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Congress makes Wall St look like paragon of virtue NEW YORK: US lawmaker Paul Ryan and colleagues claim a recent court ruling exempts them from a self-imposed ban on insider trading. That's lame in any event, but also hypocritical: They're mulling bills to expand constituents' liability. They should get their own houses in order. The US Securities and Exchange Commission on May 18 criticized the House Ways and Means Committee, including Chairman Paul Ryan, for claiming that a recent federal court ruling immunizes members of Congress and their staff from insider-trading investigations. - In a letter filed with US District Judge Paul Gardephe, the commission said the May 8 ruling on congressman Charles Rangel's challenge to an ethics probe did not extend constitutional protections for congressional debates to leaks of material, non-public information. The SEC is looking into whether a staff member of the House committee illegally passed along confidential information about a change in healthcare policy that prompted ...

South Korea's Park to visit Obama June 16: White House WASHINGTON: President Barack Obama will welcome South Korean President Park Geun-hye to the White House on June 16, the White House National Security Council said on Twitter on Tuesday. Copyright Reuters, 2015 ...
California beach town cleans up after oil spill SANTA BARBARA: A small army of clean-up workers toiled Friday to scoop up crude oil deposits from a picturesque California beach, three days after a pipeline rupture unleashed thousands of gallons into the ocean.The scenic Refugio State Beach and its neighbor El Capitan would usually be swarming with tourists over America's Memorial Day weekend, but were closed until further notice following Tuesday's spill.Plastic bags filled with blackened sand piled up, and the stench of oil ...
Bacteria blamed in indigenous Mexican baby deaths MEXICO CITY: Bacteria -- and not a contaminated vaccine as initially suspected -- were to blame for the recent deaths of two Mexican babies and for sickening 29 others, according to an official investigation.The babies, from the indigenous town of Simojovel in southern Chiapas state, became sick after receiving Hepatitis B shots earlier this month. Mexican health authorities said Friday that studies carried out on the babies detected a type of Staphylococcus bacterium that is ...
US Senate approves fast-track trade authority for Obama WASHINGTON: The US Senate overcame bitter divisions on trade policy Friday and passed legislation that gives President Barack Obama authority to swiftly forge international trade pacts, including a landmark Pacific Rim accord under negotiation.The measure now heads to the House of Representatives where its fate is uncertain.While Senate passage is a dramatic victory for Obama, the bill clearly faces a fierce debate in the lower chamber, where lawmakers signalled there is intense opposition from within ...
Canada inflation drops to 0.8pc in April OTTAWA: Low oil and gas prices brought inflation down in April but Canadians paid more for almost everything else, the government statistical agency said Friday.The consumer price index fell to 0.8 percent in the month, according to Statistics Canada. Analysts had expected a rate of 1.0 percent after it was 1.2 percent in March.Statistics Canada said the prices of meat, fresh vegetables, restaurant meals, passenger vehicles, clothing and footwear increased.Gasoline, natural gas and mortgage interest ...
Obama praises US senators for 'big step forward' on trade WASHINGTON: US President Barack Obama praised US senators on Thursday for advancing legislation that would help him complete a trade pact with Asian countries, a major policy priority for the White House. "I want to thank a bipartisan group of senators who took a big step forward this morning on a trade agenda that is consistent with strong labor standards, strong environmental standards," Obama said at the beginning of a meeting with members of his ...


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Banking Review 2014

Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-1.894 bln
Exports $1.953 bln
Imports $3.847 bln
WeeklyJune 25, 2015
Reserves $17.457 bln