Goodwill Savannah GA Thu, 12 May 2022 04:52:05 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Goodwill Savannah GA 32 32 NFIB: Small business expectations for better trading conditions at record low, lowest in 48 years Wed, 11 May 2022 19:37:41 +0000

Below is a press release from the National Federation of Independent Business:

Homeowners expecting better conditions in next six months drop as 32% cite inflation as number one business issue

the NFIB Small Business Optimism Index was unchanged in April, remaining at 93.2 and the fourth straight month below the 98-for-48-year average. 48 year survey.

Inflation continues to be a problem for small businesses, with 32% of small business owners saying it’s their biggest problem running their business, the highest number since the fourth quarter of 1980 .

“Small business owners are struggling to cope with inflationary pressures,” said Bill Dunkelberg, NFIB Chief Economist. “Labour supply does not respond strongly to high wage offers from small businesses and the impact of inflation has significantly disrupted business operations.”

Key findings include:

– Forty-seven percent of owners reported job openings that could not be filled, unchanged from March.

– The net percentage of owners raising average selling prices fell two points to 70% net (seasonally adjusted), two points below last month’s high.

– The net percentage of owners expecting actual sales to be higher increased six points from March to a negative net result of 12%.

As noted in the NFIB’s monthly jobs report, small businesses continue to struggle to find workers to fill vacancies, with 47% (seasonally adjusted) of all owners reporting job openings they don’t. could not fill during the current period. Of those who are hiring or trying to hire, 93% of owners reported few or no qualified candidates for the positions they were trying to fill.

Fifty-four percent of owners reported capital spending in the past six months, down two points from March. Among owners who incurred expenses, 40% said they purchased new equipment, 24% acquired vehicles and 14% improved or expanded facilities. Eight percent acquired new buildings or land for expansion and 11% spent money on new fixtures and furniture. Twenty-seven per cent of owners expect capital spending in the coming months, up one point from March.

Seasonally adjusted, 3% of all owners reported higher nominal sales over the past three months, down one point from March and a poor reading. The net percentage of owners expecting higher actual sales volumes rose six points to a negative net result of 12%.

The net percentage of owners reporting inventory increases rose four points to 4% net. Nineteen percent of owners reported increases in inventory while 15% reported reductions as strong sales reduced inventory at many businesses.

Thirty-six percent of owners said supply chain disruptions had a significant impact on their business. Another 34% report moderate impact and 20% report mild impact. Only 8% of owners reported no impact from recent supply chain disruptions.

Up three points from March, a net 6% of owners considered current inventory to be “too low” in April. A net 1% of owners plan to invest in stocks in the coming months, down one point from March.

The net percentage of homeowners raising average selling prices fell two points from March’s record high of 70% net (seasonally adjusted). Four percent reported lower average selling prices and 70% reported higher average prices. Price increases were most frequent in wholesale trade (85% higher, 0% lower), construction (81% higher, 3% lower), retail trade (76% higher, 4% lower) and manufacturing (70% higher, 3% lower). lower). A net 46% of owners expect price increases (seasonally adjusted data).

A net percentage of 46% (seasonally adjusted) said they had increased their compensation, down three points from March. A net 27% of owners plan to increase compensation in the next three months. Eight percent of owners cited labor costs as their top business issue and 23% said the quality of labor was their top business issue.

The frequency of reporting positive earnings trends was a net negative 17%. Of owners reporting lower profits, 34% blamed rising cost of materials, 22% blamed lower sales, 14% cited usual seasonal change, 11% cited labor costs , 9% cited lower prices and 2% cited higher taxes. or regulatory costs. For owners reporting higher profits, 51% credited sales volumes, 13% cited usual seasonal changes, and 19% cited higher prices.

Two percent of homeowners said all of their borrowing needs were not met. Twenty-six percent of homeowners said all of their credit needs were met, and 61% said they weren’t interested in a loan.

the NFIB Research Center has collected data on small business economic trends with quarterly surveys since 4and 1973 quarter and monthly surveys since 1986. Survey respondents are randomly selected from NFIB members. The report is released on the second Tuesday of each month. This survey was conducted in April 2022.

Automotive Lending Services Market Size and Forecast Wed, 11 May 2022 19:33:24 +0000

New Jersey, United States – Comprehensive analyzes of the fastest growing companies Automotive Lending Services Market provide information that helps stakeholders identify opportunities and challenges. The 2022 markets could be another big year for auto lending services. This report provides an overview of the company’s activities and financial situation (a company profile is required if you want to raise capital or attract investors), recent developments (mergers and acquisitions) and recent SWOT analyses. This report focuses on the Automotive Lending Services Market over the assessment period 2029. The report also provides an analysis of the Automotive Lending Services Market growth which includes Porter’s Five Factor Analysis and the supply chain analysis.

It describes the behavior of the industry. It also outlines a future direction that will help companies and other stakeholders make informed decisions that will ensure strong returns for years to come. The report provides a practical overview of the global market and its changing environment to help readers make informed decisions about market projects. This report focuses on growth opportunities that allow the market to expand its operations in existing markets.

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The report helps both major players and new entrants to analyze the market in depth. This helps key players determine their business strategy and set goals. The report provides key market insights including niche growth opportunities along with market size, growth rate and forecast in key regions and countries.

The Auto Loans Services report contains data based on rigorous studies of primary and secondary schools using best research practices. The report contains exhaustive information which will enable you to evaluate each segment of the Automotive Loan Services market. This report has been prepared considering various aspects of market research and analysis. It includes market size estimates, market dynamics, and company and market best practices. Entry marketing strategy, positioning, segmentation, competitive landscape and economic forecasts. Industry-specific technology solutions, roadmap analysis, alignment to key buying criteria, in-depth vendor product benchmarking

Key Players Mentioned in the Automotive Loan Services Market Research Report:

Chase Auto Loan, Alliant Credit Union, Capital One, LendingTree Auto Loan, LightStream, Wells Fargo Auto Loan,, US Bank, CarsDirect, Bank of America, CMBC, PingAn, Guazi, UMB Financial Corporation

Automotive Lending Services Market Segmentation:

By Product Type, the market is primarily split into:

• In line
• Offline

By application, this report covers the following segments:

• New cars
• Used vehicles

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Scope of Automotive Loan Services Market Report

UNITY Value (million USD/billion)
SECTORS COVERED Types, applications, end users, and more.
REPORT COVER Revenue Forecast, Business Ranking, Competitive Landscape, Growth Factors and Trends
BY REGION North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Latin America, Middle East and Africa
CUSTOMIZATION SCOPE Free report customization (equivalent to up to 4 analyst business days) with purchase. Added or changed country, region and segment scope.

Geographic segment covered in the report:

The Automotive Loan Services report provides information on the market area, which is sub-divided into sub-regions and countries/regions. In addition to the market share in each country and sub-region, this chapter of this report also contains information on profit opportunities. This chapter of the report mentions the market share and growth rate of each region, country and sub-region over the estimated period.

• North America (USA and Canada)
• Europe (UK, Germany, France and rest of Europe)
• Asia-Pacific (China, Japan, India and the rest of the Asia-Pacific region)
• Latin America (Brazil, Mexico and rest of Latin America)
• Middle East and Africa (GCC and Rest of Middle East and Africa)

Answers to key questions in this Automotive Lending Services Market report

  1. How much revenue will the Auto Loan Services Market generate by the end of forecast period?
  2. Which market segment is expected to have the maximum market share?
  3. What are the influencing factors and their impact on the Automotive Loan Services market?
  4. Which regions are currently contributing the maximum share of the overall auto loan services market?
  5. Which indicators are likely to drive the Auto Lending Services Market?
  6. What are the key strategies of the major Automotive Loan Services market players to expand their geographical presence?
  7. What are the key advancements in the Auto Loan Services market?
  8. How are regulatory standards affecting the auto loan services market?

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Borrowers abandon banks after RBA rate hike shock Tue, 10 May 2022 08:28:21 +0000 Fact checked Advertiser Disclosure The Reserve Bank’s first official rate hike in more than 11 years has galvanized Australian borrowers into action, with thousands flocking to comparison sites in recent days to seek bargain mortgage …]]>

The Reserve Bank’s first official rate hike in more than 11 years has galvanized Australian borrowers into action, with thousands flocking to comparison sites in recent days to seek bargain mortgage deals .

Interest in cheaper home loans is skyrocketing, putting big banks under pressure to keep their customers. Although banks are already responding by passing on higher rates to variable home loan customers, fierce competition from online lenders and challengers means rates around 2.00% are still available.

Mozo Money expert Tom Godfrey said, “Savvy borrowers could save tens of thousands of dollars on their home loan by taking the opportunity to shop around and switch. Given the savings on offer, it’s no surprise that we’re seeing a shift of challenger lenders away from the big four banks.

With an average variable mortgage rate of 3.05%, there is a huge gap between the best and worst mortgage rates available. Start by comparing some of the best rates of the month on the market below….


Macquarie – Compensatory Home Loan
  • Variable rates from just 2.14% (2.42% comparison rate*) – 40% minimum deposit
  • 100% clearing account, ease of withdrawal and additional refunds
  • No upfront fee ($248 annual plan fee applies)

The details:
Macquarie is now Australia’s 5th largest property lender, and with deals like this, it’s not hard to see why. The Macquarie Offset Home Loan now has even lower variable rates as well as a range of flexible features such as 100% offsetting (up to 10 free offset accounts per loan account), free additional repayments and a new online draw and a split account option. To start the simple application process, simply request a call on the Macquarie website. Available for loans up to $5 million.

Greater Bank – Low Rate Fixed Rate Home Loan
  • Fixed rate of 2.59% for 1 year (comparative rate of 2.23%*)
  • Mozo Experts Choice Awards – 2022 Home Lending Bank of the Year^
  • Borrow with only 10% down payment

The details:
With an ultra-low 1-year fixed rate and no ongoing charges, this competitive fixed-rate home loan from Greater Bank is a great option for borrowers looking to secure repayment certainty on their home loan and protect against future upsurges. rate. It is available with only a 10% deposit and a guarantor option is available. NSW, QLD and ACT residents only.

Bank of Queensland – Economical Variable Mortgage Loan
  • 2.13% variable rate (comparison rate 2.30%*)
  • $3,000 Cash Back Bonus for Refinancers – Limited Time Only
  • Available to borrowers with 70% LVR

The details:
BOQ is a favorite of borrowers looking to find value beyond the big four banks, and for good reason. The BOQ Economy Variable Home Loan offers competitive variable rates, free withdrawal, flexible repayment options, and free valuation. Plus, refinancers can get a $3,000 cashback bonus for a limited time only (terms and conditions apply). Apply before May 16.

Nano – Variable real estate loan
  • Variable and comparative rate of 1.99%*
  • Free clearing account + zero upfront or ongoing fees
  • Mozo Experts Choice Best New Home Loan of 2022 ^

The details:
Digital lender Nano has launched what it claims to be the fastest home loans in the world, with an all-digital approval process that they claim can see you approved in as little as 10 minutes. Buyers and refinancers will benefit from an ultra-low variable rate, zero Nano fees, and a wide range of flexible features, including unlimited additional repayments, a free new draw, and a 100% free clearing account.

Calculate your mortgage repayments

We can show you the monthly repayment amount for a range of loans

house with heart

Want to compare more home loans? Check out the latest mortgage rates from over 80 lenders on Mozo’s Home Loan Comparison Center.

ATTENTION: This comparison rate only applies to the example or examples given. Different amounts and durations will result in different comparison rates. Costs such as withdrawal charges or prepayment charges, and cost savings such as fee waivers, are not included in the comparison rate but may influence the cost of the loan. The comparison rate displayed corresponds to a guaranteed loan with monthly principal and interest repayments of $150,000 over 25 years.

Initial monthly repayment figures are estimates only, based on the advertised rate, loan amount and term entered. Rates, fees and charges and therefore the total cost of the loan may vary depending on the amount of your loan, the term of the loan and your credit history. Actual repayments will depend on your personal circumstances and changes in interest rates.

^ See Mozo Experts Choice Home Loan Awards information

Mozo provides general product information. We do not take into account your personal goals, financial situation or needs and we do not recommend any particular product. You must make your own decision after reading the PDS or offer documentation, or after seeking independent advice.

Although we pride ourselves on covering a wide range of products, we do not cover every product on the market. If you decide to request a product through our website, you will be dealing directly with the supplier of that product and not with Mozo.

]]> You are what your actual fed funds rate says you are Tue, 10 May 2022 04:00:18 +0000

The writer is Managing Director and Chief Investment Officer of Richard Bernstein Advisors

Former NFL coach Bill Parcells once said, “You are what your record says you are.” A team’s coach may try to rationalize a losing record by pointing out good planning, unfortunate injuries, or small player mistakes, but the harsh reality is that a team with a losing record is mediocre.

The Federal Reserve claims to fight inflation, but before one proclaims the central bank “hawkish,” it seems appropriate to paraphrase Parcells: you are what your real fed funds rate says you are.

The real federal funds rate (ie the difference between the central bank’s target rate and inflation) has always been a reliable indicator of monetary policy. When the real federal funds rate is positive, interest rates are high enough to slow nominal growth. But when the real fed funds rate is negative, it suggests that the Fed is trying to fuel the economy.

Every US recession in the past 50 years has been preceded by a positive real fed funds rate. And the Fed correctly kept the real funds rate negative for most of the post-financial crisis period, as falling bank lending made deflation a bigger risk than inflation.

Despite inflation being at a 40-year high by virtually every measure, the real fed funds rate is now negative to a degree well above historical averages. Measured using the consumer price index, the real fed funds rate is negative 7.5% versus a 50-year average of 1%. The real funds rate was above 10% at the height of the inflation-fighting Volcker regime of the 1980s.

The US and global economies have changed dramatically in 40 years, and Volcker’s extraordinary monetary tightening may not be warranted today. But serious questions must be asked whether the current real federal funds rate will slow the economy, much less dampen inflation.

Some economists are defending the Fed’s timid actions by suggesting that inflation will ease once current supply chain bottlenecks ease. However, supply disruptions have been behind the worst episodes of inflation in the United States. The oil embargoes of 1973-74 and 1979 fostered a large-scale price and wage spiral.

It is important to note that the current supply disruptions have already lasted longer than the oil embargoes of 1973-74 and 1979 combined and that supply chains still remain blocked. It is remarkable how investors, and the Fed for that matter, downplay one of the most important economic events in US history.

Whether supply is limited or demand is too high, inflation simply reflects demand exceeding supply for an extended period of time. The lesson of the Fed Volcker was that the central bank has a limited ability to increase the supply of goods or labor, so the only way to thwart inflation is to raise interest rates enough. interest in destroying demand and causing a recession.

Despite history, the current Fed thinks it can stage a so-called “soft landing” – that is, inflation returning to more benign levels without a recession. The Fed’s optimism has sparked discussions about whether or not a recession will occur.

The current hard-landing versus soft-landing debate, however, seems to be a false dichotomy. A third outcome could be that the Fed does not act vigorously enough to force a cooling of the nominal economy and that inflation lasts longer than the current consensus.

The markets seem to be considering this third option. The three-month to 10-year yield curve is the steepest in seven years, with investors demanding more returns for holding longer-term debt. Such an emphasis during a tightening of monetary policy suggests that the Fed is losing, not gaining, its credibility in the fight against inflation.

The combination of a tepid Fed, significant inflation and investors’ general underweight to traditional inflation-friendly assets appear to present an investment opportunity.

Although investors have shifted somewhat to traditional hedges such as inflation-protected treasury bills and real estate investment trusts, investors remain significantly underweight the assets that benefit the most from inflation: energy, materials and industrial stocks, lower quality credits, commodities and commodity-related securities. countries, gold, and real assets such as forest land, farmland, and trusts that provide royalty income.

The Fed wants to be seen as a conscientious inflation fighter, but the extremely negative real fed funds rate indicates otherwise. Despite the jawbone of the Fed, they are what their actual fed funds rate indicates they are.

Controlling inflation: the role of companies and employees Sat, 07 May 2022 13:00:00 +0000

Businesses and employees can’t raise interest rates like the Federal Reserve, adjust the money supply, or fix supply chain bottlenecks on their own, but they do have a way to fight inflation.

By working together, employers and employees can mitigate some of the inflationary pressures caused by the wage-price spiral. Simply put, when prices for housing, energy, food, and other goods rise, workers typically demand and get wage increases. The spiral continues to rise, and inflation results.

Unemployment hit a low of 3.6% last month in the United States and 3.5% in North Carolina, so demand for workers has been strong. But the stock market has fallen recently, some companies are laying off employers, and the worker dynamic that calls most of the shots may soon be over. The Federal Reserve raised short-term interest rates by half a point this week, which will likely cool the economy and lower inflation even further.

To pursue economic growth without adding to inflation, workers and management must cooperate on wages, hours, management, continuing education and other issues. These measures could result in reasonable wage growth, greater influence over management decisions and longer-term relationships without causing inflationary pressures.

Economist John Maynard Keynes argued that a hot economy raises prices more than wages because the former adjust more frequently than the latter. This could explain why employers are not increasing salaries enough, on average, to reach inflation levels of 8.5% in March 2022.

The strongest salary growth is currently attributed to the retail and leisure/hospitality sectors with vacancy rates of 8-10% according to the Brookings Institution think tank, translating into a turnover rate high and therefore re-hiring at higher wages adjusted for inflation.

However, industries with a more stable workforce will generally experience less wage growth (both nominal and real) to cover inflation.

Disgruntled workers are consequently quitting their jobs at record highs as the Great Resignation persists in pursuit of a better balance between wages or working life, while those in stable industries see their real wages fall.

So how do employers retain talent in stable and unstable sectors while controlling inflation? While many Americans appreciate direct cash income in their monthly checks, this country should train and educate more employees on the value of investing. This presents a huge opportunity for employers to introduce more investable option plans that complement standard compensation packages to not only educate their talent on asset strategies, but help them stave off inflation whatever the winds. economic opposites.

For companies that offer stock options, there should be a limited or no vesting period for these offers, giving employees immediate access to sell these assets when needed. For workers who simply prefer not to invest, employers may offer other incentives to accommodate employee families and lifestyles. For employees with young children, childcare can be provided by service providers under contract with the employer (similar to health insurance agreements). For those who prefer a better work-life balance, flexible working hours can be extended when virtual days adapt based on business demand or number of hours on site.

Employers can also incorporate dynamic paid time off models where employees can earn extra days through exceptional work and even “cash out” those days if they are unused at the end of the year. For those focused on retirement, matching plans can be made more attractive through higher percentage match rates, thereby reducing taxable income and increasing potential long-term returns upon plan acquisition.

These diverse models can extend to family members with educational opportunities to improve their skills through certificates or more formally by supporting bachelor’s or master’s degree pursuits. College courses, online technical courses, and workplace improvement seminars and courses should be treated as an investment in better educated and more productive employees.

We should galvanize the private sector by promoting these asset- and incentive-based compensation models with immediate vesting periods.

In addition to wages and opportunities for education and growth, employers need to better communicate the company’s mission and role in society.

A recent study by Deloitte notes that Generation Z, people born after 1997, have different views on employment. “While salary is the most important factor in deciding a job, Gen Z places less importance on salary than all other generations: if given the choice of taking a better paid but boring job by compared to more interesting but lower-paying work, Gen Z was fairly evenly split on the choice. To win the hearts of Gen Z, companies and employers will need to highlight their efforts to be good global citizens… Companies must demonstrate their commitment to a broader set of societal challenges such as sustainability, climate change and hunger.

Salaries are always important, but as the workforce evolves, companies need to be flexible, able to invest in the emotional and educational growth of their employees. These methods will strengthen the ties between management and workers, while mitigating the effects of inflation.

Mohamed A. Desoky is the Associate Dean of Academic Programs at Skema Business School in Raleigh, NC

Vella lays out Abela’s priorities on the road to climate neutrality and equality Sat, 07 May 2022 11:30:00 +0000

The President of the Republic of Malta officially inaugurated the country’s 14th legislature since 1964, as outgoing and new MPs took their seats today.

George Vella addressed the House, which also welcomed 12 additional female MPs co-opted under a gender quota system, outlining the Abela administration’s priorities for the next five years.

Among those priorities will be further amendments to Malta’s rules on in vitro fertilization, Vella said, with the aim of offering more hope to expectant parents wanting assisted reproduction.

It is now 10 years since Malta last banned embryo freezing under a previous nationalist administration, with new rules extending the service to all women, regardless of status or sexual orientation.

“Above all, we want an equal society,” Vella told MPs. “One of those top priorities will be giving more families a better chance of becoming parents. A number of amendments will be introduced to the laws governing IVF to offer more hope to the most potential parents. The changes would be complemented by the necessary investments to enable the process to take place.

“Equality at all levels is one of the values ​​that must set us apart as a country,” Vella said, turning now to Malta’s parliamentary quotas for the underrepresented. Sex.

“We are starting this legislature with a more egalitarian parliament, with stronger female representation. We need to embed this principle in workplaces, especially in decision-making councils, with a number of incentives.

Russian invasion

With Ukrainian President Volydymyr Zelenskyy now due to address the New House on Tuesday May 10, Vella reminded MPs that Malta’s neutrality should not turn a blind eye to injustice and deplorable actions.

“The pressures caused by the war in Ukraine are not diminishing at all. Firstly, we must reaffirm that this is an attack that can only be condemned… which is why Malta has implemented a number of sanctions agreed in EU fora .

“We have provided and will continue to provide humanitarian aid to help Ukrainian citizens. We continue to hear stories of destruction, death, cruelty and the loss of their homes and everything they built in their lives.

“We who are so far away are also feeling the effects of this war. Imagine how those in the middle of this feel,” Vella said.

The president said Malta was also feeling the pressures of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

“We have an economy that is recovering strongly from the effects of the pandemic. Last year, our country created more wealth than we had created before the pandemic… But success does not come from nothing. What is happening in the world makes it all the more important that we never lose sight of the effective management of our economy.

“War has an impact on the prices of essential goods such as energy, food and freight. The government is not only aware of these challenges, but is constantly pursuing discussions to counter this impact. As it has done during the pandemic, the government will make sure to support people and businesses.

Income redistribution

Vella toasted Malta’s economic growth rate and Malta’s record unemployment rate, but said the success of Malta’s economic formula will always depend on the extent of wealth redistribution.

Malta will see a further reduction in income tax rates, tax refunds, but will also impose new obligations for sustainable business practices.

“Reducing business taxes should lead to a move towards more sustainable operations, more productive job creation and increased investment in research and innovation.”

Vella also said the labor administration will boost the country’s standards following a positive report from the Council of Europe’s Moneyval and implement recommendations agreed with the Financial Action Task Force with the aim of removing Malta from the FATF gray list.

Vella also said Malta would continue to register improvements in areas of governance, also linked to its recent setback from the FATF.

“No country or individual is perfect, but we can strive for Malta to be at the forefront of modern democracies, with strong rule of law systems. This requires reforms to have more modern judicial processes , because the administration of effective justice must be a basic principle in today’s world.

“We will continue to intensify reforms, but as in other sectors, we want justice to be oriented in a way that better understands the realities of those who face its practitioners and those who exercise it. Justice is blind, but it must be sensible and sensitive to changing social realities.

Digital transition, environmental sustainability, climate neutral Gozo

An important element of Malta’s economic development will be the use of EU funds which will contribute to the island’s digital transition and the decarbonisation of the country’s economy.

“Gozo, where we will guarantee that at least 10% of all European funds will be allocated, will be where we carry out one of the most ambitious environmental projects. So much so that we are aiming for this island to be the first part of the country to become climate neutral.

“While these environmental and digital transformations are significant challenges, they have the potential to be the best economic opportunities we have ever had in this generation.”

Vella said the pandemic had revealed the importance of the digital economy and said Malta needed to invest heavily to become a leader in these new sectors.

“This will require a leap forward in skills and innovation in our education system. Digitization must be strong in the public sector, which must ensure that it is a tool to offer a better service to the citizen, to reduce bureaucracy.

Quality of life and environment

Vella said that while it was important to protect the material livelihoods of citizens, especially those of low-income groups, labor administration would focus on quality of life in terms of health, environment, labor work-life balance and safety.

“It is time that in addition to talking about statistics and figures, we have indicators on the quality of life of people and that this measurement is another key consideration in any project or initiative of the public administration and the government.

“Our obligation is to safeguard the interests of future generations – not only those unborn, but those young among us who are beginning in the world and deserve the best care and attention our society has to offer.”

Vella said the administration will treat the environment as a key objective, with the same emphasis that previous administrations have placed on the country’s infrastructure.

“It is not enough to protect the natural environment of our country – it is an obligation that all those who belong to public entities have through decisions that can affect the state of the Maltese natural environment.

“But we need to be innovative about new public and open spaces in urban areas – and plan more carefully to safeguard the unique characteristics of our towns and cities, an important part of our identity and the face of our nation. It must be the main administration to invest for this purpose. 700 million euros will therefore be allocated to these projects.

Vella also said that reaching climate neutrality by 2050 will require an electric transport fleet, alternative modes of transport, but also fundamentally changing the treatment of waste and making it an alternative energy source.

“The reality is that if our environment isn’t taken care of, our economy can’t continue to function.

“The government will be there to support these changes. But we will also need a change in our culture. We need to understand that if we really care about our children, now is the time to take decisive action for the environment. Not only do we expect others to make decisions for us, but we reflect this new priority in the decisions we make every day as citizens, from the smallest to the largest. The government will continue to encourage environmentally friendly choices.

Social measures

Vella said the Abela administration would also commit to increasing leave for caregivers, the introduction of parental leave and the right to disconnect, and the need to tackle cyberbullying.

“We need to protect children and teens from modern-day dangers, including cyberbullying, and ensure they know how to use social media and the various technologies available to them wisely…

“We need to see our children healthy, and for that reason it is important that this administration’s commitment to identify physical, intellectual, social and educational challenges as early as possible. This applies not only to children , but to all groups in our society, all of us who, throughout our lives, face different mental health problems.

“We can say that society supports everyone in need, when we break the mental health stigma once and for all. When mental health challenges are addressed as much as any other health issue, on which we do not hesitate to seek help from our doctors.

The coming years will be crucial for our country to reach the fullness of specialized and free services in the mental health sector, projects that go beyond what we have had so far, reaching out to all those who need it.

The yen: a cheap safe haven for uncertain times Thu, 05 May 2022 11:23:09 +0000

The writer is co-head of currency strategy for Goldman Sachs

The yen has been the worst performing major currency this year, slipping around 12% against the dollar and even underperforming the Turkish lira and Argentine peso.

Against a basket of trading partner currencies and adjusted for inflation, the yen has fallen to levels last seen in the early years of the Reagan administration, before the 1985 Plaza Accord.

But this state of enyasu (weak yen) is likely to be short-lived. The yen is an undervalued safe-haven asset at a time of growing recession risks around the world and structural threats to the dollar. It will find support from long-term investors looking to protect their capital. If global inflationary pressures remain high, the Bank of Japan will eventually let bond yields rise, rather than let the currency tumble.

The recent depreciation of the yen reflects shorter-term cyclical factors: the sharp rise in bond yields in the United States and Europe, the increase in commodity prices which leads to an increase in the import bill for Japan and the wave Omicron Covid, which has stalled the process of economic reopening across Asia.

The BoJ was right to say last week that Japan’s cyclical stance – low core inflation and a more limited rebound in economic output – warrants looser monetary policy relative to its G10 peers.

But structurally, the Japanese economy is not that different from other developed markets. There was an earlier and larger housing bubble and bust, but the pattern was largely the same as that which has unfolded in Western economies over the past decade.

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Japanese inflation has been low, but elsewhere inflation rates have approached levels comparable to those in Japan over the past economic cycle. Between 2010 and 2019, consumer price index inflation in Japan averaged 0.5%, compared to 1.4% in the euro area, 1.1% in Sweden and zero in Switzerland. Over the same period, real per capita growth in Japan’s gross domestic product averaged 1.3%, slightly above the average for the rest of the G10.

Moreover, Japan has the attributes of a natural “refuge”. More importantly, it is a wealthy nation with a large stock of foreign assets. Japan holds about 1.26 trillion yen in foreign assets ($9.6 billion) against liabilities of about 850 billion yen ($6.5 billion).

This net international asset position amounts to approximately 75% of Japan’s GDP and generates revenue for the country amounting to nearly 4% of GDP each year. The Japanese government has a large stock of debt, but this is mainly held as an asset by its residents and the BoJ. The nation of Japan is not going bankrupt and its large current account surpluses over the years mean that the currency is not vulnerable to sudden capital flight.

Investors should be more wary of Japanese bonds than the currency. If we have entered a period of stubbornly high global inflationary pressures, Japan will not be immune. Between 1960 and 1989, when US inflation averaged 5%, Japanese inflation averaged 5.6%—there is nothing in Japan that implies sustainably low inflation.

The weak wage growth and price inflation trends in the country will not change overnight. Inflation expectations seem anchored at relatively low levels. It may take repeated inflation surprises for the Japanese public to expect a steady rise in the price level. But that now appears to be a significant risk. Most other economies saw a wave of price pressures as they reopened.

For the BoJ, which has been trying for years to end deflation, this should be good news. Bringing core inflation closer to the central bank’s 2% target will allow it to bring nominal interest rates above zero and improve policy flexibility.

BoJ Governor Haruhiko Kuroda is expected to prepare for his victory lap. Ending negative rates and a yield curve control policy — which effectively caps 10-year government bond yields at 0.25% — wouldn’t be a tragedy. Instead, it would signal that officials have succeeded in ending deflation through a sustained macroeconomic campaign within government.

The yen could very well come under further depreciation pressure in the coming weeks – it goes without saying that we are going through a complex and volatile time for global markets. But beyond the short term, there are a number of recovery avenues for the yen.

In the event of a recession, US Treasury yields and commodity prices would likely decline, narrowing interest rate differentials with Japan and lowering the cost of its commodity imports. If global inflation remains elevated, low interest rates in Japan will eventually move closer to levels in other developed markets.

Investors can anticipate a rebound in the yen over time and should consider holding this safe-haven asset as a hedge against the global recession and other tail risks.

M&A Liquidity and Fair Value Analysis in Del. and the Caymans Tue, 03 May 2022 21:36:00 +0000
By Erik Himan and Carlos Penikis (May 3, 2022, 5:36 p.m. EDT) – In some jurisdictions, investors in acquired companies may object to the sale of their shares at the offered price and opt instead for a judicial appraisal of the value of their shares. In Delaware and the Cayman Islands, the court will award what it believes to be the fair value of these shares.

However, fair value is a legal concept whose definition varies by jurisdiction. Although this definition is widely established in Delaware, it is not completely determined in the Cayman Islands.

The Delaware valuation defines fair value as the—relatively—simple calculation of the value of…

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Finance Ministry details talks at IMF-World Bank spring meeting Mon, 02 May 2022 00:30:32 +0000

The Department of Finance on Friday released details of discussions with international financial institutions and development partners at the IMF-World Bank Spring Meeting in Washington DC last month.

In a statement, he said that a Sri Lankan delegation, led by Finance Minister Ali Sabry, participated in the 2022 Spring Meetings of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank Group held in Washington DC April 18-22. The delegation met with several international financial institutions (IFIs), including the IMF and the World Bank, as well as bilateral partners during their stay in Washington DC.

The discussions mainly focused on the current critical situation of the Sri Lankan economy, as well as the policies and measures to be implemented in the immediate, short and medium term. Key areas discussed included (a) addressing the immediate need to re-establish supply chains for critical items including fuel, LPG and pharmaceuticals, (b) securing bridging funding in the interim period until that IMF financing with an economic program be finalized, and (c) implement short- and medium-term policies to ensure macroeconomic stability and facilitate greener, more inclusive, sustainable and stable growth in the country.

Views were exchanged on ways to support the population in the immediate term and on the future direction of engagement with Sri Lanka in a more coherent manner.

The overwhelming support, cooperation and solidarity extended to the people of Sri Lanka by all major IFIs, other institutions/agencies and friendly nations has been extremely encouraging at this critical time for the Sri Lankan economy.

International Monetary Fund

The delegation met with the Managing Director of the IMF, the First Deputy Managing Director and the Deputy Managing Director overseeing Sri Lankan affairs, as well as other senior officials at the technical level. The meetings with the IMF focused on obtaining an Extended Financing Facility (EFF) to overcome the current difficult situation of the Sri Lankan economy with a medium-term vision, following the formal request made by the Sri Lanka in mid-March.

A formal request has also been made for a Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI) for consideration by the IMF to secure immediate financing in the country, which will act as a gateway to the EFF.

It is important to reach a staff-level agreement on an IMF program as soon as possible, as this will help unlock bridge financing facilities from other IFIs and bilateral partners. Specific topics discussed with the IMF included the debt restructuring process, government revenue and expenditure measures, public financial management, public enterprise reforms and energy pricing, strengthening safety nets social security, monetary policy and central bank independence, foreign exchange management, financial sector stability and related policies, and growth-enhancing structural reforms.

An IMF mission is expected to organize face-to-face and/or virtual technical meetings with the Sri Lankan authorities in early May with a view to reaching an agreement in the short term on a program for Sri Lanka alongside the debt restructuring process. .

world Bank

Meetings with the World Bank were aimed at securing immediate foreign financing and providing support to the government to identify the most appropriate policies to implement under an IMF-supported program. The importance of stronger social safety nets to mitigate the negative impact of the current economic crisis on poor and vulnerable segments was also discussed in detail.

During the discussion, the World Bank Vice President for South Asia Region and senior officials expressed their commitment to provide emergency support for essential medicines and health-related supplies, meals for schoolchildren and cash transfers for poor and vulnerable households.

The World Bank’s emergency response program includes immediate funding for the procurement of essential drugs, and a total program of approximately $600 million is expected over the immediate, short and medium term. , and funds will be made available by reallocating some ongoing projects, triggering the Contingent Emergency Response Components (CERCs) of some ongoing projects, as well as new funding agreements. Support to provide cooking gas, basic foodstuffs, seeds and fertilizers and other necessities is also being discussed.

Asian Development Bank

The delegation also met with the President of the Asian Development Bank (AfDB) and discussed the country partnership strategy and the way forward with a focus on promoting economic activities and improving productivity. and improving the quality of growth by promoting inclusion. The AfDB expressed its support to the government to address the current challenges and move towards green, resilient and inclusive growth.

The postponement of the AfDB Annual Meeting which was to be held in Colombo in September was also mooted due to the unexpected and unprecedented situation that Sri Lanka has been facing in recent weeks. The Minister of Finance will continue to work with the AfDB on the Annual Meeting in his capacity as Chairman of the Board of Governors.

In addition, discussions were held with the Regional Director for South Asia of the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the Administrator of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), the Secretary-General of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and the Secretary General of the Paris Club.

All IFIs, including the IMF, have stressed the importance of maintaining social stability and protecting the country’s democratic institutions to help Sri Lanka effectively manage the economic problems facing the country and people.

Bilateral talks

The Indian delegation, led by its Minister of Finance, reassured India’s enhanced commitment to support Sri Lanka through several channels, including direct bridging financing in terms of lines of credit for oil and other imports. and carry-over of accrued commitments from the Asian Clearing Union (ACU) as well as support through multilateral agencies.

The delegation also met with the US authorities who also reiterated their strong support for the acceleration of short and medium term programs with the IMF and the World Bank.

The delegation held a series of meetings with the members of the Advisory Board appointed by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa on various economic and financial issues.

In collaboration with multilateral and bilateral partners, the government is developing more targeted and concrete policies and measures, including a strong macro-fiscal policy framework, which, with the support of the general public, should enable the country to overcome the current crisis. difficult conditions, solve accumulated problems in the economy and lay the foundations for a modern, dynamic and strong economy in the future.

We have the lowest minimum wage in Asia Pacific. It’s high time to revise it Sun, 01 May 2022 04:30:00 +0000 Dr Md Asadul …]]>

Bangladesh has experienced amazing economic growth in recent years. But the state of the country’s human resource minimum wage continues to paint a picture of disparity and inequality.

May 01, 2022, 10:30 a.m.

Last modification: May 01, 2022, 11:06 a.m.

Dr Md Asadul Islam and Dr Mohammad Enamul Hoque. Illustration: TBS


Dr Md Asadul Islam and Dr Mohammad Enamul Hoque. Illustration: TBS

Rising prices have been a global problem. It has reached a dangerous level since the Russian-Ukrainian war because these two economies contribute significantly to world exports of oil, gas and wheat. Disruption to the supply chain caused by the war has also caused turmoil in global commodity markets.

As a result, governments around the world are trying to justify rising prices. In such a time of pandemic and war, that might be a reasonable and plausible assertion. However, justifications alone will not be enough for frontline workers living on minimum wage.

Similarly, workers working outside the minimum wage ceiling also suffer the setbacks of price increases. Many salaried/day laborers do not even know the minimum wage as they have become accustomed to being paid below the nominal amount.

They should receive wages that at least follow the minimum wage scale. Otherwise, their vulnerabilities can create anarchy at different levels of individual, family, community, social and even national life. Such a social calamity will hamper the rapid progress of the country’s infrastructure, such as the Padma Bridge, which is expected to be completed this year.

Bangladesh has achieved astonishing economic growth, averaging more than 5% per year over the past decade, and has continued to make strides in infrastructure development in recent years, a feat that has been hailed by almost all international associations. .

However, when it comes to paying our workers – our human resource – minimum wage, Bangladesh finds itself at the bottom of the ladder. When comparing the minimum wage with neighbors such as India ($215), Nepal ($396), Pakistan ($491) and Sri Lanka ($247), it is evident that our minimum wage of only $48 (ILO, 2019) is dismal.

Focusing on real wage growth in Bangladesh between 2010 and 2019, real minimum wages declined by 5.9% (annually), which paints a dire picture. Bangladesh is the only country in the Asia-Pacific region where the minimum wage does not even come close to the lowest international poverty line.

Additionally, the price of commodities has risen significantly in recent years, but minimum wage reviews or increases have not been implemented in favor of the poor, since December 2018. Bangladesh reviews the minimum wage every five years. However, the review period should be shorter in such a rapidly growing country to adapt to national and international issues.

A disturbing fact is that the garment sector is the only sector where a minimum wage of Tk 8,000 is enforced, while many other sectors directly or indirectly ignore labor laws or minimum wage guidelines. Other than that, the minimum wage application process is fraught with pitfalls. The reality on the ground for day laborers looks grim.

Although the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics reported an inflation rate of between 5.4% and 5.7%, and more details on food and non-food inflation are presented in Chart 1, the study real market shows a different picture.

Infographic: TBS

Infographic: TBS

Infographic: TBS

Vegetables and many other staples are currently sold 2-3 times more than in fiscal year 2019. Therefore, the numbers are not compelling. In addition, the central bank’s inflation expectations survey also revealed that the annual average inflation rate is expected to cross the 6.0% level by the end of the current fiscal year. It could even reach 8.5% by the end of December this year. In a recent report, the IMF is also cautious about the inflation rate, and it should be higher than expected given the current economic and international situation.

“The Gini index is a measure of the distribution of income within a population. A higher Gini index indicates greater inequality, with higher income people receiving much larger percentages of the population’s total income. “, says the report. The trend between the years 1992 and 2016 (as shown in Chart 2) shows that income inequality has increased in Bangladesh, a trend that is also evident in the US economy.

Furthermore, the World Bank (WB) 2016 report shows (Chart 3) that the income share of the bottom 40% of Bangladeshis is about 21%, while the share of the top 10% is 27%. However, given the trend of the past 5 years, it is possible that income distribution is unlikely to have improved. As such, it can be expected that inequality has increased in recent years and may increase further in the future.

The gap between rising prices and the minimum wage not only exacerbates inequalities in the lives of workers, but also influences lower-middle-class families with children and elderly relatives who may require medical attention.

This gap has also created a work-life imbalance, especially in urban areas. Rising prices also impact the nutritional status of women, who traditionally sacrifice their food and other health-related needs for the sake of children and male family members.

As a result, in the long term, malnutrition levels could skyrocket, not only destructively affecting women’s health, but also ruining families. According to medical experts, most women in Bangladesh already have problems with malnutrition, and a price hike could make the situation worse.

Our GDP has grown enviably and it is a matter of judgment, but if the majority of the population, that is to say the workers, do not benefit from it, we cannot deny our participation creating an unequal society where more people are malnourished than healthy.

We recognize that the government is tirelessly taking initiatives to combat rising prices. But while ensuring price stability, it is high time to consider raising the minimum wage for the common people who are the backbone of our economy.

Md Asadul Islam, PhD and Mohammad Enamul HoqueDBA are assistant professors at BRAC Business School

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions and views of The Business Standard.