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Pakistan Central Bank Holds Interest Rate at 12.00%

February 11, 2012 by CentralBankNews   Comments (0)

The State Bank of Pakistan maintained its discount rate unchanged at 12.00%.  The Bank said: "In conclusion, despite moderate aggregate demand, pressure on rupee liquidity is likely to continue due to uncertain foreign inflows and substantial government borrowings to finance the fiscal deficit. Moreover, inflationary pressures have not eased significantly. It must be emphasized that sustainable economic recovery over the medium term would call for a sizable increase in both the domestic and foreign private investment in the economy. For this to happen, the business confidence needs to be revived by reducing uncertainties due to energy shortages."


Pakistan's central bank last cut the discount rate by 150 basis points in October last year, and 50 basis points to 13.50% at its July meeting.  Pakistan reported annual inflation of 10.1% in January, compared to 10.46% in September, 11.56% in August, 13.77% in July, 13.92% in June, 13.23% in May, and 13.04% in April.  The Pakistani government previously announced an inflation target of 12 percent for fiscal 2012, with a desired path for inflation of 9.5% and 8% in the subsequent 2 years.  

The Pakistani Rupee (PKR) has depreciated about 7% against the US dollar over the past year, and the USDPKR exchange rate last traded around 90.8.  The Karachi Stock Exchange KSE100 Index is up 8.7% over the past year, last trading around 12,232.

www.CentralBankNews.info

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Bulgarian National Bank Sets Base Rate at 0.18%

February 11, 2012 by CentralBankNews   Comments (0)

The Bulgarian National Bank announced on the 31st of January that its base interest rate would be lowered 4 basis points to 0.18% as of 1 February 2012, compared to the previous rate of 0.22%, set in December for January.  The February rate of 0.18% compares to 0.19% in February 2011, 0.24% in February 2010, and 3.92% in February 2009.  Bulgaria reported inflation of 2.8% in December last year.  The Bulgarian economy was unchanged in 3Q11 (0.3% in 2Q11), placing annual GDP growth at 1.3% (2.0% in 2Q11).  Bulgaria's currency, the Bulgarian Lev (BGN), is pegged at 1.95 against the Euro; the USDBGN exchange rate last traded around 1.49.

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Zemanta CTO on the Smart Personal Assistant

February 10, 2012 by Jenz514   Comments (0)

Ryan Kim recently spoke to Zemanta CTO Andraz Tori regarding the company’s role in the growing smart personal assistant field. Kim writes, “When I first heard of Zemanta, I thought of it as a great tool for bloggers, helping recommend links, content and images. And it does that quite well, helping some 80,000 active users. But after talking with Zemanta’s CTO and co-founder Andraz Tori, our conversation turned to the bigger picture of what New York-based Zemanta is doing. And it’s really in a similar vein as Apple’s Siri, IBM’s Watson and other services. We’re now entering the age of the smart personal assistant, as computers increasingly listen and understand what we’re saying and fulfill our requests and questions in real time.” continued…

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Semantic Web Jobs: Intermountain Healthcare

February 10, 2012 by Jenz514   Comments (0)

Intermountain Healthcare is looking for a Clinical Modeling Engineer in Salt Lake City, UT. According to the post, “The Clinical Modeling Engineer will fill a critical role in the joint Intermountain Healthcare/GE Healthcare effort to enhance the GE Centricity Enterprise product and deploy it throughout Intermountain Healthcare. The incumbent will be a member of the modeling team, which collaborates with engineering teams, systems engineers, and clinical analysts and develops models and terminology for the healthcare data that needs to be stored in the system. The Clinical Modeling Engineer will serve as an expert in the clinical models and terminology used in clinical information systems.” continued…

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Monetary Policy Week in Review - 11 February 2012

February 10, 2012 by CentralBankNews   Comments (0)

The past week in monetary policy saw just one bank lift rates; Jordan +50bps to 5.00%, and two banks cut rates; Belarus -200bps to 43.00%, and Indonesia -25bps to 5.75%.  Meanwhile the banks that held rates unchanged were: Australia 4.25%, UK 0.50%, EU 1.00%, South Korea 3.25%, Serbia 9.50%, Iceland 4.75%, Poland 4.50%, and Peru 4.25%.  Also making news was the Bank of England adding another GBP 50 billion to its quantitative easing program.

Some of the key quotes and comments from the central bankers that announced monetary policy decisions are listed below:
  • Reserve Bank of Australia (held rate at 4.25%): "At today's meeting, the Board noted that interest rates for borrowers have declined to be close to their medium-term average, as a result of the actions at the Board's previous two meetings. With growth expected to be close to trend and inflation close to target, the Board judged that the setting of monetary policy was appropriate for the moment. Should demand conditions weaken materially, the inflation outlook would provide scope for easier monetary policy."
  • Bank Indonesia (dropped rate 25bps to 5.75%): "This decision was made as a further step to boost Indonesia's economic growth amidst decreasing performance of the global economy, with the priority remains on achieving inflation target and exchange rate stability."
  • Bank of England (held rate at 0.50%, added 50B to APP): "In the light of its most recent economic projections, the Committee judged that the weak near-term growth outlook and associated downward pressure from economic slack meant that, without further monetary stimulus, it was more likely than not that inflation would undershoot the 2% target in the medium term."
  • European Central Bank (held rate at 1.00%): "Inflation is likely to stay above 2% for several months to come, before declining to below 2%. Available survey indicators confirm some tentative signs of a stabilisation in economic activity at a low level around the turn of the year, but the economic outlook remains subject to high uncertainty and downside risks.... A very thorough analysis of all incoming data and developments over the period ahead is warranted."
  • Bank of Korea (held rate at 3.25%): "In Korea, economic growth has slowed, with domestic demand subdued overall and exports also decreasing. On the employment front, however, the uptrend in the number of persons employed is being sustained, led by the private sector. The Committee anticipates that the domestic economic growth rate will gradually return to its long-term trend level going forward, although viewing downside risks as likely to remain high for some time due mostly to the impact of external risk factors."
  • Central Reserve Bank of Peru (held rate at 4.25%): "Some current and advanced indicators of activity show a moderation of growth in the economy. For example, even though sales of electricity continued to grow in January, they showed a lower pace of growth than in December. Moreover, indicators of global economic activity have shown a better-than-expected evolution, but uncertainty in international financial markets persists and growth in 2012 is expected to be lower than in the previous year."
  • National Bank of Serbia (held rate at 9.50%): "The key risks to inflation projection stem from the international environment due to the still unresolved crisis in the euro area, as well as from fiscal policy at home. Keeping the budget deficit within the framework earlier agreed with the IMF would serve as an additional safeguard of macroeconomic stability and leave more scope for future relaxation of monetary policy."

Looking at the central bank calendar, the two main monetary policy meetings are the Bank of Japan and Sweden's central bank. Elsewhere the US Federal Reserve will release the minutes from its most recent FOMC meeting (Wednesday), and the European Central Bank will release its monthly bulletin (Thursday), and the Bank of England is scheduled to release its inflation report (Wednesday).
  • JPY - Japan (Bank of Japan) expected to hold at 0.10% on the 14th of Feb
  • SEK - Sweden (Riksbank) expected to hold at 1.75% on the 15th of Feb

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Semantic Case Study: EPIM ReportingHub

February 10, 2012 by Jenz514   Comments (0)

On Tuesday the E&P Information Management Association (EPIM) launched EPIM ReportingHub (ERH), an interesting semantic technology project in the field of oil and gas. According to the project website, ERH is “a very flexible knowledgebase for receiving, validating (using NPD’s Fact Pages and PCA RDL), storing, analysing, and transmitting reports. The operators shall send XML schemas for DDR, DPR and MPR to ERH and ERH sends DDR and MPR as XML schemas to the NPD/PSA and all three reports as PDF to EPIM’s License2Share (L2S). The partners may download all three reports and/or any data from one or more reports through flexible queries. Some parts of ERH will be in operation already in November 2011 and the rest as soon as the authorities and the industry are ready for it. ERH is owned and operated by EPIM.” continued…

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Twitris Social Media Analysis Tackles Occupy Wall Street, 2012 Elections

February 10, 2012 by Jenz514   Comments (0)

Semantic social web application Twitris, a project of Kno.e.sis at Wright State University, recently added to its social media analysis event lineup coverage of Occupy Wall Street, and Election 2012 is set to debut in the next couple of weeks.

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Semantic Web Jobs: GHG Corporation

February 10, 2012 by Jenz514   Comments (0)

GHG Corporation is looking for a Senior Software Developer in Houston, TX. The company is looking for someone with the following qualifications: “At least 7 years of solid experience in JAVA Programming and J2EE/JavaEE based Web application development. Experience in using frameworks and tools such as JSF, Hibernate, Spring, XML, EJB, JSP, JDBC, ANT, JUnit, and Log4J. Experience in developing Web Service components using one or more of the following technologies: SOAP, REST, XML-RPC, WSDL, XML/XSLT, JAXB, JAXP. Experience in developing applications with multi-tier architectures. Knowledge and Experience in Relational Database systems (Oracle, MySQL, or SQL Server) as well as proficiency in enterprise environments.” continued…

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Kasabi’s Presence at SemTechBiz Berlin

February 10, 2012 by Jenz514   Comments (0)

Richard Wallis continues his coverage from SemTechBiz Berlin with a recap of the first day of the conference. Wallis writes, “Something that struck me throughout the day was the number of references to the Kasabi Data Marketplace during the day.  Well yes, you might say, you are a Kasabi Partner and Kasabi Staff members Knud Möller and Benjamin Nowack gave presentations.  Of course you would be right.  However, I also noticed references to it in other presentations and in general conversations.” continued…

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