The issue of deploying pension contributions for mortgage payments has been on the agenda for pensions reform in the Netherlands since at least 2011, when trade union RMU came up with the proposal.Last month, social affairs minister Wouter Koolmees said he would assess the possibilities of making it an option for savers in a new pensions system.The researchers at ASRE highlighted that they only looked at the financial impact of using pension contributions for paying off a mortgage, and said that they hadn’t taken any possible legal or practical hurdles into account.Contribution flexibility pros and consResearch published by Tilburg University and the Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis last year called for Dutch workers to be granted greater flexibility over how they use their pension savings, claiming the benefits of such freedoms would outweigh the risks.At IPE’s annual conference in Dublin in December, panellists also debated alternative uses for pension contributions.During a panel discussion, Michael O’Higgins – a former chair of the UK’s Pensions Regulator – suggested allowing people to use auto-enrolment savings to pay off student loans faster. Amlan Roy, chief retirement strategist at State Street Global Advisors, added that the US Treasury department and the Department of Labor were considering “lifetime loan-bundling vehicles” to help younger workers pay off student debt.However, Tim Jones, former CEO of UK defined contribution fund NEST, disagreed strongly with the idea, arguing that: “Pension money is for your later life. No ‘ifs’ or ‘buts’.” Using pension contributions to pay off a mortgage would not be a financially attractive option, a survey by the Amsterdam School of Real Estate (ASRE) has suggested.It found that, on balance, the financial advantage of lower initial housing costs would be more than cancelled out by a lower pension income in retirement.The survey found that households using their pension contributions to pay down mortgage debt would have 6% more income during the entire duration of the mortgage.However, these households would also have a 15% lower pension income, it said.
There’s power in numbers. Unfortunately, Wisconsin head coach Bobbie Kelsey just doesn’t have those numbers right now. After starting the season with a comfortable number of players, the UW women’s basketball team has suffered from the unfortunate and uncontrollable loss of players. What used to be a comfortable number has now been whittled down to nine. Mikayla Dyer and Lindsay Smith both elected to transfer. Taylor Wurtz and AnnMarie Brown both saw their seasons end with injuries. Michala Johnson is on the bench, but ineligible due to transfer rules. The cupboard seems rather bare and Kelsey has been forced to use every tool available to her, regardless of their readiness for Big Ten basketball. “It’s hard for them because a lot of the players that are having to play a lot of minutes probably wouldn’t have to have that load on them if others were healthy,” Kelsey said.The consequences for such low numbers on this team have been inevitable, the obvious problem being the limited number of players available during the game as substitutes. Kelsey has been left overwhelmed with a lack of choices.“Some people you just can’t take out,” Kelsey said. “It’s difficult when they do get tired [during the game], they’re humans.”Some coaches have the ability to sub in five new pairs of fresh legs every seven minutes, a luxury Kelsey just doesn’t have. With only four subs left on the bench, Kelsey has instead had to comprise for the restrictions she has, but with every loss leaves something to be gained.“More people need to step up to take on the roles of all the injuries we’ve had,” Nicole Bauman said, a freshman starting guard and Big Ten Freshman of the Week during December.Bauman was thrust into a starting role with Wurtz’s initial absence back in November. Her freshman comrade Dakota Whyte has similarly been forced into an immediate backup position to point guard Tiera Stephen.Many of the players have found stepping up means improving their defense and ball-handling, which is something that might become especially taxing on the team late in the game. Forty minutes, the number of minutes some players, starters in particular, have been, or have gotten close, to playing in recent games can be a long time to play when the legs get heavy and the shots aren’t falling, but Kelsey doesn’t have many alternatives.But frustration is a word that resonates with more than just the coach.“The thing that frustrates me the most is that this year we were supposed to be pretty good with a lot [of] freshman coming in,” Cassie Rochel said. Indeed, many really good freshmen did come in for the Badgers. Bauman was the 2012 Miss Basketball for Wisconsin, Shannon Malone’s AAU team was a national finalist, Whyte was a member of the 2012 Canadian Junior National Team and Tessa Cichy was a top-five finalist for the 2012 Miss Minnesota Basketball. There were plenty of other reasons, besides the incoming freshmen, to believe this team could have been one of the top teams in the Big Ten.That being said, the only positives Kelsey envisions is the loss of numbers can only stimulate improvement considering many of players have been forced into a position or a different role that will push their limits and build better players for the future.“I also try to impart upon the players that are healthy that it’s going to help us in the future. It’s going to help us down the road,” Kelsey said. They could use a pick-me-up right now, though.With a record of 2-6 in January alone, the team has been in a position where it would seem easy to throw in the towel. Their record now stands at 10-12 as Wisconsin ranks 11th in the Big Ten. To take on a negative vibe would be easy, but that’s not the type of personality this team has. Instead, they are looking to give the lone graduating senior, Tiera Stephen, a good send-off.“It’s her senior year,” Rochel said. “You want to give her all we can, but we’re doing what we can with the players we have.”
AfghanistanFIFA 2022 World Cup QualifiersfootballIndia First Published: November 14, 2019, 10:17 PM IST Get the best of News18 delivered to your inbox – subscribe to News18 Daybreak. Follow News18.com on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Telegram, TikTok and on YouTube, and stay in the know with what’s happening in the world around you – in real time. Dushanbe (Tajikistan): India escaped with a 1-1 draw after an injury-time goal saved them the blushes against lower-ranked Afghanistan in their FIFA World Cup Qualifier match on Thursday.The result meant the 106-ranked India remained winless in their qualifying campaign so far. When the visitors seemed headed for their second defeat, substitute Seiminlen Doungel (90+3) provided India with a lifeline, outjumping his markers to head one into the far post.Afghanistan had taken the lead through Zelfagar Nazary’s strike (45+1), putting India on the backfoot.India remained at the fourth position in Group E with three points from four matches, while Afghanistan continued to be on the third with four points.Starting the away game, being played in extremely cold conditions at the Central Republican Stadium, on a bright note, India conceded a goal in the first half’s injury time (45+1).Afghanistan went into lead after a fine move saw David Najem play a square ball to Zelfagar Nazary at the centre of the box, and the mid-fielder’s attempt breached the Indian defence before finding the back of the net.It wasn’t really a home match for Afghanistan either, but wins here against Cambodia and Bangladesh, followed by draws with Tajikistan and Jordan have given them much-needed confidence ahead of the clash against Igor Stimac’s 106-ranked India.And the 149-ranked Afghanistan carried that confidence into the game on a chilly evening when the temperature dropped to nine degree celsius.The hosts looked the better of the two sides in the first half and the goal, in the added time of first session, was not inappropriate.On and off, Afghanistan managed to put pressure on the Indian defence manned by Mandar Rao Desai, Adil Khan, Rahul Bheke and Pritam Kotal. With their enterprise, the likes of striker Ahmad Omran and mid-fielder Faysal Shayesteh kept India on their toes, forcing Bheke and Adil to make a few clearances in the first quarter.India looked to take on the opposition but they could not create any clear chances, and the couple of half chances in the opening minutes failed to test the Afghan custodian.There was a change straightaway for India after the break as Stimac substituted Mandar with Farukh Choudhary.The visitors showed urgency and looked desperate for an equaliser. They had a chance in the 58th minute but skipper Sunil Chhetri’s header off a cross from right back Pritam Kotal was saved by Azizi. At the other end, Gurpreet Singh Sandhu made a diving save.While he will be disappointed to end the match in a stalemate, Stimac’s decision to bring in Doungel in place of Kotal paid dividends.Stimac made three changes to the line-up that drew against Bangladesh last month, starting with Kotal, Brandon Fernandes and and Pronay Halder in place of Anas Edathodika, Anirudh Thapa and Manvir Singh.