Lampard joins MLS side New York City

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Former Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard has joined Major League Soccer side New York City FC on a two-year deal.
Lampard, 36, was released by the Blues at the end of last season after his contract expired to end his 13-year association with the London side.
He moved from West Ham to Chelsea in June 2001 in an £11m transfer and became the club’s record goalscorer with 211 goals in his 649 appearances.
“New York ticks all the right boxes for me. It’s very exciting,” said Lampard.
“Chelsea will always have a huge place in my heart, but it’s now a new challenge.
“I had a fantastic 13 years there and can look back at that with pride, but it was a great time for me and Chelsea to move on.
“Having seen the vision of this club, I have seen a real long-term plan and I want to be involved and I want to keep on challenging myself.”
Newly-formed New York City FC will play in their first MLS season in 2015.
The franchise, which is owned by Manchester City, are currently building their squad and have already signed ex-Spain striker David Villa from La Liga winners Atletico Madrid.
However, Villa, 32, will spend three months on loan from October to December at Australia A-League side Melbourne City and Lampard could look for a similar loan spell, or train in England to maintain his fitness.
New York sporting director Claudio Reyna, who played in Scotland with Rangers and in the Premier League with Sunderland and Manchester City, described the deal as “really exciting”.
“Frank Lampard is one of the greatest players in Premier League history and in European and world football over the last 15 years,” he added.
“He is a leader and we are extremely delighted to have him here.”
During his time at Stamford Bridge, Lampard was Chelsea’s vice-captain and won the Premier League title three times, the Champions League once and the Europa League once.
He also won four FA Cups and the League Cup twice and has also gained 106 England caps throughout his career, with his last international appearance coming in the 0-0 draw against Costa Rica in the World Cup.
England captain Steven Gerrard announced his retirement from international football last week and Lampard admitted he would have to consider his own future with the national team.
He added: “In terms of England, I’ve not had a lot of time after the World Cup. Getting my personal future was the most important, now I have to think about England.
“Now I know where I will be playing my football, I can make that decision and I will do soon.”

Top earning actors of the year.

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The movie industry is dominated by eye catching movies, spell bound thrillers and action packed comic movies. As much as the movie is rolling in day after day, so does the actors earning rise role after role either as a villian or a superhero. One superhero tops this chart and he is no other than Robert Downey Jr of the “IRON MAN franchise”. Here is a quick run down of the list according to forbes.com.

The 49-year-old star made most of his money from June 2013 to June 2014 from “Iron Man 3,” which made $1.2 billion at the box office and assured him the top spot again in the annual ranking.

“As Iron Man, he’s the driving force behind four of Marvel’s biggest hits, including ‘The Avengers,’” Forbes.com said.

Former wrestler Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, 42, who starred in “G.I. Joe: Retaliation,” and the “Fast and Furious,” films, jumped into second place this year from fifth in 2013 with earnings of $52 million, followed by “Hangover,” star Bradley Cooper, 39, with $46 million.

“His work in the lucrative ‘Hangover,’ franchise has given him the ability to take risks with smaller films like ‘Silver Linings Playbook,’ and ‘American Hustle,’” Forbes said about Cooper.

“The Wolf of Wall Street,” star Leonardo DiCaprio, 39, had a lucrative year with two hit films and came in fourth at $39 million in earnings, while Australian “Thor” actor Chris Hemsworth, rounded out the top five with $37 million.

DiCaprio was a driving force behind “The Wolf of Wall Street,” which made $395 million worldwide and he also starred in “The Great Gatsby,” which took in $351 million globally.

Mark Wahlberg, 43, who was in fourth place last year thanks to the comedy hit “Ted,” just made the top 10 this year along with actor Will Smith, 45. Each actor earned an estimated $32 million.

Forbes.com compiled the rankings and estimated earnings by talking to managers, producers and agents.

Shell offers 30 million pounds to settle 2011 Nigeria oil spills

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Royal Dutch Shell is ready to pay up to 30 million pounds ($51 million) in compensation for two oil spills in Nigeria in 2008 after a London court rejected a larger claim, sources involved in the case said on Friday.

Around 15,000 residents of the Bodo community in the Niger Delta represented by law firm Leigh Day appealed in 2011 to a London court for more than 300 million pounds in compensation.

Claimants say that the two spills resulted in the leakage of of 500,000 barrels of oil but Shell estimated the volume at around 4,000 barrels.

Shell has already offered some compensation for the spills.

The sources said a Shell offer from September 2013 to settle the case for 30 million pounds remained on the table. The lawyer representing the claimants on Friday rejected the sum.

“Shell have consistently sought to underestimate the damage whilst paying only lip service to an apology. These spills, which are some of the largest oil spills in history, have devastated a community of many thousands of people and ravaged the environment,” Martyn Day said in a statement.

“The offer of £30m has been offered before and has been flatly refused by our clients who found it insulting and derisory, nothing has changed this view.”

The London High Court on Friday rejected the claimants’ attempts to expand the scope of the compensation, ruling that the pipeline operator could not be held responsible for damage caused by oil theft.

A trial is planned to start in May 2015 in Nigeria, but Shell urged the claimants to reach a settlement beforehand.

“From the outset, we’ve accepted responsibility for the two deeply regrettable operational spills in Bodo,” Mutiu Sunmonu, Managing Director of the Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Ltd (SPDC), said in a statement.

“We hope the community will now direct their UK legal representatives to stop wasting even more time pursuing enormously exaggerated claims and consider sensible and fair compensation offers,” Sunmonu said.

Massive oil theft, sabotage of infrastructure and leaks from ageing pipelines are cutting into the profits of oil majors operating in Nigeria, as well as damaging the public finances of the African nation.

How wise investment and careful spending made people millionaires.

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Doug Nordman, 53, and his wife spent their careers in the U.S. Navy. During their working years, they built robust portfolios and lived frugally, saving over 50% of their incomes at some points. As he prepared to retire from the military, he realized his investments could actually support him, without having to take a civilian job. Today, he and his wife live in Hawaii, where he spends his time surfing and completing do-it-your projects around his home. He’s chronicled his journey to early retirement on his web site, The Military Guide.

Ray Hinchliffe, Jr., now in his late sixties, saw his salary grow from just $67 a week to more than $100,000 a year over the course of his career working at grocery stores, first as a clerk and later as a manager. Through disciplined saving, he built a sizable nest egg under the guidance of his financial advisor. He says one of the best things he did for his finances was purchasing a home as soon as he was able to. Today, he owns multiple properties and enjoys a relaxing retirement.

Retirement
Hinchliffe: I find myself being in a very good position. I now have been retired for over 12 years. I’ve managed to go from $67 a week [in earnings] to [now having] several million dollars.

Nordman: My wife and I are millionaires. We have that much money in our retirement investments, and we plan to make that last the rest of our retirement. We didn’t really want to work until we were in our 60s and do a more traditional retirement age. Instead, we thought we’d be able to retire in our 50s or even our 40s, and as it turned out, it worked out for me to be at age 41.

Earnings
Hinchliffe: In 1959, I started as a food clerk with A&P. I was making $67 a week as a food clerk. After that, I went with Safeway food stores. I worked with them for 30 years. I made over $100,000 a year as a store manager for them, plus bonus, and was able to save quite a bit of money working with them and investing in their plans.

Nordman: I peaked out at about $88,000, and that was just before I retired in 2002. My wife’s salary peaked out at about the same number. As we got older, in our 30s, we realized that we had enough savings that our portfolio, our investments, were growing fast enough to almost replace our incomes.

Saving
Hinchliffe: I found that the best way to save money and easiest way to save money was through my work. Sometimes younger people aren’t disciplined enough to put money away as they should every week or every month, but what I would do is take advantage of 401(k) plans that might be at work, stock plans where they would match your money that you put into buying stock in the company.

Nordman: Our financial freedom came from saving a lot of money, saving a high percentage of our income. My wife and I were both active duty in the Navy for over 20 years and during that time we tried to save as much as we could. Most of the time we’d save over half of our income. We would reduce our expenses and just save the rest in mutual funds. Pretty much the boring mutual funds, index funds, exchange-traded funds that everybody should use for their retirement. Nothing special.

Frugal Habits
Hinchliffe: There’s lots of things that I wanted but not a lot of things that I needed. If you bought a used car, it did the same thing for you [as a new car] and you saved yourself quite a bit over a period of time. Another thing we used to do is vacations, we would go with friends rather than buy a big place and go by ourselves. We would go with other couples and split the bill and that helped out a lot.

Nordman: My wife and I have a lot of frugal habits that I think tended to make us big savers. We planted a lot of the yard with fruit trees, and so we have fruit year-round. We get crops all year here in Hawaii, and so we can grow some of our own fruit. And we also compost and use things around the house. By buying from Craigslist and Goodwill you’re effectively recycling possessions that other people don’t want anymore, and you’re getting them for yourself at a much cheaper price than if you bought them new.

Advice
Hinchliffe: My advice to someone young today is to stay on course with their investing aims. It’s like a boat. You set a course. You go from one spot to another. If you get off course, needless to say you don’t know where you’re going to end up. If you have a good plan and you follow it, I think that you’ll find that you’ll succeed and your investing will definitely pay you a huge dividend.

Nordman: Track your spending for a couple of months and see where your money goes. Don’t try to cut back, don’t try to change anything just track your expenses and see where you’re spending your money. Then you will figure out where you want to cut back, and you won’t feel like you’re depriving yourself or making yourself miserable.

Indiana man left dead in living room since last July

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An Indiana woman is under investigation after her husband’s corpse was left in their home for more than nine months and fed on by birds, authorities said on Thursday.

Gerald Gavan Jr., 89, whose body was found on May 3 on the living room floor of his house in Lafayette, Indiana, had been dead since at least last July 15, Tippecanoe County coroner Donna Avolt said.

Investigators are trying to determine if Gavan’s wife, Ila Solomon, had a financial motive for not reporting the veteran’s death, Lafayette Police Sergeant Brian Phillips said. There are also laws that require prompt reporting of deaths, he said.

Avolt said the man’s body had shriveled to skeleton form and was becoming “partly mummified.” Gavan was identified because he had a steel plate in his ankle from an old injury, she said.

Solomon told Avolt her husband had been dead only a few days, the coroner said.

The cause of his death is unknown, but results of toxicology tests that are due back late in June might determine if there was any foreign substance in his body, she said.

Solomon also told Avolt she sometimes left the doors of the house open so birds could come in and feed on the corpse in a Tibetan tradition, at his request, Avolt said. Tibetan Buddhists call the practice a “sky burial.”

Avolt said the decaying body would have emitted a strong odor in the house. But Solomon also owned a house next door that she had purchased in February 2013, according to property records provided by a Tippecanoe County official.

A phone number listed for the Gavan home in Lafayette was not in service on Thursday.

Malaysia says Cadbury products found not to contain pig DNA

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New tests conducted by Malaysian authorities found that chocolate bars made by British confectioner Cadbury do not contain pig DNA, contrary to a previous finding, the country’s Islamic affairs agency said on Monday.

Cadbury withdrew two varieties of its chocolate snacks from sale in Muslim-majority Malaysia last week after government tests found traces of pork in them, leading some Islamic groups to call for a boycott on all of its products.

Malaysia’s Islamic Development Department (Jakim) said none of the 11 samples it tested of Cadbury’s Dairy Milk Hazelnut, Cadbury Dairy Milk Roast Almond and other products from the company’s factory had shown positive results for porcine DNA.

Jakim said in a statement that Cadbury’s halal certification for the two products would remain suspended pending further tests and investigations of its supply chain.

Jakim is the only body in Malaysia tasked with ensuring products are halal, or permissible by Islamic law. The previous tests were conducted in February by the country’s health ministry on products taken from store shelves.

Jakim had said those tests might not have been fair to Cadbury since the products could have been contaminated after leaving the factory.

Cadbury Malaysia, whose parent firm is Mondelez International Inc, has stood by its products’ halal worthiness and assured the public it was working with authorities to resolve the matter.

A Muslim consumer group that last week called on Malaysians to boycott Mondelez products said on Monday it would not reverse its stance unless the health ministry concurs with the new results released by Jakim.

“There are still a lot of question marks there,” said Sheikh Abdul Kareem Khadaied, the head of research with the Muslim Consumers Association Malaysia.

An official at the health ministry told Reuters that it “has handed the entire issue over to the Islamic agency”.

Following last week’s announcement that the chocolate bars tested positive for the non-halal ingredient, fellow Muslim countries Indonesia and Saudi Arabia said they were also carrying out tests on Cadbury products.

Concerns over halal food standards could jeopardise Mondelez’s sales in Muslim markets that are larger than Malaysia, such as Indonesia, home to the world’s largest Muslim population, and in the Middle East.

Lambert passes Liverpool medical

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Southampton and England striker Rickie Lambert has passed a medical at Liverpool after the clubs agreed a fee of about £4m plus add-ons.

The 32-year-old’s move to Anfield will be confirmed on Monday, after he has flown to Miami with the rest of England’s World Cup squad.
The Liverpool-born forward will sign a two-year deal at the club where he spent five years as a youth player.
Lambert was an unused substitute in England’s 3-0 win over Peru on Friday.
He scored 14 goals in 39 games this season, and has netted 117 times in 235 appearances since joining Southampton from Bristol Rovers in 2009.
Lambert, whose contract at St Mary’s has two years remaining, has won four England caps, scoring twice.
And former Liverpool and England striker Robbie Fowler believes his signing is a smart move by Reds manager Brendan Rodgers.
“From a Liverpool point of view, it’s a perfect fit,” Fowler told BBC Sport.
“For £4m-£5m, it is a fantastic piece of business for a recognised English striker who is proven in the Premier League.
“He’s probably a little bit different from what we’ve got already but he’s a Liverpool lad and all his family are from Liverpool, so straight away you are going to get that extra 10% from him.”
Southampton turned down one offer from Liverpool for Lambert, having rejected a similar bid from West Ham in January. (external)
There has been interest in the striker from other clubs, but it is understood he was only considering Liverpool.
Saints, without a manager following Mauricio Pochettino’s move to Tottenham, decided they would not stand in Lambert’s way if they received an acceptable offer.
Liverpool remain in talks with Southampton over England midfielder Adam Lallana, 26, and Croatia defender Dejan Lovren, 24.
They have also made an enquiry for Sevilla full-back Alberto Moreno, 21, and said they are willing to pay as much as £16m for the player.
Saints have turned down one offer for Lallana and are resisting Liverpool’s attempts to rush a deal through, though the player was keen to resolve his future before flying out to Miami on Sunday.
Southampton remain in talks with Manchester United over the sale of left-back Luke Shaw, who is also in Roy Hodgson’s England squad.
They are under no financial pressure to sell and are determined not to be forced into sanctioning deals by suitors keen to make signings before the World Cup.