Word of the day

19/04/2012

Heimganger – someone who stays at home; a stay at home mother.


Thursday’s quiz

19/04/2012

1. Who said: “Every man can tell how many goats or sheep he possesses, but not how many friends.”?

2. Which station was home to the merino Shrek?

3. It’s mouton  in French, pecora in Italian, oveja in Spanish and hipi in Maori, what is it in English?

4. What is the geological feature a rouche mountinee?

5. How old is a two tooth sheep?


One fall does not a winter make

19/04/2012

People wagering on iPredict are putting their money on a fall in Fonterra payouts for this season and the next one.

Forecasts for Fonterra’s 2011/12 and 2012/13 payouts have fallen following last night’s 10% plunge in prices on the company’s global dairy auction system.

According to the 6000 registered traders on New Zealand’s online predictions market, iPredict, the 2011/12 payout per kilogram of milk solids (before retentions) is now likely to be $674, down $0.07 from the $6.81 forecast when iPredict last reported on Monday.

The 2012/13 payout forecast has been harder hit, and is now just $6.14, down $0.35 or 5.4% from the $6.49 forecast on Monday.

Federated Farmers is also warning of a possible drop in the forecast price for next season:

World wide demand for milk products remains steady despite a 9.9 percent price index fall on the GlobalDairyTrade online market. Federated Farmers agrees with Fonterra this reflects the current abundance of milk being produced around the world.

“Almost ideal growing conditions around most of New Zealand this season has seen a record amount of milk production and a corresponding increase in products on the market platform,” Federated Farmers dairy chairperson Willy Leferink says.

“There is also more milk coming from the United States and Europe at the moment, meaning there is an abundance of milk products going through GlobalDairyTrade.

“This month alone there has been a 10 percent increase in volumes on the platform, so a price drop was not unexpected.

We will have to watch what happens over the next few months, but with Fonterra already having revised down it’s payout by 45 cents to $6.30 per kg of milk solids, New Zealand dairy farmers should begin preparing for a potentially lower milk price forecast for the 2012-13 season.

“However, the price of whole milk powder indicated by GlobalDairyTrade represents just one day on the market.

“This is a volatile market with many factors influencing it. One thing which could have a big effect on global dairy production over coming months is the very strong beef prices at the moment, which could sway production towards the meat rather than the dairy side of the equation.

“New Zealand’s dairy industry is very resilient and used dealing with small downturns while looking to the long term picture, which is very rosy indeed,” Mr Leferink concluded.

One price fall, even a 9.9% one, doesn’t mean we’re in for wintery market conditions, but it does show the need for caution with budgeting for the coming season.

It might also have a moderating influence on price rises for land, wages, supplies and services.

 

 


Chch rebuild gets welcome boost

19/04/2012

The Christchurch rebuild got a welcome boost yesterday with Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee’s announcement of a new business unit inside the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (CERA) to focus on rebuilding the CBD.

“The Christchurch Central Development Unit will provide clear leadership for the rebuild of the city and work in a positive partnership with Christchurch City Council, which remains the consenting authority,” Mr Brownlee said.

The unit will be led by Warwick Isaacs, who is presently CERA’s operations manager responsible for CBD access, building deconstruction, and the Cashel Mall restart. “This is a great day for Canterbury as it’s another tangible milestone in the recovery process,” Mr Brownlee said.

“It marks a shift in focus from demolition to building the new, vibrant, distinctive and green central city the people of Christchurch told their council they wanted.” . . .

. . .

The new unit’s first task will be preparation of a blueprint for the implementation of the Central City Plan inside the next 100 days. The blueprint will give property owners, developers and business sectors a lead on how the city will look and how they can be involved.

“This blueprint will be vital to achieving a coherent roll-out of a number of anchor projects such as public buildings and strategic city blocks, and will provide important guidance to the market.

“It will also identify how to streamline consents and look at what, if any, land amalgamation is required to support anchor projects and developments.

“An example of an important anchor project is the city’s new convention centre. Delivering certainty about that project will begin the process of reviving the city’s hospitality and tourism sector.

“Hotel developments are unlikely to proceed until the location of the convention centre is resolved.

“Reviving the central city’s hospitality and tourism sector will attract other businesses in and encourage service sector, retail and hospitality development.

“The blueprint will deliver the sort of market intelligence the commercial property and business sectors need to invest with confidence. This is all about getting momentum in the rebuild,” Mr Brownlee said.

The news has been welcomed by the Property Council, business leaders and the Insurance Council.

The assurance that consents will be processed within 14 days is especially welcome.

Prominent businessman Bruce Irvine, chairman of Christchurch City Holdings, the investment arm of the Christchurch City Council, said what was needed was an organisation that had more powers than councils did and that was what Cera had.

“It will enable a more effective execution of the plan that the council has come up with. I’m very supportive.”

The unit would consist of up to 25 staff, with some seconded from the council and Environment Canterbury. The team would identify the most important projects to “pave the way forward”.

The unit would also determine how to streamline the consents process with an aim of processing all resource consents within 14 days. It would attract overseas investment, he said. “Private sector capital is very important, because that’s the majority of the money that will be spent inside the central city.”

If those of us outside the city have been thinking that it’s time for action, people in Christchurch must have been feeling even more frustrated.

Yesterday’s announcement is a much-needed sign of progress.

Dare we hope that the determination on how to streamline the consent process might be something  from which other councils could learn?

The Minister’s full speech is here.


Farm sales up, most to locals

19/04/2012

Farm sales increased 109% in the March quarter it doesn’t necessarily signal the start of a boom.

“Sales over the three months to March reflect the strengthening of the rural economy, bolstered by favourable growing conditions, very good levels of production, solid market returns and a positive climate for borrowing,” said Brian Peacocke, rural market spokesperson at REINZ.

All regions, apart from the Hawkes Bay, recorded an increase in sales in the March quarter compared with a year earlier. Canterbury showed the largest increase, up 39 sales, followed by Waikato on 38, while the Hawkes Bay dropped 4 sales.

“Irrespective of the above, a note of caution is clearly emerging as the industry prepares for winter, with the expectation that income levels may moderate next season, and given seasonal variabilities, it is unlikely the combination of current benevolent factors will be repeated for some time to come,” said Peacocke.

Critics of land sales to foreigners argue that they price locals out of the market.

The media release doesn’t mention the nationality of the buyers but there haven’t been many Overseas Investment Office approvals for sales this year so most of the properties must have been bought to locals.

Among those sales would have been ones engineered by one of the major banks which has been carefully and quietly sorting out heavily indebted customers who weren’t going to be able to farm their way out of their problems.

The bank has been working under the radar on purpose, usually selling to neighbours, sometimes doing some much-needed maintenance before looking for buyers.

Had the receivers for the Crafar Farms followed this example, the chances of properties being sold individually and to locals would have been much greater.

 


April 19th in history

19/04/2012

1012 – Martyrdom of Alphege in Greenwich, London.

1529 At the Second Diet of Speyer, a group of rulers and independent cities protested the reinstatement of the Edict of Worrms, beginning the Protestant Reformation.

1587 Francis Drake sank the Spanish fleet in Cádiz harbour.

1713 With no living male heirs, Charles VI, Holy Roman Emperor, issued the Pragmatic Sanction of 1713 to ensure that Habsburg lands and the Austrian throne would be inherited by his daughter, Maria Theresa of Austria (not actually born until 1717).

1770 Captain James Cook sighted Australia.

1770 Marie Antoinette married Louis XVI by Proxy marriage.

1775  American Revolutionary War began at the Battle of Lexington and Concord.

1782 John Adams secured the Dutch Republic’s recognition of the United States as an independent government. The house which he had purchased in The Hague, became the first American embassy.

1809 An Austrian corps was defeated by the forces of the Duchy of Warsaw in the Battle of Raszyn, part of the struggles of the Fifth Coalition.

1809 The Austrian main army was defeated by a First French Empire Corps led by Louis-Nicolas Davout at the Battle of Teugen-Hausen in Bavaria; part of a four day campaign which ended in a French victory.

1810 Venezuela achieved home rule: Vicente Emparan, Governor of the Captaincy General was removed by the people of Caracas and a Junta was installed.

1839 The Treaty of London established Belgium as a kingdom.

1847  New portico at British Museum opened

1855 Visit of Napoleon III to Guildhall, London.

1861 American Civil War: Baltimore riot of 1861, a pro-Secession mob in Baltimore, Maryland, attacked United States Army troops marching through the city.

1892 Charles Duryea claimed to have driven the first automobile in the United States.

1893 The Liberals subdivided the Cheviot Estate.

Liberals 'burst up' Cheviot Estate

1919 Leslie Irvin of the United States made the first successful voluntary free-fall parachute jump using a new kind of self-contained parachute.

1927 Mae West was sentenced to 10 days in jail for obscenity for her play Sex.

1928  The 125th and final fascicle of the Oxford English Dictionary was published.

1935  Dudley Moore, English actor, comedian and composer, was born  (d. 2002) .

1936 First day of the Great Uprising in Palestine.

1937 – Joseph Estrada, actor and 13th President of the Philippines, was born.

1941 Alan Price, English musician (The Animals, The Alan Price Set), was born.

1942 World War II: In Poland, the Majdan-Tatarski ghetto was established, situated between the Lublin Ghetto and a Majdanek subcamp.

1943 World War II: German troops enter the Warsaw ghetto to round up the remaining Jews, beginning the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising.

1943 Eve Graham, Scottish singer (The New Seekers), was born.

1943 – Bicycle Day – Swiss chemist Dr. Albert Hofmann deliberately took LSD for the first time.

1946 Tim Curry, British actor, was born.

1951 – General Douglas MacArthur retired from the military.

1954 – Constituent Assembly of Pakistan decided Urdu and Bengali to be national languages of Pakistan.

1955 The German automaker Volkswagen,  founded Volkswagen of America in Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey.

1956 Actress Grace Kelly married Rainier III of Monaco.

1960 Students in South Korea held a nationwide pro-democracy protest against their president Syngman Rhee, eventually forcing him to resign.

1961 The Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba ended in success for the defenders.

1971  Siaka Stevens became first president of Sierra Leone Republic.

1971 – Vietnam War: Vietnam Veterans Against the War begia a five-day demonstration in Washington, DC.

1971 – Launch of Salyut 1, the first space station.

1975 India’s first satellite Aryabhata was launched.

1984 Advance Australia Fair was proclaimed as Australia’s national anthem, and green and gold as the national colours.

1987 The Simpsons premiered as a short cartoon on The Tracey Ullman Show.

1989  A gun turret explodesd on the USS Iowa, killing 47 sailors.

1993 The 51-day siege of the Branch Davidian building outside Waco, Texas, ended when a fire broke out. Eighty-one people died.

1993 – South Dakota governor George Mickelson and seven others were killed when a state-owned aircraft crashed in Iowa.

1995 Oklahoma City bombing: The Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, was bombed, killing 168.

1997 – The Red River Flood of 1997 overwhelms the city of Grand Forks, ND. Fire breaks out and spreads in downtown Grand Forks, but high water levels hamper efforts to reach the fire, leading to the destruction of 11 buildings.

1999 The German Bundestag returned to Berlin.

2005 Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger elected Pope Benedict XVI on the second day of the Papal conclave.

Sourced from NZ History Online and Wikipedia


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