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Showing posts from March, 2013

Exxon Mobil working to clean up thousands of barrels of oil in Mayflower, Arkansas

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Keystone XL demonstration, White House,8-23-2011 Photo Credit: Josh Lopez (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Exxon Mobil was working to clean up thousands of barrels of oil in Mayflower, Arkansas, after a pipeline carrying heavy Canadian crude ruptured, a major spill likely to stoke debate over transporting Canada's oil to the United States.
Exxon shut the Pegasus pipeline, which can carry more than 90,000 barrels per day (bpd) of crude oil from Pakota, Illinois, to Nederland, Texas, after the leak was discovered on Friday afternoon, the company said in a statement.
Exxon, hit with a $1.7 million fine by regulators this week over a 2011 spill in the Yellowstone River, said a few thousand barrels of oil had been observed.
A company spokesman confirmed the line was carrying Canadian Wabasca Heavy crude. That grade is a heavy bitumen crude diluted with lighter liquids to allow it to flow through pipelines, according to the Canadian Energy Pipeline Association (CEPA), which referred to Wabasca as …

Virtual terminals for high risk credit card processing

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Apply for your application today. To get a merchant account, you must go through an application process to assure your business is qualified and to assume this responsibility. eComTechnology has succeeded with their clients for a decade now and been the driving force behind their clients success.
Applying for a merchant account is similar to applying for a business bank account or loan.
eComTechnology evaluates each application to assure the company and owner do not have unresolved issues with past merchant accounts. Discrepancies in the your documents, extended truths will not produce a successful application, however pointing out where you went wrong the last time might make you successful the second time around.
eComTechnology is an extension of what the banks demand for a successful application. eComTechnology matches the client with a bank worldwide and has been successful at this for 10 years now. eComTechnology is a registered ISO/MSP for BMO Harris Bank, N.A., Chicago, IL., a…

SMBs have positive effects with mobile devices

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Apple iPhone 3GS, Motorola Milestone and LG GW60 (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Small business that use mobile devices such as smartphones, tablets and notebooks feel that they have had a positive effect on their companies' productivity, according to a Sage North America survey of 490 small and midsize businesses (SMBs) in the United States.

Just 1 percent of businesses using mobile devices felt it had a negative impact on the company's productivity, compared with 85 percent of respondents who said the technology had a positive impact on their business. Notebooks (80 percent) and smartphones (81 percent) were the most common devices employees used remotely to access work-related information when they are not in the office, followed by tablets (57 percent).
"For many businesses, the mobile device is an extension of the office," Joe Langner, executive vice president of Sage North America, said in a statement. "It affords workers the freedom to leave the office while ma…

Apple still hoarding cash

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Apple Inc. (Photo credit: marcopako ) Apple could end up with $170 billion in cash by the end of 2012 unless it learns to share more with investors.
With around $137 billion in cash as of the end of 2012, Apple is the biggest cash-rich company outside of the banking industry, according to Moody's. As such, it's faced increasing pressure to return more of that money to its investors.
Greenlight Capital's David Einhorn, a major Apple investor, recently filed a lawsuit against Apple over guidelines regarding the issuance of preferred stock. Though Einhorn dropped the suit early this month, Apple still is being called upon to share more cash beyond just its current dividend.
"Unless Apple changes its philosophy towards liquidity/shareholder returns by increasing its $10 billion annual common dividend, or if Apple increases its stock buyback program, we estimate Apple's cash balances could increase by another $35 billion in 2013 and exceed $170 billion," Moody'…

Wells Fargo overdraft

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Wells Fargo Advisors (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Veronica Gutierrez never asked Wells Fargo to act like her mother. The banking colossus just did it anyway. Here's what happened. She bought some sandwiches at Subway for $11.27. Then she purchased car parts at Autozone and went grocery shopping. Twelve transactions into the billing cycle, she wrote a check for $65. It overdrew her account, which should have cost her an overdraft fee of $22.
But Wells Fargo didn't order Veronica's purchases chronologically. Rather, it took the liberty of reordering her purchases so the biggest ones came first. Instead of the Subway meal for $11.27, the bank's reordering placed an $80 transaction at the top of the list.
The result: she ran out of money faster. Wells Fargo drained Veronica's account nearly dry after just eight transactions. Every purchase after that just put her deeper in the hole.
This fancy footwork allowed Wells Fargo to quadruple its revenue from overdraft fees, f…

Gold and Silver prices set

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English: Photo of CFTC Commissioner Bart Chilton (Photo credit: Wikipedia)London's gold and silver markets face the possibility of a probe into price setting, putting a century-old practice under the spotlight after the Libor rigging scandal that exposed widespread interest rate manipulation by banks.
The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) has started internal discussions on whether the daily setting of gold and silver prices is open to manipulation, the Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday.
The CFTC declined to comment, while the chairs of the London Gold Fixing Company and London Silver Fixing Company were not available for comment.
CFTC Commissioner Bart Chilton, attending the annual Futures Industry Association conference in Boca Raton, Florida, declined to specifically address the report, saying: "Given the clubby manipulation efforts we saw in Libor benchmarks, I assume other benchmarks - many other benchmarks - are legit areas of inquiry."
Brita…

Tesla to pay back government early

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English: Tesla Model S sedan (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
There’s was a lot of hubbub when some U.S. government loans to green energy companies went bust, but there’s also been notable successes. Electric vehicle (EV) maker Tesla, a loan recipient, is proving to be another exception, so much so that it is reimbursing taxpayers years ahead of schedule.
Today, Detroit Free Press’s Alan Ohnsman reported that the U.S. government had approved a revised repayment schedule with the electric automaker. The amended terms of the loan allow Tesla to accelerate payments to pay off the entire balance by 2017. Tesla received US$465 million from the U.S. Energy Department to fund the development and creation of its EV designs, which are now hitting the market.
The article noted that Tesla is not yet profitable, but anticipates that it will be by the end of this quarter. The company had a net loss higher than previous years at the end of 2012, mainly because it was building up its inventory in anticipat…

proposal by the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas to limit government support for banks

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A proposal by the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas to limit government support for banks could force JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) and Bank of America Corp. to shrink their U.S. consumer and commercial-lending units by more than half.
Dallas Fed President Richard Fisher
Patrick Fallon/Bloomberg Richard Fisher, president and chief executive officer of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. The proposal put forward by Fisher and Executive Vice President Harvey Rosenblum would require separate capitalization and funding for investment-banking and trading units without forcing firms to break up. Richard Fisher, president and chief executive officer of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. The proposal put forward by Fisher and Executive Vice President Harvey Rosenblum would require separate capitalization and funding for investment-banking and trading units without forcing firms to break up. The plan would cap assets at deposit-insured divisions of the largest U.S. financial firms at about $25…

Alternative credit card processing solutions

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CanAmPay offer services that allow you to target consumers in North America, Europe and Asia.
Put one button on your site, click on it and be taken to 50+ payment options, it is that easy!
Put an API into your Zencart or OsCommerce shopping cart.
-not uncommon for us to see our clients experience a 30% or more increase in their sales.
-a great solution for start-ups and a solution for established merchants to increase sales.
eComTechnology provide merchants with a payment network that supports a vast array of national cards and non-card based payment schemes - among them direct debits, bank transfers, real-time banking, cash based payments, eWallets, prepaid cards and checks.



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Banking executives facing harsher penalties

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Bank executives who violate anti-money laundering laws may soon face harsher punishment in the United States as regulators consider ways to step up the fight against illicit money flows.
New rules are being weighed that will hold individuals specifically liable, and older rules - rarely used to take action against executives - will also be explored, top officials from the Office of the Comptroller of Currency and the Treasury Department's illicit finance unit told lawmakers on Thursday.
Regulators and law enforcement authorities have recently settled with top banks, including HSBC Holdings Plc, which in December agreed to pay a record $1.9 billion to resolve charges it laundered a river of drug money from Mexico. It entered into a deferred prosecution agreement, and no bank employees were charged in connection with the case.
Senators on Thursday focused on that discrepancy and attacked regulators for what they described as lax enforcement.
"If you're caught with an ounce…

Proposed Contaminated Fill site at Shawnigan

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Proposed Contaminated Fill Site Thank you for taking interest in the future of our community, it’s watershed, Shawnigan Creek, Shawnigan Lake and our childrens future. South Island Aggregates (S.I.A.) is presently operating two mine sites (Lots 23 & 21 in Goldstream Heights) The mine site is at 460 Stebbings Road with access via a gated bridge over Shawnigan Creek. They are located within the “Shawnigan Lake Watershed Protection Area” right along the west bank of Shawnigan Creek. S.I.A. has applied for a license through the Ministry of Environment (MOE) to import and bury contaminatedwaste on this mine site. This contaminated material will be trucked in from all over the island with most other municipalities using this facility to dispose of their unwanted contaminated material. S.I.A. estimates a life span of 50 years and 100,000 tons per year of contaminated waste trucked to and dumped into our watershed. That’s “FIVE MILLION TONS” of contaminated waste dumped in our waters…

Equifax accessed

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Image via CrunchBaseCredit reporting agencyEquifax Inc (EFX.N) said on Tuesday it had launched an internal investigation after finding that four consumer credit reports had been fraudulently accessed.
Equifax spokesman Tim Klein said the "fraudulent and unauthorized access" was related to media reports that a website published the personal financial information of U.S. First Lady Michelle Obama, Vice President Joe Biden and celebrities including singer Beyonce and actor Ashton Kutcher.
Klein said the company's initial investigation found that the perpetrators had personal information on certain individuals, which allowed them to bypass authentication steps.
He would not name the individuals whose credit reports were involved, but said they were accessed through the www.annualcreditreport.com website.
Related articlesFTC: Mistakes in one out of four credit reports

Oil spill clean-up ship hit sandbar en route to government news conference in Vancouver

States racing to legalize gambling

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Casino Velden Panorama (Photo credit: geek7)Casino Velden Panorama (Photo credit: geek7) States racing to legalize online gambling may soon be overtaken by the federal government, as efforts to pass a national bill begin to come together.
Legislation in the House is likely to be introduced this spring. Senate Majority LeaderHarry Reid (D-Nevada), whose long-advocated federal legislation never got introduced last year, is working behind the scenes to form a coalition to support the measure.
"I think the states' passage gives some incentive to the federal government to act," said Representative Joe Barton (R-Texas), who introduced an online poker bill in 2011 that failed. He plans to introduce a bill this spring.
"Whether you're for or against Internet gambling," said Barton, "you don't want 50 sets of state laws. You want uniformity."
Similar efforts by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and former Senator Jon Kyl (R-Arizona), backed by the casi…

Who should regulate the banks

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The Bank of England in Threadneedle Street, London. Deutsch: Sitz der Bank von England in der Londoner Threadneedle Street. (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Sweden hasn’t had its banking crisis yet, and household debt in the country continues to grow. This has not gone unnoticed, but now the country’s financial regulator—the Swedish Financial Supervisory Authority—and its central bank are sniping over who gets to do something about it. The financial regulator argues that it’s already on the job and has made changes to ensure stability in the mortgage market. A deputy for the Riksbank—Sweden’s central bank—says financial stability is already discussed during monetary policy meetings, “in the absence of a clear framework.”
The “who” of regulation matters as much as the “what.” Sweden’s conflict, between bank regulator and central bank, mirrors similar debates in the U.S., the U.K., and the euro zone. Right now, everyone in every government is motivated to prevent systemwide bank failure in the…

Harry Reid shoots down Feinstein gun-ban bill - Washington Times

Assault weapons ban dropped from Senate bill

Europe's highest court dealt a blow to companies

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Image via CrunchBase Europe's highest court dealt a blow to companies that retransmit free-to-air television programming over the Internet on Thursday, ruling that original broadcasters have the right to prohibit any such redistribution.
The case involves UK-basedTVCatchup Ltd, which offers "live" streaming of free-to-air television shows, including programming by the BBC, ITV and Channel 4, Britain's three largest terrestrial broadcasters, and Sky.
TVCatchup is accessible only to subscribers with a valid British TV license who are in the United Kingdom, the same audience that could watch programs for free on terrestrial TV.
But the European Court of Justice ruled against TVCatchup, saying that under a 2001 EU law, original broadcasters are held to be "authors" with an exclusive right to authorize or prohibit any communication of their work to the public.
The ruling will be a boost to ITV, which brought the case, and to other domestic broadcasters whose pot…

Crucial system fails at Japan's quake-damaged nuclear plant

Google hoarding 48 billon

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Image via CrunchBaseGoogle has stashed away $48 billion in cash to give it free rein and lots of financial options in the marketplace should tantalizing acquisition targets show up in its crosshairs.

That's what Google CFOPatrick Pichette recently told a crowd at a technology conference held by Morgan Stanley in San Francisco, according to a report from The Associated Press(AP).
"It serves the shareholder best to actually have that strategic ability to pounce" if a ripe acquisition target should pop up, Pichette said at the conference, the AP reported. Google has made more than 200 such acquisitions since its IPO in 2004, including many smaller start-ups and larger purchases, such as the 2006 purchase of YouTube for $1.65 billion and the 2007 acquisition of DoubleClick for more than $2 billion.  In May 2012, Google made big headlines when it paid $12.5 billion for Motorola Mobility in a deal that aims to revive Motorola's mobile phone business and bring value from it…

Online payment processing

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Apply for your application today. 
To get a merchant account, you must go through an application process to assure your business is qualified and to assume this responsibility.  CanAmPay has succeeded with their clients for a decade now and been the driving force behind their clients success.
Applying for a merchant account is similar to applying for a business bank account or loan.
CanAmPay evaluates each application to assure the company and owner do not have unresolved issues with past merchant accounts.  Discrepancies in the your documents, extended truths will not produce a successful application, however pointing out where you went wrong the last time might make you successful the second time around.
CanAmPay is an extension of what the banks demand for a successful application.  CanAmPay matches the client with a bank worldwide and has been successful at this for 10 years now.
eComTechnology is a registered ISO/MSP for BMO Harris Bank, N.A., Chicago, IL., and Wells Fargo Bank, N…

Apple iWatch

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iWatch (Photo credit: Brett Jordan) With Wall Street souring on Apple during the last few months – and with no big product updates expected in the next few months – the company could use some buzz. In what could be a controlled leak, two outlets are adding fuel to the flame of iWatch rumors. They report that Apple plans to release the device later in 2013.
First was Bloomberg, with a report that the device could be more profitable than an (also rumored) Apple TV set, adding that the smartwatch could release in 2013. Then The Verge chimed in, saying its sources also point to a planned iWatch release later this year.
The second source added that the wearable gizmo would run a full version of iOS (as opposed to the modified version that runs on the iPod nano), and that it’s a pet project of Apple Senior VP of Industrial Design Jony Ive. Several years ago, he reportedly bought boxes of Nike sportswatches for his team to study.
One of the sources, however, suggests that Apple still has som…