Letterkenny public engages positively with Irish Language Plan

first_imgIrish language social hubs, culture nights, language lessons and many more exciting events could be in the pipeline for Letterkenny in the years to come as the town develops its own Irish Language Plan.Over the next seven years, Letterkenny will create and implement a plan to encourage a positive approach to Irish in everyday life. The town will gain significant investment to support its role as a Gaeltacht Services Town in both the business and public sectors. Líonra Leitir Ceanainn, the body appointed to draft the language plan, held an open evening on Wednesday 18th September to gain feedback from members of the public on what they believe the plan should contain. The meeting builds on a business-focused event which was held in June. Both focus groups will lead to a public consultation in the future and a dedicated person will be employed to implement the plan and use the resources and funding that will be available.Ursula Ní Shabhaois, Cinnteacht, ag caint ag an cruinniú poiblí maidir le plean teanga Leitir Ceanainn, 18ú Meán FómhairMeeting facilitator Ursula Ní Shabhaois from Cinnteacht explained that every person in Letterkenny with an interest in the plan will have an opportunity to have their say on the project.She said the Letterkenny Plan is “a local plan, by local people, for local needs”.Wednesday’s public event explored practical ways to make space for the Irish language in everyday life in a variety of ways: through learning, connecting with young people and families, through business, social events, fostering greater use of Irish in the home, in the media and in public services. An cruinniú poiblí maidir le plean teanga Leitir Ceanainn, 18ú Meán FómhairUrsula Ní Shabhaois, Cinnteacht, and Bairbre Uí Chathail, Líonra Leitir Ceanainn, ag caint ag an cruinniú poiblí maidir le plean teanga Leitir Ceanainn, 18ú Meán FómhairAttendees at the meeting held an engaging discussion on how an Irish language hub could benefit many groups in Letterkenny, such as a parent/toddler group, conversation groups or a book club. People commented that it would be important to have a central location or various spaces for locals to drop in for tea/coffee and events where they know the Irish language will be spoken.“A central hub would not only encourage language there but it would normalise it outside,” said Ursula Ní Shabhaois. She said a hub could become part of the plan’s long-term vision and would fulfil one of the plan’s key aims: “Creating links between Irish speakers.”Bairbre Uí Chathail, Anna Ní Bhraonáin, Mairéad Nic Daibheid, Aodán Mac Closcaigh and Róise Ní Laifeartaigh celebrating the prize draw for those who completed the Líonra Leitir Ceanainn: Suirbhé Pobail.Another aim of the plan is to make language learning more accessible to all. Bairbre Uí Chathail, Chair of Líonra Leitir Ceanainn said that she would like to see a database developed in the plan to show people where Irish is taught and where local groups are hosting events. Ursula Ní Shabhaois added that a clear pathway of learning Irish, from beginning to fluency, would benefit anyone with an interest.Other attendees suggested enjoyable ways to encourage a culture of positivity around Irish, such as ceilí nights, more pop-up Gaeltachts and working with schools to support teachers in speaking Irish. “This plan is about making things simple for people so they want to do things, not feel obligated to do them,” Ms Ní Shabhaois said. She said that all the language planning bodies in Donegal will soon be united in a forum to work together and share ideas.Anne Uí Chuinn and Susan McCauley ag an cruinniú poiblí maidir le plean teanga Leitir Ceanainn, 18ú Meán FómhairAn cruinniú poiblí maidir le plean teanga Leitir Ceanainn, 18ú Meán FómhairIn the meantime, the positive meeting raised many suggestions for a time of change in Letterkenny. All members of the public and businesses are invited to make their suggestions or request further information on the Letterkenny Irish Language Plan by visiting https://www.lionraleitirceanainn.ie/ or emailing Ursula Ní Shabhaois, Cinnteacht at ursula@cinnteacht.ie.Letterkenny public engages positively with Irish Language Plan was last modified: September 23rd, 2019 by Rachel McLaughlinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:cinnteachtIrish language planLíonra Leitir Ceanainnlast_img read more


Apple Is Starting To Look A Little Nervous About Samsung

first_imgThe Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technology Related Posts Today is the big launch of Samsung’s flagship Galaxy S4 smartphone — and Apple has clearly taken notice. Earlier this week, Apple released two new iPhone commercials, which were well-crafted if boring. It is unlikely the timing of these new ads was coincidental.Yesterday, Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller gave a rare interview to the Wall Street Journal. Schiller was clearly on the attack.Schiller insisted that surveys reveal that iPhone users are more “satisfied” with their device than Android users. Schiller mentioned that Android is plagued by fragmentation and that Android users are often running outdated versions of the operating system. Schiller wasn’t finished: Android is often given as a free replacement for a feature phone and the experience isn’t as good as an iPhone.While Apple’s advertising focuses almost exclusively on its own product, Schiller spent much of his time with the Wall Street Journal knocking Android.When you take an Android device out of the box, you have to sign up to nine accounts with different vendors to get the experience iOS comes with. They don’t work seamlessly together.While Schiller mostly talked Android, Samsung was clearly on his mind. For example, he took a swipe at Samsung and its larger-sized Galaxy displays, suggesting that the bigger screen is necessary to mask a larger battery with which to compete with the iPhone 5’s battery life.Schiller even disputed the recent smartphone market share numbers, touted the claim that Android users are more likely to switch to iPhone, and stated:I’m not sure that the estimates and the modeling accurately gives an accurate picture of it all.There is good reason for Schiller to be concerned, at least with Samsung, if not Android. According to the most recent comScore figures, Apple has a 38% share of the US smartphone market. Samsung is second, with 21%. But according to mobile analyst, Tomi Ahonen, Samsung is the clear global smartphone winner — having sold 215 million devices in 2012, compared to Apple’s 136 million.The disparity could grow throughout the year. Samsung has recently stated that its flagship Galaxy line has sold over 100 million units since its May 2010 launch and that it expects to sell over 300 million smartphones in 2013.Another point of concern for Apple: Samsung has been outspending Apple on advertising. Samsung spent $401 million just in the U.S. last year to promote its smartphones. Apple spent $333 million. Just as important, Samsung’s advertising has been more impactful. As ReadWrite noted this week, Samsung’s commercials “are the kinds of ads that strike a chord.” Apple remains the leader, however, where it may matter most: profits. As we noted last week, “Samsung is winning every way but one” against Apple. That one way, of course, is profits. Nonetheless, Apple clearly is watching Samsung carefully — and isn’t above having the likes of Schiller toss a brushback pitch from time to time. Tags:#Apple#iOS#iPhone#Samsung#Samsung Galaxy What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech …center_img Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces Role of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement brian s halllast_img read more


End confusion over 1966-71 refugees, CPI(M) tells NRC Coordinator

first_imgThe Communist Party of India (Marxist) has asked the State Coordinator for the National Register of Citizens (NRC) to remove the confusion over the status of refugees who came to Assam between 1966 and 1971 and add their names to the citizens’ list to be published by July 31.The midnight of March 24, 1971, is the cut-off for detecting, detaining and deporting illegal migrants under the 1985 Assam Accord, which was signed between the Centre and leaders of the Assam Agitation that took place between 1979 and 1985. The Accord stipulates that those who came from Bangladesh between 1966 and 1971 be barred from voting for 10 years before their citizenship is considered.A major stream of refugees entered India after the India-Pakistan war in 1965 and during the war for liberation of East Pakistan that resulted in the birth of Bangladesh in 1971.“There is a confusion over the status of those who entered India from the ‘specified territory’ between January 1, 1966, and March 24, 1971. Many people belonging to this category were identified by the Foreigners’ Tribunals and asked to register themselves with the competent authority,” CPI(M) leader Deben Bhattacharyya said in a letter to NRC State Coordinator Prateek Hajela on Friday.“A big number of such people registered themselves… They are very much eligible for inclusion in the NRC. But there prevails a lot of confusion among NRC officials in some areas over their eligibility…,” he said.The CPI(M) urged Mr. Hajela to order the inclusion of the people belonging to the 1966-1971 refugee stream in the NRC.last_img read more


Youth Trans Tasman Award Winners

first_imgTroy Malcolm award – Oscar SanftRoxy Winder award – Kirsty Quince Australian 18’s Boys captain, Oscar Sanft, was given the Troy Malcolm award, while Australian 20’s Girls player, Kirsty Quince, was the recipient of the Roxy Winder award. 18’s GirlsPlayers Player – Emily ReedCoaches Award – Sarah PeattieEncouragement Award – Charlotte Caslick20’s Girls Players Player – Emilee CherryCoaches Award – Kirsty Quince18’s BoysPlayers Player – Brentt Warr and Zach StrasserCoaches Award – Simon Lang20’s BoysPlayers Player – Nick GoodCoaches Award – Dylan Thompsonlast_img read more


Arniel happy with Blue Jackets performance despite loss to Ducks

Tuesday night’s 3-2 loss to the Anaheim Ducks was the Columbus Blue Jackets’ first regulation defeat in their last six games — and it hurt. Goals from left winger captain Rick Nash, who has scored in the Jackets’ past eight games, and center Derick Brassard were not enough to overcome early power-play goals by Anaheim at Nationwide Arena. In the first period, Jackets winger Derek Dorsett unleashed a dangerous hit on Ducks winger Corey Perry, sending him headfirst into the boards. Perry fell to the ice, and players from both teams exchanged shoves behind the Anaheim goal before referees separated the players and assessed a five-minute boarding penalty to Dorsett. “It was a hit from behind,” Jackets coach Scott Arniel said. “It’s the referee’s judgment call. When you give (Anaheim) a five-minute major, that gets them off to a pretty good start.” That judgment call produced a two-goal lead for the Ducks. Anaheim wingers teamed up for the first tally. Bobby Ryan fed a pass across the slot to a streaking Teemu Selanne, who had no trouble scoring his 15th goal of the year to give Anaheim a 1-0 lead. Defenseman Cam Fowler’s fifth goal of the year gave the Ducks a 2-0 lead just more than a minute later. After being fed by defenseman Lubomir Visnovsky and center Saku Koivu, Fowler snapped a long-range shot that snuck past Jackets goalie Steve Mason. Before Columbus fans had settled into their seats, the Ducks had scored their first two shots of the game. But the Jackets responded with a power-play goal of their own just before the first intermission. Nash cut the Ducks’ lead in half with a wrist shot from the slot. Brassard assisted on Nash’s 23rd goal of the season, which made the score 2-1. A quiet second period saw the teams exchange scoring opportunities, but Mason and Ducks goalie Jonas Hiller denied everything. Mason and Hiller finished the night with 19 and 35 saves, respectively. But the game had more goals in store, as Ducks winger Jason Blake would give the Ducks breathing room early in the third period. Blake scored his 10th goal of the season on an uncontested backhand shot, extending the Ducks’ lead to 3-1. Mason was left helpless and hunched in the lower, left-hand corner of his goal when Blake emerged from behind the net. Brassard later narrowed Columbus’ deficit to 3-2 after a redirected shot from the blue line fell to him just outside Hiller’s crease. The tap-in goal, assisted on by winger Jakub Voracek, was Brassard’s 12th of the season. Thanks to Hiller, who extinguished a late surge by the Jackets, the Ducks eventually held on for a 3-2 win. Despite Tuesday’s loss, Columbus will enter the NHL All-Star break with a 3-1-2 record in its last six games. Brassard focused on the Jackets’ recent improvements following the loss to Anaheim. “I think we had a good push tonight,” Brassard said. “In the third, we competed really hard. We are just going to take some rest right now and make sure we are ready to make a big push.” Coach Randy Carlyle’s Ducks head into the midseason break in fifth place in the Western Conference. Carlyle commended his players for their effort. “The guys are putting it on the line,” Carlyle said. “Our guys have worked extremely hard to get themselves in the position we are in. We’re having some fun right now.” Arniel managed to stay upbeat about his team’s current standing after the game. “What we’ve done in the last two weeks has been very good,” Arniel said. “I like the way we’re working and competing.” The Blue Jackets will host the Chicago Blackhawks at 7 p.m. Tuesday. read more


Alcino Lavrador Altice Labs general manager Alci

first_imgAlcino LavradorAltice Labs’ general manager, Alcino Lavrador, discusses IP delivery, the advent of 5G and unpicks some of the biggest technical challenges facing the TV industry today.What television or broadcast projects are currently occupying most of Altice Labs’ time?At Altice we want to offer the best and most unique user experience to our television customers. For that, Altice Labs is working on an “Altice User Experience” supported over a unified platform for all access networks: FTTH, Cable, xDSL, Wi-Fi, 3G/4G. This means, among others, and not to mention the technological challenges of merging platforms, presenting content in a more thematic way, less siloed in channels. On the mobility side, our efforts are to bring more and more functionalities previously restricted to fixed-access IPTV, namely better personalisation and seamless continuity between platforms.What do you think are the biggest technological challenges facing the TV industry in 2017?Customers today want to watch TV not only on the big screen but also on the move and on more and more portable devices, even at home and simultaneously. So, WiFi delivery inside the home, supporting multiple streams with the same quality that the customers are used to, is probably the biggest challenge. To deliver 4K TV consistently over WiFi is no small feat today. 802.11ac with 4×4 and mesh extenders will help and will have a big push in 2017, but compatibility issues with existing STBs will come up. In addition we will see growth in data mining and analytics about customer behaviour – aiming at a better personalised offering and also a new revenue stream for advertising. Not least, as digital content availability is growing exponentially, new and easier ways to discover real-time and stored content must appear in order to enhance the customer experience.How useful is full duplex DOCSIS 3.1 for maximising cable bandwidth and what technology or technologies will come after that?Full duplex DOCSIS 3.1 and other such evolutions for cable can represent additional tools in our toolbox for delivering the best possible bandwidth to our customers as a very efficient value-for-money proposition. It’s possible that it will be used in some places, and in other places maybe GPON is a better solution. Or we could keep the cable plant as it is or with small improvements and just do a selective subscriber migration, putting the most eager customers on FTTH/GPON, which leaves more bandwidth for the remaining ones. We need to remember that FDX DOCSIS 3.1 comes at a price, with added complexity, without MPEG-TS Video and an all new silicon solution required. At Altice Labs we are working on NGPON2, developing our own equipment and technology, because we believe this will be the future for next-generation access networks.What challenges will arise from the greater move towards IP delivery of content?At Altice Labs we don’t see this move as a set of challenges but more as a new opportunity. In Portugal we have, for a long time, had a full IPTV solution in place and we think that IP delivery of content is a significant improvement. For instance, as a multi-national group, Altice can leverage our data networks in completely different geographies to allow us to produce content in one place, complement it in another, and deliver it to all the group operators. To do that in a non-IP network can be a nightmare, but with IP it just leverages our existing infrastructure, knowledge and investment. Most cable operators are already using IP delivery of content as the back-end for QAM muxes, for VOD or catch-up TV, so most times you just remove the QAM muxes. You need a correctly dimensioned CDN. However, you should have it in place anyway since most of the growth in consumption is in on-demand and is happening in additional devices that are already IP-only.How important do you think 5G will be to the future of TV, as viewers increasingly stream content on the move and to different devices?Although the big screen TV will continue to be a staple of our day to day life, and people still want to see the hottest content on the biggest screen, there is no doubt that personal and mobile video consumption will continue to grow. 5G will have an important role in that respect. According to research, by 2020, more than half of all mobile traffic will be video. People are watching it on small and not so small screens with increased resolutions, some with 2K and 4K screens, so video quality really matters. What also matters is latency and buffering time, all areas were 5G promises to improve the customer experience. We also expect that in the future, people will increasingly broadcast self-produced content as has been demonstrated by trends like Periscope, Facebook Live and YouTube Live. 5G will allow for this kind of experience in crowded spaces, like music festivals, where today’s technologies have a huge challenge. These are only a couple of examples. We expect new uses cases in line with the increasing digitisation of our society enabled by current 3G/4G with services like Uber and other digital platform-based services.Do you think traditional over-the-air broadcast will eventually become obsolete? If so, how long until that will happen?If you’re talking about DTT, yes I think that it will become obsolete. The main reason is that these frequencies are a prime asset for telecommunications and there will be a point in time that people will place more value on this spectrum being used for ‘mobile data’ than for broadcast TV. People will get all the TV they want as ‘mobile data’ anyway. It will take some time but it will happen.What do you think about the long-term viability of DTH satellite TV as a mass-market delivery mechanism? I don’t believe that DTH will go away anytime soon. It’s a completely different proposition than DTT, there are countries like Brazil that have a massive area with people scattered all over the place that will only be able to get broad, good quality content this way. In these countries it will still be a mass-market proposition. In other countries, like in Europe, it will be used more as a complementary solution for places that the fixed network will not reach. Even the foreseen 5G will not be suitable as an alternative to deliver 4K, 8K or whatever resolution we will have at that time. DTH will always be able to solve this.How does Altice Labs divide its efforts between its teams in Portugal, the US, France, Israel, Brazil. Do you all have different remits and responsibilities?We try to take advantage of what is being done better in each geography avoiding overlap and duplication of work. If we have a good application developed in France, the United States, or whatever geography, we’ll try to use it in all the group operations. The origin of Altice Labs dates back to 1950 with over 66 years shaping the telecommunications evolution not only in Portugal but also in all the places where our technology has been deployed. Achievements like mobile prepaid services that we pioneered in 1995 have been of worldwide benefit. Over our 66 years of history, much more could be highlighted, like one of the first commercial interactive cable TV service in 2001. More recently, in August 2015, we did a field trial of NGPON2 technology with Verizon, the first with tuneable optics offering symmetrical broadband speeds of up to 10 Gbps, with the potential to go even higher – up to 40 or even 80Gbps in the near future. An existing innovation ecosystem in Portugal, supported by strong partnerships with universities, industry and startups, and complemented with R&D collaboration projects under European Union Framework Programmes like H2020, enables a continuous flow of innovation. This is feeding the process of developing new and advanced products that are being deployed in over 40 countries in the world, not just in Altice’s geographies. We do not simply follow the technological evolutions; we are part of them!What are Altice Labs’ key aims for the year ahead?The first objective is to support Altice’s aggressive expansion providing state-of-the-art technology enabling a clear differentiation to competitors. Besides being an R&D lab, we have a solid product orientation strategy with a market positioning and growth ambition. We believe we are a key factor that can help turn Altice into the most innovative CSP in the world. We are committed to evolving our products for the most efficiency practices, incorporating the results from R&D exploratory projects in network architectures – like SDN and NFV for our product lines of network systems, OSS, convergent charging and policy platforms, and TV solutions. Of course, maintaining the creativity culture that has been in our DNA  for years, in parallel with the committed and quality delivery of solutions to the market, is the main challenge in a fast-paced industry.Alcino Lavrador will speak at Cable Congress in Brussels this week. He is due to appear on the ‘Fostering Innovation’ panel at 16:45 on March 8, 2017.last_img read more


Heres a chart that Washington state reader SA s

first_img 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.center_img 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.last_img read more


In This Issue   Dollars allout assault is st

first_imgIn 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 Marketslast_img read more


Cant cool off this summer Heat waves can slow us

first_imgCan’t cool off this summer? Heat waves can slow us down in ways we may not realize.New research suggests heat stress can muddle our thinking, making simple math a little harder to do.”There’s evidence that our brains are susceptible to temperature abnormalities,” says Joe Allen, co-director of the Center for Climate, Health and the Global Environment at Harvard University. And as the climate changes, temperatures spike and heat waves are more frequent.To learn more about how the heat influences young, healthy adults, Allen and his colleagues studied college students living in dorms during a summer heat wave in Boston.Half of the students lived in buildings with central AC, where the indoor air temperature averaged 71 degrees. The other half lived in dorms with no AC, where air temperatures averaged almost 80 degrees.”In the morning, when they woke up, we pushed tests out to their cellphones,” explains Allen. The students took two tests a day for 12 consecutive days.One test, which included basic addition and subtraction, measured cognitive speed and memory. A second test assessed attention and processing speed.”We found that the students who were in the non-air-conditioned buildings actually had slower reaction times: 13 percent lower performance on basic arithmetic tests, and nearly a 10 percent reduction in the number of correct responses per minute,” Allen explains.The results, published in PLOS Medicine, may come as a surprise. “I think it’s a little bit akin to the frog in the boiling water,” Allen says. There’s a “slow, steady — largely imperceptible — rise in temperature, and you don’t realize it’s having an impact on you.”The findings add to a growing body of evidence that documents the effect of heat on mental performance, both in schools and workplaces.For instance, a 2006 study from researchers at the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab found that when office temperatures rise above the mid-70s, workers’ performance begins to drop off. Researchers reviewed multiple studies that evaluated performance on common office tasks. The study found that worker productivity is highest at about 72 degrees. When temperatures exceeded the mid-80s, worker productivity decreased by about 9 percent.Another, more recent study compared worker performance in green-certified buildings and typical office buildings. They found a dip in cognitive function linked to conditions in the indoor environment, including higher indoor temperatures and poor lighting.And, when it comes to performance in the classroom, a study funded by the Harvard Environmental Economics Program finds that taking a standardized test on a very hot day is linked to poorer performance. The study includes an analysis of test scores from students in New York City who take a series of high-school exams called the Regents Exams.The author, R. Jisung Park, assistant professor at the University of California, Los Angeles, writes that compared with a 72-degree day, “taking an exam on a 90◦F day leads to a 10.9 percent lower likelihood of passing a particular subject (e.g. Algebra), which in turn affects probability of graduation.”There’s still a lot to learn about how our brains and bodies respond to heat. “We all tend to think we can compensate, we can do just fine” during heat waves says Allen. But he says the “evidence shows that the indoor temperature can have a dramatic impact on our ability to be productive and learn.” Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.last_img read more


At the beginning of 2018 we made predictions abou

first_imgAt 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.last_img read more