Lost Worlds http://lost-worlds.com/ Fri, 30 Sep 2022 11:19:25 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9.3 https://lost-worlds.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/cropped-icon-32x32.png Lost Worlds http://lost-worlds.com/ 32 32 Scottish care homes face tough winter https://lost-worlds.com/scottish-care-homes-face-tough-winter/ Fri, 30 Sep 2022 11:05:24 +0000 https://lost-worlds.com/scottish-care-homes-face-tough-winter/

In the days following the Queen’s death, many were caught off guard by their own feelings of grief for a distant and unknown public figure. Also removed from our daily lives, the monarch’s passing ended an era that for the vast majority began before we were born and was ingrained in the memory of parents and grandparents.

Many of us have recently lost loved ones. Since Covid emerged in early 2020, nearly 180,000 deaths have been recorded in the UK within 28 days of testing positive. Due to the restrictions in place, many died alone, their funerals were poorly attended and socially distanced. Indeed, the image of the Queen at Prince Philip’s funeral, sitting alone and wearing a black face covering, has become one of the defining images of the pandemic.

But while few lives have remained unscathed by the pandemic, those living in care homes have suffered more than most. At the onset of the pandemic and with increased demand for hospital beds, the decision was made both in Scotland and elsewhere in the UK to send elderly patients back to care facilities often without testing them d first for Covid.

Between March 1 and May 31, 2020, more than 3,000 untested hospital patients were discharged to care homes in Scotland. It was a decision now considered one of the biggest mistakes of the pandemic.

Donald Macaskill, chief executive of Scottish Care, a charity that represents private care homes, says many of the measures subsequently put in place to protect vulnerable older people ended up having negative consequences.

“The damage caused by certain measures, ostensibly to protect, has become a continuing violation of human rights,” he says. “We haven’t heard the voices and experiences of individual care home residents. There’s always a tension between the need for collective security and an individual’s desires and I think as a whole system we got it wrong.

Macaskill says staff working in the sector have been physically and emotionally drained by the pandemic. And yet, Covid has not gone away. Macaskill says around 80 care homes are still under some form of restriction, although many believe the worst of the pandemic is behind us.

“Even when people were pulling up the sunbeds in the summer and acting like Covid was over, the care industry faced the challenge of people still getting the disease despite vaccinations, boosters etc, and some people getting extremely sick “, he says.

“Anyone who thinks it’s like a cold or the flu is fooling themselves, and matters are not helped by a political and media system so eager to return to normality that it ignores the reality that Covid remains a challenge for the sector care…”

And yet, despite the rigors of Covid and the impact it continues to have on residents, Macaskill says the biggest challenge is yet to come. He says soaring energy prices have left care homes wondering how they will survive the winter, with many reporting a 1,000% rise in the cost of gas and electricity.

“Personally, I’m more worried about the impact this winter than I was in the winter of 2020,” Macaskill says. “Fortunately, fortunately, unless Covid really changes, we won’t see people dying to the same extent. But I am really concerned about the sustainability of the social care sector in Scotland, on which the NHS fundamentally depends.

“There is a myth that, particularly in the independent care sector, it is full of multinational organizations – this is not the case in Scotland. The majority of private providers in Scotland are small family farmers, often sole proprietors, who simply do not have the resources or income – even in good times – to cope with these kinds of exponential increases.

“You add to that the cost of living crisis on food and non-energy utilities, the impact on the workforce, and I’m really deeply concerned about the financial stability and ability of a cohort of really exhausted workers getting us through the winter.”

Donald Macaskill says this winter will likely be tough for care homes | 1 credit

Macaskill says a typical 50-bed care home would normally expect an energy bill of between £26,000 and £36,000 a year, but is now quoted eight to ten times that figure.

“With Covid, certainly in the winter of 2020 when vaccination started, we had a sense of hope and optimism that there was light at the end of the tunnel,” he says. “At the moment we think the lights will go out and we will literally have a hard time getting through the winter.”

It is in this difficult context that the current politics of social care is played out. When he became Prime Minister in 2019, Boris Johnson promised to ‘fix social care once and for all’, eventually introducing the Health and Social Care Tax, which aimed to address chronic NHS backlogs as well as the long-standing problems in the provision of social care by forcing workers to pay an extra 1.25 pence in the pound in National Insurance contributions.

But amid the cost of living crisis and with a tough winter looming, Liz Truss has pledged to scrap the tax less than a year after it was introduced. Macaskill says it would leave a “tax hole” as well as unanswered questions about the implications for Scotland.

North of the border, the Scottish government plans to introduce a new National Care Service. Described as the biggest political intervention since devolution, the local council called it a “power grab”.

Macaskill says the National Care Service is currently a “massive distraction” from the day-to-day realities facing the sector.

“At the moment, there is such a lack of detail in the bill and associated documents that it is not clear what the future will look like. The National Care Service is seen as a massive distraction from reality day of trying to carry on and survive this winter.

“People don’t have the energy…to contribute to the conversation around the National Care Service. We’re standing on a burning platform and it’s burning on both sides. The promise of a National Care Service is , for the moment, a mirage that will not save us from drowning.

So should discussion of the initiative be postponed until the sector is on a level playing field?

“I know the unions and others have called for a postponement,” Macaskill said. “We have fundamental issues that we need to address. I do not see why we cannot deal with them at the same time as having a debate which is less about legislative change and the establishment of a new structure than about the essence of what this national service should be of care.

“Having been skeptical at first, I am someone who thinks we need a substantial change to the system. We have a broken system in its current format, so status quo is not an option.

As if things hadn’t been tough enough over the past two years, the sector has been further undermined by Brexit, that singular act of self-harm that not only failed to deliver any of the promised ‘opportunities’, but instead left a series of difficulties in its wake. For Scottish care homes, especially those in rural areas, the biggest issue is the difficulty of recruiting staff.

“The National Care Service debate is fine,” Macaskill says, “we can come up with the best ideas, the most innovative proposals, but they need people on the ground. That’s what we lost with the men and women of phenomenal talent who had made Scotland their home and felt the need to leave the country.We are unable to recruit at the level required.

“Yes, the Home Office has made things better and visa processes are easier, but for a social economy like Scotland’s, with so many SMEs, the simple practicality of recruiting internationally is almost impossible.”

I ask Macaskill if Covid, Brexit and now the energy crisis have come together to create a perfect storm for the sector.

“I sometimes wake up wondering what major doomsday disaster is going to hit the care sector this week. Many of the issues we were facing were there in January 2020, but no one listened to them. They have been aggravated and deepened by the pandemic and yet the sector has not sunk thanks to the amazing professionalism of the women and men working on the front lines.

“Then we faced a huge workforce crisis partly because of the Covid trauma and the negativity around the social care sector which meant we lost a lot of people to the retail, hospitality and other sectors that had nowhere to recruit in terms of international recruitment. So Brexit has not only affected direct recruitment, it has also affected our ability to retain staff who have left for sectors unable to recruit from Europe.

When the Queen died earlier this month, Macaskill was preparing for the launch of a report by the UK Commission on Bereavement, on which he sits. Launched in June 2021, the Commission gathered information on the main challenges faced by bereaved people and emerging issues caused by the pandemic. It is presided over by the Bishop of London, Sarah Mullally, who gave a reading at the state funeral. After the announcement of Elizabeth’s death by Buckingham Palace, it was decided to postpone the publication of the report, which will now be published at a later date.

“There’s a generation that has a special resonance with the Queen,” Macaskill says. “For many people in care, but also for those who are supported at home, this is a subject they want to talk about and think about. For many people, it surprised them that it put them in touch with their own feelings about their parents, partners, or someone important who is no longer in their life. Collective mourning has impacted and highlighted individual mourning.

“For staff [in care homes] it’s been a tough time because they’re exhausted from an extremely stretched summer. On top of all that, this great emotional and psychological moment was very tiring.

In a blog posted after the Queen’s death, Macaskill wrote that he was “saddened” by the idea that we should mourn less for someone who has reached the age of 96 compared to someone younger.

“There is immense hypocrisy around mourning and grief,” he says. “We believe that our personal response to the death of a loved one should be reflected in the response of others. It is inappropriate to place a hierarchy of emotion upon an individual…grief is deeply individual and unique .

“People often make the comment about someone ‘having a good run’…it suggests that an older person has less to contribute than a younger person,” he says. “If there has been someone who has held the role of matriarch or patriarch in a family, their loss is disproportionately more intense the older they are because we don’t know life without them.”

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Floods, debt and SDRs – Opinion https://lost-worlds.com/floods-debt-and-sdrs-opinion/ Fri, 30 Sep 2022 00:52:50 +0000 https://lost-worlds.com/floods-debt-and-sdrs-opinion/

Pakistan is facing unprecedented floods of a deeply catastrophic nature. While 3 million head of cattle died in flood-affected areas, the other mainstay of people’s livelihoods, namely agriculture, also suffered a severe blow. Millions of hectares of agricultural land have been inundated by floods, following, for example, six times more rain in the province of Sindh than on average over the past thirty years, not to mention the acceleration of melting glaciers.

Therefore, the rice harvest has been badly affected, which will not only mean a drop in supply for the country and the world (Pakistan is the fourth largest rice exporter), it would also mean a negative effect of that on much-needed export earnings, to broadly reduce the large gap between a heavy import bill and exports. In addition, significant damage to the cotton crop means that imports will have to be made in this regard, to meet the needs of the main export industry in the form of textiles.

In addition, another concern has arisen: as the water is stagnant in most flooded areas, it is very unlikely that wheat can be sown this year. This would mean, once again, that wheat imports will have to be made in the coming months.

Therefore, this winter will see an additional burden on imports in the form of a likely large level of realized imports in cotton and wheat.

This makes it all the more difficult to rein in the high level of import payments the country is already making, given high global energy and commodity prices for more than a year since the global commodity supply shock emerged last year and deepened in its wake. of the war in Ukraine.

Here, the fallout in the form of food and energy shortages from this war means that prices for these are likely to rise as the food crisis is likely to worsen in the months to come, alongside the likely rise in LNG prices, for example, as Europe competes with developing countries such as Pakistan for scarce LNG supplies over the coming winter.

With around $8.3 billion in foreign exchange reserves, Pakistan could have ill afforded such strain on the import bill, since the country already only has five to six weeks’ import cover. which is well below the desired minimum, according to international best practice, of at least 12 weeks (or three months).

Moreover, even before the floods hit, following the sharp weakening of the national currency (PKR) against the US dollar in recent months – both due to the rise in the value of the US dollar in the wake of a significant decline and rapid monetary tightening by the US Federal Reserve, and also due to the growing demand for US dollars to pay for very expensive imports due to the global supply shock – the external debt, which was already at an expensive level, has increased all the more.

Following the floods, servicing the external debt for the current year at around $30 billion has become all the more difficult, if not impossible, even after receiving a tranche of around $1.2 billion. from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) under the Extended Financing Facility (EFF) program, funding is well below about $8 billion, even after adding inflows from other donors like the Bank Asian Development Bank (AfDB), etc. So there is a gaping funding gap of $22 billion.

On the other hand, the initial assessment of the damage caused by the floods would be around 30 billion dollars. This places an immense burden on the country to organize the 33 million people who have been displaced by the floods and are facing increasing threats/challenges from the coming winter, little shelter, food shortages which may well become famine, water-borne diseases, and the onslaught of dengue fever. And all of this is on top of the dozens of vulnerable pregnant women living and children out of school.

Pakistan, like many other developing countries, could not provide much stimulus during the pandemic because the world did not care to grant a moratorium or meaningful debt relief. The enhanced allocation of special drawing rights (SDRs) from the IMF which entered the pandemic well, about a year and a half after the start of the pandemic, and where most of the allocations also went to already rich countries, and Pakistan received only $2.77 billion out of the total $650 billion allocated in August 2021.

This is not to say, however, that an “unconditional” allocation of SDRs was not important to Pakistan, which it would have used both for fiscal purposes and to provide some debt burden relief from the IMF. , but allocated on the basis of a quota meant that the amount received was insufficient.

The search for international support in terms of debt relief and financial assistance from development partners in general for debt relief, including a new allocation of SDRs as published in August 2021, is not just a matter of charity, but a principle of climate justice.

Indeed, firstly, as the world, and in particular the countries of the South, suffered from the Covid pandemic, which had strong roots in the climate change crisis, and secondly, in the form of floods mainly induced by climate change is a matter of justice that rich countries, and at least have meaningfully met their $100 billion pledge and provided that climate finance to developing countries, which had little contribution in terms of ‘carbon footprint. For example, Pakistan only contributes about 0.8% of global carbon emissions.

Pakistan, which is facing a serious debt default and a catastrophic flooding situation, needs urgent attention from the world. Millions of flood-affected people are exposed to the risks listed above, among many others. There is indeed a need for rapid debt relief from the country – at least $30 billion owed by the country for 2022 should be canceled immediately.

Second, the IMF should urgently release a boosted allocation of SDRs to $650 billion, for which it just needs a nod of approval from the US Treasury, and this allocation to individual countries is done not only on quotas but also on foreign exchange reserve requirements.

Another way to distribute could also be, as has been suggested by a number of people for many months now, to adopt an 80/20 allocation criterion between developing countries and high income countries, and who need less such DTS allocation.

Also, since the IMF cannot allocate more than $650 billion, it would make sense for the IMF to advocate for the passage of a bill in the US Congress titled “IMF Issuance of Special Drawing Rights”. .

The bill passed the US House of Representatives three times, but failed to pass the US Senate. If passed, the bill would allow the IMF to increase its SDR allocation envelope well beyond the $650 billion cap, and to approximately more than $2 trillion.

Given the climatic disasters in Pakistan and West Africa due again to flooding, in addition to an ongoing pandemic, high debt overhang and difficult import bills in the wake of the global shock of the supply of raw materials faced by developing countries, and as the world enters a period of strong recessionary tendencies as a result of high inflation and tight monetary policy, it is therefore of utmost importance that a significant new allocation of SDRs be made by the IMF.

In addition, a significant debt restructuring/relief effort – with both private creditors and China included in these meetings – should be provided to developing countries as soon as possible. Moreover, given this deep level of crisis, the IMF should also immediately cancel its “surcharge” policy, which is implemented on program countries that are behind in their debt repayments.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

Market volatility is part of any long-term investment cycle, KiwiSaver providers say https://lost-worlds.com/market-volatility-is-part-of-any-long-term-investment-cycle-kiwisaver-providers-say/ Thu, 29 Sep 2022 02:03:16 +0000 https://lost-worlds.com/market-volatility-is-part-of-any-long-term-investment-cycle-kiwisaver-providers-say/

High inflation, rising interest rates and war in Ukraine have caused financial market volatility this year, but KiwiSaver providers say investors should maintain a long-term perspective.
Photo: 123RF

Local KiwiSaver providers are reminding investors to keep a cool head amid the latest wave of financial market turmoil.

Capital markets have been under pressure for most of this year as they have been hit by a combination of high inflation, rising interest rates and the war in Ukraine.

But some more fuel was added to the fire last week, following the announcement of the UK government’s mini budget.

The plan to cut taxes but increase government borrowing surprised investors, who aggressively sold government bonds and the pound, plunging the latter to an all-time low against the US dollar. .

The turmoil prompted the Bank of England to step in to try and put out the flames – announcing it would go against its anti-inflation policies and spend £65billion ($123billion NZ) to buy government debt to support bond prices.

The development brought some respite to global stock markets, which had been hammered last week.

Kernel Wealth managing director Dean Anderson said KiwiSaver members should refrain from any sudden adjustments to their portfolios in light of news from the UK.

His advice to investors was simple – turn off the news.

“Reality is for investors with a long-term mindset [they] shouldn’t make any adjustments to how they invest, how they plan to invest,” Anderson said.

“The market noise we’re seeing right now is unusual, there are a lot of factors at play, but in fact it’s a standard part of any long-term investor’s life cycle.”

Anderson said the volatility would be harder to bear for KiwiSaver members who were nearing retirement or planning to use their balances to help with their first home.

Conservative funds also didn’t offer much hiding space for investors, he said.

These lower risk funds tend to have greater exposure to bonds.

Anderson said conservative members of the fund could expect to see bigger moves in their balances following the aggressive selling of UK government debt, which caused yields to surge and prices to fall.

But Pathfinder Asset Management’s chief investment officer, Paul Brownsey, said the consequences for local investors would be limited.

“I don’t think there would be any KiwiSaver funds in New Zealand that would have massive exposure to UK bonds because that’s a relatively small part of the global market.”

Falling UK bond prices were a serious problem for UK pension schemes, which had borrowed against those assets to invest in stock markets, he said.

Brownsey said investors should contact a financial adviser or their KiwiSaver provider if they have any concerns.

Will the UK’s economic bet pay off? https://lost-worlds.com/will-the-uks-economic-bet-pay-off/ Wed, 28 Sep 2022 17:30:00 +0000 https://lost-worlds.com/will-the-uks-economic-bet-pay-off/

The so-called ‘tax event’ on September 23 saw Kwasi Kwarteng, the UK’s new Chancellor of the Exchequer, announce tax cuts and deregulation measures aimed at boosting the growth prospects of the UK economy. The Chancellor also indicated that further tax cuts would be included in the full budget to be unveiled later.

The initial reaction from the bond and money markets was dramatic and demonstrated a staggering lack of confidence in Prime Minister Liz Truss’ fiscal agenda. Investors are rightly worried about the impact of tax largesse on the country’s public finances.

Unfunded tax cuts and large energy subsidies will also help boost aggregate demand, even as the Bank of England tries to cut spending to ease inflationary pressures. The disconnect between fiscal and monetary policy is likely to add to already high levels of economic uncertainty and complicate the ongoing fight against high inflation.

While Kwarteng and Truss hope for a re-reading of 1980s Thatcherism or Reaganomics, recent economic research suggests that the UK economy is unlikely to see a significant increase in productive capacity.

Does the trickle down economy work in the real world? The short answer is no. Economic studies indicate that the tax cuts instituted in recent decades have primarily boosted the fortunes of high net worth individuals and large corporations and exacerbated income and wealth inequality. Moreover, tax cuts aimed at the wealthiest have not generated widespread benefits for the real economy as a whole.

Economists David Hope and Julian Limberg undertook an in-depth study using “data from 18 OECD countries over the past five decades to estimate the causal effect of deep tax cuts for the rich on income inequality , economic growth and unemployment. Their recently published findings indicate that “tax cuts for the rich lead to greater income inequality in both the short and medium term. On the other hand, such reforms do not have a significant effect on economic growth or unemployment.

At the same time, a recent meta-analysis by economists Sebastian Gechert and Philipp Heimberger seems to indicate that there is no strong and consistent relationship between corporate tax cuts and economic growth. They observe that their “finding that the average effect of corporate tax cuts on growth is zero with some variance for individual cases is broadly consistent with the recent nuanced theoretical literature on growth”.

Multinational corporations often engage in global tax arbitrage which significantly reduces their tax bills. The “Double Irish Dutch Sandwich” and other tax avoidance transfer pricing strategies enable many of the largest and most profitable companies to significantly reduce their taxes globally. As such, reductions in corporate tax rates have minimal impact on large corporations. In fact, the proposed minimum global taxation could be the first step towards leveling the playing field and avoiding international tax competition that results in a “race to the bottom”.

In theory, if there was a substantial gap between desired investment and actual investment due to a scarcity of savings, then a tax cut targeted at the wealthy could pay off. The marginal propensity to consume is low for wealthy households—that is, the wealthy save a greater share of their income than the poor, and therefore additional dollars of after-tax income accruing to wealthy households will boost the accumulation of savings which can then be deployed to generate productive investments.

In fact, during the first two decades of the 21st century, most advanced economies recorded levels of real investment that roughly corresponded to desired investments. In the United States, investment booms have not materialized following large tax cuts (such as the Bush tax cuts in the early 2000s or the Trump tax cut in 2017) . Instead, they have led to widening budget deficits, soaring levels of public debt and a sharp rise in inequality. This should offer Trussonomics lovers some warning.

Even the ultra-loose monetary policy measures instituted in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis failed to revive investment-led economic growth in the UK and elsewhere. Clearly, the problems facing the UK are more structural in nature and cannot be solved by fiscal or monetary largesse.

Improving human and physical capital can help boost the UK economy over the long term. Reforming the education system (improving the quality and rigor of study programs and promoting technical skills training programs should help improve the quality of the national workforce) and the immigration system (boosting the skilled immigration while limiting/controlling low-skilled immigration) capital and increasing productivity levels.

On the physical capital side, infrastructure improvements and increased reliance on automation are expected to help boost productivity levels in the UK. Clearly, the British economy has failed to create enough houses, roads, reservoirs and power stations in recent decades. This in turn has generated extreme levels of geographic inequality. Moreover, excessive financialization has led to investments that are more speculative than productive.

Since 2008, rising income/wealth inequality, economic and political uncertainty, and muted expectations about future aggregate demand growth have all contributed to low levels of actual and desired investment. This has contributed to chronically low productivity, which in turn has limited the actual and potential growth rate of the UK economy.

Instead of relying on tax cuts, the UK economy would be better served if the government led by Liz Truss undertook structural reforms aimed at boosting productivity and improving the potential growth rate of the UK economy.

Vivekanand Jayakumar is an associate professor of economics at the University of Tampa.

Global Rapid Relief Asthma Drugs Market 2022 https://lost-worlds.com/global-rapid-relief-asthma-drugs-market-2022/ Wed, 28 Sep 2022 02:45:09 +0000 https://lost-worlds.com/global-rapid-relief-asthma-drugs-market-2022/

A recently released report titled Global Quick-relief Asthma Drugs Market Outlook 2022-2028 provides primary data, surveys, product scope, and vendor insights across numerous aspects that are crucial for increasing the industry in the years to come. The report summarizes important details related to market share, market size, applications and statistics. The report highlights market segments including geographic segmentation, major manufacturers, type segmentation and application segmentation. The study deeply sheds light on pricing trends, changing market dynamics, pricing structure, demand-supply proportions, restraints, limitations, and growth drivers of the Global Anti-Asthma Drugs Market quick relief. Extensive coverage of industry players has been analyzed with component such as profit, purchasing, marketing, and utilities.


The report studies the global Rapid Relief Anti-Asthma Drugs Market players, geological regions, product type and end-customer applications of the market. The report reveals historical revenue and trading volume, along with insights into the best ways to handle market metrics. Global industry market requirements, for example, type capacity, production, distribution, demand, price, profit, promotion forecast, and growth speed have been analyzed. It registers the essential elements of the market, including the structure of the market chain and describes the environment of the industry, the advancement of the market upstream and downstream, the industry as a whole, the investigation of the speculation, the structure of production costs.

DOWNLOAD A FREE SAMPLE REPORT: https://www.marketsandresearch.biz/sample-request/314858

Key manufacturers covered in this report:

  • Pfizer
  • GlaxoSmithKline
  • Novartis
  • Merck
  • Boehringer Ingelheim
  • Astra Zeneca
  • rock
  • Teva pharmaceutical
  • Vectura Group

Global market size and share, by-products:

Global market size and share, applications:

  • Hospital pharmacy
  • Online pharmacy
  • Retail pharmacy

Regional analysis:

  • On the basis of geography, the market report is segmented into few major key regions, with sales data, revenue data (million US$), share data and growth rate of industry for the regions mentioned.
  • Production by Region: Production value growth rate, production growth rate, import and export, and key players in each regional market are provided.
  • Consumption by Region: This report provides information on the consumption of each regional market studied in the report. Consumption is discussed according to country, application and product type.

ACCESS THE FULL REPORT: https://www.marketsandresearch.biz/report/314858/global-quick-relief-asthma-drugs-market-2022-by-company-regions-type-and-application-forecast-to-2028

The complete profile of Global Rapid Relief Asthma Drugs Market by companies is mentioned. Here capacity, production, price, revenue, cost, gross margin, sales volume, sales revenue, consumption, growth rate, import, export, supply , the future strategies and the technological developments they are making are also included in the report. . Finally, the report contains the conclusion part where the opinions of industry experts are included.

Lenders including Halifax pull mortgages from sale amid market volatility after pound plummets https://lost-worlds.com/lenders-including-halifax-pull-mortgages-from-sale-amid-market-volatility-after-pound-plummets/ Mon, 26 Sep 2022 18:41:58 +0000 https://lost-worlds.com/lenders-including-halifax-pull-mortgages-from-sale-amid-market-volatility-after-pound-plummets/

Three lenders have temporarily withdrawn fee-based mortgages for new customers in response to market volatility caused by the fall in the pound.

Halifax, Britain’s biggest mortgage lender, is to withdraw the proceeds until it determines the interest rates to charge, according to Reuters news agency.

Virgin Money and Skipton reportedly followed Halifax’s decision.

It comes after the Bank of England announced it would raise interest rates “as much as necessary” in a bid to control inflation.

There are concerns that the Bank will have to raise rates again in a bid to stabilize the pound, after a series of increases in recent months.

The Bank has indicated that it will carry out a “full assessment” of interest rates at the next meeting of the monetary policy committee scheduled for November 3.

On Monday morning, the pound fell to an all-time low against the US dollar, falling more than 4% to just $1.03 before regaining ground.

Markets panicked over new Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng’s mini budget on Friday, in which he announced controversial tax cuts worth £45billion – including the scrapping of the 45p for top earners, the reversal of his predecessor Rishi Sunak’s National Insurance hikes and stamp duty cuts – to break what he called the ‘vicious cycle of stagnation’.

Since his tax cuts are unfunded, they should be funded by the sale of gilts. Changes to the gilt market are impacting swap rates, which lenders use to decide how much to charge borrowers.

A spokesperson for Halifax, part of Lloyds Banking Group, said: “Due to significant changes in the cost of funding, we are making some changes to our product range.

“There is no change in product rates, and we continue to offer no-fee options to borrowers at all product terms and LTV (loan-to-value) levels, but we have temporarily removed matching products. of charges.”

Virgin Money said: “Given market conditions, we have temporarily withdrawn Virgin Money mortgage products for new business customers.

“Existing requests already submitted will be processed as normal and we will continue to offer our product transfer range to existing customers.

“We plan to launch a new product line later this week.”

Around 1.8 million households are expected to seek new mortgage deals when their contracts end next year, according to data from UK Finance.

German Bosch acquires Dutch semiconductor company Ideas to the Market (ItoM) https://lost-worlds.com/german-bosch-acquires-dutch-semiconductor-company-ideas-to-the-market-itom/ Mon, 26 Sep 2022 09:51:54 +0000 https://lost-worlds.com/german-bosch-acquires-dutch-semiconductor-company-ideas-to-the-market-itom/

Bosch, a German multinational engineering and technology company based in Gerlingen, Germany, announced Thursday (September 22nd) that it has acquired Eindhoven-based semiconductor company Ideas to the Market (ItoM).

With this acquisition, the German company aims to strengthen its expertise in high-frequency processing SoCs. System-on-Chips (SoC) are increasingly used semiconductors in control units in the automotive industry. The IToM development sites in Eindhoven and Enschede will be further expanded as part of the acquisition.

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Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed. The acquisition is subject to the approval of the competition authorities.

From ideas to market: what you need to know

Founded in 1998, Ideas to the Market (ItoM) is a design service and IP provider focused on integrated circuit and system developments for RF transceivers and broadcast tuners.

Using standard BiCMOS IC technology, the Dutch company designed the first Hi-Fi stereo AM and FM radios without external components.

ItoM has many IPs like LNAs, oscillators, mixers, AGCs, stereo decoders, etc.

In 2006, the company started manufacturing in 55nm CMOS RF technology. These designs achieve an even higher level of integration than previous chip generations, the company claims.

“We have core expertise in mixed-signal IC design and bring a strong team to the table. Bosch offers the ideal framework to grow. I am convinced that the merger will open up new perspectives for our company and our employees”, Edwin Veldman, Managing Partner at ItoM.

Bosch: what you need to know

The Bosch Group is a global technology and service provider. The company’s activities are divided into four business areas: Mobility Solutions, Industrial Technology, Consumer Goods, and Energy and Building Technology.

As an IoT provider, Bosch offers innovative solutions for smart homes, Industry 4.0 and connected mobility. Bosch pursues a vision of sustainable, safe and exciting mobility.

“The team fits perfectly into our development area for ICs and will build expertise in high-frequency circuits,” says Jens Fabrowsky, Executive Vice President Automotive Electronics, Robert Bosch GmbH, Area Head semiconductor components business at Bosch.

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NJ groups are in favor of congestion pricing in New York – here’s why https://lost-worlds.com/nj-groups-are-in-favor-of-congestion-pricing-in-new-york-heres-why/ Sun, 25 Sep 2022 23:04:43 +0000 https://lost-worlds.com/nj-groups-are-in-favor-of-congestion-pricing-in-new-york-heres-why/

While a plan that could charge Garden State drivers an extra fee of up to $23 during rush hour to get to Manhattan awaits federal approval, plan advocates suggest too many people are focused on signs dollar and not on the reasoning behind the proposal.

An extended comment period on New York’s congestion pricing plan recently ended. It is now up to the state’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority to submit a response to the Federal Highway Administration and see if it gets approval to move forward with the plan that aims to reduce vehicle loading in the central business district and generate additional transit revenue. projects.

An official scale has not yet been decided. Proposals have ranged from $9 to $23 for non-commercial vehicles traveling under 60th Street during rush hour.

“It’s not about penalizing you specifically. It’s about a fashion shift,” Renae Reynolds, executive director of the Tri-State Transportation Campaign, told New Jersey 101.5. “It’s about investing in public transport, it’s about saying, maybe you don’t need to drive in the CBD every day.”

Rendering of congestion pricing in New York

Rendering of a proposed mast arm housing toll infrastructure and pavement toll system equipment on Broadway between 60th and 61st Streets in Manhattan (MTA)

According to a TSTC analysis, more than 75% of New Jersey-Manhattan commuters use public transportation. Less than 2% of New Jersey workers overall would be subject to the new charge, according to the analysis, and the median income of New Jersey commuters driving to Manhattan is $107,996.

“Congestion pricing puts a big thumb on the scale to reduce driving and encourage transit ridership, reduce air pollution and climate pollutants,” said Doug O’Malley, director of the New Jersey Environment.

Plan supporters held a rally Thursday in Jersey City, arguing that the benefits of tolling the bustling commercial district to fund public transit will be shared by New Jerseyans and New Yorkers.

“For the small percentage who want or need to continue driving in the city, there will be less traffic,” said Zoe Baldwin, New Jersey director for the Regional Plan Association.

On the same day as the rally, the New Jersey Assembly’s Transportation and Independent Authorities Committee introduced a resolution opposing the congestion pricing plan.

“In New Jersey, we are disproportionately punished by congestion pricing,” said Assemblyman Christopher DePhillips, R-Bergen, before the vote.

Gov. Phil Murphy said he “likes the concept” of congestion pricing, but suggested it should only happen if New Jersey drivers receive credit for tolls already paid at highway-railway crossings. hudson river.

Dino Flammia is a reporter for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at dino.flammia@townsquaremedia.com

Click here to contact an editor about a comment or correction for this story.

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Cooperatives satisfied with the Centre’s decisions: FM https://lost-worlds.com/cooperatives-satisfied-with-the-centres-decisions-fm/ Sun, 25 Sep 2022 18:19:04 +0000 https://lost-worlds.com/cooperatives-satisfied-with-the-centres-decisions-fm/

Pune: Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said local cooperative sector representatives were “extremely satisfied” with the various measures taken by the Center on their behalf.

Those who exploited the cooperative sector for political purposes never thought of creating a separate ministry for it, and it was Prime Minister Narendra Modi who created the cooperative ministry, she told reporters. Saturday after concluding his three-day Baramati Lok Sabha tour. constituency in Pune district, Maharashtra. Baramati is notably the homeland of NCP leader Sharad Pawar, the former Union agriculture minister whose party has a strong presence in the cooperative sector. NCP leader and Pawar’s daughter SupriyaSule is currently a member of Baramati’s Lok Sabha.

Sitharaman said, “I had a meeting with representatives of different cooperative institutions such as banks and sugar factories (mills) and they are extremely happy and there was applause after applause for various measures taken such as the relief to be given to them, the tax concession which was extended, removing long-standing arrears from one of the cooperatives. They were all appreciated. Asked about her tour of the constituency, the minister indicated that she had held several meetings and gave an update on the implementation of the various central arrangements. When asked about the importance of Baramati for the BJP, she said that the purpose of her visit was to strengthen the organization of the party and to assess what remains to be done.

Regarding inflation, the Minister of Finance said that the government was constantly trying to control it. The rise in prices has been curbed thanks to the removal of import duties on edible oil and the import of pulses, she added.

Asked about the fight between the opposition and the ruling BJP in Maharashtra over the Vedanta-Foxconn project going to Gujarat, Sitharaman criticized the former government led by Uddhav Thackeray for blocking expensive projects such as the Nanar refinery. , Wadhvan Port, Metro Car Shed and High Speed ​​Train. The delay in the Mumbai Metro car shed project has caused a cost increase of Rs 4,000 crore, Sitharaman said.

Are ESG strategies a priority in a context of economic volatility? https://lost-worlds.com/are-esg-strategies-a-priority-in-a-context-of-economic-volatility/ Sat, 24 Sep 2022 06:11:26 +0000 https://lost-worlds.com/are-esg-strategies-a-priority-in-a-context-of-economic-volatility/

The world is a very different place than it was at the start of 2022, when COP26 was at the forefront and ESG at or near the top of corporate board priorities.

The invasion of Ukraine has transformed the outlook for the economy and organizations by creating volatility, whether through sanctions and loss of markets, increased energy prices and associated broader inflation to almost all products and services, and supply chain disruption.

Another factor contributing to disruption in the global supply chain is China’s zero COVID-19 policy. Their current approach to curbing it with strict lockdowns adds further uncertainty.

As boards prioritize their valuable time to negotiate this unstable new world, the question is, where does that leave ESG?

Should current ESG strategies be abandoned, or should boards continue to focus on them as before, or put even more emphasis on ESG in the future? Basically, should they rethink their ESG approach?

ESG remains a vital focus

These forward-thinking leaders and boards will recognize that despite the volatility, ESG remains a very important goal for their organization. A key aspect of ESG – concerns about the environmental impact of companies – does not go away.

Deloitte Global’s third annual readiness report, “The Fourth Industrial Revolution: At the intersection of preparedness and accountability,” reveals that not only is the environment on the minds of leaders, but that climate change and environmental sustainability have become an integral part of their management of their businesses.

In surveying more than 2,000 global leaders, Deloitte Global found that nearly 90% agreed to some degree that the impact of climate change will negatively affect their organization. The world is warming due to rising carbon emissions and almost everyone agrees that action is needed now if the increases are to be small. This means that those who continue to mitigate their impact on the environment at this time will be well received by stakeholders.

Boards need to realize that any increase in fossil fuel use due to the current volatility should be a very short-term policy, with their company having a clear roadmap to quickly reduce emissions in the medium and in the long term, if they are serious about ESG.

The growth of institutional investor activism will certainly help to keep the mindset of boards focused on ESG. For example, BlackRock states in its proxy voting guidelines that it will continue to pressure companies to disclose a net-zero aligned business plan consistent with their business model and industry.

In 2022, this will include asking companies to demonstrate that their plans are resilient as part of likely decarbonization pathways towards a global goal of limiting warming to 1.5°C.

New opportunities to grow your business

Dependence on Russian gas and oil, especially for many people in Europe, presents an opportunity for forward-thinking corporate boards to accelerate their efforts to use sustainable and renewable forms of energy. .

Organizations should also keep in mind that many governments in Europe are realizing that energy supply is now an increasingly important national security issue and will seek to accelerate moves towards renewable energy adoption. For example, Germany now plans to completely phase out coal eight years ahead of schedule – and get 80% of its electricity from renewables by 2030.

Amid this uncertainty, smart organizations will spot new opportunities to grow their business, with ESG in mind. It is those boards that are inclusive and benefit from the five diversity drivers – demographics, skills, experience, thinking styles and circles of influence – that will have an inherent competitive advantage in decision-making due to the makeup of their board. advice.

In addition to boards that have effective governance processes in place, including conducting regular assessments of directors to ensure they are fit for the future, who will be able to identify and seize these opportunities.

ESG planning by the board

When it comes to ESG planning by the board – which has three key areas – the best place to start is to effectively plan and assess risk. For example, the invasion of Ukraine highlights the risk of organizations doing business in autocratic states, and companies serious about ‘social’ in ESG should assess their business relationships in these territories and take appropriate measures, if necessary.

Second, boards must ensure that ESG disclosure and reporting is verifiable and accurate. Finally, directors must clearly understand that they are individually responsible if their activity harms the environment.

As the current volatility continues with the war in Ukraine, boards should consider how they might need to adapt their short-term ESG plans to ensure they don’t compromise their long-term ESG goals. .

The current energy crisis could accelerate the pace of change, with a reduction in the use of non-renewable carbon fuels and an increased focus on energy security. After all, boards have a responsibility to manage environmental capital and sustainability in a way that is honest, reflects expectations, and is good business.

Organizations that continue to prioritize ESG and spot an opportunity with ESG to grow their business during these uncertain times will experience happy stakeholders and increased revenue and help deliver a better future for us all.

About John Harte, Managing Partner at Integrity Governance

John Harte leads a global team at Integrity governance which aims to make advice more effective. A board expert working with multinationals, SMEs, trade associations and nonprofits, he provides practical, unbiased advice to directors, business owners, executives and CEOs to help improve performance. from the administration board. John and his team have advised the boards of organizations in the UK and around the world since he founded Integrity Governance over 17 years ago. He has 30 years of director-level experience in the corporate world, having worked at blue chip companies such as Mars, Schroders and Goldman Sachs. He is a sought-after speaker and thought leader on board effectiveness, practical governance and business disruption.