Archive for the ‘National Australia Bank’ Category
Brad Pitt gave Angelina Jolie breath mints for Valentine’s Day.
The stunning Angelina Jolie received breath mints for Valentine’s Day from Brad Pitt, her man of eight years, according to Us Weekly.
It wasn’t just an Altoid or a Tic-Tac, though. Jolie was allegedly presented with an Eatwhatever – a breath-freshening product that includes a swallowable gel cap and a mint to suck on. It’s also vegan, gluten-free and sugar-free.
The gift was intended as a loving joke because “he always teases her that she has bad breath,” a source told the magazine.
“It’s a joke gift,” the source insisted. “He’ll also get her something more serious.”Hopefully he came up with something good for lovers’ holiday — Jolie has a pretty impressive track record of presents to her beau.
In 2011, she reportedly showered her fiancé/father of their six children with gifts like a diamond pendant worth six-figures engraved with a microscopic love note. For Pitt’s birthday/Christmas gift last year, he was reportedly surprised with an actual California waterfall where they plan to build a house above. For Valentine’s 2010, the “Fight Club” star reportedly received helicopter and flying lessons that totaled $1.6 million.
The next part — a structured, timed event — takes place in a room with small tables. All contestants have a number and two forms — one to turn in and one on which to take notes to keep. Each woman stays put at an assigned table.
The room grows quieter as the mood changes to “down to business.” After brief instructions from the organizer, the games begin. This was the only time I felt awkward and nervous, but only briefly. Once the actual speed dating begins, men and women talk for five minutes each. It’s a frenzy of questions, answers and note-taking. (No. 5 had black hair and a green sweater. No. 6 likes to jog. No. 9 is a Cubs fan).
Granted, this is done not so much to determine long-term compatibility, but to remember who is who when it is all over.The energy level is high, and laughter abounds.
During half-time, the women chat as they wait in line to use the ladies’ room. We begin to compare notes. “That doctor, No. 8, named John was cute.” “Doctor? He told me he is a lawyer.”One can only imagine what is being said in the men’s room. It occurs to me that even if I do not meet the love of my life, I will probably make some new friends.
As the event resumes, every time the bell sounds, the men stand in unison and move one table down. By the time number 15 sits down my head is spinning.When it is all over, the organizer collects all the “report cards.” If a woman and a man both circled “let’s talk” beside each other’s number, it’s a match. Each will get the other’s email address the next day.
At the end of your individual list, you will see the names of those who “yessed” you but whom you “no thanked.” They will not get your contact information, but you have the opportunity to contact them if you so choose.After the speedy event, it is back to old-fashioned dating with phone calls, emails, texts and conversations.Dinner and a movie, anyone?
Why online dating services are like financial markets (and not just because you might get lucky).
It is Valentine’s Day, an occasion for romance, for the celebration of the magical connection two people share when Cupid’s arrow strikes and true love blossoms.
But this is Wonkblog, and we won’t have any of that. Instead, we will explain a little bit about the economics of love—and specifically, what dating has in common with financial transactions.Think of it this way. In a dating marketplace, everyone is trying to get the best match they can find. Somehow, as millions of people each pursue their own best interest, mutually beneficial arrangements result. It is not unlike when buyers and sellers, each pursuing their best interest, come together in a marketplace.
Online dating is for relationships what modern, electronic financial markets are for people trading stocks or bonds. Those looking to buy and sell financial assets once crowded onto the streets of Lower Manhattan or the City of London, all coming to one place to engage in trade. Those are the equivalent of the bars that singles traditionally go to meet other singles.
But both those markets are awfully inefficient. When stock or bond traders are trying to do business in person, it’s hard to be sure that they have canvassed all the potential buyers and sellers to get a good deal—and there might be an even better deal lurking in some other market in another city. Similarly in a crowded bar no one can meet all their potential dates to ensure that they connect with the one who is the best match. And a bar can only hold a few hundred people; there might be thousands of potential dates out there who just don’t much like loud music and meat-market establishments.
In that sense, online dating services bring the same thing to the market for relationships that modern, electronic trading platforms bring to the financial markets: In a word, liquidity.
In a financial context, liquidity is simply the knowledge that there are always many buyers and sellers that you are likely to trade with at a reasonable price. Want to buy 10,000 shares of General Electric stock? On the New York Stock Exchange you can always be confident that there is a seller at the ready. Want to sell 1,000 options betting on a drop in the price of frozen orange juice? On the Chicago Mercantile Exchange you can always do so.
2012 Olympics: Australia, Japan Criticized For Olympian Gender Discrimination
Australia — Men up front, women in the back.
Not so fast, Olympians.Sports governing bodies from Japan and Australia are being skewered following complaints that male Olympic athletes flew business class to the London Games, while the women sat in the cheap seats.
Japan’s world champion women’s football team took exception to flying economy while their male counterparts sat in business en route to the games.
“It should have been the other way around,” Japanese soccer star Homare Sawa, the 2011 FIFA women’s world player of the year, said after arriving in Paris after the 13-hour flight, with just the short hop to London left. “Even just in terms of age we are senior.”
The Japan Football Association said the men’s under-23 Olympic team members flew in business class because they are professionals. The women, however, are likely be the bigger draw at the games. Only months after the devastating earthquake and tsunami hit Japan last year, they brought a sliver of joy to their country by winning their first World Cup title.
The Australian women’s basketball team has also been more successful than the men, earning the silver medal at each of the last three Olympics.
On Friday, Basketball Australia said it would make sure the flight flap doesn’t happen again.”(We will) review our Olympic travel policy with the goal of ensuring there is equity between travel arrangements for the men’s and women’s teams attending future Olympics,” the basketball governing body said in a statement.
The United States’ business of National Australia Bank , Greater Western Bank, has acquired the First Federal Savings Bank in a $39.5 million deal. Observers say the purchase, while not materially significant, provides a stark reflection on NAB’s strategy in North America as opposed to its operations in the United Kingdom. Earlier this year, the lender said Greater Western, which added $90 million to the bank’s profit last year, was posting “good organic loan growth and remained fully deposit funded”. Page 19.
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The Reserve Bank of Australia’s latest quarterly communiqué has supported claims from major lenders that their cost of funding is on the rise. In its report, the central bank said the increases “reflects strong competition for deposits, particularly term deposits, and higher spreads on wholesale debt reflecting an increase in investors’ concerns about the global banking industry”. Page 19.
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Telstra yesterday announced that it had raised $1.23 billion in 10-year bonds as part of its standard debt refinancing scheme, only a week after the company received its first payment from the Federal Government under its $11 billion agreement with NBN Co. The telecommunications giant has approximately $2.25 billion in debt maturing this year. Page 20.