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Jonathan Groff & Lea Michele on Spring Awakening, Cory Monteith & Louder

first_img Star Files Michele told Groff that Louder, which is scheduled to be released on February 28, gets its name from her big personality. “Louder is like me. I’m loud, I come from an Italian family, I don’t stop talking,” she said. “My favorite song is, 100 percent, ‘You’re Mine.’ I listened to it the other day—it was the one song I had the most emotional reaction to, just because that’s my relationship with Cory.” Groff told Michele that he believes she is the “quintessential role model” because of how she has handled her work, success, friendships and relationships over the last few years. “As your friend, I saw you exhibit so much strength.” Yuck. However, Michele did reveal that Spring Awakening was the “greatest experience of [her] life” because it was how she came to meet her best friend. “In this lifetime, if there is anything you need, it’s a best friend,” she told Groff. “You believed in me a lot.” Michele and her Glee co-star Cory Monteith began dating around February 2012, and, of course, he became one of her biggest champions before he died in July 2013. “My relationship with Cory made me feel like I could reach for the stars and more,” she said. One of those stars? Recording her album Louder. “He would be like, ‘You’re going to be a pop star!'” Jonathan Groff Jonathan Groff and Lea Michele know there’s nothing like a best friend. The stage and screen stars met almost 10 years ago “in [a] dark building in Chelsea” when they auditioned for the off-Broadway premiere of Spring Awakening and the rest is, as they say, history. Michele went on to star as Rachel Berry in FOX’s Glee and will soon become a pop star with the release of her album Louder, and Groff is the star of HBO’s new buzzworthy series Looking. In the March issue of Teen Vogue (on shelves February 4), Groff got his BFF to open up about their “crazy” friendship, the loss of Cory Monteith and more.center_img Even though Michele had to “simulate sex more than 1,000 times onstage [with Groff] in Spring Awakening,” she confessed that, at this point, she probably couldn’t even kiss her hunky friend without chuckling. “I don’t think I could. I really think I would laugh too hard,” she told Groff. “Whereas we used to make the hell out.” Another reason she might be afraid to lock lips with Groff? He might puke. There was that one time… During the hayloft scene, where we always open-mouth kissed. I had the stomach flu and I was going to vomit in your mouth,” Groff told Michele. “You opened your mouth and I was like, ‘Nuh-uh.'” View Comments Lea Michelelast_img read more

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Georgia Green.

first_imgIn 1995, the peanut industry in Georgia was under siege. Tomato spotted wilt virus, a plant-crippling disease, had cut yields over much of the state.That same year, the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences released a weapon to help farmers combat the disease. Georgia Green, a TSWV-resistant variety, became available to farmers on a small scale.Now, only five years later, more than 90 percent of the peanut acreage in the Southeast is planted in Georgia Green.Strong Resistance, High YieldsBetween the mid-’70s and mid-’90s, Florunner was the dominant peanut variety grown in Georgia. But Florunner was very susceptible to spotted wilt, which by the early ’80s had become an economic problem.The industry also needed higher yields, said Bill Branch, the UGA peanut breeder who developed Georgia Green at the Coastal Plain Experiment Station in Tifton.”Georgia Green combines high yields and high grade with strong TSWV resistance,” Branch said. “Georgia Green results in greater dollar value return per acre for growers.”Over the past three years, Georgia Green has averaged the highest yield, grade and dollar return of all runner-type varieties in side-by-side comparisons.It tastes good, too. If you like peanut butter, chances are you like Georgia Green. Of the state’s $400 million peanut crop, about 75 percent goes into peanut butter. Nearly all of the rest hits the stores as snacks or in candies. In 1999, Georgia grew 37 percent of the nation’s peanuts.Despite three years of drought and increased TSWV pressure, state growers have averaged about 2,600 pounds per acre with Georgia Green. During a similar drought in 1980, growers reached only 1,935 pounds per acre with Florunner, with no TSWV pressure.Georgia Green, along with other management tools developed by CAES scientists, saved state growers $28 million in 1999 alone.Branch said Georgia Green, because of its multiple-gene resistance, will continue to be a viable variety for growers for many more years.”Georgia Green has consistently performed well from field to field and year to year over many different management systems and environments,” Branch said. “We can now manage TSWV with Georgia Green.”The variety has helped save the Southeastern peanut industry during recent years of drought and spotted wilt, said Emory Murphy of the Georgia Peanut Commission.”We would have been in a mess if we didn’t have Georgia Green in our industry,” Murphy said. “That’s about the best way I can put it. If we hadn’t had Georgia Green, our alternatives would have been dismal. It came along at a very important time in making the difference in our growers, not only staying competitive, but even growing peanuts.”Since its release, Georgia Green has been grown in some of the most extreme weather to hit Georgia, Murphy said. “It has held up extremely well,” he said. “It hasn’t had the chance to be assessed on a full-scale commercial basis under what we would consider normal conditions. We are very glad we’ve had Georgia Green available to the farmers.”The CAES will spotlight Georgia Green at the 2000 Sunbelt Agricultural Expo Oct. 17-19 in Moultrie, Ga.last_img read more

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Drought almost gone

first_imgDrought conditions continued to shrink across the state during April due to the seasonal rainfall and cool spring temperatures; the only area of Georgia left in drought is a small sliver along southeast coast. Northern Georgia’s drought eased in February due to wet conditions north of Atlanta in January 2013 while most of the rest of the state saw the drought gradually diminish over March and April. Wet conditions in February and continued rains in the following months erased years of precipitation deficits in all but the deepest groundwater aquifers. Many farmers went from very dry soil conditions to saturated fields, leading to problems for some crops and difficulty getting into the fields for spring planting. The cooler temperatures in March and frost in early April also caused some delays in farmers’ fields and damage to some crops. However, more seasonable temperatures through the rest of the month allowed slow planting of peanuts and corn as the month progressed. Excessive rains triggered some worry about this year’s Vidalia onion crop after growers reported some seed stem problems. Seed stems can be brought on my excessive rain and cold temperatures and affect the onions by drying out and hollowing the onions’ cores, which renders them unsuitable for sale. Some growers were reporting fields with 30 to 40 percent seed stem problems compared to a typical year when seed stem losses might be in the two to three percent range. However, yields are expected to be higher than average and that may offset some of the losses due to the seed stem loss. The onions available for sale should be of good quality, according to industry reports. Hail associated with severe weather damaged canola and transplanted vegetables in some areas. The cold temperatures in March delayed the production of Georgia highbush blueberries by up to ten days due to the slowdown in maturity, but the total volume is not expected to be affected in spite of minor damage from hail in some locations. Storms featuring hail damage hit several parts of the state during April. On April 11, three weak tornadoes were reported in Haralson, Polk and Lumpkin/Hall counties, along with hail up to baseball-sized. High winds were reported in several coastal counties on April 14, including one report of 86 mph from the National Estuarine Research System site on Sapelo Island in McIntosh County. A tornado was reported near Mansfield in Newton and Morgan counties on the afternoon of April 19 and two EF0 tornadoes were confirmed near Moreland in Coweta County and McDonough in Henry County on April 29, along with large hailstones and high winds. Damage from the storms was mainly due to tree damage, although a small number of buildings were also affected. Temperatures across the state in April were typical for spring in the Southeast. In Atlanta, the monthly average temperature was 62.1 degrees F (0.1 degrees above normal), in Athens 61.2 degrees (0.5 degrees below normal), Columbus 65.6 (1.0 degree above normal), Macon 61.9 (1.5 degree below normal), Savannah 66.4 (0.8 of a degree above normal), Brunswick 66.9 (0.4 of a degree above normal), Alma 65.4 (0.8 of a degree below normal) and Augusta 62.4 (0.3 of a degree below normal). Several stations set record low daytime temperatures early in April. Columbus reported a high of 52 F on April 4, breaking the old record of 54 F set in 1987. Macon set a record of 50 F on the same day, surpassing the old record of 53 F also set in 1987. Alma set a record low daytime temperature of 60 F on April 5, breaking the old record of 63 F set in 1971. Augusta also reported a new record low daytime temperature of 51 F on April 4, breaking the old record of 53 F set in 1987; the National Weather Service noted that this low maximum temperature was 24 degrees below the normal high for the date. Brunswick, Atlanta and Athens also tied their record low maximum temperatures at least once during the month. Savannah tied a record high temperature of 88 F on April 12, matching the old record set in 2008. Rainfall across most of the state was above normal with the exception of the southwest corner. The highest monthly total precipitation from NWS reporting stations was 6.03 inches in Macon (3.07 inches above normal) and the lowest was in Brunswick at 2.80 inches (0.31 of an inche above normal). Atlanta received 5.51 inches (2.15 inches above normal), Athens 3.77 inches (0.62 of an inch above normal), Columbus 3.72 (0.17 of an inch above normal), Alma 3.24 (0.43 of an inch above normal) and Augusta 4.23 (1.39 inches above normal). A daily rainfall record was set in Atlanta on April 28 with 1.73 inches, surpassing the old record of 1.23 inches set in 1990. The highest single-day rainfall from a Community Collaborative Rain Hail Snow Network station was 5.86 inches west of Blairsville in Union County on April 18. An observer northwest of Macon in Bibb County received 3.82 inches and a Summerville observer in Chattooga County reported 3.64 inches on April 29. The highest monthly total rainfall was 12.34 inches, reported the Blairsville observer mentioned above, followed by two observers in Fannin County near McCayville and Blue Ridge with 11.43 and 11.25 inches, respectively.last_img read more

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Birds of a Feather

first_imgWhile some young men collect baseball cards or video games, University of Georgia senior Vince Hix has a slightly more exotic hobby. “When I was four, my dad bought me a few Rhode Island Red chickens for laying,” said Hix, an avian biology major in the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. “I’d get the eggs and sell them at church on Sunday. I’d fight all year to get $80 together to buy more chickens.”His operation began with 25 laying hens. He gathered eggs from these hens and sold them to buy feed, putting aside money when he could to grow his flock, always of different breeds — from unusually colored blue laced red Wyandottes to fluffy-plumed Silkies. The power of networking grew from a simple operation of laying hens to a collection of approximately 1,000 rare and exotic birds from all over the world.Walking among hundreds of enclosures he built with the help of family, Hix rattles off names of birds at a dizzying pace.From the Australian emus and South American rheas that placidly stalk among Boer goats and sheep in his parents’ sprawling backyard to turacos from Africa and great argus pheasants worth thousands per breeding pair.While Hix has some domestic breeds — homing pigeons, turkeys, a variety of bantam chickens, pheasants and quail — he says he doesn’t like “the domestic stuff.”“I like the birds you find in the wild,” he adds.He branched out into more exotic species beginning with pheasants he bought when he was 16 and expanded from there.“My parents said I could have anything I wanted as long as I took care of them and paid for them,” he said before pausing. “I don’t think they thought it would go this far.”Adam Davis, an associate professor in the Department of Poultry Science, is Hix’s advisor and faculty mentor.“I have had students who have had more experience with the poultry industry and broiler houses, but nobody has ever had as much experience in the exotics as Vince. He is, by far, more experienced than anyone I’ve ever met in my 20 years here as far as students go,” Davis said. “When there is something he is passionate about, he is very proactive. It doesn’t bother him to call whoever he needs to find out what he’s after.”Many in the exotic bird industry have gotten to know Hix and have entrusted him with birds other facilities have had difficulty breeding.“He’s been successful at breeding birds no one else could breed. That’s led to zoos and a lot of people loaning or giving him birds if he will breed them and share the offspring,” Davis said.On his family’s property and on 40 acres he bought nearby to expand his collection, Hix has birds from every continent except Antarctica.“There are some birds at my house that you wouldn’t even think existed,” said Hix.Egyptian geese wander between enclosures holding birds with outlandish names like the violaceous turaco from Africa or far-flung locales like the black francolins from India, multihued Mandarin ducks from East Asia, bronze-tailed peacock-pheasants from Sumatra, great currasows from Costa Rica, and Bornean crested fireback pheasants who look as if they are wearing blue masks over their eyes.Among the many birds you will find in his possession, some are the last of their breed and others are rarely seen in the U.S. outside of zoos or sanctuaries.Hix has been a part of multiple initiatives to preserve breeds of birds all over the world while still in college.In one enclosure are a pair of Edwards’s pheasants that are extinct in their native Vietnam. Hix has raised more than 40 of the birds with his breeding pair.When it comes to the Galliformes species — an order that includes about 290 species including turkeys, chickens, quail, partridge, pheasant, peacock, guinea fowl, and grouse — “I’d rate him No. 1 in the world as far as breeding,” said Davis. “Some of the curassows he’s breeding, no one else can breed.”Hix has put in many hours of hard work to create his exotic bird oasis. There is not an instruction manual for an operation like his, so much of his time is spent discovering the best ways to raise various species. He has built relationships with exotic bird collectors and experts, calling them with questions and comparing notes on breeding. He also provides birds to zoos worldwide.”With exotic birds it is a lot of trial and error,” said Hix, pointing out two breeding pairs of Ceylon jungle fowl in adjoining enclosures. He obtained one pair from another breeder who wasn’t able to successfully breed them. Hix was having similar issues with the pair until another breeder mentioned that he had luck getting fertilized eggs from his birds after he put a mirror in his birds’ enclosure, inciting jealousy in the male. In a play on the ploy, Hix got another pair of the birds and put them in an adjacent enclosure.“I’ve gotten 20-plus birds from them now,” he says. “It is just something I figured out. There’s nobody to tell you a lot of this.”In a henhouse on the property, Hix keeps dozens of Old English game hens whose sole job is to incubate the eggs of the exotic birds he breeds.“I hatch every bird underneath a hen and only have incubators for backup,” he said.In addition to the four hours a day he spends caring for his birds, Hix attends classes at CAES and works with Davis in his lab.“When Vince is talking casually to you, he makes it seem like there’s nothing to it, but he’s gone through a lot of observations and experience. He has a confidence; he’s not afraid to try anything. And, once he gets his mind set on something, it is going to happen. He is determined. This is why people come to him,” Davis said. “He really is extraordinary. Based on the success of his breeding and his personality — especially his personality — it’s hard to say no to Vince. People are comfortable doing things with him and loaning him birds and trying different things. Then, once he has success, that leads to other people contacting him from zoos to help them with breeding.”After graduation, Hix said he is considering medical school. Davis said he hopes Hix will apply to graduate school in avian biology so he can continue to work with him at CAES.”I’ve spoken to him about a master’s and a PhD. I also have friends who have a DVM and a PhD, and I think Vince is definitely suited to the PhD side, but he’ll go beyond that,” Davis said. “He’s gotten so much experience just by himself that, with a PhD, there won’t be anything he can’t do related to medicine and birds.”Regardless of where his career path leads him, Hix plans to build a house on his property near his parent’s farm, along with room for whatever other animals he gets the notion to collect.“I’d love to have aviaries attached to the house and a balcony where I can feed giraffes,” Hix mused before he was off to take care of his birds.(This story was produced for the CAES magazine Southscapes. For more stories from the most recent issue of Southscapes, visit read more

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VTrans warns of safety concerns: Post-Irene ‘Tremors’

first_imgVermont Agency of Transportation Secretary Brian Searles today reminded the public that “tremors” from Tropical Storm Irene in the form of sink holes and slope failures continue to occur across the state, especially in the southern tier. Recent rains continue to soften the state’s soil, intensifying the probability of such tremors. These dangers can occur on roads that previously experienced no damage. Travelers need to be on the lookout and drive with care. “We appreciate there are some long detours to take in light of roadway closures,” Searles said. “Trying to make the longer commute shorter by driving aggressively may cost you your life. Everyone’s focus needs to be on safety.” As for road recovery efforts, a temporary bridge along Route 125 in Hancock will be open for public travel by the end of the day. This temporary bridge restores critical two-way traffic along Route 125 between Hancock and Middlebury, which was severed over the weekend when a bridge was closed. Additional forces arrived as 149 crews from the Maine Department of Transportation landed in Vermont at about 4 p.m. with 145 pieces of heavy equipment including 10 road graders, seven large excavators, and dozens of back loaders and dump trucks. The Maine crews will be deployed on Wednesday to several locations including Route 131 in Cavendish where they will replace culverts, clear debris and repair shoulder washouts. Maine crews also will be dispatched to Route 100 in Jamaica and Wardsboro where two teams will reestablish ditching and repair shoulder damage. Other crews will conduct a variety of tasks along routes 100, 30, 11, and 10. Also, 10 New Hampshire crews with trucks arrived delivering 150 Jersey barriers to help cordon off dangerous roadway sections. The New Hampshire crews on Wednesday will also help repair segments of Route 131 and Route 106.last_img read more

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Central America to Manage International Funds for Fight against Crime

first_imgBy Dialogo July 03, 2012 The Central American presidents agreed on June 29 to double their efforts to obtain financial aid and fight organized crime, at a biannual summit at which they also signed an unprecedented commercial and political partnership agreement with the European Union. “What we (the presidents) agreed is to be more expeditious, more aggressive in acquiring funds in order to succeed in financing the regional strategy” to fight crime, said Salvadoran President Mauricio Funes, who acted as an informal spokesperson for the heads of state or government of the eight countries. The participants in the Central American Integration System (SICA) summit agreed “concretely to construct a regional strategy for the (management of) financing of the plan to fight crime.” Funes recalled that the United States, Canada, and Australia, among others, have offered Central America up to 2.5 billion dollars to finance 22 programs targeting four security issues. The United States, represented by the top American diplomat for Latin America, Roberta Jacobson, attended this SICA summit for the first time as an observer. Jacobson was there to reiterate U.S. support through the Central America Regional Security Initiative (CARSI), for which Washington has committed 361 million dollars. The summit was organized under the slogan “Everyone’s Fight: The New Security Approach in Central America.” Security, especially in relation to drug trafficking, is Central America’s primary challenge. Estimates are that 90 percent of the cocaine consumed in the United States passes through the region. At the summit, Honduran President Porfirio Lobo transferred the group’s rotating presidency to his Nicaraguan counterpart Daniel Ortega. Guatemalan President Otto Pérez, Salvadoran President Mauricio Funes, Costa Rican President Laura Chinchilla, and Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli also attended. Belize was represented by Energy Minister Audrey Joygralt, and the Dominican Republic by Foreign Minister Clara Quiñónez.last_img read more

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Venezuela’s Crisis Threatens Nearby Democracies

first_imgBy Noelani Kirschner/ShareAmerica November 23, 2020 Democracy must be restored in Venezuela because undermining a democracy anywhere is a threat to democracy everywhere, experts say.“This is a country where Maduro has not only taken over most of the bigger opposition parties and tried to replace their leadership with his puppets,” said on September 1, Michael G. Kozak, acting assistant secretary for Western Hemisphere Affairs at the U.S. State Department. “He’s taken over illegally the national electoral commission so that he completely runs the elections. There’s still no freedom of the press. There’s no freedom of expression. There’s no freedom of assembly.”Neighboring countries will continue to pay the price for the illegitimate Maduro regime’s abetting of illegal drug and gold trafficking, Kozak said on September 15. These criminal operations destroy local Venezuelan communities and bordering nations, leading to an uptick in crime.Maduro also provides a safe haven for terrorist organizations such as the National Liberation Army (ELN, in Spanish) and dissidents of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC, in Spanish) to run rampant throughout Venezuela. Their terrorist activities bleed into countries like Colombia, sowing more unrest and chaos.The massive exodus of Venezuelans fleeing dire conditions will continue and increase. This undermines the economies of other countries in the region and strains resources of countries sheltering these refugees.Containing diseases such as COVID-19 becomes even more difficult.Until the illegitimate Maduro regime no longer holds the reins of power, democracy will continue to erode within Venezuela and threaten nearby countries.The Organization of the American States (OAS) called a special permanent council session on September 29 to discuss the disintegration of democracy in Venezuela and the results of the September 16 Independent United Nations (U.N.) Fact-Finding Mission that found reasonable grounds to believe regime-controlled forces committed widespread human rights violations.Many member state representatives from the European Union and experts from the U.N. Fact-Finding Mission to Venezuela agreed that, as it stands, the current conditions would not guarantee free and fair parliamentary elections in December.As long as dissenting voices are silenced and the Venezuelan people suffer, they concurred, there will be no situation in which free and fair parliamentary or presidential elections can take place.Free and fair elections are necessary, the meeting participants said, to restoring humanity and peace to Venezuela and the surrounding region.“In the end, suffering has no political colors, there are no good dictators or bad dictators,” said Venezuelan opposition leader Julio Borges at the OAS session. “There are dictators and that is why torture and persecution are the same.”last_img read more

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Long Island Blizzard? The Most Important Thing You Need To Remember

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York It was about a year or so ago when Long Island received advance warning of a monster snowstorm. With recent memories of wild weather in our region, including tornadoes in Brooklyn and Snowmaggedon, Long Islanders — a hearty stock yes, but one shaken by prior hurricane-seasons’ wicked women — took heed to the dire omen.But what do we need to do this time? Between emails from our new electric company and robocalls from our schools, we’re on information overload! Hopefully, everyone’s bought a shovel. Maybe some rock salt. Hot cocoa for the kids, who will probably/possibly be stuck in the house with you tomorrow…Our house has a tradition that must be fulfilled… Entenmann’s Classic 8 Rich Frosted Donuts. A fine family tradition passed along to me from my wise father, Dr. Joseph M. Conforti, a professor of Sociology, and a fine storm-hunter-gatherer, especially to a young boy who he seldom allowed any kind of name brand treats. (I grew up on off-brand cereals for instance…. Tasteeoos, Crispy Rice, Lieutenant Munch…)It is the perfect parallel to this, a favorite, timeless classic of The Buzz column, as Vic Dibitetto reminds us all what is way more important during these trying, troubled, turbulent times of extreme winter.Bless your heart Vic.And please shoot future viral videos in landscape mode.Thanks.(For more information about the upcoming snowstorm, check the Long Island Press homepage – Happy now Philip?)last_img read more

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English Heritage slams London Plan

first_imgTo access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week. Would you like to read more?Register for free to finish this article.Sign up now for the following benefits:Four FREE articles of your choice per monthBreaking news, comment and analysis from industry experts as it happensChoose from our portfolio of email newsletterslast_img

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Pension funds’ increased risk tolerance to hit returns – Allianz GI

first_imgThe survey noted that the low-rate environment had led to “constrained” institutions – classed as those constructing cash-generating investment strategies such as pension funds – re-assessing the level of risk in individual portfolios.“This open-mindedness among investors may well be necessary to meet performance objectives in this loose monetary policy environment,” the survey said.“But the recent shift in risk tolerance is all but certain to negatively affect fund performance if rates rise quickly and unexpectedly, or if investors are ill prepared for managing the dynamics of interest rates as they return to normalcy.”Of the 391 survey respondents, two-thirds said they saw an abnormal price distortion in fixed income markets developing over the last five years as a result of central bank intervention.A further one-third said foreign exchange markets had been similarly affected, and 45% believed equity markets had been distorted.The US Federal Reserve was singled out for its role by a number of respondents.“Large institutional investors interviewed for this report pointed to multiple examples of emerging market economies, and even Japan, that have been negatively affected by the easy liquidity polices of the Fed and the coming tapering of that liquidity,” the survey said.AGI chief executive Elizabeth Corley cited the impact of the looser monetary policy initiated in the wake of the crisis as a concern.“Five years on, we find that, despite sovereign debt [being] at historic levels, growth remains anaemic, and that what was envisaged as first aid has become an enduring support to keep growth afloat,” she said.“As we journey towards a world with less monetary stimulus, the question is, are we facing a bumpy landing or will policymakers be skilful enough to avoid unintended consequences?” Pension funds’ increased risk tolerance is “all but certain” to impact fund returns negatively, as some are ill-prepared for the problems posed by increasing interest rates, Allianz Global Investors (AGI) has predicted.Publishing its annual RiskMonitor – for the first time surveying investors globally – the German asset manager said its nearly 400 respondents were concerned about price bubbles developing in fixed income.Equal numbers of respondents, or 51%, were concerned about the bubble materialising in high-yield corporate debt and developed market sovereign bonds, and 44% also perceived emerging market property as a risky proposition.Developed market real estate was only considered overpriced and at risk of an asset bubble by 24% of respondents, ahead of only commodities, which 23% identified of being at risk due to central banks’ expansionist monetary policy.last_img read more

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