Bitcoin price jumps as El Salvador prepares to adopt the cryptocurrency as legal tender

President of El Salvador Nayib Bukele El Salvador is about to become the first country in the world to adopt bitcoin as legal tender. President Nayib Bukele announced late Monday that his government has purchased another 200 bitcoins ahead of El Salvador’s formal adoption of the currency. El Salvador now holds 400 bitcoins, which are worth nearly $21 million at current trading levels. The price per bitcoin was last about $52,486, up 1.5% in the last 24 hours, according to Coinbase. From Tuesday, bitcoin will be used as legal tender in El Salvador alongside the US dollar. Bukele tweeted that the country’s … Continue reading Bitcoin price jumps as El Salvador prepares to adopt the cryptocurrency as legal tender

Goldman Sachs mandates vaccines for US staff and visitors

Goldman Sachs has made it compulsory for its staff to be fully vaccinated against coronavirus in order to work in its US offices. The investment bank said from 7 September all employees, along with clients and visitors, would need to be doubled jabbed to enter its buildings. Goldman said it would also introduce mandatory once-a-week testing from the same date for staff. Workers who are not fully vaccinated will be expected to work from home. Goldman told the BBC the policy was being introduced in the US, where workers returned the office in July, and not at its sites around … Continue reading Goldman Sachs mandates vaccines for US staff and visitors

Mastercard to end magnetic strip on cards

Mastercard is to stop issuing cards with a magnetic strip. By 2033, none of its debit or credit cards will have a strip, with banks in many regions including Europe able to issue the strip-less cards from 2024. The UK moved to chip-and-pin for all card payments in 2006, but in the US, some magnetic strip systems are still in use. Mastercard says chip-and-pin and new biometric cards that use fingerprints, offer greater security. The firm claims to be the first payment network to phase out the technology. A spokesperson told the BBC the level of global acceptance of chip-and-pin was … Continue reading Mastercard to end magnetic strip on cards

Fiscal Tragedy: Barcelona president Joan Laporta reveals club debt stands at £1.15bn

Barcelona president Joan Laporta has revealed the Spanish club is 1.35bn euros (£1.15bn) in debt, describing the situation as “very worrying”. The club’s wage bill currently accounts for 103% of total income. Laporta blames predecessor Josep Maria Bartomeu for the debt, accusing him of leaving a “terrible inheritance”. Extending Lionel Messi’s contract would have made the wage bill accountable for 110% of revenue, which La Liga refused to accept. Messi announced an emotional exit from the Nou Camp last week and signed for Paris Saint-Germain on a two-year contract. “Our salaries represent 103% of the club’s total income, that’s 20-25% more … Continue reading Fiscal Tragedy: Barcelona president Joan Laporta reveals club debt stands at £1.15bn

A billionaire banking dynasty is fighting over the patriarch’s will

A son of the late Joseph Safra, one of the world’s richest bankers who died in December at age 82, said he intends to challenge his disinheritance from his father’s will in a court proceeding in Switzerland.Joseph Safra Alberto Safra on Thursday asked a court in New York to let him pursue evidence in the U.S. for his challenge. He said his father, who had Parkinson’s disease when he died, lacked the mental acuity to execute three new wills in November and December 2019. “Mr. Safra was under no condition at that time to voluntarily and knowingly make changes to … Continue reading A billionaire banking dynasty is fighting over the patriarch’s will

Goldman Sachs raises banker pay after 95-hour week complaint

Goldman Sachs has increased its salaries for younger bankers following complaints of long working hours. It is understood that first-year investment bank analysts globally will get a pay rise this year to $110,000 (£80,000) from a previous $86,000. As first reported in the Financial Times, the pay increase does not include bonuses. Basic pay will rise to $125,000 in the second year. It comes as a top banker criticised recruits for being “entitled”. Xavier Rolet, who ran the London Stock Exchange for eight years, said the younger generation of bankers should stop complaining about long working hours or find another … Continue reading Goldman Sachs raises banker pay after 95-hour week complaint

Banking giant HSBC sees first half profit more than double

Banking giant HSBC said its first half profit has more than doubled, as it benefited from an economic rebound in Britain and Hong Kong. Europe’s biggest bank by assets saw pre-tax profit for the period rise to $10.8bn (£7.8bn), compared to $4.32bn for the same time last year. It said all regions had been profitable in the first half of the year. The figures come as the global economy emerges from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. “I’m pleased with the momentum generated around our growth and transformation plans, with good delivery against all four pillars of our strategy. In … Continue reading Banking giant HSBC sees first half profit more than double

Euro zone banks see small tightening of credit standards in third quarter

Euro zone banks expect corporate loan demand to surge in the third quarter and see just a moderate tightening of credit standards or loan approval criteria, the European Central Bank said on Tuesday. Credit standards held steady in the second quarter after significant tightening last year, the ECB said based on a survey of the bloc’s biggest lenders. On the demand side, the figures suggest that firms are now more willing to invest. “For the first time since the third quarter of 2019, firms’ financing needs for fixed investment contributed positively to loan demand, suggesting that firms may become less … Continue reading Euro zone banks see small tightening of credit standards in third quarter

India stops payment service provider Mastercard from issuing cards

India’s central bank has barred Mastercard indefinitely from issuing new debit or credit cards to domestic customers. The Reserve Bank of India has accused the company of violating data storage laws. The bank said Mastercard had not complied with rules requiring foreign card networks to store data on Indian payments exclusively in India. There has been no response from the global payments service provider. Mastercard will be prohibited from issuing debit, credit or prepaid cards to customers in India from 22 July. The Reserve Bank’s decision will not have any impact on Mastercard’s existing customers.  The central bank said the … Continue reading India stops payment service provider Mastercard from issuing cards

Desperation: Lebanon banks close in solidarity after assault on staff

Banks in Lebanon have closed for the day after an assault on staff at the headquarters of Lebanese Swiss Bank. About 100 men stormed the building in Beirut on Monday night, trying to access closed accounts and injuring three employees, according to the bank. The Association of Banks in Lebanon denounced the “disgraceful attack” and said branches would shut in solidarity. Lebanon is in the midst of one of the world’s most severe economic crises in modern times. The Lebanese pound has lost more than 90% of its value against the US dollar since 2019 and inflation has skyrocketed, wiping … Continue reading Desperation: Lebanon banks close in solidarity after assault on staff

China tells banks to stop supporting cryptocurrency

China has expanded its clampdown on cryptocurrencies, telling banks and payments platforms to stop supporting digital currency transactions. That follows an order on Friday to shut down Bitcoin mining operations in Sichuan province. The price of Bitcoin slumped by more 10% on Monday but stabilized in Asian trading on Tuesday. The value of the cryptocurrency has fallen by around 50% since hitting a record high above $63,000 in April. On Monday, China’s central bank, the People’s Bank of China (PBOC), said it had recently summoned several major banks and payments companies to call on them to take tougher action over … Continue reading China tells banks to stop supporting cryptocurrency

El Salvador President Bukele wants Bitcoin as legal tender

The move, if approved, would make El Salvador the first country in the world to formally accept cryptocurrency as legal money. El Salvador may become the first country to make Bitcoin legal tender after President Nayib Bukele announced he would soon propose a bill that could transform the remittance-dependent economy. The move would make the Central American nation the first in the world to formally accept cryptocurrency as legal money and would “allow the financial inclusion of thousands of people who are outside the legal economy”, Bukele said on Saturday. “Next week, I will send to Congress a bill that … Continue reading El Salvador President Bukele wants Bitcoin as legal tender