Is eXp Realty a Pyramid Scheme? MLM? Scam?
Kyle Handy, 30 July 2020
Are you looking into eXp Realty but unsure if you should make a move because you think it might be a pyramid scheme or multi-level marketing? Did a fellow real estate agent just join the company, and now you see all sorts of recruiting messages coming from him or her?
Since around 2016, when eXp Realty started gaining momentum, they’ve created a stir amongst the real estate agent community. Regardless of whether you are for or against what eXp Realty represents, it’s essential to know the full picture of the business model so you can decide whether to investigate further.
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Timbercreek Financial (TF) – a tenuous business model with hidden balance sheet risks (50% base case downside)
mariner_admin, 28 July 2020
We believe that the COVID-19 pandemic will accelerate the stresses already hidden in TF’s portfolio and expose TF’s underwriting and financing strategy. We believe that Timbercreek is grossly underprovisioned compared to its small-cap MIC peers – its current loan provision is 73% below the peer average – unusual to say the least. While its peers have taken actions to protect their balance sheets, TF has not, and we believe the dividend is at risk.
In this report, we unveil two large exposures that collectively account for 14% of book value today – we believe they were significantly underprovisioned and that investors were inadequately informed about the issues at these properties – these assets were “sold” in a manner that, in our opinion, allowed TF to avoid taking appropriate provisions (our diligence, presented below, shows these “sales”).
Continue reading “Article: Timbercreek Financial (TF) – a tenuous business model with hidden balance sheet risks (50% base case downside)”
BlackRock CEO Larry Fink sells 5% of stake, raising $24m
NICOLE PIPER, 27 July 2020
Larry Fink, chief executive of BlackRock, sold $24.2m of stock in the company earlier this week. According to Bloomberg, Fink sold 41,706 shares at an average price of $580.29 on July 21, shedding about 5% of his stake in the world’s largest asset manager. The latest sale means that Fink has raised $74.4m from selling BlackRock stock this year. He still owns $457m in BlackRock stock. Continue reading “Article: BlackRock CEO Larry Fink sells 5% of stake, raising $24m”
Executives are selling stock as the market experiences its epic rebound
Maggie Fitzgerald, 24 July 2020
Company insiders are dumping shares as stocks experience their epic rebound from the coronavirus recession. The sales are a major shift from the insider buying frenzy during the market bottom in March. Among the sellers are the heads of blue-chip companies like UnitedHealth and BlackRock. Continue reading “Article: Executives are selling stock as the market experiences its epic rebound”
BlackRock CEO Sold $24 Million of Stock as Insider Sales Up
Donald Moore, 23 July 2020
BlackRock Inc. Chief Executive Officer Larry Fink sold $24.2 million of stock in the world’s largest asset manager, bringing his sales this year to $74.4 million. What’s moving markets
Start your day with the 5 Things newsletter. Fink disposed of 41,706 shares — about 5% of his stake in the business — at an average price of $580.29 on July 21, according to a regulatory filing. The filings didn’t indicate that his sales this year were made under a pre-scheduled trading plan. Continue reading “Article: BlackRock CEO Sold $24 Million of Stock as Insider Sales Up”
Wirecard’s Former Billionaire CEO Markus Braun Arrested Over Allegations Of Fraud
Jack Kelly, 23 July 2020
On Monday, I reported that Markus Braun, the billionaire CEO of online payments company Wirecard, faced serious allegations over the company’s rapid growth and questionable business practices. Specifically, regulators and investors were concerned over claims that the FinTech company purported to have $2 billion dollars in a couple of Philippine banks. Investigations conducted by an outside auditor revealed that the money wasn’t there and possibly never existed. Continue reading “Article: Wirecard’s Former Billionaire CEO Markus Braun Arrested Over Allegations Of Fraud”
Article: Fugitives arrested in I-CAN global anti-mafia operation
LYON, France: Coordination through the INTERPOL Cooperation Against ‘Ndrangheta (I-CAN) project – an INTERPOL and Italian initiative – has seen law enforcement round up six fugitives in Albania, Argentina and Costa Rica following intelligence gained in an earlier operation targeting the ‘Ndrangheta in November 2019.
Last year’s “Operation Magma 2007” targeted individuals wanted for association with the ‘Ndrangheta, as well as drug trafficking and illegal weapons possession. Conducted by Italy’s Guardia di Finanza and Direzione Centrale Servizi Antidroga, and coordinated by the Direzione Distrettuale Antimafia in Reggio Calabria, the operation resulted in the arrest of 45 suspects across Italy.
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Singapore’s Marina Bay Sands casino pays Chinese gambler US$6.5 million to settle suit
Bloomberg, 20 July 2020
(Bloomberg) Singapore casino Marina Bay Sands has agreed to settle a lawsuit brought by a former patron, meeting his demand for a S$9.1 million (US$6.5 million) payment, according to a person familiar with the matter.
Marina Bay Sands, run by US billionaire Sheldon Adelson’s Las Vegas Sands, also agreed to allow Chinese gambler Wang Xi back into the casino as long as he abides by its policies, said the person, who asked not be identified because the matter is confidential.
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Does the EU’s anti-money laundering strategy ignore the (Russian) elephant in the room?
Portia Kentish, 14 July 2020
With Europe’s parliament having now approved the European Commission’s new “high-risk” list of third countries deemed a threat to the bloc’s anti-money laundering (AML) efforts, several high profile critics are already voicing fears that it will do little to prevent illicit funds from being washed through Europe’s banks. This is particularly true for the Baltic states, whose vulnerability to money laundering networks based in neighbouring Russia remains an acute problem for the region. Continue reading “Article: Does the EU’s anti-money laundering strategy ignore the (Russian) elephant in the room?”
Market Movers: Facedrive Inc.
Braden Maccke, 14 July 2020
Market movers joins the story of Richmond Hill, Ontario based nu-tech platform company Facedrive Inc. (TSXV: FD) just as it finishes a wild Monday, ultimately giving back -$4.92 (-19%) from last week’s $10.14 (+68%) vertical move in a 596,000 share session that landed it at $20.00 flat, after touching $28.00, an intra-day and all-time high.
The 92 million share company has kept tight lines and a clean hull on the boat that is its cap structure, and has trimmed its sails perfectly to capture this market’s strongest trade winds. The company purports to be advancing business units that the market understands, in a manner that socially and ecologically conscious investors and consumers appreciate.
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Patrick Byrne to Increase Focus on tZERO and Digital Securities Exchanges
Joshua Stoner, 12 July 2021
Despite market conditions, there is no shortage of belief in the viability of blockchain. Week after week, partnerships are made, and new products ramp up development. One notable move has taken place just recently. Patrick Byrne has indicated that he will be shifting his priority and focus from Overstock.com to tZERO. This shift will see the sale of the retail side of Overstock.com. The plan is expected to come to fruition by February of 2019, as they line up potential buyers. Continue reading “Article: Patrick Byrne to Increase Focus on tZERO and Digital Securities Exchanges”
Uncertainty tax: Why Vanguard bigwigs expect economic growth to slow in 2020
Erin Arvedlund, 11 July 2020
Vanguard’s top executives held a webcast Thursday evening addressing key factors that could affect the U.S. and global economies, trends to watch for in the financial markets, and what’s new for Vanguard clients in 2020.
“We’ve seen a significant rally last year, so for returns in bonds, we expect overall 2-2.5% over the next decade” annually, said chief investment officer Greg Davis on the one-hour program. For U.S. equities, Vanguard expects annual returns of slightly under 5% and international equities of 7.5% annually. Continue reading “Article: Uncertainty tax: Why Vanguard bigwigs expect economic growth to slow in 2020”
Novagold says potential class action amateurish, ignorant
Cecilia Jamasmie, 10 July 2020
Canada’s Novagold (TSX, NYSE: NG), which is suing short-selling firm J Capital Research (JCAP) for defamation, said a US law firm’s potential attempt to launch a class suit against the company on alleged securities fraud would be based on “malicious and false information”. Lawyers at Hagens Berman and Portnoy said this week they were investigating whether Novagold had misled investors about the viability of its Donlin gold project, in Alaska.
Novagold said the move by San Francisco-based Hagens Berman appeared to be entirely based on JCAP’s “tapestry of deceit” as well as “false and misleading statements” about the company and its 50-50 development partner in the project, Barrick Gold (TSX: ABX) (NYSE: GOLD).
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Novagold slams law firm for ‘malicious and false’ claims on Donlin gold project
Nahum Asher, 09 July 2020
According to the complaint, throughout the Class Period, Defendants misrepresented and concealed that (1) ACM Research’s revenues and profits were diverted to undisclosed related parties, and (2) consequently, the company materially overstated its revenues and profits.
Investors allegedly began to learn the truth on Oct. 8, 2020, when J Capital Research published a report entitled “Dirty business,” bringing ACM Research’s reported financials into serious question.
More specifically, J Capital concludes ACM Research is a fraud, over-reporting both revenue and profit. According to the report, “ACMR reports industry-beating gross margins of 47%” but “[w]e believe the real gross margins are half at the best.” J Capital also concludes revenues are overstated by 15-20%, undisclosed related parties are diverting revenue and profit from the company, the key means by which ACMR tunnels over-reported profit out of the company may be through about $20 million in overstated inventory and through cash that is inflated or compromised, and warranty and service costs are understated by at least $11 million.
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