Financial Services Commission Issues Cease Trade Order on Government Securities

avinash_persaud

Avinash D. Persaud, Chairman of the FSC (?)

The decision by the Financial Services Commission (FSC) to suspend trading in government securities effective 5 July 2018, although routine based on government’s decision to default on debt, the implications will not be. If the unconfirmed news that Avinash Persaud is the Chairman of the FSC, it is understandable why Prime Minister Mia Mottley prefers a team player. The blogmaster understands the routine of the changing of the Boards once a new government or Minister takes charge although there is nothing that would have prevented his reappointment.

116 thoughts on “Financial Services Commission Issues Cease Trade Order on Government Securities


  1. Is there no opinion as to whether the blog owner thinks it is a good decision to drop Jeff and put Avinash.

    Yes we understand the team player bit mentioned but I expected some more in this article .For example what role its expected that Persaud will play there in this current environment.

    Perhaps a little more info on the implications of suspending trading in govt securities etc.


    • Jeff was the chairman of the FTC and board member of the FSC. The error was corrected. Regarding your point about giving an opinion on the matter, sometimes the preference is to solicit opinions from the BU family.


  2. On another note I am so pleased to see that the prime minister is going to hold disccussions with the commercial banks about a number of national concerns.

    She mentioned mortgage hardship and delinquency and delisting.I hope she also address the matter of unreasonable fees, these low or almost non existentinterest payments,and other unilateral – one sided decisions taken by these banks.

    Perhaps its time to look at an empowering an entity other than the Fair trading to work on behalf of the customers and can impose strong penalties where there is a breach.

    I feel Mia is best placed to deal with this issue and will get the support of the banks since we know the private sector worked hard to ensure her victory and cannot be seen to be undermining her now.

    I trust that she dialogues with the officers at the Fair Trading and get a report from them detailing the various issues raised by the public against these banks.

    I totally support her in this move if its going to bring positive change.

    These are some of the low hanging fruits that can be dealt with early on and which will impact the ordinary citizen.


  3. There is another NEW Minister – senator Kay Mcconney – minister of Science,Innovation and Smart Technology.

    So why do we need a tsar or consultant in Smart Technology – with Analee Babb?


  4. @Blogmaster
    “The blogmaster understands the routine of the changing of the Boards once a new government or Minister takes charge although there is nothing that would have prevented his reappointment”

    What has the former Chairman of the FSC done to distinguish himself in the position? To take the FSC forward? To enable innovation?To protect Bajan consumers? To make Barbados more competitive as an offshore jurisdiction? To introduce cutting edge products ?

    Although legal input is necessary, financial regulation is less about “lawyer thinking” and more about “financial market participant thinking”. Enough with the paper pushing lawyer types.

    There are too many lawyers in important positions in Barbados. Many times [not always] they add very little value.

    A. Dullard


  5. “What has the former Chairman of the FSC done to distinguish himself in the position? To take the FSC forward?…..”

    A. Dullard

    Was Jeff Cumberbatch chairman of the FTC or the FSC…..or BOTH?

    However, I agree with your above comment.

    And I also believe the concerns raised by David BU, and are likely to be raised by others, relative to (non) reappointment of Jeff Cumberbatch….. may be perhaps based on sentimental reasons (i.e. Jeff posts his weekly articles and is a regular contributor to BU)…..

    ……rather than the right of the PM to choose her own team……as is the normal practice when there’s a change of administration or minister.

    To be CONSISTENT and FAIR……similar concerns should also be raised, for example, for the replacement of former DLP candidate for the City and chairman of the Transport Authority, Abdul Pandor, (purposely mentioned), with Ian Estwick…..

    …….or the replacement of several other former chairmen and board members identified in the recently announced changes in the hierarchy of the other SOE.

    And in all fairness, then we should laud government for the reappointment of Dr. Justin Robinson to the Board of the Barbados Central Bank.


  6. David BU

    I went on the site and I noticed a usual occurrence.

    Have you ever noticed that the only island in the Caribbean island many of these international “agencies” include in their listings is Jamaica?


  7. @ David and Artax

    Fair enough re chairmanship of FSC vs FTC.

    But the points stand that (1) whomever was in charge, the FSC has done a poor job. (2) The non-renewal of Mr Cumberbatch’s contract should be no surprise. (3) To many non-performing lawyers in critical positions when perhaps an accountant or engineer or carpenter may be a better option.


    • Not sure what you want the FSC to do given the resources available to it.

      @Artax

      Yes, observed same, sometimes there is Trinidad and Bahamas.


  8. “To many non-performing lawyers in critical positions when perhaps an accountant or engineer or carpenter may be a better option….”

    A. Dullard

    Interesting observation.

    The Director of the Financial Intelligence Unit is a lawyer.

    “In fact,” the last time I checked, the prerequisite qualification for appointment to that Unit, is a law degree.

    And given the mandate of the Unit, there aren’t any accountants or even a forensic accountant among the employees.


  9. “Not sure what you want the FSC to do given the resources available to it.”
    How about doing its job?

    Come on Blogmaster that is a cheap cop out. It is not a question of resources but of allocation of available resources i.e the long time Bajan disease of square pegs in round holes.

    Have you ever noticed that the only island in the Caribbean island many of these international “agencies” include in their listings is Jamaica/ Trinidad/ Bahamas?

    Many Bajans tend to be too inward looking. Plus, many are happy to just sit in a position and not keep up with/ engage the outside for the benefit of the island.


  10. “There are too many lawyers in important positions in Barbados. Many times [not always] they add very little value.”

    Like the one they just appointed as the Chairman of the Transport Board. A complete waste. More bull shit.


  11. Trump is now threatening to impose tariffs on ALL Chinese imports. If this happens and China calls in its US debt, what will happen?Will Barbados be safe?


  12. A. Dullard,

    It is called regulatory incompetence. We always put square pegs in round holes. Our administrative class is grossly incompetent – but of course they all have degrees from Cave Hill and shiny suits from Cave Shepherd and high-performance cars from Simpson’s and, of course, they punch above their weight. In the real world it is called delusion.


  13. One of the highlights of the IMF report was the gap in resources and expertise required by the FSC to supervise the industry. Especially a company like Sagicor given is complexity

    C’mon David.
    There is a resource gap, yes but that’s not the key issue. Why is it there? The gap did not materialize from thin air. It is there because of poor management i.e square peg-round hole and can be fixed with better management.
    There is already the expertise in Bdos that can vastly improve the FSC tomorrow if the government wants. Financial regulation is not rocket science. The best regulators come from industry. Why not hire people from there instead of from the pen pushing civil servant pool? This happens all the time in more forward thinking jurisdictions.

    A. Dullard


  14. @ Artax
    “In fact,” the last time I checked, the prerequisite qualification for appointment to that Unit, is a law degree.
    And given the mandate of the Unit, there aren’t any accountants or even a forensic accountant among the employees.

    Yup. Makes no sense at all.


  15. On another point. LED management has forward a concern and the possibilty of not having money upfront to buy product out of the Canadian market
    Hus concern being that barbados default might be a cause for the tightening around the nooze if barbados businesses


  16. Seems like we are all between a rock and a hard place, the first world countries too, although they have some more padding on their economic bones, so they might not yet feel the squeeze as much as some other less well off or diverse economies do.

    Viktor Shvets: ‘The Private Sector Will Never Recover’

    Do you feel something is wrong with the United States and the global economy? Despite a respectable recovery and low unemployment, many people aren’t happy with their current economic situation or their outlook for the future. From rising prices for basic necessities or schooling, to harsh competition and low pay for lower income jobs, to negative interest rates—the poor and the middle class all have their problems to deal with.

    Experts in the government and central banks are trying to manage a suboptimal situation but cannot isolate the problem, let alone offer solutions. Or maybe they know what’s wrong but don’t want to talk about it because the truth is too shocking.

    Enter Viktor Shvets, the global strategist of the investment bank Macquarie Group. He not only dares to think outside the box but also isn’t afraid to openly voice his opinions, which are fascinating and shocking at the same time.

    The private sector will never recover, it will never multiply money again,” he told Epoch Times. His main theme is the “declining return on humans,” which means that in today’s digital world, normal humans don’t grow productivity fast enough to justify more jobs and higher wages as the machines are taking over.

    “There is no productivity on a global basis. Secular stagnation, technological shifts, monetary policy, all are suppressing productivity growth rates,” he said. But what about technology making humans more productive? Shvets says this was true in the first and second industrial revolution, when displaced jobs, such as the horse-cart driver, eventually morphed into higher-tech and higher-productivity ones, like the taxi driver.

    However, in this, the third industrial revolution, machines are not augmenting humans, they are replacing them. The self-driving car will completely eliminate the driver. And even in the previous, more-mechanical industrial revolutions, it often took decades for productivity growth to recover and for jobs to come back, and only after higher-productivity sectors dominated the majority of the economy.

    And not only lower-skilled jobs like taxi drivers are threatened. Just look at the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, where you can barely see a human specialist trader anymore. The machines in New Jersey have taken over the trading.

    https://www.theepochtimes.com/viktor-shvets-the-private-sector-will-never-recover_2143386.html?utm_expvariant=D001_01&utm_expid=21082672-11.b4WAd2xRR0ybC6ydhoAj9w.1&utm_referrer=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.blacklistednews.com%2F_A_Gold_Standard_%2522Comes_After_War%252C_Not_Before%2522_Macquarie_Warns_%2522The_Private_Sector_Will_Never_Recover%2522%2F53678%2F0%2F38%2F38%2FY%2FM.html


  17. ” FIRSTCaribbean International Bank (FCIB) has realised an 18 per cent increase in profits for the second quarter of its 2018 financial year.

    The Bank’s Chief Executive Officer, Gary Brown, has reported that FCIB recorded a net profit of $43.9 million for the period ended April 30, 2018, compared to $37.2 million for the corresponding period a year ago.”


  18. Quoted
    “The private sector will never recover, it will never multiply money again,” he told Epoch Times. His main theme is the “declining return on humans,” which means that in today’s digital world, normal humans don’t grow productivity fast enough to justify more jobs and higher wages as the machines are taking over.”

    I truly hope the trade unions are paying attention to this. The world of work as we know it is about to change bout hay.

    I do believe that MAM is serious about remaking the way Barbados operates ,but i am no so sure her vision will be very compatible with the current trade union ethos that we have come to embrace.


  19. @ Blogmaster
    Why did Randy Graham leave the FSC?
    Another manager exited in recent weeks, why?

    I do not know. Please enlighten me.

    PS: You know the old saying about monkeys, peanuts and pay right?

    A. Dullard


    • @A. Dullard

      It goes back to issue of resources discussed earlier? Can the FSC compete against the pay scale of the private sector to win the expertise that you suggested is available in the private sector?


  20. @ Hants at 10 :18 AM

    Noted.

    Is FCIB’s increase in profits a good thing or bad thing for the economy of Barbados?

    Did you note which assets yielded these increases in profit?

    Is this level of profit sustainable?

    Why was the attempt to float the shares on the US stock exchange withdrawn despite this profit performance?

    Man, spin me a more interesting story nuh.


  21. Is there no opinion as to whether the blog owner thinks it is a good decision to drop Jeff and put Avinash.

    Note that I was merely a Commissioner of the FSC and not Chairman of the Board of the Commissioners. That was Sir Frank Alleyne. I was Chairman of the FTC!


  22. Answered the first submission in limine and so missed your subsequent clarification, David. Thanks!


  23. @ Dullard at 10 :57 AM

    I know for sure Randy Graham is no monkey. I do not know whether he is allergic to peanuts. And I doubt that he is motivated by pay alone.

    Highly qualified persons change jobs for various reasons including job satisfaction. Money is not everything.


  24. @ David BU

    There is a growing tendency in this country to retain institutions long after the purpose for which they were designed and established has past or no longer relevant.

    There is also a tendency to introduce new institutions from other places to our environment that are not relevant.
    We need to spend more time in thinking through what it is we are trying to achieve .
    Did we really need all of these SOEs that we setup in the past 30 years?


  25. @ Dullard at 11:37 AM

    I am not the brightest in BU. I have a tendency to miss points. Mr. Dullard what is the point that I missed?


  26. This article is about Bizzy Williams’ contribution to a policy initiative…..

    ……as usual the political operatives have managed to change the focus of the discussion to suit there political agenda.


  27. So how interesting that THE same gawd flies that lambasted Bizzy for ten years now finds bizzy input to be of interst to them and their party
    Remember Red jet

    Gawd i am dizzy


  28. @ Codrington
    “Mr. Dullard what is the point that I missed?”

    Let me show you. You seem slow.

    I know for sure Randy Graham is no monkey. I do not know whether he is allergic to peanuts. And I doubt that he is motivated by pay alone. Highly qualified persons change jobs for various reasons including job satisfaction. Money is not everything.

    All irrelevant nonsense.

    You read my comment “PS: You know the old saying about monkeys, peanuts and pay right?” and inferred your bollocks above but if you grasped the context of my exchange with the Blogmaster you would understand that I meant just the opposite.

    You are very honest when you state “I am not the brightest in BU. I have a tendency to miss points.”


  29. @ Dullard at 11: 51 AM

    You got that right . I rate honesty very highly. Effective communication very often involves being on the same wave length. Obviously ,the point of the message was not meant for me.

    Thank you all the same.


  30. @ Bernard Codrington
    “I rate honesty very highly.” As do I — but I also rate looking before leaping. The final word is yours.

    A. Dullard


  31. “Did we really need all of these SOEs that we setup in the past 30 years?”

    Mr. Codrington

    The answer is NO!!

    Owen Arthur closed the Housing Welfare Section of the National Assistance Board (NAB) to establish the ineffective Urban and Rural Development Commissions (UDC & RDC).

    The NHC, UDC, RDC and NAB provide similar services and could be amalgamated.

    How effective is the FSC? What changes in policy has it implemented as a result of lessons learnt from CLICO and Sagicor relocating to Bermuda?

    How effective is the FTC, especially if one takes into consideration its limitations as it relates to certain consumer matters, which are referred to the Office of Public Counsel?

    One of the responsibilities of Transport Authority is to issue PSV permits. Could the Transport Board not be amalgamated with the TA?


    • Clearly the Supervisor of Insurane and Rigistrar is Cooperatives were ineffective. A change had to be made.


  32. Why was RedJet mentioned?

    It is interesting to note that airline commenced operations on May 10, 2011 and ceased operations on June 8, 2012.


  33. Possibly the question is…..why did it take a month after the GoB’s selective default, to issue a Cease Trading order? Why didn’t the BSE cease trading immediately? Not much trades in this market anyways.
    The BSE is another behemoth of an organization. The costs to trade on it are astronomical. And given all the recent listing defections without replacements, it must lose money? I would guess its primary revenue is from are called “put throughs”.


  34. @ Artax at 12:27 PM

    I agree with you. GOB would cut Public expenditure by a significant amount by rationalizing these SOEs along the lines you have suggested. This would not necessarily lead to lay offs. Some of the senior officers can opt for early retirement; some can be offered suitable jobs in the Public service; others because of their expertise will find similar jobs in the Private sector.
    The younger ones are re-trainable for the New Economy which is evolving as we type.

    There is a high level of attrition in the Public and Private Sectors. The aging population syndrome is impacting these sectors despite raising the age of retirement. We just need to do the maths and schedule the retrenchment accordingly.


  35. “This would not necessarily lead to lay offs. Some of the senior officers can opt for early retirement; some can be offered suitable jobs in the Public service; others because of their expertise will find similar jobs in the Private sector.”

    Mr. Codrington

    I agree wholeheartedly with your suggestions and was about to mention some of them in a subsequent post.

    It is also ironic that Lynette Eastmond and the UPP articulated similar policies in their manifesto.

    However, I believe your comments definitely require further discussion.


    • The issue of retirement (early) bring us to the vexing issue of pensions and rising pension expense in a market where rate of return is low made worse by an ageing population.


  36. @BC
    I appreciate the SOE rationalization.
    I am confused as to how one CUTS expenditure, by re-posting within the public service?
    The ‘early retirement’ scenario, and switch to the Private Sector, does impact the expenses, while at the same time switching some from one expense account line entry to another? I am led to believe the Public Service does not have a formal pension body, they are funded out of what Barbados calls ‘the current account’. Is this true for the SOE’s as well?


  37. Northern Observer at 1: 07 PM

    A very insightful submission. One that PUDYR would be proud of.

    As I would have mentioned in previous submissions there was no significant market in either bonds (stocks) and shares to justify the BSE’s establishment. It is a failed experiment. No fault of staff or the GoB.

    Investors held GoB bonds to maturity and rolled them over at maturity. GoB credit reputation was AAA. We always repaid our debts.
    There was little trading in shares. The original owners of the companies did not wish to dilute ownership. What little trading there was, was done on private put throughs …where the buyer was pre-approved. They were mostly pension funds ,insurance companies and investment managers. etc.


  38. @ Northern at 1 :45 PM

    Most SOEs would have had their own pension schemes. After 1975 an integrated pension scheme would have come into place. Integrated in the sense of transferring pensions to the National Pension Scheme. Private pension schemes where they existed would reduce their pensions by the NIS component. Short answer :they should not be a charge on the Consolidated Funds of G o B.


  39. @ Artax July 20, 2018 12:27 PM

    Not a word on the future of CBC? On this IMF- controlled-restructuring occasion around the State will be forced to get this politically-partisan propaganda monkey of its back.

    What about the BADMC and the other state agencies involved in the agricultural sector?
    Given the parlous state of agriculture in Barbados can a good case be made out to justify the continuing existence of these parasitic State-owned and managed organizations which operate more like fiscal pests than agricultural enablers?

    The divestment of the BWA would make good commercial sense with the credit unions ‘targeted’ as one of the big recipients of a real good investment opportunity.

    What we need to see in order to make informed decisions about the future of these SOEs is the report which commissioned since December 2013.

    How many of these SOEs have up-to-date financials? For that reason alone they ought to be closed down immediately in order to get rid of the calcified management; even if some important functions have to be carried out under some other more efficient’ entity in the same public sector or outsourced to the private sector.


  40. @ David BU

    I cannot speak specifically on any one institution’s pension scheme/arrangement. The staff of each institution would have been informed by their Human resource about their pension arrangements.
    Some people might be able to draw two pensions…NIS and private pensions .
    The integrated model would be the mode.


  41. @BC
    you would appear to be suggesting, this common notion of “offering shares to the public” in the transformation of certain entities is a waste of time and money. That beyond BMLAS where the ‘policyholders were the owners’, Bajans prefer to keep their money in bank accounts. I was “told” that post de-mutualization, many sold off their new shares, as they now could monetize value instantly versus the former situation.
    Certainly the existence of the BSE hasn’t lured large private operations to “go public”. And even those already public appear to have some inconsistent strategies. I see GEL had a 4:1 split, for stated reasons (affordability) that seem to run counter to their large share buy-backs in recent years. As long as the BSE fees are such, buying shares in small quantities makes no sense.
    Thoughts on a Caribbean Stock Exchange?


  42. While the only connection with the issue that I am blogging in this submission is that in the case of Barbados, our Luminary Jeff Cumberbatch served on both the FTC and the FSC and would hope that the article would be accepted in that light.

    I would like to remark on the detail related to the practical operations of our FTC specifically regarding their dissemination policy and practice.

    De ole man like he fixated on Jamaica causing I does use dem in everyting nowadays. e.g. the Integrity Legislation fiasco dat going on in barbados under Mia’s version of the 1933 enabling act

    For ease of reference take a look at

    https://www.ftc.gov.bb/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=19&Itemid=46

    and then look at

    https://jftc.gov.jm/enforcement/judgments/

    or

    https://jftc.gov.jm/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/Case-No.-6529-Tank-Weld-Metals-Limited.pdf

    What will be evident as you review the materials disseminated by our local FTC and that of the Jamaican counterpart is that, in addition to the fact that they seem to believe in Freedom of Information (notwithstanding a few redactions) over the same ten year period they have matters by a range of consumers both individuals and corporate entities.

    While our FTC ent got one case NOT ONE EFFING CASE which mean dat dere is no consumers with any matters against any entity dem does monitor OR INCREDULOUSLY not one case in all dem years EVAH met the means test to become a matter of public record

    But den again with all de Samsung Galaxy phones dat get share way and the family plans (Jeff you is a man of integrity so you ent get any) we can understand why there were no matters or decisions on thier records


  43. @ the Honourable Blogmaster your assistance with an article comparing the FOIA practices of the FTC in Barbados and that of Jamaica sole HCF (highest common Factor with FSC being Mr. Jeff Cumberbatch)


  44. What next for Avinash? Deputy Prime Minister? There is a certain preoccupation with this gentleman. Earned alot from that Paradise project but delivered nothing for the people of Barbados. He is a debt restructuring consultant; a consultant on IMF negotiations. What next?


  45. @TI
    the last administration changed the rules, and allowed Banks to set the interest rates. The reason for this, is by allowing those rates to slide down, it made the GoB rate on its fixed income instruments look very good. The objective was to entice Barbadians to move money from Bank Accounts into GoB instruments, withOUT GoB having to offer 8% or more. It didn’t work very well. Reverse the rules, and the savings rates will rise again.


    • @Northern Observer and A Dullard

      Barbados from all reports seem to have a preference for defined benefit plans compared to contributions. Do we agree?


  46. “The divestment of the BWA would make good commercial sense with the credit unions ‘targeted’ as one of the big recipients of a real good investment opportunity.”

    Miller

    I don’t believe the BWA should be privatised. That’s just MY opinion.

    The reality of the situation is both BLP and DLP administrations did not have any definitive water resources plans or policies for the BWA, but continued to blame each other for it reoccurring failures.

    The former Owen Arthur led BLP administration brokered a questionable deal with Bizzy Williams re the desalination plant in Spring Garden and the former inept DLP administration idea of modernizing the Authority, was to build a new headquarters, under questionable circumstances, which will continue to cost taxpayers millions of dollars for a number of years.

    Management was also another failure as well as the intervention of the trade unions that “sanctioned” some unnecessary and unreasonable overtime related expenses.

    Can you imagine that “burst pipes” are allowed run, wasting gallons of water, because employees see this as an opportunity to earn overtime, which they also seem to believe is an entitlement?

    And I even bother to comment on David Estwick abysmal tenure as minister responsible for the Authority and Atlee Brathwaite who was rewarded for his ineptitude as chairman, by having some section of the new headquarters named after him.

    All the BWA requires is proper management.


  47. Can you see changes coming at VOB? Was that not a “the grab” of a drowning man …David Ellis and the PM’s interview? Who got the most direct camera shots? Moreover, “down-to-brass-tacks” the day after, was all centred around the “drowning man”. Haynes Darlington.P.S. Put this on the back burner, please. At Harvard we call it “The Peter Principle” . Reaching the level of incompetence. 


  48. “A defined-benefit plan is an employer-sponsored retirement plan where employee benefits are computed using a formula that considers several factors, such as length of employment and salary history.”@$$|$|€$|||&|&&&||&|&&s||||&333


    • You continue to make your self an ass on the blog. Clearly the original comment dropped the word benefit and it was subsequently clarified . You carry on smartly. Have the last word.


  49. I do not believe ‘benefit’ was dropped. It is typical of the nonsense you say when you intervene in discussions you know nothing about. I can easily mention others. Then you often add to this by backing people who have got things wrong. You set the standards.


  50. ” Chief of Staff of the Barbados Defence Force (BDF), Colonel Glyne Grannum, said the 958 Series patrol craft was a gift from the People’s Republic of China.”


  51. David BU

    While reading through, I realized a one of the usual sarcastic questions was asked and you guys deliberately ignored it.

    But could we not describe the method government uses to calculate and payment of pensions to retired “appointed” civil servants as based on similar principles of the “defined benefits” method?


    • @Artax

      This buffoon has no idea the work required on the blog. He is of the view we are all retired like he his with time on our hands. We all make errors in scribing comments, however, meaning can be gleaned from context. When the error was made Northern Observer chimed in and added that there is also defined contributions. The point is that if he meant well he would have clarified and added to the discussion. Instead his Rh purpose on the blog, and a few others, is to embarrass the blogmaster et al every opportunity he gets.

      We have discussed this matter before on a blog dealing with the Appropriations Bill. The blogmaster thought it useful to raise it here given that oversight of pensions fall under the responsibility of the FSC.


    • @Artax

      The blogmaster is no actuary. We know that pension management is a complex business. What we know is that this is a matter that requires some attention for the several reasons discussed on the blog and others posted.


  52. It is your way of hitting back for your usual ignorance of discussions you always intervene with no proper understanding. A Bajan tantrum. You do it almost every day. One of the weakest, if not the weakest, contributors on BU.


  53. David BU

    I believe you made a simple mistake.

    But they are some people who believe they are perfect, know everything and cannot make mistakes.


  54. Barbados Coast Guard to the rescue.

    ” After being stranded at sea for more than five hours, hundreds of passengers aboard the MV Dream Chaser returned to land just after 7 a.m. today.

    ” Two Coast Guard vessels and the Jolly Roger offered assistance.”


  55. @NorthernObserver
    I look forward to your comments on BSE, but they are too terse and intermittent. Perhaps, you can give us a post on this. It may not get many comments, but it would be appreciated and enjoyed.

    BSE is a site that I visit often, but hesitate to wet my beak. I often wonder how with so few transactions how brokers make money.

    A chance to educate.


  56. It is obvious that five years of this govt is going to stretch David nerves to the limit
    His obvious attacks are the warning signs
    Now if a contributor cannot asked a simple question without being a ” buffoon” it goes to the mindset of the person lashing (out ) undergoing unbearable stress and may indeed needs time for a long vacation
    David has left his blp yardfowl feathers scattered all over Bu and his alligence seems to be more in allignment to protect this govt from crticism a govt who has placed barbados in a perilous state of social dislocation


  57. How is it that Mia is reaching out to the business sector when certain sectors are looking for solutions for them having to get credit funding for goods being bought in Canada.
    This PR gimmick by Mottley can only gi so far when the realities of the default hits all in the pocket
    People are screaming about the Banks fees but what can be considered is that govt debt default in some way might have been involved in the decision making


  58. @ Hal
    @David BU

    Most of us come on the Blog to exchange ideas,get information and to learn. There is no harm in not knowing. The harm comes when we know that we know not and pretend that we do.
    For most of us our ego is not tied up with our ignorance. Ignorance cannot define who we are ; but to remain ignorant will.We are all grown men and we will make errors. Some times ,especially on this blog, the precursive coding over-corrects.

    But as David says, very often we know what the blogger intends from the context.


  59. @ David July 21, 2018 8:02 AM

    You are being rather ‘magnanimously reserved’ in describing that blindingly perfect ass of a schoolmarm whose pedantic nitpicking attitude leaves all to be expected of a pure poor black Johnny giving perfect meaning to the old Bajan that a likcle leaning is a dangerous thing.

    We can only assume he is rehearsing on BU to be the perfect Bajan-Limey replacement in the double act of Statler and Waldorf.

    That pure-bred idiot knows exactly what was meant; but being a fallen star of a seasoned certified financial journalist around which every planet of knowledge once revolved he, as usual, tried to play the puerile game of one-upmanship.

    Bush Tea warned us long ago about Shallow Hal’s antecedents stretching back to his Billy Bunter school days. Now what else could Bush Tea add in trying to “define” this curmudgeon of risible character?


  60. Generally this is a good blog. The level of tolerance is very high. Let us cut out the one -up-man-ship games.


    • @Bernard

      To add a little more to you comment. We have many highly qualified BU commenters that water down comments posted to protect their identities.


  61. Amm just like Mia is stretching to connect bajans to a culture which involves drug king pins known as Bounty Hunters which Mia seems to show affection and most comfortable to be in their company


  62. I cannot understand the ignorance of BU bloggers about the various pension plans in general use today and in the past. Older generation employees generally enjoyed DEFINED BENEFIT PENSION PLANS(DBPP) and the newer generation Emplyees DEFINED CONTRIBUTION BENEFIT PLANS(DCBP). The DBPP of old were good employee plans and were generally indexed, payouts were geared to inflation. These plans have generally fallen out of favour in recent years due to inflationary costs, employees living longer, return on investment opportunities and the fact the employer is ultimately responsible to keep the plan viable. The newer DCPP can also be good for employees, however their optional participation in the plan must be dedicated. The plan is organized such that payouts are solely based on amount of funds in the plan and the investment of these funds. The employer is not responsible financially for the viability of the plan in the long term.

    DBPP is generally used for GOB plans and is integrated with NIS payouts, these type plans demand dedicated seperate management and investment by the employer to ensure the plan is viable in the long term. These plans typically have thier own identified accounts and are not integrated into general government revolving funds as is the case in Barbados. The consequences of this is that your pension plan is now subject the defaults risk of the sovergien state finances. If the state finances fail the your pension plan also fails.


  63. Given the frequency of your contributions, “It is obvious that five years of this govt is going to stretch your nerves to the limit.”

    Your fascination with Mia Mottley is uncanny. I’m wondering if the main Mariposa character is Maureen Holder.

    Wuh, shiite, when Mottley was Opposition Leader, she was living in your head, rent free.

    Now she has become Prime Minister, based on the amount of posts you dedicate to her, repeatedly with the same criticisms contained therein, irrespective of if the article focuses on government……

    ……is a clear indication that you GRANTED Mottley PERMANENT RESIDENCE STATUS in your head.


  64. My understanding is that persons who joined the public service after 1975 are entitled to a NIS pension only. And that GOB, like the private sector, is responsible for paying to the NIS GoB employer’s contribution plus the employees’ contribution which it deducts.

    Public pensions should no longer be a charge on the GoB’s Consolidated Fund.

    A problem can only arise if the GoB does not shoulder its fiduciary responsibilities. In fact if it does not, it will put employees in the Private Sector pensions at risk also.

    In passing the NIS is a defined benefit pension plan. The pension employs a formula similar to the former public pension scheme.

    Of course demographic changes can endanger or enhance the NIS scheme. A factor alluded to by David BU. Remember the Guyanese migrants that were sent back home ?


  65. @ Artax July 21, 2018 5:49 AM
    “Can you imagine that “burst pipes” are allowed run, wasting gallons of water, because employees see this as an opportunity to earn overtime, which they also seem to believe is an entitlement?
    And I even bother to comment on David Estwick abysmal tenure as minister responsible for the Authority and Atlee Brathwaite who was rewarded for his ineptitude as chairman, by having some section of the new headquarters named after him.
    All the BWA requires is proper management.”

    Artax, you have argued a seemingly convincing case to protect the BWA from divestment (to use a politically acceptable word as opposed to the more politically charged one of ‘Privatization’).

    But in so presenting your case to defend the current status f ownership you have unwittingly submitted more than sufficient evidence for change in the ownership, managerial and operational status of the BWA.

    It is precisely because of stark political interference in the day-to-day management and its woefully incompetent and unprofessional management that the BWA has to face the music of change.
    And it has to be done either under an ‘agreed’ proactive divestment programme or be forced to do just that; and if further delayed, most likely, under the aegis of a foreign entity for a mess of forex to keep Barbados afloat until the next wave of hunger to feed the beast of conspicuous consumption or pay off foreign debts.

    The divestment of the BWA- like the rest of utilities on the Island- has been a long-time ‘request’ of the IMF to improve operational efficiency and facilitate a wider (comprehensive) programme of economic restructuring.

    Why do you think the BWA was placed (as a token compromise to the IMF) under the FTC on the same footing as the other now foreign-owned utilities except the Natural Gas Corporation (for the time being)?

    That is what is called preparing the ‘divestment’ wicket for private sector players to bowl and bat on with the FTC being the umpire.

    On this pending occasion of the IMF’s involvement in setting the fiscal rules before you can get balance of payments support there is no escaping the inevitable divestment of the supply of water and the management of sewage and waste-both liquid and solid.

    That, for sure, must represent a major part of the new administration’s three-part programme to save Barbados fiscal heart attack and economic implosion.

    PM MAM could dipsy-doodle, hop and skip around the inevitable ‘divestment’ of the BWA as much as she could try to do; but just like the rest of the SOEs, its days are numbered given its indebtedness and management paralysis in spite of the recent physical reenergizing of the standard operating tank cleaning and maintenance routine.


  66. @ Miller at 11:09 AM

    You are providing a lot of food for thought. You are seeing farther down the road than most of us. I hope the powers that be re-engineer the management of BWA with the same level of success as they did the tank at the Bridgetown Sewerage Plant.

    Should this not be done toute de suite , I know who to blame for our recolonization.


  67. Miller

    I agree that some SOE should be privatised, but they are others that should remain government controlled…..and I believe BWA is one.

    The time has come for political parties to an end to recruiting the proverbial “square pegs in round holes.”

    The former inept DLP administration appointed a bank loans officer to manage the Transport Board, a mobile phone salesman is overseeing the BWA; a trade unionist is director of UDC, the more qualified individual to manage the BRA was reported to receiving a salary while at home and a lawyer is director of the Financial Intelligence Unit…… these are just a few examples of “square pegs.”

    SOE are more or less quasi government, and similar to the private sector individuals with requisite qualifications and experience should be recruited to manage these entities and their contracts should be tied to productivity, rather on than the politician you know or the party you support.

    If this was the case, Sandra Forde would have probably lasted at TB for 6 months….but she is/was a secretary of the DLP, and this was probably her “pass go and collect $200” card.

    Management and productivity.


  68. And therein comes the conundrum

    We, rather you the BU commentators, even with the Anonymice Names, fear being fully open CAUSE WUNNA HAVE TO KEEP WUNNA MOUT CLOSED else feel the wrath of the Night of the Long Knives.

    So you are entrapped in your substantive jobs because you cannot speak out about the wrongs OR THE INEFFICIENCIES cause wunna fear de bosses buth then wunna rushing home at 4.30 cause wunna asses fraid of being outside after 6 when the street lamps come on and the other criminals killing wunna in the streets and at the ATMs.

    So what is de difference between wunna and de ole man dat got he acting so sanctiminous and talking big and powerful?

    It is the realization and full acceptance of who I am and what is my purpose and my destiny.

    I am a poor black man whose purpose is to give of himself to his country and is destined to die at a time appointed by My Creator.

    Fumbles, nor Stinkliar, Nor Dale Teets not Mia Mottley DOES NOT CONTROL DAT.

    The only way that we can change this is by DEMANDING MORE OF OUR SO CALLED LEADERS.

    If dem is teifing AND YOU GOT THE CONTENTS OF DEM HARD DRIVE TO SHOW DAT DEM IS TEIFS let them know it, after you send de spreadsheets/contents to a safe place of course.

    This ransom of the citizens HAS TO STOP, wunna gots to do wunna job dat you getting $17,000 a month to do.

    My grandson already has a Stoopid Poster mek up for Gline Clarke RH for his brilliant HoA speech and when he get home later today after Pudding and Souse he say he gine send it to de ole man and I gine share it with wunna so that wunna can whatsapp it to wunna friends to show the absolute gratitude of this MIA CARES TEAM MEMBER who in 50 something days want a pay raise WHILE DE CUNTRY IN DE EFFING HANDS OF THE IMF.

    I would fire his scvunt immediately effing i was Mia.

    I would mek and example uh he

    Steupseee


  69. @ David BU at11:57 AM

    I recognize this. That is why I expect a higher level of engagement / argumentation; and not the reductio ad hominem that surface from time to time.


  70. “the reductio ad hominem that surface from time to time” ARE REQUIRED WHEN PEOPLE COME HERE CLAIMING TO BE PELLUCIDLY CLEAR ABOUT THINGS THEY DONT KNOW ANYTHING, AND THEN SUGGESTING THAT OTHERS ARE IGNORANT OF THE SAME MATTERS, of WHICH THEY, AS EXPERTS, ARE REALLY TRULY PELLUCIDLY CLEAR ABOUT.ah lie? .


  71. So de grandson come home and do dis one for Gline Clarke with a letter which reads

    To: The Voters of Barbados Date : Just 50 days after being elected

    Subject: MY PARLIAMENTARY SALARY IS NOT ENOUGH…

    Dear Bajans

    Just when wunna is about to suck salt from the IMF I wants wunna scvunts to know dat my $17,000 per month and $204,000 a year is not enough.

    Can Wunna expect my MP ass to “augment my salary from the Treasury…?? Enquiring minds want to know…

    https://i.imgur.com/UuOoQBF.png


  72. Gline Clarke is no fool just being the messenger for the 30 reminding Mia of a promise she made
    Just notice how Mia has not made a peeping sound to distance herself from Clarke comments


  73. Government Pension Information

    In order to qualify for a government pension an officer must accumulate a minimum of ten years pensionable service and be in the Public Service at the point of retirement.

    Government utilizes the annual salary to perform pension calculations. To perform the calculation the years of service must first be converted to months.

    The maximum pensionable service used in the calculation of a Pension and Gratuity is four hundred (400) months or thirty three and a third (33 1/3) years.

    The minimum pensionable service used in the calculation of a Pension and Gratuity is one hundred and twenty (120) months or ten (10) years.

    Calculation of pension is partially dependent on the position held by an individual at the time of retirement.

    If an employee is at the maximum point of the position salary scale or is in a fixed salary position, the last annual salary will be used to calculate the pension.

    Where persons act in a higher position for a total of three years continuously or accumulated within the last five years of pensionable service, the pension can be calculated based on the average salary.

    If a person dies in service, the gratuity will be calculated and made payable to the deceased person’s estate. Any arrears of pension also becomes payable to the deceased person’s estate. At death, pension ceases.

    The widow and/or children of a deceased male officer, who was paying a Widows and Children Contribution, are entitled to a Widows and Children pension. The widow is entitled to half and the children are entitled to a quarter; if there is more than one child they are entitled to half of the deceased male’s pension.

    The male officer can claim a refund of his Widows and Children Contributions at retirement if there is no beneficiary. A refund also be claimed if married and divorced after the divorce becomes final and after the death of the wife.

    Government allows for at least six months to complete the paperwork for a pension and gratuity before it can actually commence. It is therefore a good practice to indicate the retirement date early and submit appropriate documentation to allow for processing time.

    The last department that the pensioner worked at has to prepare the retirement form.

    http://www.treasury.gov.bb/content/government-pension-information


    • Pension Reform Issue A Complex One

      admin June 2, 2014 Top Stories

      This island???s Minister of Finance, Christopher Sinckler, has described the pension reform issue in the Caribbean as a complex one which should not and could not be reviewed with tunnel vision.

      Instead, Mr. Sinckler expressed the view that the issue should be explored by technocrats who possessed the competence to see the entire picture, so the most appropriate solutions could be found.

      He made the comments today while addressing the Caribbean Association of Pension Supervisors??? 2014 Conference and Annual General Meeting at Hilton Barbados.

      Acknowledging that the demographics of Barbados and the Caribbean were changing, he said persons were living longer, having less children and expecting more from Government???s social services.

      ???These demographical changes are at the heart of the assumptions used for pension planning, and the material change in these circumstances means that those persons administering pension plans have been forced to reform the assumptions used in administering the said plan.

      ???We have, therefore, seen periods where defined benefit pension plans are no longer popular and have every possibility of actually becoming extinct to new entrants ???. We have seen the underfunded multi-employer plans grow in North America and through the popular establishment of defined contribution plans, we have seen a shifting of the investment risk in a pension plan reform from the employer who is sponsoring the plan, to the employee who is participating and contributing to the plan,??? he stated.

      He pointed out that this trend was also being seen in Barbados and disclosed that to date, approximately 300 occupational pension plan applications had been submitted to the Financial Services Commission for registration under the Occupational Pension Benefits Act. According to him, that number comprised 189 Defined Contribution Plans and 98 Defined Benefit Plans.

      Mr. Sinckler praised the work of the Financial Services Commission in Barbados, saying he was pleased with its progress. He told his audience that the World Bank and International Monetary Fund had issued a positive review of the Commission last year. ???We still have some way to go, but I think we are on the right track???,??? he stated.

      Sixty persons are attending the two-day conference, which has as its theme: Planning and Strategising for Pension Reform.

      sharon.austingill-moore@barbados.gov.bb


    • EDITORIAL: Address issues in public service pension plan

      BARBADOS NATION,

      Added 18 March 2015

      THE APPEAL BY Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler for public officers to defer early retirement requests and not act on rumours gives us cause for thought.

      So serious is this situation that our legislators should discuss the sustainability of the existing pension plan for state employees during the current Estimates debate.

      Public officers form the largest group of employees and the viability of their pension plan can have an economic impact on the wider society. Unfortunately, many Barbadians do not take significant interest in their retirement benefits until it is too late.

      Many of them, from both public and private sectors, do not understand the full scope of their entitlements after retirement, and expectations are often greater than the reality.

      This country’s civil servants are in a defined benefit plan and the established view and attitude of beneficiaries, past and present, is that the money is there, and always will be. After all, Government will not go bankrupt, it will not go out of business and there will be no merger or acquisition of its core business; so pension funds are not at risk.

      But we see how unsubstantiated talk of the taxing of gratuities has created a level of fear amongst many public officers. They appreciate recent history, which shows that there are really no guarantees about any financial product and risks abound.

      Auditor General Leigh Trotman has addressed the issue of the defined benefit plan in his latest report in which he highlighted the large unfunded pension liability on the part of Government, which is approximately $4.3 billion, following the 2014 actuarial review.

      His comments and Mr Sinckler’s appeal suggest that there are key issues to be addressed.

      The public, and not just civil servants, must be assured that the existing pension plan must be well managed and should address some key issues: that benefits are fair and predictable, and contributions are not only accounted for but also well funded. In this regard, the results of the latest actuarial review of the plan should be publicly discussed to state if any changes should be considered.

      Pension reform is a must so as not to cause a national financial catastrophe, since it is clear that without changes to the prevailing defined benefits plan, the problem will only continue to grow.

      The public sector must meet its commitment to retirees and participants already in the system. Going forward, the system must not only provide generous retirement benefits but also encourage greater control of personal retirement savings.

      Barbados cannot allow a time bomb to be ticking away slowly – as it relates to the management of public sector pension funding – with the potential to undermine the country’s fiscal health.

      The looming crisis will not disappear and we should not wait until it actually arrives. Doing nothing is not an option.

      http://www.nationnews.com/nationnews/news/64968/editorial-address-issues-public-service-pension-plan


  74. @TG
    I am not qualified to give any lesson on the BSE. The return on locally listed firms is not the best. While their shares are available, versus the many private companies, I would stick with the exchanges closer to your home.
    Appreciating there are several yardsticks by which to measure success, Mr Codrington referred to the BSE as a failed experiment. He is correct by several measurements. There certainly has NOT been many (any?) firms using the exchange to raise capital via equity offerings. It has provided a public platform by which Bajan controlled operations have been sold to others…BS&T, Wibisco, WIRR, Banks Holdings etc The ‘cross listings’ gave them gurkha, though Sagicor is still cross listed.
    It would seem to me, given the limited volume of many of the neighbouring exchanges, a Caricom Exchange (for lack of a better word) may make some sense. Cut costs and increase exposure.


  75. Wonder when article #1 was penned….male vs female??
    A huge unfunded liability however one looks at it.


  76. I have promoted this blog almost on a daily basis. Quite frankly a lot of nonsense was given respectability, by the blogmaster, on the grounds of freedom of speech: we had a cuss bird who would never behave so , in any other forum; we have a regular contributor, who wrote several articles openly accusing former government ministers of stealing and owning properties without one iota of evidence; we had some dangerous apologists for both the BLP and DLP submitting pure crap and engaging in smearing each other and I could go on and on.
    I hold no brief for Hal Austin, quite frankly we often disagree but I know for a fact that he is highly respected by those who grew up with him and has always enjoyed robust debate. However on numerous occasions , he was cussed stink stink with real cuss words, that I found very disrespectful.
    Then the blogmaster(David) started calling anybody who opposed him jack asses. In recent times he has resorted to calling people RH (rass holes). How can we build a future when people in leadership set such dismal standards ? How can we seriously blame or cuss the political class, when we engage in similar behaviour ?No wonder then we now have a cabinet minister , who the taxpayers educated telling another MP to haul he monther c***. Another wun pull he gun pun another wun and nutten happen.
    By now BU should have evolved into a powerful information tool , with wide and varied discussion on all topics related not only to Barbados but the entire Caribbean and world.
    I would bet my life , that if the Black Star newspaper of the 60s and 70s , had the opportunity of BU, at least 75% of the problems we have now , would have been solved because back then the apologists of the decadent BLPDLP regimes would have at least conducted themselves with better deportment.
    I invited a fellow Barbadian living in Germany to read this blog. He read it once and asked me: Do dey allow people to cuss so in a public organ. He never read it again. I still begging he to do so because BU is a good organ; I want it to be great.
    Now wunnuh cud go ahead and cuss me !!!


    • Thanks for promoting the blog William, one thing the blogmaster knows – we will never be able to please all the people all of the time.


    • This blog was closed because the focus which is too often the case started to discuss commenters.


  77. William Skinner

    I don’t know why but I find myself agreeing with you often.

    1) I wholeheartedly agree that BU is a good blog which I desperately want to succeed.I believe that there are a few persons posting as BU,hence the strident tones used sometimes.However, there is one of the personalities of BU that I have a lot of time for – a very reasonable fella.

    2) I agree there are specific persons – some who are supporters of the BLP and others who admit to being senior in years – whose language can be foul – that it renders your attempt to read their contribution – a distasteful act.

    I have mentioned this to the blog owner as it relates to the cussing.

    You see I often think of the age groups who might be reading these posts (especially the younger ones), and I think that instead of lowering the standard of this site we should be attempting to make it the best in the region – the ‘GO TO PLACE’ for informed views on specific topics, for humour, or an exposition on things legal,political etc.

    Already we see a few regional contributors coming to BU to post their articles.

    Finally, I too have come to the defence of Hal Austin – for the harsh attacks not merely on his contribution but on his persona.

    There are some contributors – and they know who they are – who cannot dis assemble and destroy an argument but repeatedly show their shallowness by always attacking the contributor.

    A case in point is Mariposa.Whether you reject or accept her arguments – she usually posts her views,never resorting to all the shameful attacks on her but repeat her arguments over and over, – but just check the BLP ‘Hit Squad’ – and see how – like Hal Austin- she is told how stupid she is and all the other insulting remarks and descriptions about her – what part of the female anatomy she is etc.

    Yet every day she comes on and puts her view and is seldom if ever as offensive to contributors personally.

    Now sit back and watch the response.Ha ha.

  78. Pingback: External Debt Default WATCH! | Barbados Underground


  79. Too often I see these things happening various companies and businesses , I’ve had my own negative experiences , for example Blades courier services , run by Alex Blades is a fraudulent operation , I am highly dissatisfied with the service . My requests for service are usually met with sexual harassment amongst other profanities .

Leave a comment, join the discussion.