“Luis Wells: De La Destrucción Al Juego” Opens at Maman Fine Art

Argentine contemporary artist, Luis Wells who is famed for his “Destructive Art”, has opened a new exhibition at MAMAN Fine Art in Avenida Libertador, Buenos Aieres.

Wells was considered to have played an influential role during the Informalist Movement of the 1950s and 60s, and he earned a reputation for creating “Destructive Art” (the name of his first exhibition, and ultimately a descriptor for much of his future work). Wells’ art at the time was considered distasteful, but his work has since gone on to become respected globally; marked by the latest opening of his exhibition at Mamam Fine Art.

The exhibition opened on September 1st 2016 and will run through to October 15th.

Further Reading:
Olyvia Kwok’s Biography
MAMAN Fine Art

About MAMAN Fine Art

Daniel Maman, having worked 25 years as an economic and art advisor, opened MAMAN Fine Art in 2001. As an Argentinian man, Maman has dedicated his gallery to Latin American Modern and Contemporary Art, solidifying his reputation as an influential figurehead of Agentina’s culture.

How is Spread Betting taxed, today and in the future?

At the time of writing, the HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) position on Spread Betting is that gains are generally not subject to tax. Any income is treated effectively as gambling income – because no assets are physically traded. However, this is not always the case 100% of the time; HMRC will try to tax individuals for whom ‘gambling’ forms part of their ‘trade’. Thus, if you are trading spreads and are also a professional stock broker or trader, the income would very likely be subject to tax.

The majority of spread betters are effectively part-time, so you almost certainly don’t need to worry about this HMRC position. You will need to think carefully about this position however if you choose to enter this sphere on a full-time basis. If you do choose to trade on a full-time basis, and if HMRC deem your ‘trade’ to include spread betting, you will very likely be liable for capital gains tax (CGT) on any profitable trades that you make.

Each UK individual has an £11,000 CGT exemption – meaning that the first £11,000 of realised gains will be free of capital gains tax. Beyond this exemption, tax will be applied at your marginal capital gains tax rate – which will probably be around 28%.

There are currently no CGT tax breaks available to spread betters, though this may not be the case indefinitely. The UK Government introduced the Innovative Finance ISA in April 2016, to act as tax shelter for new forms of finance. The initial iteration of the “IFISA” covers certain types of crowdfunding (specifically, Peer-to-Peer lending). Over time it is widely expected that the Government will choose to extend the remit of the ISA to cover other forms of modern finance (starting with other debt-based crowdfunding activities). It is certainly not beyond the realms of possibility to imagine that the Government may choose to include income from spread betting within the new Innovative Finance ISA, though at present it is understood that there are no immediate plans to bring this form of investing under the IFISA banner.

An Overview of the Innovative Finance ISA

If the Government were to do this, then holding an IFISA would potentially allow Spread Betters to invest up to £15,240 under a tax-free wrapper, with no consequences for either income tax or capital gains tax. However it is likely that the majority of investors would be sensible to spread their annual £15,240 ISA allowance across a range of investment vehicles (the Cash ISA, Stocks & Shares ISA and Innovative Finance ISA share a common annual limit – they are not separate).

We will update this page with news of any updates to the Innovative Finance ISA remit. For the time being, it is not likely that Spread Betting will be covered by the IFISA, though it is impossible to say with any certainty whether or not the Government will subsequently elect to include this form of investing within the new tax-free wrapper.

AAPL: China Sales to Save Stock Price Dive

The past three years have seen Apple’s share price (AAPL) in an unstoppable rally; but a recent flurry of skeptical media reports have left this share price down nearly 30% from its all-time high of $700.

Such is the skepticism of Apple, that even a launch of their iPhone 5 in the World’s largest market did little to stop the fall. On Friday, Apple finished the day trading at a 10-month low by falling 3.9% to $509.79. The company’s stock was downgraded and 6 month predictions fell by nearly $100…

But great news came from Apple HQ as this weekend’s launch of the iPhone 5 saw over 2,000,000 sales – the largest opening weekend for a mobile phone ever seen in China.

“Customer response to iPhone 5 in China has been incredible, setting a new record with the best first weekend sales ever in China,”

Tim Cook, Apple CEO

This news seems to clash with some reports of empty stores and despondent customers; and there is no doubt that many investors will remain skeptical given the relatively few sales in such a large market.

Such a short term gain may seem like a big win for shareholders; but the real value in the China launch will be in the long term. Apple currently does not have partnerships with some of China’s main telecoms carriers (including China Mobile), and so the outlook may still remain uncertain.

Image Credit: http://uk.finance.yahoo.com/q?s=AAPL

Why The PlayStation 4 Will Continue To Be Sony’s Key Profit Maker

First there was the speculation, then there was that E3 Expo showdown between Microsoft and their xBox One console, but finally we know the full specifications of the PlayStation 4 which in turn gives us reason to believe that Sony’s profits will continue to soar.

Gaming website VGChartz recently unveiled its ‘2013 Year on Year Sales and Market Share Update’, which displays various statistics gathered from the last four years up to June 29th 2013. It details figures relating to the ‘big four’ consoles currently on the market, including the PS3, Nintendo Wii, the not-so-successful Nintendo WiiU and Microsoft’s xBox 360. For the sake of this article, we’ll be pitting the PS3 and xBox figures against one another, just to see if the latter will be battered as much as it was at the announcement conference for their next generation consoles, the PS4 and xBox One respectively.

Source: DigitalTrends.com

In terms of their sales, Sony’s PS3 has sold around 17,522,702 units since 2010, whilst the xBox 360 sold just 13,184,911 units in the same period. Whilst the XBox saw an increase in unit sales of 527,159 between 2010-2011, the console lost an average of 671,099 consoles between 2011-2013. Meanwhile, the PS3 lost an average of 337,266 units per year between 2010-2013.

Since 2010 console sales across all platforms (inclusive of PS3, XBox 360, Wii and Wii U have been slowly decreasing. A total of 24,373,258 consoles were sold in 2010, versus just 19,981,875 in 2011 and a measly 18,348,630 in 2012. However in the earlier half of 2013, 15,122,419 older consoles have already been sold, and with the launches of the XBox One and PS4 imminent, it is likely that these new ‘toys’ will boost the gaming market back into its former glory, pushing console sales over 20,000,000 units once again.

Financially, the 7th generation PlayStation console, PS3, has a lifetime market share of 30.5%, just 0.1% ahead of its 7th gen Microsoft rival, XBox 360, whose lifetime market share stands at 30.4%. The PS3 has also had a consistently larger market share across the 4-year analysis period in comparison to the XBox, so is this a sign of the future?

The main reason contributing to the predicted positive future for the PlayStation’s success in both sales and shares, is that its 8th gen console, the PS4, costs around £80 less than Microsoft’s XBox One. Retailing at £349, the PlayStation 4 is significantly cheaper than XBox One’s £429 price tag and an online comparison site is waiting to see what bundle prices will appear nearer to the launch date. The PS4 was also made instantly more attractive as the makers of the XBox announced that its players would need to check in online once a day, and its games also carried strict digital rights managements software that prevented users from using second-hand games – although both points have now been revoked.

With a poor pitch from the start, the majority of gamers already seem much more attracted to Sony’s latest gaming hardware in comparison to the XBox One. However, with both consoles’ launch day editions already sold out on Amazon, it seems that the market is anyone’s for the taking…

William Hill Day Trader – Accessible Financial Markets

International investment Exchanges are in a continual state of flux during the course of their trading hours. Regional events may impact on share prices. This will have a knock-on effect on market indices in addition to futures prices, such as precious metals and carbon fuels. The successful trader understands that while he can’t predict the future, by following events, he will be able to react faster than rival traders. William Hill Day Trader provides a strategic focus on the shifting patterns of the globe’s financial markets for dealers that want to stay ahead of the online betting competition.

Gains are available by estimating whether the financial markets will either rise or fall within a set forecasting timeframe. With eleven separate markets to speculate on, new dealers can begin in a lower priced market before graduating on to a higher one. Bets can be placed on several time-based windows. The five-minute betting window provides a snapshot of how the trading floor operates. There are one-hour betting windows as well as day-to-day markets. Day Trader allows buyers and sellers to keep an eye on their bets whenever they like on their own desktop or laptop. Traders can quit while they’re ahead any time prior to close of business or allow their stake to roll over for another day.

Day Trader gives customers the freedom to use the more common fixed odds method of betting or the more cautious Binary Betting system. Essentially fixed odds winnings are multiplied by the fixed price at the time when the bet was laid. For example, if a £50 trade is ventured at odds of 1.25, the profit realised would be £125. Binary betting shows odds settled by index from 0 – 100. The more chance an event occurring the higher the odds will go. For instance, odds of 74-76 forecast a 75 per cent likelihood of an event happening.

William Hill Day Trader offers a safe and user friendly way of entering in to the challenging world of currency and commodities trading. Its £25 new player bonus means that new players can become acquainted in the flurry of the world’s financial markets without the risk of getting their fingers burned.

Capital Spreads City Insider

This article was written by a trader at Capital Spreads and sent to their existing account holders. Sign up for a free account at Capital Spreads to receive fortnightly updates on market movements and more.

To give our clients a different and uniquely informed perspective on the financial markets, Capital Spreads introduces “The City Insider”, a fortnightly view from a City expert, with a senior network of influential bankers, investors, economists and analysts. The identity of the Insider is anonymous – and a closely guarded secret – in order to allow our expert to express forthright, personal views and to protect the identity of the City figures upon whose opinions the Insider draws.

GEORGE Osborne must have felt like Harry Houdini last week after the UK economy escaped falling into the dreaded triple-dip recession so many people had feared.

The Chancellor took to his new Twitter account to declare that growth of 0.3pc in the first quarter of the year was a sign that “the economy is healing”. The stronger than expected rise in GDP was undoubtedly good news and City sources I know say it lessens the likelihood of further monetary policy easing from the Bank of England.

The view from the square mile is that Osborne must now turn this modest growth into a sustainable recovery.

My economist chums reminded me that first-quarter growth was driven by the services sector, while manufacturing and construction fell. There is still some way to go until the Government achieves its ambition of rebalancing the economy, so that manufacturing plays a bigger part in driving growth.

Growth on the other side of the Atlantic meanwhile disappointed during the first quarter, which I’m told by City contacts is likely to delay the US Federal Reserve’s withdrawal of stimulus.

Closer to home, the eurozone remains on edge, with diminishing consumer confidence and signs that the region’s economy is likely to contract again in the second quarter. I’m told to expect a further cut in interest rates, possibly as soon as Thursday’s ECB meeting.

Events have been even more exciting in the world of commodities where gold has dominated most of the headlines.

Gold always divides people. Gold bugs point to current monetary policy and the devaluing effect it has on currencies while bears argue that it’s a non-yielding asset that costs to own so there are better homes for your cash.

Of course the bears are right and it costs to own physical gold but that doesn’t matter if the price carries on rising, as it has done for the last 12 years.

The recent plunge and partial recovery in the gold price has split views in the market even further. What is really interesting is the complete dislocation in the paper gold market (ETFs) and the physical market. Gold coins in the US are flying off dealers’ shelves and queues have formed in India and China to buy jewellery after the price dip. It’s a mug’s game trying to forecast the price in this sort of environment but the strength in the physical market will be easing nerves for gold advocates.

Elsewhere in commodities it is quite gloomy.

Prices have been heading south, with copper prices on the LME falling below $7,000 a tonne on one day last week. There could be further falls ahead. This is true for agriculturals too, as grain stocks are finally starting to rise in the major food producing nations. All these price falls are gloomy portents for the global economic recovery.

That’s all for now. Time to perform a disappearing act of my own for a week in the sun. I’m told Corfu is rather nice at this time of year – I might even bump into Osborne or Peter Mandelson who we all know enjoy holidaying there. Take our poll and have your say.

Until next time….

Bitcoin Trades Available at Spreadex

Spreadex have become the second spread betting firm to allow betting through the use of bitcoin – a virtual, decentralised currency that has been growing rapidly in popularity. Bitcoin first became available in July 2010 when it began trading through a dedicated exchange at MtGox.com; the currency was adopted by speculators and those wishing to make transactions outside of government control. This popularity saw several rises and falls, none quite as big as the recent fluctuation in price where bitcoin grew a staggering 2000% in a matter of weeks.

These price movements were dramatic, and resulted in bitcoin making the news across multiple global platforms including the front page of the FT. Since then, IG adopted bitcoin as a method of placing binary bets; and now Spreadex have offered bitcoin as a funding method for trades.

At this moment in time, Spreadex only accept bitcoin bets made over the phone.

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IG Adopts Bitcoin Virtual Currency

At the start of April, bitcoin hit the front page of the Financial Times after it was speculated that the virtual currency was experiencing an enormous bubble. The bitcoin price (BTC) rose from $33.89 on March 1st to $234.25 on April 9th before crashing to $99.62 in just 2 days. This rise and fall has boosted the currency to the world stage with the latest adoption in a long line of investments coming from the UK’s leading financial betting company, IG.

With such a volatile price, bitcoin has become the perfect betting market for punters looking for big wins. A USD/BTC bet placed on bitcoin just 2 months ago would have seen returns of as much as 1200%. IG are now offering a limited risk binary option for those interested in speculating on the currency.

This couldn’t have come at a better time for IG. Binary betting on the price of bitcoin does not require any funds to be held in the high-risk currency, but in the casino and poker markets where chips are held in bitcoin, activity has all but dried up – the risk is just too high.”

Binary bets, also called binary options, are placed in the form of a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ bet. A predicted future price of BTC is set by IG and the punter agrees or disagrees by betting ‘yes’ or ‘no’.

IG chief executive, Tim Howkins, commented: “While Bitcoin is still a relatively new phenomenon it has surprised many in the financial markets with its popularity. We’re delighted to offer our clients the opportunity to benefit from its price fluctuations using a binary – while limiting their risk exposure”.