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星期六, 2月 06, 2016

White House Statement on the Employment Situation in January

Statement on the Employment Situation in January 
WASHINGTON, DC – Jason Furman, Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, issued the following statement today on the employment situation in February. You can view the statement HERE.
Posted by Jason Furman on February 5, 2016 at 9:30AM EST
Summary: In January, the unemployment rate fell below 5 percent for the first time in eight years as the longest streak of private-sector job growth on record continued.
The unemployment rate reached 4.9 percent in January for the first time since February 2008, and the labor force participation rate has been essentially stable over the past year. Just two years ago, many economists expected the unemployment rate to remain above this level until 2020. Our businesses added 158,000 jobs in January, somewhat below the pace of recent months but well above the pace necessary to maintain a low and stable unemployment rate. Most importantly, wages rose 2.5 percent over the past year, and the 2.9-percent annualized pace over the past six months is the strongest since the recovery began. Nevertheless, more work remains to drive further job creation and faster wage growth, including passing the President’s new proposal for ambitious investments in 21st-century clean infrastructureopening our exports to new markets with the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and raising the minimum wage.

FIVE KEY POINTS ON THE LABOR MARKET IN JANUARY 2016
  1. Businesses have now added 14.0 million jobs over 71 straight months, extending the longest streak on recordToday we learned that private employment rose by 158,000 jobs in January, while private employment growth in November and December was revised up by a combined 15,000 jobs. Total nonfarm employment rose by 151,000 jobs in January, somewhat below the pace of recent months but well above the pace necessary to maintain a low and stable unemployment rate, which CEA estimates at about 80,000 jobs per month. The unemployment rate reached 4.9 percent for the first time since February 2008, as the labor force participation rate edged up to 62.7 percent, the same level as in March 2015. Over the last six months, average hourly earnings for all private employees rose 2.9 percent at an annual rate, the fastest pace since the recovery began. Over 2014 and 2015, the private sector added 5.5 million jobs, the most in any two-year period since 1999.  
 
  1. Initial estimates of job growth and GDP growth have been especially disconnected in the current recovery. In general, stronger quarterly job growth is associated with stronger quarterly GDP growth. This pattern was consistent in expansions from the 1960s until 2001. But in the current recovery, initial estimates of quarterly job growth and quarterly GDP growth have been much less closely correlated. This disconnect was especially clear in the fourth quarter of 2015, when GDP growth was 0.7 percent and employment growth was initially estimated to be 4 percent. While such discrepancies are in part due to fluctuating productivity growth, measurement error is likely playing a role. This illustrates the importance of focusing on a wide range of indicators – especially labor market data, which tend to be less noisy – in assessing the health of the economy.  
 
  1. While the unemployment rate for African Americans has fallen below its pre-recession average, more work remains to close long-standing disparities in the labor market. The unemployment rate for African Americans peaked at 16.8 percent in March 2010, after experiencing a larger percentage-point increase from its pre-recession average to its peak than the overall unemployment rate did. Since then, the African-American unemployment rate has seen a larger percentage-point decline in the recovery, falling almost twice as fast as the overall unemployment rate over the last year. The recovery in the unemployment rate has been particularly strong for African-American teens, though adult men and women have also seen their unemployment rates fall below their pre-recession averages. Nevertheless, the current African-American unemployment rate—8.8 percent as of January 2016—remains too high. That’s why the Administration has proposed a number of initiatives—including the My Brother’s Keeperinitiative for young men of color and new investments in skills training and apprenticeships—to ensure that the benefits of our strong labor market are shared among all Americans. 
 
  1. While rates of hires and separations have risen in the recovery, a long-run trend of declining labor market “churn” remains. The most recent data from the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) show that the private-sector hires rate—the total number of hires by businesses as a share of total employment—has continued to trend upward since the end of the recession. The private-sector separations rate has shown a similar pattern, as workers are more likely to choose to leave their jobs when the economy is stronger. Despite these recent increases, a number of measures of labor market fluidity, including hires and separations rates, have been on a downward trend for decades. Hires and separations rates both stood at 4.5 percent in late 2000 and each averaged 4.2 percent in the previous expansion period, but stood at 4.0 and 3.8 percent, respectively, as of this past November. This decline in fluidity could reflect greater job stability and better matches between workers and firms. At the same time, reduced churn could limit workers’ ability to realize the wage gains that often come from switching jobs. More research is needed to understand both the causes and consequences of reduced labor market fluidity over the long run. Nevertheless, the increases in both hires and separations rates in the current recovery are yet more indicators of the increasing cyclical strength of the U.S. economy. 
 
  1. The distribution of job growth across industries in January diverged sharply from recent trends, with strong growth in sectors including manufacturing but other sectors reporting below-trend changes in employment. Both manufacturing (+29,000) and retail trade (+58,000) saw their strongest growth in the past twelve months, while financial activities (+18,000) and wholesale trade (+9,000) also saw notable above-trend growth. Mining and logging (-7,000) saw a moderation in its decline, though low commodity prices continue to weigh on the sector. At the same time, utilities (-300), transportation and warehousing (-20,000), and private educational services (-39,000) all saw weaker-than-average job growth. Across the 17 industries shown below, the correlation between the most recent one-month percent change and the average percent change over the last twelve months was 0.49, below the average correlation over the previous three years. 
As the Administration stresses every month, the monthly employment and unemployment figures can be volatile, and payroll employment estimates can be subject to substantial revision. Therefore, it is important not to read too much into any one monthly report, and it is informative to consider each report in the context of other data as they become available.

Senator Markey to Canvass for Hillary Clinton in New Hampshire This Weekend

Senator Markey to Canvass for Hillary Clinton in New Hampshire This Weekend
BOSTON – Senator Ed Markey will lead a group of energetic volunteers to Dover, New Hampshire this Saturday to canvass for Hillary Clinton. With the New Hampshire primary election this Tuesday, February 9, volunteers will knock on doors and talk to voters about why Hillary is the best choice for President.
“I can’t wait to hit the phones and streets of New Hampshire this weekend to tell voters why Hillary Clinton is my choice to be the next President of the United States of America,” said Senator Markey. “Granite State voters are some of the most informed and active in the country, and Hillary has real plans to address the issues like college affordability, income inequality, and the opioid crisis that matter so much to them.”
This is Senator Markey’s second trip to Dover, which is the ancestral home of the Markey family.
“With so much at stake for families in 2016, Hillary for New Hampshire is committed to delivering a grassroots community organizing campaign that connects supporters and builds relationships through one-on-one discussions and online engagement,” said Harrell Kirstein, the Clinton campaign’s communications director for New Hampshire. “We are thrilled to see momentum building out of Massachusetts for Hillary Clinton, and are excited about the great work all of her Bay State supporters are doing for her in the Granite State. From day one, Hillary Clinton made this campaign about the people she will make a difference for as President, and empowering them to take part in the elections is one of our top priorities.”
In December, the Clinton campaign announced the formation of our Massachusetts Leadership Council, a group of more than 190 elected officials, community, student, coalition, and grassroots leaders who will help build a grassroots-driven volunteer team that will help Hillary to win the New Hampshire primary, as well as the Massachusetts primary on March 1.

Attorney General Healey to Canvass for Hillary Clinton in New Hampshire This Weekend

Attorney General Healey to Canvass for Hillary Clinton in New Hampshire This Weekend

BOSTON – Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey will lead a group of energetic volunteers to this Saturday in Exeter and Londonderry, New Hampshire this Saturday to canvass for Hillary Clinton. With the New Hampshire primary election this Tuesday, February 9, volunteers will knock on doors and talk to voters about why Hillary is the best choice for President
Attorney General Healey, who grew up in Hampton Falls, has already led six trips to New Hampshire to volunteer in Exeter, Manchester, and Portsmouth. In addition, members of Team Healey have been working on reaching New Hampshire voters through weekly phonebank sessions. On Tuesday, Healey hosted a rally with Hillary Clinton at her hometown high school. 
“With so much at stake for families in 2016, Hillary for New Hampshire is committed to delivering a grassroots community organizing campaign that connects supporters and builds relationships through one-on-one discussions and online engagement,” said Harrell Kirstein, the Clinton campaign’s communications director for New Hampshire. “We are thrilled to see momentum building out of Massachusetts for Hillary Clinton, and are excited about the great work all of her Bay State supporters are doing for her in the Granite State. From day one, Hillary Clinton made this campaign about the people she will make a difference for as President, and empowering them to take part in the elections is one of our top priorities.”
In December, the Clinton campaign announced the formation of our Massachusetts Leadership Council, a group of more than 190 elected officials, community, student, coalition, and grassroots leaders who will help build a grassroots-driven volunteer team that will help Hillary to win the New Hampshire primary, as well as the Massachusetts primary on March 1.

$470 MILLION STATE-FEDERAL SETTLEMENT REACHED WITH HSBC OVER UNLAWFUL FORECLOSURES, LOAN SERVICING

$470 MILLION STATE-FEDERAL SETTLEMENT REACHED WITH HSBC OVER UNLAWFUL FORECLOSURES, LOAN SERVICINGAG’s Office Reaches Separate Agreement with HSBC that Provides Direct Relief to Massachusetts Borrowers
BOSTON – A $470 million joint state-federal settlement has been reached with nationalmortgage lender and servicer HSBC to address mortgage origination, servicing, and foreclosure abuses, Attorney General Maura Healey today announced.
AG Healey joins 49 other states, the District of Columbia, U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) in the consent judgment, filed today in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.
The settlement will provide direct payments to hundreds of borrowers in Massachusetts, along with rigorous mortgage servicing standards and compliance oversight from an independent monitor.
            The AG’s Office has also reached a separate assurance of discontinuance, filed today in Suffolk Superior Court, which addresses allegations that HBSC offered teaser interest rate reductions to Massachusetts borrowers that ultimately increased the likelihood that they would lose their homes, violating HSBC's obligation to make a good faith effort to avoid foreclosure. Under the terms of the agreement, HSBC will pay an additional $750,000 and provide relief to Massachusetts homeowners for violation of the state’s foreclosure law.
“Today’s settlements hold HSBC accountable for its unlawful practices and provide immediate relief to struggling Massachusetts borrowers who lost their homes or face foreclosure,” AG Healey said. “With strict servicing standards in place, HSBC will be required to ensure fairness and take critical steps to prevent past foreclosure abuses.”
State-Federal Settlement
The mortgage servicing terms under today’s multistate settlement largely mirror the2012 historic national settlement involving the nation’s five largest mortgage servicers, which addressed unlawful foreclosures and unfair loan servicing practices.
Of the $470 million, HSBC will pay $40.5 million to the federal agencies, and close to $60 million will be paid to the states to be distributed to HSBC borrowers who lost their homes to foreclosure from Jan. 1, 2008 through Dec. 31, 2012. The settlement also includes $370 million in consumer relief by HSBC nationwide, including items such as principal reduction and refinancing for underwater mortgages.
It is estimated that nearly 1,000 Massachusetts borrowers who lost their homes to foreclosure will be eligible for monetary payments. Borrowers will be contacted about how to apply for payments.
The settlement also includes new consumer protections that require HSBC to substantially change how it services mortgage loans and handles foreclosures. The terms will prevent past abuses, such as robo-signing, improper documentation and lost paperwork. An independent monitor will ensure mortgage servicer compliance.
Massachusetts Settlement
In a separate assurance of discontinuance reached with HSBC, the AG’s Office alleges that HSBC violated a Massachusetts foreclosure law, Section 35B of G.L. Chapter 244. This landmark law, passed in 2012, requires creditors to make a good faith effort to avoid foreclosure for mortgage loans that were made with abusive subprime terms.  
According to the AG’s Office, HSBC violated this law by offering borrowers facing foreclosure temporary modifications that did not consider the borrower’s ability to repay the mortgage debt over the life of the loan. Borrowers often defaulted after the temporary modification expired.
The settlement also resolves claims that HSBC unlawfully foreclosed on properties when they did not own the mortgages. The AG’s Office alleges that HSBC’s unlawful conduct resulted in numerous void foreclosures affecting the marketability and insurability of the titles.
Under the terms of the settlement, HSBC will pay a total of $750,000 to the Commonwealth, provide permanent loan modification relief as required by state law to eligible borrowers, and facilitate cures of title issues resulting from unlawful foreclosures.
Consumers who need assistance or have questions can call the AG’s HomeCorps Division at (617) 573-5333 or visit www.mass.gov/ago/homecorps
Today’s settlement with the AG’s Office was handled by ​Assistant Attorneys General Lisa Dyen and Justin Lowe of the Consumer Protection Division, and Claire Masinton of the Insurance and Financial Services Division, with assistance from Assistant Attorney General Michael Lecaroz and Legal Analyst Maja Kazmierczak of AG Healey’s HomeCorps Division.

南台強震 僑委會確認僑生安全無虞

南台強震 僑委會確認僑生安全無虞


6日小年夜清晨357分,南台灣地區發生規模6.4的強震,其中又以台南、高雄市受創嚴重,多間建物倒塌、多人受傷。
為確保當地僑生安全無虞,僑務委員會在地震發生後第一時間內,聯繫高雄地區承辦僑生建教專班中山工商及台南地區成功大學、台南大學、台南應用科大、崑山科大、康寧大學及南台科大等學校,僅部分學校有圍牆傾斜或磁磚掉落等情形。
僑委會表示,適逢寒假期間,多數僑生均回僑居國,留校僑生人身均安。
另目前嘉南以南地區由南台科大做為聯絡中心,僑委會已跟該校老師聯繫,確認目前嘉南以南地區相關學校之僑生平安。僑委會將持續追蹤各校僑生安危等後續相關狀況。

星期五, 2月 05, 2016

波士頓美術博物館慶猴年 2/6 入場免費 展宋代彩雕觀音

Free admission for all!

Visit the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, to ring in the Year of the Monkey! Explore Chinese, Korean, and Vietnamese traditions while enjoying activities, demonstrations, and performances throughout the day.
  • Go on a Gallery Tour highlighting works of art in the Art of Asia galleries
  • Drop in on a hands-on Family Art-Making Activity to create your own masterpieces to take home.
  • Participate in interactive demonstrations of meditation, Gong-Fu (Chinese martial arts) and Saebae (Korean ceremony).
  • Enjoy festive musical and dance performances (including a Lion Dance!) by local artists and much more!
Visit Lunar New Year Celebration for full schedule.
贊助機構包括韓國文化協會,波士頓華埠社區中心(BCNC),華夏文化協會

中國觀音雕塑在波士頓美術館宋代藝術展廳揭開帷幕 
──波士頓美術館將於 2 6 日舉辦宋代藝術精品展以賀中國新年
彩色木雕觀音菩薩坐像 金(12 世紀早 期)
波士頓美術館將於 2016 2 6 日(星期六)舉辦以 “宋-中國藝術的黃金時代”為主題的中國宋代藝術精品展。 宋代是中國文化藝術的黃金時代。佛教深入民間,與中國傳統 思想和技藝相融合,造就了藝術、詩詞、哲學和工藝的空前創 新與發展。本次展覽將展出近四十件館藏的宋代陶瓷、雕塑、 繪畫和書法作品,旨在呈現宋代的藝術盛景。最令人矚目的是 一尊十二世紀早期的彩色木雕觀音菩薩造像。這尊造像歷經十 八個月的精心修復,將重新回到大眾視野。另一件鎮館級作品 ──南宋文人畫家陳容所作《九龍圖卷》也將隆重登場。漫步 在此次全新打造的 Paul and Helen Bernat 展廳中,觀眾將充 分領略到宋人的審美趣味,更會驚嘆於那些陶瓷、雕塑和書畫 背後宋人的藝術造詣。
   “波士頓美術館歡迎觀眾前來欣賞宋代的藝術珍品,感
受這尊木雕觀音的令人動容之美。它在過去近百年感動了無數
觀眾,歷經修復後將一如既往感染更多人。”波士頓美術館中國藝術策展人 Nancy Berliner 白 鈴安女士這樣談到。這尊坐姿觀音菩薩於 1920 年入藏波士頓美術館,1950 年修復人員曾剝去最 外六層裝飾漆以最大程度保護木像觀音的原色。在最新的修復技術(包括紫外成像、X 射線照相 和放射性碳測定年代技術)的幫助下,關於這尊觀音的年代等歷史信息逐漸浮出水面。除此,宋 代佛教的興盛在其他展品也多有體現,如南宋佛像畫家周季常所繪的兩幅《五百羅漢圖軸》和一 件漆器羅漢頭像。
   本次展覽開幕當天正值第三屆波士頓美術館中國新年慶祝日。美術館將於星期六上午十點
至下午四點四十五分免費開放以慶賀春節的到來。觀眾可免費體驗中國、韓國和越南春節的傳統
慶祝活動,在歡快的節日氣氛中與家人一同參加手工藝術創作,探索宋代藝術展廳的藝術珍寶,
欣賞新英格蘭地區唯一亞裔女子醒獅團──巾幗醒獅團的中國舞獅表演、韓國春節的歲拜禮和波
士頓越助中心的新年演講。
宋代將寫實與寫意交互融合,
成就了宋畫獨一無二的美感與境界。
文人畫的興起將書畫同源理論推向
高峰,開創了繪畫的新風格。本次
展出的陳容最有名的作品《九龍圖
卷》用筆豪縱雄健,極盡詩意,或
“飛龍出峽駕春江”,或“玉龍皎
皎摩蒼崖”,如神來之筆。受金石
學興起的刺激,宋代的藝術掀起仿
古的浪潮,以商周青銅器和玉器為
藍本創作了大量仿古器物,如此次 展出的一件宋瓷花瓶在器型上仿周玉禮器,其他亦有仿漢青銅酒器。宋代陶瓷更是極盡高雅之美, 單色釉瓷收到宋代鑑賞家極力追捧,汝窯更是獨領風騷,視為青瓷典範,現今存世不足一百件。 本次展覽的一大亮點便是波士頓美術館收藏的一件北宋汝窯青瓷盤。同時,觀眾還能欣賞到宋代 青釉瓷、定窯白釉瓷、南方瓷窯燒製的黑釉瓷等稀世珍品。
陳容 九龍圖卷
南宋(1244)
汝窯青瓷盤
北宋(11 世紀晚期至 12 世紀早期)
   除此次揭幕的宋代藝術展廳外,波士頓美術館另設有
六間中國藝術展廳展出中國的雕塑、陶瓷、青銅藝術、古玩
雜件和佛教藝術。其中,屏居佳器展廳借十六至十七世紀中
國傢俱,再現了晚明庭院的風雅韻味。
作為世界上有著最出色收藏的美術館之一,波士頓美 術館的亞洲收藏涵蓋了世界一半人口橫貫古今的藝術成就。 藏品包括日本、中國和印度繪畫及雕塑,日本版畫和金屬工 藝品,中國、日本、韓國和越南瓷器,伊斯蘭藝術與亞洲當 代藝術。中國收藏主要包括雕塑、繪畫、瓷器和紡織藝術品。 其中,館藏佛像與早期卷軸畫更是聞名世界。 

劍橋中文學校 2/6 辦春晚

剑桥中文学校2/6辦春节联欢晚会

各位剑桥中文学校的老师、家长和同学们请注意:
今年的春节联欢晚会将于26日周六(小年夜)4:00pm-10:30pm在学校大厅举行。大家可以尽情观赏各种精彩的表演和联欢节目,更有传统的包饺子和potluck,让大家一起度过一个温暖欢乐之夜!

这是剑桥中文学校每年的传统节目,每当新年来临之际,CCCC的师生家长们都会欢聚一堂,畅谈一年来学校的变化、学生的进步、欣赏孩子、家长和老师们精彩的才艺表演、一起动手包饺子、分享各自带来的美味、还可以参加有奖竞猜、卡拉OK和舞会等各种活动。联欢会项目精彩、其乐融融、气氛温馨、场面热烈,深受大家的喜爱。

为举办每年的春节联欢活动,中文学校和家长会都要进行很多的筹备,让所有前来的老师家长和学生都能开开心心地度过一个尽兴的夜晚。作为中文学校的福利,我们只收取成本费用:成人每人$510岁以下儿童和60岁以上老人每人$3。作为大家共同参与的活动,中文学校希望每人给potluck带一份(足够自己吃)以上的菜肴,品尝各自的手艺、分享各自的心得;没有时间准备的朋友,每人请另交$5。联欢会门票将于110日开始在图书馆发售。26日现场购票的价格一律为成人票$10,优惠票$8
当天主要活动时间顺序:
4:00pm–6:00pm
,文艺表演;
6:00pm–7:00pm
potluck,分享各自带来的拿手饭菜;
6:30pm–7:00pm
,包饺子;
7:00pm–10:30pm
,吃饺子,卡拉OK和舞会等等。
票价:
--potluck的成人: $5,儿童(10岁以下)老人(60岁以上): $3 
--没带potluck的:每人另加 $5 

请大家现在在日历上预订一下日期,到时务必踊跃参加。
有兴趣参加春季晚会表演的老师、家长、班级和个人,请把你们的节目报给:冯丽丽老师lilifeng2b@gmail.com,中文学校家长会renjianhuang@gmail.com .因为文艺表演之后还将进行包饺子和potluck活动,表演时间将控制在两小时以内。目前已有多个节目报名,请准备表演的团队和个人抓紧时间报名!
谢谢大家!
CCCC
家长会


(消息来源剑桥中文学校家长会, 微信平台编缉董国贞)