White tiger cub seized in Louisiana recovering at Sanctuary in Alpine

first_imgWhite tiger cub seized in Louisiana recovering at Sanctuary in Alpine Posted: January 4, 2018 January 4, 2018 KUSI Newsroom, ALPINE (KUSI) — A five-month-old white tiger cub has been seized from an unpermitted location in Louisiana and relocated to an exotic animal sanctuary in California.The orphaned female cub, who does not yet have a name, required immediate medical attention for conditions consistent with severe neglect. She is now responding well to treatment. The whereabouts of the cub’s parents are unknown.“Unfortunately, we see this all too often,” says Bobbi Brink, Founder and Director of Lions Tigers & Bears Big Cat and Exotic Animal Rescue, the accredited animal sanctuary where the tiger will now live out the rest of her life. “The exotic pet trade is a multi-billion dollar industry, often leading to illegal ownership like in this case. Many of these animals are pulled from their mothers when they are only days old. They are then subjected to very poor living conditions at the hands of individuals who quickly become overwhelmed by the level of care a full-grown wild animal requires. This in turn poses a very real threat to public health and safety.”The tiger cub arrived at Lions Tigers & Bears on December 22, 2017, where she continues to receive ongoing medical care.White tigers are not classified as a subspecies, nor are they considered albino. The lack of color in the animal’s hair follicles is referred to as leucism, a genetic mutation that occurs naturally in 1 out of every 10,000 births among Bengal tigers in the wild. White tigers in the United States can be traced back to one breeding pair brought to the country in the 1950s. Since then, white tigers have been selectively bred using various species of tigers, resulting in mixed breeds with the leucism gene. KUSI Newsroom Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitterlast_img read more

BTS earns highest Billboard Hot 100 debut for Kpop group

first_img A fresh crop of new music to tickle your ears K-pop superstar BTS breaks another music record.  Video screenshot by Bonnie Burton/CNET K-pop superstars BTS — arguably the most popular boy band in the world right now — is breaking records yet again with its song Boy With Luv. Boy With Luv, featuring American pop star Halsey, is the first single from the Korean boy band’s new album Map of the Soul: Persona. Debuting at No. 8 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart makes this the highest-charting song by a Korean pop group ever, according to reports on Monday.It seems as though Boy With Luv is the kind of chart-topping tune that is breaking more than one kind of record.  Tags BTS breaks YouTube records with music video for Boy With Luv BTS blows away SNL, and you can watch their performance online Fortnite, ASMR and BTS ruled Instagram in 2018 1 More BTS Comment When BTS performed its new single Boy With Luv on Saturday Night Live on April 13, the official video of the performance didn’t just get record numbers on YouTube, it also marked the first time a South Korean musical act had ever performed on the NBC show.And last year, BTS also managed to dominate Instagram by having the biggest fandom community. Share your voice The music video for Boy With Luv also smashed YouTube’s record for the most views in the first 24 hours of release. The video attracted 74.6 million views in 24 hours, demolishing previous viewership records by music acts Ariana Grande and Blackpink.Boy With Luv also broke the record for fastest music video to reach 100 million views on YouTube, achieving the mark in less than two days. YouTube 25 Photos Music TV and Movieslast_img read more

Elections futures settlements expected to roil market week

first_imgThe week is likely to remain range-bound because of a host of uncertainties, domestic and global, even though the benchmark indices rallied smartly on Monday, according to some analysts.Sensex rose 373 points to close above 35,354 and Nifty gained 101 points to close above 10,628.The nation is in the midst of elections to five states. Of them, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Telangana are key states where pitched battles are on. These are prestigious battles for the Narendra Modi-led Bharatiya Janata Party which head the ruling National Democratic Alliance. The election results will not be out until December 11 and the market is watching for cues from voting percentage and the optics in general.The trading week of November 26-30, being the last week of the month is also the expiry week for futures and options. The Street will be watchful for the open positions build-up for making further commitments.The market is in the midst of a promising earnings season and some hope its effect will continue to linger. However, the market would have already priced in the good manufacturing numbers restricting further price movement ahead.A further softening of the international crude prices will buoy the Indian market even further despite the domestic uncertainties. Though the oil took a pause on Monday after last week’s rout, a lower crude price and a lower dollar will be a double bonus in the week ahead because India’s revenue account deficit could ease further. The easing oil will have a significant impact on the market, considering the lower fuel prices and macroeconomic benefits, market experts believe.Opec production cut”It is difficult to say whether $60 is the new normal, as there doesn’t seem to be a ‘normal’ at the moment,” Reuters quoted Cantor Fitzgerald oil and gas analyst Jack Allardyce as saying.”The recent weakness seems dramatic given the lack of actual catalysts – it seems to have been driven by a wider impending sense of doom amidst weak equities, geopolitics, subsequent softening demand and increasing supply,” he told the news agency.The effect of the looming Opec production cut and vanishing Iran oil as the grace period given to eight countries including India ends will continue to roil the market, according to some experts.Significantly, the International Energy Agency has pegged down its global oil demand growth rate estimate to 1.4 million barrels per day from June’s 1.5 million bpd. The demand for 2019 is expected to top off at 100 million barrels.last_img read more

University of Asia Pacific students attacked at Farmgate

first_imgUniversity of Asia PacificA group of University of Asia Pacific students came under attack when they tried to reach Farmgate intersection with a procession from their campus on Sunday, witnesses said.According to the witnesses, a group of yet-to-be-known youths wearing helmets swooped on the demonstrating students with sticks near Ananda Cinema Hall in Farmgate around 12:30pm.Dispersed and chased, the protesting students of University of Asia Pacific took shelter on their campus.The attackers, then, vandalised windows of Asia Pacific University campus located in Farmgate’s Green Road.Students started to gather in different streets of the capital for the eighth consecutive day on Sunday morning demanding safe roads and justice for death of two of their fellows in a road accident on 29 July.The movement sparked off after shipping minister Shajahan Khan smilingly compared the Dhaka Airport Road accident with the one in India, which killed 33 people, while talking to newsmen within one hour of the crash.last_img read more

Britains US ambassador resigns after Trump spat

first_imgIn this file photo taken on October 20, 2017 British Ambassador to the US Kim Darroch speaks during an annual dinner of the National Economists Club at the British Embassy in Washington, DC. Britain`s ambassador to Washington Kim Darroch said on July 10, 2019, he was resigning after drawing US President Donald Trump`s ire for criticising his administration in leaked confidential cables to London. `The current situation is making it impossible for me to carry out my role as I would like,` Darroch wrote in his resignation letter. `I believe in the current circumstances the responsible course is to allow the appointment of a new ambassador.` AFPBritain’s ambassador to Washington Kim Darroch said Wednesday he was resigning after drawing Donald Trump’s ire for calling the US president “inept” in leaked confidential cables to London.Darroch said in a resignation letter to the Foreign Office that the scandal made it “impossible” for him to continue representing British interests in the United States.Trump has said his administration would no longer “deal” with Darroch.”Since the leak of official documents from this Embassy there has been a great deal of speculation surrounding my position and the duration of my remaining term as ambassador,” Darroch wrote.”I want to put an end to that speculation. The current situation is making it impossible for me to carry out my role as I would like,” he said.”I believe in the current circumstances the responsible course is to allow the appointment of a new ambassador.”Prime Minister Theresa May told parliament moments after Darroch’s resignation that the criticism he faced was “beyond unfair and wrong”.”I think he’s given honourable and good service and he should be thanked for it,” she said.The Mail on Sunday’s publication of Darroch’s cables set off a political firestorm in London and saw Trump launch two successive days of Twitter attacks against the envoy and May.One of the cables called the Trump administration “uniquely disfunctional” and another characterised the US leader as “inept” and “insecure”.Trump tweeted Monday that Darroch “is not liked or well thought of within the U.S. We will no longer deal with him.” He also welcomed the “good news” that Prime Minister Theresa May was stepping down in two weeks.The US leader followed that up on Tuesday by calling “wacky Ambassador” Darroch “a very stupid guy”.The scandal saw Darroch taken off the guest list of a dinner attended by Trump on Monday.He also missed visiting UK Trade Minister Liam Fox’s talks in Washington on Tuesday with the president’s adviser and daughter Ivanka Trump.last_img

AFRO Clean Block Campaign Returns

first_imgOn April 27, at the headquarters of the AFRO American Newspapers, local organizations and community leaders will join forces with the newspaper to announce that the AFRO Clean/Green Block campaign is returning stronger than ever for 2017. The announcement will take place at 10:30 a.m. at 2519 North Charles Street in Baltimore Md.The AFRO Clean Block program began in 1934 as a way to beautify Baltimore and ran continuously for several decades. As the AFRO wrote in 1968 about the kickoff of the 34th season of Clean Block, “The AFRO sponsors the campaign in the hopes that Clean Blockers will learn the value of respect for property, for one another and for the community.” Frances L. Murphy I, the late daughter of the founder of the AFRO, John H. Murphy Sr., created and ran the project.Communities can commence cleanup efforts on May 4 and the organizers only ask that each community recruit at least four blocks to represent their neighborhood. All neighborhoods, businesses and city and state agencies are extended an invitation to participate and/or contribute. The theme for this year has remained the same, “AFRO Clean/Green Block Campaign – Our Community – Our Responsibility.”To sign-up your community, business, agency or organization contact Diane W. Hocker, Director, Community & Public Relations for the AFRO at 410-554-8243.The Clean Block Campaign is one of the oldest environmental programs in the country. In 2007, the program began collaborating with the city of Baltimore for a cleaner, greener Baltimore. Following the success of last year’s campaign, this year’s initiative will be a full-fledged program in honor of the AFRO American Newspapers, the nations’ #1 African American Newspaper, turning 125 years-old.The AFRO Clean/Green Block Campaign is just one of many events this year to mark the celebration of the newspaper’s 125 years. Other events include the AFRO High Tea: Saluting Women of the AFRO on April 23 at Sharon Baptist Church in Baltimore, Md. (tickets are sold out) and the 125th Anniversary Gala on Aug. 12 at Martin’s Crosswinds in Greenbelt, Md. Ticket and sponsorship packages are still available for the gala, if interested contact Diane W. Hocker at 410-554-8243 or by email at dhocker@afro.com.last_img read more

1984 riots Two convicts get interim bail from Delhi High Court

first_imgDelhi high court on Tuesday granted interim bail of 60 days to Captain Bhagmal, one of the three convicts serving life term in a 1984 anti-Sikh riots case, on medical grounds. A Bench of justices Sanjiv Khanna and Ashutosh Kumar said Bhagmal will remain on bail for 60 days from the date of his release and listed the matter for further hearing on July 1. It also extended the interim relief by 30 days to convict Balwan Khokhar on the same ground.  Also Read – Company director arrested for swindling Rs 345 croreThe court, however, asked Bhagmal to furnish a bail bond of Rs 50,000 with one surety of the like amount. It further directed retired naval officer Bhagmal not to leave India without prior intimation to the court. On April 15, the court had called for a medical report on Balwan Khokhar after it was informed that the convict broke his hand after a fall in the jail. The court had on that day refused to grant bail to co-convict Girdhari Lal. The trio and two others were held guilty in a case relating to the murder of five members of a family in Raj Nagar area of Delhi Cantonment on November 1, 1984, a day after the assassination of then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.  Also Read – Man who cheated 20 women on matrimonial websites arrestedThey also challenged their conviction and award of life sentence by the trial court in May 2013. The trial court had acquitted Congress leader Sajjan Kumar in the case but awarded life term to Bhagmal, Khokhar and Girdhari Lal. The court had also awarded three years jail term to two others — former MLA Mahender Yadav and Kishan Khokhar.  The high court had in September 2013 denied bail to Bhagmal. The convicts have filed their appeals before the HC while CBI has also filed an appeal demanding death sentence for the trio, saying they were engaged in “a planned communal riot” and “religious cleansing”.last_img read more

World Bank CIO IT is Not a Cost to Be Constrained

first_img 8 min read September 16, 2015 Register Now » The World Bank Group has an audacious goal: to promote economic growth and end extreme poverty by 2030. Making this happen behind the scenes is chief information officer Stephanie von Friedeburg. She oversees technology deployment, keeping communication flowing between 188 member countries operating out of 200 country offices, many in undeveloped or unstable regions.  She does all this while bringing the 71-year-old institution up-to-date through cloud and mobile technology so workers can be remote and critical information can be accessible from anywhere. We spoke with von Friedeburg about how new-school technology is shaping the old-school financial services organization and the shift companies big and small have to make when it comes to information security.Related: The Challenge of Redefining Culture as Your Startup GrowsQ: Help us understand the scope of the technology challenges an organization like the World Bank faces?A: We’re all over the world — little places, big places, hard to reach places — South Sudan, Afghanistan. Some of the hardest places in the world to connect to. We have a staff of about 15,000 who make somewhere in the range of 125,000 to 150,000 trips a year. We put people on the road all the time, and they need to have to have access, anywhere and anytime, to all the data and information that the bank houses. When I took over, the bank had really fundamentally underinvested in technology. We hadn’t made any really big, strategic changes to our technology landscape since the late 1990s. We were only spending about $12 million dollars a year to connect all of our country offices. Nothing was really working properly.Q: How so? What kind of problems was your team seeing?A: I was in my job about six months and I went to Mongolia. One of the task team leaders in Mongolia literally booted up the operations portal, we went to lunch, we came back and it was still loading the 800 data fields it needed to load. I was like, ok, this is a really serious problem.Q: How have you addressed this?A: We put in place a multi-pronged strategy. The first was to attack the end-user, and standardize and improve the end-user devices [like phones and laptops and tablets]. Can we get them more immersed in a cloud-based environment? And while we’re making those changes, under the hood, also rip out a lot of the customized, underlying platforms and buy centralized platforms that we could re-use across the organization and use in a way that would allow us to take our really big applications and pare them down into a mobile applet. Instead of trying to open a monolithic application, you’re just going to open a little tiny slice of the application you need to get your job done.Q: Why were these important?A: We really want to make our knowledge available to our teams in the field. If you’re working on your first water project, you could actually find the last five water projects that we’ve done that are applicable to what you’re trying to do, and connect to the people who worked on them. How do you make information flow more smoothly within the organization?Q: How has cloud technology helped you deal with emergency situations?A: We use to have servers in all 220 of our offices. When a disaster hit we had technology people in all of those offices physically carry the servers out of the country offices with them and then reinstall them wherever we were going to operate. Now, we’re on Office 365 and Box. So, when it got really rough a few times this year at our Kabul office, we could leave everything in Kabul and move those 125 staffers north and have them functioning and operational instantly, as opposed to a week or two. Cloud technology has become about business continuity and operations and I didn’t envision that.  Q: What does a successful IT strategy for the World Bank look like? What tools are you using and why?A: For me, the successful strategy is that everyone will be mobile and will be able to be connected from anywhere so you won’t have to be physically in the office. We have about 246 applications that we use. If we are successful they will all eventually be redesigned and put in the cloud. We have five data centers now, but we won’t need five data centers. We may have one data center ourselves, but I do not envision us continuing to maintain all of our own servers. It’s expensive and we aren’t as good at it as [companies like Microsoft and Amazon] are.Related: New York State’s Chief Digital Officer Explains the Importance of User ExperienceQ: I imaging getting a 71-year old organization onto the cloud isn’t easy. How do you make a change like that happen?A: The most esoteric challenge we faced was getting the organization to even agree that we should have a cloud strategy. That took me the better part of 9 months. When I started the conversation, the lawyers said to me, putting World Bank data in the cloud would be like putting our data in a paper box, writing ‘Free’ on it and placing it on the curb. And I said, ‘well, not exactly.’Also, we’d been an organization with a lot of bubble-gumming and shoe-stringing on the back end to hold things together. So, it was important to shift the mentality of the staff and shift our position in the organization to say ‘Listen, IT is not a cost to be constrained, we should be a strategic partner helping you be better at delivering solutions all the time.’ I think those are the things we struggle with every day. We’ve done a lot work around culture, communication and changing perspective and mindset.The other interesting thing is that the World Bank Group is founded by treaty so we are protected by something called our privileges and immunities. And it means that in any jurisdiction, our files and vaults are impenetrable by local law enforcement, so no one can subpoena the World Bank and request our information.  And overcoming the idea that our data wouldn’t physically be behind our firewall and our data center was a really big hurdle for us.Q: How will technology at the World Bank change in the next 10 years?  A: The work we’re going to do is going to be more complex and cross-cutting. We’re no longer going to look at things in silos. From a technology perspective, if a country wants to have a citizen database, what can that database be used for? We could use it for social security, healthcare, driver’s licenses, etc. And we’ll be able to be build a database, not several databases. I think you’ll see technology that will solve development problems as well like education. I think energy is going to have to be driven in technology, and we’ll see the bank playing a big role in that. I think our role is going to get more interesting.Q: Security is such a concern across the public and private sector. What approach is the World Bank taking to keep information safe?A: A little over three years ago, we created a new security strategy. Instead of building more exterior protections, we reclassified all of our data and information. We created about 250 classes of information and put it on a heat map, and we said, which of this is the critical crown jewel — what drives the equivalent of our bottom line, how our treasury operations work, where we invest our money, highly confidential information about a company or country — that we would never want to escape from the organization? All the way down to, which of the data do we think ‘who cares what happens to it?’ We have spent considerably more time thinking about keeping safe the crown jewel, and letting go of the things that are less relevant.When I became a CIO five years ago, the first thing somebody said to me is ‘you don’t want security anywhere near you because if there is a security breach, you’ll lose your job.’ I think in the last five years, the context of security breaches has shifted. We try to spend time with our board and our other senior management talking about how we are vulnerable, and we will be breached. The question is: what do we do when we are breached? How do we respond, do we actually have the incident command in place from a communications standpoint? We spend a lot of time working on that. We no longer say that we’re safe. I think that’s the important shift for organizations to make.This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity. Related: Amazon CTO: ‘We Still Consider Ourselves a Startup’center_img Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right.last_img read more

We believe every advisor wants to be proud of their brand Jeff

first_img Wednesday, September 20, 2017 Travel Edge CEO & Owner Jeff Willner started Kensington Tours from his kitchen table in 2006, with a box of office supplies from his last job. Like many home-based advisors, he went without a paycheck for over a year when times were lean.Originally specializing in African safaris, Kensington Tours almost went out of business several times with the 2007 Kenya election violence that cut tourism in half, and the global economic meltdown in 2008.That was then and this is now. Kensington Tours grew slowly but surely over the years and is now a $100 million tour company.Not only that, but 6 years ago Willner started acquiring travel agencies with the goal of creating the top luxury agency in North America.With a corporate family where everyone trusts each other to work hard, and a meaningful investment in making the world a better place, “you can’t help but continue to grow”, says Willner in his role as CEO and Owner of Travel Edge.Travel agents might be familiar with the name Worldview. “Worldview has always been a part of the Travel Edge Group of companies,” says Willner. “We built the company with a series of acquisitions starting in 2011 that included luxury leisure agencies and corporate agencies.”The company was called Worldview in the press, says Willner, but really it was a collection of 12 acquired agencies, most of whom continued to operate under their own names including: The Travel Network (Toronto), Pisa Brothers Travel (New York), Travel Door (California), and Century Travel (Atlanta). The company currently has 11 offices in Canada, the U.S. and Bermuda.”The decision to re-brand to Travel Edge was based on a desire to bring the company’s leading edge technology and combine it with the decades of experience and client relationships from the agencies, he adds.“There was a general feeling from our discussions with our agents and management that we needed a fresh start. Travel Edge was selected based on the idea that we provide a competitive edge to our agents, and our agents provide better travel experiences and a lifestyle edge for their clients.”In addition to the name, the company wanted a new logo and an updated look and feel. The new logo has two components: the stylized ‘route map’ insignia and the Travel Edge wordmark.Willner says he’s confident in Travel Edge’s strategy to become the largest and best luxury agency in North America. Travel Edge is now a $750 million company with over 750 advisors specializing in Leisure, Corporate & Events, and Tours travel.Most of the company’s advisors – about 70% – are home-based. “Many have decades of experience but a growing number are professionals who have moved to travel as a second or third career. We have carefully built a support team to help our agents grow their sales and most importantly grow their profits.”Willner says Travel Edge’s advisor services are intentionally designed to support agents wherever they choose to work. “We are committed to consistent communication and accessible training including recorded sessions,” he said.He says Travel Edge offers the highest, achievable commission levels in air, cruise, hotels, resorts and tours. “But what is interesting about Travel Edge is we also offer full professional services including finance, HR, technology, three different GDS, ClientBase, email, marketing, legal, and more. So agents have the best of both worlds: industry leading commissions plus the benefits of full service.”Ultimately the company’s “true competitive advantage” is the Agent Digital Experience (ADX) tool, he says. Travel Edge has invested over $20 million in the past five years to build a modern travel management tool that “transforms agent profitability”. “They can bundle multiple products with a single click, instantly show Virtuoso amenities, cross sell/upsell, see commissions live, auto invoice, and stay informed with online reports. We believe ADX is truly transformative for the luxury leisure agent.”Asked what sort of reaction he’s heard from Travel Edge travel advisors about the rebranding, Willner says feedback on the new brand has been “really positive”.“[At our] road show to almost all of our branches I had the pleasure of chatting directly to most of our advisors. We believe every advisor wants to be proud of their brand. We are on a journey to create a luxury brand that can hold its own across all industries. And that is a message that has really resonated with our employees, agents and the rest of the industry. They are also very excited that as our brand starts to gain awareness it will result in more leads and more closed sales.”Is Travel Edge still pursuing the acquisition of more agencies? “Candidly we have been very successful as a company with double-digit organic growth, hundreds of advisors who have joined our Advisor Program and ongoing acquisitions,” says Willner, adding, “I believe with a corporate family that can trust each other to work hard, and a meaningful investment in making the world a better place, you can’t help but continue to grow.” << Previous PostNext Post >> Share Tags: Sphere, Travel Edgecenter_img “We believe every advisor wants to be proud of their brand”: Jeff Willner talks about the Travel Edge difference Travelweek Group Posted bylast_img read more

Deutsche Telekom is adding 15 HD channels to its l

first_imgDeutsche Telekom is adding 15 HD channels to its line-up, taking the total number of HD channels available on the telco’s Entertain TV platform to 45.Next month, DT will add 11 HD channels from public broadcasters ARD and ZDF. ARD’s channels will include Phoenix HD and regional networks WDR HD, NDR HD, BR Süd HD, SWR RP HD and SWR BW HD. Joining them will be ZDF’s 3sat HD, zdf_neo HD, KiKA HD, ZDFinfo HD and zdf.kultur HD.Premium channels ProSieben Fun HD, Sat.1 Emotions HD, Kabel1 Classics HD and Glitz HD will be added to Entertain’s Premium HD package.last_img read more

UK commercial broadcaster ITV is to launch a new f

first_imgUK commercial broadcaster ITV is to launch a new female-focused channel, ITVBe, that will feature lifestyle and reality programming and become the exclusive home of flagship reality show The Only Way is Essex.The channel, which will launch towards the end of the year, will be advertising and sponsorship funded and will be targeted at a younger female audience.Other shows to be aired on the channel include the Real Housewives franchise, Plebs, The Job Lot and Release the Hounds.The channel will complement ITV2, targeted at the 16-34 age group, and will expand the number of free-to-air channels offered by the group to seven.ITV also plans to launch a pay TV channel, ITV Encore, on the BSkyB platform later this year.“ITVBe will be a terrific new addition to our family of channels.  It reinforces our plan to maximise audiences and revenues from our broadcasting business. Alongside our recently announced new pay channel ITV Encore, this is another important step forward in our strategy to become the most watched, most loved and most talked about family of free and pay channels for every household and every advertiser in the UK,” said ITV CEO Adam Crozier.“Expanding ITV’s family of channels to introduce a new free-to-air, female skewing channel focusing on entertainment and reality means our viewers will have access to even more great content. We identified an opportunity to develop what is currently part of the ITV2 schedule – reality and non-scripted shows, which are very popular with young women and housewives with kids – into a distinct channel proposition, aimed more squarely at that audience. ITV2 will continue to be the youngest channel in our portfolio, outside of CITV, and the strategy of bringing more scripted series, both acquired and commissioned, will continue apace, alongside panel shows, formats and other young skewing commissions,” said Peter Fincham, director of television.last_img read more

Three quarters of German cable homes now take digi

first_imgThree quarters of German cable homes now take digital TV services, according to research by TNS Infratest.According to the latest report, 72.5% of German cable homes now take digital services, up 15.2% year-on-year, with 1.7 million households making the switch from analogue over that period.Cable distribution accounts for 46.1% of German TV homes, according to the report.The main drivers for switching to digital were demand for HD services, up 16.9% in the course of the year, the proliferation of internet-connected TV sets, up 25.6% year-on-year and the increasing use of on-demand services, up 18.3%.TNS Infratest surveyed 6,484 people across Germany between May 4 and July 15.last_img read more

Source WWE WWE has recorded decline for its WWE N

first_imgSource: WWEWWE has recorded decline for its WWE Network SVOD, complemented by continually tumbling share prices and revenues.Global subscriber numbers for the Network dropped by 6% to approximately 1.69 million though the company said that this is in line with its guidance. The company predicts further decline to 1.53 million subscribers in the third quarter, representing a year-over-year decline of 8%. On a cautionary note, the company said that it does not not expect to achieve record subscribers for the full year.Decline in subscriber numbers is put down to “the timing of episodic series (i.e., fewer episodes delivered) for programmes, such as Total Bellas”.The company also used the opportunity to announce that it had started to transition the WWE Network to a new platform, promising “a better experience, a more intuitive interface, and enhanced search functionality”.There is also speculation that the company will introduce tiered pricing, the first time the pricing structure will have changed since its US$9.99 launch in 2014. This speculation has been added to due to the fact that the company has closed sign-ups to the Network, with a statement on the website reading: “WWE Network is being updated. As a result, the sign-up page for WWE Network is temporarily unavailable”. There is also a prompt to come back “tomorrow” (July 27).This is also alluded to in the earnings release, which says: “The new platform enables the introduction of new features and experiences over time, including the addition of free and premium tiers as well as the localisation of content in multiple languages”.Elsewhere in the company’s digital platforms, digital video views increased 17% to 9.0 billion; hours consumed increased 22% to 324 million hours across digital platforms; and social media followers increased 10% to over 1.02 billion.While the company is seeing growth on its digital platforms, its TV viewership is suffering badly. Average viewership of Raw, its flagship weekly show, was at 2.35 million, down 20% year over year. The company’s stock price has also fallen 31% since April’s record-high of US$99.43 (€88.17), with several key executives selling millions of dollars worth of stocks ahead of the Q2 earnings.It is possible that those latter figures were affected by a great amount of negative PR surrounding the WWE in the past few months. Variety, NPR and Last Week Tonight with John Oliver have all recently run pieces heavily criticising the company, its business practices and CEO Vince McMahon.Speaking on the results, McMahon said: “During the quarter, we made progress on key strategic initiatives.“We completed content distribution agreements in key international markets, prepared for the next phase of our WWE Network service, and achieved steady improvement in engagement metrics. As indicated previously, we remain excited about the future, particularly with our debut on Fox in October.”last_img read more

The gold stocks opened in the red but rallied str

first_img The gold stocks opened in the red, but rallied strongly almost immediately, even before 9:50 a.m. EST gold price melt-up going into the London p.m. gold fix.  From that point, the stocks gave up a bit of their gains before trading sideways for most of the day, but rallied into the close, finishing almost on their highs of the day.  The HUI closed up 2.42%. The CME’s Daily Delivery Report showed that 1 gold and 72 silver contracts were posted for delivery on Friday within the Comex-approved depositories. JPMorgan out of its in-house [proprietary] trading account delivered 58 contracts—and ABN Amro came up with 10 contracts.  The only long/stopper of note was Canada’s Bank of Nova Scotia with 70 contracts.  The link to yesterday’s Issuers and Stoppers Report is here. There were no reported changes in either GLD or SLV yesterday—and no sales report from the U.S. Mint, either. Monday was a very busy day over at the Comex-approved depositories—especially in silver. In gold, these depositories reported receiving 63,996 troy ounces of the stuff—and all of it went into the HSBC USA depository.  The link to that activity is here. But the fork lifts were real busy moving silver around, as 1,810,657 troy ounces were reported received—and 1,216,360 troy ounces were shipped out the door.  Of the amount received, a third of it disappeared into JPMorgan’s vault—and all of the silver JPM received came out of Scotia Mocatta’s vault.  The link to that action is here—and it’s worth a quick peek. I have a decent number of stories today—and I hope you have the opportunity to read the ones that interest you. Yes, it is possible, given how close we are to the lows of the year that more salami slicing to the downside, designed to generate more technical fund short selling, could be seen. But it is just as possible that the salami slicing is over with. More than possible is that JPMorgan will look, at some point, to feather their own nest with an explosion in gold and silver prices, given how they are currently positioned. That’s what smart crooks do. – Silver analyst Ted Butler: 28 December 2013 Well, it doesn’t get much more blatant than that.  I couldn’t make up a price scenario like yesterday no matter how hard I tried.  If JPMorgan et al were fishing for a bottom, I’d say they found one, as I doubt very much that prices could get much lower than this—or stay there for long if they did.  You saw that happen yesterday—and you also saw how quickly it reversed itself. As Ted Butler says, in order for JPMorgan et al to go longer or cover more short positions, they have to find either a technical fund or small trader to either puke up a long or go short, so they [JPMorgan et al] can gobble up either the long contract puked up, or buy the long side of the short trade.  These two types of traders are the only “food supply” for JPM et al—and why they continually attempt to engineer lower prices.  Once “da boyz” can no longer entice these traders to go short anymore, or puke up more longs, the bottom is in.  And if I had to bet a sum of money, I’d guess we saw it yesterday. But the question at all market bottoms is always the same—what will JPMorgan et al do on the subsequent rally?  They, as always, are 100% in the driver’s seat—and what they do, or what they’re instructed to do, is all that matters.  If you’ve been reading this column for any length of time, it’s a situation that we’ve been in many times in the past—and Ted Butler and I always pose the same questions.  Will this time be different, or will it be the same old, same old? Since this is the final column for 2013—my thanks go out to all the kind readers that have contributed so much to this missive over the last 12 months.  As I say every year at this time, this column is just as much yours as it is mine, as it would be considerably diminished without their contributions. Some you only know by their initials—as they wish where they live and who they are to remain anonymous—and I respect that.   But I would be remiss if I didn’t shout out a few names here:  Phil Barlett, West Virginia reader Elliot Simon, South African reader B.V., Manitoba reader Ulrike Marx, Washington state reader S.A. and, as always, Roy Stephens is at the top of the heap.  Of course other readers have contributed news items, chart and graphs, photos and cartoons from time to time all year long—and as I said, this column would be diminished without them.  Chief amongst those contributors would be Nick Laird over at sharelynx.com, as his charts are an integral part of my blog—along with other newsletter writers on the Internet as well. Last, but certainly not least, my thanks go out to my daily Internet buddy at Casey Research.  Every day [except Saturdays and holidays] CR’s own Juli Placek crawls out of a nice warm bed somewhere in the vicinity of Stowe, Vermont at 5:10 a.m. EST—and takes my scribblings and posts them on their website before 6:30 a.m. EST—and then dispatches it to the in-boxes of the 40,000+ world-wide readers that peruse this rant [in whole, or in part] every day.  All of this is done long before the vast majority of North Americans has even had to reach for their respective alarm clocks.  I can’t begin to remember the number of times she has been there for me—or for us—and she has my eternal gratitude. Happy New Year to you and yours in 2014, dear reader—and I’ll see you right here on Friday. The dollar closed on Monday afternoon in New York barely above the 80 mark at 80.01.  From there it rallied it tiny fits and starts, finishing the Tuesday session at 80.205 which was up 20 basis points from its prior close. It was more or less the same routine in both platinum and palladium, but both reported a decent gain on the day—finishing up a percent or so.  Here are the charts. And as incredible as the price gyrations were in gold, it was off the charts in silver, as JPMorgan et al pulled out all the stops.  However, the price pattern was virtually identical, so I shan’t waste any time talking about it. The intraday price move was well over a dollar—and the CME recorded the low and high as $18.72 and $19.825 in the March contract. Silver never got a sniff of the $20 spot price mark, closing the Tuesday session at $19.445 spot, which was down 12 cents from Monday.  Net volume was an astounding 46,000 contracts. What will JPMorgan et al do on the subsequent rally? The gold price didn’t do much in Far East trading on their Tuesday, but a tiny new low was set around 1:30 p.m. Hong Kong time.  From there, gold rallied back above the $1,200 price mark.  Then around 11:15 p.m. the price began to decline.  Ted said that it was JPMorgan et al “spoofing” prices lower.  And once Monday’s closing price was taken out at 8:45 a.m. in Comex trading, the technical funds went short some more—as JPMorgan et al took the long side of those trades—and the price plunged over twelve bucks in a few seconds. The tiny rally that followed exploded in a flurry of what was probably a combination of short covering by technical funds—and long buying by JPMorgan et al at 9:50 a.m. EST. That rally ran out of gas/got capped at the London p.m. gold fix, which came minutes after 10 a.m. EST.—about 15 minutes after the rally began. From gold’s high of the day, the price slowly declined until it stuck its nose back below the $1,200 spot price market shortly before 3 p.m. in New York.  At that point a buyer showed up—and gold closed above the $1,200 spot. The low and high ticks were recorded by the CME as $1,181.40 and $1,214.00 in the February contract. Gold closed on New Year’s Eve in New York at $1,205.50 spot, which was up $8.80 from Monday’s close.  Volume was an impressive 127,000 contracts. The chart pattern in the silver equities was virtually the same as the HUI, except the silver stocks closed on their absolute high ticks of the day.  Nick Laird’s Intraday Silver Sentiment Index closed up 2.47%. Sponsor Advertisement Freegold Ventures Limited is a North American gold exploration company with three gold projects in Alaska. Current projects include Golden Summit, Vinasale and Rob. Both Vinasale and Golden Summit host NI 43-101 Compliant Resource Calculations. An updated NI 43-101 resource was calculated on Golden Summit in October 2012 and using 0.3 g/t cutoff  the current resource is 73,580,000 tonnes grading 0.67 g/t Au for total of 1,576,000 contained ounces in the indicated category, and 223,300,000 tonnes grading 0.62 g/t Au for a total of 4,437,000 contained ounces in the inferred category. In addition to the Golden Summit Project the Vinasale also hosts a NI 43-101 resource calculation which was updated in March 2013. Indicated resources are 3.41 million tonnes averaging 1.48 g/t Au for 162,000 ounces, and Inferred resources are 53.25 million tonnes averaging 1.05 g/t Au for 1,799,000 ounces of gold utilizing a cutoff value of 0.5 grams/tonne (g/t) as a possible open pit cutoff. Please send us an email for more information, ir@freegoldventures.comlast_img read more

Regret wrecks peoples finances like no other emot

first_imgRegret wrecks people’s finances like no other emotion. Nothing feels worse than missing out on a rally, except buying what turns out to be a top. Retail investors were burned badly in 2000 and 2008. “Buy and hold” blew up in their faces. While stock prices lifted in step with the Fed’s balance sheet post-crash, the traumatized little guys sat out the stock market rise until the last year. But now small investors are piling in again, and they’re investing like it’s 1999. “I could see it going up maybe 50% at a minimum, just being conservative,” a 35-year old computer programmer told the Wall Street Journal, talking about the stock price of a small biotech company he was pouring his 401(k) money into. More money flowed into mutual funds and exchange-traded funds last year than ever before. Even more than in 2000, the tech bubble year. 2013 was the first year investors took money out of fixed-income funds after three straight years of dumping it into them. The stock market is one giant roller coaster of regret for retail investors. Regret for not getting in… regret for getting in too late… regret for being left holding the bag. Behavioral economics pioneer and Nobel Prize winner Daniel Kahneman quotes two Dutch psychologists about regret in his bestseller Thinking, Fast and Slow. They noted regret is “accompanied by feelings that one should have known better, by a sinking feeling, by thoughts about the mistake one has made and the opportunities lost, by a tendency to kick oneself and to correct one’s mistake, and by wanting to undo the event and to get a second chance.” Studies of investor brains during experiments simulating stock market investing show the variable that most drove behavior in the investment game, in all markets, was the “r-word.” Regret was a big factor when subjects changed their investments and also “showed up as an extremely strong neural signal in a reward-decision-making region of the brain, the ventral putamen, the same site where reward-prediction error signals appear,” writes neuroscientist Dr. Read Montague. Thus, the brain treats counterfactual experience the same as it does real experience. Regret, in this case, is the difference between the value of what is and the value of what could have been. Dr. Montague offers what he calls a pseudo-equation: “Terry Malloy’s Regret equals (value of being a contender minus value of being a bum). Why this is important is something called dopamine, a chemical in the brain that helps humans decide how to take actions that will result in rewards at the right time.” As investors pile into high-flying stocks, they receive a dopamine kick to their brains similar to the sensation a drug addict receives when getting high, or the response our brains receive during sex. The sensation occurs in anticipation of the great returns. Getting what we expect doesn’t provide a dopamine rush, only unexpected gains do. The same way an addict needs larger doses, market investors crave more risk. As the market continues to surge ahead, bad memories have faded and individual investors are chasing higher highs—literally. When the investments crash, the pain of regret will be that much greater. Are investors about to plunge into another deep valley of regret? This week Elliott Wave International’s Robert Prechter gives us some perspective on how far the market has soared in investor sentiment since the dark days of five years ago. The financial press’s rationalizations cloud our senses to the continued irrational investment ebullience. Mr. Prechter brings us back to earth below—plus he has an offer just for Casey readers:  get two free weeks of EWI’s Financial Forecast Service to help you navigate these troubled times. Enjoy, Doug French, Contributing Editorlast_img read more

The price action in platinum and palladium barely

first_img The price action in platinum and palladium barely had a pulse, either.  Here are the charts. The silver equities price path looked similar, but Nick Laird’s Silver Sentiment Index closed up only 1.02% There are four trading days left for contract holders in the May delivery month in silver to either sell, roll, or stand for delivery—and there are still about 44,000 contracts left open.  Only 5,577 were rolled yesterday, at least according to the preliminary report from the CME Group. When I checked the CME’s preliminary Daily Information Bulletin that was posted on their website in the wee hours of this morning EDT—it showed the big increase in silver open interest for the April delivery month that appeared on their Daily Delivery Report late last evening.  As I said earlier, it’s obvious, at least to me, that this delivery from JPM to Scotiabank was privately arranged and hidden from public view until the last possible moment.  As to what it portends for the future, I don’t really know for sure, although I do have my suspicions—which I’ll keep to myself, as it falls into the “wild-ass speculation” category. Not much of anything happened in Far East trading on their Thursday—and the same can be said now that London has been open about 20 minutes.  Volumes in both gold and silver are very light—about 18,000 contracts in gold, and 4,000 contracts [net of roll-overs] in silver.  The dollar index is down a handful of basis points. And as I send this out the door to Stowe, Vermont at 4:55 a.m. EDT, all four precious metals are now down a bit from yesterday’s close in New York.  I see that JPMorgan et al are still trying to beat up the technical funds to the down side in silver—and it remains to be seen how successful they are.  But at these volume/price levels, they’re picking up nickles in front of the proverbial steamroller.  Volumes in gold and silver are still on lighter side, so it’s not wise to read too much into this price action, even in silver—although the volume in that has picked up quite a bit, as has the roll-over action.  The dollar index is still down the same handful of basis points it was 90 minutes ago. Here’s the Kitco silver chart as I hit the ‘send’ button. I have very few stories for you today—and the final edit is yours. Once in a while you will stumble upon the truth, but most of us manage to pick ourselves up and hurry along as if nothing had happened. – Winston Churchill There’s not a lot to read into yesterday’s price action—and it was just another day off the calendar as Ted Butler is wont to say from time to time. Here, once again, are the 6-month charts for gold and silver.  With no new lows being set—and price action subdued on top of that—I doubt very much if yesterday’s trading meant much as far as the Commitment of Traders Report is concerned. Sponsor Advertisement There’s not a lot to read into yesterday’s price action [Note: After three years without a break, I’ll be taking some time off.  There will be no Gold and Silver Daily next week.  Ed] The gold price action on Wednesday was a real yawner.  The only activity worthy of mention was the small rally that began at the London a.m. gold fix—and “da boyz” took care of that at exactly 1 p.m. BST—20 minutes before the Comex open.  From there it got sold down to its 10:35 a.m. EDT low—and then recovered a bit before trading sideways for the remainder of the day. The highs and lows aren’t worth looking up. Gold finished the Wednesday trading session at $1,283.70 spot—unchanged on the day.  Volume, net of April and May, was only 113,000 contracts. This is the second day in a row that the precious metal equities vastly outperformed the metals themselves—and I’ve very encouraged by that. The CME Daily Delivery Report showed that 56 gold and a whopping 151 silver contracts were posted for delivery within the Comex-approved depositories on Friday.  Once again the largest short/issuer in gold was Jefferies and, once again, the two biggest long stoppers were JPMorgan and Canada’s Scotiabank. But the totally out-of-the-blue surprise was the 151 silver contracts that were posted for delivery, as there was no hint of it in the current CME’s Daily Information Bulletin.  I would guess that this delivery was arranged privately—and left until the last possible moment.  It was the biggest Comex silver short [JPMorgan] delivering to the second largest Comex silver short [Canada’s Scotiabank].  One crook lending a helping hand to another crook, methinks.  The link to yesterday’s Issuers and Stoppers Report is here—and it’s worth a quick peek. While on the subject of deliveries, according to the current CME Daily Information Bulletin, there are around 600 gold contracts still open in April—and that’s netting out the deliveries due today, plus the 56 contracts posted for delivery tomorrow.  Any bets that JPMorgan and Scotiabank are long/stoppers on what’s left to deliver this month?  The only other unknown would be the identity of the short/issuer.  Jefferies, perhaps—but that’s a lot of contracts for a company their size.  In the end, it doesn’t really matter who they are, but it’s fun to speculate, now that we’re down to the final days before all and sundry have to make their intentions known. There were no reported changes in either GLD or SLV yesterday. The U.S. Mint had a smallish sales report.  They sold 50,000 silver eagles—and that was it. There was no in/out movement in gold at the Comex-approved depositories on Tuesday—and only smallish in/out movement in silver, as 20,717 troy ounces were received—and 88,852 troy ounces were shipped out.  The link to that activity, such as it was, is here. Here are two more gold and silver charts courtesy of Nick Laird that he whipped up for us yesterday.  The top chart in both is the spot price in each metal going back about 8 years.  The 2-colour charts below that show the long and short positions of the Big 4 and Big 8 traders in each in the Commitment of Traders Report over the same time period.  Note the short positions of the Big 8 in gold vs. the Big 8 in silver over time—especially over the last six months or so.center_img It was pretty quiet in silver yesterday as well—and there really isn’t anything to talk about here.  Like gold, the highs and lows aren’t worth looking up. Silver closed yesterday afternoon in New York at $19.45 spot, up 6.5 cents on the day.  Volume, net of roll-overs was pretty quiet at 19,000 contracts. The gold stocks opened in the black—and then began to rally convincingly about an hour after the equity markets opened in New York.  Their highs came about 2:20 p.m. EDT—and then they gave up a bit going into the close.  The HUI finished up 2.07% on the day. That’s all I have for today—and as the April delivery month winds down—and the May contract goes off the board—the price/volume activity between now and the Comex close on Tuesday, could prove interesting. See you tomorrow. The dollar index closed around 79.90 on Tuesday in New York—and didn’t do much until moments before London opened yesterday.  By 9:30 a.m. BST, the 79.70 low was in—and the index rallied quietly back to almost unchanged, as it closed on Wednesday at 79.86—down a whole 4 basis points. Avrupa and Antofagasta intersect copper-rich VMS in Pyrite Belt, Portugal •             First Greenfields discovery of massive sulfide mineralization in 20 years in the Iberian Pyrite Belt •             10.85 meters of massive and semi-massive/stockwork sulfide mineralization grading 1.81% Cu, 2.57% Pb, 4.38% Zn, 0.13% Sn, and 75.27 ppm Ag •             Including 7.95 meters @ 2.21% Cu, 3.05% Pb, 4.82% Zn, 0.15% Sn, 89.8 ppm Ag •             Followed by 2.90 meters @ 0.71% Cu, 1.27% Pb, 3.17% Zn, 0.092% Sn, 35.4 ppm Ag •             Avrupa and Antofagasta sign an amended Joint Venture Agreement Please visit our website to learn more about the company and current exploration program.last_img read more

In This Issue Dollar rebounds against most cu

first_imgIn This Issue. * Dollar rebounds against most currencies. * Krone, renminbi, rubles rally VS dollar. * Lockhart and Yellen speak. * ADP report misses expectations.. And Now. Today’s A Pfennig For Your Thoughts. Norges Bank Keeps Rates Unchanged. Good day.. And a Tub Thumpin’ Thursday! An easier/ navigable morning for me, so I’ve got that going for me, eh?  Not so much for all the participants of the U.K. election, which is going on today. As I’ve been saying, it appears it’s a toss-up right now, but the exit-polls later today should give us some indication of the outcome. more on that in a bit. My beloved Cardinals saw their 8-game winning streak come to an end last night. And Fed member, Lockhart, tells an audience that tomorrow’s Jobs Jamboree (my words of course) comes as a key point for policy makers and will say a lot about the expected 2nd QTR growth bounce back. I was greeted this morning with a Steely Dan song: Black Friday.  Could that be tomorrow if the BLS jobs report mirrors the ADP report? WOW! Now that’s putting “it” out there for everyone to see, feel, touch, and write it down so they can shove it in the person’s face should it all come crashing down around them going forward!  Lockhart said that with such confidence that you would almost think that he already knows what the BLS will tell the rest of us tomorrow, as to the job creation in April.  Now, I’m not saying that he does have the numbers ahead of the rest of us, all I’m saying is that he acted and talked like someone that knew the numbers already. But that wouldn’t be possible. the BLS wouldn’t allow that to happen, right? So. I turned on the currency screens this morning, and the currencies, for the most part, were all up VS the dollar. And then ½ hour later, when I begin to write, those same currencies have turned around and are losing ground. Hmmm.   Just about the time the U.S. Traders begin to show up at their desks. I have to wonder just what the heck just went on to turn that around that quickly. Because I had read all the articles and notes from traders around the world and had formed an idea as to how the letter was going to go this morning, and now I have to trash that idea, and go back to the drawing board! UGH! One thing that I was going to highlight, I’ll still highlight.  The Norwegian krone is the best performing currency overnight, with the Chinese renminbi a close second, and the krone is getting its oats this morning from the Norges Bank, who left rates unchanged last night. See! I told you that was going to be the outcome, and it was! In fact, let’s review exactly what I said in the Pfennig on May 5th. “Norway’s Norges Bank will meet this week (May 7), and most observers, economists, and traders believe the Norges Bank will opt to cut rates at this meeting. But I’m on the other side of the fence on that one. Here’s my reasoning. The Norges Bank, seeing the stabilization and mini-rally of the Brent Oil price at the last meeting, opted to keep rates unchanged.  Well, since that last meeting, Brent Oil price has rallied nearly 22%. So, I see the Norges Bank keeping rates unchanged, and IF they do, a heavy weight will be removed from the krone, for at least a few days.” But. and you knew there would be a “but” here. the Norges Bank did indicate that they will keep looking at economic data, but the trend indicates to them that they will probably cut in June. YIKES!  I remain steadfast in my thought that the Norges Bank does not need to cut rates given their housing boom, so maybe the Norges Bank was just attempting to keep a lid on the krone, as they saw traders pushing it higher after the Norges Bank left rates unchanged. And so the krone did have a heavy weight removed from it from all the traders that thought the Norges Bank was going to cut rates at this meeting. In other news. The euro was stronger earlier, as Greece did make their payment this morning, to the IMF for: euro200 Million, but that’s small potatoes to the payment that’s due next Tuesday of euro770 Million. There have been positive tones coming from the talks with Greece, so that’s encouraging, and like I said the other day, rising Bund yields are certainly helping underpin the euro. Did anyone besides me see that Germany posted a record Trade Surplus? And that has the German Current Account Surplus reaching 7.9% of GDP. You know, everyone in the Eurozone is having a conniption fit over this, because it violates the Eurozone stability rules, and get this. it would force a sanction if the European Union law was enforced.  For what, being very good at manufacturing and exporting? That just rubs me the wrong way that they would be sanctioned. Is it Germany’s fault that the euro dropped from 1.30 last year to near parity this year before its recent rally? The answer is no. So.. the European Union needs to focus on increasing the growth of the Club Med countries so the euro can rebound further and slow the exports. But that would be everything, the other Eurozone countries need to get better at manufacturing and exporting.  So, I mentioned it at the top this morning, I might as well get to it so you all know what I was talking about. The April ADP Employment report didn’t even come close to meeting the expectations of 200,000, printing instead at 169,000, with last month’s 189,000 revised downward to 175,000. I try to mention the revisions because the markets and media seem to ignore them, but to me they are important.  So, just as a reminder for you, the ADP report is supposed to be a good indicator for what the BLS will print tomorrow. It rarely works out that way, but you can’t ignore the ADP print.  And according to Fed Member Lockhart, the April BLS report is going to carry a lot of weight toward monetary policy. On a sidebar, I’ve pretty much always said that the U.S. should scrap the BLS report, which to remind you, is nothing but surveys, that then the BLS adds or subtracts (rarely do the subtract) jobs out of thin air, which leaves the BLS subject to be shot full of holes, by people like me each month. And instead use the ADP report. ADP basically does the payroll systems for most companies, so they are the people (ADP) that would know the employment in the country! But no one listens to me. Just like at home. The Aussie dollar (A$), which yesterday rose to above 80-cents, has since seen selling. It began with profit taking, and then turned ugly with the Aussie April Employment report, which fell 2,900. which to me is no Big Deal. Especially, and here I go with the revisions again, that the markets and media ignored, when you look at the revision to last month’s number, which originally was reported as 37,700, but revised upward to 48,100. So, to me.  the 10,400 gain in the revision was greater than the 2,900 loss this month, so why the negative Nellies with the A$? Well, it’s because as I keep telling you, markets and media don’t recognize revisions. And that’s all I’ll say about that, because I have a ton of things to say that would get me into big trouble here. So, move along, Chuck. The Russian ruble traded below 50 yesterday, it last traded below 50 on April 16th, So just a few weeks ago, and then as it was yesterday, the drop below 50 didn’t last long. But at least the last time the ruble visited the 49 handle (11/2014) it was going in the opposite direction!  As I said the other day, the bad stuff for the economy has been priced in, and without an unseen chaotic happening to Russia, the ruble should be able to trade sideways with the dollar and gain a little here and there, going forward.  I will remind you that while the ruble has rebounded from the devastating drop to 79, a year ago, the ruble traded at 35. And the Chinese renminbi followed up the big appreciation on Tuesday night, with an even bigger appreciation on Wednesday night! Good for them! I think the Chinese will use this upcoming meeting with the IMF to decide if the renminbi can be part of the SDR, as an opportunity to increase the value of the renminbi.   In other news from China, I read yesterday, where there are confirmed reports that China has been running tests on a floating renminbi. Hmmm, I know it’s only smoke, but remember what I’ve always told you, where there’s smoke, there’s fire. In a follow-up of my report yesterday on the HUGE widening of the U.S. Trade Deficit for March, I came across  some data that might just put the kyboshes on any thoughts that the initial 1st QTR GDP print of 1% will be added to in the revisions.  In fact, from what I can figure, the March Trade Deficit which was $51.4 Billion, will put the revisions of 1st QTR GDP in negative territory.  So, once again, we’ll be starting the year in the hole. Speaking of being in a hole. Oh, that’s right! I already talked about the ADP Employment report, so move along here Chuck, what have you run out of things to talk about that you’re going to resort to repeating yourself in the same letter? Shame, shame.. OK. I won’t go there, it really was just a stream of consciousness. not any attempt to repeat myself!  I guess it’s OK to talk about the Jobs Jamboree tomorrow? This Jobs Jamboree has become quite the circus event. The circus is coming to town, the circus is coming to town. Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to the Big Event! The flying acrobats will be performing while the fire eating giant thrills the crowd, and the dog riding ponies parade around the ring!  But seriously, the Jobs Jamboree somehow has been granted the authority to decide whether or not the Fed will hike rates in June!  Crazy, I know, simply crazy, but that’s the game that’s being played by the markets right now, so get your seat under the Big Tent before it’s sold out! Well, Fed member Lockhart wasn’t the only Fed member talking yesterday. The Fed Chair, Janet Yellen got her own gig at the Institute for New Economic Thinking. In fact, on MarketWatch they have a picture of both Yellen and IMF Managing Director, Christine Lagarde, sitting next to each other in big comfy chairs, and Yellen seems to be attempting to explain something to Lagarde.   Well, in Yellen’s speech, she mentioned that, “I would highlight that equity market valuations at this point generally are quite high. They are not so high when you compare the returns on equities to the returns on safe assets like bonds, which are also very low, but there are potential dangers there.”   Pretty interesting wasn’t that? HA!  Just like an economist. on one hand we have dangerous levels of equity values, and on the other hand they aren’t so dangerous. You see, economists do this so they can point to either side of the fence they were on with their “two-handed” comment, and say, “see I told you”. of course they don’t mention then that they had hedged their statement! HA!  The thing I would have liked to hear her say is, “And this is what we at the Fed are going to do about these dangerous levels.”  Instead she said, “we need to be attentive and are to the possibility that when the Fed decides it is time to begin raising rates, these term premiums could move up and we could see a sharp jump in long-term rates.”    The key there being, “when the Fed decides it is time to begin raising rates”. Wouldn’t it just be better if she said, “get ready for we are going to raise rates at the next meeting, or next year or whenever?” And Warren Buffett and Bill Gross both think that bonds are overvalued.  Hmmm. So, if stocks and bonds correct, as these people seem to think is coming, where would you go with your cash?  May I suggest Gold?   Gold has different pricing mechanisms than Stocks or Bonds, and have the potential for numismatic values, that Stocks or Bonds don’t have, therefore is a very good asset class to include in your investment portfolio. Especially while the price is being held down so arbitrarily by manipulators that eventually will be driven from the markets. Well, so, right after writing all that about Gold. Gold is getting whacked again this morning. The shiny metal is down $9 as I write. Another Blue Light Special?  That’s for you to decide. I’m just here to point stuff out to you and make you think. I used to say things like “it’s time to look to go long kiwi” and so on, but. Those days are gone. Old days.. Good times, I remember, Fun Days, Filled with ship of pleasure. Drive in Movies, Comic Books, and blue jeans. Howdy Doody, Baseball Cards, and birthdays. Please take me back to the world gone away. -Chicago The U.S. Data Cupboard is basically empty today, with only the usual Tub Thumpin’ Thursday fare of Weekly Initial Jobless Claims, which have seen some good movement lately in the Continuing Claims, which could be good, or it could be that the people are just dropping off the list, and giving up. To recap. The U.K. election is taking place right now, and we should begin to see the exit polls as the day goes along, in an election that appears to be very tight. Norges Bank left rates unchanged and the krone is the best performing currency overnight. Greece made their payment on time to the IMF, but it was the smallest payment they have coming due, so this one was made without problems.  But the euro has given back its gains overnight in the early morning trading. Aussie employment fell 2,900, no biggie, but traders are ripping the A$ this morning. And Gold is down $9 in early morning trading. For What It’s Worth.  I had a dear reader send me a thesis titled: “Has The Invisible Hand Disappeared?”  I’m only going to give a small snippet of it. But the basic idea here is that In the last 25 years there has been a loss or decline in intrinsic demand, most people don’t really need anything today.  So, that’s where the demand has gone.  here’s your small snippet, but it will make you think.. Unfortunately today there is nothing important enough to rally around.  Nothing new.  Everything important has already been invented – ha!  (Of course not, but important inventions are genuinely few and far between.)  Control over the world populace is unprecedented.  If there are important things to rally around, such change is quickly suppressed before it can take hold. But to the point.  People have their basic necessities – what they need.  As innovation and change is stifled, big business fights over a smaller pie.  The government responds by forcing people to buy more things, which is an unending and unnatural cycle.  A vicious circle.  You can stimulate, drive and force a great deal of new demand – squeezing blood from a turnip – but eventually it dries up.  Without that, the infighting begins.  Eventually there are only a few survivors and they own or control everything.  We’re already there.  Without meaningful change in demand – something new or different – there can be no real growth, and business and the market shall remain stagnant as today.  This is likely to persist for a very long time, especially when markets are artificially controlled (manipulated) and true innovation is suppressed, if only by overwhelming barriers to entry, in favor or old ways of doing things.  This is why prices no longer move according to natural market forces we learned in school, and why the invisible hand has, in fact, disappeared.  [] Chuck again. Makes sense.  I had a dear reader send me something that’s truthful and funny in his follow up of my attempt to be funny yesterday, asking why they call it a boxing ring. The reader said, “The same faceless people that come up the economic numbers decide that you will park your car in a driveway, and drive on a parkway..  HAHAHAHA! Currencies today 5/7/15. American Style: A$ .7955, kiwi .7470, C$ .8275, euro 1.1305, sterling 1.5210, Swiss 1.0945,   . European Style: rand 12.0285, krone 7.3695, SEK 8.2130, forint 269.60, zloty 3.5830, koruna 24.2320, RUB 50.37, yen 119.25, sing 1.3310, HKD 7.7525, INR 64.23, China 6.1113, pesos 15.35, BRL 3.5835, Dollar Index 94.28, Oil $61.19, 10-year 2.27% (big move upward the past couple of days), Silver $16.33, Platinum $1,1137.26, Palladium $793.07 and Gold. $1,186.20 That’s it for today. Well, as I told you at the top this morning, my beloved Cardinals winning streak of 8 games came to a halt last night. A dear reader sent me a note the other day and said, “Chuck are you superstitious you haven’t mentioned that the Cardinals have the best record in baseball”?  And I replied, yes I am!  And that’s why I haven’t mentioned it until they lose one. Well, how about what that investigation had to say about Deflategate? They concluded that Patriots’ Quarterback Tom Brady probably knew about the deflated balls he was using in the Super Bowl, and all year according to the investigation. WOW!  Of course I’ll have all the Patriots fans ripping me today, but Cheaters are cheaters, I still feel the sting of losing to them in the Super Bowl 12 years ago! Our neighboring state, and one that I used to live in for a short time, Oklahoma is experiencing some dangerous weather, tornados, etc. My friend, Donnie Phillips who played lead guitar in our traveling band, still lives there. I hope all everyone is safe. The Moody Blues from their Seventh Sojourn album are playing their song: Isn’t Life Strange on the iPod right now. I love that album, and Life is strange isn’t it?   Well, I actually took way too much time writing today, and now I’m late! So, let’s go out there and make this a Tub Thumpin’ Thursday! Chuck Butler Managing Director EverBank Global Marketslast_img read more

Federal health officials say that as they anticip

first_imgFederal health officials say that, as they anticipated, the flu vaccine isn’t very effective this year — but they say it has still prevented thousands of serious illnesses and deaths.The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention figures that, overall, the flu vaccine is 36 percent effective at preventing disease. One bright point for parents of young kids: Children ages 6 months to 8 years responded significantly better to the vaccine than older Americans.There are three major strains of flu virus circulating at the moment, causing one of the worst flu seasons in recent years. The vaccine is 25 percent effective against the most common strain, H3N2. It’s 42 percent effective against influenza B viruses and 67 percent effective against H1N1 viruses, according to the results of a study involving about 4,600 people.”Even with current vaccine effectiveness estimates, vaccination will still prevent influenza illness, including thousands of hospitalizations and deaths,” scientists from the CDC reported in the issue of Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report published Thursday. And health officials say it’s still not too late to get vaccinated — they expect flu season will last at least another few weeks.According to this preliminary study, which will be updated at the end of the flu season, the current flu vaccine is not quite as poor as health officials had feared. A study in Australia suggested the vaccine would be only about 10 percent effective against the H3N2 virus, and a preliminary study from Canada two weeks ago put that figure at 17 percent.Also encouraging is news that the H3N2 strain of flu is becoming somewhat less common, relative to the other strains that are more easily quelled by the vaccine.Scientists are still trying to puzzle out why the vaccine was relatively ineffective this season. One possibility is that the vaccine virus is generally grown in eggs, and during that process it picks up genetic changes that make it a poorer match to protect against the virus that’s being spread by sneezes, coughs and contaminated surfaces.This year, some doses of the vaccine were brewed up in giant vats of cells, rather than grown in eggs. One as yet unanswered question is whether those versions of the vaccine were better or worse than vaccine produced in chicken eggs.The CDC scientists also note that a person’s immune response to a vaccine depends in part on age, vaccination history and previous infections. That could explain why children have been responding better to this season’s vaccine. The risk of serious illness in the 6 months to 8 years age group was reduced by 59 percent among children who were infected with the H3N2 strain.Last week, the CDC reported that about 10 percent of hospitalizations in the United States are due to the flu, making this a particularly nasty season. As of last week, the season had not yet peaked.People who have fever, cough and other flu symptoms are urged to stay home to avoid spreading the disease. Seriously ill patients are advised to call a doctor before deciding whether to go to the emergency room.You can contact Richard Harris at rharris@npr.org. Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.last_img read more

Ryan Morgan replaces Matty Lees in the only change

first_imgRyan Morgan replaces Matty Lees in the only change from last week’s 19.Justin Holbrook will therefore select his 17 from:1. Jonny Lomax, 2. Tommy Makinson, 3. Ryan Morgan, 4. Mark Percival, 5. Adam Swift, 6. Theo Fages, 7. Matty Smith, 8. Alex Walmsley, 9. James Roby, 10. Kyle Amor, 11. Zeb Taia, 12. Jon Wilkin, 13. Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook, 14. Luke Douglas, 16. Luke Thompson, 17. Dom Peyroux, 18. Danny Richardson, 19. Regan Grace, 23. Ben Barba.Ian Watson will choose his 17 from:1. Gareth O’Brien, 2. Greg Johnson, 3. Kris Welham, 4. Junior Sa’u, 5. Niall Evalds, 6. Robert Lui, 7. Jack Littlejohn, 8. Craig Kopczak, 9. Logan Tomkins, 11. Josh Jones, 12. Weller Hauraki, 13. Mark Flanagan, 14. Lama Tasi, 16. Luke Burgess, 17. Tyrone McCarthy, 18. Ben Nakubuwai, 19. Josh Wood, 23. Lee Mossop, 24. Jake Bibby.The game kicks off at 4pm and the referee will be Scott Mikalauskas.Tickets for the clash remain on sale from the Ticket Office at the Totally Wicked Stadium, by calling 01744 455 052 or online here.last_img read more