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Since April 2015, eleven cases of plague have been recorded in the U.S., and three people have died leaving the CDC no other recourse but to issue a warning to alert doctors of potential cases that may arise.
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How to Prevent the Bubonic PlagueAlthough the government is closely monitoring the situation, California is actually mapping where the plague is occurring in the state. It is important to note that there is no vaccination of this illness. In the past, many relied on four thieves oil to naturally protect them from this disease, however prevention is the best recourse.
Follow these tips from the CDC:
- Reduce rodent habitat around your home, work place, and recreational areas. Remove brush, rock piles, junk, cluttered firewood, and possible rodent food supplies, such as pet and wild animal food. Make your home and outbuildings rodent-proof.
- Wear gloves if you are handling or skinning potentially infected animals to prevent contact between your skin and the plague bacteria. Contact your local health department if you have questions about disposal of dead animals.
- Use repellent if you think you could be exposed to rodent fleas during activities such as camping, hiking, or working outdoors. Products containing DEET can be applied to the skin as well as clothing and products containing permethrin can be applied to clothing (always follow instructions on the label).
- Keep fleas off of your pets by applying flea control products. Animals that roam freely are more likely to come in contact with plague infected animals or fleas and could bring them into homes. If your pet becomes sick, seek care from a veterinarian as soon as possible.
- Do not allow dogs or cats that roam free in endemic areas to sleep on your bed.
- Remove garbage, clutter, brush and anything that could be a food source for rodents.
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Mass Layoffs To Hit Banking Industry As Consumers Ditch Big Box Banking :The days of big banks are done. Million dollar buildings that double as empty fortresses will soon be empty, or conveniently turned into FEMA holding centers when the collapse hits.
Thomas Dishaw) The days of big banks are done. Million dollar buildings that double as empty fortresses will soon be empty, or conveniently turned into FEMA holding centers when the collapse hits.
The tide is turning and the banks know it. Mass layoffs have been announced by almost every major institution in the world and this is just the beginning. Unfortunately small town America will be hit the hardest as some of these jobs are the highest paying in the household. Also taking a major hit will be Charlotte, NC, the banking center of the US, where Wells Fargo has over 22,000 employees, Bank Of America 15,000 and most major banks have a presence. Be on the lookout for some great real estate deals in Charlotte soon.
Bank have many problems. They have over expanded at a rate that doesn’t support demand, consumers don’t trust them, the average american has no savings, there has been a drastic shift to online banking, and probably the most important, they lack innovation. But don’t worry, Capital One is here to change the game with their roll-out of 360 internet cafes according to a recent article in Boston.com:
These bank guys aren’t too creative. The banking industry is old, outdated, and lacks any innovation that would warrant me to ever keep my money in a bank. The most successful roll out banks have ever had was the introduction of the ATM and that was over 36 years ago.They will serve up coffee and other amenities. If they are anything like cafes in other cities, they will include free wireless Internet access, flat-screen televisions, and comfy furniture for hanging out.“It’s a departure from the traditional banking experience that people have come to know,” said spokeswoman Amanda Landers.Capital One’s cafes, already operating in eight cities, don’t have tellers to handle deposits and withdrawals, bankers to handle loans, or safe-deposit boxes to store valuables. They’re designed to introduce consumers to its online bank.Instead of handling cash, employees at the existing cafes serve up espresso, sandwiches, and advice, helping customers set up online accounts and learn about the bank’s services. If customers want to make a deposit, Capital One employees hand them pre-addressed, stamped envelopes to mail deposits to the bank or help them download smart phone apps to deposit checks electronically.As more customers bank via the Internet, mobile devices, and ATMs, many banks are reinventing their branches.Bank of America plans to open at least a dozen so-called flagship branches, including one in Boston, with a “power bar” to plug-in gadgets and a wider assortment of specialists in lending, investing, and private banking.Umpqua Bank in Oregon has attracted attention for offering free Internet service, an espresso bar, and meeting space at some branches to encourage customers to hang out.Other banks are experimenting with video conferencing to let customers talk to bankers located miles away.“We’ve reached a tipping point where the majority of banks say they have initiatives in place to make substantial changes in their branch networks,” said Bob Meara, a senior analyst at Celent, a Boston financial research firm.“There’s a lot more banks developing new business models.”
As Americans continue to distrust banks, have no money to save, and migrate to online banking, big banks will be taking big hits. This is just the begging of the bloodbath where I foresee 50% of the current workforce being laid off in 6 years. Below is just the start of a long list of bank layoffs and closures.
In the bank’s second big overhaul since the financial crisis, it will speed up a cull of unprofitable units and countries by cutting almost 50,000 jobs – half of them from selling businesses in Brazil and Turkey.
The bank also planned to increase its business in Asia, particularly in China.
HSBC will cut its assets by a quarter, or $290 billion on a risk adjusted basis (RWA), by 2017, and slice $140 billion from its investment bank, which will subsequently make up less than a third of HSBC’s balance sheet from 40 percent now.
Facing demands from politicians, the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) announced that it plans to reduce its investment banking and international operations — a reorganizational move that will lead to a reduction of some 30,000 workers.
RBS was rescued by a 45.5 billion pound ($75.80 billion) government bailout during the 2008 financial crisis. Since then, the future of its investment bank and Citizens has been a source of friction between RBS’s management and Britain’s finance ministry.
Yesterday, the London Times reported Barclays plans to cut 30,000 jobs within two years as part of an effort to cut costs after the recent firing of CEO, Antony Jenkins. An unidentified source went on to claim that the bank has set no new targets to cut jobs beyond the 19,000 (7,000 at Barclay’s investment bank) announced in May of 2014. If implemented, however, the cuts could reduce the bank’s global workforce to below 100,000. Barclays cut 14,000 jobs last year and is expected to axe 5,000 more staffers by the end of 2016.
The source told the Times that the bank considers this job cutting program the only way to address the bank’s underperformance and double its share price. The majority of the cuts would likely affect middle and back office operations as the bank continues efforts to automate those functions. Plans are also underway for the bank to close over 30 branches by October.
Bank of America closed more branches than any other bank in late 2014, and recently announced that it plans to lay off more than 200 employees from a Norfolk-based loan servicing unit.This is just the latest round of layoffs in the legacy asset servicing division, which has seen its numbers dwindle from about 42,000 in 2012 to less than 16,000 in 2015.
Royal Bank of Scotland could be cutting as many as 80% of the jobs in its investment banking unit over the next four years as part of a massive restructuring meant to turn around the struggling bank’s fortunes.
The Financial Timesreported Tuesday that RBS RBS , which has been scaling down its investment banking business, plans to layoff up to 14,000 people in that unit by 2019. The majority of the job cuts will come in the U.S. and Asia, according to FT. The Wall Street Journal had said last week that the bank could cut more than 1,000 investment-banking jobs in the U.S.
J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. is cutting more than 5,000 jobs in an effort to trim costs and become more efficient.
The cuts already have begun, according to people familiar with the decision, and are part of a broader industry move toward Internet and mobile banking. The bank will cut at least 2% of its current workforce in the next year.
The moves come as the nation’s largest bank overhauls its 5,570 branches to rely more on technology and less on human tellers. Chairman and Chief Executive James Dimon said Wednesday that the average J.P. Morgan Chase branch would lose one employee over the next two years, mostly through attrition.
Wells Fargo (WFC) announced it was cutting about 1,100 jobs.
This may be the beginning of a trend for the company, with many more jobs being cut in the future.
Since the 2008 financial crisis and the consolidation of the money centers into the giant four that remain in the U.S. — Wells Fargo, Bank of America (BAC), JPMorgan Chase(JPM) and Citigroup (C) — Wells has done the best job by far of controlling expenses and maintaining employment.
A lot of this has to do with the efficiencies the company has been able to achieve because of its concentration in the residential mortgage space.
As a result, it has the lowest non-interest expense of all four, of which employee salary and benefits is a part, while simultaneously maintaining the largest workforce.
Wells has about 227,000 full-time employees, vs. 201,000 at JPMorgan, 164,000 at Bank of America and about 179,000 at Citigroup.
Toronto-Dominion is the latest of the big Canadian banks to dole out pink slips to staff. And employees tell CBC News they expect more layoffs to come as the company looks to cut costs.
Although they’re still pulling in billions in profits, TD and other big banks are trying to protect their bottom line in a slow growth economy.
TD was unwilling to give numbers.
“It’s too early in the process to speculate on the number of people affected,” said TD spokeswoman, Ali Duncan Martin in an email. The bank has more than 85,000 employees.
Duncan Martin confirmed to CBC News that TD is focusing on streamlining departments, currently targeting executive and corporate management positions outside of personal banking.
“We are at the beginning stages of this initiative and we have no specifics to announce at this point,” she said.
“We are working harder to become a fitter and faster organization.”
Both corporate employees told CBC News that TD has hired an American consulting firm to advise on its cost-cutting strategy.
Citizen’s Bank IT employees are training replacements in India to take over their jobs
Citizens Bank in Rhode Island has offered its IT employees solid middle-class wages and good benefits, but this slice of the America Dream is ending for many of them.
Bank IT employees are training replacements in India to take over their jobs. IT employees who were contacted say this “knowledge transfer” is being accomplished remotely, over the Web and in a teleconferences.
2015 Branch Closings & Hour Cuts
The nation’s second-largest bank has pulled the plug on hundreds of branches and eliminated tens of thousands of jobs over the past two years. Bank of America () is not the only big bank scaling back, but it’s been among the most aggressive to do so in the United States.
The retreat is part of BofA CEO Brian Moynihan’s efforts to slash costs and capitalize on the shift to mobile banking. It’s also the bank’s way to help make up for its gigantic legal costs as it continues to fights a litany of lawsuits related to shoddy mortgages prior to the financial crisis.
In an era of extremely low interest rates, community banking is also not that sexy.
“Back in the day, it made sense to open up bank branches all over the country. You couldn’t walk down a street in New York without seeing two or three branches,” said Dick Bove, a banking analyst at Rafferty Capital.
Banks then were offering free checking accounts and other incentives to lure Americans into branches and deposit their money.
But that was when interest rates weren’t in the basement. Today, both short and long-term rates are extremely low. That flat yield curve makes it much more difficult for banks to turn a profit on the difference between the interest they pay out on deposits and the amount earned on loans.
“Now they don’t want the deposits — and they don’t want the branches. They’re getting rid of them,” Bove said.
Bank of America will discontinue drive-up teller service at 12 Nashville area branches next month, a move a spokeswoman attributed in part to low use by customers.
Metro Nashville’s largest banking player by market share of federally insured deposits also is reducing in-branch service hours at least 15 area branches mostly by an hour a week.
This aggressive move by Bank of America is part of the efforts of Brian Moynihan, BofA chief executive officer, to lessen costs and take advantage of changing to mobile banking. The bank has also humungous legal costs to cover as it continues to battle a long list of lawsuits related to disreputable mortgages before the financial crisis, as per CNN.
Dick Bove, banking analyst at Rafferty Capital, said, “Back in the day, it made sense to open up bank branches all over the country. You couldn’t walk down a street in New York without seeing two or three branches.”
That was then when banks were luring Americans into branches for safekeeping of their hard-earned money with incentives and free checking accounts.
Consumers’ Changing Banking Habits Led To 1,400 Bank Of America Branches Shuttering, More Cuts To Come
Over the past several years, Bank of America has revamped the way it provides banking services in an effort to cut costs and respond to consumers’ changing banking habits. Those operation modifications have not only included shutting down some drive-thru windows, but the closure of nearly a fifth of the company’s branches.
Quartz reports that while many of those closures have occurred over the last five years, the bank warns that more of its 4,800 branches are likely to shutter in the future.
“We took 1,400 branches out of the system, which is bigger than some entire companies out there,” CEO Brian Moynihan said on a call with analysts. “We expect there to be more pressure downward.”
Moynihan says that the expected cuts would likely continue to be a reaction to customer behavior, noting that the number of mobile banking customers has grown to 17 million people in the past four years. Additionally, about 13% of the company’s checks are now deposited via the company’s mobile app, Quartz reports.
Bank of America’s Myers Park branch is expected to join the growing list of locations nationwide where the Charlotte-based bank has gotten rid of drive-up teller lanes, the bank said Monday.
The bank said it has not determined exactly when drive-up service at the branch at 751 Providence Road will end. The bank’s website showed Monday that the service will be discontinued June 8, but the bank told the Observer that date is incorrect.
Bank of America has continued to close drive-through lanes across the U.S. in recent years, a move it has attributed to low demand from customers for the service.
The closures come as Bank of America and other lenders continue to re-evaluate branch staffing as more of their customers conduct transactions on their smartphones and other devices.
“Customer preferences and behaviors are changing,” Bank of America spokeswoman Tara Burke said Monday. “They bank differently now than they have in the past.”
The cuts to drive-up service also come at a time when many U.S. banks are looking for ways to slash costs in branches, which are expensive to operate.
Bank of America is vacating four floors of an uptown Charlotte office tower where it leases space, in the latest example of the lender shrinking the amount of real estate in occupies in Charlotte and elsewhere.
The Charlotte-based lender is moving out of the sixth through ninth floors of 101 Independence Center, where it will remain the largest tenant, bank spokeswoman Jennifer Darwin said Thursday. The 20-story building is directly across from Bank of America’s headquarters tower at Trade and Tryon streets.
All told, the bank is vacating roughly 85,000 feet of space in the building, Darwin said. She declined to disclose how much space the bank will continue to occupy in the building or how many of its employees work there.
The move comes as Bank of America over the past three years has been scaling back the office space it occupies worldwide as it seeks to improve efficiencies. Darwin said the latest move is part of those efforts.
But in Australia, where bank branch numbers have remained steady for many years, banks participating in the survey expect a larger reduction in the number of branches over the coming years, of 11 per cent./
Using the latest numbers from the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority at June 2014 there were 5483 bank branches in Australia. The closure of 11 per cent would amount to 603 branches.
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