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LMA, LIBA: With Mills Jones No Longer at CBL, What Future If the New…

By on January 17, 2020

first_imgAs Executive Governor of the Central Bank of Liberia, Dr. J. Mills Jones, contributed tens of millions of Liberian and United States dollars to ordinary Liberian businesspeople in order to empower them to improve and expand their businesses. In so doing, he helped them lift themselves out of poverty, better educate their children and improve their living standards.Dr. Jones is no longer at CBL. Now there is an Acting Executive Governor, Charles Sirleaf, the President’s son. He was part of the Board of Governors that made possible the empowerment of ordinary Liberian businesspeople. Hopefully, shortly, President Sirleaf is scheduled to appoint a new Executive Governor. If Charles Sirleaf and later, the new CBL Executive Governor are able to steer the CBL in the positive direction that Governor Jones left it, retaining its position as the nation’s richest and most successful public financial institution, how do we know whether the new CBL leader will favor ordinary Liberian businesspeople with the same generosity and vision as Governor Jones?Remember the ancient saying, “There came a pharaoh that did not know Joseph”?Joseph, favored son of Jacob, was sold into slavery by his jealous brothers. But God’s favor was upon Joseph and he later became the Prime Minister of Egypt because he correctly interpreted Pharaoh’s dream of seven years of plenty and seven years of famine. The famine spread to Israel and Jacob sent his sons to buy food in Egypt. There they met their younger brother Joseph, but did not know him. He, however, knew them. And when he revealed himself to them, they all bowed to him, in fulfillment of a dream he had as a boy. As the famine continued in Israel, Joseph sent for his father, brothers and their families. Pharaoh gave them the choicest land in Egypt—Goshen—where they farmed and became very rich.Alas! Pharaoh died! There came a new Pharaoh who did not know Joseph! So what happened? This new pharaoh enslaved the Israelites for 400 years, just as God had prophesized to Abraham, Jacob’s grandfather. God later sent Moses to Egypt to tell Pharaoh, “Let my people go.”Lusu Sloan, President, Liberian Marketing Association (LMA), and D. Maxwell Kemayah, President, Liberia Business Association, (LIBA), must now look seriously to the day when the new Central Bank Governor WILL NOT KNOW YOU! So what shall you do—return to the slavery of poverty and powerlessness? That, you know, is what the rest of us Liberians are today—enslaved to the foreigners who completely dominate our commerce and economy. And HARDLY ANY of our pharaohs—the Liberian officials—know anyone called Joseph! They know only Eid, Habib, Haddad, Abi Jaoudi Singh, Punjab, Mustapha and Mohamed—not Joseph, Lusu, Kaema, Bindu, not Dahn, Sonpon, Juah, Flomo or Zizzay.Mills Jones has done for our small businesspeople one thing more: He has created and sharpened their political sensitivities. But the LMA and LIBA must never forget that that was NOT Mills Jones’ sole intention. His primary aim was to empower them in business, lift them out of poverty and assure them a better future for themselves, their children and country.So how should the LMA, LIBA, all their members and the microfinance beneficiaries propel themselves in business and economic empowerment and NOT return to the slavery of poverty? Yes, these people should continue to sharpen their political sensitivities, for this is essential, even crucial to the future of Liberia.But—and this is a BIG BUT—they all should continue to GROW their BUSINESSES and graduate from selling their bitter ball and used clothes on the ground and open their own shops, stores and supermarkets all over the country. They and their children should go into not just retail, but WHOLESALE businesses and become ENTREPRENEURS. And yes, the children should complete high school and university, yet NEVER forget business. After university they should not go seeking jobs. They should rather develop and expand their parents’ businessesor create their own and themselves become employers.The LMA, LIBA and all the other microfinance beneficiaries Governor Jones empowered should develop their rice, cassava, coffee, cocoa, potato, plantain, pepper and other vegetable farms, and become rich!While focusing on their businesses, our people must also think about whom we elect in 2017 that will put Liberians first before foreigners in every field of endeavor, including BUSINESS.In order to make it easy for our leaders to encourage us in business, however, we must be very serious about business—diligent, efficient, totally committed and determined to achieve and succeed! Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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FKF swimming in debts as FIFA lifts financial embargo

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first_img0Shares0000FKF President Nick Mwendwa during the press conference.PHOTO/Timothy OlobuluNAIROBI, Kenya, May 17- World football governing body FIFA has lifted an embargo on grants to the Football Kenya Federation (FKF) after the new office pleaded their case, but that is only where the good news ends.The Federation is faced with Sh182 million in debts and the financial situation is getting worse with two former national team coaches suing for wrongful dismissal. MP&Silva who entered into a broadcast partnership with the FKF led by the then President Sam Nyamweya last year, is also suing the Federation for breach of contract but Nick Mwendwa has not exactly disclosed how much the Italian company is suing for.“It is a huge amount though I would not like to go into details now. However, it is something that we are following up on. We have discussions with them to look for a compromise,” the FKF chief said.Former coaches Adel Amrouche and Bobby Williamson are suing the Federation for a combined sum of Sh170 million after terminating their contracts.Amrouche has taken his case to FIFA and is claiming Sh130 million in damages while Williamson has forwarded his case to the Sports Tribunal, claiming Sh40 million.However, Mwendwa says they have taken the dialogue route with both coaches to look for an amicable settlement.Amrouche was dismissed by the previous FKF office after being slapped with a CAF fine in 2013 and forwarded his case to FIFA.Williamson was shown the door as soon as the new office came into place with youthful Stanley Okumbi succeeding him.There has been reports that Amrouche is looking for a soft landing back to the Kenyan job and his give and take deal with the Federation includes him being reinstated as the national team coach in order to drop the case at FIFA.Mwendwa  has however declined to issue further comment on the matter, saying they are in discussions with several options available.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

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Leicester offer Kante improved contract

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first_imgReports in France have stated that Chelsea have already agreed a fee of £29m with Leicester for Kante but we understand that is not the case.Kante was a member of the France squad who reached the Euro 2016 final.Sky sources report that Kante was offered a new deal by Leicester before Euro 2016 got underway and negotiations are continuing, as the player mulls over his future.The 25-year-old Kante only joined Leicester from Caen last summer but quickly emerged as one of their key performers as the Foxes launched a successful title bid.His energetic performances earned him a place in the PFA Premier League team of the year and he also forced his way into the France squad.Several clubs have been linked with moves for Kante this summer but Leicester are clearly keen to keep hold of one of their prize assets.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000N’Golo Kante has proved to be a superb signing for Leicester. PHOTO/SKY.LEICESTER, United Kingdom, July 13 -Leicester City have offered midfielder N’Golo Kante an improved four-year contract, according to Sky sources.The Premier League champions are hoping the offer of improved terms will persuade the France international to remain at the club.last_img read more

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Montney Basin sees only increase in Canadian tight oil production in past three years

By on January 10, 2020

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — According to a report released by the National Energy Board last week, the Montney Formation in Northeast B.C. and northwestern Alberta is the only formation in Canada that has seen increased tight oil production since oil prices fell in 2014.Since mid-2014, Canadian tight oil production decreased from a peak of about 425,000 barrels per day to about 345,000 barrels per day at the end of 2016. The main reductions were seen in the Cardium Formation in Alberta, which fell from 85,000 to 50,000 barrels per day, and the Bakken Formation in Saskatchewan and Manitoba, which decreased from about 60,000 to 40,000 barrels per day.A graph showing Canadian tight oil production by formation in the last ten years. An overlaid line series shows the year-over-year well count growth. Tight oil production grew from less than 9,000 barrels/day in 2007 to almost 445,000 barrels/day in 2014 before dropping to less than 345,000 barrels/day in 2016. This production came from various formations, led by the Montney/Doig, Cardium, Viking, and Bakken formations. Well count growth increased from 132 in January 2007 to 3,517 in December 2014, after which it declined to 798 in December 2016. Source: Divestco, National Energy Board.- Advertisement -The Montney Formation was the only formation that had its production grow since 2014, rising by approximately 35,000 barrels per day. This was largely due to increased production of natural gas condensate, which is considered a form of oil. Montney condensate is obtained from tight gas wells, and is in high demand for use as a diluent that allows bitumen to be shipped by pipeline. Consequently, condensate fetches a higher price than crude oil in western Canada.A graph that illustrates drilling rig activity in western Canada from 2010 to 2016, broken down by horizontal or vertical drilling, and rigs targeting oil or natural gas. Rig activity in western Canada through the summer, fall, and winter from 2010 to 2014 varied seasonally between 300 and 425 rigs drilling at any time. In 2014, summer rig activity was about 350. In 2015, that fell more than 50% to about 150. In 2016, summer rig activity fell more than 60% from the 2014 figure to about 85. In the summer of 2016, more than 90% of all rigs were drilling horizontal wells. Source: JuneWarren-Nickles.The overall decline in tight oil production is because of fewer new wells being drilled in response to decreasing prices. The NEB says that tight oil wells typically produce a large amount of oil in their first month, but decline quickly thereafter. That means that new wells must be continually added to maintain production levels. In 2014, the number of producing wells grew by over 3,200 per year. However, by 2016 less than 1,000 new wells were added.Advertisementlast_img read more

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Stock prices soar into record territory

By on January 3, 2020

first_imgThe Dow rose 191.92, or 1.38 percent, to 14,087.55. The blue chip index surpassed its previous closing record of 14,000.41, set in mid-July, and moved into record territory, rising as high as 14,115.51 and eclipsing its intraday high of 14,021.95 on July 17. Broader market indexes also rose sharply. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose 20.29, or 1.33 percent, to 1,547.04, nearing its all-time trading high of 1,555.90, also reached in mid-July. The Nasdaq composite index rose 39.49, or 1.46 percent, to 2,740.99; the tech-laden index remains well below its high of 5,048.62, reached in 2000 when it was bloated by the dot-com boom. The Dow finished a turbulent third quarter with a 3.6 percent gain, after the Fed eased investor concerns over the credit and housing markets by lowering key interest rates half a percentage point. Bonds moved higher Monday, with the yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note falling to 4.55 percent from 4.59 percent late Friday. Fixed-income investors, currently concerned about the dollar’s recent weakness, interpreted the ISM report as not necessarily portending an interest-rate cut, which would further erode the U.S. currency. The dollar was mixed Monday against other major currencies, while gold prices rose. A barrel of light, sweet crude fell $1.42 to $80.24 on the New York Mercantile Exchange. This extended last week’s decline amid concerns that oil market fundamentals do not support recent high prices. Arthur Hogan, chief market analyst at Jefferies & Co., said the biggest tipping point of the day was in financial stocks. For the first time, Citi – considered a barometer for the banking industry – is giving some real numbers about the extent of its damage, he said. “If they are giving us worst-case scenario, then market participants are feeling that most of the stuff we’ve worried about since July will remain contained,” he said. “That’s the celebration the market is putting on right now, and the take-away is that the black hole of not knowing finally has some numbers around it.” Financial stocks – from brokerages to retail banks – slumped during the third quarter as uncertainty grew about the extent of losses from the credit and subprime mortgage turmoil. Comments from Citi Chief Executive Charles Prince that he expects to “return to a more normal earnings environment” during the fourth quarter put investors more at ease. And, since analysts believe financials must lead a broader Wall Street advance, a rally in bank and brokerage stocks was greeted with enthusiasm. Citigroup shares rose $1.05, or 2.3 percent, to $47.72. Countrywide Financial Corp., the nation’s largest home loan provider, rose 95 cents, or 5 percent, to $19.96 on the potential of an easing in subprime-loan jitters. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies was up 19.31, or 2.39 percent, at 824.76. Advancing issues led decliners 3-to-1 on the New York Stock Exchange, where consolidated volume rose to 3.26 billion shares Monday from 2.92 billion shares on Friday.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! NEW YORK – Wall Street began the fourth quarter with a huge rally Monday, sending the Dow Jones industrial average above 14,000 and well into record territory for the first time in 2.5 months. Stocks were buoyed by a growing belief that the worst of the credit crisis has passed. While the beginning of the new quarter was an incentive for institutional investors to buy, they also seemed to be motivated by a sense that banks and other financial companies generally weathered the recent credit market upheaval. Both Citigroup and Switzerland’s UBS AG issued third-quarter profit warnings, but indicated the current period might see a return to normal earnings levels. Meanwhile, the market was optimistic that new economic data might nudge the Federal Reserve toward another interest-rate cut at its Oct. 30-31 meeting. “People are getting more confident there is going to be an October rate cut,” said John C. Forelli, portfolio manager for Independence Investment. “To some degree, it looks like Citi kitchen-sinked the quarter, and that from here going forward will be calmer. That’s underpinning the financials.” last_img read more

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Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher takes his seat in the dugout

By on December 30, 2019

first_img1 Jamie Carragher was in the home dugout at the New York Stadium Jamie Carragher was in the home dugout at the New York Stadium in Rotherham where England Under-17s beat their German counterparts 2-1 on Friday night.The former Liverpool captain has been helping under-17s coach Steve Cooper at St George’s Park this week as part of the Football Association’s plan to involve former players in the England youth coaching set up.Carragher, who won 38 senior England caps, addressed the players on Tuesday and helped with training in the build-up to Friday’s friendly against the Germans.The former centre-back chatted with Cooper on the touchline during the match, which England won thanks to goals from Mason Mount and Niall Ennis.Carragher’s former Liverpool team-mate Steven Gerrard gave a talk to the under-19s after their 5-1 victory against Japan last week.And former Manchester United centre-back Rio Ferdinand will give a talk to the England Under-16 squad before they fly to the Nike Tournament in Florida next week.FA technical director Dan Ashworth said of the trio’s involvement: “I am delighted that we’ve got such fantastic role models working with our development teams.“One of the big parts of the England DNA, when we launched our philosophy, was to be able to tell young players what it meant to play for the Three Lions.“Steven, Jamie and Rio’s experiences on and off the pitch are vital and I am both happy and grateful to them all, that they want to pass on their advice to our young players.”last_img read more

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Nov. 7 voting mainly by mail

By on December 25, 2019

first_imgFor the first time in state history, more Californians are expected to vote by mail in the November election than actually go to the polls because of the growing popularity of absentee ballots. Once the domain of overseas travelers and homebound seniors, absentee voting has been made easier by changes in state laws, and busy residents have jumped at the chance to save time and still have their voices heard. “As we all get more and more hectic lives, absentee is a very attractive way to vote,” said Tim Hodson, executive director of the Center for California Studies at California State University, Sacramento. Two decades ago, only 9 percent of general-election voting was done by absentee ballot. By last year’s special election, absentee voting was up to 40percent, and in the June primary nearly 47 percent of votes cast were absentee. “We can expect the November general election will have even higher numbers requesting, and subsequently casting, absentee ballots throughout the state,” Secretary of State Bruce McPherson wrote last week. But experts warn that the trend has made campaigns longer and more expensive, and it has raised concerns about privacy and security. “The old adage used to be: Just campaign in the last 10 days, because nobody paid attention,” said Allan Hoffenblum, a political analyst who publishes the California Target Book analyzing state elections. “They now start well over 30 days out, because they know a lot of voters start at least a month before the election. It’s changed the tactics.” Kim Alexander, president of the California Voter Foundation, said that while the boom in absentee ballots makes it more convenient to vote – and thus may boost turnout – it also has an isolating effect. “In California, we don’t have a lot of civic rituals as it is,” Alexander said. “Voting at your polling place is one of the few civic rituals millions of Californians engage in. I think it would be a mistake to take that experience away.” Advocates say absentee ballots allow voters more time to think through their choices, and that is particularly critical on a ballot such as the one for Nov. 7, calling for many voters to make more than 30 choices. Still, analysts say absentee voting also raises the question of whether someone is pressured by others in the household to vote a certain way when filling out a ballot at home, rather than voting at a polling place where the ballot is truly secret. Voting by mail also depends on the U.S. Postal Service, and McPherson recently expressed concerns about such costs this year. Big ballots In at least 15 counties, McPherson said, the ballot is so big that it will take 63 cents, rather than a standard 39-cent stamp, to mail it. And that has McPherson concerned that voters will use insufficient postage and their ballots will be kicked back to them. McPherson has asked the Postal Service to work with county election officials to ensure that heavier ballots with insufficient postage are delivered on time. The issue is not affecting Los Angeles County because its InkaVote system creates a smaller ballot, said county Registrar Conny McCormack. Los Angeles County also has traditionally had a lower absentee-voting level than other counties. In the June primary, 30 percent of L.A. County voters mailed in their votes, compared with more than 55 percent in Contra Costa and Orange counties. A permanent thing Those counties also have encouraged residents to sign up as permanent absentee voters so they are automatically mailed absentee ballots every election. “Some counties have done that, and they believe it makes their processing easier,” McCormack said. “That wouldn’t be the case here. “If we had 30 or 40 percent of our voters (permanent) absentee that would mean we’d be mailing out 2 million ballots. And getting 2 million ballots ready to mail out by Election Day would be extremely difficult. “If we had to, we would do it, but it’s very expensive.” “And you have to set up polling places anyway. So it really becomes running two elections.” Some experts trace the first big acknowledgment of the value of absentee voting to the 1982 governor’s race between George Deukmejian and Los Angeles Mayor Tom Bradley. During that battle, some media outlets used exit polls and early returns to declare Bradley the winner Election Day. But Republicans had made a big push on absentee ballots that year and the final results gave the win to Deukmejian. So now election campaigns must essentially run two campaigns. Campaign managers know they now need to reach voters earlier with advertising while also continuing the traditional last-minute blitz for the smaller universe of voters who turn out on Election Day. And political consultant Bill Carrick said many absentee voters also wait until the last minute to cast their ballots. “It drives the campaigns crazy, because they know people have gotten the ballot and they haven’t voted,” said Carrick, who is working with the Phil Angelides gubernatorial campaign. “Is that ballot filled out, sitting in an outbox for three weeks, while people wait to send it at the last minute? Or is that ballot unfilled out and the voter truly undecided? Those are the kinds of questions that give campaign managers gray hair and high blood pressure.” harrison.sheppard@dailynews.com (916) 446-6723 How to vote Early voting: Touch-screen voting in Los Angeles County will run Oct. 25 through Nov. 3 at more than a dozen sites. Locally, touch-screen locations are open 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. at the Mid-Valley Library, 16244 Nordhoff St., North Hills, or the North County Fire Training Center, 42110 6th St. West, Lancaster. For a complete list of locations, see www.lavote.net. Absentee: A request for an absentee ballot must be received by an election official no later than Oct. 31 for the Nov. 7 election. Absentee ballots can be requested online at www.lavote.net or by writing or visiting the Registrar-Recorder’s Office, 12400 Imperial Highway, Room 3002, Norwalk. For more information, call (562) 466-1323 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays. Source: Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder’s Office Absentee ballot use in California General elections, Ballots cast, Percentage absentee 1962 5.9 million 2.6 1970 6.6 million 3.1 1980 8.8 million 6.3 1990 7.9 million 18.4 2000 11.1 million 24.5 2005* 8 million 40 *Special statewide election Source: California Secretary of State’s Office160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

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SA a proud nation: survey

By on December 19, 2019

first_imgThe survey, conducted in November and December by the Centre for International and Comparative Politics at the University of Stellenbosch and market research company Markinor, involved 3 000 face-to-face interviews of people across the country, conducted in six of SA’s 11 official languages.The lead researcher for World Values Survey SA, Dr Hennie Kotze, attributed the results to the positive socio-economic trends South Africa had experienced over the last five years.The survey also found that South Africans’ confidence in state institutions had increased by 11% over the previous survey – although around 40% of respondents said the government was doing “very badly” when it came to handling crime.Political system, democracyThe survey also focused on the system governing the country. People were asked to rate the political system as it was under apartheid, the current political system, and the political system expected in the future on a 10-point scale, with 1 being “very bad” and 10 being “very good”. While black South Africans were the most positive about the current and future political systems, white, coloured and Indian South Africans were more positive than negative, with an average of more than 5 out of 10.The survey also showed that South Africans regard democracy as very important: on average, the survey respondents gave democracy a score of 8.7 out of 10 for importance. When asked to what extent South Africa was a democracy today, the respondents answered on average 7.4 out of 10.SouthAfrica.info reporterlast_img read more

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Emerging Technologies: CEOs not Sure What to Make of New Technologies

By on December 17, 2019

first_imgEmerging technologies may have the potential to revolutionize the way businesses work, but despite that, CEOs aren’t so sure that new technology can help them to boost productivity.Gartner says that there’s a problem.  They see a disconnect between what technology can do and how to most effectively apply it to business models to increase productivity.Mark Raskino, analyst at Gartner, said that ” CEOs lack a major new theory. The really big management ideas of the past like business process management (BPM), total quality management (TQM) and lean [management] are less helpful in an ephemeral product and services world where social networks, business model innovation, design thinking, brand values and customer experiences are at the center of value creation …There is still little in the way of management theory on how to optimize the new kinds of inputs and work …There is no new big idea or major trend in contemporary productivity thinking.”It’s maybe not so much that new technologies can’t boost productivity.  Rather, it’s that businesses aren’t designing their business plans to best take advantage of the possibilities of technology.  Gartner says, for example that the technologies of IoT, AI, 3D printing and blockchain have the potential to radically change business, but these technologies still aren’t on the radar for most executives.Gartner’s survey of CEOs found that just 1% said they see value in blockchain, AI or 3D printing technologies, and only 2% thought that IoT would help them improve productivity.Raskino said that “what’s really needed is new business-transforming management science ideas. Those include methods of framing, modeling, measuring and changing productivity to take advantage of the pile-up of new high-power technologies. Big, creative thinking may be more valuable than yet more new technology right now. The smartest CIOs of this generation have the opportunity to come up with new methods as powerful as Lean or BPM were in prior decades.”last_img read more

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