Cayman Islands has become “uncompetitive”

| 21/01/2010

(The Tribune): An international securities/brokerage business yesterday said it expected client assets under administration at its Bahamas office to grow by upwards of 50 per cent to $300-$320 million, due to its regional consolidation plans, as it warned this nation not to follow Cayman’s lead in raising business costs. Craig Lines, LOM (Bahamas) general manager, told Tribune Business that apart from the Bahamas’ US pre-clearance facility and better air transportation links, the other factor that influenced the company to consolidate its operations here, rather than in the Cayman Islands, was the ‘more than doubling’ of the latter nation’s licence and permit fees within the past five years.

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  1. Richard Wadd says:

     All that is stated may be true, but the Wise person doesn’t throw away their old shoes before they have a new pair.

    It may very well be that we ‘Don’t need’ these Migratory Businesses, but we must be sure that we can fill the gap that they leave behind, no matter how small it may be.

  2. Joe Average says:

    I could care less if they move to Iceland.  Oops.  Iceland’s economy is in tatters. We’re learning an important lesson mind you. That is that banks and financial insitutions hold no affinity for country, flag, the population, or any of the things we associate with loyalty. So why do we ask ourselves such things as "why did they move?" "don’t they like it here?"  The answer becomes clear when we finally realize insitituions such as banks and financial corporations have a different set of priorities and values.  I don’t know why it has taken us so long to figure that out, or why we’re surprised when they do decided to move. The other lesson to be learned is: "what does it matter?"  Once we get over the initial shock that one more investment company is off to ‘greener’ pastures our lives bascially remain the same. And that is what I would like to address. Following theworldwide financial catastrophe, I travelled to Mexico. The most surprising thing happened. In the small villages and towns…life went on. In most cases the citizens didn’t know if the DOW was up, down, or moving sideways. Their economies were so localized and in many cases self-reliant that the only indication was the occasional gringo tapping on their laptop and looking worried. This might be simplistic, but it also tells us just what happens when you put all your eggs in someone else’s basket. They can take the basket away.  Or invest your eggs somewhere else, and in the process break a lot of them. I am very intrigued by the system set up by women in India called Micro-Banking.  They loan money to each other to help with businesses. Start-up costs, etc. And very few of those loans are not re-paid. At one time in America many communities had Credit Unions and local banks. During the crash of ’29, instigated by large banks such as J.P.Morgan, vast numbers were bought up. Banking became centralized. Removed from communities. During this most recent calamity, the same thing has happened. But now smaller commercial banks are being purchased with public bailout money. Now just how clever can you get?  Everyone knows a monopoly is the most ideal way to do business. If may not be fair or in everyone’s best interest, but it is the ultimate corporate wet dream. If we want to survive the rolling of the dice each time one of these crisis happens along (and make no mistake money is made on the up and the down) our our best shot is to depend on each other, our skills, our human resources, and find ways to finance ourselves. Sorry I went on for so long.  Here’s a link that best describes the workings. It’s easy reading and sometimes humorous in a macabre sort of way:

  3. Anonymous says:

    I wonder how many Caymanians LOM employed. I doubt it was any significant number.

    What was the number of work permits compared to the number of Caymanians they employed?

    And to Mac’s silly idea that these types of companies are providing a significant number of middle management positions, I wonder if anyone can shed some light about how many real middle managment positions were filled by Caymanians at this company that everyone is so fussed about?

    Oh, by the way, government-style fake management positions like "Acting Assistant Deputy Pencil Pusher (Designate)" do not count.


    • Johnny Cake wid a cup of coffey(e) says:

      am the article claim the had EIGHT lil jobs after being here for 15 years.  My bet 7 – 1 in the guest worker favour.  wha a shame eh?

      • Anonymous says:

        Yep so less money for the government trying to keep Caymanian civil servants paid.

        one rain drop most likely will not kill you, it is the flood of raindrops that will

  4. Anonymous says:

    Most interesting thing about the posts here is that the Financial Services Association or whatever it is called this month has not denied any of the assertions made by LOM. Maybe they are true after all?

  5. Anonymous says:

    From what I hear thru the marl road is that all of their top Brokers left the firm over the years due to a variety of reasons. I think revenues would have had to be way down with their departures. Add the increases in fees here and it makes sense to shut it down. To go to the Bahamas from here is an insult tho for the remaining staff.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Take a moment and google: LOM (Lines Overseas Management), Lines and Offshore Alert. A few interesting articles about this company & family!

    • anonymous says:

      Sure, interesting, but what have they actually been convicted of?  Anything?  Who are the injured parties?  Damn better compliance record than most of Wall Street.

  7. Don't 4get me says:

    Aw I would say the local (Cayman) infrastructure is at least decent. Poor just… hurts.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Let’s see LOM get work permits in the Bahamas, good luck!! They soon will see how easy they had it here ( our permits might be expensive but at least you can get them).

    ….Pre-clearance into US???….this is normally right at the top of needs for businesses, Not. Silly comment.

    The funnier news is that most of their Canadian ex-employees are still here, having jumped ship before they left. Hope they continue to enjoy.

  9. Anonymous says:

    I thought that the financial industry left the Bahamas (and came to Cayman) in the early 1970s because of tight immigration policies following independence. Has that all changed now?  

  10. Too true says:

    Cayman is slaying the golden goose.  Ezzard wants to hike fees on everything, he is the best friend of the enemies of Cayman.

    Pre-clearance at GCM would be nice.

    • Anonymous says:

      Ezzard Miller, whether you like his personality or not, is the only politician and to some extent the only person with the guts to champion the cause in trying to protect the rights of his Caymanian people. I am a proud Caymanian and I thank Ezzard for his efforts. The growing anti-Caymanian community in these Cayman Islands are now enjoying the ride following McKeeva Bush’s recent speech castigating the Immigration Department for implementing and maintaining the roll over policy; or as he termed it "fool fool policy" which, incidentally, he and his UDP government were the architects of. An assessment of who an what is "fool fool" can easily be done at this stage don’t you think?

  11. Anonymous says:

    Oh please LOM, the Bahamas??? I’m quite sure y’all will have to dig deep inna ya pockets to offset some of the bandits pockets on the other side. !!!

    The Bahamas never greets anyone just so, so, so. They also have to get something in return, just speak to one of their natives, and perhaps you may just get it right.

    You see in Cayman you can get the sun, sand and sea for free, along with the exclusive package that y’al are offered when unna arrive. Ha! but other parts of the world y’al have to pay for it, which in my opinion is excellent!!! After all Caymanians are just sick and tired of leeches.

    Any firm that stands up and ridicule us after making massive profits that shine on their balance sheet, I say good ridance! One day we will all sit back and have a read about the company’s future. Hopefully sooner rather than later.

    • Voice of Reason says:

      Go back to flipping burgers please.  Your public display of a lack of understanding of international finance embarrasses the jurisdiction.

  12. Annonymous:) says:

    So what did we say, raise the cost to the businesses to support lazy ,,,,, the kind that dont want to wait on tables, do room service, etc etc, this is what I am concerned about, every one needs to pay attention to whats happening here. Stop blameing the expats, I am not an expat just an even minded citizen that works for a living on the work that these expats put their money into to allow us that priveledge. Do you want to have a business and dont charge the rightprice and go in the hole for it, I am sure that you want to have a profit too. So stop your whining and face the music, MORE AND MORE BUSINESSES ARE GOING TO LEAVE AND WE WILL ALL BE IN DEEP YOU KNOW WHAT.

    Have mercy.

    • Anonymous says:

      Why should Caymanians be waiters, gardeners and laundry room staff in their own countries?  I am a Caymanian and when I went to work in the US, they didn’t give me or other foreigners the top management jobs while, while employing Americans as maids and gardeners.

      • Anonymous says:

        Given your attitude and communication skills, I can’t possibly see why you weren’t made a CEO, or at least upper management, right from the start when you worked in the US.

      • Anonymous says:

        Anon 11:34!

        Because that’s all they might be any use for, Bozo! In every country in the world and—Jesus Christ—–Cayman is not much different, you have citizens who cant do certain jobs so-yes you have to do what you can do! Like gardener or whatever! In Cayman, it’s becoming gangboy or druggie because you have zero brains/qualifications but want to run a lawfirm and blame it on the furriners because you can’t do it.

        And the likes of Ezzard back you up. God help us.

      • O'Really says:

        Ummm, let me see. Because they are unemployed? 

      • Anonymous says:

         If there are job openings in those areas and a Caymanian needs a job and are not qualified to fill some of the "high-end" positions, why would they not consider that job?


  13. Thankful says:

    yup…I told unna so….again.

    It was always about them.  Selling the " we are the best, we are needed in your society, we will provide jobs to the Bahamians now.  Wow they were her for 15 years and had EIGHT 8 staff!!!!!  wow they surely had an impact on the numbers alright – in their bottom-line maybe.  So these are the kinds of firms that deserve the changing of laws for?  I am not sure I am personally convinced.

    They leave us and give a nice story go to the Bahamas and say another and of course make us look bad.  It suits their needs in the bahamas to do so.  You know, I read something about lawsuits and SEC.  Wait until it all hits the ceiling…maybe them moving will be a blessing in disguise.

    We am so tired of the knee-jerk reactions, no long-term planning that seeks to nation build in the interest of Caymanians.  One that embraces action for the good of the country and our people.  That does not mean an absent of anything or anyone but rather the opposite.


  14. Anonymous says:

    Within the last 5 years?! He’d be laughing if he knew about the hike this week!


  15. Anonymous says:

    Bahamas has no zero infastructure and if they want to build any to attract any significant business the costs will increase

    • Anonymous says:

      Your use of double negatives and poor grammar makes your post quite difficult to understand. It’s a good job you are talking rubbish anyway.

      Bahamas is indeed a scumhole, but the cost of doing business is much cheaper there now. The infrastructure is poor, but then it is in Cayman as well, so thats pretty irrelevant in this particular argument.

      • Anonymous says:

        This is not and should not be about the Bahamas. To say that the infrastructure there is poor or zero and that it is a scum hole is very ignorant and unkind to say the least. 

        What is even more pathetic is that you are also referring to the country where you reside as having poor infrastructure also, yet you are here; taking advantage of all that it has to offer.

        Why are you here anyway if this is the case? I am an expatriate and the difference between me and so many of you, is that I have respect for Caymanians, their culture and their way of life.

        I do not consider myself to be better than them and call many of them friends. I do not live in isolation; I have submersed myself in the community and volunteer my time to real causes that positively impact the lives of many young Caymanians, not so that it looks good on my permanent residency application. 

        In case you have not figured it out as yet, you are in the Caribbean and no, it is not on par with industrialized nations and never claimed to be. Do not compare apples with oranges.

        It is amazing the negativity that is communicated on this website under the guise of anonymity, but then again, you are only saying how you truly feel and many would be surprised to learn your true identity.


      • Night Flyer says:

        Did you realy have to say the Bahamas was a scumhole? what’s the Bahamas done to you?

    • Anonymous says:

      "..has no zero infrastructure…." What Business School did you go to Einstein? God help us. I hope you weren’t brought here on a work permit.