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Swiss ex-banker pleads to helping U.S. tax evaders PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by Associated Press   
Wednesday, 12 March 2014 15:28

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) — A former Swiss banker has pleaded guilty to his role in a fraud scheme that prosecutors say helped U.S. taxpayers hide as much as $3 billion in assets from the IRS.

Swiss citizen Andreas Bachmann is one of eight former employees of Zurich-based Credit Suisse to be charged back in 2011. The 56-year-old is the first to be arrested and plead guilty.

Court records show he was arrested Tuesday and pleaded guilty Wednesday in federal court in Alexandria.

In court papers, Bachmann admitted traveling twice a year to the United States to meet with clients who maintained secret Swiss accounts as a means of avoiding U.S. taxes.

The charges are part of a crackdown by the Obama administration on foreign banks believed to be helping U.S. taxpayers hide assets.


Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

 
Volvo earnings hit by new product launches, costs PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by Associated Press   
Wednesday, 12 March 2014 06:38

HELSINKI (AP) — Swedish truck maker AB Volvo enjoyed strong sales in the fourth quarter, but its earnings were hurt by extra costs linked to the launch of new products, write-downs and restructuring charges.

Net profit in the last three months of 2013 fell to 548 million kronor ($86 million), from 869 million kronor in the same period a year earlier. Sales rose to 76.6 billion kronor, from 70.8 billion kronor in 2012.

Describing profitability in the period as "unsatisfactory," the company said Wednesday it would continue cost-cutting measures during 2014, including 4,400 layoffs it had already announced, and will review its products portfolio.

Volvo said it expects a slight growth in overall demand, driven mainly by China and Europe, but added that 2014 will see a reduction in costs.


Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

 
Europe makes a stink about American cheese names PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by MARY CLARE JALONICK, Associated Press   
Wednesday, 12 March 2014 06:39

WASHINGTON (AP) — Errico Auricchio produced cheese with his family in Italy until he brought his trade to the United States more than 30 years ago. Now, the European Union is saying his cheese isn't authentic enough to carry a European name.

As part of trade talks, the EU wants to ban the use of names like Parmesan, feta and Gorgonzola on cheese made in the United States. The argument is that the American-made cheeses are shadows of the original European varieties and cut into sales and identity of the European cheeses.

Auricchio, president of Wisconsin-based BelGioioso Cheese Inc., says he has no idea what he would call his Parmesan if he had to find a new name.

"I Can't Believe It's Not Parmesan," he jokes.

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Strikes in Greece as austerity deal proves elusive PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by Associated Press   
Wednesday, 12 March 2014 06:35

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — A 24-hour strike by civil servants disrupted public services in Greece Wednesday as the country's government struggled to hammer out a deal on further austerity measures with international creditors.

The strike by public sector unions hit services at tax offices, local government and elsewhere. A protest march is planned in central Athens later in the day, while civil servants have penciled in another 48-hour strike on March 19-20.

Demonstrators gathered at two squares in central Athens, including cleaning staff fired by the Finance Ministry, who marched holding up buckets and mops.

The latest disruptions have come as negotiations with rescue lenders have dragged on for months, with the government reluctant to impose more economic pain in a country already exhausted by a six-year recession.

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