Say Hello to $3 Trillion in Forgotten Debt






Say Hello to $3 Trillion in Forgotten Debt


November 17th, 2017

Via: Bloomberg:

Companies have been on a borrowing binge, but you wouldn’t always know the full scale of their liabilities by looking at the balance sheet. This makes it hard for investors to compare businesses that fund their activities in different ways. Happily though, that’s about to change.

How come? The answer is buried in the notes to financial statements (you know, the ones you don’t bother reading). It’s here that companies have parked about $3 trillion in operating lease obligations, according to Bloomberg data. For non-financial companies, those obligations equate to more than one quarter of their long-term (on-balance sheet) debt.

Operating leases are actually pretty similar to debt. They represent money companies will be obliged to cough up in future to rent things like planes, ships and retail floor space. But right now you won’t find them on the balance sheet.















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Norway’s $1 trillion wealth fund looks to dump oil & gas stocks

Norway’s trillion-dollar sovereign wealth fund has proposed dropping investment for oil and gas companies. The plan, backed by the central bank, still needs approval by the finance ministry, but it would see the fund gradually divesting itself of oil and gas stocks over time. Currently, fossil fuel investments account for about 6 percent of the fund’s assets, or $37 billion.

“Our advice is to simply remove the oil and gas sector, as it is defined in the FTSE reference index, from the fund’s reference index,” Deputy Central Bank Governor Egil Matsen told Reuters in an interview. “That would mean all companies that the FTSE has classified with the sector, should be removed from our reference index.”

The global movement for fossil fuel divestment has been one of the fastest growing divestment campaigns ever witnessed. According to Fossil Free, a project of 350.org, an estimated 808 institutions from around the world have committed to divestment, totaling $5.57 trillion in assets. The type of groups are varied – about 27 percent of them are faith-based, another 20 percent are philanthropic foundations, 18 percent are government, 16 percent are education institutions, and 10 percent are pension funds.

But the potential move by Norway’s sovereign wealth fund is one of the most significant pledges yet, for a few reasons. First, the size of the fund, with $1 trillion in assets, is obviously notable. Second, the fund was built on oil and gas money, so a diversification away from fossil fuels has symbolic importance. But third, the justification for divestment, according to the fund, is not because of concerns over climate change, which is the usual reason why most other institutions have opted to divest.

Norway’s sovereign wealth fund wants out of fossil fuels in order to avoid exposure to oil price fluctuations.

The sovereign wealth fund is a massive investor in oil and gas, so the news of a shift in investment strategy is significant. According to Reuters, Norway’s sovereign wealth fund holds a 2.3 percent stake in Royal Dutch Shell, 1.7 percent stake in BP, 0.9 percent stake in Chevron and 0.8 percent of ExxonMobil.

But, as any energy investor would know, oil and gas stocks have been poor performers for the past few years. “It clearly stands out, perhaps not surprisingly, but not obviously, that indeed there is a substantial difference … in return between the oil and gas sector and the broad stock market in periods when the oil price changes substantially,” Matsen said. “Oil price exposure of the government’s wealth position can be reduced by not having the fund invested in oil and gas stocks.” The sovereign wealth fund, like other investors, would have been better off putting their money in other sectors of the global economy.

It isn’t just the most recent downturn that Norway is worried about. Over the long-term, peak oil demand looms. Pulling out of companies like Royal Dutch Shell and BP would make Norway’s wealth “less vulnerable to a permanent drop in oil and gas prices,” according to the country’s central bank, the FT reported.

The sovereign wealth fund is seeded with revenues generated from oil and gas sales, so it is already vulnerable to oil price fluctuations. Moreover, the Norwegian government owns a substantial portion of Statoil, making the country even more dependent on oil and gas revenues. One way to reduce the country’s financial risk would be for the sovereign wealth fund to get out of the oil business.

Critics of the divestment campaign often note that liquidating one’s assets does very little to influence the actions of the oil and gas industry. After all, even if divestment dragged down the valuation of an oil company, its share price would merely be discounted for opportunistic investors to scoop up the asset on the cheap. But that was never the overarching goal. The objective of the divestment movement was to make fossil fuels so toxic in the minds of the public that it forces governments to change policies to force a transition towards cleaner energy. That fight is ongoing.

However, the proposal from the Norwegian sovereign wealth fund opens up an entirely new front on the oil and gas industry. Hard-headed central bankers are concerned about the long-term investment case for fossil fuels…unrelated from climate change. The largest sovereign wealth fund in the world simply doesn’t think it makes sense to hold onto oil and gas assets anymore.

This article was originally published on Oilprice.com

Source Article from https://www.rt.com/business/410160-norways-trillion-wealth-fund-dump-oil/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=RSS

Apple could become world’s first trillion dollar company

The company’s quarterly earnings published on Thursday topped analysts’ estimates with revenue reaching $52.6 billion against $50.7 billion forecast by Thomson Reuters. The company’s adjusted earnings per share at $2.07 also exceeded the $1.87 expected by experts.

Apple sold 46.7 million iPhones compared to 46 million expected by a FactSet consensus estimate. Mac and iPad sales were above forecasts of most analysts as well. The company’s revenue guidance for its fiscal 2018 first quarter is projected at $87 billion against a projected $84.9.

“We’re happy to report a very strong finish to a great fiscal 2017, with record fourth-quarter revenue, year-over-year growth for all our product categories, and our best quarter ever for Services,” said the company’s CEO Tim Cook.

Apple could become the world’s first trillion dollar corporation. The company’s shares grew almost four percent on Friday with the current market cap value hovering around $868 billion.

“We see iPhone X unlocking pent-up iPhone upgrades, especially in China, driving more than 20 percent iPhone unit growth and a revenue and earnings beat in 2018,” analyst Katy Huberty of Morgan Stanley told Reuters, commenting on the company’s flagship product that went on sale on November 3.

“Apple’s first-mover advantage and ”easy growth“ from new smartphone adopters is over, but the company appears likely to retain its existing premium customer base,” said analysts at investment research company Morningstar.

Source Article from https://www.rt.com/business/408693-apple-first-trillion-market-cap/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=RSS

Combined Social Security Spending for 2017 Tops $1 Trillion for First time

The Monthly Treasury Statement issued on Wednesday from the Social Security Administration showed that total spending for the three social welfare programs administered by the agency — the Old Age and Survivors Insurance program, the Disability Insurance program and the Supplemental Security Income program — topped $1 trillion for the first time in history in 2017.

The program first hit $600 billion in spending in 1997, and it took nine years to hit the next benchmark, $700 billion. From there it took between three and four years to hit subsequent $100 billion spending benchmarks. Accordingly, the agency estimates that it will spend $1.6 trillion in 2026. From there it will be just a few short years before all funds are exhausted.

Most sensible observers have been warning for years that the program is in dire jeopardy, with all manner of schemes being proposed to rescue it from oblivion: expanding income brackets, raising both employee and employer “contributions,” slowing down the COLA (cost of living adjustment) or eliminating it altogether being those most often suggested. Some have recommended privatizing at least part of the program, which would still force people to save for their old age but at least would allow them the choice of where best to invest their money.

On the other hand, there are those who are completely oblivious to the dreadful financial condition of the welfare-state program and think it ought to be expanded. Nancy Altman, president of Social Security Works, an outfit that favors expanding benefits, said, “If the U.S. [Congress] wants to allocate more money to Social Security, there’s no question it can afford to do so. It’s not a question of affordability; it’s a question of values.”

And then there’s Maya Rockeymoore Cummings, the CEO of Global Policy Solutions, a left-wing policy advocate for “disadvantaged” people, who has gone even further. She thinks that Republican attempts to pass income tax cuts without fully funding them will then give them an excuse for not funding Social Security adequately: “They [Republicans] will then say we can’t afford Social Security, Medicare and other safety-net programs. It’s a bait-and-switch situation.”

Cummings comes by her distorted view of the world legitimately: She is married to far-left Democrat Representative Elijah Cummings from Maryland.

Maya Rockeymoore Cummings also criticizes Social Security for being racist. Since African-Americans have a median net worth of just $7,100 (according to a report generated by her group) compared to $111,700 for whites, therefore, she says, “Minorities have a greater reliance on Social Security for most or all of their incomes.” There’s also another racial factor: Black men tend to die at younger ages than their white counterparts and so they aren’t around long enough to enjoy all the benefits from the program.

Given the program’s tenuous financial condition, most people on Social Security will live long enough to see the program run short of money. According to the Social Security Administration, taxes paid to fund Social Security go into the general Treasury for the U.S. government as a whole, and the money is spent; in return Social Security gets an IOU with a promise of interest payments on the money:


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Source Article from http://govtslaves.info/2017/10/combined-social-security-spending-for-2017-tops-1-trillion-for-first-time/

51 GOP Senators Just Voted To Cut $1.5 Trillion from Medicare and Medicaid To Give Super-Rich and Corporations a Tax Cut

The Republican budget, declared Sen. Sanders after its passage, “is not a bad bill. It’s a horrific bill.”

Along strict party lines, the Republican-controlled Senate on Thursday night voted to pass a sweeping budget measure—one criticized as both “despicable” and “horrific” for providing massive giveaways to corporations and the super-rich while eviscerating funding for social programs, healthcare, education, and affordable housing.

“Another dark deed done: GOP passes obscene budget to slash Medicare/Medicaid & explode the deficit – all in the name of tax cuts for the 1%.”
—Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Oregon)
The measure passed by 51-49 vote, with only one Republican, Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, joining every Democrat and the chamber’s two Independents who voted against it. Its approval now paves that way for massive tax giveaways to the wealthy and corporations envisioned by President Donald Trump and the GOP in both the House and the Senate.

“51 Republican Senators just voted to cut Medicaid by $1 trillion and Medicare by $500 billion so that millionaires and corporations can get a tax cut. It’s immoral and despicable,” said TJ Helmstetter, a spokesperson for Americans for Tax Fairness, in a statement immediately following the vote.

 

Though the budget resolution itself is nonbinding, MoveOn.org’s Ben Wikler notes how the Senate passage on Thursday represents the “starting gun for what might be the most consequential legislative fight of the Trump era: the looting of the U.S. treasury to reward billionaire GOP donors and mega-corporations, at the expense of the rest of us.” And with the Senate resolution now in place, a reconciliation process can begin with Republicans in the House, meaning the GOP can “shoot for a tax bill without a single Democratic vote.”

In the wake of its passage, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.)—who earlier this week called the proposal “Robin Hood in reverse” for taking from the poor to give to the rich— said the “Republicans’ budget is not a bad bill. It’s a horrific bill.”

 

Sanders was far from alone in his outrage.

Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Oregon) called the vote a “dark deed” and urged people nationwide to stand up and fight back against what the budget represents:

 

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), also vocal in her warnings ahead of the vote, condemnedthe budget put forth by her Republican colleagues as “garbage”.

Here, for the record, is the full roll call of the vote:

 

Via: Common Dreams

 

Source Article from https://truththeory.com/2017/10/24/51-gop-senators-just-voted-cut-1-5-trillion-medicare-medicaid-give-super-rich-corporations-tax-cut/

Iran, Iraq, And Turkey Unite To Block Kurdish Oil Exports: Netanyahu Owes Iraq $1.5 Trillion For Stolen Kirkuk Oil

Stolen Oil For Israel ~ This Route Took Place Before Erdogan Renounced US & NATO

Iraq, Iran, and Turkey are taking a unified stance against Kurdistan’s oil sector after the region elected to seek independence from Baghdad in a referendum in September, according to a new report by Rudaw.

“In the case of northern Iraq; Iran, Iraq and Turkey will form a tripartite mechanism and will decide on shutting down the oil,”Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said after a meeting with leaders from the other two nations on Thursday.

day before the vote, the Iraqi central government issued a statement calling on “neighboring countries and countries of the world” to stop buying crude oil directly from Kurdistan and only deal with Baghdad.

  1. Netanyahu Owes Iraq $1.5 Trillion For Stolen Kirkuk Oil

Turkey’s Ceyhan port provides an outlet for the Kurdish Kirkuk oil to meet international markets without interference from Baghdad. Erdogan, Tehran and other members of the international community had censured Erbil for proceeding with the independence referendum as Iraq recovers from a three-year war against the Islamic State (ISIS). The Turkish leader had previously threatened to cut Kirkuk off from Ceyhan, but did not provide details on how such a measure would be carried out.

Majority Sunni Arabs Sunni Kurds ~ Minority Shiite

  1. Sunni Arabs/Kurds Main Body Opposing U.S. Deep State Banking Take Over Of Their Country
  2. Sunni Kurd Militia In Kobani, Syria Wipe Out U.S. Israeli Proxy Army ISIS

Russia’s oil majors side with Kurdistan in its quest for an independent fossil fuel establishment. Rosneft signed off on a $1 billion gas pipeline deal with the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) a week prior to the historic vote, signaling Moscow’s approval of a hypothetically separate Kurdistan.

[ However the above statement is diametrically opposite to Russia & Turkey saying no to a separate Kurdistan:

  1. Moscow And Ankara Urge For Unified Iraq: Kurdistan Region’s Legal Status Is Fixed In The Iraqi Constitution Of 2005 ]

Both Iran and Turkey house sizeable Kurdish populations, so the referendum raises fears that Kurds from other nations may seek similar political solutions.

Kurdistan produces around 600,000 bpd of crude oil, or about 15 percent of Iraq’s total output. After the votes were counted, the KRG said that the ‘Yes’ to independence option won at the polls, with 92.73 percent of voters opting to grant Erbil its own regime.

ZeroHedge

Unlike Iran Where Deep Drilling Is Required To Retrieve Oil – Iraq Has It Floating On The Surface.

Related News:

  1. Iraq To Sue US Government For 2003 Illegal Invasion
  2. Iraq Being Suicided By Rothschild’s IMF & J.P. Morgan
  3. President Erdogan Of Turkey Finalizes Purchase Of Russian Air Defense System
  4. General Flynn Hillary Clinton Confirms U.S. Israeli ISIS: Splitting Iraq & Syria For Israel.
  5. Israel U.S. ISIS Absconded Oil-Rich Kirkuk & Basra From Iraq: Oil To Feed Israel, & Jordan ~ Analyst
  6. Iraq Defending Entire World against U.S. Israeli Proxy Army ISIS: Iraqi Foreign Minister Ibrahim Jaafari
  7. Donald Trump Promotes Stealing Iraq’s Oil: Turkey & Israel Owes Iraq $1.5 Trillion USD For Stolen Kirkuk Oil
  8. Iraqi Dinar For U.S. Citizens Granted By Presidents Bush Obama E.O. 13303 & Iraq’s Coalition Provisional Authority Order 39
  9. Iraqi Government Signs $1 Billion Military Agreement With Russian Government: Providing Heavy Artillery, Ballistic Missile Systems And Ammunition.

Source Article from https://politicalvelcraft.org/2017/10/07/iran-iraq-and-turkey-unite-to-block-kurdish-oil-exports-netanyahu-owes-iraq-1-5-trillion-for-stolen-kirkuk-oil/

"This Is A Crisis Greater Than Any Government Can Handle": The $400 Trillion Global Retire


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Source Article from https://www.freedomsphoenix.com/News/226485-2017-10-01-this-is-a-crisis-greater-than-any-government-can-handle.htm?EdNo=001&From=RSS

“We’re Firing Trillion Watt Lasers into the Sky”: Top Scientist Admits to Weather Modification on CBS

weatherweather

In the aftermath of the devastation wrought by Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma, and Hurricane Jose brewing in the Atlantic, many people are looking for answers as to the increasingly volatile weather being witnessed.

And while climate change is one potential cause, there are other lesser known activities that could potentially be playing a role in the manifestation of these weather anomalies.

While weather modification and geo-engineering are still somewhat taboo subjects to the mainstream, often considered to be in the realm of conspiracy theory, there is a significant body of academic research and science that confirms that these technologies not only exist but are being operationalized.

No, the Free Thought Project is not claiming the government, nor anyone else is making hurricanes or actively controlling the weather. We are only presenting this information because it exists and people should be aware that it exists.

In a segment aired on CBS in 2013, respected scientist Dr. Michio Kaku, a physics professor at City College of New York, discussed – with Charlie Rose and Norah O’Donnell – the science of weather manipulation.

During the interview Kaku, in discussing the experiments with weather modification notes that “We’re shooting trillion watt lasers into the sky,” referencing the use of lasers to induce changes to naturally occurring weather phenomena.

Later in the conversation, Kaku briefly touches on the history of weather modification that has been carried out for decades by the government – with the CBS hosts quickly interrupting him to note these programs were only “alleged.”

Of course, these hosts must be ignorant of the declassified history of “Operation Popeye,” which was a weather manipulation program enacted during the Vietnam War as a means of creating ongoing monsoon conditions in an effort to impeded the Viet Cong’s mobility in the region.

This is no “conspiracy theory.”

In fact, research published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences specifically notes that laser beams create plasma channels in air, which in turn, cause ice to form.

Professor Jean-Pierre Wolf and Dr. Jerome Kasparian, both biophotonics experts at the University of Geneva, actually organized a conference at the World Meteorological Organization to discuss how powerful laser pulses can be used to generate changes in the atmosphere that influence the weather.

Wolf and Kasparian said:

“Under the conditions of a typical storm cloud, in which ice and supercooled water coexist, no direct influence of the plasma channels on ice formation or precipitation processes could be detected.

“Under conditions typical for thin cirrus ice clouds, however, the plasma channels induced a surprisingly strong effect of ice multiplication.

“Within a few minutes, the laser action led to a strong enhancement of the total ice particle number density in the chamber by up to a factor of 100, even though only a 10−9 fraction of the chamber volume was exposed to the plasma channels.

“The newly formed ice particles quickly reduced the water vapour pressure to ice saturation, thereby increasing the cloud optical thickness by up to three orders of magnitude.”

Adding credence to the idea of scientists using geo-engineering technology to manipulate the weather, according to the MIT Technology Review:

A pair of Harvard climate scientists are preparing small-scale atmospheric experiments that could offer insights into the feasibility and risks of deliberately altering the climate to ease global warming.

They would be among the earliest official geoengineering-related experiments conducted outside of a controlled laboratory or computer model, underscoring the growing sense of urgency among scientists to begin seriously studying the possibility as the threat of climate change mounts.

Sometime next year, Harvard professors David Keith and Frank Keutsch hope to launch a high-altitude balloon, tethered to a gondola equipped with propellers and sensors, from a site in Tucson, Arizona. After initial engineering tests, the “StratoCruiser” would spray a fine mist of materials such as sulfur dioxide, alumina, or calcium carbonate into the stratosphere. The sensors would then measure the reflectivity of the particles, the degree to which they disperse or coalesce, and the way they interact with other compounds in the atmosphere.

Another top American climate researcher – Professor Alan Robock from Rutgers – says that the CIA is looking into weather modification as a form of warfare.

As reported in The Independent:

A senior American climate scientist has spoken of the fear he experienced when US intelligence services apparently asked him about the possibility of weaponising the weather as a major report on geo-engineering is to be published this week.

Professor Alan Robock stated that three years ago, two men claiming to be from the CIA had called him to ask whether experts would be able to tell if hostile forces had begun manipulating the US’s weather, though he suspected the purpose of the call was to find out if American forces could meddle with other countries’ climates instead.

During a debate on the use of geo-engineering to combat climate change, at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in San Jose, California, Prof Robock said: “I got a phone call from two men who said we work as consultants for the CIA and we’d like to know if some other country was controlling our climate, would we know about it?

“I told them, after thinking a little bit, that we probably would because if you put enough material in the atmosphere to reflect sunlight we would be able to detect it and see the equipment that was putting it up there.

“At the same time I thought they were probably also interested in if we could control somebody else’s climate, could they detect it?”

Professor Robock, who has investigated the potential risks and benefits of using stratospheric particles to simulate the climate-changing effects of volcanic eruptions, said he felt “scared” when the approach was made.

“I’d learned of lots of other things the CIA had done that haven’t followed the rules and I thought that wasn’t how I wanted my tax money spent. I think this research has to be in the open and international so there isn’t any question of it being used for hostile purposes.”

Professor Robock’s concerns come as a major report on geo-engineering is to be published this week by the US National Academy of Sciences. Among the report’s list of sponsors is the “US intelligence community”, which includes Nasa, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and the US Department of Energy.

The professor alleges that the CIA told a colleague of his that it wanted to fund the report, but claimed that it did not want this fact to be too obvious – he added that the CIA is “a major funder” of the report which “makes me really worried about who is going to be in control”.

He claimed the US government had a proven history of using the weather in a hostile way, citing the action of seeding clouds during the Vietnam War to muddy the Ho Chi Minh foot-trail and attempt to cut it off, as it was used as a supply route but the north Vietnamese.

He claimed the CIA had also seeded clouds over Cuba “to make it rain and ruin the sugar harvest”.

While certain powerful constituencies are well aware of the extremely powerful forces that can be unleased through weather modification technology, these same groups would like to keep the general public unaware of these technologies and programs.

Whether these recent weather phenomena may, or may not, have anything to do with weather manipulation technology, make no mistake that weather modification is a real and practiced science – and is no conspiracy theory.

Listen to Dr. Michio Kaku briefly explain the reality of scientific weather manipulation below:

Source Article from http://thefreethoughtproject.com/cbs-weather-modification-scientist/

U.S. National Debt Hits $20 Trillion






U.S. National Debt Hits $20 Trillion


September 11th, 2017

Via: CBS:

The U.S. national debt reached $20 trillion for the first time ever last Friday after President Trump signed a bipartisan bill temporarily raising the nation’s debt limit for three months.

While at Camp David, Mr. Trump, with the stroke of his presidential pen, increased the statutory debt last Friday by approximately $318 billion, according to the Treasury Department. Before the bill’s completion, the U.S. debt was sitting around $19.84 trillion.

The legislation allowed the Treasury Department to start borrowing again immediately after several months of using “extraordinary measures” to avoid a financial default. The bill passed last Thursday 80-17 in the Senate and in the House 316-90 on Friday. Around $15 billion in emergency funding for Hurricane Harvey recovery efforts was attached to the borrowing measure.

The $318 billion increase raised the U.S. national debt to $20.16 trillion by Friday. Since Mr. Trump’s inauguration, the debt has increased about $215 billion from around $19.94 trillion.















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US debt surpasses historical $20 trillion









 






The United States has now officially accumulated a $20 trillion debt. The ceiling was broken after the White House allowed the Treasury to borrow more money.

As of Tuesday, the American national debt stood at $20.16 trillion, according to the US Debt Clock website. This is almost $62,000 per person and over $167,000 per tax payer.

The debt number had been stagnant since March due to the debt ceiling, as the US Treasury faced a temporary ban on further borrowing.

On Friday, President Donald Trump signed a law to suspend the debt ceiling until December 8. The Treasury can now borrow freely till that date. Since Trump’s inauguration, the debt has increased about $215 billion from around $19.94 trillion.

The largest budget items are healthcare, social security, and defense.

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO), a federal agency that provides budget and economic information to Congress, said federal debt held by the public is now at its highest level since shortly after World War II.

If current laws stand, widening budget deficits will increase that debt sharply in the next 30 years; the deficit would reach 150 percent of GDP in 2047, the CBO predicts.

According to the agency, mounting debt increases government interest costs, put additional pressure on the budget, and improve the chances of a fiscal crisis.

Total American debt (the combination of government, business, mortgage, and consumer debt) is approaching $68 trillion.

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