11 January 2012South African new vehicle sales remained strong in 2011, with figures released by the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of SA (Naamsa) on Tuesday showing a 15.6 percent increase in total industry vehicles sales, to 570 012 units for the year.2011 proven to be a very successful year for the country’s vehicle industry due to high demand as a result of low interest rates, increased corporate activity and a number of new entry-level models entering the market.For the month of December 2011, Naamsa data also shows an 11 percent year-on-year increase in total industry vehicle sales, to 43 790 units.Chris De Kock, executive head of sales and marketing at WesBank, notes, however, that these figures exclude sales figures from one vehicle manufacturer. “If we assume that this manufacturer sold a similar number of vehicles in December 2011 as were sold in the previous month, we would actually be looking at year-on-year growth in December 2011 of around 16 percent.”WesBank book data also recorded an increase in credit applications in December 2011 to 91 091, compared with 88 429 recorded in the same period a year earlier.“This positive consumer trend was also reflected across other book data, with a further reduction in the replacement cycle and an increase in the new versus used car purchase ratio,” De Kock said.“Looking forward, we expect moderate growth on these figures in 2012 as a result of price increases feeding through and the likelihood of a rise in interest rates.“However, if market sales in 2012 match those seen last year, the industry should be reasonably happy.Sapa
1 October 2013The Durban duo of Hank McGregor and Grant van der Walt claimed a record fourth successive K2 title in the Hansa Fish River Canoe Marathon on the weekend, while Abby Adie and Anna Adamova captured the womens’ title.McGregor and van der Walt started the final day with a lead of over four minutes over second placed Ben Biggs and Alasdair Glass, and succeeded in maintaining their advantage throughout the 36km stretch from Knutsford to Cradock.“We had a faultless day. It was a bit lonely and pretty cold, but we just looked to keep things conservative and not try be heroes and it all paid off in the end,” said recently crowned marathon world champion McGregor.‘I’m very happy’“Today was probably the best I have ever shot Cradock Weir and after that it was great to come home to get our fourth win in a row together and my fifth, so I’m very happy.”“We had a really good weekend together,” added van der Walt. “We both weren’t feeling great coming into the weekend after all the travel [from the World Championships in Copenhagen back to South Africa] but it was great to be back at the Fish and the win is obviously great!”While McGregor and van der Walt ran clear up front, there was a huge battle on for the remaining podium places.Biggs and Glass bravely tried their best to hang onto their second place. However, pre-race title hopefuls Len Jenkins and Greg Louw and the top international duo of Tobias Bong of Germany and Tomas Slovak of the Czech Republic had other plans.Charged through the fieldHaving charged through the field after starting the day in fifth place, Bong and Slovak proceeded to storm straight past Jenkins and Louw and into a probable second place finish, until disaster struck at the notorious Cradock Weir.“We caught Len and Greg and stayed with them for a while before we managed to open up a 30-second lead going into Cradock Weir,” explained Slovak. “Unfortunately we had some bad luck there though and swam.“The swim also broke our boat a little, so when we emptied and got going again we filled up with water all over again, and by the time got to Golf Course Rapid we were completely underwater and had to stop and empty again.‘A bit disappointing’“It’s obviously a bit disappointing, but that’s Cradock Weir, that’s the Hansa Fish and that’s paddling!” said an upbeat Bong. “We’re still very happy with third place and maybe if we can practice a bit more we can be back again in two years’ time and try to challenge Hank and Grant.”Jenkins, a six-time K1 Fish champion and local lad Louw ultimately claimed the silver medal after an improved day compared to Friday’s opening stage.“Yesterday wasn’t the best for us, but we managed to hold it together and Greg pulled us through,” Jenkins said afterwards. “It was much better today and man, what a nice race!”Having slipped back to fourth, Biggs and Glass then suffered the same misfortune as their international counterparts at Cradock Weir, which allowed Brandon van der Walt and Stu MacLaren to go past them and round out the top five finishers.Ladies’ raceIn the ladies’ race, Adie and Adamova showed a clean pair of blades to their chasers, Robyn Kime and Bridgitte Hartley, as they cruised to a commanding victory. It was Adie’s second K2 victory in a row after she won the 2011 title with Hilary Pitchford.The win was also an ideal 24th birthday present for the Natal Canoe Club star. “I couldn’t have asked for a better present,” she beamed afterwards. “We managed to hang onto a good bunch of guys early on and that really helped us.“This really was a special win because coming into the race I thought it was one of the toughest fields I have ever had to compete against, and Anna and I were a new combination.‘I knew we would go well’“Once we paddled together and saw just how well we sat together and combined I knew we would go well though,” she added.Adamova, who recently claimed a K2 bronze and K1 silver medal at the Marathon World Championships in Copenhagen, added a gold medal to her recent successes.“The past two weeks have been amazing, I would probably rank both Worlds and Fish on the same level. They have been fantastic,” an ecstatic Adamova said. “Abby drove so well and she is also my Dusi partner, so I’m very happy to have started our partnership so well.”Kime and Hartley won silver with Jenna Ward and Kerry Segal moving up one spot from their fourth place overnight to claim the bronze medal.Junior categoriesThe Juniors Boys’ race saw Louis Hattingh and Bryan le Roux hold off the Wilson twins, Travis and Tyler, while Jordan and Cana Peek claimed the junior girls’ title. Brandon Macleod and his Michaelhouse teammate Alan Houston came from behind the claim the U16 title.After a fascinating mixed doubles contest, Cape Town’s Tom Schilperoort and Samantha Murray claimed the win ahead of the Adie siblings, Alex and Andrew.Having stormed through the field on day one it was the Burden trio – Nic, Paul and Colin – who once again reigned supreme in the K3 contest as they overcame the challenge of Jacques, Jen and Cobie Theron.SAinfo reporter
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest You might have seen a picture floating around the internet with a cattle producer asking Santa for market prices to make a comeback this year and it looks as though jolly old St. Nick might have come through.According to USDA’s cattle-on-feed numbers last week, there was an 11% drop on cattle placement numbers compared to a year ago. That has provided some support in the cattle markets this week but the reason for the decline may make the new numbers deceiving.“These figures may imply that some cattle may have simply stayed out of feedlots and remained on grass or winter wheat pastures,” said Shayle Shagam, USDA livestock analyst. “Those cattle may be coming in to feedlots later which will put the pressure back on the more distance contracts.”The livestock markets have been put through the wringer lately and fed steers have recently averaged about $116 per hundredweight.“That, of course, causes very significant losses for cattle feeders,” Shagam said. “Just six months earlier those feeders paid about $220 for feeder calves and are now reporting losses of upwards of $500 a head.”Producers are trying to hold off on buying feeder cattle at the moment, but as long as there is plenty of forage, cow-calf operators are content to hold on to the cattle they have.Late last week as the new USDA data was released, word also spread that Congress was quickly moving an omnibus spending bill through that included the repeal of COOL, or Country of Origin Labeling. This move added to the positive news for the livestock sector, as doing away with COOL would fend off retaliatory tariffs threatened by Canada and Mexico.“COOL and the cattle-on-feed numbers, together, should give us the ability to rally back $15 to $20 a hundredweight on prices,” said Mike Zuzolo from Global Commodity Analytics. “COOL represented lost export demand to Mexico and increased competition from Canada in terms of beef.“Even though you can argue the placements of these latest cattle-on-feed figures, the latest report is below year-ago levels and I think that is a very healthy sign and should give the market pause to want to put more pressure on the supply side bearishness.”A wide futures market swing like the one taking place this week is something seldom seem with the slow pace of the holiday season and Zuzolo doesn’t see much happening on the cash side of things until the calendar turns.“If we start to see a positive reaction in box beef prices, then I think your February fat cattle should be able to get to the $135 to $136 level in the middle of January and maybe push $140 before it expires,” Zuzolo said.Dressed weights are 25 to 30 pounds more, year-to-date, which shows how well feed grain prices are holding up their end of the bargain. That sways the supply side sentiment to a little more positive from neutral. The demand side of the equation has a different feel.“USDA keeps bringing this to the forefront more and more in their reports,” Zuzolo said. “Although USDA said that red meat exports would be up by 8% in 2016 versus 2015, they were still going to be 1.5% shy of 2014 levels.”Zuzolo says that is the factor that will put a cap on the cattle market in the near term, until demand improves on the export front.
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Change comes to our weather pattern today, although we are making very few actual changes to our forecast. Yesterday was likely the last day that felt like summer…and by coincidence, today is the last day of summer. A cold front moves through the state today and it will bring cooler air along with some minor precipitation. Scattered shows bring a few hundredths to a quarter inch in most areas and we look for coverage around 70%.Dry weather returns for the weekends. We still see heavy rains staying south of the Ohio river for the most part on Sunday but will say that the southern tier of counties in south central Ohio should prepare for at least a chance of showers Sunday afternoon. There is no threat farther north. Sunshine and blue sky will be in control over the rest of the state.Rain is back for Monday and Tuesday and most of Wednesday. We are keeping our rain totals of half to 2” combined over nearly 100% of the state for the 3-day period. However, we think the rains may be a bit slow to start at least in terms of coverage, and the heaviest, most frequent rains likely develop for Tuesday and Wednesday. We should be fully dry for next Thursday.Friday-Saturday of next week is the only part of the forecast where there is some question this morning. Models are divides on how precipitation comes in late next week. Some models bring action Friday, others delay it into Saturday. Either way, we likely are looking at a final system before we bring the month to a close. The even still has potential for half to 1.5” rains but we are scaling coverage back slightly to 80% of the state.The 11-16 day forecast period still is mostly dry this morning. We have strong Canadian high pressure slowly meandering across the central and eastern corn belt in the period, and we should see low humidity and good drying again. The difference there vs what we have seen here recently will be temperatures…we should be significantly cooler as we finish September and move into October than right now. Looking past the end of the 11-16 day period, we see a strong front building to the west, and that should bring rains of at least 1 inch back in for the October 6th and 7th time frame.Temps pull back to near normal today through the weekend, and then behind the early week system make another move lower. We should be normal to below normal by the end of next week. We continue to point to that Oct 1 to Oct 3 period as a window where we can see our first frost over at least parts of the state, perhaps a majority of the state. The map at right shows potential morning lows for October 1st.
Alleging that the Central government was not providing the funds which were due to the State, West Bengal Chief Minister on Thursday said those amount would have helped the state carry out relief work in the Cyclone ‘Bulbul’-hit areas.Ms. Banerjee expressed hope that Prime Minister Narendra Modi would keep his promise of helping the State in dealing with the relief work in cyclone affected areas.“Around ₹17,000 crore is due to us from the Centre.”If they had given us that due amount, we could have used that to carry out relief works,” Ms. Banerjee told reporters at the State Secretariat on Thursday.She said she would write to the Centre in connection with the dues.The CM also asked people to refrain from playing politics in relief distribution.“It was a big cyclone. Instead of standing by the affected people, some are playing politics and indulging in vandalism. I would urge them to refrain from it. This is not the time to do politics,” she said.The individuals or BJP mouthpieces who are “playing dirty games” should stop, the Chief Minister said.Ms. Banerjee also stressed that the central and the state governments have specific roles to play and they must work together in this situation.
Renowned coach Tony Roche will hold a coaching clinic for the national players in Kolkata from December 1-8. The Australian has coached the likes of Roger Federer, Ivan Lendl and Patrick Rafter.The clinic will be held at former Davis Cupper Jaidip Mukerjea’s academy in Kolkata.Several top Indian players like Leander Paes and Somdev Devvarman have already got their dates booked to attend the camp.Mukerjea will bear all the expenses of Roche’s stay in India although he is looking for sponsors for the event. “He (Roche) is a dear friend and I had been telling him to come to India for quite some time. He has agreed now.Somdev had a small interaction with him and he was very keen to have a session with him,” Mukerjea told Mail Today.Roche had come to India in 1993 and held camp at the DLTA in the Capital.Except for Rohan Bopanna and Sania Mirza, who will be participating in the International Premier Tennis League (IPTL) during that time, all other Indian players will be available.”Besides Somdev, Leander will also be coming. Yuki (Bhambri) will be there. Others like Vishnu Vardhan, Saketh Myneni, Divij Sharan and Sanam Singh will be there too. My academy will bear all the expenses but we are looking for sponsors,” added Mukerjea.”I got the confirmation from Roche yesterday (Sunday) morning and I will speak to the All India Tennis Association (AITA) in the next few days. I will approach the government and may be it can chip in with some help,” said Mukerjea who was here to watch India’s World Group Davis Cup play-off against Serbia.advertisementDavis Cup coach Zeeshan Ali is from Kolkata and he is expected to be present during the coaching camp. Mukerjea will also speak to captain Anand Amritraj and invite him to join the camp. “I will surely invite him. The problem is that everyone will have to spend from their own pockets. Besides, Anand will have to be free at that time,” said.Former player Roche has mentored many top players. Besides his French Open title, he has 12 men’s doubles Grand Slam titles to his name.
OTTAWA – International Development Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau says 6,000 Canadians who were in the path of hurricane Maria were evacuated before the storm hit.She said today 168 Canadians who chose not to leave have requested federal assistance in the wake of the devastating storm that is ravaging the Caribbean.That number includes 147 students on the hard-hit island of Dominica, who will need to be evacuated by boat to St. Lucia before they can be brought to Canada.Bibeau says the debris surrounding Dominica is complicating rescue efforts but adds everyone is safe and will be evacuated as soon as possible.She says 20 other people in the region who have medical needs will also be assisted by Canadian authorities.The storm’s death toll across the Caribbean climbed to at least 19, nearly all of them on Dominica.Maria slammed into Puerto Rico as a category four hurricane on Wednesday and was the strongest storm to hit the U.S. territory in over 80 years.Bibeau says the government didn’t receive any requests for aid from Canadians living on that island.Maria was expected to approach the Turks and Caicos Islands and the Bahamas late Thursday and early Friday.— With files form The Associated Press