Value Blog

Spiritual Lending: When Microfinance Mixes With Religion

May 23rd, 2015  |  Source: WSJ.com

In Thailand, Buddhist monks don’t just serve people’s spiritual needs, they also manage microfinance networks that help the country’s poorest citizens.

Video/Photo: Warangkana Chomchuen: http://financingthefuture.wsj.com/videos/%7B8BA69888-4810-4E07-9E0A-C34E...


House Flippers Are Back Together With Wall St. What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

May 8th, 2015  |  Source: Bloomberg

Real estate buyers seeking money to renovate and flip U.S. houses are getting help from some of the world’s biggest investment firms.

Colony Capital Inc., Blackstone Group LP and Cerberus Capital Management are among the companies that have started making bridge loans to investors who buy homes to sell them quickly for a profit. Borrowing costs -- traditionally the highest in residential lending -- are tumbling as the firms compete for customers.

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The Battery Age begins: Sungevity pairs home solar with batteries

May 1st, 2015  |  Source: SFChronicle

Sungevity will offer devices from Sonnenbatterie to its customers wanting to store solar power.

The race to put a battery in every basement has begun.

Oakland solar company Sungevity said Wednesday that it will offer its customers a home battery system to store electricity from their rooftop solar arrays. Germany’s Sonnenbatterie will supply the batteries.


How Bitcoin Technology Could Make Home Buying Hassle-Free

May 1st, 2015  |  Source: Fast Company

Imagine yourself as a first-time homebuyer. You’re about to write the biggest check of your life for the down payment, not to mention taking on a monster loan. You have no idea who you can trust—from agent to lawyer to inspector—or what the process should be. And the list of—let’s face it—crappy experiences on the road to homeownership goes on. Must this meaningful life event be riddled with stress and anxiety from the get-go? It doesn't have to be.


Big banks have had an ugly relationship with American soldiers lately

April 29th, 2015  |  Source: HuffPo

House Republicans are pushing legislation to block predatory lending protections for American soldiers, under pressure from the banking lobby.

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Americares disaster relief team in Nepal

April 25th, 2015  |  Source: Americares

 

AmeriCares is responding to the 7.8-magnitude earthquake that rocked Nepal earlier today, causing buildings to collapse, setting off avalanches on Mount Everest and catapulting the region into chaos.

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Everyone Profits from the Return on Character

April 23rd, 2015  |  Source: Strategy + Business

Veteran management guru Fred Kiel uses hard data to prove that soft factors like integrity, forgiveness, and compassion energize employees and customers — and deliver better returns.

It’s rare to find a business book, let alone one on leadership, that is well researched, well documented, well written, convincing, credible, and imbued with a voice that one grows to both trust and admire. Fred Kiel’s 200-pager, Return on Character: The Real Reason Leaders and Their Companies Win, is a standout for at least three reasons.


Fossil Fuels Just Lost the Race Against Renewables

April 15th, 2015  |  Source: Bloomberg

This is the beginning of the end.

The race for renewable energy has passed a turning point. The world is now adding more capacity for renewable power each year than coal, natural gas, and oil combined. And there's no going back. 


New Social Progress Index from Michael Porter

April 11th, 2015  |  Source: FSG Consulting

Michael E. Porter has announced the launch of the Social Progress Imperative, a new rigorous index rating the social performance of more than 50 countries. Developed with the AVINA, Rockefeller, and Skoll foundations, this is the first index to fully separate social indicators from economic ones. In examining data on basic needs, well-being, and opportunity it creates a global agenda for country level policy.




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