Tags: American Airlines Monday, July 17, 2017 Share What’s that smell? Fart reported to be the cause of plane evacuation Travelweek Group RALEIGH — American Airlines is clearing the air after reports surfaced that a fart forced passengers to evacuate a plane on Sunday evening.According to International Business Times, a flight had just landed at Raleigh-Durham International Airport on July 16 when a man passed gas so violently that U.S. airport officials said “it caused nausea and headaches among his fellow passengers”. The funky smell was so bad that passengers were rushed off the plane.However, an American Airlines representative confirmed to Fox News that the story is not true. Since then, Andrew Sawyer, a spokesperson for Raleigh-Durham International Airport has also confirmed that the plane in question was never even evacuated, but deplaned “normally”.In an official statement, American Airlines said: “We did have an aircraft from Charlotte to RDU this afternoon, that landed at 2:19 p.m. ET, and arrived the gate at 2:21 p.m. ET, that is currently out of service for an actual mechanical issue – and odour in the cabin. But it is not due to ‘passed gas’ as mentioned.”More news: Flight Centre Travel Group takes full ownership of Quebec-based agencyThis did not stop people from cracking jokes on social media, with many applauding the suspected passenger for his farting abilities. Posted by << Previous PostNext Post >>
May 24, 2016 525 Views in Daily Dose, Featured, News, Origination, Secondary Market Credit Quality Jumbo Residential Mortgage-Backed Securities Moody’s Investors Service 2016-05-24 Staff Writer Present and Future Look Bright for Jumbo RMBS Low delinquencies, a significant credit enhancement build-up, and high credit quality of loans remaining in pools are all factors resulting in improved credit performance of post-crisis jumbo residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS) transactions rated by Moody’s, according to Moody’s Investors Service.According to Moody’s analysts Zimin Li and Michael B. Gallagher, “Elevated voluntary prepayments and transaction structures provide sufficient and continually increasing credit enhancement for senior bonds and, as of March 2016, credit enhancement levels for all transactions were adequate.”A jumbo mortgage is defined as a home loan for an amount that exceeds conforming loan limits established by regulation. For most of the United States, the jumbo loan limit is $417,000; for the highest-cost areas, it is $625,000.All jumbo RMBS transactions have had low delinquencies since issuance, and the performance of jumbo RMBS transactions is expected to remain strong given the high credit quality of the remaining collateral. Voluntary prepayments are remaining elevated, which continues to enhance the credit quality of post-crisis jumbo RMBS.As long-term interest rates rise, prepayment rates will likely decline in the future on jumbo RMBS; but according to Li and Gallagher, the credit enhancement to senior bonds built will provide sufficient coverage against serious delinquencies to these transactions. The Moody’s data shows that credit enhancement for senior bonds has risen for post-crisis jumbo RMBS while serious delinquencies have stayed low.As for the outlook for jumbo RMBS, according to Li and Gallagher, “Delinquencies in post-crisis jumbo RMBS will remain low owing to a lack of negative selection, the continuously strong performance of the remaining loans, and the improving US housing market. As the transactions season and mortgage loans prepay, the remaining bonds will continue to be backed by the high-credit-quality loans with higher borrower equities in the properties, helping to keep future default rates on the loans low.”Click here to view the complete report from Moody’s. Share
NEW YORK, NY – Taj Hotels & Palaces is inviting elite travelers to take your Valentine to The Pierre in New York for a two-night celebration including: Suite accommodation; Dinner for two at Le Caprice (exclusive of alcohol); Surprise confection from The Pierre’s pastry chef, delivered in-room; Bottle of Champagne; and Breakfast in bed.The Pierre’s Valentine’s Day package is valid for February 12, 13 and 14. Rates for a City View Suite begin at $1,100 per night (two night minimum). To book, call 212-838-8000 or 800-PIERRE4 or visit www.tajhotels.com/pierre.
Categories: Maturen News Portrait unveiled for first woman, Native American to serve in Michigan HouseFrom left, Rep. David Maturen, Capitol decorative painter and artist Joshua Risner, Rep. Dr. John Bizon, Sen. Margaret O’Brien and Rep. Amanda Price attend the portrait unveiling for Cora Belle Reynolds Anderson today at the Anderson House Office Building in Lansing.State Reps. David Maturen and Dr. John Bizon today attended a portrait unveiling in honor of Cora Belle Reynolds Anderson, the first woman and the first Native American to serve in the Michigan House of Representatives. The Anderson House Office Building, where the portrait now hangs in the lobby, is named in her honor.“Cora Belle Reynolds Anderson was a political pioneer; she no doubt overcame many obstacles to serve her district at a time when minorities, including Native Americans, were subjected to considerable discrimination,” said Rep. Maturen, R-Vicksburg. “She serves as an inspiration to us all.”Anderson was elected by the “Iron District” of Baroga, Iron, Keweenaw and Ontonagon counties in 1924, just four years after women gained the right to vote. A woman of Ojibwe decent and a former teacher, she was a lifelong advocate for agriculture, education and public health issues.“Michigan has a long history of courageous individuals who fought to improve the lives of others,” said Rep. Bizon, R-Battle Creek. “Rep. Anderson’s accomplishments helped pave the way for many others who came after. It is an honor to work in the same chamber she did.”### 08Dec Reps. Bizon, Maturen honor Cora Belle Anderson Tags: Cora Anderson, Maturen
In an effort to increase access to secondary education, state Rep. Jason Sheppard voted for giving area students more dual enrollment options today by supporting legislation to allow students in state border school districts to attend out-of-state programs.The House bill includes specific stipulation that the out-of-state educational facility be within 20 miles of the border for students enrolled in a public, charter or private school district.“A quality education has no boundaries,” said Sheppard, of Temperance. “It’s well known that I support the diverse programming we have at Monroe County Community College, but we cannot deny those students who wish to pursue a program closer to them which happens to be just across the border in Ohio.”House Bill 4735, sponsored by state Rep. Aaron Miller of Sturgis, would amend the Post-Secondary Enrollment Option Act. The Act currently stipulates eligible high school students can take certain non-core courses at a qualified institution such as a state university, community college or independent non-profit college or university with state funding assistance. The new bill would allow students in school districts that share border with neighboring states to take courses in those nearby states.Stephen McNew, superintendent of the Monroe County Intermediate School District, testified in support of the legislation before the House Education Reform Committee on Sept. 14.“There are portions of our state where the nearest Michigan-based dual enrollment programs are quite a distance away,” said Sheppard. “We’re fortunate to have many opportunities here and this bill will expand our students’ options.”HB 4735 advances to the Senate for its consideration.##### 17Oct Rep. Sheppard supports dual enrollment for border school districts Categories: News,Sheppard News
Categories: Diana Farrington News,News Legislators’ pay would be docked if the budget was not ready 16Oct Rep. Farrington backs resolution calling for July 1 budget deadline State Rep. Diana Farrington today said she fully supports a House resolution calling for a balanced state budget to be presented to the governor by July 1 each year.Farrington, of Utica, said she became a co-sponsor of House Joint Resolution X because she understands the stress placed on local governments and school districts when the amount of state money they receive is up in the air until the current Oct. 1 deadline.“Our local leaders begin their fiscal years in the summer, and not knowing how much state money they can count on can mean the difference between laying off a teacher or a city worker because the money may not be allocated,” Farrington said. “House leadership has proven for the past seven budget cycles that a spending blueprint can be finalized by July, and I believe we should let voters decide if a July 1 deadline is better than the current one.”The resolution would require two-thirds approval from both the House and Senate before the question of amending the Michigan Constitution is put on the ballot.If the deadline was missed, the resolution calls for legislators to be docked their salaries for every day the state budget is not completed beyond July 1.“State government should be held to the deadline, and if legislators do not meet the constitutional mandate, they don’t deserve to be paid.,” Farrington said.The resolution has been referred to the House Appropriations Committee for consideration.#####
ShareTweetShareEmail0 SharesSeptember 22, 2014; National JournalIt is almost looking like a movement! Over the course of three consecutive days last week, four large high-tech companies announced that they had already or were about to sever their ties with the American Legislative Exchange Council, the conservative nonprofit organization otherwise known as ALEC.Although not all of them stated so openly, the actions by Google, Yelp, Yahoo, and Facebook appear to be in response to ALEC’s open battle against any legislation that would have a positive impact on climate change. Microsoft had announced its intent to sever ties with ALEC only a few weeks earlier. Google, the first of the latest exodus, made their move following a letter from several liberal-leaning organizations urging the action based on ALEC’s stance on climate control. In particular, the letter referenced a training program ALEC offered to state-level legislators on ways to block any legislation promoting clean energy. In an interview on NPR, Eric Schmidt, Google Chairman, accused ALEC of lying about climate change.Yelp and Facebook came next. From their various statements, it appears that these two Internet giants had joined ALEC in the first place as a way of helping to promote their views on net neutrality. ALEC has been a strong supporter of the merger between Time Warner and Comcast. Yahoo was the latest defector from the ALEC ranks, making its announcement only one day later.As a reminder, ALEC is the highly controversial group that calls itself “the nation’s largest, nonpartisan, individual public-private membership association of state legislators.” One of its stated goals is to fight for sovereign rights of states. The claim of nonpartisanship is a little hard to image given that on its website the first statement in its request for donations is “Don’t let the Left stop ALEC.”In response to these defections, ALEC sent a letter to Google, signed by more than 100 legislators, trying to clarify its position on climate change. In effect, they argue that ALEC has never denied climate change as a reality. In that letter, they offer a link to model legislation ALEC has drafted which openly acknowledges that human activity may have had had an impact. In one preliminary clause, the legislation reads, “Further, a great deal of scientific uncertainty surrounds the nature of these prospective changes, and the cost of regulation to inhibit such changes may lead to great economic dislocation.” Some would argue that this means that even if humans have caused climate change, the negative impact may not be worth the cost of cleaning it up.Amid all the furor over the nonprofit status of the NFL (highly covered by NPQ over the past months), there also seems to be a quieter challenge to ALEC’s nonprofit status. As the letter to Google states, it appears that ALEC’s work is very much lobbying on behalf of legislation it considers critical. ALEC is known as the source of several model legislations that emerge from summits it facilitates. In a recent summit, for example, model legislation was drafted that would enable public sector workers to opt out of their union, negotiating their contracts individually.Given the severe limitations concerning direct promotion of any legislation that are put on organizations with 501(c)(3) status, we begin to wonder where the line in the sand is. Where does lobbying begin and end? Is model legislation worked on with legislators in the room lobbying? Is a training program on how to defeat clean energy legislation lobbying? Perhaps ALEC’s acceptance of a policy of greater transparency in its deliberations would help us understand why the work they do is membership driven, and not lobbying.—Rob MeiksinsShareTweetShareEmail0 Shares
Motorola Mobility has updated KreaTV, its operating system for IP set-top boxes.Version 4.4 offers web browsing, as well as HTTP Live Streaming, including support for Motorola’s SecureMedia HLS+ content encryption. It also features USB time-shift, retransmission and fast channel change, based on the IETF standards and expanded support for IETF TR-069, TR-135 and TR-106 standards meaning operators can remotely monitor and manage set-tops. The updated KreaTV also offers whole home DVR.
The number of homes paying for IPTV services is set to grow by almost 100 million between the end of 2012 and the end of 2018, according to a new report from Digital TV Research. The TV industry research firm predicted that pay IPTV subscriber figures will go from 69.4 million at the end of 2012 to 167 million by the end of 2018, representing 10.6% of overall TV households. This compares to 4.8% of TV households in 2012.“This means that IPTV penetration will exceed 10% of TV households by 2018, more than double the 2012 figure and up from only 1% in 2008,” said Simon Murray, Digital TV Research’s author of the Global IPTV Forecasts report.Of the 98 million subscribers due to be added over the six-year period, 73%, or 71 million, will be in the Asia Pacific Region, according to the research. Overall, Asia Pacific is tipped to account for 64% of global pay IPTV subscribers by 2018 with China to be the top country with 76 million subscribers – up from 23 million in 2012.IPTV revenues will also climb from US$2.8 billion (€2.1 billion) in 2008 and US$12.0 billion in 2012 to a predicted US$21.3 billion in 2018. Asia Pacific’s share of the global total will increase from 13% in 2008 to 34% by 2018 – just behind North America.Of the US$9.3 billion in additional revenues to be created between 2012 and 2018, the US will provide US$1.9 billion and Asia Pacific region will contribute an extra $4.0 billion.The US will remain the largest IPTV revenue earner by taking 30% of the 2018 total, down from a 40% share in 2008. France will drop from second place in 2012 to fourth by 2018, while China will take second place in 2018, with revenues nearly quadruple the 2012 figure.
Belgian telco Belgacom is expanding its TV Replay catch-up service by adding six channels from RTL and the public broadcasting organisation for the French-speaking part of the country, RTBF.Available from today, the new channels joining the service are RTL-TVI, Club RTL and Plug RTL. From RTBF, the networks being added to the service are La Une, La Deux and La Trois.The new additions follow a successful six-month pilot among 10,000 French-speaking Belgacom TV customers and increase the total number of channels available on TV Replay to 21 – including 12 Dutch language channels.Belgacom offers two versions of TV Replay. The regular service lets viewers access programs that have been broadcast in the past 36 hours for €3 per month. TV Replay+ costs €7 per month and offers the same service, along with the ability to fast-forward programmes.
Liberty Global-owned Polish cable operator UPC Poland has added two new channels to its programming line-up.The operator has added music channel Muzo.TV and movie service Stopklatka HD to its offerings. Muzo.TV will be part of the Select Extra HD package, while Stopklatka HD will be available as part of the Start HD, Select Extra HD and Max Extra HD packages.Muzo.TV, which airs a mix of mainstream and experimental pop and rock, joins 17 existing music channels on the platform, including Eska TV, Polo TV and Stars.TV.Stopkatka HD is a Polish movie channel jointly owned by Stopklatka SA and publishing group Agora SA. The channel airs a selection of Polish and international movies.
Orange has named company executive Michaël Trabbia as CEO of Orange Belgium, after previous boss Jean-Marc Harion recently became CEO of Orange Egypt.Trabbia joined Orange in January 2011 and has been chief of staff and secretary of the group’s executive committee since July 2014, working for the team of the chairman and CEO of Orange.“We are delighted to have Michaël join the other European CEOs on our management team. He will bring all of his skills and experience to bear on Orange Belgium’s operations,” said Gervais Pellissier, Orange’s deputy chief executive officer in charge of European operations outside of France.“I am convinced that he will pursue the path so successfully laid by Jean-Marc Harion, who has just been appointed CEO of Orange Egypt, and whom I would again like to thank for his contribution to the development of Orange Belgium.”The news came as Orange announced that, together with its Senegal-based partner Sonatel, it has completed its 100% acquisition of mobile operator Airtel in Sierra Leone.Orange struck a deal with mobile operator Bharti Airtel International in January to acquire Airtel’s operations in Burkina Faso and Sierra Leone.
The continued growth of the subscription video-on-demand market is being fuelled by ‘SVOD stacking’ as adoption among new customers slows, according to Ampere Analysis.The research firm claims that while Netflix is the dominant player in all but three markets surveyed, the service alone “simply isn’t enough” for many consumers, with service staking now the norm and household spend on over-the-top services “rocketing”.According to Ampere figures, the average SVOD home in the US now takes 2.8 services, while in established European markets like the UK and Germany the average SVOD home takes two services.In the first quarter of 2018 SVOD spend in the US was found to be the highest at US$35 (€30) per household, up from US$15.6 in Q3 2015. In the UK, spend rose from US$10.4 to US$18.7 – a trend that Ampere said is echoed in “the majority of markets”.“Netflix and Amazon have acted as catalysts for SVOD stacking, particularly in those European markets where they have seized the initiative through low cost subscriptions,” said senior analyst at Ampere Analysis, Toby Holleran.“While some European countries have been slower to adopt SVOD, the American giants are now part of the package in virtually every SVOD household. This is particularly notable in The Netherlands, where nearly three in four SVoD households take only Netflix.”While SOVD growth has slowed in markets such as the UK, Germany and Poland, it is nevertheless starting to eat into pay TV growth, according to the research.In the UK, partnerships between pay TV providers and SVOD services were found to be “bearing fruit” for services like Netflix and Amazon Prime, with pay TV uptake remaining static as SVOD adoption grew 4% year-on-year in Q1 2018.In Germany, local SVOD players like Maxdome and Sky Ticket are “just about holding their own” despite a growing presence from Netflix and Amazon, while leading OTT services in Poland operate multiple business models in order to compete against an inexpensive pay TV sector.Elsewhere, French and Spanish SVOD households averaged 1.5 video-on-demand subscriptions by the first quarter of this year, while Italian households had an average of 2.0.In the Netherlands and Sweden a third of internet homes subscribed to SVOD services between Q3 2015 and Q1 2018, at the same time as pay TV suffered declines of 15% and 11% respectively.“While the SVOD market may be near saturation point in terms of the number of households it attracts, there remains significant growth opportunity as viewers increasingly stack services,” said Ampere Analysis research manager, Tony Maroulis.“Although in some cases a growing number of SVOD subscriptions is leading to a decline in pay TV, that is certainly not always the case – heavy stackers are most likely to have pay TV services. Clearly there’s a healthy appetite amongst consumers worldwide for quality content across a range of paid-for platforms.”
Is the TV Industry’s Digital Transformation on Track?Based on an extensive series of interviews and workshops, Comcast Technology Solutions and MTM together have produced this new industry paper which explores the digital transformation experiences of some of the world’s leading broadcasters and Pay-TV platforms. It introduces a new analytical framework to help management teams:Assess the key digital trends impacting the marketUnderstand the main digital challenges and opportunities facing the industryAssess their organisations progress with digital transformationIdentify the key priorities for transforming their business, workflows and operating models to meet the challenges and opportunities of multi-platform TVContributors to this report include (not limited to): Atresmedia, BBC, Divitel, Sistema Brasileiro de Televisão, Freesat, RTÉ, Telekom Malaysia, Channel 4, ZDF, Telecine, Starhub, Channel 5, Medialaan, Liberty Latin America.Download the report
Understanding of the uses to which people put the different screens they own is still taking shape. From the development of companion apps dedicated to particular shows to the straightforward distribution of linear TV, broadcasters are still experimenting to find out what works – and what delivers revenue. Andy McDonald reports.4oD has experimented with content tailored to small screens.A few years ago, social TV and companion apps were the buzzwords of the TV industry, with much time devoted to the topic at conferences and events. Broadcasters and content producers alike were investing in play-along experiences for shows and ways to extend linear content beyond the main screen.The logic appeared sound – capturing the rising tide of smartphone and tablet usage to engage with audiences and offer them additional content was a step away from tried and tested linear delivery into a brave new digital world. With the likes of Zeebox making a splash when it launched in 2011, thanks in part to the pedigree of its founders – former BBC iPlayer boss Anthony Rose and former EMI board director Ernesto Schmitt – the companion screen space looked set to boom.Fast-forward to 2014: the hype seems to have died down, with many of the original proponents of the ‘second screen’ space pivoting or disappearing completely.Second-screen appsEarlier this year, second-screen TV service Viggle acquired Dijit Media, the firm behind personalised TV programming guide NextGuide, meanwhile, Yahoo! decided to close down its dedicated second-screen TV app IntoNow, with plans to instead integrate the technology into other products like the Yahoo Sports iOS7 app.In April, Zeebox took the bold move to rebrand itself as Beamly. Announcing the move, Schmitt and Rose described it as an evolution of the service, in line with shifts in the wider second screen TV market.In a blog post, Rose admitted that since its launch, Zeebox’s TV guide has been “embraced by a geeky male audience” and that its perception has been that of a “new-fangled social TV guide rather than the social network and TV participation experience that was our vision.”He added that while “Zeebox was all about TV, Beamly is all about the show,” with the app becoming a destination that provides value “even if you’re never in front of a TV.” In essence, with the rebrand, Zeebox shifted the focus away from live interactions and Zeebox’s personalised TV guide, towards TV-focused forums, chat-rooms and content.“The initial phase of social television and second screen was limited to apps providing a companion experience for audiences while watching TV. However, people’s emotional engagement with TV spans the whole day… Beamly for the first time brings together all of these touch points with TV in a single app,” said Schmitt.[icitspot id=”221981″ template=”box-story”]In many ways, this shift away from live interaction, or play-along behaviour seems to be echoed by some of the major broadcasters. Back in 2012, the BBC launched a companion experience for the Antiques Roadshow – a long-running series in which members of the public take their belongings to be valued by antiques experts. Announcing the move at the time, the BBC’s then head of IPTV and TV online content, Victoria Jaye said: “We want to creatively renew the audience experience around loved and established programmes, as well as enable brand new formats to flourish.”Having already at this time completed second screen pilots for Saturday night quiz show Secret Fortune and David Attenborough series Frozen Planet, the BBC said it would test companion experiences around a handful of programmes to explore “the key features and functions that genuinely make watching great TV an even better experience.” In particular it was keen to target “more traditional TV audiences,” in order to drive mainstream take-up.Since then the BBC has had success with a companion app for singing competition show The Voice, which airs in a Saturday primetime slot. Jaye, now head of TV content, BBC iPlayer, says the app’s usage increased by 42% since between season two of The Voice, when it was introduced, and season three. However, she says the BBC is taking a cautious approach to new developments in this vein.“It’s fair to say this is still quite a minority sport, but for those audiences that choose to play along with the programme through the apps we’ve created, the retention is really high. Over 85% are staying with it week-in, week-out,” says Jaye. “We were always very cautious in this space because I think the evidence wasn’t there that this was a big audience need. But creatively, where we’re going is fairly consistent with what we’re finding out… We’ve been offering companion content for many years on the Red Button. For us, it was about seeing how that transposes to online or through apps, and we’ll take a case-by-case approach to that, which is what we continue to do.”Jaye admits that only “a few formats” really lend themselves to synchronous second screen activity, but says the BBC will get better at seamlessly helping audiences find out about programme information while they are watching shows on TV.“We’ll continue to explore ways technically to surface that content seamlessly if audiences want to draw it up while they’re watching the programme. That would be our future direction of travel. But for the moment, we’re being quite selective about where we build a second-screen experience related to a show, because we’re more interested in the future space where all programmes benefit from the information about them being more readily accessible.”Programming One strategy the BBC is pursuing with different sized screens in mind is developing original content for the BBC iPlayer.According to official BBC statistics, iPlayer TV programme requests from tablets were higher than from computers for the first time in April 2014. For the month, the BBC said that 30% of TV content requested on iPlayer was from tablets, compared to 28% from computers and 18% from mobile devices. The rest of the traffic was made up of TV platform operators, smart TVs, games consoles and other connected devices.The BBC’s commitment to original content for iPlayer came earlier this year, at the same time as it announced and rolled out an updated version of its streaming service in a bid to offer a “consistent, but optimised,” experience across different screens. The new-look iPlayer was developed using responsive design so that it can be accessed on from different sized screens without the need for separate versions to be built. It also included a simpler and “easier to browse” homescreen, with the entire service designed to be easier to navigate.While the core of the iPlayer’s content remains the BBC’s broadcast channels and programmes, the new iPlayer also offers an opportunity for new content to be made available. Like synchronous second screen experiences before it, the iPlayer can now be used for “new forms of storytelling,” as well as to nurture new talent.From March the BBC made three new drama shorts available through the iPlayer. In May it added six original comedy shorts from famous comics including Micky Flanagan, Matt Berry, Frankie Boyle and Bob Mortimer, with plenty more content to follow later in the year – including a trilogy of iPlayer projects from acclaimed filmmaker Adam Curtis.“The drama is really about new talent – new writing and directing talent being showcased on iPlayer. The comedy shorts are about established comedians, invited onto iPlayer to create comedy that is original and different and very much authored by them, as opposed to conceived through a linear television slot,” says Jaye. “What’s been fascinating is that our audience has sought them out and really enjoyed them in volume. Both the drama shorts and the comedy shorts have made it to our most popular content in iPlayer. Interestingly, many of the shorts have been in the top 10 most-shared content in iPlayer. This is really interesting as it’s the first time we’ve seen fiction in our most-shared iPlayer content, because the most-shared content in iPlayer is usually current affairs [and] issue-based factual.”[icitspot id=”222021″ template=”box-story”]Overall, Jaye says the BBC is seeing “millions of views” for original iPlayer content, and while the short-form nature of this content seems well suited to mobile access, this was not necessarily by design, with the overall BBC strategy to make the iPlayer easily accessible from all four screens – TV, mobile, tablet and computer.“What’s important is we’re story-led in terms of how long our content is. The fact is we make long-form content, live content, short-form content – all content available through iPlayer. It’s very much up to the audience how far they want to enjoy that on a mobile or a tablet,” she says.Original contentReferring to the BBC’s original iPlayer commissions, Jaye says: “We start out with ‘what does the writer want to achieve, what is the story we’re trying to tell?’ If that requires hours to tell meaningfully and powerfully, then we’re happy with that. If it comes in shorter form, that’s fantastic. We’re very much story-led, not device-led.”In the UK, rival broadcaster Channel 4 has also launched an original content push for its on-demand service 4oD. In its case, the content it is producing is deliberately short-form and deliberately aimed at mobile devices.“We launched our new shorts hub to meet growing demand for snackable, shareable, content – video that is ideal for watching on the move, on mobile devices, for when there isn’t time for a half hour or hour-long show. At the same time we wanted to create innovative new ways for brand owners to work with Channel 4 to reach young audiences,” says head of 4oD Sarah Milton.Channel 4 is initially commissioning a diverse range of content, covering genres such as popular science and futurology, gaming, comedy and satire, lifestyle and food. Some will involve well-known Channel 4 talent, and some new talent from the internet world, says Milton. While it’s possible that one of the shorts will subsequently lend itself to a full-length linear adaptation, she stresses that this “is not the primary objective.”Mobiles, tablets and connected TVs are Channel 4’s fastest growing platforms and accounted for more than two thirds of viewing to 4oD in H1 2014. Milton says that currently most mobile viewing is for full-length programmes, reflecting the content available on the service. “Relatively speaking though, our short-form content does disproportionately well on mobiles and looking at video viewing more generally there has been a rapid increase in viewing to short form on mobile devices, particularly amongst younger viewers.”Whether smartphones and tablets should be viewed as alternative devices to which broadcasters deliver services alongside TV, as devices to which content must be tailored specifically, as companions to the main screen experience or a combination of all of the above will ultimately depend on individual broadcasters’ experience and resources.
Home NewsWatch National News Pregnant postal worker goes missing outside home, USPS offers $25K reward National NewsNewsWatch Pregnant postal worker goes missing outside home, USPS offers $25K reward By Daniella HankeyOct 17, 2018, 08:31 am 388 0 Daniella Hankey On Tuesday, the U.S. Postal Service Inspection Unit announced it was offering a $25,000 reward for help in her safe return.Coles is 3 months pregnant and has a boyfriend, officials said. Facebook Google+ Mail Tumblr Twitter (ABC NEWS)-The U.S. Postal Service is now getting involved in the search effort for one of their own.Kierra Coles, 27, disappeared after being seen on video two weeks ago outside her home. She has not been heard from since, authorities said. The $25,000 offered by the USPS Inspection Unit is in addition to $3,500 offered by her postal union, WLS reported.“Whoever it might be knows something,” her father Joseph Coles told WLS. Joseph lives in Wisconsin, but has been in town for two weeks handing out flyers and said he “would not leave” before finding her.“We’re not going to sit idly by and we’re not going to rest until we find our sister,” Mack Julian, from the Letter Carrier’s Union, said.Cole is 5-foot-4 and about 125 pounds with black hair and brown eyes. Next PostAs hunting season has begun, hunters are being asked to use non-lead ammunition! Linkedin Previous Post6-year-old boy with diabetes sells pumpkins, raises nearly $24,000 for new service dog The postal worker was last seen on surveillance video from outside her apartment in Chicago’s South Side on Oct. 2. Police said she called out of work that morning saying she was sick, but was seen on the video wearing her uniform and her car was found outside her apartment.Police said they are treating the case as a non-suspicious missing person.Coles’ mother, Karen Phillips, said it’s possible she became overwhelmed by everything that was going on in her life. Phillips told Chicago ABC station WLS her daughter recently moved out of her home and into the apartment.“Maybe something did happen where she was overcome with a lot, you know when you are pregnant you are emotional,” she said. “I want to say she just went somewhere and didn’t want to tell nobody and then she will just come home but I don’t feel that.” Pinterest
US federal debt management is living on borrowed time. The deficit for 2013 was only $600 billion, down from trillion-dollar-plus levels of recent years. But this less-terrible-than-before figure was achieved only by the grace of extraordinarily low interest rates, which limit the cost of servicing existing government debt. Should interest rates rise, less-than-terrible will seem like happy times. Almost no one imagines that the current situation can continue indefinitely. But is there a way for it to end nicely? For most investors, the expectation (or perhaps just the hope) that things can gracefully return to normal rests on confidence that the people in charge, especially the Federal Reserve governors, are really, really smart and know what they’re doing. The best minds are on the job. If the best minds were in charge of designing a bridge, I would expect the bridge to hold up well even in a storm. If the best minds were in charge of designing an airplane, I would expect it to fly reliably. But if the best minds were in charge of something no one really knows how to do, I would be ready for a failure, albeit a failure with superb academic credentials. Despite all the mathematics that has been spray-painted on it, economics isn’t a modern science. It’s a primitive science still weighted with cherished beliefs and unproven dogma. It’s in about the same stage of development today that medicine was in the 17th century, when the best minds of science were arguing whether the blood circulates through the body or just sits in the veins. Today economists argue whether newly created cash will circulate through the economy or just sit in the hands of the recipients. Let’s look at the puzzle the best minds now face. If the Federal Reserve were simply to continue on with the money printing that began in 2008, the economy would continue its slow recovery, with unemployment drifting lower and lower. Then the accumulated increase in the money supply would start pushing up the rate of price inflation, and it would push hard. Only a sharp and prolonged slowdown in monetary growth would rein in price inflation. But that would be reflected in much higher interest rates, which would push the federal deficit back above the trillion-dollar mark and also push the economy back into recession. So the Fed is trying something else. They’ve begun the so-called taper, which is a slowing of the growth of the money supply. Their hope is that if they go about it with sufficient precision and delicacy, they can head off catastrophic price inflation without undoing the recovery. What is their chance of success? My unhappy answer is “very low.” The reason is that they aren’t dealing with a linear system. It’s not like trying to squeeze just the right amount of lemon juice into your iced tea. With that task, even if you don’t get a perfect result, being a drop or two off the ideal won’t produce a bad result. Tinkering with the money supply, on the other hand, is more like disarming a bomb—and going about it according to the current theory as to whether it’s the blue wire or the red wire that needs to be cut means a small failure isn’t possible. Adjusting the growth of the money supply sets off multiple reactions, some of which can come back to bite. Suppose, for example, that the taper proceeds with such a light touch that the US economy doesn’t tank. But that won’t be the end of the story. Stock and bond markets in most countries have been living on the Fed’s money printing. The touch that’s light enough for the US markets might pull the props out from under foreign markets—which would have consequences for foreign economies that would feed back into the US through investment losses by US investors, loan defaults against US lenders, and damage to US export markets. With that feedback, even the light touch could turn out not to have been light enough. To see what the consequences of economic mismanagement can be, and how stealthily disaster can creep up on you, watch the 30-minute documentary, Meltdown America. Witness the harrowing tales of three ordinary people who lived through a crisis, and how their experiences warn of the turmoil that could soon reach the US. Click here to watch it now. The nonstop expansion of the money supply since 2008 has kept money market interest close to zero. Rates on longer-term debt aren’t zero but are extraordinarily low. The ten-year Treasury bond currently yields just 2.7%; that’s up from a low of 1.7%. The flow of new money has been irrigating all financial markets. In the US, stocks and bonds tremble at each hint the Fed is going to turn the faucet down just a little. And it’s not just US markets that are affected. When credit in the US is ultra-cheap, billions are borrowed here and invested elsewhere, all around the world, which pushes up investment prices almost everywhere. A nice result, if that had been all. But there was more. Injecting a big dose of money to inoculate the economy against recession set off a bubble in the housing market. Starting in 2003, the Fed began gradually lowering the growth rate of the money supply to cool the rise in housing prices. That, too, produced the intended result; in 2006, housing prices began drifting lower. But again, there was a further consequence—the financial collapse that began in 2008. This time, the Federal Reserve stomped on the monetary accelerator with both feet, and the growth of the money supply hit a year-over-year rate of 21%. It’s still growing rapidly, at an annual rate of 9%. During World War II, the British Royal Air Force (RAF) undertook a plan of misdirection to allow a squadron of bombers to approach an exceptionally valuable target in Europe undetected. The target was so heavily guarded that destroying it would require more than the usual degree of surprise. Although the RAF was equipped to jam the electronic detection of aircraft along the route to the target (a primitive forebear of radar was then in use), they feared that the jamming itself would alert the defending forces. Their solution was to “train” the defending German personnel to believe something that wasn’t true. The RAF had a great advantage in undertaking the training: The intended trainees were operating equipment that was novel and far from reliable; and those operators were trying to interpret signals without the help of direct observation, such as actually seeing what they were charged with detecting. At sunrise on the first day, the RAF broadcast a jamming signal for just a fraction of minute. On the second day, it broadcast a jamming signal for a bit longer than a minute, also around sunrise. On each successive day, it sent the signal for a somewhat longer and longer time, but always starting just before sunrise. The training continued for nearly three months, and the German radar personnel interpreted the signals their equipment gave them in just the way the British intended. They concluded that their equipment operates poorly in the atmospheric conditions present at sunrise and that the problem grows as the season progresses. That mistaken inference allowed an RAF squadron to fly unnoticed far enough into Europe to destroy the target. People will get used to almost anything if it goes on for long enough. And the getting-used-to-it process doesn’t take long at all if it’s something that people don’t understand well and that they can’t experience directly. They hear about Quantitative Easing and money printing and government deficits, but they never see those things happening in plain view, unlike a car wreck or burnt toast, and they never feel it happening to themselves. QE has become just a story, and it’s been going on for so long that it has no scare value left. That’s why so few investors notice that the present situation of the US economy and world investment markets is beyond unusual. The situation is weird, and dangerously so. But we’ve all gotten used to it. Here are the four main points of weirdness: The Federal Reserve is still fleeing the ghost of the dot-com bubble. It was so worried that the collapse of the dot-com bubble (beginning in March 2000) would damage the economy that it stepped hard on the monetary accelerator. The growth rate of the M1 money supply jumped from near 0% to near 10%. This had the hoped-for result of making the recession that began the following year brief and mild.
It’s the old-as-dirt 1 Percent RuleIn the broad strokes of Far East and early London trading, the gold price really didn’t do a lot when all was said and done, even though I was making a big deal out of it in The Wrap in yesterday’s column. The low tick occurred on Wednesday morning in New York at the same time as it bottomed on Tuesday—8:30 a.m. EDT. From there it rallied a decent amount until shortly after 2 p.m. in electronic trading—and it quietly sold off a few dollars going into the 5:15 p.m. close.The low and and high ticks were recorded as $1,188.30 and $1,204.40 in the June contract.Gold finished the Wednesday trading session at $1,201.50 spot, up $9.60 from Tuesday’s close. Net volume wasn’t overly heavy at 116,000 contracts.Here’s the 5-minute tick chart for gold courtesy of Brad Robertson. The dark gray line is midnight EDT and, as usual, most of the price/volume action that mattered occurred during trading in New York. Add two hours for EDT, as this chart is for Denver time—and the ‘click to enlarge‘ feature is a must.Silver’s price during the Wednesday trading session followed a similar path’s to gold and, once again, the charts are virtually interchangeable.The low and high ticks were reported by the CME Group as $16.045 and $16.37 in the May contract.Silver closed yesterday in New York at $16.305 spot, up 18 cents on the day. Net volume was very light at only 23,500 contracts.Platinum and palladium prices followed a somewhat similar chart pattern, except their respective lows came at the London p.m. gold fix. Platinum closed at $1,160 spot, up ten dollars—and palladium finished the Wednesday session at $768 spot, up 6 bucks. Here are the charts. The Oldest Bird in the Northern Hemisphere Raises a ChickBelow is a photo of “Wisdom”. She’s a female Laysan albatross—and was first banded by USGS scientist Chandler Robbins in 1956 as she was incubating an egg. This is a picture of her brooding her month-old chick on Midway Island in early March of 2011. Since then, she has raised another chick on Midway Atoll, this time in 2014. These birds must be at least five years old before they’re capable of breeding, but they more typically breed at 8 or 9 after an involved courtship lasting several years.So, assuming the egg she was sitting on in 1956 was her first one, and that’s no guarantee—and adding eight years to that, you come out with a hatching date for Wisdom somewhere in very early 1948. That means that when she raised her latest chick in 2014 she was 65 years old.I was born in October of 1948—so it’s a near certainty that Wisdom is older than I am.The photo credit belongs to John Klavitter—and you can read more about Wisdom here. If you want to follow these birds from egg to adult, there’s live webcam for that linked here—and I have it on audio background to listen to the adult birds as they carry on until the sun sets in Kau’i in the Hawai’ian Islands, where a small portion of this years brood is currently being raised. The dollar closed late on Tuesday afternoon in New York at 98.78—and made it to 99.04 by noon in Hong Kong, before selling off a bit. Then twenty minutes before the London open—2:40 p.m. Hong Kong time—away it went to the upsides, topping out around 99.35 at 9:45 a.m. BST in London. It was all down hill from there, with most of the damage occurring between 12:30 p.m. EDT—and the 1:30 p.m. COMEX close. After that it traded flat for the remainder of the Wednesday session. The dollar index closed at 98.40—which was down 38 basis points from Tuesday.The gold stocks opened up a bit—and rallied until gold’s high tick, which came minutes after 2 p.m. in New York—and they slid a hair from that point into the close. The HUI finished up a respectable 3.42 percent]It was the same story in the silver stocks, as Nick Laird’s Intraday Silver Sentiment Index closed up 3.48 percent.The CME Daily Delivery Report showed that 334 gold and zero silver contracts were posted for delivery within the COMEX-approved depositories on Friday. The big short/issuer was HSBC USA with 333 contracts—and the two big long/stoppers were Canada’s Scotiabank—and JPMorgan in its in-house [proprietary] trading account—with 171 and 161 contracts respectively. Along with their obvious grab for every ounce of silver in any form they can lay their hands on, it appears that JPMorgan is now “going for gold” as well. The link to yesterday’s Issuers and Stoppers Report is here.The CME Preliminary Report for the Wednesday trading session showed that gold open interest for April dropped by 2 contracts—and is now down to 2,146 contracts, minus the 334 posted above for delivery tomorrow. Silver’s April o.i. dropped by 23 contracts—and is now down to 170 contracts still open.There were no reported changes in GLD yesterday—and as of 9:28 p.m. EDT yesterday evening, there were no reported changes in SLV, either.There was no sales report from the U.S. Mint.There was no in/out activity in gold at the COMEX -approved depositories on Tuesday but, once again it was a different story in silver, as 1,073,627 troy ounces were reported received—and another 1,109,627 troy ounces were reported shipped out the door. The largest withdrawal was from the CNT Depository—and it didn’t quite match the almost identical number of ounces that were received by JPMorgan, which was the 1.073 million ounce number shown above. You can check out all the silver action here.Ted Butler mentioned in his mid-week column to paying subscribers yesterday that JPMorgan has take delivery of almost 6 million ounces of physical silver during the past week. How much physical silver have you added to your own personal warehouse lately, dear reader???Over at the ‘gold kilo stock’s COMEX-approved depositories in Hong Kong on Tuesday, Brink’s, Inc. reported receiving 1,773 kilobars—and shipped out 1,377 of them. The link to the troy ounces is here.I have a decent number of stories for you today—and I hope you have the time to read the ones that most interest you.Along with the growing awareness of the COT report and what that portends for the termination of the manipulation, there are other strong signs that even those not well versed on the intricacies of the report are seeing that something is very wrong with the price discovery process in silver. Back in the fall, the CEO of silver miner First Majestic, Keith Neumeyer, made waves when he suggested the price of silver was too low and openly suggested that silver miners band together to restrict production to counterbalance what he thought was too low of a silver price. I remember writing about it at the time and both congratulated and encouraged Mr. Neumeyer to continue pursuing the artificial pricing issue in silver, but to shy away from attempting to form a producers’ cartel as that appeared to be against antitrust law. While silver is clearly manipulated in price, you shouldn’t try to manipulate it higher – two wrongs don’t make a right and all that.I hadn’t heard much from Mr. Neumeyer on the artificial pricing of silver since then, so I was somewhat surprised when I ran across a very recent interview in which he discussed his opinions in straightforward terms. He questioned the price discovery process for silver on the COMEX and characterized the process in terms that should be familiar to anyone reading these pages. In the interest of time and to drill down to the price discovery discussion, you can fast forward to the 21:25 minute mark.The important point is that here we have the CEO of an important primary silver producer deeply questioning how silver prices are derived. According to Mr. Neumeyer, actual supply and demand have little to do with current silver prices and I, for one, would not argue with him. Although Mr. Neumeyer, much to his credit, has spoken to the issue of artificial pricing in silver previously, I must point out just how rare and unusual it has been for a primary silver miner to raise such concerns over the past 30 years in which I have alleged a COMEX silver manipulation has existed. I’m still shaking my head in disbelief that silver miners heretofore always denied prices were manipulated, even though their shareholders were obvious victims, but I am more encouraged by Neumeyer’s words than anything else.Taken with the growing attention being placed upon the COT Report and the Managed Money category, Mr. Neumeyer’s sentiments are reason to believe the ongoing silver manipulation is on its last legs. It’s hard to run any scam where the scam becomes common knowledge. I’ve always maintained that in matters related to the price of silver, all roads lead to the COMEX. I would revise that to all silver roads lead to the COMEX and JPMorgan, but that is a distinction without a real difference. I actually look forward to the day when someone admits that paper speculators on the COMEX do set and have every right to set the price of silver and that actual producers should butt out and be happy with the prices given to them by the speculators. It has become nearly that crazy. – Silver Analyst Ted Butler: 15 April 2015I was certainly happy to see the precious metal price action when I got up yesterday morning, but it was far from the spectacular variety, as gold wasn’t even allowed to rise one percent. It’s the old-as-dirt “1 Percent Rule” that my compatriot GATA Chairman Bill Murphy over at lemetropolecafe.com likes to mention at moments like this—and he’d be right on the money once again.Here are the updated 6-month charts for all four precious metals once again—and the charts, as usual, are courtesy of stockcharts.com. And as I write this paragraph, the London open is five minutes away. Three of the four precious metals are in positive territory—and only palladium is down on the day, but only by a buck. Net gold volume is already sky high at 36,000 contracts—and silver’s net volume is a hair over 4,000 contracts. The dollar index, which got smoked at 8:00 a.m. Hong Kong time on their Thursday morning, has now rallied back into positive territory—and is currently up 9 basis points.I would guess that a lot of yesterday’s price action was currency related, but not all of it. Behind all of this is a precious metal market that would explode in price to the outer edges of the known universe if given the opportunity. Someday it will, but it wasn’t yesterday.And as I send today’s column off to Stowe, Vermont at 5:15 a.m. EDT, I note that gold rallied a bit more going into the London open, but appears to have been capped [at least for the moment] as of 9:00 a.m. BST. Whether that was the end of it all, or there’s more rally to come, is hard to say—so we’ll have to see what the rest of the Thursday session brings, especially the New York session.It’s the same chart pattern in both silver and palladium as well—and palladium is still chopping sideways, a dollar or so either side of unchanged.Net gold volume is just north of 52,000 contracts—and it’s fairly obvious that this Far East/early London gold rally has run into pretty impressive resistance from “da boyz”. Silver’s net volume is around 5,800 contracts, which isn’t a lot—and a decent amount is roll overs as well. The dollar index is now up 25 basis points in an almost straight-line move from its 8 a.m. Hong Kong low.It beats the hell out of me as to how the rest of the Thursday trading session will unfold—and after yesterday’s price action, it’s probably best that I make no prediction at all, and let the chips fall where they may.That’s more than enough for today—and I’ll see you here tomorrow.
Congratulations to Tuscaloosa County Sheriff’s Deputy Michael Sanders, who was named VFW Post 6022’s Law Enforcement Officer of the Year.VFW Post 6022 Senior Commander Walter Turner presented Deputy Sanders with the award during a special ceremony this morning at the Tuscaloosa County Sheriff’s Office.“Well, I am grateful that I was able to receive this award this year,” Sanders said. “And, I try to be a role model for the new guys and show them the right way to do things.”Deputy Sanders has been in law enforcement for over two decades. He spent 22 years protecting and service Tuscaloosa County.“We need to recognize the work that they do because they need the respect of the community in order to do their job,” Turner said.Sanders currently works in the sheriff’s office’s training division. He hopes the community knows that sheriff’s deputies try to help and serve everyone they come in contact with.
BOSTON — Derek Jeter tacked one last hit onto his remarkable career, then waved his helmet in a final farewell to the major leagues.Successful to the very end, the New York Yankees captain hit a high chop in the third inning that bounced off the right hand of leaping Red Sox third baseman Garin Cecchini. Jeter reached first without drawing a throw, and after a few seconds Brian McCann trotted from the dugout to pinch run.Jeter got a standing ovation as he slowly ran off the field to complete his 20th big league season, pointed to the Boston dugout and embraced pitcher Clay Buchholz.Approaching the Yankees dugout after the team’s last at-bat by a player with single-digit uniform number, the 40-year-old who has worn No. 2 since his rookie season lifted his helmet to recognize the cheers and was hugged on the warning track by Mark Teixeira and Brett Gardner. Boston players stood in their dugout and applauded.The ovation continued as others in his dugout congratulated their leader. Jeter’s parents watched from the stands.In the middle of the seventh inning, Jeter’s former teammate Bernie Williams, who is also a classical guitarist, played a moving rendition of “Take me out to the ballgame,” to the delight of the Fenway faithful. The final hit, Jeter’s 3,465th, left him with a .310 career batting average, raising it from 30945 to .30951. And it came at Fenway Park, the same field where Mickey Mantle played his finale exactly 46 years earlier.Jeter had lined out to shortstop Jemile Weeks in the first inning.The last active member of the Core Four that included Jorge Posada, Mariano Rivera and Andy Pettitte, Jeter led the Yankees to 13 AL East titles, seven AL pennants and five World Series championships. He broke an ankle in the 2012 AL championship series opener and was limited to 17 games the following season. He dropped off this year to a .256 average with four homers and 50 RBIs.Before the game, Jeter was congratulated by former captains of local pro teams. During a half-hour ceremony, Carl Yastrzemski and Jason Varitek of the Red Sox, Bobby Orr of the Bruins, Troy Brown of the New England Patriots and Paul Pierce of the Celtics came out of the Boston dugout, one after the other.They shook hands with Jeter, standing on the grass just behind the dirt at shortstop.At the start of the ceremony, the date “SEPTEMBER 28 2014” was removed, one character at a time, from the hand-operated scoreboard on the left-field wall and replaced by “WITH RESPECT 2 DEREK JETER.” Then the “S” in “RESPECT” was replaced by the No. 2.Jeter waved his cap as he left the dugout for his 153rd game at Fenway, including the playoffs, breaking a tie with Lou Gehrig and Mantle for most by a Yankee.Boston second baseman Dustin Pedroia presented a base with a No. 2 and blue pinstripes on it to Jeter. He also received a green sign with white characters like those on the Green Monster scoreboard saying “RE2PECT.”A video was shown of Jeter being doused in the Yankees clubhouse as part of the “Ice Bucket Challenge” inspired by former Boston College baseball captain Pete Frates to raise awareness for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis. or Lou Gehrig’s disease, a condition Frates is afflicted with. Then Frates rode onto the infield grass in his wheelchair and Jeter came in to greet him.Michelle Brooks Thompson, a Massachusetts native from the Voice TV show, sang “Respect” on the infield dirt then Jeter shook hands and hugged her.Jeter sat out Friday’s series opener to recover from his emotionally draining final home game when his single in the ninth inning gave the Yankees a 6-5 win over the Baltimore Orioles and unleashed a wild celebration as teammates poured from the dugout to embrace him between first and second base.The 14-time All-Star returned to the lineup as designated hitter on Saturday and went 1 for 2.“The hard thing for me about this game is the relationships and how you get used to seeing people every day,” Yankees manager Joe Girardi said, “and how abruptly it ends.“Since (he was) a young man signing, really a teenager, it’s really what he’s known. It’s what we’ve known him to be, the Yankees’ shortstop, and it’s hard to believe that it’s coming to an end.”Before the game, Boston manager John Farrell praised Jeter for “a grace and a dignity, an integrity that probably is unmatched by others.”Girardi had expected Jeter to receive a warm reception in enemy territory.“Boston understands what Derek has meant to the Yankees playing him all these times,” Girardi said. “I think it will be done right.”Jeter was cheered when he took batting practice and when he ran into his dugout when it was over.HOWARD ULMAN, AP Sports WriterTweetPinShare0 Shares