Madoff will not appeal
Disgraced Wall Street financier Bernard Madoff, convicted of running the biggest financial fraud in US history, has decided not to appeal his 150-year prison sentence, his lawyer said on Thursday. “We decided not to file an appeal,” said Madoff’s lawyer, Ira Sorkin. Legal experts had said an appeal would have been unlikely to achieve a reduction in Madoff’s sentence, which effectively means the 71-year-old will spend his last days in prison.
Exports drop 21.4%
Chinese exports dropped 21.4 percent year-on-year last month, state media reported yesterday, narrowing from May’s fall of 26.4 percent. The latest plunge was the eighth straight monthly decline, underlining how China’s crucial export sector has been hit by a fall in demand from the US and Europe during the global economic crisis. Imports tumbled 13.2 percent year-on-year last month, Xinhua reported citing customs figures. For the first six months of the year, the trade surplus was US$96.9 billion, down 1.3 percent compared to the same period last year, Xinhua said.
Wholesale prices plummet
Japanese wholesale prices fell at the fastest pace yet last month, data showed yesterday, deepening concern that renewed deflation could hinder a recovery in the world’s No. 2 economy. The prices of goods traded between companies dropped by 6.6 percent last month from a year earlier, the Bank of Japan said, the steepest decline since records began in 1960. It was the sixth straight year-on-year fall, following a revised 5.5 percent drop in May, with lower commodity prices seen as the main cause.
Derivatives caused turmoil
Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner is telling lawmakers the US economy stumbled last year in part because the power and risks of an explosive derivatives market blindsided the government. In congressional testimony prepared for delivery yesterday, Geithner said the ease with which derivatives were bought and sold in an era of easy credit encouraged financial institutions and investors to take on too much risk. At the same time, government regulators weren’t given the proper tools to mitigate those risks and protect the US consumer, he said.
John Parker heads Anglo
Mining group Anglo American Plc, which has rebuffed a merger approach from rival Xstrata Plc, has appointed veteran industrialist John Parker as chairman. Anglo, which owns the world’s biggest platinum producer, said yesterday Parker would join the board immediately and take up the post held by retiring Mark Moody-Stuarton on Aug. 1. Parker is chairman of National Grid Plc and also co-chairman of paper and packaging group Mondi.
Citi shuffles management
Citigroup Inc shuffled its top management again on Thursday, naming its third chief financial officer of the year and bringing in a new head of its Citibank division as it returns its focus to traditional banking. Edward Kelly, who took over as the bank’s finance chief in March, is on the move for the second time in less than five months and will now oversee strategy and mergers in a new role as vice chairman. John Gerspach, 56, currently the bank’s chief accounting officer, is taking over as CFO.