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Meet James and Gil: Investment Bankers With Corporate Heads and Social Hearts by Linda Ryan

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Meet James and Gil: Investment Bankers With Corporate Heads and Social Hearts by Linda Ryan

With the launch of the Building Banking on Values, a new VoiceAmerica radio series I’m hosting that goes behind the scenes to tell the stories of the people, passion and positivity within the values-based banking and financing sector; I thought to introduce you to some of our guests.

Meet James Vaccaro: Head of Corporate Strategy, Triodos Bank (The Netherlands) and Specialist in Social and Environmental Finance

James has been at Triodos Bank since 1998. He has advised on bond issues and share offers for leading social enterprises and charities, and managed equity investments in a range of early stage businesses in the organic food, recycling and environmental technology sectors.

James holds a MA in Mathematics from Cambridge University and has a Certified Diploma in Accounting and Finance. He is a Fellow of both the RSA and the Strategic Management Forum.

James started his career at Triodos Bank as Development Manager – managing marketing intelligence projects and product development before becoming a loan manager with a focus in the renewable energy sector. After some time working in The Netherlands in venture capital and microfinance, James returned to the UK in 2005, starting Triodos Bank’s investment activity and was Managing Director of Investment Management UK, incorporating corporate finance advisory services and fund management. James was also the Managing Director of Triodos Renewables plc from 2005-2012. He now leads the development of strategy across the Triodos Bank group internationally.

James has served as a member of the Investment & Contract Readiness Fund Panel and author of a report for the G8 Social Investment Taskforce. He has been a director of many green and sustainable businesses and has served on the board of The UK Sustainable Investment & Finance Association (UKSIF) and been treasurer of a local community development association in south Bristol. He is a member of the Global Steering Committee for the UNEP Finance Initiative and a director of Bristol Green Capital Partnership and Regen SW. Learn more.

Meet Gil Crawford: Chief Executive Office of MicroVest (USA), Advocate for Purposeful Capital and Investment Expert In Microfinance

Crawford is Chief Executive Officer of MicroVest. He is responsible for leading the company’s investment operations and strategy since MicroVest’s founding in 2003. As MicroVest’s CEO, he led the launch of MicroVest I, LP, the first commercial private equity vehicle focused on microfinance in North America. Mr. Crawford has over 25 years experience with microfinance institutions and capital markets across the globe.

Before helping to found MicroVest Capital Management, Mr. Crawford worked for the Latin American Financial Markets Division at the International Finance Corporation (IFC), and focused on investments in microfinance institutions. Prior to joining IFC, Gil created and ran Seed Capital Development Fund, a US based non‐profit firm, involved in creating financial instruments and attracting funds to capitalise microfinance institutions, primarily in Latin America, Asia and Africa. Prior to creating Seed Capital, Gil was the Assistant Project Director for Africa Venture Capital Project, designed to create risk capital firms in Africa.

Gil received his bank training at Chase Manhattan Bank after working in Africa for the Red Cross and State Department. He is a graduate of SAIS at Johns Hopkins University and Bates College.

Gil was an adjunct professor at Johns Hopkins SAIS from 2010 to 2014. He serves on the Board of the Tunisian American Fund, which began operating in July 2013, and of SFC, a Sub-Saharan finance company. He is also an Independent Director of American Capital Senior Finance, LLC since January 2014. He is fluent in English and conversant in French, Spanish and Swedish. Learn more. 


Oh, and don’t forget to tune into Building Banking on Values. My VoiceAmerica radio show airs on Thursdays 15:00 PDT on the Business channel Learn more http://www.gabv.org/our-news/gabv-launches-radio-series-with-voiceamerica#.VwRI40fRvg8

#BankingOnValues @CatalystWarrior @bankingonvalues @VoiceAmBusiness  @James_Vaccaro @TriodosUK

Why Venezuela Matters by Té Revesz

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Why Venezuela Matters by Té Revesz

VenezuelaVenezuela’s rising wave of anti-government protests & the bloody government response has drawn far less attention than the Ukraine. It shouldn’t. The crisis in South America’s large oil producer, says Victor Hugo Rodriguez, CEO of The LatAm Alternatives Group has the potential to impact the economies & stability of many LatAm countries. Venezuela is not only the region’s largest oil supplier; it is its biggest importer, adds Daniel Osorio, President of Andean Capital Management. Together my guests will explore how alternative outcomes could change the risk/reward equation for multinationals and for institutional & private investors. How will it affect access to LatAm growth opportunities? What countries will be hurt? Who will benefit? How will the conflict impact the burgeoning Trans Pacific Partnership (Colombia, Peru, Chile, Mexico)? Mercosur (Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay, Paraguay)? The Caribbean economies? Is there a China factor? How should investors & MNCs position themselves?

Tune in for “Global Reach” with Host Té Revesz for her new episode “Why Venezuela Matters” on the Voiceamerica Business Channel on every Thursday 11am Pacific Time.

We are all operating in a dynamic global marketplace, whether we reach across borders to find new customers and fresh ideas or face overseas competitors in our home market. Global Reach embraces the opportunities and challenges we encounter when operating in multiple countries and cultures. We talk with entrepreneurs and executives about their strategies for winning in fast changing world markets: cross-cultural communication, global branding, media and marketing, transportation and manufacturing, the future of finance, alternative investment strategies, innovation and IP protection.Global Reach interviews thought leaders about 21st century megatrends that impact international entities: trends like the business and politics of sustainability, the morphing nature of competitiveness, globalization, global companies vs national governments, worldview and growth prescriptions, emerging markets issues, and the corporate impact on society (governance, ethics and leadership).

Hurricane Force Winds May Cause Ben’s Helicopter to Crash! PART II BY JAY TAYLOR

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Hurricane Force Winds May Cause Ben’s Helicopter to Crash! PART II  BY JAY TAYLOR

hurricane and money

But getting back to the U.S. Treasuries and why Bernanke may be losing control of that market and as an extension of the global financial system, here are the points that need to be made:

  • Up until now, the Fed had been able to pick up the slack as foreigners sold U.S. Treasuries. The $85 billion per month of purchases in U.S. Treasuries and mortgage-backed securities was sufficient to keep the prices of those Treasuries up and to keep interest rates at very low levels.
  • The U.S. is continuing to run huge deficits to finance all manner of unaffordable military excursions overseas and socialism here at home. The political will to cut back on expenditures to levels that can be funded from global savings simply does not exist nor do our brilliant Ivy League educated politicians and economists believe that is what we should do. So Mr. Bernanke must continue to print money to buy U.S. debt since no one in their right mind wants to buy it at current interest rates. And obviously, if Bernanke left rates rise to their true market levels as Volcker did in 1980, we would enter a depression much more severe than that of the 1930s.
  • The Fed is now like a mouse on a treadmill! While Mr. Bernanke recently said that the Fed would, depending on economic data, begin tapering down the purchases of U.S. Treasuries and mortgage-backed securities by the end of 2014, we can expect that he as well as his successor will buy even more than the current $85 billion at a faster and faster rate, in an effort to continue their failed policy. James Turk compared the Fed now to being like “mice on a treadmill.”
  • The fraudulent U.S. Dollar CON GAME will become more and more difficult for Mr. Bernanke or his successor to sell, as the Fed chairman will be increasingly seen as the “Naked Emperor.” At the moment, with the markets in decline, the dollar has gotten stronger. But if the misguided Keynesian money printing and deficit spending policies continue, at some point there will be a huge run on the dollar, although we will need to see other currencies go first. The dollar will likely be the last fiat currency standing, at least in the Western world. And in fact, the Russians and Chinese, who already see the handwriting on the wall for the dollar, have been building huge gold reserves in anticipation of the dollar’s date with death.

Of course what we are seeing now in the markets is just the tip of a gigantic iceberg of way too much debt that cannot be paid by any stretch of the imagination. James Turk pointed out in an interview with King World News the following problems that are bubbling up under the surface that should make us all very fearful of what is to come:

  • Thomas Hoenig, the vice chairman of the FDIC, described Deutsche Bank as “horribly undercapitalized.” But he also named a slew of other major companies, like UBS, Morgan Stanley, Crédit Agricole, and Société Générale, as banks skating on thin ice.
  • Mario Draghi, head of the ECB, is now saying they will do whatever is necessary, even though whatever the ECB does “may have unintended consequences.”

Meanwhile, recent economics news—even using the government’s sugarcoated stats—was abysmal. Real average hourly earnings for all employees fell 0.2% in May. Now we know that those are phony numbers because, based on the work of economist John Williams, the actual cost of staying alive is far above the 1.7% CPI numbers the government conveniently manufactures. The real cost of living increase for average Americans is more like 7% to 9%. If you factor those numbers into the equation, you can see why a chart of the real median household income using John Williams’s inflation numbers looks a lot more like the consumer confidence chart than the inflated take-home numbers the government gives us.

The mainstream media, which is bought and paid for by the same people who own the Federal Reserve Bank and our government, will try to put a happy face on rising rates by saying it is a result of a stronger economy. Nothing could be further from the truth, but in order to continue the con game, the establishment has to act like they know what is going on.

It is interesting to note that a host of people believe the bull market in long-dated Treasury bull market that was set up by the last Federal Reserve chairman to respect the markets, namely, Paul Volcker, is coming to an end. Not only is it interesting but it also represents what could be the biggest turning point in American economic history since the Civil War. What is impressive is that both those on the hyperinflationary side as well on as the deflationary side believe we are at a turning point. 


Jay Taylor



Jay Taylor Host of Turning Hard Times Into Good Times   Jay Taylor is the host of Turning Hard Times Into Good Times on the VoiceAmerica Business Channel.  The insights provided to Jay came from a history professor in 1967 who advised Jay that when countries go off a gold or silver standard, hard economic times are sure to follow because nations begin to think they do not need to work hard and save to enjoy a better life. Indeed there is no free lunch and a gold standard reminds people of that every day.  Jay watched his professor’s prophetic words come true when in 1971, President Nixon completely detached the dollar from gold. Not surprising to Jay, the price of gold skyrocketed in the late 1970s as inflation wiped out vast amounts of wealth from average Americans. To protect his own wealth Jay began to invest in gold and gold mining shares and in 1981 he began sharing his success and insights in his newsletter. In 1981 Jay began writing a subscription newsletter that has earned his subscribers countless thousands of dollars over the years.  Jay’s insights as to the real cause of our problems has enabled him to find investment strategies that work. Diagnose a problem correctly and you have a chance for success.


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