Rebound in Crude Oil Prices No Threat to Global Economy Say Analysts

first_imgA 50 percent recovery in crude oil prices raises concerns about its impact on global economy, but analysts see more chances of a fall in prices than for a rise.”We do not think that a rebound in oil prices to $60-70 per barrel represents a major threat to the global recovery,” said Capital Economics in a note on Thursday.It says current level of prices is far below the average of $110 (for Brent) seen between 2011 and mid-2014, benefitting the consumers. Besides, the current rebound in oil prices is expected to ease pressure on the producers to a little extent.Brent crude oil prices have recovered to nearly $70 per barrel, up $24 from its January low of $46 per barrel.The recent rebound in oil prices has largely been supported by falling US oil production over the past three months, as drillers idle their oil rigs due to weak prices.However, many analysts say that higher prices will attract the US oil drillers to resume production.”Some US oil producers have announced their intention to scale up their drilling activities again at higher oil prices,” said Commerzbank Corporates & Markets in a note.Capital Economics expects the US drillers to increase the active rig count again in the short-term leading to sudden rebound in the US production.Further, the oil market is already oversupplied even before Iran starts exporting oil once the sanctions are eased.Oil prices are likely to come under pressure going into the meeting of the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) on 5 June in Vienna.In its previous meeting in November last year, the OPEC had rejected the proposals to cut oil production by 30 million barrels per day, which accelerated the decline in oil prices.”OPEC delegates have already hinted that no change to production policy is likely at the cartel’s meeting in early June, meaning that OPEC will continue to produce more than is needed,” Commerzbank added.The dollar is expected to strengthen again on impending US central bank interest rate hike, putting pressure on the oil prices.”We think that oil prices are now more likely to fall than to rise further over the rest of the year. Our end-2015 forecast for Brent remains $60,” Capital Economics added.last_img read more

Virat Kohli breaks silence on why Dinesh Karthik was preferred over Rishabh

first_imgWhen the Indian selectors named the World Cup squad, there were eyebrows raised when Dinesh Karthik was picked as India’s secondary wicket-keeper ahead of Rishabh Pant. Chief selector MSK Prasad said that they had opted for Karthik since he was a better wicket-keeper.However, even as the IPL drew to a close, while Pant took the stage by fire, Karthik’s season was not as prolific. Now, captain Virat Kohli has finally spoken on the issue and as per the skipper, Karthik’s experience and his ability to stay calm and in control of things in pressure scenarios bolstered his case.Experience matters in pressure situations Karthik and KohliReuters”In pressure situations, he’s shown composure, It was something that everybody on board was convinced about,” Kohli was as quoted by Times of India newspaper.The skipper also said that if there is an injury concern with MS Dhoni, Karthik can be an apt replacement, both as a finisher and as a solid option as a wicket-keeper.”He has the experience. If, god forbid, something happens to MS (Dhoni), Karthik can be immensely valuable behind the wickets. As a finisher, he’s done well,” he further added.The captain also said that the competition was so intense in this Indian squad, that players had to miss out and like coach Shastri said, his heart goes out to the players who could make the cut.”Picking 15 from an immensely talented pool is never easy. I’d say to these guys: Keep going the way you have. Be prepared, in case there’s an unforeseen requirement that pops up,” Shastri said about the squad.The bowling attack Virat Kohli, Jasprit BumrahGLYN KIRK/AFP/Getty ImagesThere is this feeling that this Indian side has perhaps the most-balanced and rounded bowling attack and the form of the fast bowlers give them an added edge in the competition.”The one common factor binding these guys is confidence. There’s no set rule for anything – like Indian spinners have to be the best in the world, the best batsmen or whatever. The thing is, if you believe it, you can achieve it,” Kohli said.The opening combinationRavi Shastri also said that in the current context, Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan are not just the best combinations for India, they are perhaps the best pair at the top of the order in the entire world and this makes a huge difference to the side.last_img read more

Budget lacks measures to address institutional challenges Unnayan Onneshan

first_img.Unnayan Onneshan (UO), an independent multidisciplinary think-tank, has said the proposed budget for 2018-19 fiscal year lacks measures necessary to address the macroeconomic, medium term and institutional challenges the economy is facing.”The budget speech seems to lack providing prudent and farsighted solutions to the current challenges except it earmarks ambitious targets of expenditure amidst inefficient distribution of resources and cost overrun,” it said its rapid assessment of the new proposed national budget.Inequality has widened on the back of the gap between return on capital and return on labour on the one hand and the persistent primitive accumulation in the form of looting in different sectors of the economy on the other, the think-tank said.Institutional fragility has been evident in the economy, leading different economic sectors to fail to maintain discipline, it said, adding that institutional fragility and political uncertainty are contributing to lack of confidence among investors and entrepreneurs.The UO said in the wake of parliamentary elections, investors may adopt wait-and-see policy about making investment since they are fearful about the process of the transition of power and the subsequent business environment recalling the situation after the national election back in 2014.It said incapacity to implement the budget has been a major challenge in recent years. The rate of implementation has assumed a decreasing trend since FY 2011-12. In FY 2011-12, budget implementation rate was 93 per cent which decreased to 91 per cent in FY 2012-13, 85 per cent in FY 2013-14, 82 per cent in FY 2014-15, 81 per cent in FY 2015-16 and 79 per cent in FY 2016-17.Despite the increasing trend in tax revenue over the years, the tax-GDP ratio is very low compared to global average. In FY 2015-16, Tax-GDP ratio in Bangladesh stood at 8.98 per cent, while it increased slightly to 9 percent and 10.39 per cent in FY 2016-17 and FY 2017-18 respectively.Bangladesh has a regressive tax structure where people with low income have to share relatively larger share of the tax burden due to different forms of indirect taxes. In 2018-19 budget, revenue from income tax and VAT has been estimated to be Tk 1,007.19 billion and Tk 1,105.55 billion respectively. In FY 2018-19, 34 per cent of total NBR revenue would come from taxes on income and profit whereas 53.79 per cent would come from indirect sources, including Value Added Tax and Supplementary Duty, together.The budget has set a target of collecting Tk 3,392.80 billion as revenue receipts. The target seems to fall short since a gap between revenue target and actual collection has been regular, the think-tank said.In the first nine months of the current fiscal year, the revenue collection stood at Tk 1,440 billion against a target of Tk 1,670 billion leaving a shortfall by Tk 230 billion.About the rising operating expenditure, the UO evinces that in the budget for FY 2018-19, a total of Tk 1122.66 billion has been proposed for salary and allowances and interest repayment which constitutes 24.17 per cent of the total budgetary outlay. In addition, in the proposed budget for FY 2018-19, operating expenditure grows by 21 per cent while development expenditure registers a 13 per cent growth.It mentioned that it has been regular phenomenon in Bangladesh that the mass people fear national budget. This is because budget has been the occasion of increase in price of many necessities either directly or indirectly.The measures taken in the budget 2018-19 is likely to increase price of some 19 commodities while reducing price of some 14 commodities.While national budget is directly linked to the living standard of the mass, they have little stake in the formulation of budget. Lack of fiscal accountability in Bangladesh due to limited role of the parliament in budget-making process together with constitutional and systematic rigidities results in inefficiency, poor implementation of budget and misuse of public resources, the think-tank said.It said due to persistent depreciation, the local currency has been exposed to serious pressure. In 2017, local currency has experienced a depreciation of 5 percent against US Dollar. In May 2018, the exchange rate has stood at Tk 83.70 per USD which was Tk 80.69 in August 2017. Depreciation of local currency has added to the inflationary pressure on the mass.Sluggish export growth and cut in the inflow of wage earners’ remittance along with high import payment is exerting pressure on the current account balance. Referring to the deficit in current account balance, the think tank finds that the current account balance recorded a deficit of USD 7.08 billion during July-March, 2017-18 due mainly to a significant trade deficit and lower income from services and primary income accounts compared to that of July-March, 2016-17.High inflationary pressure is increasing the cost of living, thus gradually degrading the living standard of the mass by lowering the consumption capacity of the people with limited income. Statistics suggest that twelve-month average inflation increased to 5.83 per cent in April 2018 from 5.82 per cent in March 2018.Observing institutional fragility in the banking sector due to massive irregularities followed by rise in default loans and resulting capital shortfall, the UO shows that at the end of 2017, total default loans in the banking sector stood at Tk 743.03 billion, representing 9.31 per cent of the gross loan, compared to Tk 621.72 billion in the previous year.Amid chaotic situation in the country’s financial sector and political uncertainty ahead of the national election, foreign investors are increasingly making exit from capital market, the UO said.Private sector investment has been remaining stagnant at below 23 per cent for a decade. It stood at 22.07 per cent of GDP in FY 2014-15, 21.78 per cent in FY 2015-16, 23.1 in FY 2016-17 and 23.25 per cent in FY 2017-18.Meanwhile, it is found that net Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) has slumped recently. In 2017, FDI has declined by 7.76 per cent compared to that in the previous yearThe economy of Bangladesh is missing the opportunity to capitalise its demographic dividend. While the GDP growth figure is impressive, the poor rate of quality job creation is characterising it as jobless growth. The economy is presenting disconcerting job scenario with a huge number of people remaining out of work.Referring to the state of jobless growth, the research organisation notes that unemployed population increased to 2.68 million in FY 2016-17 while 1.46 million remained underemployed. In addition, the number of people not in education, employment or training rose to 48.28 million in FY 2016-17, representing 44.25 per cent of the people who are able and ready to work, from 46.6 million in FY 2015-16.If not dealt with effectively, income inequality together with inequality in access to health and social security, multidimensional poverty, and joblessness particularly among the youth may undermine the development already achieved by the county, comments the UO.Calling for prudent and farsighted fiscal management, the research organisation states that proposed actions are inadequate to bring fiscal discipline in the management of revenue, deficit and debt one the one hand and to establish an inclusive society in the absence of distributive reforms in the tax system on the other.last_img read more

National Poetry Month Toldos Azules By Patricia Coral

first_imgViolette BulePatricia Coral X 00:00 /07:03 Blue TarpsThe blue tarpsNever arrive  Or they arriveLateIf they arriveThe blue tarpsThat cannot dryThe tearsNor ease the waitingDo not arriveAnd sometimesArriveToo lateThe blue tarps of femaNever get hereIn timeTo dressThe voidAnd shelter usFrom heavenTo hide usFrom GodSo we speak to him lessThe tarps of femaArrive and do not arriveAfter brokenRoofsAnd emptyHousesAnd the flightOf familiesAfter the rain and the floodAnd the lack of breadAnd landAnd freedomThe blue tarps of fema arriveTo invadeThe greenery of our mountainsTo announceHow many houses are leftWithout roofTo show us thoseThat still have theirsSo we can learnTo tallyPoverty Listen This poem is reprinted with permission of the author and co-translated in English by Patricia Coral and Layla Al-Bedawi.Music used: Le Noveau Départ (excerpt) and Automne (excerpt) by Alexandra Stréliski from Inscape and Pianoscope and Mad Rush (excerpt) by Philip Glass from GlassmastersTo learn more about this series, go here.center_img In this sound portrait, we meet poet Patricia Coral. She talks about poetry’s beauty and emotions, how her writing often inhabits in-between spaces and why poetry is like an X-ray. She reads her poem, “Toldos Azules (Blue Tarps).”Patricia Coral was born in Puerto Rico, were she obtained an MA in Spanish Literature and Linguistics. She is a writer of creative nonfiction and poetry, but frequently her words find their home in-between. In 2017, she co-founded Fuente Collective, an organization devoted to experimentation, collaboration and hybridity in writing and other arts. Her work is published or forthcoming in Crab Fat Magazine, Yellow Chair Review, Una realidad más amplia / A Larger Reality, Women Poets of the Americas and elsewhere.Patricia CoralBlue tarps covering damaged rooftops in Puerto Rico after Hurricane MariaToldos AzulesLos toldos azulesno llegano llegantardesi lleganLos toldos azulesque no secan las lágrimasni calman la esperano llegany a vecesllegandemasiado tardeLos toldos azules de femanunca llegana tiempopara taparel vacíoy escondernosdel cielopara alejarnosde Diosy hablarlemenosLos toldos de femallegan y no llegandespués de los techosrotosy las casasvacíasy la huidade las familiasdespués de la lluvia y las inundacionesy la falta de pany de tierray de libertadLlegan los toldos azules de femaa invadirel verde de las montañaspara anunciarcuántas casas quedaronsin techopara que podamos verlas que aún lo tieneny aprendamosa contarla pobreza Share To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code:last_img read more

Drunk Bats Manage To Pass Sobriety Tests

first_imgA Pallas’s long-tongued bat, representing one of six species used in the new study. Bat researchers from the biology departments of the University of Western Ontario and the University of Regina (Saskatchewan, Ca) theorized that the amount of ethanol in the fermented fruit and nectars that the bats ingested was likely to induce intoxication.The researchers gave “sobriety tests” to 106 bats, representing six species of New World Leaf-nosed bats, after the bats had consumed enough ethanol to bring their blood alcohol content (BAC) up to 0.3 or higher. (The legal limit of BAC for human drivers is .08!) The bat BAC levels were attained by feeding the test bats ethanol mixed with sugar water. Their control group counterparts received just the plain sugar water.The bats took flight in a researcher-constructed obstacle course in which the bats would have to navigate according to five standard identifiable flying behaviors of phyllostomide bats. Otherwise, they would betray their drunkenness. Additionally, the biologists expected the alcohol to alter the bats’ echolation, or calling behavior, so they recorded the bats with ultrasonic condenser microphones.”We went into the study fully expecting that some of the species wouldn’t be able to hold their drink,” study co-author Brock Fenton, from the University of Western Ontario, told National Geographic News.But once the bats went through the test – some, mind you, with three times higher BAC than a drunk driver – the researchers found no measurable change in either flight or calling behaviors. A prior study conducted with Old World bats dieting on seasonal fruit and nectar reported signs that bat motor skills and echolation were clearly affected by the ethanol content in their diets. Apparently, the New World bats, exposed to high-ethanol products all year round, have developed an alcohol tolerance that has “afforded them an evolutionary edge.” Fenton and his colleagues are now trying “to find a company that sells alcoholic refreshments who will sponsor an expanded study.” (PhysOrg.com) — New World Leaf-nosed bats (Chiroptera Phyllostomidae) are thriving in the tropical forests of Central and South America, even though their diets consist of more fruits and nectars than their counterparts in the Old World. Strange thing is the phyllostomide bats are drawn to fruits and nectars even after they have fermented. More information: Drinking and Flying: Does Alcohol Consumption Affect the Flight and Echolocation Performance of Phyllostomid Bats? Citation: Orbach DN, Veselka N, Dzal Y, Lazure L, Fenton MB (2010) Drinking and Flying: Does Alcohol Consumption Affect the Flight and Echolocation Performance of Phyllostomid Bats? PLoS ONE 5(2): e8993. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0008993 Study looks at metal baseball bat safety © 2010 PhysOrg.com This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Explore further Citation: Drunk Bats Manage To Pass Sobriety Tests (2010, February 18) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2010-02-drunk-sobriety.htmllast_img read more