Labor/Economics/Business

Puerto Rico Debt Deal Receives Court Approval

Judge Laura Taylor Swain approved a deal to restructure $17 billion of Puerto Rico's $72 billion debt on Monday. Court approval was the last hurdle creditors and the island's oversight board needed for a plan to address sales tax backed debt or "COFINA" debt."We are worried that not enough debt is being cut and that Puerto Rico's people are carrying heavy austerity burdens," said Jubilee USA Executive Director Eric LeCompte, who monitors Puerto Rico's debt. "The math isn't adding up.

Judge Delays Ruling on Puerto Rico Debt Deal White House Opposes Island's Food Assistance Funding

On Thursday, Judge Laura Taylor Swain delayed approval of a $17 billion debt deal between Puerto Rico "COFINA" creditors and the island's oversight board. Citing concerns that her ruling could alter Puerto Rico's constitution, the judge requested additional materials to review on Monday from the federally appointed oversight board."We are concerned that the plan under consideration doesn't cut enough debt," said Eric LeCompte who heads Jubilee USA and has monitored the island's financial situation since 2015.

Federal workers march on White House against Trump's shutdown

On the 10th of January, thousands of Federal workers gathered in front of the AFL-CIO's headquarters, then marched on the White House demanding an end to Trump's lockout of Federal workers. Speaker after speaker denounced GOP Senator Majority leader Mitch McConnell for blocking any votes on bills to reopen the Federal government without caving to Trump's demand for a racist border wall.

Video highlights of the rally and short march

The scene in front of the White House as locked out Federal workers march on Trump

Video: 2018-the year in activism

Video-2018 in activism 18 min 25 sec

Sex workers and supporters hold Decrim Carnival 3 at Reeves Center

Dec 17th was the International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers. In DC, the Decrim Carnival 3 was held in the Reeves Center on 14th st. Music and dancers performing dances similar to what they would do onstage (but fully dressed) alternated with speakers on the human cost of keeping sex work illegal. Physical assaults by violent men posing as customers go unpunished because sex workers know the police cannot be trusted and filing a report simply creates a second round of risk, this time from the cops.

Video-two dance performances and a speaker on why sex workers can't report assaults to the cops 4 min 13 sec

Debt and Tax Policies Needed to Prevent Crisis Says Finance Watchdog Group

Financial institutions, experts and economists fear a new wave of financial crises hitting countries from Ghana to Italy. The IMF and World Bank warn that nearly 20 African economies are wrestling with debt crises and on Wednesday the European Union chastised Italy on its debt-laden budget."Growing debt crises and the inability of countries to meet the social needs of their people is very concerning," stated Eric LeCompte who serves on United Nation finance expert groups and is the Executive Director of Jubilee USA.

Puerto Rico Religious Leaders Criticize Debt Plans and Negotiations

Puerto Rico's Catholic Archbishop and an Evangelical leader who heads the island's bible society criticized a debt agreement and ongoing debt negotiations. "We are strongly opposed to the COFINA debt deal," wrote the religious leaders in a statement referencing a recently approved plan on a type of debt backed by sales taxes. The plan was approved by Puerto Rico's government and oversight board and covers about $17 billion of the total $72 billion debt of the US Territory.

Oversight Board Reviews New Fiscal Plan for Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico's oversight board reviews a new plan on economic growth and debt payments to the island's creditors in San Juan today.

Dark Clouds Gather on Horizon for Financial System, Warns International Monetary Fund

Bali, Indonesia -The International Monetary Fund releases its "Global Financial Stability Report" ahead of its Annual Meetings held this year in Southeast Asia.

IMF Lowers Global Growth Projections and Raises Concerns of Financial Crisis

Bali, Indonesia - The International Monetary Fund released the World Economic Outlook Report and lowered global growth projections to 3.7 percent for 2018 and 2019.

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