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Ontario announces investment to support four-hour care standard in long-term care – CTV Toronto

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TORONTO —
The Ontario government has released its funding plan to meet an average four-hour care standard commitment in long-term care homes across the province.

Speaking at a news conference on Thursday, Premier Doug Ford said the province would be committing to $1.9 billion in funding annually by 2024-25 to create more than 27,000 new positions in the industry, including personal support workers, registered nurses and registered practical nurses.

Ford also said the government would be providing a 20 per cent increase in direct care time administered by other health-care professionals.

“Four hours a day is a trailblazer,” he said. “This could be a nation-leading level of care for our seniors, because they deserve nothing less.”

Long-term care residents currently receive an average of 2.75 hours of direct care per day, the government previously said.

The announcement comes nearly two weeks after the province’s commission on COVID-19 in long-term care issued its second interim report recommending that the province conduct more proactive inspections of its facilities and follow up with harsher enforcement measures when homes fail to address concerns.

The same commission also said that Ontario must spend more money on the hiring of personal support workers and nurses.

The Ontario government called Thursday’s investment “historic” and said they will be launching consultations in January with sector partners on what regulatory changes need to be made to support the plan.

However, the official opposition is claiming the Progressive Conservatives should be shortening the timeline for the investment.

“Our parents and grandparents are in crisis. More are becoming infected every day and more are dying every day. Heartbreaking stories of neglect are still rampant, and 2,526 have tragically lost their lives,” New Democratic Party leader Andrea Horwath said in a statement.

“We need an emergency mobilization to add thousands of (personal support workers) to nursing homes right now. They cannot wait for 2025. This timeline is a disgusting example of Doug Ford doing nothing today in order to save money today — and our loved ones are paying the price for that choice.”

Donna Duncan, CEO of the Ontario Long Term Care Association, says she welcomes the government’s plan.

“The staffing crisis in long-term care has long plagued the sector,” Duncan said in a statement. “This new strategy recognizes it will take an expanded workforce and enhanced supports for staff to improve care for our long-term care residents – today and in the future.”

Duncan went on to say that she looks forward to seeing further strategies, including the use of on-site rapid testing, enhanced infection prevention and control measures, and ensuring adequate personal protective equipment.

The news also comes a few days after a paper published by the province’s COVID-19 science table called for the reduction of temporary staffing, saying that improving working conditions could help mitigate outbreaks at long-term care homes.

“The most important risk factors for the magnitude of an outbreak, and the number of resulting resident deaths are older design, chain ownership, and crowding,” the report said.

The paper said other measures that could be effective include is a community-tailored approach to prevent worker infections, de-crowding of homes, prioritizing workers for testing, and guaranteeing sick leave.

Of the province’s 626 long-term care facilities, 143 are currently experiencing an outbreak. At least two of those outbreaks were recorded in the last 24 hours.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, 2,526 long-term care residents in Ontario have died of COVID-19 representing more than 60 per cent of all deaths logged in the province.

With files from the Canadian Press

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These Stocks That Are More of a Gamble Than an Investment – Barron's

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Some stock market trading activity has looked an awful lot like gambling as of late.


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Some stock market trading activity has looked an awful lot like gambling as of late, with huge run-ups in companies that have shown little actual evidence of profits, or in some cases, sales.

Academics say there’s more in common between gambling and stocks than you might imagine. And researchers have a simple methodology for determining which stocks are gambles rather than investments.

A research paper released this month found that gambling accounted for about 14% of stock market volume in developed countries, and that stock market gambling is 3.5 times the combined gambling in casinos, lotteries, horse racing, sports betting, gaming machines, and online gambling. The U.S. and Hong Kong have the highest per capita levels of stock market gambling in the world.

The paper—from Alok Kumar of the University of Miami, Houng Nguyen of the University of Danang, and Talis Putnins at the University of Technology Sydney and Stockholm School of Economics—proposes looking at volume over market cap as a way of determining lottery stocks. “We assume that gambling in stock markets involves disproportionate amount of trading in lottery-like stocks,” they said.

Applying their methodology, Barron’s screened the

S&P 500

and

Nasdaq 100

components for volume over the last 30 days divided by market cap.

The list makes intuitive sense—a variety of travel and energy stocks, such as American Airlines Group (ticker: AAL) and

Marathon Oil

(MRO).

Broadening out the screen to any New York Stock Exchange or Nasdaq-listed company with a market capitalization of at least $500 million yields even more aggressive plays, such as cannabis stock Sundial Growers (SNDL) and genome analysis specialist

Bionano Genomics

(BNGO).

The analysis can also easily be extended across the world.

Argo Blockchain

(ARB.London) headlines the London-listed lottery stocks with market caps of at least $500 million. Solar play

GCL New Energy Holdings

(451.Hong Kong) is the biggest lottery play among Hong Kong-listed stocks.

One perhaps surprising finding from the researchers is that the stock-market gambling helps the broader market function. “Even if gamblers are relatively or completely uninformed traders, they can still contribute to market efficiency by making markets more liquid and thereby encouraging informed trading,” researchers found.

Write to Steve Goldstein at steven.goldstein@wsj.com

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Bitcoin – a Means of Financial Investment – Net Newsledger

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When it comes to money and financial assets, it’s only a thin line that separates them. Even though some people classify money as a particular type of financial asset, this, in turn, does pay back little or no interest at all. Other types of financial assets do have huge interests or returns on investments (ROI). Take for example, when you buy stocks and bonds, you would expect to get some kind of interest on it or receive dividend payments, you can even go as far as selling the stock at a very high price in the future.

Even though Bitcoin was developed with the intent of serving as an international currency, there have been changes over the year and the increase in demand for bitcoin has made it a means of investment for many people. Today, Bitcoin has turned into a high financial investment asset that can be used for different transactions.

Bitcoin which is being characterized as a means of financial investments has drawn the interest of many investors and at the same time, it has given room for financial loss. While it can be argued that the line between financial assets and money is very thin, investors’ actions generally have revealed the role asset plays in the economy.

Truly, Bitcoin price chart has really been inconsistent over the years, sometimes we experience a high run-up in price and sometimes, it is followed by some drastic crashes but checking through this chart, it has been studied that it consistently retained a large portion of its gains every time it plummets. Since the first introduction of Bitcoin, it has been the first digital asset to start the current ecosystem of cryptocurrencies. For quite a while now, investors have seen its future as a possible and replacement to the physical money we have now.

Today, the hype surrounding Bitcoin has basically been keeping it as a financial investment instead of using it as a means of payment for goods and services, You can start earning with immediate bitcoin. Jannet Yellen, who is a Former Federal Reserve said that Bitcoin is “not a stable store of value and it doesn’t constitute legal tender. It is a highly speculative asset”.

The amazing benefits Bitcoin introduced to the market cannot be over-emphasized. For one, it is a safe ecosystem for your peer-to-peer money transactions. There are little to no intermediates when it comes to Bitcoin transactions. That is why it is cost-efficient and also very fast. You can send millions of Bitcoin within a few minutes and the cost of sending this is very low compared to using fiat currency. Bitcoin has made international payments so easy in a previously unimaginable way.

If you are an investor looking to invest in bitcoin through the capital markets, then you should do that with Bitcoin Trader.Using Bitcoin Trader provides investors some certain advantages which makes an investment in bitcoin a more reliable option. For one, their system ensures a transparent trading environment through DLT technology. Also, they use trading algorithms that implement HFT trading techniques which generate profits from even the slightest market movement.

When investing in Bitcoin, you can approach it from two different scenarios:

Short Positions on Bitcoin

When there is a Bitcoin bubble (which means rise in prices of bitcoin followed by a decrease in the price), investors might bet on bitcoin decreasing in value. With this, they might decide to sell bitcoin at a certain price, and after some time, they buy it at a price lower than the selling price. Take for example, if you buy bitcoin worth $1000 and later sell it at that same rate, and you wait for bitcoin to decrease in value before buying it back. You would be buying it at a very lower price, thereby making more profits.

But you have to be careful when taking this approach, there is a high possibility that the market might move against, which might result to losing money. Before going for this, as an investor, you should have a deep knowledge about leverage and margin calls.

Long Positions on Bitcoin

With this strategy, investors want a less immediate return. They purchase bitcoin and wait till the end of a price rally before selling it. This process can be approached in so many ways, one of them is relying on the cryptocurrency’s volatility for a high rate of return, should the market move in the investor’s favor. Several bitcoin trading sites like Bitcoin Trader now exist. These platforms have provided leveraged trading. Bitcoin Trader has a trading program that conducts bitcoin trading automatically.

Final Notes

The decision to make Bitcoin a means of financial investment boils down to your appetite for risk. The price could drop drastically, going against you as an investor, and a single online hacking or hard drive crashing can wipe out your stash of Bitcoin with no compensation or repayment. You need to transact with a reliable trader!

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India’s risky investment climate – Financial Times

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Last year, India celebrated a milestone in its long campaign to attract foreign direct investment, crossing the $500bn mark in cumulative inflows over the past two decades. For the government, it was a welcome piece of good news and a sign that overseas interest remained undimmed. The numbers, however, obscure a less promising reality. India’s economy, hard hit by the pandemic, has fallen into recession and there are worrying signs that the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, far from pursuing a path of liberalisation, is turning inwards.

There are good reasons to scrutinise the supposed momentum behind the foreign investment influx. While foreign companies, including Amazon and Walmart, have gained footholds, a shifting regulatory environment has all too often sent the wrong signal to international investors. And although Silicon Valley money poured in last year, a large chunk was directed at a single company: Jio Platforms, the telecom-and-digital services arm of Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Industries, which attracted more than $10bn from the likes of Facebook and Google.

Foreign companies may be investing but the overriding trend is still through joint ventures or by taking minority stakes in companies owned by powerful Indian entrepreneurs. James Murdoch recently reunited with Uday Shankar on a media venture. All too often, the sums involved are not large and appear to be more defensive plays than a serious attempt to commit to the Indian market.

There are longstanding concerns that Mr Modi’s government, far from being the business-friendly administration that executives had hoped for when his Bharatiya Janata party came into power has, at best, an ambivalent attitude towards foreign investment. It has proven itself to be, in essence, an economic nationalist government. Regulation has remained unpredictable and frequent policy changes, including the recent increase in import tariffs, have fostered uncertainty

The precariousness for international investors has been exacerbated by New Delhi’s ambivalent attitude to the rule of law, in particular in reference to two corporate tax disputes, with Vodafone and Cairn Energy, which had gone to international arbitration. They stem from a decision by the previous Indian government in 2012 to change the tax code retrospectively, a move that gave it the power to claim taxes for deals struck years earlier if the underlying assets were in India. The government lost its case against Vodafone in September and against Cairn in December.

The government has since challenged the Vodafone ruling. Business expects it to do the same in the Cairn case. It is time for the government to accept the rulings. It should also make clear that it will no longer use or follow up on retroactive tax claims. Both actions would send a powerful signal that India is committed to the fair treatment of investors. Mr Modi commands strong popular support and should ignore dissenting voices that believe the government would look weak to its domestic audience. 

There is a risk that the recent backlash that has greeted government proposals to modernise India’s agricultural sector might reduce the incentive to liberalise in general. This would be a shame. As western companies seek to diversify their operations from China, India has a unique opportunity to become an alternative destination for manufacturing investments. As China has shown, export-oriented manufacturing is a critical factor for economic growth. India has a valuable opportunity to signal that it is open for business.

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