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Wednesday, 6th January 2016

It is unlikely that the Japanese market will grow at a similar rate again and moderate growth is predicted.

The expected slowdown in growth worldwide suggests US and UK equities are unlikely to take off this year even though some analysts are predicting returns of between 7% and 10% for US equities.

UK equities will largely be affected by the Brexit referendum and a change in fortune for commodity firms, particularly the oil and mining majors.

The Eurostoxx index was up 14% on 30 November and this market appears to be the favourite of analysts for 2016. The European countries tipped to do best are Germany and Italy.

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Wednesday, 30th December 2015

Seán Kelly MEP is warning people to be wary of potential fraudsters trying to scam money online or over the phone by obtaining banking details, passwords and other personal information.

The Fine Gael MEP, who is a leading negotiator on EU Data Protection policy, says criminals are becoming more sophisticated and so are their phishing schemes: "Phishing emails, or emails sent by criminals seeking sensitive financial information like account details, used to be obviously fraudulent with poor spelling and inaccurate information or logos. But now, criminals are much more sophisticated and so are their scams.

"Just last month, a phishing email was sent to many Irish email addresses by fraudsters pretending to represent Electric Ireland stating that they were due a refund - asking for bank account information and a copy of their passport. It was very professional looking and even linked

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Wednesday, 30th December 2015

John Smiles

Qualified Financial Advisor

Does buying locally really help the economy?

Christmas and New Year sales are the peak time for retail spending. Many towns run campaigns to encourage residents to spend their money locally with slogans such as "Keep you town in business, by keeping your business in town". Apart from the feel good factor, does it really work?

There are two economic concepts that might be helpful.

"Marginal propensity to Consume" [MPC] describes how likely you are to spend more, if you get extra money. It is expressed as a percentage of a benchmark 100 units of extra money: if you receive an extra € 100 and spend € 90, your MPC is 0.9 or 90%.

A very well-off person is likely to have a much higher spending baseline than somebody who is not as rich. The well-off consumer is already buying everything

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Wednesday, 30th December 2015

Fine Gael Waterford Minister Paudie Coffey has said that new tax equalisation measures will benefit self- employed people in Waterford, helping to create even more jobs.

"There are 323,000 self-employed people in this country, 39,000 of them in the South East region. The new € 550 Earned Income Tax Credit will benefit many of these people when it becomes available in January. It will be available to taxpayers earning self-employed trading or professional income, and to business owner/managers who are not eligible for a PAYE credit on their salary.

"Fine Gael has a plan to continue supporting SMEs to grow and create jobs. We know that small and family businesses are the lifeblood of our economy and have played a crucial role in the recovery that is now well underway.

"The introduction of this self-employed tax credit marks a welcome start along the

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Wednesday, 16th December 2015

John Smiles

Qualified Financial Advisor

Will the Irish economic recovery continue?

The Irish economy grew by 1.4% in the 3rd quarter of 2015 and annual growth is now running at 7%. Ireland is the fastest growing economy in the world this year. Looking at the Irish economy, it is clear that the recovery is more broad based than just the GDP numbers above. Tax receipts have increased significantly and are well ahead of analysts’ expectations. The unemployment rate has fallen from 15.1% in 2012 to 8.9% this year.

As usual it is the export sector of the economy that leads the way and this trend continues multi-nationals’ exports growing strongly. Consumer spending is also helping to lift the economy with the increased numbers at work driving up domestic demand. The construction sector which suffered most during the economic downturn is now showing encouraging signs

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Wednesday, 16th December 2015

from your local property and finance experts Irish Brokers Association give Top Tips to Protect Homes from

Floods & Freeze this winter

In the wake of havoc Storm Desmond played across the country and as households and businesses nationwide brace themselves for more stormy conditions on the horizon, experts at the Irish Brokers Association are calling on homeowners to take appropriate action to ensure they do all they can to protect their home – to stave off any situation whereby they may need to claim on their insurance and/or to lessen the impact where those situations arise. The insurance experts say may homes have already been by severe storm and flood damage.

Brian McNelis, Director of General Services the Irish Brokers Association explained, "We had several very harsh winters in a row, but last year on the whole was not so bad –

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Wednesday, 9th December 2015

John Smiles

Qualified Financial Advisor

What are Financial Derivatives?

Derivatives are securities linked to other securities, such as stocks or bonds. Their value is based on the primary security they are linked to and they are therefore not worth anything in and of themselves.

Most investment and financial engineering strategies revolve around the following:

- Options - contracts between two parties to buy or sell a security at a given price.

- Futures work on the same premise as options, although the underlying security is different.

- Swaps give investors the opportunity to exchange the benefits of their securities with each other.

The advantages of Derivatives are:

- They are a Non-Binding Contract so when investors purchase a derivative on the open market, they are purchasing the right to exercise it. However, they have no obligation to actually exercise their option. However, some derivative classes (such as certain types

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Wednesday, 9th December 2015

Minister Nash launches HSA-sponsored children's book to raise awareness in high risk construction sector

39 workers killed in construction work over past five years – fatality rate is rising since 2013. Construction is a growing sector with 120,000 plus employed.

Minister for Business and Employment, Ged Nash TD said on Tuesday 1st December, launched a Health and Safety Authority sponsored children's book 'Grandad Built My House'. The book is published by Kids' Own Publishing Partnership and is the culmination of a project amongst primary school children which is aimed at raising awareness of workplace safety in construction, amongst families employed in construction. The project is part of a wider Authority campaign of raising health and safety awareness in the construction sector.

The book, entitled 'Grandad Built My House', is the work of 89 primary school children from all over Ireland, out of 6,650

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Wednesday, 9th December 2015

The Government has announced that the NAMA will build 20,000 new homes over the coming years - 2,000 of them next year alone. Focus Ireland said today that it is wrong for the Government to be taking action to build private homes while it is failing to deliver the social homes required to end the worst homeless crisis in our history as a State.

The charity has launched a public campaign which aims to mobilise voters and get them to contact Minister for Finance Michael Noonan (And their local TDs) calling for action on this issue.

NAMA has revealed further details of its plans to build commercial and residential developments in the Dublin docklands. The residential project will require €5.6 billion of funding and will deliver 20,000 homes and 4 million square feet of commercial space. NAMA will look for joint venture

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Wednesday, 9th December 2015

Barony of Gaultier Historical Society launch their annual Calendar

The Barony of Gaultier Historical Society's 2016 calendar is now available in local shops. This year once again we have endeavoured to use photos from different parts of the Barony. We have photos from Brownstown, Halfway House, Ballinamona, Knockboy, Dunmore Harbour, Cloughernagh, Passage East and many other places.

We have a Waterford City Mayor, A Daughter-in -Law of a Home Rule Leader, Schoolboys, Tug of War Team, Soccer Team, Hurling Team, Fishermen and Farmers.

We have a Fishing Boat, An Old Lorry, "Pongo” the dog and A Pack of Beagles.

We also have a report on the Society's activities plus photos of events that the Society held during 2015.

The following outlets have copies of the calendar for sale:

Centra, Dunmore East ,

Mulligans Pharmacy, Dunmore East, Spar, Dunmore East, Dowers, Ballymacaw, Glanbia, Gaultier, Cloughernagh Bar, Bobby Butchers,

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Letters to the Editor

  • OUR VIEW

    Olympic-sized QuestionsWith the head of the Olympic Committee of Ireland in jail on allegations of being involved in a ticket touting scam, it seems that the Irish participation in this year's Rio Olympics has just gone from bad to worse. The scenes from his arrest were almost like something out of a Keystone Cops farce with the police having to go to two separate rooms in the hotel where Pat Hickey was staying. At the first room the police went to Mr. Hickey's wife informed police that her husband had …

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