Democrats prep Biden’s virus aid package with or without GOP

first_imgWASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Democrats are preparing to push ahead with President Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer told senators Tuesday to be ready to vote as soon as next week on a budget reconciliation package that would lay the groundwork for swift passage. The action provides a first test of Republican opposition to the White House priorities as well as to the new president’s promise of a “unity” agenda. It’s the first time in a decade that Democrats have controlled Washington, and the party says it has no time to waste trying to broker compromises with Republicans that may, or may not, happen.last_img

Garden Comfort.

first_imgIf you ever watch “Keeping Up Appearances” on Georgia Public Television, you know that Richard has to garden in a tie. “Poor devil,” as his next-door neighbor Emmet would say.Well, they don’t live in Georgia with its heat and humidity during gardening season. Me? I garden comfortably.If you’re gardening in the front yard, you may want to wear something more appropriate than when digging in the dirt in the “back forty.” Back there, comfort is most important.OK, it’s one of the two most important things, along with safety. The statistics say anyone exposed to too much sun has a greater chance of developing a melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer.Protect Skin from SunGloves, long sleeves, pants in breathable fabrics — there is even a line of clothing made from fabrics especially woven to protect skin from the sun. I’ve worn it, and I know it works.I have two pair of baggy carpenter jeans — you know, the ones with several extra pockets for storing shears and other tools. I know my wife has patched one pair four times and threatened to throw them out many more times than that.The second pair are my “front yard” jeans. They have only one patch. Until jeans get extra soft and are roomy enough and patched, they’re not gardening jeans.Wife Caught Me GoneMy wife caught me gone for several days and threw out my jeans coveralls that were just getting broken in. I had already been told not to be in the garden during lightning, because I would surely be struck, with all of the metal in the safety pins holding my coveralls together. Probably best she got rid of those. If she just had thought, though, she could have used them to patch the jeans.I’ve tried boots, tennis shoes, rubber boots and rubber and leather combination boots, but the footwear that suits me best are extra heavy duty sandals.I know that dirt filters through the socks and there are strange patterns on my feet when I take them off, but my toes like the feel of being free. I just have to be careful with the pitchfork while working with sandals on.Favorite ShirtI don’t know of a gardener who doesn’t have a favorite shirt. You know: the one that’s hung out to dry before “she who must be obeyed” lets you bring it into the house to wash. It has that certain feel. It doesn’t bind or constrain anywhere. Mine is long-sleeved to help keep out the sun.Hats are altogether another story. I like straws with a wide brim and the tie under the chin. Straws allow your head to breath, and the tie keeps it from falling off and being chewed up by the mower. As with the shirt, each gardener has that favorite hat that suits to a T.Gloves, TooGloves are another part of the gardener’s apparel. I use the brown, cloth ones, because I continually lose them and dig them up the next year or find them chewed up by the lawn mower where I dropped them. They tend to keep the hands and fingernails cleaner.Also, don’t forget that hand towel for the back pocket. I can’t tell you how many times this comes in handy — just run it under the hose and wipe off. An indispensable part of gardening.Be comfortable while gardening. Wear proper clothing and hats. Use sunscreen (there’s nothing wrong with prunes, but who wants to look like one?) and enjoy yourself.last_img read more

Allbee joins Northeast ag commissioners asking USDA to consider reinstating federal price support

first_imgVermont Secretary of Agriculture Roger Allbee recently joined his counterparts in the Northeast to write USDA Secretary Thomas Vilsack encouraging him to consider the benefits of reinstating the federal support price for cheddar block and barrel cheese and non-fat dry milk back to the levels established by USDA last August. The action was coordinated by New York Commissioner of Agriculture Pat Hooker.“We are writing to add our voice to those you have heard in saying that the current pricing system is outdated, broken and needs to be addressed,” said Secretary Allbee. “In fact the current system devalues fresh, locally produced milk, potentially impacting our food safety.”The price for milk and cheese and non-fat dry milk has been extremely volatile over the last several months and recently has fallen dramatically. This situation is impacting the expected recovery in farm milk prices and will have a devastating impact on farm finances as farmers enter the 2010 planting and growing season.“Increasing the support price for cheddar cheese and non-fat dry milk had a profound and positive impact on the market last year with little cost to government. That same positive impact can again assist our struggling dairy farmers. I appreciate Commissioner Hookers leadership on this request and wholly support it,” said Allbee.Secretary Allbee commended USDA Secretary Vilsack on the attention USDA has taken to support the dairy industry and for visiting Vermont last month to hear straight from dairy farmers what they are experiencing.“While it may be difficult to sort through all the options and come to a consensus within the dairy industry, doing nothing is not an option. If this particular dairy crisis does not move the industry to act, the consequences will be disastrous for our dairy farmers, in fact we are already seeing the ramifications,” commented Allbee. “This action would be one option to ensure a fresh local supply for our consumers and a fair price paid to our farmers who produce it.”The economic impact of Vermont’s dairy industry is over $2 billion per year supporting thousands of jobs and rural communities across the state. Vermont is the largest supplier of milk to the Boston area. Currently, the cost of production of milk is far more than the price paid to farmers for their milk and over 50 operations ceased in 2009 drastically changing our communities and threatening our open, working landscape. Source: VT Dept of Ag. 3.15.2010###last_img read more

If your members are traveling this summer, make sure they pack everything they need

first_imgAccording to a recent study, 45% of Americans took a summer vacation last year.  That’s almost half of the country. The U.S. Travel Association predicts that number to increase in 2017.Do you know what the most popular activity was during summer travel? 54% said shopping! Credit unions, your members are likely to be on the go this summer. They are hitting the road, or the skies, and they are spending. As their trusted financial partner, are you preparing them with the right travel tools? Not sun screen or comfortable shoes. Are you offering them something to protect their money and their private account information while they’re off shopping? After all travel is meant to create happy memories, not reminders of skimmed credit card numbers and identity theft. The sad truth is many tourist destinations are also popular for those with less than honorable intentions.  One way credit unions can help protect members from being the next victim of fraud is by offering them a prepaid debit card. They work just like traditional debit cards, but they’re not attached directly to a members’ share draft account or their personal info. You can only spend whatever amount has been loaded onto the cards. That makes them safer than cash, credit cards, and even traditional debit cards. In most cases, such as with Visa prepaid debit cards, they are accepted all over the world. Many now come standard with the EMV chip, the global standard for card security. One major benefit to look for when considering a prepaid debit program is member convenience. For instance, the CUMONEY® Visa TravelMoney prepaid debit card offers a free companion app so members can check their balance and transaction and manage their card from anywhere, 24/7. By offering your members a prepaid debit card to take along on their vacation, you can make sure they’ve got exactly what they need to ensure happy summer memories! 21SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Naomi Anderson Naomi Anderson is Vice President of Prepaid for LSC. In her current role, her team manages the day to day program support, customer service functions and implementations as well as … Web: Lsc.net Detailslast_img read more

Long Island Press Wins Top Journalism Awards & Honors

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York The Long Island Press brought home nearly two dozen honors at recent local, state and regional journalism awards competitions, earning top prizes and dominating the best website categories at the Society of Professional Journalists’ Press Club of Long Island Media Awards, New York Press Association‘s Better Newspaper Contest and CUNY Graduate School of Journalism Center for Community and Ethnic Media‘s Ippies Awards.The Press won honors across a broad range of categories at the 2016 Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) Press Club of Long Island (PCLI) Media Awards, held June 2 at Woodbury Country Club, with five additional prizes awarded in addition to clinching the top award in the highly competitive Best Website category for the second year in a row—testament to the outstanding efforts of Press New Media Director Michael Conforti and the Long Island Press staff.The annual contest and awards gala recognizes excellence in journalism across media outlets throughout Nassau and Suffolk counties and the region: in print, on radio, television and online. PCLI is the local chapter of SPJ, the largest journalism organization in the country.Press Managing Editor and PCLI Board Member Timothy Bolger received one of the group’s highest honors, its Phil Spahn Memorial Award, presented to a PCLI member demonstrating leadership, ability and outstanding service to journalism, PCLI and the community.Press Publisher and parent company Morey Publishing President Jed Morey clinched First Place honors in the Narrative Profile category for his in-depth portrait “Shamar Thomas Freed From Northport VA After Controversial Detention; Marine’s Stay Highlights Plight Of Fellow Vets,” documenting in colorful detail the Iraqi War veteran-turned-Occupy Wall Street hero’s dubious stay at the medical facility.The Press sports department once again took home First Place honors in the Narrative Sports News category with Press Multimedia Reporter Rashed Mian’s detailed “After Missed Opportunity, Cosmos Get Second Shot At Cuba.”Press Senior Editor Spencer Rumsey took home Second and Third Place honors in the Narrative Travel and Non-Local News/Feature categories for his emotionally moving reflections on his trek to France in the wake of the January 2015 Charlie Hebdo terror attack and his time in Nepal years before its devastating April 2015 earthquake, respectively—“Thinking About Veterans Day, D-Day & The Liberation Of France Today” and “What Nepal Has Lost Is A Lesson For Humanity.”The same evening as the SPJ PCLI Awards, Press staffers were being honored for their journalistic endeavors at a gathering of academics, elected officials and veteran and fellow journalists from throughout New York City held at CUNY Graduate School of Journalism Center for Community and Ethnic Media Ippies Awards.Originally awarded by the Independent Press Association of New York, the annual Ippies Awards are now presented by the school’s Center for Community and Ethnic Media (CCEM), and are the only journalism awards in NYC given to ethnic and community media outlets to recognize reporting in English and other languages across print, photography, video and both print and online design.Mian’s comprehensive portrait of the history, congregation and significance of the African Methodist Episcopal (AME) church in the wake of the June 2015 racially motivated mass slayings at Mother Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, S.C.—“Borne Out Of Racism, Defiant AME Church Preaches Social Justice Through Gospel”—clinched First Place in the Best Story About a Community category.Press New Media Director Michael Conforti and the Long Island Press Staff won Second Place in the Best Overall Design Of An Online Publication category for LongIslandPress.com.Press staffers earned 10 awards at the annual New York Press Association (NYPA) Better Newspaper Contest, held during the group’s Spring Convention at the Gideon Putnam Resort in Saratoga Springs on April 8 and 9.The awards competition, held each year since 1930, recognizes journalistic excellence across newspapers and media outlets throughout New York State—the Press sweeping its 2010 and 2012 contests and claiming its highest honor, the Stuart C. Dorman Award for Editorial Excellence.This year’s contest included 2,836 entries submitted by 177 newspapers vying for accolades across 64 categories, in addition to the Dorman award, Newspaper Of The Year and the John. J. Evans Award For Advertising Excellence, among others. Submissions were judged by members of the Washington Newspaper Publishers Association.Despite solely publishing online, the Press ranked fifth overall, with inclusion in “The Top Five—Single Flag Newspapers” in total contest points.Conforti and the Press staff again earned the top spot for LongIslandPress.com, scoring First Place honors in the Best News Web Site category, with a lengthy, gushing analysis from judges:“Wow, what a beautifully designed site. Form and function work effectively side-by-side on this well executed website. A hierarchy of dominant images and headlines and smaller clusters of descending significance plays just as well on the digital platform as it does in our print editions,” they gushed. “This coupled with the clean layout swaths a clear path for the eyes to follow, free of distraction and clutter. Each item is illustrated with impactful images to draw the visitor in.“But this site isn’t just a pretty face, the thought-provoking insightful writing is complemented by the stylish presentation,” the judges continued. “The range from in-depth analysis and news articles, to entertainment guides, to news of the weird provides quality content for a broad variety of site users. The advertising, from site sponsors, is tastefully presented in large format with enough space to express their messages. Site navigation is easy and intuitive. Newsletter sign-up is simple too.“Overall excellent job.”Press staffers also received First Place honors in the Best Interaction With Readers category.“Clever and engaging,” declared judges. “A great laugh for those of us in the industry.”Mian’s aforementioned “Borne Out Of Racism, Defiant AME Church Preaches Social Justice Through Gospel” clinched First Place for Coverage Of Religion, with judges proclaiming:“Great narrative storytelling delving into profiles of those who have made a difference at a local AME Church and a comprehensive look [at] its history.”Press Staff Writer and Education Reporter Jaime Franchi earned Second Place honors in the Coverage Of Education category for her in-depth, masterfully crafted series of articles regarding the ongoing controversy surrounding Common Core education reform policies, including “Common Core Critics Blast Cuomo’s Latest Comments On ‘Deeply Flawed’ Program” and “L.I. Teacher Refuses To Administer Common Core Tests, Urges Others To Join Her.”“Really good writing and the stories are very compelling and pull the reader along,” noted judges.Franchi and Press Publisher Jed Morey combined forces to bring home Second Place honors in the Feature Story category, with an entry package that included Morey’s aforementioned “Shamar Thomas Freed From Northport VA After Controversial Detention; Marine’s Stay Highlights Plight Of Fellow Vets.”“Wow,” exclaimed judges. “Now this is a story. Well written and intense, vivid. Interesting. This piece stood out. Thank you for writing it. The subject was difficult, but the piece was easy to read. Again, this was a difficult division to judge. It feels, frankly, like there are many, many top-notch publications in New York. There are so many talented writers. Great job.”Franchi and Mian brought home Second Place honors in the Sports Feature category, continuing a tradition of wins for the Press sports department that spans years.“Interesting and well-written story about a novel approach to baseball that I’d never heard of before,” commented judges.Team Press was also awarded Second Place honors for Best Overall Use Of Social Media.“Around the clock updating of local news, keeping their tens of thousands of followers responding and engaged.”Rumsey, Bolger and Press contributors Kaitlin Gallagher and Sylvia Durres brought home Third Place honors in the Coverage Of The Environment category for their series of articles including, among others: “With Brown & Red Tides In Full Bloom, Experts Strategize Solutions,” “Down In The Dumps: How The Islip Garbage Barge Compares To The Town’s Toxic Dumping Scandal” and “Controversial Mute Swans ‘Management Plan’ Public Input Period Ending.”“This is how you turn what might be considered routine breaking stories into information-rich resources for local readers,” judges swooned. “Writers’ versatility, knowledge, and keen interest in the subject matter show through in an impressive variety of topics and issues.”Press staffers received Third Place nods in the Best Use Of Technology On The Web category, with judges saying about its popular “Best Of L.I.” program:“Great best of content with a lot of great information, easy expansion to the topics that are important, excellent use of the readers ability to vote and the business ability to partner with you.”Bolger and Rumsey also garnered Honorable Mention nods in the Coverage Of Business, Financial & Economic News category.“Serious, well-researched and—most importantly—relevant coverage of Long Island business,” praised judges.last_img read more

AHF: Eastern Europe is growing, the interest of tourists is changing

first_imgGeorge Tziallas from Greece pointed out that during the last four years, that country had 16 billion in revenues. “We are also promoting new destinations on land, thus extending the season until the end of November, even during the winter”, He said. By the way, Greece is participating in the Forum this year as a destination partner, which proves that it is seriously returning to the tourism scene. The first panel of the two-day conference analyzed the role of data in the tourism sector. To the participants and guests of the Adria Hotel Forum on the panel “Comparison of results vs. tourist trends vs. investments ”of the hotel sector in Europe during 2018, the results were presented by Charlie Ballard from TripaAdvisor, Thomas Emanuel from STR and Jules van Gaalen from Colliers International.  The data collected by their companies show that Eastern Europe is a growing market, and that this trend will continue, but also that the interest of tourists is changing. “People today are much less brand oriented”, Said Ballard and stated as an example that the well-known hotel chain” Ritz Carlton “is actually the biggest competitor on Tripadvisor hotels that do not belong to large hotel chains.   The data presented by Jules van Gaalen also shows growth in this part of Europe, and estimates predict that it will continue up to 2,5 percent, compared to 1,4 as it will be in Western Europe.  The seventh Adria Hotel Forum, the largest investment conference in Southeast Europe, gathered the most important names of the hotel industry, investment funds, as well as a large number of regional experts in the field of tourism at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Belgrade on Wednesday. And on the next panel, there was talk of money. Andrej Erjavec from InterCapital moderated the panel “Money talk” which discussed the risks of investing in tourism. As a logical sequence of the program, it was the turn of a panel of investors at which large international investment funds such as Morgan Stanley, KSL Capital and Principal Real Estate Europe expressed their interest in the region. As everyone stated, they still focus exclusively on operating real estate (hotels) since the project development process is too long for their funds.center_img Interestingly, there were no representatives from Croatia. The last panel of the first day of the Adria Hotel Forum gathered representatives of regional ministries – Deputy Minister of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications of Serbia, Ms. Renata Pinjo, Minister of Sustainable Development and Tourism of Montenegro, Pavle Radulovic, Minister of Tourism and Environment of Albania, Blendi Klosi and State Secretary of the Ministry of Tourism of Greece, George Tziallas. Dirk Bakker from Colliers International was the moderator of this panel, opening the discussion by asking about the different ways in which Greece, Albania, Serbia and Montenegro are trying to attract tourists. The topic of the next panel was “Economic forecasts – are we expecting a new crisis in 2020?”. Sergei Guriev, the chief economist of EDBR, during talks with Slavko Caric, CEO of Erste Bank, warned that the greatest danger to the world economy is to ignite a trade war between the United States and China. Forecasts for the Eastern and Central European region are more optimistic, as a possible trade war will not affect countries such as Serbia or Poland to such an extent. “We can never say for sure whether there will be crises or not, but from what we know now, I would say no”, Said Guriev.   “People want to feel the essence of the country they are coming to. It’s no longer just a matter of bed and breakfast. We have to give each guest something. If you want development, you need a flow of fresh money. We talked to investors, asked them what they needed to come to Montenegro and then we did it. For example, tax cuts”, Said Pavle Radulović from Montenegro.last_img read more

Halal food rising in popularity amid COVID-19 pandemic, reports indicate

first_img“These are pre-COVID-19 projections,” Sapta clarified, noting that the overall halal economy would be impacted due to declining purchasing power. However, he said that the halal food sector was among those least affected by the health crisis, alongside the halal pharmaceutical and halal media sectors.On the flip side, halal travel, halal cosmetics and modest fashion would be strongly affected, he said, as people were cutting back on non-essential spending.The trend is not only visible in Indonesia, as other countries have also recorded a surge in demand for halal food. The United Kingdom Halal Monitoring Committee (HMC), a halal certifying body, reported a significant increase in demand for halal meat due to the outbreak.“With the recent outbreak of COVID-19, the demand for halal meat has increased. Where the average customer would buy, for example, 1 kg each week, they are now asking for up to 10 times more in the same visit, thus putting a strain on the market to fulfill the increased demand,” the HMC said in a statement released on March 31.Despite Indonesia having a steadily growing halal economy — in 2019 the country became the fifth largest halal economy according to the Global Islamic Economy Indicator (as shown in the chart below) — the country has yet to fully benefit from it. The insight supports findings by McKinsey & Company, which showed a shift in consumer behaviors. Consumers prefer foods that are healthy and locally sourced more now than before the pandemic, the consulting company stated in an April 2020 report titled Reimagining food retail in Asia after COVID-19.Yet, even before halal food gained in popularity due to increased hygiene concerns in recent weeks, reports on the global and domestic halal economy showed that the industry has been growing for years.The world’s 1.8 billion Muslim consumers spent an estimated US$2.2 trillion in 2018 across different sectors of the halal economy, which indicated 5.2 percent year-on-year growth. The overall halal economy is projected to be worth $3.2 trillion by 2024, based on the 2019 State of the Global Islamic Economy report produced by DinarStandard, a research and advisory firm.Indonesia Halal Lifestyle Center chairman Sapta Nirwandar explained in a webinar on April 24 that Indonesia’s Muslim consumers spent around $218.8 billion across core sectors of the halal economy in 2017 and that the figure was estimated to reach $330.5 billion by 2025. The food and beverage sector will see the biggest growth in value as spending in the sector is forecast to hit $247.8 billion by 2025, up from a recorded US$170.2 billion in 2017. Halal food is rising in popularity as people turn to religious practices for comfort during this time of heightened uncertainty and anxiety, reports have shown.Inventure Knowledge, a local research and consulting company, said in a report published on Monday that concerns over the risks of COVID-19 had contributed to an increase in people’s awareness about the importance of consuming halal and hygienic food, as the SARS-CoV-2 is believed to have started in a wet market in Wuhan, China. The economic powerhouse has since imposed a blanket ban on wild animal trade and consumption.“Consumers are becoming increasingly aware that non-halal food and food that is not processed in a hygienic manner have great potential to cause diseases such as the one we see today,” said the report, synonymizing halal with healthy and hygienic food. As reported by DinarStandard, Indonesia ranks first for the most spending on halal food, amounting to $173 billion in 2018, significantly more than second-placed Turkey with $135 billion.However, Indonesia did not make it into the top five countries for most exports to members of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, with the top five being Brazil, Australia, Sudan, Bangladesh and Turkey.The report also suggests that halal ingredients, halal feed, halal food-tech and meat-based meals and snacks are among the “hot sectors for growth” in 2020, emphasizing that there are prospective business opportunities to be tapped into across the halal food space.With the recent outbreak, people are looking to boost their immunity through healthy eating. The World Health Organization (WHO) has appealed to the public to consume more healthy food and avoid or reduce alcohol consumption as it weakens the immune system.“This reflects halalan thoyyiban [adhering to Islamic principles]. This is indirectly promoting halal food,” Sapta said during the webinar in response to the WHO guidelines, suggesting optimism about the growth of the halal food sector amid the pandemic. Topics :last_img read more

Europe moves ahead with lockdown easing, but caution in Asia

first_imgSeveral European countries including France and Britain on Thursday moved to further lift crippling coronavirus lockdown measures, but fresh restrictions in parts of Asia signaled the crisis is far from over.As much of the world grapples to find the path forward, with the deadly virus still spreading in some places and a vaccine at best a distant reality, Europe is slowly emerging from isolation.France is set to reopen its bars, restaurants and museums next week — when Britain will send some children back to school and shops throw open their doors. Fresh restrictions Amid all the reopenings, there were renewed signs of caution as well.South Korea — held up as a global model in how to curb the virus — reimposed some social distancing rules after a series of new clusters emerged, many in the capital Seoul. Museums, parks and art galleries will all be closed again from Friday for two weeks, while companies were urged to reintroduce flexible working, among other measures. And in Sri Lanka, some lockdown rules will be rolled out again from Sunday after more than 250 returnees from Kuwait were found to be infected with coronavirus. In a bit of happier news in Asia, a Bali zoo named a newborn giraffe after the virus. “Corona is healthy and is still breastfeeding. We’ll keep her under observation for three months,” said zoo spokesman Anak Agung Ngurah Alit Sujana.But visitors will have to wait to meet the young calf, as the zoo remains closed to the public.  On the economic front, the number of unemployed climbed as well — more than 40 million in the United States have filed jobless claims since the crisis began, and Brazil shed five million jobs in the first quarter.British carrier EasyJet said it would axe up to 30 percent of its staff, and Japanese car manufacturer Nissan reported a huge $6.2 billion annual net loss. And in Asia, restrictions were reimposed in South Korea and Sri Lanka after a spate of new infections sparked fears of a second wave of contagion. The picture remained grim in Latin America, now fully in the throes of the pandemic, with deaths in Brazil topping 26,000, and Chile recording a new record daily death toll Thursday.In the Chilean capital Santiago, residents have taken to the streets to demand state aid as their livelihoods vanish.”We don’t even get a little help from the government here. They believe that we can live without money. But how can we buy food?” asked welder Oscar Gonzalez. Topics : ‘Real sense of freedom’ In France, residents enjoyed the reopening of iconic department store Printemps on Thursday — and the news that restaurants can serve patrons on outside terraces from June 2.At the country’s museums, face masks will be required.Citizens will also be allowed to travel more than 100 kilometers from their homes, just in time for the summer holidays. “The virus is still present to varying degrees across the territory,” Philippe warned as he unveiled the new measures, urging citizens to respect social-distancing guidelines and be vigilant about hand-washing.France has recorded 28,662 virus-related deaths — the fourth highest total in the world.In Britain, football fans rejoiced as the Premier League announced play would resume on June 17. In Italy, Serie A competition will begin again three days later.Both leagues will play without supporters in the stands, but in Russia, a limited number will be allowed to attend matches when play restarts next month.”Football is back soon,” tweeted England captain Harry Kane, who plays for Tottenham Hotspur.Elsewhere in Europe, Spaniards were revisiting old joys — belting out tunes from “Grease” at a 50s-themed drive-in theatre.”It gives you a real sense of freedom. We really wanted to get out of the house,” said 22-year-old Belen Perez, who came with her flatmate. ‘Heartfelt sympathy’ In the United States, the country processed a grim milestone — more than 100,000 Americans have succumbed to COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus.”To all of the families & friends of those who have passed, I want to extend my heartfelt sympathy & love for everything that these great people stood for & represent. God be with you!” President Donald Trump tweeted on Thursday, as the US death toll reached 101,573.More and more US states are moving to open up their economies, but health experts have warned not to move too quickly.The US capital Washington will slowly move into its phase one of reopening on Friday.The new unemployment data — another 2.12 million workers filed claims for benefits — along with US-China tensions, including over the virus, sent Wall Street tumbling at the close. On the sporting front, the English Premier League and Italy’s Serie A unveiled plans to resume play in mid-June.”Freedom will be the rule and restriction the exception,” French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe said.But of course, there was somber news as well. The death toll mounted to more than 357,000 around the world. More than 5.7 million have been confirmed as infected since the virus emerged in China late last year.last_img read more

Danica Pension names CEO for Norwegian arm

first_img“Lars expressed a desire to head Danica Pensjon in Norway, and since we will continue to be able to benefit from his extensive network and strong competencies in our activities in Denmark, the move is right for both the Danica Group and for Lars, who will be heading this important task,” Klitgård said. Danica Pension is bolstering its Norwegian business with the appointment of one of its top executives to lead the operation.Lars Ellehave-Andersen, who came to Danica Pension in 2015 in a high-profile hiring coup from rival PFA, will be chief executive of Danica Pensjon in Norway.Per Klitgård, chief executive of Danica Pension, Denmark’s second largest commercial pensions provider, said: “With Lars Ellehave as CEO in Norway, we are strengthening our Norwegian business, where we see great potential.”Since August 2016, Ellehave-Andersen has been chief commercial officer (CCO) on Danica Pension’s board, having previously had a seven-month spell as chief executive of the Norwegian arm when he first switched to the company from PFA. Lars Ellehave-AndersenEllehave-Andersen is to be replaced as CCO by Søren Lockwood, who is currently chief executive of SEB Pension. Danica is in the process of buying SEB Pension’s Danish business.Lockwood will join Danica Pension’s executive board once the acquisition has been approved by the authorities, the company said.Ole Krogh Petersen has been promoted to the board as senior executive vice president, and will take on the role of chief operating officer (COO).Klitgård said that with Lockwood as CCO, the company had “the best possibilities of creating value for our customers with the acquisition of SEB Pension”.“We now have the right management team to secure an even stronger position for Danica Pension throughout Scandinavia,” he said.Danica’s 2017 resultsReporting preliminary 2017 financial results, Danica Pension said its investment return for the year gave the company “a mid-ranking in a field with very narrow margins separating the providers”.Customers in Denmark received returns of between 4.8% and 12.3%, while clients with the “Danica Balance medium risk” product, and 20 years to retirement, received 9.5%.The company made a DKK1.9bn (€255m) profit for the year before tax and premiums grew 17.5% to DKK39.7bn.The increase in premium income was partly due to a 47% increase in gross premiums via parent company Danske Bank in Denmark, it said.Out of its three Nordic markets, Sweden generated most business growth last year for Danica Pension, with premiums rising 39% there compared to 10% in Denmark and 8% in Norway.last_img read more

​Tangen kicks off NBIM re-shuffle with ‘special’ role for Kallevig

first_imgUp to now, Kallevig has been CIO real estate at NBIM, a role he took on in April 2019 after the separate unit he ran for many years, Norges Bank Real Estate Management (NBREM), was liquidated and its operation integrated into NBIM.Tangen, who replaced Yngve Slyngstad as CEO at the beginning of this month after much political wrangling over his appointment, said: “I am pleased to have Karsten in a more strategic role.He has built a high-quality organisation over the past decade and carries with him valuable investment experience which will benefit us going forward.”Meanwhile, NBIM said it is carrying out an internal process to recruit a chief real asset officer – a new role – and that Kallevig would be working closely with that person.Having long recommended expanding the GPFG’s mandate to include investment in unlisted infrastructure as well as unlisted real estate, NBIM received the go-ahead from the Finance Ministry in April 2019 to invest up to 2% of the fund’s value in unlisted renewable energy infrastructure via the fund’s existing dedicated environmental mandates.Kallevig said he was “very proud of what we have achieved over the past decade”.“The organisation is well positioned for the future and I look forward to acting in a different capacity going forward,” he said.Having worked for many years in London and then Tokyo, Kallevig first came to NBIM 10 years ago as global head of real estate asset strategies.Looking for IPE’s latest magazine? Read the digital edition here. The newly-installed head of Norway’s NOK10.2tn (€968bn) sovereign wealth fund has made his first change to the organisation’s management line up by removing Karsten Kallevig, who built up the oil fund’s NOK295bn portfolio of unlisted real estate, from the leadership team.NBIM also said its new leader group was scheduled to be announced in October, suggesting further changes are afoot.Norges Bank Investment Management (NBIM), which manages the Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG), announced that Kallevig has been appointed special adviser to chief executive officer Nicolai Tangen, with a focus on real asset matters.“Kallevig will step out of the leader group and looks forward to contributing in a new role,” the central bank division said in a statement on Friday afternoon.last_img read more