Bulgarian pension body disputes projected second-pillar payouts

first_imgThe Bulgarian Association of Supplementary Pension Security Companies (BASPSC) disputed the ministry’s interpretations and model assumptions.The current pension contribution rate increased by 1 percentage point this year to 19.8% of wages, of which 5% goes to the second pillar UPFs.There is a maximum monthly insurance ceiling, currently set at BGN2,600 with a 2% annual increase, above which taxes are due but no further pension or health insurance contributions are paid.One point of dispute is that the ministry’s long-term projection of an 8% annual increase in wages, leading to a similar increase in the average insurable income, would by 2037 result in the latter exceeding the maximum insurable ceiling, while at the same time exaggerating the expected pension paid by the first pillar.Overall the contributions cover less than 48% of current pensions expenditure, with the rest coming from taxes.According to the BASPSC’s calculations, based on NSSI figures, the average real contribution rate to the pay-as-you-go first-pillar system amounted to 30% in return for a pensions income roughly equal to 41% of the working wage.The BASPSC pointed out that, by the ministry’s own calculations for younger workers, those with 40 years of service would receive a 20% pension income from UPFs, despite the lower contribution rate.Other discrepancies included the ministry’s use of a 5% contribution fee throughout its projections, even though this has been lowered to 4% for 2018 and will fall to 3.75% next year. The ministry also failed to take into account the increase in the retirement age, to 65 years for both men and women, according to the BASPSC.The main issue, however, was the ministry’s use of average accumulated sums in pension funds.According to Bulgaria’s Financial Supervision Commission, the country’s regulator for pensions and other non-banking financial services, there were around 3.7m registered as UPF members at the end of 2017 – some 1.35m more than those actually contributing according to NSSI data. The difference was attributed largely to the high level of economic emigration.Payout proposalsDespite the dispute, Bulgaria is moving closer to finalising payout schemes for the country’s second-pillar pension system.In its draft legislation, the ministry has proposed three types of payouts: a one-off lump sum, scheduled withdrawal, and lifetime (annuity) provision. It has also put forward the possibility of combining two or three provisions to diversify pension incomes.Unlike the government’s last attempt to address payouts, in 2016, when it proposed and then shelved the idea of a common asset pool for second-pillar pensions, the latest version has proved relatively uncontroversial.Notwithstanding its criticisms, the BASPSC has welcomed the payout proposals, including the programmed withdrawals and the provision of lump-sum payments, which it described as the correct solution for those members who were not able to accumulate sufficient sums as a result of a short period of fund membership, absence due to emigration, or their working in the ‘grey’ economy.It suggested more options for inheritability of pensions, as well as the establishment of a principal guarantee to protect at least the value of nominal contributions. A majority of Bulgarian citizens retiring between 2021 and 2037 will receive a pension of €26 or less despite reforms aimed at boosting savings, according to projections from Bulgaria’s labour and social policy ministry.The ministry’s analysis of projected pension income – published alongside draft legislation for new types of pension payouts – showed that 70% of the first cohort of Universal Pension Fund (UPF) pensioners, retiring between 2021 and 2037, would receive a monthly pension of BGN50 (€26) or less, while only 10% would get more than BGN100.Meanwhile, according to the ministry, payments from the first-pillar National Social Security Institute (NSSI) would be 18-20% lower than would have been the case if members had been insured exclusively in the state system, suggesting that members should consider the option of switching to the first pillar.Since 2015, when switching was introduced, only around 10,000 UPF members and 900 members of the Professional Pension Funds (for workers in jobs that qualify for early retirement) have switched.last_img read more

Surprise result as mega mansion goes under the hammer

first_imgThe grand mansion at 1525 Riverdale Dr, Hope Island.PRIVATE negotiations will begin this week on the sale of Harbour Point, the grand Hope Island mansion which was passed in at auction on Saturday.The sun was shining down on 1525 Riverdale Drive where more than 200 people turned out to see the fate of the largest land holding in the exclusive enclave.Spectators and bidders gathered around the pool. Photo: Jason O’BrienA strong local contingent gathered around the resort-style pool where auctioneer Colin Banks listed the virtues of the iconic estate.“This is the largest block in the area,” he said.“There are 11 entitlements, subject to council approval; it’s a whopping 4982 sqm property. The house is master built and has a 1815 sqm footprint.”One of four registered bidders – all local – got the ball rolling at $4 million, with the auctioneer bidding $4.25m when no further offers were forthcoming.“People have travelled over the border to be here — I can’t do anything to help you unless that hand goes up,” he beckoned.MORE: Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate onsells bargain buyUntouched time capsules prove irresistible for buyersChance to buy your own Gold Coast chapel Auctioneer Colin Banks passed the property in at $4.5 million. Photo: Jason O’BrienThe same bidder upped his original offer to $4.5m, still well short of the $9 million paid by the Chinese owners during the GFC in 2009.“I know you’re going to test me here, but $4.5m isn’t going to buy it,” Mr Banks told the crowd.“We’re not selling cattle or horses, we’re selling a mansion of a house.”When the third and final call produced no further interest, the property was passed in and the auction wrapped up less than 10 minutes after it began.The doors were open to the public for the first time in 18 years. Photo: Jason O’BrienProfessionals Vertullo Real Estate agent Mark Carew, who led the marketing campaign alongside Nikki Dunlop, said the result was a surprise given the level of interest.“It’s been very positive,” he said.“There are a number of interested parties who we will be speaking with this week.”More from news02:37International architect Desmond Brooks selling luxury beach villa7 hours ago02:37Gold Coast property: Sovereign Islands mega mansion hits market with $16m price tag1 day agoMr Carew said the border closure and lockdowns prevented a serious Melbourne contender from attending the auction, which was conducted onsite only.The campaign pivots to private treaty this week, with an anticipated price guide of $6.5m-$7.5m.Gilt columns, decorative domes and ornate ballustrading dominate the interior.The Mediterranean-style mansion was built by national car-warranty business owner Gary and Suzanne Chuck, who purchased the prime plot in 2001 for $2.1 million.Long-time Riverdale Drive residents Daryl and Pam Sutherland, who attended the auction, recall dinner parties at the house during the Chuck’s tenure.“There were chefs, waiters and sorbet between courses,” Mr Sutherland said.“It was like being in a five-star hotel. Gary was a real character, it was always a lot of fun.”Mr Sutherland said he was surprised to see the property passed in.“I really thought the bidding would have started at $5m or $6m,” he said.“I thought a wealthy celebrity might have bought it, like maybe Russell Crowe and his football team.”last_img read more

Report: California Could Run On Offshore Wind

first_imgWith 112GW of technical resource potential, floating offshore wind in California could produce 1.5 times as much electricity as this US state uses in one year.That’s according to The California Offshore Wind Project: A Vision for Industry Growth, a new report from the American Jobs Project in partnership with the Schatz Energy Research Center (SERC) at Humboldt State University, Pacific Ocean Energy Trust (POET), and BVG Associates.Offshore wind could be leveraged to achieve the state’s 100 percent carbon-free energy goal, improve grid reliability, and support over 17,500 California jobs in 2045, the report said. This figure includes direct jobs from manufacturing and software development, indirect jobs from suppliers, and induced jobs from spending in the local economy.According to the report, the full utilization of California’s offshore generation potential could exceed New York and New Jersey, two states that have already made significant investments in the technology. This is due to California having the eighth-highest net technical energy resource potential in the United States.“Offshore wind can spur a new wave of innovation in California that will support our climate goals,” said Mary Collins, Managing Director of the American Jobs Project and lead author of the report.“But in order to take full advantage of this important source of clean energy, California needs a coordinated state vision to create opportunities for workers and businesses and protect our environmental values.”The report also provides short and long-term strategies for California to take advantage of its offshore wind potential, including setting a market acceleration target and reducing red tape.Other recommendations include upgrading ports and establishing port innovation districts to support evolving technology and workforce needs, and appointing a California Offshore Wind Czar to coordinate activities among state agencies, foster community programs, advocate for procedural changes in the federal leasing process, build international relationships for knowledge exchange, and capture foreign direct investment opportunities.“California’s coast offers some of the highest wind resource potential in the country, and offshore wind could produce more than 1.5 times the electricity the state currently uses in one year,” said Arne Jacobson, Director of the Schatz Energy Research Center. “This report provides useful guidance to policymakers and stakeholders for the effort to develop this important source of renewable energy in a way that respects our vibrant coastal ecosystem and maximizes benefits to the local economy.”At the start of 2019, the first phases of the federal leasing process are underway in California and potential leases could be issued as early as 2020, the American Jobs Project.Currently, two entities, the Redwood Coast Energy Authority (RCEA) and Castle Wind, have proposed floating wind projects off the coast of Humboldt County and San Luis Obispo County, respectively.last_img read more

Rival C.A.R. groups sign peace pact in Nairobi

first_imgRelated Nigeria’s presidential candidates sign peace accord South Sudan Peace Pact Under Threat Photo Courtesy of The Star Warring groups in the Central Africa Republic signed a peace agreement in the Kenyan capital Nairobi to stop hostilities and open a new chapter of political stability in their country. The ceasefire deal comes after months of negotiations mediated by Kenyan officials Mali rebel groups to sign peace dealslast_img

Asia remembers 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami

first_imgIn Thailand,over 5,300 people were killed, including tourists visiting resort islands inthe Andaman Sea while more than 35,000 people died in Sri Lanka.(Reuters) THAILAND –Communities across Asia commemorated the 230,000 victims of the Indian Oceantsunami on Thursday, the 15th anniversary of one of the world’s most deadlydisasters. On the morningafter Christmas Day in 2004, a 9.1-magnitude quake off northern Sumatra islandtriggered a tsunami with waves as high as 17.4 meters (57 feet) that swept overvulnerable coastal areas of Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India, Thailand, and nineother countries. Memorials werescheduled in the Indonesian province of Aceh, where entire villages wereflattened and over 125,000 people perished in the giant waves. Since then, thearea has been largely rebuilt, with around 25,600 residential, commercial,government, and school buildings constructed inside a high-risk zone. Submerged buildings are seen near the pier at Ton Sai Bay in Thailand’s Phi Phi Island on Dec. 28, 2004 after a tsunami hit the area. REUTERS/LUIS ENRIQUE ASCUI/FILE PHOTOlast_img read more

Raiders Edge Indians In Boys Soccer Opener

Thiago’s departure from Bayern could be imminent – Rummenigge

first_img Loading… Thiago Alcantara looks set to leave Bayern Munich and CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge expects an offer for the midfielder in the coming days.Liverpool have been heavily linked with a move for Thiago, though Rummenigge said this week that Bayern had received no contact from the Premier League champions.However, asked about Thiago in an interview with Welt am Sonntag, Rummenigge replied: “It looks like he will leave us.“It was important for him that he showed that he can play well in the big games.“When it comes to that, it’s a finish that hurts a bit. I expect an offer for him in the next few days.”Thiago helped Bayern to a treble-winning campaign as they lifted the Bundesliga, DFB-Pokal and Champions League under Hansi Flick.He may not be the only Spain international to depart the Allianz Arena ahead of the 2020-21 campaign.Defender Javi Martinez also appears to have his heart set on pastures new, with Rummenigge confirming Bayern would not prevent him from seeking a move.Read Also: Marcelo ready for Real Madrid first return in 2020-21 campaign“Javi thinks about leaving us. It will be difficult for him now, too,” Rummenigge added.“His contract is still valid for one year and we have given him to understand that we are not going to put any obstacles in his way.” FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail分享 center_img Promoted ContentTarantino’s Latest Effort Will Probably Be His Best To DateBirds Enjoy Living In A Gallery Space Created For ThemBelieve It Or Not, Paul Rudd Is Turning 50 This Year11 Most Immersive Game To Play On Your Table Top6 Interesting Ways To Make Money With A DroneWhich Country Is The Most Romantic In The World?20 Completely Unexpected Facts About ‘The Big Bang Theory’12 Movies That Almost Ended Their Stars’ CareersYou’ve Only Seen Such Colorful Hairdos In A Handful Of AnimeThe 18 Most Visited Cities In The World7 Ways To Understand Your Girlfriend Better9 Facts You Should Know Before Getting A Tattoolast_img read more

‘Spread the Word to End the Word’ comes to USC

first_imgUSC Best Buddies, an organization that partners with disabled elementary school students in Los Angeles, is collaborating with USC’s co-ed cinema fraternity, Delta Kappa Alpha, in promoting the national campaign “Spread the Word to End the Word,” which seeks to rid everyday vocabulary of the “R-word.”The campaign will attempt to publicize the message that the words “retard” and “retarded” are derogatory to people who are affected by disabilities. The groups will ask students to sign pledges to stop using the words.Delta Kappa Alpha and Best Buddies believe the campaign will increase the level of respect given to people with special needs.Though the cinema fraternity does not have a direct connection to those with disabilities, the members were inspired to join the campaign because actor John C. McGinley is a national spokesperson for “Spread the Word to End the Word.”Amelia Swedeen, a sophomore majoring in cinema television production and the philanthropy chair for Delta Kappa Alpha, said the partnership with Best Buddies originated out of a separate but common interest in this event.“Best Buddies was a group that I knew was already doing this event, so I thought it would be a lot more powerful to put them together and make it one big event,” she said.Swedeen said students often do not understand how much one word can hurt another’s feelings.“We want to promote respect and encourage people to not use certain words,” Swedeen said. “You hear this word in every day speech, especially with college students. They use it for anything they don’t like and they think is stupid or anything that is negative, but they don’t realize that the word cuts very deep.”Ashley Elizabeth, a junior majoring in theatre, said she thinks getting students to sign a pledge will make a difference in their use of the word.“If you spread enough awareness of the reality of the word, how degrading it is and untruthful, it will make people think twice before they say it out loud,” Elizabeth said.Certain words that are targeted toward a specific race or orientation are not accepted by the public as everyday language, but Swedeen said the same attention is not given to the “R-word.”“[Retard] is the one word that is completely acceptable in society and media,” Swedeen said. “So that’s what we want to stop. We want to let people know that they can say that if they want, they have the freedom, but they are going to get called out for it.”Eryn Parker, a senior majoring in English and communication and president of Best Buddies, said she hopes this event will make students conscious of their word choices.“The more you raise awareness with anything, the more people will think about it,” Parker said. “And then it will get rooted in their vocabulary.”Andy Dulcan, a junior majoring in cinema-television production and member of Delta Kappa Alpha, said this campaign is especially important because it promotes awareness.“Awareness is the most crucial step in change, a lot of people don’t know the harm that they are causing with words since it originates in middle school, where you’re saying it before you even know what it is that you are saying,” Dulcan said. “The only way to make that change is for people to understand the long-term effects.”Kacie Amacher, a freshman majoring in biochemistry, said she is excited students are raising awareness about this subject.“It’s important that people understand that their words, however unintentional, can have a negative effect on others and that they need to be more aware of what is coming out of their mouths,” Amacher said.last_img read more

Syracuse football’s thin offensive line has a chance at redemption against Virginia Tech

first_imgAs Eric Dungey lay on the ground, center Colin Byrne and right guard Evan Adams stood still staring down at him. A costly error by the two redshirt freshmen manifested in Dungey taking the brunt of their mistake.Wake Forest defensive tackle Josh Banks busted through the core of Syracuse’s offensive line on the third play of Saturday’s contest. Byrne’s body shifted toward the left and Banks split in between him and Adams — right through the A gap.Dungey was sacked, the first of five times against WFU, on his first drop back of the contest. The Orange was forced to punt, and a game in which Syracuse’s offense scored just seven points was off to a start that foreshadowed its end.“The best thing that Wake Forest did was they attacked some of our young people inside,” Orange head coach Dino Babers said, “and we need to be able to do things to help them in that situation.”Without three of its five starters, SU’s offensive line has struggled, especially in the interior. All five linemen against Wake Forest were first-year starters. Byrne, Adams and redshirt sophomore left guard Aaron Roberts make up the group that could be the biggest key for Syracuse’s (2-4, 0-2 Atlantic Coast) offense to run smoothly against No. 17 Virginia Tech (4-1, 2-0) on Saturday at 3:45 p.m. in the Carrier Dome.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textEarlier in the week, Babers said two of the three injured former starting offensive linemen are “pretty much done for the year.” He didn’t say whom, but redshirt senior right guard Omari Palmer and redshirt senior center Jason Emerich and sophomore left tackle Cody Conway haven’t played in the last three games. Emerich and Palmer are both listed as “out” on this week’s injury report, while Conway was not included.That means the inexperienced group SU is left with is likely the one Syracuse will go with for most of the remainder of the year.MORE COVERAGE:Time machine: Syracuse blows 14-point lead in 22-14 loss to Virginia TechRoundtable: SU’s secondary, second wide receiver and who needs to step upBeat writers predict Hokies to blow out the Orange “With not having a lot of experience on the offensive side, especially in the interior offensive line,” Babers said, “it can be very difficult for them to handle mentally some of the things that are going on.”The Demon Deacons repeatedly sent two players at the A gap — the space between the center and the guard. That meant Byrne had two players coming at him at once and he struggled picking them up, Dungey said.The Orange’s five sacks allowed last week were a season high. And even when Dungey didn’t get sacked, he often scrambled from pressure.“We’re not where we want to be,” Roberts said. “We’re going to get better. We know that.”Offensive line coach Mike Lynch hasn’t changed his approach, Adams said. He’s still consistent in what he preaches. He just needs his players to do their job.Jessica Sheldon | Photo EditorWhile Palmer and Emerich have been hurt, they’ve assisted Lynch and the rest of the offensive linemen. Adams said Palmer, the player he replaced, has discussed footwork technique and shown Adams drills to practice individually.As a result of Syracuse’s fast-paced style, Roberts said linemen need to understand blitz packages before the game even starts. Seconds before each snap is too late. And against a team like Virginia Tech, which ranks third in the nation in yards allowed per game (237.6), SU can’t afford more mishaps along the offensive line.Before the season started, Babers said games were won and lost in the trenches. He compared linemen to hippos and elephants. And with a matchup against the Hokies looming, SU’s depleted group is prepping to correct its mistakes.“They bring a lot,” Adams said. “They play any front you could think of so it’s going to be important that we stick to our A game.” Comments Published on October 13, 2016 at 11:48 pm Contact Paul: pmschwed@syr.edu | @pschwedscenter_img Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

Badgers earn hard-fought win over Rutgers

first_imgWith the combination of senior night, homecoming and the number-two spot in the Big Ten standings on the line, the Wisconsin women’s soccer team stepped onto the field ready to make a statement Friday night.The Badgers responded to the big opportunity against the third-best Big Ten team with a 1-0 win over Rutgers.Seemingly unfazed by the pregame ceremonies, the Rutgers’ offense spent the opening ten minutes in control of the game, dominating possession in the attacking end. While the Scarlet Nights (11-3-1, 7-3-1 Big Ten) had several opportunities to steal an early lead, none of their looks found the net, and eventually the Badgers (14-2-1, 7-2-1) created some rhythm and got the ball on their attacking side.The first big chance of the game came on a through ball from sophomore midfielder Rose Lavelle to redshirt senior forward Kodee Williams, who cut through the defense and had one defender to beat. With a quick fake-out cut to the left to throw the defender off track, Williams launched a one-on-one from point-blank range, but missed wide left, resulting in a goal kick.With the game scoreless 25 minutes into the half, UW’s Becca Harrison stole the ball in the opponent’s box, bringing it up the side and putting a perfectly placed cross to Williams on the opposite side. Beating the defenders to the ball, Williams managed a header that was able to find a small opening across the line for the 1-0 lead.The goal gave the Badgers a sense of confidence and excitement that would set the done for the rest of the match. Coming into the game, head coach Wilkins admitted that Friday’s showdown came with sense of added excitement compared to others throughout the year.“I think there’s a little bit of added inspiration,” Wilkins said. “Their energy for the last week in practice has been very good, I haven’t had to encourage them to play any harder in training. I think they knew what was at stake and it’s a sign of a mature team.”The remaining 15 minutes of the first half showcased breakaways that looked promising from both teams, but both backlines were quick to close down any chances in the defensively dominated half.Led by the efforts of junior Briana Stelzer and redshirt senior Alexandra Heller, the Badgers held the Scarlet Knights offense in check throughout the first 45 minutes and redshirt senior goalkeeper Genevieve Richard enjoyed a relatively untested opening segment.Similar to the start of the first half, the Scarlet Knights came out swinging, passing the ball effectively in the first five minutes. However, they still couldn’t find a hole through Wisconsin’s backline for a threatening look. Two shots from long range got to Richard, but they were lobs that she easily handled.The first serious threat of the game for Rutgers came 52 minutes in when a Rutgers striker found some open space on the right side of Wisconsin’s goal box. But on a shot that looked certain to find the net, Richard made a diving save and her backline cleared the ball out, and the Badgers’ shutout was still intact.The Badgers offense came right back with a strong challenge of their own, with a long range shot from Williams just missing high over the crossbar to keep the score at 1-0 Wisconsin with 35 minutes left.Close-range opportunities began to come more easily for both sides in the final 30 minutes, with junior midfielder Kinley McNicoll firing a promising shot in the 63rd minute that just missed wide left.The Terrapins wasted a promising chance with 10 minutes left in the game, as a corner from the right side sliced through the entire Badger’s defense, but failed to find a Rutgers player as Richard promptly punched the ball out of the box.While the Wisconsin offense didn’t challenge the Rutgers goalkeeper Casey Murphy throughout the second half, Williams said part of that was due to the defensive approach implemented by the team to prevent a Rutgers equalizer.“I think in the second half, we were pretty tired and we needed to change our game plan up a little bit. We switched formations just to make it a little easier on ourselves,” Williams said. “We did the same thing in Minnesota and it worked for us, we scored three goals in the second half, but Rutgers is a tough team and we knew that coming in, so by the end of the second half we were just trying to play solid defense.”After completing a perfectly executed pass through the Badgers’ defense with seven minutes left in the game, it looked for a split-second that Rutgers was going to tie the game up with a breakaway shot. Fortunately for Wisconsin’s defense, Richard was quick to notice the pass, and with a diving effort, beat the Rutgers striker by less than a step to eliminate any chance of an equalizer.By keeping all 11 players on the defensive end for the final five minutes of the game, the Badgers successfully kept Rutgers from scoring, despite a few close calls that were saved by Richard. The shutout from Richard marks her 10th of the season, as she notched six saves.With a 1-0 defensive victory and their eighth conference win of the season, the Badgers finished their Senior Night with their 14th win of the season, marking the most victories since their 2004 campaign.The Badgers will be on the pitch again this Sunday in a home matchup against Maryland (5-4-6, 3-2-5 Big Ten), starting at 1 p.m. at the McClimon Complex. Maryland has had an interesting stretch over their last four games, playing to a double-overtime tie in each competition.last_img read more