‘Home Drum Beat First’ -The Sale of Barbados National Bank by Owen Arthur

For many one of the enduring memories from the Owen Arthur Barbados Labour Party (BLP) tenure is the sale of the Barbados National Bank (BNB) to the Trinidad based Republic Bank Limited. Arthur continues to defend his decision by offering that the BNB was a loss making entity hamstrung by a high level of government bureaucracy and non performing loans. Further, he explains that local credit unions and locals spurned the opportunity to buy shares when offered.

Many will debate the pros and cons of Arthur’s decision to shed majority interest in the BNB till thy kingdom come. We live in a world where almost if not all decisions are greatly influenced by economic consideration. Such an approach does not allow the space for a people to craft a vision and identity based on symbols, traditions that include even the spiritual and other non economic factors. Through the eyes of the BU household the BNB was a symbol of the progress Barbados had made from transitioning the economy from agrarian. It represented how majority Black Barbadians were in control of a significant financial intuition on Broad Street. If one wants to be political with the argument, it exposed the Barbados Labour Party (BLP) philosophy of reordering the economic fundamentals of the economy to make Barbados competitive in a competitive global world.  The ease with which Black politicians- Owen Arthur as lead  -disposed of what BNB should give cause for Barbadians to pause. The decision by Arthur is analogous to the Stuart DLP government dismantling its philosophy to provide ‘free’ education as a pathway for future development and empower a small Black nation.

It was interesting to listen to former Prime Minister of St. Kitts Denzel Douglas explain a few of the strategies he presided over that have  led to the transformation of the St. Kitts economy. He stated that the St. Kitts-Nevis-Anguilla National Bank was important to the strategy of restructuring the debt because the government was able to intervene in the domestic financial market to align with the national interest. Given the current economic state of Barbados the government does not have the recourse of a local bank to borrow from an important best practice that was reportedly implemented successfully in St. Kitts and Nevis.

BU supports the view that a national bank is important to any nation to shore-up the sovereignty argument. One cannot be truly liberated as a people if the gateways to important arteries in the society are controlled by foreign interest. In the case of Barbados the banking sector is 100% controlled by foreign ownership. The food sector is 90 plus percent controlled by non Barbadian interest. The supply of electricity is controlled by foreign interest. In the three examples –the financial, food importation and distribution and power, a so called independent people have no control. We acknowledge that the Fair Trading Commission and government agencies were established to regulate the market in the interest of all stakeholders including the consumer .

The lengthy preamble is meant to introduce a recent development in Canada where the banks- locally owned -have agreed to pool resources in the interest of the country.

Canada’s biggest banks and insurance companies have launched a private-sector fund of up to $1 billion to provide long-term financing to burgeoning high-growth businesses, the firms announced Thursday. The Canadian Business Growth Fund will look to invest the full amount over 10 years, with an expected initial commitment of more than $500-million.

Canada’s banks and lifecos launch fund of up to $1 billion to help businesses grow

There is no need to be prolix to emphasize the point that home drums beat first. For non Barbadian owners of business enterprises in Barbados –where is home?

93 comments

  • Violet Beckles CUP Plantation Deeds from 1926-2017 land tax bills and no Deeds,BLPand DLP Massive land Fruad and PONZI

    BNB? Owen selling,SOLD, You all have to be making jokes,,Let me see if any one will come up to the answer as why? or who will agree,

    When you sell out a Nation for one Bank over the other and the Prime Minister and AG in this scam of selling the Bank.

    How do Banks make the Money? or list 3 top ways make their money ,

    Now if you know ahead of time they came make any money, then you will sell it off? The Prime Minister Owen Did Two Frauds, One to the Nation of Barbados and the other to TNT , Which if they took him to court would expose the scam,

    Like

  • @enuff

    What is your point?

    Like

  • David that previous blog adds to the current. It is not to blame.

    Like

  • @enuff

    The partisans will bray the obvious that this is an attack o Arthur. Our inability to critique policies using sensible discussion devoid of partisan claptrap is sad. What Barbados do we want to create.

    Do we subscribe to the following? In fact do we even remember the words? Do the words have significance today?

    BU’s emphahsis.

    In plenty and in time of need
    When this fair land was young
    Our brave forefathers sowed the seed
    From which our pride was sprung

    A pride that makes no wanton boast
    Of what it has withstood
    That binds our hearts from coast to coast
    The pride of nationhood

    Chorus:
    We loyal sons and daughters all
    Do hereby make it known
    These fields and hills beyond recall
    Are now our very own

    We write our names on history’s page
    With expectations great
    Strict guardians of our heritage
    Firm craftsmen of our fate

    The Lord has been the people’s guide
    For past three hundred years.
    With Him still on the people’s side
    We have no doubts or fears.
    Upward and onward we shall go,
    Inspired, exulting, free,
    And greater will our nation grow
    In strength and unity.

    Like

  • That Bajans could have so meekly and tamely allowed the disenfranchisement of their children and grand children by this stupid sale, is probably the most blatant manifestation of the national idiocy that have caused our present predicament.
    Whenever Arthur relied on his training as an ‘Economist’ (what ever the hell THAT is), rather than on common sense, he has gone on to do irreparable damage to the national economy.

    A simple housewife, using basic common sense, would NEVER consider that the solution to a troublesome bank account is to hand it over to a total stranger to manage on her behalf … “because they seem to have lots of money”. She would look closely to see WHY there were losses; WHERE there were opportunities for gains, and then take appropriate steps.

    Trust an ‘Economist’ to come up with the ‘solution’ to sell (give) it to a total stranger….and to add insult to injury, he argued that since none of his CHILDREN were prepared to pay him what this rich, total stranger was willing to pay, he was forced to sell to the damn stranger.
    Lotta shiite!!

    He did the same shiite with CSME.
    Wasting Bajan assets….. changing laws to disenfranchise locals, spending millions on shiite entities, commissions, technocrats etc … in pursuit of an idiotic dream of Caribbean unity -when all the other players just looked on …and took whatever he was foolish enuff to give away….

    Then the new pack of DLP jackasses that took over after Arthur are so stupid and clueless, that their idea of what is ‘right’ is to refer to what Arthur did….. despite the fact that Bajans voted OUT Arthur with the understanding that they would do differently…. Even now, they continue to reference ‘what Arthur did ten years ago’ whenever ask to justify their policies.

    The ones who will suffer are ordinary Bajans. But we will DESERVE every bit of the shiite that we will face in the coming months…. for being such brass bowls to sit idly by …while a complete set of dumb, clueless, dishonest politicians made the most stupid, simplistic and counterproductive decisions possible ….. culminating in the construction of a big ugly shiite monument to Satan, right in the middle of the damn Garrison.

    Wunna so blind, that wunna ain’t even yet noticed the wave of wickedness that has been unleashed on the island since that unveiling… Not to worry, we will all notice it in time.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Hamilton A Hill

    Pride goeth before a fall……Pride long gone since the vaunted cash for gold days……. HERE COMES THE FALL.

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  • Canada where the banks- locally owned -have agreed to pool resources in the interest of the country.
    …………………………………………………….

    To my mind that is where we should have gone by creating a regional entity as above which would have given us greater resources and reduced our vulnerability.Note T&T with its oil riches has had to reverse the Eric Williams’ aquisition of foreign banks.

    Our bank with nothing to back it up would have collapsed sooner rather than later due to the politicos use of it as their personal piggy bank.

    OSA in his first term did have a vision one which was sacrificed on the altar of political expediency which has led us to where we are today aided and abetted by this present govt who slavishly followed suit.

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  • @Vincent

    And you know the BNB would have collapsed how? Do you lack the confidence in your ability to manage? Isn’t this why we have invested so much resources in education?

    Here is the presentation Pacha posted last week where OSA clearly explained why he jettison the national Bank. It was about money and a resignation he couldn’t fix the problem wrought by government bureaucracy. The icing on the decision was feathering his lead role for CSME.

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  • @David, one can debate extensively your position that our government still needed a development bank at the commercial level to further develop the economy.

    And you have made a powerful central theme that ‘Home Drums Beat First’, however a few of the central foundation beams upon which you built your ostensibly strong ‘home’ are suspect.

    But let’s agree that the total sale of all bank shares was wrong, however.

    Now, to the suspect, weak beams…

    That you equate what PM of St. Kitts Denzel Douglas did with his “strategies …that have led to the transformation of the St. Kitts economy…[with] the St. Kitts-Nevis-Anguilla National Bank” is not a mango to mango comparison to Bim.

    Based on the single metric of “recourse of a local bank to borrow” it is pellucid that until recently the Bajan government effected that quite ‘successfully’ using the Central Bank. This is not a matter of the merit of the action, simply that it happened sans any BNB existence.

    They sought recourse to local ‘bank borrowing’ by selling bonds and printing money at will; the latter option of which Mr Douglas does not have in his tool-kit as he has no central banker at his beck and call.

    It’s provocative to conflate a development banking need and the benefits it bought to the Bajan landscape with that of free tertiary education.

    And surely we have built a great history on the back of excellent institutions and now according to you are eviscerating our future by removing those institutions. But as difficult as it may appear there is a credible alternative path and argument.

    Suffice to say here that our market had developed well beyond the move from ‘the agrarian’ and was now robust and sophisticated with several competitive entities that allowed a move to different more PRACTICAL strategies re our banking sector…

    …and too re how we funded tertiary education.

    If after all this time we have an army of legal doves barracking the society with legal sloth and but a small group of legal eagles who attack society’s ills as evidence of the billions of education $$ about which you regularly lament then it is valid enough for the country to revisit how that tertiary education spend is best utilized.

    I hear your claim and fully support a part of your view in that the government on behalf of the people should have retained a share of the BNB but completely REMOVE themselves from its operations. However, if we were retaining the bank simply as our bank of last resort then that was unnecessary and would have been absolutely counter productive offering us no different mess that seen currently.

    But anyhow, when all else fails you are right that withing reason and practical long term benefit ‘Home Drums Beat First’….and ideally loudest, too.

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  • @Dee Word

    You missed the point by a wide mile.

    The reference to the St.Kitts Nevis national bank was about the government of St.Kitts using the local national bank to deliver haircuts to holders of government debt because significant government debt was owned by the National Bank and customers.

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  • @Bushie, oh dear… For the record -and what little it’s worth, LOLL – re your 8:39 AM that was an inadvertent ‘like’.

    Your main points re the bank sale and CSME are valid and your positions clear and positive.

    But to equate now every one of your screeds to the Garrison monument is not debatable or valid…just your personal pique.

    THAT is worth a ‘thumbs down’.

    So there…for the record: How not to like a post is less that 90 words! LOLL. Feel free to bash.

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  • David

    Our politicians lack proper checks and balances,the every 5 year merry go around,the PAC,the Auditor Generals report or the laws of the land does not help with proper governance.

    By virtue of the above plus the example of Barbados Development bank,The Agricultural credit bank and recently GEMS,I posit that the highly educated Bimmers have the ability to mismanage every business in Bim which falls under the clutches of the politicos in govt.

    Our only hope lies in a confederation of the region which will make it a bit more difficult for local politicos to get away unscathed from their dubious decisions.

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  • Hamilton A Hill

    Just heard Dr Ester Do Little setting up an excuse as to why this country’s N I S is practically on life support. Dear Doc, prior to 2008 your opinion formed part of the diagnosis that governmental plundering was the root cause of the problem. How did you and yours address this problem? Continued rape/plunder, and now talking about controlled migration? The longer Barbadians permit this bunch to stay in office, the longer the rebuilding process will take.

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  • @ David
    Vincent has no confidence in his, or in local, ability.
    That is probably his English background. Bushie pities those who can see no hope unless we are able to arrange a parasitical relationship with others who can pull us along.

    Being an adult is all about taking full responsibility for your, and your family’s well-being and future. it is not about attaching yourself like a parasite to enjoy the benefits of other’s fortunes. This is why our politicians are all a bunch of PARROs….. encouraged by attitudes like Vincent’s.

    True success is about developing your OWN ability, and those of your FAMILY, to the highest possible level. There is no real requirement to be ‘better’ than other families, and no glory in it. It all depends on the exploitation of the TALENTS available to each family.

    Arthur articulated a policy of making Barbados great by attracting ‘high net worth’ individuals to move here and enjoy various benefits which he provided….. while condemning local children to the blocks and ZR culture.

    A fundamental policy flaw for which we are now paying with idiots like Stinkliar seeking to emulate him….

    Liked by 1 person

  • @David March 11, 2017 at 9:08 AM re “You missed the point by a wide mile…The reference to the St.Kitts Nevis national bank was about the government of St.Kitts using the local national bank to deliver haircuts to holders of government debt because significant government debt was owned by the National Bank and customers.”

    REALLY. I must admit I did not get that from your prose at no point. So I went back and can now ‘see’ that in your comment “He stated that the St. Kitts-Nevis-Anguilla National Bank was important to the strategy of restructuring the debt because the government was able to intervene in the domestic financial market to align with the national interest.”

    So my friend are you really telling the blog that you wanted the retention of the BNB so that the government would be in a position to demand that it’s lenders take a lower repayment on their loans as they ‘restructured’ the economy?

    I am not trying to be facetious but surely you cannot be saying that!

    Tell me, aren’t our current bond holders virtually in that same possible pickle NOW. Isn’t that what Moodys et al has said in ‘so many words’?

    You got me on this one David.

    These economic issues are serious debates which cannot be reduced to a a ‘140 word’ blast. We both know that.

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  • @ Dribbler
    Boss, if you think that Bushie gives a shit who ‘likes’ or ‘dislikes’ a post, then you have missed the mark widely….. Bushie has even been known to dislike one of his own posts …just to provide some balance….
    So have a ball…

    As to the Monument thing….
    There is none so blind, as those who will not see.

    This world is a COMPLEX SPIRITUAL reality, with a temporary, physical, realm that has been created just to facilitate us brass bowls with limited senses.
    Unfortunately, what REALLY matters resides in the SPIRITUAL realm. So the fact that you remain totally blinded and clueless about this REALITY speaks more about you…than it does about Bushie.

    Anyway, there is no need for a long debate, since it will VERY soon become very clear what Bushie has been on about…..

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  • @ david
    Dribbler is being deliberately ‘daft’

    If he really cannot see how a National Bank can positively influence the development of national policy, enfranchisement of local, and retention of profits for further development, then there may be no point in taking the ‘last word’ away from him…..

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  • @Dee Word

    Try to glean the bigger point which is the importance of a national bank to maintain some level of influence in the domestic market.

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  • @WWC

    No, no, no, I do not promote president T. Just saying that the situation in Bim will not get worse with him.

    The neutron bom already hit Bim. We think we can dance around, not realizing that we are already doomed and sold out to foreign institutions.

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  • Bushie

    Chuckle…..comprehension again……I have stated that I have unequivocal fate in our politicos to mash up any business they get their hands and showed why….lack of checks and balances.

    Bright boy all you have to do is to find a way to introduce these checks and balances…..knowing you,you will probably head down to the garrison and do some invocations…..let me know what BBE told you to do.

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  • Violet C Beckles CUP

    The down grades in Barbados were expected. More will come. The political Parties the D L P and B L P are to blame, The Barbados National Bank was sold for no gains were to come of it, Prime Minister Owen at the time knew ahead of time that Sir Richard L Cheltenham and Sir Charles O Williams had taken over the Barclay’s Bank . This move take over the Estate Of Beatrice Henry which held her Bank accounts and land title deeds.
    The Barclay’s Bank now called Frist Caribbean CIBC Bank held all of the cards,
    First Caribbean Bank now teamed up with CLICO in land sales, home building,mortgages, car loans , a full service Banking,First Caribbean Bank said they have no records of Beatrice accounts, the Money then was to go to the Central Bank who also claim they have not moneys or accounts nor was money send from Barclay’s Now First Caribbean CIBC, The Probate to Violet Beckles was held up by these tactics till this day March 11 2017, So now that Prime Minister Owen was able to sell T N T a dead B N B when all of the money and loans going to CLICO First Caribbean to Sir Richard L Cheltenham and Sir Charles O Williams,
    It was a well planed Fraud ahead of time by the Crooks, Liars and Scumbags of the BLP. Now today after the Ponzi Fraud exposed by Time and Events of the day,
    Where did First Caribbean find 100 million dollars to hand over to the Barbados DLP government, Where those accounts other peoples money? where is the list of names of which this money came from? Is this why now the money was removed or handed over is why First Caribbean now want to charge persons to have a bank account? Zero Banking,

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  • @David and senor Bush Tea…as I said from the start…a debate on the merits of a ‘national bank’ particularly in a small economy is a robust one with many pros and cons.

    If you ask me David so succinctly to “try to glean the bigger point which is the importance of a national bank to maintain some level of influence in the domestic market” then I ask you in turn: what role would a publicly owned national bank be expected to play in a sophisticated financial market which had blossomed from a Blacks struggling to get loans or having their ideas stolen to one that now had–

    -an ‘Enterprise Growth Fund’ lending millions of business seed money every year;

    -a very robust credit union industry offering millions in home and other personal loans;

    -an insurance industry offering it’s own millions of loans;

    -other smaller lending agencies and financial factors offering hundred of thousands of $$ for cars, equipment and other self-help projects.

    -And at the national level where there were major options also available for funding that need not involve a development bank.

    Gentlemen, I do not dismiss what the early leaders of BNB achieved. How could I!

    But to posit that in 2000’s with the plethora of options available that the Barbados gov’t should have maintained this institution in its non-competitive state simply as their bank of last resort does not make any DEVELOPMENTAL sense.

    If you want to argue that they should have retained a stake as they changed and adapted to the times, then we agree.

    The industry and market had moved past what the original BNB was mandated to do. They were a single bank competing in a small market against banks which were part of larger and financially stronger operations.

    Could they have survived and retained profitability long term….I have no idea as I never studied their financials.

    But just based on general market considerations they would have needed exceptional management to achieve that in the face of the assaults from the T&T and other banks/lenders pushing into Bim.

    But alas as the Bushman said, I am just being ‘deliberately daft’.

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  • @Dee Word

    Clearly the thrust of the BU posit as to the importance of a NATIONAL bank eludes you even with all the options mentioned you would seek to obfuscate the discussion. One strand of that importance is priceless -the fashioning of an identity of a people.

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  • @ David
    At some point in time , you are going to have to make up your mind about privatisation. You
    are one of the main supporters of privatisation but you have problems with the sale of the BNB and now the sale of the Barbados National Oil Company. You will note that Arthur has publicly blamed Mia Mottley for putting privatisation as the main plank of the BLP in the last general elections.
    As I have maintained for a long time, Arthur was just a competent Minister of Finance but was elevated by those who do not understand small islands economic management to godly status. This is a point that Hal has been making on BU for sometime but the party loyalists can see no fault in Arthur although it appears to me that Arthur is skillfully acknowledging his failures.
    The path forward for Caribbean economies has been championed from the time of Eric Williams but politics tends to get in the way. That is why the so-called progressives in our country prefer to march with Mia or defend Sinckler rather than put in the hard work of re-educating our citizens to be free of international agencies such as S& P and Moodys. These agencies along with the IMF are terribly ignorant of such things as the cultural influences on our economic development.
    Even in our case the question must be asked; How can a country still be functioning at any level at all after nineteen downgrades ?
    I have long written off both the BLPDLP but Stuart has a point , even if it is opportunistic to save his face: Why should we cringe every time these agencies tell us to send home people and cut services to the poor. Let us get back to a real discussion on whether Barbados is more than an economy , that it is a society.
    The problem here is that neither the BLP nor the DLP has any progressive economic strategy that is why they are being manipulated by international agencies.
    We are now heralding the planners in Jamaica for seeing some improvement in that economy nearly after 30 years or so plus of IMF policies. Do we really want to be under the yoke of the IMF for 30 years?

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  • William how have you deduced that the BU household is a supporter of privatization whatever that means? Have We not beens at pain to single out why strategic assets must be protected?

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  • @William

    I have long written off both the BLPDLP but Stuart has a point , even if it is opportunistic to save his face: Why should we cringe every time these agencies tell us to send home people and cut services to the poor. Let us get back to a real discussion on whether Barbados is more than an economy , that it is a society.

    Are you able to appreciate the above is the perfect non sequitur? It is how a leader communicates with his public that coaxes them to their way of thinking. To make the point above you seem to agree with him on and do it in a way that pisses of a nation is idiotic.

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  • If the reasons given for Arthur’s sale of the BNB are true, not a single one of them is based on sound financial economics. All are untenable.
    Apart from he fact that bank accounting is different to that of a normal corporation, a loss-making bank can be reversed; that is a management issue.
    The question of government bureaucracy: he was prime minister, unless he had forgotten, and could remove any over-bearing level of bureaucracy. In any case, the only bureaucracy banks should have to contend with is that of regulation – good regulation.
    And as to defaulting loans, that too is a management issue: poor risk-management; poor under-writing; poor supervision.
    One way of dealing with that is to offer secured loans. If the borrower defaults s/he runs the risk of losing their assets, maybe their home.
    The other way, of course, is to package the defaulting loans and sell them on at a discount like most other financial institutions do.
    If the sale of BNB was driven by Arthur, it exposed his ignorance of how financial intermediation works since he removed an essential institution for funding SMEs.
    I have said, and say again, the sale of the BNB was the greatest undermining of domestic enterprise since independence, and maybe since the end of the Second World War.

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  • The writer of this article should have gone further to the broad forces which go beyond any single issue.

    For whether it is the BNB or education or power generation or food supply or any combination thereof, there is something deeply wrong with the economic culture, the wider culture more generally.

    Black Bajans never had an ethos of land ownership – beyond house spots, for example. We have long concluded that this culture of disposition has historically muddied mass involvements in all sphere of economic activity.

    This writer back in 1991 (circa) was one of the people who sought to convince Erskine Sandiford that state assets should be divested to the cooperative movement.

    The Sandiford administration found all types of reasons why that could not have been possible. We will more fully get into their reasoning at another time but they ranged from legislative prohibitions to the perceived lack of access to FOREX by credit unions.

    It did not matter that those argumentations were successfully conquered, with evidence. The then government proceeded on divestiture without the involvement of cooperatives.

    Enter! The Arthur administration.

    Only a week ago we drew to the attention of Bushie, David et al the disclosures by OSA in an ‘interdependence’ lecture.

    A week ago we wondered whether what OSA was now saying was indeed a fair representation of history. We asked Bushie for assistance.

    OSA said that he had offered the credit unions the BNB but that they were persuaded by David Thompson and the DLP not to acquire the bank because it was losing money, crippled by bad debts etc.

    We drew to Bushie’s attention a number of matters. These included the unique circumstances involved in the sale of financial firms and the stupendous opportunities available in bank ownership for credit unions.

    His responsive was in line with established ‘wisdom’, more philosophical than practical, group-think.

    Both Bushie and David were more interested in defended the established ‘wisdom’ of a neo-liberal OSA selling out Barbados to the highest bidder than considering the possibility of a departure from that narrative. If even for once!

    Barbados under the institution of slavery produced a London Bourne. A man who was as wealthy as most rich White people. History always gives exceptions to the rule. Could it be possible that this could have been the exception to the rule of neo-liberal capitalism by OSA?

    Our interest was in establishing whether there was a genuine desire of OSA to sell BNB to the credit unions. And if that were so, the extent to which that paradigm could have been expansionist in character. Even coexisting with his dominant economic proclivities, if you will.

    Our political sophistication must be, and history bears this out, to work with whoever is in government to achieve broader goals instead of opting for the D/B artificial divide, or the sameness of a sameness which both parties represent in selling out national assets to foreign capital uncontrolled by locals.

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  • Denzil Douglas,the two bit King Kong of St Christopher with Nevis is being quoted as a financial genius.Barbados want ‘noticing’ if David Ellis can include this double clown of the trump variety in any discussion on Barbados…Hear this fool in 2015 when the people skinned his and his party asses out of Parliament……”and they want to know why I am so quiet eh!You think we finish yet?You think we finish eh!You think we finish?We ain’t finish yet!We just a start.We ain’t taking it so!Over 600 people were disenfranchised.Me ain’t taking it so!Let them who taping me,let them understand that Douglas say tonight,we ain’t taking it so.We ain’t taking it so at all at all.” It looks like King Kong is taking it so…two bit politicians all about the place,fouling the Caribbean air with their crap.

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  • @Hal

    We should not forget Arthur’s approach to circumvent the bureaucracy of the public service was to contract a posse of consultants reporting to the Prime Minister’s Office. We have to attract a different type of Barbadian to join the ‘political class’.

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  • @Pacha

    Bushie will not like the following this comment but our large credit unions are being poorly managed. There is a level of nepotism, strategic and financial mismanagement that has the making of a disaster waiting to happen. Unlike Bush Tea BU has not fully bought in to the idea given what we know. It can be fixed with a few good men and women stand up.

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  • David,

    Judged on economics alone, Arthur was a disaster failure.

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  • disastrous

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  • David

    That is a sad report. The movement had those tendencies when we were there a few decades ago.

    We are highly disappointed that the cooperative culture is being subsumed by wider despotic tendencies.

    At that time people like Hugh McClean and his sister behaved like Black Bothas.

    Some will say, what are we to expect?

    We have read reports over the years which seem to confirm your conclusions. However, we had hoped that somehow a better logic could have prevailed.

    David, if this is right and there can be no halt in this slide, any hope for Barbados is lost.

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  • HOW DO WE CORRECT THE MISTAKES WE MADE ?

    ” what must WE do today, tomorrow and every day…..or must we wait for a different party to

    be elected ?

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  • Well Well & Consequences Observing Blogger

    Honestly that is the very first time I have ever heard that a leader sold a central bank, that is one for the history books, a real stupid move, then the present clowns in government after critizing the sale of the government’s majority shares in BNB turned right around shortly thereafter and sold the remaining 30% shares Barbados had in BNB.., both governments did that, sold their National Bank….both….and foolish people would still vote for these jokes….and believe all their lies too…lol

    “Bushie will not like the following this comment but our large credit unions are being poorly managed. ”

    Christ…ah guess people better keep their money in the local ….foreign banks.

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  • @Hants

    Even it this state of woe there is a level of apathy and disengagement that is pathetic for an educated nation. The narrative for many is even at this stage being distilled through partisan political lens.

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  • Not withstanding that an ad in the news that took up at least seven lines back when the BNB was about to be sold, I am sure was looked over by most Bajans simply because of the hidden size and placement in the papers back then. It is felt that shares were not scooped up by Bajans for that reason .

    You can bet your bottom dollar that Owen bought big shares in the former BNB.

    Would anyone in their right mind believe that Trinidad will sell that big money making bank back to Barbados? No way.

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  • @ David
    You should not be unaware that partisan
    clap trap has all but destroyed serious
    discourse on BU in the same way it
    has destroyed national discourse on
    De Call -in programs.
    Like you always say it’s all about leadership.

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  • David

    Can you say that OSA comments about his efforts to transfer ownership of BNB to the credit unions is a fair representation of truth?

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  • Well Well & Consequences Observing Blogger

    “These agencies along with the IMF are terribly ignorant of such things as the cultural influences on our economic development.”

    It’s not for the rating agencies and IMF to learn about that cultural ignorance practiced by small island states, that’s not their jobs, their jobs are to be clinical in their economic analyzes….

    ……….it’s for the leaders and people of small island states to divorce themselves from that destructive cultural ignorance and the people refrain from putting small island leaders on these easily toppled pedestals. .

    “The problem here is that neither the BLP nor the DLP has any progressive economic strategy that is why they are being manipulated by international agencies.”

    Again…small island states lead by puppets who allow local or foreign minorities to pull their strings and are self-absorbed ministers are being manipulated by their own cultural ignorance, the knowledge is there, both the leaders and the people refuse to acknowledge or use that knowledge, they prefer remain marinated in cultural ignorance to their own detriment. …

    ….i cant believe we are still going over this in 2017.

    Like

  • @William

    There is national discourse. There will always be claptrap.

    How does the individual who backs the courage of his convection operate?

    Leaving that with you.

    Like

  • Well Well & Consequences Observing Blogger

    Let me reiterate.

    It’s not for the rating agencies and IMF to learn about that cultural ignorance practiced by small island states, that’s not their jobs, their jobs are to be clinical in their economic analyzes…….not to enable the cultural influences that are destructive.

    I am really sick of ignorance being called culture when practiced because it suits the agendas of the ignorant and enriches the leaders.

    Like

  • Hants

    Hopefully what unfolds today,which is a good venting mechanism will have a greater long term benefit.

    Like

  • @Pacha

    OSA was all powerful during his tenure.Do you believe if he wanted to give the opportunity to the credit unions (BCCUL) to purchase a stake in the Republic Bank he would not have made a hell of a lot more noise trying to achieve it?

    Like

  • @ David
    Bushie will not like the following this comment but our large credit unions are being poorly managed
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    You err.
    Bushie agrees 100%.
    The Credit Unions are being managed by Bajans …and UWI graduates (in the case of the large ones especially) so what else is possible…?
    If they were properly managed (with billions in assets) they would be a MAJOR economic, social, spiritual and political force in Barbados as we speak….
    As it is Bushie don’t even know who is in charge of the shiite right now….

    The Cooperative SYSTEM however, …is robust enough to control the kind of outright idiocy that we see in the political system from the same kind of idiot leaders. ….This is why Bushie had called for an adoption of such a SYSTEM in our politics.

    @ Vincent
    Boss, if you failed to even comprehend who PUDRYR was calling ‘Mugabe’ on BU, pray tell how Bushie could expect you to follow the often-complex lines of argument that the Bushman tends to lead on BU…?
    The intent of utilising a man like Caswell, …and BUP, was to impose a level of GOVERNANCE on our political life that would control the ROT and underhandedness that currently undermines EVERY SHIITE that we try to do….

    Do you even know of the attributes of Caswell? …you probably missed his era at school, and in the cooperative movement, but then again, HE himself do not understand his talent and value to this shiite nation at this (dreaded) time in our history…..

    Bushie was actually referring to Caswell and his attributes on BU….BEFORE he ever came on this forum…. and no doubt the records are still there to verify this….

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  • That is not our question.

    We have no interest in Republic Bank. No PM can offer something the country does not own to the credit unions.

    Our question is whether he offered the bank, BNB, like he is saying, to the credit unions and that Thompson told them no to buy.

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  • @ David
    The man was after FOREX….
    He did NOT intend to sell to no damn Credit Unions. He just played that political card to try to get around the arguments being put by people like Bushie at the time…
    His focus was fully on reducing the deficit and shoring up the foreign exchange reserves.

    Look how easily they got the Credit Unions to buy into CLICO ….via Capita….

    Like

  • Well Well & Consequences Observing Blogger

    The Bushman……Pedant like Alvin is neatly tucked away in Canada, neither of them will say they will bring their pensions to the island and give up Canada completely so they can progress with all the people who are progressing in Barbados now…lol

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  • @Pacha

    Will answer you by reposting a BU comment from 2009.

    David February 27, 2009 at 8:35 PM

    Read this article which was penned by Hilford Murrell back in 2007. In the article the BU family should take note of two points which we have highlighted.

    In the four years preceding the sale, BNB had reported pre-tax earnings ranging from $16 million to $28 million and seemed on a sustained growth path.

    A majority sale of Government’s shares therefore seemed highly unwarranted.

    Arthur’s decision to proceed with the sale was met with mounting criticism on the grounds that there was already too much Trinidadian interest in Barbados. In particular, he was charged with squandering the legacy of his mentor Tom Adams who, in establishing BNB, courageously conceptualised and brought to fruition the country’s first national commercial bank.

    Despite the censure and condemnation, the Finance Minister maintained that BNB’s future development resided in a strategic alliance with an established regional or extraregional financial institution.

    The two points in our opinion debunks the myth that the BNB was not an efficiently run government bank and it gives an insight into why the bank was sold. Bare in mind that several other international banks would have been operating in Barbados at the time.

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  • Bushie

    The credit unions could have raised Forex to finance the deal

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  • Bushie

    When the masses rise the political class will listen one way or the other and I agree with Caswell not to enter the ring at this time or ever….

    This dependency syndrome on God,BBE or a moses has to come to an end the people have to stand up for themselves.

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  • Well Well & Consequences Observing Blogger

    It’s amazing that anyone would put Arthur on a pedestal after that cockup. ..selling a national bank, who does that, when there are so many other viable options.

    And credit unions should not be letting lawyers, politicians or government ministers tell them if to invest in a bank, if Thompson really did that….well he too met his cockup…what a bunch of asses, practicing their culture influence, fueled and driven by ignorance.

    Like

  • @Pacha

    Can you point the relevant part of the Cooperatives Act that wold have allowed it?

    Also would OSA have given the sovereign guarantee required?

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  • David

    On the Cooperatives Act – we have not read that in recent times. However, around the 1991 period the Act, we seem to recall, had limited credit unions from investing in anything other than land or government bonds unless with the permission of the Supervisor of Cooperative.

    At that time we had relied on a group of lawyers for guidance. Lawyers who were members.

    There were no issues around SGs, no need. We were talking about large international credit unions leading sister credit unions resources or forming limited partnership for acquisitions of state assets.

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  • David

    My recollection on the BNB sale was that in order for them to buy it the govt had do an amendment to the Coop. act. which was never done and I am sure that they submitted a bid.

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  • David

    And none of that could be possible unless there were changes to the Act.

    But the government was changing the law for other interests to acquire state assets.

    Why not the Cooperatives, we then agrued

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  • @Pacha

    Now that it is clear, Arthur never intended to sell a damn thing to the credit unions.

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  • David

    What is clear?

    Has the Cooperatives Act been amended since 1991 (circa)?

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  • @Pacha

    Will leave the prosecution of this matter to Bushie or Caswell who are more qualified to address than the lowly BU household, suffice to state some changes were made when the Financial Services Commission took the responsibility to regulate the credit unions instead of the Registrar of Cooperatives.

    http://www.fsc.gov.bb/index.php/credit-unions/legislation

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  • David

    I agree with you and Bushie,that it was a straight forward sale in order to get fx.

    The point has to be emphasised that nothing was done to retool Bim and create new avenues for fx earning…..I do not see Bim becoming a service economy as being creative.

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  • David

    Those changes seem to be around 2008; 2010/2011

    If these were the only changes there is a good possibility they came after OSA’s regime.

    And therefore show no seriousness by him

    That he maybe indeed a LIAR.

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  • Well Well & Consequences Observing Blogger

    https://www.barbadostoday.bb/2017/03/11/maloney-wants-greater-fiscal-incentives/

    Now the greedy Maloney and his backers are muscling their way to monopolize all the fiscal incentives. …because of the weak and incompetent Fruendel Stuart government.

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  • Well Well & Consequences Observing Blogger

    Where is Frustrated Businessman to fight this…

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  • @David at 10:02 AM re “Clearly the thrust of the BU posit as to the importance of a NATIONAL bank eludes you even with all the options mentioned you would seek to obfuscate the discussion. One strand of that importance is priceless -the fashioning of an identity of a people.”

    These debates devolve to the emotive always . You have an entrenched position on what you accept as the right path of “an identity of a people” – as is your pejorative – and any alternative position, regardless how carefully enunciated is harangued with emotive rhetoric rather than solid argumentation.

    My fundamental query to you still remains: what benefits accrued to the Bajan economy and society from public ownership of a ‘development bank’ that was NOT accruing or would not accrue in the long term with all the other financial players in the market? (Notwithstanding BushTea’s point that the sale was premised almost exclusively on Arthur sorely wanting the US $$ forex)

    We were well past any simplistic model of the original mandate of the BNB which as I recall was born out of earlier nation building development/funding initiatives.

    Many of its basic directives were being handled as well and better by others by the date stamp date of the sale. That’s clear. And this is no attempt to validate Arthur’s decision.

    Take the emotion out of it with your rhetoric about my clouding the issue. I am looking directly into the maelstrom of the financial realities of what was a very competitive and sophisticated financial market locally and regionally.

    The BNB could NOT have remained a single commercial bank entity and expect to remain viable in today’s banking industry UNLESS expectations were that it would continue to generate its comparatively ‘small’ profits ad infinitum…in short, operational change via merger or other method was needed to buttress its balance sheet and its continued growth on ROI as the local financial services market continued to expand and change.

    To re-litigate that decision now in light of the BNTCL or the EMERA matter and others with the simplistic perspective of off-loading a ‘national treasure’ is to conflate VASTLY different important matters. That senor is obfuscating!

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  • @Dee Word

    You persist?

    How does one compare a ‘development bank’ to a commercial ban being discussed in this context?

    Have you traveled through the Caribbean and observe the many indigenous banks?

    A big part of our problem is the lack of confidence to undertake any major initiative. How do you know a well run indigenous bank is not doable? Or a well run any thing for that matter.

    What emotional argument what!

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  • @David
    Spot on about the nepotism and mismanagement within Credit Unions, I said the same thing some months back.

    On the BNB “sale”, I think it made sense from a strategic perspective; however, the “sale” agreement should have had an iron clad clause safeguarding government’s fixed shareholdership in perpetuity and a national development/SME loan portfolio. I must note though that Bajans squandered a lot of small business development loans granted to them through various government lending schemes established to replace the BDB and BNB. You would be surprise at some of the persons that received loans and failed to pay back ONE cent.

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  • David

    It was pointed out recently by Dennis Johnson on Brasstacks that no regional banks existed other than RBTT.that what you had was foreign investors and he cited stanford in antigua and another in st.vincent would use indigenous names and open banks in the region.

    The regions strength lies in its credit unions who will come into their when most of the extra regional banks leave.

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  • Getting ready to march.

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  • Getting ready to march.

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  • And one wonders if the sale of BNB to Republic Bank, did not work out well for Trini businesses in Barbados.
    Deposit in Barbados , withdraw in Port of Spain.

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  • @Vincent

    Check this link out. Click under all the countries and then Barbados and report you findings.

    http://www.cab-inc.com/content_manager/members/index/1

    Like

  • Yes David I persist simply because I have traveled through the region – then, very extensively.

    Your argument is emotional because you speak of ‘development or national bank’ which in the 70’s had a very distinct and purposely intent.

    That those institutions then evolved into full-fledged ‘commercial banks’ competing in a developing (not nascent nation building ‘national/development’) stage is apparently being lost in your argument or you are inaccurately conflating the two.

    In Guyana, Jamaica, throughout the EC et al there was some bank institution with the term ‘National’ in its title. They basically all had the same original ethos of providing a financing support as the islands and their citizens came of age…to put in simply.

    Boss, that entire ethos and need changed circa 2000’s.

    If you can’t or don’t appreciate that players like NCB (Jamaica National Commercial Bank) and then moreso the T&T actors started to seek ownership stakes in SKNB (St Kitts), GNB (Grenada) and too GNCB & NBIC (Guyana) and so on, then let’s close out the debate.

    And by the way this happened all the way up to Belize and too overtures were made to the more nimble and healthier banks in the Bahamas and Bermuda too.

    And again I repeat, I make NO CASE for Arthur’s sale one way or other. Nor have I suggested at ANY point that a ‘well run indigenous bank is not doable’. How could I when they are so many throughout the region.

    I absolutely highlight however that your position should not be seen in some vacuum devoid of the oxygen of life: the entire financial market was changing dramatically in the region.

    So yes bro, I persist. Step off the emotive and nice sounding rhetoric and let’s get real.

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  • Violet Beckles CUP Plantation Deeds from 1926-2017 land tax bills and no Deeds,BLPand DLP Massive land Fruad and PONZI

    When Owen and Mia sold BNB so Sir Richard and Sir Charles run Ponzi Fraud with CLICO with Beatrice Henry Estate to Violet Beckles money from Barclays Bank/CIBC accounts and Plantation deeds.Owen and MIA sold TNT a dead Bank that could not get any new loans for Sir Cheltenham held all of the Plantation land deeds under Fraud, Mia and Owen was a Party to the crime.So the now down grade 18&19 on our way to 23 down grades.

    Like

  • David

    Could you send me a link with a listing of the shareholders as I am unable to find one.

    Like

  • Well Well & Consequences Observing Blogger

    Is any of this being tsught in the schools, all the last 2 generations have learned from the ministers of bith political parties is to sell off everything when the going gets rough….to acquire foreign exchange, no country can remain consistently progressive under those self defeating practices.

    I did not even know the history of BNB.

    “Republic Bank (Barbados) Limited, formerly Barbados National Bank Inc. was established in March 1978 following an amalgamation of three government owned financial institutions, namely Barbados Savings Bank which dates back to 1852, Sugar Industry Agricultural Bank and the National Housing Corporation (Public Officers Housing Loan Fund). In April 1978, the bank acquired the assets of Bank of America in Barbados.

    Following partial privatisation of the bank in 2000, the Government of Barbados sold 57% of its shareholding to Republic Bank Limited, Trinidad & Tobago. In 2003, Republic acquired additional shares to increase its shareholding to 65.13%. In 2013, Republic Bank acquired the remaining minority shares to increase its shareholding to the full 100%.

    The bank was officially rebranded as Republic Bank (Barbados) Limited in 2012. The bank has a staff complement in excess of (500) with its headquarters located at Independence Square, Bridgetown. Republic operates (10) branches strategically positioned across the island with two branches in the island’s capital Bridgetown as well as an extensive ATM network with (23) locations island-wide. The bank has one subsidiary – Republic Finance & Trust (Barbados) Corporation. Republic Bank’s vision is “To be the Caribbean Financial Institution of choice for our staff, customers and shareholders. We set the standard of excellence in customer satisfaction, employee engagement, social responsibility and shareholder value while building successful societies.” Its mission is “To provide Personalised, Efficient and competitively priced Financial Services and to Implement Sound Policies which will redound to the benefit of our Customers, Staff, Shareholders and the Communities we serve.”

    The bank’s core values are Customer Focus, Respect for the Individual, Integrity, Professionalism and Results Orientation. Republic Bank (Barbados) Limited is one of the largest banks in Barbados and as at September2013 had an asset base of US$1.13 billion”

    Like

  • Well Well & Consequences Observing Blogger

    BNB should never have been sold….never, Owen was just as weak as the present government, the leaders are all dressed up in these monkey suits in boiling tropical weather and have no strength of character, no survival instint…..no sense of protecting the people and future generations of the majority population….weaklings, that’s why 6 or 7 measly, greedy business people wreak havoc on the island.

    “Republic Bank (Barbados) Limited, formerly Barbados National Bank Inc. was established in March 1978 following an amalgamation of three government owned financial institutions, namely Barbados Savings Bank which dates back to 1852, Sugar Industry Agricultural Bank and the National Housing Corporation (Public Officers Housing Loan Fund). In April 1978, the bank acquired the assets of Bank of America in Barbados.”

    Like

  • But LOLLL…Mr Blogmaster I dun wid you and this… I just did a search on Arthur and ‘Barbados Development Bank’ to see if I could get a better handle on your rhetoric and was I astounded…. Not by you tho, but by Mr. Arthur. OMG…

    So you are on very solid ground. When is the last time anyone reread Orwell!…Or read a Yogi Berra quote like : It’s deja vu all-over again! SMH.

    Taken from: Loop News, March 9, 2016———

    Former Prime Minister Owen Arthur, whose administration oversaw the dismantling of the Barbados Development Bank in the 1990s, is now calling for such an institution to be re-established.

    Speaking in Parliament on Tuesday during debate on the Barbados Investment Development Corporation (Amendment) Bill, the now Independent MP said there is an urgent need for a specialised institution dealing with development financing to help build “new enterprise”.

    “I want to strongly suggest that there is a need for a new development institution; it should be properly capitalised. I believe that nobody could quarrel if the NIS was to make a substantial investment in it. I believe that the development institution should also capture the national service providers and that the private sector of Barbados should also see it as something that is critical.”
    

    Arthur said that the now defunct Barbados Development Bank was operating as a bankrupt institution and needed to be closed, but that his administration established Fund Access and the Enterprise Growth Fund as a first step.

    However, he says, it is time to move past that stage and implement a new source of development financing to help fund a new class of entrepreneurs, focusing on the people who have been made redundant in the public service and will not regain employment in that sector.

    He suggested that Government should create a database of such people and put them in contact with institutions that can give them the seed capital to become the “new entrepreneurs and industrialists of the future.”

    Is he fah real!

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  • I like to poull to the side and let stronger and faster horses run the race. But when I see something like this “the leaders are all dressed up in these monkey suits in boiling tropical weather and have no strength of character, no survival instinct…..no sense of protecting the people and future generations of the majority population” then i have to add my little bit…,

    Are you saying that the island is lead by a set of “empty suits”. Running here and there with attache cases, looking busy but without a clue? Our successes just like our failures is by chance. Shit may work out good or it may not?

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  • @Vincent

    Click this link under ‘About’. Besides Republic bank who owns/has interest in Grenada,Guyana and Suriname not sure of the others to which Dee Word referred.

    https://www.republictt.com

    Like

  • Well Well & Consequences Observing Blogger

    Exactly Gazer…and the chances of things working out good to benefit the majority population, well just say the odds are never in favor of the majority population, thanks to these arrogant, empty suits.

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  • David

    I saw enough to suggest to me that DJ was on point,that what we see as entities describing themselves as indigenous banks when due dilligence is done on the investor base are discovered to be fronts for foreign investors.

    Like

  • @Vincent

    You are entitled to your uninformed opinion.

    Like

  • LOL @ David
    You are entitled to your uninformed opinion.
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Boss, just cuss the man and dun wid dat! …Um is your blog.

    Ha ha ha …LOL
    Oh Shirt!!!

    Like

  • People seem to forget that under Owen Arthur locals were able to buy shares at$1.80.Under the DLP they were forced to sell their at $5.00 a loss of 50cents a share and did the DLP Goverment did with proceeds.Sink in the Paradise project which was privately owned.

    Like

  • Bush Tea March 11, 2017 at 8:49 PM #

    Chuckle…..so how come yuh ain beg the blog master to ban muh….

    David

    Until you can show me a link to the shareholders it is only obvious I will be uninformed…..so what is point of the statement?

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  • @Vincent

    What prevents you from clicking on the financials of the respective banks to check the information?

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  • @ Vincent
    What ban you what??!!
    …and miss out on Bushie’s daily LOL readings?
    Nothing more entertaining than listening to poor people discussing the business of banking and Credit Unions, ….and making money….

    Just trying to get the BU boss to free up and let go a few pips at yuh…. 🙂

    Like

  • David

    I gave it a try and could not get any further,hence my request that you share the actual data.

    Bushie

    Chuckle…..yuh means tuh sez dat yuh duz needs muh tuh kep yuh honest an lambase yuh tail weneber yuh steps outta line…..um allrite…..no prob.

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  • Disadvantaged:
    there is something wrong with the maths here:
    “…People seem to forget that under Owen Arthur locals were able to buy shares at$1.80.Under the DLP they were forced to sell their at $5.00 a loss of 50cents a share and did the DLP Goverment did with proceeds.Sink in the Paradise project which was privately owned.”

    If persons BOUGHT shares at $1.80 per share, but SOLD at $5.00 per share, then they would have profited by $3.20.00 per share. Thus if someone bought a thousand shares for $1800. 00 when they sold them they would have sold them for $5,000 and profited by $3.200. That is why a lot of people have difficulty understanding why people buy and sell shares.
    Share are supposed to be bought low and sold high.

    Like

  • You do not buy and sell shares like hot cakes. A better decision is to buy and hold. Lots of people buy and sell at the first opportunity, giving the big shareholders, institutions etc to accumulate their shareholdings.

    Like

  • Hal,
    “…You do not buy and sell shares like hot cakes…”
    What foolishness are you propounding? Why do people sell “short”?
    Shares are bought and sold as soon as the right profit; in the eye of the purchaser is reached. Shares (stocks) are commodities bought and sold (traded) sometimes changing hands before the payment for the first purchase is made. that is one of the bad things we were brought up to believe; buying and holding. The best purchase is to buy just before the payment of dividends and selling when the dividends are paid out. What do you want to “hold” for if you are a small investor? Big companies buy and hold long term investments for specified periods, because the interest periods are specified in the debenture or treasury terms. If I buy ten thousand in shares of Banks and Amber purchase a large block and want to purchase my shares; at a higher price; especially if there is a bidding war going on, what do I want to keep those shares for? Just to say I have shares in Banks? Best to sell, make a profit, and use the profit to invest further.

    Like

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