Incompetent Bungler Kerry Heads To Cuba, Castro Wants Millions
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Ronald F. Better
2015-08-13 22:38:48 UTC
Secretary of State John Kerry heads to Havana Friday to formally
hoist the stars and stripes over the reopened U.S. Consulate in

And while the move is a step toward removing the U.S. trade
embargo against Cuba, there’s growing skepticism that doing
business in Cuba will reap big rewards for U.S. companies.
Nicholas Watson at Teneo Intelligence writes:

” … Prominent industry groups including the U.S. Chamber of
Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers as well
as a wide array of companies are pushing for commercial
restrictions to be relaxed further. Although sanctions persist
and conventional tourism remains banned, the administration
continues to encourage businesses to explore entering the Cuban
market in hopes that political progress toward ending the
embargo will naturally follow a growing U.S. economic footprint
on the island. In this way, the administration hopes to weaken
the embargo from the inside out, eventually rendering its repeal
inevitable. For U.S. business, this means legal pathways must be
navigated carefully.

To date, however, the contingent of Republicans in Congress that
support normalization remains small. Proposed legislation
lifting the embargo is not expected to gain traction anytime
soon, and GOP leaders have inserted the Cuba issue into their
looming budget fight with the White House and Democrats on
Capitol Hill. Anti-normalization provisions have been baked into
various appropriations bills and now face an uncertain future …”

The closed-end Herzfeld Caribbean Basin Fund (CUBA), which is
invested in travel prospects in an expanding Cuban economy and
the broader region, has become a trading vehicle around these
news events. Top holdings include Copa Holdings (CPA), the Latin
American airline operator; Seaboard (SEB), a shipping and
agribusiness enterprise; and Royal Caribbean Cruises (RCL).

The fund is up 1.8% today, down nearly 7% this month and up 5.6%
this year — outpacing the more than 9% decline in the iShares
MSCI Emerging Markets ETF (EEM). The Cuba closed-end fund is now
trading at a 29% premium to its net asset value of $7.15 per
share, much lower than its 60% premium in June. See our recent
post on the Herzfeld fund, “Is Big Cuba Play Overvalued?” for
links and details on holdings. Also see my mid- July Barron’s
magazine column, “Cuba’s Investing Opportunities” (Subscription

NPR via Agence France-Presse reports that former Cuban President
Fidel Castro wrote in a newspaper columm today that the U.S.
owes Cuba ‘many millions’ in reparations for the embargo. The
article notes Republicans in Congress including Marco Rubio, Jeb
Bush, Ted Cruz, Scott Walker, Lindsey Graham, Bobby Jindal and
Mike Huckabee are against restoring diplomatic ties with Cuba,
despite public opinion favoring normalization.

Beam Me Up Scotty
2015-08-13 23:05:17 UTC
Post by Ronald F. Better
Secretary of State John Kerry heads to Havana Friday to formally
hoist the stars and stripes over the reopened U.S. Consulate in
Take the confederate flag and raise it, just to fuck with their heads...
That's Karma