Government to fund Nottinghamshire road repairs

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“That would be in addition to the 34,000 pothole repairs already made each year and on top of the £2.8m we are spending this year on making those repairs.

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Get ready to buy into a correction, says FE Alpha Manager Wilson

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The manager of the Newton Managed Income fund says that while stock markets look stretched at the moment, any pull-back will be short-lived.
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Investors should be getting ready for a market correction, warns FE Alpha Manager Tim Wilson of the Newton Managed Income fund, who says this will be a great time to pick up cheap stocks. Developed world markets have rallied over the last 12 months, leading some experts to argue a correction is imminent. However, Wilson says any sharp fall in share prices is likely to be short-lived.Performance of indices over 1yr Source: FE Analytics The manager says investors should embrace any short-term tumble in the markets as a chance to pick up strong stocks at cheaper prices. “Last year was a strong one for global equity markets and we are mindful that it’s all too easy to expect such conditions to continue. We would guard against complacency and believe a pull-back is likely at some stage,” he said. “Should we see an equity market correction, we may well become more positive on equities, depending of course upon the extent of the pull-back.” Wilson’s views echo those of star manager Sebastian Lyon, who recently warned equities were at risk of entering a bubble as share prices soar ahead of earnings growth. Lyon is much more concerned about the potential impact of a correction, preferring to position his portfolio for capital protection instead of hunting for value buys. Contrarian manager Alastair Mundy is another high-profile manager warning of an imminent correction. Mundy says he is sitting on a pile of cash waiting for a sell-off so that he can snap up new holdings at cut prices. There are three key areas where Wilson is hunting for value buys.Emerging markets Wilson is making an early foray back into emerging markets. Many investors fled the sector after it fell in 2013 and emerging markets stocks have continued to underperform their developed market peers this year. However, Wilson says the prolonged underperformance is making the sector look attractive from a value perspective, which is why he’s sticking with it in spite of macro headwinds. “As far as the current investment backdrop is concerned, emerging markets are becoming an interesting value investment opportunity – as such, we are happy to maintain exposure to this area of the market,” he said. “It has been a strange year to date: while large parts of the emerging markets have performed strongly, pockets of the developing world have really struggled.”Europe Wilson also prefers companies in Europe, where he says the improving political and economic situation is making firms look much more attractive from an investment point of view. He adds that there are more value opportunities in Europe than the US, where the S&P has broken through historic highs. “There is a sense the West is becoming subdued, whether that’s down to concerns over China’s shadow banking sector or the sustainability of the US economic recovery,” he said. “In the US we wait to see whether the recent data weakness has been down to the unusually poor weather or deeper economic problems.” “Until this becomes clear, equity markets are likely to remain in a state of flux – such an environment is tough from an asset allocation standpoint.”UK Wilson says the UK has made strong strides towards a full economic recovery and he thinks there are a number of companies within our own shores that are currently cheap and can offer strong growth. “As for the UK, we believe economic progress has been made and see good relative value in the equity market,” he said. One question looming on the horizon is the outcome of the Scottish referendum in September, but Wilson doesn’t think investors should worry about it yet. “It is too early to speculative on ‘what ifs’,” he said. The £166.3m Newton Managed Income fund has a solid long-term track record, outperforming the IMA Mixed Investment 20%-60% Shares sector over three and five years. However, it has struggled over the last 12 months, picking up just 1.95 per cent while the sector gained 5.41 per cent, according to FE Analytics.Performance of fund vs sector and index over 1yr Source: FE Analytics The fund has been exceptionally consistent over its history, outperforming the sector in each calendar year apart from 2013. In the down markets of 2011, the fund protected capital better than its peers, returning 0.35 per cent while the sector lost 1.89 per cent. It is, however, trailing the sector year to date. Source: FE Analytics The fund is paying out 4.11 per cent, making it one of the highest yielders in the sector. The top-yielding Mixed Investment funds are currently the Scottish Widows HIFML Diversified Income fund, at 6.7 per cent, and the Schroder Managed Monthly High Income fund, at 5.6 per cent. The Newton fund is invested in a mix of fixed income and equity holdings. Wilson currently holds 18.5 per cent of the fund in cash and cash-related assets while equities currently make up the largest asset weighting, at nearly half of the portfolio. Its equity allocation is split between the UK, European, US, Asia Pacific and international stocks. Global fixed interest makes up 38.7 per cent of the fund. Newton Managed Income requires a minimum investment of £1,000 and has ongoing charges of 1.4 per cent.
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Live: Manchester Traffic and Travel – March 21, 2014

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Roads: Offerton - Queueing traffic on Dialstone Lane in both directions between A6 Buxton Road / A6 London Road and B6171 Nangreave Road. In the roadworks area. Due to temporary traffic lights in place for telecoms work.

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Osborne urged to axe North Sea tax rise from Budget

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The Chancellor had also pledged fiscal stability for the North Sea following his 2011 tax raid on the sector.

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I am not a dog: FIDO - a new standard for user authentication

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Providing a standard way for all these various methods of authentication being used has been a long time goal to provide higher levels of reassurance to online service providers. The latest attempt to do so is a prototype industry standard dubbed FIDO (fast ID online). Here is how it works; you request a service and, as a session is established, the service seeks to authenticate you using a local credential. If you have a (free) FIDO client installed it will ask for a means of authenticating you to the device you are using. This establishes a ‘key pair’ and unlocks a local private key to authenticate against a public key hosted on a server at the online service provider (i.e. it is all based on Public Key Infrastructure/PKI). Each time you use a new device you go through the process again. The key pair is a means of authentication to the service in question for the user on their current device. If FIDO is not installed, weaker means of authentication can be used, or it can be insisted that the FIDO client is installed. In other words, if the backers of FIDO succeed, over time service providers may see that it becomes the dominant standard for secure authentication, just like SSL has for sharing data over the internet.

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