05 6 / 2013


Tuesday, latest details emerged from U.S. officials and family members concerning how the two Boston Marathon bombing suspects may have been persuaded by an agitator, anti-American strain of Islam. They had been radicalized by sources on the web, not through direct contact with terror groups said A U.S. senator.

Younger brother, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 19-year-old university student’s condition was improved to fair from serious as investigators continued building their case against him. After being charged Monday, he possibly will face the death penalty with working in partner with his brother in setting off the shrapnel-packed pressure-cooker bombs that killed three people. Older brother previously reported dead.Over 260 people were injured by the bomb blasts last week while about 50 were still hospitalized.

There is “no question” that older brother Tamerlan Tsarnaev was “the dominant force” behind the attacks, and that the brothers had apparently been radicalized by material on the internet rather than by contact with militant groups overseas Republican Sen. Richard Burr stated after the Senate Intelligence Committee was briefed by federal law enforcement officials in Washington.Brothers, both Russian-born ethnic Chechens, have no links to terror groups based on what the authorities believed in. On the other hand, two U.S. officials said Tuesday that Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26 — who died last week in a gunbattle — frequently looked at extremist websites, including Inspire magazine, an English-language online publication produced by al-Qaida’s Yemen affiliate. The said magazine has endorsed lone-wolf terror attacks.

Because both officials were not authorized to discuss the investigation they spoke on condition of anonymity.

Tamerlan was steered toward a strict strain of Islam under the influence of a Muslim convert known to the Tsarnaev family only as Misha, according to family members reached in the U.S. and abroad by The Associated Press.According to family members, who said he turned to websites and literature claiming that the CIA was behind the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, after befriending Misha, Tamerlan gave up boxing, stopped studying music and began opposing the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.“Somehow, he just took his brain,” said Tamerlan’s uncle, Ruslan Tsarni of Maryland, who recalled conversations with Tamerlan’s worried father about Misha’s influence.“You could always hear his younger brother and sisters say, `Tamerlan said this,’ and `Tamerlan said that.’ Dzhokhar loved him. He would do whatever Tamerlan would say,” recalled Elmirza Khozhugov, the ex-husband of Tamerlan’s sister. He spoke by telephone from his home in Almaty, Kazakhstan.Khozhugov said, the brothers, who came to the U.S. from Russia a decade ago, were raised in a home that followed Sunni Islam, the religion’s largest sect, but were not regulars at the mosque and rarely discussed religion.

Then Tamerlan met Misha, a heavyset bald man with a reddish beard around 2008 or 2009. Khozhugov is not quite sure where they met but held as true that they attended a Boston-area mosque together.

03 6 / 2013


Irish energy services company Crowley Carbon has launched a boiler aimed at the commercial and industrial market, which it says has been proven to deliver savings of up to 80pc on energy costs.

Based on high pressure heat pump technology, the Thermal Server was developed in-house and is manufactured in Ireland. It can be driven by gas engine or electricity and utilises waste heat from manufacturing or geothermal sources to deliver low-cost hot water to businesses.

This hot water can then be used in a wide range of installations, including breweries, dairies and other food processing plants. Over the past 24 months has been piloted within Dawn Meats in Ireland and the British-based Direct Table Foods.

Chairman of Crowley Carbon Norman Crowley said at the launch: “Ireland’s industrial and commercial sectors spend €2.6bn per annum on heating oil and gas. If only half of this market was to be addressed by our ground-breaking technology we would confidently estimate that its application could save at least 70pc of this figure, thereby reducing energy costs for Irish companies by €918m.”

To date Crowley Carbon has invented and licensed over 80 products to address energy usage in all areas of a client’s business. Its client base includes Vodafone, Pfizer and Johnson and Johnson.

In 2012 the firm created 35 new jobs in Enniskerry, Co Wicklow and announced a €64m deal with Emrill, one of the largest facilities management companies in the Middle East. It currently has offices in Ireland, London and Sydney and Dubai.


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02 6 / 2013


hendren global group news blog, Hendren Global Group: Top Facts

Sales of new homes accelerated up to 1.5 percent in March to a seasonally adjusted yearly rate of 417,000, another verification of a sustained housing upturn at the launch of the spring buying season.

Sales of new homes exceeded February’s pace of 411,000, though they were below January’s 445,000 — the fastest rate since July 2008, the Commerce Department said on Tuesday.

The 700,000 pace is considered healthy by most economists but new-home sales are still below the said pace yet the rate has increased 18.5 percent from 352,000 a year ago

Majority of the economists spot more boost ahead, as housing is probably to remain a constant driver of economic growth this year.

Jennifer Lee, senior economist at BMO Capital Markets said, “With increasing signs of a softer U.S. economy springing up in the spring, we can take comfort in the resilience of the housing recovery.”

More Americans are encouraged to buy new houses due to stable job formation and near-record low mortgage rates. The increase in demand is helping to elevate sales and prices in most markets. Lavish prices are more likely to make homeowners feel richer and spur them in spending more.

Another reason why sales lift prices is due to a limited supply of both new and previously occupied homes.

The inventory of new homes for sale amplified 2 percent in March, to 153,000, the second successive gain. Still, that’s the equivalent of a 4.4-month supply at the current sales pace and historically lean, according to Jim O’Sullivan, chief United States economist at High Frequency Economics.

The median price of a new home is 3 percent higher than a year ago, it rose to $247,000 in March.

The March sales gain came from a 20.6 percent increase in the Northeast and a 19.4 percent rise in the South. Sales fell 20.9 percent in the West, where problems of supply have hampered home buying. Sales were down 12.1 percent in the Midwest.

According to the National Association of Realtors, sales of previously occupied homes dipped in March from February. Still, sales were 10.3 percent higher than a year earlier.

The association mentioned low supply as a ground sales fell in March. Nevertheless in a positive sign, the inventory of formerly occupied homes augmented for the second straight month. That proposes more sellers are positive that the revival will carry on and they can sell at a good price. While low inventories have helped drive more construction of new homes.

In March, home builders began work on more than one million new houses and apartments at a seasonally adjusted annual rate. This is the first time the number had crossed that threshold in nearly five years. That reflected a surge in volatile apartment building.

After reaching the fastest rate in nearly five years, single-family home construction fell in March.

Yet, one of several constraints is a low supply of homes for sale, it could limit sales. More than six years ago the housing bubble burst and since then banks have forced tighter credit conditions and mandate larger down payments. As a consequence, it became harder to first-time homebuyers to qualify for the low mortgage rates that made the Federal Reserve’s efforts to ease credit.





13 5 / 2013


Source: http://www.lasvegasweekly.com/news/2013/may/13/food-drink-innovation-moonen-rx-boiler-room/

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Everybody knows Rick Moonen is a stellar chef, a successful restaurateur, a champion advocate of sustainable seafood practices and an overall cool guy, as evidenced by his appearances on Top Chef and Top Chef Masters.

But not everybody knows Moonen’s also a mad scientist, a super-geek-level enthusiast when it comes to the elements that make great food and drink so great. The recent decision to re-conceptualize the upstairs space at his RM Seafood restaurant at Mandalay Bay is Moonen’s opportunity to indulge his geekiest food-science fantasies. What will this mean for us? Possibly the most interesting cocktail program in Las Vegas.

The former fine dining room is being transformed into Rx Boiler Room, a Bunsen burner and bubbling beaker-laden lounge and restaurant focused on applying modern, precise technique to classic cocktails and comfort food. Moonen is hoping to open it this summer in time for the arrival of the new Cirque du Soleil Michael Jackson ONE show at Mandalay.

The concept has been in Moonen’s mind for quite a while. “When it comes to cocktails in Vegas, for a while it was about the show, handsome guys throwing bottles around,” he says. “It was fun and it works, but if the bottle fell and broke, it wouldn’t be the end of the world because it wasn’t really about the cocktail. Little by little, that has changed. You’ve got the little Downtown bars approaching the craft in a serious way, and places like Herbs & Rye, and then Cosmo came along with a very serious approach with a little more fun. So Vegas is ready for this now.”

But don’t expect another cool, sleek, craft cocktail bar at Rx Boiler Room. Moonen’s “blowing it out.” The private dining rooms in the space are being knocked out to create a much larger bar area, “a center stage for all the fun stuff that’s going on.” The lounge will have a steampunk-ish esthetic with mismatched furniture, a large communal table across from the bar and oversized couches you’ll want to take your picture on. The cocktail program, the true centerpiece of this new place, is geared around elements that match those visuals. “Think batch cocktails aging in barrels and fog coming from liquid nitrogen cooling down a hot infusion that was just made in a press pot,” Moonen says. “We’ll be using bubbles, carbonating our own drinks, and a serious ice program. It’s about expecting the unexpected, paying homage to something classic by messing with it and making it your own.”

RM lead barman Nathan Greene, who created the stellar opening menu at Downtown’s Vanguard Lounge before working some corporate gigs and winning a few contests, will be heading up the bar at Rx. “This is the best possible scenario for me because my philosophy has always been about blurring the line between the bar and the kitchen,” Greene says. “Now I have this amazing opportunity to do that with Chef’s blessing in this larger format.” Those familiar with Green’s skills won’t be surprised to see all the custom goodies he’s planning, from shrubs (vinegar infused with fruit) and tinctures to house-made sodas and bitters.

“This is fairly groundbreaking,” he says. “I’ve done the research and the only places in the country that are doing anything close are Minibar in DC and the Aviary in Chicago. For us to be able to do it in this market, where everyone comes to experience something like this, and to show locals some love, it’s exciting.” Greene has invited the best bartenders in the city to moonlight or practice for competitions at Rx, opening up a serious collection of toys for everyone to play with.

And don’t forget about the food. Moonen is planning a menu of re-imagined comfort foods, “stuff I just like to cook.” A recent teaser sampling included these small plates: chicken pot pie nuggets, with a gravy foam made from chicharrón-style chicken skin; Buffalo fried frog legs with fried chicken-style crispy skin tossed in hot sauce; kona kampachi tacos with avocado and grapefruit yuzu in a yucca shell; and bacon-wrapped bacon with bacon vinaigrette (“bacon cubed,” as Moonen calls it) with a quail egg on top.

“No way did I want to do something cookie-cutter,” Moonen says. “I’m really excited because of how different the Boiler Room will be. It adds a lot to [Mandalay Bay], where we’ve got all these great [dining] standards. Now it’s time for something out of the ordinary.” And suddenly, summer can’t come fast enough.

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05 5 / 2013



Source: http://www.scmp.com/business/economy/article/1229646/economy-risk-overheating-warns-hkma-chief


Economy at risk of overheating warns HKMA chief, hendren global group news article


“HKMA boss warns rising levels of household debt and high consumer spending could see families left in a vulnerable financial position.”


Soaring household debt and rampant consumer spending have put Hong Kong’s economy at risk of overheating, the city’s central bank boss said yesterday.


Norman Chan Tak-lam, chief executive of the Hong Kong Monetary Authority, told lawmakers these were “warning signals”.


In a briefing to the Legislative Council’s financial affairs panel, he said the ratio of household debt to gross domestic product had risen to a record 61 per cent from 59 per cent at the end of last year.


The previous record was 60 per cent in 2002.


Household debt includes credit card loans, personal loans and home loans, which are usually a family’s largest debt.


The higher the ratio, the more vulnerable people will be when interest rates go up.


Chan said the surge in property prices in recent years had fuelled an increase in Hongkongers’ spending on consumer items. He was concerned that private consumption has grown faster than GDP since 2005.


And because much of the consumption is based on credit, “once the interest rate turns up, the macro economy will be at risk”, Chan said.


He also pointed to a decline over a short period in the current account balance - essentially, exports of goods and services, plus other income minus imports - as another “warning signal” that the economy is at risk of overheating.


Hong Kong’s current account balance plunged to 1.1 per cent of GDP at the end of last year from 15 per cent in 2008. Exports were stable during that period, but imports jumped.


Raymond Yeung Yue-ting, senior economist at ANZ Banking in Hong Kong, said when the rise in interest rates exceeded the rise in wages, people would be less able to pay their debts.


That could result in a surge in the number of homes in negative equity - properties worth less than their outstanding mortgage.


But he said a fall in the number of property transactions could ease the risk of the economy overheating.


HKMA deputy chief executive Arthur Yuen Kwok-hang said the authority would keep an eye on the risk management strategies of banks when handing out personal loans.


Such loans account for about 5 per cent of the total loan book of a bank, he said.


Norman Chan

The HKMA rolled out fresh measures in February to cool the property market. Chan said the measures were working but he would continue to watch the market to see if the upward trend in prices had reversed.


"It is too early to tell which way property will go, because the external environment, such as in Japan, the US and Europe, is quite uncertain. We have to monitor the situation closely," he said.


Economy at risk of overheating warns HKMA chief, hendren global group news article