People line up in front of a currency exchange shop to buy U.S. dollars and euros, in downtown Tehran, Iran, Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2018. The Iranian rial fell Wednesday to its lowest rate on record and saw worried residents of Tehran line up outside of beleaguered moneychangers, part of a staggering 140-percent drop in the currency's value since America pulled out of the nuclear deal only four months ago. (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi)
People line up in front of a currency exchange shop to buy US dollars and euros, in downtown Tehran, Iran on Wednesday (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi)

Iranian rial hits fresh lows as currency crisis worsens



Iran's currency plunged to a new low against the US dollar yesterday, dragged down by the worsening state of the nation's economic woes following the re-imposition of sanctions by United States over its nuclear ambitions.

The dollar strengthened as much as 8 per cent to 150,000 rials, according to Bonbast, a website that tracks the unofficial currency market.

As worried residents of Tehran lined up outside, many exchange shops in downtown Tehran simply turned off their electronic signs showing the current rate for the US dollar. Some Iranians who wanted hard currency sought out informal money traders on street corners.

"Everyone's just nervous," Mostafa Shahriar, 40, who was seeking dollars, told AP.

The rial has lost about two thirds of its value against the green back since the beginning of this year. Growing demand for dollars stoked by concerns that the impact of US sanctions would spill beyond the country’s crude shipments and will affect Iran’s broader export sector has also added to the white-knuckle ride for rial traders. Authorities are trying to curb the foreign exchange crisis, cracking down on traders and currency exchanges, which they accuse of hoarding dollars and creating an artificial crunch.  However, nothing the government has done so far has helped, as pressure of sanctions mount with every passing day.

Ever since the rial began its slide, people have been trying to hedge by withdrawing cash from the banks and buying gold and major currencies including dollars, euros, and the British pound to protect the value of their capital for the tougher times ahead.

The government and lawmakers have also shaken up financial policy in recent months in a failed attempt to calm the markets. The Iranian parliament last week sacked the minister of economic affairs and finance, the latest official to lose his job in a series of high-profile changes. His departure follows the removal of the minister of labour in early August and a change of guard at the country’s central bank in June.

Read more: From the economy to foreign policy, Rouhani's malaise is self-inflicted

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Dates for the diary

To mark Bodytree’s 10th anniversary, the coming season will be filled with celebratory activities:

  • September 21 Anyone interested in becoming a certified yoga instructor can sign up for a 250-hour course in Yoga Teacher Training with Jacquelene Sadek. It begins on September 21 and will take place over the course of six weekends.
  • October 18 to 21 International yoga instructor, Yogi Nora, will be visiting Bodytree and offering classes.
  • October 26 to November 4 International pilates instructor Courtney Miller will be on hand at the studio, offering classes.
  • November 9 Bodytree is hosting a party to celebrate turning 10, and everyone is invited. Expect a day full of free classes on the grounds of the studio.
  • December 11 Yogeswari, an advanced certified Jivamukti teacher, will be visiting the studio.
  • February 2, 2018 Bodytree will host its 4th annual yoga market.
Company profile

Company: Rent Your Wardrobe 

Date started: May 2021 

Founder: Mamta Arora 

Based: Dubai 

Sector: Clothes rental subscription 

Stage: Bootstrapped, self-funded 

COMPANY PROFILE

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Started: 2022
Founders: Hamza Iraqui and Abdessamad Ben Zakour
Based: UAE
Industry: Refurbished electronics
Funds raised so far: $10m
Investors: Flat6Labs, Resonance and various others

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Based: UAE with a subsidiary in the UK
Industry: FinTech
Funding: Undisclosed
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Number of employees: 8

1,000 Books to Read Before You Die: A Life-Changing List
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• Shortage of labour/skills

• A resurgence of Covid?

Titan Sports Academy:

Programmes: Judo, wrestling, kick-boxing, muay thai, taekwondo and various summer camps

Location: Inside Abu Dhabi City Golf Club, Al Mushrif, Abu Dhabi, UAE

Telephone: +971 50 220 0326

Dengue fever symptoms
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Company Profile

Company name: myZoi
Started: 2021
Founders: Syed Ali, Christian Buchholz, Shanawaz Rouf, Arsalan Siddiqui, Nabid Hassan
Based: UAE
Number of staff: 37
Investment: Initial undisclosed funding from SC Ventures; second round of funding totalling $14 million from a consortium of SBI, a Japanese VC firm, and SC Venture

Biog

Age: 50

Known as the UAE’s strongest man

Favourite dish: “Everything and sea food”

Hobbies: Drawing, basketball and poetry

Favourite car: Any classic car

Favourite superhero: The Hulk original

WHAT IS 'JUICE JACKING'?

• Juice jacking, in the simplest terms, is using a rogue USB cable to access a device and compromise its contents

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• The term was first coined in 2011 after researchers created a compromised charging kiosk to bring awareness to the exploit; when users plugged in their devices, they received a security warning and discovered that their phones had paired to the kiosk, according to US cybersecurity company Norton

• While juice jacking is a real threat, there have been no known widespread instances. Apple and Google have also added security layers to prevent this on the iOS and Android devices, respectively

Afghanistan fixtures
  • v Australia, today
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Nationality: Irish

Family: Wife, Pom; and daughters Kate, 18, and Ciara, 13, who attend Jumeirah English Speaking School (JESS)

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Some 400,000 shrubs and 13,000 trees in the on-site nursery

An additional 450,000 shrubs and 4,000 trees to be delivered in the months leading up to the expo

Ghaf, date palm, acacia arabica, acacia tortilis, vitex or sage, techoma and the salvadora are just some heat tolerant native plants in the nursery

Approximately 340 species of shrubs and trees selected for diverse landscape

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Some mature trees are in open areas or planted within the expo site

Green waste is recycled as compost

Treated sewage effluent supplied by Dubai Municipality is used to meet the majority of the nursery’s irrigation needs

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Sukuk explained

Sukuk are Sharia-compliant financial certificates issued by governments, corporates and other entities. While as an asset class they resemble conventional bonds, there are some significant differences. As interest is prohibited under Sharia, sukuk must contain an underlying transaction, for example a leaseback agreement, and the income that is paid to investors is generated by the underlying asset. Investors must also be prepared to share in both the profits and losses of an enterprise. Nevertheless, sukuk are similar to conventional bonds in that they provide regular payments, and are considered less risky than equities. Most investors would not buy sukuk directly due to high minimum subscriptions, but invest via funds.

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Quarter-finals: December 9 and 10
Semi-finals: December 13 and 14
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Need to know

The flights: Flydubai flies from Dubai to Kilimanjaro airport via Dar es Salaam from Dh1,619 return including taxes. The trip takes 8 hours. 

The trek: Make sure that whatever tour company you select to climb Kilimanjaro, that it is a reputable one. The way to climb successfully would be with experienced guides and porters, from a company committed to quality, safety and an ethical approach to the mountain and its staff. Sonia Nazareth booked a VIP package through Safari Africa. The tour works out to $4,775 (Dh17,538) per person, based on a 4-person booking scheme, for 9 nights on the mountain (including one night before and after the trek at Arusha). The price includes all meals, a head guide, an assistant guide for every 2 trekkers, porters to carry the luggage, a cook and kitchen staff, a dining and mess tent, a sleeping tent set up for 2 persons, a chemical toilet and park entrance fees. The tiny ration of heated water provided for our bath in our makeshift private bathroom stall was the greatest luxury. A standard package, also based on a 4-person booking, works out to $3,050 (Dh11,202) per person.

When to go: You can climb Kili at any time of year, but the best months to ascend  are  January-February and September-October.  Also good are July and August, if you’re tolerant of the colder weather that winter brings.

Do not underestimate the importance of kit. Even if you’re travelling at a relatively pleasant time, be geared up for the cold and the rain.

EMIRATES'S REVISED A350 DEPLOYMENT SCHEDULE

Edinburgh: November 4 (unchanged)

Bahrain: November 15 (from September 15); second daily service from January 1

Kuwait: November 15 (from September 16)

Mumbai: January 1 (from October 27)

Ahmedabad: January 1 (from October 27)

Colombo: January 2 (from January 1)

Muscat: March 1 (from December 1)

Lyon: March 1 (from December 1)

Bologna: March 1 (from December 1)

Source: Emirates

Financial considerations before buying a property

Buyers should try to pay as much in cash as possible for a property, limiting the mortgage value to as little as they can afford. This means they not only pay less in interest but their monthly costs are also reduced. Ideally, the monthly mortgage payment should not exceed 20 per cent of the purchaser’s total household income, says Carol Glynn, founder of Conscious Finance Coaching.

“If it’s a rental property, plan for the property to have periods when it does not have a tenant. Ensure you have enough cash set aside to pay the mortgage and other costs during these periods, ideally at least six months,” she says. 

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Using a good mortgage broker is worth the investment to obtain the best rate available for a buyer’s needs and circumstances. A good mortgage broker will help the buyer understand the terms and conditions of the mortgage and make the purchasing process efficient and easier. 

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