Frijns: Dutch should shift toward PAYG pension arrangements

first_imgThe Netherlands should increase pay-as-you-go (PAYG) arrangements in its predominantly capital-funded pensions system to better address the impact of low interest rates, according to Jean Frijns, former CIO at the €355bn Dutch civil service pension fund ABP.In an interview with Dutch financial news daily Het Financieele Dagblad (FD), Frijns said capital-funding was “no longer fit for purpose”.“The pensions sector failed to foresee how much participants would be exposed to market shocks, and the pensions system no longer provides the certainty we expected,” said.Given the level of interest rates, he said PAYG arrangements, such as the state pension AOW, would now be more attractive than pensions saving – ageing population notwithstanding. Frijns’s proposal is likely to raise eyebrows in the industry, as the Netherlands has always dismissed pensions systems in neighbouring countries that rely heavily on PAYG.“We always thought capital would offer greater security, as well as pension value, than PAYG, which depends on political promises,” he said. “Because this is no longer true, we shouldn’t be afraid to adjust the ratio slightly between capital-funding and PAYG.”He said he was surprised by the lack of debate on this issue in the Netherlands.According to the FD, Frijns took pains to emphasise that he did not advocate raising the AOW, as non-workers would “unjustly benefit”.Instead, he called for a new national scheme with income-based contributions and benefits, which could also accommodate self-employed workers.The industry veteran conceded that introducing an additional PAYG system would not be easy.“But, from an economic point of view, it would be fantastic, as it would mean less saving, and it has the potential for increased spending,” he said. The Social and Economic Council (SER) is preparing a recommendation for the Dutch government on how best to design a sustainable pensions system.The SER is expected to call for a switch to defined contribution arrangements, with individual pensions accrual combined with various forms of risk-sharing.It marks the second time in five years that a reform of the Dutch pensions system has been the subject of debate.The first effort stalled after transition arrangements were deemed as overly complicated.“If new reform plans also turn out to be infeasible, pension funds should close and start new pensions accrual under individual arrangements,” Frijns told the FD.“That would be a simple and quick solution.”last_img read more

Dhoni slots ‘finishing’ as hardest cricketing role

first_img(ESPNCricinfo) – Ahead of India’s home ODIs against New Zealand, captain MS Dhoni has said it is difficult to find players to slot into a finisher’s role. The nature of cricket in the subcontinent, he said, meant lower-order batsmen had few opportunities to get used to the pressure of finishing games.“You talked about [the examples of Jos] Buttler and [Glenn] Maxwell. You have to see consistent performances,” he said. “It [finishing] is one of the most difficult things to do in cricket. It’s not about six months or one year. You have to be used to that role and responsibility, and you have to have that self-confidence to keep on doing what is required of you, usually over a period. Once you find a good finisher, they are the ones that will keep batting at that slot for 8-10 years.“I think one of the biggest challenge is that the cricket that we play in the subcontinent, more often than not, a finisher is someone who bats at 5, 6 7, to some extent, maybe No. 4. A lot of times in India, the lower-order doesn’t get a chance to bat.Dhoni himself had made his reputation as a finisher but, with his striking power having dimmed over the last few years, he has indicated a preference for batting higher up the order; his reasoning is he can hold the innings together before hitting out in the end, while the batsman coming in at numbers 7 or 8 could go for the big hits from the start. He said the team management had identified a few players for the finisher’s spot, but refused to divulge their names so as to not put pressure on them.“It becomes more and more difficult for a youngster to come in and fill in that place. The reason being he may not get an opportunity, but you start counting opportunities – say if we are four or five down for 40 runs, it’ll be counted as a big opportunity by you. In 15-20 games, [the youngster] gets an opportunity like that and you expect the youngster to do well, score a 100-150; you say” ‘That was a perfect opportunity in front of you.’”Dhoni is averse to using the word “experimentation”, but with India having only eight ODIs to play before the 2017 Champions Trophy in England, he admitted to there being pressure to identify the best combination of players in a short span of time.“Quite a few of them would have gone to Zimbabwe. All of a sudden, 14 or 15 were there and then a few injuries here and there… It’s not a realistic number but at the same time, there are a few individuals who we are very keen to see what they have on offer.last_img read more

Locker rooms of Sweet 16 teams bring out mystique, sorrow of NCAA Tournament nature

first_img Published on March 28, 2015 at 12:00 am Contact Phil: [email protected] | @PhilDAbb Only in the NCAA Tournament could two college basketball locker rooms feature polar opposite atmospheres.But such is the nature of March Madness. In the first night of Carrier Dome action for the weekend, with the entire nation tuned in, fourth-seeded Louisville (27-8) held off No. 8 seed North Carolina State (22-14), 75-65. Not long after, seventh-seeded Michigan State (26-11) upended No. 3 seed Oklahoma (24-11), 62-58, to clinch the next spot in the Elite Eight.And after the final buzzers, all kinds of emotions were on display and the unusual moonlighted as the usual.Fifty-plus reporters pack into the tight, smelly confines of MSU’s locker room to access the players, and Spartan forward Colby Wollenman has to slip his 6-foot-7 frame around two cameras and teammate Bryn Forbes just to reach the showers.Down the hall in Oklahoma’s locker room, three Sooners sit in a row in identical positions — leaning back in a chair, head down, focusing on nothing but an iPhone. Dishearted sophomore Frank Booker is barely audible from 4 feet away. And junior guard Buddy Hield, a notably fast speaker, is subdued to the point his speech is worlds clearer than a day earlier.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textJust hours earlier and a locker room over, the N.C. State atmosphere was comparable.Forward Abdul-Malik Abu looks down at the floor, speaking with his volume turned way down from the previous day’s open locker room. Forward BeeJay Anya somberly scratches his beard as he answers questions.And hiding behind Anya, with his jersey tucked over his eyes and his head buried in his hands, is senior Ralston Turner, who is now 20 minutes into being a former Wolfpack.And the stagnant guard’s only signs of life are two twitches of his right index finger and, two minutes later, a sniffle.But 36 paces down the Carrier Dome hallway is a boisterous Cardinals locker room, and its hero of the night hasn’t even gotten there yet from the interview room.Freshman Chinanu Onuaku anxiously paces around the room, asking NCAA personnel when he can leave to scout Michigan State and Oklahoma’s game.Sitting up straight, star guard Terry Rozier smiles, incites laughter and credits the old streetball game of “33” as being the reason he rebounds so well — and did it 14 times Friday night. When reflecting on the magnitude of the win, he takes a deep sigh, grins again and tells reporters, “We’re not done yet.”But despite his 17 points, questions are still asked about a teammate who contributed just as much down the stretch.And then the door from the hallway opens.Enter Montrezl Harrell, a second-team all-Atlantic Coast Conference big man and the game’s highest scorer with 24 points.And he introduces the player a group of media is dying to speak with.“There’s Anton Gill!” Harrell exclaims, pointing to the reserve guard behind him, as he walks to his locker across the room from Gill’s.Nine reporters follow the star to his locker. Twelve flock to the locker of the sophomore who, before this night, hadn’t scored since Feb. 28.But in this Sweet 16 showdown, Gill netted all seven of his points in a span of 2:20 in the last six minutes of the game to spring the Cardinals past N.C. State.“You dream about stuff like this,” Gill says.But only in the NCAA Tournament is when this stuff becomes reality. Comments Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

D.O. Sportscast: Men’s basketball writers discuss Syracuse’s season, ACC awards and more

first_img Published on March 9, 2020 at 7:19 pm On this week’s edition of The D.O. Sportscast, the men’s basketball beat writers discuss Elijah Hughes being named to All-ACC first team. Later in the show, they recap the regular season and preview this week’s upcoming ACC tournament.Subscribe to Sportscast on Spotify and iTunes. Commentscenter_img Facebook Twitter Google+last_img

Tata Consultancy expands in SA

first_img31 October 2007Global information technology (IT) services provider and outsourcing company Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) has in partnership with an empowerment partner launched a local subsidiary, TCS South Africa, to strengthen and expand its operations in the country.“We see South Africa as a key strategic market for TCS and also as a gateway to southern and central Africa,” TCS chief executive and managing director Subramaniam Ramadorai said in a statement last week.“Through our own subsidiary, we will be well-placed to contribute to the economic growth of the country and its businesses by bringing in global best practices and world-class technology solutions.”TCS is part of the US$29-billion Tata Group, which already has extensive operations in South Africa through subsidiaries like Tata Motors, Tata Steel and VSNL, which is the largest single shareholder in South Africa’s second landline operator, Neotel.Ramadorai said the new model would help the company make a greater contribution to the South African economy by investing in the skills of its IT professionals by providing world-class training, and also bringing global best practices to help increase the competitiveness of South African businesses.Opening a subsidiary is also in line with TCS’s global strategy to have a direct presence in the countries in which it operates.The statement adds that TCS South Africa will have equity participation from local black economic empowerment groups to ensure a high level of social governance and localisation of services and skills.“To help its customers in South Africa, TCS has already created a near-shore delivery capability in Johannesburg, from where we are providing support services for our financial services products implemented in South Africa,” TCS chief operating officer N Chandrasekaran said.“The South African operations will emerge as a hub to serve customers in the southern and central parts of Africa.”TCS already does business in South Africa, with the government as well as with leading companies in the banking and financial services, manufacturing, energy, telecommunications and retail sectors.SAinfo reporter Want to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

Snitch Movie Promotion

first_imgThanks to our friends at STUDIOCANAL, Touch Football Australia has 10 double passes to the new Dwayne Johnson movie ‘Snitch’, only at the movies from May 16.In the fast-paced action thriller, Snitch, Dwayne Johnson stars as a father whose teenage son is wrongly accused of a drug distribution crime and is looking at a mandatory minimum prison sentence of 10 years. Desperate and determined to rescue his son at all costs, he makes a deal with the U.S. attorney to work as an undercover informant and infiltrate a drug cartel on a dangerous mission — risking everything, including his family and his own life. For your chance to win a double pass to Snitch, send an email to [email protected] telling us why you’d like to win tickets to this film. The best 10 answers will receive a double pass and TFA will be in contact with you if you are a winner. Related LinksMovie Promotionlast_img read more

3 Musts for Better Stories

first_imgEveryone knows that storytelling is a win for nonprofits, but not all stories are created equal.To truly resonate with your readers, your story needs to have three essential ingredients:A strong emotional pull. Stories should make us feel something. Happy. Sad. Outraged. Inspired. All of these emotions can make an impact, but above all else, an amazingly effective message needs to make your reader feel, then act. Not think, then act. Not think, then feel, then act. FEEL, then act. Don’t disconnect these two steps. Lead with a strong pull of emotion, engage your reader’s senses, and then ask them to take action. A singular focus. Resist the urge to pack everything into one story—you’ll only confuse your reader. Stories work best when they are rich, yet simple, and are laser-focused on one message, one issue, and one person. You likely have many stories to tell, but focus on telling one distinct story at a time for best results.A clear tie to the reader. Your audience should quickly and clearly understand why your story matters to them. Does it tap into something they have experienced? Does it affect the community they love? Think about how to incorporate details that are meaningful to your supporters, then underscore your donors’ role in the story. Are they the hero? What can (or did) they make happen?There are many components that come together for an amazing story, but without these core elements, your message will fall flat. How are you incorporating all three into your donor communications?Need some help writing more effective stories for your nonprofit’s outreach? I’ve got your back.In our next free webinar, I’ll walk through a simple framework for more compelling stories that will help you connect with donors, raise more money, and retain supporters by reporting your impact in a highly memorable and relatable way. Register now to save your seat for Storytelling with the Emotional Brain. (Can’t attend the live session? Never fear. Go ahead and register and I’ll make sure you get a copy of the slides and the recording.)last_img read more

5 New Year Resolutions Every Fundraiser Should Make

first_imgYou know what takes a lot of inspiration and a truckload of guts?  Fundraising.I learned this the hard way when I started a nonprofit in the living room of my apartment with just $500 and a credit card.  There were days when I second guessed myself but ten years later we raised over 10 million dollars and have been featured on Oprah, CNN, and the Today show.  Last year, Girlstart turned 20.  I’ve learned a lot since then, including how to get the absolute best fundraising results in the shortest possible time using scientifically proven methods.So what tips do I have for you to make 2018 your best year ever?  Lots!  Are you ready to ring in the new year raising more?  Here are 5 New Year resolutions I want EVERY fundraiser to make:1. Resolve to learn more about your donors.Why did they give to your organization – what connected to them? What programs do they care about?  What motivated them to give in the first place?  What was the best gift they ever gave and why?  Of all the organizations they support which one does the best job engaging them?  What are their top three philanthropic priorities?  What do they love about what they do?  How do they prefer to be communicated with?  You can ask some of these questions when you call them to thank them just for being a donor and others in a visually rich donor survey.2. Resolve to learn from your data.Do you know what your donor retention rate is? If you don’t know how you’re currently performing, setting goals to improve is meaningless. You can examine retention overall or narrow it down to first-time donors and/or major donors. You can calculate retention by the number of donors or gift value.  I personally recommend examining by gift value so you know exactly what your retention rate is costing your organization.  To run your numbers, decide on your 12 month date range (a calendar year or your fiscal year) and add the donor gift amounts by annual “class” i.e. the class of major donors giving $1,000 or more in 2017 (or the class of all 1st time donors in 2017) and then divide that amount by what those same donors gave to you the previous year, in 2016.  In other words, if you had 1,000 first time donors in 2016 and only 200 of those made another gift in 2017 your new donor retention rate would be 20%.  Why does retention matter so much?  Acquiring those donors cost you money, time and effort.  As Roger Craver, author of Retention Fundraising, advises, “Taking actionable steps to reduce donor losses is the least expensive way to increase your fundraising income.”3. Resolve to make your donors FEEL something.This is one of my biggest pet peeves in fundraising. Giving is such a joyous experience but so much of our communications can feel bland and lifeless. Does your appeal or acknowledgment make your donor feel great about themselves? It should. What we feel is irrelevant. What our donors feel is the only thing that matters. While we’re busy trying to educate our donors, or boasting about how awesome our programs are, our donor might be tossing our letter in the trash. Communicate in a warm, friendly, personable tone. Make the donor feel like gushing over what they made possible. If your autoresponders sound like a robot wrote them, it’s time for a rewrite in 2018!4. Set a revenue goal for every donor in your portfolio.Base your appeal goals on your donor’s capacity, inclination, prior giving, and interests.  Now you’re ready for your best fundraising year ever!  What’s more, when your CEO walks in and tells you about a budget shortfall you’ve got solid ground to push back on unrealistic goals.5. Resolve to dedicate 30 minutes a day to call and personally thank donors.Don’t start with the biggest and then fall off the wagon on this goal come February.  If you can, include new donors to your call list.  Be prepared with a few great discovery questions and opportunities for them to engage with you deeper.  Before you know it, your lower level donors will be major gift prospects.  The secret is you have to STICK WITH IT.  Put it on your calendar as a recurring appointment when your energy levels are at their peak.  Don’t forget to smile while you’re talking or leaving a message.I’d love to share more of my secrets with you – Download the NFG Masterclass Webinar Fundraising Strategy Series with “The Secrets of High Performing Fundraisers”.  Want more help?  I have OODLES of guides to make your fundraising EASIER.Here’s to 2018!Learn more about our guest blogger:Rachel Muir, CFRE transforms individuals into confident, successful fundraisers through workshops and retreats.  When she was 26 years old, Rachel Muir launched Girlstart, a non-profit organization to empower girls in math, science, engineering and technology in the living room of her apartment with $500 and a credit card.  Several years later she had raised over 10 million dollars and was featured on Oprah, CNN, and the Today show. Learn more about Rachel at www.rachelmuir.com or follow her at facebook.com/rachelmuirfundraising and on Twitter @rachelmuir.last_img read more

5 Tips to Make Your Spring Campaign Blossom

first_imgWe know how tempting it can be to take a break from fundraising after the hustle and bustle of year-end giving in November and December. However, spring is a popular time to send out fundraising appeals.Why Launch a Spring CampaignEnough time has passed since year-end giving that fundraisers feel comfortable asking for donations.Without key dates like #GivingTuesday and New Year’s Day providing natural bookends for a campaign, fundraisers can be more flexible about when to send out appeals and by when to request donations be submitted.While a great option, spring campaigns aren’t quite as omnipresent as year-end campaigns, which means less competition for donors’ attention.Now that you know why a spring campaign is a great idea, it’s time to figure out how to make the most of them.5 Best Practices for Spring CampaignsDevelop a theme. From your messaging to your visuals, working with a cohesive theme is a great way to connect direct mail, email, and social media posts. These communications should look and sound like they’re part of one overarching campaign. Use an integrated marketing approach and send out multiple types of communications to compel your donors to act.Choose a fundraising strategy. Recently, Network for Good hosted a webinar all about spring campaigns, featuring one of our Personal Fundraising Coaches, Andrea Holthouser. During the webinar, Andrea recommends choosing one key strategy to focus on this time of year, such as acquiring new donors or encouraging monthly recurring donations. What strategy will you choose? Listen to the webinar for more spring campaign tips.Create a themed everyday giving page. Once you have developed a cohesive theme to connect your messaging and wording, why not create an online donation page to match? Update the link attached to the donate button on your organization’s homepage during your spring campaign and make sure your email blasts drive traffic to your dedicated page as well.Tell a story. Choose a beneficiary who was helped by your organization in 2018 and ask your donors to help people, animals, or causes like them in 2019. Remind your donors that their gifts make an impact throughout the year and that making more than one gift is a great way to increase their impact for the cause they care about.Don’t forget the flowers! If you’re using your own images or stock images, it’s worth ensuring that any outdoor photos reflect the correct season. If your area is experiencing great weather, it might be worth skipping the snow-covered shots and opting for full trees and landscaping in the background. Even if the temperature isn’t quite spring-like, a little aspiration might just grab the viewer’s attention and prompt a positive response.A spring campaign is the perfect way to fundraise for a new initiative, raise more for your annual gala, or wrap up your fiscal year. Engage and renew donors, attract prospects, build awareness, and plant the seeds that sustain your organization. Download our 30-Day Spring Fundraising Plan to launch your campaign today!Read more on The Nonprofit Bloglast_img read more