Here's the speech by Webb-site founder David Webb to the crowd in Admiralty last night. (12-Oct-2014)
One HK, two possible outcomes
HK's civic freedoms and lack of democracy are an incompatible, unsustainable combination, which is why it is alone globally in that quadrant of the grid of democracy and civic freedoms. Either we move to a democratic open society, or we join mainland China and others with neither civic freedoms nor democracy. The status quo, with recurrent protests against an illegitimate and paralysed government, is not a viable option. (9-Oct-2014)
The highway guide to the Umbrella Movement of 2014
What's going on in HK? Here is our quick illustrated guide. Note 12-Oct-2014: we've amended the title from "Revolution" to "Movement" - as this subsequently emerged as the more accepted name for the pro-democracy protests. (29-Sep-2014)
Fixing the Small House Policy
We look at a recent court case which again highlights the rampant abuse of the Small House Policy for the New Territories. We propose a return to the original policy intent, creating an internal market for indigenous housing, together with a voluntary, market-based scheme to surrender the claims of indigenous men and their under-age and unborn male descendants. (9-Sep-2014)
HKT's abuse of ID numbers
Your ID number is not a password; so many firms and people know your identity - but dominant land-line provider HKT Ltd (6823) is using it that way to access your phone bills. HKT: Here to Cut Corners. (9-Sep-2014)
PCPD not answering our calls
After blogging about parts of an "intemperate grilling" from the Commerce and Economic Development Bureau over his call for a do-not-call person-to-person register, igniting public debate, the Privacy Commissioner has now refused our request, under the Code on Access to Information, for copies of the CEDB's letter and his reply letter, citing a lack of public interest. He can't have it both ways. (5-Sep-2014)
ISS recommends against Lerado (1225) sale
Webb-site has learned that ISS, the leading proxy advisory firm, has joined us in recommending voting against the sale of Lerado's core business, due to the excessive capital retention. (4-Sep-2014)
Veto Lerado (1225) sale until they pay up
We call on Lerado shareholders to veto the sale of its core business unless and until the board increased the proposed special dividend from $0.30 to at least HK$1 per share. We would rather hold a stake in a real business than get trapped in another shell trading at a discount to its net cash. Management only owns 33%, so they had better listen to investors and revise the plan. David Webb holds just under 8%, and we need your support. (1-Sep-2014)
Guangdong Yueyun bonus share vetoed
H-share holders have narrowly vetoed a bonus share issue by Guangdong Yueyun (3399) which would have knocked 40% off the dividend in additional tax and destroyed 1.5% of value for H-share investors. This is the board's idea of "providing returns to shareholders". (30-Jun-2014)
Minsheng tax grab, HKEx conflicts
Minsheng Bank (1988) just grabbed RMB115.6m from H-share holders and paid it to the Government with no good reason. We explain why bonus share issues by PRC issuers are not just silly but damaging to shareholder value. We also look at the conflict of interest for HKEx, which recently signed a strategic MoU with Minsheng and is pursuing relationships with other banks while acting as their listing regulator. The SFC should now take over regulation of these listings, but has declined to do so. (30-Jun-2014)
Foreign forces behind protest movement, says C Y Leung
Comment: he is insulting the intelligence and feelings of the protesters by implying that they don't actually want democracy themselves. He should stop parroting the mainland Government and start representing the people of HK.
Newsline interview with C Y Leung
Asia Television, 19-Oct-2014
Unfortunately the interviewer does not ask about the obvious step of returning the nomination threshold to 1/8 from 1/2, within the Basic Law, and allows the CE to suggest that the protesters insist on civic nomination, which the BL does not allow. A fair nomination threshold would resolve the issue.
PM ordered Lord Freud to apologise for remarks on disabled people’s pay
David Freud is right - employers will not offer jobs to less productive people if they can get a non-disabled person for the same minimum wage. That is why places including Australia and Hong Kong allow productivity assessments so that mentally or physically disabled people can still work, with social welfare to top-up their incomes. The Tory and Labour parties, in a contest of political correctness, are ignoring economics and reducing the employment chances of disabled people.
C Y Leung: we're spending HK$20bn and a vast chunk of land on sports instead of housing
HK Government, 15-Oct-2014
Displaying the Government's economic illiteracy, in a prepared speech he says: "if you divide 7 million into 20 billion, even I can come up with a figure of at least three to four thousand dollars for every man, woman and child in Hong Kong". Um no C Y, that's at least $2857, not $4000. Still a waste though. He says they "did consider using the site instead for housing units". But why do that when you can buy election committee votes from the sports sector as well as the construction sector? It's a win-win proposition.
LCQ: Legal proceedings related to CITIC (0267)
HK Government, 15-Oct-2014
Govt says police investigations into CITIC are ongoing. Legal battle over whether documents and disks seized by police are subject to legal professional privilege won't be heard in Court of Appeal until May-2015. Thanks to legislator James To Kun Sun for raising this again.
Luk Fook (0590): same-store sales +3% in Golden Week, during Occupy Central
Company announcement, 15-Oct-2014
The gold and jewellery co says:"Although the “Occupy Central” movement in Hong Kong caused a disruption of normal operations in some shops at certain districts, the adverse impact was mitigated by a substantial growth of sales of shops at other districts because of the switch of customers’ shopping locations."
CE postpones LegCo Q&A on security grounds
HK Government, 15-Oct-2014
Has this man never heard of video-conferencing? He could do it via Skype from his fallout shelter/ Führerbunker. Government business should continue.
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Today's birthdays, 21 October
From Webb-site Who's Who
|Pierrepont, William (1692)
|Manners, John (1696)
|Charteris, Francis (1723)
|Stewart, Alan Plantagenet
|Ho, Ping Yin (1902)
|Tsang, Chiu Cheung
|Rufus Isaacs, Elizabeth Ann Mary
|Jessen, Arwed Peter
|Chan, George Wai Ho
|Freshwater, Timothy George
|Chan, Patrick Siu Oi
|de Courcy Hughes, Simon
|Huthart, Gordon Richard
|Leung, Fu Wah
|Fisher, Carrie Frances
|Guinness, Dominic Alexander