Retailers optimistic annual sale season will jump start consumer spending

first_imgAt a press conference, Deputy Tourism and Creative Economy Minister Angela Tanoesoedibjo said the pandemic and subsequent large-scale social restrictions (PSBB) had driven down demand in the tourism and retail sectors.According to National Development Planning Agency (Bappenas) data, the purchasing power of Indonesian dropped Rp 362 trillion in the weeks between March 30 and June 6 due to the pandemic.“[The COVID-19] pandemic and PSBB measures have affected demand for non-essential products. However, we hope the situation will improve in the third and fourth quarters of 2020,” she said.Besides ramping up household spending, it is also hoped that the HBDI will help retailers sell their excess stock, which has sat unsold during the closure of malls and shopping centers from late March to mid-June in Jakarta.“As shopping centers were closed during the Idul Fitri holiday season, we hope this event can help retailers sell their Lebaran stockpiles such as sarongs and Muslim attire,” Indonesian Shopping Centers Tenants Association (Hippindo) chairperson Budihardjo Iduansjah told journalists.“This is the right moment to empty our warehouses as we’re currently being helped by the government and online marketplaces during the event.”Hippindo and HBDI are working together with e-commerce giants Tokopedia, Lazada, Blibli.com and technology decacorn Gojek for event promotion and product marketing. Topics : The committee set a sales target of Rp 24 trillion (US$1.6 billion) during last year’s HBDI event, a 20 percent increase from the first HBDI target in 2017, according to Kompas.This year’s HBDI will offer special prices for consumers, with discounts reaching up to 75 percent from Aug. 14 to 30 both in-store and on online marketplaces.Indonesia’s gross domestic product (GDP), the broadest measure of the production of goods and services, was down 5.32 percent year-on-year (yoy) in the second quarter, the steepest decline since the first quarter of 1999, Statistics Indonesia (BPS) announced Wednesday.Household spending, which accounts for more than half of GDP, fell 5.51 percent yoy in the second quarter. Apparel consumption, included under the household spending category, also fell 5.13 percent yoy during the period. Hopes are high the annual Indonesian Discount Shopping Days (HBDI) will give a much needed boost to household spending, which has been well down amid the COVID-19 pandemic, providing retailers with an opportunity to sell their excess stock at below-market prices, officials have said.HBDI committee chairperson and president director of state-owned retailer Sarinah, Fetty Kwartawati, told The Jakarta Post Friday that a sales target had not been set for this year’s event, but that it was more focused on simply reviving consumer spending.“While we can’t predict exactly what the sales will be like because of the pandemic, we are certain this event will jump start retail activities,” she said during an online press conference.last_img read more

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Reach Out PA: Wolf Administration Seeks Input from Providers on Barriers to Mental Health and Substance Use Disorder Treatment

first_imgReach Out PA: Wolf Administration Seeks Input from Providers on Barriers to Mental Health and Substance Use Disorder Treatment February 07, 2020 SHARE Email Facebook Twittercenter_img Press Release,  Public Health Governor Tom Wolf announced today that the Insurance Department, in partnership with multiple state agencies, released a survey asking health care providers for input on their experiences with barriers to mental health and substance use disorder treatment.Under the governor’s Reach Out PA: Your Mental Health Matters initiative, the Wolf Administration is undertaking a long-term, statewide campaign that seeks to educate and empower Pennsylvania providers and consumers about consumer rights under state and federal parity laws.“The results from this survey will allow us to better inform and collaborate with providers, advocates and personnel on the front lines,” said Gov. Wolf. “Their experiences will help us enhance resources, develop more tools and create learning opportunities that will help serve the providers’ needs, which will ultimately help those in need of mental wellness services.”For more than a decade, state and federal laws have required that treatment and services provided for mental health and substance use disorders must not have limitations that are stricter than those applied to medical/surgical treatments. Recent market conduct examinations of Pennsylvania insurers, however, have indicated that there are noncompliant barriers that are limiting consumers’ ability to access the treatment they need for mental health and substance use disorders.“While complicated in its wording, both state and federal law are very clear that inequitable barriers to mental health and substance use disorder treatment will not be permitted,” said Insurance Commissioner Jessica Altman. “Through our market conduct examinations, we have found that many insurers have placed limitations on treatment that are stricter than state and federal parity requirements allow.”The Wolf Administration is looking for feedback from mental health and substance use disorder providers, as well as other providers who have heard from patients that they have run into barriers when seeking treatment. The survey, developed by a working group of staff from the Insurance Department, and departments of Health (DOH), Human Services (DHS), Drug and Alcohol Programs (DDAP), State, Aging, the Office of the Attorney General and the Governor’s Office, will be sent to providers across the commonwealth.The survey requests specific instances regarding complaints providers have heard from their patients about barriers to access. The survey also includes questions about providers’ experiences with barriers to treatment and problems with reimbursement for mental health and substance use disorder services. The aggregate data will be used to identify and address areas of concern by creating more accessible resources, included what is needed to help providers and other stakeholders learn more about parity.“We often hear of struggles when providers seek authorization from insurers for substance use disorder treatment, particularly opioid use disorder treatment,” said DDAP Secretary Jennifer Smith. “We hope to get a better understanding of trends and how best to address them.”“Providers typically have trusted relationships with their older adult patients that can be used to overcome stigma to seeking services and to help them gain access to mental health and substance abuse disorder treatments,” said Department of Aging Secretary Robert Torres. “We want all providers to have a knowledge base that empowers them to point their patients in the right direction.”“The process for determining whether parity protections are being followed is incredibly detailed and requires data that is best identified by mental health and substance use disorder providers,” said DOH Secretary Rachel Levine. “Using the insights we gain from this survey, we will be able to give our providers better tools to empower their patients and clients.”“Ensuring that mental health services are accessible to all Pennsylvanians is a critical step as we work to break down stigma and other barriers that keep people away from treatment,” said DHS Secretary Teresa Miller. “We need people to know that when they are ready to seek help, they will be met with support, not obstacles. This survey will help identify areas to improvement to ensure that people can access the help they need.”The survey specific to providers will be sent directly to the e-mail addresses provided to the Department of State through the licensing process. The Insurance Department will be accepting survey responses through March 4, 2020. For more information about the survey, individuals can e-mail RA-IN-Parity-PID@pa.gov.Since its introduction at the beginning of the year, Reach Out PA efforts have included a new consumer feedback form launched on January 23, and publication of a proposed regulation to enhance mental health parity reporting requirements for commercial health insurers. In just 10 days, more than 1,000 Pennsylvanians have completed the online form, offering input and suggestions, many of which detail challenges to accessing mental health services and pointing to potential parity violations.Resources are available on agency websites, including information on substance use disorder and mental health coverage. More information and videos on parity can be found on insurance.pa.gov. These resources will be updated and expanded based on responses to the survey.last_img read more

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Local athletes have strong showings at weekend track meets

first_imgELLSWORTH — Local athletes were among the top performers at three track and field meets over the weekend.In Ellsworth on Saturday, Mount Desert Island continued its hot start to the year with a first-place finish on the boys’ side and a second-place finish on the girls’ side. The Trojans set a team record in the 4-by-100 relay with a finish of 44.92 seconds.Sophomore Nate Mason led the way for Ellsworth’s boys’ team with a first-place effort in the long jump and second-place finishes in the high jump and triple jump. Matt Shea finished first in the 3,200-meter run with a time of 10 minutes, 37.89 seconds.Caitlin MacPherson won the 3,200-meter run for the Ellsworth girls, and Emma McKechnie took second in the high jump. Both Ellsworth teams placed fourth.This is placeholder textThis is placeholder textAt Bucksport High School, junior Carter Tolmasoff placed first of 34 finishers for the host team in the 100-meter dash Friday with a time of 11.53 seconds. Nate Sawyer finished third in the 200-meter dash and second in the 400-meter dash for the Golden Bucks.For the Bucksport girls’ team, Ava and Brookelyn Knowles placed a respective first and second in the discus throw. Addie Morrison won the 400-meter dash for the second-place Golden Bucks with a time of 1:08.76.Luke Barnes was the star for Sumner in Bucksport with wins in the 1,600- and 3,200-meter runs. Bryce Coombs (300-meter hurdles) and Logan Carter (800-meter run) were the other individual winners for the second-place Sumner boys.On the girls’ side, Sumner’s Gabby Richardson won the 200-meter dash with a time of 29.64 seconds. Emily Crocker won the 300-meter hurdles for the Tigers, who won the 4-by-100 relay as a team.George Stevens Academy participated in Saturday’s Brewer Invitational Relay Carnival. The boys’ team placed fifth, and the girls took sixth.last_img read more

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Van Gaal’s United draw with Chelsea, Arsenal go top, Tottenham leave it late

first_imgManchester United put in an improved display against Chelsea but Louis van Gaal’s side were unable to find the back of the net in a 0-0 draw at Old Trafford.United, whose manager Van Gaal has been under intense pressure, enjoyed the better of the first half with Juan Mata and Anthony Martial both seeing efforts bounce back off the woodwork.In the second half, David De Gea made a superb save to deny Pedro before up the other end Thibaut Courtois somehow kept out Ander Herrera’s close-range shot.Chelsea then had a golden chance to open the scoring as they broke from a corner, but Nemanja Matic was guilty of a horrendous miss as he blazed over when through on goal.The draw ended United’s four-game losing streak in all competitions, though Van Gaal’s side are still without a win since Nov. 21, a span of eight games — six in the Premier League and two in the Champions League. Arsenal climbed above Leicester to go top of the table as they saw off Bournemouth 2-0 to bounce back from their 4-0 Boxing Day loss at Southampton.Mesut Ozil’s 16th Premier League assist of the season saw Gabriel Paulista powerfully head home from the Germany international’s corner on 27 minutes.Ozil then got his name on the scoresheet after playing a one-two with Olivier Giroud and then nudging the ball past goalkeeper Artur Boruc, putting the Gunners above Leicester who play Manchester City on Tuesday.A late goal from Son Heung-Min earned Tottenham Hotspur a 2-1 win over 10-man Watford to lift the club to third in the Premier League table Spurs went in front on 17 minutes following a mix-up in midfield that allowed Erik Lamela to pounce and slip the ball beyond goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes.Odion Ighalo scored for a sixth top-flight game in a row to make it 1-1, showing good strength before prodding the ball past goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.Watford were reduced to 10 men on 62 minutes after a high challenge by Nathan Ake on Lamela.Tottenham clinched all three points when Son backheeled through Gomes’ legs with a minute of normal time remaining. Marko Arnautovic’s injury-time penalty secured Stoke City a thrilling 4-3 victory over Everton at Goodison ParkStoke took the lead in the 16th minute when Arnautovic squared for Xherdan Shaqiri, who found the corner to beat goalkeeper Tim Howard.Everton hit back just six minutes later with Romelu Lukaku scoring his 10th goal in as many games in all competitions thanks to James McCarthy’s smart assist.The visitors retook the lead just before half-time with Shaqiri netting his second of the game, half-vollleying in a superb effort that looped over Howard.It was 2-2 in the 64th minute when Lukaku grabbed his second of the game, Tom Cleverley finding the Belgian who made no mistake with a powerful finish. Everton went in front thanks to Gerard Deulofeu, who slotted in from Ross Barkley’s square pass.Stoke responded when Joselu came off the bench to make it 3-3, thumping in a loose ball after Arnautovic’s cross was not dealt with.A dramatic winner came for Stoke when Arnautovic was brought down in the box by John Stones, with the Austrian scoring from the spot.Norwich City condemned bottom-of-the-table Aston Villa to a 13th league defeat of the season as the Canaries triumphed 2-0 at Carrow Road. Jonny Howson broke the deadlock on 24 minutes with a volley at the back post after Villa failed to clear Nathan Redmond’s cross.The points were sealed by Dieumerci Mbokani who nodded in from Wes Hoolahan’s delivery with three minutes left on the clock.Darren Fletcher was the match-winner for West Brom as they beat Newcastle United 1-0 at The Hawthorns.After Paul Dummett and Victor Anichebe had hit the woodwork for both sides, West Brom finally broke the deadlock in the 78th minute via Fletcher following Claudio Yacob’s cross. Elsewhere, Crystal Palace and managerless Swansea City played out a goalless draw at Selhurst Park to leave Alan Pardew’s men unbeaten in their last six league matches.Patrick Bamford wasted a golden chance to score his first Crystal Palace goal, blasting straight at a grateful Lukasz Fabianski and spurning his side’s finest chance to secure victory.Andy Carroll helped West Ham United record a 2-1 victory as the Hammers came from a goal down to beat Southampton at Upton Park.Southampton went in front on 13 minutes when Dusan Tadic’s shot from close range deflected in off Hammers defender Carl Jenkinson.West Ham levelled in the second half when Victor Wanyama’s clearance bounced off Michail Antonio and beyond goalkeeper Maarten Stekelenburg.The turnaround was completed with 11 minutes left when Carroll headed in a rebound after Antonio’s initial effort had hit the bar.–Follow Joy Sports on Twitter: @Joy997FM. Our hashtag is #JoySportslast_img read more

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