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Blue Bird to provide electric taxi fleet in Indonesia"s international airports

Indonesia-based Blue Bird Holding Group has been partnering with international airports in Indonesia to provide electric mobility services, according to the group's press releases......»»

Category: topSource: digitimesJun 24th, 2022

Blow up your Instagram with these 10 over-the-top hotels in the US

Here are 10 cool, photogenic US hotels to post about on Instagram, with over-the-top decor, dramatic architecture, and eccentric rooms. When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more. The Saguaro When choosing a hotel, social media-minded travelers place a high value on a visual appeal. Many hotels design with Instagram in mind, with decor ranging from highly curated to eccentric. We found the most photogenic hotels across the US with options for all budgets and travelers. Table of Contents: Masthead StickyThe saying goes, "pics or it didn't happen," and when it comes to travel, that is especially true. After all, vacation visuals that get posted to social media serve as photogenic proof that you had an incredible time away, inspiring others' travel decisions, and perhaps even a bit of travel envy.Whether or not you're an influencer commanding a major social media presence, it's nice to visit somewhere that is visually appealing, both on and off the 'Gram. That's why we rounded up some of the most Instagram-worthy hotels across the United States, each catering to a variety of aesthetics.You can be sure that each and every hotel on this list has gorgeous decor that'll photograph perfectly, even if you're relatively inexperienced behind the camera.Browse all the most Instagrammable hotels in the US below, or jump directly to a specific area here.The most Instagrammable hotels in the USFAQ: Instagrammable hotelsHow we selected the most Instagrammable hotelsMore photogenic accommodationsThese are the most Instagrammable hotels in the US, sorted by price from low to high. The Roxbury This suite is inspired by the tale of "Cinderella" with a bathroom entrance fashioned out of her pumpkin carriage. Roxbury Hotel Book The RoxburyCategory: Budget Location: Roxbury, NYTypical starting/peak prices: $95/$138Best for: Couples, families, friendsOn-site amenities: Pool, spa, hiking trails (to a waterfall!)Pros: Between the property's two hotels, there are about two dozen room themes, meaning there's something to tickle everyone's fancy.Cons: There's no on-site restaurant, but daily breakfast is included. Guests are charged to use the pool (a one-time, not daily fee), which eliminates the need for a resort fee.When it comes to themed hotel rooms, no one does them quite like The Roxbury in New York's Catskills region.Made up of two hotels, the Roxbury Motel and the Roxbury at Stratton Falls, there are 28 whimsical rooms and suites. Entry-level rooms are fairly traditional, though still bold in colors, but it's the suites and cottages that really dazzle.Themes range from Maryann's Coconut Cream Pie, where the ceiling looks as if it's coated in undulating meringue; and The Wizard's Emeralds, a riff on "The Wizard of Oz" complete with a yellow brick (or, in this case, yellow tile) road and a glittering green bedspread worthy of the Emerald City. Additionally, the Tower Cottages are standalone duplex suites with themes like the Faerie Forest, where interiors resemble whimsical woods plucked out of a fairy tale, with flowers, ferns, mushrooms, and gnarled tree branches adorning every inch.The Roxbury also has a pool with a spa that appears warped to create the illusion that it's defying gravity, alongside a hot tub, dry sauna, and treatment rooms. There are also hiking trails, one of which leads to a 50-foot waterfall.COVID-19 procedures are available here. The Saguaro Palm Springs The colorful Saguaro is one of Palm Springs' most recognizable hotels. Tripadvisor Book The Saguaro Palm SpringsCategory: BudgetLocation: Palm Springs, CATypical starting/peak prices: $129/$350Best for: Couples, friends, solo travelersOn-site amenities: Pool, restaurants, bars, gym, spaPros: The pool is the place to see and be seen — and to take your Instagrams. Pool parties are particularly boisterous, and the rainbow backdrop of the hotel brightens up any photographs.Cons: There's a mandatory $38 (plus tax) resort fee, which makes seemingly affordable room rates less appealing.Palm Springs is a desert oasis primarily known for two things: amazing midcentury architecture and a raucous party scene, particularly at its hotels. The Saguaro Palm Springs is no exception to either.The hotel was built in 1971 but underwent a major renovation in 2012 by the same group behind the ultra-hip Ace Hotels. That refurbishment brought about the brightly painted exterior with a gradient rainbow effect for which the hotel is best known. These vibrant, cheerful colors carry throughout the entire property, most notably in the courtyard pool area. Paired with swaying palm trees, bright yellow umbrellas, and the cool blue of the pool, and it's positively photogenic.  That pool area, by the way, is one of the hotel's biggest draws. Lively parties are thrown regularly and often spill over into the Saguaro's restaurants and bars. Be sure to reserve a cabana in advance for the best spot for photos.Inside, guest rooms are similarly colorful with lemon yellow walls, royal purple carpets, and furniture done up in lime green, hot pink, or electric orange alongside technicolor striped bedspreads.COVID-19 procedures are available here. TWA Hotel Built into an old airline terminal, the TWA hotel offers a retro feel infused with heavy doses of '60s glam and nostalgia. TWA Hotel/David Mitchell Book TWA HotelCategory: BoutiqueLocation: New York, NYTypical starting/peak prices: $200/$280Best for: Couples, families, friends, solo travelers, aviation and design enthusiastsOn-site amenities: Restaurants, bars, gym, rooftop pool, event space, museums displays, ice/roller rinkPros: The main building is legendary among aviation geeks and architecture lovers, but anyone who appreciates funky design will enjoy the hotel. Don't miss the cocktail bar inside an old airplane. And, of course, if you're flying out of JFK, it doesn't get more convenient than staying here.Cons: The rooms are pretty small, even the suites. Mixed reviews cite cleanliness issues, too. You're far better off hanging out in the public spaces, which are more visually interesting anyway.As the only hotel within John F. Kennedy International Airport, the TWA Hotel is, of course, a place for those who need a place to rest pre- or post-flight. But it's also so much more, as a design-forward gem that feels like a slice of preserved history with front-row views of airplanes taking off and landing.Designed by midcentury architecture icon Eero Saarinen in 1962 (originally as a flight center for Trans World Airlines), the TWA hotel has jaw-dropping interiors. The main building, which houses the front desk, restaurants, and bars, features soaring, curved white ceilings that are not unlike a Jetsons-style spaceship with bright red carpets, classic midcentury furniture, and an old-school departures/arrivals board. Throughout the hotel and in some guest rooms, enjoy iconic views of the runway as planes land and depart, a boon for aviation enthusiasts. Rooms are small, but feel like you've stumbled onto the set of "Mad Men" with bright red Saarinen-designed Womb chairs, retro TWA travel posters, dark wood paneling, and brass accents on furniture, including a martini bar.Visiting this hotel is a lot like, walking into a time capsule, especially when you enter the hotel's cocktail bar housed within an actual 1958 Constellation airplane.COVID-19 procedures are available here. Madonna Inn The Floral Fantasy is one of 110 over-the-top themed rooms. Tripadvisor Book Madonna InnCategory: BoutiqueLocation: San Luis Obispo, CATypical starting/peak prices: $220/$580Best for: Families, friends, couplesOn-site amenities: Restaurants, bars, bakery, pool, spa, gym, dance floor, boutique, tennis, basketballPros: Every room is unique, meaning you can stay 110 times and have an entirely different experience for each visit. Cons: The decor is undoubtedly kitschy and even borderline gauche, which may not appeal to some guests. For others, it's the entire reason they're here.When it opened in 1958, the Madonna Inn in the midst of San Luis Obispo's wine country, had just 12 rooms. Today, it has 110, from economy kings to three-bedroom suites, and each one has its own absolutely one-of-a-kind, at times tacky, but highly memorable decor.In the Fabulous 50s room, teal walls are framed by pink trim, while gilded mirrors form a focal point in the bathroom. In the Victorian Gardens room, a four-post bed is matched with floral wallpaper, pink walls, and pink-velvet chairs and sofas. And in the Caveman room, the ceiling, walls, and floors are all made with rough-hewn rock, while furnishings are upholstered with animal print to complete the prehistoric theme.The rooms are spread across a 1,000-acre resort, which includes basketball and tennis courts, a pool, a retro gas station (a nod to the hotel's roots as a classic road trip stop, though today you'll find Tesla Superchargers there), a spa, a bakery, and several restaurants and bars.The eclectic decor doesn't stop in the rooms, either. Alex Madonna's Gold Rush Steak House is decked out in topsy-turvy pink and gold colors that recall either the Mad Hatter's tea party or the "Be Our Guest" scene in Beauty and the Beast." Hot pink circular banquettes are trimmed with gold, while a pink floral carpet provides punchy patterns. An organic, tree-like candelabra rises in the center of the room, its golden tendrils supporting dozens of electric candles. COVID-19 procedures are available by phone at 805-543-3000. The Greenbrier Bright colors mix heavily with punchy prints. The Greenbrier Book The GreenbrierCategory: ResortLocation: White Sulphur Springs, WVTypical starting/peak prices: $240/$425Best for: Families, couples, friends, solo travelersOn-site amenities: Restaurants, bars, casino, shopping, pool, tennis, golf, spa, ropes course, bowling, art studio, Cold War bunkerPros: Everything you could possibly want to do at a mountain resort, you can do here, whether falconry or jewelry making. It's almost shocking how many activities are offered.Cons: Some might find the decor a bit too traditional — there are lots of florals — but there's no denying it makes for a great Instagram post.Opened in 1778, the Greenbrier is an iconic American resort in West Virginia, having hosted 27 presidents throughout its history. Naturally, there have been many changes to the property over the centuries, but perhaps the most dramatic was a 1946 redecoration by lauded interior designer Dorothy Draper, who introduced lurid colors and punchy patterns into the historic buildings.Take the Greenbriar Avenue lobby, where black-and-white houndstooth club chairs sit atop bright red carpet, surrounded by teal-and-white striped columns, tropical-print wallpaper, and black-and-white checkered floors. Then in the Victorian Writing Room, rainbow-colored floral armchairs and drapes contrast with forest green walls and a bright red carpet.The guest rooms feature similar idiosyncratic decor, though perhaps not as in-your-face. Entry-level rooms all feature floral wallpaper with floral drapes to match, while higher room tiers have slightly more vibrant approaches to interior design. In the Windsor Club Rooms, you'll likely find brighter pink wallpaper, whole beds are covered by canopies, and furniture and carpets feature gingham or plaid patterns. The Greenbrier is also known for its many on-site activities, ranging from sports facilities, studios, and workshops for creative types to a casino, more than a dozen dining options, and plenty of shopping on the 11,000-acre grounds. But its most unusual amenity is a formerly secret Cold War-era bunker designed to house Congress. It's now declassified and open for tours.COVID-19 procedures are available here. Urban Cowboy Catskills Room designs are a feast for the eyes. Urban Cowboy Catskills Book Urban Cowboy CatskillsCategory: BoutiqueLocation: Big Indian, NYTypical starting/peak prices: $250/$500Best for: Couples, friends, solo travelersOn-site amenities: Restaurant, bar, games room, libraryPros: Despite being a wilderness lodge, there's very strong Wi-Fi for the WFH (or can't-be-disconnected) crowd.Cons: There are often minimum stay requirements, usually two to three nights on weekends.In New York's Catskills region, a popular weekend trip for city dwellers, the Urban Cowboy sits on 68 forested acres with plenty of outdoor recreation, but we wouldn't blame you if you wanted to spend your entire stay indoors.That's because the hotel's 28 accommodations feature super cool decor that focuses on quintessential rustic elements like deer antlers, live-wood furniture, rough-hewn wood beams, and outdoorsy accent pieces like snowshoes or oars. Colorful Native American pattern work covers the ceilings, beds, chairs, and rugs, creating a visual cacophony that feels high-design. And then there's the matter of the absolutely gorgeous copper soaking tubs set in front of big picture windows.This rugged-chic mountain style continues in public spaces, especially in the bar with a massive stone fireplace and columns that look like trees. The vibrant patterns make an appearance, too, from the walls to the sofas to the rugs.COVID-19 procedures are available here. Faena Hotel Miami Beach An attractive pool scene sets a sleek tone. Booking.com Book Faena Hotel Miami BeachCategory: LuxuryLocation: Miami Beach, FLTypical starting/peak prices: $445/$1,350Best for: Couples, friends, familiesOn-site amenities: Restaurants, bars, gym, spa, beach club, kids' clubPros: Despite its opulent, perhaps frenzied look, this is actually a surprisingly family-friendly hotel. Cons: It's 10 blocks north of South Beach, so you're not right in the heart of the action. However, there's plenty to do on-site.If it feels like Faena Hotel Miami Beach is some sort of phantasmagoric movie set, that's because it basically is. Filmmaker Baz Luhrmann and production and costume designer Catherine Martin, a husband-wife team, spearheaded the design of this Mid-Beach property, and they went all out.Public spaces are filled with sumptuous colors, dazzling metallics, and all manners of prints and patterns, from leopard spots to Art Deco geometry. Even the spa, a typically soothing space, is filled with bright colors, a neon-colored pom-pom chandelier, and bird-filled, floral landscape wallpaper.In fact, public areas are absolutely buzzing with visual elements, with a gold-covered woolly mammoth skeleton by the pool (a Damien Hirst artwork) that takes center stage.Guest rooms, however, are a bit more subdued, with white walls and wood floors to keep things grounded, accented by red and turquoise furnishings. Bits of animal print are thrown in for good measure and as subtle reminders of your larger surroundings. COVID-19 procedures are available here. The Inn of the Five Graces Guest rooms, spaces, and even bathrooms are bursts of colors, prints, and international influences. Tripadvisor Book The Inn of the Five GracesCategory: BoutiqueLocation: Santa Fe, NMTypical starting/peak prices: $715/$1,175Best for: Couples, friendsOn-site amenities: Bar, spa, gymPros: A made-to-order breakfast is included, as is a wine and cheese reception on Fridays. The spa's Tibetan-style treatment room is beautiful.Cons: There's no true on-site restaurant, but in-room dining is available via the restaurant next door.From the outside, the Inn of the Five Graces is just another (450-year-old) adobe dwelling in Santa Fe. But inside, it's a global journey along the Silk Road.Public spaces and all 24 rooms burst with colors and patterns, whether from mosaic tiles, Central Asian textiles, or South Asian works of art. The look is definitely maximalist, but the blend of international styles is somehow never overwhelming thanks to the smooth and soothing adobe walls that serve as a calming backdrop. Natural elements like wood-beamed ceilings and stone hearths also provide simple contrast.The boutique property is limited on amenities, though it has an exceptional spa treatment room inspired by Tibetan tradition (both in decor and in therapies), a gym, and in-room dining provided by a neighboring restaurant.The Inn of the Five Graces is a five-minute walk from downtown Santa Fe, but thanks to its global influences, it seems to transport you to the other side of the world.COVID-19 procedures are available here. The Villa Casa Casuarina Gianni Versace's former mansion is now a luxury hotel showcasing his ostentatious style. TripAdvisor Book The Villa Casa CasuarinaCategory: LuxuryLocation: Miami Beach, FLTypical starting/peak prices: $750/$1,400Best for: CouplesOn-site amenities: Pool, restaurant, barPros: The hotel's old-world-inspired grandeur truly is unmatched in Art Deco-filled South Beach.Cons: Because this is a major tourist site in Miami, there can be many people around snapping photos at all hours. Diners at the restaurant are loud, and noise can reach the rooms.Italian fashion designer Gianni Versace was tragically murdered in 1997, but his lavish Miami Beach mansion was preserved to pay homage to his life, and now, operates as a luxury hotel. Today it's called the Villa Casa Casuarina, and was inspired by the Alcázar de Cólon in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. The Spanish-style mansion, built in 1930, captivated Versace, who bought it in 1992 and renovated it to suit his extravagant taste. It's still exquisitely over the top.The hotel's suites feature ostentatious decor in various themes. In the Azure Suite, blue-and-white decor abounds with Roman-inspired architectural details, like the medallion-inlaid pediments above the windows in the bedroom and the tromp l'oeil "plasterwork" in the bathroom. In the Signature Suite, however, there's a far more sultry vibe, with animal print upholstery, a sumptuous warm-tone marble bathroom, and gilded furnishings.But the visual highlight of the entire property is the Million Mosaic Pool, which is comprised of thousands of 24-karat gold tiles. COVID-19 procedures are available by phone at 305-908-1462​​. Amangiri Utah's luxury Amangiri resort is a favorite with celebrities. Amangiri Book AmangiriCategory: LuxuryLocation: Canyon Point, UtahTypical starting/peak prices: $1,931/$3,500Best for: CouplesOn-site amenities: Spa, restaurant, bar, poolPros: This is desert minimalism at its finest — the hotel blends perfectly into its landscape with earth-toned decor. The luxury service is unmatched.Cons: This is not the easiest property to get to, as the closest major airports are more than four hours away. But the remote location is one of the many reasons why people visit.Arguably one of the most exclusive resorts in the US, Amangiri is a lesson in understated elegance. Architecturally, the sleek hotel is designed to blend in with the stark, rocky landscape surrounding its 600 desert acres in Utah, with color palettes that match near perfectly.Despite the indulgent luxury price tag, everything here is understated. Furnishings are made of sinuous wood or matte concrete with white upholstery to maximize the natural surroundings, which are often framed by views so beautiful, they appear like a work of art. With so many clean lines, use the sky for color and take pictures at different times of day to create variation. Though it'd be easy to rest in your luxurious suite all day long, you'll want to spend time in the dramatic Aman Spa, which covers 25,000 square feet. With looming concrete walls, it can at times feel cavernous, akin to the deep canyons found just a few miles away. While expensive, the rate covers all meals (sans alcohol), some activities, and some spa treatments, too. Stunning nature, hiking, horseback riding, or climbing, are all activities that await. COVID-19 procedures are available here. FAQ: Instagrammable hotels What are other unique hotels in the US?For unusual hotels, consider the Dog Bark Park Inn in Cottonwood, Idaho, where the main building is shaped like a beagle; ​​The Inn at Christmas Place in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, where Christmas is celebrated year-round; and the Railroad Park Resort in Dunsmuir, California, where guests sleep in converted train cars.How do I find cool hotels to stay in?If you're looking for an Instagrammable hotel, head to Instagram to get inspired by other travelers. Search hashtags like #beautifulhotels or #coolhotels. Or trust the experts, like us!What makes a hotel Instagrammable?Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Styles that some might consider Instagram-worthy might not be quite right for the aesthetic of your feed. But in general, bold interior design is key or a stunning setting. And bold doesn't necessarily mean maximalist. A stark, minimalist interior can be visually dynamic in photographs, too.What are some of the most photogenic hotels in the world?There's no shortage of beautiful hotels in the world, whether you're looking for the classic Italian style of Villa d'Este on Lake Como, the over-the-top safari lodge Ol Jogi in Kenya's Laikipia region, or the futuristic ME by Meliá Dubai, designed by Zaha Hadid. How we selected the most Instagrammable hotels in the US As a travel writer who focuses on architecture and design, I determined that every hotel has photo-worthy design elements, whether in the guest rooms, public spaces, or exterior areas.Each property on the list is highly rated on traveler review sites like TripAdvisor, Booking.com, and Expedia.High-design hotels range greatly in budget. We've selected properties from each end of the spectrum; they cost anywhere from $95 to $$3,500 per night.Tastes vary, so we've picked a selection of decor styles. There's everything from kitschy-themed suites to magazine-worthy interior design.While COVID-19 policies vary from state to state, these hotels still have strict health and safety policies in place to protect both guests and staff. More photogenic hotels The Setai Miami Beach The best luxury hotels in the USThe best themed hotel suites for familiesThe best bucket-list Airbnbs in the US Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderSep 21st, 2021

An Airbus A340 aircraft just landed on Antarctica for the first time ever — see the history of aviation on the 7th continent

In 1956, the US Navy managed to accomplish what many had thought was impossible — landing an aircraft on the Antarctic ice. The first Airbus A340 to land on Antarctica.Hi Fly An Airbus A340 made history in November when it became the first jet of its type to land on Antarctica. The South Pole has a long history of aviation that has contributed to the exploration of the continent. A number of airliners, military planes, turboprops, and luxury jets have landed on the polar tundra since 1956. Airlines operate regularly scheduled service to nearly every corner of the globe across six continents, connecting people to remote islands, deserts, and tundras. However, the 7th continent has proven difficult to reach, though a number of aircraft have successfully made the trek.Winter kayaking in Antarctica.Song_about_summer/ShutterstockAntarctica is the world's least populated continent and is typically home to about 4,400 people in the summer and only 1,000 in the winter. The inhabitants are settled on the continent's many research stations and tourist camps, which are regularly supplied by chartered cargo jets.Port Lockroy research station in Antarctica.Willem Tims/ShutterstockSource: World Population ReviewOn November 2, 2021, the first-ever Airbus A340 aircraft made the journey down to the White Continent, marking a historical feat. The plane flew from Cape Town, South Africa, and flew 2,500 nautical miles (2,877 miles) to Antarctica in five and a half hours.The first Airbus A340 to land on Antarctica.Hi FlySource: Hi FlyThe jet, which was operated by Portugal-based Hi Fly and chartered by luxury campsite Wolf's Fang, carried supplies for the latter's upscale adventure camp located on the South Pole. The plane carried enough fuel to make the journey to Antarctica and back.The first Airbus A340 to land on Antarctica.Hi FlySource: White Desert, Hi FlyAccording to Carlos Mirpuri, Hi Fly's vice president and the Captain of the historic flight, the 3,000-meter (9843-foot) glacial runway had special grooving to help the jet brake easier, though landing the heavy bird was not a problem. However, the reflective blue ice created a glare during landing.The first Airbus A340 to land on Antarctica.Hi FlySource: Hi Fly"The reflection is tremendous, and proper eyewear helps you adjust your eyes between the outside view and the instrumentation. The non-flying pilot has an important role in making the usual plus extra callouts, especially in the late stages of the approach," Mirpuri said.The first Airbus A340 to land on Antarctica.Hi FlySource: Hi FlyDespite the glare, the landing was smooth. "We flew a textbook approach to an uneventful landing, and aircraft performed exactly as planned, Mirpuri said. "When we reached taxi speed I could hear a round of applause from the cabin. We were joyful. After all, we were writing history."The first Airbus A340 to land on Antarctica.Hi FlyHi Fly's historic flight was just the latest addition to the long history of aviation in Antarctica. In 1928, Australian military pilot George Hubert Wilkins flew a Lockheed vega 1 monoplane from Deception Island in the South Shetland Islands over Antarctica in the first recorded flight to the 7th continent.Australian polar explorer Sir George Hubert Wilkins.Hulton Archive/Stringer/Getty ImagesSource: BBCWilkins was accompanied by co-pilot Carl Ben Eielson and the two spent four and a half hours crossing 1,000 miles of the previously unchartered Antarctic area, dropping a flag and document to claim the land for King George V of the United Kingdom.Document written by Sir Hubert Wilkins outlining claim for Australia at Walkabout Rocks.Daleen Koch via the Australian Antarctic DivisionSource: BBC"For the first time in history, new land was being discovered in the air," Wilkins wrote about the journey.Sir George Hubert Wilkins' Lockheed Vega.George Rayner via the Australian Antarctic DivisionSource: BBCWilliam Randolph Hearst, the American newspaper publishing millionaire, funded the project. Flights like these were how worldwide researchers and scientists learned about Antarctica's topography.Expeditioners reading Sir Hubert Wilkins’ proclamation at Wilkins Cairn.Scott Beardsley via the Australian Antarctic DivisionSource: BBCWhen Australia claimed the title of the first explorers to fly over Antarctica, an American navy man and aviator set out to best his feat. In January 1929, Richard Byrd's "million-dollar expedition" set out for the South Pole carrying three aircraft and setting up the first "Little America" naval base.Richard Byrd visits Little America in 1933.Bettmann/Getty ImagesSource: BBCHowever, Byrd did not fly during his first expedition to Antarctica, worrying his Ford Trimotor plane was too heavy and unreliable. Nevertheless, with determination to beat his rival Wilkins, he set out on November 28, 1929, for the South Pole.Richard Byrd posing next to the plane he used on his expedition to the South Pole.Keystone-France/Contributor/Getty ImagesSource: BBCByrd successfully flew across the Ross Ice Shelf and narrowly climbed above the Liv Glacier to the High Polar Plateau during his journey. He dropped a US flag onto the Antarctic tundra, and his achievements far-outmatched Wilkins. After his success, he vowed to return to the polar region.Richard Byrd in the cockpit of the second aircraft he flew over Antarctica.Bettmann/Getty ImagesSource: BBCAfter a few follow-up expeditions in the 1930s, Admiral Byrd launched Operation Highjump in 1946, sending 13 ships and 33 aircraft to the White Continent for exploration, research, mapping, American territorial sovereignty, and naval preparedness for Antarctic warfare.Dr. Paul A. Siple and Rear Admiral Byrd during Operation Highjump.Bettmann/Getty ImagesSource: BBCIt was the largest expedition in history to the continent, though no planes landed on the ice.Admiral Richard Byrd at his accommodation in Little America during Operation Highjump.ullstein picture Dtl. via Getty ImagesSource: BBCWhile the exploration of the polar wasteland started with "mapping wars," which led to the need for control over the territory, eventually the focus turned to scientific research.Antarctic expeditioners.George Rinhart/Corbis via Getty ImagesSource: BBCIn 1955, the US Navy launched Operation Deep Freeze to assist the National Science Foundation in its participation in the International Geophysical Year. IGY was a 67-country collaborative scientific project that lasted from July 1, 1957, to December 31, 1958, and studied topics like Antarctic weather, marine life, and glacial systems.The USS Arneb, the flagship of the Operation Deep Freeze task force.Bettmann/Getty ImagesSource: BBC, National GuardAs part of its preparations, the US Navy managed to accomplish what many had thought was impossible — landing an aircraft on the Antarctic ice. In October 1956, an R4D-5 Douglas Skytrain touched down on the South Pole for the first time ever.The R4D-5 Skytrain is parked at the South Pole behind the American flag after landing at the South Pole in 1956.US NavySource: BBCAfter the historic landing, a new era of science took off with nearly 70 nations participating in the IGY between 1957 and 1958. After the strong year, the Treaty of Antarctica was signed in which 12 countries committed to peace, science, and research on the continent, though there are 54 parties today.Flags of the original 12 signatory nations of the Antarctic Treaty.Bettmann/Getty ImagesSource: BBC"Aviation helped to confirm the ice-covered nature of Antarctica, which arguably contributed to a willingness to compromise in the Antarctic Treaty because there was little immediate prospect for economic gain," Adrian Howkins, a reader in environmental history at the University of Bristol, said.Australian DHC-2 Beaver flying over Mt Henderson in 1959.Australian Antarctic DivisionSource: BBCA number of aircraft have visited the White Continent since the first landing in 1956, like British Antarctic Survey's fleet of De Havilland Canada Twin Otters and Dash-7s started science flights to the frozen south in 1994.A British Antarctic Survey aircraft in Antarctica.British Antarctic SurveySource: British Antarctic SurveyMeanwhile, the US Navy launched later versions of Operation Deep Freeze, sending to Antarctica a USAF C-124 Globemaster...US Air Force C-124 Globemaster on Antarctica.US NavySource: National Naval Aviation MuseumA Lockheed P-2 Neptune...US Navy P2V Neptune in Antarctica.US NavySource: National Naval Aviation MuseumA De Havilland U-1 Otter...U-1 Otter emerges from the maw of a C-124.US NavySource: National Naval Aviation MuseumAn R5D Skymaster...US Navy workhorse, an R5D Skymaster.US NavySource: National Naval Aviation MuseumAn R4D Skytrain...US Navy R4D Skytrain on Antarctica.US NavySource: National Naval Aviation MuseumAnd a pontooned helicopter.US Navy pontooned helicopter.US NavySource: National Naval Aviation MuseumOther military aircraft have also landed on the continent, including the Royal New Zealand Air Force's Boeing 757, which first landed in 2009 and continues to operate supply flights each year.Royal Air New Zealand Boeing 757 jet on Antarctica.Colin Harnish/ShutterstockSource: Simple FlyingAlthough there is no regularly scheduled service to Antarctica, a handful of airlines have touched down on the polar wasteland, including Swiss airline PrivatAir which flew the first Boeing 737 to the continent in 2012.PrivatAir Boeing 737 on Antarctica.PrivatAirSource: South Pole StationMeanwhile, Icelandair's sister carrier Loftleider Icelandic Airlines was the first airline to land a commercial flight on Antarctica in 2015.The first-ever landing of a commercial Boeing 757 passenger airliner by Loftleidir Icelandic.Antarctic Logistics and ExpeditionsSource: Antarctic Logistics and ExpeditionsThe company ferried 60 tourists on a Boeing 757 to Union Glacier on behalf of Antarctic Logistics & Expeditions ALE. The purpose of both PrivatAir and Loftleider's journeys was to see if airliners could successfully transport people and cargo to Antarctica.The first-ever landing of a commercial Boeing 757 passenger airliner by Loftleidir Icelandic.Antarctic Logistics and ExpeditionsSource: Antarctic Logistics and Expeditions, South Pole StationBetween 2019 and 2020, Titan Airways flew two aircraft to the southern-most continent. The first was a Boeing 767 to Russia's Antarctic station, Novolazarevskaya, which landed several times on a 3,000-meter (9,843-foot) runway made of blue ice...Titan Airways' Boeing 767 on Antarctica.Titan AirwaysSource: Simple FlyingAnd an all-business Boeing 757 carrying World Marathon Challenge participants. The landing gear was modified with extended legs to absorb the shock of the ice.Inside Titan Airways' Boeing 757.Titan AirwaysSource: Simple FlyingIn February 2021, Icelandair made the trek with a Boeing 767 to pick up a group of Norwegian scientists from the Troll airfield in Antarctica. The flight involved a lot of planning due to the treacherous conditions on the continent and required six pilots, 13 crew, and one flight engineer to man the journey.Icelandair Boeing 767 in Antarctica.IcelandairSource: IcelandairTo land on Antarctica, aircraft navigate to one of 50 icy runways designated on the icy tundra, though none are actual airports. Two notable ones are the Phoenix Runway and Williams Field's skiway.LC-130s on Williams Field skiway in Antarctica.National Scientific FoundationSource: National Science FoundationIn addition to airline and military operations, there are several countries and organizations that fly planes to the South Pole for tourism or scientific research.Scientists collect meteorites from a glacial moraine at the base of Mt. Ward, Antarctica.NASAAustralia's Antarctic Division ferries expeditioners and equipment from the country to Antarctica. It flies an Airbus A319...Australian Antarctic Division A319 passenger flight.Australian Antarctic DivisionSource: Australian Antarctic DivisionAnd Royal Australian Air Force C-17As.Australian Royal Air Force C17-A Globemaster.Australian Antarctic DivisionSource: Australian Antarctic DivisionThe National Science Foundation, founded in 1959, also regularly operates polar-modified LC-130 Hercules, Twin Otters and Baslers, helicopters, and the US Air Force's C-17 between Antarctica and two main gateways, including Christchurch, New Zealand, and Puntas Arenas, Chile. The operation is part of the US Antarctic Program.Three year-round US research stations in Antarctica that are part of the program.National Scientific FoundationSource: National Science FoundationThe LC-130 Hercules was introduced into the military's Antarctic program in 1960 and has specially made ski-equipped landing gear for landing on the ice.LC-130 airplanes near McMurdo Station.National Science FoundationSource: National Science FoundationThe De Havilland Twin Otter and Basler turboprops are used for domestic flights within Antarctica. They can carry cargo and land on either ice or snow.Twin Otter on Antarctica.National Science FoundationSource: National Science FoundationFour helicopters are used in Antarctica, including two AS-350-B2 "A-Stars" and two Bell 212s.NSF Helicopter.National Science FoundationSource: National Science FoundationMeanwhile, a C-17 carries the bulk of passengers and cargo between Christchurch, New Zealand, and McMurdo Station each summer. The giant jet can carry approximately 121,254 pounds.US Air Force C-17 on Antarctica.National Science FoundationSource: National Science FoundationCanada-based Kenn Borek Air flies Twin Otters in support of US Antarctic Program science and in 2016 flew a rescue mission to the seventh continent to evacuate two people at the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station who were in need of medical help.Kenn Borek rescue mission aircraft.National Science FoundationSource: National Science FoundationA number of tour operators also fly to the South Pole, like Ice Trek, which flies an Ilyushin-76 from Punta Arenas, Chile, to Union Glacier, Antarctica.Icetrek's Ilyushin-76 on Antarctica.IcetrekSource: IcetrekAnd White Desert, the operator of the luxury campsite on the tundra, which operates a Gulfstream 550 between Cape Town and Antarctica. According to the company, the plane makes the journey in five hours flying at .85 Mach.White Desert Gulfstream 550.White DesertSource: White DesertAntarctica's history of aviation is just beginning as airlines and countries continue to push the boundaries of the southern tundra in the name of science and exploration.Royal NZ Air Force aircraft on Antarctica.Colin Harnish/ShutterstockRead the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderDec 1st, 2021

Futures Slide Amid Renewed Recession Fears After China Doubles Down On "Covid Zero"

Futures Slide Amid Renewed Recession Fears After China Doubles Down On "Covid Zero" One day after futures ramped overnight (if only to crater during the regular session) on hopes China was easing its highly politicized  Zero Covid policy after it cut the time of quarantine lockdowns, this morning futures slumped early on after China's President Xi Jinping made clear that Covid Zero isn't going anywhere and remains the most “economic and effective” policy for China during a symbolic visit to the virus ground zero in Wuhan, in which he cast the strategy as proof of the superiority of the country’s political system. That coupled with renewed recession worries (market is again pricing in a rate cut in Q1 2023) even as monetary policy tightens in much of the world to fight supply-side inflation, sent US futures and global markets lower. S&P futures dropped 0.2% and Nasdaq 100 futures were down 0.4% after the underlying index slumped on 3.1% on Tuesday. The dollar was steady after rising the most in over a week while WTI crude climbed above $112 a barrel, set for a fourth session of gains. In cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin dipped below the closely watched $20,000 level on news crypto hedge fund 3 Arrows Capital was ordered to liquidate. The Nasdaq's Tuesday’s slump added to what was already one of the worst years in terms of big daily selloffs in US stocks. The S&P 500 Index has fallen 2% or more on 14 occasions, putting 2022 in the top 10 list, according to Bloomberg data. Not helping the tech sector, on Wednesday morning JPMorgan cut its earnings estimates across the sector, especially for companies exposed to online advertising, citing macroeconomic pressures, forex and company-specific dynamics. One of the chief drivers for overnight weakness, China's Xi said during a trip Tuesday to Wuhan where the virus first emerged in late 2019 that relaxing Covid controls would risk too many lives in the world’s most populous country. China would rather endure some temporary impact on economic development than let the virus hurt people’s safety and health, he said, in remarks reported Wednesday by state media. As a result, China’s CSI 300 Index extended loss to 1.4% after the headline, while the yuan drops as much as 0.2% to trade 6.7132 against the dollar in the offshore market. Among key premarket movers, Tesla slipped in US premarket trading. The electric-vehicle maker laid off hundreds of workers on its Autopilot team as it shuttered a California facility, according to people familiar with the matter. Carnival slumped as Morgan Stanley analysts warned that the London and New York-listed cruise vacation company’s shares could lose all their value in the event of another demand shock. Pinterest gained 3.7% as the company’s co- founder and CEO Ben Silbermann quit and handed the reins to Google and PayPal veteran Bill Ready in a sign the social-media company will focus more on e-commerce. Also, despite the pervasive weakness, the Energy Select Sector SPDR Fund ETF (XLE) rebounded off key support (50% Fibonacci) relative to the SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY). That said, energy was alone and most other notable movers were down in the premarket: Carnival (CCL US) shares fall 8% premarket as Morgan Stanley analysts warned that the cruise vacation firm’s shares could lose all their value in the event of another demand shock. Nio (NIO US) shares drop 8.2% after short-seller Grizzly Research published a report on Tuesday alleging that the electric carmaker used battery sales to a related party to inflate revenue and boost net income margins. The company rejected the claims. Upstart Holdings (UPST US) shares slump about 9% after Morgan Stanley downgraded the consumer finance company to underweight from equal-weight amid rising cyclical headwinds. Ormat Technologies (ORA US) rallies as much as 5% after the renewable energy company is set to be included in the S&P Midcap 400 Index. 2U (TWOU US) shares rise 16% premarket. Indian online-education provider Byju’s has offered to buy the company in a cash deal that values the US-listed edtech firm at more than $1 billion, a person familiar with the matter said. Watch Amazon (AMZN US) shares as Redburn initiated coverage of the stock with a buy recommendation and set a Street-high price target, saying “there is a clear path toward a $3 trillion value for AWS alone.” Shares in data center REITs could be active later in the trading session after short-seller Jim Chanos said in an FT interview that he’s betting against “legacy” data centers. Watch Digital Realty (DLR US) and Equinix (EQIX US), as well as data center operators Cyxtera Technologies (CYXT US) and Iron Mountain (IRM US) Investors are growing increasingly skeptical that the Fed can avoid a bruising economic downturn amid sharp interest-rate hikes. Evaporating consumer confidence is feeding into concerns that the US might tip into a recession. Naturally, Fed officials sought to play down recession risk. New York Fed President John Williams and San Francisco’s Mary Daly both acknowledged they had to cool inflation, but insisted that a soft landing was still possible. “It seems the market is in this tug of war between on the one hand the hope that we are close to the peak in inflation and rates, and on the other hand the challenge of a slowing economy and potential recession,” Emmanuel Cau, head of European equity strategy at Barclays Bank Plc, said in an interview with Bloomberg TV. “Central banks are walking a very tight line and to a certain extent dictate the mood in the markets.” European equities snapped three days of gains, trading poorly but off worst levels with sentiment also hurt by China remaining committed to its zero-Covid approach. Spanish inflation unexpectedly surged to a record, dashing hopes that inflation in the euro zone’s fourth-biggest economy had peaked, and emboldening European Central Bank policy makers pushing for big increases in interest rates. The ECB should consider raising interest rates by twice the planned amount next month if the inflation outlook deteriorates, according to Governing Council member Gediminas Simkus, as calls not to exclude an outsized initial move grow. German benchmark bonds rose, while 10-year Treasury yields slipped to 3.16%. DAX lags, dropping as much as 1.8%. Real estate, autos and miners are the worst performing sectors. In notable moves in European stocks, Hennes & Mauritz (H&M) gained after the Swedish low-cost retailer’s earnings beat analyst estimates. Just Eat Takeaway.com NV tumbled to a record low after Berenberg analysts rated the stock sell, saying the food delivery firm’s UK business will remain under pressure. Here are some of the biggest European movers today: Just Eat Takeaway shares plunge as much as 21% after Berenberg initiated coverage with a sell rating, saying the firm’s UK business will remain under pressure and a sale of its Grubhub unit is unlikely to satisfy the bulls. Carnival stocks slumped over 12% in London as Morgan Stanley analysts warned that the cruise vacation firm’s shares could lose all their value in the event of another demand shock. Pearson drops as much as 6.1% after the education company was cut to sell at UBS, which reduced forecasts to reflect a weak outlook for 2022 college enrollments. Grifols shares plunge as much as 13% on a media report the Spanish plasma firm is weighing a capital raise of as much as EU2b to cut its debt. Diageo shares fall after downgrades for the spirits group from Deutsche Bank and Kepler Cheuvreux, while Pernod Ricard also dips on a rating cut from the latter. Diageo declines as much as 4.2%, Pernod Ricard -3.7% Fluidra shares fall as much as 8.4% after Santander cut its rating on the Spanish swimming pools company. The bank’s analyst Alejandro Conde cut the recommendation to neutral from outperform. H&M shares rise as much as 6.8% after the Swedish apparel retailer reported 2Q earnings that beat estimates. Jefferies said the margin beat in particular was reassuring, while Morgan Stanley said it was a “positive surprise” overall. Ipsen shares rise as much as 3.1% after UBS analyst Michael Leuchten said that accepting palovarotene refiling priority review should be a net present value and confidence boost. Asian stocks fell, halting a four-day gain, as renewed angst over the outlook for global economic growth and inflation help drive a selloff across most of the region’s equity markets. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index dropped as much as 1.5%, led by consumer discretionary and information sectors. Chinese equities in particular took a hit, as the CSI 300 Index fell 1.5% Wednesday after Xi Jinping reiterated his firm stance on Covid zero. Tech-heavy indexes in markets such as South Korea and Taiwan took the brunt of Wednesday’s drop amid lingering concerns that monetary tightening in much of the world to fight inflation will cause an economic slowdown. While Federal Reserve members have played down the risk of a US recession, gloomy data such as US consumer confidence have damped investor sentiment. “Volatility is going to be the enduring feature of the market, I suspect, for the next couple of quarters at least until we get a firm sense that peak inflation has passed,” John Woods, Credit Suisse Group AG’s Asia-Pacific chief investment officer, said in an interview with Bloomberg TV. “Markets, I think, have aggressively priced in quite a serious or steep recession.”  China’s four-day winning streak came to a halt, putting its advance toward a bull market on hold.  “We will continue to see a risk of targeted lockdowns, and that spoils the initial euphoria seen in the markets from the announcement on relaxation of quarantine requirements,” said Charu Chanana, market strategist at Saxo Capital Markets. “Still, economic growth will likely be prioritized as this is a politically important year for China.”  Japanese equities decline as investors digested data that showed a drop in US consumer confidence over inflation worries and increased concerns of an economic downturn.  The Topix Index fell 0.7% to 1,893.57 in Tokyo on Wednesday, while the Nikkei declined 0.9% to 26,804.60. Toyota Motor Corp. contributed the most to the Topix’s decline, decreasing 1.8%. Out of 2,170 shares in the index, 1,114 fell, 984 rose and 72 were unchanged. “There are concerns about stagflation,” said Hideyuki Suzuki a general manager at SBI Securities. “The consumer sentiment from the University of Michigan, which provides one of the fastest data points, has already shown poor figures.” Stocks in India tracked their Asian peers lower as brent rose to the highest level in two weeks, while high inflation and slowing global growth continued to dampen risk-appetite for global equities. The S&P BSE Sensex fell 0.3% to 53,026.97 in Mumbai, while the NSE Nifty 50 Index declined by an equal measure. Both gauges have lost more than 4% in June and are set for their third consecutive month of declines. The main indexes have dropped for all but one month this year. Twelve of the 19 sub-sector gauges compiled by BSE Ltd. eased, led by banking companies while power producers were the top performers.   Investors will also be watching the expiry of monthly derivative contracts on Thursday, which may lead to some volatility in the markets.  Hindustan Unilever was the biggest contributor to the Sensex’s decline, decreasing 3.5%. Out of 30 shares in the Sensex, 10 rose and 20 fell. The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index inched up modestly as the greenback traded mixed against its Group-of-10 peers; the Swiss franc led gains while Antipodean currencies were the worst performers and the euro traded in a narrow range around $1.05. The relative cost to own optionality in the euro heading into the July meetings of the ECB and the Federal Reserve was too low for investors to ignore and has become less and less underpriced. The yen strengthened and US and Japanese bond yields fell. In rates, fixed income has a choppy start. Bund futures initially surged just shy of 200 ticks on a soft regional German CPI print before fading the entire move over the course of the morning as Spanish data hit the tape, delivering a surprise record 10% reading for June and more hawkish ECB comments crossed the wires. Treasuries and gilts followed with curves eventually fading a bull-steepening move. Long-end gilts underperform, cheapening ~4bps near 2.75%. Peripheral spreads are tighter to core.  Treasuries are slightly higher as US trading day begins, off the session lows reached as bund futures jumped after the first monthly drop since November in a German regional CPI gauge. Yields are lower across the curve, by 1bp-2bp for tenors out to the 10-year with long-end yields little changed; 10-year declined as much as 5.3bp vs as much as 8.2bp for German 10- year, which remains lower by ~3bp. Focal points for the US session include a final revision of 1Q GDP, comments by Fed Chair Powell, and anticipation of quarter-end flows favoring bonds. Quarter-end is anticipated to cause rebalancing flows into bonds; Wells Fargo estimated that $5b will be added to bonds, with most of the flows occurring Wednesday and Thursday. In commodities, crude futures advance. WTI drifts 0.3% higher to trade near $112.13. Base metals are mixed; LME tin falls 5.6% while LME zinc gains 0.4%. Spot gold falls roughly $5 to trade near $1,815/oz Looking ahead, the highlight will be the panel at the ECB Forum that includes Fed Chair Powell, ECB President Lagarde and BoE Governor Bailey. We’ll also be hearing from ECB Vice President de Guindos, the ECB’s Schnabel, the Fed’s Mester and Bullard, and the BoE’s Dhingra. On the data side, releases include German CPI for June, Euro Area money supply for May, and the final Euro Area consumer confidence reading for June. From the US, we’ll also get the third reading of Q1 GDP. Market Snapshot S&P 500 futures little changed at 3,829.00 STOXX Europe 600 down 0.8% to 412.69 MXAP down 1.3% to 159.96 MXAPJ down 1.6% to 531.04 Nikkei down 0.9% to 26,804.60 Topix down 0.7% to 1,893.57 Hang Seng Index down 1.9% to 21,996.89 Shanghai Composite down 1.4% to 3,361.52 Sensex little changed at 53,204.17 Australia S&P/ASX 200 down 0.9% to 6,700.23 Kospi down 1.8% to 2,377.99 German 10Y yield little changed at 1.59% Euro little changed at $1.0510 Brent Futures down 0.4% to $117.46/bbl Gold spot down 0.2% to $1,816.09 U.S. Dollar Index little changed at 104.55 Top Overnight News from Bloomberg The Fed’s Loretta Mester said she wants to see the benchmark lending rate reach 3% to 3.5% this year and “a little bit above 4% next year” to rein in price pressures even if that tips the economy into a recession The ECB should consider raising interest rates by twice the planned amount next month if the inflation outlook deteriorates, according to Governing Council member Gediminas Simkus, as calls not to exclude an outsized initial move grow ECB has “ample room” to hike in 25bps-50bps steps to “whatever rate we think, we consider reasonable,” Governing Council member Robert Holzmann said in interview with CNBC Swedish consumers are gloomier than they have been since the mid-1990s, as prices surge on everything from fuel to food and furniture China’s President Xi Jinping declared Covid Zero the most “economic and effective” policy for the nation, during a symbolic visit to Wuhan in which he cast the strategy as proof of the superiority of the country’s political system NATO moved one step closer to bolstering its eastern front with Russia after Turkey dropped its opposition to Swedish and Finnish bids to join the military alliance A more detailed look at markets courtesy of Newsquawk Asia-Pac stocks were pressured amid headwinds from the US where disappointing Consumer Confidence data added to the growth concerns. ASX 200 failed to benefit from better than expected Retail Sales and was dragged lower by weakness in miners and tech. Nikkei 225 fell beneath the 27,000 level as industries remained pressured by the ongoing power crunch. Hang Seng and Shanghai Comp. conformed to the negative picture in the region although losses in the mainland were initially stemmed after China cut its quarantine requirements which the National Health Commission caveated was not a relaxation but an optimization to make it more scientific and precise. Top Asian News Chinese President Xi said China's COVID prevention control and strategy is correct and effective and must stick with it, via state media. Shanghai will gradually reopen museums and scenic sports from July 1st, state media reports. US Deputy Commerce Secretary Graves said the US will take a balanced approach on Chinese tariffs and that a clear response on China tariffs is coming soon, according to Bloomberg. China State Council's Taiwan Affairs Office said it firmly opposes the US signing any agreement that has sovereign connotations with Taiwan, according to Global Times. BoJ Governor Kuroda said Japanese Core CPI reached 2.1% in April and May which is almost fully due to international energy prices and Japan's economy has not been affected much by the global inflationary trend so monetary policy will stay accommodative, according to Reuters. Japanese govt to issue power supply shortage warning for a fourth consecutive day on Thursday, according to a statement. European bourses are on the backfoot as the region plays catch-up to the losses on Wall Street yesterday. Sectors are mostly lower (ex-Energy) with a defensive tilt as Healthcare, Consumer Products, Food & Beverages, and Utilities are more cushioned than their cyclical peers. Stateside, US equity futures trade on either side of the unchanged mark with no stand-out performers thus far, with the contracts awaiting the next catalyst. Top European News UK expects defence spending to reach 2.3% of GDP and said PM Johnson will announce new military commitments to NATO, according to Reuters. UK Weighs Capping Maximum Stake in Online Casinos at £5 Europe Is the Only Region Where Earnings Estimates Are Rising European Gas Prices Rise as Supply Risks Add to Storage Concerns Gold Steady as Traders Weigh Fed Comments on US Recession Risks Choppy Start for Euro-Area Bonds on Mixed Inflation FX Dollar mostly bid otherwise as rebalancing demand underpins - DXY pivots 104.500 within 104.700-350 confines. Franc outperforms on rate and risk considerations - Usd/Chf breaches 0.9550 and Eur/Chf approaches parity. Euro erratic in line with conflicting inflation data - Eur/Usd rotates around 1.0500. Aussie and Kiwi undermined by downturn in sentiment - Aud/Usd loses 0.6900+ status, Nzd/Usd wanes from just over 0.6250. Yen rangy following firmer than forecast Japanese retail sales and BoJ Governor Kuroda reaffirming intent to remain accommodative - Usd/Jpy straddles 136.00. Nokkie welcomes oil worker wage agreement with unions to avert strike action, but Sekkie hampered by softer Swedish macro releases pre-Riksbank policy call tomorrow - Eur/Nok probes 10.3000, Eur/Sek hovers around 10.6800. Rand rattled by decline in Gold and ongoing SA power supply problems, but Rouble rallies irrespective of CBR and Russian Economy Ministry divergence over deflation. Central Banks ECB's Lane said there are two-way inflation risks: "on the one side, there could be forces that keep inflation higher than expected for longer. On the other side, we do have the risk of a slowdown in the economy, which would reduce inflationary pressure", via ECB. ECB's Holzmann said "We will have to make an assessment where the economic development is going and where inflation stands and afterwards there’s ample room to hike in 0.25 and 0.5 levels to whatever rate we think, we consider reasonable" via CNBC. ECB's Simkus said if data worsens, then he wants a 50bps July hike as an option, 50bps hike is very likely in September; ECB's fragmentation tool should serve as a deterrent, via Bloomberg. ECB's Herodotou said EZ inflation will peak this year, via CNBC. ECB's Wunsch said government aid may spell more rate hikes, via Bloomberg; 150bps of hikes by March 2023 is reasonable ECB is said to be weighting whether or not they should announce the size and duration of their upcoming bond-buying scheme, according to Reuters sources. Fed's Mester (2022, 2024 voter) said on a path towards restrictive interest rates; July debate between 50bps and 75bps hike, via CNBC. Mester said if inflation expectations become unanchored, monetary policy would have to act more forcefully; current inflation situation is a very challenging one, via Reuters. SARB Governor said a 50bps hike is "not off the table", Via Bloomberg CBR Governor said she does not see risks of deflation; sees room to cut rates; sticking to policy of floating RUB exchange rate. PBoC will step up implementation of prudent monetary policy, will keep liquidity reasonably ample. Fixed Income Bunds unwind all and a bit more of their hefty post-NRW CPI gains as other German states show smaller inflation slowdowns and Spanish HICP soars. Gilts suffer more pronounced fall from grace in relative terms and US Treasuries slip from overnight peaks in sympathy. UK debt and STIRs also await testimony from MPC member elect to see if newbie leans dovish, hawkish or middle of the road 10 year benchmarks settle off worst levels within 147.37-145.14, 112.66-11.85 and 117-12+/116-27 respective ranges awaiting comments from ECB, Fed and BoE heads at Sintra Forum. Commodities WTI and Brent front-month futures traded with no firm direction in early European hours before picking up modestly in recent trade. US Private Inventory (bbls): Crude -3.8mln (exp. -0.6mln), Cushing -0.7mln, Distillate +2.6mln (exp. -0.2mln) and Gasoline +2.9mln (exp. -0.1mln). Norway's Industri Energi and SAFE labour unions agreed a wage deal for oil drilling workers and will not go on strike, according to Reuters. OPEC to start today at 12:00BST/07:00EDT; JMMC on Thursday at 12:00BST/07:00EDT followed by OPEC+ at 12:30BST/07:30EDT, via EnergyIntel. Libya's NOC suspends oil exports from Es Sider port. Spot gold is under some mild pressure as the Buck and Bond yields picked up, with the yellow metal back to near-two-week lows Base metals are mixed but off best levels after President Xi reaffirmed China's COVID stance – LME copper fell back under USD 8,500/t US Event Calendar 07:00: June MBA Mortgage Applications, prior 4.2% 08:30: 1Q PCE Core QoQ, est. 5.1%, prior 5.1% 08:30: 1Q GDP Price Index, est. 8.1%, prior 8.1% 08:30: 1Q Personal Consumption, est. 3.1%, prior 3.1% 08:30: 1Q GDP Annualized QoQ, est. -1.5%, prior -1.5% Central Banks 09:00: Powell Takes Part in Panel Discussion at ECB Forum in Sintra 09:00: Lagarde, Powell, Bailey, Carstens Speak in Sintra 11:30: Fed’s Mester Speaks on Panel at ECB Forum in Sintra 13:05: Fed’s Bullard Makes Introductory Remarks DB's Jim Reid concludes the overnight wrap I'm finishing this off in a taxi on the way to the Eurostar this morning and I made the mistake of telling the driver I was slightly pressed for time. He seems to be taking the racing line everywhere and my motion sickness is kicking in. A little like this car journey, it's been another volatile 24 hours in markets, with a succession of weak data releases raising further questions about how close the US and Europe might be to a recession. That saw equities give up their initial gains to post a decent decline on the day, whilst there was little respite from central bankers either, with sovereign bonds selling off further as multiple speakers doubled down on their hawkish rhetoric. That comes ahead of another eventful day ahead on the calendar, with investors primarily focused on a panel featuring Fed Chair Powell, ECB President Lagarde and BoE Governor Bailey, as well as the flash German CPI print for June, who are the first G7 economy to release their inflation print for the month, which will provide some further clues on how fast central banks will need to move on rate hikes. Just as we go to print the NRW region of Germany has seen CPI print at 7.5% YoY, way below last month's 8.1%. This region is around a quarter of GDP so it could imply the national numbers will be notably softer when we get them later. The energy tax cuts were always going to come through in June so some respite was always possible but at first glance this seems materially below what might have been expected. This comes after a significant sovereign bond selloff in Europe once again yesterday as President Lagarde reiterated the central bank’s determination to bring down inflation, and described inflation pressures that were “broadening and intensifying”. And although Lagarde stuck to the existing script about the ECB raising rates by 25bps at the next meeting, we also heard from Latvia’s Kazaks who said that “front-loading the increase would be a reasonable choice” in the event that the situation with inflation or inflation expectations deteriorates. Lagarde did nod to this in part, saying that if the ECB was “to see higher inflation threatening to de-anchor inflation expectations, or signs of a more permanent loss of economic potential that limits resources availability, we would need to withdraw accommodation more promptly to stamp out the risk of a self-fulfilling spiral.” Separately on fragmentation, Lagarde said that they could “use flexibility in reinvesting redemptions” from PEPP starting July 1 in order to deal with the issue. For now, overnight index swaps are only pricing in a +31.3bps move in July from the ECB, so still closer to 25 than 50 for the time being. Meanwhile the rate priced in by year-end rose also by +7.9bps as investors interpreted the comments in a hawkish light. That supported a further rise in yields, with those on 10yr bunds up another +8.1bps yesterday, following on from their +10.7bps move in the previous session. That’s now almost reversed the -21.9ps move over the previous week, which itself was the third-largest weekly decline in bund yields for a decade, and brought the 10yr yield back up to 1.63%, so not far off its multi-year high of 1.77% seen last week. A similar pattern was seen elsewhere, with 10yr yields on 10yr OATs (+9.6bps), BTPs (+4.2bps) and gilts (+7.2bps) all moving higher too. Things turned near the European close with some poor US data releases piling on to some lacklustre confidence figures in Europe. Earlier in the day the GfK consumer confidence reading from Germany fell to -27.4 (vs. -27.3 expected), taking it to another record low. Separately in France, consumer confidence fell to 82 on the INSEE’s measure (vs. 84 expected), which we haven’t seen since 2013. Then in the US, the Conference Board’s measure fell to 98.7 (vs. 100.0 expected), which is the lowest since February 2021. The Conference Board’s one-year ahead inflation expectations hit a record high of 8.0%, surpassing the June 2008 record of 7.7%, adding to the pessimism. Along with waning confidence, the Richmond Fed’s Manufacturing Index registered a -19, its lowest since the peak onset of the pandemic, versus expectations of -7 and a prior of -9, showing that production data has weakened as well. This put a serious damper on risk sentiment which drove Treasury yields and equities lower intraday during the New York session. 10yr Treasury yields ended down -2.8bps after trading as much as +5.5bps higher during the European session. They are down another -4bps this morning. Concerningly as well, there was a fresh flattening in the Fed’s preferred yield curve indicator (which is 18m3m – 3m), which came down another -9.1bps to 165bps, which is the flattest its been since early March. With that succession of bad news helping to dampen risk appetite, US equities gave up their opening gains to leave the S&P 500 down -2.01% on the day. Tech stocks saw the worst losses, with the NASDAQ (-2.98%) and the FANG+ (-3.74%) seeing even larger declines. And whilst there was a stronger performance in Europe, the STOXX 600 ended the day up just +0.27%, having been as high as +0.95% in the couple of hours before the close. We didn’t hear so much from the Fed ahead of Chair Powell’s appearance today, although New York Fed President Williams said that at the upcoming July meeting “I think 50 to 75 is clearly going to be the debate”. Markets are continuing to price something in between the two, although since the last Fed meeting futures have been consistently closer to 75 than 50, with 69.0 bps right now. Those sharp losses in US equities are echoing across Asia this morning. The Hang Seng (-1.86%) is leading the losses followed by the Kospi (-1.82%), the Nikkei (-1.07%) and the ASX 200 (-1.06%). Over in mainland China, the Shanghai Composite (-0.77%) and the CSI (-0.80%) are slightly out-performing after yesterday’s surprise move by China to slash the quarantine period for inbound travellers (more on this below). Looking ahead, US stock index futures point to a positive opening with contracts on the S&P 500 (+0.18%) and NASDAQ 100 (+0.19%) mildly higher. Earlier today, data released showed that Japan’s retail sales advanced for the third consecutive month in May (+3.6% y/y) but lower than the consensus of +4.0%, but with the previous month's data revised up to +3.1% (vs +2.9% preliminary). Meanwhile, South Korea’s consumer sentiment index (CSI) fell sharply to 96.4 in June (vs 102.6 in May), sliding below the long-term average of 100 for the first time since Feb 2021. Separately, Australia’s retail sales put in another strong performance as it climbed +0.9% m/m in May, surpassing analyst estimates of a +0.4% increase. Oil has fallen back slightly overnight after three sessions of gains with Brent futures down -0.84% at $116.99 and WTI futures (-0.64%) at $111.04/bbl as I type. Just after we went to press yesterday, it was also announced that China would be shortening the required quarantine period for inbound travellers to one week from two. So although China is still very-much committed to a Covid-zero strategy for the time being, this step towards loosening rather than tightening restrictions is an interesting development that helped support Chinese equities in yesterday’s session towards the close which filtered through into early northern hemisphere risk performance. In terms of other data yesterday, there were signs that US house price growth might finally be slowing somewhat, with the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller index up by +20.4% in April, which is down slightly from the +20.6% gain in March. So still a long way from an absolute decline, but that marks a reversal in the trend after the previous 4 months of rises in the year-on-year measure. To the day ahead now, and the highlight will likely be the panel at the ECB Forum that includes Fed Chair Powell, ECB President Lagarde and BoE Governor Bailey. We’ll also be hearing from ECB Vice President de Guindos, the ECB’s Schnabel, the Fed’s Mester and Bullard, and the BoE’s Dhingra. On the data side, releases include German CPI for June, Euro Area money supply for May, and the final Euro Area consumer confidence reading for June. From the US, we’ll also get the third reading of Q1 GDP. Tyler Durden Wed, 06/29/2022 - 08:00.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nytJun 29th, 2022

ABM Reports Second Quarter Fiscal 2022 Results and Reaffirms Full Year Guidance for Adjusted EPS

Generates revenue of $1.9 billion, up 26.7% year-over-year, including organic growth of 7.5% Posts net income of $48.8 million and GAAP EPS of $0.72, both up 57% year-over-year Records adjusted EBITDA of $118.9 million, up 12% year-over-year Delivers adjusted EPS of $0.89, up 9% year-over-year NEW YORK, June 08, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- ABM (NYSE:ABM), a leading provider of facility solutions, today announced financial results for the second quarter of fiscal 2022. Scott Salmirs, ABM's President and Chief Executive Officer commented, "ABM posted strong results in the second quarter, continuing the momentum we saw at the start of the year. I am particularly pleased with our organic growth of 7.5%, which was driven by solid demand across Business & Industry, Aviation, Manufacturing & Distribution, and Technical Solutions, especially in our eMobility business. Our teams executed well, largely mitigating wage cost inflation and delivering an adjusted EBITDA margin of 6.5%, which is a significant improvement over pre-pandemic levels. This result is indicative of our strong client relationships and emphasis on profitability." "In all, our financial performance was largely driven by acquisitions, strong demand for our core janitorial services, and the ongoing recovery in the aviation market, partially offset by the expected decline in disinfection-related work orders and EnhancedClean™ services from the heightened levels in last year's second quarter." Mr. Salmirs continued, "Looking forward, ABM is well positioned for growth in the current economic environment, reflecting the essential nature of the work we do and continued client demand for services that promote healthy buildings, sustainability and energy efficiency. This belief is supported by $795 million in new sales bookings for the first six months of 2022, an increase of 11% over the prior year period. ABM has performed well throughout the first half of the year and we expect our end-markets to remain resilient, even as the economy continues to face inflationary pressures. Given this backdrop, we are reaffirming our full year adjusted EPS guidance." Second Quarter Financial and Business Results For the second quarter of fiscal 2022, the Company reported revenue of $1.9 billion, up 26.7% over the prior year period, comprised of 7.5% organic growth and 19.2% from acquisitions. As anticipated, the Company's revenue mix reflected a decrease in disinfection-related work orders and EnhancedClean™ business versus the prior year period. Organic revenue growth was led by a 27% year-over-year gain in Aviation, driven by recovering consumer and business travel, and by an 18% gain in Technical Solutions, powered by strong growth in the Company's e-mobility business. Business & Industry grew 6% organically, with B&I's total revenue growth of 48.9% reflecting a full quarter of Able revenue and three weeks of the Momentum acquisition. Manufacturing & Distribution posted organic growth of 5%, while Education organic revenue decreased 4%. On a GAAP basis, the Company reported net income of $48.8 million, or $0.72 per diluted share compared to net income of $31.1 million, or $0.46 per diluted share last year. Both GAAP net income and diluted earnings per share increased 57% versus the prior year period. The second quarter of 2022 growth rate was driven by higher segment earnings on significantly higher revenue and the absence of a litigation reserve taken in the prior year period, which were partially offset by ELEVATE transformation costs. Results for the quarter on both a GAAP and adjusted basis reflected increased operating earnings on higher revenue as well as the benefits of one less work day. These were partially offset by the impact of a decrease in the volume of higher-margin virus protection services and work orders and higher costs. Adjusted net income for the second quarter of 2022 was $60.2 million, or $0.89 per diluted share, representing increases of 8% and 9%, respectively, over the $55.5 million, or $0.82 per diluted share recorded in the second quarter of fiscal 2021. Adjusted results exclude items impacting comparability. A description of items impacting comparability can be found in the "Reconciliation of Non-GAAP Financial Measures" table. Adjusted EBITDA for the quarter was $118.9 million compared to $106.6 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2021, an increase of 12%. Adjusted EBITDA margin for the quarter was 6.5% versus 7.4% last year, primarily reflecting the aforementioned change in service mix and cost increases. Update on ELEVATE The Company continued to make progress on several ELEVATE initiatives during the second quarter, including advancement in designing and testing its core cloud-based ERP system and further refinement of its cloud-based recruiting and tracking system and processes. In addition, the Company closed on the purchase of Ireland-based Momentum Support during the second quarter, further executing its ELEVATE strategy to grow through strategic acquisitions. The acquisition is expected to provide annualized revenue of approximately $70 million and expands ABM's footprint to the Ireland market. Momentum offers a blue-chip customer base and provides attractive cross-selling opportunities to existing ABM clients with operations in Ireland. Liquidity, Capital Structure & Share Repurchases The Company ended the quarter with total debt of $1,335.7 million, including $162.4 million in standby letters of credit, resulting in a total leverage ratio, as defined by the Company's credit facility, of 2.4x. In total, the Company had available liquidity of approximately $781 million, inclusive of cash and cash equivalents of $48.9 million. During the second quarter, the Company repurchased 0.7 million shares of its common stock at an average share price of $43.50, for a total cost of $30.0 million. Through the first half of the year, the Company has repurchased 1.0 million shares for $43.3 million. Declaration of Quarterly Cash Dividend The Company announced that the Board of Directors has declared a cash dividend of $0.195 per common share payable on August 1, 2022 to shareholders of record on July 7, 2022. This will be the Company's 225th consecutive quarterly cash dividend. Guidance For full year 2022, the Company now expects GAAP EPS to be in the range of $2.91 to $3.11, compared to $2.65 to $2.85 previously. This increase reflects a combined $0.26 EPS benefit from changes in items impacting comparability. Excluding these items, the Company reaffirms its prior guidance for full year 2022 adjusted EPS of $3.50 to $3.70, and for adjusted EBITDA margin to be in the range of 6.4% to 6.8%. Conference Call Information ABM will host its quarterly conference call for all interested parties on Wednesday, June 8, 2022, at 5:00 PM (ET). The live conference call can be accessed via audio webcast at the "Investors" section of the Company's website, located at www.abm.com, or by dialing (877) 451-6152 (domestic) or (412) 317-6671 (international) approximately 15 minutes prior to the scheduled time.  A supplemental presentation will accompany the webcast on the Company's website. A replay will be available approximately two hours after the webcast through June 22, 2022, and can be accessed by dialing (844) 512-2921 and then entering ID #13729675.  A replay link of the webcast will also be archived on the ABM website for 90 days. About ABM ABM (NYSE:ABM) is one of the world's largest providers of integrated facility services. A driving force for a cleaner, healthier, and more sustainable world, ABM provides essential services that improve the spaces and places that matter most. From curbside to rooftop, ABM offers a comprehensive array of facility services that includes janitorial, engineering, parking, electrical & lighting, energy solutions, HVAC & mechanical, landscape & turf, and mission critical solutions. ABM delivers these custom facility solutions to properties across a wide range of industries – from commercial office buildings to schools, airports, hospitals, data centers, manufacturing plants and distribution centers, entertainment venues and more. Founded in 1909, ABM serves over 20,000 clients, with annualized revenue exceeding $7 billion and more than 100,000 team members in 350+ offices throughout the United States, United Kingdom and other international locations. For more information, visit www.abm.com. Cautionary Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 This press release contains both historical and forward-looking statements about ABM Industries Incorporated ("ABM") and its subsidiaries (collectively referred to as "ABM," "we," "us," "our," or the "Company"). We make forward-looking statements related to future expectations, estimates and projections that are uncertain, and often contain words such as "anticipate," "believe," "could," "estimate," "expect," "forecast," "intend," "likely," "may," "outlook," "plan," "predict," "should," "target," or other similar words or phrases. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and assumptions that are difficult to predict. For us, particular uncertainties that could cause our actual results to be materially different from those expressed in our forward-looking statements include: The COVID-19 pandemic has had and is expected to continue having a negative effect on the global economy, and the United States economy, and it has disrupted and is expected to continue disrupting our operations and our clients' operations, which may adversely affect our business, results of operations, cash flows, and financial condition; our success depends on our ability to gain profitable business despite competitive market pressures; our business success depends on our ability to attract and retain qualified personnel and senior management and to manage labor costs; investments in and changes to our businesses, operating structure, financial reporting structure, or personnel relating to our ELEVATE strategy, including the implementation of strategic transformations, enhanced business processes, and technology initiatives may not have the desired effects on our financial condition and results of operations; our ability to preserve long-term client relationships is essential to our continued success; our international business involves risks different from those we face in the United States that could have an effect on our results of operations and financial condition; our use of subcontractors or joint venture partners to perform work under customer contracts exposes us to liability and financial risk; acquisitions, divestitures, and other strategic transactions could fail to achieve financial or strategic objectives, disrupt our ongoing business, and adversely impact our results of operations; we may experience difficulties integrating Able Services and may not realize the growth opportunities and cost synergies that are anticipated from the Able acquisition; we manage our insurable risks through a combination of third-party purchased policies and self-insurance, and we retain a substantial portion of the risk associated with expected losses under these programs, which exposes us to volatility associated with those risks, including the possibility that changes in estimates to our ultimate insurance loss reserves could result in material charges against our earnings; our risk management and safety programs may not have the intended effect of reducing our liability for personal injury or property loss; we may experience breaches of, or disruptions to, our information technology systems or those of our third-party providers or clients, or other compromises of our data that could adversely affect our business; unfavorable developments in our class and representative actions and other lawsuits alleging various claims could cause us to incur substantial liabilities; a significant number of our employees are covered by collective bargaining agreements that could expose us to potential liabilities in relation to our participation in multiemployer pension plans, requirements to make contributions to other benefit plans, and the potential for strikes, work slowdowns or similar activities, and union organizing drives; our business may be materially affected by changes to fiscal and tax policies; negative or unexpected tax consequences could adversely affect our results of operations; changes in general economic conditions, such as changes in energy prices, government regulations, or consumer preferences, could reduce the demand for facility services and, as a result, reduce our earnings and adversely affect our financial condition; future increases in the level of our borrowings or in interest rates could affect our results of operations; impairment of goodwill and long-lived assets could have a material adverse effect on our financial condition and results of operations; if we fail to maintain proper and effective internal control over financial reporting in the future, our ability to produce accurate and timely financial statements could be negatively impacted, which could harm our operating results and investor perceptions of our Company and as a result may have a material adverse effect on the value of our common stock; our business may be negatively impacted by adverse weather conditions; catastrophic events, disasters, and terrorist attacks could disrupt our services; actions of activist investors could disrupt our business. For additional information on these and other risks and uncertainties we face, see ABM's risk factors, as they may be amended from time to time, set forth in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including our most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and subsequent filings. We urge readers to consider these risks and uncertainties in evaluating our forward-looking statements. We caution readers not to place undue reliance upon any such forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date made. We undertake no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise, except as required by law. Use of Non-GAAP Financial Information To supplement ABM's consolidated financial information, the Company has presented net income and net income per diluted share as adjusted for items impacting comparability for the second quarter of fiscal years 2022 and 2021. These adjustments have been made with the intent of providing financial measures that give management and investors a better understanding of the underlying operational results and trends as well as ABM's operational performance. In addition, the Company has presented earnings, net of taxes, interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization and excluding items impacting comparability (adjusted EBITDA) for the second quarter of fiscal years 2022 and 2021. Adjusted EBITDA is among the indicators management uses as a basis for planning and forecasting future periods. Adjusted EBITDA margin is defined as adjusted EBITDA divided by revenue excluding management reimbursement. We cannot provide a reconciliation of forward-looking non-GAAP adjusted EBITDA margin measures to GAAP due to the inherent difficulty in forecasting and quantifying certain amounts that are necessary for such reconciliation. The Company has also presented Free Cash Flow which is defined as net cash provided by (used in) operating activities less additions to property, plant and equipment. The presentation of these non-GAAP financial measures is not meant to be considered in isolation or as a substitute for financial statements prepared in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America. (See accompanying financial tables for supplemental financial data and corresponding reconciliations to certain GAAP financial measures.) We round amounts to millions but calculate all percentages and per-share data from the underlying whole-dollar amounts. As a result, certain amounts may not foot, crossfoot, or recalculate based on reported numbers due to rounding. Unless otherwise noted, all references to years are to our fiscal year, which ends on October 31. Contact:   Investor Relations: Paul Goldberg   (212) 297-9721   ir@abm.com     ABM INDUSTRIES INCORPORATED AND SUBSIDIARIES CONSOLIDATED INCOME STATEMENT INFORMATION (UNAUDITED)     Three Months Ended April 30,     (in millions, except per share amounts)     2022       2021     Increase /(Decrease) Revenues   $ 1,897.8     $ 1,497.4     26.7  % Operating expenses     1,648.3       1,274.5     29.3  % Selling, general and administrative expenses(1)     156.8       161.9     (3.1 )% Amortization of intangible assets     17.6       10.7     64.8  % Operating profit     75.0       50.3     49.1  % Income from unconsolidated affiliates     0.6       0.2     NM * Interest expense     (7.8 )     (7.8 )   (0.2 )% Income before income taxes     67.8       42.8     58.4  % Income tax provision     (19.0 )     (11.7 )   (62.6 )% Net income   $ 48.8     $ 31.1     56.9  % Net income per common share             Basic   $ 0.73     $ 0.46     58.7  % Diluted     0.72     $ 0.46     56.5  % Weighted-average common and common equivalentshares outstanding             Basic     67.2       67.3       Diluted     67.5       67.8       Dividends declared per common share   $ 0.195     $ 0.190                             *Not meaningful (due to variance greater than or equal to +/-100%) (1) 2021 includes $30 million litigation settlement reserve   ABM INDUSTRIES INCORPORATED AND SUBSIDIARIES CONSOLIDATED INCOME STATEMENT INFORMATION (UNAUDITED)     Six Months Ended April 30,     (in millions, except per share amounts)     2022       2021     Increase / (Decrease) Revenues   $ 3,834.1     $ 2,989.8     28.2  % Operating expenses     3,307.9       2,523.8     31.1  % Selling, general and administrative expenses(1)     309.9       284.5     8.9  % Amortization of intangible assets     35.2       21.5     63.6  % Operating profit     181.0       160.1     13.1  % Income from unconsolidated affiliates     1.0       0.8     23.2  % Interest expense     (14.1 )     (16.3 )   13.7  % Income before income taxes     168.0       144.6     16.2  % Income tax provision     (43.2 )     (38.9 )   (11.2 )% Net income   $ 124.8     $ 105.7     18.0  % Net income per common share             Basic   $ 1.85     $ 1.57     17.8  % Diluted     1.84     $ 1.56     17.9  % Weighted-average common and common equivalentshares outstanding             Basic     67.5       67.2       Diluted     67.9       67.7       Dividends declared per common share   $ 0.390     $ 0.380                             (1) 2021 includes $30 million litigation settlement reserve   ABM INDUSTRIES INCORPORATED AND SUBSIDIARIES SELECTED CONSOLIDATED CASH FLOW INFORMATION (UNAUDITED)     Three Months Ended April 30, (in millions)     2022       2021   Net cash (used in) provided by operating activities(a)   $ (43.9 )   $ 125.9   Additions to property, plant and equipment     (10.0 )     (8.3 ) Purchase of businesses, net of cash acquired     (56.7 )     —   Other     3.6       0.2   Net cash used in investing activities   $ (63.1 )   $ (8.2 ) Proceeds from issuance of share-based compensation awards, net     0.8       0.9   Repurchases of common stock     (30.0 )     —   Dividends paid     (13.0 )     (12.7 ) Borrowings from credit facility     245.1       —   Repayment of borrowings from credit facility     (80.7 )     (50.2 ) Changes in book cash overdrafts     (15.0 )     (1.3 ) Financing of energy savings performance contracts     4.0       3.5   Repayment of finance lease obligations     (0.4 )     (0.8 ) Net cash provided by (used in) financing activities   $ 110.9    .....»»

Category: earningsSource: benzingaJun 8th, 2022

Auto Roundup: F"s $3.7B Investment, GM"s Milestone in AV Journey & More

Ford (F) plans to invest $3.7 billion and create over 6,200 new UAW jobs in Ohio, Missouri and Michigan. Meanwhile, General Motors (GM) gets the green light for commercial driverless robot taxi services in San Francisco. Last week, a number of automakers released their vehicle sales data for May. Most of them saw double-digit declines in sales volumes owing to the chip crisis, supply-chain disruptions and inventory dearth. Per the Automotive News Research & Data Center, cumulative U.S. vehicles sales (for the automakers who reported sales figures) fell more than 31% on a year-over-year basis. Per Motor Intelligence, SAAR for May tumbled to a year-to-date low of 12.81 million.On the news front, Ford F announced plans to invest $3.7 billion and create over 6,200 new United Auto Workers (“UAW”) jobs in Ohio, Missouri and Michigan. The initiatives are part of the company's Ford+ growth strategy. Ford’s close peer General Motors' GM autonomous vehicle (AV) unit, Cruise, became the first company to secure a permit to charge for driverless car rides in San Francisco. Meanwhile, Nissan Motor NSANY announced a pause in further orders of its Ariya SUV due to supply chain challenges that have been ongoing in Japan in the light of a recent spike in COVID-19 infections. Stellantis STLA and Toyota TM also made to the headlines as they sought to expand their ties through an agreement over a new large light commercial vehicle.Last Week’s Top Stories1. Ford and the UAW union announced plans to add more than 6,200 U.S. manufacturing jobs in the Midwest.The joint pact entails $3.7 billion of investments in manufacturing facilities across Ohio, Michigan and Missouri, which, in turn, are expected to generate an estimated 74,000 indirect ancillary non-Ford jobs nationally.Let’s look at the breakdown of the $3.7 billion investment and more than 6,200 new union jobs that span three states. Ford is advancing its long-standing legacy in Michigan by investing another $2 billion to create 3,200 UAW jobs, per the latest UAW contract. Ford will invest $1.5 billion and create 1,800 union jobs at Ohio Assembly Plant to assemble an all-new commercial EV starting mid-decade. Ford will also create an additional 90 jobs and a $100 million investment between Lima Engine and Sharonville Transmission plants. A $95 million investment and 1,100 union jobs have been planned for Missouri, for a third shift at Kansas City Assembly Plant to increase production of the Transit and the all-new E-Transit electric van.2. General Motors’ autonomous vehicle (AV) unit, Cruise, is set to operate a commercial taxi service of self-driving cars in San Francisco. In a unanimous decision, Cruise has been awarded a driverless deployment permit by the California Public Utilities Commission to start its services commercially in San Francisco and charge a fare for the rides.Per the California Public Utilities Commission permit, Cruise may offer its passenger services to the general public at a maximum speed of 30 mph, between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. daily, in normal weather conditions. It will use a fleet of 30 fully driverless all-electric Chevrolet Bolts to ferry passengers around parts of California. Cruise will decide on a fare that will be comparable and competitive with traditional ride-hailing services. It intends to gradually expand its outreach across the city and, eventually, in other regions.3. Nissan notified its dealers in the United States to stop taking new orders for the company’s 2023 battery-electric Ariya SUV on the grounds of supply chain issues that have been affecting production at home in Japan. It is uncertain as to how long Nissan intends to keep Ariya EV orders closed. The starting price for the U.S.-spec base-grade front-wheel-drive model is $45,950. Though Nissan has allotted around 6,000 vehicles to the United States market, it has not been able to provide a clear delivery schedule.Nissan believes that it is judicious to scale down orders to the level at which it can realistically deliver this year. Demand for Ariya SUV has been surging in the United States, Europe and Japan. Previously, the Ariya plant had experienced disruptions when production was halted in 2020 due to semiconductor supply issues and the pandemic. In the current context, the company has decided not to promise more than it can actually deliver.4. Stellantis and Toyota Motor Europe (“TME”), announced the expansion of their existing partnership with a pact for a new large-size light commercial vehicle (“LCV”), including a battery-electric version. Stellantis will supply TME with the new product for sale in Europe under the Toyota brand. The new van will be built at Stellantis’ plants in Gliwice, Poland and Atessa, Italy. It is planned to begin in mid-2024. The new vehicle is the third body type under the agreement, completing a full LCV line-up, with compact, mid and now a large-size LCV. This marks TME’s debut into the large-size commercial vehicle segment.The recent announcement on large-size LCV furthers the collaboration, enabling Toyota to complete a full LCV line-up in Europe, while allowing both companies to enjoy the benefits of development and production cost optimization. While Stellantis carries a Zacks rank Rank #2 (Buy), Toyota is Ranked #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.Price PerformanceThe following table shows the price movement of some of the major auto players over the last week and six-month period.Image Source: Zacks Investment ResearchWhat’s Next in the Auto Space?Industry watchers will track China vehicle sales data for May 2022, likely to be released by the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers soon.  Also, stay tuned for any update on how automakers will tackle the semiconductor shortage —aggravated by the Russia-Ukraine war and rising COVID-19 infections— and make changes in their business operations. Zacks' Top Picks to Cash in on Electric Vehicles Big money has already been made in the Electric Vehicle (EV) industry. But, the EV revolution has not hit full throttle yet. There is a lot of money to be made as the next push for future technologies ramps up. Zacks’ Special Report reveals 5 picks investorsSee 5 EV Stocks With Extreme Upside Potential >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report Ford Motor Company (F): Free Stock Analysis Report Toyota Motor Corporation (TM): Free Stock Analysis Report Nissan Motor Co. (NSANY): Free Stock Analysis Report General Motors Company (GM): Free Stock Analysis Report Stellantis N.V. (STLA): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on Zacks.com click here. Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacksJun 8th, 2022

The head of the world"s largest ship management firm seeks NATO naval escorts for vessels in the Black Sea, a report says

"We should demand that our seafaring and marine traffic is being protected in international waters," the CEO of V.Group told the FT A cargo ship is docked in the Black sea port of Odessa, Ukraine, November 4, 2016.REUTERS/Valentyn Ogirenko/File Photo NATO intervention is merited due to the region's importance for food shipments, the CEO of V.Group told the FT. Conflict in Ukraine has made the northernmost third of the Black Sea unsafe for shipping, the FT reported. NATO told the FT that its allies are working to neutralize mines in the area but won't provide escorts. The world's largest shipping management firm has requested that NATO provide naval escorts for shipping in the Black Sea amid concerns that vessels could be at risk as a result of conflict in Ukraine, the Financial Times reported.The CEO of V.Group, René Kofod-Olsen, told the outlet that NATO intervention is merited due to the region's importance for shipments of food. According to the paper, the conflict in Ukraine has made the northernmost third of the Black Sea unsafe for shipping. "We should demand that our seafaring and marine traffic is being protected in international waters. I'm sure Nato and others have a role to play in the protection of the commercial fleet," Kofod-Olsen told the FT.According to NATO, floating mines have been found and deactivated in the Western Black Sea by authorities of countries that border the waterway. The organization also said that "threat of collateral damage or direct hits on civilian shipping" in part of the Black Sea remains high.V.Group did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment.NATO has so far declined V.Group's request, according to the FT."Russia's naval presence in the Black Sea has disrupted maritime commerce even before its invasion of Ukraine," the military alliance told the paper.  "Nato is not considering a naval mission to escort ships in the Black Sea, but Nato allies that have coastal borders — Bulgaria, Romania and Turkey — have deployed ships to find and neutralize any mines that may be in the area."NATO did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment.Hundreds of seafarers on dozens of vessels have been stranded in the region due to the conflict, and are running short of supplies like food and fuel, the International Maritime Organization previously told Insider. The stranded vessels and crews have highlighted the challenges of exporting and importing goods from the region via sea following the invasion. Exports of commodities such as wheat and corn, of which Ukraine is a major supplier, have already been hampered by the closure of ports, while cities within Ukraine face food, water and energy shortages as imports are curbed.Kofod-Olsen's request for NATO escorts comes after maritime and labor organizations' call  for a "blue corridor"  to safely evacuate stranded seafarers failed to materialize, due to security risks such as mines, the International Transport Workers' Federation previously told Insider.Security officials also told the FT that any such corridor may create a route for Russian military ships into Ukraine.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nytApr 25th, 2022

Shell (SHEL) & BYD Partner for EV Charging in Europe & China

The oil supermajor, Shell plc (SHEL), teams up with the Chinese manufacturer, BDY, as it enters into a strategic EV charging cooperation agreement. Headquartered in London, the oil and gas major, Shell plc SHEL, and the Chinese conglomerate — BYD — announced that the two entities would get into a strategic cooperation agreement associated with plug-in electric vehicles (EVs) in China and Europe to begin with and possibly in other regions worldwide in the future.The deal will help push China’s energy transition and enhance the charging experience of BYD customers who use battery-powered EVs and plug-in hybrids in the ever-growing new EV sector. The deal will further boost China's position as a top center of EV production and sales, which will encourage more international players to be part of its quickly growing EV charging sector.Shell and BYD mentioned that they plan to form a joint venture to develop EV charging networks in China. They have come up with a blueprint to operate a network of more than 10,000 charging points in China’s Shenzhen at the beginning and the Guangdong province in the near future. The network will be further expanded to more sites in the country.Both the firms will jointly look for opportunities to create BYD-Shell EV hubs in crucial European markets and form a pan-European Mobility Service Provider partnership and cooperatively develop fleet solutions and depot charging services for BYD customers in Europe.Moreover, per the agreement, the firms will pursue to provide integrated home energy solutions, such as dynamic tariff scheduling, solar integration, home batteries, vehicle-to-grid charging, worldwide.Internationally, SHEL will help BYD generate a cost-saving and better hardware performance with Shell E-Fluids and coolants. Additionally, both entities plan to collaborate on global research and development in the fields of battery performance and advanced charging.Jason Wong, executive chairman of Shell in China, mentioned that his company is pleased to partner with BYD to discover the prospects of the growing EV charging network in China and unceasingly improve the charging experience for EV customers. "By working with more partners collectively, we will be able to build an ecosystem to accelerate the energy transition and make contributions to China's ambition to achieve carbon neutrality by 2060," he added.Shell currently sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). Some other similar-ranked stocks from the energy sector that warrant a look include Cenovus Energy CVE, TotalEnergies TTE and Murphy USA MUSA. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.The Zacks Consensus Estimate for Cenovus Energy’s 2022 earnings is pegged at $2.43 per share, up 200% from the projected year-ago earnings of 81 cents.Cenovus Energy’s stock has rallied 132.6% in a year. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for CVE’s 2022 earnings has been revised 37.3% upward over the past 60 days.The Zacks Consensus Estimate for TotalEnergies’ 2022 earnings is pegged at $10.52 per share, which is about 57.5% higher than the year-ago estimate of $6.68.TotalEnergies beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings in three of the trailing four quarters, the average being about 18.9%. TTE shares have gone up around 18.3% in a year.Murphy USA is valued at around $5.5 billion. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for Murphy USA’s 2022 earnings per share has been revised upward over the past 60 days from $11.35 to $11.42.Murphy USA beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings in all the trailing four quarters, the average being 24.6%. MUSA stock has rallied around 64.1% in a year. Just Released: Zacks Top 10 Stocks for 2022 In addition to the investment ideas discussed above, would you like to know about our 10 top buy-and-hold tickers for the entirety of 2022? Last year's 2021 Zacks Top 10 Stocks portfolio returned gains as high as +147.7%. Now a brand-new portfolio has been handpicked from over 4,000 companies covered by the Zacks Rank. Don’t miss your chance to get in on these long-term buysAccess Zacks Top 10 Stocks for 2022 today >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report Cenovus Energy Inc (CVE): Free Stock Analysis Report Murphy USA Inc. (MUSA): Free Stock Analysis Report TotalEnergies SE Sponsored ADR (TTE): Free Stock Analysis Report Shell PLC Unsponsored ADR (SHEL): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on Zacks.com click here. Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacksApr 18th, 2022

69 gifts under $50 perfect for any occasion or holiday

We found great gift ideas under $50 that prove you don't have to spend a fortune to get just the right gift for any occasion. Prices are accurate at the time of publication.When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.Hollis Johnson/Crystal Cox/Alyssa Powell/Business Insider You don't need to spend a fortune to find a thoughtful gift they'll love.  We found 69 of the best gifts under $50 to suit the interests and tastes of everyone on your list. Still looking for a gift? Check out our list of the All-Time Best products we've ever tested. With best friends' birthdays, anniversaries with your significant other (or Valentine's Day), celebratory moments with coworkers, or even just to tell a loved one you're thinking about them,  it's easy for your gifting list to fill up quickly. But you don't have to spend a fortune to get everyone on your list a gift that feels made for them. There are plenty of great gift ideas under $50 to be found if you know where to look.We've done the hard work for you and sifted through hundreds of options to find affordable gifts to suit a wide range of tastes and interests.Our picks for the best gifts under $50 still feel unique and personal. And whether these gifts are complements to a bigger present or are the star of the show, we know your recipient will love them.Keep reading for 69 gifts under $50 that work for anyone on your list.This list includes a Sponsored Product that has been suggested by Under Armour. It also meets our editorial criteria in terms of quality and value.*A bluetooth microphone to make events more funAmazonBonaok Bluetooth Karaoke Microphone, available at Amazon, $30.99This Bluetooth karaoke microphone is the perfect accessory to gift the one who's the life of the party. They can sing along to their favorite songs with this gift that offers premium sound and noise reduction. A cozy knit beanieAsosStormlock Rip Knit Cap, available at Jack Wolfskin, $29.95Cold-weather accessories make a great gift for anyone braving the cold this winter and the Jack Wolfskin's Stormlock Rip Knit Cap is exactly what they need. Built of a blend of wool and acrylic, this beanie also features Stormlock fleece which just about guarantees a warm noggin. It's even available in two different colors to match a variety of outfits.  A set of spa-worthy shower bombsAmazonEuka Wellness Shower Bombs 6-Pack, available at Amazon, $18No bathtub? No problem. With these shower bombs, anyone can transform their bathroom into a makeshift spa, and they don't even need a bathtub to do it. These come in a variety of options including Calm, Detox, Breathe, and Happy (and come 6 in a pack). A sampler box of wineVineboxBe Mine... Wine, available at Vinebox, $45Who doesn't love a sample pack of wine? With the Be Mine... Wine box from Vinebox, you can gift the special person in your life a selection of wine that'll tickle their tastebuds. The box includes three different tubes of wine, two reds and one white, each from a vineyard in Europe. A tracker for lost itemsAppleAirTag, available at Apple, from $29Whether you lose track of your keys or a bag, Apple's AirTag is a sure way to find any lost item. This water-resistant tracker plays a sound or uses its precise distance findings to lead you straight to the item regardless of the distance on the Find My app.An at-home tie dye kitNordstromRit x Thompson Street Studio Dye at Home Upcycling Kit, available at Nordstrom, $11.4oInstead of buying something new, this dye kit can refurbish old clothes from your wardrobe with playful prints. The Dye-at-home kit includes power dyes rubber bands gloves, and an instruction booklet to begin making your closet more sustainable.A pair of stylish wearable weightsBandierBala Bangles, available at Amazon, from $49Incorporate fitness into your daily life with these wearable weights that fit on your wrist or ankles. At one to two pounds, these stylish weights intensify any movement and build strength whether it's a workout or running errands.A hatch decanter to sophisticatedly store alcoholCrate & BarrelHatch Decanter, available at Crate & Barrel, $44.95If their barware collection bares a sophisticated flair, they'll appreciate this elegant hatch decanter. This 32oz decanter is a more affordable price than others thanks to its beautiful molded diamond pattern that resembles cut crystal.A spice and herb kit packed with international flavorsUncommon GoodsGourmet Oil Dipping Spice Kit, available at Uncommon Goods, $42Whether it's a dash of Italian oregano or za'atar from the Middle East, any cook will appreciate this international spice kit that lets them cook with various tastes of the world. A skincare set for combination and oily skin typesSephoraClinique Great Skin, Great Deal Set, available at Sephora, $32.50This Clinique set for combination and oily skin types is a great addition to any skincare routine. This three-step regimen includes a facial soap, an exfoliating lotion, and a moisturizing gel make this three-step routine an easy and quick way for a fresh face.A DIY recipe bookAmazonMy Recipes Cookbook, available at Amazon, $8.99Whether they're a huge foodie or want to preserve a favorite family meal, this DIY cookbook offers 120 blank pages to fill with their favorite recipes. The notebook's table of contents and additional note space at the end will help keep them extra organized.Taking the time to add in your own savory vodka sauce pasta dish or having their loved ones fill in grandma's homemade sweets recipe will make this gift feel extra special.Snacks for movie nightKnackPopcorn Snack Medley, available at Knack, $40.99Help them take their next Netflix marathon to the next level with this popcorn mix set. The mix includes two microwavable Pop on The Cob popcorn cobs, toffee pretzels, dark chocolate-covered cherries, and Virginia peanuts. If they have a particular favorite treat, each snack can also be added in extra quantities at an additional cost.A carafe that helps preserve wineGrommetGlass Wine Saver Carafe, available at Grommet, $42.95Wine lovers will surely appreciate this elegant gift that will allow them to savor and sip their favorite bottle for longer. This glass carafe preserves non-sparkling wine in the refrigerator for up to one week. Simply, pour wine into the carafe, insert the float at an angle, then seal it with the top and serve.Farm-to-skin lip balmsEtsyBeekman 1802 Ten Piece Lip Balm Set, available at Uncommon Goods, $48This farm-to-skin lip balm set is just right for the green beauty obsessive. All 10 lip balms are made from natural goat's milk and essential oils. Beautifully packaged and scented, the fragrances include Ylang Ylang and Tuberose, Orange Blossom, Fig Leaf, Sweet Grass, Grapefruit, Oak Moss, Apricot and Honey, Vanilla, and an unscented balm.A monogrammed clutchMark & GrahamPalm Leaf Rounded Clutch, available at Mark and Graham, from $34.99You can get your giftees initials embroidered on this cute roll-up clutch for a personal touch. The bag is woven from natural palm leaves for a beachy vibe, and the blue and white striped interior adds to the fun coastal feel.A sand-free, quick-dry towelSand CloudSand Cloud towel, available at Sand Cloud, from $28Not only are these thin towels easy to roll up and throw in your beach bag or picnic basket, but they also easily shake off sand and dry three times faster than classic beach and pool towels. Choose from a wide array of vibrant patterns and colors, from a navy blue whale shark print to tie-dye options.An easy way to make their own bubble teaUncommon GoodsBubble Tea Kit, available at Uncommon Goods, $40For the bubble tea lover in your life, this kit comes with two flavors of loose-leaf tea, tapioca pearls, and two reusable stainless steel straws. All they'll have to do is add a little milk (if they like!) and sip on this delicious brew.A personalized video message from their favorite celebrityCameoCameo video, available on Cameo, from $1Whether they have a favorite musician, reality TV star, comedian, or actor, there's a good chance their favorite celebrity is on Cameo. You can even choose from pre-recorded video messages with a personal shoutout, or opt to give them a super special one-on-one video call. Of course, the price will depend on who the star is.Notepads chock full of affirmationsAmazonKnock Knock Notepads, available at Amazon, from $5.25Whether you want to give them a quick pep talk or celebrate them just because, these notepads from Knock Knock provide a creative and encouraging way of doing so. Each comes with 50 sheets, so they'll make plenty of use of these witty notes.A small but mighty smart assistantGoogleGoogle Nest Mini (2nd Generation), available at Best Buy, $24.99Give the gift of a virtual helper. Currently on sale for under $25, the Google Nest Mini offers a compact, affordable smart speaker with Google Assistant built-in. Friends and family members will love being able to dim lights, control the volume on their TV, check the weather, and more, all with just the sound of their voice.Read our full review of the Google Nest Mini here.A face mask designed for working outUnder ArmourUA Sportmask, available at Under Armour, $25Under Armour's Sportmask was designed with athletes in mind, as reflected in its breathability, water resistance, and UPF 50+ sun protection. Thanks to the Sportsmask, they won't have to sacrifice their workout routine or their comfort.*Sponsored by Under ArmourA 52-piece art kitAmazon51-Piece Watercolor Art Set, available at Amazon, $21.98Encourage them to pick up a new hobby (or take advantage of an existing one) with this watercolor set that's built for both beginners and experts. The set includes various cakes and paints, watercolor pencils, paintbrushes, a paint palette, an eraser, and a pencil sharpener — all within a pre-packaged case that can save you the pain of gift wrapping. A streaming stick that turns any TV into a smart oneAmazonRoku Streaming Stick +, available at Amazon, $34.99Upgrade their Netflix binge marathons without actually buying them a whole new TV. The Roku Streaming Stick + offers 4K, HD, and HDR streaming in a portable package and affordable price. A meal kit from their favorite restaurantGoldbelly/FacebookGoldbelly Restaurant Meal Kits, available at Goldbelly, from $25Bring a bit of their favorite restaurant right to their door. From bagels to barbeque, Goldbelly ships food gifts nationwide from iconic eateries in major cities. A Disney+ subscriptionAlyssa Powell/Business InsiderOne-year gift subscription to Disney Plus, $79.99It gives them unlimited access to movies and shows from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, National Geographic, and 20th Century Fox, and costs just $7.99 a month or $79.99 a year after a free seven-day trial. Read everything there is to know about Disney+ over here.And if you need some binge-spiration, here are all the new movies available to stream.A set of loose-leaf teas that even Oprah lovesAmazonVadham Chai Tea Reserve Set, available at Amazon, $24.99This classy set of loose-leaf teas made it into Oprah's Favorite Things back in 2018. It's filled with three variations of chai tea that any tea lover will appreciate. A smooth olive oil that'll instantly elevate any dishBrightlandAlive Olive Oil, available at Brightland, $37If they spend a lot of time in the kitchen, they probably already know the merits of high-quality olive oil. A drizzle of Alive from Brightland adds a vibrant, zesty flavor to any dish, plus the beautiful bottle will look great on display in their kitchen. An affordable electric toothbrush subscriptionQuipToothbrush Starter Set, available at Quip, from $25Help them upgrade their oral care routine with a Quip toothbrush. Not only is it a great electric toothbrush at a reasonable price, but Quip will send them a refill every three months with a new brush head and toothbrush. Delicious mini cupcakesBaked by Melissa FacebookCupcake Gift Boxes, available at Baked by Melissa, from $32Who doesn't love getting a sweet surprise? With delicious flavors ranging from Cookie Dough to Pink Frosted Donut, these bite-size treats are sure to please. You can also add a special gift box to complete the gift. A head-to-toe mini care kitSephoraDrunk Elephant The Littles Head to Toe, available at Sephora, $49Give this mini set for head-to-toe care they can take on the road or just to test out some new products. The set is packed with Drunk Elephant minis, including a glossing shampoo, cream conditioner, scalp scrub, detangler, body cleanser, lotion, deodorant, and a comb. It also comes neatly packaged in a fun, neon bag.An at-home spa kitUncommon GoodsEucalyptus Spa Gift Set, available at Uncommon Goods, $40Let's face it, 2020 has been a hard year. Give them the gift of soothing relaxation with this at-home kit that includes pampering botanical bath salts and natural jute body scrubber. The recipient will also be able to grow their own eucalyptus in the bamboo pot so they can continue to breathe deep and say ahh.A set of magnets that are fun to play with and can boost concentrationSpeksSpeks Magnet Balls, available at Speks, $34.95Almost everyone on the Insider Reviews team has a set of Speks at their desk. The little magnetic balls can be mashed, molded, and built into fun shapes and are a fun fidget toy that even adults will love. A personalized pillow of their favorite fur babyaurespaces/EtsyCustom Pet Pillow, available at Etsy, from $29.99If there's nothing they love more than their cat or dog, this pillow — featuring a blown-up picture of their pet — is sure to make them smile. A cute kitchen gadget that makes breakfast in a flashAmazonDash Mini Waffle Maker, available at Target, $10This compact waffle maker makes a great addition to any college dorm or small kitchen. All they have to do is plug it in and they can make their favorite breakfast treat in a flash.A sugary and fun snackNeiman MarcusSugarfina Champagne Bears, available at Neiman Marcus, $20Elevate their next sugar fix with these fun champagne gummy bears. Don't worry if they're under 21, despite the name and flavor, these gummies are non-alcoholic. They also have rosé options too.    A taste of Japan by way of snacksBokksuBokksu Tasting Gift, 3-month box, available at Bokksu, $44.95Adventurous foodies will love the chance to taste test a curated box of gourmet Japanese snacks. In this Bokksu box, they can expect to find between 10-14 snacks, a tea pairing, and an in-depth guide that details every product included.A best-selling face mask for clear skinAztec SecretAztec Secret Indian Healing Mask, available at Target, $9.99Anyone in on the latest skincare trends will know about this mask. Many claim it has helped clear their skin, and it has over 12,000 five-star reviews on Amazon. The best part is that this powerful facial is just $10.A soft pair of socks made from sustainable fabricUnited by BlueSoftHemp Socks 2 Pack, available at United by Blue, $30With cold weather approaching, there's nothing better than slipping on cozy socks. Made from soft, sustainable hemp fabric, these are sure to do the trick (and why not get them two pairs?).A luxurious exfoliator to keep skin smoothNecessaireNecessaire The Body Exfoliator, available at Sephora, $30Necessaire's clean beauty products come in beautiful, minimalist packaging that looks as good in their bathroom as it feels on their skin. This gentle exfoliator will help them slough off dry winter skin for good.Cruelty-free nail polish in a range of fun colorsSmith & CultNail Polish, available at Smith & Cult, $18Smith & Cult's polish is vegan, cruelty-free, and chip-resistant. With 46 fun colors to choose from, you're sure to find one (or two, or three) they'll love. A sheet mask that'll hydrate dry, stressed skinSephoraDr. Jart+ Soothing Hydra Solution, available at Sephora, $6Fall and winter skin tends to be dry and dull. While you can't change the weather, you can throw on a hydrating face mask to stay moisturized. This one will add lots of soothing hydration to their skin to keep it feeling fresh.Makeup towels that make washing their face less of a choreWeezieMakeup Towels, available at Weezie, $40If they've never thought of washcloths as anything special, Weezie towels will change their minds. The adorable towels are embroidered with either hearts, winky eyelids, or the words "stain me." Plus, the dark navy blue color will conceal makeup stains.A silky-smooth sleep mask to block lightNordstromSlip Pink Marble Sleep Mask, available at Nordstrom, $50If there's nothing they appreciate more than a good night's sleep, they'll love Slip's silk sleep mask. It's made from 100% pure Mulberry silk for a luxe, light feel on their skin. A lip gloss that has all the benefits of a balmSephoraTower28 Beauty Jelly Lip Gloss, available at Sephora, $14This clean-beauty favorite delivers the glossy sheen they'd expect from a lip gloss, but it's loaded with nourishing oils to keep lips hydrated, too. A beautiful way to store olive oilUncommon GoodsHandblown Glass Olive Oil Pourer, available at Uncommon Goods, $45These stunning handmade jars can hold up to 12 ounces of olive oil or vinegar. Plus, they look beautiful sitting out on the kitchen counter.Useful cable clipsAmazonShintop Cable Clips (six-pack), available at Amazon, $5.59Whether their phone charger is always falling under their desk or they simply have too many cables to keep track of, these affordable and efficient clips will allow them to simplify their workspace. Plus, the pink, orange, and green shades contribute a fun pop of color.A bold lip color that'll last all day longSephoraLancome L'Absolu Rouge Lipstick, available at Sephora, $32Whether it's a pale peach or a deep-red look they crave, they'll love this long-lasting lipstick with its saturated colors and hydrating formula.A set of playing cards inspired by music's greatsAmazonMusic Genius Playing Cards, available at Uncommon Goods, $10Whether they love game night, music, or are equal fans of both, they'll surely get a kick out of these playing cards. The pack features illustrations of all the big names in pop, rock, country, and R&B.A spray that any sneakerhead needs in their collectionAmazonJason Markk Repel, available at Amazon, $17If they love shoes, they should have the right products to take care of their favorite footwear. This spray protects shoes from stains caused by water and oil, and there are multiple people on our team who swear by it for every new pair of shoes they get.A set of colorful silicone straws that reduce plastic wasteFood52Five Two Silicone Straws Single Pack, available at Food52, $25Bendable, sustainable, and portable (thanks to the set of carrying cases), these fun straws are the accessory any eco-conscious person should have.A book subscriptionBook of the MonthBook of the Month 3-month plan, available at Book of the Month, $49.99A subscription box that sends them an exciting new read catered to their tastes each month is the perfect gift for a bookworm.A unique case that protects their phoneCasetifyCasetify phone case, available at Casetify, starting from $40Our phones are our lifelines these days and if you know someone who's always glued to theirs, consider giving them a unique case that's as protective as it is pretty thanks to being drop-tested and shock-absorbent. They have options ranging from watercolor forest scenes to cute sayings to cuddly animals. You can even do a customized option and put their initials on it.  A coffee mug that keeps their drinks hot or cold for hoursAmazonHydro Flask Travel Coffee Mug, available at Hydro Flask, $24.95Hydro Flask's Travel Coffee Mug is a team favorite. It combines the classic shape of a mug with Hydro Flask's TempShield insulation to keep beverages hot, or cold, for hours— a great gift for the coffee or tea lover who's always on the move. Unisex House SlippersEtsyUnisex Comfy Linen Slippers Slides, available at Etsy, $27.46Clean space enthusiasts who enjoy a no outdoor shoe policy at their homes will appreciate these unisex house slippers. The waffle cloth pattern, platform bottom, and cushioned sole makes for a cute and cozy fit. These snug slippers are available in yellow, pink, gray, or green colors. A cute reusable tote that can fit tons of stuffBAGGUStandard Baggu, available at Baggu, $12It's no wonder these bags are bestsellers — they can hold up to 50 pounds of stuff and come in a range of fun colors and patterns. Plus, at just $12, they're a great deal. A portable straw that makes water drinkableAmazonLifeStraw Personal Water Filter, available at Amazon, $12.99This portable, personal water filter was one of the bestselling products on Prime Day. It filters water from creeks and rivers, making it perfect for hiking, camping, and travel.A classy carrying case to stash chargersMark & GrahamLeather Charger Roll-Up, available at Mark & Graham, from $39After they fill the three pockets with cables and chargers, all they have do is roll everything up and they're good to go. The soft, supple leather comes in a variety of fun colors and patterns. A cult-favorite cast-iron skilletAmazonLodge 12-inch Cast-Iron Skillet and Handle Holder, available at Amazon, $29.99Every cook needs a cast-iron skillet in their kitchen. Lodge makes some of the best out there, but at prices that won't break the bank. A fitting vehicle for their post-run brewsUncommon GoodsEtched Marathon Pint Glass, available at Uncommon Goods, $20If they like to celebrate a long run with a big pint, they'll appreciate these pint glasses etched with famous marathon routes. A candle that reminds them of their favorite placeAmazonHomesick Scented Candle, available at Amazon, $34This is a great gift that's sure to make anyone sentimental. Whether it's their hometown, college town, or favorite spot to vacation, a Homesick candle, with scents inspired by all sorts of locations, will bring them back to that favorite place. A cold brew coffee maker to keep up with their iced coffee habitAmazonTakeya Cold Brew Coffee Maker, available at Amazon, $19.99If their morning ritual includes a cup of cold brew, they'll appreciate this convenient cold brew maker. All they have to do is fill it with their favorite coffee grinds, add water, let it sit, and they've got a glass of delicious cold brew on the way. A rocks glass etched with a city mapUncommon GoodsUrban Map Glass, available at Uncommon Goods, $18Whether you want to bring back fond memories of a place you visited together or just want a gift that highlights their favorite stomping grounds, you can cheers to these rocks glasses intricately etched with a city map and interspersed street names. Over 30 major US cities are available to choose from.To really up the ante, consider pairing the glass with a nice bottle of bourbon. A dainty pair of gold hoops that go with everythingMejuriMidi Hoops, available at Mejuri, $50Jewelry always makes a great gift, though it's typically pricey. These dainty hoops from Mejuri are the perfect pair for every day, and they're only $50.An apron loaded with plenty of clever featuresFood52Five Two Ultimate Apron, available at Food52, from $25Anyone who spends a good amount of time in the kitchen will appreciate this durable apron with its sturdy fabric, clever pockets made to hold the essentials, and pot-holders built right in. A lifetime of perks with an REI membershipREIREI Membership, available at REI, $20A one-time, $20 payment will get them lifetime access to REI's membership program. The outdoorsy types in your life will appreciate the special offers, 10% back on purchases, member-pricing on REI classes and events, and the host of other membership perks. Learn more about the REI membership program here. A simple and elegant photo calendarArtifact UprisingWalnut Desktop Photo Calendar, available at Artifact Uprising, from $35All of Artifact Uprising's customized photo gifts are simple, beautiful, and made from eco-friendly materials. This simple calendar is an easy choice for anyone on your list. Just pick 12 photos (one for each month) of the people and places they love most to add a special sentiment to their desk setup.A simple necklace that reminds them of their intentionsBandoGood Intentions Necklace, available at Amazon, $38A sweet necklace with an even sweeter mission. Choose from a selection of positive intentions like "optimism," "strength," or "gratitude," which they can carry with them throughout the day. For every necklace sold, a portion of the proceeds will be donated to the non-profit Girls Inc.A cult-favorite candleOtherlandOtherland Candles, available at Otherland, $36We love Otherland's candles, whether seasonally inspired or from the classic collection. Notable scent combinations such as champagne, saffron, and leather, gorgeous packaging, and a 55 hour burn time have deemed Otherland's candles as a foolproof gift among the Insider Reviews team.An elevated hand sanitizer that fends off germsTouchlandPower Mist Hand Sanitizer, available at Touchland, $9A lightweight, spray formula and refreshing scents make Touchland's hand sanitizer one they'll actually want to use. It dries quickly and doesn't leave residue or stickiness behind.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderJan 21st, 2022

Hochul announces start date for $9B JFK terminal addition

Governor Kathy Hochul announced that the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey has reached a revised agreement with The New Terminal One (NTO) – a consortium of financial sponsors – to build a 2.4 million square foot state-of-the-art new international terminal that will anchor the south side of John F. Kennedy International Airport.  The $9.5 billion project will be built in phases and will create more than 10,000 jobs, becoming the fourth major terminal project announced... The post Hochul announces start date for $9B JFK terminal addition appeared first on Real Estate Weekly. Governor Kathy Hochul announced that the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey has reached a revised agreement with The New Terminal One (NTO) – a consortium of financial sponsors – to build a 2.4 million square foot state-of-the-art new international terminal that will anchor the south side of John F. Kennedy International Airport.  The $9.5 billion project will be built in phases and will create more than 10,000 jobs, becoming the fourth major terminal project announced by the Port Authority as part of a complete transformation of JFK into a world-class airport worthy of New York and the region.  When completed, The New Terminal One will be the largest international terminal at JFK and aspires to be among the top rated airport terminals in the world.      “As we recover from this pandemic, I want to ensure that everyone traveling to New York has a welcoming and streamlined experience, and that New Yorkers have the modernized transportation hubs they deserve,” Governor Hochul said. “The time to get large infrastructure projects done is now, and I’m committed to getting JFK’s brand new Terminal One underway and completed as soon as possible.”      The Port Authority Board of Commissioners will vote on the proposed lease agreement at its meeting this Thursday. The full cost of the terminal will be privately financed by the NTO consortium which includes financial partners Carlyle, JLC Infrastructure, and Ullico. A joint venture of Munich Airport International and CAG Holdings is the operating and technical services partner to the consortium.      As part of the project, the Port Authority will undertake a number of infrastructure upgrades and improvements including roads, parking, and utilities including a new electrical substation. The New Terminal One will be built on the sites of the current undersized and outdated Terminal 1, the aging and obsolete 59-year-old Terminal 2, and the site of the former Terminal 3, which was demolishedin 2013. Construction of the new terminal is scheduled to begin in mid-2022 and the first phase, including the new arrivals and departures hall and first set of new gates, is expected to open in 2026.     The project was initially scheduled to break ground in 2020. Due to the severe impact of the COVID-19 on air travel, the terms of the agreement needed to be restructured. The restructured deal announced today marks a major step forward in the ambitious plan to transform JFK into a unified, 21st century global gateway. The new terminal will be built in phases, subject to international passenger traffic levels, with full completion anticipated in approximately 2030.      The New Terminal One will ultimately have 23 new gates, as well as bright and airy check-in halls and arrival spaces designed to enhance the customer experience and compete with some of the highest-rated airport terminals in the world. Customers will enjoy world-class, New York-inspired dining and retail amenities, as well as space for lounges, an indoor green space and family-friendly amenities. The New Terminal One will incorporate the latest advances in both sustainability and security and be infused a with uniquely New York sense of place.        In October 2018, following a competitive review of leasing proposals, the Port Authority entered into exclusive negotiations for the development of two major new international terminals, one each on the airport’s north and south sides, that would lead the transformation of JFK and increase the airport’s capacity to accommodate projected growth.      Today’s announcement reflects a significant vote of confidence by the private sector in the future of JFK Airport, the return of air travel, and the economic recovery of the region. A key element of the restructured agreement is an extended lease term to 2060 to provide sufficient time after the terminal opens to enable the private investors recover their multi-billion-dollar investments. The City of New York’sten-yearemergency extension of the master lease for JFK Airport, which had been set to expire in 2050, enabled this important element of the restructured deal with NTO.        This week, the Port Authority Board will also vote on the authorization of the full $2.9 billion of funds which were included in the Port Authority’s 2017-2026 Capital Plan for the JFK Redevelopment program. These funds are allocated to enabling infrastructure in direct support of JFK Redevelopment, including roadway improvements, utilities, improved parking facilities, a ground transportation center and airfield work. (To date, approximately $1.24 billion of those funds have been authorized through separate Board actions.) Thus, the Port Authority capital is leveraging private investment at a rate of more than 5:1 when taking into account the full private investment of more than $15 billion that has been committed to the four projects comprising the full JFK redevelopment program.      The development of The New Terminal One is expected to result in over 10,000 total jobs including more than 6,000 union construction jobs.        NTO is a private consortium comprised of Carlyle, JLC Infrastructure (formed in 2015 by Loop Capital and Magic Johnson Enterprises), and Ullico (the only labor-owned insurance and investment company), and is supported by Reach Airports, a joint venture between Munich Airport International and Carlyle’s airport platform, CAG Holdings, providing technical services. NTO selected a design build team, led by AECOM Tishman, and Gensler, a design and architecture firm.        JLC’s participation as a minority-owned equity investor in the project is notable not only in that it continues the state’s trend of MWBE firms creating wealth by investing in such a major public-private partnership – beyond the provision of goods and services such as construction contracts – but doing so at the 30 percentlevel, which is both historic and nation-leading.       The passenger facilities at The New Terminal One will feature significantly larger check-in, security and concessions areas with high ceilings, natural light and modern architecture coupled with interior green space, exhibits and art featuring iconic New York landmarks and local artists. World-class retail, restaurants and bars will include locally inspired restaurateurs, craft beverage options and Taste NY stores. Free, high-speed Wi-Fi and an abundance of charging stations throughout the terminal will enable passengers to stay connected at each step of their journey.        State-of-the-art technology will further improve the customer experience and security in the new terminal including elements such as touchless passenger journey, digital passenger flow and queue management, TSA security lanes featuring the latest technology, advanced video search analytics, biometric-based systems and a flexible design to accommodate future technology and/or regulatory changes.       Sustainability enhancements will include the use of renewable energy technologies such as a solar hot water, aircraft de-icing and fluid recovery, and the conversion of diesel ground service equipment to electric-powered ground service fleet across the airport – such as baggage tractors and belt loaders.        Plans for The New Terminal One build on the momentum of the other three major components of the airport’s transformation. The $3.9 billion development of a state-of-the-art new Terminal 6, to be built by JFK Millennium Partners, on the airport’s north side that will seamlessly connect with JetBlue’s existing Terminal 5 was approved by the Port Authority Board of Commissioners in August. The $1.5 billion expansion of Terminal 4, led by Delta and JFK International Air Terminal, was approved in the spring and will begin construction in the immediate future. Additionally, work began in December 2019 on the $425 million expansion of JFK’s Terminal 8, led by American Airlines, which operates the terminal, and British Airways, which will be relocating to Terminal 8 from Terminal 7, set to be demolished to make way for the new Terminal 6.      The post Hochul announces start date for $9B JFK terminal addition appeared first on Real Estate Weekly......»»

Category: realestateSource: realestateweeklyDec 15th, 2021

Saudi Arabia Faces Accusations of ‘Sportswashing.’ For Young Saudis, It’s a Chance to Enjoy New Freedoms

Standing in a luxury spectator stand on Saturday night, Abdullah Sarhan stared down at the newest track on the Formula 1 series, as the world’s top race-car drivers roared past in a blur, during this past weekend’s Grand Prix event. His amazement was not the race itself. It was where it was happening: His home… Standing in a luxury spectator stand on Saturday night, Abdullah Sarhan stared down at the newest track on the Formula 1 series, as the world’s top race-car drivers roared past in a blur, during this past weekend’s Grand Prix event. His amazement was not the race itself. It was where it was happening: His home town of Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. “For years, if we wanted to see something like this, we had to travel,” said Sarhan, a 29-year-old with long curly hair, wearing jeans and T-shirt, who works for his family’s hotel company in the Red Sea coastal city. “Now it’s happening five minutes from my house.” [time-brightcove not-tgx=”true”] The sense of the world opening up has—at least for many Saudis—injected a palpable excitement and a giddy sense of newness. In numerous interviews with TIME in the kingdom over the past week, young Saudis—nearly 70% of Saudi Arabia’s 34.8 million is younger than 35—said that their lives had markedly changed during the past three years, and that they were thrilled they could finally cut loose, after decades of cultural isolation and suffocating religiosity. To anyone visiting Saudi Arabia after a long absence, as TIME’s correspondent did last week after four years, the change is evident. Rules forbidding women to travel without a male relative’s permission, to work in public-facing jobs, to leave their heads uncovered—and most famously, to drive—have been scrapped in the past three years. Religious police, who until 2018 detained women for violating dress codes, have vanished from the streets. Now, women with long flowing hair, some tinted pink or blue, fill the crowds at mass events like last weekend’s Formula 1 on Jeddah’s seafront. Even the women’s bathroom sign at the race featured a silhouette of a long-haired woman with bright lipstick. At its first-ever Grand Prix, the kingdom celebrated with fireworks and crowds including top royals and government officials filling the venue to capacity.The race marked a milestone for Saudi Arabia, aligning the kingdom with top-level international competition and, by implication, cementing its perceived acceptability on the world stage. It is that second prospect that has drawn fire from human rights groups in recent weeks, in the run-up to the Grand Prix. They accuse the titular Saudi ruler, Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman, or MBS as he is universally known, of “sportswashing,” using Saudi Arabia’s vast oil wealth to buy its way into the biggest sporting events, and so gloss over mounting human-rights violations. The country reportedly spent about $900 million to secure 10-year hosting rights for Formula 1 and in November, its Olympic Committee announced it would spend $694 million creating about 90 sports federations, training athletes from scratch to be world champions, much as China did decades ago. Lars Baron/Getty ImagesJEDDAH, SAUDI ARABIA – DECEMBER 05: Fans show their support from the stands during the F1 Grand Prix of Saudi Arabia at Jeddah Corniche Circuit on December 05, 2021 in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. All this is part of a carefully crafted strategy, micromanaged by MBS, who was given effective power by his father, King Salman, in 2017, when he was just 31. Named “Vision 2030,” MBS’s plan is geared toward ending almost 90 years of near-total dependence on vast oil reserves. By diversifying the economy and opening up to foreign investment and tourism with attractions such as big sporting events, the goal is to provide jobs for the new, wired generation. But human rights activists and others detect another, unstated goal too: Keeping that generation compliant, and even content, under an autocratic monarchy, despite little prospect of Western-style democracy. Few areas crystallize that social contract quite so starkly as professional sports. The vast sums that the Saudis are investing are fueling an unstoppable momentum, on which efforts to raise awareness of sportswashing or force boycotts have had little impact. In October, the government’s Public Investment Fund, of which MBS is chairman, snapped up Newcastle United soccer club for $409 million, giving it a toehold into the U.K.’s powerful Premier League. Even before then, Saudi Arabia had spent about $1.5 billion in recent years on investments in a wide range of professional sports, from boxing to chess, according to a March report by the British human rights group Grant Liberty. Earlier this month, Human Rights Watch called the Saudi government’s giant sports investments, including in golf and soccer, “well-funded efforts to whitewash its image, despite a significant increase in repression over the last few years.” The claim of sportswashing has little resonance among many Saudis, who believe that they finally have opportunities long enjoyed by the rest of the world. “The country was closed off from the world,” Reema Juffali, 29, Saudi Arabia’s first female professional race-car driver, told TIME on Sunday, on the side of the race track. “Now it is changing, and they should support us wanting to.” Human-rights observers strongly disagree, seeing in events like Formula 1 the endorsement of a repressive regime. They point to the country’s arrest of critics, the execution of nonviolent offenders, the heavy air bombardment of Houthi rebels in Yemen, and the use of flogging as punishment for homosexuality, which remains a crime in Saudi Arabia. Most shocking of all was the horrific killing and dismemberment in October, 2018 of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi, of which MBS has denied he had prior knowledge. A CIA report last February concluded that MBS, with his “absolute control” over Saudi intelligence services, very likely approved the operation. Yet three years on, foreign investors—many flying into Jeddah to attend the Formula 1 event—are back in force. On Saturday, as the qualifying races got underway, French President Emmanuel Macron wrapped up a tour of the Gulf region with a visit toJeddah accompanied by a large contingent of French businesses. While Macron met with MBS, the French companies including BNP Paribas, Sanofi and EDF Renewables, signed 27 deals with Saudi companies. Macron was one of the first Western leaders to meet the Crown Prince since Khashoggi’s killing. U.S. President Joe Biden has refused to do so. All that made last weekend’s Formula 1 race an important moment in Saudi Arabia’s rehabilitation, in spite of criticism by observers like Human Rights Watch. “Everyone is entitled to their opinion,” says Juffali, the female racing driver. ”But I think people have to come here and see it for themselves.” While countless Saudis have embraced the flashy sporting events with huge enthusiasm, there is little sign that they are considering the moral questions or whether sports are being used as a political tool. “I’ve spent a lot of time in the [Persian] Gulf, and I’ve never once heard anyone talk about sportswashing,” says Simon Chadwick, director of the Center for Eurasian Sport at the Emlyon Business School in Paris. “If you sit in Qatar, you sit in Saudi Arabia, it is nation building, it is soft power,” he says. “Sportswashing is in the eye of the beholder.” Saudi Arabia is not the only rich authoritarian state to spend lavishly on sports, or to face accusations of sportswashing because of it. The mammoth multibillion-dollar global sports industry, which has benefited from the perception of being an apolitical crowd-pleaser, is increasingly becoming entangled in issues of human rights, corruption, and personal agency. On Monday, U.S. officials announced they would not send a diplomatic delegation to the Beijing winter Olympic Games in February. That is in response to China’s brutal repression of the Uighur Muslims in the western province of Xinjiang, and its crackdown on protesters in Hong Kong. Great Britain, Canada and Australia also announced diplomatic boycotts of the Beijing Olympics. There are calls to boycott the 2022 FIFA World Cup soccer tournament next November in Qatar in protest against the wealthy Gulf state’s human rights record, following the deaths of dozens of migrant construction workers. Qatar, like Saudi Arabia, also outlaws homosexuality. The country has spent about $200 billion creating a vast infrastructure for the tournament, and it is reportedly paying about $500 million for the Premier League’s broadcast rights in the Middle East and North Africa—again drawing fury from human-rights observers. As the controversy raged over the Jeddah car races, the world’s top race-car driver Lewis Hamilton wore a rainbow Pride crash helmet in Jeddah to support gay rights, which he first donned the previous week at the Qatar Formula 1 race; Hamilton won the Saudi Grand Prix in a chaotic final race on Sunday night, putting him one step closer to winning a record eight Formula 1 titles. Cristiano Barni/ATPImages—Getty ImagesJEDDAH, SAUDI ARABIA – DECEMBER 05: Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 Team, Mercedes-AMG F1 W12 E Performance in the final stage of the race during the Grand Prix Formula One of Saudi Arabia on December 05, 2021 in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Yet even as more countries face accusations of sportswashing it is clear that for many citizens, the issue is often complex. In Saudi Arabia, for example MBS has maintained an authoritarian regime while allowing Saudis a markedly more relaxed personal lifestyle than they have enjoyed for decades—a two-pronged strategy that has helped toto consolidate his power. The explosion of professional sports is closely interwoven with aspects of youth culture, giving Saudis the sense that, although they cannot elect their leaders or march in protests like their contemporaries in the U.S. or Europe, they can now enjoy the same culture as them. In a country where live music had been banned for decades until 2018, thousands of young Saudis partied until 2.30 a.m. at Formula 1 on Saturday and Sunday at blowout post-race concerts by Justin Bieber, and DJ megastars David Guetta and Tiësto. During breaks between races, giant monitors along the track screened other music, with women gyrating behind DJs in skintight, hot-pink sequined bodysuits. Until 2018, movie theaters were also banned in Saudi Arabia, deemed to violate Islamic strictures. Now, there are multiplexes across Riyadh and Jeddah packing theaters with movies like The House of Gucci. In the capital Riyadh, more than two million people have visited a giant entertainment zone called Riyadh Season over its six-week run, where they can catch nightly music or dance performances, go rock-climbing, or whizz down the world’s longest slide. Wang Haizhou/Xinhua—Getty ImagesPhoto taken on Nov. 6, 2021 shows a view of the winter wonderland in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Riyadh winter wonderland is one of the entertainment zones of Riyadh Season 2021, which will continue until March 2022, with the aim of attracting a diverse audience with more than 7,000 events. “Everything is different,” says Salma Sultan, 37, describing her life over the past three years. A Riyadh mother of a six-year-old, separated from her husband, she learned to drive after the ban on women driving was lifted in 2018, and now supplements her civil-service pay by driving for a ride-share company on her off-hours. “I am finally independent,” she says. While the revamped regime has enabled Sultan to make a modest living for herself, at the much higher end of the economic spectrum, it has also allowed the generously-funded new Saudi sports industry to flourish. Outside Riyadh, a permanent Formula 1 racetrack is being built within the sprawling Qiddiya entertainment and sports city, which is being built by the amusement-park giant Six Flags. There is a separate Formula E track for electric race cars, in Riyadh’s restored historic area of Diriyah, with a race scheduled for February. Sports organizations play a role in the dynamics that are playing out in countries like Saudi Arabia, say some observers who have tracked the industry for years. Bidding wars for sports clubs and hosting deals for events like the Olympics, Formula 1, and the FIFA soccer World Cup have increasingly attracted—and been won by—rich, state-dominated countries, like Russia, Qatar and Saudi Arabia. Paris Saint-Germain, one of Europe’s wealthiest soccer clubs, is able to pay its superstar players Lionel Messi, Kylian Mbappé and Neymar small fortunes partly because it is owned by Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund. Formula 1, often associated with glamor and celebrity-studded crowds, attracts dizzying sums and its Paris-based international federation, known as the FIA, has signed increasingly large hosting contracts. “The sport faces some huge challenges if it wants to preserve its reputation and not be known as a money-grabbing plutocracy,” wrote a Formula 1 analyst last year, when Saudi Arabia negotiated its hosting contract. From the stands high above the race track in Jeddah last weekend, racing fan Sarhan did not see a plutocracy. What he saw was young Saudis like himself being able to enjoy themselves in a way they weren’t able to before 2018. Looking around the Formula 1 luxury stand, at young people laughing and sipping sodas, he dismissed the idea of sportswashing and embraced what he sees as new freedoms. “You would never see this before,” he said. The crown prince’s ambitious plans for the kingdom indicate that young Saudis like Sarhan will see more evenings like it. —With reporting by Sean Gregory.....»»

Category: topSource: timeDec 12th, 2021

Futures Jump In Volatile Session Dragged By Latest Twists In Omicron Saga

Futures Jump In Volatile Session Dragged By Latest Twists In Omicron Saga Much of the overnight session was a snooze fest with stocks drifting first higher then lower after surging on Tuesday, as the narrative meandered from "omicron fears ease" optimism to "vaccines won't work" pessimism, before futures took a sudden leg lower, dropping into the red just after 530am ET, following news that UK's Boris Johnson would introduce new restrictions in England to curb Omicron spread, sparking fears that Omicron is more dangerous that expected (and than futures reflected). However, this episode of pessimism proved short-lived because just an hour later, the WSJ confirmed that Omicron is really just a pitch for covid booster shots when it reported that even though the covid vaccine loses significant effectiveness against Omicron in an early study, this is miraculously reversed with a booster shot as three doses of the vaccine were able to neutralize the variant in an initial laboratory study, and the companies said two doses may still protect against severe disease. Futures quickly shot up on the news, spiking above the gamma "all clear" level of 4,700 in a move best summarized with the following chart. And so, after going nowhere, S&P futures climbed for a third day, last seen 12 points, or 0.3% higher, just around 4,700 after rising the most since March on Tuesday. Europe’s Stoxx 600 Index rose following the biggest jump in more than a year. In addition to the omicron soap opera, which as we noted yesterday turns out was just one staged covid booster shot advertisement (because Pfizer and Moderna can always do with a bigger yacth), sentiment was also lifted by Chinese authorities' reversal to "easing mode" and aggressive efforts to limit the fallout from property market woes which lifted risk assets in Asia even as key debt deadlines at China Evergrande Group and Kaisa Group Holdings Ltd. passed without any sign of payment. "Clearly in the very short term uncertainty has risen over the Omicron virus... but overall at this stage we do not believe it will derail the macro picture in the medium-term," said Jeremy Gatto, multi-asset portfolio manager at Unigestion. Treasury yields were little changed after rising across the curve Tuesday. The VIX spiked first on the FT news, then dropped back into the red, while the dollar was flat and crude rose after turning red. Besides macro, micro was also in play and here are some other notable premarket movers Apple (AAPL US) ticks 1% higher in premarket trading following a Nikkei report that the tech giant told suppliers to speed up iPhone output for Nov.-Jan, citing people it didn’t identify. Amazon.com (AMZN US) shares in focus after an Amazon Web Services outage is wreaking havoc on the e-commerce giant’s delivery operation Stitch Fix (SFIX US) tumbles 25% in U.S. premarket trading after a 2Q forecast miss that analysts called “surprising,” while customer additions also disappointed Pfizer (PFE US) shares drop 2% in U.S. premarket trading after an early study showed that the company’s vaccine provides less immunity to the omicron variant Dare Bioscience (DARE US) soars 41% in premarket trading after Xaciato gets FDA approval for treating bacterial vaginosis EPAM Systems (EPAM US) soars 8% in premarket after S&P Dow Jones Indices said co. will replace Kansas City Southern in the S&P 500 effective prior to the opening of trading on Dec. 14 Goodyear Tire & Rubber (GT US) upgraded to buy from hold and target boosted to Street-high $32 from $29 at Deutsche Bank with the company seen as a major beneficiary from the shift to electric vehicles. Shares up 4.3% in premarket trading NXP Semiconductor (NXPI US) shares slide 2.2% in U.S. premarket trading after the chipmaker got a new sell rating at UBS Dave & Buster’s (PLAY US) gained 3.5% postmarket after the dining and entertainment company reported EPS that beat the average analyst estimate and authorized a $100 million share buyback program "Every day that passes without a wave of severe cases driven by Omicron is offering more hope that this won't be the curveball to throw the recovery off course," wrote Deutsche Bank strategist Jim Reid in a note to clients. In Europe, the Stoxx Europe 600 Index initially drifted both higher and lower then bounced 0.3% on the favorable Pfizer and BioNTech news one day after posting its bigger surge in a year. European benchmark index earlier rose as much as 2%, dropped 2.1%. Health care sub-index leads gains, rising 1.2%, followed by travel stocks. The Stoxx 600 closed 2.5% higher on Tuesday, biggest gain since November 2020 Earlier in the session, Asia stocks also rose for a second day as concerns about the omicron variant and China’s economic slowdown eased. The MSCI AsiaPacific Index climbed as much as 0.9% after capping its biggest one-day gain in more than three months on Tuesday. Technology and health-care shares provided the biggest boosts. Benchmarks in New Zealand and India -- where the central bank held rates at a record low -- were among the day’s best performers. “The biggest point appealing to investors is that the Omicron variant doesn’t seem to be too fatal,” which is encouraging to those who had been going short to close out their positions, said Tomoichiro Kubota, a senior market analyst at Matsui Securities in Tokyo. “Worry that the Chinese economy will lose its growth momentum has subsided quite a bit.” Thus far, Omicron cases haven’t overwhelmed hospitals while vaccine developments indicate some promise in dealing with the variant. While vaccines like the one made by Pfizer and BioNTech SE may be less powerful against the new strain, protection can be fortified with boosters. The two-day rally in the Asian stock benchmark marks a sharp turnaround following weeks of declines since mid-November. Stocks in China also climbed for a second day. The nation’s central bank said Monday it will cut the amount of cash most banks must keep in reserve from Dec. 15, providing a liquidity boost and helping restore investor confidence In FX, news on the Omicron variant rippled through G-10 currencies after a report the Pfizer vaccine could neutralize the Omicron variant boosted risk appetite. The pound underperformed other Group-of-10 peers, extending declines after reports that the U.K. government is poised to introduce new Covid-19 restrictions.  A gauge of the dollar’s strength fluctuated as Treasuries pare gains and stocks rally after a report that said Pfizer and BioNTech claim three vaccine doses neutralize the omicron variant. EUR/USD rose 0.1% to 1.1277; USD/NOK falls as much as 0.8% to 8.9459, lowest since Nov. 25 Sterling fell against the euro and the dollar, as traders pare bets on the path of Bank of England rate hikes following reports that the U.K. could introduce fresh Covid-19 restrictions such as working from home and vaccine passports for large venues. Money markets pare rate hike bets, with just six basis points of interest rate hikes priced in for the BOE meeting next week. GBP/USD falls as much as 0.6% to 1.3163, testing the key level of 1.3165, the 38.2% Fibonacci retracement of gains since March 2020. EUR/GBP gains as much as 0.7% to 0.85695, the highest since Nov. 11. “The market will probably see this as more U.K. specific and therefore an issue for the pound at least in the short term,” said Stuart Bennett, FX strategist at Santander. In rates, Treasuries were mixed with markets reacting in a risk-on manner to the Dow Jones report that Pfizer and BioNTech claim three vaccine doses neutralize the omicron variant. Yields remain richer by less than 1bp across long-end of the curve while front-end trades cheaper on the day, flattening curve spreads. Session’s focal points include $36b 10-year note reopening at 1pm ET, following Tuesday’s strong 3-year note auction. Treasury 10-year yields around 1.475%, near flat on the day; gilts outperform slightly after Financial Times report that further Covid restrictions will be announced imminently to curb the variant’s spread. U.S. 2-year yields were cheaper by 1bp on the day, rose to new 2021 high following Pfizer vaccine report; 2s10s spread erased a flattening move In commodities, crude futures turned red, WTI falling 0.8%, popping back below $72. Spot gold holds Asia’s modest gains, adding $8 to trade near $1,792/oz. Looking at the day ahead, and Olaf Scholz is expected to become German Chancellor in a Bundestag vote today. From central banks, the Bank of Canada will be deciding on rates, and we’ll also hear from ECB President Lagarde, Vice President de Guindos and the ECB’s Schnabel. Finally, data releases include the JOLTS job openings from the US for October. Market Snapshot S&P 500 futures up 0.2% to 4,693.75 STOXX Europe 600 little changed at 480.55 MXAP up 0.7% to 194.84 MXAPJ up 0.6% to 632.78 Nikkei up 1.4% to 28,860.62 Topix up 0.6% to 2,002.24 Hang Seng Index little changed at 23,996.87 Shanghai Composite up 1.2% to 3,637.57 Sensex up 1.8% to 58,654.25 Australia S&P/ASX 200 up 1.3% to 7,405.45 Kospi up 0.3% to 3,001.80 Brent Futures down 0.5% to $75.04/bbl Gold spot up 0.3% to $1,790.33 U.S. Dollar Index down 0.17% to 96.20 German 10Y yield little changed at -0.38% Euro up 0.2% to $1.1286 Brent Futures down 0.5% to $75.04/bbl Top Overnight News from Bloomberg The omicron variant of Covid-19 must inflict significant damage on the euro-area economy for European Central Bank Governing Council member Martins Kazaks to back additional stimulus “The current phase of higher inflation could last longer than expected only some months ago,” ECB vice president Luis de Guindos says at event The earliest studies on omicron are in and the glimpse they’re providing is cautiously optimistic: while vaccines like the one made by Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE may be less powerful against the new variant, protection can be fortified with boosters U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson is set to announce new Covid-19 restrictions in England, known as “Plan B,” to stop the spread of the Omicron variant, the Financial Times reported, citing three senior Whitehall officials familiar with the matter. French economic activity will continue to rise in December, despite another wave of the Covid-19 pandemic and fresh uncertainty over the omicron variant, according the Bank of France The Kingdom of Denmark will sell a sovereign green bond for the first time next month to help the Nordic nation meet one of the world’s most ambitious climate targets Tom Hayes, the former UBS Group AG and Citigroup Inc. trader who became the face of the sprawling Libor scandal, has lost his bid to appeal his U.K. criminal conviction Poland is poised for a hefty increase in interest rates after a spike in inflation to a two- decade high convinced central bankers that spiraling price growth isn’t transitory. Of 32 economists surveyed by Bloomberg, 20 expect a 50 basis-point hike to 1.75% today and 10 see the rate rising to 2%. The other two expect a 25 basis-point increase Australia is weighing plans for a central bank-issued digital currency alongside the regulation of the crypto market as it seeks to overhaul how the nation’s consumers and businesses pay for goods and services Bank of Japan Deputy Governor Masayoshi Amamiya dropped a strong hint that big firms are in less need of funding support, a comment that will likely fuel speculation the BOJ will scale back its pandemic buying of corporate bonds and commercial paper A detailed summary of global markets courtesy of Newsquawk Asian equity markets traded positively as the region took impetus from the global risk momentum following the tech-led rally in the US, where Apple shares rose to a record high and amid increased optimism that Omicron could be less dangerous than prior variants. This was after early hospitalisation data from South Africa showed the new variant could result in less severe COVID and NIH's Fauci also suggested that Omicron was 'almost certainly' not more severe than Delta, although there were some slight headwinds in late Wall Street trade after a small study pointed to reduced vaccine efficacy against the new variant. The ASX 200 (+1.3%) was underpinned in which tech led the broad gains across sectors as it found inspiration from the outperformance of big tech stateside, and with energy bolstered by the recent rebound in underlying oil prices. The Nikkei 225 (+1.4%) conformed to the upbeat mood although further advances were capped after USD/JPY eased off the prior day’s highs and following a wider-than-expected contraction to the economy with the final annualised Q3 GDP at -3.6% vs exp. -3.1%. The Hang Seng (+0.1%) and Shanghai Comp. (+1.2%) were less decisive and initially lagged behind their peers as sentiment was mired by default concerns due to the failure by Evergrande to pay bondholders in the lapsed 30-day grace period on two USD-denominated bond payments and with Kaisa Group in a trading halt after missing the deadline for USD 400mln in offshore debt which didn’t bode well for its affiliates. Furthermore, China Aoyuan Property Group received over USD 650mln in repayment demands and warned it may not be able to meet debt obligations, while a subdued Hong Kong debut for Weibo shares which declined around 6% from the offer price added to the glum mood for Hong Kong’s blue-chip tech stocks, as did reports that China is to tighten rules for tech companies seeking foreign funding. Finally, 10yr JGBs languished after spillover selling from T-notes and due to the heightened global risk appetite, but with downside stemmed by support at the key psychological 152.00 level and amid the presence of the BoJ in the market today for over JPY 1.0tln of JGBs. Top Asian News China Clean Car Sales Spike as Consumers Embrace Electric Gold Edges Higher as Traders Weigh Vaccine Efficacy, Geopolitics Paint Maker Avia Avian Falls in Debut After $763 Million IPO Tokyo Prepares to Introduce Same-Sex Partnerships Next Year Equities in Europe shifted to a lower configuration after a mixed open (Euro Stoxx 50 -0.7%; Stoxx 600 -0.1%) as sentiment was dented by rumours of tightening COVID measures in the UK. Markets have been awaiting the next catalyst to latch onto for direction amidst a lack of fresh fundamentals. US equity futures have also been dented but to a lesser extent, with the YM (-0.1%) and ES (Unch) straddling behind the NQ (+0.2%) and RTY (+0.2%). Sources in recent trade suggested an 85% chance of the UK implementing COVID Plan B, according to Times' Dunn; reports indicate such restrictions could be implemented on Thursday, with the potential for an announcement today. In terms of the timings, the UK cabinet is penciled in for 15:45GMT and presser for 17:30GMT on Plan B, according to BBC's Goodall. Note, this will not be a formal lockdown but more so work-from-home guidance, vaccine passports for nightlife and numerical restrictions on indoor/outdoor gatherings. APAC closed in the green across the board following the tech-led rally in the US. The upside overnight was attributed to a continuation of market optimism after early hospitalisation data from South Africa showed the new variant could result in less severe COVID, albeit after a small study pointed to reduced vaccine efficacy against the new variant. Participants will be closely watching any updates from the vaccine-makers, with the BioNTech CEO stating the drugmaker has data coming Wednesday or Thursday related to the new COVID-19 variant, thus markets will be eyeing a potential update this week ahead of the Pfizer investor call next Friday. Back to European, the UK’s FTSE 100 (Unch) and the Swiss SMI (+0.8%) are largely buoyed by their defensive stocks, with sectors seeing a defensive formation, albeit to a slightly lesser extent vs the open. Healthcare retains its top spot closely followed by Food & Beverages, although Personal & Household Goods and Telecoms have moved down the ranks. On the flip side, Retail, Banks and Travel & Leisure trade at the bottom of the bunch, whilst Tech nursed some earlier losses after opening as the lagging sector. In terms of individual movers, Nestle (+1.8%) is bolstered after announcing a CHF 20bln share repurchase programme alongside a stake reduction in L'Oreal (+1.0%) to 20.1% from 23.3% - worth some EUR 9bln. L’Oreal has shrugged off the stake sale and conforms to the firm sectoral performance across the Personal & Household Goods. Meanwhile, chip names are under pressure after Nikkei sources reported that Apple (+0.8% pre-market) was forced to scale back the total output target for 2021, with iPhone and iPad assembly halted for several days due to supply chain constraints and restrictions on the use of power in China, multiple sources told Nikkei. STMicroelectronics (-1.7%) and Infineon (-5.0%) are among the losers, with the latter also weighed on by a broker downgrade at JPM. Top European News ECB’s Kazaks Sets High Bar for Omicron-Driven Extra Stimulus Biden Is Left Guessing Over Putin’s Ultimate Aim in Ukraine Byju’s Buys Austria’s GeoGebra to Bolster Online Math Courses Scholz Elected by Parliament to Take Charge as German Chancellor In FX, the Dollar index continues to hold above 96.000, but bounces have become less pronounced and the range so far today is distinctly narrower (96.285-130) in fitting with the generally restrained trade in pairings within the basket and beyond, bar a few exceptions. Price action suggests a relatively muted midweek session unless a major game-changer arrives and Wednesday’s agenda does not bode that well in terms of catalysts aside from JOLTS and the BoC policy meeting before the second leg of this week’s refunding in the form of Usd 36 bn 10 year notes. AUD/EUR - Notwithstanding the largely contained currency moves noted above, the Aussie is maintaining bullish momentum on specific factors including strength in iron ore prices and encouraging Chinese data plus PBoC easing that should have a positive knock-on effect for one of its main trading partners even though diplomatic relations between the two nations are increasingly strained. Aud/Usd has also cleared a couple of technical hurdles on the way up to circa 0.7143 and Aud/Nzd is firmer on the 1.0500 handle ahead of the RBA’s latest chart pack release and a speech by Governor Lowe. Elsewhere, the Euro has regained composure after its sub-1.1250 tumble on Tuesday vs the Buck and dip through 0.8500 against the Pound, but still faces psychological resistance at 1.1300 and the 21 DMA that comes in at 1.1317 today, while Eur/Gbp needs to breach the 100 DMA (0.8513) convincingly or close above to confirm a change in direction for the cross from a chart perspective. CHF/CAD/JPY/GBP/NZD - All sitting tight in relation to their US counterpart, with the Franc paring some declines between 0.9255-30 parameters and the Loonie straddling 1.2650 in the run up to the aforementioned BoC that is widely seen as a non-event given no new MPR or press conference, not to mention the actual changes in QE and rate guidance last time. Nevertheless, implied volatility is quite high via a 63 pip breakeven for Usd/Cad. Meanwhile, Sterling lost grip of the 1.3200 handle amidst swirling speculation about the UK reverting to plan B and more Tory MPs calling for PM Johnson to resign, the Yen is rotating around 113.50 eyeing broad risk sentiment and US Treasury yields in context of spreads to JGBs, and the Kiwi is lagging after touching 0.6800 awaiting independent impetus from NZ manufacturing sales for Q3. SCANDI/EM - The Nok extended its advantage/outperformance against the Sek as Brent rebounded towards Usd 76/brl in early trade and Riksbank’s Jansson retained reservations about flagging a repo rate hike at the end of the forecast horizon, while the Mxn and Rub also initially derived some support from oil with the latter also taking on board latest hawkish talk from the CBR. However, the Cny and Cnh are outpacing their rivals again with some assistance from a firmer PBoC midpoint fix to hit multi-year peaks vs the Usd and probe 6.3500 ahead of option expiry interest at 6.3000 and a Fib retracement at 6.2946, in stark contrast to the Try that is unwinding recent recovery gains with no help from the latest blast from Turkish President Erdogan - see 10.00GMT post in the Headline Feed for more. Conversely, the Czk has taken heed of CNB’s Holub underscoring tightening signals and expectations for the next rate convene and the Pln and Brl are anticipating hikes from the NBP and BCB. In commodities, crude futures have been hit on the prospect of imminent COVID-related measures in the UK, albeit the measures do not involve lockdowns. Brent and WTI front month futures slipped from European highs to breach APAC lows. The former dipped below USD 74.50/bbl from a USD 76.00/bbl European peak while its WTI counterpart tested USD 71.00/bbl from USD 72.50/bbl at best. Overnight the benchmarks traded on either side the USD 75/bbl mark and just under USD 72/bbl after the weekly Private Inventories printed a larger-than-expected draw (-3.6mln vs exp. -3.1mln), albeit the internals were less bullish. Yesterday also saw the release of the EIA STEO, cut its 2021 world oil demand growth forecast by an insignificant 10k BPD but raised the 2022 metric by 200k BPD – with the IEA and OPEC monthly reports poised to be released next week. On the vaccine front, a small preliminary study of 12 people showed a 40x reduction in neutralization capacity of the Pfizer vaccine against Omicron, but early hospitalisation data from South Africa showed the new variant could result in less severe COVID. BioNTech CEO said they have data coming in on Wednesday or Thursday related to the new Omicron variant. The geopolitical space is also worth keeping on the radar, with US President Biden yesterday warning Russian President Putin that gas exports via Nord Stream 2 will be targeted and more troops will be deployed if he orders an invasion of Ukraine. Further, reports suggested, an Indian army helicopter crashed in Tamil Nadu, with Chief of Defence staff reportedly on board, according to Sputnik. Note, Tamil Nadu is located towards the south of the country and away from conflict zones. Elsewhere spot gold was supported by the overnight pullback in the Dollar, but the recent risk aversion took the yellow metal above the 100 DMA around USD 1,790/oz, with nearby upside levels including the 200 DMA (1,792/oz) and the 50 DMA (1,794/oz). Copper prices meanwhile consolidated within a tight range, with LME copper holding onto a USD 9,500/t handle (just about). Dalian iron ore extended on gains in a continuation of the upside seen in recent trade. US Event Calendar 7am: Dec. MBA Mortgage Applications, prior -7.2% 10am: Oct. JOLTs Job Openings, est. 10.5m, prior 10.4m DB's Jim Reid concludes the overnight wrap A reminder that we are currently conducting our special 2022 survey. We ask about rates, equities, bond yields and the path of covid in 2022, amongst other things, and also return to a festive question we asked in 2019, namely your favourite ever Christmas songs. The link is here and it’ll be open until tomorrow. All help filling in very much appreciated. My optimism for life has been shattered this morning. Not from the markets or the virus but just as I woke this morning England cricketers finally surrendered and collapsed in a heap on the first day of the Ashes - one the oldest international rivalries in sport. It was all I could do not to turn round and go back to bed. However out of duty I’m soldering on. After the twins nativity play went without incident yesterday, this morning it’s Maisie’s turn. Given she’s in a wheelchair at the moment she can’t get on stage so they’ve given her a solo singing spot at the start. I’m going so I can bring a bucket for all my wife’s tears as she sings!! If I shed a tear I’ll pretend it’s because of the cricket. The global market rebound continued to gather strength yesterday as investors became increasingly optimistic that the Omicron variant wouldn’t prove as bad as initially feared. To be honest, it was more the absence of bad news rather than any concrete good news helping to drive sentiment. Late in the US session we did see some headlines suggesting that the Pfizer vaccine may provide some defence against Omicron but also that the new variant does evade some of the immunity produced by this vaccine. This report of the small study (12 people!!) from South Africa lacked substance but you could take positives and negatives from it. More information is clearly needed. For the markets though, every day that passes without a wave of severe cases driven by Omicron is offering more hope that this won’t be the curveball to throw the recovery off course. Indeed, to get a sense of the scale of the market rebound, both the S&P 500 and the STOXX 600 in Europe have now clocked in their strongest 2-day performances of 2021 so far, with the indices up by +3.27% and +3.76% respectively since the start of the week. Meanwhile, the VIX fell below 25 for the first time in a week. On the day, the S&P 500 (+2.07%) put in its strongest daily performance since March, whilst the STOXX 600 (+2.45%) saw its strongest daily performance since the news that the Pfizer vaccine was successful in trials back in November 2020. Once again the gains were incredibly broad-based, albeit with cyclical sectors leading the way. The Nasdaq (+3.03%) outperformed the S&P 500 for the first time in a week as tech shares led the rally. Small cap stocks also had a strong day, with the Russell 2000 up +2.28%, on the back of Omicron optimism. This recovery in risk assets was also seen in the bounceback in oil prices, with Brent crude (+3.23%) and WTI (+3.68%) now both up by more than $5.5/bbl since the start of the week, which puts them well on the way to ending a run of 6 consecutive weekly declines. For further evidence of this increased optimism, we can also look at the way that investors have been dialling back up their estimates of future rate hikes from the Fed, with yesterday seeing another push in this direction. Before the Omicron news hit, Fed fund futures were fully pricing in an initial hike by the June meeting, but by the close on the Monday after Thanksgiving they’d moved down those odds to just 61% in June, with an initial hike not fully priced until September. Fast forward just over a week however, and we’re now not only back to pricing in a June hike, but the odds of a May hike are standing at +78.8%, which is actually higher than the +66.1% chance priced before the Omicron news hit. A reminder that we’re just a week away now from the Fed’s next decision, where it’s hotly anticipated they could accelerate the pace at which they’ll taper their asset purchases. With investors bringing forward their bets on monetary tightening, front-end US Treasury yields were hitting post-pandemic highs yesterday, with the 2yr Treasury yield up +5.8bps to 0.69%, a level we haven’t seen since March 2020. Longer-dated yield increases weren’t as large, with the 10yr yield up +3.9bps to 1.47%, and the 5s30s curve flattened another -1.8bps to 54.4bps, just above the post-pandemic low of 53.7bps. Over in Europe there was similarly a rise in most countries’ bond yields, with those on 10yr bunds (+1.4bps), OATs (+1.0bps) and BTPs (+4.4bps) all moving higher, though incidentally, the 5s30s curve in Germany was also down -2.2bps to its own post-pandemic low of 50.0bps. One pretty big news story that markets have been relatively unperturbed by so far is the rising tensions between the US and Russia over Ukraine. Yesterday saw a video call between US President Biden and Russian President Putin. The US readout from the call did not offer much in the way of concrete details, but if you’re looking for any optimistic news, it said that both sides tasked their teams with following up. Setting the background for the call, there were reports immediately beforehand that the US was considering evacuating their citizens and posturing to stop Nord Stream 2 if Russia invaded Ukraine. The Ruble appreciated +0.42% against the dollar, and is now only slightly weaker versus the dollar on the week. Overnight in Asia stocks are trading mostly higher led by the Nikkei (+1.49%), CSI (+1.11%), Shanghai Composite (+0.86%) and the KOSPI (+0.78%) as markets respond positively to the Pfizer study mentioned at the top. The Hang Seng (-0.12%) is lagging though. In Japan, the final Q3 GDP contracted -3.6% quarter on quarter annualised against consensus expectations of -3.1% on lower consumer spending than initially estimated. In India, the RBI left the key policy rate unchanged for the ninth consecutive meeting today while underscoring increasing headwinds from the Omicron variant. Futures markets indicate a positive start in the US and Europe with S&P 500 (+0.41%) and DAX (+0.12%) futures trading in the green. Back on the pandemic, despite the relative benign news on Omicron, rising global case counts mean that the direction of travel is still towards tougher restrictions across a range of countries. In fact here in the UK, we saw the 7-day average of reported cases move above 48,000 for the first time since January. In terms of fresh restrictions, yesterday saw Canada announce that they’d be extending their vaccine mandate, which will now require employees in all federally regulated workplaces to be vaccinated, including road transportation, telecommunications and banking. In Sweden, the government is preparing a bill that would see Covid passes introduced for gyms and restaurants, while Poland put further measures in place, including remote schooling from December 20 until January 9, while vaccines would become mandatory for health workers, teachers and uniformed services from March 1. One move to ease restrictions came in Austria, where it was confirmed shops would be reopening on Monday, albeit only for those vaccinated, while restaurants and hotels would reopen the following week. If you see our daily charts you’ll see that cases in Austria have dropped sharply since the peaks a couple of weeks ago, albeit still high internationally. In DC, Congressional leaders apparently agreed to a deal that would ultimately lead to the debt ceiling being increased, after some procedural chicanery. Senate Majority Leader McConnell voiced support for the measure, which is a good sign for its ultimate prospects of passing, but it still needs at least 10 Republican votes in the Senate to pass. McConnell indicated the votes would be there when the Senate ultimately takes it up, which is reportedly set to happen this week. The House passed the measure last night. Yields on Treasury bills maturing in December fell following the headlines. Looking ahead, today will mark the end of an era in Germany, as Olaf Scholz is set to become Chancellor in a Bundestag vote later on, marking an end to Chancellor Merkel’s 16-year tenure. That vote will simply be a formality given the three parties of the incoming coalition (the centre-left SPD, the Greens and the liberal FDP) have a comfortable majority between them, and the new cabinet will feature 7 SPD ministers, 5 Green ministers, and 4 from the FDP. Among the positions will include Green co-leader Robert Habeck as Vice Chancellor, Green co-leader Annalena Baerbock as foreign minister, and FDP leader Christian Lindner as finance minister. Running through yesterday’s data, the US trade deficit narrowed to $67.1bn in October (vs. $66.8bn expected), marking its smallest level since April. Meanwhile in the Euro Area, the latest Q3 growth estimate was left unchanged at +2.2%, but both Q1 and Q2’s growth was revised up a tenth. Over in Germany, industrial production grew by a stronger-than-expected +2.8% in October (vs. +1.0% expected), with the previous month’s contraction also revised to show a smaller -0.5% decline. In addition, the expectations component of the December ZEW survey fell by less than expected to 29.9 (vs. 25.4 expected), but the current situation measure fell to a 6-month low of -7.4 (vs. 5.7 expected). To the day ahead now, and Olaf Scholz is expected to become German Chancellor in a Bundestag vote today. From central banks, the Bank of Canada will be deciding on rates, and we’ll also hear from ECB President Lagarde, Vice President de Guindos and the ECB’s Schnabel. Finally, data releases include the JOLTS job openings from the US for October. Tyler Durden Wed, 12/08/2021 - 07:58.....»»

Category: blogSource: zerohedgeDec 8th, 2021

Amtrak is getting part of $66 billion for rail from the infrastructure bill, but the agency is already debuting new trains that will take travelers across the US - see inside

Amtrak's interior upgrades make long-haul rail travel more enticing with all classes of service seeing enhancements, from coach class to the sleeper cars. An Amtrak GE Genesis P42 locomotive. Thomas Pallini/Insider Amtrak is a big winner in the $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill with $66 billion going towards rail. More cities across the US may receive rail service while existing lines, stations, and services will see upgrades and improvements. Amtrak in June debuted the new interiors of its long-distance trains that will traverse the country. Amtrak is on the verge of a new era as it will soon find itself flush with capital following the passage of a $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill in Congress. An Amtrak long-distance train. Shutterstock Here's what's in Biden's $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill. A total of $66 billion has been allocated for rail including $22 billion in Amtrak grants and $44 billion for items like intercity rail and the modernization of the Northeast Corridor. AJ Packer/Shutterstock.com Source: Insider "The passage of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act provides historic levels of investment for intercity passenger rail in this country and the start of a whole new era for improved and expanded Amtrak service," Anthony Coscia, Amtrak's chairman of the board, said in a statement. An Amtrak train passes through Elizabeth train station Saturday, March 12, 2016, in Elizabeth, N.J., along Amtrak's Northeast Corridor. AP Photo/Mel Evans Amtrak has wasted no time telling Americans where it wants to expand service, with cities such as Nashville, Tennessee and Phoenix, Arizona potentially getting connections to the national network. And taking rail passengers on long-distance journeys across the country will be a newly upgraded fleet of familiar trains. An Amtrak long-distance train. Shutterstock Here's why Amtrak's future plans don't call for high-speed rail expansion. Insider previewed the new cars over the summer at Amtrak's mid-continent hub at Chicago's Union Station. Here's what they're like onboard. An Amtrak GE Genesis P42 locomotive. Thomas Pallini/Insider Amtrak regulars won't immediately notice the difference when approaching their long-distance trains, and that's because the cars themselves haven't actually changed. Rather, it's only the interiors that are receiving an upgrade. An Amtrak GE Genesis P42 locomotive. Thomas Pallini/Insider A total of $28 million is being spent to update its fleet of Superliner and Viewliner trains, in all classes of services, including coach class. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider While a small drop in the bucket compared to $66 billion, Amtrak travelers will immediately notice the difference between the old and new products. The tired blue cloth that has traversed the country more often than most is being replaced with modern leatherette. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider But travelers paying up to book the most exclusive and expensive accommodations onboard an Amtrak train will see the most improvements, starting in the sleeper cars. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Amtrak offers five types of bedrooms on Superliners including roomettes, bedrooms, bedroom suites, accessible bedrooms, and family bedrooms. Overall bedroom layouts will remain the same but will feature updates throughout. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider The largest, bedrooms, are perhaps the most quintessential when thinking about long-distance Amtrak travel. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Inside each one are a large sofa and an armchair that can house two adults, despite having seating room for at least three. The blue cloth has been upgraded to gray leatherette cushioning. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider It's a sleek look for a centuries-old mode of transportation but emblematic of Amtrak's recent push to evolve with the times. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider These rooms can only sleep two, one on the sofa that can be made into a bed and the other on the top bunk directly above. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Most of the fixtures will remain as they are but updates can be found in the en-suite shower where single-use soap bottles are being replaced with dispensers. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider The refillable dispensers, Amtrak says, will help reduce the rail corporation's environmental footprint. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Roomettes are smaller alternatives that can similarly house two passengers, ideal for solo travelers or couples looking to save money while still having access to many of the perks that come with booking a room on Amtrak. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider The two seats face each other and are divided by a table in the middle. There's not much space to walk around in the roomettes but the cost savings can be significant, especially for those that don't need a full bedroom. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Elsewhere on the train, a revamped dining car offering complements the onboard updates with the return of white tablecloth service and china. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Here's how Amtrak is bringing back the dining car. Guests can take all three meals in the car with a renewed focus on high-quality meals, from french toast and omelets at breakfast to steak and salmon for dinner. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Communal dining will continue the tradition of sharing meals with fellow riders but those that prefer to dine alone can request their own table. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Meal costs are included in the price of a sleeper-car ticket, which can stretch into thousands of dollars depending on the route. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Coach class passengers can't currently dine in the elegant car but Amtrak is working on creating dining packages so they can enjoy a bit of the high life. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Guests can also choose to dine in their rooms instead of heading up to the dining car. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider It’s not the same white tablecloth service as in the dining car but Amtrak says the rooms are plenty comfortable to enjoy a meal. “We cater to each individual, it’s not a program,” Amtrak conductor David told Insider. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Separating the dining car from the coach class cars is the observation car, offering expansive views of the outside scenery. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Seats in this car are similarly being reupholstered with the new material while the layout is staying the same. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Passengers from any class can take a seat in the observation car on a first-come, first-serve basis. And directly below is the café where drinks and snacks can be purchased on-demand. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Coach class cars feature the bulk of the seating with two-seat pairs on both sides of the aisle. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Frequent Northeast Regional travelers will recognize the layout but the long-distance seats offer considerably more legroom. "This is like a 50-inch pitch on an airliner, Roger Harris, Amtrak's executive vice president and chief marketing and revenue officer, said. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider And for groups traveling together, riders can even request an attendant swivel the seats to face each other. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider The seats don't lay flat but there's plenty of room to stretch out and leg rests help make the ride more comfortable, especially when it's time to sleep. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider And if there's no seat neighbor in a given row, the combined seat width is comparable to a double bed. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider The entire fleet of bi-level Superliners consisting of around 450 cars will be updated within the next two years. Amtrak debuted its first car over the summer immediately after the unveiling event in June. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider The downside for travelers is that they can't book onto a car that has the updated interiors, given the interchangeability of Amtrak's trains. It would be "truly impossible" to book specifically on a train with the new interior, Amtrak said. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider "People will be looking forward to them," an Amtrak executive said, but added that cars aren't assigned to trains more than just a few days out. Even trains that feature the new interiors might still have a mixture of the old interior with the new. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Amtrak's Viewliners, the smaller long-distance trains that pass through New York City, will receive the same upgrades. Though, the implementation may look a bit different given the smaller size. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider The improvements are among the many currently underway at Amtrak, almost all of which were implemented before President Joe Biden was elected to the presidency. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider New Acela trains on the Northeast Corridor are slated to debut in 2022 to provide a high-speed experience closer to what's currently found in Europe. Amtrak's new Acela trainset. Amtrak See inside the new Acela trains that seek to bring European-style high-speed rail to the US. And in New York, Pennsylvania Station just opened a new train hall that primarily serves Amtrak trains. New York City's new Moynihan Train Hall. Thomas Pallini/Business Insider Take a look inside New York City's new $1.6 billion Moynihan Train Hall. Powering the updated cars will be the new ALC-42 Siemens Chargers locomotives, offering a 4,200-horsepower output allowing speeds up to 125 miles per hour. An Amtrak ALC-42 Siemens Chargers. Thomas Pallini/Insider Meet Amtrak's new diesel-electric locomotives built by Siemens. Larger trains will be able to travel further while making fewer stops for fuel thanks to increases in head-end power and fuel capacity. An Amtrak ALC-42 Siemens Chargers. Thomas Pallini/Insider Amtrak awarded an $850 million contract for 75 locomotives to be delivered through 2024. An Amtrak ALC-42 Siemens Chargers. Thomas Pallini/Insider And now that Amtrak is expecting a monetary windfall, it won't be too long before the upgraded trains roll through more US cities. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderNov 14th, 2021

Amtrak is getting a piece of $66 billion for rail from the infrastructure bill, but Amtrak is already debuting new trains that will take travelers across the US - see inside

Amtrak's interior upgrades make long-haul rail travel more enticing with all classes of service seeing enhancements, from coach class to the sleeper cars. An Amtrak GE Genesis P42 locomotive. Thomas Pallini/Insider Amtrak is a big winner in the $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill with $66 billion going towards rail. More cities across the US may receive rail service while existing lines, stations, and services will see upgrades and improvements. Amtrak in June debuted the new interiors of its long-distance trains that will traverse the country. Amtrak is on the verge of a new era as it will soon find itself flush with capital following the passage of a $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill in Congress. An Amtrak long-distance train. Shutterstock Here's what's in Biden's $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill. A total of $66 billion has been allocated for rail including $22 billion in Amtrak grants and $44 billion for items like intercity rail and the modernization of the Northeast Corridor. AJ Packer/Shutterstock.com Source: Insider "The passage of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act provides historic levels of investment for intercity passenger rail in this country and the start of a whole new era for improved and expanded Amtrak service," Anthony Coscia, Amtrak's chairman of the board, said in a statement. An Amtrak train passes through Elizabeth train station Saturday, March 12, 2016, in Elizabeth, N.J., along Amtrak's Northeast Corridor. AP Photo/Mel Evans Amtrak has wasted no time telling Americans where it wants to expand service, with cities such as Nashville, Tennessee and Phoenix, Arizona potentially getting connections to the national network. And taking rail passengers on long-distance journeys across the country will be a newly upgraded fleet of familiar trains. An Amtrak long-distance train. Shutterstock Here's why Amtrak's future plans don't call for high-speed rail expansion. Insider previewed the new cars over the summer at Amtrak's mid-continent hub at Chicago's Union Station. Here's what they're like onboard. An Amtrak GE Genesis P42 locomotive. Thomas Pallini/Insider Amtrak regulars won't immediately notice the difference when approaching their long-distance trains, and that's because the cars themselves haven't actually changed. Rather, it's only the interiors that are receiving an upgrade. An Amtrak GE Genesis P42 locomotive. Thomas Pallini/Insider A total of $28 million is being spent to update its fleet of Superliner and Viewliner trains, in all classes of services, including coach class. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider While a small drop in the bucket compared to $66 billion, Amtrak travelers will immediately notice the difference between the old and new products. The tired blue cloth that has traversed the country more often than most is being replaced with modern leatherette. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider But travelers paying up to book the most exclusive and expensive accommodations onboard an Amtrak train will see the most improvements, starting in the sleeper cars. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Amtrak offers five types of bedrooms on Superliners including roomettes, bedrooms, bedroom suites, accessible bedrooms, and family bedrooms. Overall bedroom layouts will remain the same but will feature updates throughout. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider The largest, bedrooms, are perhaps the most quintessential when thinking about long-distance Amtrak travel. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Inside each one are a large sofa and an armchair that can house two adults, despite having seating room for at least three. The blue cloth has been upgraded to gray leatherette cushioning. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider It's a sleek look for a centuries-old mode of transportation but emblematic of Amtrak's recent push to evolve with the times. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider These rooms can only sleep two, one on the sofa that can be made into a bed and the other on the top bunk directly above. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Most of the fixtures will remain as they are but updates can be found in the en-suite shower where single-use soap bottles are being replaced with dispensers. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider The refillable dispensers, Amtrak says, will help reduce the rail corporation's environmental footprint. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Roomettes are smaller alternatives that can similarly house two passengers, ideal for solo travelers or couples looking to save money while still having access to many of the perks that come with booking a room on Amtrak. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider The two seats face each other and are divided by a table in the middle. There's not much space to walk around in the roomettes but the cost savings can be significant, especially for those that don't need a full bedroom. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Elsewhere on the train, a revamped dining car offering complements the onboard updates with the return of white tablecloth service and china. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Here's how Amtrak is bringing back the dining car. Guests can take all three meals in the car with a renewed focus on high-quality meals, from french toast and omelets at breakfast to steak and salmon for dinner. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Communal dining will continue the tradition of sharing meals with fellow riders but those that prefer to dine alone can request their own table. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Meal costs are included in the price of a sleeper-car ticket, which can stretch into thousands of dollars depending on the route. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Coach class passengers can't currently dine in the elegant car but Amtrak is working on creating dining packages so they can enjoy a bit of the high life. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Guests can also choose to dine in their rooms instead of heading up to the dining car. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider It’s not the same white tablecloth service as in the dining car but Amtrak says the rooms are plenty comfortable to enjoy a meal. “We cater to each individual, it’s not a program,” Amtrak conductor David told Insider. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Separating the dining car from the coach class cars is the observation car, offering expansive views of the outside scenery. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Seats in this car are similarly being reupholstered with the new material while the layout is staying the same. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Passengers from any class can take a seat in the observation car on a first-come, first-serve basis. And directly below is the café where drinks and snacks can be purchased on-demand. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Coach class cars feature the bulk of the seating with two-seat pairs on both sides of the aisle. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Frequent Northeast Regional travelers will recognize the layout but the long-distance seats offer considerably more legroom. "This is like a 50-inch pitch on an airliner, Roger Harris, Amtrak's executive vice president and chief marketing and revenue officer, said. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider And for groups traveling together, riders can even request an attendant swivel the seats to face each other. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider The seats don't lay flat but there's plenty of room to stretch out and leg rests help make the ride more comfortable, especially when it's time to sleep. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider And if there's no seat neighbor in a given row, the combined seat width is comparable to a double bed. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider The entire fleet of bi-level Superliners consisting of around 450 cars will be updated within the next two years. Amtrak debuted its first car over the summer immediately after the unveiling event in June. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider The downside for travelers is that they can't book onto a car that has the updated interiors, given the interchangeability of Amtrak's trains. It would be "truly impossible" to book specifically on a train with the new interior, Amtrak said. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider "People will be looking forward to them," an Amtrak executive said, but added that cars aren't assigned to trains more than just a few days out. Even trains that feature the new interiors might still have a mixture of the old interior with the new. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Amtrak's Viewliners, the smaller long-distance trains that pass through New York City, will receive the same upgrades. Though, the implementation may look a bit different given the smaller size. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider The improvements are among the many currently underway at Amtrak, almost all of which were implemented before President Joe Biden was elected to the presidency. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider New Acela trains on the Northeast Corridor are slated to debut in 2022 to provide a high-speed experience closer to what's currently found in Europe. Amtrak's new Acela trainset. Amtrak See inside the new Acela trains that seek to bring European-style high-speed rail to the US. And in New York, Pennsylvania Station just opened a new train hall that primarily serves Amtrak trains. New York City's new Moynihan Train Hall. Thomas Pallini/Business Insider Take a look inside New York City's new $1.6 billion Moynihan Train Hall. Powering the updated cars will be the new ALC-42 Siemens Chargers locomotives, offering a 4,200-horsepower output allowing speeds up to 125 miles per hour. An Amtrak ALC-42 Siemens Chargers. Thomas Pallini/Insider Meet Amtrak's new diesel-electric locomotives built by Siemens. Larger trains will be able to travel further while making fewer stops for fuel thanks to increases in head-end power and fuel capacity. An Amtrak ALC-42 Siemens Chargers. Thomas Pallini/Insider Amtrak awarded an $850 million contract for 75 locomotives to be delivered through 2024. An Amtrak ALC-42 Siemens Chargers. Thomas Pallini/Insider And now that Amtrak is expecting a monetary windfall, it won't be too long before the upgraded trains roll through more US cities. Touring Amtrak's newly-upgraded Superliner train. Thomas Pallini/Insider Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderNov 14th, 2021

I rode the famed Eurostar high-speed train between London and Paris and saw how it"s undeniably better than Amtrak"s Acela

Eurostar offered a premium experience that's unlike anything I've experienced on Amtrak, showing that America has a long way to go with high-speed rail. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Eurostar connects London with cities through mainland Europe in France, Belgium, and the Netherlands. A train journey between London and Paris only takes a little more than two hours. America has fallen behind in high-speed rail with Amtrak's Acela pailing in comparison to services like Eurostar. Europe's expansive rail network has long surpassed America's in nearly every aspect, connecting cities across the continent with efficient downtown to downtown service unavailable to most Americans. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Multiple European countries have been working towards greater rail connectivity on the continent while Amtrak has dominated national rail travel in the US. American high-speed rail, as a result, has been limited to a handful of cities with no plans to expand it on a national level. Two European high-speed trains. REUTERS/Charles Platiau Here's why Amtrak isn't prioritizng high-speed rail beyond the Northeastern US.  America's first true foray into European-style high-speed rail came in 2000 with Amtrak's Acela Express, now known simply as Acela. Amtrak's Acela train. Kyodo News Stills via Getty Images But there's been little progress since then. Acela is the only high-speed line operated by Amtrak and takes passengers solely between New York, Boston, and Washington, DC, with stops in major cities in between. Amtrak's Acela train. AP Here's what riding Acela during the pandemic was like. New trainsets are scheduled to debut in 2022 but even still, journey times will only slightly improve as the winding train tracks that prohibit consistent high speeds will remain the same. Amtrak's new Acela trainset. Amtrak Here's how Amtrak is modernizing its Acela fleet. Eurostar, alternatively, connects London with mainland European cities as far south as Nice, France and as far east as Amsterdam, Netherlands. Its trains reach speeds of nearly 186 miles per hour, Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider I took Eurostar between London and Paris after taking three trips on Acela during the pandemic. Here's which one was better. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Eurostar's London-Paris route is arguably its most popular and well-known. The two capital cities are connected in just over two hours through the Channel Tunnel, also known as the Chunnel. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider A round-trip ticket for a Parisian day trip just a few days after the UK opened to French visitors cost $239. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Here's what it was like entering the UK after it opened to vaccinated tourists. Three classes of service are available including "standard," "standard premier," or "business premier," basically the equivalents of economy class, premium economy class, and business class, respectively, on an airplane. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider I booked standard premier class for the London to Paris leg as the upgrade fee was only $13, and standard for the return journey. The upgrade came with more spacious seats as well as a light meal and drinks served at the seat. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Acela, by comparison, only has two classes of service including business class and first class. Riding Amtrak during the pandemic. Thomas Pallini/Business Insider But Acela's business class is more akin to a standard coach class as there are no added perks beyond a large recliner and having a ticket onboard the high-speed trail. Riding Amtrak during the pandemic. Thomas Pallini/Business Insider I arrived at London's St. Pancras International Station around an hour before my Eurostar train's departure to Paris. This is where the process got complicated. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider I collected my ticket from a self-serve kiosk and headed to the departure area. The first step was completing a COVID-19 questionnaire required for travel to France. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Next came the security screening checkpoint which was similar to those found in airports. Amtrak trains, even those bound for foreign countries, do not require these types of screenings. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider The security check was followed by a quick stop at the UK Border Force to scan my passport out of the country. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider The final stage of the check-in process was clearing French passport control. A major benefit to taking Eurostar is clearing passport control in the departure country. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Once clear of the security formalities, passengers are directed to a seating lounge to wait before the platform is called. On Acela, it isn't uncommon to wait in the main hall of a station until the train is nearing the station. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider There was no shortage of seats in the departure lounge, as well as passengers that prefer to wait by the door to the platform. A small duty-free shop and cafe were also open for passengers. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Both Eurostar and Amtrak offer their top paying customers access to private lounges within stations, similar to premium airline lounges in airports. Eurostar "business premier class" ticket holders can access Eurostar lounges in Paris, Brussels, London, as well as partner lounges at stations in the Netherlands. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Holding a first class ticket also affords Acela riders into Amtrak's Metropolitan Lounges. New York City's new Moynihan Train Hall. Thomas Pallini/Business Insider The platform was opened to passengers 20 minutes before departure and up we went. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Eurostar's trains are massive with 16 cars in total on this trainset. Walking down to my car took quite a bit but I wanted to be closer to the front so I would have a shorter walk upon arrival in Paris. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Red carpeting quite literally guided the way into the standard premier car. There were fewer seats in this car that gave it a more exclusive feel with more space to stretch out. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider All Eurostar seats are reserved so there was no need to rush to find an open spot. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Amtrak, alternatively, just recently introduced reserved seating on all Acela trains. Riding Amtrak during the pandemic. Thomas Pallini/Business Insider The seat map even shows which seats are obstructed by a window, and which offer a view. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider The stylish chairs in standard premier are arranged in a 1-2 configuration, with the exception of the tables that offer two pairs of seats that face each other. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Each seat also has amenities including a personal reading lamp... Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider European and UK power outlets and USB charging ports... Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider And storage compartments under the armrests. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider It was exactly what I was expecting from European rail. The seat products looked so modern and clean on my journey that they seemed brand new. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Even standard class has stylish seats arranged in a 2-2 configuration, with table seats spread throughout the car. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Those seats similarly have European and UK power outlets and tray tables. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Acela, by comparison, has a tired interior of blue leather recliners in business class. Riding Amtrak during the pandemic. Thomas Pallini/Business Insider Amtrak has not given Acela the same upgrades that its long-distance trains are currently receiving. Riding Amtrak during the pandemic. Thomas Pallini/Business Insider Here's how Amtrak is upgrading the seating on its long-distance trains.  Our 8:01 a.m. train departed from London on-time and quickly advanced through the city's tunnels bound for the Chunnel. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Eurostar's Siemens British Rail Class 374 trains, also known as the E320, have a top speed of 186 miles per hour. And I could feel that speed as we soared through the countryside. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Acela's Bombardier/Alstom trainsets are limited to 150 miles per hour, which it can only achieve on straight stretches of track north of New York City. Darren McCollester/Getty Images Complimentary WiFi was available throughout the entire journey, even in the Chunnel. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider A light meal was included in the price of my standard premier ticket and it consisted of a croissant, bread roll, yogurt, water, and a selection of coffee and tea for breakfast. It was tasty and I couldn't argue with the value since I only paid $13 for the upgrade. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider The one downside was that the silverware still had crumbs on it after it had been cleaned. It was the first thing I noticed after taking the fork, knife, and spoon out of its packaging. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Those in standard class have the option of visiting the cafe car, called "Cafe Metropole," or bringing snacks onboard the train. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider The menu is reasonably priced but I could see just as well not having to eat anything since the journey is so short. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Meals on Acela are only served in first class, which is often a substantial buy-up from standard business class. But snacks and drinks can be purchased in Acela's cafe car Riding Amtrak during the pandemic. Thomas Pallini/Business Insider There isn't much by way of entertainment on Eurostar beyond the WiFi and overhead screens that gave fun facts about things like how deep the Chunnel is. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Acela similarly offers free WiFi but entertainment is limited beyond that. Riding Amtrak during the pandemic. Thomas Pallini/Business Insider Signage onboard the Acela is also more reminiscent of a New York City subway car than it is a premium travel product. Riding Amtrak during the pandemic. Thomas Pallini/Business Insider The experience on Eurostar did feel quite premium, more so than I've ever felt on Acela. This was a train ride worth dressing up for. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Arriving in Paris, we had made the roughly 200-mile journey in two hours and 16 minutes flat. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Not even Acela's non-stop service between New York City and Washington could beat that time, even though the cities are roughly the same distance apart. Passengers exit an Amtrak Acela train from New York Penn Station as it arrives on a platform at South Station train and bus station, on August 7, 2012 in Boston, Massachusetts.() Photo by Ann Hermes/The Christian Science Monitor via Getty Images If I had to choose between taking Acela or Eurostar with all other things being equal, I wouldn't hesitate to choose Eurostar. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider The major downside to Eurostar is that extra security checks are required for those traveling between the UK and mainland Europe. I made sure to arrive extra early for each Eurostar journey whereas, on Acela, I can get to the station just a few minutes before departure and have time to spare. Taking Eurostar between London, UK and Paris, France. Thomas Pallini/Insider Intra-European Union train lines don't have the same hassle and are arguably as easy to take as Acela. A European high-speed train. Pool/Getty Images But I can't fault Eurostar for international travel requirements. And what its train services lacks in convenience in that aspect, they make up for in incredibly fast and stylish journeys. A Eurostar E320 trainset. Digital News Agency Acela will see improvements when its new Aveila Liberty trainsets arrive. New seating will replace the tired blue leather... Amtrak's new Acela trainset. Amtrak And the cafe car will be modernized with digital menus. Amtrak's new Acela trainset. Amtrak Every seat will also have power outlets, USB charging ports, and adjustable reading lights. Amtrak's new Acela trainset. Amtrak So while Amtrak may never fully catch up to Eurostar in all aspects, Americans will soon get a high-speed upgrade to help bridge the gap. Amtrak's new Acela trainset. Amtrak Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nytNov 1st, 2021

JetBlue is trying to cater to business travelers on its London routes with a new Mint business class cabin. But it"s missing some key amenities.

JetBlue offers an incredible business class product onboard its London-bound aircraft. Off the plane, however, there's a lot to be desired. Flying JetBlue Airways from London to New York in Mint business class. Thomas Pallini/Insider JetBlue is the newest airline flying between New York and London, catering to both leisure and business travelers. Mint business class has been fully upgraded for the long-haul flights with a new cabin and dining experience. The flights are, however, not perfectly suited to match the needs of traditional business travelers. JetBlue is looking to make a splash in the transatlantic market with the start of new flights between New York and London, and it's off to a great start. First inaugurated in August, the route now sees two flights per day to London's Heathrow and Gatwick Airports from New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport. Airbus' A321neoLR, a brand-new fleet type for JetBlue, powers the overseas flights with an onboard experience unlike anything in the airline's current network. Mint business class features an entirely new look and feel, with 24 seats across a whopping 12 rows that takes up half of the aircraft. JetBlue has invested heavily in the premium experience with new herringbone-style suites that all offer privacy, exclusivity, and direct aisle access. But whether business travelers will be the ones to fill those seats remain to be seen as there are some key premium features JetBlue has left out of the offering. I flew on JetBlue's inaugural flight from New York to London in economy class and back a few days later in Mint business class.Here's why JetBlue wouldn't be my first pick if I was a business traveler. No access to premium airport lounges Flying JetBlue Airways from New York to London. Thomas Pallini/Insider A key staple of traveling internationally in a premium cabin is having access to airport lounges before departure. Nearly every full-service US carrier has a network of lounges at its hub airports, except JetBlue. Airport lounges serve business travelers by providing a quiet, exclusive space to get work done or simply rest before a flight. They offer complimentary WiFi and a selection of drinks and snacks, with the latter enabling travelers to get more sleep on eastbound transatlantic flights being by eating in the lounge and skipping the in-flight meal service. Terminal 5 at New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport isn't entirely deprived of premium lounges, it's just that none are available for JetBlue's premium passengers. Aer Lingus' lounge is not currently open to JetBlue flyers; though, day passes can be purchased for $50, according to Upgraded Points. Mint travelers will have to use other means to access lounges, such as credit cards or Priority Pass, as their tickets won't be enough. JetBlue is aware that premium lounges are needed for the route and is reviewing options to offer the amenity to passengers in the future. As of now, though, none are available to those that simply buy a business class ticket. Inconvenient flight times Flying JetBlue Airways from New York to London. Thomas Pallini/Insider JetBlue's flagship route between New York and London's Heathrow Airport isn't timed perfectly for business travelers. The late evening departure from New York is scheduled at 10 p.m. and arrives in London the next morning at 10:05 a.m. The late morning arrival means business travelers can write off an entire half a day in London. When I flew JetBlue to London, for example, I didn't get to my hotel until around 12:30 p.m., and that was with taking the Heathrow Express and using the e-gates at customs.British Airways, American Airlines, and Virgin Atlantic Airways, alternatively, all have flights that arrive before 7 a.m., giving business travelers the early bird advantage to tackle early meetings or more time to prepare for afternoon engagements.JetBlue's flights to Gatwick Airport are better timed for business travelers, departing New York at 7:50 p.m. and arriving in London at 7:55 a.m. On the return, the Heathrow flight departs London at 1:55 p.m. and arrives in New York at 6:49 p.m. while the Gatwick flight departs London at 12 p.m. and arrives in New York at 4:48 p.m. Both arrival times conflict with rush hour traffic in New York City and give travelers little time to adjust to being in a new city before it's time for bed. A lack of partner airlines on the route American Airlines and JetBlue Airways aircraft. NYC Russ/Shutterstock.com JetBlue is largely flying solo across the Atlantic, despite having a network of partner airlines on both sides of the pond. And in the event something goes wrong, whether it be a delay or cancellation, that could mean passengers are left without a backup option. American Airlines has British Airways, Delta Air Lines has Virgin Atlantic Airways, and United Airlines has Air Canada, and vice versa, each offering multiple ways of getting between New York and London. JetBlue doesn't have those same partnerships where travelers can simply be moved to a partner airline in case something goes wrong. American is a JetBlue partner through the Northeast Alliance but it remains to be seen whether JetBlue will rebook flyers onto American flights if one of its own flights is delayed or canceled. JetBlue does have the benefit of a second daily flight to London's other area airport, Gatwick. But there will only be so many seats available to give to disrupted passengers. Where JetBlue does offer great value for business travelers Flying JetBlue Airways from London to New York in Mint business class. Thomas Pallini/Insider The new Mint business class onboard JetBlue's transatlantic aircraft does offer travelers a wide variety of amenities that surpass what rival carriers are offering. Mint travelers will be able to stay connected throughout the entire journey with high-speed satellite WiFi that's free of charge in business class. When it comes to onboard dining, JetBlue has partnered with Delicious Hospitality Group, which operates restaurants in New York City, to cater the business class experience. Flexible dining is available for those that want to focus on work or get straight to sleep. And the seats themselves are a step up from JetBlue's initial Mint product with brand-new private suites. All Mint suites have fully closable doors and do not disturb buttons to maximize downtimes. JetBlue offers what is arguably the most convenient way to fly to London because of the aircraft type it flies on the route. The Airbus A321neoLR is an incredibly nimble and capable aircraft that JetBlue has outfitted with a mere 138 seats. The result, as I found, was a smoother experience without a lot of the stresses that normally accompany international travel. I felt no different on the London flight than if I was flying JetBlue to, say, Florida. Not many airlines can offer that type of convenience and it made the flying experience all the more enjoyable. But JetBlue does have some downsides that need to be reconciled in order to be a true friend to business travelers on the route. Insider paid JetBlue Airways a media rate to fly between London and New York. Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderOct 29th, 2021

L3Harris Technologies (LHX) Wins Deal to Support B-52 Aircraft

L3Harris Technologies (LHX) secures a $947 million IDIQ contract to modernize the U.S Air Force B-52 aircraft. L3Harris Technologies, Inc. LHX recently secured a 10-year contract from the U.S. Air Force involving the upgradation of Boeing’s (BA) B-52 Aircraft. As part of the deal, L3Harris will modernize and enhance the B-52 aircraft with a proven electronic warfare system that can protect the aircrew from enemy radar threats.Details of the DealValued at more than $947 million, the contract entails L3Harris to modernize the AN/ALQ-172 electronic warfare (EW) self-protection system deployed in B-52 jets with enhanced integrated radio frequency system. This would enable military aircrew to simultaneously counter multiple electronic spectrum threats that interfere with aircraft operations. The contract enables L3Harris to extend its services in modernizing the aircraft, which includes software sustainment to hardware upgrades.Importance of AN/ALQ-172Intense geo-political tensions globally have resulted in countries strengthening their defense system. In this context, a good electronic warfare system plays a vital role in adefense system as it highlights the ability to use the electromagnetic spectrum effectively. Countries are increasing their expenditure on improved and effective electronic warfare systems in order to defend themselves from radar threats, and ensure better security within the military services. In this context, it is imperative to mention that L3Harris’s AN/ALQ-172 EW self-protection system can simultaneously counter multiple pulse, continuous wave, pulse Doppler and monopulse threats. It is integrated with the aircraft controls and displays and defensive subsystem to provide the aircrew protection against the most sophisticated radar-directed threats. Such enhanced features made the L3Haris’s EW self-protection system anideal choice for the U.S Air Force for its B-52 bomber aircraft. The latest deal is a testament to that.Looking AheadPer Frost & Sullivan report, the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) electronic warfare market is projected to reach $3.6 billion by 2025, indicating an increase of 13.6% from $3.17 billion in 2021. Without a doubt, this implies a strong inflow of orders for EW manufacturers like L3Harris going forward. Other defense majors that would reap the benefits of strong demand for advanced communication systems are Lockheed Martin LMT, Northrop Grumman NOCand Raytheon Technologies Corp RTX. Lockheed Martin supplies AN/ALQ-210 for the U.S. Navy and international MH-60R and the AN/ALQ-217 on the U.S. Navy’s E-2C/D aircraft, while Northrop Grumman delivers AN/APG-83 Scalable Agile Beam Radar (SABR) for the U.S. Navy’s F-16 fighter aircraft fleet that offers full-spectrum radar warning, threat identification and advanced countermeasure capabilities. Meanwhile, Raytheon’s ALR-69A(V) and ALR-69A(V) providea secure electronic shield against enemy radars.Price MovementIn the past year, shares of L3Harris have gained 33.2% compared with the industry’s growth of 9.5%.Image Source: Zacks Investment ResearchZacks RankL3Harris currently carries a Zacks #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here. Tech IPOs With Massive Profit Potential In the past few years, many popular platforms and like Uber and Airbnb finally made their way to the public markets. But the biggest paydays came from lesser-known names. For example, electric carmaker X Peng shot up +299.4% in just 2 months. Think of it this way… If you had put $5,000 into XPEV at its IPO in September 2020, you could have cashed out with $19,970 in November. With record amounts of cash flooding into IPOs and a record-setting stock market, this year’s lineup could be even more lucrative.See Zacks Hottest Tech IPOs Now >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report Lockheed Martin Corporation (LMT): Free Stock Analysis Report Northrop Grumman Corporation (NOC): Free Stock Analysis Report L3Harris Technologies Inc (LHX): Free Stock Analysis Report Raytheon Technologies Corporation (RTX): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on Zacks.com click here. Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacksOct 12th, 2021

66 gifts under $50 for everyone on your list that still feel thoughtful and personal

We found great gift ideas under $50 that prove you don't have to spend a fortune to get just the right gift for any occasion. When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more. Hollis Johnson/Crystal Cox/Alyssa Powell/Business Insider You don't need to spend a fortune to find a thoughtful gift they'll love. We found 66 of the best gifts under $50 to suit the interests and tastes of everyone on your list. With best friends' birthdays, anniversaries with your significant other, celebratory moments with coworkers, or even just to tell a loved one you're thinking about them, it's easy for your gifting list to fill up quickly. But you don't have to spend a fortune to get everyone on your list a gift that feels made for them. There are plenty of great gift ideas under $50 to be found if you know where to look.We've done the hard work for you and sifted through hundreds of options to find affordable gifts to suit a wide range of tastes and interests.Our picks for the best gifts under $50 still feel unique and personal. And whether these gifts are complements to a bigger present or are the star of the show, we know your recipient will love them.Keep reading for 66 gifts under $50 that work for anyone on your list.This list includes a Sponsored Product that has been suggested by Under Armour. It also meets our editorial criteria in terms of quality and value.* A hatch decanter to sophisticatedly store alcohol Crate & Barrel Hatch Decanter, available at Crate & Barrel, $44.95If their barware collection bares a sophisticated flair, they'll appreciate this elegant hatch decanter. This 32oz decanter is a more affordable price than others thanks to its beautiful molded diamond pattern that resembles cut crystal. A spice and herb kit packed with international flavors Uncommon Goods Gourmet Oil Dipping Spice Kit, available at Uncommon Goods, $42Whether it's a dash of Italian oregano or za'atar from the Middle East, any cook will appreciate this international spice kit that lets them cook with various tastes of the world.  A skincare set for combination and oily skin types Sephora Clinique Great Skin, Great Deal Set, available at Sephora, $32.50This Clinique set for combination and oily skin types is a great addition to any skincare routine. This three-step regimen includes a facial soap, an exfoliating lotion, and a moisturizing gel make this three-step routine an easy and quick way for a fresh face.   A DIY recipe book Amazon My Recipes Cookbook, available at Amazon, $8.99Whether they're a huge foodie or want to preserve a favorite family meal, this DIY cookbook offers 120 blank pages to fill with their favorite recipes. The notebook's table of contents and additional note space at the end will help keep them extra organized.Taking the time to add in your own savory vodka sauce pasta dish or having their loved ones fill in grandma's homemade sweets recipe will make this gift feel extra special. Snacks for movie night Knack Popcorn Snack Medley, available at Knack, $44Help them take their next Netflix marathon to the next level with this popcorn mix set. The mix includes two microwavable Pop on The Cob popcorn cobs, toffee pretzels, dark chocolate-covered cherries, and Virginia peanuts. If they have a particular favorite treat, each snack can also be added in extra quantities at an additional cost. A carafe that helps preserve wine Grommet Glass Wine Saver Carafe, available at Grommet, $42.95Wine lovers will surely appreciate this elegant gift that will allow them to savor and sip their favorite bottle for longer. This glass carafe preserves non-sparkling wine in the refrigerator for up to one week. Simply, pour wine into the carafe, insert the float at an angle, then seal it with the top and serve. Farm-to-skin lip balms Etsy Beekman 1802 Ten Piece Lip Balm Set, available at Uncommon Goods, $48This farm-to-skin lip balm set is just right for the green beauty obsessive. All 10 lip balms are made from natural goat's milk and essential oils. Beautifully packaged and scented, the fragrances include Ylang Ylang and Tuberose, Orange Blossom, Fig Leaf, Sweet Grass, Grapefruit, Oak Moss, Apricot and Honey, Vanilla, and an unscented balm. A monogrammed clutch Mark & Graham Palm Leaf Rounded Clutch, available at Mark and Graham, from $49You can get your giftees initials embroidered on this cute roll-up clutch for a personal touch. The bag is woven from natural palm leaves for a beachy vibe, and the blue and white striped interior adds to the fun coastal feel. A sand-free, quick-dry towel Sand Cloud Sand Cloud towel, available at Sand Cloud, $48Not only are these thin towels easy to roll up and throw in your beach bag or picnic basket, but they also easily shake off sand and dry three times faster than classic beach and pool towels. Choose from a wide array of vibrant patterns and colors, from a navy blue whale shark print to tie-dye options. An easy way to make their own bubble tea Uncommon Goods Bubble Tea Kit, available at Uncommon Goods, $38For the bubble tea lover in your life, this kit comes with two flavors of loose-leaf tea, tapioca pearls, and two reusable stainless steel straws. All they'll have to do is add a little milk (if they like!) and sip on this delicious brew. A personalized video message from their favorite celebrity Cameo Cameo video, available on Cameo, from $1Whether they have a favorite musician, reality TV star, comedian, or actor, there's a good chance their favorite celebrity is on Cameo. You can even choose from pre-recorded video messages with a personal shoutout, or opt to give them a super special one-on-one video call. Of course, the price will depend on who the star is. Notepads chock full of affirmations Amazon Knock Knock Notepads, available at Amazon, from $9.13Whether you want to give them a quick pep talk or celebrate them just because, these notepads from Knock Knock provide a creative and encouraging way of doing so. Each comes with 50 sheets, so they'll make plenty of use of these witty notes. A small but mighty smart assistant Google Google Nest Mini (2nd Generation), available at Best Buy, $49.99Give the gift of a virtual helper. Currently on sale for under $25, the Google Nest Mini offers a compact, affordable smart speaker with Google Assistant built-in. Friends and family members will love being able to dim lights, control the volume on their TV, check the weather, and more, all with just the sound of their voice.Read our full review of the Google Nest Mini here A face mask designed for working out Under Armour UA Sportmask, available at Under Armour, $15Under Armour's Sportmask was designed with athletes in mind, as reflected in its breathability, water resistance, and UPF 50+ sun protection. Thanks to the Sportsmask, they won't have to sacrifice their workout routine or their comfort.*Sponsored by Under Armour A 52-piece art kit Amazon 52-Piece Watercolor Art Set, available at Amazon, $12.34Encourage them to pick up a new hobby (or take advantage of an existing one) with this watercolor set that's built for both beginners and experts. The set includes various cakes and paints, watercolor pencils, paintbrushes, a paint palette, an eraser, and a pencil sharpener — all within a pre-packaged case that can save you the pain of gift wrapping.  A streaming stick that turns any TV into a smart one Amazon Roku Streaming Stick +, available at Amazon, $39Upgrade their Netflix binge marathons without actually buying them a whole new TV. The Roku Streaming Stick + offers 4K, HD, and HDR streaming in a portable package and affordable price.  A meal kit from their favorite restaurant Goldbelly/Facebook Goldbelly Restaurant Meal Kits, available at Goldbelly, from $25Bring a bit of their favorite restaurant right to their door. From bagels to barbeque, Goldbelly ships food gifts nationwide from iconic eateries in major cities.  A Disney+ subscription Alyssa Powell/Business Insider One-year gift subscription to Disney Plus, $79.99It gives them unlimited access to movies and shows from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, National Geographic, and 20th Century Fox, and costs just $7.99 a month or $79.99 a year after a free seven-day trial. Read everything there is to know about Disney+ over here.And if you need some binge-spiration, here are all the new movies available to stream. A cult-favorite candle Otherland Otherland Candles, available at Otherland, $36We love Otherland's candles, whether seasonally inspired or from the classic collection. Notable scent combinations such as champagne, saffron, and leather, gorgeous packaging, and a 55 hour burn time have deemed Otherland's candles as a foolproof gift among the Insider Reviews team. A set of loose-leaf teas that even Oprah loves Amazon Vadham Chai Tea Reserve Set, available at Amazon, $34.99This classy set of loose-leaf teas made it into Oprah's Favorite Things back in 2018. It's filled with three variations of chai tea that any tea lover will appreciate.  A smooth olive oil that'll instantly elevate any dish Brightland Alive Olive Oil, available at Brightland, $37If they spend a lot of time in the kitchen, they probably already know the merits of high-quality olive oil. A drizzle of Alive from Brightland adds a vibrant, zesty flavor to any dish, plus the beautiful bottle will look great on display in their kitchen.  An affordable electric toothbrush subscription Quip Toothbrush Starter Set, available at Quip, from $25Help them upgrade their oral care routine with a Quip toothbrush. Not only is it a great electric toothbrush at a reasonable price, but Quip will send them a refill every three months with a new brush head and toothbrush.  Delicious mini cupcakes Baked by Melissa Facebook Cupcake Gift Boxes, available at Baked by Melissa, from $32Who doesn't love getting a sweet surprise? With delicious flavors ranging from Cookie Dough to Pink Frosted Donut, these bite-size treats are sure to please. You can also add a special gift box to complete the gift.  Useful cable clips Amazon Shintop Cable Clips (six-pack), available at Amazon, $5.79Whether their phone charger is always falling under their desk or they simply have too many cables to keep track of, these affordable and efficient clips will allow them to simplify their workspace. Plus, the pink, orange, and green shades contribute a fun pop of color. A head-to-toe mini care kit Sephora Drunk Elephant The Littles Head to Toe, available at Sephora, $49Give this mini set for head-to-toe care they can take on the road or just to test out some new products. The set is packed with Drunk Elephant minis, including a glossing shampoo, cream conditioner, scalp scrub, detangler, body cleanser, lotion, deodorant, and a comb. It also comes neatly packaged in a fun, neon bag. An at-home spa kit Uncommon Goods Eucalyptus Spa Gift Set, available at Uncommon Goods, $40Let's face it, 2020 has been a hard year. Give them the gift of soothing relaxation with this at-home kit that includes pampering botanical bath salts and natural jute body scrubber. The recipient will also be able to grow their own eucalyptus in the bamboo pot so they can continue to breathe deep and say ahh. A set of magnets that are fun to play with and can boost concentration Speks Speks Magnet Balls, available at Speks, $27.95Almost everyone on the Insider Reviews team has a set of Speks at their desk. The little magnetic balls can be mashed, molded, and built into fun shapes and are a fun fidget toy that even adults will love.  A personalized pillow of their favorite fur baby aurespaces/Etsy Custom Pet Pillow, available at Etsy, from $23.99If there's nothing they love more than their cat or dog, this pillow — featuring a blown-up picture of their pet — is sure to make them smile.  A cute kitchen gadget that makes breakfast in a flash Amazon Dash Mini Waffle Maker, available at Target, $9.99This compact waffle maker makes a great addition to any college dorm or small kitchen. All they have to do is plug it in and they can make their favorite breakfast treat in a flash. A sugary and fun snack Neiman Marcus Sugarfina Champagne Bears, available at Neiman Marcus, $20Elevate their next sugar fix with these fun champagne gummy bears. Don't worry if they're under 21, despite the name and flavor, these gummies are non-alcoholic. They also have rosé options too.     A taste of Japan by way of snacks Bokksu Bokksu Tasting Gift, 3-month box, available at Bokksu, $44.95Adventurous foodies will love the chance to taste test a curated box of gourmet Japanese snacks. In this Bokksu box, they can expect to find between 10-14 snacks, a tea pairing, and an in-depth guide that details every product included. A best-selling face mask for clear skin Aztec Secret Aztec Secret Indian Healing Mask, available at Target, $7.99Anyone in on the latest skincare trends will know about this mask. Many claim it has helped clear their skin, and it has over 12,000 five-star reviews on Amazon. The best part is that this powerful facial is just $10. A soft pair of socks made from sustainable fabric United by Blue SoftHemp Sock, available at United by Blue, $16With cold weather approaching, there's nothing better than slipping on cozy socks. Made from soft, sustainable hemp fabric, this pair is sure to do the trick.  A luxurious exfoliator to keep skin smooth Necessaire Necessaire The Body Exfoliator, available at Sephora, $30Necessaire's clean beauty products come in beautiful, minimalist packaging that looks as good in their bathroom as it feels on their skin. This gentle exfoliator will help them slough off dry winter skin for good. Cruelty-free nail polish in a range of fun colors Smith & Cult Nail Polish, available at Smith & Cult, $18Smith & Cult's polish is vegan, cruelty-free, and chip-resistant. With 46 fun colors to choose from, you're sure to find one (or two, or three) they'll love.  A sheet mask that'll hydrate dry, stressed skin Sephora Dr. Jart+ Soothing Hydra Solution, available at Sephora, $6Fall and winter skin tends to be dry and dull. While you can't change the weather, you can throw on a hydrating face mask to stay moisturized. This one will add lots of soothing hydration to their skin to keep it feeling fresh. Makeup towels that make washing their face less of a chore Weezie Makeup Towels, available at Weezie, $40If they've never thought of washcloths as anything special, Weezie towels will change their minds. The adorable towels are embroidered with either hearts, winky eyelids, or the words "stain me." Plus, the dark navy blue color will conceal makeup stains. A silky-smooth sleep mask to block light Nordstrom Slip Pink Marble Sleep Mask, available at Nordstrom, $50If there's nothing they appreciate more than a good night's sleep, they'll love Slip's silk sleep mask. It's made from 100% pure Mulberry silk for a luxe, light feel on their skin.  A simple necklace that reminds them of their intentions Bando Good Intentions Necklace, available at Amazon, $38A sweet necklace with an even sweeter mission. Choose from a selection of positive intentions like "optimism," "strength," or "gratitude," which they can carry with them throughout the day. For every necklace sold, a portion of the proceeds will be donated to the non-profit Girls Inc. A lip gloss that has all the benefits of a balm Sephora Tower28 Beauty Jelly Lip Gloss, available at Sephora, $14This clean-beauty favorite delivers the glossy sheen they'd expect from a lip gloss, but it's loaded with nourishing oils to keep lips hydrated, too.  A beautiful way to store olive oil Uncommon Goods Handblown Glass Olive Oil Pourer, available at Uncommon Goods, $44These stunning handmade jars can hold up to 12 ounces of olive oil or vinegar. Plus, they look beautiful sitting out on the kitchen counter. A bold lip color that'll last all day long Sephora Lancome L'Absolu Rouge Lipstick, available at Sephora, $32Whether it's a pale peach or a deep-red look they crave, they'll love this long-lasting lipstick with its saturated colors and hydrating formula. A set of playing cards inspired by music's greats Amazon Music Genius Playing Cards, available at Uncommon Goods, $10Whether they love game night, music, or are equal fans of both, they'll surely get a kick out of these playing cards. The pack features illustrations of all the big names in pop, rock, country, and R&B. A spray that any sneakerhead needs in their collection Amazon Jason Markk Repel, available at Amazon, $17If they love shoes, they should have the right products to take care of their favorite footwear. This spray protects shoes from stains caused by water and oil, and there are multiple people on our team who swear by it for every new pair of shoes they get. A set of colorful silicone straws that reduce plastic waste Food52 Five Two Silicone Straws Single Pack, available at Food52, $25Bendable, sustainable, and portable (thanks to the set of carrying cases), these fun straws are the accessory any eco-conscious person should have. An elevated hand sanitizer that fends off germs Touchland Power Mist Hand Sanitizer, available at Touchland, $9A lightweight, spray formula and refreshing scents make Touchland's hand sanitizer one they'll actually want to use. It dries quickly and doesn't leave residue or stickiness behind. A book subscription Book of the Month Book of the Month 3-month plan, available at Book of the Month, $49.99A subscription box that sends them an exciting new read catered to their tastes each month is the perfect gift for a bookworm. A unique case that protects their phone Casetify Casetify phone case, available at Casetify, starting from $39Our phones are our lifelines these days and if you know someone who's always glued to theirs, consider giving them a unique case that's as protective as it is pretty thanks to being drop-tested and shock-absorbent. They have options ranging from watercolor forest scenes to cute sayings to cuddly animals. You can even do a customized option and put their initials on it.   A coffee mug that keeps their drinks hot or cold for hours Amazon Hydro Flask Travel Coffee Mug, available at Amazon, $45.55Hydro Flask's Travel Coffee Mug is a team favorite. It combines the classic shape of a mug with Hydro Flask's TempShield insulation to keep beverages hot, or cold, for hours— a great gift for the coffee or tea lover who's always on the move.  Unisex House Slippers Etsy Japanese Waffle Linen Slipper Slides, available at Etsy, $28.23Clean space enthusiasts who enjoy a no outdoor shoe policy at their homes will appreciate these unisex house slippers. The waffle cloth pattern, platform bottom, and cushioned sole makes for a cute and cozy fit. These snug slippers are available in yellow, pink, gray, or coffee colors.  A cute reusable tote that can fit tons of stuff BAGGU Standard Baggu, available at Baggu, $12It's no wonder these bags are bestsellers — they can hold up to 50 pounds of stuff and come in a range of fun colors and patterns. Plus, at just $12, they're a great deal.  A portable straw that makes water drinkable Amazon LifeStraw Personal Water Filter, available at Amazon, $14.83This portable, personal water filter was one of the bestselling products on Prime Day. It filters water from creeks and rivers, making it perfect for hiking, camping, and travel. A classy carrying case to stash chargers Mark & Graham Leather Charger Roll-Up, available at Mark & Graham, from $29.99After they fill the three pockets with cables and chargers, all they have do is roll everything up and they're good to go. The soft, supple leather comes in a variety of fun colors and patterns.  A cult-favorite cast-iron skillet Amazon Lodge 12-inch Cast-Iron Skillet and Handle Holder, available at Amazon, $45.47Every cook needs a cast-iron skillet in their kitchen. Lodge makes some of the best out there, but at prices that won't break the bank.  A fitting vehicle for their post-run brews Uncommon Goods Etched Marathon Pint Glass, available at Uncommon Goods, $20If they like to celebrate a long run with a big pint, they'll appreciate these pint glasses etched with famous marathon routes.  A candle that reminds them of their favorite place Amazon Homesick Scented Candle, available at Amazon, $34This is a great gift that's sure to make anyone sentimental. Whether it's their hometown, college town, or favorite spot to vacation, a Homesick candle, with scents inspired by all sorts of locations, will bring them back to that favorite place.  A cold brew coffee maker to keep up with their iced coffee habit Amazon Takeya Cold Brew Coffee Maker, available at Amazon, $24.99If their morning ritual includes a cup of cold brew, they'll appreciate this convenient cold brew maker. All they have to do is fill it with their favorite coffee grinds, add water, let it sit, and they've got a glass of delicious cold brew on the way.  An easy-to-care-for plant The Sill Snake Plant, available at The Sill, $43Bring some life to their space with this cute snake plant that comes in a nice planter with multiple color options. With little attention needed, it's a great gift for amateur plant parents and experienced ones alike.  A luxury wallet perfect for daily use or travel Italic Albee Leather Zip Card Case, available at Italic, $30By partnering with the same manufacturers that make high-end pieces for brands like Celine, Burberry, and Prada, but ditching the designer labels and opting for a direct-to-consumer model, Italic is able to sell luxury goods at a fraction of the price. This sleek and simple leather card case would go for over $300 with a designer label, but at Italic it's a steal at just $35.  A rocks glass etched with a city map Uncommon Goods Urban Map Glass, available at Uncommon Goods, $18Whether you want to bring back fond memories of a place you visited together or just want a gift that highlights their favorite stomping grounds, you can cheers to these rocks glasses intricately etched with a city map and interspersed street names. Over 30 major US cities are available to choose from.To really up the ante, consider pairing the glass with a nice bottle of bourbon.  A dainty pair of gold hoops that go with everything Mejuri Midi Hoops, available at Mejuri, $50Jewelry always makes a great gift, though it's typically pricey. These dainty hoops from Mejuri are the perfect pair for every day, and they're only $50. An apron loaded with plenty of clever features Food52 Five Two Ultimate Apron, available at Food52, $45Anyone who spends a good amount of time in the kitchen will appreciate this durable apron with its sturdy fabric, clever pockets made to hold the essentials, and pot-holders built right in.  A lifetime of perks with an REI membership REI REI Membership, available at REI, $20A one-time, $20 payment will get them lifetime access to REI's membership program. The outdoorsy types in your life will appreciate the special offers, 10% back on purchases, member-pricing on REI classes and events, and the host of other membership perks. Learn more about the REI membership program here.  A simple and elegant photo calendar Artifact Uprising Walnut Desktop Photo Calendar, available at Artifact Uprising, from $30All of Artifact Uprising's customized photo gifts are simple, beautiful, and made from eco-friendly materials. This simple calendar is an easy choice for anyone on your list. Just pick 12 photos (one for each month) of the people and places they love most to add a special sentiment to their desk setup. A cozy, slouchy beanie Neff Instagram Neff Beanie, available at Amazon, $15.95Cold-weather accessories make a great gift for anyone who will be braving the cold come winter. Neff beanies come in a wide variety of colors and are the perfect combination of cute and cozy.  An easy way to grill kabobs Uncommon Goods Kabob Grilling Baskets, available at Uncommon Goods, $17Forget needing to spend time sticking every piece of meat or sliced veggie on a kebob stick. These baskets make it easy to perfectly grill you food and the basket makes for easy flipping. Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderSep 28th, 2021

Globus Maritime Limited Reports Financial Results for the quarter and six-month period ended June 30, 2021

GLYFADA, Greece, Sept. 27, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Globus Maritime Limited ("Globus", the "Company", "we", or "our") (NASDAQ:GLBS), a dry bulk shipping company, today reported its unaudited consolidated operating and financial results for the quarter and six-month period ended June 30, 2021. Financial Highlights In H1 2021, Total revenues increased by about 161% compared to H1 2020. The Adjusted EBITDA for H1 2021 increased by about 6.8 million compared to H1 2020. The Total comprehensive loss for H1 2021 decreased by about 94% compared to H1 2020. As of June 30, 2021, and December 31, 2020, our cash and bank balances and bank deposits (including restricted cash) were $78.5 and $21.1 million, respectively, an increase of 272%. As of June 30, 2021, the total outstanding borrowings under our Loan agreements decreased to $34.25 million compared to $37 million as of December 31, 2020, gross of unamortized debt discount, a decrease of about 7%.                                 Three months ended June 30, Six months ended June 30, (Expressed in thousands of U.S. dollars except for daily rates and per share data)   2021   2020   2021   2020   Total revenues   6,829   2,299   11,996   4,589   Total comprehensive loss   (23 ) (4,197 ) (789 ) (13,199 ) Adjusted EBITDA (1)   3,055   (783 ) 4,361   (2,447 ) Basic loss per share (2)   -   (38.66 ) (0.09 ) (158.35 ) Daily Time charter equivalent rate ("TCE") (3)   11,781   3,778   10,859   3,016   Average operating expenses per vessel per day   5,256   4,353   5,471   4,437   Average number of vessels   6.2   5.0   6.1   5.0         (1)   Adjusted EBITDA is a measure not in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles ("GAAP"). See a later section of this press release for a reconciliation of Adjusted EBITDA to total comprehensive loss and net cash used in operating activities, which are the most directly comparable financial measures calculated and presented in accordance with the GAAP measures. (2)   The weighted average number of shares for the six-month period ended June 30, 2021 was 9,001,704 compared to 83,354 shares for the six-month period ended June 30, 2020. The weighted average number of shares for the three-month period ended June 30, 2021 was 10,774,058 compared to 108,577 shares for the three-month period ended June 30, 2020. (3)   Daily Time charter equivalent rate ("TCE") is a measure not in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles ("GAAP"). See a later section of this press release for a reconciliation of Daily TCE to Voyage revenues. Current Fleet ProfileAs of the date of this press release, Globus' subsidiaries own and operate seven dry bulk carriers, consisting of four Supramax, one Panamax and two Kamsarmax. Vessel Year Built Yard Type Month/Year Delivered DWT Flag Moon Globe 2005 Hudong-Zhonghua Panamax June 2011 74,432 Marshall Is. Sun Globe 2007 Tsuneishi Cebu Supramax Sept 2011 58,790 Malta River Globe 2007 Yangzhou Dayang Supramax Dec 2007 53,627 Marshall Is. Sky Globe 2009 Taizhou Kouan Supramax May 2010 56,855 Marshall Is. Star Globe 2010 Taizhou Kouan Supramax May 2010 56,867 Marshall Is. Galaxy Globe 2015 Hudong-Zhonghua Kamsarmax October 2020 81,167 Marshall Is. Diamond Globe 2018 Jiangsu New Yangzi Shipbuilding Co. Kamsarmax June 2021 82,027 Marshall Is. Power Globe 2011 Universal Shipbuilding Corporation Kamsarmax   80,655 Marshall Is. Weighted Average Age: 10.4 Years as of September 27, 2021 544,420   Current Fleet Deployment All our vessels are currently operating on short-term time charters ("on spot"). Management Commentary "During the second quarter we have seen the market gaining momentum. We are pleased to see increased rates across all sectors, the factors being demand as well as supply driven. On the demand side, we see a healthy demand of commodities both on the major as well as the minor bulks. There is significant congestion in ports all around the globe mainly due to COVID-19 related delays and complications. The combined effect of a healthy demand and a limit on the supply of ships helps the market and elevates rates. Since we expect the market to remain strong for the medium term and as our fleet comes out from legacy charters, we will be able to take advantage of the strong rates by positioning it accordingly. "During the second Quarter we continued to improve our balance sheet and build up our fleet. We have managed to refinance and reduce our bank debt at much lower levels compared to our previous loan agreements with the effects to be visible in the following quarters and years. We feel that the new refinancing and new relationship with a respectable financial institution provides the Company with a good base for the future. "In early June we have taken delivery of m/v Diamond Globe, further expanding and modernizing our fleet. As previously communicated, the vessel assumed a charter cover until about the end of the year. Additionally, we have recently announced the delivery of our new vessel m/v Power Globe joining our fleet which immediately performed a short trip at about $31,000 gross per day before proceeding to drydocking for her scheduled maintenance. We will examine the market and hopefully find lucrative business for the vessel when the scheduled maintenance is completed. "Furthermore, last week we entered into an agreement to acquire a 2015 Japanese Kamsarmax for $28,4 million and expect to take delivery of the vessel during the 4th Quarter of 2021. We will examine the charter and market condition closer to the delivery date and do our best to secure the highest rate possible at that time. The addition of this new vessel will expand our fleet and its carrying capacity further and align well with our renewal and expansion strategy. We consider this to be a good addition to the fleet which will further strengthen the position of the company in the market as well as help us build new relationships with customers. "COVID-19 is affecting most parts of our operations, we see delays related to the pandemic on most aspects that relate to technical as well as commercial matters. There are delays on schedules of loading, discharging, crew exchanges and spare part procurement as well as repairs, the delays are also accompanied with increased costs of such operations. We are trying our best as a company to mitigate any effects and delays, always keeping in mind international and local regulations as well as our vessels and crew safety and wellbeing. We are focused in helping and supporting our seafarers during these trying times; we want them to be healthy, happy and demonstrate high morale on board and will continue doing whatever is necessary for their safety and good physical and mental health. "Finally, we believe that the company has a strong balance sheet, and the growing fleet will help us to fully take advantage of the strong market. We are keeping our focus on future environmental regulations and continue to modernize and build up our fleet on that basis. We are confident that with a bigger and modernized fleet will be able to take advantage of the strong market and by extent build long term value for our shareholders." Management Discussion and Analysis of the Results of Operations Recent Developments Issuance of the Series B preferred shares On March 2, 2021, we issued an additional 10,000 of our Series B Preferred Shares to Goldenmare Limited in return for $130,000. The $130,000 was paid by reducing, on a dollar-for-dollar basis, the amount payable as compensation by the Company to Goldenmare Limited pursuant to a consultancy agreement. The issuance of the Series B preferred shares to Goldenmare Limited was approved by an independent committee of the Board of Directors of the Company, which received a fairness opinion from an independent financial advisor. Each Series B preferred share entitles the holder thereof to 25,000 votes per share on all matters submitted to a vote of the shareholders of the Company, provided however, that no holder of Series B preferred shares may exercise voting rights pursuant to Series B preferred shares that would result in the aggregate voting power of any beneficial owner of such shares and its affiliates (whether pursuant to ownership of Series B preferred shares, common shares or otherwise) to exceed 49.99% of the total number of votes eligible to be cast on any matter submitted to a vote of shareholders of the Company. To the fullest extent permitted by law, the holders of Series B preferred shares shall have no special voting or consent rights and shall vote together as one class with the holders of the common shares on all matters put before the shareholders. The Series B preferred shares are not convertible into common shares or any other security. They are not redeemable and have no dividend rights. Upon any liquidation, dissolution or winding up of the Company, the Series B preferred shares are entitled to receive a payment with priority over the common shareholders equal to the par value of $0.001 per share. The Series B preferred shareholder has no other rights to distributions upon any liquidation, dissolution or winding up of the Company. All issued and outstanding Series B preferred shares must be held of record by one holder, and the Series B preferred shares shall not be transferred without the prior approval of our Board of Directors. Finally, in the event the Company (i) declares any dividend on its common shares, payable in common shares, (ii) subdivides the outstanding common shares or (iii) combines the outstanding common shares into a smaller number of shares, there shall be a proportional adjustment to the number of outstanding Series B preferred shares. As of June 30, 2021, Goldenmare Limited owned 10,300 of the Company's Series B preferred shares. Public Offerings On January 13, 2021, the remaining pre-funded warrants from the December 2020 Pre-Funded Warrants were exercised and 130,000 common shares, par value $0.004 per share were issued. On January 27, 2021, the Company entered into a securities purchase agreement with certain unaffiliated institutional investors to issue (a) 2,155,000 common shares, par value $0.004 per share, (b) pre-funded warrants to purchase 445,000 common shares, par value $0.004 per share and (c) warrants (the "January 2021 Warrants") to purchase 1,950,000 common shares, par value $0.004 per share, at an exercise price of $6.25 per share. Total proceeds, net of commission retained by the placement agent, amounted to $15,108,050, before issuance expenses of approximately $122,000. The pre-funded warrants were all exercised subsequently and the total proceeds amounted to $4,450. No January 2021 Warrants have been exercised as of the date hereof. The January 2021 Warrants are exercisable for a period of five and one-half years commencing on the date of issuance. The warrants will be exercisable, at the option of each holder, in whole or in part by delivering to the Company a duly executed exercise notice with payment in full in immediately available funds for the number of common shares purchased upon such exercise. If a registration statement registering the issuance of the common shares underlying the warrants under the Securities Act is not effective, the holder may, in its sole discretion, elect to exercise the warrant through a cashless exercise, in which case the holder would receive upon such exercise the net number of common shares determined according to the formula set forth in the warrant. If the Company does not issue the shares in a timely fashion, the warrant contains certain liquidated damages provisions. On February 12, 2021, the Company entered into a securities purchase agreement with certain unaffiliated institutional investors to issue (a) 3,850,000 common shares par value $0.004 per share, (b) pre-funded warrants to purchase 950,000 common shares, par value $0.004 par value, and (c) warrants (the "February 2021 Warrants") to purchase 4,800,000 common shares, par value $0.004 per share, at an exercise price of $6.25 per share. Total proceeds, net of commission retained by the placement agent, amounted to $27,890,500 before issuance expenses of approximately $150,000. The pre-funded warrants were all exercised subsequently and the total proceeds amounted to $9,500. No February 2021 Warrants have been exercised as of the date hereof. The February 2021 Warrants are exercisable for a period of five and one-half years commencing on the date of issuance. The warrants will be exercisable, at the option of each holder, in whole or in part by delivering to the Company a duly executed exercise notice with payment in full in immediately available funds for the number of common shares purchased upon such exercise. If a registration statement registering the issuance of the common shares underlying the warrants under the Securities Act is not effective, the holder may, in its sole discretion, elect to exercise the warrant through a cashless exercise, in which case the holder would receive upon such exercise the net number of common shares determined according to the formula set forth in the warrant. If the Company does not issue the shares in a timely fashion, the warrant contains certain liquidated damages provisions. On June 25, 2021, the Company entered into a securities purchase agreement with certain unaffiliated institutional investors to issue (a) 8,900,000 common shares par value $0.004 per share, (b) pre-funded warrants to purchase 1,100,000 common shares, par value $0.004 par value, and (c) warrants (the "June 2021 Warrants") to purchase 10,000,000 common shares, par value $0.004 per share, at an exercise price of $5.00 per share. Total proceeds amounted to $46,580,875 before issuance expenses of approximately $129,000. As of June 30, 2021 550,000 pre-funded warrants were exercised and the total proceeds amounted to $5,500. The remaining 550,000 pre-funded warrants were exercised subsequently. No June 2021 Warrants have been exercised as of the date hereof. The June 2021 Warrants are exercisable for a period of five and one-half years commencing on the date of issuance. The warrants will be exercisable, at the option of each holder, in whole or in part by delivering to the Company a duly executed exercise notice with payment in full in immediately available funds for the number of common shares purchased upon such exercise. If a registration statement registering the issuance of the common shares underlying the warrants under the Securities Act is not effective, the holder may, in its sole discretion, elect to exercise the warrant through a cashless exercise, in which case the holder would receive upon such exercise the net number of common shares determined according to the formula set forth in the warrant. If the Company does not issue the shares in a timely fashion, the warrant contains certain liquidated damages provisions. Acquisition of new vessel On June 9, 2021, the Company took delivery of the m/v "Diamond Globe", a 2018-built Kamsarmax dry bulk carrier, through its subsidiary, Argo Maritime Limited, for a purchase price of $27 million financed with available cash. The m/v "Diamond Globe" was built at Jiangsu New Yangzi Shipbuilding Co., Ltd and has a carrying capacity of 82,027 dwt. On July 20, 2021, the Company took delivery of the m/v "Power Globe", a 2011-built Kamsarmax dry bulk carrier, through its subsidiary, Talisman Maritime Limited, for a purchase price of $16.2 million financed with available cash. The m/v "Power Globe" was built at Universal Shipbuilding Corporation in Japan and has a carrying capacity of 80,655 dwt. On September 22, 2021, the Company entered into a memorandum of agreement with an unrelated third party, for the acquisition of the m/v "Peak Liberty", a 2015-built Kamsarmax dry bulk carrier, for a purchase price of $28.4 million. The m/v "Peak Liberty" was built at Tsuneishi Zosen in Japan and has a carrying capacity of 81,837 dwt. The agreement is subject to customary closing conditions. Delivery of the vessel is expected during the 4th quarter of 2021. Debt financing In March 2021, the Company prepaid $6.0 million of the Entrust loan facility, which represented all amounts that would otherwise come due during calendar year 2021. As a result, after this pre-payment we had an aggregate debt outstanding of $31 million, gross of unamortized debt costs, from the Entrust Loan Facility. On May 10, 2021, the Company reached an agreement with CiT Bank N.A. for a loan facility of $34.25 million bearing interest at LIBOR plus a margin of 3.75% per annum. This loan facility is referred to as the CiT loan facility. The proceeds of this financing were used to repay the outstanding balance of EnTrust Loan Facility. Impact of COVID-19 on the Company's Business The spread of the COVID-19 virus, which has been declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization in 2020 had caused substantial disruptions in the global economy and the shipping industry, as well as significant volatility in the financial markets, the severity and duration of which remains uncertain. The measures taken by governments worldwide in response to the outbreak, which included numerous factory closures, self-quarantining, and restrictions on travel, as well as potential labour shortages resulting from the outbreak, had slowed down production of goods worldwide and decreased the amount of goods exported and imported worldwide. Some experts fear that the economic consequences of the coronavirus could cause a recession that outlives the pandemic. Besides reducing demand for cargo, coronavirus may functionally limit the amount of cargo that the Company and its competitors are able to move because countries worldwide have imposed quarantine checks on arriving vessels, which have caused delays in loading and delivery of cargoes. It is possible that charterers may try to invoke force majeure clauses as a result.  Crewing and Crew management operations. Due to COVID-19 there are restrictions on travelling on many jurisdictions. We may face problems in the embarkation and disembarkation our crew members. Many airports around the world as well as many countries impose heavy travel restrictions such as quarantine periods for incoming and outgoing travelers. By extent it is increasingly hard, if not restrictive, for our crews to be relieved by new crew members. We continue to monitor the situation with respect and utmost care for our seafarers, always communicating with the relevant authorities in order to assist them as much as we can in these unprecedented times. Disruption in operations in case crew members get infected. In case one of our crew members is found to be infected by COVID-19 this may lead to delays in cargo operations. It may also need to a detention and quarantine of the ship for an unspecified amount of time. Relevant authorities may require us to perform disinfection and fumigation operations if a crew member gets infected by COVID-19. Crew members may be quarantined if a member is found to be infected. The above may lead to increased costs and lower utilization of our fleet. Dry docking and Repairs. Repair yards and dry docks in the far east, usually selected for the scheduled maintenance of our vessels, may be affected by the closures and travel restrictions in their countries. Shipyard staff and third-party experts as well as spare parts may be harder to procure and provide making the maintenance process potentially lengthier, costlier or unfeasible. Spare parts and supplies may be harder to produce and deliver to a shipyard where they would be utilized for a scheduled maintenance. In addition to the above, and always relating to COVID-19 travel restrictions, it will be difficult for our in-house technical teams to travel to the shipyards in order to monitor the maintenance process, so the maintenance may have to be postponed or 3rd party monitoring technical crews will be hired. Finally, classification society surveyor attendance may be restricted thus not only affecting the time spent within a repair facility but also causing scheduled survey work to be postponed as far as this is permissible. Effect on the following technical department activities yet not limited to: Logistics and supply of spares and expert services may incur increased costs and disruption in Planned Maintenance and consequently lead to increased failures / incidents. Office Personnel attendance is disrupted or impossible, which can have as a result inadequate supervision and lead to increased incidents in third party inspection and reduced maintenance quality. Long-Term planned maintenance (dry docking) unsupervised by company personnel, that can result to lower quality and increased costs. Delays in class surveys, which can lead to postponements. The above ultimately are translated to possible increased costs and reduced maintenance quality which in the long term shall spiral to cost increases again as the aftermath shall have to be dealt with. However, there are presently insufficient statistics to reach to prediction model as regards to the actual increase in costs due to the above disruptions. The Company has evaluated the impact of current economic situation on the recoverability of the carrying amount of its vessels. During the first half of 2020, the Company concluded that events and circumstances triggered the existence of potential impairment of its vessels. These indicators included volatility in the charter market as well as the potential impact the current marketplace may have on the future operations. As a result, the Company performed an impairment assessment of the Company's vessels by comparing the discounted projected net operating cash flows for each vessel to its carrying values. For the first half of 2020, the Company concluded that the recoverable amounts of the vessels were lower than their carrying amounts and an impairment loss of $4.6 million was recorded (see also Note 5). For the first half of 2021 the Company re-evaluated the carrying amount of its vessels and concluded that no further impairment of its vessels should be recorded or previously recognized impairment should be reversed. Results of Operations Second quarter of the year 2021 compared to the second quarter of the year 2020 Total comprehensive loss for the second quarter of the year 2021 amounted to $23 thousand compared to total comprehensive loss of $4.2 million for the same period last year or $38.66 basic and diluted loss per share based on 108,577 weighted average number of shares. The following table corresponds to the breakdown of the factors that led to the decrease in total comprehensive loss during the second quarter of 2021 compared to the second quarter of 2020 (expressed in $000's): 2nd Quarter of 2021 vs 2nd Quarter of 2020 Net loss for the 2nd quarter of 2020 (4,197 ) Increase in Voyage revenues 4,530   Decrease in Voyage expenses 364   Increase in Vessels operating expenses (1,003 ) Increase in Depreciation (238 ) Increase in Depreciation of dry-docking costs (257 ) Increase in Total administrative expenses (156 ) Increase in Other income, net 102   Increase in Interest income 1   Increase in Interest expense and finance costs (487 ) Decrease in Loss on derivative financial instruments 1,309   Decrease in Foreign exchange losses 9   Net loss for the 2nd quarter of 2021 (23 )       Voyage revenuesDuring the three-month period ended June 30, 2021, and 2020, our Voyage revenues reached $6.8 million and $2.3 million, respectively. The 197% decrease in Voyage revenues was mainly attributed to the decrease in the average time charter rates achieved by our vessels during the second quarter of 2021 compared to the same period in 2020. Daily Time Charter Equivalent rate (TCE) for the second quarter of 2021 was $11,781 per vessel per day against $3,778 per vessel per day during the same period in 2020 corresponding to an increase of 212%. Voyage expenses Voyage expenses reached $0.2 million during the second quarter of 2021 compared to $0.6 during the same period in 2020. Voyage expenses include commissions on revenues, port and other voyage expenses and bunker expenses. Bunker expenses mainly refer to the cost of bunkers consumed during periods that our vessels are ...Full story available on Benzinga.com.....»»

Category: earningsSource: benzingaSep 27th, 2021

Pair of Upper West Side multi-housing buildings offered for sale

JLL Capital Markets announced today that it has been retained on an exclusive basis to arrange the sale of 103-105 West 105th St., two adjacent 5.5-story multi-housing properties located two blocks west of Central Park. The asking price is $8.35 million. Situated just off the corner of Columbus Avenue in... The post Pair of Upper West Side multi-housing buildings offered for sale appeared first on Real Estate Weekly. JLL Capital Markets announced today that it has been retained on an exclusive basis to arrange the sale of 103-105 West 105th St., two adjacent 5.5-story multi-housing properties located two blocks west of Central Park. The asking price is $8.35 million. Situated just off the corner of Columbus Avenue in an area poised to continue its post-pandemicrecovery as Columbia University returns to full operations in the 2022-2023 school year, the propertiescomprise a total of 20 apartments, configured as 15 two-bedroom units and five one bedrooms. 14 of theapartments are free market. Owned by the same private investor for the past 12 years, the properties have multiple levels of outdoorspace, basement storage and laundry. A substantial rehabilitation was completed in the late 1980’s andeach unit has its own boiler/hot water heater and is individually sub-metered for gas and electric usage. The two walk-up buildings are a four-minute walk from Columbia University – which will return to full in-person activities inclusive of international enrollment this coming fall – and near the Broadway 1 andCentral Park B and C subway stations. The JLL team representing the seller is being led by Managing Directors Hall Oster and Paul Smadbeck,Vice Presidents Teddy Galligan and Conrad Martin and Associate Braedon Gait. “The properties will appeal to purchasers seeking a true value-add offering with tax-class protectedstatus and a location that will support steady occupancy and substantive long-term rent growth,” saidOster. Galligan added, “The properties’ predominantly free market status, access to subway stations and favorable unit layouts that support sharing by students or young professionals provide an immediate path to short-term rent growth. Longer term demand will be supported by the supply constrained nature of the Upper West Side building stock and the continued evolution of the retail landscape along Columbus and Amsterdam Avenues.” JLL Capital Markets is a full-service global provider of capital solutions for real estate investors andoccupiers. The firm’s in-depth local market and global investor knowledge delivers the best-in-classsolutions for clients — whether investment sales and advisory, debt advisory, equity advisory or arecapitalization. The firm has more than 3,000 Capital Markets specialists worldwide with offices innearly 50 countries. For more news, videos and research resources on JLL, please visit our newsroom. The post Pair of Upper West Side multi-housing buildings offered for sale appeared first on Real Estate Weekly......»»

Category: realestateSource: realestateweekly11 hr. 25 min. ago

Entergy (ETR) Concludes Palisades Power Plant Sale to Holtec

Entergy (ETR) announces that its sale of the Palisades Power Plant to Holtec International has reached completion. Entergy Corporation ETR recently announced that the sale of its Palisades Power Plant to Holtec International has reached completion. This enables the company to attain its goal of focusing on its utility operations in the Gulf South and fulfilling its intent of exiting the nuclear merchant power business.Impressively, the site has been decommissioned after supplying safe, clean and reliable energy to customers for more than 50 years. Also, the deal highlights the transfer of the ownership of the decommissioned Big Rock Point site in Charlevoix, MI, from Entergy to Holtec.Rationale Behind the DealTo reduce volatility at its Entergy Wholesale Commodities (“EWC”) business, ETR took a decision to cease merchant power generation at all EWC power plants by mid-2022.As part of this decision, in January 2019, Entergy wrapped up the sale of its Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant to the subsidiaries of NorthStar Group Services. In 2019, the company signed an agreement to sell 100% of the equity interests in its subsidiaries owning its nuclear plants — Indian Point 1, Indian Point 2 and Indian Point 3 — for decommissioning. As expected, the transaction concluded in May 2021.This strategy of shutting down its merchant power business seems to be attractive as regulated spending offers a secured rate of return.Entergy’s Current Nuclear Plant & Renewable PortfolioWith the final exit from merchant power generation at all EWC nuclear power plants, Entergy continues to supply safe and secure energy through four of its nuclear power stations in Arkansas, Louisiana and Mississippi. With nuclear being a zero-emission clean energy source, these nuclear plants of Entergy will enable it to duly achieve its net-zero emission target by 2050.Thus, it is imperative to mention that Entergy has nearly doubled its renewable capacity over the past three years as part of its goal to add more than 2,500 megawatts (MW) of capacity by the end of 2025 and more than 5,000 MW of renewables by 2030.Peer MovesUtilities in the United States are gradually moving to energy sources that entail lower emissions and, in this attempt, steadily replacing their coal-fired generation fleet with clean, safe and secure energy from natural gas and renewable modes.In this context, utilities that have deployed their efforts in attaining a carbon-free environment through natural gas sources in the process of serving customers clean energy and benefiting from this next-generation energy include:In June 2022, CenterPoint Energy CNP announced that its Indiana-based electric utility business, CenterPoint Energy Indiana South, received the approval for the construction of natural gas generation.CenterPoint Energy boasts a long-term earnings growth rate of 3.9%. Shares of CNP have returned 18.7% in the past year.In June 2022, DTE Energy Company DTE announced that its Blue Water Energy Center, a 1,150 MW combined-cycle natural gas-fired power plant has begun commercial operation and will provide cleaner, reliable and affordable power for 850,000 customer homes in southeast Michigan.The long-term earnings growth rate of DTE Energy is pegged at 6%. DTE shares have rallied 5% in the past six months.In June 2022,Constellation Energy Corporation’s CEG management recently announced its clean energy transition plan to achieve net-zero emission.  Constellation Energy will rely more on its nuclear power units and utilize new technologies to lower emission and maintain grid reliability. Constellation Energy boasts a long-term earnings growth rate of 20.5%. CEG shares have appreciated 9.6% in the past year.Price PerformanceShares of ETRhave rallied 11.3% in the past year compared with the industry’s growth of 5.5%.Image Source: Zacks Investment ResearchZacks RankEntergy currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here. Zacks Names "Single Best Pick to Double" From thousands of stocks, 5 Zacks experts each have chosen their favorite to skyrocket +100% or more in months to come. From those 5, Director of Research Sheraz Mian hand-picks one to have the most explosive upside of all. It’s a little-known chemical company that’s up 65% over last year, yet still dirt cheap. With unrelenting demand, soaring 2022 earnings estimates, and $1.5 billion for repurchasing shares, retail investors could jump in at any time. This company could rival or surpass other recent Zacks’ Stocks Set to Double like Boston Beer Company which shot up +143.0% in little more than 9 months and NVIDIA which boomed +175.9% in one year.Free: See Our Top Stock and 4 Runners Up >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report Entergy Corporation (ETR): Free Stock Analysis Report Constellation Energy Corporation (CEG): Free Stock Analysis Report DTE Energy Company (DTE): Free Stock Analysis Report CenterPoint Energy, Inc. (CNP): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on Zacks.com click here. Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacks18 hr. 9 min. ago