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Sociedad viernes 25 de octubre 2013

Today's top five stories in English

Here's a summarized list of Infobae's top stories of the day.

viernes 25 de octubre 201311:05
  • The candidates are ready for Sunday and the election silence or "blackout period" is in full force. This means a ban on political campaigning and the publication of poll results before the big day, starting today at 8 in the morning. If you want to know who's winning you will have to wait until Interior and Transportation Minister Florencio Randazzo announces the first results once the polls have closed on Sunday at 9 pm. 24 seats in the Senate and 127 seats in the Lower House are up for grabs in Congress. 

  • The so called "blue dollar" (dollar's black market exchange rate,) went through what's called a "virtual bank holiday" after remaining above the 10-peso mark again yesterday. In an effort to keep it down before Sunday, Domestic Trade Minister Guillermo Moreno called leaders in the foreign currency exchange sector and asked them not to operate until Monday. The presence of the police and the AFIP tax collecting agency also scared away the so-called arbolitos from Florida street, keeping actual exchanges to a minimum. The official dollar exchange rate remains stable at 5.87 pesos.    

  • US medical equipment firm Stryker Corp. joins the list of big corporations such as IBM or Ralph Lauren, who were found guilty of paying bribes in order to sell their products in Argentina. The company admitted to the Securities Exchange Commission that it paid almost a million dollars in bribes to doctors working in Argentine hospitals between 2005 and 2008, in order to keep their contracts and sell their products there. The SEC says the company got 7.5 million dollars in profit and will pay 13.2 million in order to avoid going to court.

  • Venezuelan president Nicolás Maduro announced the creation of a Vice-Ministry of Supreme Social Happiness. Maduro said the vice-ministry will be tasked with making sure that the thirty so-called "social missions" that Chavism has created in the last 14 years are enforced. The Venezuelan president says that "it will help the elderly and children," which he says are "the most sublime and loved aspect of the revolutionary people."

  • Six people in the Santa Fe province have been arrested in connection to the recent attack on governor Antonio Bonfatti's home, an attack he attributed to drug dealers who are against his efforts to combat drug trafficking. The people arrested allegedly have ties to gangs in the drug dealing business and hooligans. Police seized several cell phones, computers and 9 mm handguns that could be compatible with the ones used by four masked assailants to attack Bonfatti's house two weeks ago.