January 15, 2018
By Web Desk

Bitcoin investors trying to channel their new fortunes into UK property are being turned away by mortgage lenders and brokers who fear breaching anti money-laundering regulations.The price of bitcoin, a virtual currency, has fallen back in recent days but has still risen nearly 1,500 per cent in the past 12 months on the Coinbase exchange.Some younger investors have tried to take advantage of the sudden windfall to get on to the housing ladder, but have found that even after converting their profits to sterling, lenders were not satisfied that they could trace the source of the money.One public sector worker built up a deposit of £40,000...


By Web Desk

US inflation strengthened at the end of last year, lifting expectations that the Federal Reserve will raise rates as soon as March as rapid growth and low unemployment promise to boost prices.Core US consumer prices climbed at their quickest pace in nearly a year, increasing 0.3 per cent in December against the previous month, according to the Labor Department. Prices excluding food and energy were up 1.8 per cent from a year earlier, compared with 1.7 per cent the previous month.Fed officials have pencilled in three rate increases this year, but several analysts see the prospect of four rises given the strength of the economy and the added...


By Mehtab Haider.

Insight All tax amnesty schemes introduced in Pakistan since its independence, failed to yield any desired results. This was irrespective of political divide, including democratically elected regimes or those led by military dictators in Pakistan.The amnesty schemes to whiten black money met with failure because tax evaders knew that existing loopholes within the system would rescue them and would not let government take stern action by the end of the day.Despite failure of such schemes in the past, the incumbent Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz government is again contemplating upon options to introduce a tax amnesty scheme at the...


By Richard Branson

Column Q: I’d like to ask a philosophical question: I have been trying to get my business off the ground, and I often feel that I have to get very aggressive with suppliers and service providers. I hate being aggressive, but I hate it more when my success is hampered by others who don’t perform as they should.I have come to believe that only very aggressive people get ahead. Yet I look at you and wonder: Are you aggressive in business or do you have a technique that serves you well while keeping your composure when faced with trying situations? I once met you and found you to be very friendly and relatively soft-spoken.— Marco,...


By Hussain Ahmad Siddiqui

INDUSTRY Pakistan Steel Mills , which had ceased its operations abruptly on June 10, 2015, is once again in the news. The National Accountability Bureau has decided to initiate an inquiry to ascertain reasons and to hold responsible for dismal state of the nation’s strategic and largest industrial undertaking. PSM had been marred with poor corporate governance, weak and corrupt management, over-employment and political interference in all administrative matters, which weakened its institutional, technical and operational capabilities. Resultantly, the PSM was turned from a profitable organisation into a loss-making entity...


By Sirajuddin Aziz

MANAGEMENT Perhaps, books are worst victims of advancements in information technology. Reading books is a rare habit. Buying them is a dying practice. Presenting them to others is a fading phenomenon. The race to do more in less time does not allow for the luxury of reading. There is general unwillingness prevalent amongst the youth not to invest their earning on acquisition of these life time assets . I recall spending endless hours not only in bookshops but also on the foot paths near Regal cinema house, where second hand books were available in plenty. So was the case at Frere Hall. On most occasions, the bargains were good. Some...


By Muhammad Usman Khan *** M Aman Ullah *** Myra Mufti

PLANNING Last year, on December 18, 2017, the government of Punjab published two products, the Punjab Economic Report 2017 and Planning and Development Department Annual Report 2017. The event which was attended by an audience of five hundred plus. It was chaired by the provincial minster for finance along with minister for planning and development. The speakers at the event included Planning and Development Board Chairman Mohammad Jehanzeb Khan, renowned academic and former federal minister finance Dr Hafiz A Pasha, International Growth Centre Country Director Dr Ijaz Nabi, and Lahore University of Management Sciences Chair of...


By Steve Johnson

The net profits of listed companies in the Asia ex-Japan region have risen 33-fold since 1999, trouncing gains in the rest of the world, where they have merely tripled in nominal terms.Asia’s earnings surge has been led by mainland China, where the net profits of listed companies in the MSCI All Countries World Index were around $303bn in 2017, a 362-fold increase from the $834m generated in 1999, according to figures from JPMorgan Asset Management, accounting for about half of Asia’s rise.The earnings of public companies have also jumped sharply in South Korea, Hong Kong, India and Taiwan, helping the Asia ex-Japan region raise its...


By Mehtab Haider.

Insight In a rare precedent, ambassadors of influential countries have jointly sent an official communication to the government of Pakistan about halting their assistance to Pakistan.United States, Canada, Australia, Japan, Norway and European Union have taken the decision over the lingering registration issue of International Non Governmental Organisations operating in Pakistan. They have politely conveyed to Islamabad that they were going to halt their humanitarian and development aid.This whole controversy came into the limelight during the tenure of former interior minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan who had shifted the dealings of INGOs...