Welcome, 77 artists, 40 different points of Attica welcomes you by singing Erotokritos an epic romance written at 1713 by Vitsentzos Kornaros

Friday, May 9, 2014

Greece’s Flying Firefighter Fleet in ‘Borderline Condition’

The condition of Greek airborne firefighting fleet after 40 years of services was described as “almost borderline” by the Greek Public Order


Kea, Greece's Hidden Gem

A mere breath away from Athens lies the small Cycladic island of Kea. It's often overlooked by its more prominent siblings, Mykonos and Santorini. Kea does not reveal its secrets easily. It's more an island for Greeks to visit, rather than an island that ...


Greek Police Officer Head of Prostitution Ring

A Greek police officer was arrested for allegedly being the head of an Internet-based prostitution ring in Athens. A police investigation revealed that the 45-year old policeman was forcing his Russian wife and several Greek and foreign women into ...


Chasing Maria Menounos: Good Luck Keeping Up!

PHOTOS (Use as many as possible)   Menounos 1: You can chase Maria Menounos all you like, but with at her furious pace, she’s hard to catch.   If chasing Maria Menounos is your task, you had better lace up your running shoes and be prepared for a long run. Because the Greek-American […]

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Athens-based firm Potamitisvekris picks up Chambers award

The Chambers Europe Awards for Excellence, one of the best known guides to legal services in Europe, has been won by Athens-based firm Potamitisvekris for the second time. “Unlike most other Greek law offices, we decided to grow together as a firm, emphas... ...


From sardines to truffles: Greek food stars at weekend festivals

KathimeriniFrom sardines to truffles: Greek food stars at weekend festivalsKathimeriniAthinorama city guide is behind “Ellada Giorti Gefseis” (Festival of Greek Flavors), an event running to Sunday at the Technopolis cultural complex in Gazi, central Athens. Already in its second edition – according to organizers, last year's debut drew ...


Bartholomew I, Orthodox Patriarch, Hopes Pope Francis Visit Will Bring Forth 'Christian Unity'

ISTANBUL (AP) - Bartholomew I, spiritual leader of 250 million Orthodox Christians, says a meeting with Pope Francis in Jerusalem this month will help move the two churches closer to ending their nearly 1,000-year divide. In an interview with The Associated Press in his Istanbul office, Bartholomew also praised Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan for improving rights for Christians but said pointedly, "it is not enough." The meetings between the ecumenical patriarch and the leader of the world's Roman Catholics on May 25-26 will commemorate the historic visit of their predecessors 50 years ago that launched a dialogue aimed at ending the two churches' schism in 1054. "We shall say through our meeting and our prayer that it is the intention of both of us to work further for Christian unity and reconciliation," Bartholomew said, sitting at his desk piled high with papers in his Patriarchate office. Around him, golden icons from Byzanti um on the walls loomed over standing photos of the patriarch greeting world leaders, including U.S. President Barack Obama and Erdogan. Although the Orthodox and Catholic churches remain estranged on key issues, including married clergy and the centralized power of the Vatican, there have been moves toward closer understanding, beginning with the 1964 meeting between Pope Paul VI and Ecumenical Patriarch Athenagoras in Jerusalem. It was the first encounter between a pope and Orthodox patriarch in more than 500 years. Following the meeting, mutual excommunication edicts were dropped, and a Catholic-Orthodox Joint Declaration of 1965 called for greater harmony. Echoing that declaration, Bartholomew said the road to unity remains long, but that Pope Francis's acceptance of the invitation to meet in Jerusalem demonstrates that both leaders want to end the divide. "When it will take place, we don't know; how it will take place, we don't know. Only God know s ," he said. The two leaders will hold a prayer service together at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, where the faithful believe Jesus was crucified and buried, and issue another declaration. Bartholomew said it had not been finalized. In the interview, Bartholomew expressed disappointment that Erdogan had not re-opened the Theological School of Halki, the Orthodox Church's most important seminary. Bartholomew spent seven years as a student and another four more as an assistant to the dean at the grounds on an island in the sea of Marmara. The school, whose doors were closed in 1971 under a Turkish law that required private higher education to be controlled by the state, have been meticulously maintained since, in case students are allowed to return. Many expected that the seminary would be reopened last year as part of a package of reforms aimed at boosting minority rights in Turkey. "These are hopes which are not fulfilled so far," Bartholomew said. "It is a matter of human rights and especially of religious freedom." Erdogan has said Halki's reopening depends on reciprocal measures from neighboring Greece that would improve the rights of Muslims there. Asked about that demand, Bartholomew threw up his hands. "Are we responsible for that?" he asked. "I am in favor of a mosque and even more mosques where there are Muslims, in order to give them the possibility to pray according to their own faith. But what can I do?" Bartholomew said that the issue is not about Greek law, it is about Turkey's responsibility to protect religious freedom. "I am a Turkish citizen and I was born here. I served in the Turkish army for two years," he said. "I want my full rights as such as a Turkish citizen and not only for myself but for my church and my community." Later, he glanced over at a table near his desk with photos of Turkish President Abdullah Gul and his Greek counterpart, Antonis Samaras. There were i mages of a dove and of an olive tree, symbolizing peace between the two often warring cultures. Bartholomew credited Erdogan with improvements in rights for Christians in Turkey and noted that whereas ethnic Greeks once left Turkey in droves, many are returning, especially because of Greece's financial turmoil. "We recognize these steps. We express our gratitude to Mr. Erdogan. But we say that it is not enough," he said.


Greece Fines Tax Dodgers €142m

Greece’s Financial Crime Unit (SDOE) has issued fines to Greek businesses and professionals for dodgy accounting practises, the Finance Ministry said Friday. After auditing various businesses across Greece throughout April, SDOE forwarded 507 ...


Greek power grid operator sell-off draws international interest

KathimeriniGreek power grid operator sell-off draws international interestKathimeriniGreek power grid operator ADMIE attracted five expressions of interest as the government seeks to sell a controlling stake, state-controlled power utility PPC said on Friday. PPC, which owns ADMIE and will handle the deal, said in a regulatory ...and more »


Town of Greece Decision Brings Needed Common Sense to Establishment ...

San Diego Jewish WorldTown of Greece Decision Brings Needed Common Sense to Establishment ...National Review OnlineThis week, Alliance Defending Freedom, which litigated the Town of Greece case, asked the en banc U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit to use that decision to reverse a recent 2–1 panel decision in another important case that ADF is litigating.In Town Of Greece, U.S. Supreme Court Affirms Constitutionality Of Prayer At ...Mondaq News Alerts (registration)Town of Greece should promote diversitySan Diego Jewish WorldGeorge Will: Greece's prickly plaintiffsGoErie.comLexology (registration) -WMBFall 122 news articles »


Legendary ‘Pony’ Car Set to Return to Greek Streets

More than 30 years have passed since the last Pony buggy hit the Greek streets, but a Thessaloniki company is preparing to relaunch the famous


Greek Lawmakers OK 2015-18 Budget

By a vote of 150-119, the Greek Parliament approved a budget plan for the years 2015-18 as part of a deal with


Albariño – Great with Greek Salad, Kalamarakia, Anthous

Starting off your meal with some crispy, fried calamari, or skipping the frying process and opting for a sautéed version with lemon, garlic, and olive oil? Either way, you’re in store for a great spring and/or summer culinary experience, and you’ll need a fresh, minerally white wine to complete the package. Recently, an article in […]

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Amb. Monteagle Stearns Honored by Greece, Discusses U.S. Relations with Greece, Turkey

BOSTON, MA – Retired U.S. Ambassador Monteagle Stearns was recently made a Grand Commander of the Order of the Phoenix by the President of Greece. He is the first American Ambassador to receive the award, which is given to both Greeks and non-Greeks “who have increased understanding and appreciation of Greece and its culture throughout their careers.” In […]

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First all-Greek production to hit Dubai theatre in June

Dubai: Dubai’s home-grown Greek theatre group will debut a satirical comedy at Ductac in June. Thespis Greek Theatre Group, composed of amateur actors living in Dubai, will perform Babades with Chantilly by acclaimed Greek screenwriters M Reppas and Th ...


Thomas Edison's Reaction To His Factory Burning Down Shows Why He Was So Successful

At around 5:30 in the evening on Dec. 10, 1914, a massive explosion erupted in West Orange, New Jersey. Ten buildings in legendary inventor Thomas Edison's plant, which comprised more than half of the site, were engulfed in flames. Between six and eight fire departments rushed to the scene, but the chemical-fueled inferno was too powerful to put out quickly.

According to a 1961 Reader's Digest article by Edison's son Charles, Edison calmly walked over to him as he watched the fire destroy his dad's work. In a childlike voice, Edison told his 24-year-old son, "Go get your mother and all her friends. They'll never see a fire like this again." When Charles objected, Edison said, "It's all right. We've just got rid of a lot of rubbish."

Later, at the scene of the blaze, Edison was quoted in The New York Times as saying, "Although I am over 67 years old, I'll start all over again tomorrow." He told the reporter that he was exhausted from remaining at the scene until the chaos was under control, but he stuck to his word and immediately began rebuilding the next morning, without firing any of his employees.

Was there any other viable response? In new book "The Obstacle Is the Way: The Timeless Art of Turning Trials into Triumph," author Ryan Holiday says there wasn't. Sure, Edison could have wept, yelled in anger, or locked himself in his house in a state of depression. But instead, he put on a smile and told his son to enjoy the spectacle.

"To do great things, we need to be able to endure tragedy and setbacks," Holiday writes. "We've got to love what we do and all that it entails, good and bad. We have to learn to find joy in every single thing that happens."

After thoroughly surveying the damage, Edison determined that he'd lost $919,788 (about $23 million in today's dollars), according to Matthew Josephson's biography. The flames had consumed years of priceless records and prototypes, and his plant's insurance only covered about a third of the total damage.

But after just three weeks, with a sizeable loan from his friend Henry Ford, Edison got part of the plant up and running again. His employees worked double shifts and set to work producing more than ever. Edison and his team went on to make almost $10 million four years later, in 1918.

Edison's story is a powerful example of Stoicism, the ancient Greek philosophy that Holiday explores in his book. Holiday explains that the Stoics were not emotionless men devoid of feelings, but rather men who practiced total control over their emotions in a way that acknowledged forces beyond their control.

Holiday uses philosopher and writer Nassim Nicholas Taleb's definition to describe a Stoic: someone who "transforms fear into prudence, pain into transformation, mistakes into initiation, and desire into undertaking."

It's fine to initially respond to loss or failure with sadness or anger, says Holiday, but only if it's fleeting. When tragedy strikes, you must accept that it has happened and that you cannot change the past. Finding the opportunity to overcome a challenge ultimately makes you stronger.

Not only did Edison master his own emotions, but he also instilled this mindset in his employees. As A. H. Wilson, his vice president and general manager told the Times after the flames died down, "There's only one thing to do, and that is to jump right in and rebuild."

SEE ALSO: The Simple Strategy Alabama Coach Nick Saban Used To Create A College Football Dynasty

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Survivors from Samos shipwrecks granted deportation stay

Thirty-four migrants rescued from two boats that capsized while entering Greek waters illegally from Turkey have been granted a six-month reprieve from deportation on humanitarian grounds, the police said on Friday. The bodies of 22 people, including wome... ...


Customs officer, and his family, caught smuggling liquor

A 62-year-old customs officer, his wife and two children were arrested on Friday in Kilkis, northern Greece, for smuggling alcohol. The arrests came after authorities caught the man’s 33-year-old son carrying contraband drinks in his mother’s car. It emer... ...


Heating oil subsidy benefited 124,000 people

Some 124,000 people received a total of 14.3 million euros in heating benefits this week, the government said on Friday. This takes to 169 million euros the total paid out to Greek families this past winter to help them meet their heating costs. The Finan... ...


Yoplait's Greek yogurt challenge isn't getting any easier

Yoplait's Greek yogurt challenge isn't getting any easierMinneapolis Star Tribune (blog)While General Mills' Yoplait brand has made some progress in Greek-style yogurt, it's still an “eventual loser” in the Greek market, says a report this week from Bernstein Research. However, the Greek yogurt juggernaut is slowing down some, which ...and more »


Greek parliament backs new bailout bill

Greece's parliament has approved budget plan for 2015-18 as part of the country's international bailout commitments. The plan envisions Greece's recession ending this year but a slow decline in unemployment. ...


Only 12% of Greeks Pay by Card

According to a survey by the Foundation for Economic and Industrial Research (IOBE), the use of debit and credit cards remains very limited


National Bank Completes 2.5 Billion Share Sale

The National Bank of Greece (NBG) announced on Friday it had successfully completed its equity offering, with its new shares priced at 2.2 euros each


Sisco's Restaurant in Susquehanna Township to open as Greek restaurant with ...

Sisco's Restaurant in Susquehanna Township to open as Greek restaurant with ...Patriot-NewsOriginally, they had planned to transform the space into a 100 percent Greek restaurant. But after so many inquiries for the popular Sisco menu items, they have decided to bring back the pizza and stromboli which will be served alongside Greek ...


New Principal Kusulas Speaks to TNH

  NEW YORK – Theodore P. Kusulas was appointed new principal of the School of the Holy Trinity Archdiocesan Cathedral of New York, replacing Sonia Celestin. He will begin on June 15. Kusulas has four decades of experience and many accomplishments as a dedicated educator and administrator in both private and public schools, with students […]

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Venizelos Says PASOK Won’t Quit

PASOK chief Evangelos Venizelos said he never said the party would quit the coalition if it fares poorly in municipal and European Parliament elections.

The post Venizelos Says PASOK Won’t Quit appeared first on The National Herald.


For Mom: Greek Thyme Honey Granola

Did you know that KFC’s day of largest gross sales is Mother’s Day? Think about that for a second. Why not give mom a real treat with a selection of these easy to make recipes for a breakfast in bed or a memorable brunch? Greek Thyme Honey Granola Makes 2 servings Ingredients: Grape seed oil […]

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SDOE imposes 142 million euros in fines on businesses for bogus invoices

The Financial Crimes Squad (SDOE) imposed a total of 142 million euros in fines on Greek entrepreneurs who issued or received bogus invoices and to self-employed professionals who did not issue receipts for the provision of their services, the Finance Min... ...


UN questions Greek Cypriots on missing Turkish Cypriots

The United Nations Committee on Torture has requested information from the Greek Cypriot administration about Turkish Cypriots who went missing between the years of 1963-74. The United Nations Committee on Torture questioned Greek Cypriot officials on ...


Bomb hoax forces Acropolis Museum evacuation

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — A bomb hoax forced Greek authorities to evacuate the Acropolis Museum in Athens and an adjacent subway station for more than an hour.


9 Countries (And 1 Region) Which Have Their Own HuffPost

Nine years ago The Huffington Post launched as a single page. Today it has 10 international editions. Starting in 2011, HuffPost has been expanding around the world. Our two English-language editions in Canada and in the UK launched that year, soon followed by France, Spain and Italy in 2012. In 2013, we reached Asia, by way of Japan and later that year returned to Europe to launch in Germany. Along the way we landed in Africa with the debut of our Maghreb edition. So far in 2014 new editions have come to life in Brazil and South Korea. And there are more countries to come this year. HuffPost India, HuffPost Greece and HuffPost Arabic are next.Check out what it means for the editorial teams around the world to be part of the HuffPost family.Kenny Yum, Managing Editor, HuffPost Canada "As the first international site, HuffPost Canada proved that the site's DNA, how we engage with readers, how they gravitate to our coverage of politics, business, lifestyle, was a huge success. As we hit our third anniversary, we're proud to say that we're true to the HuffPost values and we believe the Canadian media landscape is richer for that." Carla Buzasi, Editor in Chief, HuffPost UK "It's been a real privilege to be a part of the HuffPost family for the past three years. As the first launch outside North America, it really felt like all eyes were on us at launch and I'm so proud of the UK team for rising to the challenge. We're firmly part of the British media scene these days, and no longer the new kid on the block, but with 9,000 British bloggers and counting, the conversations and debates are as lively as on day one." Anne Sinclair, Editorial Director, HuffPost France "HuffPost is 9! Nine years old. Just incredible. Usually at nine you are not even a teenager. But HuffPost is a grown up media, successful, accurate and... thriving of course!"Paul Ackermann, Editor in Chief, HuffPost France "To be part of the HuffPost family was crucial in our success. The editorial model which gives a voice to the people and puts the reader at the forefront of the news supported by cutting edge tech tools was very innovative in France. Being part of a worldwide network, rich of international points of view on this conception of news has been very important to us." Gianni Del Vecchio, Editor in Chief, HuffPost Italy "Being part of HuffPost is being on the right side of history."Guillermo Rodriguez, Editor in Chief, HuffPost Spain "Being part of the HuffPost family feels like standing on the shoulders of giants."Tomoko Nagano, Editor at Large, HuffPost Japan “We will keep working on creating a life of well-being, wisdom, and wonder with you guys.”Houeida Anouar, Editor in Chief, HuffPost Maghreb "John Donne once wrote: "No man is an island, entire of itself, every man is a piece of the continent". This is how we feel about belonging to the HuffPost family. We are happy to have the opportunity to cultivate our differences, to be independent and unique in our North African "island", and at the same time, we have the privilege to be part of a diverse, rich and stimulating group across many continents. Our differences are our strength as a global community of editors."Sebastian Matthes, Editor in Chief, HuffPost Germany "We are so proud of being part of the growing HuffPost family. It is a great experience to help build a global media brand for the digital age. The fantastic growth of the German edition tells us that it is the right time for a news site for the digital age, a place where we bring together great voices from all over the world along with award winning journalism."Ricardo Anderáos, Editorial Director, Brasil Post "The Huffington Post covers above all life. Everything that has to do with real life in this hyper-connected 21st century. Here at Brasil Post we are very excited to be part of this global adventure that helps redefine the scope of journalism."Dohoon Kim, Co-Editor in Chief, HuffPost Korea "To be part of the HuffPost family is like being part of an island chain. As I steal and change the famous quote from the film "About A Boy": "every nation is an island." But clearly some nations are island chains, they are connected. I feel utterly connected to the world thanks to the HuffPost family."Check out their first splashes in the slideshow below.


QUIZ: Which Of The 9 Greek Muses Are You?

QUIZ: Which Of The 9 Greek Muses Are You?Huffington PostThe nine mousai, born to Zeus and Mnemosyne, were themselves given divine reign over music, poetry and dance -- and said to be the inspiration for classic works of epic and sacred poetry. But they were also just an ensemble cast dramedy waiting to ...


Greek Ministry Protects Social Dividend from Banks

The total amount of money paid to 200,000 beneficiaries as a social dividend sums up to 133.2 million euros. Up to 205,912


Financial Crisis Sparks Cigarette Smuggling in Greece

Nearly a quarter of tobacco products used in Greece are likely to have been smuggled in to the country, according to the latest


How to learn to love Eurovision: laugh at foreigners, unite, laugh some more

The joy of the mystifying song competition is that everyone's in on the joke, and nobody is on the outside sneering in

Poll: Does the Eurovision song contest make you feel patriotic?

There is a point in the lives of most European schoolchildren when they come to understand the continent's geo-political history in terms of the Eurovision Song Contest. What better way to comprehend the situation in Cyprus, for example, than through the lens of why Greece never votes for Turkey at Eurovision, even when the Turkish entry is this good? (Turkey withdrew from the competition in 2013, citing the unfairness of politicized voting blocs).

I used to hate Eurovision. Growing up, it struck me as too much of a good thing, like putting sugar on your ice cream, combining all the best bits of figure skating (the costumes), children's television (the earnestness), amateur singing contests (the public humiliation) and, for British audiences at least, the magnetism of the host, one of the few titans of BBC light entertainment who hasn't been hauled up on child molestation charges and who managed to have the same chuckly bonhomie that always made you slightly wonder.

I've got a cake to bake I've got no clue at all (cep, cep, cep, cep, cep kuuku)

I've got a cake to bake and haven't done that before (cep, cep, cep, cep, cep kuuku)

I melted the ice of the polar caps,

Found the raiders of the lost ark,

We've got a cake to bake and got no clue at all

We've got a cake to bake and haven't done that before

Continue reading...


Olivier Dubois: Tragédie review 18 naked dancers swarm the stage

Sadler's Wells, LondonStamina-sapping repetition mars a piece that falls just short of saying something interesting about the human condition

Olivier Dubois describes his 2012 work Tragédie as an exploration of the gulf between merely being human and embracing our full humanity. On paper, his ideas come dressed in the philosophy of Nietzsche and the history of Greek tragedy. On stage, however, his 18 dancers perform entirely naked.

During the first half hour, these men and women are reduced to bare essentials. They track the stage in a grid formation, their faces expressionless, their footfalls dictated by a relentless drum. Yet, however minimal their choreography, the dancers impress with their individuality. Their impact stems partly from their lack of fear or inhibition, partly from their rich variety of body type and shape. Even as our attention wanders from the movement's repetition, we are drawn into an odd physical intimacy with the dancers, with the heft and pigmentation of their bodies, their birth marks and body hair.

Continue reading...


Turkish PM Erdoğan's steps 'not enough,' Greek Orthodox Patriarch says

Hurriyet Daily NewsTurkish PM Erdoğan's steps 'not enough,' Greek Orthodox Patriarch saysHurriyet Daily NewsBartholomew said that the issue is not about Greek law, it is about Turkey's responsibility to protect religious freedom. "I am a Turkish citizen and I was born here. I served in the Turkish army for two years," he said. "I want my full rights as such ...Orthodox patriarch eyes unity in visit with popeNew Zealand Heraldall 35 news articles »


Bartholomew Eyes Unity In Visit With Pope This Month

Bartholomew I, spiritual leader of 250 million Orthodox Christians, says a meeting with Pope Francis in Jerusalem this month will help move the two churches closer to ending their nearly 1,000-year divide. In an interview with The Associated Press in Istanbul, Bartholomew also praised Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan for improving rights for Christians but said pointedly, "It is not enough."

The post Bartholomew Eyes Unity In Visit With Pope This Month appeared first on The National Herald.


Greek authorities evacuate Acropolis Museum in Athens after receiving bomb threat

Greek authorities have evacuated the Acropolis Museum in Athens after receiving a bomb threat.


Dave: how the 'home of witty banter' became TV's big success story

The digital channel is watched by 27m people a month, and it's growing. It couldn't all be down to repeats of Storage Hunters? We sent our man to Bavaria to find out

Greek gymnasia. Burmese monasteries. The Italian parliament. Every culture has a sacred male space, where men will be boys. For modern Brits, that space is the Dave channel. Dave's your mate, the marketing tells us. You do five-a-side and pub quizzes together. The only problem is you have to share the winnings with his 27 million other mates.

In a crowded digital market characterised by fragmentary audience share, Dave is an outlier. While total TV viewing in the UK is down across all other networks, Dave is growing. The biggest channel outside of the public broadcasters, Dave is celebrating its strongest quarter yet and is watched by more than half the men in the UK. Are they boneheads? What's going on?

Continue reading...


Greece makes it to Eurovision final on Saturday

Freaky Fortune and RiskyKidd are to represent Greece in this year's Eurovision song contest final in Copenhagen on Saturday after qualifying in Thursday's semi-final along with another nine entries. Apart from Greece, with its English-speaking song "Rise ... ...


IMF official eyes debt relief, political stability for Greece

A spokesman for the International Monetary Fund, one of Greece's three international creditors, acknowledged in comments to reporters late on Thursday that Greek debt is high and added that Greece's eurozone partners had agreed to debt relief. Addressing ... ...


In Town Of Greece, U.S. Supreme Court Affirms Constitutionality Of Prayer At ...

San Diego Jewish WorldIn Town Of Greece, U.S. Supreme Court Affirms Constitutionality Of Prayer At ...Mondaq News Alerts (registration)This week, a sharply divided U.S. Supreme Court issued its ruling in Town of Greece v. Galloway, a decision that overruled the lower court decision and determined that the prayers preceding Town Board meetings in upstate New York's Town of Greece did ...George Will: Greece's prickly plaintiffsGoErie.comTown of Greece should promote diversitySan Diego Jewish WorldThe lessons of Town of Greece v. Galloway for campaign finance lawsTwin Cities Daily Planet (blog)Alexandria Town Talk -Jacksonville Daily Newsall 82 news articles »


Great recession almost over says thinktank -live

The UK economy has nearly recovered the ground lost since 2008 financial crisisBest manufacturing performance since 1999Senator hurries to close Pfizer tax loopholeOmnicom-Publicis bn merger collapses

1.30pm BST

Mr Obama is going to Walmart.

The president is expected to visit a store in Mountain View, California, where he will speak about energy efficiency.

President Obama will stand to side by side with a company known for low wages, few benefits, unreliable hours, discrimination against women, violating workers rights and yes, environmental degradation.

Things have always been tight. After four years working at Wal-Mart in Mountain View, I am bringing home about $400 every two weeks (Id like to get more hours, but Im lucky if I work 32 hours a week). Thats not enough to pay for bills, gas and food. All I can afford to eat for lunch is a cup of coffee and a bag of potato chips. Ive always done everything possible to stretch paychecks and scrape by. Sometimes it means not getting enough to eat.

But then I got some bad news that made stretching my budget impossible.

12.29pm BST

Portugal's unemployment rate has fallen for the fourth successive quarter, while the government has been given a nod of approval from the Standard and Poor's rating agency.

Official data showed that the jobless rate was 15.1% in March, down from 17.5% a year earlier.

We think Portugal's real GDP will likely grow on average about 1.4% per year during 2014-2015, chiefly on the back of sustained export growth, after a 1.4%contraction in 2013. We also expect a gradual recovery in domestic demand asprivate sector hiring continues to recover.

11.53am BST

European leaders have declared the eurozone crisis over several times in recent months.

Today is the turn of the outgoing president of the European Commission, Jose´Manuel Barroso.

The existential crisis of the euro, I think we can say is solved now.

No complacency, some problems remain and we know the difficulties that exist mainly in social terms but the reality is that those observers, those analysts in Europe and outside who were predicting the Greek exit, they were predicting the implosion of the euro, they were completely wrong. They are the ones who have to apologise.

11.40am BST

Prices in Greece continue to fall at a steady pace, as wage cuts and unemployment take their toll.

Data from the Hellenic Statistics Agency showed that prices were down 1.6% in April 2014 compared to April 2013.

11.26am BST

Nick Clegg has said the government is not focusing on "wielding vetoes" to block the takeover of Astra Zeneca by US rival Pfizer. But the deputy prime minister wants to ensure that Pfizer's commitments to the UK are binding.

From what I've seen, it's not clear how the government would make those commitments binding, or how long they would last for.

We need to make sure @pfizer commitments are binding. Our focus is not to start wielding vetoes. @nick_clegg

Pharmaceutical is... a bit dog-eat-dog. Assurances, however well meaning, will change depending on circumstance. It will not be able to stick to assurances, however well meant.

11.13am BST

Howard Archer, chief economist for Europe at IHS Global Insight, has said the latest ONS data does little to dilute the view that the UK economy is doing well.

However, weak demand in the eurozone and strong imports into the UK are likely to cloud the picture.

The prospects currently look largely encouraging for manufacturers, with April survey evidence from the CBI and the purchasing managers robust. Much improved consumer confidence, higher employment, a robust housing market and improving consumer purchasing power should bolster demand for consumer goods.

Meanwhile, improving global growth should help UK manufacturers export orders as 2014 progresses, although the upside for export orders may well be constrained by domestic demand in the Eurozone improving only gradually. Furthermore, the strength of the pound could become an increasing problem for UK manufacturers. Manufacturers will also be helped by a number of developments in Marchs budget, including measures aimed at limiting energy bills and providing more export finance at cheaper borrowing rates.

10.57am BST

Tougher sanctions on Russia could damage German growth, according to a leaked report from the European Commission.

Light sanctions, such as blocking imports of Russian luxury goods like furs or expanding the list of political and business figures subject to travel bans, would slow German growth by 0.1 percentage points this year and next year, the Stern report said.But the worst-case scenario for the German economy would be prompted by a ban on imports of Russian oil and gas and Russian intermediate goods and a freeze on Russian financial assets and capital movements, according to the report.This would have a big impact on Germany's energy supplies, it said, estimating that Germany gets 46 percent of its gas and 37 percent of its oil from Russia and is even more dependent on it for supplies of certain raw materials like copper.

The full article (in German) can be read here

Mario Draghi, the ECBs president, said the outflows from Russia have been large enough over recent weeks to push up the euro exchange rate, complicating monetary policy for the ECB.

We had very significant outflows that have been estimated by some to be in the order of 160bn out of Russia, he said, without specifying where the information came from.

10.25am BST

Some useful charts on the manufacturing data, courtesy of Twitter users.

+1.4%: UK #manufacturing had its best 3 month period of growth since 2010 in Q1, and the best calendar qtr since 1999

ONS manufacturing production charted against #PMI Output Index below. PR can be accessed here:

Good news on UK manufacturing output today. But the long-run chart is sobering.

10.07am BST

A very timely nugget of data is contained in the ONS's latest tranche of economic statistics.

The biggest contributor to growth in manufacturing came from pharmaceutical products, a fact that is bound to add to sceptics' armoury over the proposed takeover of the UK's second biggest drug company.

9.51am BST

The ONS has some good news for George Osborne, with data showing that factory output grew 1.4% in the first three months of 2014.

This is way above expectations and the best quarter since 1999.

This release of data estimates that production rose by 0.7% between Q4 2013 and Q1 2014 and the impact on the previously published Q1 2014 GDP estimate is minimal.

9.38am BST

Here is the rundown of the trade data just released by the Office for National Statistics.

9.33am BST

Breaking news: UK industrial output fell 0.1% in March; trade deficit in goods narrows.

9.23am BST

A former head of the Eurogroup has warned France to stop blaming the euro for its woes.

Jean-Claude Juncker, the centre-right candidate for European Commission, told Reuters that France had better fix its problems at home, before blaming the single currency.

I don't believe France is the sick man of Europe.

But I do caution against looking for the causes of what is partly the result of (its) own mistakes somewhere other than at home.

8.57am BST

Speaking of Astra-Zeneca, there is a great read in the FT by Martin Wolf, the paper's chief economics commentator.

The questions any normal person would ask are three. Would a takeover increase competition? Would it increase investment in life-transforming research? Would assurances given by the bidder about future production and research be credible? The answer to all is no.

Yet the merger is likely to go ahead, because the only people whose interests count are shareholders, whether they have owned their shares for 10 years or 10 seconds. AstraZeneca can be sold and bought like a sack of potatoes.

8.45am BST

Pfizer's £63bn bid for Astra-Zeneca has come under further attack, this time from the United States Senate.

Two leading Democrat Senators are trying to close a loophole that allows US firms to pay less tax by going abroad.

Ive long been concerned about inversions companies moving offshore on paper, for tax purposes, while the management and operations remain in the United States. Its become increasingly clear that a loophole in our tax laws allowing these inversions threatens to devastate federal tax receipts.

We have to close that loophole. I am talking to my colleagues about legislation to close the loophole, which I intend to introduce soon.

Carl intends to introduce bill to close corporate inversion tax loophole. Statement:

8.36am BST

So no payday for the mad men of Omnicom and Publicis.

The proposed $35 billion (£20bn) mega merger between advertising giants, US Omnicom Group and French rival Publicis Groupe, has collapsed as the different cultures of the two firms proved impossible to reconcile.

There are a lot of complex issues we havent resolved. There are strong corporate cultures in both companies that delayed us for reaching an agreement. There was no clear finish line in sight and uncertainty is never a good thing when you are in the personal service business.

In the end it was a case of eyes bigger than tummy

Tax driven deals are made in hell, as Publicis-Omnicom proves | Tax Research UK

8.13am BST

Good morning, and welcome to our rolling coverage of the world economy, the financial markets, the eurozone and the business world.

The great recession is over, according to a respected economic forecasting group, which says the ground lost since the 2008 financial crisis has almost all been recovered.

The British economy is very close to being bigger than it has ever been. Symbolically, that matters, and it comes out a time when growth is entrenched.

But as far as individuals are concerned what really matters is how rich we are - per capita GDP - and that's well below the level of 2008 and won't get back to its previous level for a couple of years.

In fact, real wages - take-home pay deflated by inflation - is about 6% lower than it was then and won't get back to its previous 2008 peak before, we reckon, another three or four years.

Industrial production is expected to show a decline of 0.2%, down from 0.9% in February, while manufacturing production is expected to slow to 0.3% from 1%. Construction output is expected to expand 0.6% in March and 7.1% year on year.

If these numbers come in any way positive it will add fuel to the belief that the economy is well on the way to recovering back to its GDP peaks, pre financial crisis.

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