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Solitaire men create tax-free resi option

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Italian laws to spur pension fund investment in infrastructure, says S&P

first_imgItalian laws brought in last year to promote the development of public-private partnerships (PPPs) and give them access to the capital markets should encourage institutional investors into Italian infrastructure via project finance, according to ratings agency Standard & Poor’s (S&P).Manuel Dusina, credit analyst at the company, said: “The new laws introduce a more innovative and benign legal and fiscal regulatory regime, one that could support the development of a project bond market.”This should enable Italy to tap into the increasing demand among European and worldwide institutional investors for infrastructure assets that has been seen in other European markets, he said.The new set of laws should also help to cut some of the costs of infrastructure investments, S&P said. Before the First Growth and Development Decree was approved in August 2012, for example, S&P said, unlisted issuers, such as project finance special-purpose vehicles, issuing bonds with a debt-to-equity ratio of more than 2:1 had to pay a withholding tax on interest payable.This prevented the tax deduction of interest payable and made it hard to access the capital markets.S&P said the decree also identified international and national financial institutions that could give project guarantees, such as CDP and the Italian export credit agency Servizi Assicurativi del Commercio Estero (SACE).S&P said: “Such guarantees should in our view further support infrastructure investments funded through the capital markets because they address investors’ reluctance to invest directly in projects that are pre-completion, commonly known as greenfield projects.”But any shift to bond financing from bank loans was likely to be gradual, it said.Not only have investors been reluctant to invest in infrastructure projects up to now because of the lack of data and their inexperience, but the Italian project bond market also remains untested, S&P explained.“Market participants will take some time to get acquainted with the new legislation,” it said.Fabio Ortolani, president at Fonchim, the pension fund for the chemicals industry in Italy, pointed out that the legislative change to allow project bond issuance has not happened yet, although it is on the way.“What is new is that pension funds have started to invest in Italian industry in another way,” he told IPE.In Italy, a law has been passed allowing for the issuance of mini-bonds, through which investors can invest in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).This stratum of Italian industry has found it hard to borrow as banks have reined in their lending activities in the wake of the European banking crisis.The new mini-bonds are unlisted loans, which can be packaged into funds.In July, for example, Mediobanca announced it would launch the first mini-bond fund, to be run by Duemme SGR, part owned by the banking group.But, having just completed an overhaul of its investment mandates, including a heavy weighting in traditional government bonds, Fonchim is unlikely to make big changes to its asset allocation in the near future, Ortolani said.Potentially, the fund could direct some of its investment towards mini-bonds and infrastructure via the new project bonds if the market takes off, he said.“In five to six years, we will see,” he said.“The main reason for investing in infrastructure and mini-bonds would be asset diversification, but also mini-bonds have the potential to help good companies.”last_img read more

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CHEN PALMER: A long (dodgy) walk to the altar

first_imgChen Palmer, NZ Public and Employment Law specialists have written a summary of the progression of the gay marriage bill.In it, they take a few swipes at the way politicians dealt with the issue, including“The Select Committee process was controversial. Given the very high number of submissions (21,533 submissions, demonstrating the intensity of feeling on both sides of the public debate), only 220 submitters were asked to appear in person.”“..the (2nd reading) vote holding so strongly in the face of intense public debate was not the only success at second reading — more surprising was that the vote was taken at all. That day the Bill was ranked third on the Members Order paper behind Chris Auchinvole’s Habeas Corpus Amendment Bill and Dr David Clark’s Holidays (Full Recognition of Waitangi Day and ANZAC Day) Amendment Bill. Pushing the Bill further back was Hon Chester Burrows’ South Taranaki District Council (Cold Creek Rural Water Supply) Bill. As a Local Bill this took priority over Members Orders of the day, effectively ranking the Bill fourth on the Order Paper. Taking into account time for Questions for Oral Answer and General Debate, this would have meant that a vote on the Bill would likely have been delayed until the next member’s day two weeks away. To make matters worse, on Monday 11 March the Finance and Expenditure Committee reported back on the Budget Policy Statement (“BPS”). According to Standing Order 327(4) this replaced the 1 hour General Debate with a 2 hour debate of the BPS, putting further pressure on the amount of time the House had to debate and vote on the Bill. What transpired was a salutary reminder that Parliament is the master of its own pace. The Campaign for Marriage Equality, working with MPs in Parliament from across the House, negotiated with Party Whips and MPs that the Bill would be debated that evening. By taking short calls on Bills MPs were able to find an hour of extra parliamentary time, resulting in the shortest BPS debate in recent memory, votes on all three Bills before it on the Order Paper, and an eventual second reading vote with seconds to spare before the House rose at 10 pm.”“…four SOPs were voted down and the Chairperson Eric Roy ruled the two referendum SOPs out of order. This was surprising as they had been accepted by the Clerk of the House. Roy’s ruling appears to extend the rules around what is a “relevant” amendment during the Committee of the Whole House. Roy based his decision on Standing Order 298(1), which reads: A committee of the whole House considers a bill to determine whether the bill properly incorporates the principles or objects of the bill as read a second time by the House. Roy interpreted this to mean that amendments at Committee should not be contrary to the intention of Parliament at second reading. As Winston Peter’s motion to include a referendum was defeated at second reading his and Horan’s SOPs calling for a referendum were out of order. This rationale for this ruling can be queried. Standing Order 298 allows the committee to make amendments that are relevant to the subject-matter of the bill and are consistent with the principles and objectives of the Bill. The key question is the interpretation of what is “relevant”. Roy’s ruling appears to preclude any amendment that is contrary to the Bill as voted on at Second Reading. This is a very broad interpretation of “relevant” that could potentially be used by MPs to push out legitimate amendments to future Bills. It also begs the question, if amendments cannot be contrary to the intention of Parliament at second reading, then what is the Committee of the Whole House for? However, the Chairperson’s rulings are their prerogative and are a reminder that as well as setting its own pace, Parliament’s Standing Orders are not static. Politics is just as important as procedure. Parliament’s rules and their application can, and often do, change.”last_img read more

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FSSA working hard to provide telehealth services for mental health

first_imgImage by StockSnap from PixabayStatewide—During the Governor’s daily press conference on Friday, the Indiana Family and Social Services Administration announced it has been working closely to provide maximum flexibility, including using telehealth, to treatment providers to ensure that crucial services for people that suffer from Serious Mental Illness, and children who suffer from Severe Emotional Disturbances can continue.Hoosiers can call 211, or contact your insurance company, to find access to teletherapy, and talk to your doctor about whether medication might be right for you during this time.Additional mental health guidance can be found here: https://coronavirus.in.gov/files/IN_COVID-19_MentalHealth_03.31.20.pdfFSSA also announced more than 152,000 Indiana households will receive additional Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits when April distributions begin this Sunday.The additional funds are intended to help Hoosiers obtain food and support for their families while Indiana responds to the COVID-19 pandemic. Click here to learn more: https://www.in.gov/fssa/files/SNAP_additional_funds_4-3_FINAL.pdflast_img read more

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AJ Long limited in quarterback drills and other early day 6 notes

first_img Comments AdvertisementThis is placeholder text Sophomore AJ Long didn’t hold a ball in his right hand during quarterback slide warmups and didn’t participate in quarterback-center exchanges and passing during Friday’s open portion of practice. The signal-caller left yesterday’s practice early and was holding his right hand at times while bending over. He recently got a cast removed from that hand after a broken bone this summer.Yesterday, in a statement via SU Athletics, Scott Shafer said the injury is no big deal. The head coach will address the media at 11 a.m. Friday.Freshmen weren’t at practice due to a freshman symposium wrapping up summer classes, so quarterback Eric Dungey wasn’t in attendance. Only senior Terrel Hunt and sophomore Austin Wilson participated in quarterback-center exchanges.Other early day six observationsCenter Kendall Moore worked with the tight ends again despite two centers not working with the group during Friday’s open portion. Sophomore center Donnie Foster worked with the other offensive linemen and freshman Andrejas Duerig was at the symposium, but Moore still worked with his position group from 2014.Incumbent starting kicker Cole Murphy went 2-for-4 on field goals that the media saw. He pushed his first one wide right then missed his third well left.For the fourth straight day, senior defensive tackle John Raymon worked individually with defensive coordinator Chuck Bullough and didn’t do push-ups with the team.Personnel from the Denver Broncos and New York Giants were in attendance during the beginning of open practice.Sophomore tight ends Tyler Provo and P.J. Batten, redshirt freshman offensive tackle Denzel Ward and senior cornerback Eric Jackson all sat out the early part of practice. Facebook Twitter Google+center_img Published on August 14, 2015 at 10:15 am Contact Matt: mcschnei@syr.edu | @matt_schneidmanlast_img read more

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Five apps assist with student life

first_imgMaintaining a healthy weight, managing money, and keeping track of to-do lists while juggling academics and extracurriculars is something that many college students struggle with. These five innovative apps alleviate some of those responsibilities from students.1. Evernote: The perfect place to jot down lecture notes or simply passing thoughts, Evernote is an application that will help keep life organized. In addition to its text note and photo note functionalities, Evernote offers many features and provides a solid solution to list keeping on the go. Evernote also sports a scanning feature that imports handwritten notes and paper documents at a high contrast to ensure maximum readability. Additionally, Moleskine and Evernote have partnered on a product line for individuals who still prefer traditional pen and paper note taking. These Evernote notebooks by Moleskine are entirely compatible with the Evernote app and are considered the first smart-notebooks of their kind. Syncing across nearly all platforms and devices, Evernote is perfect for the student wanting to travel light without sacrificing the option of studying at anytime, anywhere.2. Acorns: Financial stability is a key component to a stress-free life. Beginning to invest at a young age can pay dividends in the long run, and Acorns is the application for that. Targeting millennials who are looking to put their money to work, Acorns rounds up spare change and invests it in portfolios of users’ choosing. For example, if coffee was purchased for $2.35, Acorns would round up to $3.00 and invest $0.65 in the stock market on the user’s behalf in a fund of his or her choosing. It doesn’t seem like much, but spare change adds up over time, particularly when it could be accruing interest. Acorns offers five portfolios, all with varying levels of risk, managed by Nobel Prize-winning economist, Harry Markowitz. Acorns is already flourishing among millennial investors as it allows individuals under 24 to trade without fees and commissions. Beginner investors should not be turned away either as Acorns makes it incredibly easy. Seasoned investors will find Acorns’ appeal as well. This is the app for the money-savvy student.3. Google Drive: Google Drive is more than just a platform for group PowerPoints and last-minute lab reports. Compatible with almost any file type, it’s one of the best cloud storage services currently available. USC students are given 10 terabytes of Google Drive cloud storage by the University with their email address. That amount of storage is more than even most computer science majors know what to do with, so taking advantage of the perks is encouraged. There is no better pocket companion for making some last-minute edits or working on the go than through the Google Drive app.4. Clear: The daily grind can become pretty hectic, and Clear is an excellent app for keeping you organized, setting important reminders and keeping lists to remain on task. Clear is unique in that created items can be sorted by priority, whether they are reminders to head down to Leavey Library for study sessions or to purchase supplies on a list at the bookstore. It is an app that will noticeably increase productivity and can be tailored to meet the level of structure all users appreciate in their own life. With an intuitive user interface and a minimal design worthy of a Tumblr blog, Clear will definitely appeal to many students.5. Lose It!: The concept of the “freshman fifteen” is daunting for most incoming students, so for those concerned about future health habits, look to the app Lose It! This app helps users maintain a healthy lifestyle by making it incredibly easy to keep a log of both diet and exercise. When logging food consumption, users can select from a pre-existing catalog of food items or opt to create their own unique food items. To make it even easier, Lose It! also sports the ability to scan bar codes if users wish to be very particular about logging their diet. Lose It! calculates a daily calorie goal for each user depending on height, weight, daily exercise and weight goals. With this information, a healthy dietary plan with a completion date is created for the user. This app is also great for simply maintaining a healthy weight. Healthy living is for everyone, especially new college students, and Lose It! is well worth the download.last_img read more

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HBO, Slate Executives discuss Hollywood PR and film

first_imgHBO Film President Len Amato and Slate PR co-founder Simon Halls spoke at Wallis Annenberg Hall on Monday night. At the talk, Amato and Halls discussed the importance of public relations and film when dealing with modern issues in the Hollywood industry.Slate co-founder Simon Halls told journalism students about his initial decision to enter the media industry. Junyi Li | Daily TrojanThe discussion was moderated by professor Mary Murphy and was part of her class, “Entertainment, Business and Media in Today’s Society” at the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. Amato and Halls talked about their decisions to enter the media industry despite the struggles and successes they experienced. “I went to junior college because I thought I would be drafted into the Vietnam War,” Amato said. “But I got a high lottery number, so I enrolled in Columbia College and wrote two movies.”While working, he said he learned that the entertainment industry does not produce movies that cater to everybody. Rather, he said that the industry expands on issues and serves audiences who care about the messages and themes that come across in the movies.Murphy shared trailers for some of the films Amato oversaw in the past year. One trailer was for Paterno, a film centered on former Penn State football coach Joe Paterno and the accusations that he failed to report an assistant coach at the school for engaging in pedophilia. Amato said that HBO Film received backlash for making the film, but Amato said he believed it was important to cover the issue of sexual assault, especially in light of the #MeToo movement.At the event, Halls also shared different tips about the workings of the media industry and how journalists can lead technological shifts in media.“I think Simon Halls’ success and the fact he started the biggest PR company was important,” said Shannon Ward, a junior majoring in public relations who attended the talk. “I also think what was Simon was saying about just getting in the door of the media industry was important.”last_img read more

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Syracuse men’s lacrosse opponent preview: What to know about No. 9 Army

first_imgNo. 16 Syracuse (1-1) faces off with No. 9 Army (3-0) on Saturday at 2 p.m. in the Carrier Dome. It’ll mark the second straight week the Orange welcomes an opponent ranked higher than itself to its home confines. Syracuse enters the game following its brutal 15-3 loss against then-No. 4 Albany. Meanwhile, Army currently holds a three-game winning streak including its most recent win, a 9-7 victory over then-No. 11 Rutgers. Here is everything you need to know about the Black Knights ahead of the matchup with SU. All-time series: Army leads, 40-24Last time they played: Army handed then-No. 6 Syracuse its only regular-season loss of the 2017 regular season with a 14-13 last-second victory over the Orange in the Carrier Dome. Army dominated SU in most major categories including faceoffs (17-13), shots on goal (26-19) and ground balls (31-24). In the fourth quarter of that contest, Syracuse senior midfielder Nick Mariano knotted the game at 13 with just more than two minutes remaining. After an SU turnover, Army controlled the ball for the final minute of play. Then-junior midfielder David Symmes ripped a shot past SU goalie Evan Molloy with just one second remaining on the clock, propelling the Black Knights to victory. The Army Report: The Black Knights have played stingy defense thus far this season. In three games, Army has allowed 18 goals. The six goals-against per game average ranks third in the country behind Vermont and Albany. The Black Knights held Rutgers to seven goals last week, the Scarlet Knights’ lowest output this season. Army has won 58.8 percent of its faceoffs this season, ranking it three spots ahead of SU nationally. Through three games, Army’s only close game came against Rutgers.  The Black Knights currently stand fourth nationally in scoring margin. On average, Army outscores its opponent by more than seven goals.  AdvertisementThis is placeholder textHow Syracuse beats Army: Syracuse needs the ball. SU head coach John Desko said on Thursday his team had the ball for roughly one and a half minutes in the third quarter of its loss to Albany. In the quarter, Syracuse was outscored 7-1 as the Great Danes further extended its 4-1 halftime lead. Desko pointed out that SU’s offense was sloppy last week but it starts with winning faceoffs. Syracuse had no answer for Albany’s TD Ierlan a week ago as he and the Great Danes dismantled Syracuse 17-5. A season ago, then-freshman and backup Danny Varello entered the game late against Army to aid a struggling Ben Williams. Varello finished the game 10 of 17 at the faceoff X. If Syracuse is to win, it will have to control the ball better and longer than it did against Albany a week ago. Number to know: 5.78Army goalkeeper AJ Barretto’s goals against average ranks fourth in the country. Player to watch: No. 18 Dom Ricca, senior defenderRicca leads Army’s defense with four caused turnovers, two of which came in the win over Rutgers. Ricca started all 16 games for Army a year ago and averaged more than one groundball per game in those contests. Comments Published on February 23, 2018 at 4:37 pm Contact Josh: jlschafe@syr.edu | @Schafer_44 Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

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Fifa 21: ‘Toxic behaviour’ cut from goal celebrations

first_imgThe Fifa 21 video game will feature fewer player celebrations as EA Sports attempts to curb “toxic” behaviour among gamers.Players will no longer be able to use the “shushing” celebration, which was often used to gloat and stall games.Fifa 21’s lead game-play producer Sam Rivera said some celebrations had been removed following calls from gamers.The latest instalment of the Fifa videogame series is due to be released in October.“We were told by the community that there’s toxic behaviours in the game, and we wanted to make sure we removed them,” said Mr Rivera.“So we removed some of the celebrations that people thought were not the best idea to have in the game.” As well as the “shushing” reaction, an “A-OK” hand gesture will also be removed, and goal celebrations will be shorter overall.“The intention there is just to keep you playing instead of doing other things that may not be necessary in the game,” said Mr Rivera.Ryan Howard, co-founder of gaming platform The Nerd Council, said the changes were unlikely to have a fundamental impact on gamer behaviour.“Removing goal celebrations that are deemed toxic will not change the nature of the game or the feeling of losing,” he said.The Fifa series remains one of the most popular video game franchises in the world, having sold more than 260 million copies as of 2018. The latest edition – Fifa 21 – will be released for the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, as well as the next-generation Xbox Series X and PS5 consoles.EA Sports says the newer consoles will feature enhanced graphics, taking advantage of more advanced technology.Nintendo Switch players will get a “legacy edition” of the game that will primarily include new kits, teams and an updated menu system.last_img read more

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Clippers back to a new normal

first_imgThe Clippers seem to have returned to normal. A new kind of normal, anyway.The scandal that banned owner Donald Sterling from the NBA for life is still in its infancy, but the Clippers can get back to the business of basketball, especially since Dick Parsons was appointed as the new Clippers CEO on Friday, hours before Game 3 of the Western Conference semifinals between the Clippers and Oklahoma City. Asked if this means things are normal for the Clippers, coach Doc Rivers said: “I would love to feel that way, but I think we all know that’s not true.”There’s seemingly news on the Clippers nearly every day. Whether Sterling’s wife, Shelly, comes to games with her security detail in tow is always a concern, too. She was in attendance Friday at Game 3. Parsons being in the picture should provide needed stability for the Clippers, and Rivers endorsed the hire.“We did talk a couple of times. This morning we talked,” Rivers said before Friday’s game. “It was really nice. I don’t know Dick very well, but from what I’ve heard from everyone who knows him and talking to him today I think he’s a very good hire for us.”Parsons was not expected to be at the game. Rivers was consulted on the selection process to replace longtime team president Andy Roeser, who is on an indefinite leave of absence.Fans were back to normal, wearing red giveaway T-shirts that read: “One Team. One Goal. It’s Time.” Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorcenter_img Clipper Darrell — the team’s most popular and longtime fan — was all smiles as he was back in his usual seat doing his usual thing. With Sterling out, the ouster signs weren’t cropping up. Folks weren’t wearing all-black outfits. Advertising signs that had been covered before NBA commissioner Adam Silver ruled Sterling was suspended, were uncovered and showing sponsorships again. And there was laughter again. Especially when it came to Rivers’ role in being on the search committee for the new CEO.“They’ve done a great job. They’ll call you. I wasn’t actually out there searching (laughing),” Rivers said.You know enough time and healing has passed when laughter and jokes are back on the table.Rivers can worry about Xs and Os, getting Blake Griffin to face the basket more and trying to find a way to limit the Thunder’s Russell Westbrook (UCLA) — who had a triple-double in Game 2 — instead of racist remarks and the massive fallout created from Sterling’s comments on an audio tape released by TMZ two weeks ago. “I’ve got other things to do,” Rivers said of the search for the new CEO. “They’ve done a great job of keeping me up to date on where they’re at and what they’re doing. I trust the league in this so well. They’re smart. I don’t have a lot to say, because, to be honest I don’t think I should have a lot to say.”He usually has plenty to say to officials, and that’s part of being back to normal. It’s a new kind of normal for these Clippers.last_img read more