Eurozone finance ministers last night (9 March) rejected calls for increased economic stimulus measures, despite a worsening outlook for the EU economy. They also rejected any easing of the requirements for joining the eurozone.Speaking after a meeting of the Eurogroup, which brings together the finance ministers of the 16 eurozone countries, Jean-Claude Juncker, the prime minister and finance minister of Luxembourg, said: “We don’t feel we need to pile deficit on top of deficit and add further to our debt.”Juncker, who chairs the Eurogroup meetings, added: “We would not want to give the impression we are considering putting together other recovery packages.” His remarks followed comments from Larry Summers, director of the US National Economic Council, in an interview with the Financial Times, that governments should pump more public money into their economies to fight the recession. “Recent American appeals” for a European budgetary effort are “not to our liking”, Juncker said.Juncker said ministers had rejected any relaxation of the criteria for joining the euro, including the length of time that countries have to spend in the European Exchange Rate Mechanism II. “There is no question of changing the criteria,” Juncker said. “The credibility of monetary union is at stake,” he added.Forecasts darkenBoth Juncker and Joaquín Almunia, the European commissioner for economic and monetary affairs, said that assessments of Europe’s economic outlook are now worse than they were earlier this year. Juncker said that the recession is “certainly deeper than what we saw at the beginning of the 1990s”. Almunia said that “the recovery will take longer than we were expecting a few months ago”, and that he now expects a “gradual recovery” to start in 2010.Support for RomaniaAlmunia said that the Commission will start discussions with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) “in the coming days” on possible support measures for Romania. The IMF announced today that it will send a mission to the country on 11 March to “hold discussions on a potential IMF programme”, which would be part of a “multilateral financing package, to be supported by the EU and the World Bank, among other international financial institutions”. If a package is agreed, Romania would become the third EU country, after Latvia and Hungary, to receive joint EU-IMF assistance to help cope with the current crisis. Almunia said the Commission is “ready to react” once a request is received from Romania for access to the EU’s balance-of-payments facility, the EU support scheme used to help Latvia and Hungary.
Texas resident and accomplished triathlon coach Claire Oliver has been named the ‘TrueNorth Story of the Month’ in a promotion from the TrueNorth brand of 100% natural nut snacks, produced by PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay division.Inspired by the belief that everyone has a singular passion in life, PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay is recognising real people who have pursued their life’s passions or their ‘true north’.The TrueNorth brand is thus recognising the inspirational story of Claire Oliver, an accomplished triathlon coach in the Dallas area. A certified USA Triathlon (USAT) coach, Claire’s true north is helping new and veteran triathletes achieve success. An accomplished athlete herself, Claire has completed more than 40 triathlons, two Ironman events and 10 marathons.In 2003, a few years after Claire’s stepfather lost his battle with leukaemia; Claire set out to honour the man who made a big difference in her life, by bringing awareness to the disease and raising money for The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS). She embarked on her first triathlon raising US$2,500 for the organisation. Claire continues to compete in triathlons and to-date has raised more than US$100,000 for LLS.Today, she is dedicated to helping triathletes accomplish goals they set for themselves. Through her efforts, she has helped train more than 500 athletes to cross the finish line and lead a more active lifestyle.”After my step-dad Tom passed away from leukaemia in April 2000, I found a way to channel my anger towards the disease and do something good for myself and others at the same time,” shared Oliver. “After completing a number of triathlons and continuing to raise money for The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, I found my passion in coaching others to be successful triathletes. I firmly believe that everyone can complete a triathlon and make a difference in their life to be more active.””Many of us have experienced the heart break of losing someone important to us like Claire did,” said Regan Ebert, Vice President and General Manager, Warehouse Direct Business, Frito-Lay North America. “The courageous way that she turned the experience into something positive and selfless is what inspired us. We are thrilled to spotlight her story and the incredible work she does to guide so many people towards that finish line.”The TrueNorth brand encourages consumers to continue to submit a written essay that describes how they are pursuing their life’s passions through the brand’s website – www.truenorthsnacks.com. The brand will select a ‘Story of the Month’ each month through to December that will be prominently featured on the web site. In addition to being featured online, the recipient of ‘Story of the Month’ will be awarded a US$1,000 grant and a passion pack to help in the pursuit of his or her passion.www.truenorthsnacks.com www.fritolay.com Related
DENVER RTD inaugurated its 14 km Southwest light rail line from I25/Broadway to Mineral Avenue in the suburb of Littleton on July 14. Parallelling existing BNSF and UP tracks, the route has four intermediate stops at Evans, Englewood, Oxford and Littleton/Downtown. Journey time on the extension is 14min, with services running through to the northern terminus at 30th & Downing in 36min.Two and three car trains operate every 15 min off peak, and at 10min intervals during peak times. Daily ridership at the end of the first week was around 30% above RTD’s estimates. Car parks at the two Littleton stations, which total nearly 1 150 spaces, were filled by 07.30. Additional spaces were to be provided at Mineral Avenue by the end of August. RTD expects to open its next extension, the Central Platte Valley Spur, during 2001. The 30·5 km Southeast line along the I25/I225 corridor from Broadway to Lincoln Avenue and Parker is to be completed in 2008.
Finance Minister, Audley Shaw phone bill a whopping JMD$8 MillionFollowing public outcry after it was revealed that Jamaica’s finance minister Audley Shaw racked up a J$8.3 million cell phone bill, Prime Minister Andrew Holness has announced that all Cabinet ministers will take responsibility for their telephone bills.Following an emergency meeting of the island’s cabinet at Gordon House in Kingston on Tuesday, Holness said the situation is unacceptable and must be addressed immediately.During the meeting Holness ordered an audit of all cell phone bills of Ministers and State Ministers to confirm the accuracy of information in the public domain.Jamaica Prime Minister Andrew HolnessHolness admitted that there was no standard, clear and consistent policy being applied across government regarding the treatment of communication expenses for Ministers.Read More: Jamaican Government reduces property tax ratesThe Prime Minister has directed the Ministry of Finance to review the respective policies for the provision of communication services including cell phones, operating in the various Ministries. This is to allow Cabinet to make a comprehensive decision on how communication services and expenses for Ministers are treated. Below is a copy of Audley Shaw’s phone bill from April 2016 to March 2017.A copy of Audley Shaw phone bill from April 2016 to March 2017Should phone bills be capped?In the interim, he instructed that cellular phone expenses be capped. The Ministry of Finance has been tasked to advise the Prime Minister, within a week on the appropriate amount for the cap. Any amount exceeding the cap should, therefore, be the responsibility of the respective Ministers unless otherwise approved by the Permanent Secretary.The Cabinet members have agreed that public concerns about the level of some bills are valid.Read More: Income Tax threshold increase for JamaicansIn furtherance of their Ministerial responsibility to be frugal with the public purse, notwithstanding that most of the costs incurred would have been in pursuit of the Government’s business, they have committed to reimburse the Government retroactively the difference between actual bill and the capped amount to be determined and imposed.In the meantime, the Minister of Science, Energy and Technology is being mandated to enter into discussions with telecommunications providers to devise standard cell phone and data packages for Government Ministers.
Maggie Proffitt led the Sugar Bears in scoring for the third time this season, posting 19 points in 30 minutes on 5-of-12 (41.7 percent) 3-point shooting, the third time this year and fifth time in her career she’s made five or more from long range. Mullins had 15 points, six rebounds, and led the team with four assists and seven steals in 38 minutes. Sadler had her best outing of the season with 11 points, eight rebounds, two assists, a block and a steal. Kendara Watts added 10 points, Brittany Agee had nine points and five rebounds, and Kelsey McClure adding six points. The Sugar Bears did much of their damage at the free throw line, shooting 85.5 percent (17 of 20) while holding WBC to 10 attempts. UCA had its best turnover margin of the season, committing just seven while forcing 16, getting 22 points off those turnovers including 10 fast break points. The Lady Eagles did have a rebounding advantage, getting 40 to the Sugar Bears’ 33, including 17 offensive rebounds. The Sugar Bears (5-5) trailed for more than 28 minutes, not taking the lead for good until the 8:40 mark of the second half after the Lady Eagles (4-7) had built a lead as large as nine in the second half. But after shooting just 28.6 percent in the first half, the Sugar Bears were 16 of 30 (53.3 percent) in the second half and limited the Lady Eagles to 29.6 percent in the half and just two field goals over the final 14:52 while forcing WBC into 13 second-half turnovers. Lamar 93, Ohio Valley 42 Down 53-50 with just over 10 minutes to play, it was one of UCA’s nine second-half steals that got the game-changing rally started as Brianna Mullins got one of her career-high seven steals and got down the floor for an easy layup to cut the WBC lead to one. A few possessions later, with the score unchanged, Mullins put UCA ahead for good with a 3-pointer to make it 55-53. The run continued with a steal and layup by Terai Sadler, another steal and layup from Mullins, and a 3-point play from Brittany Agee to give UCA a nine-point advantage at 62-53 with 6:24 left. Lamar 93, Ohio Valley 42VIENNA, W.Va – The Lamar Lady Cardinals used a balanced scoring attack to claim their first road win of the season as they rolled to a 93-42 victory over Ohio Valley in a non-conference women’s basketball game Tuesday night.Twelve of Lamar’s 14 players scored as the Lady Cardinals registered their largest margin of victory this season.Kiandra Bowers led Lamar with 16 points, as she was one of three Lady Cardinals to score in double figures. Dominique Edwards had 15 points and nine rebounds, finishing just one board shy of her third straight double-double. Edwards also had a career-high five steals. Addesha Collins had 11 points for Lamar.The Lady Cardinals (3-7) never trailed in the game. Lamar scored the first 10 points of the contest and never looked back.The Lady Cardinals shot a season-best 54.2 percent from the field (39-of-72). Lamar’s pressure defense caused problems for the Oho Valley offense, as the Lady Cardinals scored 40 points off of 31 OVU turnovers.Baileigh O’Dell and Lejha Smith had nine points for Lamar, while Shauna Long had eight points and a career-high six assists. JaMeisha Edwards also had eight points for the Lady Cardinals. Lamar had a 46-1 advantage in bench points.Lamar outscored the Fighting Scots 40-6 in the paint, getting a lot of good looks thanks to a season-high 21 assists.Danielle Dunnagan had 16 points to lead Ohio Valley (0-9), while Amy Brooks finished with 14 points.The Lady Cardinals are idle until Dec. 28, when they travel to Rice to close out the non-conference portion of the schedule. Lamar’s next home game is 4 p.m. Jan. 3, when Nicholls comes in for the Southland Conference opener. Thompson led WBC with 20 points, Alisha Stone had 11, and Meagan Goza added nine points, nine rebounds and a game-high five assists. Central Arkansas 73, Williams Baptist 57CONWAY, Ark. — Central Arkansas took Williams Baptist’s best shot on Tuesday afternoon, but the Sugar Bears overcame a sluggish start and were dominant over the final 11 minutes as they closed the game with a 25-4 run to defeat the Lady Eagles 73-57. Michaela Thompson scored inside with 6:09 left to get WBC to within seven, but it would be WBC’s last field goal of the game as the Sugar Bears scored 11 of the game’s final 13 points to improve to 7-1 all-time against the Lady Eagles and 3-2 at home this season. – Return to top – UCA will host Blue Mountain College, an NAIA member institution, on Friday at 2 p.m. in the final game before the holiday break. The Sugar Bears will then return to action on Dec. 30 against Austin Peay in the final game before Southland Conference play begins Jan. 3 at Abilene Christian.– Return to top –
SANTA CLARITA – It’s difficult to imagine Christine Hart without her children – her white, nine-seat SUV is constantly filled with the laughter and chatter of her five kids. “Everyone who knows me knows my children come first,” Hart said, as she gazed upon her little ones. On a recent trip to Santa Clarita Central Park, each of the little Harts ran off to play with their their dad but make frequent trips back to Mom in search of water, Band-aids or even just a hug. Hart was in her element. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORESurfer attacked by shark near Channel Islands calls rescue a ‘Christmas miracle’Not too long ago, this kind of life was but a dream for Hart and her husband, Lance. Doctors found she had an undeveloped uterus and would never have children. “I kept thinking, Why me?” Hart said. But a chance meeting gave the couple a shot at parenthood and the chance to adopt five children and foster dozens more. Hart, looking to take her mind off the kids she so badly wanted, joined a local gym years ago. She met a woman there who changed her life. “I saw this woman at the pool, she had five children, all different ethnicities, and they were all calling her Mom,” Hart said. Hart couldn’t contain her curiosity, and a few moments later the woman was telling her about foster care. Hart had accepted she couldn’t have children, so she figured caring for someone else’s temporarily, could fill her void. Growing up in a traditional Filipino family, Hart was always around children. The eldest of five, she helped raise younger brothers and sisters. She even took in and eventually adopted a godson, whom she still visits at least once a year in the Philippines. Her new friend referred her to a private agency where on her first visit she was handed two photo albums – one pink and one blue – filled with young boys and girls in need of homes. Hart still has trouble understanding how thousands of abandoned and abused boys and girls in the foster-care system can be relegated to color coordinated photo albums. “I could not believe how these parents, who were given the blessing of having children, would waste their lives,” Hart said, tears rolling down her face. The Harts realized they wanted to give some of these children homes – permanently. But like many other prospective parents, they had some conditions. They wanted younger children, no older than 5, to rear and mold. They also wanted either Filipino or white kids, like Hart and her husband of 15 years. Those chances were slim and so the couple agreed to provide foster care to all types of children, then adopt when they found their match. “Are you sitting down?” the social worker asked Hart. The date was Dec. 5, 1996. There was a baby for the Harts, her name was Alexandra. She was three-quarters Filipino and only 5 months old. Today Alexandra couldn’t bear more resemblance to her adoptive mother. When she’s asked who she looks like she promptly answers “my mom.” Foster children continued to pass through the Harts’ home. At least 30 children, they said. Some of the children they wanted to adopt went back to their biological families. Reunification is always the goal in foster care. But letting go wasn’t always easy. “Sometimes even packing their bags was too much for me,” Hart said. A couple of years passed, and one day Hart received a 4-month-old little girl. Dark hair and dark eyes, little Olivia had no family willing to care for her. Before the Harts finalized her adoption, they learned Olivia had a little brother, Michael. When siblings are in foster care, the goal is to place them in the same home, but you need a willing parent. And the Harts definitely were willing. Now the Harts had three children, plus the adoptive son in the Philippines. Their babies grew quickly and the Harts no longer took in foster children. They had their family. Two years later Hart received another call. Olivia and Michael had another sister. She had been placed in a home before the agency realized that her siblings were with the Harts. The foster family wanted to adopt her but the Harts had priority. One look at little Ashley closed the deal for the Harts. The family moved to a larger house. They replenished the supply of baby items as many had been given to friends. And still another call, this time it was from a hospital where the children’s birth mother had had another baby. Still pink, the tiny baby was abandoned by his mother after she gave birth to him six weeks early. “He was a John Doe,” Hart said with tears welling up in her eyes. “He was the size of my arm and I could not let him go.” Christopher, or “Baby” as he is more often called, completed the family. Hart has contact with the birth mother of the four children. She said she’s begged her to consider permanent birth control, which she would pay for. But she would never turn another baby away. “How would my children feel if they knew there was another sibling that they had that I didn’t take?” Still the family has its challenges. The children all are asthmatic, a common consequence of exposure to drugs before birth. Three of the five children have been diagnosed with learning disorders. But the family is tightly knit, traveling the world – to Hong Kong, Japan, Mexico, and the Philippines. Hart has lunch with her school-age children every day. The couple spends the extra money for Catholic school minutes from Hart’s job. Things, she said, have worked out. “I tell my children, you didn’t come from my tummy but you came from my heart. You are the chosen ones.” [email protected] (661)257-5254160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
“I’m never ever going to be able to sign a perfect player, so you’re looking at players with loads of development to come. Sam has come from way back.“Sam is starting where he finished off last season. We’ve had enquiries and we know people are looking at him, but he’ll be with us this season and it’s important he uses that time to develop even further.“We think we’ve only scratched the surface and there’s a lot more to come.”Aberdeen had gone into the game with a job to do, having drawn 1-1 in Georgia last week. But a strong performance blew away the opposition, leaving McInnes more than satisfied. Derek McInnes praised Sam Cosgrove for his clinical display against Chikhura Sachkhere and vowed the striker would be staying at Aberdeen this season.Cosgrove netted a hat-trick in the 5-0 win at Pittodrie that put his side in the Europa League third qualifying round, equalling Drew Jarvie’s record of scoring in four consecutive European games for the Dons.McInnes revealed that his form had drawn the attention of other clubs but said that the 22-year-old would be remaining at Pittodrie and was gong to improve further.“He’s in good company with Drew, equalling that record,” McInnes said. “It’s 25 goals in 32 games for him now, and that’s an incredible record. “I’m very pleased,” he said. “People who weren’t at the game will maybe look at the scoreline and think that maybe our opponent wasn’t any good, but I thought they were a capable side.“We chose our moments tonight and we not only looked a good side – and scored some quality goals – but I thought we played with a lot of intelligence.“We started the game full of speed and the two home games have given our fans a flavour of what is to come.“It’s credit to my players that they are able to deliver that type of performance so early in the season.“We showed our strength, speed and quality and I couldn’t be more pleased.”
2 August 2012South African retail group Woolworths Holdings is to expand its footprint in Australia through subsidiary Country Road’s acquisition of fashion brand Witchery Group, the company announced in Cape Town on Wednesday.The deal, worth AU$172-million, is expected to boost Woolworths’ operations in Australia, which began in 1998 when the South African company secured an 88% controlling interest in Country Road.Woolworths rebuilt Country Road and re-launched the brand in 2004. “It was successfully repositioned, grew sales, and won the retail industry’s top honour as Australian Retailer of the Year in 2008,” Woolworths said in a statement.“The acquisition of Witchery Group creates one of Australia’s largest speciality fashion retailers with complementary brands and a strong position in the mid to upper tier specialist retail sector,” said Woolworths chief executive officer and Country Road chairperson, Ian Moir.“The acquisition delivers an attractive portfolio of owned brands, greater scale, diversified revenue streams and industry leading margins.”Witchery Group’s portfolio is made up of two brands, Witchery and Mimco. “With 40 years of trading, Witchery is a leading fashion brand offering women’s, men’s and kids apparel and accessories with 210 stores and concessions in Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and Singapore,” he said.Mimco sells luxury bags, jewellery, shoes, sunglasses and watches with 96 shops and concessions in Australia, New Zealand and Singapore, as well as a successful online business.The group is performing well financially and made $266-million in revenue in 2011.“The acquisition has the capacity to create significant shareholder value through the delivery of synergies that are estimated by Country Road management to be approximately $10-million on an annualised basis and expected to be achieved over four years,” Moir said.These synergies refer to supply chain efficiencies, integration of systems and structures, optimisation of sourcing opportunities and increased growth opportunities in new geographies, categories and channels.The deal will also allow Woolworths – through Country Road – to consolidate its position in Australia.Funding for the acquisition will come through a combination of acquisition debt worth $92-million raised from Australian banks and a rights issue by Country Road, which Woolworths as majority shareholder will follow. It has already received the required exchange control approvals from the South African Reserve Bank.SAinfo reporter
A Cathay Pacific A330. Photo: Cathay Pacific. A solid rise in Cathay Pacific Group’s June passenger numbers has been tempered by the impact of intense competition on long-haul routes and weakening cargo markets.The airline’s June figures showed passenger numbers on Cathay Pacific and Cathay Dragon increased 6 percent in June compared to a year ago to top 3.1 million.The group passenger load factor in June rose 1.4 percentage points to 86.7 percent compared to June 2018 but remained flat for the first six months of the year.Cargo tonnage slumped 9.1 percent to 163, 977 tonnes in June as the cargo and mail revenue load factor fell by 7.8 percentage points to 62.8 percent. Tonnage was down 5.7 percent for the first half of the year.READ: why American Airlines needs to lift its customer service.“Passenger demand remained robust for both business and leisure travel in June, with first and business class load factor reaching its highest level over a decade,’’ Cathay Pacific director commercial and cargo Ronald Lim said.“However, intense market competition continued to exert pressure on yield. Long-haul regions such as North America and Europe performed behind expectations, particularly on the yield front.“Such pressure on yield is expected to continue in the coming months.’’Lim said that weakening market sentiment and impacted both tonnage uplift and yield.“ With the exception of the Americas, Northeast Asia and mainland China, which had a marginal increase in uplift compared to May, overall volume has seen decline against the previous month and year, with only a short-lived recovery from Asia towards the latter half of June,’’ he said.“ The outlook for the coming months has not seen signs of volume rebound. We shall further our efforts to maintain a healthy market share by working closely with our forwarders and shippers, and further rationalize our freighter capacity to better match demand.”The figures came as the airline opened its newly renovated lounge at Shanghai Pudong International Airport.
Right or wrong, businesses need to be profitable—at least the ones that plan to be around next year. Put another way, it’s more about “Show Me the Money” than most of us are comfortable admitting. It may sound odd, but the linked scene from the movie Jerry Maguire was the inspiration for my latest Data Center Knowledge blog. Here, I discuss my eighth and final fundamental truth of cloud computing: altruistic motives do not generally keep the lights on.How we see the importance of a business being profitable is a matter of context. For example, I spent part of my career in enterprise IT shops where I was somewhat insulated from this concept. Every year, I was given a budget. In general, and beyond those elements tied to specific projects, I knew my overall budget was a percentage of overall revenue. How any of this led back to actual profit was something I honestly didn’t consider.At this point in my career, and in polite company, I’m willing to speak of these times as my “blissful ignorance” phase. To be honest, though, I routinely had to resolve profit conflicts as part of contract disputes with the companies we hired to help us through numerous hardware upgrades and systems modernizations. (I was always amazed at how quickly a contractor could determine that whatever wasn’t working was absolutely not their problem.) At the end of the discussion, though, we were held accountable by the enterprise for delivery, so we got very good at resolving these disagreements.As I moved beyond IT, the significance of profitability hit me the hardest when I worked for a start-up. Here, we not only had to worry about generating enough cash to make our bi-weekly payroll, but we also needed to generate enough extra revenue to convince investors that our business model was viable. Anyone who’s started a business knows the drill. And it’s here that my common-sense attitude toward profitability forever changed. (This was also when I gained weight and my hair started turning gray.)So what does any of this have to do with a cloud ecosystem? In my column, I explain that every element of this ecosystem has different goals, most tied to profitability. This is the new order of things. I also explain that IT’s role in this ecosystem (assuming you have the opportunity) is to use lessons you probably learned in other areas to help reduce the pain that’s likely to be part of the new order.I hope you find this blog interesting. I welcome your feedback, so please join the discussion. You’re welcome to contact me via LinkedIn or follow me on Twitter.