She said that even with a secure portfolio profile, Veritas had managed to achieve a good return in the first half.Fixed income investments returned 2%, and private equity investments generated 11.3%.Total investments rose to €3.1bn at the end June from €2.9bn at the end of December 2016.Elo nets 4.4% returnMeanwhile, the larger pensions insurer Elo announced a 4.4% return on its investments in the second half, up from 1% in the same period last year.Net pensions assets increased to €22.8bn by the end of June, from €21.8bn at the end of December.Elo’s CIO Hanna Hiidenpalo, said: “The global investment market, especially the equity market, has yielded extremely good returns since March 2009. This has been the second-longest streak of good returns from investments since World War II.”In the reporting period, the US dollar weakened by almost 10% against the euro in the currency market, but “the share of Elo’s open currency risk of investments was kept at a moderate level”, Hiidenpalo said.Listed equities produced a return of 8.9% between January and June, Elo reported. Real estate generated 3.1%, but fixed income investments registered a loss of 1%.Elo said the new partial early old-age pension, which was introduced in Finland at the beginning of this year, had proved particularly popular. In the first six months since it was brought in, Elo said it had issued the new pension to to 1,536 customers.VER positive after strong equity, infrastructure gainsFinland’s State Pension Fund (VER) reported a 3.7% return on investments in the first half.Of its main asset classes, VER said listed equities gave a return of 6.9% and liquid fixed-income instruments generated 1.2%.VER said listed companies data had improved in the first six months of this year relative to 2016, and future prospects were felt to be quite bright.Real estate funds returned 0.4% and infrastructure investments yielded 6.6%, VER reported.At the end of June, fixed income instruments accounted for 43.7% of the pension fund’s portfolio, equities made up 44%, and other investments amounted to 9.5%.VER’s assets totalled €19.2bn at the end of June, up from €18.8bn at the end of December.The pension fund transferred €914m to the government budget in the first half – more than the €719m it received in pension contributions.“This gap between income and budget transfers will continue to grow year on year and slow down the growth of the fund,” it noted in the interim report.VER was established in 1990 to balance Finland’s state pension expenditure.The fund said that as of the start of this year, it would concentrate more and more on long-term outcomes and future prospects instead of quarterly reporting, but would continue posting quarterly figures and commentary on them as before. Finnish pensions insurance company Veritas has rolled back the equities weighting in its portfolio in response to high valuations.The company reported a 4.2% return on investments between January and June in its interim results, up from 0.9% in the same period last year. Equities performed the best out of all asset classes with an 8.3% return.Niina Bergring, Veritas CIO, said: “Shares are now valued at a relatively high level, and we should adjust our long-term return expectations accordingly.“We have therefore had a cautious line in our allocation to risky assets and have recently reduced the equity weighting.”
The engineering company INNAS and technology company Hydrautrans are developing a mechanical-hydraulic transmission for offshore wind turbines with a capacity of more than 12MW. The Floating Cup Technology used for the transmission is invented and patented by INNAS.The hydraulic pumps and motors operate without internal metal-to-metal contact.This translates into superior system efficiency without wear and results in an elongated service life of more than 25 years and an efficiency of more than 95%, the developers said.Preliminary calculations show that, by implementing this hydraulic transmission in new wind turbine models of existing suppliers, the levelized cost of energy (LCoE) can be reduced significantly, according to the developers.The low turbines price in combination with an elongated service life is said to result in a LCoE reduction up to EUR 6 per MWh.The 12MW transmission consists of four independent modules of 3MW each. The components are lightweight which leads to a 10-25% head mass reduction, according to the developers. Wind turbines with a lower capacity, either 6MW or 9MW, can also use this new technology by placing less modules, and the technology allows upscaling to over 12MW in the future.The expectation is that this technology will be released on the market by 2020.
62 Views one comment NewsRegional Antigua embraces backyard gardening in an effort to save millions. by: – June 19, 2012 Tweet Share Share Sharing is caring! A couple looks at their backyard garden in the Cassada Gardens community in St. John’s, Antigua. Credit: Desmond Brown/IPSST. JOHN’S, Antigua, Tuesday June 19 2012 – As a boy, Hilson Baptiste remembers going to his neighbour’s home and giving them a large slice of pumpkin grown in his family’s backyard garden. In return, he would be given two fish for his family.But Baptiste, who is currently Antigua’s minister of agriculture, regrets that in his country, those days are over. He is now part of an initiative to prevent the island from spending millions of dollars on importing food that could easily be grown, in some cases, in the backyards of many homes.In 2010, the twin-island nation imported approximately 16 million pounds of vegetables, according to figures from the Antigua and Barbuda government. Baptiste said serious measures must be taken to drastically reduce that figure.“I want to see that happen. You would not have to buy anything from the supermarket; you can grow your own and share with your neighbours,” he said. He related his boyhood story of exchanging pumpkin for fish, noting, “We build better communities when we do this.”Even the island’s ceremonial head of state, Dame Louise Lake-Tack, is supporting the initiative. The representative of Queen Elizabeth in Antigua and Barbuda, she has no problem getting her hands dirty as she seeks to boost food production in the country.To ensure that the 80,000 inhabitants of this small two-island state understand the need to drastically reduce the millions of dollars spent on importing food, Lake-Tack assisted the government by distributing seedlings to homeowners, a move authorities hope will address the issue of food security here.Known as the National Backyard Gardening Programme, the ministry of agriculture-led initiative is aiming at getting the population to produce four million pounds of food annually in their own backyards.“We encourage people to grow all types of vegetables and even fruits,” Owolabi Elabanjo, an agriculture extension officer, told IPS.“We’ve seen a rise in (the) production of tomato, sweet pepper, okra, lettuce and seasoning like rosemary and thyme. We are also now introducing vegetables that (are not) common in many homes.”Family farmingThe programme initially began with the help of the Rome-based Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) in 2008 and now, approximately 2,500 families are registered.FAO’s sub-regional coordinator for the Caribbean, Florita Kentish, said the FAO is a firm believer in activities to alleviate the effects of rising food prices and global economic hardship, and to ensure that even the most vulnerable have good nutrition.“Home gardening has a long established tradition of offering great potential to improve household food security and alleviate micronutrient deficiencies in many ways,” Kentish said. The FAO and the World Health Organisation are jointly involved in the initiative to improve nutrition.Home gardening can help achieve such goals by offering direct access to a diversity of foods rich in nutrients. It also helps people save money by spending less on food and earn extra income by selling garden produce, ultimately increasing their purchasing power. During seasonally lean periods, home gardens can serve as an additional source of food.The initiative is especially important in rural areas where income-earning opportunities are fewer, Kentish said, adding that it is becoming increasingly important for vulnerable households, including those headed by females.The government is taking steps to better support the initiative, which has been extended to some of the nation’s schools, Baptiste said.“We are zoning Antigua off into three or four zones to focus on each zone once per month to ensure that we assist you to better supply yourself and your family with all the vegetables you need,” he told those registered under the programme.In the month of May alone the ministry distributed more than 15,000 seedlings – among them tomatoes, butternut squash, zucchini, peppers and an assortment of fruit trees – to families.Environmental challengesBut despite such drive and commitment to the programme, Elabanjo said Antigua and Barbuda was at a disadvantage in terms of agricultural production, especially when climate change is factored into an already precarious environment.Even before climate change became an issue, Antigua and Barbuda lacked an adequate water supply, Elabanjo told IPS. “All of the other islands can use free water (from streams and rivers) for production of food but an average farmer in Antigua has to pay for water.” Higher temperatures brought by climate change have exacerbated the problem.Elabanjo, a Nigerian farmer who moved to Antigua 20 years ago, explained that during the summer, an entire month can pass without any rainfall.“Antigua is one of the few islands where we don’t have good rainfall. The conditions are semi-arid, so we have one of the lowest rainfalls in all of the Caribbean islands and above all, we don’t have a single river in Antigua,” he said.“But when you go to St. Vincent, Dominica, St. Lucia…everybody has an abundance of water,” which is critical for agriculture, he pointed out. He praised the nation’s farmers for managing to grow produce despite the environmental constraints.The Atlantic hurricane season, which runs from Jun. 1 to Nov. 30, also affects production levels.“Right now, as the hurricane season is here, you will see some farmers reducing their production because they are not sure if a hurricane will come and destroy their crops,” Elabanjo said.Without insurance, farmers have no protection, he added. “Rather than losing money they tend to cut back, and by cutting back they affect supply.”Finance Minister Harold Lovell welcomed the initiative, noting that several years ago, society had turned its back on agriculture. But the resultant importation of foods and vegetables came at a high cost to the country.“Even if we do not produce everything that we eat, we should produce substantially what we eat, and we should also eat what we produce,” Lovell said.In Antigua and other Caribbean countries with a strong tradition of agriculture, most impoverished people buy their food. In Antigua’s case, Elabanjo said, the majority of it is imported.“Our environment is not conducive (to) the production of certain crops so most of the produce you see in the market or the supermarket is imported from neighbouring islands of Dominica or St. Vincent,” he said.But if the backyard gardening initiative – which boasts a range of participants, from the impoverished to those who are working professionals – works, the future might soon look different for Antigua and Barbuda. (IPS)Caribbean 360 News Share
Wyatt Block bested a veteran IMCA Modified field for his career first win in the division Saturday at Shawano Speedway.By Scott OwenSHAWANO, Wis. (May 19) – Rookie Wyatt Block won his first career IMCA Modified feature Saturday at Shawano Speedway.Trevor Spaulding pulled to the early lead with Eddie Muenster in tow. As those two paced the field, Block began to work through the field after starting the race in 10th. By the time Block passed Muenster for second near the midpoint of the race, Spaulding had built up a sizeable advantage.Block continued to reel in Spaulding, though, before a caution after lap 13 bunched the field back up.Block took advantage and grabbed the lead with an inside pass for the lead on lap 15, then never looked back in scoring his first IMCA Modified win. Spaulding finished second. Lance Arneson was the hard charger as he moved from 17th starting to finish third.Jeremy Christians notched another IMCA Sunoco Stock Car win, his first of the 2018 season, while Lucas Lamberies remained unbeaten in the Karl Chevrolet Northern SportMods as he won his third feature in a row.
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LONDON: English Premier League side Crystal Palace’s Wilfried Zaha has been subjected to racial abuse on social media, the forward shared screenshots ahead of Sunday’s Premier League game at Aston Villa.”Woke up to this today,” Zaha wrote along with the post on Twitter where he shared the screenshots. “This is an absolute disgrace and should not be happening. We stand with you, Wilf, and anyone else who has to suffer such horrific abuse,” Palace said on Twitter. Former Arsenal and Palace striker Ian Wright offered his support to the Ivory Coast international. “People like to make these experiences seem like it’s not the norm for black people. It’s always an outlier. ‘Not one of us’. ‘Not a real (insert club) fan’,” Wright tweeted. “These are real people and daily experiences. Sooner we accept it the better we can deal with it,” he added. IANSAlso watch: Get Set Global: How are People in The UK Facing Financial Crisis & More
The No. 1 USC men’s tennis squad (4-0, 0-0) won in every sense of the word this weekend.Top · Senior Jason McNaughton played No. 1 doubles this weekend. – Sunil Murali | Daily Trojan On Sunday, the Trojans faced off against No. 73 Yale University (1-1, 0-0) and swept the Bulldogs 7-0.In doubles, freshman J.T. Sundling made his season debut after recovering from mononucleosis. He teamed up with senior Robert Farah and defeated their Yale counterparts — freshmen John Huang and Marc Powers — 8-1.Sundling and Farah had only played together once — in practice — before the match, but USC coach Peter Smith was not wary of placing the experienced senior with the newcomer.“When you’re good, you’re good, and Rob’s a good doubles player,” Smith said in explaining the pairing.Sundling was a highly sought-after recruit himself, qualifying for a berth in last year’s U.S. Open doubles draw alongside Trojan sophomore Daniel Nguyen.Sundling said he was pleased with his performance Sunday.“It felt really good to be playing again,” Sundling said. “I played pretty well, I was pretty happy with the way that I served.”In other action, juniors Peter Lucassen and Jaak Poldma sealed the doubles point by winning the last four games of the pro set to defeat Yale’s Calvin Bennett-led pairing 8-5.With Sundling active, sophomore Daniel Nguyen and senior Jason McNaughton moved up to the No. 1 spot but were unable to complete the sweep, losing to sophomores Erik Blumenkranz and Joel Samaha 8-5.In singles, USC gained an early advantage when Bennett was forced to retire from his match with Poldma leading 4-1 in the first set because of an ankle injury.The rest of the Trojans did not drop a set with Kecki, Nguyen, Lucassen and Farah all out-matching their opponents.Johnson finished off the day with a hard-fought victory over Powers 7-6 (7-2), 6-4 in an intense match.On Saturday, USC cruised to a 4-1 victory in the first round of the tournament against No. 49 Vanderbilt (4-2, 0-0) on Saturday.Doubles action started off with McNaughton and Nguyen easily defeating the Vanderbilt pairing of sophomore Charlie Jones and freshman Ryan Lipman 8-2.Following their example, USC’s No. 13 combo of senior Robert Farah and sophomore Steve Johnson triumphed 8-5 over juniors Adam Baker and Alex Zotov to secure the doubles point.In singles play, the top three positions exerted their will with straight-set victories. No. 1 Steve Johnson defeated No. 29 Lipman 6-3, 6-2, and Poldma and Farah secured solid wins.Zotov defeated No. 47 USC sophomore Matt Kecki 6-4, 6-2 for the only blemish on the final tally.The victories sealed the ITA Kick-Off Championship for USC and a berth to the ITA National Team Indoor Championships starting Feb. 12 in Charlottesville, Va.But before heading East, USC has some business to care of at home.Today, the Trojans host a match against UC Irvine (3-1, 0-0) at 1:30 p.m. The Anteaters’ only loss was against No. 26 University of Washington.Smith wants to approach the UCI match as an opportunity to give his younger players meaningful experience.“We want Peter, Kecki and J.T. to get comfortable competing and winning,” Smith said.During this stretch of non-conference home matches, USC has successfully defended its court against teams giving their best shots in hopes of knocking off the top-ranked Trojans.UCI will be no different, and, even though USC will be big favorites, Smith explains that they plan on being fully prepared for the Anteater attack.“Opponents play very well against us, we know that, and we’re ready for that,” Smith said.
Published on September 13, 2015 at 7:18 pm Contact Michael: firstname.lastname@example.org Facebook Twitter Google+ As they do before every game, Syracuse captains Jackie Firenze and Stephanie Skilton joined goalkeeper Courtney Brosnan at the scorer’s table for the coin flip to determine which team would get possession first.But when the SU starters walked to midfield for lineup introductions, Firenze, Skilton and Maddie Iozzi — typically staples in the Orange’s starting lineup — weren’t among them. Instead, the three took their place on Syracuse’s bench, each wearing a long-sleeved orange pullover on top of their jerseys.Before Sunday, Firenze, Iozzi and Skilton had started all seven of Syracuse’s games in 2015. But SU head coach Phil Wheddon opted to shake up the lineup and use those players in more limited roles off the bench against Colgate. The result was a 2-1 victory for the Orange (3-4-1) over the Red Raiders (2-5) — Syracuse’s first win since topping Albany by the same score Aug. 30.Wheddon said that after SU tied Cornell 0-0 Friday, he and SU’s other coaches met to discuss potential lineup adjustments.“We make lineup decisions based on performance,” he said. “We felt that performance-wise, we needed to make some changes.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textWhen Syracuse had its pregame meeting Sunday morning, Firenze, Iozzi and Skilton learned they wouldn’t be starting. For Firenze, it marked the first time in her four-year career at Syracuse that she didn’t start a game she played in.“It was kind of motivating,” Firenze said. “Obviously I need to be out on the field to help my team, so there’s good and bad to do it.”Firenze’s time on the bench lasted for the majority of the first half. But 25 minutes into the game, SU assistant coach Neel Bhattacharjee approached the reserves and said something. Firenze, Iozzi, Skilton and a couple others then began jogging up and down the sideline. A few minutes later, Firenze and Skilton checked into the game for Rebecca Pongetti and Eva Gordon. Iozzi, meanwhile, stayed put on the bench.In the second half, all three players were again on the bench when play resumed. Firenze and Skilton re-entered with just over 30 minutes to play and Syracuse leading, 1-0.Skilton had a chance to leave her fingerprints on the game in the 68th minute. Alex Lamontagne took the ball up the left side of the field and crossed a pass into the box to Skilton, but the forward whiffed at the goal-scoring opportunity.Roughly five minutes later, Skilton and Firenze were both near the center of the action when Alexis Koval scored to extend SU’s lead to 2-0, even though neither registered any statistics.After Koval’s goal, Iozzi walked to the scorer’s table and removed her pullover for the first time all afternoon before checking into the game in the 75th minute. Iozzi then made a costly mistake with just under 10 minutes to play, when she fouled Colgate’s Jenna Panepinto in the penalty box, giving Panepinto a penalty kick that she converted.But over the next nine minutes and 45 seconds, Iozzi helped make up for that blunder as she, Firenze and Skilton each finished a game they didn’t start, contributing to a Syracuse effort that prevented Colgate from getting another shot on goal.“We have a team that has a lot of depth, so people are willing to step into different roles,” Brosnan said. “Everyone knows that if they’re not starting, if they’re coming off the bench, everyone still has to bring their A-game. I think that’s something we did a very good job of today.” Comments
Published on September 10, 2016 at 12:08 am Contact Jon: email@example.com | @jmettus Syracuse (1-1, 0-1 Atlantic Coast) was blown out by No. 13 Louisville (2-0, 1-0), losing 62-28, in the Carrier Dome on Friday night. The Cardinals amassed 845 yards of offense — a school record for Louisville, the most given up by an SU team and an ACC record.Here are three quick reactions from the game.Shell-shockedSyracuse started the game about as poorly as anyone could’ve thought. Within the first five minutes, Louisville had racked up more than 200 yards of offense and scored three touchdowns.Jackson alone already had 133 yards and one touchdown through the air, along with 79 yards and two touchdowns on the ground.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textOn the first play from scrimmage, Jackson hit receiver James Quick up the seam on the left side for a 72-yard touchdown pass. Quick burned Syracuse safety Antwan Cordy up the middle of the field.Two offensive plays for Louisville later, Jackson found receiver Jaylen Smith on the same route, just the other side of the field. Smith got inside safety Kielan Whitner for the 61-yard catch. Jackson then danced his way into the end zone from 10-yards out.Fans were already booing as the Cardinals came off the field.The very next time Jackson touched the ball he did the same thing — only this time it was from 72 yards away. Jackson took the snap out of shotgun, ran right, past defensive end Kenneth Ruff, and juked Whitner in the open field.Action JacksonLamar Jackson was everything as advertised in the Carrier Dome on Friday. He finished the game with 411 yards in the air and 199 on the ground. He was 20-for-39 and accounted for five touchdowns. His 610 total yards is most in ACC history and he’s just the second player in FBS history with 400 pass yards and 150 rush yards in a game.The sophomore quarterback accounted for more yards than the Orange’s offense totaled. Jackson’s stat line was even hurt by several drops from his receiving corps.When the Cardinals needed a third down conversion, Jackson would either scramble for 10-plus yards or complete a touch pass along the sideline. He broke tackles and even hurdled Syracuse defensive back Cordell Hudson on an impressive touchdown run.MORE COVERAGE:Storify: Syracuse fans react to 62-28 loss against LouisvilleStorify: Twitter reacts to Lamar Jackson dominating Syracuse defenseLouisville destroys Syracuse football in 34-point blowout Facebook Twitter Google+ Going downA common scene in the Carrier Dome on Friday was Louisville players laying on the turf with apparent injuries. Each time the stoppage of play was met with a chorus of boos from the Syracuse crowd.The first time it happened was on Syracuse’s third drive of the game. Eric Dungey slipped a pass to Moe Neal to Louisville’s 17-yard line and as the Orange tried to lineup for another snap, a Louisville defensive lineman remained on the ground.Referees stopped play and SU head coach Dino Babers ran down the sideline yelling at the officials in protest.At least three other times in the game, a Cardinals defensive player caused a stoppage of play with a leg injury. Once, an SU fan yelled, “lock him up.” When the Cardinals were driving down the field fans yelled, “somebody fall down.”Each time, Babers seemed to be upset and talked with the referees.When Louisville’s Chris Williams squirmed on the ground while Syracuse was in the red zone. Dungey ran over to the defensive lineman and turned him over before running back Dontae Strickland pulled Dungey away. Comments
It starts on Thanksgiving Day with a full slate of NFL games bound to keep you couch-locked while your mom and her siblings tire away in the kitchen. There’s always three — an early afternoon game, an afternoon game and a night game. The Detroit Lions usually lose one of them, and the Dallas Cowboys typically emerge victorious in another. It’s a tradition football fans have grown accustomed to at this point, but that doesn’t make it any less special when Thanksgiving rolls around each year. For those who don’t know, Thanksgiving marks the greatest weekend of the football season. It’s a four-day celebration of all that is good and holy about the sport, opening Thursday and closing Sunday with the NFL and filling in the gaps with some of the best rivalries in college football. Just two weeks removed from a heartbreaking home loss against top-ranked LSU, the No. 5 Crimson Tide will travel two and a half hours south to face its sworn enemy without its on-field leader, junior quarterback Tua Tagovailoa. It’s a win-or-go-home game for an Alabama team teetering on the edge of a playoff berth, and I can’t think of a better opponent to stand in their way than the dreaded Auburn Tigers. When most people think of Thanksgiving, they think of the basics: food, family, friends, gratitude, Black Friday and cranberry sauce (whatever the hell that is). But for me, as well as an entire nation of maladjusted sports fans, there is another pillar of Thanksgiving tradition that takes precedent over all others: football. Sure, Ohio State has won seven straight dating back to Urban Meyer’s reign of terror, but Michigan probably has its best chance to play spoiler in years. It’s Ryan Day’s first game against Michigan as head coach of the Buckeyes, and a win would all but guarantee his team’s slot in the elusive College Football Playoff. As a two-loss team, it’s a long shot for Michigan to make the playoff, but a win against their highly ranked rivals would make a convincing argument to any skeptic on the playoff committee. The next day, after the food has settled and the hangover has kicked in, we begin the first of a two-day college football festival otherwise known as Rivalry Weekend. Some people call it the greatest weekend in sports; I’m sure others have grown tired of my hyperbole at this point. Either way, it’s certainly a weekend worth celebrating, with a seemingly endless stream of top-flight rivalry games for two whole days. There are always a few games on the docket you can’t miss while you’re busy cleaning out your fridge and freezer. Finally, if you’re from a certain part of the country where one’s identity is irreversibly tied to the college football team one pledges their allegiance to (the Dirty South, baby), there is one rivalry that trumps all others in terms of passion, commitment and disdain for the other side: the Iron Bowl. Alabama’s in-state rivalry between the Alabama Crimson Tide and Auburn Tigers is among the sport’s most beloved (or infamous, depending on how you look at it), and this year, everything is on the line. To cap this delicious meal, right before us USC students are slated for our final week of classes, we’re blessed with a classic NFL Sunday. Look, I recognize that it’s already a weekly tradition in the fall, but a full Thanksgiving schedule doesn’t make it any less exciting. Two of the season’s best games fall on this Sunday, with a matchup between the conference-leading San Francisco 49ers and the Baltimore Ravens and a Sunday night clash between the New England Patriots and the Houston Texans. At noon Saturday, No. 2 Ohio State and No. 10 Michigan face off in what is known in the American sports canon as “The Game.” That’s right, not “The Game Up North” or even “The Big Game,” just “The Game” — as in The Only Game you should ever be concerned about. Ohio State and Michigan have been facing off for more than a century now (this Saturday will mark the 116th game between the two programs), and the rivalry is still as fresh as it’s ever been. It sounds like a lot of football because it is and that’s the point. If the football season is an indie movie (which, for some of us, isn’t a stretch), this weekend is the emotional climax where the protagonist dunks her head underwater and comes of age — or something. Either way, I already forgot what we’re getting three days off of school for. Sports! Matthew Philips is a senior writing about football. He is also a former lifestyle editor of the Daily Trojan. His column, “Catch or No Catch,” ran every other Tuesday.