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Eyes on Woods as Ryder Cup kicks off in Paris

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Tiger Woods.
Tiger Woods. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

The Ryder Cup is finally here! And if you were not excited before, Tiger Woods’ victory at East Lake during the Tour Championship and the behaviour of fans at the 72nd hole hopefully got your fired up.

Golf Digest, the sports’ leading publication, described the scenes on the 18th fairway on Sunday as being “on steroids”. The Golf Channel described the scenes as ‘incredible” and Teryn Gregson, who contributes for the PGA Tour, said the scenes were “nothing anyone had prepared for. We were all silent, none of us could form the words to express what we saw.”

Gregson went on: “Tiger parted the sea of fans, the fans were attracted to him like a magnet, wanting to get as close as they could to greatness.

“It was like a movie and you couldn’t help but realise you were in the middle of the greatest comeback story of all time. Win number 80.” SkySports described Woods’ victory as “spectacular for the game of golf.” Sksports added that the game of golf truly won. “You couldn’t have scripted it any better and you see how much it meant to him.” CBS Sports described the crowds swarming Woods as “absolutely insane!”

Rory McIlroy, who was playing with Woods during that historic final round, ran away ahead of the massive crowd but Woods held his ground, shielded by a handful of guards. Commenting after his victory, Woods said, “I just didn’t want to get run over.”

Golf News Net said Woods doesn’t just move the ‘needle’, he is the needle! The PGA Tour’s TV ratings for the Tour Championship were the highest ever with an audience of 7.8 million viewers, about eight per cent of these streaming the event on mobile or other devices. This numbers were 212 per cent higher than the 2017 numbers.

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Woods’ victory at the Tour Championship was his first in five years; his last victory was the 2013 WGC-Bridgestone Invitational. He has now won this event a record three times and is now ranked 13th on the Official World Golf Ranking, his best rank since September 2014.

Woods has now won an amazing 80 times on the PGA Tour, just two shy of Sam Snead’s all time record.

The various statistics as posted by Woods are simply breathe taking; he has now banked $76.45 million (Sh7.8 billion) in his career, won the Arnold Palmer Invitational and the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational a record eight times each, won 18 World Golf Championships — Dustin Johnson is next on that list with only five wins and Phil Mickelson and Geoff Ogilvy are joint third with three wins each.

Woods was victorious 46 times in his 20s and in 2000 he won the US Open with a 12 stroke margin.

The only record that probably matters to Woods is most wins in men’s professional majors; Woods has 14 victories, just four short of Jack Nicklaus.

Earlier in the year, bookmakers had Woods as a 100-1 long shot to win the 2018 Masters, Oddsmaker projects Woods to open at 3-1 to win a major in 2019.

Tomorrow Woods — playing for Team USA — will tee it up at the Ryder Cup in Paris for the morning fourballs and afternoon foursomes against Team Europe. The cup is named after Englishman Samuel Ryder who donated a gold trophy in 1927 for the biennial men’s golf contest held alternatively between courses in the US and Europe.

The atmosphere in Paris will be extra charged and the first tee is fitted with an amphitheatre grandstand with a capacity of over 7,000 fans.

This large number of charged and noisy fans will fray nerves on that first tee and the presence of players like Woods, Ian Poulter and Patrick Reed will only add to the atmosphere and drama. I am looking forward to watching the Ryder Cup this weekend, and like millions of fans around the world, my eyes will be on Woods and the fans following him around Le Golf National in Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, Paris, France.

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World Bank pushes G-20 to extend debt relief to 2021

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World Bank Group President David Malpass has urged the Group of 20 rich countries to extend the time frame of the Debt Service Suspension Initiative(DSSI) through the end of 2021, calling it one of the key factors in strengthening global recovery.

“I urge you to extend the time frame of the DSSI through the end of 2021 and commit to giving the initiative as broad a scope as possible,” said Malpass.

He made these remarks at last week’s virtual G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting.

The World Bank Chief said the COVID-19 pandemic has triggered the deepest global recession in decades and what may turn out to be one of the most unequal in terms of impact.

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People in developing countries are particularly hard hit by capital outflows, declines in remittances, the collapse of informal labor markets, and social safety nets that are much less robust than in the advanced economies.

For the poorest countries, poverty is rising rapidly, median incomes are falling and growth is deeply negative.

Debt burdens, already unsustainable for many countries, are rising to crisis levels.

“The situation in developing countries is increasingly desperate. Time is short. We need to take action quickly on debt suspension, debt reduction, debt resolution mechanisms and debt transparency,” said Malpass.

ALSO READ:Global Economy Plunges into Worst Recession – World Bank

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Kenya’s Central Bank Drafts New Laws to Regulate Non-Bank Digital Loans

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The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) will regulate interest rates charged on mobile loans by digital lending platforms if amendments on the Central bank of Kenya Act pass to law. The amendments will require digital lenders to seek approval from CBK before launching new products or changing interest rates on loans among other charges, just like commercial banks.

“The principal objective of this bill is to amend the Central bank of Kenya Act to regulate the conduct of providers of digital financial products and services,” reads a notice on the bill. “CBK will have an obligation of ensuring that there is fair and non-discriminatory marketplace access to credit.”

According to Business Daily, the legislation will also enable the Central Bank to monitor non-performing loans, capping the limit at not twice the amount of the defaulted loan while protecting consumers from predatory lending by digital loan platforms.

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Tighter Reins on Platforms for Mobile Loans

The legislation will boost efforts to protect customers, building upon a previous gazette notice that blocked lenders from blacklisting non-performing loans below Ksh 1000. The CBK also withdrew submissions of unregulated mobile loan platforms into Credit Reference Bureau. The withdrawal came after complaints of misuse over data in the Credit Information Sharing (CIS) System available for lenders.

Last year, Kenya had over 49 platforms providing mobile loans, taking advantage of regulation gaps to charge obscene rates as high as 150% a year. While most platforms allow borrowers to prepay within a month, creditors still pay the full amount plus interest.

Amendments in the CBK Act will help shield consumers from high-interest rates as well as offer transparency on terms of digital loans.

SEE ALSO: Central Bank Unveils Measures to Tame Unregulated Digital Lenders

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Scope Markets Kenya customers to have instant access to global financial markets

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NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 20 – Clients trading through the Scope Markets Kenya trading platform will get instant access to global financial markets and wider investment options. 

This follows the launch of a new Scope Markets app, available on both the Google PlayStore and IOS Apple Store.

The Scope Markets app offers clients over 500 investment opportunities across global financial markets.

The Scope Markets app has a brand new user interface that is very user friendly, following feedback from customers.

The application offers real-time quotes; newsfeeds; research facilities, and a chat feature which enables a customer to make direct contact with the Customer Service Team during trading days (Monday to Friday).

The platform also offers an enhanced client interface including catering for those who trade at night.

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The client will get instant access to several asset classes in the global financial markets including; Single Stocks CFDs (US, UK, EU) such as Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix and Google, BP, Carrefour;  Indices (Nasdaq, FTSE UK), Metals (Gold, Silver); Currencies (60+ Pairs), Commodities (Oil, Natural Gas).

The launch is part of Scope Markets Kenya strategy of enriching the customer experience while offering clients access to global trading opportunities.

Scope Markets Kenya CEO, Kevin Ng’ang’a observed, “the Sope Markets app is very easy to use especially when executing trades. Customers are at the heart of everything we do. We designed the Scope Markets app with the customer experience in mind as we seek to respond to feedback from our customers.”

He added that enhancing the client experience builds upon the robust trading platform, Meta Trader 5, unveiled in 2019, enabling Scope Markets Kenya to broaden the asset classes available on the trading platform.

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