Rabu, 08 Juni 2011

Regretting Move, Bank May Return to Manhattan

Fifteen years ago, New York City’s reputation as an international financial center was called into question when the giant Swiss bank UBS moved its North American headquarters to the Connecticut suburbs, where it built the largest trading floor in the world.

Now, though, UBS is having buyer’s remorse. It turns out that a suburban location has become a liability in recruiting the best and brightest young bankers, who want to live in Manhattan or Brooklyn, not in Stamford, Conn., which is about 35 miles northeast of Midtown. The firm has also discovered that it would be better to be closer to major clients in New York City.

As a result, UBS is seriously considering a reverse migration that would bring its investment banking division and up to 2,000 bankers and traders back to Wall Street and a new skyscraper at the rebuilt World Trade Center, according to real estate executives and city officials.

“They just can’t hire the bankers and traders they need,” said one landlord who has spoken with UBS but requested anonymity so as not to alienate a potential tenant.

The bank is also looking at several Midtown locations, and Connecticut is sure to wage a fierce battle to keep UBS in Stamford, where it is the largest private employer and the biggest taxpayer.

A final decision is perhaps months away, and any move would not take place until 2015.

But over the last week, UBS has engaged in negotiations with the developer Larry Silverstein over the terms of a potential financial deal at 3 World Trade Center, an 80-story office tower that he plans to build at 175 Greenwich Street. The return of UBS would be a boon to New York, which in past decades often suffered from corporate defections that were fueled by a sense that computers and telecommunications had made a Manhattan location more of a luxury than a necessity.

The move would be the latest sign that New York has regained its allure as a caldron for the young and creative. Six months ago, Google paid nearly $2 billion for a large building just north of the meatpacking district, in the same Manhattan neighborhood where many of its employees live.

“A key piece of the mayor’s economic strategy has been to make New York City a place people want to be,” Deputy Mayor Robert K. Steel said, “and more than ever the city is the ideal location for any company, like UBS, that succeeds by attracting a talented, motivated work force.”

A UBS trader in his 20s said that like many of his peers at the firm, he would have preferred a job in New York City, where he lives.

“I mean, it’s annoying,” said the trader, who asked that his name not be used because he was not authorized to speak about the possible relocation. “I take Metro-North. I live pretty close to Grand Central, so it’s not a terrible commute. But it’s not ideal.” The trip takes about 45 minutes to an hour, depending on how many stops the train makes.

He added that “the bank’s plan is to move to New York, but it’s mostly to be closer to clients.”

UBS has hired the real estate brokerage firm CB Richard Ellis to explore new space. A UBS deal would also be a vindication of a multibillion-dollar effort to rebuild the World Trade Center complex. After the terrorist attack on the trade center, there was widespread debate over the future of the city’s financial center downtown. Since then, the residential population there has swelled.

Last month, Condé Nast, publisher of The New Yorker, Vanity Fair and Glamour, signed a deal to be the anchor tenant of 1 World Trade Center, the signature skyscraper at the northwest corner of the site.

Mr. Silverstein has the right to build three towers along Greenwich Street. The first one is already under construction, and the city has pledged to take space in it. But Mr. Silverstein has long sought a large financial tenant for what is known as Tower 3, which features five trading floors at the base, and will be built before Tower 2 is. A possible UBS relocation, which was first reported by Bloomberg News last week, would be a major blow to Stamford, where a quarter of the office space is vacant.

Michael Pavia, the mayor of Stamford, said UBS executives have been noncommittal, saying they have “no firm plans, nothing that they can report at this time.”

He said he and Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, a former mayor of Stamford, “are committed to keeping UBS here.”

Catherine Smith, Connecticut’s economic development commissioner, said: “We just want to make sure that Connecticut has a fair shot. We love having them in the state and hope they’ll stay. But you don’t always win these competitive battles.”

Mr. Pavia said UBS had about 3,000 employees in Stamford, down from more than 4,000 a couple of years ago. The bank, which leases but does not own any space in Stamford, is not expected to move all its employees out of town.

UBS issued a statement saying that “we routinely evaluate our space allocation as these leases expire and/or space becomes available.”

UBS, then known as Swiss Bank, touched off cross-border recriminations and municipal hand-wringing in 1994, when it announced plans to move from its two Manhattan locations, one in Midtown and the other in the financial district, to Stamford. New York City, still in the throes of a deep recession, was already hurting after the defection of MasterCard to Westchester County.

City officials and real estate executives feared that New York was about to endure another wave of corporate departures to less-expensive locales in Connecticut and New Jersey and beyond. Some experts suggested that financial firms no longer needed to be in Manhattan and close to Wall Street because of the spectacular growth of computerized trading and telecommunications.

Connecticut sweetened the pot for UBS by dangling what was supposed to be a $120 million package of tax breaks and interest-free loans, although the actual value of the incentives turned out to be substantially less. The bank erected a trading floor the size of two football fields, packed with more than 5,000 computer monitors.

At the time, Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani charged that Connecticut had broken a 1991 nonaggression treaty among New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, in which state leaders promised not to use special incentives to steal jobs from one another.

New York City officials took out large advertisements in Connecticut newspapers condemning the subsidies as too costly to taxpayers. They vowed to begin wooing Connecticut firms, a largely empty threat.

“If you start a border war, you don’t really give us much choice but to fight back,” Deputy Mayor John Dyson said in 1994. “New Yorkers are not widely considered to be patty-cakes.”

U.S. Trust, Goldman Sachs, Chase, UBS and other financial institutions moved at least some of their operations across the Hudson River to New Jersey, although Goldman Sachs equity traders revolted in 2002 when the investment bank tried to relocate them to an expensive new tower in Jersey City, a mere mile from its Lower Manhattan headquarters.

Goldman slowly moved other employees over to Jersey City and then built a new headquarters in Manhattan, across West Street from the World Trade Center site.


The Polar Express

"The Polar Express," Chris Van Allsburg's beloved children's book, published by Houghton Mifflin, captures the pure spirit of the holiday season. It is a time of wonder, of enchanting discovery, of boundless fascination.

The inspirational tale will become even larger than life with the theatrical release of "The Polar Express." The movie, from Warner Bros. Pictures, stars the Academy Award-winning team of Tom Hanks and director Robert Zemeckis. And now, fans of "The Polar Express" can take home a little bit of the story's magic with exclusive gifts from Hallmark Gold Crown stores.

"'The Polar Express' is such a classic Christmas story, it seemed appropriate that Hallmark Gold Crown stores, a traditional holiday destination, serve as 'The Polar Express' headquarters," said Greg Raymond, vice president of license acquisitions at Hallmark. "The one-of-a-kind Hallmark collection truly brings the classic story to life."

In the movie, a young boy who wants to believe in Santa, no matter what the doubters say, is given an unexpected train ride to the North Pole. When the train reaches its destination, Santa himself materializes and offers the boy whatever his heart desires. In the end, the boy learns that the wonder of life never fades for those who believe.

Fans can feel the excitement of the movie with items from Hallmark's collection, such as an authentic reproduction of the bell Santa gives the boy as the "first gift of Christmas."

Also available in the collection are copies of "The Polar Express" book, Keepsake Ornaments, photo frames, gift-wrap, a tea-light holder, stocking holders, greeting cards and partyware. The variety of gifts in the collection will delight even those not so familiar with "The Polar Express" story.

"Hallmark has a long history of celebrating warm holiday traditions and these traditions are perfectly in sync with what 'The Polar Express' symbolizes," said Karen McTier, executive vice president of domestic licensing for Warner Bros. Consumer Products. "Now filmgoers can take a bit of the movie magic and enchantment home with them."

Selasa, 07 Juni 2011

DeVito calls for healthy food in schools

Danny Devito is throwing his support behind celebrity chef Jamie Oliver's campaign to improve food in American public schools.

The chef has been trying to convince US officials to revamp school lunches to include more nutritious options for students.

DeVito has now pledged to help Oliver on his food crusade, insisting it's important for kids to adopt a healthy lifestyle at a young age.

In a series of posts on his Twitter.com page, DeVito writes, "Got up again to talk about Jamie Oliver and his passion about getting kids to start on a good diet and fight the sugar and salt. Let's help!

"Got to do something... Talk to kids and get them on board. We have to do it. We have to talk about the future. Let's not suck our kids into an additive life of soda pop and candy. He wants our children to get with a correct program of health... We have to rebalance our lifestyles to fit the future."


Studi: Gamer Cenderung Gemuk dan Depresi

CALIFORNIA - Jika anda gemar bermain game, baik di konsol maupun PC, ada baiknya anda berhati-hati. Sebuah studi baru menyebutkan, sebagian besar gamer cenderung memiliki tubuh lebih gemuk dan berisiko mengalami depresi.

Studi itu dilakukan oleh gabungan ilmuwan dari Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Emory University di Atlanta serta Andrews University di Michigan. Hasil studi itu mengungkapkan bahwa mereka yang sering bermain game memiliki risiko lebih besar untuk kelebihan berat badan serta mengalami depresi. Rata-rata gamer yang mengalami kondisi ini berusia 35 tahun. Demikian seperti dilansir Reg Hardware, Sabtu (21/5/2011).

Sebanyak 500 responden berusia 19 hingga 90 tahun ikut berpartisipasi dalam studi ini. Sekira 45 persen dari para responden mengaku sering bermain game.

Para peneliti menemukan bahwa gamer wanita memiliki tingkat depresi lebih tinggi dan kualitas kesehatan lebih buruk dibandingkan wanita yang tidak bermain game. Sementara, gamer pria cenderung memiliki nilai Indeks Massa Tubuh lebih tinggi ketimbang pria yang tidak bermain game.

Lebih lanjut, gamer pria dan wanita juga tercatat lebih tergantung pada internet sebagai dukungan sosial mereka dibandingkan non-gamer.


Minggu, 05 Juni 2011

Berbagai Anggapan yang Salah Seputar Jerawat

Benarkah makan coklat dan kacang bisa menyebabkan jerawat? Lalu, apakah benar pasta gigi bisa membantu menyembuhkan jerawat? Berikut ini mitos-mitos yang beredar seputar jerawat. Baca lebih lanjut agar Anda tak lagi salah dalam merawat kulit wajah.

1. Jerawat disebabkan oleh debu.
Jerawat muncul akibat pori-pori tersumbat oleh minyak, bakteri, dan sel kulit mati.

2. Makan coklat dan gorengan bisa menimbulkan jerawat.
Sampai saat ini, tak ada penelitian yang bisa menemukan hubungan antara jerawat dengan makanan apa pun. Selama dikonsumsi secara tidak berlebihan, makanan tak akan mempengaruhi jerawat.

3. Jerawat bisa diatasi dengan cara sering-sering mencuci muka.
Cucilah wajah dengan sabun atau pembersih yang lembut, maksimal 3 kali sehari. Terlalu sering mencuci wajah bisa menyebabkan kulit iritasi, dan merangsang kulit untuk memproduksi lebih banyak minyak, sehingga jerawat malah makin meradang.

4. Pasta gigi membantu menyembuhkan jerawat.
Pasta gigi tak mengandung zat apa pun yang bisa mengobati jerawat. Carilah obat yang mengandung benzoyl peroxide atau salicylic acid.

5. Memencet jerawat adalah cara tercepat mengusir jerawat.
Dengan dipencet dan dipaksa pecah, bakteri penyebab jerawat justru akan mudah tersebar ke bagian lain. Apalagi jika tangan yang digunakan untuk memencet jerawat tidak steril. Akibatnya, bukan hanya jerawat bertambah parah, tapi juga akan meninggalkan bekas luka di kulit wajah.

6. Sinar matahari membantu menyembuhkan jerawat.
Paparan sinar matahari bisa menyebabkan iritasi yang membuat jerawat makin parah.

7. Jerawat hanya muncul pada kulit remaja.
Pada usia remaja, hormon dalam tubuh banyak mengalami perubahan. Oleh karena itu jerawat lebih sering muncul pada remaja. Namun timbulnya jerawat bukan hanya dipengaruhi oleh hormon, tapi juga oleh kebersihan diri, pola makan, polusi, stres, dan faktor genetik, sehingga anak-anak maupun orang tua pun masih bisa berjerawat.


Kekenyangan Makan Pupuk Rasa Asin, Seekor Gajah Sumatera Tewas

REPUBLIKA.CO.ID,BENGKULU - Gajah Sumatera (Elephas maximus Sumatrae) yang ditemukan mati pada 2011 di sekitar perkebunan kelapa sawit PT Alno dalam Kecamatan Putria Hijau, Kabupaten Bengkulu Utara, diduga akibat terlalu banyak makan pupuk jenis urea. Berdasarkan hasil otopsi laboratorium dari Institut Pertanian Bogor (IPB), gajah itu mati akibat terlalu banyak makan pupuk urea sehingga kadar nitrogennya cukup tinggi.

Gajah liar itu paling suka makan rasa masin-masin. ''Sedangkan, pupuk di perkebunan itu rasanya juga masin, sehingga gajah tersebut mengkonsimsi dalam jumlah banyak dan mengakibatkan kematian,'' kata Kepala Balai Konservasi Sumber Daya Alam Provinsi Bengkulu, Amon Zamora, Senin (23/5).

Gajah itu ditemukan tim evaluasi gajah liar beberapa bulan lalu. Kondisinya sudah dalam bentuk tulang belulang di sekitar kawasan perkabunan kelapa sawit PT Alno di Bengkulu Utara. Dengan hasil penelitian itu, pemilik perkebunan PT Alno dan PT Agricinal diimbau agar penggunaan pupuk bagi tanaman kelapa sawit itu tidak sampai diketahui gajah.

Amon mengatakan bahwa Polres Bengkulu Utara saat ini tengah memproses pegawai PT Alno. Karena, ada dugaan pupuk sengaja diberikan agar hewan itu tidak mengganggu tanaman kelapa sawit lagi. Padahal, kawasan perkebunan itu dulunya merupakan habitat gajah liar.


Hopkins becomes oldest world title winner

Bernard Hopkins, 46, became the oldest man to win a boxing world title when he defeated Canadian Jean Pascal by unanimous decision to claim the WBC and IBO light-heavyweight belts.
"It feels great," Hopkins said after eclipsing the achievement of George Foreman, who was 45 when he knocked out Michael Moorer to win the heavyweight title in 1994.

"I knew it was going to be a tough fight, but I wasn't going to be denied. You're supposed to win titles in your twenties, not when you're 46."

The bout was a rematch of the duo's controversial majority decision draw in Quebec City last December which Hopkins thought he had done enough to win but only one of the three judges awarded him a win.

On Saturday in Montreal, however, all three judges awarded the canny, former undisputed world middleweight champion the fight with Hopkins claiming 116-112, 115-114 and 115-113 majorities.

That result seemed unlikely when, after a quiet opening round, Pascal came to life in the second round and landed several hard punches, including a combination against the ropes that had the crowd of 17,560 roaring its approval.

In the third, Hopkins, 52-5-2 (32 KOs), turned the tables, feinting with a left and then landing a booming overhand right hand that buckled Pascal's legs, forcing the younger man to hold on.

Pascal, 26-2-1 (16 KOs), returned the favour in the fourth, landing a big right and then following up with a right-left combination that had his opponent looking hurt at the end of the round.

Although Pascal was the younger man by 18 years, he appeared to tire surprisingly early in the fight and took advantage of every second of the one-minute rest between rounds to catch his breath on his stool.

When he appeared to take especially long to stand up at the beginning of round seven, Hopkins mocked him by doing push-ups in his corner while he waited.

By that stage, Hopkins had seized control of the contest, with Pascal beginning to look confused. An overhand right in the eighth round nailed Pascal, as did another right in the ninth.

In the tenth a short right hand spun Pascal around and he staggered forward, touching the canvas with his gloves, but British referee Ian-John Lewis did not call a knockdown, instead ruling the Canadian had slipped.

As the fighters emerged for the twelfth and final round, Pascal in particular appeared exhausted, but he summoned the last of his energy to attack Hopkins with everything he had left, landing two hard rights as the two exchanged furiously at the final bell.

But it was not enough and Pascal, who claimed the belts by beating Chad Dawson in August, was left to praise the new champion.

"Bernard fought great tonight," he said. "He is a great champion. he has really good defense and a lot of tricks. I am a young fighter and I am green. These two fights will make me better in the future."

Hopkins, who made his professional debut in 1988, was delighted with his achievement.

"It was exciting," the American said.

"I've been accused of being boring but I've saved the best for last. I'm going to fight like this until I retire. But I want to fight for as long as I can."

Hopkins also received tribute from Foreman, whose record he broke.

"What great conditioning," he marvelled. "And he did it in Pascal's home town. Isn't that something? He was just so much better. I'm happy for Hopkins and I'm happy for mature athletes."


Penandatanganan Kesepakatan Bersama Direktorat Jendral Pajak Dengan Kepolisian Negara Republik Indonesia

Direktur Jendral Pajak, Drs. Mochamad Tjiptardjo, MA Dengan kepala Badan Reserse Kriminal Kepolisian Negara Republik Indonesia, Komisaris Jendral Polisi DR. Ito Sumardi DS, SH, MH, MBA, MM., dihadapan Menteri Keuangan Republik Indonesia, DR Sri Mulyani Indrawati dan kepala Kepolisian Negara Republik Indonesia, Jendral Polisi Drs. H. Bambang Hendarso Danuri, MM, dan dihadiri Kepala Kepolisian Daerah (Kapolda) seluruh Indonesia, hari ini bertempat di kantor Pusat Direktorat Jendral Pajak mengadakan pendatanganan kesepakatan bersama antara Direktorat Jendral Pajak (DJP) dengan Kepolisian Negara Republik Indonesia (Polri) . Kesepakatan bersama ini merupakan pembaruan dari kesepakatan bersama yang telah dibuat beberapa tahun yang lalu. Kesepakatan bersama antara lain berisi kerja sama dalam penagihan, penyidikan dan lain-lain termasuk pengamanan dari pihak Kepolisian bagi petugas pajak yang menjalankan tugas penegakan hukum di bidang perpajakan. Kesepakatan bersama itu dilaksanakan sesuai dengan tugas dan fungsi masing-masing. Kerjasama yang telah dilaksanan antara lain adalah kepolisian menjadi Koordinator Pengawas (Korwas) penyidikan dan pemeriksaan Bukti Permulaan Tindak Pidana Pajak. Kesepakatan bersama juga dilakukan dalam hal tukar menukar data dan informasi, penyidikan dan pelatihan yang diperlukan kedua pihak, termasuk juga kegiatan penyuluhan di bidang perpajakan. Dengan dilakukannya pendatanganan kesepakatan bersama antara DJP dengan Polri, tentunya sangat diharapkan kerja sama dan koordinasi yang selama ini sudah terjalin dengan baik akan semakin lebih baik lagi, baik pada tingkat pusat maupun di tingkat daerah di seluruh wilayah Indonesia. Jakarta, 23 Februari 2010 Divisi Humas Polri


Russell Brand deported from Japan

Russell Brand was taken into custody and deported from Japan yesterday, Katy Perry revealed on Twitter.

The pop star is currently touring Japan and husband Brand had flown over to see her perform but Tokyo police stopped the 'Arthur' actor at Narita airport, prompting Perry to tweet:

"So... my husband just got deported from Japan. I am so. sad. I brought him all this way to show him my favourite place #tokyodreamscrushed", before launching an impassioned plea to fans to "#FREE@RUSTYROCKETS! RT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!", @Rustyrockets being the twitter alias of her comedian husband.

[See also: Actress claims Arnie has fathered more love children]

Brand was clearly not incarcerated in a particularly strict cell, as he joined in the Twitter action himself, saying: "Planning escape from Japanese custody. It's bl**dy hard to dig a tunnel with a chopstick."

Soon Perry accepted the situation too, reassuring her Japanese fans by declaring, "But of COURSE I ? my Japanese fans & the show #MUSTGOON no matter the daily aftershocks or husband kidnappings! #it'snotrightbutit'sokay".

[See also: Exclusive video interview with Russell Brand]

Brand's deportation was related to prior offences from over ten years ago. The Japanese authorities have not made the precise offences public, or the action taken against Brand, but he has been arrested a total of 12 times during his turbulent past.

In addition to drugs charges, the former heroin addict was arrested for indecent exposure and criminal damage while covering May Day protests for MTV in 2001 and, more recently, had to post a $20,000 bail after being arrested for battery charges relating to an alleged attack on a photographer in 2010.



Clive Owen reportedly fell about laughing when Angelina Jolie told him that he looked sexy in "Beyond Borders". This may have been news to the actor who used to be a big fan of David Bowie and changed his hair color every time the singer did. But the green-eyed, darkly handsome, very British actor attracts women audiences to every film, including the very scary "Derailed", his latest movie.

"Derailed", about a happily married man who begins an affair with a beautiful, young woman he meets on a train only to find out all may not be as it appears, is Owen 's latest movie. The complicated character he plays in this film is the kind of part that he prefers because he 'has never been interested in playing good guys. I'm always attracted to dangerous characters. Those roles are usually far more interesting and I hold no fears about doing them...' (Clive Owen quoted at AllMoviePortal.com)

This film caused controversy when Anniston claimed that she was covered in bruises after her steamy, sex scenes with Owen, but Owen denies this. In an article by Jack Ryan at The Post Chronicle website (November2, 2005) Anniston reportedly said that she didn't mind, describing Owen as 'dreamy' to work with. He had nothing but praise for her, admiring her courage in handling her divorce from Brad Pitt.

Owen who comes from Coventry, England aimed to be an actor ever since playing the Artful Dodger in a school play but. according to his biography on the IMDB database, a teacher told him that: "You're a working-class boy from Coventry. What do you know?"

His rise to fame after attending the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art began with classical parts on the stage and he joined the Young Vic Theatre Company where he met his wife, Sarah Jane Fenton, who played Juliet to his Romeo. They now have two daughters: Hannah and Eve. Although he'd had an extensive stage and film career in England by his late 30's he was still little-known in America. His big chance came in "Croupier", in which he played a struggling writer working as a casino employee who is taken in by a female scam artist. Robert Altman, impressed by the actor's performance, asked him to join his all-star movie, "Gosford Park" and Owen's career has shot ahead ever since with starring roles in "King Arthur" and "Closer".
Owen's latest role is in the brilliant director Spike Lee's "Inside Man" in which he plays a bank robber and hostage taker. His co-star is Jodie Foster. Owen loved spending time in New York while the movie was filmed, which he said in an article on the Star Pulse website (Starpulse News Blog: 03/13/06) is "the best city in the world and the capitol of the world...There's so much to do and never enough time to do it." If it weren't for his daughters, Owen would like to move to New York.

The gorgeous actor's career appears to be going from success to success. His next role is likely to be Essex alongside Cate Blanchett in a new movie about Queen Elizabeth 11 . This swashbuckling character who won the heart of the flame-haired, young queen is likely to suit the actor who likes to play 'dangerous roles'.

Tondo killed by garage door

The Movistar cyclist was reportedly crushed between his car and his automatic garage door as he was heading out for a training ride with team-mate Beñat Inxtausti, according to Spanish newspaper Marca.

Movistar team manager Eusebio Unzue has confirmed the news of the 32-year-old's death, which took place at 10am on Monday.

"The 32-year-old Catalan rider was in his car on the way to training when he suffered the incident with the door of the garage," the team said in a statement.

Tondo, who was based at home in Granada at the time of his death, won this year's Vuelta a Castilla y Leon and is a former stage winner in both the Volta a Catalunya and the Paris- Nice, and was sixth overall in the 2010 Vuelta a España.

Earlier this year, he blew the whistle on a doping ring when he alerted authorities after receiving emails in which he was offered banned substances.

Twice Tour de France winner Alberto Contador paid tribute to his compatriot via Twitter.

"Life is so unjust and difficult to understand at certain moments, it's impossible to describe my feelings on the death of Xavi Tondo," he said.

"My most sincere condolences to his family. He was an incredible person who loved this sport like nobody else. You will be missed. Rest in peace."
Eurosport / Reuters