The cavalier attitude of ocean carriers towards the ordering of new ultra-large tonnage is almost entirely to blame for the current dire market conditions within the container industry and the collapse of the charter market, according to a respected maritime consultant.Alphaliner said that the gravity facing containership owners compared with that during the financial crisis in 2009, but suggests that the context is now “rather different”.“This time, carriers’ reckless order wave of the past few years is largely to blame for the overcapacity that wreaks havoc to the market,” said Alphaliner, “while the poor health of the world economy has only made things worse.”The full extent of the carnage exacted on the boxship charter market in 2015 was recounted by Alphaliner in its latest update. By Mike Wackett 11/01/2016 It said that after a “wind of optimism” that had prevailed among containership owners in the first half of the year it became obvious by August that the market was changing direction, which would eventually lead to a rate collapse.Indeed, in the last weeks of 2015 daily hire rates for containerships of over 4,000 teu plunged to all-time lows.For example; according to Alphaliner’s data, charter rates for an 8,800 teu ship plummeted from $31,000 per day in the first half of the year to $8,000 in the second half as demand almost totally dried up.The influence of the ‘big three’ container lines, Maersk, MSC and CMA CGM, on the charter market is substantial: between them they accounted for 36% of the chartering activity in 2015, according to Alphaliner’s records.Hence, as their new mega-container vessels have been delivered for Asia-Europe deployment, the trio have cascaded incumbent ships into smaller trades and off-hired, or not extended, smaller boxships, thus exacerbating the difficulties for the weakening charter market.Looking ahead, Alphaliner said that the prospects for 7,500 teu to 9,000 teu ships could improve later in the year with the opening of the new Panama locks as carriers prepare to “shake-up service patterns” to reduce unit costs.However, what is potentially good news for the owners of bigger vessels, is very bad news for the current fleet of panamax containerships.“The situation can only get worse in 2016 for conventional panamaxes, already vastly affected by a chronic oversupply” said the consultant. “The new Panama locks are expected to open at the start of the peak season, just when panamax chartering activity picks up as seasonal Asia-US east coast loops are launched. “This time, it will be much larger ships that stand to benefit, leaving many traditional panamaxes stranded,” it said.In terms of other smaller sectors, Alphaliner’s view is again mostly negative for the year, given the cascade impact from panamax ships looking for any form of employment. In fact, it suggests that the only size of containership likely to enjoy a positive outlook this year is in the 1,000-1,800 teu sector.These vessels, notes Alphaliner, could benefit from the dearth of newbuilding ships of this size coming on stream and their niche deployment requirement for trades that have physical restrictions such as in draught or length.
U.S. Sen. Martin HeinrichWASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) issued the following statement this afternoon after voting for the interim COVID-19 emergency relief package, which passed the Senate today. A summary of the legislation is available here.“This stopgap legislation is designed to quickly shore up the economic relief programs targeted for small businesses, provide more funding to our health care providers, and set the foundation for a much larger, national testing infrastructure that is absolutely critical to restoring confidence and reopening our economy. Resuming normal life relies on making COVID-19 testing readily available in every single community in every corner of the country, and ensuring that data is accessible and transparent.“It was clearly urgent to get more funds into programs like the Paycheck Protection Program and Economic Injury Disaster Loans that can serve as critical lifelines for small businesses and nonprofits. I am disappointed and deeply frustrated with the shortcomings in the delivery of these programs by the Trump administration. I hope the additional funding and key fixes to these programs in this legislation will allow the small businesses who need help–not just those who are well-connected–to finally receive it.“We still need to do so much more to invest in a broader public health response that’s rooted in science, and a strong long-term economic recovery in the aftermath of the pandemic. I am not done fighting for New Mexico’s priorities as the negotiations continue between the Senate, the House of Representatives, and the White House on the next major bill to protect our health and rebuild our country.”
Christmas Fruit Cake – Have you soaked your fruits yet?By: Shakira ThomasWho is baking this Christmas? I know all the yearly bakers already have their containers of mixed fruits soaking and ready for the biggest baking time of the year. Good stuff!If you didn’t know, soaking your mixed fruits in advance before baking your Christmas fruit cake is the key to that moist, rich and tasty texture. The flour, sugar and other ingredients are just props; it’s really the fruits and nuts that are the star of this delight.Can you remember that time you had the best Christmas cake ever and the first bite brought happy tears to your eyes? You remember thinking that there must be a secret ingredient in this Christmas fruitcake? Well I’m here to tell you that the secret is fruit soaking in advance. When you soak the mixed fruits it gives you that rich, moist texture with bursting flavors.There are different timelines you can choose to soak your mixed fruits, I will inform you of the different ways but the rule of thumb is the longer you soak the fruits the better the taste. It’s like the wine aging concept the older the wine the better the taste, well it’s the same for soaking your mixed fruits, the longer you soak your mixed fruits in alcohol the better the taste of your Christmas fruit cake. Yearly bakers start to soak their mixed fruits the beginning of the year and bake first week in December and feed the cakes with alcohol once a week up to Christmas. Some say the traditional way is to soak fruits three months before Christmas that would be first/second week of September and then bake approximately five weeks before Christmas. The easiest timeline is to soaking your mixed fruits overnight just three-four weeks before Christmas, bake the next day and brush alcohol once a week until Christmas. This is probably the best option for busy moms on the go. The key here is to give your fruits adequate time to marinate in alcohol to get that rich, scrumptious taste you want.If you are planning on baking this year for the first time, have no fear we will be your guide to the process. We have the same recipe and method that ‘Grandma’ and ‘Aunt Mae’ used when you were a child, so you’re in good hands. To start the baking process right, I want you to first get rid of the fear that baking a Christmas fruit cake is hard. It’s really easy; once you have good directions (we got you!) and all the ingredients the process is effortless.This week we will start with the simplest step in the process, and that is to soak your mixed fruits.Items you will need:FruitsGlazed cherry – 100gApricot – 120gDate – 180gPrune – 100gCranberry – 100gFig – 50gRaisins:Black current – 150gRaisin – 100gSultana – 150gNuts:Almond – 50gWalnut – 50gCashew – 50gOther:Brandy: 700ml (sherry, whisky or dark rum)Orange zest of 1 large orangeEquipment:Large glass bowl with lid or large glass jar with air-tight lidSpatula/Wooden serving spoonChopping boardSharp knifeDirection made simple:Chop all the fruits and nuts in bite size pieces. It will increase the total amount of fruits present in your cake. This will ensure that fruits and nuts are in every bite of your cake.Place the chopped fruits and nuts in the clean and dry containers (as listed above) and pour the brandy (or alcohol of your choice) over the fruits. Make sure fruits are completely covered with the liquid.Stir gently with the wooden spoon and cover with the lid. The glass container should be air tight.Place the container in a dry and dark place, may be in your kitchen cupboard.Stir (or shake) the fruit mix with a wooden spatula/spoon on each day or at least on alternate day until the baking day.How easy was that?!Cooking tips:It’s best to use a glass container, as alcohol could have a reaction to other types of material.Depending on the sizes of the fruits, cut is quarters and halves. The bigger pieces of fruits cut in quarters, and the smaller cut in halves.Look out for the follow-up article on this topic – closer to baking time. I will give you the list of items, best brands you need to shop for your cake; in the meantime get those fruits soaking.Shakira Thomas is the creator and founder of Caribbeanchick.com. The official internet destination for Caribbean women worldwide.– See more at: http://www.caribbeanchick.com
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This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.Brothers Emmanuel and Josh Smith created their own brand — #SmithBrosOnTheRise — on a whim while playing football together at Oakland High School.Two years later, the new Vanderbilt teammates can’t escape their own creation, hearing the hashtag while walking through the football facility, across campus or even on the field.“Smith brothers on the rise! Smith brothers on the rise!” said Emmanuel, a sophomore defensive back. “We hear it everywhere we go from everyone.”Perhaps that’s because the brothers rarely go anywhere these days without each other.“I love being with my brother in college,” said Josh, a freshman linebacker who turned down offers from Oregon, Oklahoma and almost every SEC school to follow his brother to Vanderbilt. “(Emmanuel) didn’t force me to come to Vanderbilt. It was more like an invitation, and I took it.”It’s hard to imagine the Smith brothers apart. They talk, walk and even laugh alike. To say they finish each other’s sentences would be cliché if not absolutely true.And their mother, Stephanie, said her boys’ next fight will be their first.“(Emmanuel) has always been the protector, and Josh has always been right there with him,” she said. “They’re just sidekicks. They don’t fight like other siblings.”Brothers Josh Smith, left, and Emmanuel Smith talk about growing up in Murfreesboro, playing at Oakland High School and winding up together at Vanderbilt.Growing up, the only argument between them was a routine rock-paper-scissors game to decide which brother had to wash the dishes and which cleaned the living room.“We argued about that like every night,” Emmanuel said. “But we didn’t fight. We just laughed a lot.”Their camaraderie already is a cog in Vanderbilt’s young defense. Emmanuel should play a major role at nickel back in head coach Derek Mason’s defensive scheme, and Josh has quickly earned a spot in the rotation of the Commodores’ athletic linebackers.“Both of those guys want to be impact players, and they will be,” Mason said. “They are the type of guys we look for –— extremely smart, extremely talented and from a great home.“Those two are so close. They care about football, but they really care about each other.”Vanderbilt defense focuses on getting off fieldPlaying together is old hat for the Smiths.As five-year-olds, they were standouts on the Murfreesboro Blue Raiders youth football team. Emmanuel was a lightning-quick running back and linebacker. Josh was a “fast chubby kid” who could play quarterback or defensive tackle, depending on “if I had done my conditioning and been up a couple of pounds or down a couple of pounds.”They won a Rutherford County championship at Rockvale Middle School together. Emmanuel then led Oakland to an undefeated regular season in 2013, and Josh guided the Patriots to a spot in the Class 6A state semifinals the next year.The Smiths developed into two of the top prospects in Tennessee in their respective recruiting classes, and they should play together some in Vanderbilt’s Sept. 3 opener against Western Kentucky.Their father, Demetrius, played football at MTSU and now serves as a campus police officer at his alma mater. He said he didn’t care where his sons played, as long as they put school before football.“We always told them, ‘God blessed you to be an athlete, but he also gave you a mind,’” their father said. “Football is going to end one day, so they know to always make their decisions based on academics first.”Emmanuel and Josh lived in adjacent rooms during preseason camp, but they will move into different dorms as classes begin this week. It may seem like a short distance, but not for the Smiths.“They had their own bedrooms growing up, and they still hung out together in the same room,” Stephanie said. “Playing video games or watching scary movies, they always did it together.”Vanderbilt’s 10 things to do in 10 days before kickoffThe Smiths are still “locker buddies,” sharing the same space after each practice and game. “His area is pretty dirty, and so after all these years I’m still cleaning up after him,” Josh said. “But I can’t complain because my feet stink worse than his.”Once again teammates, the Smiths are closest on the field. During camp, they practiced together for the first time in nearly two years, but it seemed just like every game they played as five-year-olds at the Murfreesboro park.“I always realize when he’s on the field with me,” Josh said. “I can just sense if he’s out there. I always know.”Said Emmanuel: “Like he said, we just know. No one is going to have your back more than your brother, even on the field.” Reach Adam Sparks at 615-259-8010 and on Twitter @AdamSparks. Vanderbilt players and brothers Emmanuel Smith, left, and Josh Smith lived in adjacent rooms during preseason camp, but soon they will be in different dorms. Brothers Josh Smith, left, and Emmanuel Smith pose for camera at the Vanderbilt University practice field and McGugin Center on campus Nashville, Tenn. August 21, 2015. Brothers and Vanderbilt football players Josh Smith, left, and Emmanuel Smith are excited to be on the same team.Play VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration Time 0:00Loaded: 0%0:00Progress: 0%0:00 Progress: 0%Stream TypeLIVERemaining Time -0:00 Playback Rate1ChaptersChaptersdescriptions off, selectedDescriptionssubtitles off, selectedSubtitlescaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedCaptionsAudio TrackFullscreenThis is a modal window. The Video Cloud video was not found. Error Code: VIDEO_CLOUD_ERR_VIDEO_NOT_FOUND Vanderbilt football players and brothers Emmanuel and Josh Smith are greeted by Steve Rector during Vanderbilt’s annual Dore Jam fan event on Sunday Aug. 16, 2015. Rector’s son Andrew plays football for Vanderbilt.