1,069 research outputs found

    The Effects of Funding Costs and Risk on Banks' Lending Rates

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    After falling for over a decade, the major banks' net interest margins appear to have stabilised in a relatively narrow range in recent years. In the early part of the financial crisis, margins fell to the bottom of this range, reflecting an increase in debt funding costs. Margins have since recovered a little, to around the middle of the range, as a result of some repricing of lending rates relative to these costs. In addition to the increase in the cost of debt funding, there have been other drivers of the rise in lending rates relative to the cash rate. First, the banks have increased their equity funding, which is more costly than debt finance. Second, risk margins on loans have risen to account for higher expected losses.funding costs; lending rates; interest rates; risk pricing

    Recent Developments in Banks' Funding Costs and Lending Rates

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    The global financial crisis has affected the cost and composition of Australian banks‚Äô funding, with flow-on effects to their lending rates and net interest margins. Since mid 2007, Australian banks‚Äô overall funding costs have risen significantly relative to the cash rate, mainly reflecting the higher cost of deposits and long-term wholesale debt, and changes in their funding mix. Australian banks‚Äô lending rates have also risen significantly relative to the cash rate. For the major banks, the increases in lending rates have more than fully offset their higher funding costs, with their net interest margins in late 2009 about 20‚Äď25 basis points above pre-crisis levels. Since then, margins may have narrowed slightly.banks; funding costs; lending rates; net interest margins; global financial crisis

    Quality assessment of a randomly selected sample of Swiss medical expertises : a pilot study

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    Background: Considerable criticism has lately been raised by the media regarding the quality of Swiss medical expertises. The present investigation was therefore undertaken to assess the professional quality of Swiss medical expertises. The study was part of a market analysis of medical expertises (MGS study). Methods: A sample of 97 anonymised expertises randomly chosen from a total of 3165, collected in the MGS study over a period of 3 months, were evaluated by an international board of medical experts and reviewers, using a stepwise developed questionnaire. Each expertise was independently evaluated by two experts. Data were then tested for plausibility (obvious errors and misunderstandings). The main outcome was the overall quality rating of the expertise that was graded from 1 (very poor) to 6 (excellent) in analogy to the Swiss school grading system. For analysis and interpretation the grades were divided into sufficient (grades >= 4) and insufficient (grades <4). Results: Overall 19.6% (95% confidence interval: 13.1%; 28.3%) of the expertises were rated to be of insufficient quality. The quality was inversely related to the number of involved medical disciplines, the time relapsed since injury and positively related to the difficulty of the expertise. In addition, expertises in the French and Italian languages were rated superior to those in German. Conclusions: Our results confirm recent criticisms that the professional quality of expertises does not suffice. This is hardly acceptable in face of the financial and personal consequences. There is an obvious need for further research using larger samples and for educational programmes on all levels

    Allelopathic effects of three plant invaders on germination of native species: a field study

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    The ability of some invasive plant species to produce biochemical compounds toxic to native species, called allelopathy, is thought to be one of the reasons for their success when introduced to a novel range, an idea known as the Novel Weapons Hypothesis. However, support for this hypothesis mainly comes from bioassays and experiments conducted under controlled environments, whereas field evidence is rare. In a field experiment, we investigated whether three plant species invasive in Europe, Solidago gigantea, Impatiens glandulifera and Erigeron annuus, inhibit the germination of native species through allelopathy more than an adjacent native plant community. At three sites for each invasive species, we compared the germination of native species that were sown on invaded and non-invaded plots. Half of these plots were amended with activated carbon to reduce the influence of potential allelopathic compounds. The germination of sown seeds and of seeds from the seedbank was monitored over a period of 9weeks. Activated carbon generally enhanced seed germination. This effect was equally pronounced in invaded and adjacent non-invaded plots, indicating that invasive species do not suppress germination more than a native plant community. In addition, more seeds germinated from the seedbank on invaded than on non-invaded soil, probably due to previous suppression of germination by the invasive species. Our field study does not provide evidence for the Novel Weapons Hypothesis with respect to the germination success of natives. Instead, our results suggest that if invasive species release allelopathic compounds that suppress germination, they do so to a similar degree as the native plant community

    Recent Developments in Banks\u27 Funding Costs and Lending Rates

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    The Centrality of Aleppo and its Environs

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    This study analyses the relationship between Aleppo and settlements in the city’s hinterland based on spatial statistics. A theoretical extension of the term central place is used in reconstructing Aleppo’s central character. Locally the city served as a centre for trade, exchange, and cult activity. In a regional and supra-regional context, advantages deriving from the topographic location led trade, exchange, and craft to take on different functions. This study demonstrates that, in contrast to other important cities in the ancient Middle East, Aleppo could maintain its long-lasting significance as a central place due to the combination of different functions

    T√©cnica de Moir√© aplicada al an√°lisis de esfuerzos de compresi√≥n en el bamb√ļ Guadua

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    El bamb√ļ es considerado como una materia prima muy importante para los pa√≠ses en v√≠as de desarrollo, pues combina levedad con una elevada resistencia mec√°nica. Hasta ahora no se conoce adecuadamente el comportamiento del material cuando es sometido a los ensayos de caracterizaci√≥n mec√°nica. En este trabajo se busc√≥ evaluar probetas de bamb√ļ (Guadua angustifolia) sometidas al ensayo de compresi√≥n simple. Se utiliz√≥ la t√©cnica de moir√© de sombra para mapear las deformaciones de las probetas en funci√≥n de la cantidad de nudos presentes en ella (0, 1 √≥ 2). Los resultados obtenidos evidenciaron la adecuaci√≥n de la t√©cnica utilizada, permitiendo observar la distribuci√≥n de las l√≠neas de iso-deformaci√≥n en el bamb√ļ.¬†AbstractBamboo is considered an important raw material in developing countries because its physical characteristics associate lightness with high mechanical resistance. However its behavior obtained from mechanical tests is not yet well defined. This research work had the objective of evaluating bamboo (Guadua angustifolia) testing specimens under simple uniaxial compression loading. Shadow moir√© optical methods had been employed to generate deformation mapping as function of knots (0, 1 or 2). Obtained results indicate that the technique is well adequate in generating iso-deformation contour lines in bamboo specimens

    MOIR√Č OPTICAL TECHNIQUE FOR EVALUATION OF CASHEW NUTS (Anacardium Occidentale, L.) ISOSTRAIN

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    A figure corresponding to 96% of the Brazilian production of cashew nuts is forwared to industrial processing yielding only 50 to 60% of whole kernels. An appropriated knowledge of nut mechanical behavior would be important to support the development of equipment designed to minimize losses during processing.&nbsp; The nut shell is composed of three layers identified as the epicarp, mesocarp and endocarp, which exhibit distinct behavior beyond mechanical excitations. An important class of mechanical loading is recognized to be the contact stress which is generated from the pressure exerted among two elastic bodies in contact. However the structural as well as the geometrical complexity of the nut deserves a suitable methodology to investigate stress distribution in cashew nuts. Shadow moir&eacute; technique was identified to support a suitable stress analysis method for the present case. Ten individuals were submitted to the trials, being 05 scarified nuts and 05 non scarified. A conventional optical setup was prepared to support a shadow moir&eacute; test. It was observed close correlation between external and internal load distribution. The technique was showed to be efficient to obtain a qualitative correlation of deformation distribution in the endocarp, as well as in the epicarp

    Performance of the CMS Cathode Strip Chambers with Cosmic Rays

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    The Cathode Strip Chambers (CSCs) constitute the primary muon tracking device in the CMS endcaps. Their performance has been evaluated using data taken during a cosmic ray run in fall 2008. Measured noise levels are low, with the number of noisy channels well below 1%. Coordinate resolution was measured for all types of chambers, and fall in the range 47 microns to 243 microns. The efficiencies for local charged track triggers, for hit and for segments reconstruction were measured, and are above 99%. The timing resolution per layer is approximately 5 ns
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