vice president – Beacon at Bangsar http://beaconatbangsar.com/ Mon, 14 Mar 2022 00:41:24 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9.3 https://beaconatbangsar.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/cropped-icon-32x32.png vice president – Beacon at Bangsar http://beaconatbangsar.com/ 32 32 NCAA March Madness prepares for the return to normal https://beaconatbangsar.com/ncaa-march-madness-prepares-for-the-return-to-normal/ Sun, 13 Mar 2022 11:21:03 +0000 https://beaconatbangsar.com/ncaa-march-madness-prepares-for-the-return-to-normal/

A general view of the March Madness logo prior to the game between the Syracuse Orange and the Houston Cougars in the Sweet Sixteen of the 2021 NCAA Tournament at Hinkle Fieldhouse.

Aaron Doster | USA TODAY Sports | Reuters

After two tough and pandemic-disrupted years, the March madness we all know so well returns.

The 2022 Men’s NCAA Tournament begins Thursday on CBS Sports and Turner Sports. Disney properties ABC and ESPN will air the women’s NCAA tournament starting on Friday.

Paramount Global and WarnerMedia executives spoke on Tuesday to promote March Madness, which promises to pour nearly $1 billion in ad revenue into the men’s side.

“The country is ready for the [NCAA] tournament,” CBS Sports President Sean McManus said.

“We’re back to normal,” added Turner Sports President Lenny Daniels. “And we want to take that and go further.”

The networks lost the 2020 NCAA tournament due to Covid. The 2021 event took place in a bubble and saw the Baylor Bears claim their first NCAA men’s basketball championship.

But this year’s tournament will feature the return of legendary programs Duke and Kentucky — both missed last year’s tournament — and legendary coach Mike Krzyzewski chasing his last title with the Blue Devils.

Can the men’s tournament attract 20 million viewers?

The production of this year’s NCAA tournament isn’t changing too much. Games will once again feature a virtual on-field timer. There will be in-game coaching interviews and Final Four matches will see rail and aerial cameras integrated into the broadcasts.

But will there be more viewers than last year?

The 2021 NCAA Championship game between undefeated Gonzaga and Baylor averaged 16.9 million viewers for CBS Sports, a 14% drop from the 2019 game. It was also the least-watched championship aired on CBS since the network began airing the games in 1982 .

The 2021 Men’s Final Four matches averaged 14.9 million viewers.

The NCAA Men’s Tournament returns to Turner Sports this year for the first time since 2018, when Villanova defeated the University of Michigan. This title match drew around 16.5 million viewers.

CBS and Turner have been running the Final Four since 2016. The last time the NCAA Men’s Championship game topped 20 million was in 2017 when the University of North Carolina took on Gonzaga. This game attracted about 22 million viewers.

On Tuesday’s call, McManus reportedly wouldn’t predict viewership around the 2022 tournament, but added “good games, good storylines, and as we know, when a Cinderella shows up, it’s good for ratings.

He also noted that bigger programs returning to the tournament should help the viewership. In addition, the measurement company Nielsen will combine Outside the house hearing with the final measures. Out-of-home TVs are counted in places like airports, restaurants, and sports bars. Nielsen previously only provided in-home measurements for its linear television reporting.

McManus said Nielsen’s decision to combine the metrics is “good for the network and good for our sponsors, and it really provides an accurate count of how many people are consuming our content.”

On the women’s side, Disney is hoping to top last year’s title match between Arizona and Stanford. The pageant averaged 4 million viewers and has been the most-watched women’s pageant since 2014.

The 2021 women’s semifinals with Stanford and South Carolina averaged 1.6 million viewers, while the University of Connecticut’s loss to Arizona drew 2.6 million viewers, up by 24% compared to the second semi-final of 2019. Sweet 16 games broadcast on ABC, ESPN and ESPN2 averaged 918,000 viewers, an increase of 67% compared to 2019.

A detailed view of the March Madness logo on center court as Gonzaga Bulldogs and Norfolk State Spartans players run during the second half of the first round of the 2021 NCAA Tournament at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

Kirby Lee | USA TODAY Sports | Reuters

March Madness commercials are sold out

Advertising inventory around the 2022 men’s tournament has run out, said John Bogusz, executive vice president of CBS Network’s sales division. Thirty-second spots for the tournament range from hundreds of thousands of dollars in earlier rounds to over $2 million for the NCAA title game.

Bogusz said the automotive, insurance and fast food categories are “very active and very strong this year.” Movie studios are also returning to rotating ads, while travel and tech companies will also promote around games.

TV Ad Measurement Company I spot ad spend estimates around the 2021 men’s basketball tournament were around $1.05 billion, a 21.4% increase from the 2019 tournament. The company told CNBC that AT&T was the biggest spender with $74.7 million on ads around the 2021 tournament. Capital One spent $48.7 million on ads, Geico ($46.7 million), Buick ($39.5 million dollars) and Progressive ($37.7 million).

Briefed on the estimates and asked if ad spend around the 2022 men’s tournament would top $1 billion, Bogusz didn’t reveal details but added that the projection was “within range.”

“It’s pretty impressive,” Turner Sports chief revenue officer Jon Diament said, referring to ad spend. Diament noted the time the networks have to deliver the games – “three weeks of activity…it’s pretty remarkable that we can gobble up that money in just three weeks of flying.”

Last September, the NCAA declared the 2022 NCAA Women’s Tournament to be included in the March Madness brand. The decision has come after mounting pressure and criticism on the organization’s initial stance on using the brand only for the men’s tournament.

EPSN said he also sold his inventory for the women’s tournament. Twenty-two advertisers, including Apple, General Motors, Target and T-Mobile, will run ads during the games.

The sports program advertising market remains a top purchase for advertisers. The National Football League Super Bowl remains the most expensive inventory. CNBC’s parent company, NBCUniversal, billed about $6.5 million for Super Bowl 56 ads, and some brands paid a record $7 million for a 30-second ad.

Yet the high prices of sports programs do not deter companies. Bogusz said “advertisers in all demo groups are allocating extra dollars” to buy inventory.

“It offers the best drama in all of television, and for many advertisers, it’s still the most engaging programming you can have,” McManus said. “And that includes the NCAA Tournament.”

When asked if the NCAA Men’s Tournament will increase to $3 million per 30 seconds when CBS returns to the event in 2023, Bogusz replied, “I wouldn’t say it would be that high. But we plan to increase prices as we continue to move forward.

Demonstrators protest against the war in Ukraine in front of the Brandenburg Gate.

Kay Nietfeld/photo alliance via Getty Images

War contingency plans

As the networks welcome a return to normalcy for March Madness, contingency plans are in place to update major news at the moment – Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

“There are bigger things going on in the world right now than the NCAA Tournament,” McManus said. “Nobody will claim that the action on the ground is as important as the life and death action that is taking place in Ukraine,” he added.

McManus referenced the invasion of Iraq in March 2003 to explain how the network would approach coverage. He said the networks would update the war in Ukraine as needed and “handle it in the best possible way”.

“We have two of the best production companies and two of the best news agencies,” Daniels added, referring to CBS News and CNN. “I think we will make the right decisions.”

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TVS Raider wins Indian Motorcycle of the Year 2022 award https://beaconatbangsar.com/tvs-raider-wins-indian-motorcycle-of-the-year-2022-award/ Sat, 12 Mar 2022 14:53:10 +0000 https://beaconatbangsar.com/tvs-raider-wins-indian-motorcycle-of-the-year-2022-award/

Chennai-based motorcycle manufacturer TVS’ Raider 125 has won the highly acclaimed Indian Motorcycle of the Year 2022 award. The IMOTY award is the country’s most revered award any motorcycle can be awarded and this year the 125cc from TVS was crowned the winner. Equivalent to the entertainment world’s Oscar or Grammy, this award is India’s most credible and coveted two-wheeled award. Some of the other contenders for this year’s IMOTY were the Royal Enfield Classic 350, Honda CB200X, Yamaha FZ-X, Bajaj Pulsar F250 and Bajaj Pulsar N250.

This award is based on industry experts’ analysis of the nation’s best new motorcycles. The highly experienced judging panel is tasked with picking a single clear winner, and the voting process has been designed to be completely fair and tamper-proof. Price, fuel economy, style, comfort, safety, performance, practicality, technical innovation, value for money and suitability for Indian driving conditions are all important to consider when selecting a winner.

The 2022 IMOTY judging panel included 14 top industry experts like Rahul Ghosh and Dipayan Dutta from Auto Today, Shivank Bhatt from AutoX, Aspi Bhathena and Sarmad Kadiri from BIKE India And CAR India, Sirish Chandran and Aatish Mishra from Evo India, Kartik Ware and Janak Sorap from Motoring World, Rohit Paradkar and Bertrand D’souza from Overdrive, Vikrant Singh from CarWale, BikeWale And CarTrade with Kranti Sambhav from Times Drive and finally Abhay Verma from TURBOCHARGED.

The process of selecting the bikes in the running is done with a set of a few basic rules. The qualifying criteria includes that all bikes eligible for these honors be new. Existing bikes with minor cosmetic modifications or minor mechanical modifications, such as power or transmission changes, are not eligible for this award. The rules also define that no matter where the bikes come from, they must be manufactured or assembled in India and available for purchase in showrooms by November 30 of the previous year. The motorcycles should have been homologated for Indian type certification, however, those imported via CBU are not.

Meanwhile, the winner selection process takes place with a voting system where each member of the jury receives a maximum of 25 points. A motorcycle can receive a maximum of ten points from each member of the Jury. At least 5 of the competing bikes must receive points from each member of the Jury. The IMOTY is the most respectable automotive award due to its extremely fair and transparent procedure.

On behalf of the 2022 IMOTY Jury, Dr. Raghupati Singhania, President and Managing Director of JK Tire & Industries Limited, presented the winner’s trophy to Aniruddha Haldar, Senior Vice President – Marketing, TVS Motor Company for the Raider 125. And all on accepting the award Aniruddha Haldar said, “IMOTY has always been the automotive industry’s most coveted award with sheer expertise that backs up the standard of the jury. The TVS Raider receiving congratulations from the esteemed jury was truly heartening with a deep sense of pride as we accept it on behalf of the entire TVS Motors team and all consumers who have shown their love for TVS Raider.

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A Ukrainian family has finally been allowed to enter the United States after being arrested earlier at the US-Mexico border https://beaconatbangsar.com/a-ukrainian-family-has-finally-been-allowed-to-enter-the-united-states-after-being-arrested-earlier-at-the-us-mexico-border/ Fri, 11 Mar 2022 04:59:00 +0000 https://beaconatbangsar.com/a-ukrainian-family-has-finally-been-allowed-to-enter-the-united-states-after-being-arrested-earlier-at-the-us-mexico-border/
U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas-Greenfield speaks to the press March 2 in New York City. (John Lamparski/NurPhoto/AP)

US Ambassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas-Greenfield said on Thursday that Russia’s actions against the Ukrainian people are “war crimes”.

“They constitute war crimes; these are attacks on civilians that cannot be justified by any – in any way,” Linda Thomas-Greenfiel said in an interview with BBC Newshour.

State Department spokesman Ned Price refrained from declaring Russia’s actions against Ukrainian civilians “war crimes” during a Thursday briefing, reiterating instead that the United States ” support efforts to document and investigate reports of potential war crimes in Ukraine.”

“The fact is, we’ve seen very credible reports of deliberate attacks on civilians, which under the Geneva Conventions would constitute a war crime,” he told a Department of Defense briefing. state on Thursday, citing attacks on Mariupol hospital and strikes. on schools, hospitals, buses, cars and ambulances.

“We are appalled by the brutal tactics that the Russian Federation, the Kremlin, has employed in pursuing this war of choice,” Price said.

Thomas-Greenfield said the question of whether Russia is guilty of war crimes is one “we are asked every day, and we are working with other members of the international community to document the crimes that Russia committed against the Ukrainian people. ”

In the BBC interview, Thomas-Greenfield said she couldn’t predict how war crimes would be prosecuted, but “what’s important is that we gather the evidence and have the evidence ready and ready.” available for use”.

The ambassador also indicated that the United States supports the investigation of the International Criminal Court (ICC) into Russia’s actions in Ukraine, although the United States is not a member of the ICC and criticizes others ICC investigations.

“We have always been in favor of the criminal court taking action when action is needed,” she said.

What other US officials are saying: Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Sunday that the United States was considering “credible reports of deliberate attacks on civilians that would constitute a war crime,” but did not say the United States had assessed that Moscow was guilty of war crimes.

“What we’re doing right now is documenting all of this, putting it together, reviewing it and making sure that as people and the appropriate organizations and institutions investigate whether war crimes have been or are being committed, we can support whatever they’re doing,” Blinken said on CNN’s State of the Union. “So right now we’re looking at those reports. They’re very credible And we document everything.

Meanwhile, US Vice President Kamala Harris has stopped calling Russia’s actions in Ukraine “war crimes” as civilians continue to be killed in the conflict.

Speaking alongside Polish President Andrzej Duda in Warsaw on Thursday, Harris said: “We are also very clear that any intentional attack on innocent civilians is a violation.”

She added: “The UN has a process in place whereby there will be review and investigations and we will of course participate where necessary and appropriate.”

Footage from Ukraine clearly showed atrocities taking place, Harris said, even before an investigation determined what to call them.

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Trade and Development Bank — Moody’s changes outlook on TDB to stable from negative; affirms Baa3 ratings https://beaconatbangsar.com/trade-and-development-bank-moodys-changes-outlook-on-tdb-to-stable-from-negative-affirms-baa3-ratings/ Fri, 18 Feb 2022 21:39:06 +0000 https://beaconatbangsar.com/trade-and-development-bank-moodys-changes-outlook-on-tdb-to-stable-from-negative-affirms-baa3-ratings/

Rating Action: Moody’s changes outlook on TDB to stable from negative; affirms Baa3 ratingsGlobal Credit Research – 18 Feb 2022London, 18 February 2022 — Moody’s Investors Service (“Moody’s”) has today changed the outlook on Trade and Development Bank (TDB) to stable from negative and affirmed the Baa3 long-term issuer and senior unsecured debt ratings and the (P)Baa3 senior unsecured MTN programme rating.The change in outlook to stable takes into account TDB’s improved liquidity position and increasingly diversified funding sources. It also reflects the resilience of TDB’s capital position despite a challenging operating environment aggravated by the pandemic.Moody’s affirmation of the Baa3 ratings reflects TDB’s moderate capital adequacy and expectations that the bank’s leverage metrics will remain broadly stable in the medium term. The bank has a solid track record of profitability and its shareholder base has expanded continuously. The affirmation also reflects TDB’s credit risk mitigation instruments that offer a degree of protection to adverse scenarios impacting its balance sheet from the financial stress experienced by some of its borrowers. While TDB’s shareholders’ ability to support is constrained by their own predominantly weak credit profile, TDB benefits from a mid-term credit risk mitigation instrument that improves the bank’s overall creditworthiness by effectively increasing the likelihood of timely equity injection in the event of a call on additional capital by the bank.RATINGS RATIONALERATIONALE FOR CHANGING THE OUTLOOK TO STABLETDB’S LIQUIDITY POSITION HAS STRENGTHENED, SUPPORTED BY THE BUILD-UP OF LARGE BUFFERSThe first driver for stabilizing the outlook is TDB’s improved liquidity profile supported by large buffers and increasingly diversified funding sources. TDB’s total liquid assets at the end of 2021 (according to unaudited financials) consisted of cash deposits amounting to about $1.4 billion held with entities rated at or above Baa3. The quality of liquid assets has also improved, with the share of liquid assets rated A2 or higher at $1.2 billion as of December 2021 from $0.9 billion as of December 2020.Moody’s considers a stress scenario in which the Multilateral Development Bank (MDB) loses market access, and compares the stock of high-quality liquid assets to estimated net cash outflows over the coming 18 months. Based on TDB’s liquid asset position and estimated net outflows at the end of 2021, in such a scenario its liquid asset coverage would exceed 170% at end-2021, up from 79% at end-2020, and well above the median of Baa-rated peers which stood around 55% at end-2020. While some of this liquidity improvement is temporary due to lower disbursements in the aftermath of the coronavirus shock, Moody’s expects the liquidity buffers to remain adequate and stronger than pre-pandemic.Moreover, liquidity remains supported by access to committed facilities from development institutions. Unutilized long-term credit lines exceeded $700 million as of December 2021. TDB’s access to funding has proved resilient in the past two years. Since the outbreak of the pandemic, it has secured new facilities from a broadening pool of bilateral and multilateral development institutions, including concessional loan facilities for on-lending as well as guarantees on commercial loans, helping TDB to contain the cost of funding despite more challenging market conditions in the early months of 2020. In 2021 TDB issued a $650 million seven-year eurobond at a reduced cost compared to early 2020.RESILIENT CAPITAL ADEQUACY AMID CHALLENGING OPERATING ENVIRONMENTMoody’s decision to change the outlook from negative to stable is also driven by the demonstrated resilience of TDB’s capital position, reflecting stable leverage and asset performance, the latter despite deteriorating credit conditions in several of its countries of operations.TDB’s leverage ratio has remained broadly stable at 4.2X as of June 2021 (per published financial accounts), compared to 4.1X in 2020 and 4.2X in 2019. This was mainly the result of increasing usable equity although loan growth moderated compared to previous years. TDB is among the MDBs with consistent and strong profitability, with return on assets and return on equity estimated at above 2% and 10% in 2021, respectively. Paid-in capital also increased by an estimated 4% last year, albeit at a slower pace compared to 2020. Moody’s expects that the bank’s equity will continue to expand thanks to its current capital mobilization initiative. In late 2020, shareholders approved a $1.5 billion capital increase, which comprises $1 billion allocated to new Class C shares aimed at new types of investors, in particular global impact investors.In a similar vein, TDB’s asset performance has remained broadly stable over the past two years, despite the challenging operating environment in Eastern and Southern Africa. Non-performing loans (NPLs) stabilized at 2.9% of gross loans as of end-2021 in line with June 2021 and December 2020, while the share of loans to selected borrowers whose terms have been modified to provide temporary pandemic-related relief declined to about 2% of total loans as of end-2021 from about 4% as of end-2020.Portfolio concentration has also declined, with the top 10 exposures accounting for an estimated 62% of the total at end-2021, down from about 70% in 2019 and 2020.RATIONALE FOR AFFIRMING THE Baa3 RATINGSMoody’s affirmation of TDB’s ratings at Baa3 is underpinned by the expectations that TDB’s capital adequacy will remain broadly stable at current level, as growth in equity – supported by continued relatively strong profitability and planned capital increase – will allow to pursue its managed growth strategy tied by the maintenance of capital adequacy and asset quality metrics.Moody’s expects pressures on asset performance to persist over the next two years, although NPLs are expected to remain at a manageable level. Moody’s notes that the credit quality of TDB’s borrowers has further weakened from an already low position over the past year and exposure to countries rated in the Caa rating category or lower account for about 60% of total loans. That said, TDB extensively uses collateral and insurance policies to limit the risks stemming from the very weak borrower credit quality of large exposures and also benefits from a risk participation program to share risks with a number of institutions. In 2021, the bank had more than $700 million in both funded and non-funded risk participation agreements with highly rated institutions. Nevertheless, exposure to Zambia’s Ministry of Finance in particular accounts for 7% of TDB’s total loan portfolio as of December 2021 and the rating agency expects that TDB will be involved in the negotiations for the restructuring of Zambia’s (Ca stable) debt under the Common Framework.Moody’s expects that the bank will continue to proactively implement measures aimed at mitigating the risks inherent to its difficult operating environment, protecting its asset performance, through further portfolio diversification, use of credit enhancements such as insurance and risk participation agreements, and by implementing initiatives to expand its shareholder base.Moody’s assessment of strength of member support remains constrained by the low credit quality of most of the bank’s shareholders with an average weighted shareholder rating at B3 and relatively weak contractual support based on the ratio of callable capital to total debt of 28%. At the same time, the mid-term credit risk mitigation instrument introduced in 2017 continues to support its creditworthiness by effectively increasing the likelihood of timely equity injection in the event of a call on additional capital by the bank.ENVIRONMENTAL, SOCIAL AND GOVERNANCE CONSIDERATIONSTDB’s credit impact score is moderately negative (CIS-3), reflecting a negative but limited impact on the current rating from ESG risks, given its adequate governance profile supported by a strengthening risk management framework, with greater potential for future negative impact over time in light of moderate exposure to environmental risks, and low exposure to social risks.TDB’s environmental issuer profile score is moderately negative (E-3), reflecting moderate exposure to physical climate risks and moderate risks arising from carbon transition due to exposure to the oil and gas sector. The latter may over time affect the demand for certain financial products. While exposure to physical climate risk is relatively high for many of TDB’s borrowers, we expect the impact on TDB’s asset quality to remain contained.TDB’s social issuer profile score is neutral to low (S-2), reflecting good relations with member countries, that have supported its increasing relevance in the region, an inclusive and diverse workforce, and emphasis in the bank’s strategy on responsible production and societal trends.TDB’s governance issuer profile score is neutral-to-low (G-2), reflecting sound governance principles and a risk management framework that has progressively strengthened in recent years through staff increases in key risk management functions and by adopting tools to measure risks more accurately.FACTORS THAT COULD LEAD TO AN UPGRADE OR DOWNGRADE OF THE RATINGSUpward rating pressure would likely arise from prospects of a significant strengthening of the capital base, accompanied by further diversification of the lending portfolio that considerably reduces credit risk.Moody’s would likely downgrade the ratings due to a material weakening of its assessment of capital adequacy, due for example to significant deterioration of asset performance or borrowers’ credit quality, and failure of the risk mitigants to perform as expected. Furthermore, a marked erosion of liquidity buffers and/or increased liquidity pressures which impact the bank’s access to funding sources would also likely be credit negative. Any development that leads to an early termination of the mid-term credit risk mitigation instrument for callable capital, or a failure to perform as expected when triggered, would also likely result in a downgrade.The principal methodology used in these ratings was Multilateral Development Banks and Other Supranational Entities Methodology published in October 2020 and available at https://www.moodys.com/researchdocumentcontentpage.aspx?docid=PBC_1232238. Alternatively, please see the Rating Methodologies page on www.moodys.com for a copy of this methodology.REGULATORY DISCLOSURESFor further specification of Moody’s key rating assumptions and sensitivity analysis, see the sections Methodology Assumptions and Sensitivity to Assumptions in the disclosure form. Moody’s Rating Symbols and Definitions can be found at: https://www.moodys.com/researchdocumentcontentpage.aspx?docid=PBC_79004.For ratings issued on a program, series, category/class of debt or security this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to each rating of a subsequently issued bond or note of the same series, category/class of debt, security or pursuant to a program for which the ratings are derived exclusively from existing ratings in accordance with Moody’s rating practices. For ratings issued on a support provider, this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to the credit rating action on the support provider and in relation to each particular credit rating action for securities that derive their credit ratings from the support provider’s credit rating. For provisional ratings, this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to the provisional rating assigned, and in relation to a definitive rating that may be assigned subsequent to the final issuance of the debt, in each case where the transaction structure and terms have not changed prior to the assignment of the definitive rating in a manner that would have affected the rating. For further information please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page for the respective issuer on www.moodys.com.For any affected securities or rated entities receiving direct credit support from the primary entity(ies) of this credit rating action, and whose ratings may change as a result of this credit rating action, the associated regulatory disclosures will be those of the guarantor entity. Exceptions to this approach exist for the following disclosures, if applicable to jurisdiction: Ancillary Services, Disclosure to rated entity, Disclosure from rated entity.The ratings have been disclosed to the rated entity or its designated agent(s) and issued with no amendment resulting from that disclosure.These ratings are solicited. Please refer to Moody’s Policy for Designating and Assigning Unsolicited Credit Ratings available on its website www.moodys.com.Regulatory disclosures contained in this press release apply to the credit rating and, if applicable, the related rating outlook or rating review.Moody’s general principles for assessing environmental, social and governance (ESG) risks in our credit analysis can be found at http://www.moodys.com/researchdocumentcontentpage.aspx?docid=PBC_1288235.The Global Scale Credit Rating on this Credit Rating Announcement was issued by one of Moody’s affiliates outside the EU and is endorsed by Moody’s Deutschland GmbH, An der Welle 5, Frankfurt am Main 60322, Germany, in accordance with Art.4 paragraph 3 of the Regulation (EC) No 1060/2009 on Credit Rating Agencies. Further information on the EU endorsement status and on the Moody’s office that issued the credit rating is available on www.moodys.com.Please see www.moodys.com for any updates on changes to the lead rating analyst and to the Moody’s legal entity that has issued the rating.Please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page on www.moodys.com for additional regulatory disclosures for each credit rating. Daniela Re Fraschini Vice President – Senior Analyst Sovereign Risk Group Moody’s Investors Service Ltd. One Canada Square Canary Wharf London E14 5FA United Kingdom JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456 Client Service: 44 20 7772 5454 Marie Diron MD – Sovereign Risk Sovereign Risk Group JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456 Client Service: 44 20 7772 5454 Releasing Office: Moody’s Investors Service Ltd. 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Romance scams hit a record $547 million https://beaconatbangsar.com/romance-scams-hit-a-record-547-million/ Fri, 18 Feb 2022 19:18:00 +0000 https://beaconatbangsar.com/romance-scams-hit-a-record-547-million/

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) – Millions of people use online dating apps or social media platforms to meet someone. Online dating can be a great way to find lasting love, but it also comes with risks. But instead of finding a romantic relationship, many find a scammer trying to trick them into sending money and stealing their information.

A record $547 million was reported lost to these scams in 2021. There were approximately 56,000 reports filed last year and dollar losses have been increasing among victims of all age brackets.

Scammers use social engineering to quickly gain your trust.

WAFF spoke with Ashish Baria, Senior Assistant Vice President for Information Security at Redstone Federal Credit Union. He says these are red flags to watch out for:

  • work at sea: They often say that they are from the United States and that they are currently working in another country. They use excuses such as: working on an oil rig, working as a doctor in an international organization or being deployed on a military mission.
  • Communicate offline: They may ask you to quickly leave the dating site and communicate with them directly via chat or messaging platforms.
  • Will ask for money: If your online interest is asking for money, back off and walk away. They will use excuses such as: paying for an emergency medical procedure, needing to fix a car, paying customs fees, paying for a visa or travel documents, or even a plane ticket to visit you.
  • Payment method: The scammer will usually ask you to pay by bank transfer, reloadable gift cards or Amazon and iTunes gift cards. They use these methods because they are difficult to trace. Sometimes they may ask you for your banking information to deposit money, so they can use your account to perform other scams.
  • Meet in person: They will make plans to meet in person, but will always come up with a last minute excuse and cancel the meeting.

Action items: (things to do if you think this is happening to you)

  • Immediately stop communicating with the person and talk to someone you trust.
  • Do some research online, find the person and see if that name or job has ever been used in another scam, use Google’s “image search” to scan the person’s photo.
  • Contact your financial institution immediately if you think you have paid a scammer.
  • If it’s too late for that and you’ve already been the victim of a romance scam, file a complaint with the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center. You can file a report at: https://www.ic3.gov/
  • You should also contact your financial institution immediately.

For more ways to save, be sure to tune in at noon every Friday for the “Financial Friday” segment of WAFF 48.

Copyright 2022 WAFF. All rights reserved.

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$600,000 to replace a Stamford playground? Finance council members concerned about project costs https://beaconatbangsar.com/600000-to-replace-a-stamford-playground-finance-council-members-concerned-about-project-costs/ Sat, 12 Feb 2022 19:38:39 +0000 https://beaconatbangsar.com/600000-to-replace-a-stamford-playground-finance-council-members-concerned-about-project-costs/ STAMFORD — The Finance Council looked into the costs of maintaining and upgrading the city’s playgrounds on Thursday after learning that a single project was expected to cost more than $600,000.

There are 20 playgrounds in Stamford’s public parks. Among them is a playground at Courtland Park on the east side that the city has been planning to replace for years.

Equipment on the playground has broken and been removed over time, senior parks planner Erin McKenna told the finance council, and the playground is not accessible to people with disabilities. The city’s plans for the park include the installation of new play equipment as well as a poured-in-place rubber surface, replacing engineered wood fiber.

Mary Lou Rinaldi, vice president of the council, argued that there must be a way to revamp playgrounds at a lower cost.

“Not every park needs to have Mercedes-level equipment,” the longtime Democratic board member said. “Why can’t it be a Chevy or a Ford?” We could do a lot more.

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Zimbabwe: More taxes collected to fund development https://beaconatbangsar.com/zimbabwe-more-taxes-collected-to-fund-development/ Mon, 31 Jan 2022 11:57:00 +0000 https://beaconatbangsar.com/zimbabwe-more-taxes-collected-to-fund-development/

A total of $469.21 billion was collected in taxes and duties last year against a target of $387.4 billion, ensuring the government has the money to accelerate development.

Gross inflows for the fourth quarter were $161.08 billion against a target of $108.17 billion, 48.91% above target, reports Zimra Vice President Ms. Josephine Matambo, in her latest earnings report for the fourth quarter, and therefore for the whole year, published yesterday.

“2021 ended on a high note in terms of revenue collection, as Zimra exceeded revenue targets despite a number of challenges faced by the revenue authority and the nation as a whole. greatest adversity has been the continuing Covid-19 pandemic which has affected business operations and resulted in the deaths of fellow citizens and some Zimbabwe Revenue Authority staff,” Ms Matambo said.

“The authority collected net revenues of $469.21 billion against a target of $387.4 billion for the year ending December 31, 2021 and that translated to 21.12% above goal,” she said.

Zimra collects excise duty, value added tax, customs duty, income tax, corporate tax and intermediate funds transfer tax and all of them earned more in the fourth quarter in terms of nominal compared to the same period in 2020.

“This is largely attributable to the inflationary pressures the country has experienced for most of 2021.”

The sums declared corresponded to what was actually paid into Zimra’s bank accounts. Late payments and what people are trying to avoid are not included.

Excise duty was a major contributor to revenue in the fourth quarter after accounting for 12.4% of total revenue, while VAT on local sales constituted 14.42%, mainly due to the blitz conducted by Zimra across all media platforms.

Regarding customs duties and VAT on imports, the import tax base increased by 74.37%, from $65.08 billion in the fourth quarter of 2020 to $113.47 billion in fourth quarter of last year.

IMTT contributed 10.48% to quarterly revenue.

“The non-availability of adequate liquidity to meet the transaction needs of businesses and individuals has led to increased demand for electronic transactions, which has boosted IMTT collections,” Ms. Matambo said.

She also said that measures to improve the ease of doing business such as the modernization of the Beitbridge border post, which is the country’s largest and busiest port of entry, the application of the pre-clearance and the imposition of penalties for non-compliance and deployment. additional staff during peak hours, helped Zimra increase its revenue.