Central banks will want oversight of Facebook’s Libra: Bank of England

The Bank of England is open to the idea of letting new payment services such as Facebook’s upcoming Libra hold funds with the central bank, Mark Carney said Thursday, June 20. (AP)
Updated 21 June 2019

Central banks will want oversight of Facebook’s Libra: Bank of England

  • “It has to be safe, or it’s not going to happen,” Band of England Governor Mark Carney said
  • Facebook proposed a new currency and payment system called Libra

LONDON: Major central banks and regulators will want oversight of Facebook’s proposed new currency and payment system, Libra, to ensure it is safe and does not allow money laundering or finance terrorism, Bank of England Governor Mark Carney said.
“It has to be safe, or it’s not going to happen,” Carney told the BBC in an interview broadcast on Friday. “We, the Fed, all the major global central banks and supervisors, would have direct regulatory (oversight).”
Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority — responsible for consumer protection and anti-money laundering — would also have a major supervisory role to play, Carney added.
Carney said on Thursday that Facebook cannot expect its new Libra currency to benefit from the same unregulated free-for-all that helped the company achieve a dominant position in social media.


US removes some Chinese furniture, modems from planned 10% tariffs

Updated 17 August 2019

US removes some Chinese furniture, modems from planned 10% tariffs

  • US President Donald Trump on Tuesday delayed more than half of the proposed tariffs until December
  • The $114 billion retail furniture industry has been among the sector’s hardest hit with price increases due to Trump’s tariffs

WASHINGTON: The Trump administration is sparing some Chinese-made household furniture, baby items and Internet modems and routers from its next rounds of 10 percent tariffs, it said on Friday.
The US Trade Representative’s office released a complete list of the items that were removed from $300 billion in tariffs scheduled to go into effect on Sept. 1 and Dec. 15, some of which had already been hit with 25 percent tariffs.
Trump on Tuesday delayed more than half of the proposed tariffs until December, saying it would help shield businesses and consumers from the US-China trade war fallout during the Christmas selling season.
The new list of 44 categories of spared imports, worth about $7.8 billion according to US Census Bureau data, also includes some chemical compounds used in the manufacture of plastics. Reuters previously reported that bibles and religious texts would be spared from the tariff list.
Modems and routers made in China were part of a $200 billion list of products hit with tariffs last September that have since been raised to 25 percent. Friday’s exclusion would avoid a further 10 percent hike as Trump imposes tariffs on Sept. 1 to products in the same broad customs category, including smart watches, smart speakers and Bluetooth headphones.
The bulk of the items removed from the tariff list were furniture products, including wooden- and metal-framed chairs and those made of plastics. Some of these were previously hit with tariffs as part of broader furniture categories.
Baby-related furniture items also were spared, including toddler beds, bassinets, cradles, strollers and children’s seats.
The $114 billion retail furniture industry has been among the sector’s hardest hit with price increases due to Trump’s tariffs, which rose to 25 percent in May.
The US Labor Department said on Tuesday that the price index for household furnishings rose 0.4 percent in July, marking its third consecutive monthly increase and contributing to broad-based growth in consumer prices during July.