DJ accelerates growth with additional services

first_imgVirgin Australia planes + staff Source = e-Travel Blackboard: N.J As part of an accelerated capacity growth plan Virgin Australia has announced additional services on flights across Australia.Unveiled earlier this week the carrier said it will operate extra services between Melbourne to Brisbane, Sydney and Adelaide as well as Brisbane to Cairns and the Whitsunday Coast from 13 February this year.Additional return flights will also be added on services between Brisbane and Gladstone from 19 February this year while more capacity will be added between Brisbane and Rockhampton from 20 February.With the additional services now on sale, Virgin Australia group executive of alliances, network and yield Merren McArthur said the extra services were to meet rising demand from corporate and leisure travellers on the selected routes.“Virgin Australia will be able to offer travellers the increased convenience of more flights, more often, across the country’s busiest capital city trunk routes, as well as on growing resources sector and leisure routes in Queensland,” Ms McArthur said. A Virgin Australia statement read that capital city flight increases are as follows: Adelaide-Melbourne: An additional return flight Mondays through Fridays; taking the total number of flights offered between the two cities up to 10 per day or 130 per week. Brisbane-Melbourne: An extra return flight seven days a week; taking the total number of flights offered on the route up to 13 daily or 174 per week. Melbourne-Sydney: An extra return flight seven days a week; taking the total number of flights offered between the two cities up to 31 daily or 392 per week. Queensland flight increases:  Brisbane-Gladstone: One extra return flight on Sundays (using the ATR); taking the total number of flights offered by the airline on the route to 34 per week. Brisbane-Rockhampton: An extra return flight, Monday to Friday; taking the total number of Virgin Australia flights between Brisbane-Rockhampton up to 78 per week. Brisbane-Cairns: An extra return flight will be added every day except Saturdays; taking the total number of Virgin Australia flights between Brisbane and Cairns each week to 80.  Brisbane and Whitsunday Coast (Proserpine): An additional return service, Monday to Friday, will be introduced; taking the total number of flights offered by the airline on the route to 24 per week. last_img read more

Sheraton On The Park Awarded BrasserieCafé Of The Year Plus Workplace

first_imgSheraton on the Park has again been recognised for their consistently outstanding achievements, by winning two awards at the 2012 TAA (NSW) Awards for Excellence, on Thursday 26th July. Sheraton on the Park took home ‘Brasserie / Café of the Year’ and ‘Workplace Health & Safety Hotel of the Year’.Renowned for its popular seafood buffet and five star service, Sheraton on the Park’s Botanica Brasserie was named “Café / Brasserie of the Year”. This is the third time that Botanica has won this award previously winning in 2008 and 2010; further acknowledges its reputation as the best seafood buffet in Sydney. With its central location and sweeping view of Hyde Park, Botanica Brasserie is the perfect place to enjoy a meal with colleagues or loved ones.Sheraton on the Park was also awarded “Workplace Health and Safety Hotel of the Year” and as an industry leader, this award reinforces that Sheraton on the Park is committed to looking after the safety, health and wellbeing of associates, guests and visitors. All associates are committed to safe work practices and this is reflected in the success at these awards. This is the fourth year that the hotel has won this award previously winning in 2008, 2010 and 2011. The Tourism Accommodation Australia (NSW) Awards for Excellence are recognised as the most prestigious awards in the hospitality industry, honouring the achievement of excellence in service. According to Mr. Sean Hunt Managing Director, Sheraton on the Park and Regional Vice President Starwood Pacific Hotels, the award recognises the Hotels commitment to taking care of both all guests and associates. “Winning these prestigious awards is the culmination of many years of hard work and constant investment in our facilities and our people. Through an unprecedented string of awards, Sheraton on the Park has firmly positioned itself as the hotel of choice in the highly competitive 5-star Sydney market. All kudos to our talented team of associates, who go above and beyond to deliver exceptional services to our guests”, he said. Source = Sheraton on the Parklast_img read more

Over 1 million Aussies visit Singapore

first_imgGlobal tourism receipts have also increased with a two per cent increase year on year, at a total of nearly USD $19 million. With 1,125,000 Australians visiting the city between January and December 2013, it continues to maintain its position as the fourth highest international tourist market, right behind Malaysia with 1,281,000, China with 2,270,000 and Indonesia with 3,089,000. Singapore’s Overall International Visitor Arrivals (IVA) reached 15.6 million, representing a strong seven per cent year on year growth, confirming the city continues to be an attractive travel destination. “We’re thrilled that increasingly more Australians are visiting our city and we’re excited to present the diverse range of experiences that Singapore offers all year round and this year we want to continue telling more Aussies why Singapore should be featured in their holiday plans,” Singapore Tourism area director Oceania Sharon Lam said. Singapore’s year round calendar of events will soon look to attract more Aussies than ever before, with both the popular Formula 1 Singapore Airlines Singapore Grand Prix and inaugural Women’s Tennis Association Championship happening this year.  Source = ETB News: Lana Bogunovich Based on recent visitor arrival figures, Singapore received over a million Australian visitors in 2013, an increase of seven per cent on the previous year.last_img read more

TravelPort increases ownership stake in ENett International

first_imgTravelPort has increased its stake in its travel payments co-venture ENett International, bringing its total stake to 73 per cent.The payments company bought 15 per cent from its venture partner PSP International in a transaction worth US $450 million.PSP International will also provide  a number of banking services to ENett, including becoming the primary issuer of its Virtual Account Numbers.TravelPort chief executive officer and president Gordon Wilson said that the purchase is a natural buy.“Travelport felt that the time is right to own more of this growing business and this deal provides the opportunity for the two shareholders in eNett to play to their respective strengths,” Mr Wilson said.“Following the signing of a significant multi-year extension of our partnership with MasterCard announced last month, this new agreement allows eNett to further leverage the expertise of its respective shareholders as it continues to expand into other markets and verticals around the world”.Morgan Stanley advised TravelPort on the transaction whilst  Financial Technology Partners acted for PSP International.Source = ETB News: Tom Nealelast_img read more

Peru demonstrates attractions to Indian tourists

first_imgPeru is no longer an unknown tourist destination for the Indian tourist. In fact, it is now the land of hidden treasures, exactly what granted the nomenclature to the seminar organised  by the Commercial Office of Peru who named their presentation,’Peru: Empire of Hidden Treasures’.The conference showcased the beautiful landscape of the destination, highlighting specific tourist attractions like the Amazon jungle, the Andes mountain range, the architecture of Lima, ancient cultures and cities like Caral, Machu Picchu and the city of Cusco, leaving behind an indelible impression on the visitor.The striking richness of culture and heritage along with scintillating dazzle of beaches and highlands renders Peru an indispensable destination on the travel list of an Indian tourist.What interests one further is that Peru has been bestowed the title of World’s Best Culinary Destination for six consecutive times, including 2015, by the World Travel Awards. All attendees of the seminar were able to vouch for it, given the delicious Peruvian dishes they could enjoy at the event.Over the years, the number of Indian tourist to Peru has grown by 20% on an average, a statistics that is firmly established now, as highlighted by the Commercial Office of Peru. The changing tastes of the Indian traveller and the developing commercial and investment ties between the two countries are likely to promote this upward trend further. Peru has successfully portrayed itself to be one away from the hackneyed, giving a chance to explore the unexplored and imaginative.In terms of business travel, Free Trade Agreement is also underway, contributing to outbound travel from India to Peru.last_img read more

BLS International inaugurates Spain visa application center in Riyadh

first_imgBLS International, inaugurated their new Spain Visa Application Centre (VAC) in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia last month. The company operates 124 visa application centres in 49 countries for Spain Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation (Ministerio de Asuntos Exteriores y de Cooperación). The new Spain VAC was formally inaugurated in the presence of the Ambassador of Spain in Saudi Arabia along with senior officials from BLS International.At the inauguration, Álvaro Iranzo Gutiérrez, Ambassador of Spain in Saudi Arabia speaking at the opening ceremony said, “This new and revamped visa application centre is the result of our effort to adapt our service to visitors coming from Saudi Arabia and in particular to the 73,000 Saudi tourists that arrive in Spain on a yearly basis.”The Consular staff commended the infrastructure of the Spain VAC in Riyadh and particularly appreciated the Value-Added Services (VAS) such as VIP lounge, photocopy, courier, form filling assistance, SMS alert, photo booth, translation, prime time, prime day and insurance that BLS is providing at the Spain VAC for the convenience of the applicants.Commenting on the announcement, Shikhar Aggarwal, Joint Managing Director, BLS International said, “The new VAC for Ministerio de Asuntos Exteriores y de Cooperación in the capital of Saudi Arabia, is equipped with state of the art technology to strengthen and smoothen the visa processing services for the citizens. Looking at the growing trend of emerging popularity of Schengen areas as a new tourist destination, the centre will cater to the ever-increasing volumes of visa applications for Spain – a preferred destination for Schengen entry.”last_img read more

Young Buyers Step Up Market Presence Despite Challenges

first_img Demand Down Payments First-Time Homebuyers National Association of Realtors 2014-03-11 Tory Barringer For all the discussion in the industry surrounding Millennials and their apparent lack of presence in today’s housing market, a new study from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) found they now account for the greatest market share of recent home purchases.According to the association’s Home Buyer and Seller Generational Trends study for 2014, Millennials—aka “Generation Y” or “Generation Next”—comprised 31 percent of recent purchases, leading all other age groups. Following that were Generation X (defined as those born between 1965 and 1979), which made up 30 percent.NAR chief economist Lawrence Yun said the increase isn’t that surprising, given that many in the younger generation are now in the peak period in which people buy their first home.“Given that Millennials are the largest generation in history after the baby boomers, it means there is a potential for strong underlying demand,” Yun said. “Moreover, their aspiration and the long-term investment aspect to owning a home remain solid among young people.”Indeed, about 87 percent of recent buyers age 33 and younger said they consider their home purchase a “good financial investment” compared to 80 percent of the total survey population.Millennials were also among the age groups most likely to a simple desire to own a home of their own as their motive for purchasing—as opposed to senior generations, who relocated due to retirement or to be closer to friends and family.Still, despite their evident interest, “the challenges of tight credit, limited inventory, eroding affordability and high debt loads have limited the capacity of young people to own,” Yun said.Out of recent Millennial homebuyers, 20 percent said they had to delay their purchase because of difficulties saving for a down payment, with 56 percent of that group pointing to student loan debt as the greatest hurdle.In purchasing characteristics: The median age of recent Millennial buyers was 29, according to NAR, while their median income was $73,600. The typical choice of homes among the group was a 1,800-square foot house costing $180,000.Eighty-seven percent purchased an existing home, and they plan to stay in their homes for a median 10 years.When it comes to shopping, all age groups typically began by looking online for for-sale properties and then contacting a real estate agent, though NAR found Millennials are more likely to also use the Internet to find information about the buying process. When it comes time to actually buy, though, it seems there’s no replacement for a human—according to the study, younger buyers relied more heavily than older groups on real estate agents to help them navigate the process. March 11, 2014 403 Views in Daily Dose, Data, Headlines, Newscenter_img Young Buyers Step Up Market Presence Despite Challenges Sharelast_img read more

Study One in Three FHA Borrowers Could Save Money Refinancing

first_img in Daily Dose, Data, Featured, Government, News More than one in three homeowners with mortgages backed by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) could stand to save money by refinancing now that the agency has lowered its annual mortgage insurance premium, according to a study released by the Urban Institute (UI).As a result of last month’s 0.5 percentage point cut in premiums (bringing them down to 0.85 percent), UI researchers Karan Kaul, Laurie Goodman, and Jun Zhu estimate that roughly 2.4 million existing FHA borrowers could benefit by refinancing their mortgage at the lower premium.Ever since President Barack Obama first made the announcement of the reduction last month, economists have tried to calculate the number of potential refinancers who could benefit, particularly since that activity is a key driver of FHA’s premium revenues and of the health of the agency’s insurance fund, which has been light in recent years as a result of the housing meltdown.The team came to that total by taking the pool of existing FHA loans—about 6.6 million—and removing about 2.2 million with characteristics that make unable or less than ideal for refinancing. Those groups include loans originated prior to June 1, 2009 (which are eligible for FHA’s lower-rate Streamlined Refinance program); delinquent and modified loans; and mortgages with terms of 15 years or less, for which the premium cut does not apply.Out of the remaining 4.4 million borrowers, the group made three separate estimates for expected refinance candidates based on how many can afford the initial costs of refinancing and how many would benefit measurably from the savings:Conservative borrowers: Looking at just those homeowners who would wait until their annual savings (including the new interest rate and reduced premium) hits 1 percent, the researchers calculate that roughly 1.7 million borrowers could save money by refinancing.Aggressive borrowers: At a more aggressive 0.5 percent savings threshold, the group says as many as three million borrowers could save. That estimate, however, comes with the note that “very few borrowers … would find refinancing cost effective at the 0.5 percent threshold.”The base estimate: Reasoning that most borrowers would save at a 0.75 percent threshold, the pool comes in at about 2.4 million who could lower their mortgage payments appreciably.Even working within that wide range, the team notes that there are a few unknowns that will likely creep into market demand for FHA refinances, including changes in mortgage rates—whether observed or simply anticipated.”If a large number of borrowers decide to wait in anticipation of even lower rates in the future, that would further reduce refinance volumes,” they wrote. “Given what we know today, however, one in three FHA borrowers could certainly lower their monthly payments by refinancing.” February 16, 2015 562 Views Study: One in Three FHA Borrowers Could Save Money Refinancingcenter_img FHA Mortgage Insurance Refinances Urban Institute 2015-02-16 Tory Barringer Sharelast_img read more

Lawmakers at Odds Over CFPB Effects

first_img CFPB Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Senate Banking Committee 2016-04-05 Seth Welborn Share Lawmakers at Odds Over CFPB Effects in Daily Dose, Government, Headlines, Newscenter_img Two days in advance of Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Richard Cordray’s testimony before the Senate Banking Committee, the Committee held a hearing on Tuesday to debate whether the consumer finance regulations passed as a result of the crisis are helping consumers—or having the opposite effect.Now almost five years old, the CFPB remains the subject of a heated debate among lawmakers: Is the Bureau an organization vital to the financial well-being of consumers, or is it simply a government bureaucracy that abuses its power?In his opening statement at the hearing, Committee Chairman Richard Shelby (R-Alabama) lamented the fact that the CFPB is not subject to the same type of checks and balances system which governs other federal regulators—and consumers are the ones that have suffered because of it.“Because of the Bureau’s structure and the means by which it is financed, it remains one of least accountable agencies in the federal government,” Shelby said. “As a result, the very consumers that the CFPB was designed to help have been harmed by the Bureau because some of its rules make it more difficult for companies to lend and offer products in the marketplace. The Bureau has enormous power over consumer financial matters.  It has, however, no statutory mandate to write balanced regulations that protect the economy or promote institutional safety and soundness. As it continues to exercise its considerable regulatory powers, it does so without any meaningful statutory check by Congress.”Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Ranking Member on the Committee, defended the Bureau’s actions in his opening statement.“The crisis revealed that Americans needed a federal watchdog that would put their interests first,” Brown said. “The CFPB has been a success. The agency has taken strong actions in a number of consumer finance markets that previously had no federal oversight, including credit reporting, debt collection, payday loans, student loan servicing, and auto finance. The benefits of the CFPB are clear: its actions have resulted in $11.2 billion being returned to over 25 million consumers.”The Rev. Willie Gable of the Progressive Baptist Church of New Orleans, one of four witnesses at the hearing, noted that the CFPB has played a critical role in implementing mortgage rules that prevent predatory practices.“The mortgage market is, of course, an absolutely vital one,” Gable said. “Homeownership is the primary vehicle through which families build wealth and pass it on to future generations. Homeownership brings tangible benefits to neighborhoods, schools, and cities, and carries immense intangible value as well. This is particularly important for families of color, who still lag so far behind economically. The predatory practices in the market had catastrophic consequences, and ones that became evident to all.”“The tragedy of Dodd-Frank and the CFPB is that it squandered this unprecedented opportunity to modernize the consumer credit system to promote competition, consumer choice, and innovation.”Todd Zywicki, George Mason University School of LawAnother witness at the hearing that addressed the impact of the CFPB on the mortgage industry was Leonard Chanin, Of Counsel with law firm Morrison & Foerster and a former Assistant Director of Regulations with the CFPB. Chanin warned that over-regulation can limit access to financial products.Chanin told the Committee that “there can be benefits to regulation,” but at the same time, “there are many risks and dangers to regulating ‘too much’. . .it seems clear that such rules and other actions have had a significant adverse impact on the ability and willingness of institutions to offer those products and services. Anecdotal and other evidence clearly indicates that institutions have reduced the products and services offered to consumers and some institutions have been reluctant to offer new products and services. Recent CFPB rules on mortgages illustrate this result.”Chanin continued, “Some institutions that previously offered mortgages have stopped doing so because the costs of complying with the new rules cannot be spread over a sufficient number of loans to enable them to effectively compete in the marketplace. In addition, a number of institutions have reduced the products offered to consumers. In fact, a recent American Bankers Association survey revealed that, due to the CFPB mortgage rules, 75 percent of banks surveyed eliminated one or more mortgage product offerings, such as construction loans and loans with payout options.”Another witness, Todd Zywicki, Foundation Professor of Law and Executive Director of the Law and Economics Center, George Mason University School of Law, concurred with Chanin’s assessment that more regulation has meant fewer opportunities for consumers.“The tragedy of Dodd-Frank and the CFPB is that it squandered this unprecedented opportunity to modernize the consumer credit system to promote competition, consumer choice, and innovation,” Zywicki said. “Instead, the post-crisis regulatory framework has resulted in higher prices and reduced choice for consumers and little improvement in consumer financial protection. Indeed, by stifling competition and driving millions of Americans out of the mainstream financial system, it may actually result in more consumer protection problems.”Zywicki continued, “Given this extreme lack of democratic accountability, the CFPB has done what all bureaucracies tend to do: it has constantly expanded its power, promoted its own bureaucratic interests at the expense of the public and American families, and trampled underfoot other public policies, such as consumer choice and financial innovation.” April 5, 2016 521 Views last_img read more

TRID Causing Widespread Closing Delays Among Credit Unions

first_imgTRID Causing Widespread Closing Delays Among Credit Unions Callahan &Associates Credit Union TRID 2016-04-06 Scott_Morgan April 6, 2016 473 Views in Daily Dose, Data, Government, Headlines, Newscenter_img While most everyone knew the TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure (TRID) regulations would result in delays, not many expected those delays to be so sweeping. The results of a study released Wednesday by Washington, D.C.-based Callahan & Associates found that a whopping 96 percent of the 200-plus credit union executives the company surveyed across 46 states reported closing delays related to TRID over the past six months.Callahan found a  variety of reasons at the heart of the delays. Half cited  new lender workflow between title companies and members, as well as refinement of processes of procedures as the primary cause of closing delays. A quarter cited compliance issues related to settlement, systems, members, and mortgage disclosure. Sixteen percent said that their own mortgage loan origination and core processing systems were not fully equipped to handle necessary updates, while 6 percent said their members were unable to provide documentation and other information in a timely manner.Additionally, open-ended survey responses noted timing issues with disclosures, difficulties integrating mortgage origination systems with core processors, and challenges with title companies, realtors, and other settlement agents, Callahan stated.All told, more than half of the respondents said new TRID regulations have added five or more days to mortgage closing, while the average number of days to close, according to respondents is 42. The industry’s ideal average closing goal is 31 days.Despite the delays, the vast majority of respondents said closing issues were generally easy to handle. Nearly 80 percent said they are able to deliver disclosures quickly, with 20 percent saying they deliver three days before the mortgage closing, the absolute deadline for delivering disclosures.For most credit unions, the portfolio and secondary markets are significant origination factors, Callahan found. Eighty-three percent of respondents, in fact, said they originate loans to hold in their portfolio. But more two-thirds also actively originate for sale to the GSEs.  A minority of respondents — 11.3 percent — said they solely originate for sales to GSEs. Sharelast_img read more

More Homes are Returning to Positive Equity

first_img As home prices continue to rise, the number of underwater borrowers has fallen over the years significantly to the point where 92 percent of all mortgaged properties are in positive equity territory, according to a recent report from Fannie Mae.Fannie Mae reports that in the first quarter of this year, 46.7 million properties had positive equity levels, while 4 million borrowers were underwater, or owed more on their mortgages than their homes are worth, according to data from CoreLogic. The factors that can lead to negative equity include a decline in a home’s value, an increase in mortgage debt, or both factors combined.The report notes that out of 176 cities that CoreLogic tracks, San Francisco topped those with the highest percentage of homes in positive equity territory in the first quarter of 2016. Additionally, the home equity positions of some of the 10 biggest cities have seen dramatic improvements when comparing the first quarter of 2010 to the first quarter of 2016.Specifically, Fannie Mae cites certain areas that have seen large percentage increases such as San Francisco-Redwood City-South San Francisco, California jumped from 90.1 percent in 2010 to 99.4 percent in 2016. Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, Texas increase from 85.6 percent in 2010 to 98.3 percent in 2016. Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, Colorado increased to 98.3 percent in 2016 from 2010 where it sat at 75.2 percent. Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale, California rose from 72.8 percent in 2010 to 96.1 percent in 2016. Boston, Massachusetts leapt from 82.1 percent in 2010 to 94.3 percent in 2016.Fannie Mae also presents data from New York-Jersey City-White Plains, New York/New Jersey that jumped from 86.9 percent in 2010 to 94.0 percent in 2016. The Washington D.C. -Arlington-Alexandria area rose significantly from 69.6 percent in 2010 to 89.1 percent in 2016. The Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights region of Illinois increased from 71.7 percent in 2010 to 83.3 percent in 2016. Miami-Miami Beach-Kendall, Florida nearly doubled from 46.7 percent in 2010 to 80.4 percent in 2016. Finally, Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise, Nevada increased a whopping 4 times its percentage of 22.4 in 2010 to 80.1 in 2016.Fannie Mae also notes that Las Vegas’ percentage of homes in positive equity territory grew 57.7 percent in that period, but it’s still among the 10 cities with the lowest equity positions that CoreLogic tracked in the first quarter of this year.These top 10 cities with the highest percentage of homes in negative equity territory for Q1 of 2016 include Ocala, Florida at 21.3 percent; Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise, Nevada at 19.9 percent; Miami-Miami Beach-Kendall, Florida at 19.6 percent; Lakeland-Winter Haven, Florida at 18.8 percent; Atlantic City-Hammonton, New Jersey at 18.4; Detroit-Dearborn-Livonia, Michigan at 17.8 percent; Camden, New Jersey at 17.2 percent; Flint, Michigan at 17.1 percent; Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, Florida at 17 percent; and finally Cleveland-Elyria, Ohio at 16.9 percent. in Daily Dose, Data, Featured, News More Homes are Returning to Positive Equity August 29, 2016 466 Views center_img Negative Equity underwater homes 2016-08-29 Seth Welborn Sharelast_img read more

Southern California Bay Area Housing Markets Rebounding

first_img Share July 1, 2019 922 Views Data released by CoreLogic reveals that California housing market, specifically in southern California and in the San Francisco Bay Area, saw increases in home sales in May. The reports state that existing homes sales increased by 10.6% month-over-month in Los Angeles, Riverside, San Diego, Ventura, San Bernadino, and Orange Counties. While this is an increase from April, home sales are down 2.7% from 2018, and the 22,300 homes sold for the month was the lowest for that month since 21,754 were sold in May 2015.Home sales in this region have fallen on a year-over-year basis for the last 10 months. The declines, though, have decreased and came in at under 3% in April and May after reported declines of 12% to 20% between November 2019 and March 2019.The median price for homes sold in southern California in May 2019 was $530,000, which is a 0.4% increase from April’s $528,000, and 0.2% higher than in 2018.Home sold in the San Francisco Bay Area saw an increase of 18.9% from April 2018, but still down 2.7% year-over-year. Total home sales in San Francisco in May were the lowest for that month since 8,038 were sold in May 2016. CoreLogic states sales have been declining in the double digits from November 2018 to March 2019, but May’s decline was reported at just 2.7%. The average price of homes sold in San Francisco in May 2019 was $860,000—a slight increase of 1.2% from April 2019.A report by Redfin last month found that the release, and anticipated release of several IPOs, have provided a boost to the Bay Area housing market. According to the report, 35% of offers by Redfin agents in May faced a bidding war, which is up from 5% in Janaury. While an increase, and higher than Redfin’s national average of 16%, it is still down from 77% from May 2018.  “Earlier this year, the San Francisco housing market appeared to be running out of gas, but the recent tech IPOs have reignited competition.” said Redfin Chief Economist Daryl Fairweather. “Buyers want to get in now before prices shoot up, while many would-be sellers are holding out for higher prices. With more people looking to buy homes than there are homes for sale, what you have is a recipe for bidding wars.”Redfin states San Francisco was the most competitive metro in the nation in May, beating out San Diego (24%). San Francisco and San Diego were the only two metros that saw more than one-in-five offers face competition in May. 2019 Housing Market california 2019-07-01 Mike Albanesecenter_img Southern California, Bay Area Housing Markets Rebounding in Daily Dose, Data, Featured, Newslast_img read more

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first_img You might also be interested in U.K.: Tesco adds plant-based meals to its meat ais … U.K.: Greenyard Frozen and Tesco announce new part … July 24 , 2018 One of the job ads for Tesco’s new stores reads: “The new retail format will be operated separately from the core Tesco business and as such benefits offered will be different from those offered at Tesco.”According to The Guardian, some of the chain’s smaller-format stores, called Tesco Metro, are set to re-open under the new name in a few weeks.The news follows revelations in February that Tesco had earmarked two potential sites – the Lincolnshire and Cambridgeshire sites – and entrusted former Aldi operations director Lawrence Harvey and advisors from Boston Consulting Group to spearhead the project. Leading British supermarket chain Tesco is rumored to be on the verge of launching a new discount chain after it advertised for workers to staff new format stores, local media Retail Gazette reported.Weekend chatter in the U.K. business press highlighted the forthcoming arrival of Jack’s, which could launch as early as September in a bid to claw back some of the market share it has lost to German discounters Aldi and Lidl. U.K.: Tesco trials removing plastic from fruit and …last_img read more

… and what that means is that from 1 July 2017 tra

first_img… and what that means is that from 1 July 2017 travellers ticketed in transcontinental Business Class will be treated to upgraded meal service and amenities and flat-bed business class seat for the duration of their journey through the US on the New York/Newark–Los Angeles route, the New York/Newark–San Francisco route, and the new Boston–San Francisco route. There will also be complimentary hot meal and beverage service for customers seated in Economy Plus. Beginning on flights in July, this will feature industry-leading meal service, including a complimentary hot fresh entrée, dessert and fruit, a pre-arrival snack and alcoholic beverages. “United offers Boston customers the industry’s leading schedule between Boston and San Francisco with the most departures, the greatest number of seats and the only wide-body service,” said United’s VP of Marketing, Mark Krolick. “Now, as a premium transcontinental market, we are increasing significantly the number of business class seats available to Boston travellers on this route. Moreover, Boston business customers connecting via SFO, our Asia/Pacific hub, to destinations throughout the Asia Pacific region will be able to enjoy a flat-bed business class seat for the duration of their journey.” Transcontinental networkUnited Airlineslast_img read more

ProFootballFocuscom has Peterson ranked sixth out

first_imgProFootballFocus.com has Peterson ranked sixth out of the eight Cardinals defensive backs they’ve rated this season. Keim is optimistic about the three-time Pro Bowler picking up his play as the year rolls on.“We expect him to play at a high level and I think he’ll get things cleaned up here in the next few weeks,” he said. The fourth-year pro out of LSU, who became the league’s highest-paid cornerback in the offseason, has been bothered by an ankle injury suffered last week against the Denver Broncos.Peterson played Sunday, but wasn’t too effective, getting beat on two touchdown passes on slant patterns.“I wouldn’t say he’s 100 percent (healthy),” Cardinals general manager Steve Keim told Doug and Wolf Monday on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM. “What I will say about Pat is I still have a tremendous amount of faith in his physical tools. When Pat gets into trouble, in my opinion, it’s a tendency to not focus and a lack of intensity for 60 minutes.“I can guarantee you that’s something that Todd Bowles and Kevin Ross, our DBs coach, will clean up and have Pat ready to go next week.”Through the first five games of 2014, Peterson has been beaten for five touchdown passes. “When you don’t have a great edge rush and you have to cover for four and five seconds and you’re going against guys like DeSean Jackson and Demaryius Thomas, you can get exposed,” Keim said. “If you play 70 snaps and 65 of them are excellent, and five of them you get exposed, you can’t hide.” Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Your browser does not support the audio element. The Arizona Cardinals got their fourth win of the season Sunday, beating the Washington Redskins 30-20 in front of a sold-out crowd at University of Phoenix Stadium.The Cardinals find themselves all alone in first place in the NFC West after five games, but that isn’t due to a lack of adversity.The team’s injury problems have been well-chronicled. Other players are playing through their own ailments, like cornerback Patrick Peterson. Comments   Share   Top Stories The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo LISTEN: Steve Keim, Arizona Cardinals General Manager Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impactlast_img read more

Excuse Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer a bit

first_img Excuse Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer a bit.No, he wasn’t exactly on, and his two interceptions thrown to the Minnesota Vikings’ Xavier Rhodes were evidence of that. One, for what it’s worth, might not be completely on the Arizona signal-caller.Whatever the case may be, Palmer completing 20-of-38 passes for 198 yards, two touchdowns and those picks came along with a quarterback rating of 63.3. Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact Carson Palmer is hit as he throws in the Arizona Cardinals’ loss to the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday, Nov. 20, 2016. (Associated Press) Top Stories The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Comments   Share   center_img Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling That’s not good, not next to the Vikings’ Sam Bradford’s 98.7 rating thanks to a more efficient, quite conservative stat line of 20-of-28 passing for 169 yards and a touchdown.Certainly, Palmer could’ve been better, but his offensive line didn’t exactly give him much opportunity to get comfy in the pocket.According to Pro Football Focus’ Sam Monson, the Vikings put Palmer under pressure on 27 percent of 42 dropbacks.That 62.8 percent of plays under pressure is the most any quarterback has dealt with over the entire NFL season to this point. In Monson’s more subjective opinion, it’s a “ludicrous” figure.FOX’s telecast’s counted Palmer taking 23 hits and hitting the turf 17 times. And by the box score, he was sacked four times for 43 yards, all in the second half.The Cardinals’ offense actually got off to a promising start by scoring 17 first-half points, rolling up 263 yards and earning 19 first downs. As Minnesota’s pressure increased in the second half, Arizona would only net 27 more yards from scrimmage and five first downs.Of course, the Cardinals offensive line will take much of the blame. Injuries to Evan Mathis and Jared Veldheer put John Wetzel and Earl Watford in the first unit, but on Sunday, left guard Mike Iupati suffered a left leg injury and briefly exited for Taylor Boggs, who had seven games of experience under his belt heading into the Vikings game. Iupati eventually returned, but Boggs also earned time at right guard in place of Watford as the Cardinals searched for answers. – / 22last_img read more

In their entirety the 2016 Arizona Cardinals were

first_imgIn their entirety, the 2016 Arizona Cardinals were a disappointment.Preseason Super Bowl favorites, they stumbled right out of the gates and never truly regained their footing, finishing the season with a 7-8-1 record.But while the team itself did not have a great year, a handful of players on the roster did.And according to the analytics people over at ProFootballFocus.com, two Cardinals are worthy of All-Pro Team status: running back David Johnson and defensive lineman Calais Campbell. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling “He’s the one that has given me the opportunity, he’s the one that is teaching me the plays and what he is looking for and what Carson (Palmer) is looking for,” Johnson said. “So to hear that, hopefully I do have the opportunity to do that.”Johnson, whose sprained MCL will sideline him for about two months, will be back with the team next season looking to build off his impressive 2016. The other Cardinal on PFF’s All-Pro team, Campbell, is a free agent and may not be.But if this was it for Campbell in Arizona, he went out with a bang. He joined Los Angeles’ Aaron Donald on the first team for “Interior defenders,” while Miami’s Ndamukong Suh and the Giants’ Damon Harrison landed on the second team.Aaron Donald’s season was somehow quietly dominant. He posted 82 total QB pressures, a figure bettered by only three players in the entire league, despite playing inside and not on the edge, where pressure comes easier. He was a constant disruptive force against the run, as well, with his quickness and ability to penetrate into the backfield. Arizona’s Calais Campbell put together the best season of his career, despite the Cardinals failing to live up to their standards of a year ago. Ndamukong Suh was again excellent for Miami on the second team, while Damon Harrison’s performance in the run game is the stuff of legend. He posted 10 more run stops than any other defensive tackle; only six of his peers came within half of his total of 49.Campbell, 30, finished with 53 tackles and eight sacks, which was his most sacks since posting 9 in 2013. Prior to the team’s Week 17 win over the Rams, defensive coordinator James Bettcher talked about how Campbell was playing as well as any defensive lineman in football over the second half of the season. Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Top Stories That idea was reaffirmed by Arians the day after the season ended.“I thought it was very solid, one of his better ones, especially the last half of the season,” the coach said. “I thought he really benefited from Chandler (Jones) and Markus (Golden).”Campbell has said he would prefer to stay in Arizona, but understands the business of the NFL and is unsure of what his future holds.center_img Comments   Share   Johnson, the second-year running back, was named to the first team at the “Flex” position.The ultimate flex player, David Johnson was a machine for the Cardinals this season when it came to yards from scrimmage, falling short in his quest to top 100 yards from scrimmage in every game of the season only due to injury in the final week. Johnson recorded over 1,200 rushing yards and notched 16 scores on the ground, but added 80 receptions, 879 receiving yards, and four more trips to pay-dirt as a receiver. The running back debate was fierce, and Johnson was firmly in the mix there, too.Johnsons statistics are well known, as is the fact that he put together one of the best seasons you will ever see from a running back. In fact, had the Cardinals posted a better record, there is a good chance the 2015 third-round pick would have been in the conversation to be the league MVP.While Johnson was great, his head coach believes the running back can be even better next season.“Sky is the limit,” Bruce Arians siad. “I mean, 200-yard games every week. I’m serious. He’s capable.”That may seem like a lofty goal — and perhaps a bit of hyperbole — but Johnson himself said he likes hearing that talk from his coach. Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelolast_img read more

Go back to the enewsletter As Crystal River Cruis

first_imgGo back to the e-newsletterAs Crystal River Cruises prepares to launch the first of its seven luxury river vessels, the fully reimagined Crystal Mozart, the World’s Most Awarded Luxury Cruise Line is simultaneously announcing design plans for the next phase of its four newly built river yachts. The river yachts are set to embark in spring and summer of next year. As with Crystal’s other recent endeavours (including Crystal Yacht Cruises’ Crystal Esprit and Crystal Luxury Air’s Global Express Jet), Crystal River Cruises’ Crystal Ravel, Crystal Bach, Crystal Debussy and Crystal Mahler will not simply join the ranks of competitors, but will set a new standard of luxury river cruising experiences.“Emulation has never been part of our formula for success, rather, we have enjoyed a long reputation for innovating and leading the way in luxury travel experiences,” says Crystal CEO and President, Edie Rodriguez. “Crystal River Cruises river yachts will showcase the most celebrated parts of the Crystal Experience – stylish and elegant design, creative itineraries and experiences ashore, unmatched genuine service – while also creating a brand-new niche in river cruising that will appeal to the world’s most discerning travellers.”The four new river yachts will boast a nearly identical design strategy to Crystal Mozart, with some notable variances due to the difference in the vessels’ size. While Crystal Mozart is the largest river-going ship in Europe (known as the “Queen of Europe’s Rivers”) accommodating 158 guests, the new builds will carry approximately half that number for a more intimate environment. Sailing on the Rhine, Main and Danube Rivers, Crystal Mahler and Crystal Bach are distinguished as “Rhine Class” yachts, at 135 metres in length with 53 suites for 106 guests; while Crystal Debussy and Crystal Ravel will sail on the Seine, Garonne, Dordogne and Gironde Rivers and are considered “Paris Class” yachts, with a length of 110 metres and guest capacity of 78 guests in 39 suites.All four river yachts will offer Crystal guests luxurious amenities that surpass the comforts of home, including Crystal’s acclaimed butler service for every suite – suites that reach up to 70 square metres (Crystal Suite) and feature plush king-sized beds that face toward the Panoramic Balcony-Windows are covered with fine Egyptian cotton linens, plus walk-in closets, full-length mirrors, ETRO robes and slippers, wall-mounted flat-screen HD TVs, and Nespresso machines.Additional enticing features include Crystal’s highly-acclaimed cuisine in multiple eateries: the elegant Waterside Restaurant, namesake Bistro cafés and the exclusive Vintage Room, Cove Bar and Palm Court. Further cementing itself in the river cruise industry, Crystal will offer true open-seating dining, allowing guests to dine where they want, when they want and with whom they want.Public amenities and services include full-service spa and separate fitness centre, equipped with modern machines and cardio equipment as well as free weights – both with dedicated professionals for service and nearly unheard of in the river cruising market. Plus a partial indoor/outdoor pool on the aft of Crystal Bach and Crystal Mahler.In order to give guests the best possible experience, the new river yachts will now offer all-suite accommodations that are located entirely above the waterline, providing spectacular and unobstructed views through the Panoramic Balcony-Windows.Go back to the e-newsletterlast_img read more