Oil prices received a jolt on January 21 and 22, as a cavalcade of bullish news conspired to push oil prices back into the $30s per barrel. The markets got excited at the possibility of more aggressive action from the European Central Bank on Thursday after comments from Mario Draghi, the bank’s president.Also, several voices weighed on oil prices, raising the questions about the unreasonable decline below $30 per barrel. The head of state-owned Saudi Aramco said that oil prices below $30 per barrel was “irrational,” and that he expected prices to rebound this year. Separately, Citigroup said that oil could be “the trade of the year,” because a price increase is nearly assured. After all, prices cannot go much lower, can they? Continue reading
Further proof that Germany runs and directs the European show, with this article highlighting its leadership positions on the continent, once again.
Two years ago, the European Commission proposed a law that would authorize an “independent authority” within the European Parliament [EP] to decide whether EP parties would receive an official legal status as EP parties. This legal status is needed for a party to obtain EP party subsidy, which is designed to cover 85% of party expenditures.Despite a British and Dutch lobby against the law, it was passed by the EP on September 29, 2014.
Among the demands parties have to meet are that of “internal party democracy” and that they must “respect the values on which the European Union is based.” Among these values are: “pluralism, non-discrimination, tolerance, justice, solidarity and equality between women and men.” In addition, the parties must be active in at least 7 out of 28 EU member-state countries. Continue reading