Sunday, February 22, 2015


Rob Hill, es el líder de la entidad que agrupa a individuos adinerados que se han mudado a Puerto Rico atraídos por leyes que les permiten vivir aquí pagando poco o ningún impuesto.  

La entidad Act 20/22 Society fue creada para educar sobre los beneficios de los incentivos contributions de Puerto Rico, forjar una comunidad y proteger sus intereses, y su líder Robb Rill, aseguró que las 800 personas y negocios que han tomado ventaja de los beneficios otorgados bajo la leyes 20 y 22
La Ley 22, conocida como la  “Ley Para Incentivar el Traslado de Individuos Inversionistas a Puerto Rico”, promueve que individuos que no hayan sido residentes de Puerto Rico por al menos los últimos seis años establezcan su residencia en Puerto Rico. La ley les exime totalmente del pago de contribuciones en Puerto Rico del ingreso pasivo devengado por estos con respecto a sus inversiones. También los exime de los impuestos sobre ganancias de capital amasadas y aplica tanto cuando el individuo invierte directamente en bonos, acciones u otros instrumentos de inversión, como cuando dicho individuo invierte a través de fondos mutuos de Puerto Rico o a través de una entidad bancaria internacional de Puerto Rico.

Inversionistas aseguran que contribuyen pese a no pagar impuestos
Eva Laureano, 1/02/2015

 Otras empresas que han recibido estos beneficios son: Management Holding, LLC. (exsocio director de Pharos Capital Group, LLC., Dale LeFebvre); Acrecent Financial Corporation (el exvicepresidente y exgerente de la División de Financiamiento Estructurado del Banco Popular, Raúl Cacho, y el expresidente y exgerente de Región del Caribe de GE Capital, James Connor); ACV International & Consulting Solutions, LLC. (Aileen Camacho Vallejo); AJA Management and Research, LLC. / Nine Points Capital Advisors, LLC. (gestor de fondos de riesgo en Seattle, Damon Vickers); AltVest Capital, LLC. (director general de Avidity Capital Partners, LLC., Chris Streib y el director ejecutivo de Palladium Group, Inc., John McClellan); Álvarez-Díaz Group, PSC (Ricardo Álvarez Díaz); A.M.M.V.R. Group, Inc. (el dueño de  Metro Pavia Health System, Eduardo Artau Gómez, y Carmen Feliciano Vargas); AT Financial Services, LLC. (miembro del comité de transición de la administración de García Padilla, Juan Acosta Reboyras y Adam Thorpe); Betis Products, LLC. (miembro de la Comisión de Alimentación y Nutrición de Puerto Rico, Charlie Sánchez Class); y Black Knight Organization, LLC.
Una de las entidades que se ha beneficiado de esta legislación es la firma Zaragoza & Alvarado, PSC., a la que Zaragoza Gómez, durante su nominación pidió a la Oficina de Ética Gubernamental crear un fideicomiso ciego para evitar cualquier conflicto de interés.
Vea también:

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Statehood Process Moves Forward

Pierluisi Adds 10 New Cosponsors to H.R. 727, the Puerto Rico Statehood Admission Process Act
Feb 12, 2015
Press Release

Washington, DC—Resident Commissioner Pedro Pierluisi announced today that 10 additional Members of Congress have joined as cosponsors of H.R. 727, the Puerto Rico Statehood Admission Process Act, a bipartisan bill that would result in Puerto Rico becoming a state on January 1, 2021 once a majority of the electorate in Puerto Rico votes in favor of admission in a federally-sponsored vote.

The bill now has 61 cosponsors—48 Democrats and 13 Republicans. The number of Republican cosponsors for H.R. 727 has surpassed the number of Republican cosponsors for H.R. 2000, Pierluisi’s political status bill in the last Congress, which ultimately obtained 131 total cosponsors.

In a November 2012 referendum in Puerto Rico, sponsored by the local government, voters soundly rejected Puerto Rico’s current territory status and expressed a clear preference for statehood.

H.R. 727 would authorize a vote to be held in Puerto Rico within one year of the bill’s enactment—that is, no later than the end of 2017. The ballot would consist of a single question: “Shall Puerto Rico be admitted as a State of the United States?” In 2014, at Pierluisi’s initiative, and over the objections of the Governor of Puerto Rico and his allies, Congress enacted a $2.5 million appropriation to enable Puerto Rico to conduct the first-federally sponsored vote in its history, so long as certain conditions are met. Under H.R. 727, the admission vote authorized by the bill may be funded with the $2.5 million that Congress approved. This is appropriate because a straightforward vote on admission clearly satisfies the conditions that the federal government established in the appropriations law.

Pursuant to H.R. 727, if a majority of voters affirm their desire for admission, this would trigger a series of steps that would culminate in residents of Puerto Rico voting for President and Vice-President, two U.S. senators, and voting members of the U.S. House of Representatives in November 2020, and Puerto Rico being admitted as a state in January 2021.

“As I have said before, every cosponsor of H.R. 727 is extraordinarily meaningful. Each Member of Congress who cosponsors the bill is declaring, in essence, that he or she will support Puerto Rico’s admission as a state on a relatively fast timeline once a majority of voters in Puerto Rico confirm their desire for statehood in a federally-sponsored vote on admission,” said Pierluisi.

“The Governor of Puerto Rico, through the Puerto Rico Federal Affairs Administration and its consultants, is actively lobbying against H.R. 727, using Puerto Rico taxpayer funding to do so. I believe this is both illegal and immoral, given that the bill is intended to fulfill the will of the voters as expressed in the 2012 referendum. Nevertheless, bipartisan support for the bill is growing,” added the Resident Commissioner.

Pierluisi continues to reiterate that, at his initiative, Congress and the President have already provided funding and a framework for the first federally-sponsored vote in Puerto Rico’s history, with the declared goal of resolving the territory’s status. The Resident Commissioner has proposed that the Puerto Rico government use that appropriation to conduct a federally-sponsored vote on Puerto Rico’s admission as a state. For over a year, however, the Governor and the majority party in the Legislative Assembly of Puerto Rico have failed to take any action, presumably because they fear that a democratic vote will result in another victory for statehood.

Monday, February 9, 2015

States Might Dip into $2 Trillions of Offshore Corporate Cash

Puerto Rico, a poor, bankrupt US Territory, with a severe economic crisis, was classified by the IRS to be one of the "FOREIGN" US Offshore tax shelters holding 2$Trillion US Dollars with Unpaid US Tax Money. PR's unemployment is in the double digits; Per capita around $10,000; and 179,000 residents have left PR for other states in 51 months. That is immoral and outrageous!
Feb 9, 2014 - by Miriam J. Ramirez
An ‘out-of-the-box idea’ to fund transportation projects gains traction
By Ashley Halsey III - February 7
Ashley Halsey III
Rep. John Delaney (D- MD)came up with an idea to yank America out of transportation quicksand. The concept of using almost $2 trillion in offshore corporate cash to bail out the beleaguered federal trust fund for roads, bridges and transit seems to have lots of parents on Capitol Hill these days. 
They want to use that tax money to shore up the Highway Trust Fund, which relies on the federal gas tax to pay the federal share of transportation funding. Delaney’s bill is the antithesis of simple, but nowhere so massive as revision of the tax code, and he says he thinks the repatriated tax money might arrive in time to meet the May deadline.

U.S.-based companies have deferred payment of taxes on their $2 trillion in cash overseas. His proposal would create a one-time tax rate of 8.75 percent on cash coming home — enough, he says, to provide an additional $120 billion for a six-year surface transportation bill.

Friday, February 6, 2015

UBS Risked Retirement Funds Of Puerto Ricans

Puerto Rico Beaches
UBS was in charge of investing the Retirement funds of Puerto Rico Government Workers. It is said that millions were lost. MJ

Recording shows how UBS drove reluctant brokers to sell high-risk Puerto Rico funds
By Suzanne Barlyn
February 6, 2015
(Reuters) - In April 2011, two years before their prices sank, a slew of bond funds that were being sold by UBS’s Puerto Rico arm appeared to its brokers to be such risky investments that they balked at promoting them to their clients.

Their misgivings became so great that when a group of brokers was asked by the firm why they weren’t selling more of the funds’ shares they came up with a list of 22 reasons, according to people familiar with the matter. The concerns, which the brokers said were based on their own views and feedback from clients, included allegations the funds suffered from low liquidity, excessive leverage, oversupply and instability. 

Miguel Ferrer & Bodine
 They were wary, in part, because many of the funds were loaded up with debt of the Puerto Rican government and related entities that was underwritten by UBS, the people said.

Their views were unacceptable to Miguel Ferrer, then the chairman of UBS Financial Services Inc of Puerto Rico, a unit of UBS AG. On June 2 of that year he told a meeting of the firm’s brokers, held at its offices in the Golden Mile banking district of San Juan, they had to change their mindset or leave, according to an audio recording reviewed by Reuters.

For audio of Miguel Ferrer’s address to the meeting, click:

“You need to focus again on the attractive benefits of our funds and stop this nonsense that there are no products available – because if there are no products, go home, get a new job!” Ferrer can be heard telling them in Spanish in the recording, which was made by one of those attending.

Ferrer stressed that the brokers had almost $1 billion in cash in their clients’ accounts that was not generating commissions. He said the team’s production had dropped “40-something-percent” (a figure now disputed by UBS that says it was closer to 10 percent), that “overall we are doing quite badly” and it was “bullshit” for brokers to claim there weren’t products to sell.

The recording could help to bolster arbitration claims filed with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority in the U.S. by hundreds of investors seeking more than $900 million in damages from UBS, said Andrew Stoltmann, a Chicago-based lawyer representing some of the investors. The claims are based on allegations UBS Puerto Rico pitched the funds’ high yields and tax benefits to clients, but did not tell them about the risky nature of the investments, according to Stoltmann. UBS also put its own financial interests ahead of its clients by steering clients to funds containing bonds underwritten by UBS, he said.

The bank said it does not comment on pending litigation. A spokeswoman for UBS in New York, Karina Byrne, said the firm believed the funds they were selling were a sound investment that had provided investors strong returns in the past as well as tax benefits.

UBS, which was provided with key parts of the recording, declined to confirm their authenticity or say whether it reviewed them. Ferrer, through his lawyer, provided Reuters with his own English translation of his comments on the recording. He said in a statement that UBS funds have provided attractive investment opportunities for certain investors at various times over the past 20 years. “However, as I reminded the financial advisors both during and after the sales meeting, it was and is up to each financial advisor to recommend only those financial products that are suitable to their individual customers’ needs,” said Ferrer, who left UBS last July in a restructuring.

Some of the funds lost half to nearly two-thirds of their value between March 2011 and October 2013, and have failed to recover since. To be sure, a few of the funds with AAA-rated debt, such as Fannie Mae mortgage bonds, are higher now than they were in March 2011.

The investors in the arbitrations include 88-year-old widow Mabel Ladicani and her daughter, Vanessa Hernandéz, who claim that in October 2011, UBS broker Antonio Lopez switched money they had invested in a fund of mostly AAA-rated Puerto Rican debt into one of the riskier debt funds that UBS was selling.

Ladicani, who runs a fabric store in San Juan, said she does not remember agreeing to the change. Her investment dropped by more than half to $196,500 from an earlier $400,000 in a two-month period in the middle of 2013, according to her Houston-based lawyer Samuel Edwards. Ladicani, who also took a loan from UBS for a property purchase with the fund shares as collateral, says the losses ended her hopes of retirement. “I can’t sleep – it changes your life,” she said. "I still work in the store every day.” UBS declined to discuss Ladicani’s case. Lopez did not return calls seeking comment.

The recording of Ferrer’s comments could become evidence in two whistleblower complaints involving the funds filed at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, a person familiar with the cases said. An SEC spokeswoman declined to comment. 

Reuters reported last June that the FBI was investigating allegations that some UBS Puerto Rico clients were improperly directed to borrow money from another UBS unit to buy the fund shares. It is unclear if that probe is still continuing. An FBI spokeswoman declined to comment.

Many of the funds were highly concentrated in the debt of the Caribbean island’s government and related entities. But they were being sold at a time when there were already fears about the size of Puerto Rico’s debt burden and the weakness of its economy.

The debt picture has deteriorated further since. The island has more public debt per capita than any U.S. state and its pension funds for government employees are severely underfunded.  A senior broker who spoke at the 2011 meeting, Ramon Almonte, told the brokers that Puerto Rico’s “fiscal and credit situation has gotten miraculously better” and that the firm has to stop “being an agent of fear, of panic,” according to the recording. At the time, there had been some modest improvements in the island’s outlook, including an upgrade of Puerto Rico’s credit rating by Standard & Poor’s, though the pickup didn’t last.

Almonte, whose voice on the recording was identified by another person who attended the meeting, can be heard on the tape saying it was important that brokers try to dissuade those wanting to sell the fund shares.

For audio of Ramon Almonte at the meeting, click:

Almonte, who still works for UBS, said in a statement that the funds had been very good products for the bank's clients. At the time of the meeting, Ferrer and UBS Puerto Rico were the subject of an earlier SEC probe into its sales tactics for the same group of funds in 2008-2009. UBS paid a $26.6 million penalty in 2012 to settle allegations that it had offloaded shares in the funds from its own balance sheet before filling its customers' sell orders. The bank neither admitted nor denied the allegations.

Ferrer and another UBS executive, Carlos Ortiz, fought the case and they were later cleared of wrongdoing by an SEC administrative judge in 2013. The judge found that they had not misled customers or engaged in fraud, and also said the SEC had not adequately proven parts of its case. UBS did not seek to modify the prior settlement, a spokesman said.

(Reporting By Suzanne Barlyn; Additional Reporting by Rodrigo Campos and Edward Krudy; Editing by Charles Levinson and Martin Howell)