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  • A year in Nigeria: Cross River State—The People’s Paradise | BizNews
    that in coming to Nigeria I was signing up for an adventure and the past month has certainly not disappointed After having been required to evacuate from Kaduna to Abuja because of the unpredictable terrorist activities of Boko Haram in some of the northern states including Kaduna I spent a few days traveling through Oshogbo and Illorin in the southwest of the country as VSO Nigeria decided what to do with all the volunteers from Kano Kaduna and Jigawa states It was very sad to unexpectedly leave Kaduna and Hope for the Village Child Foundation earlier than planned but I was fortunate that a new work placement was found in Cross River State and I was redeployed within a couple of weeks My new assignment is working with the Mary Slessor Foundation helping to build the capacity of the local staff who run a vocational training center for fashion carpentry and mechanical welding a small scale agricultural processing plant for oil palm and cassava and a health clinic The organization is based in a rural village called Akpap Okoyong not too far from the rainforest and the Cameroonian border Catching rainwater in front of my new home in beautiful Akpap Okoyong Cross River State No running water here The main focus of my assignment here is putting administrative processes in place as well as establishing local management and supporting the staff in developing income generating activities to help with the long term sustainability of the organization I ve also been supporting another VSO volunteer from India who is working at an organization called Concern Universal in Calabar conducting a market assessment on palm oil This involved interviewing different stakeholders in the palm oil value chain farmers processors etc in addition to conducting secondary research and compiling organizing and editing information for the report My neighbors Victor left and Moses helping me plant my first ever garden I ve definitely been able to use my experience working in Nigeria thus far it s been almost eight months now to adapt more quickly to my new position both culturally and professionally I m excited by the apparent potential to have a positive impact on the local community through my work with the Mary Slessor Foundation as well as the opportunity to live and work in a rural setting I have developed an interest in agriculture since moving to Nigeria and getting to visit local farms to learn from the farmers and purchasing their fruits is quite fun I was even inspired to plant my first ever garden of lemongrass and pineapple I m enjoying this new work and life experience thus far and hope to serve the community of Akpap Okoyong well for the next few months Christine M Adolf BBA 07 is spending a year in Nigeria as a CUSO International volunteer exploring how she can use her background in business to empower people living in poverty around the world Her interests include yoga reading dancing social entrepreneurship and exploring new

    Original URL path: http://biznews.fiu.edu/2012/03/a-year-in-nigeria-cross-river-state-the-peoples-paradise/ (2016-02-17)
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  • Developer Chad Moss shares insights into new real estate technology at Hollo School Developers Luncheon. | BizNews
    it takes to make a project a reality The idea is to give students a better understanding of all the components and all the members of the village that are involved in a large scale real estate development said faculty member and attorney Suzanne Hollander who noted that speakers also offer valuable insights into the successes and challenges that companies face Students and attendees networking before the 2015 Developer Luncheon gets underway Family owned and operated Moss Associates signature projects include the Miami Marlins ballpark which opened in 2012 and the groundbreaking 620 bed Parkview Residence at his FIU opened in August 2013 That year the company donated 250 000 to FIU to build the Moss and Associates Built Environment Informatics Laboratory BEIL a high technology facility that will help students learn from real world data and case studies using virtual simulations without having to make trips into the field Moss who co founded the company in 2004 has served as assistant field engineer project engineer project manager and account manager He urged students to explore the latest technology in the industry The 2015 fall Developer Luncheon highlights the 10th anniversary of the College of Business Master of Science in International Real Estate Sharing the next generation of construction tools New software and apps allow construction companies to handle the increasing complexity of commercial projects and boost productivity These include programs for real time data collection and energy modeling At the luncheon Moss shared information about Building Information Modeling BIM which provides 3 D graphics and allows for the automatic generation of drawings and reports design analysis schedule simulation and facilities management Among the benefits Moss noted are more efficient communication between the project teams the ability to make better informed decisions increased efficiency and reduced costs The teams are able to identify glitches and deal with challenges that we are able to solve digitally Moss added We just finished a 48 million student housing project at FIU and used BIM to resolve thousands of conflicts before we got in the field saving the school about 1 5 million Chad Moss executive vice president of Moss Associates speaks to FIU students and attendees at the 2015 Developer Luncheon Yet technology isn t the only key to construction success As construction activity in South Florida continues to flourish Moss highlighted the importance of strong business relationships drivers of new projects and expanded initiatives You have to sit down and talk he added It s no longer a formal structured process Seeing construction from a different perspective Pierre Apollon a professional engineer and real estate investor currently enrolled in FIU s Master of Science in International Real Estate program described Moss presentation as invaluable He provided a realistic view of the current real estate climate gauged by construction activities and future global opportunities especially in the sustainability arena said Apollon who will graduate in December 2015 He introduced many views that at times are overlooked when making fundamental real estate or development

    Original URL path: http://biznews.fiu.edu/2015/10/developer-chad-moss-shares-insights-into-new-real-estate-technology-at-hollo-school-developers-luncheon/ (2016-02-17)
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  • Chinese Lessons: HCMBA trip brings an international perspective to the study of healthcare. | BizNews
    navigated And both offer lavish attention to those with means while others struggle to get basic care Weismann and students in the Healthcare MBA program saw these challenges first hand when they spent 10 days this summer in Beijing and Guangzhou The group of 30 visited public and private hospitals clinics a pharmaceutical company a non profit few and far between in China as well as a PricewaterhouseCoopers office where they discussed health care financing Completion of the study abroad program which includes a rigorous academic component and a health policy analysis earns the Advanced Certificate in Global Healthcare Administration The whole purpose of the trip was to consider a global health care system and compare the models in China to other global systems ours France Germany Japan and others Weismann said adding that in order for the U S health care system to meet today s challenges it s necessary to see how other countries approach their issues The main theory is that we can only see ourselves through the mirror of the world System blends tradition with modern practice One striking difference was how traditional Chinese medicine more than 2 000 years old is integrated into health care And one enlightening experience was visiting a non profit dedicated to helping the blind It was started by Xiaojie Zheng a former high level scientist China hasn t many such charities and there are few accommodations for the disabled The group found her and her work inspirational said Weismann Even in such a vast country the lesson was that one person can make a difference Blind NGO in China Along on the trip was Vanessa Vega who will graduate from the FIU program in December Vega who works at Baptist Health South Florida s Founder s Society said the trip was life changing Vega said that Xiaojie Zheng left an indelible impression She took all of her intelligence to make a meaningful difference in the world while still being independent and efficient After witnessing the sheer volume of people public hospitals deal with each patient often allotted about three minutes per visit Vega returned home thinking about how crucial it is to keep the human factor in health care That means she said making health care more efficient while giving patients quality attention and dedication It was the first trip to China for Weismann who became Academic Director of the Healthcare MBA in February 2015 and has revamped the curriculum including a 120 hour residency program that now incorporates Lean Six Sigma yellow belt and green belt certification Lean Six Sigma centers on efficiencies in supply chain quality assurance business risk and other management processes The program also strengthened its intensive writing course and offers a series of pre class boot camps on topics including accounting team building health care innovation and health care analytics Weismann is bringing the same kind of rigor to the study abroad trips What I wanted to do was create an intense academic experience that

    Original URL path: http://biznews.fiu.edu/2015/10/chinese-lessons-hcmba-trip-brings-an-international-perspective-to-the-study-of-healthcare/ (2016-02-17)
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  • InTAXication | BizNews
    be saving billions in tax payments So who gets the short end of the needle stick The U S government does How is this happening Corporate inversions A corporate inversion is when a company relocates its legal domicile to a domicile of lower taxes usually maintaining its material operations in the original high tax country of origin Essentially tax inversions create a legal loophole for companies looking to avoid high taxes Specifically because the U S tax code requires corporations to pay income taxes for foreign subsidiaries When an American company like Pfizer has large operations abroad then this acts as a huge incentive for them to re domicile themselves as a foreign company Now let s talk size This 179 1 billion dollar deal could not only be the largest takeover this year it could also be one of the largest inversions of all time Purchasing Allergan would allow Pfizer to exit the U S s 35 corporate tax rate and enter the sweet 12 5 Irish tax rate Pfizer is seeing dollar signs and hearing cha ching According to Bloomberg Ireland not only offers low tax rates but it also makes it relatively easy to move profits into zero tax locations like the Caymans and Bermuda Thanks to this American companies with large foreign Irish subsidiaries pay taxes in the low single digits on those units profits In addition Ireland is in the works to set a 6 25 rate on profits made from patent innovations but who uses patents Yup you guessed right again large cap pharmaceutical companies like Pfizer Back to politics This debacle will play a big role come the 2016 presidential race Bloomberg reports that on the republican side Trump has said that U S companies don t have the loyalty to the U S that they used to have On the campaign trail he has vowed to lower tax rates to encourage companies to keep their legal addresses here On the democratic side Hillary Clinton believes that our entire economy benefits when companies invest for the long term not when they undercut competition by consolidating markets or juice profits by gaming the tax code Can someone say defense Let s take it back to last fall semester In September 2014 the U S Treasury issued a proposal as an attempt to stop inversions That notice empowered the government to prevent corporations from borrowing against their cash abroad as a method to finance inversions Bloomberg news teaches us that the proposal also tightened the calculations for when a deal triggers anti inversion restriction in the tax code and changed how passive assets would be counted in those tallies It also limited other corporate actions companies undertake to shrink themselves One being paying extraordinary dividends before a big deal so they can escape the arithmetic tests in the anti inversion law There is no question about it with 10 of S P 500 s companies opting out of paying U S taxes this is a

    Original URL path: http://biznews.fiu.edu/2015/11/intaxication/ (2016-02-17)
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  • Are you in for a December surprise? | BizNews
    that the job report is only a snapshot of the economy Let s look at additional data Unemployment rate BULLSEYE The jobless rate decreased from 5 1 percent in September to 5 0 percent in October marking the lowest level since April 2008 This is the magical number that the FED has waited for as this is considered full employment in the U S We can see that the labor force expanded and employers created more positions Another unemployment measure is when part time workers who may not be able to find full time jobs are also considered to be unemployed However even this data has decreased from 10 percent in September to 9 8 percent in October Compared to a year ago these numbers were at 11 1 percent Clear evidence of improvement Average hourly earnings The long awaited increase in worker s pay might finally be here The average hourly wage paid to American workers rose 0 4 percent in October and showed the strongest 12 month gain since mid 2009 This data was particularly impressive as the month of September did not indicate any increase in average hourly earnings In October the typical worker earned 25 20 an hour This is 9 cents more from the previous month From October 2014 to October 2015 hourly wages rose 2 5 percent the best year over year gain since the end of the recession in June 2009 Is this enough evidence I guess we still have to wait another four weeks until the Federal Open Market Committee gathers for its last meeting of the year on Dec 15 and 16 Now let s call some attention to Oil Prices Across the board we could see that the energy sector reached a peak on Tuesday Nov 3 As a result stocks got a boost from higher oil prices causing people to think optimistically about the recovery of oil prices But to everyone s disappointment this euphoria did not last long Chevron shares rose to 98 14 on Tuesday the highest in months but plummeted on Friday to 92 39 U S WTI Crude Oil prices was as high as 48 36 the same day but also closed off the week with a disappointing 44 71 What has happened in China over the past week It is no secret that China s economy has had us worried for a while The latest news disclosed that China s president Xi Jinping expects that the economy will continue to slow down but at the same time he points out that Beijing could be fine with a growth rate as low as 6 5 percent as this is enough to ensure people s average income and doubling the size of China s economy from 2010 to 2020 To improve the world s second largest economy a new plan will be implemented that calls for increasing consumer spending The plan also suggests to gradually raise the retirement age so that more people stay in the

    Original URL path: http://biznews.fiu.edu/2015/11/are-you-in-for-a-december-surprise/ (2016-02-17)
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  • Fed Up!…on a Thursday | BizNews
    times since November could these stimulus measures create a ripple effect and pose future threats for the country Sound familiar Think 2008 That brings us back to the U S On Wednesday the Fed held a meeting to talk about when they plan to raise interest rates They announced that they will leave short term interest rates near zero meaning that December is the Fed s last chance to raise rates in 2015 The keyword here is uncertainty The economy showed signs of improvement earlier this year with strong job growth and falling unemployment rates but inflation has not hit the expected target rate of 2 and China s situation is also raising a lot of eyebrows British eyebrows that is the Bank of England is also delaying their decision to tighten up Last but not least the European central bank and the Bank of Japan have begun talks of further stimulus Okay so everyone is drinking Janet Yellen s Kool Aid Not quite to conclude talks about the Fed we will explore the current strategy that the global central banks seem to be putting in place currency devaluation Let s illustrate this as an economy experiences a shock currency markets price in a looser stance of future monetary policy Meaning the exchange rate of that particular currency goes down this lower rate helps the domestic economy recover by increasing demand for exports and encouraging consumers to switch from imported goods which will seemingly be more expensive to those that are produced domestically A good example of this is China and Colombia 1 US dollar can get you 3 400 Pesos 1 US dollar can get you 6 35 Yuans An American good like an IPhone 6 that costs about 650 to us would cost 2 210 650 3 4 Pesos and 4 127 Yuans 650 6 35 English please When the US dollar gets stronger the ability for the rest of the world to buy those dollar assets decrease That lack of pricing power for consumers and individuals to buy non domestic goods forces them to boost the demand in their own economy If the shock is suffered by a single economy the fluctuation in the exchange rate depicts that a portion of the domestic demand shortfall is shared widely across that country s trading partners This is a risk management strategy revealing that while currency devaluation in one country is likely to deliver growth advantage over another it does not serve its purpose when the shock to the economy is of GLOBAL scale So this strategy has naturally brought a lot of controversy because of the foreign exchange volatility What s really happening then These institutions are trying to increase global demand by bringing future spending forward in each of their countries economies Now how does this relate to interest rates Given that global interest rates are at all time lows they reflect the low cost of central bank money as policy rates have decreased and the importance

    Original URL path: http://biznews.fiu.edu/2015/10/fed-up-on-a-thursday/ (2016-02-17)
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  • Weekly Market Wrap Up, October 19 – 23 | BizNews
    Asia to the Eurozone there has been a major shakeup in the markets Weeks after Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton spoke out about overpriced prescription drugs the healthcare sector has still not recovered from its steep drop in stock prices The healthcare sector and most predominantly the biotechnology sub sector have been on a losing streak and the worst performers of the S P 500 last week Oct 19 23 On the other side of the spectrum technology stocks have increased by 2 8 and caused the S P 500 to rise by 0 9 and overall by 0 6 for the year The best performing technology company has been Microsoft whose shares rose 11 61 percent to 53 61 their highest in 15 years Alphabet Google s new holding company advanced by 10 5 percent to 752 50 while Amazon raised to 619 45 Apple had a gain of 2 6 percent that pushed their stock price to 118 47 Social media company Facebook rose 2 percent and surpassed the 100 mark for the first time while Twitter was up 3 9 percent lifting up their stock price to 30 27 Overall all three major U S indexes rose to more than two month highs on Friday due to the strong performance of the healthcare sector the uncertainties in the Eurozone and China s decision on cutting banks reserve requirement rates The state of China s economy continues to keep people worried First commodity prices declined over the past year due to a drop in demand causing an economic slowdown in China Then China unexpectedly devalued its tightly controlled currency the yuan in an effort to make their products less expensive in global markets The anticipated result being to increase export and boost production Now the country s central bank decided to decrease interest rates and lower their banks reserve requirement ratios by a half percentage As previous actions have not been as successful as anticipated changes in the banks requirements are aimed at lowering corporate financing costs and moving liquidity into the economy Looking at the state of Europe it seems as though the quantitative easing plan implemented in 2014 has not met the twelve month economic growth expectations in the region Last Thursday Oct 22 European Central Bank President Mario Draghi dropped hints at a possible expansion of a stimulus program The reason for taking on more bond buying actions is to stimulate private sector spending and investments which should further boost inflation and overall growth As a result from his speech the euro sank against the dollar while stocks and bonds in the Eurozone surged Article submitted by Natalie von Cieminski of the Capital Markets Lab To learn more about the Capital Markets Lab please visit their web site http business fiu edu capital markets lab View all articles by Capital Markets Lab Sharing Twitter 0 Facebook 19 Google 0 Linkedin 55 Email this article Print this article Authors FIU Business Tags Capital Markets Lab

    Original URL path: http://biznews.fiu.edu/2015/10/weekly-market-wrap-up-october-19-23/ (2016-02-17)
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  • Weekly Market Wrap Up, April 1, 2015 | BizNews
    Friday is because they are looking at it as an indicator of the US Economy With a strong report this Friday this may lead the fed to think that the economy can survive an interest rate increase as early as this summer US Government Bonds rose on Tuesday to top off the 5 th quarterly gain in a row this has been the longest time in a row that government bonds have rose since 2005 The bond market has continued to attract investors that are uncertain about uneven global growth and uneven inflation growth in the QE participating countries The uncertainty of US Economic growth and uncertainty of interest hikes have allowed for accommodative monetary policy which has kept bond prices attractive Another reason why investors have been piling into bonds is because the US treasury bonds offer higher yields specifically because foreign investors are convinced that the low yields are here to stay This has dumbfounded most investors because they believed that bonds would stay high throughout the year as the US economic data strengthened On the contrary low yields leaves the possibility open for less income simply because bondholders are more vulnerable to losses if yields strike higher because the decline in prices would outpace their subsequent interest payments Looking at the M A market deal making within health care companies has officially set the pace for 2015 Exploring takeovers like the 21 Billion Abbvie agreement to take over Pharmacyclics According to deal logic merger activity in the health care sector alone has already rose over 108 yoy and has made 126 4 billion in the first quarter alone Deal flow in the health care has increased dramatically since the March 25 th non health care deal announcement and the purchase of Kraft Foods Group by 3G capital and Berkshire Hathaway Bloomberg Economic Events Calendar Wednesday U S manufacturing probably expanded in March at close to the weakest pace in a year according to a Bloomberg survey as American factories contended with slower overseas markets 10 00 EDT ECONOMY Wards total vehicle sales March ADP U S employment March Brazil industrial production Feb South Korea consumer prices March Japan Tankan first quarter South Korea trade March South Africa manufacturing PMI March South Africa consumer confidence first quarter HSBC Turkey Manufacturing PMI March U K manufacturing PMI March euro area manufacturing PMI March Thursday Chair Janet Yellen gives opening remarks at a Federal Reserve conference on economic mobility 8 40 EDT U K Prime Minister David Cameron takes part in the only full scale party leaders debate on television before the May 7 general election Seven party chiefs answer questions starting at 15 00 EDT The ECB publishes a summary of its March 5 monetary policy meeting 7 30 EDT ECONOMY U S factory orders Feb U S trade balance Feb U S initial jobless claims weekly Bloomberg U S consumer comfort weekly Challenger U S job cuts March South Korea current account Feb Japan monetary base March Japan

    Original URL path: http://biznews.fiu.edu/2015/04/weekly-market-wrap-up-april-1-2015/ (2016-02-17)
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