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March 5, 2013

Written by Bob Meyer, Editor of BarterNews

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From the desk of Bob Meyer... 03/05/2012

ITEX Increases Dividend, Now Yields 5.43%

On February 26, 2013, the Board of Directors of ITEX Corporation approved a 25% increase in the company’s quarterly cash dividend to a new dividend rate of $.05 per share. It will be payable on March 20, 2013, to shareholders of record at the close of business on March 11, 2013. The annualized dividend yield based on average closing price of ITEX’s stock for the trailing 12 months is 5.43%.

The Number Of Super-Rich Continues To Grow

There were 2,000 billionaires (U.S. dollars) on the planet in 2012, 185 more than 2011, according to Wealth-X, an organization that tracks the super-wealthy. These fortunate few have a combined fortune of $5.5 trillion, equal to China’s GDP. Average age is 63, and 1 in 10 are female. The U.S. has 408 billionaires and China is second with 317.

Despite a financial crisis that has affected many in the U.S. and worldwide, the super-rich haven’t reined in their travel spending. According to Conde Nast Traveler’s, luxury hotel companies are actually expanding at a record pace to meet the demand.

Our Amazing World

Researchers have created a way to store data in the form of DNA, which can last for thousands of years. The encoding method makes it possible to store at least 100 million hours of high-definition video in a cup of DNA. (Information obtained from Computerworld.)

All back issues of "From the Desk...” can be accessed by clicking here.

(Please feel free to forward our newsletter to your friends and colleagues. We have a “box” at the end of the newsletter for your convenience. See you next week. . .)



NATE Announces 29th Annual Convention

The National Association of Trade Exchanges (NATE) recently announced that registration has begun for their 29th annual convention. The site will be the Wyndham Riverfront in Little Rock, where owners and brokers of the most successful barter exchanges in America are expected to attend on May 16-18.

The convention, hosted by Southern Barter Exchange, consists of seminars for trade exchange owners, brokers and sales representatives. Topics of discussion will include, but are not limited to the following:

  • IRS & Barter Exchange Accounting
  • How to Expand our Membership Beyond Businesses
  • Loyalty, Rewards & Referral Programs
  • How to Sell Trade to the Media
  • Mass Marketing Tools for Barter Exchanges

NATE’s guest speaker, Cynthia Vassilowitch, will be addressing IRS related topics. Cynthia has over 30 years experience at the International Revenue Service, and is now a knowledgeable tax consultant and Certified Public Accountant.

Along with the seminars and discussion panels, convention attendees have plenty of other activities to look forward to this year. Many social events are planned as a way for the different exchanges to get to know each other, and learn what each exchange has to offer in hard goods and in travel. NATE has planned the “Great NATE Trade Out” where exchanges will buy and sell various products, services, and travel offerings to promote their exchange. Convention registrants will also be invited to attend a Travelers Baseball game at Dickey-Stephens Park.

NATE will also be providing CTB (Certified Trade Broker) training during the convention for individuals seeking to advance their barter broker skills and knowledge in the barter industry. The annual awards ceremony will be held at The Clinton Presidential Library and Museum on Saturday evening.

For more information and to register, click here or contact Lauren Pound at (678) 302-6772.


BarterNews.com — World’s Largest Depository Of Barter Information

Hundreds of valuable articles, techniques, and strategies are found in the following various barter categories:

Ø  Entrepreneur’s Corner,

Ø  Travel,

Ø  Media,

Ø  Trade Exchange,

Ø  Corporate Barter,

Ø  Offset & Countertrade,

Ø  Secondary Capital,

Ø  Real Estate,

Ø  Community Barter, and

Ø  Restaurant & Entertainment

(The Barter Categories are found on the horizontal bar at the top — 3rd button from right.)


It’s Time To Establish An Independent Global B-2-B Currency

It’s not every day you hear a former central banker and an architect of the euro advocating for complementary currencies that have nothing to do with the national ones we call money. But that’s exactly what Bernard Lietaer does in his book Rethinking Money: How New Currencies Turn Scarcity Into Prosperity.

He argues new monetary tools are needed to avoid repeated financial meltdowns and fiscal crises like we’ve seen in the U.S. and Europe.

“There’s nothing wrong with a hammer when you are dealing with nails,” Lietaer told Yahoo Finance’s The Daily Ticker, on Friday, February 22. “However I think we are dealing with a broader set of issues than one single type. Therefore, I think it’s time to look at other possibilities; complete the toolset. If you want to do a paint job it’s a good idea to have a paint brush.”

Lietaer says in complementary currency terms, a “paint brush” is a standard medium of exchange, functioning in a parallel to conventional money. If that seems alien, Leitaer gives the example of frequent flier miles as a relatable example.

For a model of the real life currency kind, you can look to the WIR. It’s a business-to-business currency in Switzerland that started in the 1930s, and has become the country’s “secret weapon” to better stability during tough times, according to Lietaer.

When some businessmen in the 1930s had credit lines from their banks cut, they created a mutual credit system among themselves to conduct business, inviting clients and suppliers to join. Even in modern days, during recessions when bank loans decline, businesses use WIR to pick up the slack. That’s how it helps to smooth the tough times, notes Lietaer. He reports about 600,000 mostly small- and medium-sized Swiss businesses use the WIR, or about 16% of businesses, with a volume just under $2 billion annually.

Meanwhile, in the U.S., this month we’ve seen Virginia legislators vote to study the feasibility of minting a metallic-based monetary unit of the state’s own. And according to CNN, since the financial crisis a growing number of communities have introduced local currencies. For example, the Potomac in Washington D.C. was introduced in part to help more money stay in the local community.

For his part, Lietaer gives the example of time banks, where 286 systems across the country including TimeBanks NYC allow people to provide help, support, and services to one another by using time instead of money as currency.

He thinks it’s time to complete the “toolbox” and adopt more of these types of alternatives. 

While Lietaer was a co-designer of the ECU (European Currency Unit), which was the precursor to the euro that brought many currencies into a single monetary system, he acknowledges the irony that he now advocates alternative currencies from the regional to global level.

Now he sees complementary currencies running parallel to national money at all levels. He claims we need a global business-to-business b2b) currency that is nobody’s national money, and which encourages multinational corporations to think long-term. He also sees complementary currencies providing value even to a local neighborhood, thus helping solve regional social problems. 

Editor’s Note: In the limited interview time allotted, Lietaer failed to mention the many b2b trade exchanges that are functioning in some 35 countries around the globe. They are conduits for considerable business among small and mid-sized companies (estimated in the billions aggregately), and a much closer step to his goal of an international b2b currency for multinational corporations, than are the TIME banks and community currencies. Several years ago Lietaer made an excellent presentation on this very subject to the International Reciprocal Trade Association’s annual convention.


Is Your Trade Exchange Missing Out On Valuable New Business?

If your barter company’s listing on BarterNews.com isn’t current, you are definitely missing out on new business. The web site BarterNews.com receives heavy traffic — with over 150,000 page-views every month. Entrepreneurs and corporate executives check the thousands of articles, the weekly “Tuesday Report,” and the “Contacts Section” of our site. They use the latter to find barter companies with which to do business.

Is your barter company’s listing up-to-date?

To keep your listing current is very easy. See the links below to (A) update any changes to your company’s listing, such as new location, phone number, web site or other information, and (B) if your company has not been listed.

Here’s how to get on board:

To make changes to your listing click here.

For new listings click here.


Barter Plays Major Role In Large Residential Real Estate Deals

Financier Gary Winnick is in the news again out in Los Angeles. (Winnick, you may recall, was the founder of Global Crossing years ago.) This past week he has quietly placed his Bel-Air mansion on the market for $225 million.

John Karevill of the San Diego real estate information company DataQuick says any sale will certainly include a major barter component. “It would be incredibly shocking if somebody actually walked up to the table and wrote a check for that amount.” Karevill says any such home sale would include a barter offer such as land or properties, stocks, car collections, jewelry or racehorses.

Editor’s Note: In 1998 former President George H.W. Bush made a speech in Tokyo to a group of Global Crossing executives. At breakfast the next morning, Global Crossing’s founder Gary Winnick offered President Bush an opportunity to acquire pre-IPS stock in the company in lieu of the $80,000 speaking fee. Bush accepted and subsequently sold the stock for $14 million several years later.


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Loyal Customers Become A Funding Source For Expansion

That’s exactly the case for Starbucks, where happy customers are pushing a lot of money toward the company. Their Starbucks Card was the highlight of the recent holiday season. In the first quarter of 2013, Starbucks saw $1 billion loaded on Starbucks Cards, a whopping 25% increase from a year earlier and a new record for the company. This revenue could be the means for further expansion.

That huge figure would have amounted to about a quarter of the company’s overall revenue of $3.8 billion, if the card loads were immediately recorded as sales. The cards growth far exceeded overall revenue and same-store sales growth of 11% and 6%, respectively.


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The Growth and Use of Secondary Capital (New Money) Creates Unprecedented Wealth In Today’s New Age Of Possibility

There are many forms of secondary capital—which can be defined as any financial instrument that measures and communicates value in a common language. Would you like to see and learn more about the many forms of secondary capital?

 We have 70 free, informative and inspiring, articles for you in our “Secondary Capital Section.”

Check it out... www.barternews.com/secondary_capital.htm.


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