By Dialogo October 17, 2011 The United Nations aims to cut back its peacekeeping force in Haiti this year as the number of blue-helmet troops around the world hits a record of more than 120,000, officials indicated on October 13. The new head of UN peacekeeping, Herve Ladsous, said cutback was not linked to the sexual assault and cholera scandals that have hit the Haiti mission, known as MINUSTAH, this year. The UN Security Council is to approve an extension of the MINUSTAH mandate. The United Nations sent a “surge” of about 3,000 specialist engineering troops to Haiti after the January, 2010 earthquake which killed more than 200,000 people. “We believe that it should be possible to reduce, to come back to the levels of MINUSTAH before the earthquake,” Ladsous told a press conference. At the end of August there were about 8,700 troops from 18 countries in the mission, 3,500 police and 500 civilian personnel. UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has recommended reducing this by about 2,750 over the next 12 months. “In general I think there is a desire from the government of Haiti to retain MINUSTAH,” Ladsous said, quoting one survey which said 60 percent of the population wants to keep the mission. Ladsous said there were now more than 120,000 peacekeepers around the world, including about 98,000 uniformed troops. “We are at about the highest level ever,” the Frenchman added. “It is true that we have to cut back where we can,” he said. “Of course we are going to reduce numbers where we can, and of course costs.” UN peacekeeping has an annual budget of about $8 billion and the Haiti mission alone will cost about $800 million in the current financial year.
4SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr As the first session of the 114th Congress enters its final week, CUNA Chief Advocacy Officer Ryan Donovan highlighted some of his trade association’s successes over the last year, while adding that much work remains to be done going forward.The U.S. Congress is expected to vote on a long-term government funding bill this week, and while CUNA is hopeful that regulatory relief provisions will be included, it looks increasingly pessimistic.“We continue to hope that it will include some of the remaining regulatory relief priorities, but we are in the final hours before we expect leaders to file the bill and our confidence is lower than it was just a week ago,” Donovan said. “While there appears to be broad support for provisions that are intended to help credit unions and small banks, such support does not exist for legislation intended to improve Dodd-Frank or impact larger financial institutions. There also seems to be a reluctance to separate the credit union and small bank provisions from the other financial services provisions.”. continue reading »
The artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning sector is poised for explosive growth in the U.S. and worldwide.In fact, research from McKinsey has found 45 percent of all work activities globally potentially could be automated by adapting currently demonstrated technology – and some 80 percent of that could be implemented with existing machine learning capabilities.So what does this mean for credit unions, and how will machine learning impact – and improve – the member experience going forward?According to Phong Q. Rock, Sr. VP, corporate strategy and business development for Feedzai, more than any other technology, today’s machine learning solutions are able to transform the consumer experience for credit union members – across the entire member lifecycle.Here are six ways members stand to benefit: continue reading » 15SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr
The US central bank rolled out a major policy change on Thursday that gives greater weight to its mission of maximizing employment for the benefit of lower income families, while ratcheting back its emphasis on fighting inflation.Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said the aim is to correct the “shortfalls” in achieving the Fed’s full employment goal while recognizing that with changes in the global economy, a tight job market does not necessarily drive prices higher.In practice, the change has no impact in the near-term but will keep borrowing rates low for much longer than in prior economic expansions — something President Donald Trump has loudly demanded, though for more political reasons. “This change may appear subtle, but it reflects our view that a robust job market can be sustained without causing an outbreak of inflation,” he told the virtual conference.Powell said the goal now is “to achieve inflation that averages two percent over time,” although he stressed that would not be tied “to a particular mathematical formula.”Adam Posen, former policymaker at the Bank of England, called the update “superb” and long overdue.Powell “did a great job of stressing that this is a reaction to the changing economy was not a change in the goals of the Fed,” Posen, head of the Peterson Institute for International Economics, told reporters.High unemployment for yearsBut Kathy Bostjancic of Oxford Economics said the move “largely just codifies” current Fed policy.”Fed officials have been very concerned about the severe damage to the labor market and the desire to swiftly return the unemployment rate back to its pre-COVID level,” she said in an analysis.Prior to the coronavirus pandemic, the US unemployment rate had hovered near 50-year lows at 3.5 percent, which brought many people back into the workforce as firms struggled to fill open positions.The Fed chief grew passionate as he described hearing low-income workers explain the dramatic impact of more jobs.”It was just riveting… to hear them talking about what a tight labor market means in their communities,” he said of one of the many “Fed Listens” outreach events. Responding to questions after the video speech, Powell sounded optimistic about the recovery from the coronavirus, as well as a note of caution.The pandemic hit what was a solid economy like a natural disaster, he said, noting that “there’s is still a healthy economy under here, except for this area that’s been directly affected by COVID.”But millions of workers in travel, hotels and restaurants have been directly impacted, which means “a couple of years of… relatively high unemployment.”People in those industries are “really going to struggle to find work” and, “We need to support them.”But, as he has repeatedly stated, this will “take support from Congress” with programs focused on education, training and healthcare.”It’s about all the things that enable people to get into the labor force and stay there and progress in their careers,” Powell said.Topics : “This change reflects our appreciation for the benefits of a strong labor market, particularly for many in low- and moderate-income communities,” Powell said in a speech unveiling the policy.The new policy makes it clear the central bank will allow inflation to stay above its 2.0 percent target “for some time” before raising interest rates.The shift, though telegraphed in recent statements, is significant for the Fed, as inflation for decades has been an economic villain to be stamped out at every turn. It also represented a defeat for inflation hawks, though the change was approved unanimously.Powell, in his speech to the annual Jackson Hole monetary policy conference, said the 10 years since the 2008 global financial crisis — when US inflation remained stubbornly below the 2.0 percent target — has shown that warnings about low unemployment causing price hikes were exaggerated.
First Published: 23rd August, 2020 09:54 IST WATCH US LIVE Last Updated: 23rd August, 2020 09:55 IST Slam Diego! Cronenworth Hits Padres’ 5th Slam In 6 Games Trent Grisham hit three home runs and rookie Jake Cronenworth launched a grand slam in a wild nine-run second inning Saturday night, making the San Diego Padres the first team in major league history to hit five slams in six games as they cruised to a 13-2 rout of the Houston Astros Associated Press Television News Trent Grisham hit three home runs and rookie Jake Cronenworth launched a grand slam in a wild nine-run second inning Saturday night, making the San Diego Padres the first team in major league history to hit five slams in six games as they cruised to a 13-2 rout of the Houston Astros.Earlier in the week, the Padres became the first club to hit a grand slam in four straight games.Grisham had his first three-homer game and drove in a career-high six runs. Zach Davies (4-2), who came over from Milwaukee with Grisham in an offseason deal, pitched eight brilliant innings to give the beat-up bullpen a much-needed rest and help the Padres win their sixth consecutive game.Cronenworth drove a 3-1 pitch from Humberto Castellanos into the home run deck in right field to give San Diego an 11-1 lead. It was San Diego’s third homer of the inning and fifth of the game. The home run deck now has a number of mannequins wearing Padres gear, and the ball landed near one wearing a Slam Diego No. 4 jersey.Cronenworth, obtained along with outfielder Tommy Pham in an offseason trade with Tampa Bay, became the 20th Padres rookie to hit a grand slam. It was his third homer of the year and he had his first three-hit game.Earlier in the week, the Padres hit grand slams in four straight games during a sweep of the Texas Rangers in a home-and-home series.That onslaught started with Fernando Tatis Jr.’s slam Monday night on a 3-0 count with a seven-run lead, reigniting a debate about etiquette and baseball’s so-called “unwritten rules.” Wil Myers hit a slam on Tuesday, Manny Machado had a walk-off grand slam in the 10th inning Wednesday night and Eric Hosmer capped the run with a historic shot on Thursday night.Hosmer batted with the bases loaded Friday night but grounded out.On Saturday night, Myers opened the second inning with a homer and Grisham hit a three-run shot with one out, with Cronenworth aboard on a single. Tatis was hit by a pitch from rookie Brandon Bielak (3-1), who made way for Castellanos. Both teams were warned by the umpires, and Houston’s Martin Maldonado was ejected from the dugout.Grisham also hit a leadoff shot and Machado had a solo shot with one out in the first.The six homers tied the Padres’ home record set Aug. 9 against Arizona.Davies held the Astros to two runs and four hits while striking out seven and walking two in going eight innings for the second time in his career.Davies retired 11 straight batters between allowing Yuli Gurriel’s sacrifice fly in the first inning and Taylor Jones’ first career homer in the fifth.Bielak allowed seven runs and five hits in 1 1/3 innings, struck out two and walked one.Image credits: AP COMMENT SUBSCRIBE TO US Written By LIVE TV FOLLOW US