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The world's most-profitable hedge fund is now a climate radical

The hedge fund industry has no shortage of aggressive, in-your-face players, but few are as tough as Chris Hohn. The British billionaire takes the typical playbook to new levels-scuttling deals, pushing to remove bosses, and battering companies with litigation and threats. One opponent was so peeved after losing a boardroom battle with Hohn that he titled a book about the experience Invasion of the Locusts. That approach made Hohn's TCI Fund Management the world's best-performing, large hedge fund last year.Chris Hohn is pushing portfolio companies to dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions and disclose their carbon footprint. If they don’t, he says he’ll oust their boards or dump their shares.Credit:Getty ImagesNow Hohn is bringing his hardball tactics to the fight against global warming. The money manager, with $US30 billion ($44 billion) in assets, is pushing portfolio companies to dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions and disclose their carbon footprint. If the…

Google's 'Wi-Spy' accord gives consumers nothing, nine US states say

SAN FRANCISCO (BLOOMBERG) – Attorneys general from nine states urged a federal judge to toss out Google’s US$13 million (S$17.6 million) settlement of a class-action lawsuit blaming its Street View mapping technology for a massive violation of consumer privacy.The proposed accord in a debacle that became known as “Wi-Spy” doesn’t offer compensation for millions of people whose confidential data was captured off their Wi-Fi networks by Street View vehicles.Instead, the deal divvies up funds among a handful of privacy rights organizations, a small number of individual consumers who led the case and their lawyers, the state officials said in a court filing.The lawsuit, filed a decade ago, was once called the biggest U.S. wiretap case ever and threatened the internet giant with billions of dollars in damages.The settlement was reached in July and won preliminary approval in October from U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer in San Francisco, who found it to be “likely fair, reasonable, and a…

'I used to joke that I'd buy a theatre - but I've grown out of that'

The actor and playwright Pat Nolan is probably best known for playing the role of Barry O’Hanlon in the RTÉ soap opera Fair City.He grew up in Ballyfermot and Bluebell in Dublin and is now living in Avoca, Co Wicklow. He is married with two sons.He co-wrote the play Take Off Your Cornflakes with Irish actress Rose Henderson.The play – which is about Alzheimer’s disease – will be performed in a number of venues nationwide in the coming months, including the Droichead Arts Centre in Drogheda, and Dublin’s Civic Theatre and Pavilion Theatre.Please log in or register with Independent.ie for free access to this article.Log InNew to Independent.ie? Create an accountFor details of more of the venues where the play will be on, visit rosehenderson.com.What’s the most important lesson about money which your career as an actor has taught you?Always have a rainy day fund – lots of them!The best advice you ever got about money?‘There’s no pockets in habits’ – it’s an old Dublin saying which means…

Mortgage free: Couple reveal retirement plans as they strive to repay mortgage in 10 years

Getting on the property ladder is no doubt a milestone for many. But, from a particular location of the UK to an abundance of extra space, there are countless reasons why a person may later look to buy a new home. For some, this prospect of purchasing again may see them faced with a choice of whether to buy their dream home, or become mortgage free.READ MOREMartin Lewis reveals more than 1 million could get up to £1,150This is something which one Mumsnet user, who goes by the name of “cheeseismydownfall”, has experienced.Beginning a thread back in November 2018, they explained that they all shorty be moving, having already sold their last house.“We’ve realised we have enough cash to buy a perfectly decent albeit thoroughly unexciting and unimpressive house that’s big enough for us all in a perfectly okay area without needing a mortgage,” they explained.“This seems hugely appealing! On the other hand, DH [darling husband] is a relatively high earner and we could take out a mortgage big…

Adam Schiff: 'Dangerous' Trump Must Be Removed Because He Won't Put America First

WASHINGTON ― House impeachment manager Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) delivered an impassioned appeal on the floor of the Senate on Thursday evening imploring Republicans to vote to remove President Donald Trump from office because he’ll put himself ahead of the nation’s interests.Schiff said that no one was arguing in good faith that Trump wasn’t guilty of putting his personal political interests ahead of the interests of the United States when he withheld aid to Ukraine to pressure its government to smear a political rival. Schiff’s speech capped off the second full day in which the House impeachment managers made their case for forcing Trump out of the White House.“He’s done what he’s charged with. He withheld the money, he withheld the meeting, he used it to coerce Ukraine to do these political investigations. He covered it up, he obstructed us, he’s trying to obstruct you, and he’s violated the Constitution,” Schiff said.“Do we really have any doubt about the facts here? Does anyone…

Sonos Apologizes After Backlash Over Updates for Aging Speakers

Sonos Inc. Chief Executive Officer Patrick Spence apologized to customers after a backlash over the company’s plan to halt software updates for older products.The Santa Barbara, California-based speaker maker earlier this week said it would stop providing updates and new features for speakers launched in the 2000s, including the Connect, ZonePlayer, the original Play:5 and Bridge.The company warned that even if customers only had one older speaker, their entire Sonos sound systems might lose access to services and functionality would “eventually be disrupted.” It also suggested users buy new speakers with a 30% credit for each legacy device traded in. Sonos devotees quickly went berserk on social media, accusing the company of purposely degrading existing hardware to spur new sales.“I have over 1000USD of *speakers* that must be retired now? Terrible product life cycle support,” Scott Jenson, a longtime Google executive,wrote on Twitter. “I clearly have no choice to upgrade but I’m ce…

Data-obsessed Brits spend an entire WEEK per year 'analysing their lives with gadgets', survey suggests

DATA driven Brits spend the equivalent of a WHOLE WEEK of each year tracking and analysing their behaviour, according to research.A survey of 2,000 adults revealed we typically use analytical apps and devices to monitor six parts of our lives.More than half (51 per cent) monitor their steps and movement, with 39 per cent tracking their fitness and 34 per cent regularly monitoring their heart rate.And one quarter of adults use apps to see how much sleep they get each night.But according to a new survey, commissioned to encourage the use of smart meters in UK homes during Big Energy Saving Week and beyond, three quarters (76 per cent) of Brits admit they haven’t the foggiest how much energy they use at home.In total, adults spend 30 minutes every day checking their health, behaviour and finances on apps and devices – the equivalent of 183 hours or seven-and-a-half days per year.A quarter like to track areas of their life because it inspires them to improve, while 22 per cent say it make…

Martin Lewis dismantles 'nasty leftist fabrication' of student debt crisis – VIDEO

Martin Lewis’ warning over the “misleading and dangerous” student loan statements sent to students was posted after the Labour MP lamented the increase of interest rates on student loans repayments in the Commons. Ms Sultana was accused of making a “cheap political point” when she lashed out against Boris Johnson on the merits of his Eton education to make her point on the difficulties working-class kids face when embarking on higher education. Ms Sultana said: “I currently have around 50,000 pounds of student debt. Here is my latest student loans statement. As it says, this year alone the interest added was £2,022.65. So I ask the secretary of state, can he look me in the eye and tell me that is fair.“Is it fair that working-class kids who want an education are forced to take on this colossal debt while his Government is led by a man, Boris Johnson, who went from the playing fields of Eton to a free education at Oxford.”The comment sparked the fury of young political commentators who…

Huawei CFO's lawyer attacks U.S. extradition case in Canadian trial

VANCOUVER/TORONTO (Reuters) – A lawyer for Huawei Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou argued on Monday that “double criminality” was at the center of a trial to decide whether she can be extradited to the United States, a case that has strained relations between Ottawa and Beijing.Meng, 47, arrived in a Vancouver courtroom wearing a dark top with polka dots, for the first phase of a trial that will last at least four days, as China repeated its call for Canada to release her.Legal experts have said it could be years before a final decision is reached in the case, since Canada’s justice system allows many decisions to be appealed.The United States has charged Meng with bank fraud, and accused her of misleading HSBC Holdings Plc about Huawei Technologies Co Ltd’s [HWT.UL] business in Iran.Court proceedings show the United States issued the arrest warrant, which Canada acted on in December 2018, because it believes Meng covered up attempts by Huawei-linked companies to sell equipment to…

Driving a vintage car from Chennai to Puducherry

From Ambassador and Dodge to Rolls-Royce, the 11th edition of the Chennai-Puducherry heritage rally saw some forgotten icons grace the road
Using automobiles to denote the passage of time was an ingenious move adopted by Martin Scorsese in his film The Irishman.Robert De Niro’s character Frank Sheeran drives different cars — all of which qualify as vintage by today’s standards — throughout the film’s runtime (from a ’51 Hudson Hornet to a 70s Lincoln Continental) as he makes the climb up the mob ladder.But a shiny Morris Eight, which rolled into the Mayajaal multiplex complex on East Coast Road near Kanathur, stood as proof that Scorsese’s concept could be inverted on its head.Owned by city-based Vernon Saldanha, the British manufactured car was one of many evidences of timelessness on display at a vintage car rally organised by the Madras Heritage Motoring Club (MHMC) over the weekend. Heritage Car Rally on East Coast Road

| Photo Credit:
M Karunakaran
Blast from the pastIt was the 11…

Activist hedge fund Marcato Capital to shut down after drop in assets

BOSTON (Reuters) – Activist hedge fund Marcato Capital Management, backed by Blackstone Group and billionaire William Ackman, is shutting down as assets have shriveled after two years of poor returns, sources said on Sunday.Richard McGuire, the firm’s founder and portfolio manager, began telling investors of his decision to return outside capital late last week, and expects to send the money back quickly because the portfolio is now largely in cash, the sources said on condition of anonymity.McGuire had been selling positions over the last months to meet redemption requests.A spokesman for Marcato declined to comment on Sunday.The decision marks the end of a nine-year run for one of the hedge fund industry’s most celebrated newcomers who launched in 2010 with the backing of Blackstone Group, the world’s biggest hedge fund investor, and Ackman, his former boss at Pershing Square Capital Management. McGuire was the first former partner to leave Ackman, followed by Scott Ferguson, Roy Ka…

What does Universal Credit replace? When is the next stage of the roll out expected?

Universal Credit is a payment which may be claimed to help with living costs. It’s paid monthly, and it may be able to be claimed if a person is on a low income or is out of work.READ MOREUniversal Credit 2020: What will be changing to the benefit next year?Universal Credit is replacing six benefits, known as legacy benefits.These are Child Tax Credit, Housing Benefit, Income Support, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA), income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA), and Working Tax Credit.Anyone who is currently receiving any of these benefits cannot claim Universal Credit at the same time.Universal Credit is being introduced in stages across the UK.Gov.uk states that a person does not need to do anything until they hear from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) about moving to Universal Credit.This is unless they have a change in circumstances.Earlier this year, the DWP confirmed that a pilot scheme for the movement of existing benefits claimants who have not had …

Trump, Democrats offer dueling arguments on impeachment

WASHINGTON/PALM BEACH, Fla. (Reuters) – The Democratic U.S. lawmakers leading the impeachment case against Republican President Donald Trump said on Saturday the president must be removed from office to protect national security and preserve the country’s system of government.In a brief filed ahead of a Saturday deadline, the lawmakers laid out their arguments supporting charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress against the president.“The Senate should convict and remove President Trump to avoid serious and long term damage to our democratic values and the nation’s security,” the lawmakers said, for the first time formally calling for the Senate to convict the president and remove him from office.“The case against the president of the United States is simple, the facts are indisputable, and the evidence is overwhelming,” they said.Trump’s legal team issued a resounding rejection of the House of Representatives’ impeachment, calling the charges a “dangerous attack on the …

Elon Musk set to cash in at Tesla as deliveries and shares soar

One of the options on a fully loaded Tesla is “ludicrous mode”, a setting offering a 0-60mph acceleration time of 2.8 seconds for drivers who find its “insane mode” too sedate.To some investors, that’s similar to chief executive Elon Musk’s bonus package: if the electric carmaker’s share price goes above $554.80 – which would value the firm at $100bn, and which it came very close to last week – the mercurial entrepreneur could reap the first $350m instalment of a potential $50bn share-based pay package.In the event, Tesla didn’t break through the key $100bn valuation last week – its share price was affected by new Chinese GDP figures showing the slowest growth in 29 years and a stock downgrade which together pushed Tesla’s shares below $500. Still, rising demand in Europe and China, coupled with record deliveries, has contributed to a remarkable change of fortune for the world’s leading electric-vehicle maker, which has pushed its shares up nearly 180% since last summer.Last year, Tes…

Trump Administration Takes Steps To Fatten Up School Meals With Burgers And Fries

The Trump administration took steps Friday to cut down on healthful fruits and vegetables in school meals and allow more pizza, burgers and fries.The move was announced by the U.S. Department of Agriculture on the birthday of Michelle Obama, who made healthier school lunches a signature goal when she was first lady.The relaxed nutrition standards would allow schools more flexibility “because they know their children best,” the USDA said in a news release. The rules are intended to allow for more “appetizing” meals, according to a statement from Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, which apparently means saltier, fattier and more processed.Critics immediately slammed the move as a food industry boost that is bound to contribute to childhood obesity. The USDA is responsible for administering nutritional programs that feed nearly 30 million students at 99,000 schools. Children can get more than half of their daily calories from school meals.If the rules are finalized, it would allow child…

Fast lane: Refreshed Honda Civic Type R to arrive here in April

Refreshed Honda Civic Type R to arrive here in AprilHonda kicks off the new year with a first look at the updated 2020 Civic Type R. The high-performance hatchback, however, appears almost identical to the car Honda unveiled two years ago.The tweaked car was shown at the Tokyo Auto Salon last weekend. Other than the additional elements on its front bumper assembly, it is hard to make out what other changes there are. The car is slated to arrive in Singapore in April.Lamborghini sold 8,205 cars last yearLamborghini worldwide sales grew by 43 per cent to hit an all-time high of 8,205 units last year.More than half (4,962) were Urus sport utility vehicles. The Audi-owned Italian brand delivered 1,104 Aventadors and 2,139 Huracans.Bentley Mulsanne bids farewell with special editionBentley’s Mulsanne is coming to the end of its life. The Volkswagen-owned British marque is releasing a special edition of 30 cars to sign off the super saloon.Called the 6.75 Edition by Mulliner, it is supposed…

'Beyond offensive' - Sinn Féin suspends Paddy Holohan from party after controversial comments

A SINN FÉIN councillor caught up in a series of controversial comments has now been suspended from the party.South Dublin County Councillor Paddy Holohan, a former UFC fighter whose nickname is ‘Hooligan’, was forced to issue an apology yesterday after he called the Taoiseach “of Indian blood” on his podcast, and for saying he would prefer for the leader of the country to be a “family man”.He said his comments were “misinterpreted” in a statement on Twitter.“He’s so separated not even from society now, but he’s so separated from the history of this country,” he said.“Leo Varadkar’s blood obviously runs to India, you know, so his great-grandfather is not part of the history of this country, you know what I mean.”On a separate podcast published two days ago, Mr Holohan said he wanted a “family man” to run the country.“We need people running the country and, not against Leo or anything like that, but to me I want a family man running the country.”Speaking yesterday, Sinn Féin leader Mar…

New WhatsApp features in 2020 – Dark Mode, self-deleting texts and catfish-busting photo tool

WHATSAPP is constantly getting new features, and 2020 is set to bring some seriously handy tricks to the app.It looks all but certain that you'll find get Dark Mode, plus a brand new feature that will expose fake "catfish" contacts trying to hoodwink you.WhatsApp Dark ModeThe tool expected to launch in the coming months inverts the colours of your screen to create a darker theme for messaging in the dark.Developers hope the change, which you'll have the option to switch on or off, will reduce the strain on your eyes after lots of screen time.And if the latest rumours are to be believed, dark mode will also help you squeeze every minute out of your battery life.You'll have the option to link it up to your phone's Battery Saver mode, reports WABetaInfo.The site has an impressive track record for WhatsApp leaks, regularly digging into the app's code to uncover new features.In Dark Mode, WhatsApp has a black background with white text on top.The regular displ…