Putin’s Plan Is Working Rosneft has grown dramatically in the last ten years – not by chance, but because Rosneft is Vladimir Putin’s vehicle to reassert state ownership over a fair chunk of Russia’s oil fields. The most famous example happened in 2003, when Putin charged privately held producer Yukos Oil with a $27-billion tax bill that bankrupted the company. The Russian president then handed Yukos’ oil fields over to Rosneft, immediately boosting Rosneft’s daily production from 400,000 barrels to 1.7 million barrels. It was blatant nationalization. Yukos’ chairman and founder, Russian billionaire Mikhail Khodorkovsky, was convicted of fraud and sent to prison. Overnight, Rosneft ballooned from a small producer to Russia’s biggest oil company. With a snap of his fingers, Putin had created a national oil giant, a vehicle through which he could pursue his plan to reassert Russian influence in the world by controlling other countries’ energy needs. The pending TNK-BP deal is simply the next step in this plan. If Rosneft does buy TNK-BP, the state oil giant will pump almost half of the barrels of oil produced in Russia. That is a massive amount of oil. Remember, only Saudi Arabia produces more oil than Russia; and no country in the world exports more oil than Russia. The country is an energy superpower – and by gradually nationalizing Russia’s energy resources, Putin is tightening his grip on Europe’s energy needs. However, Putin knows he can’t quite do it alone – his country doesn’t have enough oil and gas expertise. Without the right expertise, production will tank, and Putin’s whole plan will be derailed. History proves that point. When Saudi Arabia nationalized its oil industry in 1980, the country was producing more than 10 million barrels of oil per day. Within five years, production had fallen by more than 60%. For Putin, that’s not an option. That’s why he is encouraging BP to stick around – Rosneft needs BP’s technical expertise in order to tap into Russia’s huge reserves of unconventional tight oil and shale gas. Having BP as a significant shareholder also lets Putin continue the pretense that Rosneft is not simply an arm of the government. But an arm of Putin’s government it is, and as Rosneft gradually takes control of more and more of Russia’s oil wealth, Putin’s leverage on the international stage will increase. Saudi Arabia may have struggled in its early years as an oil-producing giant, but today the country hosts incredible clout on the world stage because of its ability to open or close oil spigots and thereby influence global oil prices. Europe is reliant on Russia for oil and gas. To be in control of other nations’ necessary energy resources is to be in a very powerful position – one that Putin has been working toward for more than a decade. He has built pipelines that bypass troublesome countries and feed into needy markets. He is cornering the uranium market by owning a large amount of primary production and controlling 40% of global uranium-enrichment capacity, while leaving the United States in need of a new nuclear-fuel supplier. He has increased Russia’s oil and gas production and encouraged unconventional exploration. Gazprom, the Russian state gas company, already has Europe wrapped around its little finger. Russia supplies 34% of Europe’s gas needs, and when the under-construction South Stream pipeline starts operating, that percentage will increase. As if those developments weren’t enough, yesterday Gazprom offered the highest bid to obtain a stake in the massive Leviathan gas field off Israel’s coast. Gazprom in control of Europe’s gas, Rosneft in control of its oil. A red hand stretching out from Russia to strangle the supremacy of the West and pave the way for a new world order– one with Russia at the helm. It is not as far-fetched as it might seem – or as you might want it to be. If Rosneft does buy both halves of TNK-BP, it will become a true goliath within the global oil sector. All the little Davids who rely on its oil will be at Putin’s mercy. Same goes for Gazprom as a Goliath in the continent’s gas scene. In this scenario, Russia could choke off supply to raise prices. Putin could play oil- and gas-needy nations off one another, forcing European nations to commit to long-term, high-priced contracts if they want secure supplies. Or imagine this: Russia could join OPEC. Suddenly the oil cartel would control more than half of global oil production and most of its spare capacity. With that kind of clout, the nations of OPEC could essentially name their price for oil – and the rest of the world would simply have to pay. Additional Links and Reads Rosneft to Replace Gazprom as Energy Driver on TNK Deal (Bloomberg) Rosneft’s deal to buy TNK-BP will accelerate the company’s eclipse of Gazprom as the dominant force in Russia’s energy industry. Over the past decade Russian President Vladimir Putin used Gazprom, the world’s biggest natural gas producer, to assert Russia’s power. Today, the lead role in Russia’s energy machine is shifting to Rosneft. Investors, Analysts Weigh Fallout from Canada’s Rejection of Petronas-Progress Deal (Platts) Late on Friday night the Canadian government issued its decision on the proposed takeover of Canadian natural gas firm Progress by Malaysian energy giant Petronas: the government said no. Investors and analysts were left scratching their heads – the deal seemed to fit the government’s requirement of being in Canada’s net interest. But with CNOOC’s proposed deal to buy Nexen also awaiting government approval, all the prime minister’s office would say is that its new framework clarifying the Investment Canada Act is pending. For now, that just means that no one is really sure whether Canada is open for business. Obama Faces Tough Call on Iran Oil Sanctions (Reuters) Mere weeks after the election, President Obama will be faced with a pivotal decision regarding the US’s sanctions against Iranian oil: whether China, India, South Korea, and other nations have done enough to wean themselves from Iranian oil. The decision requires a careful balance between the need to stay tough on Iran and the worry that too much pressure will punish the world with high oil prices. US Natural-Gas Boom Claims First Nuclear Plant (Reuters) Dominion Resources is shutting its Kewaunee nuclear plant in Wisconsin next year. It’s the first US nuclear plant to fall victim to growing competition from natural gas, but it likely won’t be the last. After claiming hundreds of coal-fired plants, the surge in US shale-gas output is now starting to grind down the nuclear industry, and smaller, older plants like Kewaunee are the first to feel the pressure. What’s In It For BP Russia has been a pretty profitable place for BP, and while BP is tired of dealing with the drama within TNK-BP, the British firm definitely wants to stay in Russia to participate in developing the country’s vast northern oil and gas potential. A cash and shares deal gives BP a nice ownership stake in Rosneft, which is the best way to profit from Russia’s immense untapped oil potential – because Putin will ensure Rosneft gets first dibs at prime opportunities. Depending on the size of BP’s slice, the company would likely also get a seat or two on Rosneft’s board. That is as important as anything else, because it would put BP personnel in regular, direct contact with Igor Sechin, the CEO of Rosneft, who has a significant say in Russian energy policy. In general, a role in Rosneft would also allow BP to pursue closer ties with a Kremlin that exerts a much tighter hold on the oil industry than it did in the 1990s, when BP first invested in Russia. And anyone who wants to operate in Mother Russia has to have an inside track to the Kremlin – or you are likely to find yourself unexpectedly kicked to the curb. Dear Reader, The presidential election is just weeks away, major deals are being made and denied in the markets, and gold prices are jumping around – there will be lots to discuss at the upcoming New Orleans Investment Conference. If you’re attending the conference, be sure to attend the Casey discussion with Doug Casey, Louis James, and Marin Katusa. The event will take place on the main stage (Grand Ballroom A&B) in the conference hall at 8:45 p.m. on Thursday. And now on to the topic of the day – the rise of a new global oil shah. Marin Katusa Chief Energy Investment Strategist Casey Research Vladimir Putin: The New Global Shah of Oil By Marin Katusa Exxon Mobil is no longer the world’s number-one oil producer. As of yesterday, that title belongs to Putin Oil Corp – oh, whoops. I mean the title belongs to Rosneft, Russia’s state-controlled oil company. Rosneft is buying TNK-BP, which is a vertically integrated oil company co-owned by British oil firm BP and a group of Russian billionaires known as AAR. One of the top-ten privately owned oil producers in the world, in 2010 TNK-BP churned out 1.74 million barrels of oil equivalent per day from its assets in Russia and Ukraine and processed almost half that amount through its refineries. With TNK-BP in its hands, Rosneft will be in charge of more than 4 million barrels of oil production a day. And who is in charge of Rosneft? None other than Vladimir Putin, Russia’s resource-full president. TNK-BP has been an economic dream, producing many billions in dividend payments for its owners – but it has been a relations nightmare. The partners have fought repeatedly. In 2008 Russian authorities arrested two British TNK-BP managers amid a dispute over strategy that forced then-CEO Bob Dudley (who now heads BP) to flee Russia – and that is just one of many partnership scandals. The writing has been on the wall for TNK-BP since this time last year, when one of the AAR billionaires quit his role as CEO of the venture and declared that the relationship with BP had run its course. Since then speculation has raged over who might buy into the highly profitable venture. Now we know: Rosneft is buying the whole thing, in a two-part deal. In the first part, Rosneft is acquiring BP’s 50% stake of the joint venture in exchange for cash and Rosneft stock worth $27 billion. The deal will give BP a 19.75% stake in Rosneft. In stage two, AAR would get $28 billion in cash for its half, though this deal is not yet finalized. Finalized it will be, however, because the billionaires of AAR are now eager to sell, rather than remain in a joint venture with the powerful Russian oil company. Rosneft gained much of its current heft at the expense of another Russian oligarch whom Putin threw under the bus, and the billionaires of AAR know they could easily meet the same fate if they try to partner with Rosneft as equals. If it all comes to pass, Rosneft’s daily production will jump to some 4.5 million barrels per day – enough to put the Russian firm neck and neck with Exxon in the race to be the world’s top oil producer. And the deal that seals it will be worth something like $56 billion – for comparison, Nike is worth $34 billion and Kraft only $27 billion. If the TNK-BP deal goes through, it will be the largest in the industry since Exxon bought Mobil in 1999. Numbers like that deserve a little contemplation. Russia is spending a heck of a lot to buy its own oil production – smells like nationalization to me. And with Vlad Putin – the most resource-driven leader in the world today – behind the controls, I dare say we’re witnessing the “Saudi Aramco-ing” of Russian oil. Putting Putin in a position of even greater resource power can only lead one place: to high oil prices and a new Cold War in energy.
These rallies are being met by stiff resistance from da boyz After chopping sideways in a tight range for almost all of the Far East trading session on their Monday, the gold price caught a bid about 3:30 p.m. Hong Kong time—and thirty minutes before the London open. Most of the impressive gains were in by 9 a.m. GMT—ninety minutes later—and from there it chopped quietly higher once again, but in a far wider range. I’m speculating here, but from the Kitco chart below, it appears that the powers-that-be were attempting to keep the gold price below the $1,300 spot price mark, but maybe I’m imagining things—black bears in dark rooms that aren’t there, sort of thing. The low and high ticks were reported by the CME Group as $1,272.10 and $1,297.20 in the February contract. Gold closed in New York yesterday at $1,294.20 spot, up $13.90 from Friday’s close. Net volume was monstrous once again at 221,000 contracts. After following a similar price path as gold, yesterday’s price action in silver was pretty clear cut, as the not-for profit-sellers were out in force shortly after 9 a.m. GMT in London yesterday morning—and by the noon silver fix had the price back to unchanged on the day, after it had broken through the $18 spot price mark for a microsecond. And it’s equally as obvious that every rally to equal that price after that, met a similar fate. The low and high ticks in the March contract were recorded as $17.63 and $18.045. Silver finished the trading day on Monday at $17.975 spot, up 19.5 cents from Friday’s close but, like gold, would have finished materially higher if allowed to trade freely, which it obviously wasn’t. Silver’s net volume was very heavy at 58,500 contracts. Uranium Energy Corp. (NYSE MKT: UEC) is pleased to announce that the final authorization has been granted for production at its Goliad ISR Project in South Texas. As announced in previous press releases, the Company received all of the required authorizations from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, including an Aquifer Exemption which has now been granted concurrence from EPA Region 6. Amir Adnani, President and CEO, stated, “We are very pleased to have received this final authorization for initiating production at Goliad. Our geological and engineering teams have worked diligently toward achieving this major milestone and are to be truly commended. We are grateful to the EPA for its thorough reviews and for issuing this final concurrence. The Company’s near-term plan is to complete construction at the first production area at Goliad and to greatly increase the throughput of uranium at our centralized Hobson processing plant.” Please contact Investor Relations with questions or to request additional information, firstname.lastname@example.org. Palladium also showed signs of life before the Zurich open—and that white metal hit its high of the day shortly after the Zurich close as well. Palladium finished the Monday trading session at $774 spot, up an even 20 dollars. The silver equities hit their highs of the day about twenty-five minutes after the markets opened on Monday in New York—and from there they chopped sideways in a fairly tight range for the remainder of the day, although they also rallied a bit starting around 2:45 p.m. EST. Nick Laird’s Intraday Silver Sentiment Index closed up an impressive 4.62%. And as I write this paragraph, the London open is less than ten minutes away. All four precious metals are up from their Tuesday closes in New York—with gold above $1,300—and silver above $18 the ounce, at least for the moment. Gold’s net volume is around 30,000 contracts—and silver’s net volume is just over 8,000 contracts—so it’s obvious that the rallies in these two metals are being met by ferocious resistance from the “Big 8” short holders. The best looking horse in the currency glue factory is down 22 basis points at the moment. Yesterday was the cut-off for Friday’s Commitment of Traders Report—and you don’t need me to tell you that it will be ugly across the board when it does put in an appearance, as the powers-that-be are throwing everything they have at the rallies in both gold and silver—and this has been going on every day since last Tuesday’s cut-off. And as I hit the send button on today’s column at 4:55 a.m. EST, I see that gold is hanging onto the $1,300 spot price mark by its proverbial fingernails, silver is still above the $18 spot price mark—and platinum and palladium are up a dollar or so each. Net gold volume is around 39,000 contracts—and silver’s net volume is a bit over 10,000 contracts. These are higher numbers than just before the London open, of course, but not by a material amount for two hours worth of trading. The U.S. dollar index is chopping around a bit—and down 23 basis points. Before heading out the door, I’d like to point out that Casey Research’s “Going Global—the 2015 Edition” is now available. As Doug Casey said in the past—“Remember, your government—considers you a milk cow. And history has shown, if they need to, they’ll use you as a beef cow, as well—“. Washington is desperately looking for ways to bail out troubled union pension funds… and one of those ways is to take over 401(k) plans and IRAs. Sounds preposterous, but it’s true. In fact, in October 2010, Congress held a hearing on a proposal to do exactly that. The talks went nowhere, but now they’re resurfacing again, raising the specter of every American losing control of their retirement funds. This $99 special report Going Global special report will show you how to protect yourself now. Going Global 2015 is an updated version of the original Going Global 2014 special report. It has many updates and is definitely still valuable to people who purchased the original report. Because, however, we realize there are some similar subjects, we’ve structured the pricing as follows: $99 for people who never purchased Going Global 2014 $29 for people who purchased Going Global 2014 in the past And you can find out all you need to know by clicking here. I’m off to bed—and I’ll be more than interested what the precious metal charts look like when I roll out of bed later this morning. See you here tomorrow. After trading flat until around 2:30 p.m. Hong Kong time, the platinum price began to chop higher under what appeared to be resistance of some sort, but ran away to the upside a bit shortly after COMEX trading began in New York. The rally ran out of gas/got capped the moment that Zurich closed for the day—and it chopped a few dollars lower after that. Platinum closed yesterday at $1,277—up $19 from Friday. It’s hard to believe that we’ll ever see that old high again, but we will eventually. The CME Daily Delivery Report showed that zero gold and 10 silver contracts were posted for delivery within the COMEX-approved depositories tomorrow. Once again the short/issuer was Jefferies—and Scotiabank stopped 7 of them. So far this month, there have been 8 gold and 401 silver contracts delivered. That’s a negligible number for gold, as January is not a traditional delivery month. But the silver contracts delivered so far in January is quite impressive—and it’s not a traditional delivery month for silver, either—and there’s still lots of month to go. The CME Preliminary Report for the Monday trading session showed that January open interest in gold increased by 3 contracts to 90 contracts still outstanding. In silver, January o.i. now sits at 62 contracts, down 18 contracts from Friday’s report. It was another big day over at GLD, as an authorized participant deposited a whopping 364,947 troy ounces of gold. In the last three consecutive business days in the U.S., a whopping 1,114,082 troy ounces of gold have been deposited in GLD! These are big, big numbers dear reader! So, what’s happening over at the SLV ETF? Funny you should ask that question. There hasn’t been one single ounce of silver deposited in SLV since December 1, 2014—and yes, you read that right. As a matter of fact, since that deposit on December 1, authorized participants [most likely JPMorgan and a tiny handful of other A.P.’s] have withdrawn 25.15 million ounce of silver from SLV, the latest being the 4.55 million troy ounces that they took out last week. Ignoring the price shenanigans in silver from November 28 to the end of December 2014—silver has rallied about $2.50 from the beginning of the 2015 calendar year—and not one ounce has been deposited. Only withdrawals. So it’s obvious that authorized participants, particularly JPMorgan, have been shorting the shares of SLV in lieu of depositing real metal, as the metal to deposit obviously doesn’t exist. I’m not sure how much silver that SLV is owed at the moment, but I’m sure Ted will have a something to say about all of this in his mid-week column to his paying subscribers which comes out mid-afternoon EST today. The confounding thing about all this, is that only Ted Butler is talking about it. The other so-called silver analysts out there—and they’re all “so-called”—treat this issue like they would the Ebola virus. They won’t come near it. As I said last week, dear reader, you have to ask yourself why this is the case? This, and the manic in/out movements in COMEX warehouse silver stocks—and the record high silver eagles and silver maple leaf sales in the face of punk retail sales—are the silver stories of the decade, if not this very young 21st century. Why, why, why is nobody else talking about this!!! This whole thing screams of what some might call fraud/scam—and on a biblical scale! As a side note, the U.S. Mint had a sales report on Tuesday. They didn’t sell any gold, but sold another 954,500 silver eagles. That brings silver eagle sales for 2015 up to the 4,656,000 mark, with another eight business days still to go in the month of January. Over at the COMEX-approved depositories on Friday, there were no in/out movements in gold at all—not one ounce. But it was another busy day in silver, as 721,689 troy ounces were reported received—but only 85,338 troy ounces were shipped out. The link to the silver action is here. As a point of interest here, I noted that The Central Bank of the Russian Federation did not update their website with December’s data yesterday. They normally update their monthly data like clockwork on the 20th of the month, but not this time. I’m sure they’re having “issues” at the moment, but I’m anxious to see if they added any gold to their reserves in December. I will keep checking their website on a daily basis going forward—and let you know the moment they bring their Internet site up to date. And one more thing before I get to the stories, the good folks over at the allengelhard.com Internet site have issued a press release about their new “Investment and Collectibility Rating” for legacy Engelhard silver bars—and you can find out all about it by clicking here. I don’t have an overly large number of stories today, so I hope you find some in here that interest you. You know the premise – if the crooks at JPMorgan add to silver shorts, the price likely gets capped; if not, away we go. It’s too soon to know for sure what JPMorgan did after the cut-off last Tuesday, but if this crooked bank didn’t add to silver shorts no one has to wonder about the jump in price on Friday. If JPMorgan’s reluctance to add shorts indicates a real change in the bank’s future silver strategy, I couldn’t come up with a more bullish development. If it turns out these crooks did sell, I may have to kick it up a big notch in working to expose just how crooked this bank is, as increasing numbers of you are imploring me to do. I can’t imagine how any honest financial institution could tolerate the kinds of accusations I level without a rebuttal. Yet, mum’s the word on the part of JPMorgan and the CME Group. We’ll see how long that lasts. – Silver analyst Ted Butler: 17 January 2015 Well, it was another interesting day in the precious metal market yesterday—and it should be obvious by the associated volumes that these rallies are being met by stiff resistance from “da boyz”. Here are the 6-month charts for all four precious metals. As you can see, we are in overbought territory in gold—and rapidly approaching that in silver as well. Of course these rallies can continue for a while longer—and whether the clock is ticking on the next engineered price decline is open for debate, because the real possibility exists that the short holders in the Commercial category could get over run this time around. But as Ted Butler has been saying for decades, if it does happen, it will be for the very first time. However, there’s a first time for everything. The gold stocks gapped up at the open—and then crawled to their high tick of the day, which occurred precisely at noon EST. There there they got sold down over two percent to their lows of the day, which came around 2:45 p.m.—and from there, they rallied into the close. The HUI finished up another 3.40%. And not that I wish to rain on anyone’s parade, but here’s the long-term Silver Sentiment Index going back to mid 2009 to put the last couple of months worth of gains in perspective—and as you can tell, we’ve got a ways to go to get back to anywhere near the high tick that preceded JPMorgan’s drive-by shooting that occurred on May 1, 2011.
Reported and Written by WVUA 23 Reporter Haley WhighamAs the graduation season approaches, Tuscaloosa County High School encouraged their seniors to let everyone know what is in store for their future.Tuscaloosa County High School held a commitment ceremony for their graduating senior class. The students had the chance to answer what everyone has been asking leading up to their graduation in May, what their next step is.“I plan to major in sports medicine,” senior Kristian Avery said. “I’m going to go to A&M for a couple of years and then I am going to transfer to another school.”The program highlighted the student’s academic success, whether they will be attending college, going into the military or on the job training.Teachers and faculty members are hoping that this ceremony motivates underclassman at Tuscaloosa County High to dream big and be passionate about their future.“We are just trying to show our students what hard work and dedication can get them,” 11th-grade counselor Tracy Parker said. “Where they can go with it, and the various schools they can apply for.”Family and friends came to support their loved ones in their post-graduation announcement plan.“I think it’s extremely important as parents to stand by your child and make sure that they are doing as needed to be a good citizen in a community,” Tomika Rainey, mother of one of the senior students, said.If you need help or advising in finding your career path, you can visit the Tuscaloosa Area Career Center or go to joblink.alabama.gov.
National Lemonade Day is just around the corner on April 27th.Little lemon squeezers partnered with Chick-fil-A to prepare children to be young entrepreneurs. They will teach children how to make lemonade and set up their lemonade stand businesses.Chick-fil-A Marketing Director Gabby Satterberg said Chick-fil-A is dedicated to serving the children in the community.“Core values are very important to us at Chick-fil-A. We’re all about treating everybody with honor, dignity and respect. Those are our three big ones, so we, of course, want to pour that into the kids. We want to teach them about customer service, and service with a smile. No one wants to buy lemonade from a grumpy kid,” Satterberg said.This is the second consecutive year that Chick-fil-A has endorsed the event. However, it is Little Lemon Squeezer’s fourth year as a national organization.Lemonade Day City Director Grace Shaheen said this national organization teaches children how to successfully run a business.“It’s just a really great program nationally that teaches kids how to budget for that business, how to market for that business, and then essentially how to run that business on lemonade day,” Shaheen said.Children were able to decorate aprons and paper hats as they get into the spirit of lemonade day.Over 100 lemonade stands have been registered within the past week and supposedly there will be more to come.This is the last week to register and pick up backpacks which include all of the ingredients for lemonade day.
ATHENS (AP) — After a government-ordered three-week suspension of the Greek league, PAOK beat Atromitos 2-0 and returned to first place on Saturday.Also, defending champion Olympiakos came from behind to draw at Levadiakos 1-1.AEK, a point behind PAOK, hosts Panathinaikos on Sunday.The league was suspended after a violent end to the PAOK-AEK derby in which PAOK owner Ivan Savvidis stormed the pitch carrying a holstered pistol.With disciplinary cases pending and appeals to be heard, the final league standings could yet be very different. For example, PAOK is appealing a decision that docked the team three points for incidents in the AEK game.Savvidis has received a three-year ban.Elsewhere, Panetolikos beat Giannena 1-0.TweetPinShare0 Shares
The first rule of soccer is pretty obvious: don’t use your hands. But soccer’s signature move, heading the ball, can cause a detectable impact on players’ brains. And according to a study published Tuesday in Radiology, female players are more sensitive to the impact than males. The study authors found that female amateur soccer players who frequently head balls showed more white matter brain alterations than their male counterparts. The study included 49 women and 49 men, ages 18 to 50, and examined MRI imaging of players’ brains. Each female player was compared to a male player of a similar age and with other similar characteristics including frequency of heading exposure. Lead author Michael Lipton, a neuroradiologist and neuroscientist at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, says white matter in the brain can be compared to fiber optic cable, which connects a network of computer. White matter is made up thread-like axon nerve fibers that connect neurons to each other, and their protective covering, myelin. Heading causes these brain tissues to become disorganized, Lipton says. His previous research found that these abnormalities accompany poorer cognitive function associated with memory or attention issues when associated with heading. “The most important finding here is that we see that in women’s brains, actually looking at brain tissue, there seems to be a greater sensitivity to repetitive, very low-level injury relative to men,” he says. An important note about this research, Lipton says, is that it isn’t about concussions. Instead, it’s measuring “sub-concussive injuries,” or repeated impacts that don’t cause any immediate, acknowledged problem for the player, but could be problematic in the long-term.”It’s actually more important to define what’s happening in people that are not yet symptomatic, because that’s where there’s still an opportunity to head off long-term problems,” he says.It’s already known that female soccer players are at a higher risk of concussion than males. Wellington Hsu, a professor of orthopedic surgery at Northwestern University, led a decade-long study of injuries among high school athletes that found this. But the current study gives additional evidence that women are more susceptible to the impact of heading, and shows more areas of women’s brains are susceptible to potential injury than men’s. Hsu, who was not involved in the current study, says while it’s not possible to draw firm conclusions from the study alone, it suggests a path forward for making the sport safer.”What I think this paper may lead to is further research in the preventative mechanisms of concussions, whether or not it’s a brace or a helmet or heading technique or a different way we think about this in men and women,” Hsu says. Women are more likely to report concussion-related symptoms than men, but Lipton says there has been debate over whether women actually are more sensitive or just more likely to speak up. This study confirms that there are changes in the tissue of women’s brains after these repetitive hits from the soccer ball that are different from men in a similar situation. “This is the first time anybody has put a definitive piece of information behind what has been a contentious dispute as to whether women’s brains are intrinsically more sensitive, or whether it’s an artifact of reporting of symptoms,” Lipton says.It’s unclear why women more biologically likely to be affected by repetitive heading. Lipton says it could have to do with sex hormones, or with the fact that women typically having less body and muscle mass than their male counterparts.Thomas Kaminski, a professor of kinesiology and applied physiology at the University of Delaware, who was not involved in the study, says that the differences in these changes in the brain could have to do with neck strength. Women typically have weaker necks and smaller heads than men. Does this research mean women should hang up their cleats forever? Probably not, says Lipton. There are a lot of brain health benefits to getting active, and women are actually okay to head the ball up to a certain point.”We’re not saying that you head the ball and then you’re brain injured,” Lipton says. “The data consistently shows that there seems to be some level of exposure to these repeated impacts which is pretty well tolerated by most people. It’s really a matter of figuring out how much is too much.”Lipton says he hopes to find out if there’s a safe threshold on heading impact for women. The latest FIFA data shows 265 million people play soccer across the globe, and Lipton says, adverse effects when multiplied by that many people “potentially [pose] a huge public health concern.” “The problem isn’t that [soccer is] creating all kinds of vegetative, brain damaged people,” he says. “But what’s the potential benefit of athletics that’s being given up by the effect of this kind of repeated head injury? And is there a way to strike a balance so that people can benefit maximally and not incur the adverse effects?”Kaminski says it would be interesting to take this research one step forward and explore this problem in youth. In the U.S., youth players can start heading the ball at age 11. He thinks it’s worth questioning whether that age cutoff should be older. Parents are faced with the issue of wanting their kids to be active but safe at the same time, he says.”What happens if [children] head the ball ten times, or a hundred times?” he says. “Would you see these changes? Those are the big question marks I have.”Carla Garcia, a Brooklyn resident and participant in the study, has been playing soccer since she was five. Now 52, she says these results probably won’t change the way she plays, but if she were younger, she would consider heading the ball a bit less. She joined the study as a way to give back to the sport she loves — and she even wants to donate her brain to science to help researchers understand brain injuries. “I think it probably over the long term will have an effect on the way that younger women and younger people play, and I got involved for that reason,” she says. “I thought that Dr. Lipton and his colleagues could find the way to make it safer for kids to play.”Sara Kiley Watson is NPR’s Science desk intern. Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.
Wisconsin’s exports dropped 8.3% combined in April and May, adding to a 0.66% decline in the first quarter, according to U.S. Census Bureau data.For the first five months of the year, Wisconsin exports are now down 3.9%, a $371 million drop compared to the same period in 2018.New data also showed metro Milwaukee exports decreased 5.2% in the first quarter compared to the same time in 2018.Declining exports to China and Canada are primarily responsible for Wisconsin’s decline. Sales to Canada were down 11.1% in May after a 3.9% percent increase in April. Sales to China decreased 32.3% in April and 18.3% in May. The state’s first and third largest export destinations, sales to Canada and China were down $117.2 million and $148.7 million respectively.Exports to Mexico – the second largest destination for state products – are up by 3% or $41.8 million for the year, but in April and May shipments declined 6.9%.Among other top export destinations, shipments to Australia increased 16.2%, Germany is up 5.1% and the United Kingdom increased 0.5%. Exports to South Korea decreased 16.2%, France is down 14.7%, the Netherlands decreased 9.7% and Japan is down 0.2%.For the entire country, exports are down 0.14% for the first five months. In the first quarter, shipments increased 1.3% but in April and May exports dropped 2.2%.Exports to China are down 19.3% for the year, sales to Canada are down 2.5% and Mexico is down 0.6%. Get our email updatesBizTimes DailyManufacturing WeeklyNonprofit WeeklyReal Estate WeeklySaturday Top 10Wisconsin Morning Headlines Subscribe
Utility Installation and Upgrades:Installation of water line and MBTA conduit at the south end of the bridge at Keany Square on weekdays by J.F. White. Utility relocation and upgrades on the north end of the bridge at City Square on weekdays and Saturdays by Eversource. Work Hours: Daytime (7 a.m. to 6 p.m.) and nighttime (11 p.m. to 6 a.m.) on weekdays. Travel Impacts: During off-peak hours, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on weekdays, inbound traffic will be reduced to one lane at the Keany Square intersection to allow for water line and MBTA conduit installation. During off-peak hours, from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. on weekdays and 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Saturdays, outbound traffic will be reduced to one lane at the Eversource work zone approaching the City Square intersection. All turn movements will be maintained, with two inbound lanes available during the morning peak hours. Note: No daytime work will be done on February 18, 2019 in observance of the Presidents’ Day holiday. Demolition and Site Preparation:Continued protection of electrical lines and utilities as well as demolition of the western sidewalk (Charles River side) using barge-mounted cranes and other equipment stationed in the water. Installation of bridge bents and construction of pier supports for temporary utility bridge.*Advertisement* Below is the construction look ahead for the North Washington Street Bridge Replacement Project as provided by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT). Travel Impacts: On weekdays, during off-peak daytime hours (10 a.m. to 2 p.m.) and nighttime hours (11 p.m. to 6 a.m.), inbound traffic will be reduced to one lane on the bridge to create a work zone for sidewalk demolition. Work Hours: Daytime (7 a. m. to 2 p.m.) on weekdays and Saturdays (7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.). Read more from MassDOT here and follow NorthEndWaterfront.com coverage of the bridge project by searching the tag N. Washington St. Bridge.
Family Business Launches Game-Changing 10-Minut…Natural Hair Entrepreneur Mahisha Dellinger Wil…Kenyan Engineer Creates High-Tech Gloves That T… be_ixf; php_sdk; php_sdk_1.4.18 https://www.blackenterprise.com/high-tech-hair-meet-tressenoire/ https://www.blackenterprise.com/high-tech-hair-meet-tressenoire/ Schedule an appointment with a well-vetted, credentialed natural haircare stylist who will come to your home or office. Receive customized curl consultations tailored to your unique locks. Stylists: Gain greater control over your career by reaching a wider client base and managing your appointments with ease.[Related: Fashion Fair President Amy Hilliard Resigns]You can achieve all of that with an app–TresseNoire. The app and company of the same name, were founded by Regina Gwynn and Octavia Pickett-Blakely.“With TresseNoire you book an appointment online, you pay online…we offer every type of natural hairstyle you can think of,â€ says Gwynn. From twists, to crochet sets to box braids, clients can have styling done in the convenience of their home or office, which “allows more productivity,â€ Gwynn said.The idea for TresseNoire sprung from each woman’s 20-year natural haircare journey. As professionals, they had the same experience of many with curly hair; finding the right stylist, at-home products, and styles that were appropriate for both work and casual looks, was challenging.“We put [TresseNoire] together out of necessity,â€ says Gwynne. “What is the ideal luxury salon experience? We see lots of beauty booking apps in the market, and when we saw these technologies none of them had the types of hair styles we were looking for.â€And so Gwynne and Pickett-Blakely got to work. They began working with small design firms to map out their app and company vision. There was some frustration in this early stage, according to Gwynne, who says there was a lot of miscommunication between what they wanted and what these design firms could deliver.Then they received early stage VC funding from CoVenture, according to AngelList,Â CoVenture connected the women with a development team in Pakistan.“Having a better partner allowed us to expand to the type of experience that we wanted.â€ Currently, TresseNoire is available for Android and as a web appÂ , but an iOS app is coming very shortly.TresseNoire services are available only in New York and Philadelphia for now. The service requires that stylists have accreditation from reputable training, including Aveda, Carol’s Daughter, and Paul Mitchell.
Intel so far this year has achieved 43.4% hiring of women and minorities according to its 2016 Mid-Year Diversity and Inclusion Report. The report also provides further detail on the company’s diversity as well as its strong support for LGBTQ equal rights.Women and Minorities at IntelThe percentage of women working at Intel is at its highest level since 2002, at 25.5%. Gains were made in hiring women to leadership positions as well as in increasing the number of women in technical roles.Hiring underrepresented minorities increased 11% from last year. The absolute number of underrepresented minority hires increased by 35% since Intel’s 2015 Mid-Year Report. The company states it still has “much work to doâ€ as overall minority representation remained stagnant at 12.3% compared to 12.4% last year.Hiring African Americans grew to 4.7%, while representation grew to 3.7%. Among Hispanics, hiring grew to 8.1%, while representation fell to 8.0%. And among Native Americans, hiring grew to 0.3%, while representation increased to 0.6%Pay equity for minorities is at 99%, the report revealed. The company says its goal is for 100% equity within the next quarter.Political RevelationsMulti-gender, one-stall restrooms are now in buildings at Intel’s major U.S. sites. The components maker also divulged that it joined 67 other major companies in challenging a component of North Carolina’s H.B. 2 law. The law mandates that transgender people be forced to use a restroom corresponding to the gender on their birth certificates in public facilities.Intel also announced an expansion of benefits to transgender employees.Supporting the PipelineThe report also revealed the result of Intel’s efforts to diversify the talent pipeline. This year, more than 45% of its interns were female and/or minority. This summer, Intel will host more than 55 scholars who come from the company’s Diversity in Technology investments.The company is introducing a computer science program to three high schools in Arizona’s Navajo Nation. It also expanded support of the Hispanic Foundation of Silicon Valley’s Latinos in Technology Scholarship program. ENTREPRENEURSHIPMAGAZINESOur Best Videos be_ixf; php_sdk; php_sdk_1.4.18 https://www.blackenterprise.com/intel-diversity-support-lgbtq-community/ https://www.blackenterprise.com/intel-diversity-support-lgbtq-community/
BY FFWPU AlbaniaDecember 11th 2016, became an important day for our nation as we organized “Family Festival & True Parents’ Cosmic Blessing Ceremony” in the coastal city of Durrës. The ceremony took place at the Ventus Harbor Complex, which is located in seaside, at 11.00 AM on Sunday morning and around 300 people filled up the hall. This was the second Blessing Ceremony we held this year, following that of May 15th held in Tirana.The family is the first institution created by God which has the main responsibility for the creation of good heavenly citizens. Seeing the sad reality of the family breakdown and multiple problems in society today, it is just obvious the need for strengthening family values. This was the way we approached couples, inviting them to attend the Blessing Ceremony.Over 100 couples attended in 1-day seminars receiving education on the blessing. Finally, 64 couples attended the blessing Ceremony. Many others promised to attend later.We were really blessed this time to have Dr. No Hi Pak and Dr. Lan Young Moon, Special Emissaries for Europe, as Officiators of the Blessing, representing our True Parents. Gani & Marjeta Rroshi, president of the FFWPU Albania, were the masters of Ceremonies.The event started with few performances, prepared by the Japanese and Korean Cheon Il Guk missionaries in Albania, respectively “CIG Band” and “Cham Sarang Team”. Everyone enjoyed deeply their performances. Albanian blessed families also performed a beautiful song for all participants showing True Parents love to them.We are grateful for the hard work of our brothers and sisters in all communities who have invested a lot to reach out to couples and give them the opportunity not only to be blessed by True Parents, but also to contribute in laying the foundation for Heaven’s blessing to our nation of Albania.Joy and happiness could be seen in couples faces when going through all the steps of the Blessing Ceremony, starting with Holy Wine ceremony until the indemnity stick ceremony.Heavenly Parent’s and True Parents’ blessing may bear fruits in these beautiful families and may they become the foundation for heavenly fortune to come down to this nation.
By Spencer Buell· Sign up for Boston Daily. News. Commentary. Every day.* Charlie Baker Tries to Reason with Trump on Immigration The executive order is bad for the economy, he says in a letter to the White House. 000 Get a compelling long read and must-have lifestyle tips in your inbox every Sunday morning — great with coffee! 2/3/2017, 5:17 p.m. Print Photo by Garrett QuinnAs fired-up activists in Massachusetts continue going for the jugular—challenging the Trump administration’s immigration policy on the street, in airports, and in the courts—Republican Gov. Charlie Baker is trying to reason with the new president and his team.In a six-page letter he sent to the new Homeland Security Secretary, John Kelly today, Baker made an economy-oriented case against President Trump’s January 27 executive order, which temporarily suspends the refugee program and bans travel to the U.S. for those from seven Muslim-majority countries. He called for the reinstatement of the refugee program, said he opposed “blanket” bans on immigration from entire regions, and urged the White House to go back to the drawing board.Trump has said that his executive order is necessary to prevent terror attacks. Baker, in the letter, agrees that something needs to be done. He shares the administration’s concern about violence, he says, and supports updates to the immigrant screening process and beefing up border security. He also says it’s time to take a look at tightening regulation of businesses that bring employees here with work visas, to root out abuse.However, he writes, sweeping decisions like the controversial travel ban aren’t efficient ways of making people safer, and will instead lead to the “unintended consequences” of hurting business, weakening hospitals, colleges, and nonprofits, and killing jobs.While I believe that changes to the country’s immigration policies are needed to improve national and border security, I wish to highlight some considerations that the Administration should weigh in pursuing any changes, in order to minimize unintended consequences for our economy and the negative effects that more restrictive policies could have on people who have followed the rules, who share our values, and who wish to contribute to our nation’s success.The letter comes after a week in which his office, and that of Attorney General Maura Healey, talked to leaders in the state about how, specifically, Trump’s aggressive crackdown on immigration would impact them.Massachusetts businesses, Baker says, are worried about losing top talent to other countries and missing opportunities to grow. Colleges are worried that capable foreign students and professors will no longer seek out colleges here. And hospitals, too, are worried they will suffer by losing out on foreign hires that have helped make them some of the best, and busiest, in the world. Conferences have been cancelled. Some who had been studying or conducting research here, or planned to, are now stranded abroad.All of that is bad for us, and good for our competitors overseas, Baker writes.Let there be no doubt that if the United States cedes its place as the global academic leader, other countries, particularly in Europe and Asia, will readily and happily step into the breach and welcome the scholars and innovators from whom Massachusetts and the nation now draw so many advantages.He countered another claim made by staunch proponents of strict reductions in immigration, including many of his Republican colleagues: that immigrants steal jobs.Those from abroad are not displacing American workers. They are growing the economic pie for all of us. If some of the most talented individuals in the world are limited in their ability to come to America, they and their talent will go elsewhere.In the letter, Baker also referenced the Boston Marathon bombings, just a day after word got out that Trump was name-checking the attack with foreign leaders as an argument against accepting refugees. The Tsarnaev brothers were raised here by Chechen parents who sought and were granted political asylum.Boston and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts know too well the pain of international terrorism. The United States must remain vigilant, and we must continually work to improve the systems we use to stop people who seek to harm us from entering the country, regardless of their country of origin. At the same time, we must recognize that overly broad responses create enormous social and economic costs without meaningfully reducing the very specific dangers they intend to address. Don’t expect to see him at a protest anytime soon, but it seems like Baker is staying true to his stance that he can do the most good with the White House by finding common ground. Particularly after an election that for many voters was about making things better for American workers, perhaps the president can be swayed by concerns from a former businessman—and a Republican, no less—about jobs.Read Baker’s entire letter here.
Table Talk: Andy Husbands of the Smoke Shop The chef and pitmaster on coffee dates, his craziest kitchen horror story, and more. Welcome to Table Talk, a series where we get to know your favorite local food industry professionals.Andy Husbands. / PHOTOGRAPH BY TOAN TRINH for “Right On Cue“The Smoke Shop might be a recent addition to Kendall Square, but the chef behind it is anything but new to town. For more than 20 years, Andy Husbands has helmed Tremont 647, whose inventive fare has led a culinary renaissance in the South End. Husbands has spent the past year building a similar reputation in Cambridge for his barbecue, a longtime passion he’s spun into a full-fledged dining destination, and his new book, Pitmaster, co-authored with longtime barbecue partner Chris Hart, is a best-seller on Amazon. We caught up with the pitmaster and restaurateur who’s becoming more synonymous with smoky, tender ’que.What’s your favorite ingredient?Ribs, ribs, ribs. [laughs]. But when I’m cooking at home, since I’m working on a spring menu, right now it’s asparagus. This will be our first spring at the Smoke Shop, so we’re pretty excited. One of my favorite things about cooking is the seasons, so as cooks in New England, we get excited [about] fava beans, asparagus, fiddleheads, all that stuff.What kitchen tool have you worn out at the restaurant?We have barbecue gloves—think of them like welding gloves—and we blow through so many pairs. We’re on a trajectory to do 60,000 pounds of brisket this year, and when you pull it out of the smoker, you have to use these big, heavy, thick gloves. We go through a pair about every month and a half.What music do you rock in the kitchen?That’s a very sensitive question [laughs]. Everybody wants to listen to different things. I would say the xx, maybe. I’m not sure which songs, but I know [it’s] is always on. If it was just me, it’s George Jones, George Strait, or Johnny Cash.Do you have a kitchen horror story?Yes, and it ended with me in the hospital. This was [during] the early days at Tremont 647, and it was really busy. First of all, we started getting all these comments back that the food was too salty. So we were trying to figure out what was happening, and we realized that we had changed brands of salt. It was a different style of flake, and we were using more than we normally use. So that set us back a bit, because we’re re-cooking stuff.At the same time, I had a gentleman who was upset [because] he just wanted to sit at a table and have a drink, and we were on an hour wait. I was trying to explain to him that we had people [waiting] to dine, and we would gladly get him a drink at the bar, but we needed tables. He decided to lecture me that he was in business school, and that we would be out of business very soon. I’d like to point out that 20 years later, we’re still open [laughs].Then, I was working with some halibut because one of my cooks couldn’t slit the fish. I came back [to the kitchen], and as I’m leaning down, the olive oil splattered up and burnt my face. So I had to go to the hospital. We’ve had many days like that—I’m sure many people do in their field—but we learn from them.What’s your go-to shift drink?It’s called a Boulevardier. It’s a Negroni, but instead of gin, it’s made with bourbon. I’m a huge bourbon and rye drinker, but when you drink them on the rocks, they’re rather strong. So it’s nice to have more of a cocktail. And it’s [made] with Campari and sweet vermouth, which are lower octane: it’s not as strong and you can really enjoy the flavor.I’m also a sour beer fiend. We constantly have rotating sours on our beer list. Anytime [our beer buyer] gets a new one in, I’m happy to try it.If you could collaborate with anyone locally, who would you want to work with?Ana Sortun from Oleana, just because her cooking style is so different than mine; I love those huge flavors that she does. It’d also be fun to [work with] somebody like Frank McClelland doing all of that fancy stuff: the juxtaposition of a L’Espalier-meets-Smoke Shop would be fun. Fancy meets down-and-dirty barbecue.When did you realize you wanted to be a chef?Junior year of high school, I went with my buddy to Johnson & Wales [College of Culinary Arts]. I had never seen anything like that: I didn’t even know that opportunity was available. And I was like, “This is what I want to do.” Fast forward several years, I’m working for Chris Schlesinger at East Coast Grill, and it was everything I wanted a restaurant to be: a place for neighbors to come, good food, great hospitality, fun staff. It just seemed like I could do this, too. Chris really helped me feel how it was all possible.When did you get into barbecue, specifically?Truth be told, I don’t think I had tried real barbecue until I was 20 and working for Chris. I’ve been passionate about it ever since. It’s really been my sport: it’s my golf, my fishing. Maybe five years back, I just started thinking, “Is this something I want to do as my occupation as well?” Life just comes at you, and you realize, “Here I am, and I’m ready to do this.” There’s no exact moment: a culmination of passion, drive, and curiosity got me to open [the Smoke Shop].If you could grab coffee with anyone, dead or alive, who would it be?Probably Joe Biden. He seems like a good dude [laughs]. If I could, it’d be Uncle Joe and Kurt Cobain. That would just be a really fun day, and coffee date.The Smoke Shop, One Kendall Square, Cambridge, 617-577-7427, thesmokeshopbbq.com. 4/6/2017, 10:20 a.m. Sign up for The Feed. The latest on the city’s restaurants scene.* 000 By Alex Wilking· Print Devoted foodies and restaurant newbies love The Feed. Sign-up now for our twice weekly newsletter.