JNTO Sydney welcomes new director

first_imgJNTO Sydney welcomes new directorJapan National Tourism Organization (JNTO) Sydney Office has welcomed a new Executive Director to its team, with Ms Mariko Tatsumi taking over from former Executive Director Mr Hiroshi Kuwamoto.Ms Tatsumi, who hails from JNTO’s head office in Japan, has moved from Tokyo to Australia to take up what is her second overseas posting.Ms Tatsumi said she is delighted to be promoting her country to the Australian market as Mr Kuwamoto’s successor: “I’m very pleased to have the opportunity to show Australians what a fantastic destination Japan is.”“Over the past years, JNTO Sydney office has received the cooperation and support of the travel industry and media in promoting Japan. 2014 saw a record number of Australians visit Japan (302,656, a 24% increase from 2013). This will undoubtedly increase in the coming years as more and more Australians discover what makes Japan extraordinary. The lead-up to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics is a particularly exciting time,” she said.“The ski and cherry blossom seasons are the most popular times to visit Japan, but I would like Australians to also experience other aspects of Japan such as the autumn leaves, outdoor activities and summer festivals. During my time in Australia, I intend to continue the various advertising and media projects, seminars and other marketing activities that JNTO Sydney has been focusing on,” explained Ms Tatsumi. Japan National Tourism OrganisationSource = JNTO – Sydneylast_img read more

Exhibitors are the winners at Luxperience in 2016

first_imgSource = Luxperience Image via Oneill Photographics.Luxperience is celebrating its fifth year anniversary by offering potential exhibitors with significant savings for a strictly limited time whilst also introducing the NEW ‘Deluxe Suite’ for its 2016 event being held at the Australian Technology Park, Sydney from 18 to 21 September.Aspiring and current attendees looking to enhance their space can enjoy a Deluxe Suite with six square metres of room at an introductory rate of AU$8670* giving them additional space to enhance their suite via a number of suite upgrades.Currently savings are also guaranteed when reserving the traditional exhibitor options and each exhibiting option provides the following inclusions:access to leading travel designers whose clientele are ultra-high nett worth individuals;access to senior event designers and producers from across the globe;a guaranteed equal mix of local and international buyers, handpicked through a stringent qualifying process;enhanced networking opportunities throughout the three day event;exposure to senior travel and consumer journalists;invitation to the inspirational and re-engineered Thought Leaders Forum – certain to be a stellar event on innovation and design.Image via Oneill Photographics.“We are excited to be celebrating our fifth year anniversary with the globe’s leaders in luxury and high-end experiential events,” says Eric Lewanavanua, Luxperience Director of Sales & Partner Alliances.“True to our unique offering and nature, we are welcoming new buyers from traditional and emerging markets with over 50 per cent being first-timers to Luxperience 2016.“Events by Luxperience is also making a welcomed return after the overwhelming success of its introduction at last year’s event. Providing an additional dimension for luxury and high end experiences, during our three-day trade show, Events by Luxperience allows MICE suppliers enhanced opportunities for business with a cross-section of elite buyers.“Corporate event decision makers will be invited to attend the 2016 event to connect with a select group of high profile leading event providers from Australia and the Globe,” says Lewanavanua.Luxperience, happening in Sydney 18-21 September, is an invitation-only event dedicated to the high-end inspirational travel & events sector and the only such event in the southern hemisphere.*Conditions apply:inclusive of GST;all special rates are available from 11 January 2016 to 13 April 2016;50 per cent deposit is required within 14 days of registration;final payment required by 01 May 2016. Book herelast_img read more

THAI extends free Bangkok stopover

first_img Amazing Thailanddiscover more here THAI – smooth as silklearn more about your FREE Bangkok stopover here THAI extends FREE Bangkok stopover www.thaiairways.com.auTHAI extends FREE Bangkok stopoverThe recent promotion offered by THAI International Airways and Tourism Authority of Thailand has been such an overwhelming success, the multi award winning carrier has extended the promotion through to the end of July 2016 with travel being completed by 30 September 2016.Passengers traveling on THAI from Australia to Japan, Korea, China, Hong Kong or the Philippines are being provided with a complimentary stay at the Dust Thani Bangkok, one of Bangkok’s most luxurious and well established hotels. General Manager, Perth for THAI, Ms Patsamon Singha-Udom spoke with ETB Travel News and said that the promotion had been so successful that the airline chose to extend the promotion with ticketing completed by the end of July 2016. Ms Singha-Udom went on to say that the promotion allowed everyone to win, for example, we have been able to attract many first time travellers to our flights from Australia, the travel agents have something special to sell their clients, the wholesalers have the opportunity of selling additional accommodation in Thailand and the consumer has the opportunity to fly a quality multi award winning airline, stay in one of Bangkok’s finest and well located hotels all whilst experiencing the quality of the destination, Thailand she said. Thailand is not just about beaches and shopping Ms Singha-Udom said, we have a quality international destination which offers a diversified product offering catering for such a broad section of travellers, including Health & Beauty, Golf, Culture, unique Sightseeing, Nightlife & Entertainment and some of the best Shopping in the world. Especially during the Thailand Grand Sale which is now on and runs through to 15 August of this year she said. Bangkok is also ideally located geographically within Asia and represents an ideal gateway to other exciting Asian cities plus it is the perfect stopover point for long haul travellers to Europe, Ms Singha-Udom went on to say.It would appear that the FREE Stopover program offered by THAI and Tourism Authority of Thailand has been so successful that other carriers are now trying to offer similar promotions in their home ports in order to compete. The main advantage to THAI is that Bangkok is such a well located transit or stopover port to other cities in Asia and enroute to Europe, it will be difficult to achieve similar outstanding success.Download the FREE stopover in Bangkok flyer by clicking here:  THAI extends FREE stopover in Bangkokcenter_img Source = THAI International Airwayslast_img read more

Taveuni Palms Resort Fiji wins World Luxury Hotel Award

first_imgSource = Taveuni Palms Resort Taveuni Palms Resort, FijiTaveuni Palms Resort, Fiji win’s World Luxury Hotel AwardThe opulent Taveuni Palms Resort, Fiji Islands has won best Luxury Private Pool Villa at the World Luxury Hotel Awards held at the St Regis in Doha. This is the third international award the resort has won in October.The World Luxury Hotel Awards is the pinnacle of recognition of accomplishment by a hotel in the luxury hospitality industry. The awards are voted for by the public and reward luxury hotels, their world class facilities and service excellence provided to guests.“We are delighted to have won this prestigious award again.  From 5-star accommodation to 5-star dining with your personal chef, the resorts number one priority is to provide an exceptional experience for all our guests in a private and luxurious setting.” Says Colleen O’Neill, Owner, Taveuni Palms Resort, Fiji.“Winning this award recognises our team’s constant hard work and that our high standards are being appreciated by our guests.” Continues Mrs O’Neill.Always acknowledged as one of the leading luxury resorts in the industry, this award is the third award Taveuni Palms has won in the past month, also winning the “Best Resort and Hotel in Fiji” at the 2016 Seven Stars Luxury Hospitality and Lifestyle Awards (SSLHLA) and the “Australasia’s Leading Luxury Boutique Island Resort” at the 23rd annual World Travel Awards™.Previously, Taveuni Palms Resort has won Australasia’s Leading Boutique Island Resort at the World Luxury Hotel Awards in 2012, 2011 and 2010, won the SSLHLA in 2013 and won the World Travel Awards for the past 6 consecutive years in a range of categories. The resort has also consistently won TripAdvisor People’s Choice awards.The five stars Taveuni Palms Resort, situated on Taveuni Island, Fiji is the ultimate in boutique luxury. Set amongst swaying coconut palms, on the edge of a golden sandy beach and surrounded by Fiji’s crystal clear blue waters, the resort is a private hideaway perfect for honeymooners, weddings or that vacation of a lifetime.Taveuni Palms has two luxury villas, the Beach Villa and Horizon Spa Villa.The Beach Villa features two bedrooms and two bathrooms, while the Horizon Spa Villa features two bedrooms and two bathrooms in the main villa and one bedroom and one bathroom in a separate air-conditioned bure. The villa also features a luxury Spa Pool.Both villa’s are on their own private acre of absolute beachfront and boasts their own private pool, beach and personal staff of seven. Villa’s are air-conditioned and include super king beds, Pure Fiji toiletries, bathrobes, outdoor honeymoon showers, full entertainment centre (TV, DVD, iPod and portable Bose speakers), library of DVD’s, books, board games, large outdoor furnished deck, daybed sofas and hammocks.Dining at the resort is an experience in itself with each villa featuring five special private dining locations. Villa’s come with a personal chef who designs guest’s breakfast, lunch and four course dinner menus based on their likes and dislikes. Whatever the menu, guests will be taken on a mouth-watering culinary journey through the South Pacific.From the time guests wake there is always something magical to experience. From hiking to waterfalls, coastal walks, horseback riding, pearl farm tours, snorkelling, deep sea fishing to island beach picnic’s, dolphin watching, paddle boarding, kayaking or diving trips to famous world class sites. Be part of traditional Fijian cultural ceremonies or try a cooking lesson with each villa’s personal chef.From the privacy of each magnificent villa, Taveuni Palms offers a variety of relaxing spa treatments, using only the finest “Pure Fiji” products and designed to rejuvenate the mind, body and soul. Taveuni Palms Resortfor information, visitlast_img read more

AccorHotels adds new Pullman Hotel in New Zealand

first_imgAccorHotels adds new Pullman Hotel in New ZealandNew Zealand’s largest hotel operator, AccorHotels has announced that a new 5-star Pullman hotel will open in Rotorua in late 2018/early 2019. It will be the first internationally-branded 5-star hotel to open in the city, and is part of the largest and fastest-growing 5-star hotel brand in the Pacific region.Pullman Rotorua is currently being developed as a conversion of an existing 9-storey building once used as a government building in the central business district on Arawa Street.The 130-room hotel will boast panoramic views of the city and lake area and feature a sophisticated Executive Lounge (a hallmark of every Pullman hotel), business lounge, chill-out lounge, restaurant and bar, gymnasium, car parking as well as five meeting rooms catering for conference and events.Members of AccorHotels’ free loyalty program Le Club AccorHotels will also be able to earn points for stays at Pullman Rotorua and access rewards and benefits which include free wifi, room upgrades and welcome drinks.Pullman Rotorua is expected to be popular with international and domestic business and leisure travellers, due to its exclusive 5-star offering and prime central CBD location and within 500metres from the Rotorua lakefront.Senior Vice President AccorHotels New Zealand Fiji and French Polynesia, Gillian Millar said the Pullman Rotorua hotel will be a significant economic contributor and boost for tourism in New Zealand.“We’re delighted to be opening a new Pullman hotel in New Zealand which will enhance Rotorua’s accommodation offering in the 5-star end of the market,” Gillian said.“Pullman Rotorua will not only offer leisure and business guests a sophisticated accommodation experience but the local economy will also benefit through employment, supplier partnerships and added expenditure that will come with increased visitors to the region,” concluded Gillian.Pullman is part of AccorHotels rapidly expanding international luxury brand portfolio with over 65 Pullman hotels in the Asia Pacific region, and over 100 globally. The new Rotorua hotel will complement AccorHotels’ sister hotels Novotel and ibis Rotorua Lakeside.The construction of the hotel will see the creation of an estimated 300 jobs together with ongoing employment in hospitality. Source = AccorHotelslast_img read more

Be among the first to stay at Discovery Rottnest Island

first_imgBe among the first to stay at Discovery Rottnest IslandBe among the first to stay at Discovery Rottnest IslandThe first new accommodation on Rottnest Island in over 30 years– Discovery Rottnest Island – is now officially open for bookings for stays from 1 March 2019.The highly anticipated new eco resort features 83 fully furnished tents, and brings an exciting new experience to Rottnest Island for locals and interstate and international tourists.Nestled behind the dunes of Pinky Beach and Bathurst Lighthouse the property features three levels of accommodation, connected via boardwalks to the resort pool and restaurant.Pinky’s Beach Club is at the heart of the property and will be serving locally inspired dishes and cocktails to both resort guests, and other visitors to the island.Discovery Rottnest Island Director Tim Crosland said that today is an exciting milestone for the property.“The opening of this property has been hotly anticipated, and today we are revealing more about what will be on offer.”“Rottnest is a special place, and we know accommodation can be hard to secure. This new property adds to the number of rooms available, and offers an experience that hasn’t before been seen on the island,” said Tim.Discovery Rottnest Island is currently recruiting for 70 positions at the new property, ranging from a General Manager to housekeeping staff. The positions available can be found here.Accommodation prices will start at $119 per night in low season for a Standard tent. All tents include ensuites, beds, furnishings, and a private deck. Tent sizes vary for each tent style. All details are available on the website.Discovery Rottnest Island will provide direct access to Pinky Beach and The Basin, Wi-Fi, BBQ areas, a guest laundry service and concierge service.The eco tents are being supplied by Eco Structures Australia, who are currently running a global competition with Glamping Hub, offering one lucky winner the chance to own their own eco tent. More information can be found here.For more information visit https://www.discoveryholidayparks.com.au/discovery-rottnest-island Source = Discovery Rottnest Islandlast_img read more

Cornell study sets latest benchmarks to ensure hotel sustainability

first_imgCornell’s Centre for Hospitality Research has created default sustainability data, thus setting the latest benchmarks for hotel sustainability. The report, ‘Hotel Sustainability Benchmarking Index 2016: Energy, Water, and Carbon’ led by Eric Ricaurte in collaboration with eleven global hotel firms, analyses data provided for 8,880 properties.“By adding new segmentation by climate and hotel type, we have strengthened our industry-centric approach to this effort, given the realization that a practical benchmark must start within specific locations and segments, rather than trying to compare all properties,” said Ricaurte.The results presented in the CHSB2016 Index report will allow users to obtain the range of benchmarks for energy consumption, water consumption, and greenhouse gas emissions for hotels within specific segments and geographic locations.“The travel and tourism sector has an incredible opportunity to drive sustainability around the world. The CHSB benchmark provides hotels the information that they need to know where they stand among their peers, and to apply that information to drive improvements and promote their own efforts to customers,” said Denise Naguib, Vice President, Sustainability and Supplier Diversity, Global Operations, Marriott International.The data for this report was provided by  Diamond Resorts, Hilton Worldwide, Host Hotels & Resorts, Hyatt Hotels Corporation, InterContinental Hotels Group, Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group, Marriott International, Park Hotel Group, Saunders Hotel Group, The Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels, and Wyndham Worldwide.last_img read more

Turkey wins Favourite Country title at the 8th edition of Condé Nast

first_imgTurkey won the award for ‘Favourite Country’ at the eighth edition of Condé Nast Traveller Readers’ Travel Awards. Hosted by Bollywood actress Chitrangada Singh and held in New Delhi, this ceremony saw the attendance of industry leaders, influencers and recognised names from the travel and tourism sector including government bodies.Like every year, the Readers’ Travel Awards were chosen through a readers’ voting process spanning two months scans any nominations and recognises the best in the travel industry across hotels, destinations, airlines, spas, websites, apps, cruise lines and more.The ceremony saw several eminent personalities from the industry like Satyajeet Rajan, Director General, Ministry of Tourism, Government of India; Suman Billa, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Tourism, Government of India; Vijay Kumar Gautam, Principal Secretary, Ministry of Tourism, Government of Maharashtra; Isidora Petropoulou, First Counsellor and Deputy Chief of Mission, Embassy of Greece; Kristin Eva Sigurdardottir, Deputy Chief of Mission, Embassy of Iceland; H.E., Gautam Mukhopadhya, former Ambassador of India to Syria, Afghanistan and Myanmar; H.E. Nengcha Lhouvum, former Ambassador of India to Lebanon and Indonesia; and Nasir Aslam Wani, former Minister of State for Home, Jammu and Kashmir, amongst others who showed up to celebrate the best in business.Divia Thani, Editor, Condé Nast Traveller India said, “Year after year, we have seen the participation and enthusiasm of our Condé Nast Traveller readers’ voter base increase significantly. Our readers form India’s most discerning travellers, the kind that set the travel trends. The Readers’ Travel Awards are a barometer of what the discerning, affluent Indian traveller looks for and appreciates when he or she travels. It also puts into perspective what tourism boards, hotels, airlines and other travel companies should focus on to attract this audience and helps them identify and cater to new trends. For us at Condé Nast Traveller India, it is an honour to announce the results and felicitate the winners in the presence of the creme de la creme of the travel and hospitality industry.”Turkey is a country that occupies a unique geographic position, lying partly in Asia and partly in Europe. With 81 states and 932 cities, Turkey is a nation straddling Eastern Europe and Western Asia with cultural connections to ancient Greek, Persian, Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman empires. From luxurious hotels to food, Turkey is a paradise proposing unforgettable notes to treasure for a lifetime and a gamut of endless memories to take back home.The annual Condé Nast Traveller Readers’ Travel Awards has set the benchmarks in the hospitality and travel industry year on year, since its inception in 1989 in the United States of America.last_img read more

StreetLinks to SCORe with System Update

first_imgStreetLinks to SCORe with System Update Share December 9, 2011 451 Views Just in time for bowl season, “”StreetLinks Lender Solutions””:https://www.streetlinks.com/ has released an updated version of “”SCORe””:https://www.streetlinks.com/products/riskmgmt/SCORe, the company’s appraisal review product. The original incarnation of SCORe was launched in 2010 to provide a solution for the validation of comparable within appraisal documents, and the platform expansion will include the addition of a repurchase and loss warranty with each report.[IMAGE]SCORe was initially created to target a market void in credible, affordable, and fast appraisal review modules, and the newly added capability gives lenders greater confidence in appraisal reports. “”We set out with a simple mission – to challenge the status quo of appraisal review products. Since the 2010 launch, the success and accuracy of SCORe├â┬ó├óÔé¼┼¥├é┬ó has been validated in the marketplace. We are now expanding the access of the product to the entire lending community and adding a comprehensive loan repurchase and loss warranty to every SCORe we deliver,”” noted Steve Haslam, StreetLinks’ CEO.Continuing his commentary, Haslam added, “”Historically, lenders have relied on AVMs or watered down review products completed by people who aren’t even located in the same state. Without local market knowledge and expertise, these products routinely produce errant or inconclusive findings. The reconciliation process creates additional monetary spend and delays – in addition to the risk of making a bad loan with an inferior or inaccurate product.””The USPAP-compliant reviews and ratings for comparables generated by SCORe are brought to completion by an unbiased, proximate, licensed appraiser from the local market being evaluated. Differentiating itself from traditional appraisal review products, SCORe analyzes the accuracy of comparables utilized to establish and confirm its findings.StreetLinks executive vice president, Tom Hurst, said, “”Recent changes in review product offerings within the valuation industry have left some correspondent lenders looking for a better review product and process. The addition of the warranty coverage to SCORe provides lenders with an easy decision on every appraisal and unlike other products on the market, SCORe is available on any appraisal – regardless of where it was originally ordered. For $95 the lenders get an appraisal-quality conclusion with the added security of knowing that, in the unlikely event that a SCORe is errant, our warranty will cover the loss.””StreetLinks is considered a source of comprehensive valuation services and lending technology solutions for banks, lenders, and other mortgage industry businesses. The company’s platforms are currently used by thousands of housing, banking, and mortgage professionals around the U.S.center_img in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicing, Technology Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Company News Investors Lenders & Servicers Processing Service Providers Valuation 2011-12-09 Abby Gregorylast_img read more

CFPB Director Responds to Discrimination Complaints

first_img Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Discrimination House Financial Services Committee Richard Cordray 2014-07-31 Krista Franks Brock Responding to allegations of racial and gender discrimination at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), the bureau’s director, Richard Cordray, appeared before the House Financial Services Committee Wednesday.Cordray said the bureau is working to improve the working environment and review processes for its employees.”Because of the speed with which we tried to build this new agency, we have found that we did not get everything right for our own employees,” Cordray told House members after describing his own sense of urgency to “get things done” amid “tremendous pressure.”About half of all employee grievances filed with CFPB have concerned employee performance reviews, according to Cordray, and the bureau is now overhauling its review process.”Whether the distinction was headquarters versus field, or one part of the bureau versus another, or bargaining unit versus non-bargaining unit employees, or other categories like age and race, we perceived that the review system was creating differential outcomes that indicated the system was unsatisfactory and not working out as intended,” Cordray said during Wednesday’s hearing.He also stated his intention to bring the bureau’s Office of Minority and Women Inclusion into his office, where he can monitor it closely. The office has begun “bureau-wide listening sessions” in which employees discuss their personal experiences at work.While Cordray would not discuss any individual discrimination complaints, he said, “We take each of these allegations very seriously and we will continue to work diligently to resolve any issues through all appropriate channels.”CFPB’s senior enforcement attorney, Angela Martin, told the same House committee earlier this year she is “a victim of discrimination by the bureau” and she has suffered “severe retaliation” since filing a complaint. She further ventured that her experience is “a microcosm of the larger story of what happens to individuals within the bureau when they step forward with complaints of wrongdoing.” July 31, 2014 558 Views in Daily Dose, Featured, Government, Headlines, Newscenter_img CFPB Director Responds to Discrimination Complaints Sharelast_img read more

Survey AgentClient Relationship Key for FirstTime Buyers

first_img in Data, Headlines, Market Studies, News Century 21 Customer Satisfaction First-Time Homebuyers J.D. Power 2014-08-06 Seth Welborn Survey: Agent/Client Relationship Key for First-Time Buyers August 6, 2014 456 Views center_img Share Century 21 gained the highest customer satisfaction rating among real estate brokerages in all four buyer/seller categories, according to the J.D. Power 2014 Home Buyer/Seller Satisfaction Study released Wednesday.The study used four factors to quantify customer satisfaction in both buying and selling: the agent/salesperson, real estate office, closing process, and additional services. For selling, a fifth factor (marketing) was considered. The four categories measured were: first-time buyers, repeat buyers, first-time sellers, and repeat sellers.The customer-agent relationship is most critical in measuring customer satisfaction among buyers, according to the study. With sellers, it is the marketing of the home.”Satisfying first-time buyers is critical for real estate firms to differentiate themselves. It’s up to the agent to build confidence in buyers by educating them and demonstrating a commitment to working in the best interest of the customer,” said Christina Cooley, director in the diversified services industries practice at J.D. Power. “The more seamless the experience, the less overwhelmed customers are likely to be. When agents take the lead, customers are also more likely to appreciate their real estate firm and agent for their expertise and customer focus.”The biggest factor that both buyers and sellers considered when choosing a real estate firm was the firm’s reputation (30 percent for buyers; 35 percent for sellers). Twenty-four percent of buyers chose a firm based on recommendation as opposed to 21 percent of sellers; and 21 percent of buyers picked a firm because of past experience with the agent or salesperson as opposed to 25 percent of sellers.Out of 1,000 possible points, Century 21 posted the following scores in the four segments:First-time home-buyer satisfaction. Century 21’s total of 848 was just enough to beat out Prudential at 846. Century 21 scored high in the agent/salesperson, real estate office, and additional service categories, while Prudential scored high in the closing process.Repeat home-buyer satisfaction. Century 21 scored 852, while Prudential placed second at 847. Century 21’s strong suits were real estate office and closing process, while Prudential scored high in additional services.First-time home-seller satisfaction. Century 21’s score of 833 just beat out RE/MAX, which was second at 831. Century 21 ranked high in the categories of real estate office, closing process, marketing, and additional services; RE/MAX scored highest in real estate office and agent/salesperson.Repeat home-seller satisfaction. Century 21 again topped the list with 836, and Keller Williams (829) ranked second. Century 21’s highest ranking categories were additional services, agent/salesperson, closing process, and marketing; Keller Williams scored high in the real estate office category.Other key findings of the study include: The average listing price of a house was $200,000 in 2014, which remained unchanged from 2013; each home on the market hosted an average of three open houses and took almost eight showings to sell on average; and repeat customers had a higher satisfaction rating than first-time buyers or sellers. Repeat buyers scored, 840 while repeat sellers totaled 821; first-time buyers and sellers totaled 835 and 820, respectively.The J.D. Power 2014 Home Buyer/Seller Satisfaction Study is in its seventh year. This year’s study was fielded between March and May of 2014 and was based on evaluations from customers who either bought or sold a home between March 2013 and April 2014.last_img read more

National MI Announces Changes to Executive Leadership

first_imgNational MI Announces Changes to Executive Leadership in Headlines, News Movers & Shakers National MI 2014-12-09 Tory Barringer NMI Holdings, parent company of National Mortgage Insurance Corporation, announced a shakeup in its executive ranks, starting with the promotion of Jay Sherwood to the role of president.A co-founder of National MI, Sherwood has more than two decades of experience in finance, securities, and investments and has held various leadership positions at the company since its start, including EVP and his current position, CFO. His promotion is effective January 1, 2015.In his new role, Sherwood will be responsible for overseeing National MI’s sales, insurance operations, and information technology functions.”Jay has been a key leader in National MI’s launch and success,” said current company president Bradley Shuster, who will remain on as CEO and chairman of NMI Holdings’ board. “Jay’s promotion to president recognizes the expanded role and responsibility he is assuming. I am confident that Jay will continue to play an instrumental part in the future growth of our company.”Stepping into Sherwood’s role as CFO is new hire Glenn Farrell, who joins the company after spending 33 years at accounting and consulting firm KPMG. Throughout his career there, he served as senior advisor to a wide range of domestic and international clients, from start-ups to Fortune 1000 firms.”Glenn brings invaluable financial management experience and expertise to National MI,” Shuster said. “We are very happy to have him join our leadership team.”center_img Share December 9, 2014 538 Views last_img read more

What is Driving Risk Higher on FirstTime Buyer Loans

first_imgWhat is Driving Risk Higher on First-Time Buyer Loans? With a greater share of agency first-time buyer home loans comes a greater share of risk involved in those loans.The share of Agency first-time buyer loans surged by 18 percent in April up to 58.8 percent, meaning that 58.8 percent of primary owner-occupied home purchase mortgages with a government guarantee in April were first-time buyers, according to AEI’s International Center on Housing Risk. Meanwhile, the Agency First-Time Buyer Mortgage Risk Index (FBMRI) shot up to 15.8 percent in April, a series high and an increase of 0.6 percentage points over-the-year.An Agency FBMRI value of 15.8 percent means that 15.8 percent of these loans would default under economic stress similar to what the country experienced in 2007-08, based on performance of loans originated in 2007.The gap is widening between risk on first-time buyer loans and loans for repeat buyers, according to AEI. The Agency FBMRI was 5.6 percentage points higher than the risk index for repeat buyers in April 2016, which was an increase from 5.4 percent from the previous April.Also according to AEI, 54.2 percent of first-time buyer loans were high risk in April 2016—an increase from 52.6 percent a year earlier.“The gap between first-time buyer and repeat buyer mortgage risk levels now stands at 5.6 percentage points compared to 5.4 and 4.7 percentage points in April 2015 and 2014 respectively,” said Edward Pinto, codirector of the AEI’s International Center on Housing Risk. “The long running seller’s market combined with growing loan leverage and weak income growth for entry-level buyers are artificially pushing up prices, resulting in a pernicious wealth transfer from the buyers to sellers of these homes.”According to AEI, “First-time buyers have accounted for the bulk of the year-over-year rise in the composite National Mortgage Risk Index for home purchase loans since early 2015, reflecting the widening gap between the risk indices for first-time buyers and repeat buyers compared with a year earlier.”Risk layering is largely responsible for the increased riskiness of the first-time buyer mortgages. According to the report, 70 percent of first-time buyer mortgages in April 2016 had a combined loan-to-value (CLTV) ratio of 95 percent or higher and 97 percent had a 30-year term. The combination of slow amortization and little money down will likely result in very little home equity for these buyers for many years, barring substantial home price appreciation.In addition, slightly more than one-fifth of first-time buyer loans in April had a FICO score of below 660, which is the traditional definition of subprime mortgages, and nearly 30 percent of them had total debt-to-income ratios higher than 43 percent—the limit set by the Qualified Mortgage rule.According to AEI, two factors that made repeat buyer mortgage less risky were: a much smaller share of repeat buyer mortgages had a CLTV of 95 percent or higher and a much smaller share had a FICO score below 660. AEI International Center on Housing RIsk First-Time Buyer Loans Mortgage Risk 2016-05-24 Staff Writer Sharecenter_img May 24, 2016 542 Views in Daily Dose, Data, Headlines, Market Studies, Newslast_img read more

The Skytrax Worlds Best LowCost Airline Premium

first_imgThe Skytrax World’s Best Low-Cost Airline Premium Seat, the AirAsia X Premium Flatbed, is on display at the Flight Centre George Street store in Sydney until 19 April 2017.AirAsia X was the first low-cost carrier to introduce flatbed seats, which have standard business class specifications of 20” width, 60” pitch and stretch out to 77” in full recline position.The seat also features universal power sockets, adjustable headrests and built-in personal utilities such as tray table, drink holder, reading light and privacy screen.Guests travelling on Premium Flatbeds can also enjoy premium complimentary products and services, including priority check-in, priority boarding, priority baggage, 40kg baggage allowance, complimentary meal, pillow and duvet, and access to the AirAsia Premium Red Lounge at KLIA2 (Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2). AirAsia XFlight CentrePremium Flatbedlast_img read more

CambodiaCosta RicaG AdventuresindiaUSA

first_imgCambodiaCosta RicaG AdventuresindiaUSA G Adventures has released special offers of up to 25% off on eligible departures across select worldwide tours, including the USA, India, Costa Rica and the British Virgin Islands, during its ‘Winter Escape’ campaign. “The Winter Escape campaign is designed to enable travellers to book a last minute – and often much needed – holiday to not only seek the sunshine and warmth, but to relax and break up the working year,” says Adrian Piotto, Managing Director for G Adventures’ Australia and New Zealand.Discounted offerings include:• India River Cruise – Ganges Experience – Experience India from the waters of Ganges River aboard a classic riverboat in Farakka and spend eight days sailing to picturesque local villages to explore stunning temples, historic battlegrounds, tranquil gardens, and the Hazarduari Palace. Sale price is $1150, for select departures (save $1149)• Costa Rica Quest – This action-packed tour of Costa Rica’s highlights is perfect for the adventurer with limited time who wants to explore the region’s diversity. Get the adrenaline pumping, follow a trail to the base of a waterfall, melt away in thermal springs or relax on a beach — G Adventures’ CEOs will help travellers find the secluded spots only the locals know. Sale price $959, for select departures (save $240)• Highlights of the Deep South (USA) – This nine-day trip pulls back the curtain on this unique part of the country by way of Charleston, Atlanta, Savannah, Memphis,< ?strong> and other hotspots, while serving up heaping helpings of colonial estates, Cajun cuisine, country music, whiskey, and fun. Sale price is $1759, for select departures (save $440)• Cambodia Experience – This nine-day trip is ideal for the traveller who is short on time but wants to soak up the colours, culture, and history of this incredible region. Its natural beauty, coupled with tumultuous history, make Cambodia a truly fascinating destination. Sale price is $1034, for select departures (save $115)Terms and conditions apply.last_img read more

What an MLB source said about the Dbacks trade h

first_img What an MLB source said about the D-backs’ trade haul for Greinke Vassallo played two season with the Wildcats, starting 25consecutive games at linebacker. After his freshmanseason at Nevada and his sophomore season at Sierra(Rocklin, Calif.) Community College, Vassallo registered172 total tackles, 13 tackles for loss and three sacks.Other players signed by the Cardinals are:Stanley Arukwe, WR, Troy;Broderick Binns, DE, Iowa;Laron Byrd, WR, Miami;Braeden Clayson, G, Idaho;Jared Crank, FB, Purdue;Blake DeChristopher, OL, Virginia Tech;Tevita Finau, DL, Utah;Blake Gideon, S, Texas;Tre Gray, WR, Richmond;Marcus McGraw, LB, Houston;Zack Nash, DL, Sacramento State;James Nixon, CB, California (PA);Conrad Obi, DT, Colorado;Scott Wedige, OL, Northern Illinois;Marc Wilson, WR, St. Anselm D-backs president Derrick Hall: Franchise ‘still focused on Arizona’ 0 Comments   Share   Top Stories center_img Nevada officials reach out to D-backs on potential relocation After adding seven players to their roster via the NFLDraft, the Arizona Cardinals have inked seventeenundraftedrookies to contracts.Among the seventeen are former ASU linebacker Colin Parkerand Arizona linebacker Paul Vassallo.Parker led the Sun Devils defense in 2011 with 75 totaltackles and earned honorable mention All-Pac-12 honors.The 6-foot-1, 223-pound Hamilton High grad finished hisASU career with 140 total tackles in 44 games (18 starts). Cardinals expect improving Murphy to contribute right awaylast_img read more


first_img Comments   Share   Top Stories The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo The Arizona Cardinals (11-3) host the Seattle Seahawks (10-4) Sunday night, Dec. 21 at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale.Below is the official Week 16 injury report for both teams. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impactlast_img read more

Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires

first_img Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Top Stories Comments   Share   The most common projection for Arizona at number 24 is Todd Gurley from Georgia, who showed up on 10 of 32 April mock drafts. Gurley ran for 911 yards last season at Georgia, but had his junior campaign cut short by a NCAA infractions suspension and a torn ACL suffered in November in a win over Auburn. He finished his career with 3,285 yards and 36 touchdowns on 510 carries.Melvin Gordon of Wisconsin, who ran for 2,586 yards as a junior in 2014, appears on eight mocks, including the latest projections by CBS Sports’ Pete Prisco, SI’s Peter King and Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio.A third running back, Jay Ajayi of Boise State, appears on the mock of CBS Sports’ Will Brinson, who has both Gurley and Gordon off the board by the time the Cardinals are on the clock.Kentucky edge rusher Bud Dupree, and Florida State interior offensive lineman Cam Erving each show up on two mock drafts linked to the Cardinals, while LSU cornerback Jalen Collins, Florida State defensive lineman Eddie Goldman and Missouri pass rusher Shane Ray appear twice.The Arizona Sports Mock Draft Tracker is updated daily. Check it often to keep tabs on all the latest projections as we inch closer to the NFL Draft. The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelocenter_img Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact The NFL Draft in Chicago is a little more than two weeks away and the vast majority of experts still have the Arizona Cardinals taking a running back with the 24th overall selection of the first round.The Adrian Peterson trade talk — at least involving Arizona — has cooled, but running back remains a need for Bruce Arians’ team heading into 2015.With an abundance of running backs available, almost 66 percent of the mock drafts tracked by Arizona Sports this month have the Cardinals going that way on April 30. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and sellinglast_img read more

Stepfan Taylor RB Knee DNP Limited Limited Questio

first_imgStepfan TaylorRBKneeDNPLimitedLimitedQuestionable Comments   Share   Daily Practice Designations:DNP-Did Not ParticipateLimited-Limited Participation (Less than 100% of normal repetitions)Full-Full Participation (100% of normal repetitions)Game Status Designations:Out-Will not playDoubtful-Unlikely to playQuestionable-Uncertain if player will play Trey FlowersDLShoulderLimitedLimitedLimitedQuestionable Shaq MasonGHandLimitedLimitedLimitedQuestionable Shea McClellinLBShoulderLimitedLimitedLimitedQuestionable Chris HoganWRShoulderFullFullFullQuestionable Jonathan CooperGFootLimitedLimitedLimitedQuestionable The Arizona Cardinals host the New England Patriots for a Week 1 matchup at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale.Here is the official NFL injury report for Sunday’s game. Alex OkaforLBBicepsFullFullFull— Top Stories Rob GronkowskiTEHamstringLimitedLimitedLimitedQuestionable Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and sellingcenter_img PlayerPositionInjuryWednesdayThursdayFridayGame Status Malcolm MitchellWRElbowLimitedLimitedLimitedQuestionable Justin BethelCBFootLimitedLimitedLimitedQuestionable Frostee RuckerDTNeckLimitedLimitedFull— Nate SolderTHamstringLimitedLimitedLimitedQuestionable The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo PlayerPositionInjuryWednesdayThursdayFridayGame Status Lamar LouisLBKneeDNPLimitedLimitedQuestionable Kareem MartinLBKneeDNPDNPDNPOut Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impactlast_img read more

The weekend wound up being a little bleak for Falc

first_imgThe weekend wound up being a little bleak for Falcons fans, given that most of the teams they’re worried about in the playoff hunt won, as did the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. That’s why we needed some good news, and by golly, we just got some.• Quinn pleased with Falcons’ regard for the football (Atlantafalcons.com)With Atlanta’s bye coming later in the season, Quinn had no shortage of tape to watch, giving himself an opportunity to get down to the nitty-gritty of what he’s pleased with so far and what he would like to see improvement in.• Freeney: Cards will ‘be blitzing from every direction’ (Atlantafalcons.com)Having spent most of 2015 with Arizona, DE Dwight Freeney knows a lot about its defensive personnel and scheme. He likens the Cardinals’ system to Dick LeBeau’s “Blitzburgh” D from the 90s, and right now, that approach is serving them well. The Falcons are coming off the bye, but their last game was a 24-15 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles on Nov. 13. The Eagles held the Falcons’ explosive offense in check, as quarterback Matt Ryan was contained to 267 yards and one touchdown. Wide receiver Julio Jones, meanwhile, had 10 catches for 135 yards, but was kept out of the end zone.Week 12’s matchup will pit the Falcons’ third-ranked offense against the Cardinals’ first-ranked defense. We’ll keep you up to date on everything the Falcons do heading into what could be an entertaining game.Its’ Behind Enemy Lines…Saturday, November 26• Keys to Victory: Falcons vs. Cardinals (AtlantaFalcons.com)The Falcons are plus-three in the turnover margin, tied for eighth in the NFL. Coach Dan Quinn is looking for this margin to increase. So far, the Falcons have created 11 takeaways and have only turned it over eight times. Atlanta has forced six interceptions – a number they would like to see grow as the season continues, starting on Sunday. In Arizona’s five losses, they are minus-eight in the turnover margin.• X-factor: Nickel back Brian Poole (MyAJC.com)Poole, who made the team as an undrafted rookie, will find himself matched up with nine-time Pro Bowl receiver Larry Fitzgerald at times. The Cardinals like to move Fitzgerald around and use him a lot out of the slot. When the Falcons are in man-to-man, Poole will have the dynamic Fitzgerald. • Falcons embrace big picture: ‘Everything is in our control’ (MyAJC.com)“You don’t have to shy away from it because I think it’s one thing to say, ‘Don’t worry about that’ or ‘Don’t talk about that’” Quinn said. “We recognize that in your (media) world you’re going to talk about it and we need to be prepared for that. But to be at our best in the long term, you’ve got to take care of the here and now.”• Is Josh Perkins ready to step up at tight end? (TheFalcoholic.com)The Falcons think he’s got the athletic ability, hands, and size to be a genuine contributor down the line, and with Tamme gone and Austin Hooper looking like the only true receiving threat the Falcons have at the position, Perkins is going to get a crack at contributing over the last six weeks of the season.Friday, November 25• Falcons’ Desmond Trufant (shoulder) game-time decision (ESPN)Trufant missed Atlanta’s last game against the Philadelphia Eagles while dealing with a shoulder/pectoral injury. Trufant and punter Matt Bosher are listed as questionable.• Falcons face Cardinals, believe best to come after bye week (Associated Press)Running back Tevin Coleman insists he’ll be ready to go after missing the last three games with a hamstring injury. When healthy, he teamed with Devonta Freeman to give the Falcons a dynamic 1-2 punch in the backfield. Top Stories • Rested Falcons look to be explosive against Cardinals at home (ESPN)The Atlanta Falcons quarterback welcomed last week’s bye after getting beat up in Philadelphia two weeks ago during a 25-14 loss to the Eagles. Despite the outcome, the Falcons remain in first place in the NFC South at 6-4 heading into Sunday’s matchup with the Arizona Cardinals (4-5-1), a team desperate for a win.• Desmond Trufant, Tevin Coleman return to practice field ahead of Cardinals game (Thefalcoholic) Atlanta Falcons’ Matt Ryan in action during the first half of an NFL football game against the Philadelphia Eagles, Sunday, Nov. 13, 2016, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum) At this point last season, the Falcons were also 6-4. But they had lost three games in a row — none to teams that would make the playoffs. They were already out of the division race, having fallen far behind a Carolina team that was 10-0 and would reach the Super Bowl.• Undrafted Poole Impressed Quinn Early In Camp With His Competitive Nature (92.9 The Game)Quinn praised Poole for having the technique and discipline it took to match up against receivers of different size, speed and ability. While that talent flashed to Quinn, what sold the Falcons’ head coach on Poole had everything to do with heart.Monday, November 21• A look at the development of Vic Beasley (AJC.com)With the Falcons at 6-4 and on their bye week, let’s look at how the six players – defensive end/linebacker Vic Beasley, running back Tevin Coleman, defensive tackle Grady Jarrett, cornerback Jalen Collins, wide receiver Justin Hardy and defensive back Robenson Therezie — have fared this season.• Falcons agree to 5-year deal with RT Schrader (ESPN)The Atlanta Falcons and right tackle Ryan Schraeder agreed to terms on a five-year contract on Monday.The deal is worth a maximum value of $33 million, a source told ESPN. • Deion Jones takes Falcons’ run defense personally (AJC.com)Falcons rookie middle linebacker Deion Jones wants to set the tone for the run defense. “It’s just a matter of our mind-set and getting lined up and playing with great effort,” Jones said. “Having that mindset that no one else is going to run the ball on us. That’s pretty much it, you know.” The Falcons gave up a season-high 208 yards rushing against Philadelphia and have stewed about it over the bye week.• Madden Simulation: AZvsATL goes down to the wire (AtlantaFalcons.com)Johnson opened the sim with a one-yard touchdown run in the first quarter to cap off a lengthy drive. Shortly thereafter, Carson Palmer threw a TD pass to Jaron Brown; the Falcons responded with an Austin Hooper score and a Matt Bryant field goal, putting them within four points heading into the fourth quarter.Wednesday, November 23• Falcons sign punter Wile to 53-man roster (AJC.com)Punter Matt Wile, who played at Michigan, was signed to the 53-man roster by the Falcons on Tuesday.• Matt Ryan bracing for pressure coming from Cardinals (ESPN)Ryan, who has been sacked 24 times through 10 games, was asked about the keys to coping with the blitz. According to ESPN Stats & Information, he’s seen five or more rushers on 110 of his 379 dropbacks this season, completing 59 of 100 passes for 926 yards, seven touchdowns and no interceptions (eight sacks) in those situations. 0 Comments   Share   center_img • Falcons need to protect home, Matt Ryan, in postseason quest (ESPN)Of the top six NFC teams, the Falcons are the only one without a winning record at home (2-2). In order to change those fortunes, coach Dan Quinn team has to be prepared to keep quarterback Matt Ryan clean against a pair of teams capable of applying plenty of pressure.• A lot of room to grow: A brief look at Atlanta’s defense through 10 weeks (Thefalcoholic.com)Atlanta’s defense has excelled in some areas and really struggled in others, but most people agree that the Falcons defense is young, athletic, and inconsistent. We’re going to take a look at what this defense’s identity is, where they improved since last season, and where they still need to improve to become a good defensive unit. Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires The Arizona Cardinals head to the Georgia Dome to take on the NFC South-leading Atlanta Falcons in a pivotal NFC matchup.The Falcons got off to a red-hot start this season, winning four of their first five games. Since then Atlanta has fallen back to Earth, losing three of their last five. The Falcons currently lead the NFC South but a loss to the Cardinals on Sunday could hinder their path to a division title, as all the teams in the division are within two games of Atlanta. The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Tuesday, November 22• Freeney on the Cardinals: ‘It’s going to be a tough challenge’ (AJC.com)Falcons defensive end Dwight Freeney has the best scouting report on the Arizona Cardinals.Freeney played 11 games for the Cardinals last season and helped them reach the NFC championship game. The Falcons are set to face the Cardinals at 1 p.m. Sunday at the Georgia Dome.• Falcons’ Dan Quinn pumped to get Desmond Trufant, Tevin Coleman back (ESPN)Atlanta Falcons coach Dan Quinn sounded rather optimistic about the progress of cornerback Desmond Trufant and running back Tevin Coleman as they returned to practice Monday off injuries.• Atlanta Falcons rookie LB Deion Jones credits veteran leadership with helping him navigate tough transition (Thefalcoholic.com)Atlanta Falcons linebacker Deion Jones is trying very hard to impersonate a veteran. As a rookie middle linebacker, he’s got an exceptionally hard job. Given the responsibilities he’s been asked to shoulder, one might expect a pretty steep learning curve. But despite those expectations, Jones has played admirably through ten games. In fact, he’s exceeded expectations.• This 6-4 feels a whole lot different for Atlanta Falcons (OnlineAthens.com) Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impactlast_img read more