Saturday, February 28, 2009

BVI Among Top Investors According to Chinese FDI Statistics in 2008

The Ministry of Commerce of China said that the growth of foreign direct investment (FDI) into the Chinese economy fell for the third month of 2009. For the whole year 2008, FDI however grew 23.58 percent and made $92.4 billion (compared to 13.59 percent to $74.8 billion of actually used FDI in 2007), due to the intense growth in the first three quarters of the year.

According to the data reported by the Ministry of Commerce, the major source of FDI for China in year 2008 was Hong Kong, which provided the country with $41 billion for a 48 percent annual increase. The second big FDI source was British Virgin Islands, which invested $15.95 billion. However, the percentage of funds invested by the BVI is just 3.62 - that is less than in 2007, reflecting the general trend.

The level of foreign direct investments from Japan rose 1.76 percent and made $3.65 billion in 2008, followed by South Korea with $3.14 billion (14.76 percent), and the US with $2.94 billion – the rise of 12.54 percent.

The industries which received most of all FDI were banking, insurance and securities, which drew $38.1 billion, or 24.23 percent more than in 2007. Actually, in the past decade China has been one of the biggest FDI recipients, but some experts guess that the global financial crisis could change this trend. For example, Mei Xinyu, a senior researcher with the Ministry of Commerce, said he was not optimistic about this year FDI level. Some experts even say that FDI could fall by 5-10 percent in the first half of the year, but positive turn is also expected – in the second half of 2008.
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Friday, February 27, 2009

27 février, "beau" lever de soleil au dessus de la vallée du Lot

images sans paroles
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Berkshire, Buffett bear brunt of bear market

Berkshire Hathaway and its chairman, Warren Buffett, are certainly bearing the brunt of this bear market in shares.

Last week, Bloomberg reported that Berkshire Hathaway shares had fallen to a five-year low on concern about possible losses and writedowns from "bets the billionaire chairman has taken on world stock markets."

Berkshire won't have to pay out on the contracts until "at least" 2019, but falling stock market prices and increased volatility in the interim require the company to take quarterly writedowns on those positions.

Today, Bloomberg reports that writedowns from those derivative bets, along with losses in the company's stock portfolio, may cause Berkshire to report its worst results ever, according to the gauge most touted by Buffett: the company's book value per share.

"Berkshire Hathaway Inc. may report its worst results since Warren Buffett took over in 1965, based on a measure the billionaire chairman cites on the first page of his firm’s annual letter to shareholders.

Losses in Berkshire’s stock portfolio and writedowns on derivative bets tied to equity markets may have caused book value per share, a measure of assets minus liabilities, to fall by 8.5 percent, according to Gary Ransom, an analyst with Fox- Pitt Kelton Cochran Caronia Waller. That ratio declined only once before on Buffett’s watch, falling 6.2 percent in 2001.

Berkshire suffered as the benchmark Standard & Poor’s 500 Index turned in its worst year since 1937. The expected writedown on derivatives may reflect both that decline and the increasing volatility of equity markets, though the $35.5 billion in derivative contracts don’t require Omaha, Nebraska- based Berkshire to pay out until at least 2019, if at all..."

The article goes on to explain the importance that this book value per share measure has to Berkshire shareholders:

"...If Buffett’s 2008 report, expected tomorrow, follows the template from past years, the first sentence of the letter to shareholders will disclose the change in book value. In his “owner’s manual” for Berkshire shareholders, Buffett says he considers the figure to be an objective substitute for the best, albeit subjective, measure of a firm’s success: a metric he calls intrinsic value."

Read on for more on Berkshire and the importance of this intrinsic value measurement.

You can also check out the links below to find the upcoming (8 a.m. Saturday) Berkshire Hathaway annual report, and a 2008 discussion with investor Warren Buffett.

Related items and posts:

1. Berkshire Hathaway annual & interim reports - Berkshire Hathaway.

2. Buffett watchers await annual report - Daily Finance.

3. Lessons from Warren Buffett - Finance Trends Matter. Any source

"El Anticiclón se marcha de fin de semana"

Tras numerosos días de monotonía meteorológica, por fin este fin de semana el tiempo va a cambiar. Los mencionados cambios van a estar protagonizados por precipitaciones de intensidad débil y por una moderada bajada de temperaturas.
Véase la imagen del Satélite esta tarde.

Como pueden ver en la imagen superior, empiezan a llegar nubes medias y altas a la Península Ibérica, avanzando de Sur a Norte. Estas nubes no van a tener consecuencias mayores durante la jornada de hoy, tan sólo van a cubrir los cielos. Todo esto se debe a que el anticiclón que ha estado estancado durante días y días al Norte del Mar Cantábrico, se va a desplazar hacía el interior de Europa, dejando por tanto paso a una pequeña perturbación que ha afectado durante estos últimos días al archipiélago canario. Esta pequeña Borrasca va a ascender de latitud en las próximas horas, y mañana por la mañana estará situada en el Golfo de Cádiz. De esta forma en la zona mediterránea soplarán vientos húmedos, de origen marítimo, es decir el famoso viento de Levante. Este viento será, mayormente, el que active las precipitaciones en esta zona peninsular. En cualquier caso no pasarán de intensidad débil y tendrán un carácter intermitente.

Véase la posición del Anticiclón y de la pequeña perturbación situada en el entorno de las Islas Canarias.

El Sábado las precipitaciones de intensidad débil son más probables en la madrugada o a primeras horas. En cualquier caso, quiero insistir en que no serán gran cosa, no pasarán de la intensidad mencionada. El Domingo el cielo estará mayormente despejado, aunque por la tarde se puede volver a cubrir abundantemente. Las temperaturas van a registrar una bajada importante el Sábado y se recuperarán de nuevo el Domingo.Any source

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Rock n' Roll for traders and investors

New music has been added to the Trader Rock blog. Rock n' roll fans, rejoice!

This week's offerings in the rock n' roll jukebox include the Small Faces, Rolling Stones, The Kinks, T. Rex, and much more.

So head on over and check out some cool tunes, find new music blogs and listening resources in our recent music news linkfest, or subscribe to the Trader Rock feed to keep up with all the latest hits.

We'll see you back here tomorrow for more news from the markets!Any source


Hey guys, I am back from my little hiatus. I have gotten into sort of a rut as far as my hair is concerned. I am trying to stretch my relaxer three months this go round. Nothing in my regimen has really changed. I still conditioner-wash once a week and do a braid-out or bun and wash/deep condition and roller-set once a week. When it gets hotter I may increase the conditioner washes to 2 times per week. We'll see how that goes. My goal is to have my hair touching my bra-strap by the fall. I will be posting pics soon when I do a braidout.

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集 數:2集未完
譯 者:張惠真




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譯 者:劉子倩




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Canvis per la setmana vinent

Com deia en l’entrada anterior de fa uns dies, el mes de Febrer acabarà amb temps estable i ben assolellat, amb temperatures suaus, totalment diferents els primers 10 dies que vam tenir de Febrer.

Però en canvi, el Març es presenta un principi ben diferent, amb cel cobert, ruixats i fred.
El pas d’un front a partir de diumenge amb la formació d’un apetita baixa enfront la costa catalana originarà un diumenge cobert amb precipitacions intermitents, que dilluns de matinada podrien ser més generals però sense acumular quantitats importants de pluja.

El més destacat d’aquest situació, és que el pas d’aquest front farà canviar les peces a l’atmosfera, i obriria camí a una basculació de l’anticicló cap al centre de l’atlàntic obrint pas a aires del nord ben freds que donarien joc a partir de mitjans de la setmana vinent, amb fred ple d’hivern, ruixats i, fins i tot, neu a cotes baixes. Encara queden dies, però cal recordar que encara som a l’hivern i el Març sempre porta sorpreses hivernals.

Model GFS. Mapa previst per dijous vinent a 500hPa on s'aprecia una llengua freda de -33ºC en el seu centre "atacant" tota la Península portant associada fronts i àrees d'inestabilitat.

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Novità: Google Toolbar 6 per Internet Explorer

Il team di Google Toolbar è sempre stato impegnato nel migliorare l'esperienza Internet dei nostri utenti. L'obiettivo iniziale è stato quello di rendere la ricerca web più accessibile, e con le versioni successive sono arrivati miglioramenti quali i suggerimenti per la ricerca, i segnalibri Google, la compilazione automatica e i pulsanti personalizzati. Oggi, l'attenzione torna sulle aree fondamentali: la ricerca e la navigazione.

La prima novità nel lancio di oggi è infatti la Casella di ricerca rapida, che offre la funzionalità di ricerca al di fuori del browser. Basta fare clic su sul pulsante 'Google' nella barra delle applicazioni del proprio computer per visualizzare la casella di ricerca (si può anche premere Ctrl e la barra spaziatrice sulla tastiera per attivare la stessa funzione). Durante la digitazione del termine scelto compariranno suggerimenti, siti web o segnalibri rilevanti e sarà possibile anche lanciare applicazioni e programmi direttamente dalla casella di ricerca. Per sperimentare questa funzione, provate a digitare 'Solitario' nella casella di ricerca:

Altre novità includono miglioramenti alla funzionalità di suggerimenti di ricerca, e la pagina Nuova scheda che da oggi è disponibile anche per gli utenti di Toolbar per Internet Explorer. Per un elenco completo delle nuove funzionalità di Google Toolbar 6, date un'occhiata al nostro Centro assistenza.

Perciò, se siete curiosi, provate la nuova Google Toolbar per Internet Explorer (è disponibile in 41 lingue, italiano compreso), e non dimenticate di farci sapere cosa ne pensate.

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26 février - la photo du jour

Ce matin, comme tant de matins de "beau" temps, depuis le belvédère où j'ai la chance d'habiter, et de constater, tous les jours, depuis 7 ans ...
ça dépasse les bornes ! Des chemtrails à en vomir ces derniers jours...
Vous n'en n'êtes pas sûr ?

Vérifiez par vous même !
Les sols s'assèchent vitesse grand V alors qu'il est tombé beaucoup d'eau il y a peu.

Les chemtrails ont aussi, entre autre "utilité" de favoriser la conduction électromagnétique.
Mais que nous prépare t-on ? on pourrait se le demander.

quelques liens : Any source

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The frequent trade-off of "politeness" and "civility" for clarity, accuracy, and exposing important truths. How to find the socially optimal balance?

I'm currently in the middle of a discussion with Nick Rowe on his and Stephen Gordon's blog regarding positional/context/prestige externalities and their effect on saving. Nick noted that he thought, but was not sure, that Greg Mankiw had a post stating these externalities did not affect the saving rate. In my reply, I wrote, "...but Mankiw has a shameful record of constantly intentionally misleading for the right.", and, "or Mankiw is describing it in a deliberately misleading way, which is par for the course for him."

In Nick's reply he wrote, "And you really should not make those sort of accusations, please. It's part of the very bad decline in civility, that I associate with recent US politics, and certain bloggers I won't name. "If someone disagrees with me, he must be lying, and a paid shill". That sort of argument is the first step towards totalitarianism."

Ok, difficult, unpleasant issue, but it's very important, so we should discuss it.

First, I should make very clear that I don't always think, "If someone disagrees with me, he must be lying, and a paid shill". I usually think they're just making an honest mistake, or I am, in which case if I think the odds are that they are right, I change my opinion. I only think, or am willing to say, they're lying or a paid shill if there's very good evidence that they are.

For example, suppose a Harvard Climatologist says the Earth is flat or that carbon accumulation in the atmosphere has absolutely zero effect on global warming, and that these false assertions please a political party he favors and/or is highly paid by. What am I to think? I know he's saying something that's not true. And I know being a Harvard Climatologist that unless he just had a serious head injury, he knows it's not true, but he said it anyway. I don't want to use the L-word, because so many people say you're not supposed to, and it can cause a lot of problems, but that is the definition of the L-word, knowingly saying something that's untrue.

And note that in this case, yes, the public would know anyway that the Earth is flat is a lie, but there are many things that a climatologist, or any expert, can say which can sound plausible to the general public, but which a fellow expert would know can only be intentional misleading, or lying. Should that fellow expert remain silent on the intentionality of the first expert's untruth? You can't say he should just point out why this untruth is untrue, and then it won't matter if he tells people that the person who said it has a record of regularly intentionally misleading. The reason is because the messenger, and her credibility, does matter. It's not just the message. The world is too complicated and advanced for that. The message itself can be very strong and convincing to you, but in such an advanced and complicated world, and with an area that you, as a member of the general public, are not expert in, there's still often a substantial probability that there's something you're missing, and the message is, in fact, not correct, or not completely correct. The more credible the messenger, the lower the probability that that's the case, and vice-versa. So it is valuable for the public in important decision making, like voting, to know if messengers are serial intentional misleaders for causes that they don't consider good.

So what are you to do?

As economists we're trained to do cost-benefit analyses, and to do something if its benefits outweigh the costs. In finance, a close cousin or sub-field of economics, the foundation is the Net Present Value rule, which is the same thing applied to financial problems. So let's try to do this with the situation where there is very good evidence that a person or group is regularly intentionally misleading for a cause that we think is bad and harmful, or extremely harmful.

If you write that they have a history of intentionally misleading, or intentionally grossly misleading, then a cost, or con, is that this can create anger and other bad feelings with the other party and with some members of the public. This can make it harder to communicate and work with them. With today's Republicans it is unlikely that we will ever get more than a few in the entire congress voting for any kind of intelligent economic stimulus program, but by being largely polite and friendly nonetheless, Republican and Democratic congress people can at least sit in the same room, handle the administrative details that have to be done, and talk about the issues where there is some real chance of at least some meaningful interchange, learning, and cooperation, and people don't start doing things out of spite, even if they think it will hurt the country.

Generally, civility and politeness, or what is often called civility and politeness, can help to keep lines of communication open, can help people work together more productively, and can prevent people from doing things to get back at their rivals even if they know it hurts themselves and the greater good. It can also make work, or any human interaction, a lot more pleasant. Moreover, lack of civility, especially if it's really bad, can intimidate people, and discourage them from communicating. It can stifle discussion and learning.

So there are very important pros to civility and politeness. Now let's talk about the costs, or cons, of civility and politeness, or what is often called civility and politeness, especially if it's taken too far, or taken to mean being extremely unwilling to say anything that could be construed as an insult no matter how true it is, and no matter how important it is for the public to know.

If a person or organization is constantly lying. Or intentionally misleading while saying things that can maybe, by some definition, be considered to be literally true (for example Bill Clinton's famous public statement, "I did not have sexual relations with that woman"), then if we can never say that they are less credible, that you should be skeptical and on guard because they constantly intentionally mislead, it makes it easier for them to mislead the public.

And often this is far from trivial. If more people had been willing to directly and clearly point out the outright lies and intentional misleading of George W. Bush and the Republican machine in 2000 they easily might have lost that election. Vagueness and fuzziness and not being willing to clearly and directly state when they were being misleading, or intentionally misleading, in the name of "civility" or "politeness" or "professionalness" made it less clear to the public what was going on.

Directness, clarity, accuracy, and precision in critiquing one's rivals, their ideas, what they say, is often considered uncivil and impolite. But if you're vague, and sort of allude to, to be polite and civil, often many people will not understand your critique, or debunking, well. It will just be a lot less clear, and their understanding and decision making will be worse as a result.

Likewise, if you don't say certain very important and relevant truths, like in the Angry Bear post, "Cato Disinformation", because you think it's uncivil or impolite to, then much of the public will not know these very important and relevant truths, and their understanding and decision making will be worse as a result. If the decisions in question are huge, like whether to elect George W. Bush, whether to elect enough Republicans to the senate to allow them to stop the measures which will prevent a long wrenching recession or depression, then the costs of being "polite" and "civil" – to that extreme – may be monumental, and the benefits minute by comparison.

Look at what George W. Bush and the Republican machine have done to this country over the last generation, largely aided by the stealth and obscuring they get from what's often called "civility" and "politeness". Do you really still think we should, as an unbending rule, never, ever, in any case, directly and clearly tell people when, on important issues, a person or organization is intentionally misleading or outright lying, that they are, and that it is a regular occurrence, so be careful, keep a skeptical eye, and look to see if more credible sources are backing them up?

I think sometimes we should be willing to say to the public that this person or organization regularly intentionally misleads, even if it will look uncivil to some, and sometimes we shouldn't. It depends on the time, place, and situation. If these are such that the costs outweigh the benefits, we shouldn't. But there are times when the costs of being what many people call "civil" are great, much greater than the benefits.

I'm all for pleases and thank-yous and avoiding swearing and so-on, because it has a clear benefit and it's basically costless. It doesn't fuzzy up understanding or hide important truths, but I think some people's definition of civil is too extreme. It's beyond the point where marginal cost equals marginal benefit.


With regard to the specific catalyst for this post. I do regret using the word shameful in, "...but Mankiw has a shameful record of constantly intentionally misleading for the right." That's a case where the benefit did not outweigh the cost, even in a relatively informal, "dinner conversation"-like venue like the comments section of a blog. Moreover, I'm really not at all sure that Greg Mankiw's reasons are shameful. Like many people, I'm puzzled as to why he says and does the things he does. Maybe he's not intentionally misleading for personal gain; maybe he's just an extreme economic Libertarian, who sincerely thinks it's worth having far lower growth in wealth, science, medicine, and total societal utility, far more human suffering and far less human happiness, to avoid giving up even small amounts of personal economic freedom. Maybe he thinks he can affect positive change to the Republican Party better by staying on the inside than by being kicked out of the upper levels. And to stay in he has to say things which please those in control.

I don't know; his reasons are puzzling and unclear. But I'm quite sure that he regularly intentionally misleads for the positions of the Republicans. As a start, see the Economist's View posts "Honest Brokers", "Economists, Ideology, and Stimulus", "Can Economists Be Trusted?" "Are There Ever Any Wrong Answers in Economics?" , and my post "The latest disinformation from Mankiw" . The whole thing, though, is a difficult issue. There are times when it's an easy call that the benefits far outweigh the costs of saying as politely as reasonable that some one, or some group, regularly intentionally misleads, but there are other times when it's a tough call.

I am putting together a response to Nick's most recent reply on the savings effects of positional/context/prestige externalities. He makes a good point, and brings up a valid first order factor. I just don't think it's the only relevant factor. There's more to the story. I hope to have my response to this up in the comments section of Nick's blog in the next day or two.

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HATTRICK - Nuove Giovanili - Stelline e Stima dei Valori delle Skill 2.0




Come molti mi sono parecchio arrabattato sulle nuove giovanili. Quello che resta il nocciolo del problema è la STIMA DEI VALORI DI SKILL NELLE GIOVANILI che sono spesso sconosciuti.

La carenza di dati al riguardo è stata compensata da qualche gruppo di volenterosi che hanno pazientemente raccolto i loro valori: raccolte interessanti sono state fatte da agiro per i portieri e da altri per gli altri ruoli. Per questo abbozzo di ricerca ho utilizzato i dati raccolti in (220 giocatori) e (418 giocatori) per un totale di 638 giocatori.

Ho riportato le tabelle in excel e ho cominciato a procedere considerando che il problema è quello solito della stima dei coefficienti dei parametri in una regressione lineare ( , occorre stimare i valori βi in Yi=β0+β1X1+...+βnXn.

Nel caso del portiere, ad esempio, avrò il vettore delle Stelline riportate giocando in porta dai vari giocatori (StGK) e i corrispondenti valori di esperienza e delle skill parate e difesa rivelatisi dopo la promozione in prima squadra. Ho sostituito alle valutazioni "buono","disastroso" e "tremendo" i valori mediani 7,5 1,5 e 2,5. Non conoscendo i decimali è prudente porsi nel mezzo.

Questo è un estratto di quello che risulta in excel:

Questi i risultati delle analisi reparto per reparto

* PORTIERI pochi dati, solo 22, quindi stima solo provvisoria

Per i portieri quindi sembra che venga considerato l'86% della skill parate, il 6% dell'esperienza e solo il 1.9% della skill difesa. Questo ultimo valore è praticamente irrilevante dal punto di vista statistico, confermando l'utilizzo per le giovanili del vecchio motore di gioco che per i portieri considera solo la skill parate.
La formula potrebbe essere:

StGK= 1 + 0,86*PAR + 0,06*exp


prima fase di analisi: consideriamo il campione piu' ampio possibile -> 208 giocatori di cui conosciamo le stelline nelle giovanili, e il valore difesa ed esperienza rivelatisi in seguito. La regressione dà:

la formula per questa prima analisi è

seconda fase di analisi
restringo ora l'analisi ai 98 di cui conosco oltre alla skill in difesa anche quella in cross e ottengo

la formula per questa seconda analisi è

da notare il coefficiente nullo dell'esperienza e quello praticamente identico della difesa, mentre R2 cresce dal 79,8% al 85,2%

terza fase di analisi considero i 22 di cui conosco difesa e regia e ottengo

il campione in esame è molto ristretto però il coefficiente in regia parla chiaro 0,008 --> regia non va considerata

quarta fase considerando i 13 giocatori di cui conosco regia, difesa e cross cross parrebbe ancora meno rilevante di difesa, non riporto i dati delle stime per la limitatezza del campione.

con molta prudenza, considerando le fasi 1 e 2 dell'analisi, potrebbe quindi essere ipotizzata una formula:

StDIF= -0,5 + 0,87*DIF + 0,20*CRO


i 75 valori del sito mi lasciano piuttosto perplesso perché se li utilizzo per la regressione ottengo un coefficiente della skill difesa doppio rispetto a quello della skill regia, cosa che per i CC è incongruente.

restringo l'analisi ai 39 giocatori dell'altro sito e ottengo

che suggeriscono una formula pari a

StREG = 0,14 + 0,64*REG + 0,25*PAS + 0,08*DIF + 0,07*exp

Per i CC allora viene considerato il 65% della skill regia + il 25% della skill passaggi e l'8% di difesa

* ALI qui si lavora bene: 138 giocatori completi di tutti i valori in difesa, regia, passaggi e cross
e anche i risultati sono buoni

R quadro oltre l'86% che suggerisce questa formula:

StCRO= -1,5 + 0,62*CRO + 0,30*REG + 0,24*PAS + 0,14*DIF + 0,27*exp

valore di cross considerato a poco piu' del 60%, pari al doppio della regia, poco meno per passaggi e ca il 14% per la difesa.


fase uno
: 127 giocatori di cui conosco sia il livello in attacco che quello in passaggi

quindi StATT=-0,177+0,713*ATT+0,283*PAS+0,117*exp

fase due:
restringo ai 42 giocatori di cui conosco anche l'abilità in cross per vedere se questa skill ha peso
0,04 come coefficiente per i cross, con le altre che variano abbastanza e R quadro che crolla.. hmm preferisco la prima fase quindi:

StATT = -0,18 + 0,71*ATT + 0,28*PAS + 0,12*exp

per gli attaccanti il 71% di attacco e il 28% di passaggi.


Quello che ottengo è quindi un sistema di equazioni lineare, che potrà essere via via risolto in relazione alle skill che verranno rese certe dall'allenatore delle giovanili.

ecco il sistema

StGK = 1+0,86*PAR+0,06*exp
StDIF = -0,5+0,87*DIF+0,20*CRO
StREG = 0,14+0,64*REG+0,25*PAS+0,08*DIF+0,07*exp
StCRO = -1,5+0,62*CRO+0,30*REG+0,24*PAS+0,14*DIF+0,27*exp
StATT =-0,18+0,71*ATT+0,28*PAS+0,12*exp

quindi, ad esempio, potrò risolvere la prima equazione per stimare il valore di skill del portiere,

StGK = 1 + 0,86 PAR + 0,06 exp
StGK - 1 - 0,06 exp= 0,86 PAR
PAR = (StGK - 1 - 0,06 exp) /0,86

se ad esempio riceve 6 stelline e la sua exp è stimata a 1,5 allora sarà
PAR = (6 - 1 - 0,06*1,5)/0,86 = 5,709

notare che in mancanza di dati piu' precisi conviene sempre stimare Debole=4,5, Scarso=3,5 ecc


questo lavoro può essere utile anche al contrario, ossia per


esempio concreto (segnalato da un amico): giocatore appena promosso con
regia 5
difesa 3
pass 4
in giovanile aveva ottenuto in posizione centrocampista centrale 5,5 stelline

avrò quindi

imposto in excel mettendo regia 5,5, passaggi 4,5 e difesa 3,5

i primi valori sono quelli rilevati, imposto poi la formula che mi stima il valore che qui è pari a 5,160 e l'ultimo valore è la differenza col valore reale (5,5-5,160)

è chiaro che mancano dei decimali... (se l'errore è positivo devo aumentare i decimali, se negativo ridurli) allora proverò ad aumentare i decimali per ridurre al minimo lo scostamento, aumento quindi regia, passaggi e difesa quanto serve restando dentro il limite (cioè regia insufficiente varierà tra 5,0 e 5,9)

vedo che inserendo regia 5,9, passaggi 4,8 e difesa 3,6 l'errore si riduce a 1 millesimo...

come detto sopra vista la scarsezza del campione in esame tutto questo è suscettibile di ampie correzioni, tuttavia può essere una base da cui sviluppare una ricerca e dare indicazioni di massima sui decimali dei giocatori

Andreac (team ID 1730726 in Hattrick)

qui l'INDICE del Blog

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This opera by Andrea Candio is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribuzione-Non commerciale 3.0 Unported License. Cioé questo lavoro può essere liberamente copiato, distribuito o modificato senza espressa autorizzazione dell'autore, a patto che l'autore sia chiaramente indicato e la pubblicazione non sia a fini commerciali.
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Do subsidies keep the cost of food down?

Canberra, ACT: Jack Thurston over at the CAP Health Check blog recently set me a challenge. An argument that is increasingly heard is that farm subsidies are a good thing because they keep the cost of food down at a time of economic recession.

First, it's an inefficient way of delivering the subsidy to those most in need. In so far as the cost is reduced, the benefit reaches the rich as well as the poor. It would be better to ensure that the least well off members of the population had enough money for a balanced and nutritious diet.

Second, the protectionist aspects of the CAP mean that consumers in the EU do not have unhindered access to agricultural goods at world market prices. The EU price is generally above the world price.

What about the single farm payment? Much of the money spent on the CAP does not reach the farmer, but is absorbed by administrative costs (pushed up by the complexity of the system), traders and food processors (just look at how much Tate & Lyle has received) and by criminal organisations.

As a rational decision-maker, the farmer is not going to use the subsidy to lower prices. He may invest in the farm, thereby benefiting suppliers of agricultural equipment which is why they favour the CAP so much. Or he may decide to use the money for personal consumption - or more likely some mixture of both.

Some of my colleagues at Warwick HRI think that food is too cheap. By that they mean that it costs so little that people do not value it enough and the emphasis is on low cost production, regardless of some of the negative externalities. There is something in this, but one has to consider the impact of higher food prices on the constrained budget of the typical family.Any source

Marc Andreessen on Charlie Rose

There are a lot of different things I could be posting about today (bank nationalization, the stock market, the wondrous things Obama said, etc.).

What I am posting today is this recent interview with Marc Andreessen on the Charlie Rose show. I'd seen the interview posted at a couple of different blogs this week, but finally got a chance to watch it yesterday while checking in with Howard Lindzon's blog. I'm glad that I did.

As you'll see right from the beginning of this interview, Charlie Rose engages the fast-speaking Andreessen on a number of subjects, from advances in technology (Twitter, Facebook, Ning, social networking and more) to entrepreneurship and venture capital and the current state of the economy.

Their rapid-fire exchange hardly lets up througout the interview, so that by the end of the program, you might find yourself trying to remember and sort out all the information and opinions that were just thrown your way within a 53 minute timespan.

But it's a very engaging discussion, one that will probably lead you to reflect on the rapid changes that are occuring in our world today, thanks in large part to the accelerating pace of technological advancement. Any source

Aggiornamento sul dibattito sulla regolamentazione della rete

Oggi ho partecipato all'audizione della IX Commissione Trasporti e Telecomunicazioni che ha deciso di aprire la consultazione sul futuro delle regole di Internet a tutti gli stakeholder. Il nostro obiettivo, in questa audizione, è stato di sottolineare la differenza di Internet rispetto agli altri media, una differenza da tenere sempre in considerazione se si vuole affrontare il tema delle regole di Internet senza dimenticare l'enorme opportunità che Internet rappresenta in termini di accesso all'informazione, libertà di espressione e crescita economica in un momento di crisi.

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Pyrocumulus desde O Barco ( 25/2/09 )

Fotografia de un Pyrocumulus ( Fuente: Wikipedia )

Pyrocumulus es una nube cumuliforme producida por:

*volcán que entra en erupción
*industrias, etc.

Estos causan la calefacción del aire, generalmente con mucho de humedad en ellos. El pyrocumulus sin obstrucción se forma solamente si hay viento muy pequeño, de modo que la termal pueda levantarse al nivel de la condensación sin mezclar demasiado con el aire ambiente.

Pyrocumulus esta misma tarde sobre a serra do Eixe, fotografíado desde los alrededores de O Barco.
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Primavera....aspettiamoci il colpo di coda dell'inverno.

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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Delloite sets up Islamic finance centre in KL

By T Vignesh
Delloite has set up its third Islamic Finance Centre of Excellence for the Asia Pacific region in Kuala Lumpur to help its International clients replicate the Malaysian success in Islamic Finance.
CEO Chaly Chee Keong said Malaysia is a good location because of its unique position as a major global player in the world of Islamic Finance and its geographical location offered opportunities to promote Islamic Finance to other countries in the region.
Chaly said the company has started to build a team between eight and ten professionals comprising auditors, financial advisors and those with banking background to be based in the Kuala Lumpur centre to continue recruiting more.
"The centre of excellence will be the core for people to understand more about Islamic Finance and all complexities around this product," Chaly told reporters in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.
He said many non-muslim countries such as Singapore, the UK, Japan and Hong Kong have also expressed their interest of becoming major players in the Islamic Finance Industry.
Islamic Leader of Deloitte South-East Asia, Eugene Wong, said there are so many factors such as the significant petrodollar running through the Middle East which has helped draw attention to the concept of interest free banking and finance to the centre stage.
He also said the recent subprime issue which brought the financial world to a crisis, has revealed that the guidelines of Shariah to insists on real assets seemed to be the shield of protection for the Islamic Institutions from going the way of their conventional counterparts.
Islamic Finance Specialist Daud Vicary Abdullah said the average growth rate of the global Shariah compliant assets over the past ten years is estimated to be 10-15% which is double the rate of the conventional market.

(This story appeared in The Malaysian Reserve on Feb 23, 2009. The Malaysian Reserve is a daily business/finance newspaper published out of Kuala Lumpur, with a sectoral page on Islamic finance on Mondays, edited by Habhajan Singh) Any source

Thai SET to launch Shariah 50 index

The Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET) is planning to launch a Shariah 50 index early next quarter before going on a roadshow to the Middle East in the second half, reports a Thai newspaper.
The index would combine 50 listed stocks, making up 47% of the SET's market capitalisation, that are compatible with Islamic law, reports The Nation.
It quoted Santi Kiranand, head of market development, as saying that SET and FTSE have jointly developed the Shariah index while the selection of the 50 firms was performed by the Yasaar Committee.
The roadshow would touch down in Qatar, Dubai, the United Arab Emirates and Abu Dhabi, with the aim to attract petrodollars from the Middle East to the SET.
"Many countries in Asia have been active in launching Shariah indexes including Singapore, Hong Kong and Taiwan," Santi said. Just over two years ago, Bursa Malaysia Bhd (Bursa Malaysia), in collaboration with global index provider FTSE Group (FTSE) launched the FTSE Bursa Malaysia EMAS Shariah index on Jan 22, 2007.
The index was designed to provide investors with a broad benchmark for Shariah compliant investment for the Malaysian market. When launched two years ago, it took the constituents of the FTSE Bursa Malaysia EMAS Index, which has been free float weighted and liquidity screened, and overlays the Securities Commission's Shariah Advisory Council's (SAC) screening methodology to derive an 'investable and transparent' Shariah compliant index.
As at Nov 28, 2008, there were 855 Shariah compliant securities as determined by the Shariah Advisory Council (SAC) of the Securities Commission (SC). This represented 87% of the total listed securities or 64.3% of the market capitalisation on Bursa Malaysia.
In neighbouring Bangkok, the newspaper reported that at least two or three asset management companies have shown interest in launching funds investing in stocks in the Shariah index. One operation thought behind the launch of the fund is to position it as a product that asset management companies could use to draw funding from investors in the Middle East.

(This story appeared in The Malaysian Reserve on Feb 25, 2009. The Malaysian Reserve is a daily business/finance newspaper published out of Kuala Lumpur, with a sectoral page on Islamic finance on Mondays, edited by Habhajan Singh) Any source

First RM22m Islamic-themed hotel to be set up in Pantai Puteri, Melaka

Majlis Agama Islam Melaka (Maim) and Jabatan Wakaf, Zakat dan Haji (Jawhar) will set up the country's first Islamic-themed hotel costing RM22 million at Pantai Puteri in Tanjung Kling, Melaka. Minister in the Prime Minister's Department, Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, said the eight-storey hotel will be of three-star status with 99 rooms.
"The hotel based on Islamic concept will be a model of wakaf development for all state Islamic affairs councils, encouraging them to give attention to the commercial aspect," he told reporters at the hotel's ground-breaking ceremony in Tanjung Kling on Feb 23. Also present was MAIM deputy chairman Ghazale Mohamad, who represented Melaka Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Ali Rustam.
Ahmad Zahid said under the Ninth Malaysia Plan, the federal government through Jawhar has allocated RM256.5 million for the development of wakaf land (trust property) nationwide.
"The Islamic-themed hotel is among the 19 projects being developed by Jawhar with the cooperation of Islamic affairs councils," he added. Ahmad Zahid said the hotel, to be managed jointly by Maim and Yayasan Wakaf Malaysia, will provide facilities, support services and food which meet Islamic requirements.
The hotel, he said, will have a multi-purpose hall, seminar room, office and surau with the first phase having started on Jan 15, 2009, and is due for completion on July 14, 2010. — BernamaAny source

Volunteer & Keep the Network Strong!

Learn more and sign-up to volunteer by clicking here!Any source

How Many of Your Visits are from iPhones?

(Cross-posted with Google Analytics Blog)

Advanced Segmentation is one of Google Analytics' most powerful features - you can use it to slice and dice your Google Analytics data by, well, pretty much anything. We've made it a little easier to see what your iPhone visitors are doing on your site by adding a default Advanced Segment showing just visits from iPhones.

Enabling the new iPhone segment is easy: click on the drop down menu at the top right of any report next to the text "Advanced Segments", and select "Visits from iPhones" in the list of default segments. You might want to turn off "All Visits" when viewing your iPhone segment; if the percentage of total visits to your site from the iPhone is small, it will be difficult to visualize the two sets on numbers on the same graph.

Like any Advanced Segment, all of Google Analytics' reports are available; this includes AdWords performance, of course. If you use AdWords, you can now use Analytics to better analyze the performance of any campaigns that use our new iPhone and high-end mobile targeting feature. We've added the iPhone segment to get you started, but you can always create a custom Advanced Segment to compare or combine iPhone visits with other mobile operating systems; for instance, if you're targeting ads in AdWords to iPhone & high end mobile devices (which currently includes Android devices), you can create a new segment for iPhone & Android.

From the Advanced Segments drop-down, click on "Create a new advanced segment", and create a segment with 2 criteria. Drag "Operating System" under the "Systems" dimension into the target area with the dotted-line border, and type "iPhone" into the "Value" field. Click "Add 'or' statement" to get a second target area, and do the same for Android. Then, you can name your segment "High-end mobile" and see that traffic in Analytics.

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Advisory Warning on BVI Insurance Company issued by the Commission

On 17 February 2009, the British Virgin Islands Financial Services Commission issued Advisory Warning No. 1 of 2009 concerning insurance company Source One Insurance Ltd. The Commission informed the public that the company is no longer licensed under the Insurance Act, 1994, to carry on insurance business from the BVI territory, based on the fact that the licence granted to Source One Insurance Ltd. expired on 31 December 2007 and has not been renewed since that time.

The BVI company tried to continue its operations into another jurisdiction but could not because it has failed to comply with the BVI's laws and requirements to do so.

The BVI FSC advised public to exercise extreme caution in conducting any transactions with Source One Insurance Ltd., as it has no licence to carry on insurance business in or from within the British Virgin Islands.
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Home prices continue to slide

US home prices continue to slide, dropping at a record pace in December. Here are the latest details from Bloomberg's story:

"Home prices in 20 U.S. cities declined 18.5 percent in December from a year earlier, the fastest drop on record, as foreclosures climbed and sales sank.

The decrease in the S&P/Case-Shiller index was more than forecast and followed an 18.2 percent drop in November. The gauge has fallen every month since January 2007, and year-over-year records began in 2001. Separately, the Federal Housing Finance Board said prices in 2008 fell a record 8.2 percent.

Record foreclosures are contributing to declining property values and household wealth, crippling the consumer spending that makes up about 70 percent of the economy. The Obama administration has pledged to spend $275 billion to help stabilize the housing market, including $75 billion to bring down mortgage rates and encourage loan modifications.

“The massive inventory overhang in the market and the surge in foreclosures mean prices will continue to fall rapidly,” Ian Shepherdson, chief U.S. economist at High Frequency Economics in Valhalla, New York, said today in a note to clients. “The administration’s rescue plan will, in time, slow the rate of decline, but it won’t happen immediately.” "

Speaking of inventory, I'm also hearing that the banks are loaded down with foreclosed properties and are taking their sweet time to add these listings to the MLS database. A new report from Deutsche Bank analysts warns of the "shadow inventory" of bank-owned REO properties hanging over the residential real estate market.

Looks like the supply of unsold homes is still far outweighing demand, and it may stay that way for the next year or so, barring an unexpected explosion of real estate investment group buying. That should provide the backdrop for home prices reverting back towards their historical mean.

Related articles and posts:

1. Shiller: stocks and houses still expensive - Pragmatic Capitalist.

2. Home price projections - Pragmatic Capitalist.

3. Manhattan on Sale (NYC luxury real estate market) - Barron'sAny source