The Pretty Project: Day 36

October 19, 2009

The Pretty Project: Day 36.

The Pretty Project: Day 55

October 19, 2009

someone asked me what animal I most resembled I would respond “Rattlesnake;” I think it goes without saying that a reptile of any kind is a frightening

The Pretty Project: Day 55

October 19, 2009

test india

March 23, 2009

test india desc.

Aussies crash despite Johnson ton

March 22, 2009

South Africa completed an innings victory over Australia on day four of the third Test in Cape Town, despite a fine century from Mitchell Johnson.

Johnson finished on 123 not out from just 103 balls as Australia made 422 in their second innings, just 20 runs short of making South Africa bat again.

Paul Harris took a career-best 6-127 in the innings and 9-161 in the match, while Dale Steyn finished with 3-96.

The result means the three-Test series finished 2-1 to Australia.

“Obviously, any time you lose it really hurts, but this has been really poor,” said captain Ricky Ponting, after Australia were condemned to their first innings defeat since India beat them in Calcutta in 1998.

“The first two Tests were as good as we have played, while the first two days here were as bad as we have ever played. It shows if you’re not quite there in terms of your best then results are not going to go your way.

 

We can take the momentum from this match into our series with England 
Stand-in South Africa captain Jacques Kallis

“Bringing along a new generation of Australian players we’ve played some really good cricket. The Ashes series will be another opportunity for them.” 

South African stand-in captain Jacques Kallis said the triumph had provided the team with a major boost before their next Test series against England next winter.

“Obviously we’re elated, it was huge to turn around our fortunes after the last two Tests. We’ve gained in confidence from this game and we can take the momentum from this match into our series with England,” Kallis said.

Harris, the slow left-armer, was named man of the match at Newlands, but the day belonged to Johnson in notching his maiden first-class ton from just 86 balls.

He was given superb support from Andrew McDonald, who made 68 to share a 163-run partnership for the seventh wicket.

Scoring at one run per hour

March 22, 2009

Mitchell’s déjà vu
In Johannesburg, Mitchell Johnson was stranded on 96 as he lost Peter Siddle and Ben Hilfenhaus in consecutive deliveries and there was a moment of horror for Johnson as the same thing threatened to happen again in Cape Town. Johnson was on 95 and at the non-striker’s end when once more two wickets fell in a row. Andrew McDonald and Siddle were both caught at silly point off inside-edges onto their pads against Paul Harris and with two balls left in the over and two batsmen to come, Johnson must have been panicking. But Bryce McGain did the right thing and blocked out the last two balls and Johnson brought up his first Test century next over with a six smashed over midwicket off Dale Steyn.

1rph
One run per hour. That’s the rate at which Simon Katich was travelling at drinks in the morning session. He began the day on 44 and by the time the first hour was up he had progressed to 45. His only run for that first hour came when he scampered through for a single when he was dropped by Harris at gully off the bowling of Steyn and rarely did Katich look like adding any further runs. He was looking exhausted at the end of a long tour and with Michael Hussey hardly racing at the other end, the pair did their best to put the “dead” back in dead rubber.

Harris gets heated
There has been a distinct lack of on-field nastiness in this series so it was a surprise to see Harris and Michael Clarke engage in a verbal stoush as the dead rubber came to a close. Harris has picked up Clarke four times over these six Tests and the pair exchanged words as Clarke ticked through the 30s without looking entirely convincing against Harris. It was the South Africans who ended up on the wrong end of the banter. At the finish of the over in question, Harris had a loud lbw shout against McDonald and he talked a clearly unconvinced Jacques Kallis into asking for the referral. The ball was clearly sliding down leg and it was impossible not to think that Harris’ judgment had been clouded by the tension leading up to it.

BJP to declare Ramsetu ‘heritage monument’ if it comes to power

March 22, 2009

CHENNAI: BJP will declare the Ramasetu “a heritage monument,” if the alliance led by the party would be voted to power at the Centre in the Lok 

Sabha polls, party’s state unit said on Sunday. 

BJP state unit president L Ganesan, in a statement here, alleged that if the alliance comprising the DMK came to power, “it will try to demolish” the Ramsetu. 

The bridge, believed to have been constructed by Lord Ram, became a centre of controversy after Hindus opposed its demolition for the construction of Rs 2,400 crore Sethusamudram Shipping Canal Project (SSCP). 

While crediting former Prime Minister A B Vajpayee for issuing in-principle approval and taking up study for the implementation of the project, Ganesan claimed the plan was “altered” after the UPA Government took over. 

“The DMK has assumed the matter as its policy failure and is adamant (in the implementation),” he said at an apparent reference to DMK president M Karunanidhi asking his party workers to inform people on the “roadblocks” created for the project. 

“If another alliance comprising of the DMK comes to power, it will try to demolish the Ramsetu. But if a BJP-led combine is voted to power, the bridge will be declared a heritage monument of historical importance,” he said.

EC finds Varun Gandhi guilty of provocative speech

March 22, 2009

NEW DELHI: The Election Commission on Sunday found the BJP leader and candidate from Pilibhit, Varun Gandhi, guilty of anti-Muslim speeches 

which sparked off widespread criticism. ( Watch 

The Election Commission rejected Varun’s reply, expressing dissatisfaction over it. The commission has also advised the party to not issue him a ticket to fight the Lok Sabha elections. 

While Gandhi in his reply to the EC’s notice had claimed that the CD, containing his alleged hate-speech, was doctored, Chief Election Commissioner N Gopalaswami had gone on record stating that the onus was on Gandhi to prove that the tape was doctored. 

In its reply, BJP distanced itself from Gandhi’s hate speeches and told EC that his remarks did not represent the views of the party. 

It, however, asked the poll panel to check the genuineness of the CD containing the comments. 

Gandhi was slapped with a notice for making speeches that had communal overtones during his rallies in Pilibhit in Uttar Pradesh.

Keeping the financial system safe

March 22, 2009

Last week I discussed why capital requirements — requiring firms to have capital equal to some percentage of their assets — cannot prevent financial crises. Among other evasions, regulated firms can shift to riskier assets (such as subprime mortgages) within the asset categories defined by the regulations. Discretionary actions by regulators to offset such shifts during a bubble period would be extremely disruptive, requiring more foresight and political courage than we have any reason to expect from public servants.

Proposals have emerged to rectify these weaknesses of capital requirements by automating the adjustment process. This would require identifying one or more statistical measures to which capital requirements would be tied. When the measures indicated that a bubble was under way, capital requirements would increase automatically, and when the measures indicated that markets were contracting, requirements would decline.

While there are many good indicators of a contracting system that follows a bubble, there are no universal indicators of bubbles themselves. Bubbles can arise anywhere, and they can involve newly fashioned financial instruments that did not exist before. Because of this, automating capital requirements would not work.

The Alternative to Capital Requirements

A good alternative to capital requirements is transaction-based reserving (TBS). Under TBS, financial firms are regulated as if they were insurance companies that are obliged to contribute to a reserve account in connection with every asset they acquire. The portion of the cash inflows generated by the asset that is allocated to the reserve account depends on the potential future outflows associated with the asset. For example, a life insurance company that sells a policy to a 70-year-old will allocate a larger portion of the premiums it receives to a reserve account than the same policy sold to a 30-year-old.

As applied to a depository, the required allocation to a contingency reserve would be, say, 50 percent of the portion of any charge that is risk-based. If a prime mortgage were priced at 6 percent and zero points, for example, the reserve allocation for a 7 percent, 2 point mortgage might be ½ percent plus 1 point.

Contingency reserves can’t be touched for a long period, perhaps 15 years, except in an emergency. Of course, income allocated to reserves would not be taxable until it was withdrawn 15 years later.

The Great Advantage

A great advantage of TBR, relative to capital requirements, is that TBR does not depend on discretionary actions by the regulator to offset the excessive optimism that feeds bubbles. A shift to riskier loans during periods of euphoria automatically generates larger reserve allocations because riskier loans carry higher risk premiums.

Another advantage of TBR is that it applies to every transaction with a risk component, whether it is shown on the firm’s balance sheet or not. The principal responsibility of the regulator is to establish the risk component of every type of transaction. When credit default swaps appeared, for example, the TBR regulator would immediately have realized that the premium was 100 percent risk-based, and sellers would have been obliged to reserve 50 percent of their premium income.

Treasury’s toxic asset plan could cost $1 trillion

March 22, 2009

WASHINGTON – The Obama administration’s latest attempt to tackle the banking crisis and get loans flowing to families and businesses rely on a new government entity, the Public Investment Corp. to help purchase as much as $1 trillion in toxic assets on banks’ books.

The plan that Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner intends to announce Monday aims to use the resources of the $700 billion bank bailout fund, the Federal Reserve and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.

The initiative will seek to entice private investors, including big hedge funds, to participate by offering billions of dollars in low-interest loans to finance the purchases and also sharing risks if the assets fall further in value.

When Geithner released the initial outlines of the administration’s overhaul of the bank rescue program on Feb. 10, the markets took a nosedive. The Dow Jones industrial average plunged by 380 points as investors expressed disappointment about a lack of details.

Christina Romer, head of the Council of Economic Advisers, said Sunday that it’s important for investors to know that the administration is bringing a full array of programs to confront the problem.

“I don’t think Wall Street is expecting the silver bullet,” she said on CNN’s “State of the Union.”

“This is one more piece. It’s a crucial piece to get these toxic assets off, but it is just part of it and there will be more to come,” she said.

Also in the coming week Geithner is expected to disclose the administration’s proposal to overhaul bank regulations to try to prevent a repeat of the financial crisis.