Source = e-Travel Blackboard: N.J Travellers looking to book an eco-friendly vacation don’t have to look far following the release of The World’s Best Ethical Destinations report. The report put together by non for profit organisation Ethical Traveller, assists people booking their holiday with the “names of countries where human rights and the environment are protected”. Ethical Traveller director Jess Greenwald said vacationers can still have a holiday while visiting places that demonstrate respect for humans and the environment. “Developing countries should be encouraged to pursue good behaviours,” co-author Jane Esberg said. “Tourism can provide an economic incentive to improve human rights, environmental conservation and social practices.” The report’s co-author Natalie Lefevre said that while the authors manage to select a range of ecotourism friendly destinations, no country receives a ten out of ten. “No country anywhere, is perfect,” Ms Lefevre said. “This report showcases the most ethical developing countries, based on dozens of sources and extensive research.” The report is an annual study of developing countries from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe.The group focuses on three areas of protection: environmental, social and human rights.
Japan National Tourism Organisation Qantas goes double daily to JapanQantas is preparing for a significant expansion of its presence in Japan with the launch of double daily services between Australia and Tokyo this weekend.Qantas flight QF25 will depart from Sydney to Tokyo’s Haneda Airport tonight, followed by the departure of QF61 from Brisbane to Narita Airport tomorrow morning.Qantas International CEO Gareth Evans said the almost doubling of capacity to Tokyo marked a new era for the national carrier’s presence in Japan in the wake of a growing Australia-Japan travel market.“This significant capacity expansion has been extremely well-received by Qantas customers and especially by corporate travellers heading directly to downtown Tokyo, who can now save up to one and a half hours on their airport commute by flying into or out of Haneda,” said Mr Evans.“Customers travelling on the new Brisbane-Narita route can explore Tokyo or beyond with popular holiday destinations across Jetstar Japan’s extensive domestic network, like Sapporo, Fukuoka and Osaka.“We’ll be working closely with our tourism partners to showcase all that Australia has to offer for the Japanese audience, and with a free trade agreement in place we’re anticipating healthy demand for travel in both directions,” added Mr Evans.Launch celebrations will commence at Brisbane International Airport Saturday 1st of August with Japanese-themed activity throughout the terminal and a water cannon salute to mark the departure of QF61.Traditional Japanese ceremonies marking Qantas’ new Tokyo – Australia services will take place at both Narita and Haneda Airports later that evening.Qantas’ Brisbane-Narita launch flights will be operated by the airline’s refurbished A330 aircraft, with lie-flat seats in Business, brand new Economy seats and new inflight entertainment. The refit of these aircraft, which takes one month each, is being done at Qantas’ heavy maintenance facility in Brisbane. These aircraft are being introduced progressively onto Asian routes.To celebrate the launch of the new Japan services, customers onboard flights departing to Narita and Haneda and in Qantas International Lounges in Sydney and Brisbane will be treated to Japanese-inspired menus for the first week of August, including Tuna Tataki Nigiri in Business, and Green Tea flavoured Kit Kats in Premium Economy and Economy.The launch of double daily Qantas flights to Tokyo follows Jetstar’s introduction of its Boeing 787 Dreamliner on the Melbourne-Narita route earlier this month, increasing the available seats between the two cities by 20 per cent over the next year. The upgrade from Airbus A330 aircraft to the higher capacity B787 will be complemented by an increase in flights from four to six per week December to March to meet growing demand for flights between Melbourne and Japan in the peak season. Fly Qantas Source = Qantas
Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Stefon Diggs (14) celebrates with offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur following a 29-24 win over the New Orleans Saints in an NFL divisional football playoff game in Minneapolis, Sunday, Jan. 14, 2018. The Vikings defeated the Saints 29-24. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall) Depending on what happens this weekend with playoff teams, the Cards could start a second round of interviews this upcoming week. Pat Shurmur, Mike Munchak and Steve Wilks could get second interviews. As for Bettcher, it’s possible considering he was recommended by BA.— Mike Jurecki (@mikejurecki) January 13, 2018NFL teams only have a small window to interview candidates still in the playoff picture: From Jan. 22 to Jan. 28, between the championship games and the Super Bowl.Regarding Shurmur, it appears Arizona won’t get that chance.Shurmur, 52, has seen his stock grow due to his mentoring of unheralded quarterbacks such as Minnesota starter Case Keenum. Shurmur has head coaching experience with the Cleveland Browns (2011-12) and as an interim with the Philadelphia Eagles (2015).Minnesota is currently headed to the NFC Championship game after defeating the New Orleans Saints on Sunday with a game-winning play as the clock wound out.In other head coaching search news, the Indianapolis Colts are expected to hire New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels as their next coach, according to Rapoport.McDaniels was not one of the coaches Arizona met with in the first round of interviews. Several of the Arizona Cardinals’ head coaching candidates remain busy with their teams in the NFL playoffs.Among them is Minnesota Vikings offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur, but as the clock ticks, NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reports Shurmur appears headed for another job. The New York Giants are targeting Shurmur to be their next head coach, and he is expected to accept.Shurmur was reportedly a finalist for the Cardinals’ coaching job left vacant by Bruce Arians’ retirement. As one of the nine known coaches Arizona has interviewed, it would expected he would meet with the Cardinals a second time. 64 Comments Share Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact Top Stories Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo
Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano visited the Expo and shared her thoughts on the importance of renewable and sustainable energy in a lively, positive Q&A session. [Photo & Text: sa] Part of the Arcosanti booth crew. [from left around the table] Workshopper Yoshimi Kato, Construction and Utilities manager Scott Riley, Archive intern Yuki Yanagimoto, Construction crew leader Brandon Scott, workshoppers Craig Moore and Charlie Provine, construction staff Jacob Schwartz and construction volunteer Mika Kawai. [Photo & Text: sa] August 12, 2004The annual The annual The Expo offered many examples of solar and wind power, thoughtful approaches to lots of different aspects of sustainability. [left] This solar powered shuttle was built for the 2000 Olympic in Sydney, Australia. [right] San Francisco Peaks in the background. [Photo & Text: sa]
Here’s a chart that Washington state reader S.A. shamelessly ripped from a Zero Hedge piece yesterday—and I thought I’d offer it with no comment. I was amazed by the big withdrawal from SLV yesterday The gold price chopped sideways in a five dollar price range up until shortly before 1 p.m. GMT in London on their Thursday. Then, in a minute or so, the price got sold down about six bucks, before rallying strongly after that. The rally got capped less than an hour later at 8:30 a.m. in New York. From there, gold traded sideways until about noon—and at that point it developed a slightly positive price bias, which really developed some legs at 2:30 p.m. in the thinly-traded New York Access Market. That rally lasted until just about 4 p.m. EST—gold’s high of the day—and then the price didn’t do much after that going into the electronic close. The CME Group recorded the low and high ticks as $1,307.10 and $1,325.30 in the April contract. Gold finished the Thursday session in New York at $1,323.00 spot, up $12.10 from Wednesday. Volume, net of February and March, was very decent at 144,000 contracts. The silver price had much more of a roller coaster ride in Far East and morning trading in London—but after the sell-off just before 1 p.m. GMT in London, the silver price action followed the gold price action like a shadow, including the rally in the thinly-traded electronic market after the Comex close—and silver’s high price tick of the day just before 4 p.m. EST. The low and high prices were reported as $21.515 and $21.90 in the March contract. Silver finished the Thursday session at $21.82 spot, up 28.5 cents from Wednesday’s close. Net volume was less than on Wednesday, but a still very decent 32,500 contracts. Here’s the New York Spot Silver [Bid] chart for yesterday—and as I said, it looks almost identical to the spot gold chart posted above. After getting sold down early in Far East trading on their Thursday, both platinum and palladium rallied to finish in the green, but only by a few dollars each. Here are the charts. The gold stocks rallied right from the open, with a big chunk of the gains in by the London p.m. gold fix. After that, the stocks rallied continued to rally higher, but at a much more modest rate. Then, when gold had its rally in the thinly-traded electronic market after the Comex close, the shares rallied a bit more—and the HUI finished up 3.89%—virtually on its high of the day, gaining back all of Wednesday’s losses and a bit more. I was impressed. The silver equities rallied right from the open as well—and most of their gains were in by precisely 11 a.m. EST. After that they traded sideways, but caught a bit of a tail wind as well when silver rallied in after hours trading in New York before the equity markets closed. Nick Laird’s Intraday Silver Sentiment Index closed up 4.03%—not gaining back everything it lost on Wednesday, but pretty close. Skyharbour Resources (TSX-V: SYH) is a uranium exploration company and a member of the Western Athabasca Syndicate which controls a large, geologically prospective land package consisting of five properties (709,513 acres) in the Athabasca Basin of Saskatchewan. The properties are strategically located to the north, south, east and west of Fission Uranium’s (TSX-V: FCU) Patterson Lake South (“PLS”) recent high grade uranium discovery on the western flank of the Athabasca Basin. $6,000,000 in combined exploration expenditures over the next two years is planned on these properties, $5,000,000 of which is being funded by the three partner companies. Numerous high-potential drill targets have been identified with drilling to start in March, 2014. The Company has recently acquired a 60% interest in the Mann Lake Uranium Project on the east side of the Basin strategically located 25km southwest of Cameco’s McArthur River Mine. The ground adjacent to this property is Cameco’s Mann Lake Joint Venture where an aggressive 13,000 metre, 18-hole drill program is about to commence and previous grades of up to 7.12% uranium have been intersected in drilling. The Company has 43.6 million shares outstanding with insiders owning over 25% of the outstanding shares. Skyharbour’s goal is to maximize shareholder value through new mineral discoveries, committed long-term partnerships, and the advancement of exploration projects in geopolitically favourable jurisdictions. Please visit our website to learn more about the company and request information. The CME’s Daily Delivery Report showed that 145 gold and zero silver contracts were posted for delivery within the Comex-approved depositories on Monday. The short/issuer on 140 of those contracts was Barclays. They also stopped 50 contracts as well. HSBC USA stopped another 65 contracts. The link to yesterday’s Issuers and Stoppers Report is here. There were no reported changes in GLD on Thursday—but over at SLV there was a big surprise in store. After a huge deposit of 3.85 million troy ounces on Tuesday, there was a big withdrawal of 2,212,315 troy ounces yesterday. The only answer I have for this, is something that Ted Butler has been talking about for the last couple of years. He suspects that a big buyer has been purchasing shares by the truckload [read JPMorgan Chase] and has been continuously redeeming their shares for physical metal so they don’t exceed SLV reporting requirements. In a nutshell, this means that JPM is using SLV as a vehicle to load up on the shares—and the physical metal at the same time—without having to report it to anyone. This is over and above what they show in their Comex-approved depository. This may also have been what’s happening in GLD since the start of they year as well. As I mentioned yesterday, the big rallies in both silver and gold have not been matched by corresponding deposits in either SLV or GLD—and Ted Butler’s explanation as to why it’s not happening is the only theory that holds any water., at least for me. If you have another idea, I’d love to here from you. Over at the Switzerland’s Zürcher Kantonalbank for the week ending Friday, February 14, they reported a smallish decline in their gold ETF of 5,611 troy ounces. Their silver ETF showed a small increase of 29,353 troy ounces. Joshua Gibbons, the “Guru of the SLV Bar List” had this to report on the weekly goings-on within the SLV ETF for the week ending at the close of trading on Wednesday: “Analysis of the 19 February 2014 bar list, and comparison to the previous week’s list—9,670,272.5 troy ounces were removed (all from Brinks London), 13,037,078.1 troy ounces were added (all to Brinks London), no bars had a serial number change.“ “In reality, 5,290,714.0 oz were added—and 1,923,884.0 removed. The other 7.7M oz appears to be a ‘substitution’ (JPM removed bars, such as 6.7M oz of Russian State Refineries and Met-Mex bars, and replaced them with different ones, such as Kazakhmys and Valcambi bars).“ “As of the time that the bar list was produced, it was overallocated 557.5 oz. All daily changes are reflected on the bar list.” The link to Joshua’s website is here. For the second day in a row, there was no reported in/out movement in gold at the Comex-approved depositories on Wednesday—and is almost always the case, there was more in/out activity in silver, as 74,150 troy ounces were reported received—and 303,398 troy ounces were shipped out. The link to that activity is here. Here’s a three-year chart of the Continuous Commodity Index, the CCI, which is the new name for the old CRB Index—and look at it fly as of the start of the year. It’s hugely overbought, but worth keeping an eye on. If the central banks of the world are looking for inflation, here’s the first sign that it’s on its way. The new CRB chart looks similar. Here’s a chart that Casey Research’s own Jeff Clark sends our way every few weeks. It’s the latest monetary base numbers from the St. Louis Fed. Soon the line will break through the $4.0 trillion mark. I have another bunch of stories for you today—and you can cherry pick from the selections offered. Undoubtedly, we’ll get a measure of what they may be up to in Friday’s Commitments of Traders Report. Specifically, what JPMorgan has done, particularly in silver, will likely be the key feature. JPM hasn’t sold on higher prices over the past two reporting weeks in either gold or silver and that has been the big standout so far. If JPMorgan turns out to have sold some of its long gold position on higher prices, there’s not much to say. But if this crooked bank starts adding short positions in silver, there will be plenty to say, namely, overt price manipulation. – Silver analyst Ted Butler: 19 February 2014 To tell you the truth, I don’t know what to make of yesterday’s price action in either gold or silver. Don’t get me wrong, I was more than happy to see both metals do as well as they did—and as Ted Butler has told me on many occasions, it’s a mug’s game trying to forecast what might happen in day to day price action. As Ted mentioned in his quote above, we get the latest Commitment of Traders Report for positions held at the close of Comex trading on Tuesday—and I will be awaiting the numbers with some anticipation; hoping for the best, but expecting the worst. Whatever the numbers show, I’ll have it all for you in tomorrow’s column. Once again I was amazed by the big withdrawal from SLV yesterday. As I said in yesterday’s column, with gold up $100—and silver up 2 bucks so far this year, metal should be pouring into both GLD and SLV. They are to a certain extent, but no sooner does metal get deposited, when some is taken out. Ted has his explanation for this, which I posted further up—and it makes perfect sense to me. If you wish to refresh your memory, you can scroll up and read it again, as I don’t wish to repeat myself in this space. One thing I have noticed is that the further down the road we get on this price management scheme in all four precious metals, the more inexplicable it gets. Whatever is happening out of sight of the general public, which includes us, appears to be well organized—and sooner or later it will all come to an end. At that point we should have some sort of dénouement on all of this—and that day can’t come soon enough for me, although it does fall into the category of “be careful what you wish for.” We did have the usual sell-off in both gold and silver in early trading in the Far East on the their Friday morning—but both platinum and palladium emerged unscathed. Both gold and silver struggled higher later in the day—and as I write this paragraph, London has been open for 10 minutes. Both silver and gold are down from Thursday’s close in New York—and both platinum and palladium are basically unchanged. Volumes in both metals are considerably lighter than they were this time yesterday—and the dollar index is up a handful of basis points. And as I put the finishing touches on today’s efforts shortly after 5 a.m. EST, I note that prices haven’t changed by much in all four precious metals. Gold volume is still on the lighter side—and mostly of the HFT variety. Silver’s volume is decent as well, but once the roll-overs are subtracted out, the real volume is not overly heavy, either—and the dollar is still up the same handful of basis points. Since today is Friday, it’s hard to know what to expect as far as price action is concerned for the rest of the day. But as is almost always the case, it’s what happens during the New York trading day that really matters—and I don’t expect today will be any different. By the way, with what appears to be the start of a major up-trend in the precious metals, it might be worth your while to jump back in, or increase your exposure to the precious metals once again, as the HUI is already up over 22% year-to-date. Your best bets for that are Casey Research’s monthly BIG GOLD newsletter—and Casey Research’s flagship publication—Casey International Speculator. If you go for Casey International Speculator, it includes a subscription to BIG GOLD at no extra charge. It costs nothing to check them out—and Casey Research’s 90-day money back guarantee applies to both. That’s all I have for today. I hope you enjoy your weekend, or what’s left of it if you live west of the International Date Line—and I’ll see you here tomorrow. Sponsor Advertisement Here’s the New York Spot Gold [Bid] chart so you can see the Comex price action in more detail. The dollar index closed late on Wednesday afternoon in New York at 80.21—and once the trading day began in the Far East on their Thursday, the index slid down to its 80.04 low shortly before 2:30 p.m. Hong Kong time. From there it rallied to its 80.41 high at noon in New York in a broad trading range. After that it gave up some of its gains by 4 p.m. EST—and then didn’t do much after that, closing the day at 80.28—up a whole 7 basis points from Wednesday’s close.
In This Issue. * Dollar’s all-out assault is stopped.. * Euro rebounds on cease fire news. * Aussie 2nd QTR GDP beats expectations! * China to spend some reserves on shipping. And Now. Today’s A Pfennig For Your Thoughts. Ukraine / Russia Agree To Cease Fire. Maybe. Good Day! . And a Wonderful Wednesday to you! Man, I had better get my eye checked! I think I’m beginning to read stuff that’s not the way it’s presented! Here’s the skinny: I woke up from a quick and not long enough nap to answer the door yesterday afternoon, and after welcoming the ATT guy into the house, I brought up my work email on my mobile device, and there was an email from our office managing guru, Danielle, telling me about elevator work that would take place around the time I arrive in the morning. “Great! I said, for I had some blood work that I needed to get done tomorrow, so I’ll just stay home, write and then go get the blood work done, rather than get all dialed in at work to leave right away. Unfortunately, the email said Sept 4.. not Sept 3. UGH! So, I’m writing from home today, when I didn’t have to! The elevator work is tomorrow! What a dolt I am sometimes! Front and Center this morning, there was word earlier that Russia and Ukraine had agreed to a cease-fire. But then the “official word” from the Kremlin came out, and said that the Russian and Ukrainian Presidents had only discussed steps toward peace. There’s been no further discussion on what that meant, or maybe it was just a matter of semantics, but it sounds to me that the Kremlin wants their say before any “agreement” is made. The Currency traders are taking this “non-agreement in stone” as a good sign, and the euro has rallied a little bit. In fact the dollar’s all-out assault on the currencies and metals yesterday, (Gold lost $24) has backed off a bit this morning, albeit the moves are small. I forgot to mention yesterday that there is a bevy of Central Bank meetings this week, and that all gets started today with the Bank of Canada (BOC) meeting. I don’t expect any surprises from the BOC today, and their neutral bias should remain in place. The recent data from Canada, as chronicled here in the Pfennig, has been upbeat, but I doubt it’s enough. yet that is. Oh, and before I forget again. which, I might add, seems to be happening to me more and more these days, the other central bank meetings this week include the European Central Bank (ECB), The Bank of England (BOE), and the Bank of Japan (BOJ). And we can’t take our eye off the ball with regards to the Jobs Jamboree, which will take place on Friday this week! So, an event-full week, but in the end it will be just a bunch of boondoggles and cooked booked. The Biggest mover overnight, is the Aussie dollar (A$). Australia printed their 2nd QTR GDP last night, and it showed a solid number of .5% for the QTR and 3.1% year on year. That beat the expectations, and the A$ has reversed yesterday’s selling on the news. I did see “something” as a doctor might say to a patient, that we’ll have to keep our eye on. The Personal Income component of the GDP report showed a -.6% decline in disposable income. That’s not a good sign for the 3rd QTR. Just like I told you yesterday about how the Personal Income decline in the U.S. was not good for 3rd QTR GDP, the same will hold true for Australia, unless.. this was just a blip, and the next two months turn around, which is why I say we’ll have to keep our eye on this. But for right here ,right now, the A$ is in rally mode, so don’t stop it now, it’s on a roll! Remember when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? The Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? Don’t Stop him he’s on a roll. HAHAHAHAHA! One of the funniest scenes ever in a movie. On a side bar. A few years ago, used that line about the Germans bombing Pearl Harbor, and I actually had a few readers send me notes telling be that it was Not the Germans, but the Japanese that bombed Pearl Harbor. That made the whole line even more funny! Of course the actual bombing is not, was not funny. I’m strictly talking about the line in the Animal House movie! Back to Australia for a minute. Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) Gov. Stevens, made some comments after the 2nd QTR GDP report printed last night, and in his speech, he made a tactical error, and sound hawkish. I’m certain that he didn’t mean to do this, but h did, and the A$ was the beneficiary. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him come out with a retraction. There’s news this morning from two of my fave currencies / countries. Sweden and Norway, and none of the news is good. In Sweden, the markets are calling for the Riksbank to implement unconventional methods to reach their target inflation rate. Read, Quantitative Easing / QE. I shake my head in disgust, for this Central Bank USED to be prudent and kept their eyes on price stability. And in Norway, the latest data from Statistics Norway, their latest survey of Oil producers and explorers suggest an 18% drop in investments next year. So far in 2014, they’ve seen a 14% decline in investments. So a further drag on the Norwegian economy next year, folks. Of course this is where you reach back in the memory bank and recall that Chuck told you of the huge cash reserves from Oil that Norway is holding, and you say, “But, Chuck, doesn’t the Norwegian Gov’t have a 140.9 Billion krone revenue pile that they could use to plug deficits and support growth during this slowdown?” And I would say, yes! You, dear reader, get a Gold Star! Both the Eurozone and he U.K. printed their latest Services PMI’s this morning, and it was like two ships passing in the night. the U.K. Services industry printed above expectations, while the Eurozone’s print was slightly weaker. But still above 50 (actually at 52.5) But this morning is all about the cease-fire, no cease-fire between Ukraine and Russia. And any sign that the sanctions could be removed would be HUGE for the Eurozone! Gold has found a bid this morning, albeit a small bid, after losing some major ground yesterday. So, Gold loses $24 on a day when the U.S. announces air strikes in Somalia, and Russian President, Putin rates his saber, and then turns around and gains a couple of shekels when a cease-fire is announced. Now, you tell me, where the logic is in all of that! And the metal that has had the best performance so far this year, gaining 22% to date, Palladium, is getting whacked badly this morning on the cease-fire news. I have to say that I’m taken back a step or two watching this price movement in Palladium, given the need of the metal in industrial use hasn’t changed. But, the interruptions of delivery that hung over the metal like the Sword of Damocles, from strikes, earlier this year in S. Africa, and now the conflict in Russia/ Ukraine, seem now to be a thing of the past. But, I don’t think this is anything to get upset about! Look at this whacking of Palladium’s price as an opportunity to buy at a cheaper price. That’s how I look at it! The Chinese renminbi was allowed to appreciate last night.. You know how I always tell you, be yourself, no wait! No time for Mr. Wizard Chuck! I always tell you about China’s treasure chest of reserves that they can use to help the economy when they see a problem ? Well, here’s a classic case of what I’m always telling you. It was reported by the State Council overnight, that Beijing plans to build an efficient shipping system by 2020. Don’t you love it when a country makes investment in their future? So, besides the BOC meeting this morning which will most likely be a non-even, the U.S. Data Cupboard has the conn today.. Since Friday will be the Jobs Jamboree, we’ll see the ADP Employment Report for August today. the ICSC-Goldman Store Sales report, and Factory Orders. The Gallup Poll people are putting together an index on U.S. Job Creation, which should be interesting.. The U.S. Data Cupboard did produce a stronger than expected ISM Manufacturing Index (59 in August VS 57.1 in July), just as I thought, and said it would probably do, given the weakness in the dollar, but, as I also said, I would expect this index number to come down in the coming months given my expectation of a short-term dollar rally. You see, the dollar’s value goes a long way toward whether Manufacturing cooks or not. The last time the ISM Index was this strong was March 2011. And we had QE up to our eyeballs, so everything gets thrown out of whack as far as looking at fundamentals and history. But think you get the picture. For What It’s Worth.Well, I’ve told you all about the agreement that China and Russia signed a couple of months ago whereas Russia agreed to supply China with gas.. Well, there was news this weekend that I found at www.zerohedge.com on this story, and it involves the largest gas pipeline in the World to link the two countries. here’s a snippet. “If after months of Eurasian axis formation, one still hasn’t realized why in the grand game over Ukraine supremacy – not to mention superpower geopolitics – Europe, and the West, has zero leverage, while Russia has all the trump cards, then today’s latest development in Chinese-Russian cooperation should make it abundantly clear. Overnight, following a grand ceremony in the Siberian city of Yakutsk, Russia and China officially began the construction of a new gas pipeline linking the countries. The bottom line to Russia – nearly half a trillion after China’s CNPC agreed to buy $400bn in gas from Russia’s Gazprom back in May. In return, Russia will ship 38 billion cubic meters (bcm) of gas annually over a period of 30 years. The 3,968 km pipeline linking gas fields in eastern Siberia to China will be the world’s largest fuel network in the world.” Chuck again. yes, it’s happening right before us folks. the “shift” away from a dependence on the U.S. But then long time readers will say to themselves, Hey! But Chuck has been telling us this was going to happen because of the debt buildup and history for a long time! And you would be correct! To recap. the dollar’s all-out assault on the currencies and Gold yesterday has backed off this morning with the news that maybe a cease-fire between Ukraine and Russia has been made and maybe not. Australia printed a strong 2nd QTR GDP, well stronger than expected, and RBA Gov. Stevens ended up on the hawkish side of statements, and I’m sure he didn’t mean to! Gold got whacked yesterday, but has wrapped a tourniquet around the bleeding this morning, while Palladium takes over at the bloodletting table for Gold. Not good news from Sweden and Norway this morning, and the Bank of Canada meets today, should be a non-event. Currencies today 9/3/14. American Style: A$ .9325, kiwi .8325, C$ .9175, euro 1.3160, sterling 1.6460, Swiss $1.0895, . European Style: rand 10.6965, krone 6.2045 ,SEK 6.9915, forint 238.75, zloty 3.1870, koruna 21.0315, RUB 36.92, yen 105.05, sing 1.2520, HKD 7.7505, INR 60.49, China 6.1697, pesos 13.09, BRL 2.2435, Dollar Index 82.83, Oil $93.71, 10-year 2.45%, Silver $19.17, Platinum $1,409.88, Palladium $879.00, and Gold. $1,267.80 That’s it for today. What a dolt I am for that elevator repair mix up. UGH! It looks really froggy out this morning. Spell checker didn’t like my version of foggy, but I told it to deal with it! Another exciting win by my beloved Cardinals last night, I sure hope this time it’s for real, and no false dawn like we’ve seen all season long! Speaking of froggy, it reminds me of many years ago, when Kathy & Chuck were driving to St. Louis from Des Moines, Ia. The fog was so thick that the only way I could continue to drive was to crack the door open so I knew where the white line on the road was. That was dangerous, yes, I know it. Just shows how desperate we were to get out of Des Moines and back home to St. Louis! Well, after about 6 years, I finally had to have a new wireless modem put in the house. I was going crazy with all the interruptions to my TV! Hey! It’s college football season, baseball playoffs are around the corner, and the NFL starts tomorrow night, I had to get that fixed! HA! I noticed at the grocery store this past weekend that they had HUGE displays out of Halloween candy already.. UGH! What? I next week too early to get the Christmas stuff out? Our Hockey Blues were showing off their new jersey last week. Everything runs together now I guess! Oh well. I’ve got to get this to Mike for the finishing touches, I hope everyone has a Wonderful Wednesday! Chuck Butler President EverBank World Markets
Recommended Links Editor’s Note: In yesterday’s Weekend Edition, Casey Research founder Doug Casey explained why gold stocks can offer 10 times or even 100 times returns on your money. Today, Doug explains how to stack the odds in your favor when buying gold stocks… Doug Casey: You know, I first started looking at gold stocks back in the early 1970s. In those days, South African stocks were the “blue chips” of the mining industry. As a country, South Africa mined about 60% of all the gold mined in the world, and costs were very low. Gold was controlled at $35 per ounce until Nixon closed the gold window in 1971, but some South Africans were able to mine it for $20 an ounce or less. They were paying huge dividends. Gold had run up from $35 to $200 in early 1974, then corrected down to $100 by 1976. It had come off 50%, but at the same time that gold was bottoming around $100, they had some serious riots in Soweto. So the gold stocks got a double hit: falling gold prices and fear of revolution in South Africa. That made it possible, in those days, to buy into short-lived, high-cost mining companies very cheaply; the stocks of the marginal companies were yielding current dividends of 50-75%. They were penny stocks in those days. They no longer exist; they’ve all been merged into mining finance houses long since then. Three names I remember from those days were Leslie, Bracken, Grootvlei…I owned a lot of shares in them. If you bought Leslie for 80 cents a share, you’d expect, based on previous dividends, to get about 60 cents a share in that year. But then gold started flying upward, the psychology regarding South Africa changed, and by 1980—the next real peak—you were getting several times what you paid for the stock in dividends alone, per year. Louis James: Wow. I can think of some leveraged companies that might be able to deliver that sort of performance if gold goes where we think it will. So, where do you think we are in the current trend or metals cycle? You’ve spoken of the Stealth, Wall of Worry, and Mania Phases of a bull market for metals—do you still think of our market in those terms? Doug: That’s the big question, isn’t it? Well, the last major bottom in this sector was from 1998 to 2002. Many of these junior mining stocks—mostly traded in Canada, where about 75% of all the gold stocks in the world trade—were trading for less than cash in the bank. Literally. You’d get all their properties, their technology, the expertise of their management, totally for free. Or less. L: I remember seeing past issues in which you said, “If I could call your broker and order these stocks for you, I would.” Doug: Yes. But nobody wanted to hear about it at that time. Gold was low, and there was a bubble in Internet stocks—why would anyone want to get involved in a dead duck, 19th century, “choo-choo train” industry like gold mining? It had been completely discredited by the long bear market—but that made it the ideal time to buy them, of course. That was deep in the Stealth Phase. Over the next six to eight years, these stocks took off, moving us into the Wall of Worry Phase. But the stocks didn’t fly the way they did in past bull markets. I think that’s mostly because they were so depleted of capital, they were selling lots of shares. So their market capitalizations—the aggregate value given to them by the market—were increasing, but their share prices weren’t. Not as much. Remember, these companies very rarely have any earnings, but they always need capital, and the only way they can get it is by selling new shares, which dilutes the value of the individual shares, including those held by existing shareholders. Then last fall hit, and nobody, but nobody, wanted anything speculative. These most volatile of stocks showed their nature and plunged through the floor in the general flight to safety. That made last fall the second best time to buy mining shares this cycle, and I know you recommended some pretty aggressive buying last fall, near the bottom. Now, many of these shares—the better ones at least—have recovered substantially, and some have even surpassed pre-crash highs. Again, the Wall of Worry Phase is characterized by large fluctuations that separate the wolves from the sheep (and the sheep from their cash). Where does that leave us? Well, as you know, I think gold is going to go much, much higher. And that is going to direct a lot of attention toward these gold stocks. When people get gold fever, they are not just driven by greed, they’re usually driven by fear as well, so you get both of the most powerful market motivators working for you at once. It’s a rare class of securities that can benefit from fear and greed at once. – Remember that the Fed’s pumping up of the money supply ignited a huge bubble in tech stocks, and then an even more massive global bubble in real estate—which is over for a long time, incidentally—but they’re still creating tons of dollars. That will inevitably ignite other asset bubbles. Where? I can’t say for certain, but I say the odds are extremely high that as gold goes up, for all the reasons we spoke about last week and more, a lot of this funny money is going to be directed into these gold stocks, which are not just a microcap area of the market but a nanocap area of the market. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: When the public gets the bit in its teeth and wants to buy gold stocks, it’s going to be like trying to siphon the contents of the Hoover Dam through a garden hose. Gold stocks, as a class, are going to be explosive. Now, you’ve got to remember that most of them are junk. Most will never, ever find an economical deposit. But it’s hopes and dreams that drive them, not reality, and even without merit, they can still go 10, 20, or 30 times your entry price. And the companies that actually have the goods can go much higher than that. At the moment, gold stock prices are not as cheap, in either relative or absolute terms, as they were at the turn of the century, nor last fall. But given that the Mania Phase is still ahead, they are good speculations right now—especially the ones that have actually discovered gold deposits that look economical. L: So, if you buy good companies now, with good projects, good management, working in stable jurisdictions, with a couple years of operating cash to see them through the Wall of Worry fluctuations—if you buy these and hold for the Mania Phase, you should come out very well. But you can’t blink and get stampeded out of your positions when the market fluctuates sharply. Doug: That’s exactly right. At the particular stage where we are right now in this market for these extraordinarily volatile securities, if you buy a quality exploration company, or a quality development company (which is to say, a company that has found something and is advancing it toward production), those shares could still go down 10%, 20%, 30%, or even 50%. But ultimately, there’s an excellent chance that same stock will go up by 10, 50, or even 100 times. I hate to use such hard-to-believe numbers, but that is the way this market works. When the coming resource bubble is ignited, there are excellent odds you’ll be laughing all the way to the bank in a few years. I should stress that I’m not saying this is the perfect time to buy. We’re not at a market bottom as we were in 2001, nor an interim bottom like last November, and I can’t say I know the Mania Phase is just around the corner. But I think this is a very reasonable time to be buying these stocks. And it’s absolutely a good time to start educating yourself about them. There’s just such a good chance a massive bubble is going to be ignited in this area. L: These are obviously the kinds of things we research, make recommendations on, and educate about in our metals newsletters, but one thing we should stress for nonsubscribers reading this interview is that this strategy applies only to the speculative portion of your portfolio. No one should gamble with their rent money nor the money they’ve saved for college tuition, etc. Doug: Right. The ideal speculator’s portfolio would be divided into 10 areas, each totally different and not correlated with each other. Each of these areas should have, in your subjective opinion, the ability to move 1,000% in price. Why is that? Because most of the time, we’re wrong when we pick areas to speculate in, certainly in areas where you can’t apply Graham-Dodd-type logic. But if you’re wrong on nine out of 10 of them—and it would be hard to do that badly—then you at least break even on the one 10-bagger (1,000% winner). What’s more likely is that a couple will blow up and go to zero, a couple will go down 30%, 40%, 50%, but you’ll also have a couple doubles or triples, and maybe, on one or two of them, you’ll get a 10-to-1 or better win. So, it looks very risky (and falling in love with any single stock is very risky), but it’s actually an intelligent way to diversify your risk and stack the odds of profiting on volatility in your favor. Note that I don’t mean that these “areas” should be 10 different stocks in the junior mining sector—that wouldn’t be diversification. As I say, ideally, I’d have 10 such areas with potential for 1,000% gains, but it’s usually impossible to find that many at once. If you can find only two or three, what do you do with the rest of your money? Well, at this point, I would put a lot of it into gold, in one form or another, while keeping your powder dry as you look for the next idea opportunity. And ideally, I’d look at every market in every country in the world. People who look only in the U.S., or only in stocks, or only in real estate… they just don’t get to see enough balls to swing at. L: Okay, got it. Thank you very much. Doug: A pleasure, as always. Editor’s note: Doug Casey recently put $1 million of his money in penny gold stocks using the “Casey Method”…a proven way of selecting gold stocks with 5x upside, 10x upside, or more. And now, for the first time ever, he is revealing the secrets behind this lucrative strategy in this free video presentation. The last time we saw a gold market like today’s, the Casey Method found 16 stocks. The stocks more than doubled in 12 months, with an average gain of 313%. And Doug believes that today’s gold boom will even be bigger…the biggest gold mania we’ve ever seen. To learn more, watch this short presentation. As you’ll see, there’s never been a better time to own gold stocks. Don’t buy gold bullion. Do this instead. Your wife and broker might think you’re crazy… But a controversial new gold secret could make you 5 times your money this year, starting with just 60 cents right now. Details here. — “Universal Antidote” Set to Generate $1 Billion in New Revenues One under-the-radar company just created a “universal antidote” that could save up to 1.5 million lives this year… and every year thereafter. It could add $1 billion to its revenues… and send the stock soaring 8,233% over the long term… To find out how you could play this opportunity for maximum profits, click here now.
At the beginning of 2018, we made predictions about what the year in global health and development might look like in the countries we cover.The pundits we interviewed forecast that 2018 would bring a decline in the number of health workers around the world, inspire more humanitarians to share their #MeToo stories and see more conflict that would drive the world’s humanitarian crises.Our predictors didn’t do too badly. The Lancet’s latest Global Burden of Disease study noted: “The global shortage and unequal distribution of health workers requires urgent attention.” In October, international charities gathered in London to try to tackle sexual harassment in the aid sector. And a 2018 report from UNOCHA found that “conflict remains the main driver of humanitarian needs.”So what should we expect in 2019? We reached out to pundits in global health and development and they came up with nine bold predictions.1. Positive social change will be contagious in Africa.Over the past year, Ethiopia has gone through a historic transformation at breakneck speed, reports NPR correspondent Eyder Peralta. The country welcomed a new reformist prime minister, who forged peace with former enemy Eritrea and freed thousands of political prisoners.Tobias Denskus, a professor of international development communications at Malmo University and the founder of Aidnography, a global health and development blog, thinks that could inspire other African countries. “Eritrea is one of the most isolated, autocratic and dictatorial nations,” he says. “I’m hoping that positive social change in neighboring countries like Ethiopia will lead Eritrea to do the same.” – Malaka Gharib2. Urban slums will grow.The majority of Africa’s population is young — and that so-called youth bulge will mean “more and more people will make the shift from rural to urban centers in search of jobs and opportunity and driven by changing climate,” says Kennedy Odede, co-founder and CEO of the nonprofit SHOFCO, which provides education, grassroots organizing and services like health care and water in the slums of Kenya.The changing urban landscape will be a challenge for governments. They “will have to be responsive to rapid change or risk humanitarian crises and destabilization,” Odede says. If governments do not provide better services for this new urban population, Odede says there could be an “urban spring” — protests and chaos from angry, uneducated, marginalized youth. But he is an optimist: “There is opportunity in this to harness the energy and intellect of young people.” – Marc Silver3. More countries will follow the U.S. example of pulling out of U.N. funding. On January 1, the U.S. formally left UNESCO, the United Nations Education, Science and Cultural Organization. At the end of World War II, the United States helped found UNESCO to preserve the world’s heritage sites and promote the flow of ideas to prevent future conflicts. But then, UNESCO granted full membership to the Palestinians, and the U.S. stopped funding it, NPR reported.This is not the first time that the U.S. has left the U.N. heritage agency. It withdrew once before, in 1984, citing corruption and an ideological tilt toward the Soviet Union against the West, according to Foreign Policy. Tobias Denskus of Malmo University predicts that the U.S. will make further cuts: “I’m worried that as we move closer to U.S. elections, U.N. funding will suffer even more and ultimately weaken [the U.N.].” And he worries the U.S. precedent will cause other countries to reduce their contributions based on their political agenda. – Malaka Gharib4. There will be more significant infectious disease outbreaks — maybe even a pandemic … “We’re seeing a global increase in the spread of infectious diseases,” says Jennifer Nuzzo, a senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security who leads the Outbreak Observatory, a group that collects information about outbreaks. And she doesn’t expect a change in that pattern.”In fact,” she says, “there are worrying signs that the conditions favoring the emergence of a pandemic — and the impact it would have — are ever more present and possibly getting worse.”These conditions include increased migration that’s exposing people to diseases they’ve never encountered before, densely populated megacities and resettlement camps, vaccine refusals, compromised infrastructures as a result of humanitarian crises like conflict, natural disasters and instability as well as climate change that’s exacerbating disasters and pushing disease-bearing wildlife into new habitats. – Joanne Lu5. … but the odds are good we can beat back a bad outbreak.The ability to respond quickly to pandemics is also increasing, says Nuzzo. For example, the DRC was able to control the first phase of its Ebola outbreak in a couple of months, and there’s now an Ebola vaccine that didn’t exist four years ago when the virus swept West Africa.Still, the second phase of the outbreak – which is now the second largest and second deadliest in history – shows that political instability can stand in the way of such advances.”The case for optimism is that the emergence and spread of diseases may be inevitable, but the impacts that they have on society aren’t,” she says. “We should count on there being very significant outbreaks. Whether they become pandemics is up to us.” – Joanne Lu 6. People who need mental health help will find it on their phone.The fields of mental health and substance abuse treatments are about to take a great leap forward into the digital world, predicts psychiatrist Vikram Patel, professor of global health and social medicine at Harvard University. The solution to fighting stigma and the lack of trained counselors could be right in your pocket – a smartphone or even a plain old flip phone. Counselors with a web connection could learn about effective diagnosis and treatment online. They could ping their patients with online tips. People with depression or schizophrenia or substance abuse in rich and poor countries could use their phones to check in with a counselor, receive guidance or touch base with others facing the same issues. Researchers around the world are also testing a variety of apps. The University of Washington is working on a variety of cellphone-based training and treatment programs in Ghana, where cellphones are common and there’s a broad 3G network. The FDA is working on ways to approve digital programs for cognitive behavioral therapy. And the National Institute of Mental Health in the U.S., which is also predicting greater use of digital technology in the future, already provides a guide for finding effective mental health apps. – Joanne Silberner7. Nonprofit leadership will become more diverse.Bullying, sexual harassment and sex scandals in the humanitarian industry made headlines in 2018, from big aid agencies like UNAIDS to small nonprofits like More Than Me.One solution to this, critics have said, is to hire more diverse and qualified candidates. “Many organizations are realizing that they should diversify to represent views that have been traditionally sidelined,” says Tobias Denskus of Malmo University. “The pressure is increasing to hire more female leaders and hire capable managers from the global south, from the LGBT community who haven’t been included before.””More qualified, diverse candidates from Africa and beyond are knocking at the door,” adds Denskus — now it’s up to the aid organizations to let them in. – Malaka Gharib8. There will be fewer food crises.Dry season has begun in sub-Saharan Africa — the period from roughly November through April or May when the rains stop. As climate change has affected weather patterns, droughts have become increasingly severe.By February, “you see the faces of hungry people from Ethiopia to Kenya to South Sudan,” says Esther Ngumbi, a researcher at the University of Illinois and an Aspen Institute New Voices food security fellow.But in 2019, she is hopeful that the impact of the dry season will not be as dramatic. The reason, she says, is that countries are doing a better job equipping their farmers with water storage systems and encouraging them to plant drought-resistant crops like millet and sorghum, both highly nutritional grains, and cowpeas (aka black-eyed peas), whose seeds are high in protein.Famine and food insecurity will still be part of the 2019 landscape, especially in conflict-torn areas. But Ngumbi is predicts fewer hunger emergencies: “It’s already January, and we haven’t seen new calls for emergency relief.” – Marc Silver9. Wealthy countries will turn away more people seeking asylum. Paul Spiegel, director of the Center for Humanitarian Health at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, worries that there will be “an increase in denial for people seeking asylum in high-income countries.”As a result of increasing anti-immigration and anti-refugee sentiment, some countries in Europe have begun to “pay off” lower-income countries to shoulder the burden of taking in refugees, he says. In 2016, for example, Germany struck a deal with Turkey to quell the flow of refugees from Syria. In exchange for $6.8 billion, Turkey created facilities to detain refugees in camps while their asylum claims in Germany were being processed. In 2017, Italy followed suit, establishing a similar deal with Libya.Spiegel worries that programs like these will ramp up in 2019 in the U.S. and beyond. “In the U.S., we’re already having trouble with the Mexican border. What’s going to happen when Venezuelans start making their way over here?” he says. For U.S. government officials to stay in power, he predicts they too will take a tougher stance on immigration policy — adopting the idea that the U.S. must “be strong at the borders.” – Malaka GharibYour TurnGot a big, bold prediction for global health and development in 2019? Reply to this Twitter thread with your thoughts, and we’ll share a few in Goats and Soda’s newsletter next week. Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.
Health officials in Washington have declared a state of emergency and are urging immunization as they scramble to contain a measles outbreak in two counties, while the number of cases of the potentially deadly virus continues to climb in a region with lower than normal vaccination rates. Washington Department of Health officials announced that as of Monday afternoon there have been 36 confirmed cases and 11 suspected cases of the disease. That is a significant increase from Friday’s reported numbers when Gov. Jay Inslee declared a state of emergency. At the time there were 26 confirmed measles cases. In Friday’s statement, Inslee said, “Measles is a highly contagious infectious disease that can be fatal in small children. The existence of 26 confirmed cases in the state of Washington creates an extreme public health risk that may quickly spread to other counties.”Since then nine new cases have been confirmed, all in Clark County, which borders Portland, Ore., creating concern in that state as well. Washington state epidemiologist Scott Lindquist told NPR’s Patti Neighmond this is likely only the beginning of the epidemic since many of the families with infected children traveled to very public places, including Costco, Ikea, the Portland International Airport and the arena where the Trail Blazers play. Lindquist added that officials are particularly concerned that “folks that are immuno-compromised — pregnant women, young kids and those that are unvaccinated — could be at risk for this disease” without realizing it because the telltale measles rash might not appear for four days into the sickness. As a result, people may not know they are carrying the disease and could easily unwittingly expose others to the extremely contagious virus.Measles virus travels through the air. It can be contracted without even being near a person with the virus because it lingers for up to two hours in the air of a room where a person with the measles has been. It can cause serious complications, including pneumonia and encephalitis, and can be deadly. Inslee notes, “Almost everyone who is not immune will get measles if they are exposed.”Clark County Public Health has identified 35 confirmed cases and 11 suspected cases since Jan. 1, when it first began investigating the outbreak. In all but four instances, the person who had contracted the disease had not been immunized. In the remaining cases, authorities had not yet verified their immunization status.The majority of those infected were children, with 25 of the 35 confirmed cases impacting children under 10 years old. Children under the age of one cannot be immunized. So far, King County has reported the only adult case, a man in his 50s who was hospitalized but has since recovered. Although it’s not clear where he became infected, the man said he’d recently traveled to Clark County. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that people who have not been immunized but believe they have been exposed to the airborne virus, get the MMR vaccine. It explains, “If you get MMR vaccine within 72 hours of initially being exposed to measles, you may get some protection against the disease, or have milder illness.” Before the vaccine was introduced in 1963 measles was the single leading killer of children in the world. To this day, it still kills 100,000 children a year worldwide, most under the age of five. Measles was declared completely eliminated within the U.S. in 2000 due to the country’s widespread vaccination program. However, state laws allowing parents to opt out of mandatory vaccinations quickly began eroding those statistics, leading to outbreaks across the nation.The number of measles cases nearly tripled in 2018 to 349 over 2017, when only 120 cases were reported. The CDC attributed the jump to primarily unvaccinated people in the Orthodox Jewish communities in New York state, New York City and New Jersey. The agency noted the outbreaks were associated with travelers who brought measles back from Israel.And, in 2017, low vaccination compliance rates among the Somali-American community living in Minnesota led to a cluster of 75 cases. As NPR reported, “In 2014, there were 667 cases in the U.S., including a large outbreak among Amish communities in Ohio. In 2015, there were 188 cases, including some linked to an outbreak that started at the Disneyland amusement park. Prior vaccination is critical to keeping people from contracting the virus if they are exposed to it.”Washington and Oregon are among the country’s many states that allow parents with a personal or philosophical objection to decline the measles vaccination, among some others. And Seattle, Spokane and Portland are among 15 U.S. cities considered “hot spots” for their high rates of non-medical exemptions to vaccines that cover measles, mumps and rubella. Pediatrician Peter Hotez, dean of Baylor College of Medicine’s National School of Tropical Medicine, told NPR there is a very-aggressive anti-vaccine lobby throughout the Pacific Northwest that have effectively driven up the rates of vaccine non-compliance, leaving scores of children vulnerable to the infection.The groups often spread misinformation claiming a link between vaccines and autism. A claim that has been wholly refuted by the Centers for Disease Control.Washington state officials are now beginning the arduous and costly task of tracking down everyone who might have been exposed to the infection and cautioning them to be on the alert for symptoms, including runny nose, red eyes, fever and rash. Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.
Mens Quarter FinalsWimbledonTIME: from 1pm, BBCNOT EASY AS ODDS SAY FOR DJOKOVICThat worked out well yesterday. A profit of 11 points on the day after the two recommendations both copped.Straight sets win for Lisicki and a win for Radwanska who beat the match favourite Li Na.Not a bad day to be on Centre Court this afternoon.In fact if I was lucky enough to have a ticket for the final at this stage of the tournament I’d quite happily trade if for a ticket for the Men’s Quarter Finals today and Ferrer v Del Potro followed by Verdasco v Murray.I’d be in profit too because goodness knows what final tickets will exchange hands for if Murray does get to the final.Murray, our outright tip for the event has progressed to this stage in style without dropping a set and it’s odds-on that we’ll see a repeat of the US OPen Final with Djokovic and Murray stepping on to the Centre Court on Sunday afternoon.But in a tournament that has thrown up shock after shock you just wonder what else might happen.Djokovic, for example, has on paper tha hardest task today against number 7 seed Thomas Berdych, a former Wimbledon finalist, who beat Djokovic on the only time they have met on grass.It’s not a day to thrown too many points around but a point on the two 3-2 set outcomes could be of interest.STAR FORECAST(stake between 0.5 and 10 points)1 point win DJOKOVIC to beat BERDYCH 3-21 point win BERDYCH to beat DJOKOVIC 3-2(+11 points Tuesday)FOOTBALL PLAYERS LIKE WELL OILED MACHINESMore than 1,000 robots have rolled onto a football pitch in the Netherlands to show off their sporting skills.The machines might not be able to bend the ball like Beckham, their attacks lack the pace of a Barcelona charge and they struggle to stay on their feet as much as some professional players do.However, a wifi internet connection allows them to communicate with their team mates and their built-in celebrations rival those of Peter Crouch, the former England player famed for his robotic dance moves.Organisers of the RoboCup tournament hope a team of all-star androids will be able to defeat the human World Cup winners by 2050, although team members at the event in Eindhoven admit more training is needed.
Add to Queue The Big Trends From Google I/O 2017 –shares It’s very easy to dismiss Google I/O as just an opportunity to show off new toys and to throw a big party. Given the appearance of LCD Soundsystem at this year’s closing concert, the impression is understandable. But I/O 2017 was when Google’s efforts in big data, search and device ubiquity bore fruit as it transitions toward a new focus on AI and machine learning.Everything old is finally here.Google I/O 2016 is etched in my mind for two reasons. First, it was deadly hot, dampening the fun of an outdoor conference with sweat. Second, nothing announced was actually released.In retrospect, 2016 was a building year for Google. Products announced last year, including Google Assistant and Google Home, have now been in the wild — some, like Android Wear 2, for just a few months. This year, we heard about improvements and Google opened them to developers.Developers can now work on Android, Chrome, the Google Assistant and Google Home through the Actions API. Instant Apps are also now available, taking away the primary friction point of downloading and using apps. The omnipresence of the Google Assistant also means Actions developed for it will filter into many new platforms, including the iPhone.In fact, the iPhone was mentioned with such frequency, it began to feel less like a competitor and more like another platform ripe for development. The fact that the Google Assistant will be moving into Siri territory made this abundantly clear.This is particularly notable because Android has always been the centerpiece of the Google developer experience. True, not every attendee is an app developer, but Android has always loomed large. This year, the presence of Android wasn’t necessarily diminished, but it was just one of many platforms under the Google umbrella.Taking the reins.As a developer conference, I/O is an opportunity to not only encourage developers to adopt new tools and new platforms, but to offer some useful feedback as well. That’s not unusual, but there was some tension in the discussions this year.At the developer keynote, Android luminaries explained how new restrictions on data, processing power and battery power for apps are not meant to be punitive but to make Android better for everyone, including users. That’s a sensible viewpoint — it might even be correct — but it felt decidedly more prescriptive than past Google sessions.That’s just a few of the new ways Google is reclaiming Android. Project Treble, described in the Android security panel, divides Android into three segments. Google will maintain control of the core OS segment, hopefully allowing for bigger, broader updates with less meddling from device manufacturers and carriers.There are also new rules about user identifiers. Developers and advertisers use these to track users on and off their devices and serve up targeted ads. Restricting them is a privacy win for consumers, and probably a data win for Google, which controls most of the means of identifying users.The turning point in Android O.Another innovation in Android O comes in the notification center. Google designers and developers have paid particular attention to notifications and icons over the last few iterations of the OS. They rightly understand this is a major area of interest for consumers, and a primary area of interaction.”Channels” is the internal term Google applies to new categories of notifications. In O, developers will group their notifications together into different types, letting users change how those notifications appear, or if they appear at all. Google’s leadership says this is a feature requested by users and developers, and the benefits for both are clear. Users get more control over how their phone works — a key Android concept. Developers have more ways to communicate with users, and users will be less likely to simply uninstall apps that generate unwanted notifications. Instead, those notifications can simply be silenced.That all comes with a catch: Once developers target Android version 26 (or Android O, to its friends), they must use notification channels. If they don’t, their app’s notifications will be dropped and simply not appear. This, of course, will have limited impact in the Android user community, given the low adoption rates for new Android OSes. But O will be a turning point for the platform and all developers.Also during the session on notifications, the Googlers on stage took the unusual step of asking developers not to abuse the ability to change colors on notifications — a new feature in Android O. This warning was included in the developer documentation (and I noted it in my review of the pre-release of O), but it was strange to hear it on stage. It was also strange to hear Googlers say they were “giving a lot of trust” to developers, and promising to take away these privileges if they felt colorful notifications were being abused. It was odd, partly because of the paternalistic tone, but also because the vast majority of Android developers were not in the room or at I/O.VR and AR, unleashed.There are only two major tech companies with fully functional AR experiences: Microsoft through HoloLens and Google with Project Tango. Tango has been my perennial favorite at Google I/O in part because it is so radically different from other Google efforts, and also because it has felt ready for primetime since 2014 at least.Tango had a big coming out this past year with the announcement of the first commercial phone to support it, the Lenovo Phab 2 Pro.This year, we got word of an entirely new device with a thinner body and brighter screen. Lowe’s has also agreed to let Google map 400 of its stores to provide in-store navigation via Tango devices that can take you directly to items on your shopping list.From my conversations with the Project Tango team, the main focus right now is improving the overall experience and supporting the rollout of consumer applications for what was once a lab experiment. But we did get some hints. A session specifically on Tango showed off future efforts to identify discrete objects within the room, software that can map a room and then clear all the furniture from it and an app to automatically generate 2D floorplans. One of the most exciting applications was an autonomous aerial drone using Tango technology to navigate obstacles at top speed.The biggest VR announcement of Google I/O was, without a doubt, standalone VR devices. Google was short on details, but it’s a marked departure from previous VR efforts. Google dipped its toe into the world of VR with the Cardboard, a $20 frame for a smartphone that provided a surprisingly immersive and low-cost VR experience. The company doubled down with Daydream, which used only high-end phones and a specialized headset, but still cost dramatically less than any other VR experience.A standalone VR device effectively removes the hurdle of Google itself. It’s a huge boon to Google and for the developers who want to try this new platform. With a standalone device, Google can offer VR to anyone willing to purchase such a device. You won’t need a specialized Android phone; it will all be one package.Daydream is very impressive in its own right, and I’m excited for a standalone device that will allow iPhone users and others to enjoy Daydream apps. Hopefully it will cost far, far less than the Vive and the Oculus Rift. But I worry about moving too far from the humble Cardboard. Part of what impressed me about it was its DIY efficiency and remarkably low barrier for entry. As the price of Google’s VR experience goes up, the number of people who can enjoy it will go down.Going forward.In 2016, it wasn’t clear what the AI revolution actually meant for Google. While machine learning was certainly at the forefront, there wasn’t any tangible evidence of how this would work for Google. It could all have easily been dismissed as a fad, or just a nice way to encapsulate a sector of Google’s progress that had flown under the radar.This year, we finally saw what being “AI first” really means. It means Google in more places, it means developers being able to interact in new ways (and on new devices). And most importantly, it shows Google with far more focus than ever before. It seems very likely to me that this year specifically will mark a major turning point not just for Google, but for the entire industry. Software Analyst Google Next Article This story originally appeared on PCMag 2019 Entrepreneur 360 List The only list that measures privately-held company performance across multiple dimensions—not just revenue. 8 min read May 22, 2017 Apply Now » Google I/O 2017 was a continued transformation of the company, from machine learning to greater control of Android. Here’s what we learned at the show. Image credit: Google via PC Mag Max Eddy
Technology July 21, 2008 Next Article 6 min read Stream Your Music Collection Over the Net Listen to your favorite tunes anywhere, anytime, by putting your entire music library online. It’s easy, and we show you how. Brought to you by PCWorld We’re living in the Internet Age, so what good is a music collection that’s trapped inside your home PC? Your songs should be able to go where you go, be it the office, a friend’s house, an airport lounge, or even the backseat of a taxi.Fortunately, liberating your song library is easier than you might think, so you can stream it from your PC or the Web to just about anyplace. Better still, unlike a new iPod, it won’t cost you a cent.There are lots of ways to get to your music via the Net, but I’m going to show you two distinct methods using fantastic freebies. MP3tunes, a Web-based service, houses your music collection online. Meanwhile, Orb streams songs straight from your PC to nearly any Internet-connected device–including some cell phones. Which one is the better choice for you? As it turns out, you might want to tap both. Read on, and I’ll explain why.Store Your Music Online with MP3tunesMP3tunes makes a mighty generous offer: The service will store up to 25 gigabytes of your music files free of charge. Once you’ve uploaded your collection, you can sign in to your account from any Web-connected PC and stream to your heart’s content–complete with playlists and auto-generated mixes. What’s more, MP3tunes effectively doubles as an online backup for your collection, a great insurance policy against hard-drive disaster.Start by signing up for an account, which gives you an MP3tunes “locker.” (If your collection exceeds 25GB or you want advertising-free access, a 50GB premium account will run you $40 annually. Other plans are available if you need even more storage.) Next, download LockerSync 3.0 from MP3tunes’ Downloads section. This utility keeps your local music library in sync with your online music locker. It’s available for Windows, Mac, and Linux operating systems.You can let LockerSync scan your entire system for music or set it to monitor and sync specific folders. Then it’s just a matter of waiting while the software copies your tunes to MP3tunes’ servers. And there’s the rub: Depending on the size of your collection, it can take a few days of 24/7 uploading to finish the job. That’s not MP3tunes’ fault: Internet service providers typically throttle upstream performance, devoting most of the available bandwidth to downloads.Fortunately, once you’ve completed the initial upload, subsequent syncs should go much faster (assuming you add only a few songs or albums at a time). And you can start streaming music from your locker even while uploads are underway. The MP3tunes player runs in a browser window and offers familiar controls, including shuffle and repeat modes and a playlist builder. Mouse over any song in the track list to play, download, or trash it, or to add it to a playlist. You can even edit a song’s metadata.Its name notwithstanding, MP3tunes doesn’t limit you to MP3s: It can stream most unprotected audio formats, including AAC, Ogg, and WMA. Of course, that leaves out DRM-laden songs purchased from iTunes and other stores, but that’s to be expected. To avoid the hassles of DRM–on MP3tunes and throughout your digital life–I recommend either buying CDs or purchasing from DRM-free online stores such as Amazon. (For more on DRM-free music, see Dan Tynan’s “Four Ways to Reclaim Your Digital Rights”.)On the plus side, MP3tunes offers a browser plug-in that lets you add songs straight to your locker from any site that hosts MP3s (or from the company’s own Sideload site, which aggregates songs from around the Web).Stream Music From Your PC With OrbWhile you’re waiting for MP3tunes to upload all your music, consider installing Orb. This free service turns your PC into a media server, streaming not only songs, but also video, photos, and even TV, to just about any Web-connected device. That means you can tap your music library from your work PC, your Palm Centro, your Nintendo Wii, or your iPhone–to name just a few of the supported gadgets.The Orb software client requires Windows XP or later and a broadband Internet connection. (If you want to add TV to the streaming mix, you’ll need a TV tuner as well–check Orb’s FAQ page for a list of supported models.) Once Orb is installed, configure the software to monitor the system folders containing your music (and, if desired, photos and videos). The software will also help you sign up for an Orb account, which requires nothing more than a user name, a password, and an e-mail address.With the Orb client up and running, you’re ready to stream. The hitch, of course, is that you’ll need to leave your computer on at all times. If it’s configured to go into power-saving sleep mode, no problem: Orb can transmit a “wake-up” command that should get your machine out of bed. (You may need to tweak the BIOS and/or ethernet adapter settings to enable the Wake on LAN option, which makes this kind of remote control possible.)To listen to your tunes, fire up the Web browser on the device you’re using–a PC, your smart phone, a game console, or whatever–and then head over to mycast.orb.com. The Orb interface varies depending on the device you use to access it; a PC affords the richest experience, a customizable portal where you can access not just music, but also weather, news, games, and RSS feeds. Click Audio-Random if you just want to shuffle-play your song library, or click the Open Application button, and then Audio, for a familiar media-player interface.Orb is by no means the only option for streaming music from your PC; others include JukeFly, SqueezeCenter, and Vibe Streamer. Like Orb, these services cost nothing to use, but they stream only music–no video or photos–and their support for mobile devices is limited, or zero. Plus, Orb is a snap to set up and use, making it the obvious choice if you want anytime, anywhere access to your tunes. Apply Now » 2019 Entrepreneur 360 List –shares The only list that measures privately-held company performance across multiple dimensions—not just revenue. Add to Queue
Add to Queue Google and Red Hat Found a Dangerous, Widespread Bug Learn how to successfully navigate family business dynamics and build businesses that excel. Next Article This story originally appeared on Fortune Magazine Free Webinar | July 31: Secrets to Running a Successful Family Business Register Now » February 17, 2016 Software –shares 3 min read Engineers at Google and Red Hat independently found an egregious bug in very widely-distributed computer code library known as “glibc”.The bug, which dates back to 2008, affects hundreds of thousands of devices and programs that use software derived from the GNU free-software project. The products, which range from servers to routers to Internet-of-things devices, are vulnerable when they try to use a certain function to translate web addresses into their underlying, numerical IP addresses.If an attacker controls the web server or domain name the victim is trying to communicate with, or if someone is intercepting the communications between the victim’s device and the server or domain name, it’s possible to make the victim’s computer crash — or, with some effort, to even insert malicious code in that machine.Computers running Windows or Mac OS X or iOS or Android should not be affected.Google explained in a blog post that one of its engineers had discovered the bug when she found a problem with software she was using for remotely controlling a computer. It turned out that two Red Hat employees were also examining the bug’s impact.Google released a piece of code that proves the vulnerability can crash a victim’s computer. It said it has also developed a proof-of-concept for remotely running code on the victim’s machine, but it’s not releasing that publicly, for obvious reasons.There is now a patch for the bug, and server administrators should definitely be installing that right away. People using Linux versions such as Canonical’s Ubuntu should be moving quickly to protect themselves.Given the severity of the bug, there are now at least two points worth considering.Firstly, as Google Chrome security engineer Chris Palmer pointed out, the episode highlights the fact that free-software projects don’t always fix their bugs in a timely manner — it turned out someone first raised this bug last July.Next time someone claims that the abusive culture of GNU/Linux keeps the engineering bar high, #glibc is your answer.— Chris Palmer (@fugueish) February 17, 2016Secondly, we can probably expect to see servers and such get patched quickly, but devices with embedded software — routers and Internet-of-things devices, for example — don’t typically get updated very often, if at all. Internet-of-things manufacturers in particular have a legendarily lax attitude to security.If a computer doesn’t have a screen attached to it, people tend to forget that it’s a computer and needs regular care and attention. In cases like this, that’s a problem. Image credit: Pexels David Meyer
Image credit: NASA via Reuters Free Webinar | July 31: Secrets to Running a Successful Family Business –shares Reuters Next Article 2 min read Learn how to successfully navigate family business dynamics and build businesses that excel. Register Now » NASA U.S. Astronauts Prepare Station for Commercial Space Taxis August 22, 2016 Two NASA astronauts completed a six-hour spacewalk outside the International Space Station on Friday to install a parking spot for upcoming commercial space taxis, which will end U.S. reliance on Russia for rides to the orbiting outpost.Station commander Jeff Williams and flight engineer Kate Rubins floated outside the station’s airlock and headed toward the berthing slip once used by NASA’s now-retired space shuttles, a NASA TV broadcast showed.”Great view,” said Rubins, who made her first spacewalk.Since grounding the shuttle fleet in 2011, the United States has been dependent on Russia to ferry astronauts to and from the space station, at a cost of more than $70 million per person.During Friday’s spacewalk, Williams and Rubins attached an adapter onto the shuttle’s docking port that will allow commercial space taxis under development by Space Exploration Technologies and Boeing to park at the station, a $100 billion research laboratory that flies about 250 miles (400 km) above Earth.”It’s a gateway to a new era in commercial space,” said NASA mission commentator Rob Navias.California-based SpaceX, owned and operated by technology entrepreneur Elon Musk, plans to begin test flights of its new passenger Dragon capsule to the station in 2017.Boeing’s debut flight of its CST-100 Starliner capsule is expected in 2018.NASA had hoped to have the first of two new docking ports installed last year, but the equipment was destroyed during a SpaceX cargo ship launch accident in June 2015.A replacement docking port is under construction and expected to be delivered to the station in early 2018.On Friday, Williams and Rubins routed a cable for the second docking port’s installation in early 2018.The astronauts had planned to tackle a few other lower-priority maintenance tasks, but NASA decided to end the spacewalk after an intermittent communications problem developed with Williams’ spacesuit, Navias said.Williams and Rubins are scheduled to make another spacewalk on Sept. 1 to retract a solar array cooling panel that is no longer being used and to install a high-definition television camera on the station’s exterior frame.(Reporting by Irene Klotz in Cairns, Australia; Editing by Colleen Jenkins, Paul Simao and Chizu Nomiyama) This story originally appeared on Reuters NASA astronaut Jeff Williams works inside the Bigelow Expandable Activity Module (BEAM) attached to the International Space Station. Add to Queue
Source:https://www.keckmedicine.org/ Reviewed by Alina Shrourou, B.Sc. (Editor)Oct 7 2018For approximately 8 million Americans, visiting a doctor regularly is the key to managing their psoriasis, a chronic inflammatory skin condition characterized by itchy or painful red patches that can appear anywhere on the body. But for some people, seeing a specialist regularly can be a monumental challenge, especially for those who live in rural or underserved communities. A new study led by the Keck School of Medicine of USC, however, raises the possibility that one day, people with psoriasis may be able to simply go online to receive their care. Published today in JAMA Network Open, the study found that online and in-person care were equally effective at improving psoriasis symptoms.”Patients with chronic skin diseases need ongoing care, and depending on where they live, their access to dermatological care can be variable,” says the study’s lead author April Armstrong, MD, MPH, professor of dermatology (clinical scholar) and associate dean for clinical research at the Keck School. “Our study suggests that an online care delivery model is an effective way to bring high-quality care to patients regardless of where they live or what their work/life schedules look like.”Related StoriesNewly discovered bacteria-killing protein on the epidermis requires vitamin A to workAn active brain and body associated with reduced risk of dementiaResearchers investigate causal relationship between higher BMI and psoriasisIn the multicenter study, Armstrong and her colleagues followed nearly 300 patients who had been randomized to either online or in-person care and monitored their symptom improvement.Patients assigned to online care logged in to a secure, web-based connected health platform where they could communicate with their primary care provider or dermatologist, share images of their skin and receive treatment recommendations. After reviewing transmitted information, health care providers evaluated patients’ progress, provided patient education and prescribed medications electronically. Patients assigned to in-person care received treatment as usual.Psoriasis severity was measured at baseline and again at three, six, nine and 12 months. Across the follow-up visits, the two groups achieved similar improvement in psoriasis severity scores.”From a patient’s perspective, there are several benefits to an online care delivery model: They don’t need to travel to a facility with specialty care, they can receive high-quality specialty care at home and they can communicate with their doctor at a time that’s convenient for them,” Armstrong says. “From a provider’s perspective, the benefits include flexibility in where and when they work.”While this study focused on patients with psoriasis, Armstrong believes that the online care model has other potential applications as well.”The use of teledermatology needs to be considered in other patient populations with chronic skin diseases such as atopic dermatitis. There is a critical need for children and adults with atopic dermatitis to receive high-quality specialist care for this condition through novel telehealth delivery methods,” she says.
Source:https://www.upmc.com/media/news/102018-emens-nejm-trial Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Oct 23 2018Patients with an aggressive form of advanced breast cancer can benefit from immunotherapy when used in combination with chemotherapy as first-line treatment, according to the results of a large international Phase III clinical trial published today in the New England Journal of Medicine and led by a researcher at the UPMC Hillman Cancer Center and the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.The study is the first large clinical trial to support the use of immunotherapy in treating triple-negative breast cancer and establishes a new standard of care in PD-L1+ patients, senior trial investigator and study author Leisha Emens, M.D., Ph.D., co-leader of the UPMC Hillman Cancer Immunology and Immunotherapy Program, explained. Results were presented today at the annual meeting of the European Society for Medical Oncology in Munich, Germany.Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women, with an estimated 2 million new cases diagnosed in 2018 alone. About 10 to 20 percent of patients have triple-negative breast cancer, an aggressive form of breast cancer that has a higher chance of recurrence and metastasis, and lower survival.”While chemotherapy is the current standard of treatment for triple-negative breast cancer, there is an urgent need for newer, more effective therapies,” said Emens. “The results of this trial showed that adding the immunotherapy drug atezolizumab to chemotherapy was well-tolerated and resulted in a clear increase in clinical benefit for some patients with triple-negative breast cancer.”The IMpassion130 trial was designed to evaluate whether atezolizumab, approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat both bladder cancer and non-small cell lung cancer, could be used along with chemotherapy to improve clinical outcomes in patients with triple-negative breast cancer. Atezolizumab belongs to a class of immunotherapy medications known as checkpoint inhibitors. The drug targets the PD-L1 protein, which in triple-negative breast cancer patients is found mostly on immune cells that infiltrate the tumor. Blocking PD-L1 reinvigorates these immune cells, allowing them to attack the tumor.The trial enrolled 902 patients with either metastatic or locally advanced triple-negative breast cancer that could not be surgically removed. Patients were enrolled at 246 sites in 41 countries across the world and were randomly assigned to receive either atezolizumab or a placebo, along with the chemotherapy drug nab-paclitaxel.Related StoriesUsing machine learning algorithm to accurately diagnose breast cancerLiving with advanced breast cancerAI-enabled device detects if targeted chemotherapy is workingBoth progression-free survival–the length of time the patient lives after receiving the therapy without the tumor growing or spreading, and overall survival–the length of time the patient survives from the start of the trial, were recorded.In the overall patient population, the researchers found a statistically significant increase in progression-free survival in patients treated with both nab-paclitaxel and atezolizumab – 7.2 months when compared to 5.5 months in patients who received chemotherapy alone. In the group of patients who expressed the PD-L1 protein on tumor-infiltrating immune cells, the combination treatment had a more significant impact on progression-free survival – 7.5 months versus 5 months.Overall survival was 21.3 months in the combination treatment group as compared to 17.6 months with chemotherapy alone, though this did not reach statistical significance in this first analysis. In the group of patients who expressed PD-L1 on their tumors, the difference in survival was greater, with overall survival of 25 months, in contrast to 15.5 months in patients treated with nab-paclitaxel alone.”This improvement in progression-free and overall survival is clinically meaningful in patients with advanced PD-L1+ triple-negative breast cancer,” Emens said. The researchers continue to follow the patients to determine overall survival over a longer time period.The adverse events observed were similar to the known adverse event profile of the two drugs. Patients who received both immunotherapy and nab-paclitaxel experienced a higher frequency of adverse events that were potentially immune-related, than those who received chemotherapy alone, at 7.5 percent versus 4.3 percent, respectively.The trial was funded by F. Hoffmann-La Roche/Genentech, which provided atezolizumab and placebo and collaborated with an academic steering committee regarding the trial design and data collection, analysis and interpretation. Celgene provided nab-paclitaxel and had no role in the trial design, data collection or analysis, but did review the manuscript.A complete listing of the authors and their affiliations, along with the financial disclosure forms provided by the authors can be found with the article online.
Reporters take pictures of a Nissan Sylphy Zero Emission, the Nissan’s first all-electric vehicle built in China, at the Nissan factory in Guangzhou, Guangdong province, China, Monday, Aug. 27, 2018. The Sylphy is part of a wave of dozens of electric models planned by global automakers for China where the government is pressing them to accelerate development of the technology. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu) A worker of Dongfeng Nissan, right, wears a uniform with a pin with Chinese words “Communist party member” attends the ceremony of launching Nissan Sylphy Zero Emission, the Nissan’s first all-electric vehicle built in China, in Guangzhou, Guangdong province, China, Monday, Aug. 27, 2018. The Sylphy is part of a wave of dozens of electric models planned by global automakers for China, where the government is pressing them to accelerate development of the technology. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu) Manufacturers including General Motors and Volkswagen are poised this year to launch a flood of electric sedans, minivans and SUVs in China designed for local tastes and smaller budgets. Nissan, Tesla, GM and others sell imported electrics or electrified versions of models made by Chinese partners, but the market is dominated by low-cost local rivals including BYD Auto.China’s government sees electric cars as a promising industry and a way to clean up its smog choked cities. It has spent heavily on subsidies to Chinese producers and is shifting the burden to automakers with sales quotas and tougher fuel efficiency standards.The Sylphy Zero Emission, based on Nissan’s leaf, is being produced by Nissan Motor Co. and a Chinese partner, Dongfeng Motor group.The Sylphy costs 166,000 yuan ($25,850) after government subsidies, or just over half the sticker price of the Chinese version of the Leaf sold by Nissan and Dongfeng’s joint venture Venucia brand. Nissan says the Sylphy can go 338 kilometers (210 miles) on a charge. Hiroto Saikawa, Nissan Motor Co., Ltd’s president and CEO, right, and Zhu Yanfeng, Chairman and Party Secretary of Dongfeng Motor Group Co., Ltd, left, pose during the launching of the Nissan Sylphy Zero Emission, the Nissan’s first all-electric vehicle built in China, in China, in Guangzhou, Guangdong province, China, Monday, Aug. 27, 2018. The Sylphy is part of a wave of dozens of electric models planned by global automakers for China, where the government is pressing them to accelerate development of the technology. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu) A worker of Dongfeng Nissan, right, wears a uniform with a pin with Chinese words “Communist party member” attends the ceremony of launching Nissan Sylphy Zero Emission, the Nissan’s first all-electric vehicle built in China, in Guangzhou, Guangdong province, China, Monday, Aug. 27, 2018. The Sylphy is part of a wave of dozens of electric models planned by global automakers for China, where the government is pressing them to accelerate development of the technology. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu) 5 things to know about Tesla’s China plans Hiroto Saikawa, Nissan Motor Co., Ltd’s president and CEO, right, and Zhu Yanfeng, Chairman and Party Secretary of Dongfeng Motor Group Co., Ltd, left, attend the ceremony of the launching of the Nissan Sylphy Zero Emission, the Nissan’s first all-electric vehicle built in China, in Guangzhou, Guangdong province, China, Monday, Aug. 27, 2018. The Sylphy is part of a wave of dozens of electric models planned by global automakers for China, where the government is pressing them to accelerate development of the technology. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu) The Chinese government announced in April it would end restrictions on foreign ownership of electric vehicle manufacturers this year in an effort to promote development.Producers including GM and Nissan had been reluctant to transfer manufacturing to China due to the requirement to share technology with Chinese partners that might become rivals.Freed of that requirement, Tesla Inc. announced in July it would build its first factory outside the United States in Shanghai, becoming the first wholly foreign-owned automaker in China.Other automakers are working through ventures with Chinese partners, hoping to take advantage of their experience at developing lower-cost vehicles.Chinese sales in July of pure electric and gasoline-electric hybrids, boosted by subsidies and other government support, rose 47.7 percent over a year to 84,000. © 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. “By the end of this year, things will be different,” said Zhang. “We really will see the market become more competitive and consumers will have more to choose.”Government plans call for total annual sales of 2 million electric and gasoline-electric hybrid vehicles by 2020, up from last year’s 770,000. Workers of the Dongfeng Nissan attend the ceremony launching the Nissan Sylphy Zero Emission, the Nissan’s first all-electric vehicle built in China, in Guangzhou, Guangdong province, China, Monday, Aug. 27, 2018. The Sylphy is part of a wave of dozens of electric models planned by global automakers for China, where the government is pressing them to accelerate development of the technology. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu) Hiroto Saikawa, Nissan Motor Co., Ltd’s president and CEO, right, and Zhu Yanfeng, Chairman and Party Secretary of Dongfeng Motor Group Co., Ltd, left, attend the ceremony of the launching of the Nissan Sylphy Zero Emission, the Nissan’s first all-electric vehicle built in China, in Guangzhou, Guangdong province, China, Monday, Aug. 27, 2018. The Sylphy is part of a wave of dozens of electric models planned by global automakers for China, where the government is pressing them to accelerate development of the technology. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu) A cameraman takes video of a Nissan Sylphy Zero Emission, the Nissan’s first all-electric vehicle built in China, at the Nissan factory in Guangzhou, Guangdong province, China, Monday, Aug. 27, 2018. The Sylphy is part of a wave of dozens of electric models planned by global automakers for China where the government is pressing them to accelerate development of the technology. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu) This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. GM says it will roll out 10 electric and hybrid models in China from 2016 to 2020. It says 2025, all its Buick, Cadillac and Chevrolet models in China will offer hybrid or pure-electric versions.Tesla says China is its second-largest market. But a high sticker price has limited sales by other foreign brands to a few hundred vehicles. Citation: Nissan launches China-focused electric car (2018, August 27) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-08-nissan-china-focused-electric-car.html Nissan’s first electric sedan designed for China began production Monday at the start of a wave of dozens of planned lower-cost electrics being created by global automakers for their biggest market. Chinese workers inspect a Nissan Sylphy Zero Emission, Nissan’s first all-electric vehicle built in China, at a production line in Guangzhou, Guangdong province, China, Monday, Aug. 27, 2018. The Sylphy is part of a wave of dozens of electric models planned by global automakers for China, where the government is pressing them to accelerate development of the technology. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu) Explore further A worker inspects a Nissan Sylphy Zero Emission, Nissan’s first all-electric vehicle built in China, at a production line in Guangzhou, Guangdong province, China, Monday, Aug. 27, 2018. The Sylphy is part of a wave of dozens of electric models planned by global automakers for China where the government is pressing them to accelerate development of the technology. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu) “We’re confident that the Sylphy Zero Emission rolling off the production line today will become a main player in the EV market,” said Nissan CEO Hiroto Saikawa. “We’re going to roll out a range of EVs that will appeal to customers within all market segments.”Sales quotas that take effect next year require every brand to sell electrics or buy credits from competitors that do. That puts pressure on automakers to create models Chinese consumers want and can afford.China accounted for half of global electric car sales last year, but almost all of those came from Chinese brands including BYD Auto and BAIC Group. Their prices start as low as 140,000 yuan ($22,000).”Basically, all these international giants are testing the water. They have not really launched their heavyweight models in China yet,” said industry analyst Yale Zhang of Automotive Foresight.