Qantas has taken to Twitter to distribute personal apologise to its customers as 4,000 passengers experience delays from this morning’s industrial action.The carrier warned yesterday that the walk-out which ended at 9.00am would result in the cancellation of up to 28 flights and cause 35 minute delays on 27 other services.Organised by the Transport Workers Union (TWU) last week, the strike commenced at 5.00am today and included baggage handlers, ground staff, catering, freight and other transport employees.With a further 48 hour ban on administrative duties, Qantas has advised passengers that services may not return to normal schedule for two more days.Despite the walk-out officially commencing at 5.00am, TWU has told media that workers turning up to work before the strikes were denied entry.”They have locked us out since 3.30am,” TWU spokesperson told AAP.”When we talk about passengers and how they were inconvenienced, everyone has to remember that from 3.30am until 7am Qantas has been on strike not the workers.”However, a Qantas spokesperson explained that the turn-aways were to prevent any further disruptions caused by staff clocking in and out in time for the strike.The spokesperson added that all staff refused entry before the walk-out would be paid. Source = e-Travel Blackboard: N.J
Combining its loyalty card and the credit card, Air New Zealand has released plans to launch the new OneSmart card, which features the Airports membership on one side and an optional Prepaid Debit MasterCard on the other side.Announcing the new travel wallet in one card yesterday afternoon, the card can not only be used to use to skip the lines in New Zealand domestic check-in but can also be loaded with funds in four different currencies to make everyday purchases and shop online.Describing the new card as “functionally capable than any other NZ banking or loyalty card”, Air New Zealand head of loyalty Simon Pomeroy said it was destined to be a must have for all Kiwis.“OneSmart will be New Zealand’s most widely distributed debit card with more than 700,000 New Zealanders set to receive it over the next few weeks,” Mr Pomeroy explained.Other features of the card include no commission charge to load foreign currency, no charge for international ATM withdrawals as well as built with PayPass for quick transactions less than NZ$80.00.According to Air New Zealand, the card can be used at 32.9 million locations, including up to 1.9 million ATMs worldwide. Source = e-Travel Blackboard: N.J
Source = e-Travel Blackboard: N.J Aiming to reduce the industry’s shortage of skilled workers, the Australian Government has announced the conception of a new proposed template labour agreement.An initiative designed by the Minister for Immigration and Citizenship Chris Bowen MP and the Minister for Tourism Martin Ferguson AM MP, the agreement is desiged to assist the tourism attract international workers by creating a common set of requirements tailored specifically for tourism businesses recruiting overseas workers.Minister Ferguson explained that with 36,000 vacancies expected in the industry by 2015, addressing the need for new labour was critical.He said there was a particular need to for requirement in regional areas.“Tourism injects around $35 billion a year into the Australian economy and the Government is acting to ensure labour and skills issues impacting on the tourism industry’s competitiveness are addressed under the National Long-Term Tourism Strategy, Tourism 2020,” Minister Ferguson said. Including recruitments for waiters, chef, bar attendants, hotel managers and other occupations, Mr Bowen added that the agreement balances between visa recruitments while also allowing Australian businesses to locate and reach skilled workers.“Approved employers could nominate workers for temporary skilled subclass 457 visas using the template, enabling workers to be granted visas where they meet the requirements,” he said. “Of course, employers would need to show they are doing their best to employ and train domestic workers and paying market rates.”The agreement is now open for public comment on areas of eligible businesses, occupations, salary, skills levels and English language requirements.The discussion paper can be found here: www.tourism.gov.au/labour
Inmarsat, a provider of global mobile satellite communications has announced that it is partnering with Airservices Australia to trial improved flight tracking services on commercial airline flights.The announcement follows a resolution on 6 February by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to adopt a new 15-minute tracking standard for commercial aircraft.Inmarsat is working with industry partners, Airservices Australia, Qantas and Virgin Australia in developing the operational concept for the trial, using Automatic Dependent Surveillance – Contract satellite technology.Airservices Australia is the first Air Navigation Service Provider (ANSP) to trial the ICAO standard, utilising Inmarsat’s global flight tracking ADS-C messaging service.Already there is 11,000 commercial passenger aircraft equipped with an Inmarsat satellite connection, representing over 90 per cent of the world’s long haul commercial fleet.Inmarsat chief executive officer Rupert Pearce, said that this is an important step in improving international airline safety.“We are very pleased to be working with Airservices Australia and our industry partners to implement this enhanced flight tracking service. We applaud ICAO’s decision to announce the new tracking standard and believe that we are well placed to help implement the standard given our existing global satellite coverage and the time-frame proposed,” Mr Pearce said.Source = ETB Travel News: Lewis Wiseman
Boeing (NYSE: BA) and BOC Aviation, announced an order for 22 737 airplanes, building on the leasing company’s existing order book to fulfill customer demand.The order, consisting of 11 Next-Generation 737-800s and 11 737 MAX 8 airplanes, will be posted to Boeing’s Orders and Deliveries website once finalized.“This order demonstrates our continued confidence in the Next Generation 737 aircraft for its proven high performance, reliability and asset value,” said Robert Martin, managing director and chief executive officer of BOC Aviation.“The Next Generation 737 economics are very attractive to our customers. With the 737 MAX, we are investing in new technology aircraft to meet our customers’ long-term fleet planning requirements.”In addition to today’s announcement, BOC Aviation has ordered 167 737 airplanes, including 50 737 MAXs and 16 777s.“BOC Aviation has played an important role in the success of the 737 program and we’re delighted they have again put their confidence in Boeing and the 737 family,” said Dinesh Keskar, senior vice president, Asia Pacific and India Sales, Boeing Commercial Airplanes.“This new order, on top of the 2014 order for 80 737s, is proof of BOC Aviation’s leading position in the leasing market, providing its customers with the most reliable and fuel-efficient single-aisle airplanes.”The 737 MAX incorporates the latest technology CFM International LEAP-1B engines, Advanced Technology winglets and other improvements to deliver the highest efficiency, reliability and passenger comfort in the single-aisle market.The new single-aisle airplane will deliver 20 percent lower fuel use than the first Next-Generation 737s and the lowest operating costs in its class – 8 percent per seat less than its nearest competitor.BOC Aviation is a leading global aircraft leasing company with a portfolio of 253 owned and managed aircraft operated by 59 airlines worldwide in 29 countries, with commitments to acquire 203 aircraft, as of 30 September 2015. BOC Aviation, owned by Bank of China, is based in Singapore with offices in Dublin, London, Seattle and Tianjin. BOC AviationSource = Boeing
Japan is focusing on positioning itself as a leisure and family destination in the India market by promoting its lesser-known regions like Hokkaido in northern Japan, Hiroshima and Nagasaki to name a few.Hideki Manabe, Executive Director, Japan National Tourism Organisation said, “So far travellers to Japan have been on business cum leisure, but now the focus is to attract the leisure and family segment from India. Most people are usually first time visitors to Japan and they visit the Golden Route which is from Tokyo to Osaka covering Kyoto (the old capital). However, now we want to promote other regions like Hokkaido in northern Japan, and Hiroshima and Nagasaki, since many Indians are interested in the history behind these regions.”Hideki Manabe also mentioned, “We have been working in a systematic manner to create awareness pan India. We are investing in B2C advertising like out-of-home hoardings, hosting FAM trips for the media and travel trade, participating in travel trade shows in the country, etc. We have been working in small markets like Chandigarh by participating in CII, IT&CMA, etc. We are also publishing an Indian food guide book and we want to show a short commercial on Japan at multiplexes prior to the start of a movie. Our purpose has been to create more awareness and increase numbers.”
AccorHotels successfully set the terms of a seven-year bond issue for an amount of EUR 600 million with an annual coupon of 1.25% recently.AccorHotels took advantage of the favourable conditions on the credit market to optimise its average cost of funding and lengthen the average maturity of its debt.The transaction was completed within a short time, and at favourable conditions. Based on these elements, the bond was finally raised to EUR 600 million.Accor’s long-term senior debt is rated BBB- by Standard & Poor’s and Fitch Ratings. BNP Paribas acted as Global Coordinator and book runner for this bond issue.CM-CIC Market Solutions, Commerzbank, Crédit Agricole CIB, MUFG, Natixis and Société Générale Corporate & Investment Banking acted as joint Lead Managers and book runners.
Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB) organised a roadshow in Kolkata during the first week of July this year. The event was aimed at highlighting Sri Lanka as a leading leisure and MICE destination. Top of the line travel professionals attended the event in addition to interacting with the SLTPB team, to understand the unique offerings for Indian travellers in Sri Lanka.In 2017, SLTPB expects more than 26% growth in the footfall and plans to welcome 4,50,000 Indian tourists to the destination this year. The year 2016 saw approximately 356,729 Indian tourists visiting Sri Lanka compared to around 3,16,247 in 2015.In 2016, the country saw a growth of 12.8% in Indian arrivals over last year. The country is a popular tourist destination and is known as the Wonder of Asia for its long preserved culture and heritage. SLTPB, witnessing the growth and potential from India, has taken a step forward in consolidating their presence in the Indian market.Viranga Bandara, Assistant Director- Marketing (India) on his visit to India interacted with the travel fraternity to promote the country as an exotic destination among niche travellers and holidaymakers.He said, “Sri Lanka has gained immense popularity in India and has experienced a consistent growth over the period. We have come first to Kolkata to explore this beautiful landmark of joyful people and tap the travel agents to increase the flow of business. We will also be participating at the travel fairs in Kolkata & other cities of India to enhance destination visibility among travel trade & consumers, to further consolidate Sri Lanka’s position as preferred destination for Indian travellers. We are confident that in 2017 a lot of more Indians will choose Sri Lanka as their preferred holiday destination.”
Share application,Mortgage Applications Down Nationwide in Data, Origination Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Investors Lenders & Servicers Mortgage Applications Mortgage Bankers Association Mortgage Rates Service Providers 2011-06-08 Ryan Schuette June 8, 2011 476 Views Mortgage loan applications fell by 0.4 percent nationwide over the last week, spreading unease among lenders concerned about the potential for a dip in the housing market, according to a study released by the “”Mortgage Bankers Association””:http://www.mortgagebankers.org (MBA) on Wednesday.[IMAGE]The results come from MBA’s Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey, which measures changes in adjustable-rate, fixed-rate, conventional, and government loans for mortgages across 15 indices. MBA posted downward trends for several indices, which this week included adjustments for the Memorial Day holiday._The Wall Street Journal_ attributed the slight dip to tighter-than-usual credit conditions, citing a lack of equity among 24 percent of the homes of mortgage borrowers.The 0.4 percent drop is the latest in a national trend that continues to unsettle housing markets. The decline in loan applications coincides with the lowest rates for mortgages in the last six months and the fewest applications for home purchases in nearly 15 years.[COLUMN_BREAK]””People are nervous,”” Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s Analytics, told the _Journal_. “”Signing on the bottom line to buy a home requires confidence.”” The survey’s Market Composite Index calculated the 0.4 percent decrease on a seasonally adjusted basis. Unadjusted, the same index fell by 11 percent from the previous week.MBA’s Purchase Index, reflecting mortgage applications for new purchases of homes, showed a seasonally adjusted 4.4 percent decrease from the past week, alongside an unadjusted 15.2 percent decrease. The adjusted Refinance Index increased 1.3 percent from the previous week. The Refinance Index is not seasonally adjusted but is adjusted for the holiday. The four-week moving average for the Market Composite climbed by 1.0 percent. The four-week trend for the Purchase Index documented a 1.6 percent decrease, while the Refinance Index showed a 1.3 percent increase.MBA also released average contract rates for 30- and 15-year fixed-rate mortgages. Rates for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages fell from 4.58 percent to 4.54 percent, marking a new low since late 2010. Rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages also hit a new bottom since last year, declining to 3.67 percent from 3.78 percent.Coordinated by MBA since 1990, the Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey covers over 50 percent of all U.S. retail residential mortgage applications, based on data from the thrift, commercial, and mortgage banking industries.MBA is a national association that represents the real estate finance industry.
in Origination, Servicing On Tuesday popular car insurance company “”Esurance””:http://www.esurance.com/ announced a deal with “”Security First Insurance Company””:http://www.securityfirstflorida.com/ that allows the two to offer homeowners’ insurance in Florida.[IMAGE]””[This is] an opportunity for us to reach those customers looking for bundled quotes from us,”” said Danny Miller, a spokesperson for “”Esurance””:http://www.esurance.com/. “”A lot of times we get calls from those who want an auto policy but also from those who want a home policy,”” and these trends prompted the decision to move forward with a partnership, he said.[COLUMN_BREAK]Miller said the deal is “”a good opportunity for us to reach those customers when other companies are pulling out from the mortgage market.””””Security First””:http://www.securityfirstflorida.com/ underwrote the new policy, which will supply Floridians with homeowners’ insurance with an array of mortgage payment options, including escrow, full pay, and monthly, according to the statement.The partnership arrives on the heels of a Quinnipiac University poll that held a resounding 63 percent of Floridians felt that property insurance is hard to come by, with about three-fourths of those agreeing on the inaccessibility of property insurance.According to the statement, “”Esurance””:http://www.esurance.com/ will offer quotes over the phone to Floridians that have received rate increases, non-renewal, or cancellation notices from their homeowner insurers. Some discounts are available for those with burglar alarms, newer homes, and various sprinkler systems.Often covering weather- and theft-related damages, homeowners’ insurance options also apply to premise possessions, identify theft, plumbing problems, and liability and replacement costs.””Esurance””:http://www.esurance.com/, a subsidiary of “”White Mountains Insurance Group, Ltd.””:http://www.whitemountains.com/, provides consumers with personal auto insurance, according to its Web site. Agents & Brokers Company News Lenders & Servicers 2011-06-29 Ryan Schuette Esurance, Security First Partner Over Mortgage Payments Share June 29, 2011 460 Views
Share November 9, 2011 462 Views LoanSifter, Google Enter New Strategic Partnership A new strategic partnership between “”LoanSifter, Inc.””:https://www.loansifter.com/index.aspx, and “”Google””:https://www.google.com/ will give consumers access to online mortgage lending and real-time pricing. Through Google’s comparison ads, LoanSifter will facilitate the comparison of loan products among multiple providers using its technology platforms. [IMAGE]The comparison ads created by Google are designed to assist potential borrowers in collecting quotes from mortgage lenders based on their specific loan qualifications, and LoanSifter’s automated pricing module and real-time database of investor pricing and eligibility information will give Google users access to products from the company’s lenders. The relationship between the entities will also provide LoanSifter’s participating lenders with leads, drawn from those that qualify online.LoanSifter client Fairway Independent Mortgage Corporation spoke out on the partnership with Google, and Greg Ulrich, production manager for Fairway, said, “”This saves us money, allowing us to pass a greater savings to the consumer. We chose [COLUMN_BREAK]LoanSifter for our Google auto-quoting because it enables us to customize our pricing more accurately and effectively. Other vendors require manual supervision, which would have been problematic in keeping up with market shifts.””Consumers are directed to Google’s comparison ads when they conduct an online search for mortgage-related terms within the company’s website, and the proprietary ads allow users to anonymously enter details on the loan they desire, including amounts and credit scores. Once an individual has contributed the relevant information, Google compiles multiple offers from lenders, enabling a side-by-side look at the options the borrower has access to when seeking a mortgage loan. The anonymity protects consumer’s private information and eliminates the need for a potential borrower to fill out extensive paperwork when gathering general mortgage loan pricing and product data. LoanSifter’s intuitive module is the ideal integration for Google’s comparison ads, as LoanSifter boasts the most comprehensive real-time pricing and qualifications database in the industry; additionally, LoanSifter possesses leading tools for mortgage bankers, loan officers, and secondary departments seeking to price, market, and manage loans.Bruce Backer, president of LoanSifter, commented on the collaboration with Google, saying, “”Our relationship with Google will be of tremendous benefit to both lenders and consumers. A growing number of borrowers are using the Internet to find the best possible mortgage deals, and Google’s immense popularity makes it a first stop for many. Borrowers benefit from the side-by-side comparison in an open marketplace, while lenders benefit from LoanSifter’s ability to accurately price mortgage scenarios on their behalf.”” in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicing, Technology Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Company News Investors Lenders & Servicers Processing Service Providers 2011-11-09 Abby Gregory
New,Pango Group Announces New EVP of Sales Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Investors Lenders & Servicers Movers & Shakers Processing Service Providers 2013-05-16 Esther Cho “”Pango Group””:http://pangogroup.com/about/ hired Joe Curtis as EVP of sales to join the family of escrow and financial service companies.[IMAGE] [COLUMN_BREAK] In his new role, Curtis is responsible with overseeing sales operations with the end goal of building out a sales team founded on consultative and value-based selling. Other duties include recruiting, coaching, and training the sales team.Curtis joins Pnago with a background that includes significant sales experience in both title and escrow. The most recent position he served in was as president of Pickford Escrow.Before entering the real estate sector, Curtis taught physics and chemistry and also worked as a Peace Corps volunteer in Africa. Today, his personal goal is to help strategically grow the Pango Group throughout Southern California. “”It is a progressive organization with its heart in the right place. I’m excited to be here,”” he said in a statement. The Pango Group family of companies includes Glen Oaks Escrow, American Trust Escrow, VOI Insurance, and consulting services reaching over 20 offices and 200 employees. in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicing Share May 16, 2013 458 Views
United Wholesale Ranks No. 1 Among Wholesale Lenders in Q3 in Origination Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Company News Investors Lenders & Servicers Service Providers 2014-01-02 Tory Barringer Share January 2, 2014 434 Views “”United Wholesale Mortgage””:https://www.uwm.com/ (UWM), one of the nation’s fastest-growing wholesale lenders, has good reason to celebrate going into 2014: The company was ranked on “”MortgageStats.com””:http://mortgagestats.com/ as the No. 1 wholesale lender in the country for the third quarter of 2013.[IMAGE][COLUMN_BREAK]According to a release from UWM, it was the first time the lender was able to take the top spot for wholesale origination volume in its history.””We’ve been intensely focused on getting our business to this level of growth from the beginning,”” said Mat Ishbia, president of the Michigan-based firm. “”Our hard work, along with the trust and valued business of our brokers, has now officially catapulted us to the number one spot.””The company attributes its achievement to its wide range of innovative offerings, which in 2013 saw the addition of UWM Connect, the Income Calculator, free customizable marketing, and the newly released Flex Term, among others.Also a factor in UWM’s growth is the way the company approaches customer service, Ishbia said.””We developed a unique business model in how we interface with our brokers that is completely driven by a highly service-oriented approach to customer service that clients laud as being second-to-none,”” he commented.
in Daily Dose, Headlines, News, Origination Lenders across the U.S. appear to be offering borrowers a second chance at obtaining a mortgage by originating more subprime mortgages for borrowers with credit scores under 620.Equifax’s recent National Consumer Credit Trends Report found that subprime mortgage originations soared higher during the first five months of 2015.First mortgages, home equity installment (HE) loans, and home equity lines of credit (HELOCs) all experienced an uptick in subprime originations compared to the same period last year. The amount of first mortgage originations to borrowers with subprime credit scores increased 30.5 percent, HE loans rose 29.5 percent, and HELOCs rose 20.4 percent.”It appears that American lenders still believe in second chances, and without subprime loans, there would be no second chances in the housing market.” Equifax explained that although subprime orginations are rising, overall, these originations are only a small portion of total originations across the mortgage lending sector. Additionally, the subprime origination numbers remain below figure seen before the Great Recession.HELOCs lending is slower than some of the other options, the report noted. Only 7,800 of the 525,000 HELOCs originated in the first five months of 2015 were considered subprime.”The data make it very clear that almost nobody is getting HELOCs if they don’t have a credit score above 620,” said Amy Crews Cutts, chief economist at Equifax. “But we are seeing a rise in first mortgage and home equity installment loan origination subprime shares.”She added, “It appears that American lenders still believe in second chances, and without subprime loans, there would be no second chances in the housing market. The underwriting on mortgages today is tough on everyone and we believe that the subprime lending that is happening is being underwritten even more carefully.”The data also found that lenders are working to reduce risk involved with subprime mortgage originations.”Despite the continuing rise in overall subprime originations, banks are still greatly limiting their high-risk exposure,” Cutts said. “The credit score of the borrower at the 10th percentile of newly originated first mortgages today is 650. For HELOCs, it’s 700. Looking back to the start of 2006, the credit score of the 10th percentile loan was 575 for a first mortgage and 645 for HELOCs. I think we are still a long way from the Goldilocks level of ‘just right.'”Key data on subprime originations from the Equifax National Consumer Credit Trends Report:Of the 3.26 million first mortgages originated year-to-date through May, 143,800 – or 4.6 percent – were issued to consumer with an Equifax Risk Score below 620.Of the more than 280,700 HE loans originated year-to-date, 30,900 – or 1.5 percent – went to those with low credit scores.As HE installment loan originations rose 22.4 from a year ago and surged to their highest level since 2008, subprime originations also jumped sharply, by 29.5 percent. The average origination loan amount of a new subprime HE loan also climbed, hitting $22,455 in May 2015 – up 11.6 percent from May 2014.Click here to view Equifax’s National Consumer Credit Trends Report, Subprime Mortgage Originations Rise During First Five Months of Year September 23, 2015 494 Views Share Credit Scores Equifax Lenders Subprime Mortgage Origination 2015-09-23 Staff Writer
August 16, 2017 636 Views in Government, Headlines, News LenderLive Network LLC, a unit of LenderLive Holdings, Inc., announced Tuesday that Sherry Valladares has joined their team as Correspondent Lending Regional Account Manager. Valladares will cover the northeast area and work with both new and existing clients, including mortgage banks, community banks, and credit unions that are currently participating or are prospective participants in their LenderLive correspondent program. Valladares will report directly to SVP and National Sales Manager Bob Kallio.“We’re committed to helping our clients not only improve their businesses’ efficiencies, but also provide reliable customer experience that protects their relationships, making it critical for us to invest in expert talent,” said David Vida, president of LenderLive Network. “I’m confident that Sherry’s client relations skills and track record of success will translate into superior customer service and, ultimately, better results for our clients.”The correspondent program serves the needs of originators in the medium to small range that want to protect their customer relationships. It offers quick client approval, fast turn times, competitive pricing, and greater engagement during the sales process in order to keep clients abreast of their loan status.Valladares spots more than 15 years of experience in the mortgage industry including background in secondary, operations, origination, and underwriting. Previous to LenderLive, Valladares served as an account executive at GMC Financial and Fannie Mae Customer Account Manager, handling strategic relationships such as day-to-day business activities with banks, credit unions, and mortgage banks as well as managing sales. LenderLive 2017-08-16 Brianna Gilpin Share LenderLive Announces New Correspondent Lending Regional Account Manager
Ten years ago, on September 15, 2008, Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy, triggering what would become known as the Financial Crisis. In its wake came the conservatorship of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), more commonly known as the bailouts. Now approaching the ten year anniversary of what would become known as “Lehman Brothers Weekend,” where are the key figures of the Crisis?Lehmann Brothers, the bank that triggered the crisis, is now broken up with the core of its business sold to Barclays following the bankruptcy filing. Former Lehman CFO Erin Callan, who was appointed just months before bankruptcy filings, wrote a biography titled Full Circle: A Memoir of Leaning in Too Far And The Journey Back, after a short time at Credit Suisse. Richard “Dick” Fuld, CEO of Lehman at its collapse, currently runs Matrix Wealth Partners along with former Lehman alumni Matthew Rubin and Justin Gaines.The men who were instrumental in building the solution to the financial crisis, Former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, former Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson and former New York Fed President Timothy Geithner have also moved on in these 10 years. Today, Hank Paulson is a fellow at the Harris School of Public Policy Studies, and Timothy Geithner serves as president of Warburg Pincus, a private equity firm headquartered in New York. Ben Bernanke is now an Economist for Brookings Institute.On Wednesday, Paulson, Geithner, and Bernanke sat down to discuss how the crisis was handled and what impact these solutions had in the following years, in a CNBC interview with Andrew Ross Sorkin hosted by the Brookings Institution.In the interview, Sorkin asked the panel if they thought the Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac takeovers ultimately helped homeowners. Paulson replied with certainty that it did.“I don’t think it helped, it did,” Paulson replied. “Imagine how far housing prices would have fallen if we didn’t have mortgage funding during the financial crisis. Fannie and Freddie were the only sources of mortgage financing, so that made a very significant difference. I can’t imagine what would’ve happened if they hadn’t gone into conservatorship.”According to Paulson, the “spark” for taking the GSEs into conservatorship was their size.“They were these huge entities with $5.4 trillion in securities outstanding that were ready to implode,” Paulson said.In a paper from the Brookings Center on Regulations and Markets, Michael Calhoun, President of the Brooking Center for Responsible Lending, noted the large role the housing market had in the crisis, and how recovery is still taking place.“The subsequent regulatory safeguards and consumer protections have made today’s housing market much safer and resilient,” said Calhoun. “However, more could have been done to aid homeowners in the crisis and work remains to provide families with sufficient affordable, sustainable housing for today and in the coming years.”What to consider now is how to handle the next crisis. In the years leading up to the financial crisis, no banks failed for 32 consecutive months, acting as a “silent alarm” on the growing imbalances in the American financial system, according to Brookings.“Widespread bank failure is obviously not the goal. But the difference between rare bank failures and no bank failures is an important one,” said Aaron Klein, Brookings Fellow, Economic Studies, Policy Director, Center on Regulation and Markets.According to Klein, seeking financial stability is not and shouldn’t be about preventing failure.“To the contrary, a stable financial system is one in which banks fail,” Klein continued. “It is just that the failure of one or many banks does not threaten the entire financial system’s ability to function.”Klein notes that currently if no bank fails through the end September, it will have been nine months since the last bank failed, a “silent canary in a coal mine”.Says Klein, “This is not a sign of a financial crisis brewing, but it is also not a sign of success.” in Daily Dose, Government, News 2018-09-12 Seth Welborn Housing and the Financial Crisis: A Decade Later September 12, 2018 494 Views Share
Argentina: Northeastern orange, mandarin exports t … Argentine apple campaign off to a positive start … March 01 , 2019 ‘Frutas de Argentina’: Crisis-ridden fruit sector … “They consume a type of lime, similar to the Tahiti lime,” he said. However, he noted that younger consumers were more willing to try new fruits more common in Western countries.Vietnam already has a lower tariff rate for Argentine lemons and although the population is considerably smaller than India’s, Carbonell said lemon consumption was more established.Along with plans to ship lemons to those two markets this year, the Argentine lemon industry is also eager to consolidate its position in the U.S., Mexico and Brazil following the opening of those markets last year.“Our aim for this year is to go in with greater volumes, that’s what we hope,” he said. “Neither Mexico nor Brazil are countries that eat a lot of lemons, but it’s growing, especially in southern Brazil.”“Meanwhile, the U.S. is a country that has a very strong consumption habit and a production that has been declining for years, so we are confident that it is a market that is going to become very important.”Currently around 60% of Argentine lemons go to Europe, especially the Netherlands and Spain, with much of the rest going to the Far East, Canada, Russia and the Ukraine. With the Indian and Vietnamese markets set to open for Argentine lemons, the South American country is aiming to achieve long-term success in the two destinations which currently don’t consume much of the citrus fruit.Jose Carbonell, president of citrus growers’ association Federcitrus, told FreshFruitPortal.com that the phytosanitary protocols were still being finalized but he expected fruit would be shipped to the new markets during the 2019 campaign.In addition, Argentina is working to reduce the tariff rate going into India, which currently stands at 30%, Carbonell said.He did not believe the market would be very important for the Argentine lemon industry to begin with, but said there was good potential in the longer-term.“Just the fact that it has almost 1.3 billion inhabitants marks it a very attractive market for any food product,” he said. He added that it is a developing market for lemons, which are not at all common in India. You might also be interested in Argentine lemons: “Tough” second U.S. export seaso …
March 11 , 2019 From the pages of Produce Business UKDanish company Schur®Star Systems, together withSchur®Technology, is continuing to uncomplicate the packing process to offer fresh produce suppliers, distributors and retailers the ultimate in flexibility. In response to the growing demand for convenience, the firm has launched a number of new produce pouches to suit snackers and time-sensitive cooks, all of which can be filled by the versatile SchurStar Packaging Machine.PBUK speaks with UK Sales Manager Ian Weston to get the inside track.“We do find that many of our clients seek either convenience or extended shelf-life for their products, and this is apparent now more than ever, as trends move towards expeditious meals,” Weston tells PBUK. “Our concept really helps to develop these markets for them.”Weston says the ‘SchurStar Concept’, which consists of both the SchurStar Packaging Machine and a range of bespoke, pre-made SchurStar Bags, means SchurStar Systems and SchurTechnology offer the most flexible packaging solution available on the market today. Furthermore, the concept continues to evolve. Launched recently on the European market are new asparagus packs, along with snack packs for celery sticks and tomatoes. Weston says the snacking celery pouches are also proving popular in Australia, while the snacking tomatoes continue to be a hit in the Netherlands and Belgium.Across in the USA, SchurStar Systems has unveiled its SchurStar Zip-Pop bag, which the team showcased in the UK for the first time at last week’s Packaging Innovations 2019 trade show, held on 27-28 February.“We only received samples in the last couple of weeks in order to promote this bag in the UK – that’s how new it is,” exclaims Weston.SchurStar Zip-Pop is a microwaveable pouch that is currently being used for freshly prepared new potatoes by an American potato producer in the USA. The pouch has a zip seal with the potatoes packed in the bottom compartment, while a portion of a herbedbutter goes into the top. “The pouch is designed to swell to a certain size, allowing the potatoes to cook in the microwave, then at a set time the seal will burst, dropping the butter over the potatoes,” Weston explains. “It’s being used for three flavours: garlic rosemary, cajun style, and roasted red pepper.”SchurStar Systems has also released a two-compartment pouch called SchurStar Squeeze and Mix, again to help its customers answer the demand for convenience. The pouch gives the ability to pack a marinade side by side with either vegetables or meat.“The pouch has a burst-able seam in the middle, allowing the veg to be gas flushed to extend its shelf-life on one side, as the sauce sits separately on the other side,” Weston notes. “Gas flushing is something that marinade doesn’t respond well to!”Unique combined offerSchurStar Systems already offers a broad range of fresh fruit and vegetable packaging pouches with innovative shapes and functionalities that are tailored to customer needs and bespoke to the products they carry. Formats include: the Paper Laminate bag, Microwavable bag, StandUp bag, Fresh’n’GO bag, Spout Bag, Bowl bag (with a spoon or fork), Jar bag and Shaped bag and Net bag. “We supply pretty much anything the customer wants, to any specification and in almost any material,” points out Weston.On top of that, Weston says the combined solution of providing both the versatile packing machine and the accompanying diversity of packaging bags is what ultimately helps businesses to keep up with evolving market requirements. “Our biggest USP is that we offer one machine with multiple bag formats,” notes Weston. “All our bags run down the same line, with little or no tooling cost. That’s unique on the market.”Although Weston describes the machine as “very simple” in what it does, its ability to pack different formats of bags, some with multiple compartments, and even different shaped bags, comes down to the clever way it is designed and built, and the way the pouches are made. “The machine lends itself to anything,” he states, adding that the system is no wider than a pallet. “There are very few machines on the market that can accommodate so many different packaging formats in so many different sizes without extra investment or new tooling costs.”Answer to food waste Also, the versatility of the SchurStar Concept could help growers and suppliers to find new markets for any unsaleable whole produce. You might also be interested in “You could add a bag with a spout to the packing line, so a soft fruit producer, for example, could do smoothie mixes or a frozen pack with any damaged fruits but also use the same machine to pack their quality fruit,” suggests Weston. “This could translate into serious savings and a lighter impact on the environment.”Chance to diversifyEnabling customers to diversify their offering and find new routes to market is one of the major drivers of innovation currently at SchurStar Systems, which has been a family-owned company for more than 165 years.“I do think it would be good for more producers to look at diversification,” Weston comments. “We want to talk to processors and growers to see how we can empower them to consider different products. Our system may be able to help them to do something they don’t already do.”Flexible fillingAdded to that, the pouches can be manually filled, automatically filled or a mixture of both – depending on the specification of the machine.“The fact that the SchurStar Packaging Machine can hand fill, automatically fill or do a combination of both is what makes it truly unique,” states Weston, who says this versatility has benefitted many customers.“Last year, one of our customers who was packing mixed peppers for a major UK retailer needed flexibility,” he explains. “There was a shortage of orange peppers, so the red, green and yellow peppers were all filled automatically, and to ensure that one orange pepper went into each pouch they inserted that pepper by hand on the same line.” Reduced costs: labour, storage, deliveryWeston claims this automatic functionality means the SchurStar Concept could cut labour costs at a time when suppliers and packers are experiencing worker availability challenges due, in part, to Brexit.“This machine will absolutely help,” he states. “It helps to reduce labour input, and it improves efficiencies. I have one potential customer with 22 people packing on a line, producing 16 packs a minute. With our machine and an automatic filler they would only need two people, and they would produce 40 packs.”The machine can also make quick changeovers from bag to bag, and from design to design, Westonsays. “A simple bag change takes only three to five minutes,” he claims. “Our concept helps to reduce overall costs, whilst also offering a time-saving benefit.”The bags provided by SchurStar Systems also benefit from being smaller than alternatives such as bowls, pots or tubs. This means they both occupy less space and weigh less when either empty or filled on a pallet in a warehouse or in a truck, and when stacked on a supermarket shelf. Again, Weston says this offers customers a saving.Choice of materialMeanwhile, as plastic recycling advances at a pace and supermarkets head towards a circular economy for packaging, SchurStar Systems affirms to having solutions at the ready. “We offer a multitude of materials to embrace all of our clients’ needs,” Weston explains. “These include: recyclable and recycle-ready, along with traditional laminated pouches that offer the very best in barrier protection and shelf-life, plus they aid the reduction of food waste.” Whatever the request, Watts says SchurStar Systems will continue to work with its clients to help them to meet the latest requirements for ecologically-sound packaging.“Last year, a UK retailer said they were thinking of stopping using the pouch, and using a pot instead,” Weston explains. “So, I did a report to show how many pots they’d need, and how many pallets and trucks that would mean in relation to the transportation and storage of pots verses pouches.“In the end, the plastic pouch turned out to be the most ecological packaging because it wouldn’t be as detrimental to the environment. The fuel usage and CO2 emissions are lower when compared to the transportation required for pots.” Visit SchurStar Systems at The London Produce Show and Conference 2019 on Stand 313.The team will be showcasing their Zip-Pop, Squeeze and Mix and Shaped bags, alongside a selection of pouches for both whole fruit and veg, as well as fresh-cut produce for snacking and convenience cooking.
diveFrench PolynesiaPaul Gauguin Cruises The award-winning m/s Paul Gauguin is the only luxury small ship in the French Polynesia region to offer internationally recognised diver certification on board.The onboard dive teams offer Discover SCUBA diving classes and refresher courses, as well as credit towards PADI (Professional Association of Diving Instructors) certification and there are plenty of chances on every cruise to view parrotfish, clownfish, giant clams, sea turtles, sharks, octopuses, and many other underwater treasures – for first time snorkellers and experienced divers.For a completely immersive dive and snorkel experience, The Gauguin offers a 14 night cruise across the Marquesas, Tuamotus and Society Islands, with 2018 departures on 14 April, 11 August, and 20 October.Beginning in the Tuamotus Islands, Rangiroa and Fakarava are local favourites for spotting manta rays from September to October. The area is also a hotspot for dolphins, turtles, and barracuda among the canyon passes and UNESCO-protected Fakarava reef.Continuing the voyage, the Marquesas Islands are among the best diving spots in the world. The Gauguin offers travellers their only opportunity to explore the underwater world of the Marquesas, as there are no dive centres in these remote but pristine islands.*Here, the Nuku Hiva and Tahuata islands offer unparalleled diving experiences, swimming alongside spectacular marine life, such as moray eels, grey sharks, and giant trevally.In the Society Islands, guests will experience the world renowned waters of Bora Bora, where divers can view lemon sharks and manta rays up close, or take a break and enjoy the stunning views of Mount Otemanu.Fares start from USD$6,320** per person including tax, based on double occupancy. The all-inclusive fare covers all shipboard meals; 24 hour room service; complimentary beverages, including select wines & spirits, bottled water & soft-drinks; all gratuities for room stewards and dining staff; day at our private islet, Motu Mahana; access to our private beach in Bora Bora; retractable watersports marina featuring complimentary windsurfing and kayaking.*** *For safety reasons, diving is available in the Marquesas for advanced Open-Water Certified divers only, as dives are 60 feet minimum.**Fare quoted is for a category F porthole stateroom. Pricing subject to change and availability.***Watersports are subject to weather conditions and local restrictions.
Crooked CompassEvolution Travel Collective Crooked Compass founder, Lisa Pagotto, says the newly announced partnership for her company and Evolution Travel Collective (ETC) will afford Crooked Compass the “… unique opportunity to launch a Crooked Compass sales team into the market for the very first time.” All reservations enquiries will continue to be directed back to an expert within the Crooked Compass reservation team, with the ETC team to provide on the ground training and support to travel agents across Australia and New Zealand from the start of 2019.“Like us, Crooked Compass wants to challenge the status quo and remain committed to the unique,” says ETC’s CEO and Founder, Pete Rawley. “You only have to look at the way destinations are explored and the development of the Crooked Compass itineraries to see Lisa has developed something unmatched in this space.“Lisa and her team have a true passion for unique travel experiences and a commitment to responsible and ethical tourism which fits perfectly with what we, at ETC, are all about.”IMAGE:Pete Rawley with Lisa Pagotto