Clyde is a business graduate interested in writing about latest news in politics and business. He enjoys writing and is about to publish his first book. He’s a pet lover and likes to spend time with family. When the time allows he likes to go fishing waiting for the muse to come.
With the economy on the slow road to recovery after the 2008 collapse, you may be thinking that it is the right time for a career change. Whether looking for a change of scenery, or a leg up, you will find yourself in the unenviable task of putting yourself out there. However, too often people begin their job searches with a lack of preparation. Going into the job market without taking the proper steps beforehand, can decrease the chance of you landing the job you always wanted. Let’s take a look at some simple things you can do to make yourself more ready than ever to find a new job.
Research Potential Employers
When you have had the itch to leave your job for longer than you can even remember, it’s easy to jump ship at the first opportunity. With the economy continuing to add jobs, there are more options than ever. Don’t make this mistake. It might seem like the first job that pops up is the one you have always been waiting for, but it’s likely not. The desire to immediately jump ship is a result of wanting to be rid of your old job, not excitement to work at the new one. Switching jobs frequently can lead to a pattern of working for a small amount of time, only to then switch to a new job, and so on. Not only does this mean you will be constantly retraining and wasting time, but it looks bad on your resume too.
A better solution is to be patient and wait until you the right opportunity opens up. Part of this is knowing what your career goals are. Obviously, if you aspire to be a restaurant manager, switching from your fry cook position to a retail advisor makes zero sense. Ideally, you want every job switch you make to be done with a solid reason as to why your new job will aid your career. Researching the companies that you are considering applying to will help you make those decisions. There are plenty of resources available that can give you detailed information about certain company’s employment policies, pay scale, culture and more. Researching the companies you are thinking of applying to will save you time, and send you on the right path for your career.
Perfect Your Resume
More often than not, your resume will be the first thing any prospective employer will see from you. It can’t be overstated how helpful taking the time to update, rework, and improve your resume can be. Again, it is the first thing an employer is going to look at. You don’t want it to be a flimsy, wrinkled piece of paper you haven’t changed since college.
Sitting down and updating your resume will give you the chance to highlight any strengths you have in your field, as well as cover any weaknesses. Didn’t finish school? Focus on your employment history. Got fired at a previous job for eating too many jelly doughnuts? Talk about your food addiction rehab and how you have positively changed your life and relationship with food since. You don’t have to go it alone either. There are plenty of resources available to help you fine-tune your resume into a veritable work of art. Both online and offline professional resume helpers can give you sound advice on your resume, such as what areas to highlight, or how to format your resume. You can even find great cover letter examples online.
Have A Backup
Sometimes finding the job you want takes a long time. In fact, it can take months of applying, researching, and interviewing before you land a permanent gig. So before you start, it is wise to have a backup plan ready. A backup plan can take a few different forms. One option is to continue to work at the same job you already have. This is the route most people choose, whether it is out of necessity or convenience. On the plus side, it looks good to employers when you are still working while applying, and you keep a steady income. However, one negative aspect is that keeping your old job leaves you less time and energy to search for a different job.
Another option is to save up enough money to able to take time off and dedicate yourself to a job search. While not feasible for everyone, this is the best option if you really want to spend the time searching out the perfect job for yourself. You will have ample free time to research, apply, and prepare for your next job. One possible pitfall though is you get stuck without a job and run out of money, in which case you are back to square one.
Searching for a job is an exciting time. Just remember to plan out your approach ahead of time, so you are not giving yourself unnecessary headaches, looking for your next job.
As part of the deal, Meredith has secured $650 million from the Koch brothers’ private equity arm, Koch Equity Development.
The billionaire brothers run Koch Industries, which is one of the world’s largest privately-owned companies, with interests ranging from pipelines to paper towels.
According to the Koch Industries website, “to millions of Americans, the words <<Koch brothers>> and <<political activism>> go hand-in-hand”.
Charles and David Koch have long championed economically conservative candidates and causes, but they have also pushed criminal justice reform and made large donations to the American Civil Liberties Union.
Their involvement in a media deal is likely to raise concerns that they will use their investment to wield influence.
A suggestion Charles and David Koch might attempt to acquire the Los Angeles Times and Chicago Tribune in 2013 sparked petitions and protests from readers concerned about their intentions.
However, Meredith said the Koch brothers won’t be given a seat on the board of Time Inc, and won’t have any managerial or editorial input.
According to Meredith, the acquisition of Time Inc will give its brands a readership of 135 million and paid circulation of nearly 60 million.
The company’s chief executive Stephen Lacy said in a statement: “We believe this acquisition represents a transformative and financially compelling growth opportunity for Meredith Corporation and will increase shareholder value over time.”
Even if Time Inc has struggled in recent years, its eponymous magazine still holds significant cultural influence.
An example is Time’s “person of the year” issue, which is now in its 90th year.
The issue recognizes the person who “for better or for worse… has done the most to influence the events of the year”.
Past recipients have included almost every sitting US president, Queen Elizabeth, Pope John Paul II and Mahatma Gandhi.
More controversially, Joseph Stalin and Adolf Hitler also both received the recognition.
Wouldn’t it be great to get through Christmas this year without that great big dose of seasonal guilt? Very few of us feel good about the way we spend over Christmas – let’s face it most of us spend too much. That can not only ruin Christmas itself but leave you with a pretty nasty financial hangover well into the New Year and possibly a bad credit situation that affects your future borrowing. If you want to change the record this year then it’s all about healthier Christmas shopping habits.
Just buy what you need
The temptation at this time of year is to just buy everything you come across. Overbuying is a serious problem at Christmas and a very bad habit to get into. Do you really need 60 mince pies? Are you sure that only top of the range toys will do? It’s easy to start panicking that Christmas will only mean something this year if you have all the “stuff” but the reality is that it’s just not about that. Get what you need to have an enjoyable Christmas and leave it at that.
Image source Public Domain Pictures
Break the habit of associating a “good” Christmas with an expensive one
When you start your Christmas shopping think about what it is that really makes this time of year special. Is it having the best champagne money can buy or being surrounded by family and friends? It’s always a good idea to try to keep in perspective what Christmas means to you when you’re doing the buying for it so that you don’t end up overspending for the wrong reasons.
Plan and budget
Yes, it does sound a little Scrooge-like to sit down with your lists and work out exactly where to allocate every last penny. However, the reality is that planning what you’re going to buy and budgeting for all of it will ensure that you keep your Christmas spending under control. This is also a great, healthy spending habit to get into at Christmas because you’ll end up really thinking about the gifts that you buy and the food that you opt for. Plus, when it comes to enjoying the day itself you won’t be sitting there mid-turkey feast thinking “we really can’t afford this.”
Walk away if you’re not sure
At this time of year, advertising goes into overdrive and it can create a state of FOMO that’s difficult to escape. Clever marketing campaigns can make you feel like you really just can’t do without the ultra expensive new outfit or 20 tins of chocolates. Try to keep your head when it comes to the Christmas deals and discounts and don’t get sucked into spending on what you don’t need. Walking away when you start to feel affected by all that advertising is a healthy Christmas shopping habit to get into.
Shop with a friend
If you know that you’re likely to get sucked in to spending more than you should – or turning the whole experience into a stress-filled nightmare – consider shopping with a friend. Share your budgets beforehand and agree to stop each other from overspending. Sometimes having someone there is all that we need to make us feel accountable and to not take that unhealthy step towards bad spending. Plus, if you’re shopping with a friend you can make it a fun and festive affair rather than a mad dash that you dread.
The vast majority of North Korea’s trade is conducted with China, Pyongyang’s biggest economic supporter.
The latest round of UN sanctions targeted several companies and individuals, including two businesses in Singapore.
In January 2016, a Singapore company was fined $125,700 for facilitating a shipment of arms from Cuba to North Korea. A court found the Chinpo Shipping Company was in breach of the UN sanctions on North Korea.
Tension in the Korean peninsula reached unprecedented levels earlier this year after North Korea’s repeated missile tests, including two long range missiles that flew over Japan, and its sixth and biggest nuclear test.
The US and the UN are hoping that sanctions will starve North Korea of the means to pursue its aggressive program of nuclear weapons development.
Singapore still retains diplomatic ties and North Korea maintains an embassy in its financial district.
Nissan suspended local production for about three weeks after it revealed uncertified workers carried out final vehicle inspection checks for decades. On November 7, the company resumed production at all six of its domestic assembly plants.
The saga is the latest in a string of misconduct cases involving Japanese manufacturers, including a data falsification scandal at Kobe Steel.
In 2016, Mitsubishi Motors admitted that it had falsified fuel efficiency tests on some models.
While costs related to safety scandal are expected to hit Nissan’s annual profit, other headwinds weighed on its quarterly earnings.
Operating profit fell to 128.5 billion yen for the three months to September, down from 163.9 billion a year earlier.
The result, which missed market expectations, came as sales fell 2.2% in the increasingly competitive US market.
On November 7, Toyota – Japan’s largest auto maker – said its sales in North America hit their lowest level in nearly three years.
However, Nissan fared better closer to home. Sales rose 8% in China, the world’s biggest car market, and jumped 25.6% in Japan over the quarter.
The Paradise Papers have revealed that Apple has a secretive new structure that would enable it to continue avoiding billions in taxes.
The leaked documents also show how the world’s most profitable company sidestepped a 2013 crackdown on its controversial Irish tax practices by actively shopping around for a tax haven.
Apple then moved the company holding most of its untaxed offshore cash, now $252 billion, to the Channel Island of Jersey.
The company said the new structure had not lowered its taxes.
Apple said it remained the world’s largest taxpayer, paying about $35 billion in corporation tax over the past three years, that it had followed the law and its changes “did not reduce our tax payments in any country”.
The Paradise Papers is the name for a huge leak of financial documents that is throwing light on the world of offshore finance.
Up until 2014, Apple had been exploiting a loophole in tax laws in the US and the Republic of Ireland known as the “double Irish”.
This allowed Apple to funnel all its sales outside of the Americas – currently about 55% of its revenue – through Irish subsidiaries that were effectively stateless for taxation purposes, and so incurred hardly any tax.
Instead of paying Irish corporation tax of 12.5%, or the US rate of 35%, Apple’s avoidance structure helped it reduce its tax rate on profits outside of the US to the extent that its foreign tax payments rarely amounted to more than 5% of its foreign profits, and in some years dipped below 2%.
The European Commission calculated the rate of tax for one of Apple’s Irish companies for one year had been just 0.005%.
The tech giant came under pressure in 2013 in the US Senate, when CEO Tim Cook was forced to defend its tax system.
After the EU announced in 2013 that it was investigating Apple’s Irish arrangement, Ireland’s government decided that companies incorporated there could no longer be stateless for tax purposes.
In order to keep its tax rates low, Apple needed to find an offshore financial center that would serve as the tax residency for its Irish subsidiaries.
In March 2014, Apple’s legal advisers sent a questionnaire to Appleby, a leading offshore finance law firm and source of much of the Paradise Papers leak.
They asked what benefits different offshore jurisdictions – the British Virgin Islands, Bermuda, the Cayman Islands, Mauritius, the Isle of Man, Jersey and Guernsey – could offer Apple.
The questionnaire included key questions such as was it possible to “obtain an official assurance of tax exemption” and could it be confirmed that an Irish company might “conduct management activities… without being subject to taxation in your jurisdiction”.
The document also asked whether a change of government was likely, what information would be visible to the public and how easy it would be to exit the jurisdiction.
The Paradise Papers are a huge leak of financial documents that reveals how politicians, multinationals, celebrities and high-net-worth individuals use offshore structures to protect their cash from higher taxes.
There are more than 1,400GB of data, containing about 13.4 million documents. Some 6.8 million come from the offshore legal service provider Appleby and corporate services provider Estera. The two operated together under the Appleby name until Estera became independent in 2016. Another six million documents come from corporate registries in some 19 jurisdictions, mostly in the Caribbean. A smaller amount comes from the Singapore-based international trust and corporate services provider, Asiaciti Trust. The leaked data covers seven decades, from 1950 to 2016.
As with 2016 Panama Papers leak, the documents were obtained by the German newspaper Suddeutsche Zeitung, which called in the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ)to oversee the investigation. Nearly 100 media groups investigating the papers.
The Paradise Papers name was chosen because of the idyllic profiles of many of the offshore jurisdictions whose workings are unveiled, including Bermuda, the HQ of the main company involved, Appleby. It also dovetails nicely with the French term for a tax haven – paradis fiscal.
Image source Flickr
The offshore financial affairs of hundreds of politicians, multinationals, celebrities and high-net-worth individuals, some of them household names, have been revealed. The papers also throw light on the legal firms, financial institutions and accountants working in the sector and on the jurisdictions that adopt offshore tax rules to attract money. The top stories so far include:
One of President Donald Trump’s top administration officials kept a financial stake in a company whose major partners include a Russian company part-owned by President Vladimir Putin’s son-in-law
A key aide of Canada’s PM has been linked to offshore schemes that may have cost the nation millions of dollars in taxes, threatening to embarrass Justin Trudeau, who has campaigned to shut tax havens
How questions were raised about who is controlling Everton FC
An oligarch with close links to the Kremlin may have secretly taken ownership of a company responsible for anti-money laundering checks on Russian cash
Appleby is alaw firm that helps corporations, financial institutions and high-net-worth individuals set up and register companies in offshore jurisdictions.
With its headquarters in Bermuda and a history dating back to the 1890s, Appleby has become one of the largest and best known of about 10 major companies involved in the specialist arena. The leak shows the US dominates Appleby’s client register, with more than 31,000 US addresses for clients.
Details about the Duchy’s investments came to light in the Paradise Papers – a leak of 13.4 million documents from companies including Appleby, one of the world’s leading offshore law firms.
The two funds were based in British overseas territories with no corporation tax and at the center of the offshore financial industry.
However, the Duchy said it was not aware there were tax advantages to it from investing in offshore funds, adding that tax strategy was not a part of the estate’s investment policy.
The documents show the Duchy of Lancaster put £5 million ($6.5 million) in the Jubilee Absolute Return Fund Limited in Bermuda in 2004, with the investment coming to an end in 2010.
In 2005, the Duchy agreed to put $7.5 million in the Dover Street VI Cayman Fund LP.
The Paradise Papers show the fund invested in medical and technology companies.
The connection to rent-to-buy company BrightHouse began in 2007 when the US company running the fund asked the Duchy to contribute $450,000 to five projects, including the purchase of the two UK High Street retailers.
This included an interest in London-based private equity firm Vision Capital, the company which acquired 100% of BrightHouse and 75% of the owners of Threshers off license chain.
When you are strapped for cash, getting a short-term loan is what most people can think about. Unlike in the past where you had to make a trip to the bank and apply for a loan, now you can get a quick short-term loan at the comfort of your home.
However, it’s important that you make an informed choice to ensure that you are getting the most suitable online loan. Doing this requires that you have a clear understanding of various aspects of the loans as well as the lenders. In this article, you’ll learn some actionable tips to help you get the best loan.
Consider your intended use for the loan to know exactly how much you need to borrow
There are multiple reasons for taking loans but the reason behind the borrowing could influence the available choices. There are some lenders who are not concerned with how you spend the money but there are others who limit where the money can be spent.
After knowing how the money is going to be used, you can now settle on an amount that is sufficient to cover the expenses as well as any upfront fees for the short term loan. If you are using the short-term loan to take care of a major expense, then it’s important you create a budget and capture every expense.
Basically, almost every lender has the minimum loan as well as the maximum amount available for their clients to borrow. When you know how much you need, it’s easy to choose the most appropriate lender.
Image source The Blue Diamond Gallery
Take a look at your financial situation and determine the monthly payments you can comfortably pay
If you are not confident in your financial situation, it’s likely that you won’t be comfortable with the payments. Generally, there is no point in taking loan whose monthly payments will stretch your finances and make life unbearable.
Before you settle for a short-term loan, it’s important to know if you can manage to pay the monthly payments and at the same time pay all your bills. This calls choosing a loan with favorable terms that are largely determined by the following factors.
The repayment period and this is usually in months
The amount borrowed
The interest rates charged
To be on the safe side, choose a monthly payment amount that allows you to have some extra cash to take care of other financial obligations. If you are patient in your search, you’ll find multiple lenders who can give you a short-term loan that suits your financial situation.
Choosing the right online lender
While finding an online lender willing to offer you a loan will be easy, picking the best from the sea of different lenders isn’t easy.
To get started, ask a few trustworthy people if they have used any loan provider in the past. If you don’t have a relative or friend with such knowledge, you can ask a reputable financial professional. However, you should be cautious when taking recommendations from people who get some commissions from lending companies.
Check the credentials of the lender to ensure that they are authorized to conduct business in your state. It’s also important to check the lender’s rating with the BBB as well as the reviews on their websites.
The most appropriate $5000 income based lender is one who has sufficient experience in the financial industry and understands the market dynamics. You should settle for lenders who have a good track record since they already have a reputation to guard and therefore have a tendency to offer better customer service. Otherwise, avoid any fly-by-night operators who are characterized by little or no reputation in the market.
Look beyond teaser rates and calculate the APR
A legitimate lender will always strive to offer loans with transparent and reasonable terms. However, you’ll come across multiple adverts that quote the low rates just to get your attention. Don’t take the bait because the rates quoted “as low as” are normally out of reach for average borrowers.
Instead, settle on lenders who are free to reveal the exact APR for a loan without presenting you with multiple figures for the same loan. The APR should be made of the loan fee, interest rates, and the loan term so a good company won’t be presenting some additional rates.
Read the fine print in the loan agreement
While it’s important to deal with companies with a sufficient experience, track record of great service, nothing can equal a clear understanding of the loan agreement.
If a lender is good, they will include all the fees and charges in the agreement. However, it’s important to study the document just to be sure that there aren’t any hidden charges that can cause problems along the way. Normally, you’ll find the hidden charges disguised as application fees, pre-payment penalties or membership fees.
But if the agreement captures all the expected terms and rates that you are comfortable with, you can go ahead and sign it. You should know that this is a legally binding agreement and you are expected to honor the agreed terms.
While it’s important that you be on the lookout for predatory lenders, you must exercise responsible borrowing. As a rule of thumb, short-term loans are only meant to be used to solve short-term financial difficulties. This is because most lenders expect you to repay the money in a few weeks or months.
In addition, it’s always prudent to draft a budget before taking a loan so that you can be accountable for the expenditures. If you realize that you can’t meet the loan obligations due to unforeseen circumstances, you should communicate with your lender immediately. In most cases, they are ready to help by offering alternative rates and terms that are suitable to your current financial state.
Online loans are not new in the market. In fact, most of the traditional banks that had not adopted the technology are now actively doing business online. This offers the advantage of lower operating costs, efficiency and convenience to both parties.
Since you can easily compare different lenders in a short time, you have the advantage of choosing the most appropriate lender to work with. The tips discussed here can help you navigate the pitfalls of online short term loans.
Economists warned that estimates of business inventories, a major factor in the GDP rise, can vary significantly quarter-to-quarter.
Excluding that category, GDP – a broad measure of goods and services made in the US – increased at an annual pace of 2.3%.
The Commerce Department cautioned that its figures did not capture all the losses caused by the storms, which caused widespread closures of factories, offices and airports in states such as Florida and Texas.
Its GDP estimates, for example, do not measure activity in US territories, such as Puerto Rico, which suffered some of the most severe damage.
The Commerce Department estimated that storm-related damage to fixed assets, such as homes and government buildings, totaled more than $131 billion.
It also said it expected the government and insurers to pay more than $100 billion in insurance claims, with foreign companies accounting for more than $17.4 billion.
Commerce Department Secretary Wilbur Ross claimed Friday’s GDP report a sign of progress, calling it a “remarkable achievement in light of the recent hurricanes”.
President Donald Trump has made hitting annual GDP growth of 3% a goal, and pledged tax cuts and other policies intended to reach that pace or higher.
On a year-on-year basis, GDP was up 2.3%, the Commerce Department said in its report, which is an advance estimate that will be revised as more data is collected.
That pace is roughly in line with US expansion since the 2007-2009 recession.
Economists said the underlying economic strength shown in the report makes it more likely that central bankers at the Fed will raise interest rates again by the end of the year, as expected.
The price index for consumer spending, a closely-watched measure of inflation, increased at 1.3% in Q3, excluding food and energy. That remains below the Fed’s 2% target.
Bloodhound benefits from two decades of technological improvement and will have the assistance not only of a state-of-the-art Eurofighter-Typhoon jet engine but the thrust of a rocket motor.
It seeks in the first instance to push the existing record above 800mph, but then ultimately to reach a speed that no-one is ever again likely to want to try to match.
The sleek, arrow-shaped car has taken some 9 years to develop and still awaits its Norwegian rocket motor.
The shortness of Newquay’s runway (1.7 miles) severely limits the speed Bloodhound can attain before it needs to brake and safely stop. However, the thousands of ticketed spectators should still get a good sense of the car’s potential.
Along with the absence of the rocket motor, the other big difference from the race set-up of Bloodhound is the wheels. These will be thin, rubber-shod discs; the tires are actually refurbished Dunlops from 1960s-era English Electric Lightning jet fighters.
The diamond industry is a thriving one. From statement earrings and delicate necklaces to symbolic engagement rings and wedding bands, the sparkling rocks appear in an array of elegant jewellery around the globe. Usually a representation of eternal love, sometimes passed on through generations within a family, and almost always given to someone in the hopes of the sentiment and love lasting forever, it is therefore unsurprising that people are becoming more interested in the source of their diamonds.
As one of the rarest and most extraordinary gems on the planet, there is great value in understanding the origin of the stones and the journey taken from mine to ring. The increasing knowledge led to a decline in demand for diamonds for a few years, before picking up again in 2016. Although the market is currently thriving worldwide, there are still some dark corners that aren’t representative of the happiness and love typically portrayed by the gemstones.
What are conflict diamonds?
Also known as blood diamonds, conflict diamonds are those excavated from mines dominated by rebel units opposed to governments. These factions sell diamonds illegally to fund violence and invading armies.
Mountains of jewels are not the only outcome from these mines. Civil wars, human suffering and exploitation, environmental degradation, and destruction are all results from multiple diamond mines around the globe. The past two decades alone have seen seven countries in Africa experiencing civil wars, including the Democratic Republic of Congo, Liberia, the Republic of Congo, Angola, Côte d’Ivoire, Sierra Leone and the Central African Republic.
Approximately 3.7 million lives have been lost from the wars fueled by the black diamond trade so far, with millions more missing. To date, there are still millions living with the consequences and suffering from broken homes, families, and lives. The rebel gangs are often liable for the violence caused in these areas. However, governments and mining companies are also responsible for a lot of the destruction caused in countries that aren’t at war.
Consumers are increasingly gaining awareness of the violence and histories of these diamonds, supported by the recognition of award-winning film, Blood Diamond, 2006. As a consequence, the fight against the carnage is rising, yet violence is still present in many mining areas around Africa, and a notable amount of gems are still joining the market undetected. Just ten years ago, the industry was predicted to be made up of between four and fifteen percent of conflict diamonds.
Having lived in both South Africa and Zimbabwe for 15 years, Nikolay, CEO of Taylor & Hart, recalls his time there:
“Growing up in South Africa, we were acutely aware of the human rights violations that were happening in neighbouring Zimbabwe, under the government of President Robert Mugabe. Millions of people were being oppressed by his regime, and thousands crossed the borders into South Africa as refugees, trying to find work illegally. When in 2008 we heard about the crackdown by the government on miners in the Marange mines, we decided to take an active position, and though at the time Zimbabwean diamonds were not considered ‘conflict’ by international standards, we would ensure we no longer knowingly offered them and have not ever since.”
The growth of ethically sourced diamonds
Concern grew as the ability to differentiate ethically sourced diamonds from blood diamonds became apparent. This resulted in the Kimberley Process (KP) being established in 2003, in an effort to make the entire industry conflict-free. There are 80 countries involved in the certification scheme so far, which has managed to reduce the number of conflict diamonds infiltrating the supply chain, leading to less than one percent of diamonds in current circulation estimated to be unethical.
Unfortunately, the KP is not flawless as multiple countries have declined to be a part of the scheme. There has also been a lot of criticism about how sufficient the verification of the diamonds is. Only governments, NGO’s, and professional industry bodies are included in the identification process and workers in areas such as Zimbabwe, who work under extremely high levels of brutality and denied fundamental rights, are excluded. Zimbabwe is a certified conflict-free country, and so any diamonds acquired from this country are marked as such, yet the suffering endured is not considered. Being paper-based is also an issue due to increased possibilities of tampering, imitation records, and loss.
The evolution of the fight against the blood diamond trade is accelerating, and more people and businesses are getting on board to help the suffering stop. The latest breakthrough comes from a company named Everledger. They are working with Blockchain technology and aim to transition the Kimberley Process to an entirely digital system. This will make information available to retailers and consumers, and the whole process will become more accurate.
Many people in the industry avoid any diamonds coming from Zimbabwe, due to them being unethical, even though they are conflict-free and so the KP is used as a reference guide only. CanadaMark can fill the gap of information for many traders as it details the origin and history of the gem. Consumers on the high street can also request certificates for their diamond purchases, which will state the country of origin.
Synthetic diamonds have been introduced as a solution to the problems in the verification of ethical diamonds and have a successful niche in the market. However, this could not replace authentic diamonds due to the additional challenges that would arise. The diamond industry is the only source of income for the local economy in many countries in South Africa and replacing that for lab produced gems would leave a more significant issue. 10 million people are currently affected by the financial economy from the diamond industry, and so millions of jobs would be lost if synthetic gems were to become mainstream.
Value of diamonds is increasing as demand rises and fewer sources are located.
In a statement released on October 15, Colin Kaepernick’s lawyers wrote: “We can confirm that this morning we filed a grievance under the CBA on behalf of Colin Kaepernick.
“This was done only after pursuing every possible avenue with all NFL teams and their executives.
“If the NFL (as well as all professional sports leagues) is to remain a meritocracy, then principled and peaceful political protest – which the owners themselves made great theatre imitating weeks ago – should not be punished and athletes should not be denied employment.
“Such a precedent threatens all patriotic Americans and harkens back to our darkest days as a nation. Protecting all athletes from such collusive conduct is what compelled Mr. Kaepernick to file his grievance.
“Colin Kaepernick’s goal has always been, and remains, to simply be treated fairly by the league he performed at the highest level for and to return to the football playing field.”
Some players from the 49ers again knelt during the anthem before their match on October 15.
They were playing for the first time since VP Mike Pence walked out of their game in Indianapolis, after several members of the team did not stand.
Argentine Airlines is the latest carrier to suspend flights to Venezuela.
The carrier said it had concerns over security in Venezuela because of increasing criminal violence and political uncertainty.
Aerolineas Argentinas joins dozens of airlines who have taken similar action.
IATA, the trade body for the world’s airlines, says Venezuela is becoming increasingly isolated.
The body’s vice-president, Peter Cerdá, said last week: “The situation has become increasingly difficult, most of IATA’s members have left Venezuela. There are only six or seven carriers left operating a very low flight frequency.
“Venezuela is becoming disconnected, it’s practically disconnected from the rest of the world, above all by air, and we can’t see any solution in the short term.”
Since 2003 Venezuela has operated a series of currency exchange controls managed by the government.
Ryanair CEO Michael O’Leary has offered the airline’s pilots better pay and conditions.
The improved conditions came after Ryanair was forced to cancel thousands of flights in recent weeks.
In a letter to pilots, Michael O’Leary also apologized for changes that caused disruptions to their rotas and urges them not to leave the airline.
The chief executive’s apology came after he accused the pilots of being “full of their own self-importance”.
However, in the letter seen by the Irish Independent newspaper, Michael O’Leary urges pilots to stay with Ryanair “for a brighter future”.
Ryanair has been in crisis after the rota changes – brought about to comply with new aviation rules – led to a shortage of pilots because the airline failed to plan for enough leave.
The airline announced its first wave of 2,100 cancelations in the middle of September, after it rearranged pilots’ rosters to comply with new aviation rules requiring a change in how their flying hours are logged.
Towards the end of September Ryanair announced 18,000 further flights would be canceled over the winter season. These moves affect more than 700,000 passengers.
Ryanair blamed the flight fiasco on its own mistaken decision to force its pilots to take their remaining annual leave before the end of this year, rather than by the end of the financial year next March.
That left the airline without enough pilots to fly all its scheduled flights in September and October.
However, passengers have complained about the short notice of the cancellations and the consumer group Which? said Ryanair’s compensation information was “woefully short”.
Many of Ryanair’s 4,200 pilots had joined unions over the past two weeks over discontent with the disruptions caused by the rota changes.
Michael O’Leary’s letter implored the pilot team not to leave Ryanair and offered them improved terms and working conditions.
The sweeteners included pay increases, loyalty bonus payments, improved rotas and better compensation for pilots forced to work away from their home base.
Michael O’Leary stressed that Ryanair was a “very secure employer” and he emphasized that the airline’s pilots “are the best in the business”.
He asked them not to allow competitor pilots or their unions “to demean or disparage our collective success”.
The Ryanair boss also urged the airline’s pilots not to join “one of these less financially secure or Brexit-challenged airlines”.
Michael O’Leary’s letter asked the pilots to take note of “the recent bankruptcies of Air Berlin, Alitalia and Monarch”, as well as the difficulties faced by another budget airline, Norwegian Air, which has been under pressure to boost its finances.
Investors have been concerned that Ford is not moving quickly enough in markets such as China and in sectors such as automated cars to fend off competitors, including new ones emerging from Silicon Valley.
Jim Hackett said Ford needs to automate and simplify its production processes and invest $7 billion in its successful products, such as SUVs and light trucks, which have driven US sales this year.
Ford is also planning to make its vehicles more tech-savvy, with 90% of its vehicles sold around the world “built with connectivity” by 2020.
Executives said those features – such as easy compatibility with phones and other devices – would help attract customers to the brand.
They said they also opened opportunities for new lines of business, such as medical transport, ride-hailing and goods delivery.
Ford already operates a shuttle bus service called Chariot in four US cities and is set to expand it further by the end of the year. It said it has signed agreements to work with cities such as Mumbai on transport.
Jim Hackett said Ford had been slow to shift to electrification because of the costs. But it is working on partnerships with companies such as Zotye in China, where the government has called for quotas related to electric car sales.
Volkswagen has announced that the diesel emissions scandal will cost the company an extra $3 billion (€2.5 billion), because engines are proving “far more technically complex and time consuming”.
The additional cost, for fixing engines in the US, takes the total bill to $30 billion.
Two years after the diesel emission cheating scandal first emerged, VW is still struggling to put the crisis behind it.
Separately Munich prosecutors made an arrest in connection with the scandal.
German media reports have named the person taken into custody as Wolfgang Hatz, former board member at VW unit Porsche. But there has been no official confirmation of his identity.
Wolfgang Hatz was head of Research and Development at VW-owned Porsche and had held other roles in the VW group, including in engine development at Audi. He was suspended after the diesel emissions test-cheating was exposed. He then left the company.
In 2016, Porsche said no evidence had been found against Wolfgang Hatz.
Wolfgang Hatz was reportedly close to former VW chief executive, Martin Winterkorn, who has denied any knowledge of the “defeat devices” which allowed vehicles to artificially reduce emissions during tests before their existence was exposed publicly.
Another former Audi executive, Giovanni Pamio, was taken into custody earlier this year, at the request of the US Department of Justice. One man has so far been jailed in connection with the scandal: Volkswagen engineer James Liang received a 40 month sentence in a US court last month.
News of the additional financial burden from dealing with vehicles in the US underlines the difficulty VW is having extricating itself from the scandal.
VW shares initially fell sharply on September 29 although they later recovered most of the lost ground.
The automaker first admitted in September 2015 that it had used illegal software to cheat US emissions tests.
Since then VW has been adapting its cars to meet legal requirements. However, the process in the US is proving tougher than expected.
It is also amending cars in Europe, but the process there is more straightforward, VW said.
The additional costs will be reflected in Volkswagen’s third quarter results, which will be reported next month.
President Donald Trump comes again under fire after his criticism of NFL players.
On September 22, President Trump said the NFL should fire players who protest during the US anthem.
High-profile football players as well as basketball star LeBron James openly criticized President Trump in response.
One NFL team owner said Donald Trump’s comments were “offensive” but the president has gone on to repeat his criticism.
At a rally on September 22, President Trump said NFL players who protested during the playing of the national anthem should be fired by their team – referencing a controversial string of protests over race relations started by player Colin Kaepernick in 2016.
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell released a statement saying “divisive comments like these demonstrate an unfortunate lack of respect”.
Donald Trump, however, doubled down on his comments in a tweet: “Roger Goodell of NFL just put out a statement trying to justify the total disrespect certain players show to our country. Tell them to stand!”
The NFL Players’ Association said President Trump had crossed a line by effectively telling players to just “shut up and play”.
Association president Eric Winston said President Trump’s comments were “a slap in the face to the civil rights heroes of the past and present”.
On September 23, the Oakland Athletics’ Bruce Maxwell became the first Major League Baseball player to kneel in protest during the national anthem, mimicking the gesture of protest started by Colin Kaepernick.
Jed York, CEO of the San Francisco 49ers – Kaepernick’s former team – said he would continue to support his players.
“The callous and offensive comments made by the President are contradictory to what this great country stands for,” Jed York said in a statement.
There has been no comment from many teams, including New York Jets owner Woody Johnson – a wealthy businessman and Trump campaign donor who was appointed as his ambassador to the UK.
On September 23, President Trump withdrew an invitation to the White House to basketball champions the Golden State Warriors after one player, Stephen Curry, said he did not want to attend.
Stephen Curry – NBA’s most valuable player in 2015 – said he wanted to show that he and other players did not stand for “the things that he’s said and the things that he hasn’t said in the right times”.
President Trump tweeted afterwards: “Going to the White House is considered a great honor for a championship team.
“Stephen Curry is hesitating, therefore invitation is withdrawn!”
In response, triple NBA champion LeBron James, one of the sport’s foremost stars, labeled President Trump a “bum”.
He said: “U bum @StephenCurry30 already said he ain’t going! So therefore ain’t no invite. Going to White House was a great honor until you showed up!”
Retired star Kobe Bryant also tweeted his support: “A #POTUS whose name alone creates division and anger. Whose words inspire dissension and hatred can’t possibly <<Make America Great Again>>.”