ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr by. Henry MeierThe incremental but inevitable evolution of banking away from the traditional branch model took another important step yesterday with the announcement that American Express will now be offering its Serve, prepaid, reloadable plastic card at WalMart stores nationwide. This means that people will be able to walk up to cash registers at WalMart and reload cards from which many basic banking services can be performed. They can do all these banking services without ever having to bother going into a credit union and American Express has so far introduced a model with surprisingly low fees compared to prepaid card competitors and many bank accounts.News like this combined with the announcement that Facebook is moving more aggressively into electronic fund transfers demonstrates that traditional retail businesses as well as cutting edge, high tech companies have looked at the traditional financial services model and decided that there is a much better way of doing business. American Express is positioning its existing prepaid card, BlueBird, as the card for the “unhappily banked” and positioning its Serve card as the financial choice of the “unbanked.”What makes AmEx’s announcement all the more important for credit unions is that it is coupling the expansion of its prepaid card network with an advertising campaign directed precisely at the type of people that credit unions have traditionally sought to serve. According to its press release, you will soon be seeing documentary style commercials in which American Express chronicles the travails of “a handful of hopeful Americans as they navigate their way through an antiquated financial system that can inhibit, rather than help people’s ability to access, move and manage money as well as save for the future.” continue reading »
THE LAST month has seen furious activity in Britain as the industry struggles to keep pace with constant change. A ’Rail Summit’ attended by Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott was scheduled for May 25, prompting many parties across the industry to try and demonstrate that they were pulling their weight.Among the more significant developments was an announcement by rolling stock leasing company Angel Trains on May 24 that it had placed a £90m order with Siemens for 25 four-car Desiro trainsets, with options for 500 cars. At this stage there is no lessee in place, but the units are destined to replace trains formed of MkI rolling stock which cannot legally remain in service after December 31 2002 unless fitted with devices to limit one underframe riding over another.Also of note is a ruling by the Shadow Strategic Rail Authority to put proposals for a high speed line to northern Britain (RG 4.00 p217) on a back burner while more studies are carried out. Selection of a preferred bidder for the InterCity East Coast franchise on the existing route is expected to be completed ’by July’.The SSRA’s refranchising process is forging ahead, and there were some surprise bidders for the second batch of three replacement franchises announced on April 19. South West Trains attracted interest from Netherlands Railways (which poses some interesting questions about subsidised national railways running ’private sector’ services in other countries), as well as Group 4, which specialises in running prisons under contract. Other bidders were the incumbent Stagecoach, Connex, GNER Holdings and FirstGroup. For the newly-drawn Trans-Pennine Express franchise budding franchisees included Arriva, FirstGroup, Virgin, VIA GTI, Connex, GNER, Serco and Group 4. National Express and Group 4 submitted bids for the Central Trains franchise.May 11 saw the Confederation of British Industry, the Freight Transport Association and the Rail Freight Group join train operators English Welsh & Scottish Railway, Freightliner and GB Railways in the launch of a campaign to promote investment in the rail freight industry. EWS published its own wish-list of projects and enhancements, which it estimates would cost £5bn. The company says this ’pales into insignificance’ compared to ’social and environmental benefits of existing volumes of freight by rail, estimated at £750m per annum or £7·5bn over 10 years.’ Around £2·7bn would be needed for capacity enhancement, £865m for loading gauge enhancement, £526m for running longer trains, nearly £300m for heavier axleloads, and £228m would be spent on electrification.Meanwhile, Railtrack has begun installing the Train Protection & Warning System at 11000 ’key signals’ across the network at a cost of £330m. For more details read Rail Business Intelligence. Call +44 1444 475 630 to subscribe.
GET THE BEST OF THE JAPAN TIMES Veteran Takehiro Shimada will take on champion Paulus Moses of Namibia in a bid to wrest away his WBA lightweight belt later this month, Shimada’s gym said Friday.The 37-year-old Shimada will be bidding to become the oldest Japanese world champion when he fights Moses in the Namibian capital of Windhoek on July 25. “I want to deliver a performance that will move and encourage my fans,” said 13th-ranked Shimada.Shimada failed in his first shot at a world crown in June last year when he lost by technical knockout to Edwin Valero in a WBA super featherweight title fight. IN FIVE EASY PIECES WITH TAKE 5
The Bossier Bearkats had defending Class 2A state champion Madison Prep on the ropes Saturday night at Bossier.Bossier led 37-26 after three quarters. But Madison Prep rallied in the fourth for a 48-46 victory.The Bearkats dropped to 9-6. Four of their losses have been by two points.Madison Prep, ranked No. 4 in the nation by MaxPreps, raised its record to 9-2.Jacoby Decker and Dante Bell led Bossier with 12 points each. Kaalas Roots added 11. Kobe Julien, a Louisiana-Lafayette commitment, paced Madison Prep with 23.LSU head coach Will Wade was among those in attendance.— Russell Hedges, [email protected] Expat InsuranceExpat Living in Hong Kong without Health Insurance?Top Expat Insurance|SponsoredSponsoredUndoNews gadgetThis watch takes the whole country by storm! it’s price? Ridiculous!News gadget|SponsoredSponsoredUndoTheTopFiveVPNThe Secret Netflix Doesn’t Want You To Know To Unblock RestrictionsTheTopFiveVPN|SponsoredSponsoredUndoPerfect-Dating.comAre You Ready to Meet Cool Guys in Tung Chung?Perfect-Dating.com|SponsoredSponsoredUndoTheTopFiveVPNThe Trick Netflix Doesn’t Want You To Know To Unlock RestrictionsTheTopFiveVPN|SponsoredSponsoredUndoAspireAbove.comRemember Abby from NCIS? Take A Deep Breath Before You See How She Looks NowAspireAbove.com|SponsoredSponsoredUndo
Session ID: 2020-09-18:ddf636b9996247b86866a6d2 Player ID: videojs-brightcove-player-988251-3841223141001 OK Close Modal DialogCaption Settings DialogBeginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsDefaultsDoneClose Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.“Everybody started off on the same playing level. He gave everybody the same opportunity,” said senior defensive tackle Mike Douglas, who deflected a pass to fellow senior Bud Dupree for the game-winning touchdown against South Carolina two weeks ago. “There’s no separation between whoever he’s brought in and us.”And after suffering through so much losing before this staff’s arrival, the older players appreciate what’s happening now more than anyone. They remember what it felt like to lose all eight conference games by an average of 25 points in 2012 and can hardly believe they’re currently tied for first place in the SEC East.“(Stoops) came upon a program that was kind of in — I don’t want to say in ruin, but not really as good as where me, as a fan, and this state wanted it to be,” said third-year sophomore quarterback Patrick Towles, one of the holdovers. “But he’s done — obviously, the proof’s in the pudding — a phenomenal job of getting this program back on track.”While freshmen and sophomores and junior-college transfers have made big splashes, veterans have played a significant role in the resurgence, too. Towles ranks fourth in the SEC in total offense, while four of the team’s top four tacklers — and three of its four starting offensive linemen — were here when Stoops arrived.New guys do outnumber them now, but still 20 of the 44 players in this week’s two-deep are players who signed with previous coach Joker Phillips. Many of them were unsure of what was in store for them under a new staff.“I’m not even going to lie, I was extremely nervous,” senior fullback D.J. Warren said. “But when they came here they told me straight up, ‘You’re going to have a chance.’ From that point on, I’ve just been working so hard, trying to get better every day.”RELATED: Kentucky’s J.D. Harmon to sit 1st half for blockRELATED: Patrick Towles more than game manager for UKHe has. The Cats have. Kentucky travels to LSU this weekend needing just one more win to be eligible for a bowl game for the first time since 2010.“I tell myself all the time I wish I was a freshman right now,” Warren said. “Honestly, it’s an incredible feeling to be a part of something like this. It sucks that it’s my senior year. I kind of wish I could stick around a little bit longer.”Not every senior can say that after experiencing a coaching change halfway through his career. Most of them on this team, though, share Warren’s opinion of Stoops.“He stands in front of this group and says, ‘There is no my guys. You’re all Kentucky Wildcats. You’re my guys. Whether I recruited you or I didn’t recruit you, you’re my guys,’ ” offensive coordinator Neal Brown said. “He’s sincere. I think that probably doesn’t get talked about enough, but he’s a really sincere individual, and the kids understand.“He’s not one that is trying to sell anything. He’s sincere, and when he says, ‘You’re my guy,’ that’s what he means.”Kyle Tucker can be reached at (502) 582-4361. Follow him on Twitter @KyleTucker_CJ. LEXINGTON, Ky. – The simple way to explain the University of Kentucky football team’s dramatic turnaround is that it’s all about the new guys. Second-year coach Mark Stoops has recruited better than at any point in the program’s recent history and the players he’s brought in are making an instant impact.Ten of the Wildcats’ top 11 receivers this season are Stoops recruits. Each of the top four rushers on this surprise 5-1 team are guys the new coach and his staff landed since December of 2012. Because of that, Stoops has fielded plenty of questions about his guys.He bristles at the implication.“They’re all my guys. I care about all of them,” Stoops said. “I think the tone is set by our older guys. I don’t think they get enough credit for what they’re doing to change the culture in our locker room. They’ve really been good, and they’ve been a pleasure to coach.”Kentucky’s veteran players say that isn’t just lip service, that Stoops has gone out of his way to make them feel as much a part of this transformation as the new blood. That was his message from the very first meeting with his team some 22 months ago.Play VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration Time 0:00Loaded: 0%0:00Progress: 0%0:00 Progress: 0%Stream TypeLIVERemaining Time -0:00 Playback Rate1ChaptersChaptersdescriptions off, selectedDescriptionssubtitles off, selectedSubtitlescaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedCaptionsAudio TrackFullscreenThis is a modal window. The Video Cloud video was not found. Error Code: VIDEO_CLOUD_ERR_VIDEO_NOT_FOUND
0Shares0000Barcelona’s Argentine soccer player Lionel Messi (C) arrives to court with his father Jorge Horacio Messi (3rd R) to stand trial for tax fraud in Barcelona, Spain, June 2, 2016. REUTERS/Albert Gea.BARCELONA, Spain, June 2 – Argentina and Barcelona football star Lionel Messi, one of the world’s highest-paid athletes, arrived Thursday at a Barcelona court to take the stand for the first time at his tax fraud trial in Spain.The 28-year-old, who wore a black suit and tie, was cheered and jeered as he emerged from a van accompanied by his father Jorge Horacio Messi. The two are accused of using a chain of fake companies in Belize and Uruguay to avoid paying taxes on 4.16 million euros ($4.6 million) of Messi’s income earned through the sale of his image rights from 2007-09.Dozens of photographers and onlookers crowded behind metal barriers and a line of police that guarded the entrance of the court to catch a glimpse of the five-time Ballon d’Or winner.Most applauded but some jeered and criticised the player.“If he cheated, he has to be sentenced no matter how much of an idol and Ballon d’Or winner he is. These are four million euros less to pay for hospitals, schools, firefighters, roads,” Jose Seco de Herrero, 25, told AFP.“Thief!,” yelled out one onlooker. “Go play in Panama,” cried out another.The tax fraud trial comes at a time of simmering voter anger over steep government cuts to health and social spending, as the government struggles to bring Spain’s public deficit down.Messi and his father will be questioned on Thursday on the third day of the trial. It is expected to wrap up on Friday.After his court appearance in Barcelona, Messi will jet off to the United States where Argentina take on Copa America defending champions Chile in their first game of the three-week tournament in California on Monday.The high-profile case kicked off on Tuesday without Messi, as he was recovering in his hometown of Rosario in Argentina from a lower back injury he suffered during a friendly match against Honduras last week.Under Spanish law, a defendant is not obliged to attend the full trial if prosecutors seek a jail sentence of less than two years — as is the case here.– Voluntary payment –Messi’s former tax advisors came out in support of the football star when they took the stand on Wednesday, saying the player never handled his own wealth management.He “didn’t take any decisions and I didn’t see anyone consulting him for anything”, Angel Juarez, one of the partners at law firm Juarez Veciana which managed Messi’s tax affairs at the time, told the court.Inigo de Loyola Juarez, another partner and Juarez’s brother, added: “I don’t know if any of my correspondence has been included in the case, but they will see that Lionel Messi does not appear in any of it.”The Barcelona forward and his defence team have long argued that Messi’s father handled the footballer’s finances without reporting to him, and the striker was not aware of any wrongdoing.Both Messi and his father, who has managed his son’s affairs since he was a child, have been charged with three counts of tax fraud.Spanish prosecutors are seeking a jail sentence of 22-and-a-half months for them if they are found guilty, plus fines equivalent to the amount that was allegedly defrauded.But any such sentence would likely be suspended as is common in Spain for first offences carrying a sentence of less than two years.Messi and his father made a voluntary payment of 5.0 million euros ($5.6 million)– equal to the amount of the alleged unpaid taxes plus interest — in August 2013 after being formally investigated, which is expected to mitigate any sentence if they are found guilty.Messi has scored 314 goals in 348 appearances for Barcelona. He boasts eight La Liga titles and is a four-times winner of the Champions League and Copa del Rey with the club.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)
LATEST Gerrard launches furious touchline outburst as horror tackle on Barisic sparks chaos REPLY BEST OF The average first-team salaries at every Premier League club in 2019 LATEST FOOTBALL NEWS Liverpool news live: Klopp reveals when Minamino will play and issues injury update latest PAYBACK revealed Boxing Day fixtures: All nine Premier League games live on talkSPORT scrap The 18-year-old, who scored on his first senior start in Chelsea’s midweek Europa League win over PAOK, has made just three appearances this season.The Guardian claims Hudson-Odoi wants assurances over his game-time before committing his long-term future to Stamford Bridge.He is attracting interest from clubs in Spain and Germany after Blues boss Maurizio Sarri suggested he wasn’t ready for top-flight football earlier this week.The Italian coach said: “I don’t know if he is able for the Premier League at 18, especially in a big team.“If he’s already ready now to make a difference in the team like Chelsea, he would be the best player in Europe in two years.” Callum Hudson-Odoi is highly-rated by Chelsea chiefs Arsenal transfer news LIVE: Ndidi bid, targets named, Ozil is ‘skiving little git’ Every time Ally McCoist lost it on air in 2019, including funny XI reactions SORRY gameday cracker Top nine Premier League free transfers of the decade 1 RANKED Callum Hudson-Odoi has told Chelsea to “play me or sell me” as he stalls over a new contract.The Blues offered Hudson-Odoi a new five-year deal in the summer, which he is yet to sign amid concerns over his playing time. Berahino hits back at b******t Johnson criticism – ‘I was in a dark place at Stoke’ Sky Sports presenter apologises for remarks made during Neville’s racism discussion ‘I’ll get him’ – Robertson further endears himself to fans with revenge vow to Mane Hudson-Odoi could be the latest young English talent to move abroad, following in the footsteps of fellow 18-year-olds Jadon Sancho and Reiss Nelson.Sancho’s impressive form for Borussia Dortmund resulted in a first senior England cap in October, while Nelson has been tipped for a Three Lions call-up after netting six goals for Hoffenheim so far this season.Hudson-Odoi has 18 months left on his Chelsea deal.