Sprocati Deiola join Parma

first_imgParma have officially completed the signing of Mattia Sprocati from SS Lazio.The midfielder will join up with the newly promoted Serie A side on loan but the club have option to make the deal a permanent one. Sprocati signed a new five-year deal with the eternal city club back in June, after spending time on loan with Salernitana, which also owned by current Lazio president Claudio Lotito.“S.S Lazio announces it has sold the player Mattia Sprocati to Parma Calcio 1913 on loan with an option to buy,” a brief statement on the Aquile’s website confirms, as quoted by Football Italia.Parma’s coach is delighted after Sunday’s win Manuel R. Medina – September 2, 2019 According to Parma manager, Roberto D’Aversa, the team played well even after having so many difficulties in the first half of the match.Sprocati was on Parma’s books from 2012 to 2015, but he never made an appearance and was released when the club went bankrupt. The Ducali also confirmed the signing of Alessandro Deiola from Cagliari on a straight loan deal.Parma are back in the top tier of Italian football after suffering relegation to the Serie C, the third-tier of Italian football after the club went into administration due to bankruptcy.last_img read more

Van Dijk proud of teamwork in Seagulls battle

first_imgLiverpool’s defender Virgil van Dijk is proud of his team’s work ethic in their hard-fought 1-0 win over Brighton at Anfield.Mohamed Salah finished curling finish in the 23rd minute put the Reds ahead but wasn’t the ideal scoreline against a team basking in the euphoria of their 3-2 win over Manchester United last week.As in the 2-0 win at Crystal Palace on Monday, Jurgen Klopp’s men showed a resilient side that pleased centre-back and record signing Van Dijk.“It was a tough game, we knew before the game Brighton were full of confidence, we just had to be ready for the battle,” he told BT Sport.“We didn’t play our best game but it’s very important that we won and kept it tight in the end.“We [defend] altogether. It starts up front, you can see how important it is.Roberto Firmino, LiverpoolVirgil van Dijk praises Roberto Firmino after Liverpool’s win Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Virgil van Dijk hailed team-mate Roberto Firmino after coming off the bench to inspire Liverpool to a 3-1 comeback win against Newcastle United.“Credit to everyone, we’re not doing it alone at the back, everyone’s doing their bit.“It’s always important, those crucial saves, so we’re happy to keep a clean sheet and win.”Salah now has 29 goals in as many appearances at Anfield, leaving Milner to marvel at his prolific team-mate.“Not a bad record is it. If Mo gets those chances he’ll take them,” he told BT Sport, before sending further praise in the direction of Van Dijk and the defence operating in front of Alisson – the Brazil goalkeeper already proving his worth after a big-money arrival from Roma.“The front three are always going to cause problems for most teams, that’s always going to get the headlines,” he added.“But the boys at the back, the goalkeeper and as a team keeping these clean sheets is so important. That’s what’s getting us the points.”last_img read more

Buffon hoping for no PSG Juventus Champions League final

first_imgGianluigi Buffon prays that he will never face old club Juventus in the Champions League final for Paris Saint-GermainThe veteran goalkeeper left the Serie A champions in the summer after 17 domestic trophy-laden years in favour of a free transfer to PSG.One of the prime reasons for Buffon’s shock switch to France at the age of 40 was to finally win the Champions League after losing three finals with Juventus.Now Buffon just hopes that he will not have to inflict another European final defeat on his old club with PSG among the favourites for the Champions League.“After a week, PSG realised they hadn’t signed someone who was getting old but rather someone wanted to carve out their place in the team and help them grow.,” Buffon told Gazzetta dello Sport.PSG, Neymar, Ligue 1PSG ultras sent a warning letter to Neymar Manuel R. Medina – September 14, 2019 Brazilian superstar Neymar might play today his first game of the season for Paris Saint-Germain and the team’s ultras have warned him.“I got the role I wanted: one of making myself available to help the club grow and show I’m still good enough.“I have no regrets or disappointment about leaving Juve. My farewell was planned long ago and the chapter closed perfectly.“I was in Italy last week, I called Andrea [Agnelli] and he gave me permission to train at Continassa for three days.“If I had to face Juve in the Champions League, I’d prefer to do so before the Final because, if I was to win it, I wouldn’t my joy to coincide with the tears of my former teammates.”Although it remains uncertain whether PSG coach Thomas Tuchel would select Buffon for a Champions League final due to his intense rivalry with Alphonse Areola to be PSG’s number one.last_img read more

San Diegans attend Memorial Day observance at Mt Soledad

first_img Posted: May 27, 2019 00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek  . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave SettingsSAN DIEGO (KUSI) – People across San Diego County and across the country are observing Memorial Day today.KUSI’s Sasha Foo has more on this special Memorial Day observance at Mt. Soledad. KUSI Newsroom San Diegans attend Memorial Day observance at Mt. Soledad May 27, 2019 KUSI Newsroom, Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitterlast_img read more

SELECTMEN NEWS Big Issues To Be Discussed At Meeting On Monday December 10

first_imgWILMINGTON, MA — The Wilmington Board of Selectmen meets this Monday, December 10, 2018 at Town Hall (Room 9). An Executive Session begins at 6:30pm. The public portion of the meeting begins at 7pm.There are some noteworthy items on the agenda, including:DPW Director Michael Woods, Town Engineer Paul Alunni and Planning Director Valerie Gingrich will discuss the Woburn Street/Lowell Street intersection.Town Manager Jeff Hull will provide an update on the North Wilmington MBTA Commuter Rail Station.Town Manager Jeff Hull will provide an update on the Butters Row Bridge Replacement.Town Manager Jeff Hull will provide the results of the recent Annual Town Meeting Survey.Town Manager Jeff Hull will share good news about a recent award won by the Yentile Farm Recreational Facility.Town Manager Jeff Hull will provide an update on the FY2020 budget process.Town Manager Jeff Hull will provide an update on Russell Disposal’s performance bond.Town Manager Jeff Hull will provide an update on placing AEDs at all town parks.Town Manager Jeff Hull will provide an update on the Fire Department’s fire pumper situation.Town Manager Jeff Hull will announce the appointment of Laura T. deWahl to the Wilmington Conservation Commission.Selectmen will consider the approvals of various licenses for town businesses.The meeting will be telecast live by Wilmington Community Television on WCTV-G — Channel 22 on Comcast and Channel 38 on Verizon.  The meeting will also be streamed on WCTV’s website HERE.Wilmington Apple intends to report on many of the items above – and any other news that comes from the meeting — over the next two weeks. Wilmington Apple sometimes live-tweets the meeting HERE.Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com.Thank You To Our Sponsor:Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedSELECTMEN NEWS: Selectmen To Discuss Senior Center, Palmer Park, WHS Gym Floor At September 9 MeetingIn “Government”SELECTMEN NOTEBOOK: 6 Things That Happened At This Month’s Selectmen’s MeetingIn “Government”SELECTMEN NEWS: Childhood Cancer Study, Olin, Cook Ave., Recreation Dept. Update On Agenda For Tonight’s MeetingIn “Government”last_img read more

Scientists discover Big Bang fossil hiding in space

first_img NASA InSight lander rocks its journey to Mars: A view in pictures 22 Photos CNET’s Holiday Gift Guide: The place to find the best tech gifts for 2018.NASA turns 60: The space agency has taken humanity farther than anyone else, and it has plans to go further. Sci-Tech 0 Post a comment NASA, ESA, STScI, and G. Piotto (Università degli Studi di Padova) and E. Noyola (Max Planck Institut für extraterrestrische Physik) The first stars in the universe are long gone, but their signatures may still be writ across space, buried in gas clouds like space fossils.And scientists believe they’ve uncovered one.Researchers at Swinburne University in Melbourne, Australia used their time at the W. M. Keck Observatory, home to two of the world’s most powerful telescopes, to go on an astro-archeological dig through space. They discovered a “pristine cloud of gas” in the distant universe, seemingly untouched by heavy elements, suggesting it may be a “fossil relic” of the Big Bang.Space fossilsHow do you find a fossil relic in space?Well, the universe has had quite a few birthdays — it’s some 13.7 billion years old. Over that time, a lot of stars have lived and died. At the end of a star’s life, it can sometimes explode, becoming a supernova. This massive explosion spews out a lot of waste heavy elements (metals), so generally when scientists look into space, they often find gas clouds murky with this material. Over 13.7 billion years, a lot of stars have exploded — so there’s a lot of waste in the clouds.Examining these gas clouds allows for scientists to gather insight on some of the earliest events in the universe. If the gas clouds are unspoiled by the waste, they may have existed in the infant universe. The research team think they’ve identified one that’s practically untouched by waste heavy elements.”Our inspiration is actually to find relics of the first stars in the universe,” said Prof. Michael Murphy, one of the lead researchers on the study. Gas clouds that are relics of the first stars would be “almost pristine”, according to Murphy, so there would still be traces of the heavy element waste within them.But the fossil relic they found had no detectable levels of waste — it was completely clean — suggesting it comes from the very early universe and has been untouched for 1.5 billion years after the Big Bang.”This discovery – a seemingly pristine cloud – is really important,” said Murphy. “We need to know whether such clouds can last billions of years without being polluted by multiple generations of stars.”Before this discovery, only two such gas clouds had been discovered — and those discoveries were mostly accidental. By actively seeking out the gas clouds and demonstrating that they are unspoiled by heavy elements, Murphy’s team has shown that it’s possible to go digging for them.”Now we’ve proven that we can systematically find such fossils, we really have a chance of knowing how rare or common they are,” said Murphy. “That’s crucial for testing our understanding of how the first galaxies formed.”The first starsIt’s not the first time these relic gas clouds have proven fruitful for Swinburne researchers. In 2016, the team discovered an “almost pristine” gas cloud using data from the Very Large Telescope in Chile.”It proved that trying to hunt for these clouds – and the completely pristine clouds like the one we’ve now discovered – in a targeted way was feasible and could, in principle, identify a “smoking gun” signature of the first stars,” said Murphy.However, there may be alternate explanations for why the gas cloud is so clean — and those explanations are exciting, too.One possibility is that the cloud is polluted by one of the universe’s first stars, leaving only traces of heavy elements, undetectable by the telescopes the team used. Another is that the gas cloud is moving through a galaxy for the very first time, so it has yet to be polluted by other stars just yet.”This is an exciting possibility because understanding how such gas clouds ‘feed’ galaxies is a major problem in astrophysics,” explained Murphy.”We’d like to test this possibility by mapping any galaxies near the cloud in future.”And so searching for the earliest signatures scribbled across the cosmos continues. Share your voice Tagslast_img read more

YouTubes whackamole approach to child safety isnt working critics say

first_img Comments Share your voice Google YouTube Alphabet Inc. 7 Tags Tech Industry Mobile Apps YouTube is facing a scandal involving child exploitation. Getty YouTube is under fire again for allowing content that exploits children onto its platform. After reports of a “softcore pedophile ring” on the Google-owned site surfaced last weekend, YouTube on Thursday said it’s taking aggressive action to fix the problem. The company banned more than 400 accounts and took down dozens of videos that put children at risk. But even though YouTube addressed this particular controversy, critics of the company say they’re fed up that problems with child safety keep arising in the first place. For example, two years ago, YouTube faced a backlash after disturbing videos got past filters on YouTube Kids, a version of the service designed for children.”This has been happening for years,” Haley Halverson, vice president of advocacy and outreach at the National Center on Sexual Exploitation, said in an email. “Why isn’t it YouTube’s No. 1 priority to create sustained solutions, instead of carrying on with its current whack-a-mole approach?”The latest incident began on Sunday, when a video blogger named Matt Watson detailed how pedophiles could enter a “wormhole” of YouTube videos to see footage of children in sexually suggestive positions. In the comments of those videos, users would post time stamps linking to other videos, and YouTube’s algorithms would recommend even more of those kinds of videos.  In response, advertisers including AT&T and Epic Games, maker of Fortnite, pulled ad spending from YouTube. YouTube declined to make an executive available for an interview, but in a statement a spokeswoman said: “Any content — including comments — that endangers minors is abhorrent and we have clear policies prohibiting this on YouTube … There’s more to be done, and we continue to work to improve and catch abuse more quickly.” But child advocacy groups say the company isn’t working fast enough. Not the first timeYouTube has a history of people abusing the service to exploit kids. In 2017, parents started noticing troubling videos appearing on YouTube Kids. One video showed Mickey Mouse in a pool of blood while Minnie looks on in horror. In another video, a claymation version of Spider-Man urinates on Elsa, the princess from “Frozen.” The videos were knockoffs depicting the beloved Disney and Marvel characters. Also that year, YouTube stoked controversy after sexually explicit comments appeared under videos of kids doing innocuous activities, like performing gymnastics.Outside the realm of child safety, advertisers that year also boycotted YouTube after their ads appeared next to extremist and hate content because of YouTube’s automated advertising technology. Major brands including AT&T and Johnson & Johnson ditched advertising on the platform.In response to those scandals, CEO Susan Wojcicki overhauled YouTube’s safety guidelines. The new rules included removing ads from inappropriate videos targeting families and blocking inappropriate comments on videos featuring minors. Two years later, critics are upset these incidents are still popping up. Josh Golin, executive director of the Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood, says the problem is YouTube treating the issue like a public relations problem and just dealing with individual controversies when they receive media attention, instead of getting at the root of the problem.Golin said it’s particularly egregious that YouTube’s recommendation algorithm suggested even more videos that put children at risk.”If you realize that your algorithm is recommending videos that would appeal to pedophiles and you’re not stopping to think about that, what will make you stop and think?” he said. “If pedophiles won’t make you look in the mirror, what will?” There are no easy fixes, he said. Part of that is because of YouTube’s massive scale. It’s the largest video site on the planet, with more than 1 billion visitors a month. “I don’t think you can provide a safe space for children if your business model is volume,” he said. last_img read more

Educational institutions asked not to charge extra fees

first_imgEducation minister Dipu Moni File PhotoNewly-appointed education minister Dipu Moni said strict measures would be taken against educational institutions if they were found charging students extra fees.She gave the warning while exchanging post-election greetings in Chandpur sadar upazila on Friday afternoon, reports UNB.Mentioning charging excessive fees for examination as an offense, the minister said, “Steps will be taken against [educational institutions] if we get evidence of charging extra fee,” she said. “We are ready to face challenges and do everything to ensure quality education.”Additional deputy commissioner Shawkat Osman, sadar upazila executive officer Kaniz Fatema, additional superintendent of police Jahid Parvez Chowdhury, district Awami League president Nasir Uddin Ahmed, general secretary Abu Naeem Patwari Dulal, vice president JR Wadud Tipu, among others, were present.Meanwhile, on the occasion of Bangabandhu’s Homecoming anniversary on Thursday, Moni said, the nation’s founding father was harmed more by enemies from inside the country than those in Pakistan.“His return was a fortunate event for us but local and foreign enemies killed him along with his family,” she continued, “They feared that Bangladesh would move forward under Bangabandhu’s strong leadership.”last_img read more

Streeter Harrison Poised to Take County Council Seats

first_imgBy James Wright, Special to the AFRO, jwright@afro.comOn July 6, the Prince George’s County Board of Elections released the results of the absentee and provisional ballots cast during the June 26 Democratic and Republican primaries. The races for District 7 and District 9 of the county council were the ones of most interest.The results showed Rodney Streeter, chief of staff to Prince George’s County Council member Andrea Harrison (D-District 5), had the most votes with 2,818, followed closely by Krystal Oriadha with 2,787 for the District 7 council seat. Prince George’s County Clerk of the Court Sydney Harrison squeaked past political activist Tamara Brown, with 7,125 to 7,070 for the District 9 council seat.Following the counting of absentee ballots and provisional ballots, Sydney Harrison is the council member-elect for District 9 of the Prince George’s County Council. (Courtesy Photo)Streeter will replace Prince George’s County Council member Karen Toles (D), who unsuccessfully sought an at-large council seat, while Harrison will follow Prince George’s County Council member Mel Franklin (D), who also won an at-large seat.The AFRO was unable to reach Streeter or Harrison at press time. However, on his campaign web site, Harrison posted “You elected Sydney Harrison Prince George’s County Council District 9.”Neither Streeter nor Harrison has a Republican opponent so they will be elected to their offices by default in the Nov. 6 general election.last_img read more

Glistering all the way

first_imgThe Kolkata-based jewellery chain, Senco Gold and Diamonds, has remained the first choice for many families since ages. Be it a wedding, puja or any other occasion, Senco has the perfect collection to make one look absolutely gorgeous and leave others speechless. The business, which was started from scratch by Late Maran Chand Sen, soars high amongst other jewellery brands in the market. Senco Gold and Diamonds’ stores are spread all over West Bengal, Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Patna, Bhubaneswar, Cuttack, Jamshedpur, Ranchi and Guwahati among others.  Also Read – Add new books to your shelfIt not only has a pan-Indian customer base but is also involved in exporting gold and diamond jewellery to the Middle East, Singapore, UK and USA. Suvankar Sen, the Managing Director of Senco Gold and Diamonds, who joined the family business in 2007, believes that trust for quality and value for money sets them apart. An MBA from IMT Ghaziabad, Sen has worked closely with his father Sankar Sen, to learn the nitty gritty of their long running business.  Sen talks about Senco’s impeccable journey which runs for more than eight decades now along with their expansion plans.  Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveKindly tell us the background of your group. How did your grandparents come about it? Our company was started by my great grandfather Maran Chand Sen, who used to be an intern at a jewellery store. One day a trader left behind some precious stones. He was honest enough to keep it aside and return it to him when he met him a year after. That made the trader happy and in return he gave him a packet as a reward for his honesty. This gave him the capital to start his business which he named ‘Senco’.  He was smart enough to sense the change in the political environment and shift base to Kolkata during the Bengal Partition. After his death, his sons had disagreements among themselves and separated. My grandfather was given the smallest showroom and a minimum capital to restart his branch of Senco. He turned that into a very profitable showroom and went on to add 2 more to his portfolio. My father, Sankar Sen expanded it further and introduced the business model of franchisees and after I joined in 2007 the rate of expansion is as we see it today.How has been the journey of Senco group with so many jewellery brands cropping up side by side?Our motto is value for money and trust for quality. The journey with other competitors and brands entering the market with fluctuating gold price has been a challenging one and that in turn has helped us to meet the demands of the current time and supply our customers with lightweight jewellery. There are multiple jewellery brands available for consumers, how do you convince people to go for Senco? Senco Gold & Diamonds is an eighty year old brand so it includes four generations of trust. In addition, Kolkata is the best known for karigari – heavy and light weight jewellery for both wedding and daily/casual wear. So, I believe that very unique handcrafted jewellery designs  can be found here.  What is the USP of Senco gold? Having our base in Kolkata makes us unique as we are in manufacturing and retailing sector. The light affordable jewellery covering wedding or daily wear gives us an upper hand. Also, the trend that we follow while making our products sets us apart. What are the main products that you are pushing for sale? Gold, diamonds, platinum, silver– All are fine for sale.What according to you is the latest trend of consumption?The latest trend is sleek designs in gold and diamonds. It’s not about the quantity but largely depends on the quality source, which is the heritage and the value.People say gold is better as an investment than diamonds. Why?Gold is an internationally accepted metal, almost a substitute to currency that appreciates value over time. The price is driven by market demand and supply. Diamonds on the other hand are rare, precious, beautiful and fashionable. It is more modern and trendy. Big sized diamonds are still accepted as investments but not the tiny ones.In this era of so many diamonds consumers, do you think purchase of gold is on the decline?Purchase of gold amongst youngsters is on decline, compared to diamonds. This is mainly due to the dressing style and behaviour of the consumers. They want to enjoy what they wear and gold becomes selective in that case. However, I believe consumers should appreciate the long term asset value of gold and act on it. Where does Senco group stand when compared to others?We don’t compare ourselves with others. We believe in giving a solution to our consumers in terms of designs and value. We want to execute the best practices in terms of processes and controls and serve the needs of our consumers.Lately, the government has imposed tax on jewellery transactions. How intensely does it affect this line of business? Nearly 10 to 20 per cent. This is due to the rules and taxes that have been suggested but we believe it’s just a matter of time. Consumers will get used to it and we will overcome the challenge.How do you wish to see the group in another ten years?We are at 80 stores right now. As the business grows we are aiming towards 100 stores in the next two years. However, the main target over the next ten years is to take our manufactured products to the rest of the world.last_img read more

Brazils largest airline adds new flights to Florida

first_img Travelweek Group Posted by Share Tuesday, November 28, 2017 << Previous PostNext Post >>center_img Tags: AZUL Brazilian Airlines Brazil’s largest airline adds new flights to Florida TORONTO — Azul Brazilian Airlines has expanded its international flight network with new flights from Brazil to Florida.Represented in Canada by AirlinePros as its GSA, the airline has announced new departures from its Fort Lauderdale gateway to Brazil. According to an official statement, this seat capacity increase will be of direct interest to travel industry players that have regular and/or specialized client itinerary requirements for Brazil.“With launch dates starting early in the current winter season, AZUL has now boosted its product offer from North America by 35%,” said Karl Müller, AirlinePros Canada Director. “New routes such as Fort Lauderdale (FLL) to Belem (BEL), FLL to Recife (RED), in addition to the Orlando (MCO) to Belo Horizonte (CNF) services will help many travel consultants with itinerary fulfillment.”Fares and inventory have been loaded into all major GDS systems, except for Fort Lauderdale-Recife. Azul offers 7% commission on published international fares and is a full participant in BSP Canada.More news:  Venice to ban cruise ships from city centre starting next monthAzul is Brazil’s largest airline in terms of number of cities and departures, offering 755 daily flights to 104 destinations. It has a fleet of 118 aircraft and a network of 197 nonstop routes as of Sept. 30, 2017.last_img read more

Related A380 debuts on Qantas flights to LondonQan

first_img RelatedA380 debuts on Qantas flights to LondonQantas has launched the A380 ‘superjumbo’ on its flights to London from Melbourne.Etihad launches flights to Astana from Abu DhabiEtihad Airways has launched its first flight to Kazakhstani capital Astana from its base at Abu Dhabi.Emirates introduces new flights to BangkokEmirates introduces new flights to Bangkok Emirates Airlines has launched two new flights from Dubai to Brisbane and Melbourne with immediate effect.The airline will now operate two daily flights to Brisbane and three to Melbourne on A340-500 aircraft.Emirates now flies 63 times a week to Australia’s four major cities after a new A380 flight to Sydney was launched on February 1st.Richard Vaughan, Emirates’ senior vice-president of commercial operations in east Asia and Australasia, said greater capacity was “much needed” on the Melbourne and Brisbane routes.”Our flights will assist in increasing inbound tourist arrivals and support the Australian government’s plans of developing these two cities as leading centres for tourism,” he said.The airline recently opened the Emirates Lounge at Brisbane Airport, which allows passengers to view the airport at a 360 degree angle. Similar lounges have been opened at Melbourne, Sydney and Perth airports.Emirates recently announced that it would be introducing new flights to Amman, Riyadh and Jeddah this month. ReturnOne wayMulti-cityFromAdd nearby airports ToAdd nearby airportsDepart14/08/2019Return21/08/2019Cabin Class & Travellers1 adult, EconomyDirect flights onlySearch flights Maplast_img read more

Broadband providers are engaged in an arms race to

first_imgBroadband providers are engaged in an arms race to deliver ultra-fast services to subscribers. HFC cable network operators are making use of a fast-evolving range of tools to stay ahead of rivals, writes Adrian Pennington.The ‘need for speed’ is dominating the cable operator market as competitors jostle to deliver tomorrow’s Gigabit services for consumer and commercial applications.In order to deal with the expected rapid growth in demand for bandwidth, operators are searching for new technologies and architectures that can help them supply those speeds and new services, using an efficient scalable design, with predictable and controllable cost of ownership. In doing so, they may consider making changes to their headend network, nodes and amplifiers, their service groups sizes, the modulation profile used on different areas of the plant and more. The challenge is to choose the right mix of adjustments that can help them optimise their network and supply their subscribers’ demand.“The evolution of the headend and the Converged Cable Access Platform (CCAP) is a major part of everyone’s roadmap for transformation,” says Sean Welch, VP and GM at Cisco’s service provider business.Most operators have already embraced CCAP and are deploying DOCSIS 3.1 cable modems to enable DOCSIS 3.1 in most service areas. But DOCSIS 3.1 also opened up the possibility for 10G / 4096-QAM services along with a migration from a centralised to a Distributed Access Architecture (DDA). Each cable operator’s roadmap is unique of course, yet all need to begin with some form of digital transformation in their access.Distributed, virtualised architectures are expected to transform cable networks. According to analyst group Dell’Oro, investment in cable infrastructure will reach US$2 billion (e1.8 billion) globally by 2023 to prepare operators for multi-gigabit future services using a combination of extended spectrum DOCSIS, full duplex DOCSIS 3.1 (FDX) and fibre-to-the-home (FTTH).“Transitioning from where we are today into a Distributed Access Architecture is a real accomplishment,” says Welch. “Understanding that there is more than one way to get there is important.”The overall aim is “to make networks more efficient, offer premium bandwidth, and stay ahead of fibre-based competitors,” Dell’Oro research director Jeff Heynen adds.Priority investmentsBroadly, it appears that operators in Europe are focusing their investment in three high-priority areas. The first is low latency DOCSIS for improved gaming support, virtual and augmented reality support and 5G backhaul support. Second is augmented upstream bandwidth capacity, which looks to support higher bandwidth demands in the upstream for video-based IoT devices.Lastly is augmented downstream capacity, with a focus on supporting higher service level agreements for the future.“Operators have many options available to them as they plan for the evolution of their future networks,” says Tom Cloonan, formerly of Arris and now office of the CTO, CommScope. “This includes turning on more DOCSIS 3.1 Downstream OFDM channels, plus beginning to turn on – and adding in additional – DOCSIS 3.1 Upstream OFDMA channels.”Operators are also increasing the average bandwidth capacity to each of their subscribers by using combinations of at least three techniques. These are: increasing the spectral efficiency using the higher QAM Modulation orders permitted by DOCSIS 3.1; increasing channels per Service Group; and decreasing the number of subscribers per service group by performing physical or virtual node splits.The Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers & International Society of Broadband Experts (SCTE, ISBE), agrees that most upgrades in Europe are focused on increasing the capacity of the Hybrid Fibre-Coaxial (HFC) network, starting by migrating to DOCSIS 3.1 and then utilising node splits when necessary.While still deploying and upgrading their heavy base of Integrated-CCAP systems, many operators are also considering transitions to DDAs where parts of the traditional I-CCAP are moved to the node structure – closer to the subscriber. Remote PHY or Remote MACPHY are the key technologies.Sean Welch, Cisco“Based on our discussions with European operators and ecosystem partners, it is clear that scaling capacity – with DOCSIS 3.1 – in both the upstream and downstream is a priority for 2019,” says Welch.“DAA, and in particular Remote PHY, is a 2019 initiative driven by the need to modernise the analogue optical network that connect hub sites to fibre nodes in the field. Further, deploying IP over fibre in the aggregation network will unleash a compelling opportunity to converge all forms of access traffic – such as mobile, cable, fibre and copper – and operators are excited about this business case.”DDA based on R-PHYBased on discussions with operators it is working with, Finnish tech company Teleste says DDA “seems to offer the next attractive option to enable significantly higher data transmission capacity, attractive quality of service for subscribers, as well as less operational expense”.“Nearly all operators that we are working with are at least investigating DAA technologies,” says Jim Walsh, marketing manager at California-based network test, measurement and assurance vendor Viavi Solutions. “The current status varies from initial investigations to full implementation; in many cases, their deployment pace is being dictated by the maturity of their selected solutions. Some operators see DAA as a long-term enabler of node splits to address bandwidth needs while also enabling virtualisation of their service provision infrastructure, while others see it as more of a short/medium term stopgap solution with FTTH as the inevitable long-term path.”Early trials and limited deployments have begun, with CommScope projecting growth in the penetration of these technologies starting significantly by end of the year.This is something also tracked by Dell’Oro, which expects North American cable operators – such as Comcast and Mediacom – to move from lab and field trials of R-PHY and R-MACPHY to general availability.“Equipment vendors are ramping up production of their node units to meet what is expected to be a major year of deployments in 2019,” the analyst states in a briefing note. “We expect Comcast to use DDA to dramatically reduce service group sizes from an average of 300 to 400 homes to less than 100. Other operators, including Cox and Spectrum, will quickly follow suit.”Early deployments in Europe, at Com Hem and Stofa, have enabled the rollout of DOCSIS 3.1 services, while simultaneously moving away from the operator’s traditional, I-CCAP platforms. “Both operators face significant competition from fibre providers, so they view R-PHY as a stepping stone to either FDX or FTTH,” suggests Dell’Oro.Managing churn and OPEX forms a focal challenge for operators. As acquiring new customers is potentially expensive, investments in providing high quality subscriber experience – including attractive service bundle and high capacity broadband – helps to leverage churn rate and improve cost-effectivity in the longer run.Hanno Narjus, Teleste“R-PHY offers operators real benefits in terms of subscriber experience and it is an excellent option in areas where higher data transmission capacity is needed without long construction times,” argues Hanno Narjus, Teleste’s SVP, network products. “In addition to factors such as increased service reliability, more bandwidth and less latency, the technology enables operators to reduce headend footprint and ensure the availability of their legacy services.”Distributed access is used when fibre transport to the nodes is at capacity, when distribution hubs are very far away from nodes, and/or when distribution hubs are out of space. Further drivers include the desire to bring fibre closer to the home – in order to be better prepared for a FTTx architecture – and a desire to improve signal-to-noise ratios using Ethernet.“The use of Ethernet optics will also offer other benefits, such as permitting operators to multiplex more wavelengths on a single fibre feed,” says Cloonan. “It will also help them to consolidate headends and to tie their HFC plants into virtualised data centres, which would allow cloud computing environments to more easily manage HFC equipment. These transitions should help operators to future-proof their head-ends and HFC plants.”Equipment providers have started to offer Remote PHY products to operators for deployment. However, some operators are choosing to wait for the technology to mature, or for a specific flavour of the products to become available before they begin deployment.Many operators are currently using dense I-CCAPs which still have unused capacity. For those operators the need to upgrade the network may be less pressing. Additionally, an architectural upgrade such as the transition to DAA cannot be taken lightly. A great deal of consideration must go into which access architecture is the best fit, and detailed planning in order to be prepared for the transition from a network readiness, as well as from an operational perspective.Sluggish rollout“Most operators are slow-rolling DDA due to the higher cost and the current rapid evolution of the technology,” says Dean Stoneback, senior director, engineering and standards, SCTE, ISBE.“The technology of remote architectures is still in a rapid state of change as the flexible MAC architecture [FMA] specifications continue to evolve and as FDX equipment enters the market,” says Stoneback. “The uncertainty around the rapid change in technology is most likely slowing down the deployment of remote architectures. Early adoption of remote access equipment is not necessary ‘future-proofing’, as hardware upgrades would require truck rolls.”Teleste’s Narjus also makes the point that “ecosystem-level thinking” and “industry-wide interoperability” between vendors is a must-have before the benefits can be realised.“For both R-PHY and R-MACPHY implementations to succeed in enabling robust multi-vendor field deployments, industry-wide interoperability is needed,” says Narjus. “The question is how operators can safely grasp the opportunities offered by the technology transformation while avoiding vendor lock-in.”Interoperability of distributed access ecosystems has been proceeding slower than anticipated. However, MSOs have been actively driving implementation of CableLabs’ R-PHY standard.“CableLabs has also been providing vendors an invaluable opportunity to test the technology in a multi-vendor environment for some time, and distinct demonstrations of interoperability go on between several CCAP core and RPD vendors as well,” says Narjus.While there are cases of operators focused on new fibre build-outs, DOCSIS 3.1 upgrades and DDA in some cases operators are working on all three technology areas in parallel.“For greenfield opportunities, fibre is generally the option of choice, but for expanding existing networks DAA and DOCSIS 3.1 are generally the focus,” says Walsh. “The two are very often paired – if an operator is considering 1.2GHz downstream extensions and/or converting to 204MHz upstream it often makes sense to align these activities with DAA deployments. The same can be said for headend upgrades to DOCSIS 3.1, these are often coupled with DAA transitions.”Cisco makes the case for Remote PHY with an IP-Ethernet network as the most capable and economically scalable solution that exists. “While network capacity will always be important, the ability to dynamically scale network operations by automating processes, machine learning, network insights, auto-remediation, telemetry, etc will change how we look at it,” says Welch.Observing that “nothing will ever be truly future proof” he asserts that Cisco is the only vendor currently with a FDX-ready Remote PHY node, “where operators can install and operate the node today and then turn-up FDX when they are ready to in the future.”FDX contains within it the capacity to ramp upstream and downstream speeds to 10 Gigabit, speeds which – if companies like Intel are to be believed – will be needed to turbo charge the growing number of devices, vast amounts of data and immersive experiences for home users, let alone business case scenarios.Yet the market itself seems to lag behind that of vendor urgency for symmetrical bandwidth.“It has been raised by some FTTH providers as a competitive differentiator however, to-date, there does not appear to be significant consumer market demand,” says Ralph Brown, chief research and development officer at cable industry technology body CableLabs.“Competition continues to be based largely on download speeds. Symmetrical bandwidth has been more important in serving business customers and cable operators use both DOCSIS and fibre to serve these customers.”Walsh agrees with this reading of the situation: “Outside of a few isolated regional regulatory requirements, demand for symmetrical offerings from cable operators is almost entirely driven by the need for a competitive response to FTTH marketing.“It is expected that future applications will emerge driving consumption closer to symmetrical, but today it is still heavily weighted toward downstream.”Teleste Luminato 4×4 modular headend: the company believes R-PHY offers real benefits.Teleste’s Narjus comes to a similar conclusion: “At the moment are almost no services for which fully symmetrical high bandwidth is actually required and, even today, the network bottleneck continues to be the downstream. However, in some areas FTTH operators have been marketing symmetrical bandwidth to consumers quite intensively, causing a need for cable operators to upgrade their networks in order to maintain competitiveness.”The three main methods to achieve symmetrical bandwidth are FTTP, FDX and extended spectrum DOCSIS (ESD).Toward DOCSIS 4.0While FDX is designed to enable 10G symmetrical speeds, proposals to extend the life of coaxial even further are in motion. DOCSIS 4.0 or Extended Spectrum DOCSIS (ESD) would support symmetrical broadband speeds as high as 30G or even 60G by tapping into more of the cable HFC plant’s available RF spectrum. The concept would allow cable operators to basically triple the 1.2GHz of plant spectrum that can currently be leveraged for DOCSIS 3.1. At 3GHz the spectrum would trump the 1.8GHz of FDX with as much as 6GHz thought possible (10GHz being the physical limit of coaxial).The technique would complement rather than substitute FDX by using Full Duplex DOCSIS hardware while keeping the upstream and downstream spectrum blocks separate.Specifically, this involves using FDX chipsets to raise the spectrum ceiling occupied by upstream traffic to 492MHz or 684MHz while keeping upstream and downstream in separate blocks of spectrum. Downstream spectrum would be pushed above this level and the downstream would operate up to 1.8GHz, in theory.“Vendors and operators are working together to characterize the current HFC plant performance levels and to identify new equipment that can help augment current DOCSIS products,” says Cloonan. “It is expected that these activities could lead to a future Extended Spectrum DOCSIS environment.”CommScope predicts that downstream bandwidths may move to 1.2GHz in the short-term, and then to potentially higher spectral widths (1.8GHz or 3.0GHz or higher) in the more distant future.“Upstream widths will likely move to mid-split – 85MHz – or high-split – 204 MHz – with some operators planning even higher splits of up to 684MHz using FDX-capable technologies or other technologies, such as Soft-FDD [frequency division duplex],” says Cloonan.Detailed analysis of coaxial plant characteristics, tap and drop line characteristics, amplifier, node and consumer premises equipment characteristics will be required to make this happen. Detailed work on power and thermal management is also required for these next-gen systems.CableLabs and SCTE ISBE are working together on proactive network maintenance (PNM) tools and operational practices for DOCSIS 3.1 and FDX.“Without PNM tools, it would be nearly impossible to understand and manage RF impairments and interference since multiple devices will be transmitting RF signals in both directions on the cable at the same frequencies simultaneously,” says Stoneback. “These tools will be used by early adopters to gain experience and optimize future deployments.“In most cases, HFC operators are planning to use FDX or ESD to provide higher upstream rates to the majority of their customers, while utilising targeted FTTP deployments for the highest tier customers.”Cisco acknowledges that fibre may have the advantage today, in terms of symmetrical bandwidth, but notes that it is nowhere near as extensively deployed as DOCSIS networks. “Should there be a race between achieving fibre network coverage parity and deploying FDX, my money would be on FDX,” Welch says. “And I would not mind doubling down on that. Fibre is going to remain being important, but the key takeaway here is that DOCSIS networks continue to innovate. What is important here is keeping focus on the long-term vision. CableLabs set the goal with 10G, and reaching that goal still requires much innovation.”Indeed, CableLabs’ latest initiative is a ‘10G platform’ that will ramp up from the 1 gigabit offerings of today to speeds of 10 gigabits per second and beyondComcast, Charter, Cox, Mediacom, in the US plus Rogers, Shaw Vodafone, Telecom Argentina and Liberty Global are implementing the new 10G initiative, with lab trials underway, and field trials beginning in 2020, according to CableLabs.“While FDX is a fundamental element of the platform, enabling the sharing of spectrum both upstream and downstream concurrently, other technologies will be needed to deliver the full 10G experience,” explains Brown. “One such technology is Full Duplex Coherent Optics, which will significantly increase the value of the currently-deployed fibre infrastructure, boosting capacity to meet the growing demand of broadband customers.”Consensus over the future of the DOCSIS standard will be required to guarantee smooth, industry-wide deployments and the future competitiveness of the technology.Whether it will invest in Extended Spectrum, Full-Duplex DOCSIS or something in-between, the industry can already foresee innovations that could extend the life-time of coaxial cable infrastructure for many years to come.last_img read more

Dear Reader It is with a troubled heart that I si

first_imgDear Reader,It is with a troubled heart that I sit down to write today, there being reports of casualties in new fighting in eastern Ukraine. I worry, of course, about my friends and students in the country who may well be in physical danger soon, if the conflict escalates. But that’s personal; as an investment analyst, it’s the financial war the Russians seem quite willing to wage that really has my attention.It should have yours as well.As one of the experts in our just-released Meltdown America video noted, the Kremlin had already made moves to dethrone the US dollar as the world’s reserve currency before the renewed East-West tensions of this year. Putin has openly threatened what amounts to economic warfare as a response to sanctions placed on Russia after its Crimea grab.Now bullets are flying—can Putin’s financial ICBM be far behind?Mind you, the US and global economies are on such shaky ground, they could come crashing down without any help from Gospodin Putin.One of the things that really struck me while watching Meltdown America was the way the writing was clearly visible on the wall in past cases of financial collapse and hyperinflation—but no one wanted to believe it.That’s the way I see the US today. Life seems so normal and there’s so much wealth even in poorer regions, it’s hard to believe the cracks in the foundation could really bring down everything built on it. And that’s exactly why the cracks never get fixed; people don’t want to see them, and politicians do everything possible to deny they exist. So they widen and deepen until the collapse becomes inevitable—and I believe we have already passed the point of no return.It’s just a matter of time now.Gloomy thoughts indeed, but I’m not here to depress anyone. Hopefully, I can help deliver a wake-up call, as per our Meltdown America video. Perhaps even more useful, I can tell you what I’m doing about it.As you probably know already, precious metals are a key part of my strategy. As Doug Casey likes to say, gold is the only financial asset that is not simultaneously someone else’s liability. It’s solid value you can hold in your hand, and come what may, use to store and protect wealth, as well as to make payments when all other systems fail.Again, as Doug says, I buy gold for prudence and gold stocks for profit. If I’m right about the economic trouble ahead, gold will protect me, and my gold stock picks will make me a fortune. This is why we focus so much on precious metals and related mining stocks in these Metals & Mining Monday daily dispatches. Fear not; we’ll have plenty more relevant ideas and actionable information in future editions.But Doug also says that our biggest risk today is not market risk; it’s political risk. He has moved to rural Argentina to get out of harm’s way. He’s picked a beautiful place, and I had intended to move to Cafayate myself, but then I got married… and plans changed. Specifically, I need to remain in the US for some years to come.So instead of expatriating, I’ve moved to Puerto Rico, a US territory that is rapidly becoming the only tax haven that matters for US taxpayers.People keep asking me why I chose Puerto Rico and if I’m happy with my choice, so I’ve decided to skip writing about metals this week and write instead about my move here. It’s a break from tradition, but one I hope will provide as much value as anything I could write about rocks at this time.Sincerely,Louis JamesSenior Metals Investment StrategistCasey Research Oil96.8593.1384.96 Gold Producers (GDX)24.4928.5044.77 Silver Stocks (SIL)11.7213.8318.61 Gold Junior Stocks (GDXJ)9.1611.5919.21 Copper3.053.303.50 One Year Ago One Month Agocenter_img Silver19.6622.4527.61 Gold1,235.301,391.801,604.20 Rock & Stock StatsLast TSX (Toronto Stock Exchange)12,129.1112,732.6111, 596.56 TSX Venture881.40953.711,190.99 How I Intend to Survive the Meltdown of AmericaAs I type here in my new home office, I glance up and see waves of Caribbean blue crashing on the palm-lined beach. Surfers are out in force. Scattered clouds add to the already amazing variety of colors in the ocean. I wonder if I will have time to go for a swim before dinner—and I’m amazed yet again to think that it was a shot at lower taxes that brought me here to Puerto Rico.It seems almost unnatural for me to be able to enjoy so much beauty while saving money, but that’s exactly what I’m doing.The view from my new home office.You see, the economy here never really recovered from the crash of 2008. This is very bad news for long-suffering Puerto Ricans trying to make ends meet. When I first came here with my wife to check the place out, locals kept asking us why we were thinking of moving here; jobs are scarce, and something of an exodus is taking place in the opposite direction (Puerto Ricans are US citizens and can travel and work freely anywhere in the US).But I wasn’t coming to Puerto Rico to sell hot dogs. My income doesn’t depend on the local economy, so its woes are an obvious opportunity for a contrarian speculator like me.Take the most simple and basic asset class one can invest in as a Puerto Rico play: real estate. The market has been so devastated that million-dollar condos are selling for half price. When we closed on our new place, the seller came up short, and we had other options, so we weren’t willing to pay more. The real estate agents involved were so eager to keep the deal from falling through, they kicked in with their own money to help the seller out.Personally, I’m not a big fan of gated communities, but for people who are concerned about possible social unrest in the future, it’s good to know that you can buy properties in some of the most posh and secure communities on the island with no money down.Now, as much as I like a contrarian bargain, and as much as my wife loves the tropical weather, what really brought us here were the new tax incentives the government of Puerto Rico enacted to make the island more attractive to investors and employers.The critical point here is that Puerto Ricans are exempt from US federal income taxes, even though they are US citizens. They pay Puerto Rican taxes, of course, and those have generally been similar to US taxes, so the island has never been seen as a tax haven before. That all changed in 2012, when Puerto Rico passed Acts 20 and 22.Act 22Act 22 is basically a 100% capital-gains tax holiday designed to attract investors to come live in Puerto Rico. Exactly what is included or excluded is beyond the scope of this article, but for me, the important thing is that it covers the stocks I already owned when I moved here on January 1, 2014. Given that the market bottomed at almost the same time, I have no gains to be taxed on for 2013, and will not be taxed for the gains I make going forward—all the way to 2036.This alone was worth the move to Puerto Rico, in my opinion.Happily, the application process was simple. My wife downloaded the form and filled it out. I signed it, and a couple weeks later, we got an official tax holiday decree in the mail—no questions asked. I had to accept the conditions of the decree in front of a notary and send in an acceptance form with a $50 filing fee, and that was it. Didn’t even have to hire a lawyer.This tax break is not available to current residents of Puerto Rico—it’s designed to attract wealthy people to come live on the island, after all—but it’s available to all others who move here, including but not limited to US taxpayers.Act 20Act 20 is a tax break on corporate earnings designed to incent job creation in Puerto Rico. The idea is to persuade US employers who might set up call centers in India, or create other similar jobs abroad, to do so closer to home, by offering them a 4% corporate earnings tax rate.My fellow Casey Research editor Alex Daley has moved to Puerto Rico as well, and we’ve formed a company here that exports writing and analytical services to Casey Research in Vermont. This is the basis of our application for Act 20 tax benefits, which has not been approved yet, but which we understand is close.If we get our Act 20 decree approved, we’ll still have to pay regular income taxes on our base salaries, but the lower tax rate applied to our corporate income will result in a drastically lower total income tax rate for us as individuals.I’ll be sure to let readers know when we get our Act 20 decree approved.All 100% LegalThe beauty of this is that Puerto Rico’s tax breaks are not shady tax dodges set up by entities of questionable legality or trustworthiness, but perfectly legal tax incentives within the US.Act 20 and Act 22 benefits are available to non-US persons, but they are especially important to US taxpayers because, unlike almost every other country in the world, the US taxes its serfs citizens whether they live in the US or abroad.In other words, while a Canadian can get out of paying Canadian income taxes by moving out of Canada, a US person cannot escape US taxes by moving to Argentina, or anywhere else—anywhere besides Puerto Rico.It’s like expatriation without having to leave the US, truly a unique situation.And it’s a win-win situation; people like us bring much-needed money, ideas, and energy to the island, while getting to keep more of what our crisis-investing strategy nets us. We create jobs, rather than take them. We are part of the solution here, and we’ve been made very welcome.Is It Safe?So that’s why I’m here. Whether or not my Act 20 status gets approved, I’m so happy about my Act 22 decree that I’m convinced we did the right thing moving here.When I tell people what I’ve done and why, most get immediately excited by the idea—and then they balk. The first question they ask is usually: What about crime?Puerto Rico isn’t a large island, and a good chunk of its three million inhabitants are clustered in and around the capital city of San Juan. Of course there is crime here, as there is in any large city. There are places I would not walk alone at night—just as there are in New York City.Mexico City, Buenos Aires, La Paz… the capital of any other Latin American country or Caribbean country I’ve been to is much larger, more polluted, and more dangerous than San Juan. In my subjective view, San Juan, with its old Spanish fortifications and amazing beaches, is more beautiful. And you can drink the water here.Sure, it might be cleaner and safer in Palm Beach, Florida—but it’s a lot more expensive there, it has less charm, and there’s no Act 20 nor 22. It’s a matter of priorities.When I say this, most people remain skeptical; they read about the economic problems Puerto Rico has and the financial trouble the government is in, and they wonder if things could get worse.Of course they can—but if Doug is right about The Greater Depression about to envelop the whole world, things are going to get worse everywhere.Here at least, people are already used to massive unemployment. It won’t come as a shock; it’s never left since 2008.Another way of looking at it is that since tropical storms hit the island from time to time (southern Florida is much more prone to major hurricanes than Puerto Rico, but they do happen), people here are more prepared for disasters than in many other parts of the US. The better apartment buildings and hotels have their own electricity generators. Nobody can freeze to death here, anyway, and fruit trees grow all over the island.There’s a lot more I could say, but the bottom line is that I think Puerto Rico is a much better place to ride out a global financial storm than Miami, or Anchorage, or almost any city in between. A self-sustaining farm in rural Alabama might be better, but that’s not the sort of place I want to live.I Like It HereThat last is an important point: if I have to hunker down to ride out an economic storm, it should be in a place where I like being.Puerto Rico is beautiful and bountiful year-round. I speak Spanish, but most people in San Juan are bilingual, so that’s not really an issue. Our new flat is blocks from the best schools, shops, and restaurants in town—and even the hospital.I open the window and the fresh air coming off the ocean carries the sound of waves, sometimes laughing children. There’s more noise pollution during the day, but at night, the city calms down, and we can hear the famous Puerto Rican coquí frogs, which my daughter calls “happy frogs.” Ten floors up, the ocean breeze is cool enough that we have yet to turn on the air conditioning.The beaches are fantastic, and the clear water makes for great diving. I’ve never been a surfer, but the waves here are famous too, so I’m thinking of trying it out. There’s no end of other things to try out, and the neighboring islands have their own charms to offer as well.Granted, my wife and I try to be smart about what we do and where we go, but we’ve never felt unsafe here—well, apart from the crazy drivers.We like it here. We’re happy. For tax reasons, for quality of life, and with the potential meltdown of America in mind, we’re glad we made the move.Find Out MoreDoug Casey’s International Man Editor Nick Giambruno, Alex Daley, and I have coauthored a special report on Puerto Rico’s stunning new tax advantages. The report gets into all the details I didn’t have time or space for here. We cover all the specifics of what, why, and how. The report includes links to the forms you need, as well as recommended resources, from lawyers to realtors.Whether you’re thinking about expatriating or you’re just tired of paying high taxes, I think Puerto Rico is a place you should consider. I know of no better resource to help you get started than our special report.For your own health, wealth, and enjoyment, I encourage you to get your copy today.Gold and Silver HEADLINESPalladium Bulls Prepare for a Run (CNBC)As we’ve pointed out for some time, this article reminds us that the fundamental reasons for higher palladium prices are in place. Supply is squeezed from both major-producing countries South Africa and Russia, while overall demand is growing, especially automobile demand.South Africa, which produces about 70% of the world’s palladium, continues to suffer from labor strikes. Russia, the second-largest producer of the metal, has unresolved tensions surrounding the sanctions and may cut its supply.Meanwhile, the demand for the metal (which is used for catalytic converters in gasoline cars) is poised to expand, driven by robust increases in auto sales in major markets, especially in the US and China.The ongoing disruption between supply and demand is the reason for our bullish views on palladium.Dubai Gold Trade Reached $75 Billion in 2013 (Mining.com)A hefty $75 billion worth of gold, or about 40% of the world’s physical bullion exchanged, was traded through Dubai last year, said Ahmad Bin Sulayem, executive chairman of the Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC). This is an incredible twelvefold growth, compared to $6 billion worth of the precious metal traded in 2003, when the DMCC started its operations. Global demand fell 15% last year, but Dubai showed near-record consumption demand growth.Dubai had become one of the world’s major gold trade centers in the past decade, and will increase its trade volumes further, said US-based analyst John Hathaway.The blossoming of Dubai’s gold trade reveals “a significant shift in the balance of global demand flows”—namely, the shift in demand from the West to the East. There are other reasons for the growth in Dubai, including trade transparency, its strategic location, and a rising number of tourists.Matchmaking Miners and China’s $7 Trillion in Saving (Mining.com)Australian media reminds us that Asian investors have huge amounts of cash. In 2013, the Chinese had US$7 trillion in savings. Some of this could make its way to mining and other hard assets.It’s common knowledge that China is hungry for iron ore and other metals, including precious metals. Just last year, Chinese overseas investment totaled $61.6 billion at the end of September, a 17.4% year-on-year increase. For 2014, China’s authorities expect overseas investment to continue growing at double-digit rates.In 2013, the worst year for global-mining mergers and acquisitions in nearly a decade, China accounted for nearly 14% of all mining M&A activity by value, outpacing Canada, Australia, and the United States. PricewaterhouseCooper’s latest outlook suggests that Beijing’s share of global mining deals is set to grow again this year.Recent News in International Speculator and BIG GOLD—Key Updates for SubscribersInternational SpeculatorThe news of a fourfold plant expansion and upcoming low-cost figures validate our renewed confidence in this company.This explorer just arranged an earn-in joint venture, which could provide significant cash flow in a relatively short period of time. This is a win-win for us shareholders.BIG GOLDAs the bidding war for Osisko continues, only one stock is rated a Best Buy of the companies involved.last_img read more

This third chart shows in one simple yet powerful

first_imgThis third chart shows in one simple yet powerful way exactly why Doug loves buying these stocks when they’re on sale and selling them when they go into bubble mode. ATAC essentially did nothing and still shot up over an order of magnitude more than gold. Note that while this third chart looks like the second, the scales are quite different. (ATAC, by the way, is part of my special report, 10-Bagger List for 2014, that details nine companies I believe could show 1,000% or more returns this year. Note that the report was written before the big move upward you see in the chart above.)It’s worth emphasizing that ATAC’s performance this year is just on a rebound from recent lows—imagine what a stock like this could do when Doug’s super-bubble for gold stocks arrives.But what if it doesn’t? Or worse—what if we already missed it?I remember a conversation with Doug back in 2011, when gold rose to within reach of $2,000 per ounce. Many mainstream analysts said gold was in a bubble. I told Doug I couldn’t understand why anyone would listen to analysts who’ve called the gold trend wrong every year since the current bull cycle started. I remember Doug chuckling and saying: “Just wait and see—this is barely an overture.”I am certain Doug is right. That’s not because he’s the guru, nor because I’m a nutty gold bug, but because no government in history has ever multiplied its currency base without sparking serious and often fatal inflation. That’s a fact, not an opinion, backed by enough data to make me extremely confident in predicting what lies ahead for the US dollar, even if I can’t say exactly when we’ll reach the tipping point.Since that 2011 interim peak, as we all know painfully well, gold has backed off on par with the correction in the middle of the great 1970s gold bull market. But economic realities require that the market turn around and head for his long-predicted super-bubble in junior mining stocks before too long. That makes the correction the last, best time to build a substantial position in the stocks best positioned to profit from the coming bubble.And now Doug is saying that he believes the upturn is at hand. He expects a steadily rising market for a year or two, perhaps more, but not many more, culminating in a market mania for the record books.Our market does appear to have bottomed. It may take a while to go into its mania phase, but it’s already heating up. No one is going to want to be short when this train leaves the station—and the conductor has blown the whistle.To find out what you could be missing if you don’t invest in junior mining stocks right now, watch Casey Research’s recent video event, Upturn Millionaires—How to Play the Turning Tides in the Precious Metals Market. With resource and investment experts Doug Casey, Frank Giustra, Rick Rule, Porter Stansberry, Ross Beaty, John Mauldin, Marin Katusa, and myself. Watch it here for free, or click here to find out more about my 10-Bagger List for 2014. Here’s one more, with a particularly telling point to make. This is the stock price of ATAC Resources (ATC.V) over the same time period as the chart above. The point I want to draw your attention to is that the company had no major news during the time period shown. It’s a Yukon gold play, buried deep under the famous snows of the Great White North, so there’s no exploration under way, and there won’t be until the snow melts weeks or months from now. In many of my conversations with legendary speculator Doug Casey since the crash of 2008, Doug has talked about a coming super-bubble.Everything Doug has studied about human nature, history, and economics—from Roman times right up to the present—has him absolutely convinced that the global economy is headed for high inflation, with a very real potential for hyperinflation in the US.Ben Bernanke’s panicked deployment of squadrons of cash-laden choppers has been emulated around the world. The Bank of International Settlements estimates that global debt markets now exceed $100 trillion.The laws of economics—maybe even physics—say that this inflation, whenever it arrives, must have consequences… and that those consequences cannot be avoided forever.The easiest consequence to predict, and the one we’re betting heavily on, is that the price of gold will move higher. Much higher. That move will in turn ignite a bubble in gold stocks and, as Doug likes to say, a super-bubble in junior gold stocks.Jeff Clark, editor of our BIG GOLD newsletter, recently illustrated what such a super-bubble can look like, citing figures from several historic bull markets. I hesitate to repeat any of his figures because the right junior stocks’ gains when the market goes bubbly are, frankly, hard to believe. However, it is a fact that quite a few junior stocks achieved the much-vaunted 10-bagger status (1,000% gains) in previous bubbles, and some even returned 100-fold.Here’s the essential reason why junior mining stocks are Doug’s favorite speculations.Let’s start at the beginning: Doug’s mantra is that one should buy gold for prudence and gold stocks for profit. These are very different kinds of asset deployment.It’s particularly important not to think of gold as an investment, but as wealth protection. It’s the only highly liquid financial asset that is not simultaneously someone else’s liability. Every ounce of gold you physically possess is value in solid form—there is no short to your long. Come hell or high water, it is value you can liquidate and use to secure your needs. That’s why gold is for prudence.Gold stocks are for speculation because they offer leverage to gold. This is actually true of all mining stocks and, more broadly, of stocks in commodity-related companies; they all tend to magnify the price movements in the underlying commodity. But the phenomenon is especially strong in the highly volatile precious metals.Allow me to illustrate—and in an effort to avoid seeming overly promotional, I’ll show how gold stocks’ leverage works on the downside as well as the upside. Bad news first: here’s a chart showing how gold retreated during October and November of 2008, the worst two months of that year’s crash for mining stocks. Also shown are an index of gold juniors and our own portfolio performance. This was, of course, a terrific time to buy, resulting in spectacular gains over the next two years. Now the good news: here’s a chart showing the performance of the same three things in January and February of this year, which saw a major rally in the gold sector.last_img read more

In This Issue   US data turns the dollar aroun

first_imgIn This Issue. *  US data turns the dollar around… *  FOMC begins their much anticipated meeting… *  AUD rallies but then does a 180… *  Gold claws higher in front of FOMC… And Now. Today’s A Pfennig For Your Thoughts. The dollar does an ‘about face’ on disappointing US Data … Good Day!  Chuck is headed down to the southeast coast of Georgia this morning so I will get to share my thoughts with all of you readers over the next few days.  Many of the ‘traders’ seem to be taking a few days off as everyone awaits the results of the two day Fed meeting which begins today.  I don’t expect to see too many new positions put on by investors until after we get some ‘guidance’ from Fed Chair Janet Yellen on how quickly she and her compatriots are going to ratchet up interest rates here in the US.  But as Chuck told all of us yesterday, the week is full of data in addition to the FOMC meeting, and some of that data did move the markets yesterday. The US dollar reversed its march higher yesterday after data showed US industrial production unexpectedly dropped in August.  Chuck sent me this note regarding yesterday’s data: I was working in my office and not on the trading desk yesterday, so I didn’t see the Industrial Production number as it printed. And by the time I saw it, the markets must have just shrugged it off.  I walked out to the desk and the currencies and Gold were trading about the same as they were when I was out there in the early morning, writing the Pfennig. What gives? Industrial Production for August fell -.1% (consensus was for .3% gain). And, July’s previous print of +.4% was revised downward to +.2%…   And to top it off, Capacity Utilization fell from 79.1% in July to 78.8% in August! A look under the hood revealed that there was a .4% drop in manufacturing activity in August, which is, as the spin doctors like to explain it, merely a reflection of slower motor vehicle output, after an outsized increase in July.  I prefer to refer to this as the “QE tapering effect”.   Yes, after all this time, after all this money added to the system, all this excess liquidity in the markets, we’re beginning to see the effects of taking it away. And this is why I believe the Fed will be back to the QE Table before too long. Chris again..  As Chuck stated, the markets had a bit of a ‘delayed reaction’ to this data; as if they maybe didn’t believe the numbers.  But over the course of the day the dollar continued to drift lower.  Perhaps it was due to the extreme long position the market has on dollars right now.  And moves were also muted by the upcoming FOMC meeting.  Right now just about everyone believes the US dollar will continue to strengthen through the end of the year, and with everyone on one side of the trade any indication that it may be the wrong side can cause some of these investors to get a bit worried about being in such a crowd.  All of these long positions on the dollar could possibly restrain further gains in the dollar going forward; but the FOMC will have a lot to say about that. Chairman Yellen kicks off two days of meetings today in what has become one of the most anticipated Fed meetings this year.  The end of the bond buying is a foregone conclusion, but investors are now focusing on the language which will be used in the statement which will be released tomorrow afternoon.  The statement has contained the words ‘considerable time’ for a considerable amount of time, and most Fed watchers believe these words will be removed tomorrow.  These words have provided some comfort to the markets, as they assured investors that a steady stream of liquidity would give the markets a rising tide to float them higher.  But the Fed is now expected to pull this ‘security blanket’ away and replace them with some indication on when rates will start moving higher.  Instead of leaving the timing open ended, the Fed is now expected to tie their next move to a combination of labor market readings and inflation expectations.  But I still believe any interest rate increase is still a year away; and yesterday’s data showing the US manufacturing sector is still not firing on all cylinders certainly doesn’t bode well for those who expect an increase in interest rates as early as next spring.  While we are talking about the Fed, I read yesterday that they have created a new committee on ‘financial stability’.  The committee, headed by Fed Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer has been tasked with making sure important parts of the financial sector do not overheat.  Many believe the Greenspan and Bernanke policies of the past were exactly what led to many of the largest asset bubbles which the Fed has now formed a committee to pop!  I’m sure many of you will not be surprised by this latest committee, as it is another sign of a much more ‘active’ Fed.  The pound sterling joined with the dollar in moving lower yesterday and actually fell to the weakest point this year vs. the US$ after a report showed UK inflation has slowed to the lowest level in five years.  CPI in the UK fell to 1.5% from 1.6% in July according to data released yesterday.  This disappointing number sparked selling of the pound sterling as investors already on edge regarding the Scottish independence vote dumped the currency.  The BOE will release minutes of its most recent policy meeting tomorrow, and some had been expecting to see an indication that interest rates will be heading higher in response to an improving British economy.  But the recovery has been overshadowed recently by the independence vote in Scotland. The pound has fallen over 3 percent in the past month as polls showing Scotland may vote to split from the UK weighed on investor sentiment.  The latest numbers indicate that the vote will be close, but my gut tells me Scotland will remain part of the UK. The Australian dollar began to show some signs of life yesterday after the release of the RBA minutes which pointed out that rates will remain stable for the time being.  The Aussie dollar had been selling off due to the thought that the RBA may be leaning toward a rate cut as the Australian economy struggles to gain a foothold.  But the positive feelings for the AUD quickly reversed in overnight trading and it is moving lower again this morning.  Perhaps investors read through the minutes of the Australian central bank meeting again and focused on the RBA’s statement that the relative strength of the currency is a drag on the economy since it has remained “above most estimates of its fundamental value.”  Investors may now be worried that these words foreshadow further efforts to ‘jawbone’ the currency lower in order to protect exports. Brazil’s real dropped for a sixth straight day as investors try to handicap the presidential election.  President Dilma Rousseff is currently locked in a very tight race with opposition candidate Marina Silva.  The real will continue to be volatile as investors eagerly await the next poll to try and guage who will win.  The first round of elections is set for October 5th and most expect the first round to result in a runoff between Rousseff and Silva which would occur on October 26th.  The Brazilian economy continues to struggle, and the central bank is currently ‘on hold’ until after the elections which will determine the future path of economic reforms and the possibility of further government intervention in the currency markets.  Rousseff has seen a downgrade of Brazil’s credit rating and the economy has slowed during her administration.  But inflation is starting to fall which could give the new administration some room to lower the benchmark interest rates in order to stimulate the economy.  But these relatively high interest rates are all that are keeping many investors interested in the Brazilian currency, so a move lower could have a detrimental impact on the real. Gold added to the small overnight gains this morning as investors prepare for the start of the FOMC meeting.  Gold investors, like everyone else, are focused on whether Fed Chairman Yellen will be taking a more ‘hawkish’ tone in tommorow’s announcement.   Many have been betting the Fed will signal a willingness to raise rates sooner than the mid-2015 estimate which most have.  Higher rates sooner would be another drag on precious metals, as it raises the carrying costs of metals and also makes alternatives more attractive.  But if the rates are rising because of rising inflation, well that would be a good thing for commodities and precious metals.  I have to think Gold will continue to face selling pressure in front of the meeting, as most investors believe we will see Yellen take a slightly more hawkish tone.  But these sell-offs could be a good time to add to positions, as the Fed Chairman has a long history of wanting to error on the side of accommodation instead of risking choking off what appears to be a fairly fragile recovery. For What it’s Worth.  Ty Keough knew I was writing the Pfennig this morning, and sent me a story he came across in the NY Times which he thought would be some good Pfennig Pfodder, and I agree!  The story is actually an oped piece  written by Jared Bernstein back on August 27, 2014.  Readers of the Pfennig know that Chuck believes the US$ is in serious danger of losing its reserve currency status.  And in this Op Ed Mr. Bernstein takes the position that this is not necessarily a bad thing.  I’ll share some of what I consider the highlights of the piece, but you can read the full op ed at the following: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/28/opinion/dethrone-king-dollar.html?AID=3818&_r=1 . …After all, who wouldn’t want their currency to be the one that foreign banks and governments want to hold in reserve? But new research reveals that what was once a privilege is now a burden, undermining job growth, pumping up budget and trade deficits and inflating financial bubbles. To get the American economy on track, the government needs to drop its commitment to maintaining the dollar’s reserve-currency status. …It is widely recognized that various countries, including China, Singapore and South Korea, suppress the value of their currency relative to the dollar to boost their exports to the United States and reduce its exports to them. They buy lots of dollars, which increases the dollar’s value relative to their own currencies, thus making their exports to us cheaper and our exports to them more expensive. …If trade-surplus countries suppress their own consumption and use their excess savings to accumulate dollars, trade-deficit countries must absorb those excess savings to finance their excess consumption or investment. Note that as long as the dollar is the reserve currency, America’s trade deficit can worsen even when we’re not directly in on the trade. Suppose South Korea runs a surplus with Brazil. By storing its surplus export revenues in Treasury bonds, South Korea nudges up the relative value of the dollar against our competitors’ currencies, and our trade deficit increases, even though the original transaction had nothing to do with the United States. …Dethroning “king dollar” would be easier than people think. America could, for example, enforce rules to prevent other countries from accumulating too much of our currency. In fact, others do just that precisely to avoid exporting jobs. The most recent example is Japan’s intervention to hold down the value of the yen when central banks in Asia and Latin America started buying Japanese debt. Of course, if fewer people demanded dollars, interest rates – i.e., what America would pay people to hold its debt – might rise, especially if stronger domestic manufacturers demanded more investment. …Others worry that higher import prices would increase inflation. But consider the results when we “pay” to keep price growth so low through artificially cheap exports and large trade deficits: weakened manufacturing, wage stagnation (even with low inflation) and deficits and bubbles to offset the imbalanced trade. But while more balanced trade might raise prices, there’s no reason it should persistently increase the inflation rate. We might settle into a norm of 2 to 3 percent inflation, versus the current 1 to 2 percent. But that’s a price worth paying for more and higher-quality jobs, more stable recoveries and a revitalized manufacturing sector. The privilege of having the world’s reserve currency is one America can no longer afford. Interesting slant on the whole question of reserve currency status, and while I don’t necessarily agree that reserve status is a ‘burden’ I agree with Chuck that there is a good possibility that this ‘burden’ will be lifted from the shoulders of the US sometime in the not too distant future – thanks to China.  The largest worry for me is the impact of higher interest rates which would likely accompany the loss of reserve currency status for the US.  With the staggering amount of debt the US has accumulated, any increase in interest rates demanded by investors would have a very dramatic effect on the US’s very fragile fiscal situation.    To recap. Disappointing US data sent the dollar lower, but it has steadied this morning as the long awaited FOMC meeting begins.  Investors await the statement, with expectations that the ‘considerable time’ wording with regard to low rates will be removed, but what will it be replaced with?  The Pound Sterling fell as the latest inflation report showed prices are not moving up as fast as before.  The RBA released minutes from their last meeting which at first rallied the AUD but this uptick was quickly reversed.  The Brazilian real moved lower on election worries and gold actually caught a bit of a bid overnight as investors await the FOMC meeting. Currencies today 9/16/14. American Style: A$ .9027, kiwi .8163, C$ .9077, euro 1.2946, sterling 1.6196, Swiss $1.0719. European Style: rand 10.955, krone 6.3923, SEK 7.1342, forint 242.70, zloty 3.2413, koruna 21.272, RUB 38.681, yen 107.12, sing 1.2610, HKD 7.7511, INR 61.055, China 6.1462, pesos 13.22, BRL 2.3401, Dollar Index 84.21, Oil $92.80, 10-year 2.57%, Silver $18.67, Platinum $1,359.00, Palladium $833.75, and Gold. $1,234.88 That’s it for today. I was anxiously watching last night’s football game, as I have Andrew Luck as my quarterback and needed him to post at least 10 points in order to remain undefeated in our FFL.  Luckily he had scored that by halftime, so I got to get some sleep before waking up a bit earlier than usual in order to get this Pfennig out.  Both Chuck and Frank will be hitting the road this week and will have an exciting announcement for everyone – you’ll have to wait until Friday to hear the big news as I don’t want to steal their thunder!  With that little tease I will go ahead and put a bow on this one and hit the send button.  I hope everyone has a Terrific Tuesday, and thanks for reading the Pfennig. Chris Gaffney, CFA Vice President EverBank World Marketslast_img read more

Scientists Predict People in This Country Will Live the Longest

first_img Add to Queue Entrepreneur Staff If the health and well-being of a country’s people is a tangible sign of its success, the United States isn’t doing so hot, according to a recent study published in The Lancet about life-expectancy around the globe.The researchers from Imperial College London, the World Health Organization, Northumbria University and the University of Washington are predicting that in 2030, the country with the highest life expectancy for women will be South Korea — with a 90 percent probability that it will be higher than 86.7 years and a 57 percent  probability that it will be higher than 90 years — followed by France, Japan and Spain.Related: Rough Day at Work? Exercise and Sleep Are the Best Ways to Shake It Off.For men, the three countries with the highest life expectancy are South Korea, Australia and Switzerland. There is a 95 percent probability that life expectancy will be higher than 80 years and a 27 percent probability that it will exceed 85 years in those countries.South Korea landed in the top spot because of factors such as improved childhood and adolescent nutrition, advances in medical technologies and access to healthcare. The high standing comes from having “maintained lower body-mass index and blood pressure than most western countries, and lower smoking in women.”Related: How 36 of the World’s Top Business Leaders Stay in Shape (Infographic)The study described the United States as having a life expectancy at birth that is “lower than most other high-income countries, and is projected to fall further behind. … The USA has the highest child and maternal mortality, homicide rate, and body-mass index of any high-income country, and was the first of high-income countries to experience a halt or possibly reversal of increase in height in adulthood, which is associated with higher longevity.”The researchers noted that the United States is the only member of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development that does not have “universal health coverage, and has the largest share of unmet health-care needs due to financial costs.” They also note that the country’s anticipated standing in the future stems from “high and inequitable mortality from chronic diseases and violence, and insufficient and inequitable health care.” Nina Zipkin Personal Health Next Article It isn’t the United States. –shares February 22, 2017center_img Image credit: digitalhallway | Getty Images 2019 Entrepreneur 360 List 2 min read The only list that measures privately-held company performance across multiple dimensions—not just revenue. Staff Writer. Covers leadership, media, technology and culture. Scientists Predict People in This Country Will Live the Longest Apply Now »last_img read more

UN Warns Climate Change May Doom Us but Nobel Committee Suggests Taxing

first_img The United Nations has sternly warned civilization to end its addiction to fossil fuels within a decade or so to avoid a long “or else” list that includes submerged coastal cities, acidic oceans, devastating cycles of drought and flood upending agriculture and … oh come on, how long does the list need to be for you to get the picture?The report by the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is the latest and shrillest — or perhaps just the least understated — of periodic IPCC scientific assessments issued since the 1990s. However, and perhaps not entirely coincidentally, the same day as the depressing IPCC report was issued the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences was awarded to two U.S. economists, William Nordhaus and Paul Romer, who have argued for many years that economics is both the cause and the cure of the global environmental crisis.Related: ‘This Is Climate Change’ Tells an Urgent Message Via Virtual RealityNordhaus, 77, has taught and researched economics at Yale University since 1967. He built the first economic model that combined data and theory from chemistry, physics and economics that “describes the global interplay between the economy and the climate,” according to the Swedish academy. Norhaus was the first person to advocate for taxing carbon emissions to combat climate change, an idea now widely embraced by economists (if not politicians).Romer, 62, has worked for decades modeling the interplay of economic growth and regulation. According to the award statement, “Romer showed that unregulated markets will produce technological change, but tend to underprovide R&D and the new goods created by it.”Governments can offset this tendency through “well-designed government interventions, such as R&D subsidies and patent regulation. [Romer’s] analysis says that such policies are vital to long-run growth, not just within a country but globally. It also provides guidelines for policy design: patent laws should strike the right balance between the motivation to create new ideas, by giving some monopoly rights to developers, and the ability of others to use them, by limiting these rights in time and space.”Related: Can Corporates Save the World from Climate Change?Although the two economists work separately, the prize committee awarded them jointly because, in the words of committee member Per Krusell, a Swedish macroeconomist, they are both thinking about “long-run, global” issues.Taxes, regulations and even the science of climate change (and perhaps science generally) are currently far out of vogue politically in the U.S., but a carbon tax is broadly favored by business leaders. One idea advocated by the fossil fuel industry is a U.S. carbon tax with the proceeds refunded directly to taxpayers. The proposal has been met with suspicion by climate activists because it would also end the many lawsuits that have been (and likely will be) filed against the coal and oil industry for damages from climate change, eliminate regulations on the theory they are redundant and preclude government using the revenues for crucial R&D, infrastructure upgrades and everything else needed to adapt to higher oceans and extreme weather.What does all this mean for entrepreneurs? Tough to say, though a few things are good to keep in mind, not least is that millennials are deeply concerned about climate change. It also seems increasingly clear that taxes are not invariably bad and that the market won’t solve every problem, including most obviously those that are not profitable. On the other hand, there is considerable evidence that taxes and policies that treated climate change as an existential threat would create huge new industries and save trillions of dollars in avoided damages (to say nothing of social upheaval from forced migration). It might be that for entrepreneurs, climate change is more a question of what to do as a citizen than as a business person. –shares Climate Change Next Article 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. Add to Queue 4 min read Entrepreneur Staffcenter_img Senior Editor for Green Entrepreneur October 8, 2018 Register Now » Peter Page UN Warns Climate Change May Doom Us, but Nobel Committee Suggests Taxing Pollution Might Save Us The latest and most pessimistic warning about climate catastrophe came the same day as the Nobel Prize committee honored two economists for their work exploring potential solutions. Image credit: Douglas Sacha | Getty Imageslast_img read more

Heat and reapplication impact different sunscreen products containing common ingredients

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Nov 8 2018With the growing awareness of ultraviolet (UV) exposure resulting in an increased risk of photoaging and skin cancers, consumers are using higher sun protection factor (SPF) sunscreens with frequent reapplication. New research, Evaluation of Reapplication and Controlled Heat Exposure on Oxybenzone Permeation from Commercial Sunscreen Using Excised Human Abdominal Skin, presented today at the 2018 American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists (AAPS) PharmSci 360 Meeting demonstrates that heat and reapplication influences different sunscreen products containing the same amount of a key ingredient, oxybenzone, potentially affecting safety and toxicity of the UV filters included in sunscreens.”What our research shows is that current safety testing procedures may be underestimating the amount of oxybenzone being absorbed into the skin considering heat and reapplication, such as someone sunbathing on the beach,” said presenting author, Paige Zambrana, a pharmaceutical sciences graduate student at the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy. “Although sunscreens are intended for the entire body under higher temperatures with reapplication every 80 minutes, safety testing for setting UV filter limits only require single dose testing under baseline skin temperature of 32 degrees Celsius.”The researchers performed in vitro permeation tests, which indicated that oxybenzone, using lotion and spray sunscreen formulations, was able to permeate human skin with significantly higher cumulative permeation occurring from the lotion. With the addition of 24-hour heat exposure on the lotion, there was a 2.1-fold increase in cumulative permeation of oxybenzone when comparing sunscreen reapplication at 80 min and 160 min, to a single application and a 1.2-fold increase in permeation when comparing 24-hour heat application to 24-hour baseline temperature sunscreen reapplication studies. When comparing formulations, applying lotion with 24-hour heat and reapplication significantly increased the cumulative oxybenzone permeation 3.1-fold more than the spray reapplication.Related StoriesOlympus Europe and Cytosurge join hands to accelerate drug development, single cell researchSchwann cells capable of generating protective myelin over nerves finds researchTAU’s new Translational Medical Research Center acquires MILabs’ VECTor PET/SPECT/CT”Although sunscreen use is important and generally safe, our work suggests that some additional preclinical and clinical safety testing parameters should be considered before maximum UV filter levels are established,” noted Audra Stinchcomb, Ph.D., principal investigator and professor of pharmaceutical sciences at the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy. “Also, given oxybenzone’s potential environmental hazards and recently being banned in Hawaii, we are focused on how different factors affect people to provide accurate predictions of total oxybenzone absorption.”The next stage of this work will examine sunscreen use through controlled in vitro and in vivo testing procedures with the eventual aim of establishing an in vitro-in vivo correlation between the two tests. In addition, clinical trials with currently marketed sunscreen products will be performed to assess sunscreen use conditions allowing for a better understanding of the current maximum absorption of oxybenzone.Evaluation of Reapplication and Controlled Heat Exposure on Oxybenzone Permeation from Commercial Sunscreen Using Excised Human Abdominal Skin will be presented Wednesday, Nov. 7, 10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. (EST) Poster Forum 5 the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. Source:https://www.aaps.org/homelast_img read more

Vilcek Foundation prizes awarded to immigrants for their work on human biology

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Feb 8 2019The Vilcek Foundation is pleased to announce the winners of the 2019 Vilcek Foundation Prizes for Biomedical Science, awarded to immigrants who have made significant contributions to the field. Dr. Angelika Amon will receive the $100,000 Vilcek Prize, while Drs. Amit Choudhary, Jeanne T. Paz, and Mikhail G. Shapiro will each receive the $50,000 Vilcek Prize for Creative Promise.”Immigrant scientists are behind some of the most transformative discoveries made on American soil, as epitomized by the winners of the Vilcek Foundation Prizes,” says Jan Vilcek, Chairman and CEO of the Vilcek Foundation. “Their work has extraordinary implications for our understanding of human biology and our prospects for treating human disease.”The Vilcek Prize, awarded to individuals with records of significant accomplishment, is bestowed to Austrian-born molecular and cell biologist Angelika Amon, the Kathleen and Curtis Marble professor of cancer research and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Amon studies cell growth and division, and how errors in these processes contribute to birth defects and cancer. Her research has identified molecular, protein, and spatial signals crucial to triggering progression in cell division, as well as how certain errors in cell division, a state called aneuploidy, lead to disorders like Down syndrome. Amon has also illuminated the interplay between aneuploidy and cancer cells, increasing the potential for new treatments capable of selectively targeting cancer cells. Among other honors, Amon has been elected into the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and the European Molecular Biology Organization, and received the Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences and the Ernst Jung Prize for Medicine.The Vilcek Prizes for Creative Promise are awarded to emerging biomedical scientists who have shown exceptional promise early in their careers. The recipients are the following:Amit Choudhary’s research lies at the intersection of physics, biology, and chemistry. He identified a fundamental force integral to the structures of biomolecules like proteins and nucleic acids, opening up avenues for new modes of drug design and delivery, as well as insight into molecules tied to the origin of life. He refined controls for the genome-editing enzyme CRISPR-Cas9 to minimize unintended effects, increasing its potential for treating genetic disorders and curbing vector-borne diseases. His research on binge-eating snakes led to insights on insulin-secreting pancreatic beta cells, suggesting possible therapeutic approaches for human diabetes. Choudhary, born in India, is an assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, a member of the Renal Division faculty at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and an associate member of Broad Institute.Related StoriesNanoparticles used to deliver CRISPR gene editing tools into the cellNew study reveals ‘clutch’ proteins responsible for putting T cell activation ‘into gear’Sugary drinks linked to cancer finds studyJeanne T. Paz uses optogenetics, a technique in which light is used to control genetically modified brain cells in living animals, to understand the brain mechanisms underlying epileptic seizures in rodent models. Her work revealed the role of the basal ganglia and thalamus in mediating seizures with a genetic underpinning, as well as those following stroke-induced brain damage. Her research forms the potential basis for predicting and arresting seizures, even in cases of intractable epilepsy, with implications for treating brain disorders such as dementia as well. Paz, born in Georgia (then part of the Soviet Union), is an assistant investigator at the Gladstone Institutes and assistant professor at the University of California, San Francisco.Mikhail G. Shapiro developed a new class of noninvasive imaging tools to visualize molecules and structures in living organisms at high resolution. Shapiro fashioned sensors allowing magnetic resonance imaging to visualize clinically relevant molecules, like dopamine, which play a role in various brain disorders. Then, he coopted structures known as gas vesicles, a biological feature in certain bacteria, to serve as ultrasound sensors; Shapiro also demonstrated that these and other biomolecules could be used to monitor and manipulate genetically engineered microbes, allowing for their greater potential as therapeutic drugs. Shapiro was born in Russia (then part of the Soviet Union), and is a professor of chemical engineering at the California Institute of Technology.The prizewinners were selected by independent panels of biomedical experts. In addition to biomedical science, the 2019 Vilcek Foundation Prizes also recognize immigrant contributions in culinary arts and art history. The prizewinners will be honored at a gala at the Mandarin Oriental in New York in spring 2019.The Vilcek Foundation was established in 2000 by Jan and Marica Vilcek, immigrants from the former Czechoslovakia. The mission of the foundation, to honor the contributions of immigrants to the United States and to foster appreciation of the arts and sciences, was inspired by the couple’s careers in biomedical science and art history, as well as their appreciation for the opportunities they received as newcomers to this country. The foundation awards annual prizes to immigrant biomedical scientists and artists, sponsors cultural programs, and manages the Vilcek Foundation Art Collections. Source:https://www.vilcek.org/news/press-release/immigrant-scientists-lead-charge-in-understanding-human-biology.htmllast_img read more