first_imgEDMONTON – Aurora Cannabis Inc. has signed deals to acquire an initial minority stake in The Green Organic Dutchman Holdings Ltd. and to purchase up to 20 per cent of TGOD’s annual cannabis production.Aurora (TSX:ACB) says it plans to acquire a 17.62 per cent stake in the privately held company for $55 million.Aurora will also have the option to incrementally increase its ownership interest to 51 per cent once TGOD meets certain corporate, operational, construction and financial milestones.TGOD is building a high-technology greenhouse in Valleyfield, Que., where it owns a 30-hectare property.Under the proposed supply agreement, Aurora will have the right to purchase up to 20 per cent of TGOD’s annual production of cannabis from its Ancaster, Ont., and Valleyfield facilities.The supply contract also gives Aurora the right to purchase up to 33 per cent of the production at the two facilities if it increases its ownership interest to 31 per cent.last_img read more

Rabat – The Authenticity and Modernity Party (PAM) is calling on its members of parliament to relinquish their monthly allowances of the three past months until the start of the legislative year. In a communiqué published on its official website on Tuesday, the PAM, said that “the party considers that the monthly remuneration of their members of parliament is not merited until the start date of the legislative year.”Following the results of the legislative election held on October 7, 2016, the PAM is considered the fiercest political rival of the Justice and Development Party (PJD). The PAM gained a total of 102 seats in parliament, securing a position second to the PJD, which gained 125 seats. Since the announcement of the winner of the elections, the PAM officially expressed its position to avoid not forming a government coalition with the PJD. Instead, to be one of the parties in the opposition coalition.Amidst the controversy to what has become commonly known to Moroccans as the “Government Blockage,” since the delay of forming a government, Morocco’s appointed Head of Government and Secretary General of the PJD, Abdelilah Benkirane is currently facing a dilemma.Benkirane’s mission to form a coalition government has been stumbled after he decided to break off earlier this month the negotiations with the leader parties following a string of unsuccessful talks with them. read more

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump cast a fog of misinformation over the U.S. trade dispute with China, floating inaccurate numbers and skewed economic theories as big tariffs kicked in on Chinese goods.At stake in the rupture is a trading relationship between the world’s two largest economies that employs nearly 1 million Americans, supplies affordable goods to U.S. households and, in the view of Trump and a bipartisan group of trade hard-liners, puts U.S. business at an unfair disadvantage.Trump’s torrent of tweets on the subject Friday followed a rally infused with familiar falsehoods about his achievements (the economy, veterans’ health) and grievances (the Russia inquiry). A look at his words over the past week:TRADETRUMP: “Tariffs are NOW being paid to the United States by China of 25% on 250 Billion Dollars worth of goods & products. These massive payments go directly to the Treasury of the U.S.” — tweet Friday.THE FACTS: This is not how tariffs work. China is not writing a check to the U.S. Treasury. The tariffs are paid by American companies, which usually pass the cost on to consumers through higher prices. One of the theories is that the higher prices will encourage consumers to buy goods made in the U.S. or elsewhere instead. But the risk is that consumers could simply respond by spending less than they otherwise would, which would hurt growth.The burden of Trump’s tariffs on imports from China and other countries falls entirely on U.S. consumers and businesses that buy imports, said a study in March by economists from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, Columbia University and Princeton University. By the end of last year, the study found, the public and U.S. companies were paying $3 billion a month in higher taxes and absorbing $1.4 billion a month in lost efficiency.On “Fox News Sunday,” Trump economic adviser Larry Kudlow acknowledged under questioning that China isn’t paying the tariffs. “I don’t disagree with that,” he said when interviewer Chris Wallace pointed out that U.S. businesses and consumers bear the cost.“Both sides will suffer on this,” Kudlow said, noting that China risks seeing its exports shrink and economy slow. That statement, unlike Trump’s, is in accord with the view of economists.Kudlow said that after years of unfair trading practices by China, “this is a risk we should and can take without damaging our economy in any appreciable way.”___TRUMP: “Your all time favourite President got tired of waiting for China to help out and start buying from our FARMERS, the greatest anywhere in the World!” — tweet Friday.THE FACTS: The notion that China doesn’t buy from U.S. farmers is false. China is the fourth-largest export market for U.S. agriculture. It bought $9.3 billion in U.S. agricultural products last year.As for calling himself “your” favourite president, he is addressing only his supporters, not the country. Polls find Trump’s approval rating to be high among Republicans but it generally ranges between about 35% and 45% among Americans overall.___TRUMP: “We have lost 500 Billion Dollars a year, for many years, on Crazy Trade with China. NO MORE!” — tweet Friday.THE FACTS: That’s wrong. When sizing up the trade deficit, Trump always ignores trade in services — where the U.S. runs a surplus with China — and speaks only of goods. Even in that context, he misstated the imbalance.The U.S. trade deficit with China last year was $378.6 billion, not $500 billion.On goods alone, the deficit was $419.2 billion.Trump is also misleading when he puts the deficit in that ballpark for many years. It’s true the imbalance has long been lopsided. But the U.S. Trade Representative’s Office notes that exports of goods to China have increased by nearly 73% since 2008 and U.S. exports to China overall are up 527% since 2001.Nor is the trade gap a “loss” in a pure sense. U.S. consumers and businesses get electronics, furniture, clothing and other goods in return for their money. They are buying things, not losing cash.___TRUMP: “Tariffs will bring in FAR MORE wealth to our Country than even a phenomenal deal of the traditional kind. Also, much easier & quicker to do. Our Farmers will do better, faster, and starving nations can now be helped. Waivers on some products will be granted, or go to new source!” — tweet Friday.THE FACTS: In addition to repeating the canard that China pays the tariffs, he’s failing to account for the damage that tariffs can do.By most private estimates, a trade war leads to slower growth rather than the prosperity that Trump is promising. The president’s tweet also goes beyond past claims that tariffs are simply a negotiating tactic to force better terms with China. Trump appears to be suggesting that a tariff increase would generate revenues that could then be spent on farm products and infrastructure, something that might in theory require support from Congress.But on their own, tariffs are a clear drag on growth.Analysts at the consultancy Oxford Economics estimate that implementing and maintaining the latest increase would trim U.S. gross domestic product by 0.3%, or $62 billion, in 2020. This would be equal to a loss of about $490 per household.Economists at Nomura note that gross domestic product this year could take a hit of as much as 0.4% if Trump expands the taxes to all Chinese imports as business confidence slumped and financial conditions tightened.___ECONOMYTRUMP: “And our unemployment numbers are the best in 51 years. And for certain groups, … women is now 71 years.” — remarks Monday to the U.S. Military Academy football team.THE FACTS: The unemployment rate for women is solid, but it’s not the best in 71 years.According to the Labor Department, the women’s unemployment rate fell last month to 3.1%. That’s just the lowest since October 1953, or 66 years ago, when it also was 3.1%. The lowest on record was 2.4% in May 1953.___TRUMP, boasting that his economic record has delivered the “highest income ever in history for the different groups — highest income.” — Panama City Beach, Florida, rally Wednesday.THE FACTS: Not so. He did not achieve the best income numbers for all the racial groups. Both African Americans and Asian Americans had higher income prior to the Trump administration.The median income last year for a black household was $40,258, according to the Census Bureau. That’s below a 2000 peak of $42,348 and also statistically no better than 2016, President Barack Obama’s last year in office.Many economists view the continued economic growth since the middle of 2009, in Obama’s first term, as the primary explanation for recent hiring and income gains. More important, there are multiple signs that the racial wealth gap is now worsening even as unemployment rates have come down.As for Asian Americans, the median income for a typical household last year was $81,331. It was $83,182 in 2016.___RUSSIA INVESTIGATIONTRUMP, on his son Donald Trump Jr., who was subpoenaed by the GOP-led Senate intelligence committee to answer additional questions: “My son was totally exonerated by Mueller.” — remarks to reporters Thursday.THE FACTS: The report does not exonerate Trump Jr.Special counsel Robert Mueller looked into a potential criminal conspiracy between Russia and the Trump campaign and said the investigation did not collect sufficient evidence to establish criminal charges on that front.For example, the report cited the case of a June 2016 Trump Tower meeting involving Trump Jr. and a Russian lawyer who was said to have dirt on Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. Mueller said he considered bringing charges against Trump’s son and others but ultimately wasn’t sure if he could prove “beyond a reasonable doubt” that they knew the actions were illegal. The meeting had raised questions about whether Trump Jr. and others violated the federal ban on foreign contributions to American political campaigns.Mueller noted some Trump campaign officials, including Trump Jr., had declined to testify while others had provided incomplete or false testimony, making it difficult to get a complete picture of what happened during the 2016 campaign.The special counsel wrote that he “cannot rule out the possibility” that unavailable information could have cast a different light on the investigation’s findings.___TRUMP, on Mueller’s report: “No collusion. No obstruction. No anything. Two years on a witch hunt.” — Florida rally Wednesday.TRUMP: “So this comes back and it comes back totally exonerating Donald Trump and a lot of other people. ” — remarks Thursday.THE FACTS: He’s incorrect to say Mueller’s investigation did not find anything; it found plenty. Nor does the report “totally” exonerate Trump, instead specifically leaving open the question of whether his efforts to undermine the Russian investigation might have obstructed justice.The two-year investigation produced charges against nearly three dozen people, among them senior Trump campaign operatives and 25 Russians, as it shed light on a brazen Russian assault on the American political system.The investigation did not establish a criminal conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Russia and it reached no conclusion on whether Trump obstructed justice. Yet it described his campaign as eager to exploit the release of hacked Democratic emails to hurt rival Hillary Clinton and it exposed lies by Trump aides aimed at covering up their Russia-related contacts.According to the report, Mueller’s team declined to make a prosecutorial judgment on whether to charge partly because of a Justice Department legal opinion that said sitting presidents shouldn’t be indicted.Instead, the report factually laid out instances in which Trump might have obstructed justice, leaving it open for Congress to take up the matter or for prosecutors to do so once Trump leaves office.___HURRICANE AIDTRUMP: “Puerto Rico got $91 billion and I understand they don’t like me. It’s the most money we’ve ever given to anybody. We’ve never given $91 billion to a state.” — Florida rally.TRUMP: “Puerto Rico has been given more money by Congress for Hurricane Disaster Relief, 91 Billion Dollars, than any State in the history of the U.S.” — tweet Monday.THE FACTS: His number is wrong, as is his assertion that the U.S. territory has set some record for federal disaster aid. Congress has so far distributed only about $11 billion for Puerto Rico, not $91 billion.He’s stuck to his figure for some time. The White House has said the estimate includes about $50 billion in expected future disaster disbursements that could span decades, along with $41 billion approved.That $50 billion in additional money is speculative. It is based on Puerto Rico’s eligibility for federal emergency disaster funds for years ahead, involving calamities that haven’t happened.That money would require future appropriations by Congress.Even if correct, $91 billion would not be the most ever provided for hurricane rebuilding efforts. Hurricane Katrina in 2005 cost the U.S government more than $120 billion — the bulk of it going to Louisiana.___IMMIGRATIONTRUMP, claiming countries are taking advantage of the U.S. diversity visa lottery program: “They’re giving us some rough people.” — Florida rally.THE FACTS: A perpetual falsehood from the president. Countries don’t nominate their citizens for the program. They don’t get to select people they’d like to get rid of.Foreigners apply for the visas on their own. Under the program, citizens of countries named by the U.S. can bid for visas if they have enough education or work experience in desired fields. Out of that pool of qualified applicants, the State Department randomly selects a much smaller pool of tentative winners. Not all winners will have visas approved because they still must compete for a smaller number of slots by getting their applications in quickly.Those who are ultimately offered visas still need to go through background checks, like other immigrants.___VETERANSTRUMP, describing how veterans used to wait weeks and months for a VA appointment: “For the veterans, we passed VA Choice. … (Now) they immediately go outside, find a good local doctor, get themselves fixed up and we pay the bill.” — Florida rally.THE FACTS: No, veterans still must wait for weeks for a medical appointment.While it’s true the VA recently announced plans to expand eligibility for veterans in the Veterans Choice program, it remains limited due in part to uncertain money and longer waits.The program currently allows veterans to see doctors outside the VA system if they must wait more than 30 days for an appointment or drive more than 40 miles to a VA facility. Under new rules to take effect in June, veterans will have that option for a private doctor if their VA wait is only 20 days (28 for specialty care) or their drive is only 30 minutes.But the expanded Choice eligibility may do little to provide immediate help.That’s because veterans often must wait even longer for an appointment in the private sector. In 2018, 34 per cent of all VA appointments were with outside physicians, down from 36 per cent in 2017. Then-Secretary David Shulkin said VA care was “often 40 per cent better in terms of wait times” compared with the private sector.Choice came into effect after some veterans died while waiting months for appointments at the Phoenix VA medical centre.___TRUMP, on the Choice program: “It’s a great thing for our veterans. They’ve been trying to get it passed for 44 years. We got it passed.” — Florida rally.THE FACTS: He’s incorrect. Congress approved the private-sector Veterans Choice health program in 2014 and President Barack Obama signed it into law. Trump is expanding it.__CROWD SIZETRUMP, on Democrat Beto O’Rourke’s crowd size at a Texas rally before he launched his presidential campaign: “He had like 502 people.” — Florida rally.THE FACTS: Trump sells short O’Rourke’s crowd, though it has grown in his mind since he claimed the Democrat only got 200-300 at his El Paso gathering in February. Trump had a rally there the same day.O’Rourke’s march and rally drew thousands. Police did not give an estimate, but his crowd filled nearly all of a baseball field from the stage at the infield to the edge of outfield and was tightly packed.___Associated Press writers Josh Boak, Eric Tucker, Christopher Rugaber, Paul Wiseman and Andrew Taylor contributed to this report.___Find AP Fact Checks at @APFactCheck on Twitter:’S NOTE _ A look at the veracity of claims by political figuresCalvin Woodward And Hope Yen, The Associated Press read more

Mohamed ElBaradei, Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), said in a statement issued in Vienna that the agency would �treat this information with the seriousness it deserves and will investigate the veracity of the information.�He noted that Syria is obligated under its safeguards agreement with the agency to report the planning and construction of any nuclear facility.The information provided by the US yesterday states that the installation bombed by Israel last September was a nuclear reactor that was not yet operational and had not had any nuclear material introduced into it.�The Director General deplores the fact that this information was not provided to the agency in a timely manner, in accordance with the agency�s responsibilities under the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), to enable it to verify its veracity and establish the facts,� Mr. ElBaradei said.�Under the NPT, the agency has a responsibility to verify any proliferation allegations in a non-nuclear-weapon State party to the NPT and to report its findings to the IAEA Board of Governors and the Security Council, as required.�Given that, Mr. ElBaradei�s statement added, �the Director General views the unilateral use of force by Israel as undermining the due process of verification that is at the heart of the non-proliferation regime.� 25 April 2008The United Nations atomic watchdog pledged today to conduct an investigation after receiving information from the United States alleging that a Syrian installation destroyed by Israel last year contained a nuclear reactor. read more

23 July 2009Almost 400,000 people, out of the more than 2 million who escaped Government-militant clashes in northwest Pakistan, have now returned to their homes, the top United Nations relief official in the country announced today. Wolfgang Herbinger, the acting UN Humanitarian Coordinator in Pakistan said that more than 385,000 people have now returned to their homes in the past 10 days since authorities for the uprooted to return to some parts of Buner and Swat, among the areas hardest hit by the operations pitting Government forces against militants in the North West Frontier Province (NWFP).With the onset of the monsoon season and the needs of the returnees remaining acute, “this is a critical time for the complex humanitarian situation in Pakistan,” Mr. Herbinger told reporters in the capital, Islamabad.The Coordinator said that to mitigate the impact of the heavy rains, relief agencies are working to prevent outbreaks of water, sanitation and hygiene-related diseases in camps.The vast majority of the nearly 2.3 million people who have escaped the violence are sheltering either in schools and other public buildings, with host families or in rental accommodations.The pace and scale of returns in the near future will depend on the security situations in the areas to which internally displaced persons (IDPs) will be returning, Mr. Herbinger said, adding that stepped up efforts are crucial to provide assistance to the returnees so that they can re-establish their lives.With more than 80 per cent of people in the conflict-torn areas relying on agriculture for the bulk of their livelihoods, “household incomes took a battering” due to the recent violence, said Richard Fuller, Senior Emergency Coordinator for the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), addressing the same press conference.Providing essential live-saving assistance, such as food aid, must be followed by aid in reducing dependence and resuming normal lives through timely support for the restoration of agriculture, he said.It is estimated that two-thirds of food and cash crops may have been lost in some parts of NWFP during the clashes, one in three livestock animals having been lost across the area.Early recovery efforts are centering on the concept of “building back better,” with the foundation being laid for long-term targets to ensure that people’s lives are better than they were before the violence broke out. read more

Senanayake was arrested after being questioned earlier in the day and was accused of concealing evidence when he was involved in the investigations. He was questioned previously as well in connection to the controversial case. However suspicions later arose over the manner in which he died and it was believed that he was murdered. (Colombo Gazette) Former senior DIG Anura Senanayake was taken into custody by the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) today in connection to the murder of former Sri Lanka national rugger player Wasim Thajudeen.He was produced in court and remanded till May 26. Thajudeen died on May 17, 2012 in Kirulapone and his body was found in his car which had crashed into a wall.According to police reports in 2012, the rugby player was driving home after attending a party when he lost control of the car and crashed into a wall on Park Road.The police claimed that the car had exploded instantly and burnt the victim. Earlier this month the police DIG in charge of motor traffic Amarasiri Senaratne was also questioned by the CID over Thajudeen’s murder.The Colombo Additional Magistrate in February ordered the CID to arrest the suspects linked to Thajudeen’s murder. read more

The identity of the victim has also been suppressed — because Major Crime detectives have yet to locate his family in Sri Lanka and inform them of his death. Three Nepalese men have been remanded in custody over a northern suburbs murder that allegedly left a Sri Lankan victim face down in a pool of his own blood, Adelaide Now reports.In the Elizabeth Magistrates Court, prosecutors successfully applied to have the identities of all three alleged murderers suppressed to safeguard the ongoing police investigation. Police have alleged that a man, 39, man was killed at Penfield Gardens, north of Adelaide on Friday night. They said he was hanging on the barbed-wire yelling “someone’s got to help, they killed my mate”.A neighbour said he had entered the house and found the 39-year-old laying dead and face down in a pool of blood.Police subsequently arrested a man, 44, from Davoren Park, a Northfield man, 34, and a man, 48, of Elizabeth North. They have further alleged the man’s housemate had to flee for his life through barbed-wire ­fences from a group of up to six assailants.Eye witnesses claim the “distraught and wailing” housemate was found bleeding, and on the verge of collapse, at the front of the property. On Monday, none of the men applied for bail and they were remanded in custody to face court again in May. (Colombo Gazette) read more

first_imgDrinking four cups of coffee a day could slash the chance of early death, a major study suggests.Research on 20,000 middle-aged men and women found that those who drank it regularly had mortality rates almost two thirds lower.Previous studies have found that coffee can improve liver function, reduce inflammation and boost the immune system. Dr Navarro said that while the group was relatively young, with low numbers of deaths, the findings were consistent with other studies.Researchers intend to continue tracking them, to see what impact coffee habits have later in life.The study did not establish an upper limit of coffee consumption, but did not include many drinking very heavy amounts, she said. Professor Metin Avkiran, Associate Medical Director at the British Heart Foundation, said: “This study suggests there may be an association between drinking coffee and living longer, but it doesn’t prove a causal link or explain how coffee might be having this effect.    “Coffee drinkers should certainly not rest on their laurels. The best way to minimise your risk of cardiovascular disease and premature death is to concentrate on an overall healthy lifestyle – eat a balanced diet, stay active and don’t smoke – rather than lining up the lattes.”  Coffee consumption has been linked to longer living Credit:Alamy  The new study suggests that it could reduce the chance of early death from all causes – by as much as two thirds.Every extra two cups were associated with a 22 per cent drop in mortality – rising to 30 per cent among older patients in the study.  And those drinking four cups had a 64 per cent lower death risk, compared with those who never or rarely consumed coffee. Researchers from Hospital de Navarra then examined death rates in the group, with a total of 337 participants dying during the period. Those drinking coffee regularly had the lowest death rates, with the strongest links found among older participants.Researchers from Hospital de Navarra then examined death rates in the group, with a total of 337 participants – around 1 in 60 – dying during the period. Those drinking coffee regularly had the lowest death rates, with the strongest links found among older participants.Lead author Dr Adela Navarro said she believed the antioxidants in coffee, which come in the form of polyphenols, which caused the effect. “I would advise drink plenty of coffee, it could be good for your heart. I think it’s a good idea to have about four cups a day,” she said.”I think it’s the polyphenols, they have an anti-inflammatory effect. The study involved those aged between 25 and 60, with a median starting age of 37.They were tracked for up to 14 years. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.  A daily cup of coffee could add months to your life, a new study suggests  The Spanish research involved 19,986 people who were tracked for an average of 10 years.At the start of the study all provided detailed information about their dietary habits – including coffee consumption – lifestyle habits, and health history. The study was observational – so could not prove that plentiful amounts of coffee were the cause of the improved mortality.But it echoes findings from US research, which have suggested three cups a day could significantly extend life.Coffee contains a number of compounds which interact with the body, including caffeine, diterpenes and antioxidants, and scientists believe some of these have a protective impact.Some studies have found similar benefits among those drinking decaffeinated versions – leading scientists to conclude that the antioxidant plant compounds in coffee may provide the most benefit.last_img read more

first_imgEVERY WEEKDAY EVENING, brings you the five things you should know before you head out the door.1. #KENYA: Kenyan forces have stormed the Westgate shopping centre in Nairobi to bring an end to the 3-day siege. Troops have taken control of all floors and are clearing the building where militants were holding hostages. Kenya’s Defence Forces have confirmed that 62 civilians and 3 militants have died.2. #STABBING: A man in his 40s has died after being stabbed in Smithfield in Dublin city centre this afternoon. It comes less than 24 hours after a man was killed in a stabbing in Tallaght last night.3. #DANKE: Newly re-elected German chancellor Angela Merkel has said that Ireland has made good progress on its bailout and said she is grateful to Enda Kenny for “implementing the reforms so passionately” – but there will be no change in policy towards Ireland.4. #SMOKERS: The percentage of teenagers who smoke has dropped from 21 per cent in 1998 to 12 per cent, according to a new report released today. Almost half of children who smoke had their first cigarette at the age of 13 or younger.5. #COURT: Entertainer Rolf Harris has appeared in court in London to face charges relating to indecent assault and making indecent images of children. The 83-year-old was bailed and will appear in court again on 7 October.last_img read more

first_img As the clock ticks down, get all the best Brexit news and analysis in your inbox: 56 Comments Brexit isn’t the only external risk to the Irish economy, but it is certainly the biggest. The global economy is also slowing.The U.S. is the most important export destination for Irish goods, and its economy is decelerating with fears rising of an outright recession in the next 18 months.The Eurozone economy is back at crawl speed, with a few of its larger economies in, or close to, recession.China is becoming an increasingly important export destination: it recorded its weakest year of economic growth in three decades in 2018 and is expected to slow further.For an economy as open as Ireland’s, it is never good news when economic growth is slowing in your trade partners.But, so long as they remain in ‘soft landing’ territory, and a ‘soft Brexit’ is eventually agreed, our glass should remain half full.Victor Duggan is an economist and former advisor to Labour TD Joan Burton. Economist By Victor Duggan 16,094 Views Share5 Tweet Email Victor Duggan Mar 24th 2019, 7:01 AM Sunday 24 Mar 2019, 7:00 AM Opinion: How you see the Irish economy depends on if you’re a glass half-full or half-empty kind of person In many ways, the Irish economy looks to be in ‘Goldilocks’ territory: not too cold, but still not too hot, writes Victor Duggan. HOW YOU SEE Ireland’s economic prospects may depend on whether your glass is half full or half empty in the post-Paddy’s day haze.There’s plenty to be bullish about, but warning signs have begun to flash in recent months as we brace for Brexit and a global slowdown.First, the good news:The latest CSO numbers put GDP growth for 2018 at 6.7%, that is faster than China, and enough to make Ireland the fastest growing EU country for the fifth year running.Nearly 1,000 jobs a week were added during 2018 to take the total number in work close to 2.3 million for the first time, while the number unemployed fell to its lowest level in a decade.Workers are starting to feel it in their back pockets as the annual rate of growth in hourly earnings reached 3.8% in the final three months of 2018, the fastest since early 2009.At the same time, consumer prices continue to increase at an annual rate of less than 1%, the lowest rate in the EU, so that higher incomes aren’t eaten up by higher cost goods and services.Moreover, the number of people outside the labour force that could look for work again in the right conditions is still over 100,000, suggesting it still has room to run if factors beyond our control don’t get in the way.But some indicators are flashing orange:The number of jobs being created slowed significantly from about 2,000 per week in the last three months of 2017 to about 640 per week in the same period last year.The long-term trend in falling unemployment rates ended in August 2018, since when it has hovered around 5.6%.House prices fell for three months in a row through January 2019, the first such hat-trick since prices bottomed out in early 2013.In January 2018, consumer confidence hit its highest level since early 2001 but has since dropped like a stone, and last month hit its lowest level since 2014.None of this is anything to panic about yet.A slowdown in job growth and house prices was probably inevitable after years of break-neck growth. On the face of it, it is hard to explain why consumer confidence has fallen through the floor just as real wage growth picked up strongly.But, one only needs to glance across the Irish Sea to see why people may fear the worst. Rising fears of a devastating hard Brexit towards the end of this month could help explain falls in both consumer confidence and house prices, with the latter reinforcing the former as homeowners feel less flush.This week is the latest in a series of seemingly momentous weeks in the Brexit soap opera. Only a fool would predict with any confidence how it will all end.It is always darkest before dawn, as the proverb goes, and it is the way of high-stakes negotiations to go to the wire.That the current U.K. government stumbles into a nasty accident can’t be ruled out, but good sense must surely prevail at the last minute.Agreement on a soft Brexit with a lengthy transition period, whether this month or later, would at least remove some uncertainty for Ireland and take the worst-case scenario off the table.This alone could give Irish consumer confidence a shot in the arm and help stabilize house prices.Businesses in the most Brexit-exposed sectors would be able to breathe a sigh of relief, and take another look at hiring and investment plans. Short URL Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this articlelast_img read more

first_imgNemanja Matic insists that Serbia are prepared for what he expects will be a “hellish game” against Switzerland todayMladen Krstajić’s side are the surprise leaders of Group E after winning their first game of the World Cup against Costa Rica 1-0, despite being the lowest ranked team in the group.Today’s opponents Switzerland earned a creditable 1-1 draw with Brazil last weekend and left the five-time world champions feeling frustrated by their physical approach with star forward Neymar being fouled 10 times.Swiss boss Vladimir Petković has no plans on changing his tactics for Serbia, who can seal a place in the next round if they win today’s encounter.“Of course we are aware of the fact that if we win we will have progressed from the group and of course we will do our best for that to happen but you know we are facing a very good team,” said Matic, according to Reuters.serbiaReport: Euro 2020 qualifying Group B George Patchias – September 11, 2019 Euro 2020 qualifying Group B sees Portugal and Serbia play catch up with Ukraine.While Cristiano Ronaldo broke records and his Portugal side ran out…“The Swiss team will also try to be a threat to win three points. They have a lot of quality and we respect them.“They have qualities throughout their squad, excellent individual players and team spirit.“We expect a hellish game but we are going to be ready for anything.”The match will take place at the Kaliningrad Stadium at 20:00 (GMT +2).last_img read more

first_imgHuddersfield Town is in the last place of the English Premier League table and couldn’t even compete with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.Huddersfield Town is dead-last in the English Premier League table with only 11 points after 25 matches.The team has only won twice, drawing five times and losing in 18 games.They are candidates to get demoted into the English Championship at the end of the 2018-2019 season.And after they were defeated 5-0 by giants Chelsea today, Huddersfield manager Jan Siewert says his team cannot compete.“We tried everything to beat them but they showed they are also very hungry because of their defeat against Bournemouth,” he told Sky Sports after today’s 5-0 defeat.“We missed several moments when we could have shot.”Premier LeaguePremier League Betting: Match-day 5 Stuart Heath – September 14, 2019 Going into the Premier League’s match-day five with a gap already beginning to form at the top of the league. We will take a…“It’s possible to threaten but you have to shoot. Sometimes the ball goes for a corner or goes to goal, which is the important thing,” he commented.“It was a very bad moment for us. We had some chances before and then maybe we could have equalized before half-time and I’m not sure if it was a penalty.”“We have to work as intensely as possible and for my game, you need the right shape for that,” Siewert added.“To be intense and defend at the front is the most important thing. We have to work hard and continue.”“It’s definitely a test of character. Our fans were fantastic and we have to show that we are willing to win games,” the manager concluded.The team doesn’t have it easy.The next Saturday they will host Arsenal, only to visit Newcastle United and then receive the visit of Wolverhampton Wanderers.last_img read more

first_imgNORTH MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) – Authorities have reopened an intersection in North Miami Beach after, they said, a driver struck a police cruiser.According to investigators, the driver of a dark colored sedan T-boned a North Miami Beach Police cruiser at the corner of Northeast 19th Avenue and 163rd Street, just after 3 p.m., Tuesday.7Skyforce HD flew over the scene where a black sedan with heavy front-end damage could be seen next to the marked SUV.The collision took place several blocks away from the North Miami Beach Police Department building.It remains unclear whether any of the drivers sustained injuries or whether the driver of the sedan will face charges.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img read more

first_imgFacebook0TwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享Despite Representative Gary Knopp (R-K-Pen) agreeing to be a deciding 21st vote to elect a Republican speaker, he voted against one one on Tuesday. The House voted in a 20-20 split on two seperate nominations for a permanent speaker during a floor session on Tuesday. The two nominations were Healy Republican Representative Dave Talerico, and Representative Knopp. Knopp will be on the Kenai Peninsula on Friday for two seperate community events. The Kenai/Soldotna Chamber of Commerce will host a breakfast at 8:30am, at the Kenai Visitors and Cultural Center. Knopp: “Many people acknowledge that the republicans have no chance of success. If we know the probability of success is so low, why don’t we fix it now. I think there will be nothing worse for us to organize and then fall apart.”  The second will be a town hall meeting at 5:30pm- details to follow. Knopp was then nominated by Republican Representative Louise Stutes for speaker. He was surprised by the nomination: “There are concerns in this body of the success of this house regardless of the party affiliation in control of it.”  The 40-member House has 23 Republicans, but only 20 of them have been aligned with the GOP caucus. Representative Knopp: “I’m not voting against Talerico. I’m voting against a republican lead organization because it has not chance of success. It has to be a coalition.”  He said he told Republicans on Monday that he would support “whoever is put forward. Well, at that time, that was my intent.”last_img read more

first_imgAt the 2011 FOLIO: Show pre-conference workshop on social media Tuesday, several platforms, strategies and solutions were presented-the presentations shared insights on everything from Facebook to Foursquare. While the materials were meant to reveal opportunities for publishers to leverage media, platforms, audiences and content, one of the most striking social features discussed was EdgeRank.EdgeRank is similar to a Google Page Rank, except it’s within your fan’s newsfeeds. The more your fans interact with your page and content, the higher your EdgeRank is. This means, for example, if National Geographic has 7.6 million Facebook fans and only 1,000 interact with content every day, it is unlikely the majority of National Geographic’s fans will see updates from the publication-limiting interactions and click through rates.”Facebook doesn’t care about your brand page,” Robert Michael Murray, vice president of social media for National Geographic, told the audience Tuesday afternoon. “We’re not in control of the platforms, the platforms are.”EdgeRank is calculated by an affinity score between the viewing user and edge creator; the weight of activity from a comment, tag or like, among other things; and the amount of time that has lapsed from when a post was created to when someone interacted with it. One speaker during the FOLIO: Show pre-conference social media workshop, Alisa Leonard, vice president of Strategy and Planning at Hearst’s iCrossing, echoed Murray’s comments and the importance of not only posting comments, but getting noticed.”EdgeRank creates visibility on Facebook,” she told the audience “Which is where most people spend time on the Internet.”Leonard is right–according to reports, most time on the Internet is spent on Facebook, with one in every eight minutes spent on the platform.”We’ve unleashed the beast,” Murray said. “We need to make sure people are interacting.”last_img read more

first_img To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code: Listen 00:00 /43:39 Xcenter_img On Thursday’s Houston Matters: The former president of USA Gymnastics has been arrested in relation to an indictment in Texas alleging he tampered with evidence related to the sexual abuse case against sports doctor Larry Nassar. We learn more about the charges against Steve Penny connected to the Karolyi Ranch where gymnasts train in Walker County.Plus: Crosby ISD Superintendent Scott Davis talks about the financial issues his district faces.Also this hour: According to a recent projection, Greater Houston’s population could top 10 million by the year 2040. So, where will all these Houstonians go? We learn what infrastructure improvements will be needed to accommodate any further significant population growth.And Markus Zusak, author of the critically acclaimed novel The Book Thief talks about his latest book, Bridge of Clay.We offer a daily podcast here, on iTunes, Stitcher and other podcasting apps. This article is part of the Houston Matters podcast Share last_img read more

first_imgPC Chandra Jewellers, one of the leading jewellery houses in Eastern India, distributed the mega prizes to the winners of Diamond Utsav 2019 at an award ceremony held in Kolkata.They provided their customers with attractive gifts on every purchase across 46 showrooms in West Bengal, Delhi, Noida, Mumbai, Ulsoor, Jamshedpur, Bhubaneswar, Agartala. The prize consisted of 5 Renault Kwid car, 33 Hero Splendor, and Bose speakers. The winners were chosen through a contest, for which the customers had to fill a contest form during the time of purchase. The lucky few amongst the many who participated in the contest was picked in the presence of the Directors of PC Chandra Jewellers and Tollywood actor Koushani Chatterjee. The evening was made even more memorable with the performance by the melodious singer Manomoy Bhattacharya. Speaking on the occasion, Uday Chandra, Managing Director, PC Chandra Jewellers said, ” More and more women are opting for diamond nowadays, we have a wide range of diamond jewellery from everyday diamonds to party diamonds and wedding diamonds as well. The Diamond Utsav have received an overwhelming response from our valued customers, so the prizes are a small way of giving back to our customers for the trust and faith they have in us.”last_img read more

first_imgOne of the oldest guesthouses in Liberia By Robert Isenberg | Special to The Tico Times“Muy tranquilo,” said our cabbie, Leo, as his pickup truck bombed down Avenida Central. “It’s not like San José. The people are nice. The city is peaceful. I like it here very much.”We arrived at a Liberia terminal, in the dark, after a three-hour bus ride that zigzagged from Tamarindo, and we ached to lay down our bags. We had a reservation at Hotel Liberia, a straight shot from the station, but Leo saved us a long walk down unfamiliar streets. I have never spent ₡200 so gladly.Whether it’s called Hotel Paris or Hotel Caracas, taking a city’s namesake is a gutsy move. Any city name is weighty with significance, and the hotel should live up to expectation. Given Liberia’s reputation for relaxed people and swollen pride, we figured Hotel Liberia should wow us with its hospitality and vaquero charm. My girlfriend Kylan and I didn’t expect much of a $40 casona in the very heart of the White City, nor did we need much.But for two backpackers schlepping their way through Guanacaste, the room surpassed all expectations – a lofty ceiling, earth-toned walls and an immaculately made bed. The ceiling fan and flat-screen TV looked brand-new. The building is an old colonial structure, yet the room had a fresh, modernist feel, as if taking cues from a contemporary art museum. The bathroom was big and basic, and although the shower ran only cold water, its splash was refreshing in the dry Guanacastean heat. In the morning, we discovered that Hotel Liberia has no pool or hammocks as the coastal hotels nearby usually do, but it hardly mattered. The hotel’s central court is broad and sunny, and the shaded commons is beset with tables and rocking chairs. Each time we passed each other, the hotel staff smiled warmly; they let us make phone calls and were flexible with housekeeping. Near a nook full of drinks and snacks, a menu listed various trips and excursions, though the staff never pushed them on us. At one point, we absentmindedly left our door open as we ran to the tienda, and the attendant kept an eye on our exposed room until we returned.As lore would have it, the building has a long history of hosting weary travelers. Back in the 1940s, when Liberia was an even sleepier pueblo, one Doña Sofía Acuña de Guillén would offer respite to passersby; back then, there were hammocks, available to the wide range of cowboys and teamsters who floated through town. Since the 1960s, the Meza Valverde family has owned and operated Hotel Liberia, making it one of the oldest guesthouses in the city. The place looks hip and modern, but if these antique walls could speak, the stories they could tell.Hotel Liberia is undergoing some light renovations, and during the day, the court was alive with dust and electric drills. But the hotel’s best quality is its location – right in the middle of the city, a block away from the magnificent Central Church and the ever-busy Parque Mario Cañas Ruíz. The block is packed with little shops and restaurants, and for travelers looking for the real Costa Rica, the streets are filled with life-long locals, and hardly a Norteamericano can be found. Liberians are generous and chatty, and they love to give directions and advice. For simple comfort, Hotel Liberia does, in fact, live up to its name.Muy tranquilo indeed. Going ThereTake Inter-American Highway north to Liberia. Head for the center of town, to the corner of Avenida Central and Calle Real (ask for the Central Church). Hotel Liberia is located a block south from the church, on Calle Real. Driving time is about three hours. Liberia airport hosts a wide range of airlines, including domestic carriers Taca Regional ( and Nature Air ( Rates range from $28-$50. Snack bar in communal area, and tours available upon request. For information and reservations, call (506) 2666-0161, or visit Facebook Comments No related posts.last_img read more

first_imgRelated posts:Tico bullfights and horse shows: Tradition or torment? Río Torres festival aims to help clean up one of San José’s most polluted rivers The Tico Times presents: 2014 in photos The Winners and Losers of Costa Rica in 2014 Standing in the middle of Parque La Libertad, you might feel like you’re on a remote college campus, easily 100 kilometers from the nearest city. Stout wooded mountains ring the perimeter. The handful of buildings are cubist and ultra-modern. The lawns are meticulously groomed. Pathways crosshatch the grounds, and large painted icons identify them as bike paths. The area is so flat and open, the design so precise and geometric, you might not believe it’s Costa Rica at all. “Laberinto de Agua” is a stone maze designed by Ronald Esquivel. On some days, water springs from its central fountain. Robert Isenberg/The Tico TimesYet Parque La Libertad stands right on the eastern edge of Desamparados, just south of San José. It is essentially smack dab in the middle of the city.“People know Parque Diversiones,” says Cristine Jiménez Calvo, communications officer for Parque La Libertad. “They know La Sabana. But they don’t necessarily know about this place.”Yet the park, commissioned by the Culture Ministry in 2008, attracted 300,000 visitors last year, and when the project is complete, administrators anticipate as many as 650,000 annual visitors in forthcoming years. The park has a permanent staff of 30 and depends on about 700 volunteers to teach classes and maintain the landscape. La Libertad’s central dome is constructed from rubbish found on the site. Robert Isenberg/The Tico TimesNot many expats venture into Desamparados, and the news that comes out of this sprawling cantón is generally bad: The area is known for poverty and crime, and there is little to attract visitors to its low-density developments. A Gringo could visit a local bar and receive multiple warnings from the local guáchiman to be careful because the streets are unsafe. Indeed, brochures at Juan Santamaría Airport warn about driving rental cars through Desamparados.The reputation for danger dates back many decades. Most recently, U.S. tourist Steve Flesch got lost in Desamparados in 2013 and was fatally shot in the middle of the day. Caution is not without merit.But the municipality of Desamparados is an enormous area, covering 118 square kilometers, and more than 200,000 people live in its labyrinth of quiet residential streets. While Desamparados is not exactly pretty, and crime is a widespread concern, Parque La Libertad may be exactly what the area needs: accessible green space, free extracurricular classes, and a plethora of fresh-air activities, from safe jogging trails to a skate park. A small “lake” stands on the edge of the park’s developed area. Soon this pond will serve as a boundary between the campus and protected land. Robert Isenberg/The Tico TimesA cement company once owned this land, and the remnants of industry are everywhere. But after a mass renovation that has spanned the past six years, designers have repurposed the old infrastructure. Concrete platforms now serve as plant beds. The park staff is headquartered in offices once used by the concrete workers. Most striking of all, old CDs and barrel lids form a domed sculpture in the middle of the main cut. Old concrete slabs are reused as planters. Robert Isenberg/The Tico TimesThe results of these efforts are staggering. Five hundred students are currently enrolled in music classes, and 90 students perform in the Libertad Orchestra, a company that has performed throughout San José. The park also offers classes in computer literacy, fine arts, taekwondo, acrobatics, and various kinds of dance. Soon the course catalogue will include workshops in circus performance. Most classes are geared toward children and teens, but adults often participate, and while the calendar is packed with activities, Jiménez says that almost any interested person can propose a project.“All they have to do is write us and explain what they want to do,” she says. “La Libertad is living culture. It is a space for training and recreation across different cultural expressions. The positive impact is evidence in the social, environmental, and economic transformation. Not only do we promote individual abilities and skills, but we improve the quality of life of families, communities, and the country.” Students take a computer class in one of La Libertad’s many classrooms. Courses are available in both English and Spanish. Robert Isenberg/The Tico TimesMeanwhile, the community garden draws scores of local horticulturalists, and a section of the park will soon be deemed protected land, with docent tours and hiking trails.What is striking about La Libertad is that its grounds are so popular among locals, yet little-known elsewhere. The Culture Ministry sends press releases about its events once or twice a week, and the government has dedicated large amounts of money to its development and upkeep, approximately $1.5 million per year. Yet the park is so new that Waze – the ultra-detailed navigation app for smartphones – directs visitors to the rear entrance. Only slowly is awareness of the park expanding.The park’s motto reads, “Where creativity has no limits.” With any luck, its future will seem as limitless. A boarder flaunts his skills in La Libertad’s skate park. Robert Isenberg/The Tico Times Facebook Commentslast_img read more

first_imgMain opposition Akel announced on Saturday that it would launch consultations with Stavros Malas in its quest to find the right candidate for them to back in next year’s presidential elections.The party’s central committee, following a meeting earlier in the day, announced that it has authorised the Akel secretariat to proceed with their decision to “explore the possibilities of a cooperation with him (Malas) in view of the Presidential Elections”.Akel is on the hunt for a new presidential candidate after cooperation with businessman Mike Spanos – who was their first choice – fell through last month.Malas, who served as health minister during Demetris Christofias’ administration, was the party’s presidential candidate in the 2013 elections. He made it the second round where he lost to Disy’s Nicos Anastasiades who was also backed by Diko and Evroko.Following Spanos’ rejection, the Citizens’ Alliance chairman Yiorgos Lillikas tried to convince the party to back him instead but Akel leader Andros Kyprianou made it clear that they wouldn’t be backing Lillikas.The party had said that the right candidate ought to be popular enough to be elected and agree with the party’s positions. In the aftermath of an Akel presidency viewed by most as disastrous, Malas was able to make it through to the run-off election in 2013, edging past Lillikas before succumbing to Anastasiades’ landslide victory.To become Akel’s candidate, Malas needs to also have the same vision as the party as to the Cyprus problem, and the economy. Kyprianou said earlier in the year, that the right Akel candidate is one who could handle the Cyprus problem effectively, the country’s socioeconomic affairs, and wider domestic affairs in such a way as to bring about progress, and deal with corruption.With the exception of former President Demetris Christofias in 2008, Akel has never run a party member for president.In 2003, it supported Diko leader Tassos Papadopoulos, who won in a first-round landslide. Fifteen years earlier, Akel managed to elect George Vassiliou, a successful businessman, to the presidency.You May LikeFigLeaf Beta AppHow to Become Fully Anonymous Online in Less Than 3 Minutes? Better safe than sorryFigLeaf Beta AppUndoYahoo SearchResearch Compact SUVs. New SUVs May Make You Want To Trade Yours In Today – See For Yourself!Yahoo SearchUndoPopularEverythingColorado Mom Adopted Two Children, Months Later She Learned Who They Really ArePopularEverythingUndo Pensioner dies after crash on Paphos-Polis roadUndoTurkish Cypriot actions in Varosha ‘a clear violation’ of UN resolutions, Nicosia saysUndoRemand for pair in alleged property fraud (Updated)Undoby Taboolaby Taboolalast_img read more