Let there be light – entrepreneurs are making the world a brighter place

first_img City A.M.’s opinion pages are a place for thought-provoking views and debate. These views are not necessarily shared by City A.M. Opinion “Nobody saw the lightbulb coming”, he began, “yet the closer you look at the history of its creation, the more inevitable it seems.”While most people credit Thomas Edison for the lightbulb’s invention, it turns out that there were nearly two dozen inventors, placed all over the world, on the edge of the discovery at the exact same time.What enables the cultivation of ideas to spring into discovery and innovation is the “bottom-up phenomenon that emerges through the minds of ordinary people”. Contrast that to the systems of big government, dominated by rules and centralisation, and it is no surprise that it is often ordinary folk – not politicians – who create the extraordinary.While the UK and EU governments have spent months debating the difference between “the” customs union and “a” customs union, breakthroughs have been made on 3D metal printing, artificial embryos, diabetes treatment, and surgical procedures.Millions of people continue to rise out of poverty thanks to the free interactions enabled by markets, yet political airtime is granted to whether Brits will be able to make a sandwich post-Brexit. Share whatsapp Friday 16 November 2018 8:04 am Ad Unmute by Taboolaby TaboolaSponsored LinksSponsored LinksPromoted LinksPromoted LinksYou May LikeBetterBe20 Stunning Female AthletesBetterBeUndoMisterStoryWoman Files For Divorce After Seeing This Photo – Can You See Why?MisterStoryUndoZen HeraldEllen Got A Little Too Personal With Blake Shelton, So He Said ThisZen HeraldUndoFinance Wealth PostTom Selleck’s Daughter Is Probably The Prettiest Woman To Ever ExistFinance Wealth PostUndoTotal PastJohn Wick Stuntman Reveals The Truth About Keanu ReevesTotal PastUndoLearn It WiseColleagues Find Woman’s Bikini Photos Inappropriate, Give Her UltimatumLearn It WiseUndoMoneyPailShe Was A Star, Now She Works In ScottsdaleMoneyPailUndoNoteableyFaith Hill’s Daughter Is Probably The Prettiest Woman In The WorldNoteableyUndoCleverstTattoo Fails : No One Makes It Past No. 6 Without LaughingCleverstUndo Let there be light – entrepreneurs are making the world a brighter place Forging a path to leaving the EU is a not an easy or carefree job that can be done overnight. But while politicians have had one task to get on with for several years, ordinary people across the globe have been putting them to shame, developing and improving the world in an infinite number of ways.Politics may have our attention, but it is a sluggish, hindered faction of our society. While Brexit stands still, the rest of the world keeps turning, getting faster, more efficient, and more remarkable by the day. I can only assume that Netflix is bidding for rights to Brexit: The Saga.You might as well download the past 48 hours’ worth of news coverage, upload to the streaming site, and advertise it as how Breaking Bad would have unfolded if set in Westminster instead of New Mexico. The news is pure entertainment. Arguably, that’s a bad thing – yet we can’t tear our eyes away.However, for all the resignations and revelations, this political period is fundamentally characterised by stagnation. Parties are torn in half. No one can agree on a pathway forward. The past two and a half years have not been spent on meaningful negotiations with the EU, but rather bickering among one’s usual allies.Now, progress on Brexit which should have been delivered months ago looks very likely to stall again. This is fundamentally a characteristic of politics – which is why it remains so important that it doesn’t dominate our lives.On Wednesday night, we got a nice reminder that this is not how the rest of life operates. The Institute of Economic Affairs had the pleasure of hosting Viscount Matt Ridley as the keynote at our annual Hayek Lecture.Ridley’s optimism about the future tends to leap off the pages of his books and articles – and his personal delivery of this year’s lecture was no exception. Entitled “How many lightbulbs does it take to change the world”, he argued that humans will always innovate, and those innovations will move us forward, advancing human welfare and prosperity. Kate AndrewsKate Andrews is associate director at the Institute of Economic Affairs. whatsapp Tags: Brexit Netflixlast_img read more

Local candidates for statehouse participate in Native issues forum

first_imgElection Coverage | Juneau | Politics | State GovernmentLocal candidates for statehouse participate in Native issues forumSeptember 25, 2018 by Adelyn Baxter, KTOO Share:Juneau’s six candidates for Alaska Legislature appear at a Native issues forum on Sept. 25, 2018 in this still from a Central Council of Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska video. From left to right, the candidates are Chris Dimond, Sara Hannan, Jerry Nankervis, Andi Story, Don Etheridge and Jesse Kiehl.Juneau’s candidates running for the Alaska Legislature appeared at a Native issues forum Tuesday to discuss their platforms.Outgoing state Rep. Sam Kito III moderated the forum. The Juneau Democrat asked questions about issues relevant to Alaska Native and non-Native voters alike.Among other things, the candidates were asked how they would support rural Alaska Native communities where unemployment and substance abuse are coupled with a lack of access to support services.Jesse Kiehl, a current Juneau Assembly member running as a Democrat for Senate District Q, said a comprehensive fiscal plan would allow the state to fund better services. But he cautioned against having the state decide what they need.“One of the most important things a state can do is remember that rural Alaskans have a pretty darn good sense of what’s important for their communities,” Kiehl said.His opponent, independent Don Etheridge, agreed that better funding would help, but said more job training is also necessary to improve economic prospects.“We got too many people coming into these small communities,” Etheridge said. “Every time there’s a little project, everybody imports their help instead of training locals to do the job.”The local House candidates also appeared: Independent Chris Dimond and Democrat Sara Hannan running for House District 33, and Republican Jerry Nankervis and Democrat Andi Story for House District 34.The forum was hosted at Elizabeth Peratrovich Hall by partners in the Get Out the Native Vote initiative. Previous forums featured local assembly and mayoral candidates.Their next forum in the series will feature gubernatorial candidates and is scheduled for next Tuesday.Tuesday’s forum also coincided with National Voter Registration Day. The deadline to register to vote in the Nov. 6 general election is Oct. 7.You can watch the entire forum on the Central Council of Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska’s website.Share this story:last_img read more

Gov. shutdown won’t affect federal fishery openings

first_imgEconomy | Federal Government | FisheriesGov. shutdown won’t affect federal fishery openingsDecember 29, 2018 by Aaron Bolton, KBBI-Homer Share:Pacific cod. (Photo courtesy Holland Dotts and the Alaska Marine Conservation Council)The partial federal government shutdown has left some Alaska fishermen and others wondering whether federal fisheries set to start in January will open on time. The National Marine Fisheries Service has been affected by the shutdown and many employees aren’t there to answer phones, leaving some with more questions than answers.Albert Duncan with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s law enforcement office said his division is still running during the shutdown.“In our Kodiak office as well as our Southeast office in Juneau, we have received a couple of calls from fishermen wondering if there’s been any change as far as those fisheries that were set to open on Jan. 1,” Duncan explained.The federal Pacific cod season is set to open on Jan. 1. The good news is that fishery and other federal fisheries due to open on Jan. 20 will open on time despite the shutdown.That’s also good news for Homer-based commercial fisherman Ian Pitzman. He sent two of his boats out to Dutch Harbor prior to Christmas without knowing whether the Pacific cod season would start on time or not.“You know a three-week season, if you were to wait, let’s say keep the boat at home to determine whether or not there would be an opening Jan. 1, you’d be a week behind best case scenario,” Pitzman said. “You have to get the boat out and ready. That’s a process. It takes time.”State regulators were also left with questions. Elisa Russ with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game helps manage state commercial shellfish and groundfish fisheries in Southcentral Alaska, where the state first runs what’s called parallel Pacific cod seasons.“These parallel Pacific Cod seasons are established in both the Cook Inlet and Prince William Sound areas to coincide with the season dates and gear types set in the federal central Gulf of Alaska regulatory area,” Russ said, “and for us, that is for pots, jig and longline gear.”These parallel seasons allow fishermen with both federal and state permits to target Pacific cod in state waters three miles from shore. Once each federal fishery closes, the coinciding state fishery opens 24 hours later.However, Russ said Fish and Game initially wasn’t sure whether the shutdown was going to affect federal openings and subsequently the state’s parallel seasons.“We weren’t certain. Although, there has been another shutdown since I’ve been in this position that overlapped with a Jan. 1 Pacific cod season,” she added. “In that case, the fisheries also did open.”Several fishermen expected just that, but the shutdown doesn’t come without its hiccups.The National Marine Fisheries Service won’t be able to issue or renew any federal fishing permits during the shutdown, but permits for Pacific cod only need to be renewed once every three years.Some large catcher-processor trawl vessels may also not receive some required inspections in time, leaving them with no choice but to tie up at the docks waiting for a resolution in Washington D.C.Share this story:last_img read more

London rent price growth stalls as regions outpace the capital

first_imgMonday 23 March 2015 12:46 am Express KCS Share Show Comments ▼ London rent price growth stalls as regions outpace the capital London rental growth is being outpaced by the regions after prices in the capital stalled in the three months to February, according to a survey out today. HomeLet’s Rental Index found that rent prices rose across seven of the 12 UK regions, with the north east and south west of England leading the way with growth of 3.1 per cent and 2.5 per cent respectively.In contrast, average rent prices in London remained static at £1,412 per month compared with the three months to the end of January. The average UK rent is now £899, compared to £889 at the end of January and £873 in December. Martin Totty, chief executive of HomeLet’s parent company Barbon Insurance Group, said: “2014 saw the London rental market outstrip the rest of the UK in terms of rent price growth but what we are seeing so far in 2015 is the private rental market becoming much more broad-based with the strongest rent price growth occurring outside of the capital.” Read This Next’A Quiet Place Part II’ Sets Pandemic Record in Debut WeekendFamily ProofHiking Gadgets: Amazon Deals Perfect For Your Next AdventureFamily ProofIndian Spiced Vegetable Nuggets: Recipes Worth CookingFamily ProofAmazon roars for MGM’s lion, paying $8.45 billion for studio behind JamesFamily ProofBest Wine Gifts & Wine Accessories at Every PriceGayotCheese Crostini: Delicious Recipes Worth CookingFamily ProofHomemade Tomato Soup: Delicious Recipes Worth CookingFamily ProofChicken Bao: Delicious Recipes Worth CookingFamily ProofBaked Sesame Salmon: Recipes Worth CookingFamily Proofcenter_img by Taboolaby TaboolaSponsored LinksSponsored LinksPromoted LinksPromoted LinksYou May LikeMaternity WeekA Letter From The Devil Written By A Possessed Nun In 1676 Has Been TranslatedMaternity WeekMoneyPailShe Was A Star, Now She Works In ScottsdaleMoneyPailHealth Gut BoostRandy Jackson: This 3 Minute Routine Transformed My HealthHealth Gut Boostzenherald.com20 Rules Genghis Khan’s Army Had To Live Byzenherald.comMoguldom NationFather Of 2 Sues Los Angeles Hospital After Wife Dies During ChildbirthMoguldom NationNoteableyKirstie Alley Is So Skinny Now And Looks Like A BarbieNoteableyMagellan TimesThis Is Why The Roy Rogers Museum Has Been Closed For GoodMagellan TimesWorldemandCanal Drained For First Time And They Find ThisWorldemandComedyAbandoned Submarines Floating Around the WorldComedy whatsapp whatsapp Tags: NULLlast_img read more

Collapsed pipe floods outdoor swimming pool in Ballinakill

first_img“I thought the problem had been solved. They spent a lot of money piping right down by the swimming pool.“The problem might be on parish-owned land, so I don’t think you’d have a problem there.”Area engineer Wes Wilkinson said that he would examine the site. Collapsed pipe floods outdoor swimming pool in Ballinakill Community The flooding of an outdoor swimming pool in Ballinakill due to a collapsed water pipe running from Gill’s Pond will be a ‘big job’ to fix.Cllr Caroline Dwane addressed the issue at a recent meeting of Portlaoise Muncipal District, explaining that she had been in Ballinakill recently and she saw that the pipe at the bridge had collapsed on the roadway and the water is flooding the swimming pool.She said: “The whole area around the swimming pool was flooded.“The water was gushing out of the broken pipe. I reckon this could be a big job.“As far as I know, in October or November the parish council done a huge job down by the swimming pool,” explained Cllr John Joe Fennelly. Community Pinterest TAGSBallinakill By Bronagh Scully – 22nd February 2019 Facebook Facebook Charlie Flanagan on Electric Picnic: ‘I’d ask organisers to consult with community leaders’ WhatsApp RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR SEE ALSO – Laois Camogie announce new captain for 2019 Twitter Council Home News Council Collapsed pipe floods outdoor swimming pool in Ballinakill NewsCouncil Previous articleAll of this week’s golf resultsNext articleLaois-Offaly Fine Gael TD to seek nomination for European Elections Bronagh Scully Laois secondary school announces scholarship winners for new academic year WhatsApp New Arles road opens but disquiet over who was invited to official opening Twitter Pinterestlast_img read more

Laois celebrity appearing on this week’s Late Late Show

first_img Facebook Laois celebrity appearing on this week’s Late Late Show Here are all of Wednesday’s Laois GAA results Twitter Pinterest Bernard O’Shea A well-known Laois man and Durrow native is one of the top guests of this weekend’s Late Late Show on RTÉ.Comedian Bernard O’Shea and partner in crime Marty Morrissey will be sitting down with Ryan Tubridy to chat about their new show, Marty and Bernard’s Big Adventure.Ireland’s leading fashion and beauty entrepreneur Suzanne Jackson and Senator Michael McDowell will also feature on the show with music from Soulé.Bernard and Marty will speak about modern manhood, and how they fared out as becoming Instagram models this week!Blogger turned businesswoman Suzanne Jackson is the creator of one of Ireland’s best-known lifestyle sites, SoSueMe.ie, and is also the founder and CEO of a bestselling beauty brand. Suzanne joins Ryan to chat about her rise to success and the influence that social media holds in society today. WhatsApp Senator Michael McDowell joins Ryan to discuss the current political climate in Ireland and chats about his new documentary which examines the history of the Catholic Church and state relations, and how Rome came to shape the Irish political landscape.Earlier this week TEDx held their first event in an Irish prison, looking at what can be done to change the public mindset about prison.Dublin footballer Philly McMahon and Governor of Mountjoy Prison Eddie Mullins join Ryan to discuss what can be done to rehabilitate offenders through the ‘Unfuccced’ programme, and the supports that are needed by ex-offenders to reintegrate into society.SEE ALSO – Site for Portlaoise secondary school raised in Dáil Home What’s On Laois celebrity appearing on this week’s Late Late Show What’s On By Siun Lennon – 4th April 2019 GAA GAA center_img RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Kelly and Farrell lead the way as St Joseph’s claim 2020 U-15 glory TAGSBernard O’Shea Facebook Twitter Previous articleSite for Portlaoise secondary school raised in DáilNext articleComerford’s University of Limerick crowned fresher All-Ireland hurling champions Siun Lennonhttp://heresosiun.blogspot.ie/2016/09/the-lekkie-piccie-experience.htmlSiún Lennon joined LaoisToday in a full-time capacity after studying Journalism and New Media in the University of Limerick. She hails from Rosenallis and her interests vary from news, sports and politics. Pinterest GAA WhatsApp 2020 U-15 ‘B’ glory for Ballyroan-Abbey following six point win over Killeshinlast_img read more

Paddy Power issues apology and gives free bets to Laois GAA fans

first_img GAA WhatsApp By Alan Hartnett – 10th July 2019 Kelly and Farrell lead the way as St Joseph’s claim 2020 U-15 glory Facebook Paddy Power issues apology and gives free bets to Laois GAA fans Home Sport GAA Paddy Power issues apology and gives free bets to Laois GAA fans SportGAAHurlingLaois Senior Hurling Team Twitter GAA Facebook RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR WhatsApp Here are all of Wednesday’s Laois GAA results TAGSLaois senior hurlersPaddy Power Pinterest Pinterest Previous articleManager O’Loughlin hails his players as U-20s reach first Leinster final in ten yearsNext articleGovernment purchase eight acre site at Emo Court Alan HartnettStradbally native Alan Hartnett is a graduate of Knockbeg College who has worked in the local and national media since 2008. Alan has a BA in Economics, Politics and Law and an MA in Journalism from DCU. His happiest moment was when Jody Dillon scored THAT goal in the Laois senior football final in 2016. Twitter GAA Brought to you in association with Treacy’s Bar and Restaurant, The HeathHundreds of Laois GAA supporters received a windfall this morning by way of apology from Irish bookmaker Paddy Power.The betting firm caused outrage among diehard fans in advance of the county’s shock win against odds on favourites Dublin at O’Moore Park last Sunday.Believers in Eddie Brennan’s capabilities took to social media ahead of the match to brand the company ‘disrespectful’ after they priced up Tipp V Dublin to meet in this weekend’s All-Ireland hurling quarter final – ignoring the possibility that Laois could feature.When they beat Dublin 1-22 to 0-23, fans took their opportunity to stick it to Paddy Power.“We’re happy to pay the price for underestimating Eddie Brennan’s boys so we are giving a free €10 bet to our online customers who were brave enough to back them last weekend,” a spokesperson for Paddy Power said.“Given that there’s a 98.9% probability that Tipp will beat them in Croke Park this Sunday, I wouldn’t back them with someone else’s money – so we decided to give loyal Laois fans that option,” they added.Laois are currently 20/1 to beat Tipperary on Sunday so perhaps that free €10 bet could be put to this use.Laois face Tipperary in Croke Park on Sunday at 4pm.It is the second of the All-Ireland Hurling Quarter finals which will be played on the day with Cork and Kilkenny meeting first.The winner of the Laois and Tipp game will face Wexford in the All-Ireland semi final.SEE ALSO – Manager O’Loughlin hails his players as U-20s reach first Leinster final in ten years 2020 U-15 ‘B’ glory for Ballyroan-Abbey following six point win over Killeshinlast_img read more

2020 Remembered: Ranking our ten favourite Offaly people of all time

first_img4 – Seamus DarbyRhode’s Seamus Darby is is best remembered for scoring the shock late goal that deprived Kerry of a 5-in-a-row in the 1982 All-Ireland football final.In 2005 it was voted the third greatest moment in GAA history. If only he was around now to stop the Dubs!Legendary Offaly man Mick McDonagh awaits the arrival of The 2019 Open Champion Shane Lowry at his homecoming event in Clara in Offaly. Photo by Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile3 – Mick McDonaghOffaly’s greatest supporter – if not the greatest GAA supporter in the country – Mick McDonagh simply had to be on this list.Without fail, he will be spotted behind the goals in O’Connor Park sporting his famous Offaly jersey – whether the Faithful are playing or not.He was at the homecoming in Clara during the week to and even popped up in New York earlier in the year when Mayo took on the Americans in the Connacht championship.Shane Lowry and Johnny Purcell of Purcells Pub2 – Shane LowryThe man who is the inspiration for this list would have topped it had we run it on Sunday when he brought great joy to the country following his big win in Royal Portrush.But Shane has been overtaken by another member of his family – not his dad Brendan – and we think even he will probably agree with it. Twitter Electric Picnic Facebook Facebook Pinterest TAGS2020 Remembered Laois Councillor ‘amazed’ at Electric Picnic decision to apply for later date for 2021 festival 1 – Shane Lowry’s granny 8 – Ronan Walsh Ronan Walsh is a teacher in Colaiste Iosagain in Portarlington and hails from Gracefield.He is one half of ‘Bear in the Square’ – a highly successful GAA betting outfit that pick out the best and most profitable bets from club and county matches around the county.He, and Mayo native Ronan Cassidy, have an encyclopedic knowledge of all things GAA. 7 – Neil DelamereEveryone loves a good laugh and heading to see Neil Delamere will ensure that you have one.The 40-year-old Edenderry comedian travels the country making people giggle and he regularly stops in Kavanaghs in Portlaoise. 6 – Will O’CallaghanThe man with the smoothest voice on radio, Will O’Callaghan has been across our airwaves for well over a decade now.The Birr native was head of sport at Midlands 103 before switching to Off The Ball on Newstalk in recent years. He still appears regularly enough to host shows on Midlands and he is a firm favourite with radio aficionados.Knockbeg teacher John Rouse5 – John and Paul RouseJohn Rouse is one of Knockbeg’s most loved teachers and he is a proud Tullamore man.Right hand man to Chris Conway during Knockbeg’s All-Ireland triumph in 2005, Rouse has since gone on to manage his native Tullamore and also stepped in with the Offaly senior footballers for a spell in 2018.His brother Paul also managed Offaly in 2018 and is a GAA historian who lectures in UCD and has written several GAA books. WhatsApp The 82-year-old is Shane Lowry’s granny and she has become the star of the show since he claimed glory in The Open at the weekend.Emily told Ciaran Mullooly that she hadn’t had a drink in ten years before Shane’s final round on Sunday and that the two brandy’s nearly killed her!At Shane’s homecoming on Tuesday, she was right by his side for the parade through the town before taking to the stage to sing a song about Clara to bring the curtain down on a brilliant few days.What an absolute legend. 2020 Remembered: Ranking our ten favourite Offaly people of all time Electric Picnic center_img SEE ALSO – For more 2020 Remembered stories, click here Pinterest Emily Scanlon is not someone we had ever heard of before this week but we absolutely love her now. By LaoisToday Reporter – 30th December 2020 Electric Picnic Previous article2020 Remembered: Laois priest launches blistering attack against planned RIC eventNext articleIntroducing the 2020 LaoisToday Minor hurling Team of the Year LaoisToday Reporter Home We Are Laois 2020 Remembered: Ranking our ten favourite Offaly people of all time We Are Laois Twitter WhatsApp 9 – Mundy‘Oh! ma ma ma, oh! ma ma ma, oh! ma ma maMy July’Whenever you hear that song it makes you think of the summer and long evenings and just general happiness. Mundy, aka Edmond Enright, from Birr is the genius behind that tune and he simply has to be on this list. RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR In May, we complied a list of our favourite Offaly people.In honour of Shane Lowry’s Open win in the summer, we came up with a list of our favourite people from across the border.Offaly. Offaly people. You can love them or hate them but you simply can’t ignore them.They’re our neighbours, our constituency colleagues and Laois and Offaly share an amount of things in common – including a Garda division, the town of Portarlington and the Slieve Bloom mountains.Similar in size (Offaly currently has a slightly smaller population), we’ve both a lot to be proud of.There’s a huge rivalry too, though, one that borders on hatred at some stages. The story of a Clonaslee man in a pub roaring and bawling in support of England’s opponents in a big World Cup soccer match one time is a case in point.“That’s shocking you not supporting your neighbours,” argued one mis-guided punter. “Would you ever shout for England?”“I would,” responded your man. “If they were playing against Offaly!”Offaly people are on top of the world this week given Shane Lowry’s incredible success in the British Open in Portrush and they’ve celebrated across the border as if they’ve won another All Ireland.Of course they’ve punched well above their weight in GAA over the years – playing their part in arguably the most famous All Ireland football final in 1982 and the most famous All Ireland hurling final in 1994, both of which they won.In Portarlington, one smart alecs questioned the credentials of that great Kerry team that Offaly denied the five-in-a-row. “How good were Kerry really,” they’d say. “When a few families from the bog were able to beat them!”Yet from 1971 to 1998 they won three All Ireland football finals and four All Ireland hurling. They may be a long way from those glory days now but that was some going all the same.They’ve also managed to produce a Taoiseach (there was actually a popular chant of “Brian Cowen’s from Offaly” at the time!) and lay claim to Barack Obama as one of their own too.Given the week that’s in it, we’ve decided to pick out some of our favourite Offaly people of all time. It’s an eclectic mix of lovable characters.They’re all not bad. Our pal in Clonaslee couldn’t even argue that!10 – Barack Obama ‘Yes we can’.With the whole world battling Recession, Barack Obama became US President and his positivity certainly helped everyone believe that things could get better.And then didn’t it only turn out that he has roots in Moneygall in Offaly. They’ve built the Barack Obama Plaza in his honour and last year they unveiled statues of him and Michelle. Electric Picnic organisers release statement following confirmation of new festival date Electric Picnic apply to Laois County Council for new date for this year’s festivallast_img read more

Teachers’ pension assets hit all-time high in 2011

Facebook LinkedIn Twitter Companies Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan The Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan beat its benchmark and pushed its net assets totals to an all-time high in 2011, but still faces the prospect of funding shortfalls, the pension giant reported on Tuesday. Teachers said that its 11.2% return in 2011 added $11.7 billion to the plan’s net assets, pushing total assets to $117.1 billion at December 31. Overall, the pension fund earned 1.4% above its 9.8% benchmark, or $1.4 billion in value-added returns (above its composite benchmark). James Langton Share this article and your comments with peers on social media Private capital, fixed income and infrastructure were the fund’s asset class leaders, it says. “Our team’s 2011 performance was especially impressive, given the market volatility and economic uncertainty that accompanied the Eurozone debt situation, and was compounded by the year’s natural disasters,” said Jim Leech, Teachers’ president and CEO. The combined value of the plan’s public and private equities was $51.7 billion at year-end, compared to $47.5 billion as of December 31, 2010. Private equity assets managed by Teachers’ Private Capital totaled $12.2 billion at year-end, compared to $12 billion the previous year. The plan reports that its private investments returned 16.8%, and generated $1.6 billion in value added. Fixed income assets rose to $55.8 billion at year-end, compared to $45.9 billion at December 31, 2010, and returned 19.9%, compared to a benchmark return of 19.5%, for $163.4 million in added value, it says. Notwithstanding the strong returns, and efforts to balance the fund by raising contribution rates and lowering benefits, the plan still faces the issues of persistent low interest rates and changing demographic trends. “The result is a preliminary $9.6 billion funding shortfall, as of January 1, 2012,” said Leech. “Our liabilities, that is, the projected cost of providing future pensions, continue to outpace our projected asset growth. Accordingly, we are working with our sponsors, Ontario Teachers’ Federation and the Ontario government, to advise them on the various options for closing this gap at a reasonable cost.” read more

ISS invites policy input

Share this article and your comments with peers on social media Proxy advisory firm Institutional Shareholder Services Inc. (ISS) is calling for input to help develop its voting positions for the upcoming proxy season. ISS has launched its annual global policy formulation process by inviting its institutional investor clients, corporate issuers, and corporate governance market intermediaries, to participate in its 2013 proxy voting policy survey, which provides an opportunity to give views on key governance issues. CIBC chief executive Victor Dodig compensation down last year compared with 2018 Keywords Proxy voting Related news James Langton ISS unveils proxy voting guidelines for 2020 Facebook LinkedIn Twitter The survey period is open through August 17, and it will be supplemented by meeting with institutions, issuers and consultants to consider executive compensation issues. In October, it will issue draft policies for comment, with a view to finalizing them by November. “Combining the aggregate thinking of ISS’ diverse asset management and asset owner institutional client base with input from corporate issuers and other experts in the field, enriched with our own expertise, allows ISS to implement policy guidelines that strike the right balance between shareholder interests and business practicality,” said Dr. Martha Carter, ISS’ Head of Global Research. Last month, Canadian securities regulators launched a consultation on the possible regulation of proxy advisory firms, which are not currently subject to any regulatory oversight. That consultation is open for comment until August 20. ISS to boost Canadian board diversity benchmarks read more