Exclusive outtakes from industry leaders
The massive overhaul of the U.S. healthcare system backed by President Barack Obama could face a court challenge if it is ever enacted into law.
Republican Senator Charles Grassley, speaking at the Reuters Washington Summit, said a number of people, including Republican Senator Orrin Hatch, have questioned whether it is constitutional for the government to require U.S. citizens and residents to purchase a product offered by private, for-profit companies.
But many conservatives believe that clause does not allow Congress to require U.S. residents to purchase a good or service.
Healthcare reform legislation would require U.S. citizens and residents to purchase healthcare insurance, with the federal government providing subsidies to help low and moderate income people afford it.
U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano says she is reviewing recommendations on the color-coded threat alert system and experts are evenly split over its usefulness.
She said the committee of experts that made the recommendations to her were “equally divided, 50-50″ on whether the color-coded threat alert system developed after the Sept. 11 attacks was useful. It currently stands at “yellow” for elevated.
We asked Senator Charles Grassley to grade President Barack Obama’s performance (close your ears Sasha and Malia) and the top Republican on the Senate Finance Committee was a bit of a tough schoolmaster.
“He’s still learning an awful lot,” Grassley said at a Reuters Washington Summit.
Washington insiders say that not since the 1890′s have the people that represent the U.S. been so divided. From Gay rights to Afghanistan lawmakers are at polar opposites on issues that are on the Obama administration’s agenda. What’s next? And, what’s likely to get the green light or the stop sign?
Northern Trust has thought very carefully about how to communicate with its wealthy clients. In the U.S., it says it has people within a 45 minute drive of 50 percent of all of the millionaire households.
It advertises on NPR, CNBC, the Wall Street Journal, and local newspapers.
Now it might start “friending” people on Facebook.
“We had a client earlier this year who asked if we could be a friend to their child on (her) Facebook page because the child is a beneficiary of a trust that we manage and they said what better way to get to know my child when they’re awfully remote than to do this through the Facebook page?” said Lee Woolley, President of Northern Trust Bank’s Personal Financial Services division in Boston.
It’s hard to imagine that a banker who represents multimillionaires would be anything but professional – but a top executive at a leading global bank thinks that’s precisely the wealth management industry’s problem.
“There is so much mediocrity in the industry we have to raise the bar here,” said Gerard Aquilina, vice chairman of Barclays Wealth, at the Reuters Global Wealth Management Summit in Geneva.
By Neil Chatterjee
The U.S. has promised it will hunt down tax evaders.
And it seems tax evaders are on the run.
DBS bank, based in the growing offshore financial centre of
Singapore, told Reuters it had been approached by U.S. citizens
asking for its private banking services. But when told they would
have to sign U.S. tax declaration forms, the potential clients
Swiss banks also approached DBS on the hope they could
offload troublesome U.S. clients to a location that so far has
not been reached by the strong arms of Washington or Brussels.
DBS said no thanks. In fact many private banks and boutique
advisors now seem to be avoiding U.S. clients.
Will this spread to other nationalities, as governments
invest in tax spies and tax havens invest in white paint?
Is this the end of offshore private private banking?
Top private bankers are no different from the rest of us when it comes to looking after their money.
Some, such as Citigroup’s head of investments in Asia and ex-Lehman banker Debashish Dutta Gupta sold everything when his former employer went bust. Others held on and took the paper losses, before increasing their fixed income exposure and slowly edging back into equities this year.