The World Bank Group and the Liberian Government have penned two financing agreements extending US$30 million to the Government of Liberia to help with the country’s recovery program through the budget, amidst the Ebola outbreak.The money will also help support Liberia’s medium-term strategy to strengthen its transparency and accountability mechanisms, expand the economy, increase access to quality education and improve health services that are critical to fighting the current Ebola epidemic.The financing, which is also expected to support the Second Poverty Reduction Support Operation (PRSDPO II), includes a US$20 million International Development Association (IDA) credit and a US$10 million grant allocated from the World Bank Group’s IDA Crisis Response Window. The IDA is designed to help low-income [poorest] countries respond to exceptionally severe crises in a timely, transparent and predictable way. Speaking at the signing ceremony in the conference room of the Ministry of Finance &Development Planning (MFDP) in Monrovia on Thursday, November 20, World Bank Country Manager, Ms. Inguna Dobraja, said the Second Poverty Reduction Support Operation is the second in the programmatic series of four single trench operations to support the implementation of the government’s programs approved by the World Bank Board of Directors on November 12, 2014. She explained that although the original amount of this World Bank budget support operation to Liberia was US$10 million, the Bank realized the enormous economic challenges the Ebola outbreak has created on almost all government development programs and activities. “Therefore, the Bank decided to increase the amount of budget support to US$30 million, including US$10 million grand funding from a special IDA Response Window,” said Ms. Dobraja. “The World Bank is mobilizing nearly US$1 billion in financing for the three countries hardest hit by the Ebola crisis: US$518 million for emergency response and to help speed up the development of foreign health workers to affected countries. The funding is helping the three countries hardest hit by the epidemic to contain the spread of infections, help communities cope with the economic impact of the crisis and improve public health systems,” she added. “Of the US$518 million,” Ms. Dobraja said, “US$117 million is already disbursed to countries and implementing agencies, including US$52 million for Liberia.” The World Bank Country Manager pledged the Bank’s commitment to continuing its financial support to Liberia during and after the Ebola crisis.The Liberian economy has been hit hard by the Ebola epidemic and the related health crisis, significantly slowing down economic activities, declining investments in various sectors and increasing unemployment. “Our economy is struggling to adjust to the impact of the Ebola epidemic and this budgetary support provided by the World Bank Group is going to help us finance budget deficit and get the economy running,” said Finance Minister Amara M. Konneh. Minister Konneh disclosed that government and partners have re-adjusted the nation’s gross domestic product (GDP) downward for 2014, from 2.5 percent to 0.4 percent. With economic growth now in negative, Minister Konneh called for increased fiscal discipline in government and increased external budgetary support to finance the deficit. “Our economy is at crossroads. It now calls for strict adherence to fiscal discipline by public officials,” he said. Mr. Konneh, however, clarified that economic decline is not due to bad government policies, but the Ebola virus outbreak. “We appreciate the World Bank Group’s support to the worst Ebola-affected countries-Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone amidst the huge fiscal deficit, declining revenues and increased public spending caused by the Ebola outbreak,” he added. Konneh acknowledged the World Bank as the largest donor to the Government of Liberia during this Ebola epidemic.The nearly US$1 billion that the World Bank Group is mobilizing for countries hardest hit by the Ebola crisis, includes more than US$500 million for the emergency response and to help speed up the deployment of foreign health workers to the countries, and at least US$450 million from the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, to enable trade, investment and employment in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.The US$10 million grant agreement signed on Thursday is part of the PRSDPO II part of previous pledges from the Bank Group for the emergency response to Ebola.The Ebola epidemic, centered in West Africa, has infected more than 13,000 people and killed nearly 5,000.The World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA), which was established in 1960, helps the world’s poorest countries by providing grants and low to zero-interest loans for projects and programs that boost economic growth, reduce poverty, and improve poor people’s lives.IDA is one of the largest sources of assistance for the world’s 77 poorest countries, 39 of which are in Africa. Resources from IDA bring positive change for 2.8 billion people living on less than US$2 a day. Since 1960, IDA has supported development work in 112 countries. Annual commitments have averaged about US$18 billion over the last three years, with about 50 percent going to Africa.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Friday’s bean rally may be attributed to the Brazilian Central Bank propping up their currency, which will likely slow farmer selling there in the short-term. Also, dry weather in Australia is helping support wheat prices. With both beans and wheat prices higher, corn also increased. U.S. farmers aren’t selling going into harvest, which is supportive. Soybeans and corn both closed technically strong, with potential for more upside next week. However, fundamentally it may be difficult, now that harvest is in full swing.The Chinese visited the U.S. this week and announced they would buy 500 million bushels of soybeans. The announcement was not a surprise to many in the trade as the Chinese consume 60% of the world’s soybeans. The contract details were a bit vague though. The bushels purchased have no guaranteed time frame and no letters of credit have been established. It was a great photo opportunity for all involved, but follow through with commitments will still be needed over the next several months.Corn yield reports are wide-ranging. It seems yields are higher than estimated in areas where conditions were good, but below estimates where conditions were poor. As harvest moves north, I expect corn yields to improve. Early estimates indicate the national yield could be lower than previously estimated, which would support prices. However, harvest has only begun in much of the Corn Belt. We are 30% done harvesting on our farm in Nebraska. Dryland corn is 35 bushels above APH yields (similar to last year) and irrigated is near normal (which was expected). Moisture levels ranging 14%-19%.Early bean harvest results are great north of I-90. Some are suggesting the national yield could be increased. However, as the harvest moves southward, the areas in the south where stands look questionable may not produce as well.What should a farmer do with grain in a commercial facility?I am a big advocate of 100% on-farm storage because of the flexibility and profit potential options. It’s difficult for farmers to optimize their grain marketing strategy to its highest profit potential without it. But, many farmers don’t have 100% on-farm storage. Often these farmers ask me what crop should be stored at home versus commercial storage. There isn’t a one-size fits all formula, because each farmer has their own unique situation. Farmers need to understand all the costs associated to make that decision.Here is an example of a common scenario: a farmer may only have 50% home storage capacity with operating loans on most of the crop and little grain priced for 2015.Keeping grain in commercial storage costs money. Not only monthly storage rates, but finance costs too. Finance costs need to be considered because farmers could just sell all their grain after harvest to pay off all the expenses of raising a crop. Farmers need to be aware of all the costs they face holding grain once its put into storage. How do I calculate those costs?First, farmers need to calculate the operating loan cost by multiplying the interest rate to the grain’s cash value at harvest. Let’s assume 5% interest on the average operation loan and today’s cash prices of nearly $4 corn and $8.75 soybeans:– Corn = 1.6 cents/bushel/month($4 cash value x 5% interest = 20 cents for an entire year / 12 months = 1.6 cents per month)– Soybeans = 3.6 cents/bushel/month($8.75 cash value x 5% interest = 43.75 cents for the entire year / 12 months = 3.6 cents per month) Second, farmers need to calculate the cost to store grain at a commercial facility. Typically it is around 5 cents/month. This means that storing grain costs about 6.6 cents for corn or 8.6 cents for soybeans per month in a commercial facility.But, the price of grain could explode if yields come up shortObviously this is a very common thought among farmers judging by how little of this year’s crop is already sold. Most farmers don’t realize that the futures price potential is actually irrelevant to grain storage decisions. When the cost of storage at a commercial facility is factored, neither crop makes good financial sense to hold. It would be better if farmers sold the grain for cash value and then rebought the grain “on paper” using futures. Why would farmers want to do this?If a farmer sells the grain for the cash value right away, it frees up money that can be used to pay down operating notes and reduces their cost per month significantly by eliminating storage fees and interest charges. Farmers could then buy back the grain with futures, waiting for the futures price they are hoping to get. How does this work?To buy back the grain using futures, the CBOT requires about 40 cents per bushel to be placed in the farmer’s account (i.e. margin). Typically, I suggest clients have an additional $1 per bushel more in their hedge account to cover any additional margin call. This would eliminate any margin calls unless the price dips below $3 for corn and $7.75 for soybeans. (This $1 per bushel extra is not required upfront, it’s whatever the farmer is comfortable with doing as long as they understand they could be responsible for more margin requirements.) Remember, you just sold your grain for cash ($4 for your corn or $8.75 for your soybeans), so the $1.40 per bushel amount should be easily covered, plus you will get this money back when you finally sell the futures. The loan expense equivalent on this amount would only be .6 cents per month ($1.40 at 5% = 7 cents per year or .6 cents per month). This is far less than the 6.6-8.6 cents per month to store the grain. Doing this, the farmer still has unlimited price risk, just as they did when they left it unpriced in the bin. What about basis appreciation?There is no guarantee the location the farmer delivers grain to at harvest will have the best basis later in the marketing year. Variances from rail shutter loader locations to ethanol or soy crush plants are wide-ranging making basis bids uncertain from location to location throughout the marketing year.While I have seen basis for both corn and beans to rally 6.6-8.6 cents/month, it has not been that common. Basically, owning grain on paper versus storing it in a commercial facility eliminates risk and improves cash flow.Most farmers don’t realize that they have the same risk using a futures account as they do to storing unpriced grain in a commercial facility. So while the basis could improve, the cost of storage and interest of the operating note will likely make the risk to store commercially unpriced grain too high.Sadly many farmers either don’t know how or don’t use all the tools available to them that would make their farm operations more profitable with less risk.Jon grew up raising corn and soybeans on a farm near Beatrice, NE. Upon graduation from The University of Nebraska in Lincoln, he became a grain merchandiser and has been trading corn, soybeans and other grains for the last 18 years, building relationships with end-users in the process. After successfully marketing his father’s grain and getting his MBA, 10 years ago he started helping farmer clients market their grain based upon his principals of farmer education, reducing risk, understanding storage potential and using basis strategy to maximize individual farm operation profits. A big believer in farmer education of futures trading, Jon writes a weekly commentary to farmers interested in learning more and growing their farm operations.Trading of futures, options, swaps and other derivatives is risky and is not suitable for all persons. All of these investment products are leveraged, and you can lose more than your initial deposit. Each investment product is offered only to and from jurisdictions where solicitation and sale are lawful, and in accordance with applicable laws and regulations in such jurisdiction. The information provided here should not be relied upon as a substitute for independent research before making your investment decisions. Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC is merely providing this information for your general information and the information does not take into account any particular individual’s investment objectives, financial situation, or needs. All investors should obtain advice based on their unique situation before making any investment decision. The contents of this communication and any attachments are for informational purposes only and under no circumstances should they be construed as an offer to buy or sell, or a solicitation to buy or sell any future, option, swap or other derivative. The sources for the information and any opinions in this communication are believed to be reliable, but Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC does not warrant or guarantee the accuracy of such information or opinions. Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC and its principals and employees may take positions different from any positions described in this communication. Past results are not necessarily indicative of future results. He can be contacted at email@example.com.
View comments Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. UPLB exempted from SEA Games class suspension Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH LATEST STORIES WATCH: Streetboys show off slick dance moves in Vhong Navarro’s wedding The 6-foot Seavmey, who enjoyed a big height advantage over Alora, also beat the Filipino in the Asian Olympic Qualifying Tournament last year.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout SEA Games in Calabarzon safe, secure – Solcom chief LOOK: Venues for 2019 SEA Games Kirstie Elaine Alora of the Philippines (red) competes against Sorn Seavmey of Cambodia (blue) in the finals of the women’s -73 kg category of the 29th Southeast Asian Games competition Tuesday at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Center. Alora lost, 6-13. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/SEA GAMES POOLRio Olympian Kirstie Alora ran into a familiar tormentor and suffered the same fate to settle for silver in the women’s +67kg class in taekwondo in the 2017 Southeast Asian Games Tuesday in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.Alora, who was the country’s flag-bearer, fell to Sorn Seavmey of Cambodia, 13-6, in the final.ADVERTISEMENT Catriona Gray spends Thanksgiving by preparing meals for people with illnesses Onyok Velasco see bright future for PH boxing in Olympics PLAY LIST 00:45Onyok Velasco see bright future for PH boxing in Olympics01:27Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games03:07PH billiards team upbeat about gold medal chances in SEA Games00:50Trending Articles01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games05:25PH boxing team determined to deliver gold medals for PH03:04Filipino athletes share their expectations for 2019 SEA Games02:25PH women’s volleyball team motivated to deliver in front of hometown crowd JRU fends off Mapua, finishes first round with 4th win MOST READ Read Next Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa
TagsTransfersAbout the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your say Real Madrid wing-back Hakimi: Best decision to join Borussia Dortmundby Carlos Volcano10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveReal Madrid wing-back Achraf Hakimi says his move to Borussia Dortmund has been the best decision of his career.Hakimi is on-loan at BVB this season.He said, “I grew up in the youth clubs of Real Madrid, with whom I did the whole route up to the first team, but I needed to change, I need to grow as a player, gaining more space and achieving new goals as a starter.”In Dortmund everything is going well, I hope it goes on for a long time.”I am very happy to be here. It was not easy to adapt, but now I find myself at ease.”
TagsTransfersOpinionAbout the authorChris BeattieShare the loveHave your say Christian Pulisic flop? Why the US whiz on outer at Chelseaby Chris Beattie23 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveCOMMENT: He can’t say he was never told. Christian Pulisic and his far from hoped for start at Chelsea. The advice now being relayed through the press is spot on. Well, at least some of it is…First, let’s put the fantasists to one side. There’s no anti-American bias at Cobham. And there’s no belief amongst the coaching staff, including manager Frank Lampard, that Pulisic is the wrong fit for his system. Such claims, as we’ve seen in recent days, is simply the stuff of mischief-making.Indeed, the opposite is true. Lampard and his backroom team know they have a potential world-beater on their hands. They know the ability Pulisic possesses. But they need the American to come out of his shell more. To stretch himself amongst his teammates and on the training the pitch. “He needs to fight for it”, as one Cobham source told this column a week ago.As mentioned, no-one doubts Pulisic’s ability inside Chelsea. Like us on the outside, they’ve already seen it in glimpses in preseason and the limited action Lampard has handed him thus far. And we say handed, as for the moment the consensus amongst those pushing the witches hats around is that Pulisic isn’t doing enough in training to warrant selection. And it’s not so much what he does in drills and bounce games – “he keeps it all nice and tidy” – but in his overall drive to get himself ahead of teammates currently occupying what should be his place. As Jurgen Klinsmann, the former USA coach, put it this week, Pulisic needs to get “nasty”.If Pulisic doesn’t have Klinsmann’s number, then you hope his father, Mark, can reach out to the German great and have him call his son. Klinsmann’s interview this week discussing Pulisic’s problems nailed it. He hit many of the points our source made last week. Not just the need for the 21 year-old to show a willingness to compete for his place, but also how he is in unchartered water. As we were told, this is the first time in Pulisic’s career where set expectations are waiting to be met. The staff at Chelsea understand this. They’ve seen it before. But it’s up to the player to cut loose from what he’s known.As Klinsmann says, “He’s a very special player, he’s tremendously talented, but this is a big step, because Borussia Dortmund was also basically the club where he got formed into a professional player.”He came out of the youth system there, he moved himself up, he had all the support within the club and now going to London…”We’d also add Pulisic’s international career to Klinsmann’s assessment. The German capped Pulisic at 17, with no great expectation. At that stage in his career, everything he achieved at senior level was a bonus. It was all about learning his craft, gaining experience. He was given the time and space to adjust to international football. To meet it’s demands. Just as he was with Dortmund.But now he’s in a very different environment. A reputation needs to be built. New relationships established. And a realisation must dawn that he’s not entitled to anything. No-one is going to give him a free pass. Or better yet, a free place in the manager’s XI.Klinsmann again: “He will go through a phase now where more and more he needs to bring his elbows out to fight himself through the system, at Chelsea it goes from game to game, week to week. “You’re basically in training, and you have to tell the coach: ‘I’m in, I’m going to start this game, you have to become nasty to make yourself a starter.”From what we know, Klinsmann and Lampard aren’t close. But the German was definitely helping Chelsea’s manager this week. Klinsmann essentially parrotting what Lampard had stated after leaving Pulisic on the bench for the home defeat to Valencia.”He’s shown some really good moments,” reasoned Lampard, “but what he has to do, as all the players have to, not just the wingers, is reach levels in training daily that make you sit up and go ‘here’s my team selection and that’s actually affected it, I have seen good stuff’. That’s the same for every player in the squad.”Training ground form and application is what makes Lampard tick. It’s what transformed a chubby, but talented, midfielder at West Ham, into a modern day great at Chelsea. Going through the motions. Doing just enough to get by. It just won’t survive within a Lampard-managed squad.Pulisic has been given some great advice this week. And he can make it at Chelsea – so long as he acts upon what Klinsmann says.