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Another big corporate claims to have ‘beaten the tenant fees ban’

first_imgHome » News » Agencies & People » Another big corporate claims to have ‘beaten the tenant fees ban’ previous nextAgencies & PeopleAnother big corporate claims to have ‘beaten the tenant fees ban’Belvoir is the third large estate agency chain to claim the expected 10% drop in lettings revenues following the ban did not materialise last year.Nigel Lewis30th January 20200687 Views The industry’s warnings to government that the tenant fees ban would lead to significant problems for estate agents are failing to materialise after Belvoir today become the third large corporate to announced it had ‘beaten the ban’.Following LSL and Martin & Co parent company TPFG’s announcements, Belvoir has now said its franchisees had mitigated the effects of the ban by the end of December.The company says it had expected a 10% loss in revenue following the ban.Letting agents wondering how Belvoir and its franchisees have achieved this given the estimated millions sucked out of the industry by the ban, then its trading statement to the City this morning provides at least a partial answer.Belvoir has been helping franchisees hoover up competitors with both financial and logistical support to help them grow their managed property portfolios and exploit the willingness of many agents to exit the market or divest their portfolios.Some 24 franchisees took advantage of this last year, adding 4,500 properties to the company’s overall count.At year-end Belvoir’s lettings book was up 7% to 67,000, a record level.“2019 was another very strong year for the Group and is testament to the resilience of the Belvoir franchise business model,” says CEO Dorian Gonsalves.Belvoir makes no mention of its franchisees’ sales performance, suggesting the soft sales market is taking its toll on some branch revenues, although Belvoir’s recent partnership with the Mortgage Advice Bureau is reaping benefits.Its network of in-branch MAB-branded brokers helped increase revenues in its financial services division by 148% last year, largely because the brokers offer both Belvoir and rival agency customers a mortgage service.Belvoir tenant fees ban Dorian Gonsalves January 30, 2020Nigel LewisWhat’s your opinion? Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.Please note: This is a site for professional discussion. Comments will carry your full name and company.This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.Related articles BREAKING: Evictions paperwork must now include ‘breathing space’ scheme details30th April 2021 City dwellers most satisfied with where they live30th April 2021 Hong Kong remains most expensive city to rent with London in 4th place30th April 2021last_img read more

Enzymatic DNA synthesis sees the light

first_img The genetics of regeneration Critical step found in DNA repair, cellular aging “This new approach to enzyme-directed synthetic DNA synthesis by the Church team is a clever piece of bioinspired engineering that combines the power of DNA replication with one of the most controllable and robust manufacturing methods developed by humanity — photolithography — to provide a solution that brings us closer to the goal of establishing DNA as a usable data storage medium,” said the Wyss Institute’s Founding Director Don Ingber, who is also the Judah Folkman Professor of Vascular Biology at Harvard Medical School and Boston Children’s Hospital, and Professor of Bioengineering at the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS). Other authors on the study are additional members of Church’s team, including Kettner Griswold, and Sukunya Punthambaker, as well as Honggu Chun, Professor of Biomedical Engineering at Korea University. This work was funded by the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering. DNA helicopters offer insight into how biological machines power living things A new spin on an old question Experiments in mice suggest way to thwart DNA damage from aging, radiation Study uncovers genes that control process of whole-body regeneration According to current estimates, the amount of data produced by humans and machines is rising at an exponential rate, with the digital universe doubling in size every two years. Very likely, the magnetic and optical data-storage systems at our disposal won’t be able to archive this fast-growing volume of digital 1s and 0s anymore at some point. Plus, they cannot safely store data for more than a century without degrading.  One solution to this pending global data-storage problem could be the development of DNA — life’s very own information-storage system — into a digital data storage medium. Researchers already are encoding complex information consisting of digital code into DNA’s four-letter code comprised of its A, T, G, and C nucleotide bases. DNA is an ideal storage medium because it is stable over hundreds or thousands of years, has an extraordinary information density, and its information can be efficiently read (decoded) again with advanced sequencing techniques that are continuously getting less expensive.What lags behind is the ability to write (encode) information into DNA. The programmed synthesis of synthetic DNA sequences still is mostly performed with a decades-old chemical procedure, known as the “phosphoramidite method,” that takes many steps that, although being able to be multiplexed, can only generate DNA sequences with up to around 200 nucleotides in length and makes occasional errors. It also produces environmentally toxic by-products that are not compatible with a “clean data storage technology.”Previously, George Church’s team at Harvard’s Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering and Harvard Medical School (HMS) has developed the first DNA storage approach that uses a DNA-synthesizing biological enzyme known as Terminal deoxynucleotidyl Transferase (TdT), which, in principle, can synthesize much longer DNA sequences with fewer errors. Now, the researchers have applied photolithographic techniques from the computer chip industry to enzymatic DNA synthesis, and thus developed a new method to multiplex TdT’s superior DNA writing ability. In their study published in Nature Communications, they demonstrated the parallel synthesis of 12 DNA strands with varying sequences on a 1.2 square millimeter array surface. “We have championed and intensively pursued the use of DNA as a data-archiving medium accessed infrequently, yet with very high capacity and stability. Breakthroughs by us and others have enabled an exponential rise in the amount of digital data encrypted in DNA,” said corresponding author Church. “This study and other advances in enzymatic DNA synthesis will push the envelope of DNA writing much further and faster than chemical approaches.” Church is a core faculty member at the Wyss Institute and lead of its Synthetic Biology Focus Area with DNA data storage as one of its technology development areas. He also is professor of genetics at HMS and Professor of Health Sciences and Technology at Harvard and MIT.  While the group’s first strategy using the TdT enzyme as an effective tool for DNA synthesis and digital data storage controlled TdT’s enzyme activity with a second enzyme, they show in their new study that TdT can be controlled by the high-energy photons that UV-light is composed of. A high level of control is essential as the TdT enzyme needs to be instructed to add only one single or a short block made of one of the four A, T, G, C nucleotide bases to the growing DNA strand with high precision at each cycle of the DNA synthesis process.,Using a special codec, a computational method that encodes digital information into DNA code and decodes it again, which Church’s team developed in their previous study, the researchers encoded the first two measures of the “Overworld Theme” sheet music from the 1985 Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) video game Super Mario Brothers within 12 synthetic DNA strands. They generated those strands on an array matrix with a surface measuring merely 1.2 square millimeters by extending short DNA “primer” sequences, which were extended in a 3×4 pattern, using their photolithographic approach. “We applied the same photolithographic approach used by the computer chip industry to manufacture chips with electrical circuits patterned with nanometer precision to write DNA,” said first author Howon Lee, a postdoctoral fellow in Church’s group at the time of the study. “This provides enzymatic DNA synthesis with the potential of unprecedented multiplexing in the production of data-encoding DNA strands.”Photolithography, like photography, uses light to transfer images onto a substrate to induce a chemical change. The computer chip industry miniaturized this process and uses silicon instead of film as a substrate. Church’s team now adapted the chip industry’s capabilities in their new DNA writing approach by substituting silicon with their array matrix consisting of microfluidic cells containing the short DNA primer sequences. In order to control DNA synthesis at primers positioned in the 3×4 pattern, the team directed a beam of UV-light onto a dynamic mask (as is done in computer chip manufacturing) — which essentially is a stencil of the 3×4 pattern in which DNA synthesis is activated — and shrunk the patterned beam on the other side of the mask with optical lenses down to the size of the array matrix. “The UV-light reflected from the mask pattern precisely hits the target area of primer elongation and frees up cobalt ions, which the TdT enzyme needs in order to function, by degrading a light-sensitive “caging” molecule that shields the ions from TdT,” said co-author Daniel Wiegand, research scientist at the Wyss Institute. “By the time the UV-light is turned off and the TdT enzyme deactivated again with excess caging molecules, it has added a single nucleotide base or a homopolymer block of one of the four nucleotide bases to the growing primer sequences.”This cycle can be repeated multiple times whereby in each round only one of the four nucleotide bases or a homopolymer of a specific nucleotide base is added to the array matrix. In addition, by selectively covering specific openings of the mask during each cycle, the TdT enzyme only adds that specific nucleotide base to DNA primers where it is activated by UV-light, allowing the researchers to fully program the sequence of nucleotides in each of the strands.“Photon-directed multiplexed enzymatic DNA synthesis on this newly instrumented platform can be further developed to enable much higher automated multiplexing with improved TdT enzymes, and, eventually make DNA-based data storage significantly more effective, faster, and cheaper,” said co-corresponding author Richie Kohman, a lead senior research scientist at the Wyss’ Synthetic Biology focus area, who helped coordinate the research in Church’s team at the Wyss Institute. Relatedlast_img read more

Theology professor examines racial justice

first_imgDr. Christopher Pramuk, associate professor of theology at Xavier University, presented a lecture titled “Crossing the Color Line: A Catholic Perspective on Racial Justice and Responsibility” on Thursday evening.Caitlyn Jordan | The Observer The lecture was sponsored the Center for Spirituality and held in Stapleton Lounge in Le Mans Hall.Pramuk addressed Sr. Madeleva Wolff, former president of Saint Mary’s, and her decision to integrate Saint Mary’s in 1941. Though the decision received a firestorm of controversy, Pramuk quoted Wolff as saying, “If it emptied the school, we would enroll Negro girls in residence.”Pramuk said there are doorways to address the topic of race relations in America, from the patterns of racial profiling and police brutality to the Ebola crisis currently provoking xenophobic reactions.“Often people say that problem of racial justice becomes more urgent when you have your own skin in the game,” Pramuk said. “Whites have the luxury of not seeing because they have no skin in the game.”But as people of faith, Catholics often don’t see the problem as racism, he said. Instead, Catholics see fighting racism as an invitation from Jesus to stand in solidarity and see the dignity in our neighbor.“Racism is a human problem, crippling something far deeper inside us,” Pramuk said. “[Often] we act from self-justification and the message of Jesus becomes unsettling.“Jesus seems to be saying if you cannot find me in your neighbor, you will not find me in Church. God has skin in the game.”It’s important to look at race through the “doorway of faith,” Pramuk said.“From a Catholic perspective, the root of justice lies in the story of Road to Emmaus,” he said. “How do we learn to recognize the Christ that lives in others? Even in the one we have been taught to fear?”Pramuk said blindness is a pervasive theme in the Gospels, which provide fitting metaphors of current race relations in America. He said it is important to give people space to talk about race.“Each of us comes in the conversation about race or refuses it,” he said. “But it’s important to give each other space to grow.”Pramuk said his book, ‘Hope Sings, So Beautiful: Graced Encounters Across the Color Line’ is a starting point and a way to make the conversation about racism accessible. Racial hatred is harsh and often looks like the eclipse of blacks of blocking out their light, he said, which calls for intimate conversations.Pramuk said there is hope in the leadership of Pope Francis and in the universality of the Catholic church.“Universality is not the as same uniformity,” Pramuk said. “Universality is welcoming.”Pramuk said young people desire to give their gifts and their lives meaningfully.“The Church has the opportunity to turn their gazes to the poor and the marginalized,” Pramuk said. “Our physical presence is the best gift we can provide to society.”Tags: Bible, Gospel, race, Race relations, saint mary’s, SMClast_img read more

Food prices

first_imgFor many years commodity and food prices have been so low it’s been hard for American farmers to make a profit and consequently a decent living for their families. Like any business, no profit means farmers will go out of business, forcing food production overseas. None of us wants food production to go the way of oil. Today, we must rely on often-unfriendly countries to supply much of our energy needs. We see the consequences of that situation at the gas pump as just the potential for tightened supply causes prices to soar. The U.S. has about an 11-day food supply within our massive food chain. One can only imagine the consequences if we allowed China and Brazil to grow our food and they decide for political reasons to no longer send us that food.Right now, commodity and food prices have risen. Many farmers could make a decent living based on the actual price received for the food they produce. Prices for Georgia cotton, pecans and peanuts are at or near a record high. Even Georgia peaches are likely to fetch record prices this summer.But, just as our farmers are getting to the point where they can make a decent living from food prices, another issue has come into play. Input costs have risen so rapidly and so dramatically that it’s unlikely many of our farmers can continue to make a decent living. Instability in the energy market affects more than the price of gas for our cars. Far-reaching input impactThe price of fuel to plow fields, nitrogen to fertilize crops and grain to feed livestock has increased at alarming rates over the past year. There seems to be no end in sight to the increases of these vital agricultural inputs. In particular, Georgia’s poultry industry, the largest poultry industry in the U.S., is having an increasingly difficult time as the cost of feed, primarily corn, skyrockets.High food and commodity prices have given some farmers a chance to finally rely less on government-support programs. Yet, with increased costs, these programs will have to be reinstated to keep our farmers in business and food production growing in the U.S. The only real and long-lasting solution is to reduce inputs used in traditional agriculture. We need to find ways to reduce fertilizers, pesticides and water (since it requires fuel to pump ground water) used to grow crops. The cost of feed and medicine to keep our animals healthy also needs to be reduced. Research holds the key Who will conduct the necessary research to find ways to reduce inputs needed to grow our food? Private industry has no economic incentive to reduce input costs, because it will deflate their bottom line. It is difficult to imagine a fertilizer company sponsoring research to reduce the reliance of our farmers on the very product the company sells. It’s equally difficult to see the federal government, which supports competitive research to solve problems, willingly address some of these real-world issues. Federally funded research tends to focus on high-minded, long-term societal needs. This is certainly important and needed research, yet it doesn’t broadly address today’s agricultural problems. It’s unlikely that federally sponsored research will help our farmers adjust to the new reality of extremely high input costs, at least in the short term. And, the short term is going to determine who remains in business.Research to reduce input costs for food production falls squarely on our nation’s land-grant university system. The University of Georgia and Fort Valley State University are two of the premier land-grant universities in the country with a direct mandate to help our farmers stay in business and produce food for Georgia, the nation and the world. In the driver’s seatThe land-grant system in Georgia is fully capable of providing needed research to help reduce our farmers’ input costs. We can translate and transfer that information through Cooperative Extension to farming communities when and where it’s most needed. Supporting the land-grant mission of the University of Georgia and Fort Valley State University is more important now than ever. As the world cries out for more food, we need to double world food production by the year 2050. Agriculture is Georgia’s largest industry with a strong infrastructure that is setting us well on the way to becoming the breadbasket of the world. It is clear Georgia will play a major role in feeding the world. With a deepened Port of Savannah and a widened Panama Canal, we are ideally situated to grow the food and reap the economic benefits this great industry can provide. However, we will only compete and be successful if we remain on the cutting edge of research, training of the next generation of students and transferring that information to the farming communities who implement these new practices.last_img read more

Increased rainfall

first_imgWhile the spring rains have helped increase forage and corn yields, farmers are worried the wet plants and ground could lead to more disease and insect problems. According to the Georgia Automated Environmental Monitoring Network, Tifton, Ga., received 39.27 inches of rain from Jan. 1 to June 26. This is more than double last year’s 19.37 inches and almost triple the 13.20 inches recorded in 2011. During that same time period, Atlanta received 33.59 inches, almost twice as much as the 16.95 recorded last year. Also, Watkinsville, located just south of Athens, has 32.10 inches of rain this year, considerably more than the 14.77 inches it recorded last year.“The rain has been great from the standpoint of corn, but a lot of our summer annuals that like a lot more heat, they’ve been a little slower to get growing,” said John Bernard, a University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences professor of animal and dairy science on the Tifton campus. “Fortunately, we’ve had rain that’s kept everything green. The cooler spring kept some of the winter annuals from growing longer and in greater quantity than we’ve had in the past.”Heavy rain in April and May is uncommon for farmers around the state. In those two months this year, Tifton recorded 7.06 inches, up from last year’s 4.69 and the 1.61 mark in 2011. The rain showers haven’t stopped this month, either, with this month’s mark reaching 10.31 inches, more than the entire month in 2010-12 combined. Atlanta’s rain totals of 17.84 inches from April 1-June 26 is more than its totals during those three months in ’10-’12 combined.“We’ve had a lot of dry years, a lot of droughts where we’ve worried about forages,” Bernard said. “This year we’ve got a good bit of rain where we’re getting a lot of forages grown. The challenge is going to be trying to get it put up on a timely basis.”Bernard says farmers are glad their animals have plenty of grass to eat but have to “keep it under control and grazed at the right levels.”Other obstacles in dealing with increased rainfall include disease management and preserving quality, he said. “There can be more disease because the forages are going to stay wetter,” Bernard said. “Some insects may come on in a little quicker. The other thing is preserving quality. When you have good weather like this, you’ve got plenty of rain and the forage is growing good, it tends to put down more fiber and lignin, so digestibility isn’t quite as good as in a dry year.”Bernard recommends farmers cut their forages “a little quicker” than they normally would to maintain the quality.Adjusting to unpredictable rainfall hasn’t been producers’ only obstacle this year. As Bernard pointed out during last week’s Corn Silage and Forage Field Day at the Tifton campus, high feed cost continues to be an issue.“It has put a squeeze on because the feed we have to buy to supplement our forages has gone up tremendously,” Bernard said. “Although milk and beef prices have been very good, it’s cut those margins down significantly.”For more information on UGA Animal and Dairy Science programs, go to read more

Colombia’s ELN Rebels Step Up Attacks As Peace Talks Continue in Cuba

first_imgBy Dialogo April 22, 2013 MEDELLÍN, Colombia — Frozen out of peace talks underway in Cuba, Colombia’s second largest guerrilla group has made headlines with high-profile kidnappings and attacks. So far this year, the National Liberation Army [Ejercito de Liberación Nacional, or ELN] has abducted and released two German retirees. It has repeatedly blown up the vital Caño Limon pipeline that carries 70,000 barrels a day of crude oil for export, and continues to hold a Canadian citizen it kidnapped from a mining concern. These acts, analysts say, are ELN’s way of pressuring the Colombian government into letting it take part in ongoing peace talks with the larger and stronger Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia [Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia, or FARC]. The group has repeatedly sought to join the negotiations, which began last November, but has been rebuffed by President Juan Manuel Santos. When uninvited ELN delegates arrived in Havana, they were immediately turned away. In response, the ELN has increased its attacks against security forces and major infrastructure sites. According to a Bogotá-based conflict-monitoring agency, ELN has averaged about seven attacks per month since December, up from two per month the previous year. “I believe they are actions to call attention to themselves, to give the idea that they still exist,” said Camilo González Posso, director of the Institute of Studies for Development and Peace (INDEPAZ) in Bogotá. Despite their similarities, ELN and FARC take different paths The ELN and FARC began fighting parallel wars against the state in the mid-1960s. Though both espoused Marxist ideologies, the FARC recruited mainly peasants and maintained a strict military structure, emulating Soviet revolutionaries. The ELN, by contrast, drew support from diverse groups: oil workers, university professors and most notably priests steeped in liberation theology, a militant Catholic movement. Though the ELN nearly disappeared in the 1970s, it later recovered by drawing revenues through the extortion of oil companies around its operational base of Arauca, near Colombia’s border with Venezuela. It later financed its activities through drug trafficking, a practice its early leaders had denounced. The group reached its peak in the mid-1990s with nearly 8,000 fighters. But analysts say it has since declined steadily to a disorganized force of 2,500 — as a result of increased pressure from Colombia’s armed forces and frequent battles with the 9,000-strong FARC for control of drug-trafficking territories. “The ELN has come to lose its capacity for military action in the zones where they are found,” said Alfredo Rangel, director of the Security and Democracy Foundation, a Bogotá think tank. “They don’t have the ability to increase in a substantial manner their attacks against the armed forces and the citizens of Colombia.” ELN leaders demand renegotiation of oil, mineral rights Bogotá is betting it can afford to ignore a weakened ELN, which is why Santos and other Colombian officials are content to keep it sidelined during the closed-door peace negotiations with the FARC. Moreover, officials fear that ELN’s inclusion would complicate the five-point agenda that the government and FARC have established. Leaders of the ELN demand a public discussion that includes mining and oil rights — issues not covered in the current talks. The ELN wants profits from these resources available to more citizens, while the FARC has long focused on agrarian reform. The ELN “would want to renegotiate the terms of the energy contracts,” González said. “But that is something that would have a high cost politically for the government.” The ELN has sought peace before, engaging in eight rounds of talks with the government between 2004 and 2007. The talks failed due to a lack of will on both sides to agree to a final peace plan. “I believe the government should do with the ELN what they did not do with the FARC,” said Rangel, “and demand as a prerequisite to initiate conversations of peace that the ELN suspend all types of violent action.” Analysts dispute government’s tactic of ignoring ELN The government’s gambit to dismiss the ELN could be dangerous and costly, said González of INDEPAZ. “They are a small force, but they could sabotage what the government has earned with the FARC.” González also warned that FARC guerrillas dissatisfied with the peace talks could decamp for the ELN, reinforcing it greatly. Other analysts disagreed, saying that it was rare for guerrillas to pass from one group to the other. John Marulanda, a Bogotá-based security expert who advises multinational companies, said that ELN leaders such as commander Nicolas Rodríguez — better known as “Gabino” — have only two options: “stay in the mountains waiting for a bomb to land on them, or negotiate to be able to save face.” ELN said to be reviving poppy cultivation The trouble, he said, is that apart from its leaders, the ELN’s rank-and-file members resemble drug trafficking gangs more than an ideologically driven guerrilla force. “This new generation of guerrillas, the ones that are at the base of the conflict,” Marulanda said, “are young men who don’t eat up the theories of Marxism.” Politically, he said, the younger members don’t have clear ideals. “What they have clear is that they can have a nice gun, a nice truck or Humvee and they can get the best girls in these towns. That is similar to the members at the bases of the [drug] cartels.” The ELN’s traditional strongholds on the borders of both Ecuador and Venezuela have proven to be valuable in the movement of cocaine. More recently, some of the group’s units have moved into established coca-growing regions on the Panamanian border and in the Colombian interior departments of Antioquia and Cauca. “Some say they are also reviving the cultivation of poppy. These cultivations that they are reviving in Cauca are being cared for and managed by cells of the ELN,” said Marulanda. The new generation of ELN guerrillas maintains its old motto and marks — including its menacing red and black balaclavas — but little else, he said. “The blowing up of pipelines, the car bombs, the kidnappings,” Marulanda said, “all this is so they can maintain their traditional image as a guerrilla group. But what they are is a criminal gang.”last_img read more

Making the world a more predictable place: Which CECL model is best for your credit union?

first_imgCurrent Expected Credit Loss, or CECL, is an important upcoming accounting requirement that requires financial institutions to attempt to predict the expected losses on loans and other debt securities over the entire life of the loan. Large retailing banks and credit unions of all sizes can benefit from an accurate CECL model as both entities provide much of the same services to their customers and members, respectively.The two main metrics you have to consider when choosing the right CECL model should be accuracy and procyclicality. If a loss model lacks accuracy and consistency, what’s the point of spending all that time, money, and effort in a meaningless implementation? A good CECL model will be adequately equipped to better track credit losses. There is a strong correlation between the credit cycle and the economic cycle. Models that account for implied volatility better estimate the timings and severity of economic recessions and manage to do so in a timely manner.In the webinar, “Which CECL Model Should You Use”, Dr. Joseph Breeden, Chief Scientist and COO, at Deep Future Analytics and Prescient Models LLC, talks about the various types of CECL models. He clarifies the key differences between simple “spreadsheet” models and more advanced statistical models and how they can directly benefit credit unions with improved predictability. ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr continue reading »last_img read more

Woman Killed in Franklin Square Crash

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York An 85-year-old woman died after her car was involved in a crash with another car in Franklin Square over the weekend.Nassau County police said the woman was driving a Chevrolet Cobalt southbound on Franklin Avenue when she crashed into a northbound Infiniti G37 while making a left turn onto Oaks Drive at 2:41 p.m. Sunday.The woman, whose identity wasn’t immediately released, was taken to a local hospital, where she was pronounced dead shortly later.The 25-year-old man who was driving the other car was hospitalized for treatment of a broken leg.Homicide Squad detectives impounded the vehicles and are continuing the investigation, which they said does not appear to be criminal.last_img read more

Letting activity takes a downturn in the City

first_imgTo access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week. Would you like to read more?Register for free to finish this article.Sign up now for the following benefits:Four FREE articles of your choice per monthBreaking news, comment and analysis from industry experts as it happensChoose from our portfolio of email newsletterslast_img

BRI to pay Rp 20.6 trillion in dividends

first_imgState-owned Bank Rakyat Indonesia (BRI), the nation’s most profitable lender, announced on Tuesday a plan to distribute Rp 20.6 trillion (US$ 1.5 billion) in dividends to its shareholders.The dividends are equal to 60 percent of the bank’s profits of Rp 34.4 trillion, higher than last year’s dividend payout ratio of 50 percent. This means that the value of the dividend of each share will be Rp 168.1, 27.2 percent higher than last year’s dividend of Rp 132.2 per share.BRI, the biggest state bank by market value, also recorded a 6.1 percent yoy increase in earnings per share (EPS) in 2019 of Rp 279 compared with the 2018 EPS of Rp 263. BRI president director Soenarso said on Tuesday that the government, which holds a 56.75 percent stake in BRI, would receive a total of Rp 11.7 trillion of the dividend.“The remaining 40 percent of our profits will be used as retained earnings,” he said during a press briefing after the annual general shareholders’ meeting in Jakarta.BRI’s profits of Rp 34.4 trillion were the lowest in two years as lending growth slowed and the bank recorded a significant rise in bad loans last year, against the backdrop of the global and domestic economic slowdown.Lending grew 8.44 percent yoy in 2019 to Rp 908.88 trillion versus 14 percent yoy in 2018. Net interest income grew 5.2 percent to Rp 81.7 trillion in 2019, slower than the 6.35 percent in 2018. Bad loans as indicated by the non-performing loans (NPL) ratio rose to 2.8 percent last year from 2.27 percent in 2018. Read also: BRI profits slumps as bad credit rises in 2019center_img The shareholders meeting also agreed to appoint Deputy State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs) Minister Kartika “Tiko” Wirjoatmodjo as the bank’s new president commissioner, replacing Andrinof A. Chaniago.It also appointed University of Indonesia (UI) rector and renowned economist Ari Kuncoro as the bank’s deputy president commissioner, who will also act as an independent commissioner, replacing Wahyu Kuncoro.The bank also made changes to its board of directors as it appointed Wisto Prihadi as the bank’s compliance director. The position was previously held by Azizatun Azhimah.SOE Minister Erick Thohir said last week that the ministry would shake up three state banks during their respective shareholders’ meetings that will take place this week, namely BRI, Bank Mandiri and Bank Negara Indonesia (BNI).”It’s normal as long as we can see someone who has great expertise,” Erick said, brushing off concerns about an “overhaul” of state enterprises.Bank Mandiri’s shareholders’ meeting will take place today (Wednesday) and BNI’s on Thursday.Read also: Erick Thohir to shake up executives at state lendersShares in BRI, traded under the code BBRI, closed at Rp 4,400 apiece on Tuesday, down 1.57 percent from the previous trading day. The stocks have risen 12.5 percent in the past year, easily outperforming the broader benchmark Jakarta Composite Index’s (JCI) 9 percent drop.Topics :last_img read more