Vermont ranks as one of lowest credit risk states

With Mississippi as the highest and Vermont the third lowest, the TransUnion Credit Risk Index, a statistic developed to measure the changes in average consumer credit risk within various geographies, increased 1.98 percent from 124.79 in the fourth quarter of 2008 to 127.26 in the first quarter of 2009. On a year-over-year basis, the Credit Risk Index increased 7.10 percent (from 118.83 in the first quarter of 2008), the largest increase for that time period in this decade. The Credit Risk Index is defined as the weighted average probability of 90-day delinquency or worse among consumers in a given region relative to the nation as a whole.On a state basis, Mississippi ranks as the riskiest state in the nation with a Credit Risk Index of 166.45. It is followed closely by Texas (162.59), Nevada (158.97), South Carolina (158.76) and Louisiana (153.84). The least risky states include: North Dakota (82.02), Minnesota (88.53), Vermont (91.82), South Dakota (94.75) and Iowa (95.26).The states that experienced the largest quarterly changes included Nevada (4.25 percent increase), Arizona (4.06 percent increase) and California (3.98 percent increase). Though Louisiana’s Credit Risk Index is the fifth highest in the nation, it is the only state that experienced a drop on a quarterly basis of .03 percent. Arkansas experienced a minimal 0.01 percent gain while Vermont increased 0.52 percent.On a year-over-year basis, Arizona (14.82 percent increase), Nevada (14.38 percent) and California (13.82 percent) had the highest percentage increases. The three states with the lowest yearly percent increases included, Alaska (1.51 percent increase), Vermont (2.17 percent increase) and Kentucky (2.85 percent increase).”The Credit Risk Index is a true barometer of today’s economy, and the first quarter of 2009 indicates that the inherent level of credit risk within the U.S. is now 27.26 percent higher than the level reflected in TransUnion’s consumer credit database at the conclusion of 1998,” said Chet Wiermanski, global chief scientist at TransUnion. “Credit Risk Index data suggest that the growth in consumer credit risk has slowed during the past quarter, a positive note. However, the index remains at an all-time historical high, indicating that delinquencies and foreclosures will continue to rise in the coming months.””It is apparent that many of the states experiencing the highest increases in credit risk are the same when looking at the Credit Risk Index statistic on both a quarterly and yearly basis,” said Wiermanski. “This leads TransUnion to believe that consumers in these states will experience prolonged systemic difficulties in both in their ability to satisfactorily repay their existing credit obligations and in their ability to acquire new credit.”While an individual credit score can be quite powerful and accurate in predicting the probability of delinquency for an individual, the average credit score for a specific geography or customer segment does not accurately portray the level of risk existing within that footprint or segment to the same degree as TransUnion’s Credit Risk Index. This is because most credit scores are built on a non-linear scale, so averaging scores does not yield the correct measure of underlying probability of default. Credit Risk Index is a great instrument for gaining insight into the potential impact of external factors on the credit risk and rate of default within a given region, or for a given population segment, precisely because it accounts for the non-linearity of the underlying credit score,” continued Wiermanski.The Credit Risk Index uses the fourth quarter of 1998 as a baseline for comparison. Therefore it measures changes in consumer credit score distributions relative to the national distribution and delinquency rates as a whole at the end of 1998. This is considered by TransUnion as a representative year of credit performance within the usual dynamic of the historical credit cycle. A value of more than 100 represents a higher level of relative risk.TransUnion’s Credit Risk Index reflects the distribution of consumer credit risk as measured by TransUnion’s TransRisk Account Management Credit Risk Model and is a key metric within TransUnion’s Trend Data database. For comparison purposes, the Credit Risk Index in recent years has generally ranged between 110 and 120, experiencing a one- or two-point shift between quarters.TransUnion’s Trend Data databaseThe source of the underlying data used for this analysis is TransUnion’s Trend Data, a one-of-a-kind database consisting of 27 million anonymous consumer records randomly sampled every quarter from TransUnion’s national consumer credit database. Each record contains more than 200 credit variables that illustrate consumer credit usage and performance. Since 1992, TransUnion has been aggregating this information at the county, Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), state and national levels.www.transunion.com/trenddata(link is external)About TransUnionAs a global leader in credit and information management, TransUnion creates advantages for millions of people around the world by gathering, analyzing and delivering information. For businesses, TransUnion helps improve efficiency, manage risk, reduce costs and increase revenue by delivering comprehensive data and advanced analytics and decisioning. For consumers, TransUnion provides the tools, resources and education to help manage their credit health and achieve their financial goals. Through these and other efforts, TransUnion is working to build stronger economies worldwide. Founded in 1968 and headquartered in Chicago, TransUnion employs associates in more than 25 countries on five continents. www.transunion.com/business(link is external)Website: http://www.transunion.com(link is external) Source: TransUnion. CHICAGO, July 9, 2009 /PRNewswire/ — read more

Governor announces 14 climate change grants

first_imgGovernor Jim Douglas today announced that another 14 energy efficiency projects have been selected to receive almost $150,000 in funding from the Vermont Community Climate Change Grant Program. All told, these projects will reduce about 100 tons of greenhouse emissions – the equivalent of taking 16 cars off the road or not burning more than 10,000 galloons of gas, the Governor said.“It’s inspiring to see such strong grass-roots interest in energy efficiency and for doing Vermont’s part to combat climate change,” the Governor said.  “From Shrewsbury to Strafford, Vermonters are making improvements that will not only keep CO2 out of the air, but will also save individuals and taxpayers money.”In one project, Harwood Union High School is teaming up with Freeaire Refrigeration Systems of Warren to significantly reduce the cost and energy needed for the cafeteria’s refrigerators.Freeaire taps into the greatest source of refrigeration ever created: winter.  It uses cold outside air to cool a space, simply by using what nature has so kindly made available, to give the entire compressor system a winter vacation.  The high school expects to reduce CO2 emissions by 10.5 tons per year.Other projects include:Village of Essex Junction: $11,000 for a methane gas recapture system for the wastewater facility, which will provide heat and hot water for the facility. Annual emissions reduction – 9.5 tons.Town of Shrewsbury: $10,832 to upgrade and weatherize the town office and emergency shelter. Annual emissions reduction – 7 tons.Town of South Hero: $9,684 to replace the heating system, upgrade lighting and replace exterior doors at the town office building. Annual emissions reduction – 6.5 tons.Town of Underhill: $12,000 seal and insulate the town hall. Annual emissions reduction – 11.5 tons.Plainfield Fire & Rescue: $12,000 to weatherize the 1854 squad building. Annual emissions reduction – 10 tons.Lamoille Union School District: $12,000 to install photovoltaic panels to power the storage garage for the cross country trails.  Career center students will build the structure and net metering will generate credits for the campus. Annual emissions reduction – 2 tons.Richford Town School District: $12,000 to replace lighting at the high school gym. Annual emissions reduction – 16 tons.Yestermorrow Design/Build School of Warren: $11,850 to install a solar hot water system and create a demonstration project. Annual emissions reduction – 3 tons.Leicester School District: $8204 for lighting upgrades. Annual emissions reduction – 4 tons.Town of Moretown: $12,000 for weatherization and lighting upgrades at the town hall. Annual emissions reduction – 6 tons.Town of Waitsfield: $6515 to insulate and weatherize the Joslin Library. Annual emissions reduction – 6.5 tons.Worcester Historical Society: $9753 to weatherize and insulate the building. Annual emissions reduction – 2.5 tons.United Church of Strafford: $11,810 to install energy efficient lighting and weatherize the parish hall, including “the Ark,” an outdoor playground structure which doubles as a mini-stage for performances. Annual emissions reduction – 4.5 tons. Source: Governor’s office. 9/4/2009last_img read more

Gear of the Year: Best Outdoor Gear for 2013

first_imgClick to enlargeClick to enlarge1. Petzl Tikka XP2 HeadlampVersatile lighting options for a wide variety of conditions are essential in the backcountry, and this headlamp has it all. With one high-output LED, one red LED, five lighting modes, and a wide angle lens, the Tikka XP2 can cover up to 68 meters and provides 190 hours of lighting in economic mode. The two strobe settings are ideal for urban environments where visibility is crucial to nighttime bicycle commutes.$55; petzl.com2. Klean Kanteen Insulated 20oz mugNeed your homemade chili to keep nice and hot while you’re out shredding the slopes? Wouldn’t it be nice to have that smoothie stay cold while you’re out on a midday trail run? With this heavy duty insulated mug, you can do both. This stainless steel thermos keeps hot things hot (for up to six hours) and cold things cold (for up to 24).$30; kleankanteen.com3. Alite Monarch Butterfly ChairAfter a long day of backpacking, it’s nice to be able to get off your feet. Weighing in at 21oz, this lightweight chair lets you do just that while not having to lug around heavy, bulky alternatives. The aluminum frame balances on two legs, which allows you enough stability to sit on uneven ground and also rock forward and back. The tent-pole design breaks down to fit into a small stuff sack, so you can take it with you anywhere.$70; alitedesigns.com4. Casio PAG240 WatchAn upgrade to the Pathfinder line of watches, the PAG240 offers the same Triple Sensor functionality as the former models but is now powered by the sun. When you’re in remote locations, it helps to be able to look down at your wrist and have an altimeter, barometer, thermometer, compass, sunrise/sunset information, and the time of day literally at your fingertips in one sleek, compact design.$250; casio.com5. Sea To Summit Alpine II Sleeping BagSleeping at higher altitudes or in the dead of winter requires a bag that can provide serious warmth. The Alpine II is filled with Ultra-Dry Down™ at 850+ loft, which means you’ll be able to stay toasty at night without having to lug a bulky bag during the day. The smaller opening around the face ensures that your body heat does not escape, and the tapered box where your feet rest is designed with your foot’s natural angle in mind.$640; seatosummit.com 6. Adventure Technology HerculesMost kayakers do more than just run steep creeks or surf big waves. Most like to dabble, a little waterfall huck here, some McNastys there. If you’re a dabbler, then the Hercules is for you. Designed for the boater who spends a lot of time running rivers but likes to stop and play along the way, this versatile paddle is balanced for optimal all-around performance and is available in both carbon fiber and fiberglass. Think of it as the little black dress of kayakers.$230; atpaddles.com7. Showers Pass Refuge JacketA true do-it-all jacket, the Refuge is ideal for everything from bicycle commuting to shredding the slopes. The seam-taped, fully waterproof jacket has easy-access vents to prevent overheating, reflective trim for safe cycling on busy streets, and an adjustable hood large enough to cover any helmet. The jacket also includes an audio port in the chest pocket and a drop-down tail to protect against road spray and wet chairlifts.$279; showerspass.com8. Hobie Polarized Segundo SunglassesHobie’s high-tech lenses allows you to see all colors vividly. No more washed-out monochrome views; with the Segundo, you’ll forget you’re wearing shades.$190; hobiepolarized.com9. The A.T. GuideThru-hiker David “AWOL” Miller’s trail companion is the essential resource for any A.T. trek, whether a day hike or a thru hike. It includes mile-by-mile elevation profiles and icons indicating water, shelters, and scenic vistas, along with 72 maps of towns and resupply points.$15; theatguide.com10. GoLite Malpais Rain JacketAt a mere 6.7 ounces, this incredibly light three-layer rain shell also blocks wind and rain. Remarkably, it also breathes well, thanks to a permeable proprietary membrane. You won’t get better protection from the elements in under seven ounces. $125. The one thing that typically makes or breaks an adventure is the gear you bring (or don’t). What if you only have one opportunity to paddle that gorge or summit that peak? Do you want to spend the trip miserably wet from a faulty rain shell or completely frozen from inadequate base layers? We work hard to live for the moment, that brief period of time when the weather, the view, the smell of fresh air, the sweat on our brow, the sun on our cheeks, absolutely everything is just right. But more often than not, we find ourselves amid some not-so-perfect conditions. So when Mother Nature takes a turn for the worse, when fate deals its capricious hand, don’t slump back to base camp. Be prepared with these 16 great products that work where you need them, when you need them.Best Outdoor Gear 2013:1. Arcteryx Atom SV Hoody For temperatures and climates that demand more than a fleece mid-layer, this synthetic hoody is the way to go. Its moisture- and wind-resistant outer fabric also makes this jacket durable and warm enough for use as an outer layer. The underarm panel is designed to be breathable when you’re active, warm when you’re not.$250; arcteryx.com2. Smartwool Ridgeway HatFor those who like to hit the ski bar after a long day on the slopes, style and function are everything. This beanie has a tightly woven knit and full liner made entirely of Merino wool to keep your head warm even when the flakes start falling. The groovy stripes are sure to stand out in a sea of monochromatic melons.$40; smartwool.com3. Patagonia Capilene 3Even when your rain shell fails you and you’re drenched to the bone with half a day of hiking yet, you can count on these base layers to keep you warm. Made from a stretchy double-knit polyester fabric, both the top and bottom layers are designed with comfort in mind. Offset seams mean you can wear a pack comfortably for days without any irritation, and the Polygiene® permanent odor control will keep you feeling fresh and clean, no matter how greasy you really are.$65 top, $55 bottom; patagonia.com4. Mountain Hardwear ChockstoneFor those long days on the rock, you need pants that provide protection from any type of element. The air-permeable stretch fabric on the Chockstone has a high resistance to abrasion, but is also finished with a coat of DWR (Durable Water Repellent) to help shed moisture from light rain. This fabric also provides UPF 50 sun protection and a Micro-Chamois™ lining at the waist helps you stay comfortable when you’re in the harness for hours on end.Pant: $125; mountainhardwear.com5. Darn Tough Mountaineering SockBlizzards, freezing rain, blinding downpours: you name it, this sock can handle it. Made with extra heavy terry loop padding in the foot and shin, this beefy sock won’t wear out under pressure and provides maximum warmth. The streamlined fit and invisible seams help avoid debilitating blisters, while the fine gauge Merino wool lets your feet breathe and your socks dry fast. Did we mention these babies have a lifetime warranty?$25; darntough.com6. Marmot Ridgerock JacketWhen it’s rainy and cold, it sucks, no matter if you’re at 10,000 feet in the Alps or at 3,000 feet in the Blue Ridge. For a reliable shell that keeps you dry when you need it and lets you breathe when you don’t, check out this GORE-TEX jacket. The Angel-Wing Movement™ design doesn’t restrict your range of motion and prevents the shell from riding up your backside. It packs down to just over one pound, which is considerably light given its 100% seam-taped two-layer construction.$275; marmot.com7. MSR Hubba Hubba  When you see that storm front quickly approaching on the horizon, you want to be able to set up a shelter fast. The Hubba Hubba is the perfect solution for weight-conscious backpackers who appreciate an easy-to-assemble freestanding tent. With two doors, two large vestibules, and 40 inches of headspace, this three-season tent is great for everything, from extended alpine expeditions to car camping.$330; cascadedesigns.com/msr8. Kinivo BTH240 Bluetooth Wireless Headphones (not pictured)                                                                                                                                                                                        Kinivo’s top selling on-ear wireless headphones use an exceptional integrated rechargeable battery, which blast up to 10 hours of active audio. To recharge, simply plug the headphones into the included micro-USB charging cable and connect to your PC or wall outlet. It also provides crystal-clear conversations and hands-free calling via a built-in noise cancelling microphone – all housed in a stylishly slim, foldable design. The headphones handled trail runs and long hikes superbly—as well as the drive to and from the trailhead. $30. kinivo.com last_img read more

Kuraby home has flair with a family feel

first_imgThe home at 3 Melaleuca Ct, Kuraby.Spread across two levels, the home has an open-plan living, dining and kitchen area that opens through sliding doors to the outdoor entertaining area.The kitchen has stone benchtops, gas cooktop, designer appliances, glass splashback and butler’s pantry.There is also a carpeted media room and a guest room with bathroom downstairs. The home at 3 Melaleuca Ct, Kuraby.An exposed glass and polished timber staircase leads upstairs, where there is another living area and balcony.The master bedroom has a walk-in wardrobe and ensuite, and the remaining bedrooms have built-in robes. The home at 3 Melaleuca Ct, Kuraby.“My favourite part of the home is the downstairs living area — it has lots of natural light streaming in from different directions.“It’s a fantastic area for entertaining, especially with the kitchen and the alfresco area with garden backdrop.“Upstairs, there is a second living area with a balcony, which is also great for more private gatherings, though we spend most of our time in the media room and the kitchen.”More from newsCrowd expected as mega estate goes under the hammer7 Aug 2020Hard work, resourcefulness and $17k bring old Ipswich home back to life20 Apr 2020 The home at 3 Melaleuca Ct, Kuraby.THIS modern family home with flair is new to the market in Kuraby and still feels like a brand new home.Owners Muhammed and Ana Doola built the home at 3 Melaleuca Ct to be a unique house, well suited to modern family living.“It has lots of light thanks to all the windows, and the 3.6m ceilings (downstairs) give that feeling of openness,” Mr Doola said. The home at 3 Melaleuca Ct, Kuraby.The property has porcelain tiles, LED lighting, ducted airconditioning and ducted vacuum system throughout.There is also an intercom system, double garage and low-maintenance yard that comes with irrigation.The property is within walking distance to schools and parks.last_img read more

Football News Pulwama Terror Attack: Defending champions Minerva Punjab forfeit game against Real Kashmir FC

first_img Srinagar: Defending champions Minerva Punjab FC forfeited their I-League match against Real Kashmir FC in Srinagar after the All India Football Federation (AIFF) turned down their request to relocate the fixture in the aftermath of the Pulwama terrorist attacks. The match was scheduled for Sunday and Minerva said its foreign players have been advised by their respective countries’ embassies to pull out. “…we regret to inform you that this is not a risk that we are ready to take hence we shall not be travelling to the turbulent region,” the Punjab club said in its letter to the AIFF.   Minerva also said that it did not receive the security assurances it had sought from the AIFF following the attack on Thursday which led to the death of 40 CRPF personnel. It is being termed as the deadliest terrorist strike in three decades in Jammu and Kashmir.”Considering the extraordinary circumstances following the Pulwama attack just 20Km from Srinagar Airport, the Ministry of Home affairs need to approve the football match being held. If the CRPF convoys are not safe, then we are very soft targets for such attacks,” the club stated.            “We had asked for written assurance and permission from Ministry of Home Affairs which we still haven’t got from your or Home team’s end. Please note that our foreign players have already received Travel Advisory Warnings from their respective embassies asking them not to travel to Srinagar till further notice,” it added. Real Kashmir FC are on top of the table in the I-League.Minerva Punjab forfeited the game following Pulwama terror attack.Pulwama terror attack resulted in the death of 40 CRPF jawans. highlights For all the Latest Sports News News, Football News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps. Minerva once again urged the AIFF “to delay the match for at least a fortnight till situation in the valley is settled.”          “…alternately we are ready to play in Delhi, Chandigarh or any other neutral venue,” the club said.           Earlier, I-League CEO Sunando Dhar said local security authorities in Srinagar gave the go-ahead to hold the match at the TRC Ground. He said the AIFF was assured of all the necessary security arrangements for the players and officials by the local authorities.              “Our officials are already in Srinagar in preparation of the match. I have spoken to the match commissioner and he told me that the situation in Srinagar is currently normal. The local security in-charge of the match has also assured full security to the players, officials and all those related to the match,” Dhar told PTI on Saturday.        “We have been assured that the whole security bandobast of players’ transport from the airport to the team hotel and for travelling from the team hotel to the ground and return on match day will all be provided. So we have decided to go ahead with the match,” he added.       But Minerva said that the arrangements mentioned by the AIFF “are routine” for any visiting team. Minerva owner Ranjit Bajaj said his side decided to forfeit the match due to security concerns and as a mark of respect for the slain CRPF Jawans.   “We are not going to play the match, we will forfeit it. We have decided it and I have no second thought in doing that,” he said. Real Kashmir will get all the three points. The league debutants will be on 35 points from 17 matches. Leaders Chennai City FC (34 points from 16 matches) will play against Shillong Lajong on Sunday. “The AIFF wants to portray that the situation in Srinagar is normal but it is not normal there,” Bajaj said. Third-placed East Bengal (31 points from 15 matches), who are scheduled to play against Real Kashmir on February 28, have also got in touch with the AIFF after the attack, expressing similar security concerns.last_img read more

Beach soccer to lead sports tourism in Ghana

first_imgThe Ghana Beach Soccer Association (GBSA) and the La Pleasure beach resort have joined forces to elevate beach soccer as a major sports tourism lure in the capital.This was disclosed by executives and management of the two outfits after fruitful talks that lasted over two hours at the La beach arena. It is understood that Zoomlion through their beach and coastal management wing Zoil would be key partners of the project.Speaking after the meeting, the manager of La Pleasure beach resort William Odoi-Cornal stated that leisure, sports and tourism can be packaged to transform the concept of sports and entertainment in Ghana.“Let us not pretend we can do in a few years, what developed nations have done over a decade or more with so much investment. Instead we will do our best to make a meaningful impact and support all sporting activities on the beach starting with beach soccer”.Beach soccer is one of the most physically demanding sports in the world and the management of the game has proven to be equally challenging in Ghana. The GBSA manages two leagues made up of the Championship with 10 teams and Division 1 which also comprises of 10 teams.Limited funds posed major problems for the league managers have somehow run the two leagues on a budget of Gh 40,000 a season from Cal Bank. According to the association’s treasurer Nii Armah Nmai, the weekly expenditure for the league has had to be cut down to just under Gh4,000 – which means other sources of funding have to be sought to assist the teams travelling from Cape Coast, Ada, Senya, Prampram and Keta.The GBSA was formed in 2007 with no available or existing infrastructure but managed to hold a 16 team side-show during AFCON 2008 hosted by Ghana. The association only recently reconstituted after holding congress and elections in 2011 and 2012 respectively.The new partnership will see massive rebranding of the beach soccer venue in Accra. The idea is to replicate the concept right across the coastal belt.Reacting to media reports of a breakdown in management of the sport, the President of the GBSA Yaw Ampofo Ankrah said it was a ploy to derail the plans of the association.“We are building something great and it is now reaching a critical phase where we must solidify and consolidate. The biggest mistake any of us could make is to be distracted by individuals who have no interest in the development of the game,” he noted.last_img read more