As the country hosts business and world leaders at the 2019 World Economic Forum on Africa in Cape Town, the positive news on the country’s economy growing by 3.1% has been well received, as released by Statistics SA on Tuesday 03 September 2019. As part of the journey to renewal and growth, government remains committed to partnerships for growth with business, labour and civil society in reinstating confidence and addressing the structural constraints to economic growth. According to Stats SA; mining, finance, trade and government services were the main drivers of growth. Mining was the strongest performer in the second quarter, expanding by 14,4%. This was the industry’s strongest showing in three years since the second quarter of 2016 when production jumped by 16,3%. source http://www.statssa.gov.zaThe growth in the economy has a positive ripple effect on the reputation of a Nation Brand and therefore, shapes various perceptions. The 2019 WEFA theme – ‘Shaping Inclusive Growth and Shared Futures in the Fourth Industrial Revolution’ echoes South Africa’s new found hope. South Africa is indeed open for business and is a very competitive, dynamic and an investor friendly destination.Key facts from the GDP release for the second quarter of 2019;· Real GDP in the second quarter was up 3,1% quarter-on-quarter (seasonally adjusted and annualised)· Unadjusted real GDP in the second quarter was up 0,9% year-on-year.· Unadjusted nominal GDP in the second quarter of 2019 was estimated at R1,26 trillion, higher than the R1,20 trillion recorded in the first quarter of 2019.For more information, download the latest GDP report and media presentation here.1 Unless otherwise indicated, all growth rates are quarter-on-quarter, seasonally adjusted and annualised, and in real (volume) terms. 2 Stats SA, Mining: Production and sales, June 2019. Table B (download here). Similar articles are available on the Stats SA website and can be accessed here.For a monthly overview of economic indicators and infographics, catch the latest edition of the Stats Biz newsletter here.
Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Tuesday asked the security forces to “avoid collateral damage” during anti-militancy operations in J&K. She also urged the security forces to hold special counselling sessions for the youth in the State to “allay their apprehensions and misgivings about the system.”Chairing a meeting of Unified Headquarters, a body represented by all security wings active in the State, in Srinagar’s SKICC, Ms. Mufti called for “improving the public-security force interface”. Bettering tiesMs. Mufti’s thrust to improve public-security forces’ relations come in the wake of viral videos showing security personnel involved in rights violations against students and civilians in Kashmir, especially during the bypolls in Srinagar.She said counselling sessions “will help in allaying apprehensions and misgivings about the system among youth… It would also give the security agencies a chance to reach out to people through community policing,” she added.Back in Srinagar after meeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi on Monday, the Chief Minister also directed the security agencies “to exercise restraint while dealing with provocative situations and avoid as well as minimize all collateral damage while conducting operations” against militants.“Wherever restraint was exercised, it helped in maintaining peace and order. The youth unfortunately is caught in the cycle of misinformation. They ought to be won over with a healing touch,” said Ms. Mufti.She said that parents of youth be taken into confidence in case of any complaint. On the spate of cow vigilantism in Jammu, Ms. Mufti asked the security agencies to ensure that inter-community harmony among various sections of society.“Culprits be brought to justice if found spreading hatred against a section of society,” she said.The J&K government on Tuesday decided to suspend the classes work at Government Girls Higher Secondary School (HSS), Kothi Bagh and Sri Pratap Higher Secondary School, near here, on April 26.
Twitter/@fractologistUniversity of Connecticut professor of mathematics Joe Chen certainly knows how to craft a math problem from the school’s basketball program. Earlier this year, after the Huskies suffered a shocking loss to Chen’s alma mater Yale, he gave his students a problem about the likelihood that the Huskies would lose to another Ivy League program. Now, with UConn at 15-11 and squarely off the NCAA Tournament bubble, Chen has designed a set of problems designed to find the probability of the team making a run in the AAC Tournament and making it to the Big Dance.A timely @UConnMBB exam problem. I make no claims to the accuracy of the probabilities involved. @NoEscalators pic.twitter.com/W5HINKViSU— Joe (@fractologist) February 25, 2015Chen’s math class was probably more fun for the UConn basketball fans in his class last spring semester, but at least he tries to keep things interesting for the students.
The grant could provide up to $1,925,462 in funding for the project, but there is no guarantee that the grant will be approved. The City has yet to announce what the total cost of the project would be.The project was originally scheduled to start in the spring of 2019 and was to be completed by the fall.The Festival Plaza will be located on the northwest corner of Centennial Park on the grounds next to 100th street and 96 Avenue. The Plaza will act as a visual entrance to the City of Fort St. John when travelling in from the south. FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – At a recent City of Fort St. John Council meeting, Council has decided to postpone the Festival Plaza project until 2020.The decision to postpone the project was made due to the uncertainty of funding.The City was going to apply to the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program to fund 75 percent of the construction costs. Unfortunately, the City won’t know if they receive the grant until the fall of this year and construction can’t start before the grant is awarded.
Mumbai: Debt-laden Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services (IL&FS) Monday said GAIL (India) has emerged as the highest bidder for its seven operating wind power plants. The bidding process to these assets having 12 sites spread across seven states was launched in November last year. “Gail’s offer of approximately Rs 4,800 crore for 100 percent enterprise value contemplates no hair-cut to the debt of the SPVs, aggregating to nearly Rs 3,700 crore,’ the company said in a release. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscalThese wind power assets have a total generation capacity of 874 MW. The proposal was approved by the committee of creditors of IL&FS Wind Energy (IWEL), majority owner of the SPVs, it said. The company said engagement with the ORIX Japan, the other shareholders in the SPVs, with regard to the proposal is in progress, and the deal is expected to close in three weeks, it said. The sale proceeds will be distributed as per the resolution framework filed with the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) by the government,the company said. Also Read – Food grain output seen at 140.57 mt in current fiscal on monsoon boostThe closure of the deal will be subject to approval of Justice (Retd) D K Jain and NCLT. The Uday Kotak-led board of IL&FS group, as part of the resolution process has initiated sale of a number of group assets. Sale process for assets including education, funds, roads and thermal power plant are currently underway and binding financial bids are expected for these companies in stages by May 2019, it said. Under the resolution plan, the government has categorised IL&FS group companies into green, amber and red categories based on their financial position. Firms classified as “green” would continue to meet their payment obligations, while “amber” companies can meet only operational payment obligations to senior secured financial creditors. The “red” firms are the entities which cannot meet their payment obligations at all. Thousands of crores of money of more than 15 lakh employees of both public and private sector companies have exposure to IL&FS bonds. As these investments were classified as unsecured debt, the funds feared that all money would be lost if all market-related risks fell on them.
Bhopal: An average 25.9 per cent voter turnout was recorded in the first four hours of polling on Sunday in the eight Lok Sabha seats of Madhya Pradesh, an official said. Polling for the eight seats – Dewas, Ujjain, Mandsaur, Ratlam, Dhar, Indore, Khargone and Khandwa – in the fourth and final phase of Lok Sabha elections in the state was going on since 7 am, MP’s Chief Electoral Officer V L Kantha Rao said. The voting figures till 11 am were: Dewas-30.2 per cent, Ujjain-28.78 per cent, Mandsaur-32.59 per cent, Ratlam- 27.74 per cent, Dhar-18.95 per cent, Indore-19.13 per cent, Khargone-29.1 per cent and Khandwa-23.26 per cent, he said. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss account details under automatic exchange framework Prominent candidates in the fray are former Union ministers Kantilal Bhuria and Arun Yadav of the Congress, who are contesting from Ratlam and Khandwa seats, respectively. Long queues were seen at several booths in these eight constituencies, all currently held by the BJP. Some state leaders from Malwa Nimar region of the Indore constituency were also seen standing in queues to cast their votes. Altogether 82 candidates, including Bhuria and Yadav, are in the fray in the eight constituencies where there are 1.49 crore eligible voters. Also Read – Trio win Nobel Medicine Prize for work on cells, oxygen Total 18,411 polling booths, including 1,157 entirely managed by women, have been set up in these seats, he said. An average 69.26 per cent voter turnout was recorded in the first three phases of the Lok Sabha polls in the state, he added. Out of the total 29 Lok Sabha seats in MP, six went to polls on April 29, seven on May 6 and eight on May 12. The counting of votes would be held on May 23.
NFL Playoff Implications, our weekly guide to what games matter and to whom, returns for Week 11 of the NFL season. For an explanation of the methodology, see here. UPDATE (Nov. 15, 11:46 a.m.): The interactive tables above have been updated to include the result of Thursday night’s BUF-MIA match-up, and that game has been removed (the text of the article has not been updated).In our article on Week 9’s playoff implications, we focused on the game between the Denver Broncos and the New England Patriots, and the impact it had on the race for the AFC’s top seed. The Broncos were blown out in that game, 43-21, leaving that No. 1 seed up for grabs (although Denver is still a 56 percent favorite to claim it).This Sunday night, the Patriots visit the Indianapolis Colts in a game with similarly significant implications for the top two AFC seeds. The first and second seeds in each conference receive a bye in the first round of the playoffs, and as we pointed out last week, this is a significant advantage and greatly increases a team’s chances of reaching the Super Bowl.1Last week’s column featured a side-by-side comparison of the importance of playoff seeding in the NFL and the NBA, and there appears to have been some confusion as to what those numbers represented. To clarify, the seed probabilities shown in the table represent the impact of seeding only, and in both calculations, all teams are considered evenly matched. In practice, of course, teams are not evenly matched, and the superior teams are far more likely to be concentrated among the top seeds. As a result, the actual Super Bowl/Finals frequencies by playoff seed will skew much more heavily toward the top seeds. The intent of the table was to show the advantages conferred to each team due to seeding alone.For Indianapolis, the playoff race is all over but the seeding. Much like the New Orleans Saints in the NFC South, the Colts are division winners by default, with no significant competition from the Houston Texans, Tennessee Titans or Jacksonville Jaguars. And of the Colts’ remaining games, none looks to have a bigger effect on their playoff seeding than this week’s matchup against the Patriots. For both teams, the chances of securing a first-round bye swing by more than 50 percentage points depending on the game’s outcome. With a loss to the Patriots, the Colts may find themselves with very little to play for in Weeks 12-17. Their playoff outlook would largely be confined to those third and fourth divisional seeds.A victory for New England would push its first-round bye probability to 75 percent, and keep the pressure on Denver for the top seed. Because of head-to-head tiebreakers, Denver, having beaten the Colts and having lost to the Patriots, would much prefer a Colts victory.New England, while still the favorite to win its division, is not as secure in that position as Indianapolis is. Unlike the Colts, the Patriots have two division rivals that are keeping them honest: The Buffalo Bills and the Miami Dolphins.Those two teams square off Thursday night in Miami. While both have identical win-loss records, the general consensus appears to be that the Dolphins are the superior team. The market clearly thinks so (and, by extension, the rankings at the bottom of this post think so, too); the Dolphins are favored by 5 points at home — and only half of that is due to home-field advantage. The various stat-based rankings agree as well, with Elo, DVOA, SRS and Advanced Football Analytics all placing the Dolphins above the Bills. A win by Miami would boost its playoff chances to 50 percent, and Buffalo’s would drop to just 4 percent. But a Bills upset would give them a slight advantage over the Dolphins and keep the AFC playoff race more interesting.Which brings us to the AFC North, where all four teams are within a half-game of each other and the Baltimore Ravens’ 6-4 record puts them in last place. As one would expect, the division title probabilities are spread rather evenly. To assess how wide open the AFC North is right now, we calculated Gini coefficients for divisional title probabilities for each division in the NFL. (The Gini coefficient is most commonly used to measure income inequality — a lower coefficient means more equality, and a higher coefficient means more variation.2The Gini coefficient scales from 0 to 1, with 0.0 signifying complete equality, and 1.0 complete inequality.) Going into Week 11, the AFC North has a positively Danish Gini coefficient of 0.24. The remaining seven divisions have coefficients ranging from 0.70 (the NFC North) to 0.98 (the AFC South).Before we move on to the NFC, the table below shows the total impact of each game on the playoff, division, first-round and top-seed races. For example, 12 teams’ playoff chances are significantly affected by the result of Cincinnati at New Orleans this week, and the cumulative swings for these teams add up to 66 percentage points.The playoff implications chart looks surprisingly bare for the NFC this week. In recent weeks, the NFC postseason picture has come into clearer focus. At this point, most of the playoff probability is concentrated among just eight teams. But there is still plenty of uncertainty in how the seeding will play out, particularly for the top two seeds.Based on current records, those top two seeds would be the Arizona Cardinals and the Detroit Lions, who just happen to play each other this Sunday. With a victory over the Lions, the Cardinals would have a better-than-even shot at winning the top NFC seed. The Cardinals lost starting quarterback Carson Palmer last week to injury, but that’s not necessarily a reason for them to panic. The betting market seems to agree, as the Cardinals’ ranking remained relatively unchanged from last week (they actually moved up three spots from No. 14 to No. 11).The other key NFC matchup this week features the Philadelphia Eagles visiting the Green Bay Packers. While the Cardinals and the Lions occupy the top seeds by virtue of win-loss records, both the Packers and the Eagles top them in our market-based power rankings. Going into Week 11, both teams have nearly identical probabilities of getting a first-round bye. The Eagles are a game up on the Packers, but the market clearly views the Packers as the superior team, with Green Bay favored by 6 points at home.And finally, there’s the game between the Seattle Seahawks and the Kansas City Chiefs, which will affect the playoff outlook of 20 NFL teams across both conferences. Allegiances break down as one would expect, with NFC teams hoping for a Chiefs victory and the AFC rooting for the Seahawks.Here are the team rankings based on point spreads. Generic Points Favored is what one would expect a team to be favored by against a league-average opponent on a neutral field.
Redshirt Freshman Amanda Huang preforms on beam against Iowa in St. John Arena on Jan. 21. Credit: Megan Russell | Lantern reporterNow sitting at No. 22 in the country after falling to the Iowa Hawkeyes in a close meet last Saturday, the Ohio State women’s gymnastics team plans to make several lineup changes for their meet on the road at Minnesota.The Buckeyes added an extra practice this week to focus on floor, an event that has seen lower average scores in the last two consecutive meets. Coach Carey Fagan is using the extra practices from this week to determine potential lineup changes in the coming meet in Minneapolis this Saturday.“We need to get better on floor,” Fagan said. “That’s really the event we’ve struggled on. We’re going to get three days of floor in before we leave for Minnesota.”Among the athletes being considered to compete for the Buckeyes on floor on Saturday is junior Taylor Harrison, who has been absent from the lineup due to a hip injury.“I think if she has a solid week of practice, we may put her in the floor lineup in Minnesota,” Fagan said. “She had a good practice this last week, and I’d like to give her a couple more days, but if she’s ready, that will be exciting. She’s historically a 9.85 every time she goes on an event, so that’s going to be a big boost.”The lineup for bars might also be altered against Minnesota. Freshman Amanda Huang has performed in the exhibition slot for the bar event in the last two meets and might be stepping up to the performance lineup.Even vault, an event where the Buckeyes have excelled in the last two meets, might be changed to improve the already strong lineup. Senior Tenille Funches might make an appearance after also performing in the exhibition slot in the last meet. Although no lineup is set in stone, Fagan said a meet on the road is the best time to implement them.“Each week we have a six-person lineup, and depending on who is prepared that week, they go in and compete for the team,” junior Alexis Mattern said.With 12 available athletes competing for limited spots, the Buckeye have more athletes to choose from for each different event.“I think that probably for the next four or five weeks, you’ll see some things mixing up,” Fagan said. “As we get towards senior meet, it will be pretty solid, and barring any injuries or illnesses, it will probably be set from that point on.”
Ever since Thad Matta took over as coach for the Ohio State men’s basketball team, the program hasn’t been accustomed to losing. Over the past two seasons, the Buckeyes have compiled a 48-5 record with every loss coming against a ranked opponent. One of those five losses came Friday when OSU blew a double-digit lead and fell at Indiana. The loss didn’t sit well with the players and coaches, and conjured up some memories of the team’s Sweet 16 loss to Kentucky in last year’s NCAA tournament. Like the Kentucky loss, the game ended with a missed 3-pointer by William Buford that would have won the game. “We gave up that game against Indiana,” said sophomore forward Jared Sullinger. “Not taking anything away from Indiana, but there was a couple possessions when we watched film and realized that that’s not us.” Matta hopes his team uses the loss as a lesson for the rest of the season. “I think that nobody likes to lose more than we do,” Matta said. “It’s like I told our guys last year, I think we learned a great lesson in the Kentucky game, but the season was over. We have the ability to learn a lesson here at the end of December and continue to move forward.” Matta is known for being a players’ coach and normally doesn’t employ an in-your-face style of coaching. But according to the players, the Indiana loss particularly rubbed Matta the wrong way and he was a little more animated than normal. “(Matta) wasn’t very polite,” Sullinger said. “But that’s what we needed. We needed someone to put a fire under us. After that tough loss it was only right that he had to do that.” Matta described Monday’s practice as “challenging” and “tough,” and said he really harped on the focus of the team. “We’ve probably practiced this team harder than most teams we’ve had,” Matta said. “A lot of that has to do with the youthfulness and immaturity of the team and not quite understanding the level they must compete at. One of the messages yesterday was competing and a mindset carries over to the game. There was a couple moments where I had to refocus them a couple times, but for the most part I thought they did a pretty good job.” The team responded Tuesday, beating a battered Nebraska team, 71-40, at the Schottenstein Center. The Buckeyes committed 19 turnovers against the Cornhuskers, but Matta and his players felt they came out ready to play. “Last week at Indiana we was careless with the ball and we didn’t value every possession,” Buford said. “For the most part I think we did that today.” With the win against Nebraska, OSU raised its record to 14-2 overall and 2-1 in the Big Ten conference. At about the midpoint in the season, the team made it clear that while the team wasn’t going to dwell on the loss, they weren’t going to forget it. “It was a life lesson as far as the game period,” Sullinger said. “We gave up 17 layups against Indiana. They got whatever shot they wanted in the second half. As you can see, we turned up our defensive intensity in this game. We were just ready to play basketball.”
Redshirt-sophomore quarterback Cardale Jones (12) waits to have the ball snapped to him during a game against Michigan on Nov. 29 at Ohio Stadium. OSU won, 42-28.Credit: Mark Batke / Photo editorIn his six seasons as the head coach at Florida, Urban Meyer started just three quarterbacks.In what is now his third season in Columbus, Meyer is getting set to start his fourth quarterback at Ohio State.Cardale Jones, a redshirt-sophomore quarterback from Cleveland, is set to make his first career start in the Big Ten Championship Game, and Meyer doesn’t seem to be worried.“Cardale, it’s going to be his first start. Obviously a really good environment against a very tough defense,” Meyer said Monday. “But it’s not like he’s not taking snaps with the one offense or understands the concepts. So he has a very good understanding (of the offense).”Jones is set to take over for redshirt-freshman J.T. Barrett, who fractured his ankle in the fourth quarter of a 42-28 win over Michigan on Saturday. Jones has appeared in seven of OSU’s 12 games this season, accounting for 324 total yards and two touchdowns.The Glenville High School product was named the backup to senior Braxton Miller in the spring before being passed by Barrett just days before Miller tore his right labrum, ending Miller’s season before it started.The demotion was something Jones’ position coach and co-offensive coordinator Tom Herman said was not easy for the quarterback to handle.“I think that was tough for him. But him and I spoke at great length and great detail on numerous occasions about how to handle it,” Herman said Monday. “He has done nothing but be a great example of how to handle that. He stayed engaged in every game plan. He has taken that role very seriously and I am proud of him for it.”Being demoted from the second-string spot in the fall wasn’t the only time Jones has had to face adversity in his Buckeye career, as a now-infamous tweet describing his dislike for college classes earned him a one-game suspension in 2012.Redshirt-sophomore offensive lineman Pat Elflein has continued to make fun of the tweet on social media of his own, and even with the media.“Not playing class today?” Elflein asked the media as they gathered around him on Monday.Elflein said with a smile that he and some of his teammates continue to joke about the tweet.“Oh yeah, all the time,” he said.On the field, the Buckeyes are preparing to take on a Wisconsin defense that ranks second in the country.Meyer said after Saturday’s win over Michigan, though, that he does not anticipate the game plan changing much with Jones in the lineup. But Herman said he does see some differences in the style of each quarterback.“(Jones is) a big dude. Probably doesn’t have the same short range change of direction that J.T. has, but (he has) long-range speed and the ability to open it up in stride. He is pretty fast,” Herman said. “I am excited to see what he can do. I think he has got a chance to be pretty effective.”While Jones might be effective, both Herman and Meyer acknowledged that they have discussed limiting his carries against Wisconsin.“We’ve had a mini conversation about that already,” Meyer said. “That will be continued throughout the week. We have to win this game. We’re not saving him for next week or the week after. We’re not saving anything.”Herman agreed, adding that the quarterback run is an important part of setting up the Buckeye offense.“In order to run the football, I don’t think you can ever take out the way we do our business,” Herman said. “You can never take out the QB read element of it. The called and designed quarterback runs, we will probably take a few of those out.”Herman stressed that the members of the OSU team should not expect Barrett-like numbers from Jones, but should expect that he will manage the game well.“The guy (Barrett) has accounted for 45 touchdowns in 12 games. So I think what our team needs to understand is, is Cardale going to come in and account for seven touchdowns in this game? Probably not, and doesn’t need to,” Herman said. “He shouldn’t have that weight put on him. To expect that as a teammate, I think would be a little bit false.”While Herman doesn’t want too much pressure put on Jones, he characterized Jones’ arm strength by rating it as “eleventy-billion.”Sophomore running back Ezekiel Elliott said Monday that he agrees with his coaches in that he doesn’t believe the offense will change, but added there will be a lack of familiarity with Jones at the helm.“I think it is definitely a big transition just because it’s the magnitude of the game we are about to have this weekend,” Elliott said. “I don’t think the game plan will change much from last week to this week.“It’s his time, so J.T. went out, it’s the ‘next man up’ mentality. We are upset for losing J.T. but we got to keep it moving.”The OSU offense will look to do just that Saturday at 8:17 p.m. at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis against Wisconsin.