Source = Ethiopian Airlines Group CEO Ethiopian Airlines, Mr. Tewolde GebreMariam, said, “Air transport being a vital component of the tourist appeal and the driving factor for economic growth in general, we have been serving our beloved continent for seven decades, offering convenient connectivity options to more than 52 African cities. Seychelles being Africa’s premier tourist destination, with the natural attractions of the archipelagos, we have now added a fifth weekly service to provide more options for passengers flying from any part of the world to the Seychelles and vice versa through our strategic hub at Addis Ababa. As per our growth strategy, vision 2025, we shall continue to increase our presence in Africa, so as to better promote and facilitate growth in the business and tourism sectors.”Ethiopian also offers special fares for tour packages to the major African tourist destinations such as Mombasa, Zanzibar, Kilimanjaro, Dar-Es-Salaam, Johannesburg, Maputo, Djibouti and Cairo.To take advantage of our tour packages, you may visit the nearest Ethiopian office or email at ETHolidays@ethiopianairlines.com About Ethiopian Ethiopian Airlines (Ethiopian) is the fastest growing Airline in Africa. In its seven decades of operation, Ethiopian has become one of the continent’s leading carriers, unrivalled in efficiency and operational success.Ethiopian commands the lion’s share of the pan-African passenger and cargo network operating the youngest and most modern fleet to 93 international destinations across five continents. Ethiopian fleet includes ultra-modern and environmentally friendly aircraft such as Airbus A350, Boeing 787, Boeing 777-300ER, Boeing 777-200LR, Boeing 777-200 Freighter, Bombardier Q-400 double cabin with an average fleet age of five years. In fact, Ethiopian is the first airline in Africa to own and operate these aircraft.Ethiopian is currently implementing a 15-year strategic plan called Vision 2025 that will see it become the leading aviation group in Africa with seven business centers: Ethiopian Domestic and Regional Airline; Ethiopian International Passenger Airline; Ethiopian Cargo; Ethiopian MRO; Ethiopian Aviation Academy; Ethiopian In-flight Catering Services; and Ethiopian Ground Service. Ethiopian is a multi-award winning airline registering an average growth of 25% in the past seven years. Ethiopian AirlinesEthiopian to increase flight frequency to SeychellesEthiopian Airlines, the fastest growing and most profitable African airline, is delighted to announce that it will add a 5th weekly flight to Seychelles as of 16th December 2016.
Source = Tourism Authority of Thailand Grand Palace to reopen to visitors from 1 November 2016Grand Palace to reopen to visitors from 1 November 2016As this is a Royal Palace, all visitors are expected to dress respectfully, and to be aware that Thailand is currently in an official period of mourning for His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej.Visitors should wear sombre-coloured attire as a mark of respect during this period when visiting the Palace:Male: a shirt or T-shirt, long dark coloured trousers or jeans (without any holes), and covered footwearFemale: blouse or T-shirt that covers the shoulders, long skirt or dress, and covered footwearThe Grand Palace is open every day from 08.00 – 16.00 Hrs., Tourists can enter at the Wiset Chaisri Gate as normal, except during royal ceremonies. The entrance fee includes access to the Temple of the Emerald Buddha or Wat Phra Kaeo, the Royal Thai Decorations and Coins Pavilion, and the Queen Sirikit Museum of Textiles. Tourism Authority of Thailandfor more information, visit
Source = Lufthansa Aisle to be turned into a catwalk on a flight to New YorkAisle to be turned into a catwalk on a flight to New YorkFashion and technology is the theme of the second Lufthansa FlyingLab on 8 February 2017. During the course of flight no. LH400 from Frankfurt to New York, passengers will be treated to two fashion shows and three expert talks, and they will also have the chance to test out a range of innovative wearable technologies. The target group are passengers on their way to New York Fashion Week, which starts on 9 February 2017.New York fashion designer Rubin Singer will present a selection of pieces from his women’s spring/summer collection 2017, as well as elements from his upcoming autumn/winter collection. This will be the first time a new designer collection has been shown at a height of 10,000 metres. “As a designer I’m always looking for new ways to showcase my designs,” says Rubin Singer. “I’m looking forward to glamourous, unique and simply unforgettable moments in the clouds.”For the show, the models will be turning the central aisle of the aircraft into a catwalk. And so that all the passengers have a good view of the models and can hear the presenter properly, wherever they happen to be sitting in the aircraft, Lufthansa is installing an in-flight conference system with six cameras. As the first airline worldwide to do so, Lufthansa will also be setting up live video stream on board which each guest will receive via the aircraft’s Wifi hotspot. To do this, all they need is a device capable of Wifi reception, such as a smartphone, tablet or laptop. The expert talks, each 20 minutes long, will be broadcast in the same way to every seat in the Boeing 747-8. Passengers on this nine-hour flight will also be given the chance to test out a range of fashion wearables, from bracelets through headphones to health trackers.The FlyingLab will be rounded off with a special fashion show put on by a Lufthansa crew. They will be showcasing the influence of fashion trends on flight attendants’ uniforms over the past 60 years. To fit in with this theme, the passengers will in fact be sitting in a jumbo jet that has been specially repainted in the Lufthansa livery design of the 1970s. “Our FlyingLab means that Fashion Week can get started before we even take off from Frankfurt. Our program for the event gives a clear demonstration of the way current events influence our visual appearance as well as fashion trends,” says Alexander Schlaubitz, Head of Marketing at Lufthansa German Airlines.The FlyingLab is an open innovation platform for the Lufthansa Airlines. “Passengers use the time during the flight more effectively with a FlyingLab and get into the right mood and frame of mind for when they arrive at their destination,” says Schlaubitz. Themes for the FlyingLabs are taken from current areas of technology, health and sustainability. The premiere for the FlyingLab was the theme “Virtual Reality” held on 1 July 2016 on a flight to Silicon Valley. A FlyingLab comprises two parts – on the one hand, talks or presentations and, on the other, product testing. Taking part doesn’t cost anything – passengers need only buy a ticket for the flight in question, and it doesn’t matter which booking class they are in. “A FlyingLab actively integrates the passengers into the current innovation considerations of the Lufthansa Group,” says Dr. Torsten Wingenter, Head of Digital Innovations. “Together with our partners, we are testing innovations on board and are thus gaining knowledge for further development”. Future plans also involve offering the FlyingLab platform and broadcasting technology to other companies for their innovation efforts, so that their guests can also prepare for an event with presentations and individual content on their journey.Digitalization plays an important role in all of the FlyingLabs. “In some industries it is taking effect more quickly and more manifestly than in others. In the world of fashion, it is not quite so apparent, yet fashion wearables make these developments tangible,” says Dr. Wingenter. Dr. Amanda J. Parkes, Chief of Technology and Research at Inkubator Manufacture NY will be speaking on board about advances in technology in the fashion industry. Heiko Hebig, responsible for Strategic Partnerships Northern Europe at Instagram, will highlight the significance of the fashion industry for their photo platform. Digital expert Maks Gioardano from the consultancy firm Kreait, takes a look ahead at coming developments in wearable technologies.The upper deck on flight LH400 will be used as a changing room and backstage area for the fashion shows. During the flight, passengers will be given the chance to get their hair done professionally by a Redken stylist so that they are perfectly prepared for their arrival in the fashion metropolis. Selected guests will enjoy an exclusive presentation of watches on 9 February in the Breitling flagship store on Madison Avenue.
Tourism sacrficed in Government cash grab says TTFThe Turnbull Government has jeopardised the growth of Australia’s visitor economy and put at risk the ability of the tourism sector to become one of the nation’s largest employment sectors by treating the sector as a cash cow.The Tourism & Transport Forum, Australia’s leading tourism and transport advocacy group, said the Government has handcuffed Tourism Australia at a time the nation’s visitor economy is on the verge of becoming a jobs and wealth-generating juggernaut.“As the national economy continues to transition from the end of the mining boom to a diversified services-based economy, investing in tourism and transport as the key growth areas of the future should have been a no-brainer,” TTF Chief Executive, Margy Osmond, said.“However, instead of recognising the tourism sector as the next super-growth sector, the Government has ripped $35 million out of Tourism Australia over the next four years, and in the process put at immediate risk tourism jobs right across the country – jobs that are dependent on the hundreds of thousands of visitors that come to our shores off the back of Tourism Australia’s destination marketing.“The harsh reality is that we simply cannot grow the visitor economy to its full potential in the face of extraordinary competition from other markets when the budget of our primary marketing vehicle has been so drastically reduced.”In more bad news for the sector, visa application charges will now be indexed in line with the CPI.“Australia is now one of the most expensive countries in the world to obtain a visa for. This visa increase is an extremely short-sighted move that will make it even more expensive for international tourists to come to Australia,” Ms Osmond said.“The task of competing against the multitude of other destinations for the international tourist dollar has just become a whole lot harder.”Ms Osmond said the highlight of the 2017-18 Federal Budget for the tourism and transport sectors was undoubtedly the $5.3 billion over ten years to begin construction of the long-awaited Western Sydney Airport.“Securing funding to build the Western Sydney Airport has been at the top of TTF’s list for many years now, and we are very pleased to see the Turnbull Government has finally made a rock-solid commitment to get it off the ground,” Ms Osmond said.“The benefit of the Western Sydney Airport to the region’s visitor economy cannot be overstated – it will be a massive economic engine that will drive investment and jobs growth through the roof.“However, it is disappointing the Government has failed to recognise the urgent need for rail access from the airport to the Sydney CBD as a critical piece of infrastructure that will benefit the NSW’s visitor economy and support the long-term development of Western Sydney.”Ms Osmond said the Government has missed a critical opportunity to fund projects that improve national productivity and the liveability of our cities, including the Melbourne Airport Rail Link and Brisbane’s Cross River Rail.“Overall, this Budget is a disappointment to the visitor economy. We welcome the announced spending on roads, rail and airports, which will provide a boost for domestic tourism. However, our concern is that the cut to Tourism Australia funding and the increase in visa fees will reduce the international competitiveness of Australia and seriously jeopardise the potential of the sector to boost Australia’s growth and create jobs.” Tourism & Transport ForumSource = Tourism & Transport Forum
Club Med unveils refreshed Maldives suites with new services and perks for a romantic and unforgettable escapeClub Med relaunches Manta Exclusive Space at Club Med Kani, MaldivesClub Med has relaunched their Manta exclusive space in Club Med Kani, Maldives, to offer the ideal couple’s getaway. Located on the island of Kanifinolhu, the luxury space features 75 overwater suites, and is a refined private extension of the existing Club Med Kani with a range of exclusive and personalized new services for Manta guests. Surrounded by aquamarine waters, white sandy beaches, abundant marine life and endless sunshine – the natural beauty of the Maldives creates a slice of paradise on earth. Located in the northern Atolls, the Manta exclusive space is about 35 minutes away via boat ride from Ibrahim Nasir International Airport in Malé.New services, Must-Try Experiences in paradiseGuests are pampered the moment they arrive to the Manta exclusive space, with exclusive VIP check-in at the Manta Concierge lounge, priority reservations at the Kandu Specialty Restaurant, exclusive cocktails by the beach, weekly private snorkelling tours, and more. Designed with romance and seclusion in mind, Manta guests will experience the perfect union of exclusivity and excitement. Source = Club Med Kani, Maldives Unrestricted access to all facilities and amenities of the connecting Club Med KaniGuests have the option to enjoy adventure, watersports, and a vibrant atmosphere, with full access to the wide range of activities available at Club Med Kani. Participate in land and water sports such as snorkelling, windsurfing, flyboarding*, surfing*, yoga, beach volleyball and more, as well as lively evening entertainment and themed dinners for a full day of fun and revelry at the endless turquoise playground. Breakfast in the overwater suitesGuest in the Manta exclusive space can take in the glorious lagoons views from the privacy of their overwater suite whilst enjoying breakfast delivered to their suite. 4 different cuisines are available (Continental, Chinese, Japanese, and Korean) for a delectable start to the day. NEW – An exclusive beachfront and loungeRetreat to a private beach haven specially built for Manta guests for peaceful unwinding and recharging. Here, dedicated waiters ensure that drinks and snacks are served to guests while they recline and relax on the sunbeds. Complimentary access to the main facilities* of Finolhu VillasFor extra indulgence, Manta guests can also enjoy complimentary day access to the Finolhu Villas, Club Med’s flagship resort,, just five minute speedboat ride away. Lounge by the poolside, the beach or enjoy the sophisticated ambience of the main bar at Finolhu Villas. Daily champagne at sunsetRaise a toast to every breathtaking sunset with your loved one, and celebrate the good life in the Maldives with complimentary champagne served at the Manta lounge from 6pm to 11pm daily.
Finnair Awarded APEX Five Star Global Airline RatingFinnair Awarded APEX Five Star Global Airline Rating Finnair Regional Manager Australia, New Zealand & New Caledonia, Arnaud Michelin said Finnair was one of 470 passenger rated airlines through to the end of July 2018.The ratings are based entirely on verified feedback from passengers who were validated against confirmed itineraries and geo-location on mobile devices.This is the first time Finnair has received a five-star rating from the APEX organisation and Mr Michelin confirmed only 9% of airlines worldwide received sufficient votes for the prestigious five-star status in 2019.“We are proud and grateful of this recognition from our customers,” said Finnair Senior Vice President of Customer Experience, Piia Karhu.“Customer satisfaction is a team effort that is created every day, with every single encounter customers have with us – be it onboard, at the airport, with our call centres or through our digital channels”, said Ms Karhu.“We have placed a strong focus on providing a personal customer service experience, and we have also rolled out several actions to improve the overall customer experience. It’s great to see this is recognised by our customers.”Among the many development activities during this year, Finnair has renewed its business class service concept, introduced new signature menu collaborations with top chefs and renewed its meal service for long-haul economy class.Mr Michelin said Finnair was also currently rolling out the best-in-market internet connectivity to its European Airbus fleet, and its mobile application had been downloaded more than a million times.Finnair offers excellent connections from Australia with oneworld partners to 19 destinations in Asia and seven in the Americas plus more than 100 Europe destinations.Finnair has been named Best International Airline – Offline in the prestigious AFTA National Travel Industry Awards for the past six years from 2013 to 2018. FinnairBook FlightsSource = Finnair
The phenomenon of Small Ship cruising while the 5-masted Wind Surf accommodates 310 guests it feels like your own private yacht.Windstar’s Mediterranean Cruise Famil for TravelManagersA taste of the jet set life in St Tropez, a visit to Monte Carlo’s Grand Casino and time ashore in some of the most charming ports in the Mediterranean: these were among the highlights for two of TravelManagers’ personal travel managers (PTMs) during a nine-day small ship famil with Windstar Cruises from Rome to Nice.Kathy Millett, who is representative for Claremont, WA, compared the famil experience to sailing through a series of beautiful postcards.“Our late-night departure from Monaco was just one example of the many memorable moments,” she explains. “We were treated to a seafood barbecue on the top deck, with the band playing and the staff leading the ‘line dancing’. There were lights twinkling all around the harbour and we had the best party in town on board, despite being the only cruise ship in harbour, among all the super yachts.”Millett says she relished the opportunity to experience this amazing cruise product and the spectacular destinations they visited along the way.“Experiencing Windstar for myself has totally changed the way I will market it to my clients,” she explains. “Being able to visit and explore the coastlines of Italy and France from the water has completely changed my perception.”The group’s cruise aboard Windstar’s Wind Surf vessel, which accommodates a total of just 310 guests cared for by 201 attentive crew members, departed from Rome, calling first at Portoferraio on the island of Elba. From here, they cruised to the charming coastal Italian villages of Portovenere and Portofino, before continuing to several ports on the French Riviera.“The shore excursions were excellent,” Millett enthuses. “My favourite was to the village of Eze and the Rothschild Villa in Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat when we were tied up in Monte Carlo. We had a superb guide and plenty of time to explore on your own.”TravelManagers’ other participant on the famil was Vicki O’Dea, who is representative for Lane Cove, NSW. Like Millett, O’Dea says the cruise was something she had waited a long time to experience, and she is looking forward to passing on her first-hand tips and ideas to interested clients.“It’s the finer details that will add to my clients’ enjoyment of their holiday, such as the ability to make a reservation to dine at the ship’s exclusive Stella Bistro so as not to miss out on this amazing dining experience,” she explains.TravelManagers’ Executive General Manager, Michael Gazal, says the company sees considerable value in its PTMs investing their time in famils such as this one.“We have a network of 550 PTMs who are constantly sharing ideas and experiences with their colleagues,” he explains, “so the benefits of experience and knowledge from participating in such a famil are distributed across the entire network, and eventually, to all of our PTMs clients.”For more information or to speak to someone confidentially about TravelManagers please contact Suzanne Laister on 1800 019 599.About TravelManagersTravelManagers operates in all Australian States and is a wholly owned subsidiary of House of Travel, Australasia’s largest independent travel company which has a forecast turnover of $1.8 billion for 2018. TravelManagers is a sister company to Hoot Holidays, also owned by House of Travel, and has more than 540 personal travel managers throughout Australia with a dedicated support team at the company’s national partnership office in Sydney. TravelManagers places all customer money in a dedicated and audited Client Trust Account which is separate from the general business accounts, ensuring client funds are secure and only used for client purchases. Source = TravelManagers
Nikolina Angelkova, Tourism Minister of Bulgaria, announced that Bollywood actor-director Ajay Devgan has agreed to lend support to tourism in Bulgaria. After announcing Bulgaria as the location earlier this year for the ‘Shivaay’ shoot, Devgan is all set to promote the country’s tourism. He will be taking part in local activities and will shoot promotional video when he returns next year to shoot his directorial feature ‘Shivaay’. The promotional video will be shown in India, undoubtedly to encourage other filmmakers to set their films in Bulgaria.The actor-director confirmed the news saying, “The Bulgarian Tourism Ministry has been really supportive to me and my team. To show our appreciation, I will be lending a helping hand to promote Bulgarian tourism. It’s a great initiative.”Devgn and his team had discovered the exotic country to be the most apt locale for their shoot earlier this year, which is slated to start sometime soon.
With an aim to grow its presence and cater to the increasing travel demand from travellers, Ezeego1 launched a new franchise store in Surat, Gujarat. The outlet will act as a one-stop-shop for all travel needs and provide services like flight tickets, hotel accommodation, car rentals, holiday packages, rail, cruise, bus, sightseeing, visa and Insurance, both online and offline.Commenting on this, Neelu Singh, CEO & Director, Ezeego1, said, “We are happy to announce the launch of our franchisee-owned and operated in Surat, an important source market for several destinations. Considering that a large number of travellers contributing to the domestic and international travel market are from Gujarat, there is immense opportunity to tap and gain a stronghold in this market. We also plan to expand our franchise network to other cities in West India, for deeper market penetration.”The store will also offer only-veg tours for travellers who have a vegetarian or Jain food preference. Travellers can choose from an array of group tour summer packages to domestic destinations like Ladakh, Andaman, Sikkim, Himachal, Goa and Kashmir and international destinations like Europe, South Africa, Dubai, Thailand, Mauritius, Hong Kong, Singapore, amongst others.
July 17, 2013 422 Views Share “”Bank of America””:https://www.bankofamerica.com/ reported a major boost in profits for the second quarter despite a drop in mortgage banking income.[IMAGE]According to its quarterly earnings report, BofA pulled in approximately $4.0 billion in Q2, an increase of 63 percent over the $2.5 billion recorded for Q2 2012. Last quarter’s results “”were driven by year-over-year improvements in net interest income, investment and brokerage income, investment banking fees, sales and trading revenue, equity investment income and credit quality as well as expense reductions,”” the bank said.However, those gains were partially offset by the absence of year-ago gains related to liability management actions and lower mortgage banking income.On the origination side, the bank funded $26.8 billion in residential home loans and home equity loans, up 7 percent over the first quarter and 41 percent over the same quarter last year. First-lien mortgage production alone totaled about $25 billion, up 40 percent year-over-year.Approximately 83 percent of funded first mortgages were refinances, while 17 percent were for home purchases, BofA said.Despite the increase in production, BofA’s Consumer Real Estate Services division reported a net loss of $937 million compared to a loss of $744 million in Q2 2012. Noninterest income was $1.4 billion, a decrease of $400 million from the prior year, “”primarily due to lower servicing income driven by a decline in the size of the servicing portfolio.”” Meanwhile, core production revenue saw a decline of $42 million to an estimated $860 million as lower margins offset higher originations.On the brighter side, BofA was able to set aside less for representations and warranties–a provision of $197 million compared to last year’s $395 million. in Origination Mortgage Banking Profits Decline at BofA Despite Rising Originations Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Bank of America Investors Lenders & Servicers Profits Quarterly Earnings Service Providers 2013-07-17 Tory Barringer
in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicing Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Investors Lenders & Servicers Movers & Shakers Processing Service Providers 2013-08-28 Tory Barringer New,Southwest Bank SVP Elected as Secretary/Treasurer for Texas MBA “”Southwest Bank’s””:https://www.southwestbank.com/ own Tom Tallent has been elected as secretary/treasurer of the “”Texas Mortgage Bankers Association””:https://www.texasmba.org/ (TMBA) for the 2013-2014 term, the company announced.[IMAGE][COLUMN_BREAK]Tallent serves as SVP and credit manager for Southwest Bank’s Dallas-based Mortgage Warehouse Lending team. In that role, he manages program credit and operational risk. Prior to joining the bank, he served as VP of servicing acquisitions, escalations, and investor relations at Colonial Savings, F.A. Tallent served on TMBA’s board of directors for three years before his nomination. He is also a two-term past president of the Fort Worth Mortgage Bankers Association and is recognized by the national association as an Accredited Mortgage Professional.Outside of the industry, he is an active volunteer in his community, having served two terms on his local city council as well as on the boards of his local library and chamber of commerce. Share August 28, 2013 489 Views
in Daily Dose, Headlines, News, Origination Nonprime Arena Gains Another Competitor Carrington Credit Standards FICO Subprime Wells Fargo 2014-03-24 Tory Barringer In an effort to give greater attention to what the company says is an “underserved” market, Carrington Mortgage Services announced Monday its intent to put a tighter focus on borrowers with credit scores in the sub-640 range.According to a company release, Carrington has lowered its minimum credit requirements to a FICO score of 550 and expanded its guidelines on certain loan programs under the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), Veterans Affairs (VA), and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), extending eligibility to more property types and reducing overlays.According to the company, about one-third of consumers have a FICO score below 650, which sits just above the typical “subprime” threshold of 640. While obtaining financing is particularly difficult for this group—especially at a time when the average FHA purchase loan has a FICO score of 686, according to Ellie Mae—Carrington says it is “uniquely equipped to handle” the challenge.“Effectively meeting the needs of clients in the underserved market requires the ability to both originate qualify loans and appropriately service them after the fact,” said Ray Brousseau, EVP of Carrington Mortgage Services’ Mortgage Lending Division. “Both Carrington’s lending platform and specialty servicing business were created to serve this particular market segment. That uniquely positions us as the lender of choice for this population of borrowers, and the mortgage brokers and real estate agents who work for them.”While the lender plans to continue providing products and support to borrowers at all ranges of the credit spectrum through its retail lending division, Carrington also announced it will eliminate conventional and jumbo loans from its wholesale product line effective April 1. In addition, acceptance of wholesale submissions with FICO scores above 680 will be limited.According to the release, “The company feels strongly that this move is necessary for appropriately allocating its resources to provide optimum support to borrowers in the underserved market.”Carrington’s announcement comes at a time when lenders are exploring the idea of opening up lending to a greater spectrum of credit scores. In February, Reuters reported Wells Fargo may start working with scores as low 600; that report was followed by a caution from Moody’s Investor Service that special servicers may soon seek to augment their margins by moving into subprime territory.In a phone call, however, Brousseau said the stereotypical “subprime” characterization depicted in the media—risky, irresponsible loans with no document requirements or income verification—isn’t a fair label for Carrington’s new offerings, which will require full documentation and involve a heavy degree of quality control.“The reality is that what we’re doing here is an agency-backed loan. These are all FHA originations; they meet agency guidelines; they’re QM,” he said.The latest news hasn’t escaped the attention of commentators who maintain risky lending activity is still continuing at a dangerous pace. In a press call discussing the group’s most recent National Mortgage Risk Index, American Enterprise Institute resident fellow Edward Pinto discussed the announcement, warning that loans in the range Carrington is getting into are considered “extremely risky mortgage[s] based on past history.”“These loans, based on our risk matrix, have a greater than one in three chance of defaulting under stress,” Pinto said.Again, Brousseau argues the characterization is inaccurate.“It’s not the kind of origination that can be originated by anyone and serviced by anyone,” he said. “We’re a very diversified firm, [and] we have a specialty servicer that’s part of the organization. It’s not just about originating the loan, but it’s originating the loan and making sure that client is properly serviced. I think that’s an important characteristic.” March 24, 2014 484 Views Share
Drawing on a quote from economist Herbert Stein, who once said that “If something cannot go on forever, it will stop,” Fairholme Funds CEO Bruce Berkowitz stated in his annual letter to shareholders on Wednesday that he believes the sweeping of GSE profits into the U.S. Department of Treasury, aka the Net Worth Sweep, will stop and that a “common sense solution” will prevail.Berkowitz made clear on Wednesday that his intention is not to eliminate Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, namely because the two Enterprises are invaluable to the economy, resuscitating the economy in 2008 by continuing to provide liquidity at a time when credit markets were frozen. Not only that, he said, taxpayers own nearly 80 percent of the GSEs—and that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have provided a combined $7 trillion in liquidity to the mortgage market since 2009.“Shareholders simply request that the Treasury Department respect the capital structure of each company, respect the economic bundle of rights associated with our securities, and respect the law setting forth the rules of a conservatorship as decreed by Congress,” Berkowitz wrote. He said he believes that when the Net Worth Sweep is halted, “Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will transform into low-risk, public utilities with regulated rates of return, just like your local electric company.”Fairholme Funds, a Florida-based mutual fund that is one of the largest investors in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, sued the government in July 2013 over the sweeping of GSE profits into Treasury— a practice which began in August 2012 after an amendment to the original 2008 bailout agreement. The year 2012 was the first year of profitability for the GSEs after the bailout. The plaintiffs in the suit claim that sweeping of GSE profits equates to taking private property for public use without “just compensation,” a practice forbidden by the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.Berkowitz said in the shareholder letter on Wednesday that “Treasury’s decision to usurp all of the profits from each company in perpetuity (the so-called ‘Net Worth Sweep’) improved the federal budget deficit in an election year and avoided protracted debt ceiling negotiations with Congressional Republicans.”A judge in the U.S. District Court of the District of Columbia dismissed Fairholme’s suit and a similar suit by hedge fund Perry Capital in September 2014, but a judge in the federal claims court revived Fairholme’s suit in January 2015. Fairholme Funds Fannie Mae Freddie Mac GSE Net Worth Sweep 2016-02-03 Seth Welborn February 3, 2016 567 Views in Government, Headlines, News Fairholme Still Urging GSE Net Worth Sweep to End Share
in Headlines, News, Servicing Data Ocwen Q4 2016 Servicing 2017-02-22 Staff Writer February 22, 2017 668 Views Ocwen Financial released their operating results for Q4 and full year 2016 on Wednesday. In Q4 2016, Ocwen’s servicing segment recorded $43.3 million in pre-tax income, a gain over the previous quarter by $10.1 million. However, for 2016 as a whole, the servicing segment recorded a $6.5 million loss, while the company as a whole recorded a net loss of $10.4 million. Full year net loss equaled $199.6 million. Though the servicer recorded losses, 2016 saw gains for the company who saw a net loss of $246.7 million in 2015.The losses can be partly attributed to the fact that at the end of Q4 2016, Ocwen had not yet payed various legal and settlement amounts, which total approximately $68 million. For Q4 2016, Ocwen posted a net loss of $10.2 million company-wide.Overall, the servicer’s revenue was $1.4 billion for 2016. The company generated $475 million of cash flows from operating activities in 2016, ending the year with $257 million of cash.Delinquencies on Ocwen’s books decreased from 11.4 percent to 11.2 percent between Q3 and Q4 2016. The company’s reverse mortgage portfolio was worth $101.1 million by the end of the year. The originated $4.2 billion in forward mortgage loans and $825.5 million in reverse mortgages.“Not only did we deliver significantly improved financial performance versus the first half of the year, we continued our industry leadership in helping struggling families remain in their homes through responsible loan modifications,” said Ron Faris, President and CEO of Ocwen. “We also refinanced our corporate debt, improved our cost structure, and raised our servicer ratings and rankings. In addition, we continued to make progress towards resolving our major legacy legal and regulatory issues; but more progress is needed for us to complete our stabilization process.”As DS News reported on Friday, Ocwen recently reached a settlement with the State of California Department of Business Oversight that restores the company’s ability to acquire servicing rights in the state.With the restriction in California lifted, Ocwen is partnering with NID Housing Counseling Agency and the NAACP to assist customers who are struggling to pay their mortgage at an event on February 25 in Los Angeles.Jill Showell, SVP of Government and Community Relations at Ocwen said, “NID and the NAACP share our belief that homeownership is the foundation of strong communities, and we are proud to be working together to bring relief to struggling borrowers in the Los Angeles area.”Customers will be able to meet with Ocwen Home Retention Agents and NID housing counselors to discuss loan modification options. Ocwen Partners with NID and NAACP, Releases Year-end Data Share
Mexico: Taco lovers cry foul over restaurants’ gua … From the pages of Produce Business UKCan a brash new initiative change the eating habits of young children across the UK?ITV and Veg Power are teaming up on a bold advertising campaign called Eat Them To Defeat Them that debuts tonight with a specially made spot during Coronation Street (7:30 p.m.) and News At Ten in hopes of inspiring kids to eat more healthy and tackle childhood obesity.“This campaign will reach millions of parents and children through our biggest and most popular shows, and it is unlike anything that has gone before,” says ITV chief executive Carolyn McCall. The campaign will be seen on some of its biggest programmes. “We’re proud to use the power of TV to take a new, bold and brave approach to encouraging kids to eat more vegetables.”The commercial is unique, with vegetables rising up from the ground and raining down on “grown ups.” For years, the ad says, those parents have been able to keep “the veg invasion at bay.” But needing help, adults turn to their children, who stand up and harness and eat the angry-but-healthy foods. “You’re going down peas!” one girl exclaims. “It’s crunch time!” another child says. “This campaign is brave, fun and engaging,” says Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall, food writer and broadcaster said. “It will inspire kids to enjoy the huge range of tastes, textures and colors that the brilliant world of veg has to offer.”The campaign is being funded by a unique alliance of supermarkets and brands — Aldi, Asda, Birds Eye, Co-op, Iceland, Lidl, Marks & Spencer, Morrisons, Ocado, Sainsbury’s, Tesco and Waitrose — which are all coming together to help consumers live healthier lives. According to a Veg Facts study by The Food Foundation, 96 percent of teenagers and 80 percent of primary school-age children don’t eat enough vegetables. The UK ranks 21st of 28 in the European Union for fresh vegetable consumption.“With the aim of using ‘advertising for good’ and engaging and entertaining kids rather than using the well-worn health message, we can really shift the dial and hope to see long-lasting behavior change,” says Baroness Rosie Boycott, Chair of Veg Power and trustee of The Food Foundation. “Having all the major retailers will help us achieve huge reach and impact.” Veg Power is born out of the work of The Food Foundation and Peas Please. It aims to harness the creative minds of advertising and marketing to make engaging and powerful content aimed at changing our perception of vegetables in order to encourage our kids to eat more veg.In a YouGov Plc. survey done with adults in 2014, with field work undertaken earlier this month, parents admitted getting kids to eat more veg was a struggle.Nearly half of parents (48%) agree that it can be a battle to get kids to eat more veg. 51.7% of parents have to tell their kids to finish their veg. 44% of children will remove at least some, if not all, of the salad from a burger. 43% of adults say their children are fussier eaters than when they were children. The Veg Power fund hopes to use positive messages of vitality, vibrancy and taste to give vegetables a modern appeal. BayWa AG’s head of global produce to step down nex … You might also be interested in January 28 , 2019 Chile: Fruit exports contract in H1 as leading com … Leading fruit breeders form alliance to fight risi …
Australia: Queensland govt boosts TR4 funding, cal … Colombian authorities have officially confirmed that the banana disease Fusarium Wilt tropical race IV (TR4) is present in the country.Colombian Agricultural Institute (ICA) general manager Deyanira Barrero León confirmed the news during a press conference on Thursday afternoon.”We are declaring a national emergency, despite the disease [only] being confirmed in La Guajira, in order to speed up the process of controlling the disease,” Barrero León said.She emphasized that banana exports would continue, as the fruit can still be consumed normally and TR4 – also known as Panama disease tropical race IV – does not affect human health. ICA is working together with banana associations Augura and ASBAMA to ensure the disease can be detected as quickly as possible if it spreads.”Declararemos la emergencia nacional, a pesar que se ha confirmado la presencia de la enfermedad en La Guajira, con el fin de agilizar los procesos de contención de la enfermedad”, manifestó @deyabarrerol, gerente general del @ICACOLOMBIA. pic.twitter.com/Xmo1Mq8xnU— ICA Colombia (@ICACOLOMBIA) August 8, 2019 U.S. judge denies Chiquita’s request to be let out … August 08 , 2019 Sigatoka risk greatly increased by climate change, … Pioneering Dutch substrate banana production proje … You might also be interested in
President Donald J Trump of the United States of America is not happy, Jan.It’s understandable. It would be safe to assume that where you work an ‘Executive Order’ is company ‘law’, but in the US the President’s Executive Orders are easily overturned by the real law. And so it goes, in another blow to President Trump’s initiatives to prevent citizens from certain countries entering the USA, his second Executive Order in the matter (EO-2), due to be implemented yesterday (16 March) has been kyboshed by a Hawaiian judge.Judge Derrick Watson ruled yesterday that EO-2 was clearly an anti-Muslim order and, as such, and like EO-1, breaches the First Amendment, decreeing that ” … a reasonable, objective observer – enlightened by the specific historical context, contemporaneous public statements, and specific sequence of events leading to its issuance – would conclude that the Executive Order was issued with a purpose to disfavour a particular religion”. “The illogic of the Government’s contentions is palpable … The notion that one can demonstrate animus toward any group of people only by targeting all of them at once is fundamentally flawed,” he said.Issuing a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO), concluding that EO-2 was unconstitutional, Judge Watson has effectively effected a nationwide ban on the latest ban … and the US Justice Department and President Trump are off to appeal, again! US Visa
The Cardinals’ slow 1-4 start on the heels of last year’s5-11 season has fans starting to question head coach KenWhisenhunt. However, starting wideout Larry Fitzgerald believes theteam’s struggles aren’t Whisenhunt’s fault. “I think coach Whisenhunt is taking to much of a bad wrapfor things that have happened this season,” Fitzgeraldsaid. “At the end of the day he’s not catching any passes,he’s not making any blocks he’s not tackling anybody. Theonus has to fall on the players and right now the playersare not getting it done so we have to be able to get outthere and execute better.” Comments Share Top Stories What an MLB source said about the D-backs’ trade haul for Greinke Nevada officials reach out to D-backs on potential relocation D-backs president Derrick Hall: Franchise ‘still focused on Arizona’ Cardinals expect improving Murphy to contribute right away Fitzgerald knows the team, himself included, hasn’tperformed well this season. The pro bowler has compiled427 yards and only two touchdowns, and he’s been kept outof the end zone the last two games.“I just know that the men in this room, we have resolve wehave ultimate confidence in our abilities,” Fitzgeraldsaid, “but we haven’t performed to the level were capableof playing yet.” The Cardinals aren’t performing horribly, ranking in themiddle of the pack in offense and defense, but the teamknows they have to get better to be a playoff team. Fitzgerald and the Cardinals will get a chance to improveon the rankings Sunday against the Steelers, Fitz says theteam has to take the game one play at a time. “We just got to get going in the right direction, put acouple good plays together, put a couple good seriestogether, put a couple good quarters and you know put agood game together,” Fitzgerald said. “That’s how ithappens one play at a time and we have got to take it thatway.”
“It’s our job to get the players on our team to playbetter, and that’s what we’re going to do and we’reexcited about that.”There’s a great chance that the Cardinals will go into the2012 season with Kolb and Skelton as the only experiencedquarterbacks on the roster. Kolb got a huge contractbefore last season and Skelton led the Cards to sixvictories in the second half of the season. Does thatmean without Manning in the mix, that this job is up forgrabs? “There’s always competition, at any position and I don’tthink that you can ever say ‘this guy is going to be theguy’,” Whisenhunt explained. “We’re always opening it upto let other guys compete for spots, and the best playersare going to play.” Sounds like the making of a quarterback showdown inFlagstaff this August to me.Stay tuned. Will the talk surrounding the Arizona Cardinalsquarterback position ever end?After the 2010 season, the upgrading of the position wasdiscussed daily. Would John Skelton ascend to be thestarter? Would the Cardinals draft Blaine Gabbert? Woulda veteran like Kevin Kolb or Matt Hasselbeck be broughtin?We know how it shook out: the Cardinals traded for Kolband he and Skelton both showed glimpses of promise in an8-8 campaign. Comments Share Top Stories Nevada officials reach out to D-backs on potential relocation D-backs president Derrick Hall: Franchise ‘still focused on Arizona’ Here we are a year later, and the questions about thequarterback position remain. They’re a little different,but they’re still around. Will Kolb be the starter?Will Skelton take over? Will the Cardinals pursue PeytonManning if he becomes available?Arizona GM Rod Graves and head coach Ken Whisenhunt joinedDoug and Wolf Thursday for Newsmakers Week and addressedthat very position.“At all positions, we try to maintain flexibility and theability to take a look at any free agent out on the marketthat we feel has the ability to help our football team,”Graves said. OK, so that’s not exactly an invitation for Cardinal fansto start saving money for red #18 jerseys, but Graves andall NFL execs operate in a shroud of ambiguity when itcomes to players under contract.Whisenhunt did speak more specifically, but about his ownquarterbacks. “We’re in a heck of a lot better position at thequarterback position right now than we were a year agotoday,” he said. “We’ve got two guys that we feel canplay. They’ve shown at times that they can do things verywell. They’ve shown at times, they’re knuckleheads. What an MLB source said about the D-backs’ trade haul for Greinke Cardinals expect improving Murphy to contribute right away
In the Valley, three of our four professional sports teams — the Phoenix Suns, Arizona Cardinals and Phoenix (now Arizona) Coyotes — came very, very close to making the playoffs in their respective leagues in their most recent full seasons.We also have a team, the Arizona Rattlers, that is the two-time defending champion in its league, and another, the Phoenix Mercury, that made the playoffs last year and now has a chance to set the WNBA record for most wins in a season. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires – / 16 On Saturday, Aug. 9 — a day when the Cardinals, Mercury and Arizona Diamondbacks all notched a win — we asked in our Sanderson Ford Poll Question of the Day which team in the Valley deserves the title of “the best.”With 46 percent of the vote, the Cardinals were chosen by 189 of the 414 participants, earning them the title of the best in town. It helps that the football club is coming off a 10-6 season and looks like it has improved its depth at many positions going into the 2014 season. It also doesn’t hurt that the team blew out Houston 32-0 in its preseason opener Saturday.The second-most popular poll answer was the Phoenix Mercury, who earned 25 percent of all votes (102 people total). The Mercury improved to 26-4 on Saturday and has four games left to try to beat or tie the WNBA record of 28 wins in a season.The Rattlers came in third in the poll with 19 percent (79 voters). The Arena Football club set a league record this season by winning its first 15 games. The Rattlers finished the season 16-3, and they host the San Jose SaberCats on Sunday for a chance to return to the ArenaBowl.The last option on the poll was the Suns, who earned 11 percent of the vote (44 people total). The team surprised just about everybody by going 48-34 and narrowly missing the NBA Playoffs in 2013-14. Although the Suns were much improved last season and should be in good shape in the year to come, it looks like they still have a ways to go before fans are ready to call them the best in town. 0 Comments Share Top Stories The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo
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