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September 20, 2014 / 25 Elul, 5774
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Posts Tagged ‘Wall Street’

Goldman Sachs Chief: Rabbi, Jewish Groups Helped Me Succeed

Tuesday, December 3rd, 2013

Goldman Sachs chief Lloyd Blankfein recalled the role of his rabbi and Jewish organizations in helping him realize he could succeed despite growing up in a working-class neighborhood.

“The only person I knew who put on a suit everyday was our rabbi,” Blankfein told a crowd of 1,700 fellow Wall Street insiders and guests Monday night at a $26 million record-breaking fundraising dinner for UJA-Federation of New York.

“Growing up [in public housing in the East New York section of Brooklyn], every family I knew struggled. I thought every Jewish father either drove a cab or worked in the post office. I didn’t know anyone whose father was a doctor, lawyer or other professional,” the Goldman Sachs chairman and CEO said upon receiving the Gustave L. Levy Award at the event at the Hilton New York.

“Today many of you may not know a Jewish family that is struggling, you don’t see them, but there are. There are thousands of families not more than three miles away from here.”

Blankfein credited his rabbi and his involvement in federation-funded afterschool programs and summer camp for helping him “to think about the world beyond East New York,” ultimately leading to his decision to attend college.

Another Israel Pharmaceutical Firm Goes to NASDAQ

Wednesday, October 9th, 2013

Kitov Pharmaceuticals accounted it plans to apply for listing on the NASDAQ exchange, joining Israel-based Teva and Kamada that are traded on Wall Street.

Kitov is hoping for approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) after its Phase III clinical trial of a combination drug for the treatment of hypertension and pain relief.

The drug has a potential market of $10 billion, and the company’s stock in Israel has climbed almost 10-fold this year.

It also is developing a combination drug for the treatment of osteoarthritis, with the risk of hypertension and other side effects associated with current treatments, Globes reported.

Another Israeli Start-Up to Raise Money on Wall Street

Monday, September 9th, 2013

Israeli start-up Outbrain, which provides a digital content management and storage solution,  sis going to Wall Street to raise $100-200 million in a public stock offering.

The company’s decision to go public rather than sell out to foreign companies puts it in company with Wix, Matomy Media and Fifty One Inc., now called Borderfree, all of which are in the process of offering shares to raise money.

Outbrain’s content recommendations engine is based on what reader’s prefer and is aimed at keeping readers on a news site for a longer time, enabling the site  to sell more advertising.

Its customers include Reuters and The New York Post as well as with companies such as General Electric, which market items on websites.

Another Israeli Firm Files for Wall Street IPO

Tuesday, June 4th, 2013

The Israeli-based Wix website developer company has filed for a $75 million initial public offering (IPO) to raise the company’s value to $400 million.

Last week, the Israeli-based Kamada medical treatments company completed an IPO prior its stock trading on NASDAQ last week. Software developer Babylon also has filed for IP, and Caesarstone Sdot Yam Ltd., a maker of quartz-based countertops raised slightly more than $84 million in its IPO a year ago.

Wix, founded in 2006 by CEO Avishai Abrahami, his brother Nadav and Giora Kaplan, has developed an online platform for people to quickly and easily create their own websites.

Wix’s success has resulted in one million new users each month. Altogether, 28 million people have used its services and created 26 million websites. Wix employs approximately 400 people, most in Tel Aviv.

Wix’s business model is based on payments from users for its various premium services, such as larger storage space or options to add sale elements on websites. Users can choose among hundreds of website templates, and choose the colors, size, and other features as they see fit.

Business Insider earlier this year ranked Wix 65th in its Digital 100 list of the world’s 100 most valuable private tech companies, alongside companies such as Twitter and Dropbox.

Exile on Wall Street (Podcast)

Wednesday, February 20th, 2013

Mike Mayo, finance analyst and author of Exile on Wall Street, has been named on Worth Magazine’s list of the most powerful people in finance. On the Goldstein on Gelt show, Mike talks about the changes that need to be made in the world of finance, the recent world finance crisis, and what’s happening on Wall Street today.

Markets, Politics, And The True Legacy Of Adam Smith

Thursday, September 13th, 2012

We wonder about the endlessly volatile markets and also (not often enough) about plainly unequal distributions of national wealth, but are the nation’s official policy responses based on correct views of classical economic theory? In particular, what about Adam Smith and his oft-quoted arguments for “free market capitalism”? More than any other classical theorist, Smith has been embraced by conservatives.

In brief, Smith reasoned, always capably and persuasively, that a system of private property, though naturally unequal, could still permit the poor to live tolerably. Rejecting Jean Jacques Rousseau’s contrary position that in commerce, “the privileged few…gorge themselves with superfluities, while the starving multitude are in want of the bare necessities of life,” Smith saw in capitalism not only an enviably rising productivity, but also the ultimate prerequisite for political liberty.

Adam Smith published his Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations in 1776. A revolutionary book, Wealth did not aim to support the interests of any one class over another, but rather the overall well being of an entire nation. He discovered, as we all know, “an invisible hand,” an unsought convergence whereby “the private interests and passions of men” will lead to “that which is most agreeable to the interest of a whole society.”

Through capitalistic modes of production and exchange, reasoned Smith, an inextinguishable social inequality might still be reconciled with broad human progress.

Significantly, however, today’s conservative defenders of Smith usually ignore, either deliberately or unwittingly, the full depth of his relentlessly complex thought. A system of “perfect liberty,” as Smith called it, could never be based upon any encouragements of needless consumption. Instead, he argued, the laws of the market, driven by competition and a consequent “self-regulation,” strongly demanded a principled disdain for all vanity-driven consumption. “Conspicuous consumption,” a phrase that would be used far more effectively later on by Thorsten Veblen, could therefore never become the proper motor of economic or social improvement.

Adam Smith understood the dynamics of conspicuous consumption, but he disliked them altogether. For him, it was only reasonable that the market regulate both the price and quantity of goods according to the final arbiter of public demand. Yet, he continued, this market ought never to be manipulated by any avaricious interferers. More precisely, Smith excoriated all who would artificially create or encourage contrived demand as mischievously vain meddlers of a “mean rapacity.”

Today, of course, with engineered demand and hyper-Consumption as both permanent and allegedly desirable market features, we have lost all sight of Smith’s “natural liberty.” As a result, we try, foolishly and interminably, to construct our economic recovery and vitality on sand. Below the surface, we still fail to recognize, lurks a truly fundamental problem that is not political, economic, fiscal or financial. Instead, as Adam Smith would have us understand, it is a plainly psychological or human dilemma, one we should acknowledge can never be resolved by either Barack Obama or Mitt Romney.

Wall Street’s persisting fragility is largely a mirror image of Main Street’s insatiable drive toward hyper-consumption. This manipulated drive, so execrable to Adam Smith, has already prompted certain learned economists to warn repeatedly against saving too much. Could any advice be more ironic?

Whether Democrats or Republicans, all voters believe our national economic effort must always be oriented toward buying more. No one seems to ask, Exactly what sort of society can we expect from an economic system based on imitation and conformance?

Contrived demand has not always been a basic driver of our economy. Before television, and before our latest social networking gadgets, such demand could not have had any such overwhelming power and effect.

Writing in the middle of the nineteenth century, the American Transcendentalist philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson spoke presciently of “self-reliance.” Foolish “reliance upon property,” Emerson had understood, is the unwanted result of “a want of self‑reliance.”

Now, living apprehensively amid a literally delirious collectivism, the ever-fearful American wants, more or less desperately, to project a “successful” image. This projection, in turn, remains founded upon material acquisition of “all the right things.”

In the final analysis, as Adam Smith himself would have understood, it will be the relentlessly conformist call of American mass society that critically undermines our core economy.

Pity: 11 Non-Racist Iranian ‘Wall Street Downfall’ Festival Finalists Were Excellent

Friday, July 13th, 2012

The First International Wall Street Downfall Cartoon Festival in Tehran, showcasing caricatures from different countries, awarded first prize to an entry depicting three religious Jews praying in front of a Western Wall that’s been transformed into a Wall Street bank.

The festival didn’t get much attention, because it’s July and most anti-Wall Street zealouts and anti-Semites are at the beach. But then the Anti-Defamation League found out about it and it was off to the races, as it well should be.

First, because the cartoon really is nasty, or as Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director, put it: “Once again, Iran takes the prize for promoting anti-Semitism. The winning cartoon takes the most sacred site in Judaism and perverts it into a shrine of greed. It is offensive on so many levels.”

He’s right, although I don’t personally believe that anything should be verboten for satire, including, of course, the prophet Muhammad.

Mahmoud Mohammad Tabrizi from Iran won the top prize (5000 euro, a letter of appreciation and the festival’s statue), and Alexi Kostofsky from Ukraine and Farhad Rahim Qara-Maleki from Iran stood the second and the third (4000 euro, a letter of appreciation and the festival’s statue, and 3000 euro, a letter of appreciation and the festival’s statue, respectively).

The 4th to 10th winners each received 500 euro, a letter of appreciation and the festival’s statue. Meantime, all the 70 finalists were granted letters of appreciation.

It’s a crying shame, though, that the Fars news agency, the festival’s co-sponsor, and the judges, couldn’t get over their anti-Semitic impulses, because the rest of the works are fabulous. So I decided to let our readers take a look and appreciate some dirty commie cartoons, in addition to the Nazi one.

Because good art shouldn’t go unwatched…

The ADL reminds us that in 2006, the Iranian government sponsored a Holocaust cartoon contest in which the winning entries used Holocaust images to deride Israel. That one was way nastier.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/pity-11-non-racist-iranian-wall-street-downfall-festival-finalists-were-excellent/2012/07/13/

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