Ardmore Shipping Triples Net Loss in H1

first_imgzoomImage Courtesy: Ardmore Shipping Ardmore Shipping Corporation, an owner and operator of product and chemical tankers, reported a net loss of USD 13.7 million for the six months ended June 30, 2018, sinking further into the red.Namely, the net loss more than tripled when compared to last year’s USD 4 million, mostly driven by challenging charter market conditions.Spot and pool MR tankers earned an average of USD 12,086 per day, while chemical tankers earned an average of USD 12,816 per day for the six months ended June 30, 2018.“While the fundamentals of the product tanker market remain sound, a number of unrelated short-term factors came together to put downward pressure on cargo volumes and charter rates, particularly in the Atlantic Basin. “Cargo flows from the US Gulf to Brazil and Mexico declined in the latter half of the second quarter as a result of domestic issues and consequent increases in local refinery throughput. Simultaneously, a significant build-up of West African product inventories during the first quarter further reduced cargo volumes and freight rates from Europe and the US during the second quarter,” Anthony Gurnee, the Company’s Chief Executive Officer, said.However, Gurnee is upbeat on the market outlook, especially in anticipation of the changing regulations for bunker fuels in 2020, bringing a significant increase in seaborne volumes of refined products from mid-2019, and providing a further boost to tonne mile demand.On the supply side, ongoing scrapping and the record-low orderbook for MRs should result in net fleet growth of less than 1% in 2018 and 2019. This pairing of strong tonne mile demand growth and very limited supply growth creates the conditions for a rebound in charter rates, he added.“Meanwhile, we are focused on maintaining financial strength to ensure that the company can take full advantage of opportunities that may arise,” he continued.During the quarter, Ardmore completed refinancing of the Ardmore Endurance and Ardmore Enterprise, two 49,000 Dwt Eco-Design product tankers, with an undisclosed Asian financier. The agreement provides for the net proceeds of USD 10.3 million after prepayment of existing debt.The company has 28 vessels currently in operation, comprising 22 Eco MR tankers and six Eco-Design IMO 2 product / chemical tankers.last_img read more

Everyone Cares About Al Hoceima Protests Except Parliament PJD MP

Rabat – The President of the Justice and Development Party (PJD) in the House of Representatives, Idriss Azami Al Idrissi, voiced his group’s concern on Tuesday May 30 that the Parliament has been “absent” from the dialog regarding the protests and unrest in Al Hoceima. Idriss Azami Al Idrissi, who heads the group of Justice and Development Party members in Morocco’s House of Representatives, said in a speech on Tuesday that it is “regrettable” that the Parliament is not concerned with the debate regarding Al Hoceima, which he characterized as “a national public issue.” Azami Al Idrissi said that the situation has sparked protests in different Moroccan cities and is apparently “of concern to everyone except the Parliament.” The member of the PJD’s National Council added that his group had contacted the President of the Council and the government through the Council on important national issues, noting that other parliamentary groups had done the same thing “under Article 104” of the constitution. Azami Al Idrissi also revealed that the PJD group had demanded a meeting with the counselor of the Ministry of Interior and the Minister of Interior, Abdelouafi Laftit, to discuss the situation in the Northern city of Al Hoceima. He stated that his PJD group had “remarked that the government had been absent from this national issue, and the Parliament has an important role in it.” The President of the PJD members urged the Speaker of the House of Representatives to “do what is necessary” for Parliament to fulfill its duties in the government. read more

ProPolisario NGO Tells Sweden to Discourage Business Deals in Western Sahara

Rabat – Western Sahara Resource Watch (WSRW), an active pro-Polisario Front NGO network operating in several countries, including Sweden, is putting pressure on the Swedish government to derail local companies’ dealings in Western Sahara.WSRW and local Polisario advocacy NGO Emmaus Stockholm drafted a report denouncing what it described as the silence of the Swedish government on the continuous involvement of local companies in the region, despite the December 2016 ruling of the European Court of Justice, which stated that the agriculture agreement between Morocco and the European Union is not applicable to Western Sahara.A statement released by the two groups cited major Swedish companies which, according to WSRW, are not abiding by the court’s judgment. Among these are the Swedish mining and construction giant Atlas Copco and the shipping firm Wisby Tankers. WSRW said the government led by the Social Democrat Stefan Löfven should “advise” local companies not to engage in Western Sahara.“The Swedish government has a responsibility to issue clear guidance on how companies and governmental bodies ought to act in relation to Western Sahara,” said WSRW member Erik Hagen.While relations between the Moroccan and Swedish government turned sour in October 2015 over talks of Sweden’s intention to recognize the self-proclaimed Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR), the tension later on faded between Rabat and Stockholm  when the latter retracted from its earlier plans.After that the country became, with time, subject to criticism from the supporters of the separatists.Sweden, among other European countries, seems concerned with the future of trade cooperation with Morocco in light of the European court ruling. The EU and Morocco are currently in talks to reach an agreement on how to preserve cooperation despite the court’s judgment. read more

The Latest Mnuchin to hold 1on1 chat with PBOC Gov Yi

FUKUOKA, Japan — The Latest on the meeting of financial leaders of the Group of 20 major economies (all times local):1:50 p.m.U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says he plans to speak one-on-one with China’s central bank governor about trade.Mnuchin said Saturday that he would hold routine talks on various issues and then meet privately with Yi Gang, chairman of the People’s Bank of China.He said the focus of that one-on-one discussion will be the trade dispute between Beijing and Washington. But he said he expects any major progress to wait until a meeting of presidents Donald Trump and Xi Jinping in Osaka later this month.Mnuchin and Yi are among finance officials attending an annual meeting of the Group of 20 major economies ahead of a summit in Osaka later this month. He said there were no plans for trade talks in Washington or Beijing before then.___11:25 a.m.Finance chiefs of the Group of 20 major economies meeting in the Japanese city of Fukuoka are debating how to revise tax systems to ensure big companies pay their fair share and support economies as global growth slows.U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Saturday that tax policies must capture the “digitalization” of business to prevent a “race to the bottom” by countries trying to lure companies by offering unsustainably and unfairly low tax rates as an incentive.Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso says there must be “no big losers” due to the reforms, which he says could be the most significant in a century.In Washington, meanwhile, President Donald Trump tweeted that he will refrain from a 5% tariff on exports from Mexico, citing progress on the migration issue.The Associated Press read more

UN Rights Council appoints Nobel Peace laureate to lead mission to Darfur

26 January 2007Jody Williams, winner of the 1997 Nobel Peace Prize and co-founder of the Nobel Women’s Initiative, will lead a five-person high-level mission to evaluate the human rights situation in the war-ravaged Darfur region, the United Nations Human Rights Council announced today. The Council’s President, Mexican Ambassador Luis Alfonso de Alba, appointed the five “highly qualified persons” comprising the Darfur mission after conferring with the Council and Sima Samar, the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Sudan, who will also participate in the mission.The other four members of the mission are: Mart Nutt, an Estonian Parliament Member and Member of the Council of Europe’s European Commission Against Racism and Intolerance; Bertrand Ramcharan, the former Acting and Deputy UN High Commissioner for Human Rights; Patrice Tonda, Gabon’s Permanent Representative to the International Organizations in Geneva; and Indonesian Ambassador Marakim Wibisono, President of the 61st session of the Commission on Human Rights. These members will serve in their personal capacity.The appointments come more than a month after the decision to convene a high-level panel to assess the human rights conditions in Darfur, which has witnessed countless instances of abuses, among them mass rape, abduction and forced relocation. Over 200,000 people have been killed in the region since 2003 and another 2 million displaced from their homes due to prolonged fighting among Government forces, allied militias and rebel groups. read more

Muskrat Falls estimate surpasses 11 billion Project was not the right choice

ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — Estimated costs for the troubled Muskrat Falls hydro megaproject in Labrador have now hit $11.4 billion including financing.That’s up from an original estimate of $7.4 billion — including the cost of borrowing — when the development was sanctioned in 2012.First power from the dam and hydro station under construction on the lower Churchill River was expected next year, but Nalcor Energy CEO Stan Marshall now says first power is delayed until the fall of 2019.“In my opinion the Muskrat Falls project was not the right choice,” Marshall told a news conference Friday.Still, he said he expects the project will “finish strong.”Terence Corcoran: How Muskrat Falls went from a green dream to a bog of red inkFormer Fortis president takes over company leading Newfoundland’s Muskrat Falls projectCEO leading massive $9.2 billion Muskrat Falls hydro project resigns: ‘It’s my decision’Full power from Muskrat Falls to the island of Newfoundland and on to Nova Scotia through subsea cables is expected in mid-2020.Marshall says original cost estimates were optimistic or overly aggressive.He also says some contractors lacked experience working in harsh environments and that early execution by some “was poor.”About $6.7 billion has been spent or is already committed to the project.Marshall says most problems stem from construction of the power plant. He says Nalcor is in “a major dispute” with construction contractor Astaldi Canada. He said it’s the major uncertainty for Muskrat Falls but that talks continue.Marshall says electricity rates for domestic customers are now expected to rise to 21.4 cents per kilowatt hour in 2021, before tax. That’s up 6.3 cents from forecasts when the project was sanctioned in 2012.Sales of available export power would bring those estimates down by less than a cent, Marshall predicted.Consumers in the province paid about 12 cents per kilowatt hour last year before tax. That compares to almost 15 cents in Ontario and 16 cents in Nova Scotia.Marshall says forecasted energy needs have decreased, but the province still needs a new source of power to replace the aging Holyrood plant and to meet future demand.He predicts by the time Muskrat Falls comes onstream, consumers in the province will be paying among the highest rates in the country.Still, Marshall — who took over just two months ago as CEO of the project, which was sanctioned by the former PC government — says it’s too late to turn back.“It was a gamble,” Marshall said of energy price assumptions made when the project was approved.“And it has gone against us.”The province is obligated to provide power to Nova Scotia utility Emera for 35 years. Nixing Muskrat Falls and myriad contracts would be far more expensive than forging ahead, he said.“The project was too big for our needs,” says Marshall. “We speculated, and we lost.”Premier Dwight Ball said he wouldn’t go so far as to describe Muskrat Falls as a “boondoggle” as Marshall did.But he said he can understand if people question why they should trust anything they hear from Nalcor Energy.“I completely understand why people would look at the project and say: ‘I’ve heard this before. It’s political.’“We’re going to see it past the finish line. Underpinning it will be reliable power at competitive prices.”Ball said he’ll work with Marshall over the next four years to find ways to lower Muskrat Falls power rates for consumers.“We’ve inherited this project. We’ve inherited the challenges that come with it.” read more

Drew Brees Supports Jonathan Vilma In Affidavit

Jonathan Vilma, the New Orleans Saints’ linebacker who received a one-year suspension in the team’s bounty case, received strong support from quarterback Drew Brees in his quest to play this season.Vilma is fighting his punishment levied by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell. Brees’ affidavit was entered in New Orleans federal court as evidence for Vilma’s motion to dismiss the 2012 suspension for the linebacker’s alleged involvement in a program offering bonuses to players who injure opponents. Vilma has sued Goodell, claiming defamation. An NFL investigation found that the New Orleans Saints operated a bounty system rewarding between 22 and 27 players for hard hits and injuring opposing players.Drew Brees, who signed a five-year, $100 million contract last week to stay with the Saints, also swears that he wasn’t aware of any bounty program.“I have no knowledge of a pay to injure program existing, and yet to personally see any evidence that would substantiate these allegations,” Brees says in the affidavit. “In my four years as a teammate with Jonathan, I have found that he is a man of integrity who passionately plays the game of football within the frameworks of the rules and has respect for his opponents.”Drew Brees was generous in his depiction of Vilma, who has been a model citizen off the field. He said Vilma has been dedicated to helping the city recover from Hurricane Katrina and has started a foundation to build schools in Haiti.“As a professional football player, our platform to reach our communities is directly driven by the manner in which we compete on the field,” Brees said. “Therefore, Jonathan’s absence on the field will adversely affect his ability to impact the community in a positive way as a leader and a role model.”Vilma and Saints coach Sean Payton have been suspended for the 2012 season for their roles in the bounty program the NFL says went on for three seasons.The league wants the case dismissed because the collective bargaining agreement reached last August to end the lockout gives the commissioner the authority to punish players for “conduct detrimental” to the NFL. But Vilma is not accepting Goodell’s unilateral decision without a fight. read more

Who Needs A World Series The Indians Are Dominating The AllStar Game

When Major League Baseball’s All-Stars take the field Tuesday night in Washington, the Cleveland Indians will be quite well-represented. With starting third baseman Jose Ramirez leading the way, the Tribe has six total players on the American League roster, tied with the Houston Astros for the most in MLB.1Including both original All-Star picks and injury replacements. It’s a fitting honor for this star-powered season in Cleveland: The Indians currently boast four players — Ramirez, Francisco Lindor, Trevor Bauer and Corey Kluber — each on pace to put up at least six wins above replacement,2Averaging together the WAR values found at Baseball-Reference.com and FanGraphs. which, if it holds up (grain of salt), would tie them for the most by any MLB team since 1901.That kind of star performance is nothing new for the Tribe, though. Since the All-Star Game began in 1933, only seven franchises (the Yankees, Cardinals, Red Sox, Dodgers, Reds, Giants and Braves) have sent more total players to the midsummer classic than Cleveland has. And no team’s top players have done more to help their league win during the game itself, especially on the pitching side. The franchise may not have won a World Series since 1948, but it does shine brightly on at least one high-profile stage.I figured all this out by crunching a simplified version of WAR on the stats from each All-Star Game in history. This WAR doesn’t use defensive metrics3Though I did adjust for position. or fancy adjustments for extra bases gained, but it does judge a player’s basic hitting and pitching stats relative to the environment in which they were produced. (For batters, this mainly meant calculating runs above average using weighted on-base average; for pitchers, this involved a 50-50 blend between the value of not allowing earned runs and the value of performance in categories a pitcher directly controls — walks, strikeouts and home runs.)4I also applied an adjustment for the leverage index of a pitcher’s innings, although I ditched WAR’s usual distinction between pitching stats for starters and relievers. In the All-Star Game, most pitchers are used in the manner of a typical reliever — for just an inning or two — even when they start.By all those numbers, here are the franchises who have the best All-Star Game WAR over time, divided by the number of years they’ve existed (through 2017): In terms of value from batters (per season that both the team and the All-Star Game existed), the Indians rank fifth behind the Cardinals, Red Sox, Tigers and Diamondbacks. That’s pretty good, and it comes thanks to players such as third baseman Al Rosen (career 1.247 All-Star OPS, or on-base percentage plus slugging) and catcher Sandy Alomar Jr. (who was named MVP in 1997). But the pitching side is where Cleveland has really distinguished itself, easily ranking No. 1 among all franchises (topping the Dodgers and Reds). That’s largely due to the efforts of 1930s/40s-era Tribe hurlers Mel Harder and Bob Feller, who show up as the top two pitchers in All-Star history according to WAR. In 25⅓ combined All-Star innings over nine appearances, that pair allowed just 1 earned run, good for a miniscule ERA of 0.36.Now, we should note that it’s no coincidence the All-Star Game’s most valuable pitchers played early in the game’s existence. Back then, pitchers like Feller were allowed to log three to four innings at a time, as opposed to today’s trend of letting each pitcher on the roster get about an inning of work apiece. Obviously, it’s easier to rack up big WAR totals if you get to throw more innings — provided you’re effective the way Harder and Feller were.But that isn’t to say no modern players are near the top of the All-Star WAR ranks. Mariano Rivera ranks ninth among pitchers after allowing zero earned runs in nine innings of work, and Randy Johnson ranks 11th. On the hitting side, Derek Jeter enhanced his status as baseball’s biggest star with a 1.184 OPS and the third-most All-Star WAR of any position player.5This is the part where I reiterate that this simple version of WAR doesn’t factor in Jeter’s astonishingly bad defense relative to other shortstops. And Mike Trout is zooming up the list — because of course he is — with a 1.533 OPS and the seventh-most WAR of any hitter, compiled in only five appearances.Speaking of modern entities, at the other end of the All-Star WAR spectrum from the Indians are the Miami Marlins and Colorado Rockies, who look terrible even after adjusting for how comparatively few chances they’ve had to rack up appearances. (Each franchise entered MLB in 1993.) Interestingly, the Astros join them among the teams whose players have done the least in the All-Star Game over the years. Houston has had plenty of top-line talent to represent it, but Jose Altuve and Craig Biggio combined to go 1-for-23 in their All-Star appearances, and Roger Clemens gave up 3 earned runs in two innings as an Astro, to go with a handful of other high-profile flops.The good news for the Astros is that they’ll get a bunch of chances to reverse that trend in Tuesday’s game. At the same time, the Indians will get plenty more opportunities to pad their all-time numbers. Bauer and Ramirez might never catch up to Feller and Rosen, but they do have a lot of illustrious history on their side.Check out our latest MLB predictions. read more

Diamonds and Botswana society

first_imgLeading experts will meet in Botswana, November 23 – 24, for the Connecting Resources and Society conference that is set to explore the role of Botswana’s diamond industry in the socio-economic development of the country since independence, almost 50 years ago. It will also discuss how responsible resource management can safeguard the benefits of resource extraction for future generations.The conference, organised by Chatham House, a world-leading independent policy institute, will be hosted jointly by The De Beers Group of Companies and the Ministry of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources. Across the two days, the hosts will be joined by civil society, members of the media and Botswana’s private and public sectors. The speakers and panellists will examine the role of public-private partnerships, such as the one between the Government of the Republic of Botswana and De Beers.The conference coincides with the publication of a report from De Beers exploring the socio-economic contribution to Botswana of its longstanding partnership with the Government. The report, which looks back over the history of the partnership and the economic contribution it made in 2014, shows that:Between 1966 and 2014, Botswana’s GDP per capita grew at an average of 5.9% per year – the third highest rate anywhere in the world over this period – delivering real and lasting benefits for the country. Before independence:There were only three secondary schools in Botswana. Now there are more than 300 and every child receives free schooling up to the age of 13There were just 5 km of tarmac road across the country. Now there are nearly 6,000 kmThere was one doctor for every 48,000 people. Now there is one for every 3,000 people. Hon. Minister of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources, Kitso Onkokame Mokaila, said: “We are delighted to co-host this conference. Our stewardship of Botswana’s precious diamond resource has created huge opportunities for the country. As diamonds have brought about significant national economic growth, we look forward to sharing our experiences and continuing the conversation on future development opportunities.”Philippe Mellier, CEO, De Beers Group, said: “Societies across the world are increasingly – and rightly – demanding more value from their natural resources. Our partnership with Botswana is one of the world’s most enduring and successful private-public partnerships, delivering significant benefits to the country. However, it is not a panacea and we look forward to exploring the lessons learnt and how these can be applied for the long-term prosperity not only of Botswana, but also for the benefit of other resource-rich nations around the globe.”Dr Alex Vines OBE, Head of Africa Program, Chatham House, said: “I have seen how diamond revenues have not been drivers of equitable growth or tools for economic diversification in a number of countries. Botswana can make its diamonds a catalyst for change and this conference will help showcase ideas on how this can be done.” In 2014, the Partnership, through direct, indirect and induced impacts, has:Generated more than $4 billion of value to the Botswana economy, which is equivalent to more than 25% of GDP – double that of the entire wholesale and retail sectorsContributed thousands of jobs in Botswana and spent around $6 million on more than half a million hours of training for its employeesIn addition, De Beers’ relocation of its multi-billion dollar international sales operation from London to Botswana contributed more than $400 million to GDP, along with an increase in jobs and supply chain spend.last_img read more

The Taliban is on Twitter now tweeting in English

first_imgWhen the Taliban first started in 1996 it wanted nothing to do with modern technology. Fast forward 15 years, and the Islamic militia group is now jumping on the Twitter bandwagon. Yes, the Taliban is tweeting.When the Guardian published its story yesterday, the Taliban’s Twitter feed, @alemarahweb, had 224 followers. At the time of publication for this story, the feed now only has 108, losing more than half of its followers within hours. The feed tweets propaganda-esque reports of attacks against the “infidel forces” and the regime of Afghan President Hamid Karzai.Most of the tweets are in Pashtu, which Google Translate unfortunately does not translate into English. The feed was actually started in December. All the tweets were in Pashtu until yesterday when the first English-language tweets appeared. The latest tweet informs its followers that “11 US-NATO invaders killed, 11 were wounded…” All of the tweets in English seem to be about how many people were killed in various attacks, and we wonder if all the tweets on the feed are that way, or if it’s only the ones written in English. The Twitter feed can actually be useful since the official Taliban website is often shut down by authorities and is switching servers all the time.Most of the tweets link to a news story on the Taliban’s Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan website. The Taliban encourages its fighters to do phone interviews, and it’s usually speedy about emailing its version of news events. Also, let’s not forget all the propaganda videos the group produces. However, with all this material, it seems the Taliban is a little upset that it’s not getting the media attention it thinks it should. According to the Guardian, the Taliban wrote an email in December complaining that the media covers less than 10 percent of the material that the Taliban sends, and the group would like to get more press. Using social media is just one way for the militia group to actually get its news out there, whether or not anyone is reading it.As the saying goes, keep your friends close and your enemies closer. Evidenced by a few of the accounts that the Taliban Twitter follows, the Taliban is keeping tabs on some unlikely Twitter handles. No, it’s not following Ashton or Bieber, the very first feed that @alemarahweb followed was that of @Afghantim, whose bio says he is a US Air Force Logistics Readiness Officer currently deployed as a combat advisor to the Afghan Army. The Taliban site is also following @AfghanHeroesUK, which is a charity that supports British troops in Afghanistan.Will the Taliban’s Twitter help it get the attention it so desperately wants? Perhaps the number of followers will increase after news breaks of the @alemarahweb account finally writing posts in English. It’ll be interesting to see if the account get’s an official verified “check” by its name.Read more at The Guardianlast_img read more

HandsOn Everything Old is World War II Again in Call of Duty

first_imgStay on target The Xbox One X Looks Nice, But Twice as Nice as the Xbox One?Super Mario Odyssey and Other E3 Nintendo Switch Games That Aren’t Zelda As one of, like, three games Activision still makes (if you don’t count Blizzard) there’s a lot riding on the success of each year’s new Call of Duty. It’s kind of crazy then that a return to the traditional, European Theater, World War II first-person shooting that defined the franchise over a decade ago is now this crazy, bold risk. But Battlefield 1 worked and given today’s political climate perhaps we need Call of Duty and Wolfenstein to remind us that Nazis are the bad guys. At E3, I got to check out Call of Duty: WWII.The appointment began with a theater presentation for the single-player campaign. This year’s game is being developed by Sledgehammer Games, the studio’s second CoD after the well-received Advanced Warfare. Sledgehammer’s co-founder Glen Schofield was one of the primary creative forces behind Dead Space. As the typical military bombast of a Call of Duty campaign gruesomely played out in front of me, I did notice a more horrific bent to the fast, intense, violent, and cinematic military action. War is Hell, after all.As the player character fought across the ruined town-turned battlefield, he seemed to have more freedom with how he could approach the fight. The new health system, which relies on health packs instead of waiting for health to regenerate, seemed to encourage more tactical play. However, the later half of the demo became much more linear and scripted as the player escaped a collapsing church, following their commanding officer like in most other CoD campaigns. At least the spectacle looks nice.After the video, we then got to play two of Call of Duty: WWII‘s multiplayer modes. The first mode was a standard team deathmatch and if you told me it was a prettied-up remake of an older game, as a casual observer of the series I might have believed you. Players choose between different classes with different load outs and kill streaks. I opted for a dude with a shotgun that fired incendiary rounds. It was fun virtual paintball as Call of Duty always is, but it wasn’t exactly revolutionary. Even the health goes back to a regeneration system for multiplayer.The next mode, though, was much more exciting. “War” mode adds objectives and narrative to the team battles, basically turning Call of Duty into Overwatch. As a female infantry soldier, I helped my team raid a Nazi outpost for intel, build a bridge into their base, plant a bomb, and nearly escort a tank to victory. Afterward, we switched to the defending team and stopped our opponents from accomplishing even half of what we had achieved. Objectives frequently lasted until the final seconds, making each encounter incredibly tense in a great way. Every move mattered. Plus, even if you die a lot, you still feel like you contributed by building part of the bridge or distracting enemies from the target. Add in Call of Duty‘s typical progression and leveling systems and even a losing team can find the fight worthwhile. Making multiplayer about more than just who shoots the best is always a good thing in my book.As crazy as it sounds, I also dug the almost novelty of Call of Duty: World War II’s older setting. The increasingly vague modern and near-future Call of Duty games felt like they had lost their identity. When you’re jumping with rocket jets and shooting laser guns, isn’t that just Patriotic Halo? I don’t know if the WWII novelty can last for a whole new era of the franchise or just this one game, but that’s the next year’s team’s problem. I just hope there’s a celebrity guest yet to reveal like Kevin Spacey in Advanced Warfare. Heck, just put Kevin Spacey in this one, too. I bet he plays a mean Nazi. Call of Duty: World War II launches this November because of course it does.last_img read more

Victims in Vancouver doublehomicide identified

first_imgThe two people killed in a stabbing early Sunday morning have been positively identified and their families have been notified of their deaths.The names of the homicide victims, 42-year-old Thomas West and 55-year-old James Olsen, were included in court records released Monday following the first appearance of the suspect in the double-homicide, Dustin Lee Zapel, 35.However, Vancouver Police Department spokeswoman Kim Kapp told The Columbian on Monday that the families of those killed had not been notified of their deaths and their names were withheld from the news story.The police agency announced Tuesday morning that the families of the victims had been notified. A third surviving victim was identified in court records as David Garner, 51.All of the men reportedly lived at the Central Park Place Apartments, which is on the Portland VA Vancouver Medical Center campus and is a transitional housing program for people who are low-income, homeless or at risk of being homeless. It is managed and operated by the Vancouver Housing Authority.last_img read more

Fire danger to limit deer hunters land access

first_imgApproximately 20,000 hunters will head afield beginning Saturday for the start of deer season in Southwest Washington and they will find widespread closures of private forest lands due to fire danger.Ironically, the weather forecast is for a chance of rain on Friday and rain likely on Saturday.Among the private timber holdings closed to all public access include Weyerhaeuser’s 422,000-acre St. Helens Tree Farm; 260,000 acres in eastern Skamania, Klickitat and southern Yakima counties; 321,000 acres of Longview Timber Corp. (formerly Longview Fibre) land, and the 85,000-acre Ryderwood Tree Farm in Cowlitz and Lewis counties.Weyerhaeuser 1-866-636-6531Ryderwood Tree Farm 1-360-623-1299Longview Timber Corp. 1-360-442-7619Closed lands in Skamania and Klickitat counties include those of Hancock Forest Management, Broughton Lumber Co., Western Pacific Timber LLC and Stevenson Land Co.Hancock will allow walk-in hunting on its Wahkiakum County lands, according to David Boyd of the company’s lower Columbia region.The access closures began in mid-August.“We never dreamed this would drag on to effect our hunting seasons,” said Wayne Vinyard, area manager for Hancock Forest Management in Glenwood. “We hate to do this. We know people plan their whole year to go hunting.”He said he has only seen it this dry a couple of other times in the past 40 years.“Despite the shorter days and cooler temperatures, the fire danger is still as high as it was in August,” he said.Vinyard and Patrick Allen of Sierra Pacific Industries, operator of Ryderwood Tree Farm, both said about an inch of rain needs to fall to wet the forests adequately.last_img read more

At least 6 hurt after tow truck collides with transit bus

first_imgPEMBROKE PARK, Fla. (WSVN) — At least six people were injured after, officials said, a tow truck and a transit bus collided in Pembroke Park, Saturday morning.Crews responded to the scene of the accident near West Hallandale Beach Boulevard and Southwest 40th Avenue.The bus, tow truck, and a BMW that was on the tow truck all sustained damage.All victims are expected to be OK.There is no word on the cause of the accident.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img

Microsoft HoloLens app is coming to Android phones

first_img2:19 Share your voice Tags We play Pictionary Air, a refreshing twist on AR games Mobile Applications Wearable Tech 0 Post a comment Now playing: Watch this: The apps will spread Microsoft’s AR technology beyond headsets. Picture Alliance/Getty Images Microsoft is expanding its mixed reality platform from AR and VR headsets to mobile phones.Its Dynamics 365 Remote Assist app is expected to arrive in preview for Android phones in April, Microsoft said Thursday in a blog post. The Dynamics 365 Product Visualize app will debut for Apple iOS devices in preview in April as well. The apps are focused on businesses — not consumers. “Mixed reality” is Microsoft’s term for anything related to augmented reality or virtual reality.The Remote Assist app for Microsoft’s HoloLens headset already lets wearers share what they’re seeing via the built-in camera. They can annotate images to give detailed instructions or troubleshoot a problem. With the Android app, people will be able to do basically the same thing with just their phone. That means businesses can take advantage of features, like annotation, without dishing out for a headset. Product Visualize is geared more toward the sale of vehicles or heavy machinery. The app will let businesses display products scaled down or full-size in augmented reality. The Verge reported earlier on the apps, citing the head of Microsoft’s mixed reality business. Microsoft didn’t comment beyond the blog post. The highly anticipated HoloLens 2 headset could be unveiled next week at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. The headset, originally released in 2016, layers 3D hologram graphics onto reality.  last_img read more

Macau Tourism organises FAM trip for key Indian travel agents

first_imgMacau Government Tourist Office (MGTO) in India is keen to work closely with the travel trade to curate and develop enriching itineraries to Macau supporting the interests of the Indian travellers. With this objective, a familiarisation trip was organised from 11 to 14 March for 11 key Indian travel agents from all over India to experience the vibrant city of Macau.To further enhance the experience, a day trip to the Chimelong Resort at Zhuhai, China was also included in the itinerary, where the agents visited the Ocean Kingdom and the famous Circus Show along with a site inspection of three prominent hotels.The objective of this trip was to showcase various family oriented and other varied activities that an Indian travel can indulge while in Macau.A special evening was arranged to witness the famous show, ‘The House of Dancing Water’. The agents also experienced the walking tour to Senado Square, the skyline of Macau from the Macau Tower, the calm and serene Coloane and the Taipa islands.Macau has plenty to offer throughout the year. For those planning a visit this summer Macau is a well-loved all-encompassing summer holiday destination. Mega shopping malls are just a stone’s throw away from characterful small shops along narrow alleys, whereas its authentic local snacks and world-heritage sites bring out the allure of this charming little place and its Portuguese flavours. Macau offers multicultural experience where one can see beautiful urban space with charming Portuguese and Chinese buildings and their enchanting stories.last_img read more

Philippines welcomes 22121 Indian tourists in the first quarter

first_imgA total of 22, 121 Indian tourists arrived at Philippines during January-March 2016, recording an increase of 23.7% over the same period last year. The Department of Tourism (DOT) Philippines has reported 6943 visitor arrivals in March 2016, that is, a growth of 8.23% over that of the same month in 2015.Such a growth, according to SanJeet, Tourism Attaché, Philippines Tourism Marketing Office India, has been the result of continuous effort on the part of DOT to promote the country’s attractions under the ongoing Visit the Philippines Again (VPA) 2016 campaign. The country hopes to end the year with a growth of 25% while maintaining a steady number throughout the year.Parth Satpathy, Senior General Manager- Outbound MICE, Cox & Kings Ltd, said, “Philippines has successfully managed to couture the Indian traveller’s expectations with their warm hospitality, magnificent destinations, rejuvenation activities, shopping and dining options, nightlife, beaches and off course the colourful jeepneys.”“Philippines has geared up to handle Indian MICE groups as the country offers huge conventions centres and meeting locations. There are many reasons to visit this exotic country – be it the adventure options, luxury, rejuvenating holidays or vibrant nightlife, Philippines has something for all,” said Saurabh Mahajan, Director, Ambassador Express Holidays Pvt Ltd.last_img read more

Higher LTV Ratios Pull Down Borrower Health in Q3

first_img Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Borrower Profile Credit Standards Housing Affordability Investors Lenders & Servicers LendingTree Loan-to-Value Ratio Service Providers 2013-11-01 Tory Barringer Recent findings released by online lender exchange “”LendingTree””:https://www.lendingtree.com/?theme=scrollable reveal that the financial health of prospective borrowers dipped in this year’s third quarter after seeing a sizable improvement in the second.[IMAGE]LendingTree’s Borrower Health Report shows the national Borrower Health Score was 79.94 in the third quarter, down 1.56 points from the prior period. The score is calculated based on data for average loan-to-value ratios (LTV) and average credit scores.The company attributed the slight decline in borrower health to rising home prices, which boosted LTVs across the country to a national average of 89.8 percent and put more financial pressure on potential borrowers.[COLUMN_BREAK]””Because home prices have been steadily increasing, this minor slip in the Borrower Health Score isn’t necessarily unsettling,”” said Doug Lebda, founder and CEO of LendingTree. “”In order for the housing market to maintain and improve home prices, there needs to be a growing pool of well-qualified borrowers in the market for homes.””The national score also experienced a slight drag from a dip in the average credit score of prospective borrowers, which fell four points quarter-over-quarter to 636.Even with the decline, the third quarter’s health score is still above the first quarter’s reading of 76.44 and Q3 2012’s reading of 72.66–demonstrating that “”mortgage-seekers are in relatively good health and that there is a broader trend of improving borrower qualification levels.””Breaking the data down by state, Hawaii led in terms of borrower health, posting a score of 96.16, with a higher average credit score (689) offsetting a relatively higher LTV percentage: 89.66 percent. Other markets with scores above 90 include the District of Columbia (95.91), New Jersey (91.18), and California (90.59). All reported average credit scores in the 670-680 range and LTVs lower than the national average.Ledba explained that the results were largely reflective of job market conditions, observing that states ranking on the list “”had enough highly qualified, active borrowers to support the higher home prices.”” in Data, Origination November 1, 2013 501 Views center_img Higher LTV Ratios Pull Down Borrower Health in Q3 Sharelast_img read more

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