”

Facebook board: Sandberg's request to probe Soros 'entirely appropriate'
[“source=cnbc”]

European markets close at 2-year low

European stocks cratered on Thursday, amid fears of slowing growth, falling oil prices and a fresh flare-up in tensions between the world’s two largest economies.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 fell more than 3.3 percent with all and major bourses sectors in negative territory. The index clsoed at 342 points, marking a two year low. It was the worst daily percentage drop for the STOXX 600 since Brexit.

Germany’s Dax market, when measured on an intra-day basis has closed in bear market territory. 21 percent lower than its high in late January.

Symbol
Name
Price
Change
%Change
Volume
FTSE FTSE 100 6704.05
-217.79 -3.15% 1061628447
DAX DAX 10810.98
UNCH 0% 0
CAC CAC 4780.46
UNCH 0% 144862545

Market focus is largely attuned to the arrest of a top executive at Chinese tech giant Huawei, amid investor concern that the news could derail progress in U.S.-Sino trade talks.

Europe’s basic resources stocks — with their heavy exposure to China — tumbled 4.2 percent during the session. Britain’s FTSE 100 index slumped 3.6 percent Thursday, as mining stocks plummeted. London-listed Antofagasta led the sectoral losses, down more than 7 percent.

Meanwhile, autos stocks — seen as a trade war proxy because of the sector’s export-heavy constituent’s — were also among the worst performers, down more than 4.5 percent. Faurecia and Daimler both dropped more than 6 percent.

Tech stocks were also down more than 3 percent on Thursday, following the arrest of Huawei’s global chief financial officer in Vancouver on Wednesday. Meng Wanzhou, the daughter of Huawei’s founder, was arrested by Canadian authorities on December 1, reportedly over the possible violation of sanctions against Iran. She now faces extradition to the United States.

Looking at individual stocks, Italy’s DiaSorin tumbled toward the bottom of the European benchmark Thursday morning, after Kepler Cheuvreux cut its stock recommendation to “hold” from “buy.” Shares of the Milan-listed company fell more than 7 percent on the news.

Trade tensions

Wanzhou’s arrest has sparked concern of a major collision between the U.S. and China, at a time when both economic powers were set to begin three months of negotiations aimed at de-escalating their global trade war.

The U.S. and China had agreed to temporarily hold off on imposing additional charges against each other’s goods over the weekend. President Donald Trump and President Xi Jinping’s trade truce prompted global stocks to surge higher at the start of the trading week, but fading optimism over the political deal has since pared equity market gains.

U.S. stocks fell sharply on Thursday as continuing fears over U.S.-China trade relations and concern over a possible global economic slowdown kept investors on edge.

At the European closing bell, the Dow Jones Industrial Average had dropped 758 points, bringing its two-day losses to 1,500 points as Apple shares fell. The S&P 500 fell 2.8 percent, led by a decline in bank shares like J.P. Morgan Chase, while the Nasdaq Composite also dropped 2.4 percent. The S&P 500 fell back into correction territory, down 10 percent from its 52-week high.

Oil slump

Back in Europe, market participants closely monitored a much-anticipated meeting between OPEC and non-OPEC members in Vienna, Austria on Thursday and Friday. The 15-member group and its allied partners reportedly agreed to cut oil production, but the cartel is not releasing details of the deal until it reaches an agreement with allied producers including Russia.

Oil prices tumbled more than 3 percent on Thursday as OPEC reportedly agreed to cut production, but ended its closely-watched meeting without a decision on how much crude the cartel will take off the market.

International benchmark Brent crude fell $1.66, or 2.7 percent, at $59.90 a barrel around 11:03 a.m. ET (1603 GMT), after falling to a session low at $58.36. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude was down $1.79, or 3.4 percent, at $51.10, falling back towards the session low of $50.23.

[“source=cnbc”]