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Credit Analyst
Sausalito, CA

Banking, financial, leasing experience;
opportunity to grow, work w/seasoned
professional; small office, Excel a must
e-mail: or
call 415-331-1725

Tuesday, May 30, 2006


Classified Ads--Sales Manager
    PFF-Commercial-Up-Date “Funder List”
        Bank of Walnut Creek Leasing up-date
Orange County Funder gets 30 years
    Classified Ads—Help Wanted
Why I Became a CLP
  Doug Dawkins,"the industry veteran"
Top Stories--May-22-26
    “Broker/Lessor” List up-date
        Sovereign wins regulatory OKs
Internet Bloggers can Shield Sources
    Good times back/aviation leasing industry
        The Dollar-No Longer Almighty
Consumers in a lot of debt
    News about Leasing Continues To Grow
        Key Equipment Hosts Incoming ELA Prez
Connelly/Clark start Vanguard Leasing
    News Briefs---
        You May have Missed---
Gimme that Wine
    Today's Top Event in History
        This Day in American History
            Baseball Poem
                SuDoku Puzzle

If you have time to read only one article, we recommend:

Doug Dawkins , "the industry veteran"

######## surrounding the article denotes it is a “press release”


Classified ads--Sales Manager

Silverado Vineyards

Atlanta, GA
30 years in transportation Finance with strong management/ sales background. Represented company on national & region markets. Started two successful operations- produce profits and growth.

Chicago, IL
Successful sales manager has 15 years experience with captives and independents. Expertise in re-energizing existing sales teams and territories, also building teams from scratch. True Team Leader looking for new challenge.

Chicago, IL
Senior sales manager seeks Chicago based sales management role with growing, creative, customer focused lessor. Extensive experience/documented results in all aspects of information technology leasing.

S Geneva, IL
Leasing leader seeking sales manager, senior sales/business development, marketing or strategic planning opportunity. Twenty plus years in the business. Looking for a new challenge.

Marlton, NJ
25 years exper. Promoted to sales manager after attaining highest percentage of quota for 2 years. Increased business by 50% over two years as sales manager.

New York, NY
I have over 25 years owning an independent leasing company that specialized in truck leasing. Tow trucks, Limos, ambulances, tractors, etc..

Pennsauken, NJ
17 Years Leasing in all capacities from CSR and Collections to National Sales Management and Vice President Vendor Development. Exceptional People Skills. Many industry references.

Portland, OR
18+ yrs w/bank leasing company. Supervised 14- 20 sales people. Willing to relocate for the proper position.

For a full listing of all “job wanted” ads, please go to:

To place a free “job wanted” ad, please go to:



PFF Bank & Trust-Commercial-Up-Date “Funder List”

“I am pleased to announce that effective immediately PFF Bank & Trust is expanding it's coverage beyond California and is now accepting "commercial" quality transactions nationwide. Our program is for "A" and Institutional trade credits only and under a discount program. I would appreciate it if you would please inform your readers.

“Thank you,”

Bob Robichaud, CLP

Regional Commercial Credit Sales Manager

PFF Bank & Trust
17851 17th. St.
Tustin, CA 92780-2124
Tel: 714-730-1672
Fax: 714-505-9287
Mobile: 909-238-0392

For the full list, please go here:



Bank of Walnut Creek Leasing up-date

“Wanted to provide you with an update on the merger of Bank of Walnut Creek and First Republic Bank as it pertains to BWC Equipment Leasing.

“The sale doesn't close until October and we will not see any changes in our programs in '06. First Republic currently does not offer leasing and they have expressed strong interest in the product.

“I am anticipating new and exciting opportunities to bring to the market in '07.”

Paul Knowlton, CLP

President, BWC Equipment Leasing



Orange County Funder gets 30 years

by Christopher Menkin

James P. Lewis Jr., 59, received the maximum sentence of 30 years from U.S. District Judge Cormac Carney on Friday in Orange County, California, federal court. He also was ordered to pay back the $156 million he stole from 1,600 people in a Ponzi scheme that lasted over twenty years, until it imploded from the duplicate selling of equipment leasing contracts and loans.

Southern California newspaper reports have testimony from many of Lewis' victims, who were fellow Mormons whom he met through the church. More than 50 of the former investors packed the courtroom during the sentencing hearing. They were quite angry, some losing their entire retirement money, and applauded the 30 year sentence as a “death penalty.”

Defense attorney Scott M. Schlegel said he would appeal the sentence, saying it was cruel and unusual punishment for a man of Lewis' age.

Lewis ran a Lake Forest firm called Financial Advisory Consultants between 1990 and 2003.

Prosecutors said Lewis raised $311 million between 1985 and 2003 by telling investors he was earning returns of 18 percent to 40 percent by leasing medical equipment, financing purchases of medical insurance, making commercial loans and buying and selling distressed businesses. Billing his operation as perfect for individual retirement accounts, Lewis attracted many from attending Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints church services and meetings, who heard glowing reports about the yields he was able to obtain.

During the hearing, federal prosecutors and Lewis' attorney argued about the value of the net loss, which was one of the key elements in the sentencing procedure.

Brick Kane of Robb Evans & Associates of Sun Valley, the court-appointed receiver for Lewis' holdings, testified that Lewis took in $311 million between 1985 and 2003. He paid back $214 million to investors and lost $20 million on foreign exchange and commodities trades.

The receiver also found Lewis had taken over $15 million of investor funds for his personal expenses, including $3 million for homes in Villa Park and Greenwich, Conn., for his ex-wife, two girlfriends and their families.

U.S. District Judge Cormac J. Carney asked how Lewis could keep up his scheme for nearly two decades.

"As long as you're able to raise money and keep paying the promised annual or monthly payments, you can keep going until you implode," Kane said.

Another reason why the fraud succeeded for so long in was because many of the money he was taking in came from investors he had earmarked the funds for retirement and weren't seeking returns on for years. While others received a return, some more than they invested.

Receiver Robb Evans & Associates of Sun Valley has been liquidating Lewis' assets and suing hundreds of clients who were paid more than the money they invested, hoping to reclaim some for the losing investors.

Evans has recovered nearly $11 million, of which investors will get $9.5 million after expenses, said Evans' chief operating officer, Brick Kane.

Lewis pleaded guilty to one count of money laundering and one count of mail fraud on October 3 rd , 2005, after he was arrested in Houston in 2004 following a nationwide manhunt. He was in disguise at the time, and found with a plan to escape to Mexico. Prosecutors agreed to drop 12 of 14 counts in exchange for the pleas. According to the plea agreement, Lewis admitted promising investors annual returns as high as 18 percent to 40 percent or more Lewis fled Southern California after a search warrant was executed at his firm's offices in December 2003, prosecutors said. He was arrested in Houston the following month. Since then, he has been jailed in Orange County.



Classified Ads---Help Wanted

Jr. Analyst

Credit Analyst
Sausalito, CA

Banking, financial, leasing experience;
opportunity to grow, work w/seasoned
professional; small office, Excel a must
e-mail: or
call 415-331-1725

Operations Manager

Operations Manager for growing equipment leasing/broker services co. in Costa Mesa, CA to oversee syndication, docs, & credit functions. Prior leasing experience pref. Salary with benefits. Send resume to:

Senior Secondary Market Officer

Senior Secondary Market Officer
Walnut Creek, California

Work with secondary market syndication sources of leasing transactions. Minimum three years leasing experience & knowledge equipment leasing underwriting; to learn more and apply: click here.

VP-Manager of Equipment Lease Division

VP-Manager of Equipment Lease Division
Costa Mesa, CA

Responsibilities include managing and directing marketing staff from solicitations through credit submission and doc signing.
subsidiary Citizens Business Bank



Why I Became a CLP
Doug Dawkins, "the industry veteran"

This is the ninth article in a series about the Certified Lease Professional program, explaining why individuals decided to become a CLP, the process, and their reaction to the knowledge and other benefits gained.

"The industry veteran:"

Doug Dawkins is an old friend of Kit Menkin, who has survived many companies that were sold, merged, or closed down by the parent company. His story is unfortunately typical of our industry. He started his leasing career with Commonwealth Financial, in Oakland, in 1978. After changes there, he went to Equico Lessors, who also were bought out, so he moved to Litton Industries Credit Corp in early mid 80's. They consolidated, and he went to work in 1986 at Potomac Leasing, which soon became Dana Commercial Credit (Camelot). After this consolidation, he joined Orin Hall at Heritage, who eventually became part of Sierra Cities, then moved to Bell Atlantic TriCon, who decided to get out of the leasing business, as Doug also decided to do as he was tired of the musical chairs. But he missed the "action," so re-entered the leasing industry with Tokai Financial Services, then joined AT&T Capital (VP Sales west coast). That soon became Newcourt Financial, and then CIT. "CIT closed down our group, so I moved to HPSC, then to GE Capital, in the Sun Computer group. From GE/Sun, I came to Tyco Healthcare. I've been with Tyco for more than 3 years. I like it here. I think this is a very stable position and a great company to work for."

"I had been working in sales or sales management for various lessors since 1978. When my father passed away unexpectedly in 1993, I took a hiatus, and found my way into personal financial planning for seniors. I earned a life and disability license, and also the series 7 and 63 securities license. While I was moderately successful at it, I realized I missed the leasing business.

"I got back into leasing with Tokai Financial Services, around 1996, and it felt good to be back. Tokai offered financial assistance to upgrade my leasing knowledge, so I chose to take the CLP study course, and test. I really wanted to test myself; to be sure I hadn't lost anything while I had been away.

"Although I was more comfortable with the concepts being covered, I felt the CLP exam was more difficult than either the Life, or the Securities exam.

"I remember waiting anxiously, hoping to hear that I had done well enough to pass.

"I was certainly more proud of that accomplishment, than anything I had done prior, in my leasing career. I felt I had validated my leasing knowledge.

"My wife, Karen, and I drove down to Palm Springs, in April 1998, to receive my plaque at the next Western Association of Equipment Leasing meeting.

"I am currently managing the leasing programs for a medical equipment manufacturer. I come into contact with many leasing people daily. I am sometimes discouraged by the lack of knowledge, and professionalism displayed by some who approach us to do business.

"I would like to see a greater emphasis on training in our industry. I think we should all strive to be as competent as we can be in our chosen profession. Choosing to take the CLP exam was one of the best things I did in my leasing career, and I strongly urge others to consider doing the same."

Douglas R. Dawkins CLP

Director Customer Finance

Tyco Healthcare
877-654-1116 Tollfree
925-463-4564 Direct line
925-463-4310 Fax
707-580-1431 Cell



Top Stories--May-22-26

Here are the top ten stories most "opened" by readers last week.

(1) Bank of Walnut Creek Leasing Sold

(2) Two Corrections: Marlin & Kropschot

(3) Bulletin Board Complaint
Trident Leasing Corp., San Jose

(4) Selling Up—by Steve Chriest
“Predicting a Salesperson's Success”

(5) Bruce Horton still prez Popular Leasing
Van Etten to help turn things around---

(6) "FRAUD...It's Back”: Web Seminar

(7) Who is First Guardian Financial?

(8) Marlin Amends Warehouse Line

(9) Cartoon---Popular Leasing Pres. Bruce Horton

(10) Pawnee Stock down almost a buck!



“Broker/Lessor” List up-date

(static list)

1+1 Funding, LLC Fairlease Nationwide Funding
1st Choice Leases Fidelity Leasing New Way Leasing Corp.
1st Independent Leasing, Inc. Financial Group, LLC Nibarger Associates
1st National Capital Funding First Financial Corp. Services, Inc. Nighthawk Leasing, LLC
42 North Structured Finance, Inc. First Fleet Corporation Nolan Leasing & Financial, Inc.
ABCO Leasing, Inc. First Equity Lending Northern Atlantic Financial
Access Capital Group First Leasing, Inc. No. Shore Lsg & Funding Inc.
Accord Capital Group, Inc. First Opinon Leasing NorthStar Funding Group
Advance Fin. Services of CA, Inc. First Prime Capital, LLC Northwestern Financial Corp.
Advantage Business Capital, Inc. F.I.T. Leasing Odyssey Equipment Fin. Co.
Affiliated Financial Services Five Piont Capital, Inc. Omega Commercial Funding
Ajava Systems, Inc. FMC Leasing, Corp. Orion First Financial, LLC
Allco Finance Group Ford Financial Services, Inc. Overland Capital Corporation
Allleasing Fortran Group Internation, Inc. Pacifica Capital
Alpine Leasing Fortress Financial Group PaddyMark
Amano Business Credit Fortune Financial, Inc. Paramount Fin. Services
American Capital Group Forum Leasing Park Western Fin. Corp.
American Equipment Fin. LLC FundGuard Partner Financial & Assoc., Inc.
American Financial Partners Foundation Equipment Lease Pavilion Capital Leasing
American Industrial Leasing Co. Fox Enterprises, LLC Pentech Financial Services, Inc.
American Investor Services Fralin Leasing, Inc. Performance Capital Corp.
American Lesefund, Inc. Funding Well Capital, Inc. Pine Tree Financial Group
American Leasing, LLP GamePlan Financial, Inc. Piper, Jaffray & Company
Ameriquest Asset Services Genoa Financial Group, LLC PMC Financial Services Group, LLC
Anchorage Leasing, Inc. Generation Leasing Podium Financial Group, Inc.
Approved Financial Genesis Commercial Capital Premier Capital, LLC
Aquarious Capital Group Glendale Leasing Services Principle Lsng & Fin., Inc.
Ark Financial Company Global Capital Finance Priority Leasing, Inc.
Ascente Financial, Inc. Global Financial Group, LLC Providence Capital Fnd, LLC
Atlas Small Business Finance Inc. Gold Creek Leasing, LLC R&K Financial Services, Inc.
Autrey Capital Group Golden West Financial Services Reliant Capital, Inc.
Aztec Financial, Inc. Goverment Leasing Co. Ritalia Funding, Inc.
Bach Business Credit, Inc. GreatAmerica Leasing Corp. Robinson Brasswell Consulting Srvs
Bankers Capital Greenleaf Leasing Services, LLC Rockford Capital Leasing
Bankers Healthcare Group, Inc. GSF Advisors Saulsbury Hill Financial, LLC
Baycap, Inc. Harbor Financial Services SBC
Baystone Financial Group Holbrook Capital Funding, LLC Scottsdale Financial Services
Belvedere Equipment Finance Honor Capital Group, LLC Seattle Leasing Company
Beneficial Capital Leasing, Inc. iBank Securities Equipment Lsg.
Bision Commercial Leasing Corp. IME SFC Capital Group
Blue Street Capital, LLC Impact Leasing Solutions, Inc. Shamrock Equipment Financing
Bob New, Inc. Independent Equipment Company Sharpe Equipment Leasing, Inc.
Burhill Financial Services Independent Leasing Group Sierra Leasing Company
C4 Capital Corporation Indian Ink, Inc. Sierra Valley Leasing
Can-World Finance Services Industrial Financial Services, Inc. Smart Leasing Group
Canfield Capital Corporation Insight Financial Corporation Snider Leasing Corp
Capital Funding Group Insight Global Finance Southern California Leasing
Capital Network Leasing Corp. Integra Leasing, Inc. Southwest Credit
Carreden Capital Incorporated Integrity Leasing Solutions, Inc. Specialty Funding Group
Carriage Capital International Lease Center, Inc. Spring Leasing Corp.
Caunty Bank Kabot Commercial Leasing, LLC SSA Capital
CBC Group Kenco Equipment Lease Company Strada Capital Corporation
CDR Equipment Leasing, Inc. Keystone Equipment Finance Stoddard & Associates
CFI Accounts Services Kinetic Capital, LLC Straight Financial, Inc.
CFI Financial Services Knightsbridge Capital Sun State Capital Corp.
Charter Capital Lease Servicing Center, Inc. Tatonka Capital Corporation
Chase Industries, Inc. Lease2Loan, Inc. Taycor Financial
Chesterfield Financial Corp. Leaseone TEAM Equipment Leasing, Inc.
CJM Leasing Corp. Leasewell Capital Solutions, LLC Techlease LLC
CK Leasing, LLC Leasing Management Associates Technology Capital, Inc.
ClearView Financial, Inc. Leasing Options, LLC TEQlease
Clune & Company Lewis and Clark Leasing, Inc. Tetra Corporate Services, Inc.
CMG Managment Services, LLC LIA The National Companies
CNC Associates Lion Capital, LLC TIP Capital
Corporate Capital Leasing Grp, Inc. Manufacturers' Lease Plans Tommel Financial Services, Inc.
Corporate Leasing Associates Markay Financial Corporation Triad Leasing & Financial, Inc.
CPS Commercial Mortgage Marquise Equipment Leasing Triangle Equipment Leasing
Cromwell Capital, LLC McCommon Leasing Company Trident Leasing Corporation
Cypress Financial Corp. McKenzie Leasing & Finance TriStar Capital, LLC
David Steed Company McKey Financial Service, Inc. TSS Financial
Dealers First Financial Inc. Mercer Financial Services Tucker Capital, Inc.
Dear Finance Group, LLC Meridian Finance Group Tyler Glenn Company
DEBMAR Capital, LLC Merrow Business Solutions Union Equity Corp.
Denali Capital Corporation Mesa Capital, Inc. United Financial Services
Direct Capital Corporation Mesa Financial Services, Inc. United Lsng Assoc. of American, LTD
Diversity Capital MidAtlantic Financial, Inc. United Leasing, Inc.
DL Leasing, Inc. Midwest Equipment Capital, LLC Universal Equip. Lsng Co., LLC
DLC Leasing Company Millennium Leasing & Financial VenCore Solutions, LLC
Dooling Lease Management Corp. Moceri Leasing, Inc. Vision Capital Corporation
eLease Montana Commercial Credit, LLC. Warren Capital Corporation
Enable Capital Corporation Montgomey Street Financial West LP
Ensign Capital MPG Leasing Willamette Fin. Funding Srvcs, LLC
EPS Funding Group Municipal Asset Management, Inc. Willow Wood Group, LLC
EquiCapital Music Gear Capital Wright Group, Inc.
Equipment Leasing Specialists, Inc. N-1 Technologies Young Electric Sign Company
Evergreen Leasing Partners, LLC National Technology Lsg, Corp.  
Excellease, LLC Nationwide Bus. Capital, LLC  

The above is a static list. To find the full listing and page that you can click on the company and go to its listing, please go here:



Sovereign wins regulatory OKs for ICB Leasing/ 3-bank merger okay

October 24th, 2005 when Sovereign Bank made the announcement of the agreement to acquire Independence Community Bank Corp. of Brooklyn, New York for $42 per share in cash, they also announced that Banco Santander Central Hispano, S.A. of Madrid, Spain had agreed to make a $2.4 billion minority investment in Sovereign, by agreeing to purchase shares from Sovereign at $27 per share, “a significant premium over market,” said Jay Sidhu, chairman, president and CEO of Sovereign. “As a result of this purchase, Santander will own 19.8% of Sovereign's stock and the proceeds of this investment will facilitate our acquisition of Independence.”

Sovereign Bank had some recent controversy, which was resolved,

according to this press release on March 22, 2006: “ Sovereign Bancorp, Inc. (NYSE: SOV) and Relational Investors LLC, Sovereign's largest shareholder, announced that they have agreed to settle all their outstanding differences, to work together to build a better bank for Sovereign's shareholders and other constituencies, and to add two new directors to Sovereign's board.”

Friday, May 24, Sovereign Bancorp reported it won all regulatory approvals for its three-way merger with Spain's Banco Santander Central Hispano and Brooklyn, New York's Independence Community Bank Corp., home of Ira Romoff leasing division.

Sovereign said the $2.4 billion common equity placement to Santander, at $27.00 per share, will take place on May 31, 2006. After the offering, Santander will own 19.8% of Sovereign's common shares outstanding. Effective as of June 1, 2006, Sovereign will acquire Independence by purchasing all outstanding common shares of Independence for $42.00 per share in cash.

In addition, Sovereign announced today that it has elected to postpone the record and distribution dates of the 5% stock dividend it previously announced on March 15, 2006. The stock dividend will now be distributed on July 6, 2006 to shareholders of record on June 15, 2006. Postponing the record date from June 1, 2006 allows for any unforeseen delay in the closing of the pending transactions and ensures Santander will be eligible to receive the agreed upon 5% stock dividend.

This approval evidently clears the way for the merger, which prompted a five-month proxy fight that was later resolved, to close on June 1.

Philadelphia-based Sovereign agreed last October to sell a 19.8 percent stake in itself to Santander for $2.4 billion, and use proceeds to buy Independence for $3.6 billion, as reported by Leasing News. This was a surprise to many, including Ira Romoff who had built up his division to 35 employees and going very strong in the equipment leasing broker market place.

The U.S. Office of Thrift Supervision approved the Independence takeover on Wednesday, according to Sovereign's web site.

On Thursday, the Federal Reserve said it approved the Santander investment. Spain's largest bank has an option to buy Sovereign outright beginning in July 2008. Sovereign shareholders were not required to approve the investment, although they had approved the takeover.

Relational Investors LLC, an investment firm that owned 8 percent of Sovereign's shares, had sought to scuttle the merger and pushed to oust the thrift's chief executive Jay Sidhu, faulting Sovereign's share price and governance practices.

The San Diego investment firm and Sovereign have since resolved their differences, and Relational principal Ralph Whitworth won a seat on the thrift's board as reported by Leasing News.

ICB Leasing is being absorbed by Sovereign Leasing, and many of its employees were given official notice.

“Sovereign Bancorp, Inc., ("Sovereign") (NYSE: SOV), is the parent company of Sovereign Bank, a pro forma $83 billion financial institution with nearly 800 community banking offices, over 2,000 ATMs and approximately 12,000 team members with principal markets in the Northeast United States after giving effect to the Independence acquisition and recently announced branding agreement in which Sovereign ATMs will be placed in CVS/pharmacy locations. Sovereign offers a broad array of financial services and products including retail banking, business and corporate banking, cash management, capital markets, wealth management and insurance. Sovereign is the 18th largest banking institution in the United States. For more information on Sovereign Bank, visit or call 1-877-SOV-BANK.”

Here is the original story on the merger:



Internet Bloggers can Shield Sources

A California appeals court ruled Friday that “bloggers” have the same rights as “traditional” journalists in the right to keep their sources confidential. This ruling has far reaching consequences in regards to material posted and protects both those who supplied the information and those who “reported” it.

Here is the full story in the San Francisco Chronicle:



Good times back for the aviation leasing industry

BY LUCIA DORE (Senior Correspondent)

DUBAI — The good times are back for the aviation leasing industry. "Having gone through a severe dip in 2001 through 2004 we are well back into the recovery phase," said Gordon Dixon, chief executive of Abu-Dhabi based big-ticket lessor, Oasis Leasing, speaking with Khaleej Times. "It's just remarkable how you can go from bust to boom."

Aviation leasing is a highly cyclical business. "There are peaks and troughs and the skill of the business is that you have to smooth that out," said Dixon. It is where the cutthroat world of multi-million dollar deal making combines with the skill of the market trader, to ride you through the bad times and maximize returns in the good. It's also the glamorous end of the leasing industry, the end that grabs the imagination of the media. And this isn't necessarily a good thing," said Dixon.

"Part of the problem with the aviation industry, and for the companies and banks that lend into it, is the media because the media loves drama and airlines are perfect for drama," he said. But it's not Armageddon. "Many of the same aircraft that were abandoned in the [Arizona] desert because demand had dried up are now impossible to obtain.”If you're lucky enough to have them you can lease them out and pretty much name your price," said Dixon. "It's fantastic. The good times are back."

Strong demand for aircraft has also meant a return to higher residual values. "Residuals have probably doubled compared with two years ago," said Dixon. "There are certain aircraft types that no one wants, that will go the desert and will stay in the desert. But for aircraft of 12 years and less that are still in production, there are very strong residuals. It's a sellers' market again." Since Oasis Leasing was established in 1997 and listed on the Abu Dhabi stock market (ADSM) — the main big-ticket lessor in the Gulf region — it has ridden the cycle well. "Although we have never behaved like a bank, we did try and be opportunistic during this [difficult] period where there were limited cash resources open to us," said Dixon.

Between 2002 and 2003 Oasis also tried to keep the leases short — to 2006 or the latest 2007— "which was our feeling of when the market would come back," said Dixon. As a result there are nine aircraft on which leases are about to expire.

"Four will be sold and we have Letters of Intent for all the others at significantly higher interest rates than what we were getting previously," he said. Interest rates are between 40 to 100 per cent higher, depending on the type and age of aircraft.

Oasis Leasing has about 27,000 shareholders and is one of the most widely traded companies on the ADSM. The share price is currently trading at Dh10 per share.

Mubadalla, a government-backed investment company, Abu Dhabi Investments Company and BAE Systems are the largest shareholders, although, over recent months, BAE has been reducing its stake. "They have already sold shares to Mubadalla and I think over time they will download their position. We are not a core business and nor are we strategic," said Dixon.

A recovery in the market contributed towards the company's greatly improved operating performance in the year to December 2005. Revenue increased by 5.8 per cent compared to 2004 to $50.9million and net profit increased from $2.1 million in 2004 to $7.6 million, an increase of 255 per cent over the previous year. "We also picked up money from a lessee who had earlier defaulted," said Dixon, resulting in a $2.4 million contribution. The realization of two investments in operating leasing and the contribution from Project Blue from arrangement and structuring fees were also significant.

Project Blue refers to the acquisition of 25 financed Airbus aircraft worth nearly $1 billion that are operated by 10 of the world's best-known airlines. The Second Rights Issue that took place in August 2005, doubling the companies share capital from Dh 700 million ($190 million) to Dh1.5 billion ($400 million), helped to make this acquisition possible.

In that period Oasis, along with joint venture partners, also increased its investment in aviation assets. It acquired a 1995 B-737-500 on lease to Continental Airlines and a 50 per cent interest in two A340-300 aircraft on lease to Emirates Airlines.

In 2005, Oasis also entered into its first transaction in non-movable assets, through a joint venture with ADIC and Tabreed in two cooling plants. This represents a step in fulfilling the company's original mandate to concentrate on infrastructure related assets as well as ships and aircraft, although aviation will remain its core focus.

Just when the company was thinking of diversifying, there was 9/11. "All of a sudden rather than growth the focus was care and maintenance of the portfolio," said Dixon. By this time the company had bought only one ship, which it later sold. The shipping market became "pretty frothy, so we started to stay clear of that," explained Dixon.

"Now shipping is a blank sheet for us and infrastructure is increasingly important."

In the first quarter of this year, business continued to improve. Oasis recorded a net after tax profit of Dh13 million ($3.5 million) compared with a loss of Dhs4.5 million during the same quarter in 2005. The company also announced revenues of Dh60.3 million over the quarter, an increase of 35.5 per cent over the 2005 figures, while the operational assets reached a value of Dh 2.2 billion, a 16 per cent rise since the end of 2005.

Recent deals include a finance lease with Etihad Airways for six Airbus A330-200 aircraft worth $948 million and an operating lease with Sama, Saudi Arabia‚s first low cost airline for a Boeing 737-300 that is part of Oasis Leasing's existing portfolio. Sama has also said it will lease up to seven 737s in 2006 as the airline readies itself for domestic service soon.

Demand for lease finance was once largely driven by the tax and accounting benefits it offered, but these have been removed. The decision to use lease finance now comes down to two issues, explained Dixon. "First, can a leasing company provide a lower cost of capital than the operator himself? Second, does it provide operating flexibility?"

The business of an airline for example is not necessarily to own assets. "It is to make money from putting people on seats. If by not owning an aircraft you can lower costs and increase operating flexibility then you have done your shareholders a favour," he said.

The trend by airlines to use lease finance is gathering pace. "Many airlines in most parts of the world are increasingly using leasing as a preferred choice of obtaining assets. And that trend tells a story," said Dixon.

He also said there is "a definite higher dependence on leasing among low cost carriers", but added, "what works for one carrier does not necessarily work for another but the trend overall is increasing usage."

That's good news for Oasis Leasing. Revenue projections for the company are expected to top Dh324 million in 2006, from Dh187 million in 2005. And deals are in the pipeline.

"By half year there is probably a lot more we can talk about, because there is a lot of re-leasing going on. There may well be some additional trading of assets and there may be some new acquisitions of A330s," said Dixon.

Part of the company's growth will also be achieved from the diversification it is aiming for, particularly in infrastructure projects. While the UAE has been slow to use lease finance, this is likely to change. Said Dixon: "I think over time leasing will find its place in the region and as commercialisation continues there will be opportunities for lessors and for leasing."

"As the place evolves and develops all this development must be paid for somehow. Governments are going to become very creative about the ways in which they pay for the development. It is not all going to be centrally funded. And what of specific deals? Said Dixon: "We are in a lot of discussions with a lot of people but nothing is imminent."



The Dollar-No Longer Almighty

By: Ron Caruso

The US $ seems to be losing some of its aura, which is both bad news and good news. For US exporters, its good news for US consumers, it may be bad news.

Central bankers from Stockholm to Dubai seem to be retreating from the dollar and buying into the Euro. The IMF recently reported that the dollar's share of reserves held globally dropped to 66.5 percent at the end of 2005 from 71.1 percent in 1999, while the euro-s share increased to 24.4 percent from 18.1 percent over the same time period.

Simply put, the dollar is looked upon as weak and may get weaker, causing central banks to liquidate some of their dollar holdings to avoid significant capital losses, and buying up the euro as a possible alternative reserve currency, which may become more attractive as the advantage of higher-yielding dollar assets is eroded by the currency's decline and other central banks begin to raise their interest rates.

The dollar has fallen against the euro since the common European currency replaced individual country currencies in 2002. The dollar has fallen 28 percent since January 2002 against a basket of seen currencies tracked by the Fed, and is only one percent above its 1995 low. So far this year, the dollar has declined 8.3 percent against the euro and 6.6 percent against the yuan.

The significant trade deficit and budget deficit are expected to continue to erode the dollar's value and may necessitate further hikes in the prime interest rate at some point to defend its value.



Consumers in a lot of debt

National Foundation for Credit Counseling President and CEO Susan C. Keating is concerned about the support her industry is receiving, particularly in the amount owed to creditors via credit cards and mortgage payments.

In her remarks at the May 23 rd NFCC's Spring meeting in Washington, D.C., she noted “...the U.S. credit card debt has exceeded $800 billion and total consumer debt stands at over 2 trillion dollars, and is climbing.

“Consumers owe a whopping $9 trillion in mortgage debt.

“In 2005, U.S. foreclosures jumped 25 percent to a total of 846,982 foreclosures reported during the year.

“Fifty percent of mortgages written over the last two years have been adjustable rate mortgages and many buyers qualified for these loans because of low ‘teaser rates.'

“Sub-prime mortgage lending has reach $700 billion, or 12 percent of total mortgages...To give you a sense of the NFCC's housing reach, during the 2004-2005 program year for the NFCC Housing Intermediary, the NFCC conducted 99,884 housing counseling sessions. In addition, the NFCC conducted approximately 480,000 general counseling sessions of which about 20 percent involved discussion of housing issues.”

This was while rates were dropping, credit card companies and mortgage brokers were hawking to get in on the low adjustable rates now. This is 2006 and the market is just starting to slow down.

To read her entire speech, please go to:



The News about Leasing Continues To Grow


The Equipment Leasing Association has engaged in an aggressive media relations program for the last ten years. Due to reporters misunderstanding and misinterpreting leasing in the early 1990s, ELA began its media campaign in the late 1990s much the way many programs begin – by first reaching out to and educating reporters and editors on leasing's attributes, benefits and contributions. Today, ELA's media program is more sophisticated and multi-faceted, including many different tried-and-true strategies and tactics.

ELA distributes dozens of press releases each year that highlight industry research in addition to the issues at hand. Countering negative reports with commentary and statements also is an important action ELA takes when necessary to ensure inaccurate portrayals of leasing are corrected and resulting coverage is neutral or at least balanced. Sometimes, ELA's involvement in inaccurate story angles has resulted in an article not being published at all – considered an important, yet “invisible,” win for the industry.

ELA also places dozens of articles each year that ELA representatives write to ensure the appropriate message about leasing is carried among diverse industry trades and business journals around the country. Some hits this year:

--More than 60,000 audiologists read in ADVANCE for Audiologists about leasing healthcare equipment in the March 2006 issue.

--Opportunity World readers saw an article on the recent economic impact study produced by Global Insight, which touts leasing's contributions to jobs and the overall economy. Opportunity World reaches 410,000 small business entrepreneurs.

--Just under 60,000 California physicians read an article by Mike Fleming on the growth of IT healthcare leasing in So. California Physician magazine earlier this year.

The association also “earns” media coverage by pitching story ideas to reporters for their original reporting. Usually tied to an issue or new research project, the industry is covered in hundreds of publications each year. For instance:

--Medical Imaging, a publication that reaches 26,000 professionals in medical imaging departments, published a piece on the Carmichael-ELA's healthcare study in the January 2006 issue.

--Business Finance magazine, with 165,000 readers who are primarily corporate finance and other C-level executives, wrote a short but compelling piece on how leasing is becoming an increasingly attractive option and quoted the State of the Industry Report by the Equipment Leasing & Finance Foundation.

--Supply & Demand Chain, a publication that reaches just over 187,000 readers who are purchasers and supply managers in diverse industries, wrote a positive article on leasing citing ELA's statistics and commentary in their April 2006 issue.

--Financial Executive magazine wrote an article about leasing earlier in the year, resulting in just under 60,000 financial officers, from CFOs and corporate controllers to tax executives and treasurers reading about leasing's continued place in capital acquisition.

--Over one million readers of CFO magazine read Mike Fleming's and other industry leaders' comments on lease accounting issues in the August 2005 issue.

Speaking of lease accounting, Mike Fleming and William (“Bill”) Bosco, former ELA accounting committee member and lease accounting advisor, just last week visited with CFO magazine, the Wall Street Journal and BusinessWeek to present a new white paper published by ELA on the proposed changes by FASB. These in-person meetings are an important part of ELA's media program in addition to issuing press releases, white papers and statements when necessary. In fact, Financial Executive will be printing an article written by Mike and Bill on ELA's stance on leasing accounting in an upcoming issue.

On balance, the positive outweighs the negative when it comes to the industry's media coverage. However, while reporters may now more sophisticated about equipment leasing, they are no less susceptible to the sensationalism put forth by leasing foes and scandals. The old adage “If it bleeds, it leads” still holds true. For the last two years, along with leasing's positive media coverage, stories about accounting scandals, frauds, and a number of controversial business dealings in the industry has led the media to make some negative reports. ELA will continue to counter the bad with the good and aim for the most strategic media coverage possible.



Key Equipment Finance Hosts Incoming ELA President


Key Equipment Finance, one of the nation's largest bank-held equipment financing companies and an affiliate of KeyCorp (NYSE: KEY), hosted Kenneth E. Bentsen, Jr. at the company's global headquarters in Colorado today. Earlier this year, Bentsen was named incoming president of the Equipment Leasing Association (ELA).

"Ken" Bentsen

Bentsen's visit was one of a number of stops he is making as part of an executive assessment of the equipment leasing industry. During his stay at Key Equipment Finance, Bentsen had an opportunity to tour the company's corporate headquarters and attend a reception with the company's executive team.

Paul A. Larkin

“It is a great honor for us to host Ken Bentsen at our headquarters and to have an opportunity to introduce him to our executive leadership team,” said Paul A. Larkins, president and chief executive officer at Key Equipment Finance. “Ken has an impressive background and is poised to lead the equipment leasing industry into the future. We are pleased to be recognized as an important player in this market and look forward to working with Ken to continue to raise awareness about equipment leasing.”

Larkins currently serves as chairman of the board of directors for the ELA and was a member of the search committee that selected Bentsen to lead the ELA.

About Key Equipment Finance

Key Equipment Finance is an affiliate of KeyCorp (NYSE: KEY) and provides business-to-business equipment financing solutions to businesses of many types and sizes. They focus on four distinct markets:

• businesses of all sizes in the U.S. and Canada (from small business to large corporate);

• equipment manufacturers, distributors and value-added resellers worldwide;

• federal, provincial, state and local governments as well as other public sector organizations; and

• lease advisory services for manufacturers' captive leasing and finance companies.

Headquartered outside Boulder, Colorado, Key Equipment Finance manages a $12.6 billion equipment portfolio with annual originations of approximately $5.7 billion. The company has major management and operations bases in Toronto, Ontario; Albany, New York; Chicago, Illinois; Houston, Texas; London, England; and Sydney, Australia. The company, which operates in 26 countries and employs 1,100 people worldwide, has been in the equipment financing business for more than 30 years. Additional information regarding Key Equipment Finance, its products and services can be obtained online at

Cleveland-based KeyCorp is one of the nation's largest bank-based financial services companies, with assets of approximately $93 billion. Key companies provide investment management, retail and commercial banking, consumer finance, and investment banking products and services to individuals and companies throughout the United States and, for certain businesses, internationally.

Sites of Reference:

### Press Release ###########################

Connelly/Clark start Vanguard Leasing

BENSALEM, PA, Industry veterans Hugh W. Connelly, CFA and William J. Clark today announced the formation of Vanguard Leasing, Inc., a nationwide small¬ticket leasing company headquartered in Bensalem, Pennsylvania.

Connelly, who started and was Chief Operating Officer of FirstLease, Inc., will be president of the new venture that will originate equipment leases through vendors and lease brokers in all 50 states. In addition, Vanguard Leasing, Inc. will offer portfolio financing services to established leasing companies in need of capital.

“This is a terrific time to be in the equipment leasing business,” said Connelly. “It is my third start¬up and I am anxious to work with Bill and implement our proven and successful formula with Vanguard Leasing.”

Spearheading Vanguard's sales as senior vice president and national sales director will be William J. Clark. Clark plans to hire both in¬house salespeople and field representatives located across the country.

“We will be hiring over the subsequent weeks and expect to be fully operational by the end of June,” said Connelly.

”I am very excited about this opportunity. Together, we bring over 30 years of industry experience, which we can use to employ the “best practices” and serve the needs of our clients at Vanguard,” said Clark.

Additional information can be found on the Company's website at

Connelly resides in Shamong NJ with his wife, Diane, and three children and Clark resides in Newtown Square, PA with his wife, Eileen, and four children.

3325 Street Road Suite 125 Bensalem,
PA 19020
Phone 866¬604¬8160 Fax 866¬604¬8161


### Press Release ###########################

News Briefs----

Strong economy, employers' eagerness to expand present a golden opportunity for new college grads

James McClatchy dies -- a proud newspaperman

Americans Living Abroad Get a Nasty Tax Surprise

GE says China sales to double in 4-5 years

Demand grows for fast Net service

Martha Stewart to contest SEC charges

Harley-Davidson seeks to expand overseas

Internet making all phone calls "local"

Apartment rents expected to rise 5%



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June 3rd & June 4 th Santa Cruz Mountain, CA. Wine Weekend

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Wine Prices by vintage

US/International Wine Events

Winery Atlas\

Leasing News Wine & Spirits Page



Today's Top Event in History

    1886-Seeing eye dog creator Dorothy Wood Eustis born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. As a widow she moved from the U.S. to Switzerland where she continued her experiments in breeding German Shepherd dogs of great intelligence and easy dispositions. Her dogs were soon in great demand all over Europe for police work. A school was developed in Europe to train the intelligent dogs for what we know today as the seeing eye dogs for the blind. She returned to the U.S. to establish the seeing eye movement, setting up a training school for dogs and owners. At her death her school had trained more than 1300 guide dogs for the blind - all based on her breeding acumen.



This Day in American History

    1498 - Christopher Columbus set sail with six ships from Sanlucar in Spain on his third voyage of exploration to the Americas. In reality, he never discovered the main land, only a group of islands in the Bahama's that he thought were islands off of India, thus he named the natives he found on these islands: Indians. And why we call the native American Indians this name. The scuttlebutt of the time was that these natives were the lost tribe of the Hebrews ( I am not making this up. Read your history.)
    1539-Hernando DeSoto, Spanish governor of Cuba, landed at Tampa Bay with men, animals, and equipment as he prepared to scour the southeast in search of gold and valuables.
    1734- Benjamin Franklin published the first American Masonic Book. The Masons were a strong movement for several centuries in America.
    1783- the Pennsylvania Evening Post became the first daily newspaper published in the US. The paper was published at Philadelphia, PA, by Benjamin Towne.
    1806- Dueling was common in early America. Future president Andrew Jackson shot and killed Charles Dickson this day at Harrison's Mills on the Red River, Logan County, KY. The combatants stood 24 feet apart. Dickinson fired first. The shot broke a couple of Jackson's ribs and grazed his breastbone. Despite the injury, Jackson fired and killed Dickinson. It was one of a hundred duels and brawls in which Jackson is said to have participated. Jackson served as president of the United States from March 4, 1829, to March 3, 1837.
    1818-May 30 Douglas and Lincoln not allowed to speak at funeral
    1848- William G. Young of Baltimore, MD patented the “ice cream freezer.” A record of a purchase for a “cream machine for ice” is contained in George Washington's expense ledger under date of May 17,1784, and there were such machines dated earlier, but this is the first patent and production manufacturing of it followed for two centuries.
    1868 - Memorial Day was observed for the first time in the United States -- at the request of General John A. Logan, the national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic. It was first called Decoration Day because the General had seen women decorating graves of Civil War heroes.
    1879 - A major outbreak of severe weather occurred in Kansas and Western Missouri. Tornadoes in Kansas killed 18 persons at Delphos and claimed 30 lives at Irving where two twisters struck within minutes of one another, reducing the small community to rubble. The second tornado was perhaps two miles wide and exhibited multiple vortices.
    1886-Seeing eye dog creator Dorothy Wood Eustis born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. As a widow she moved from the U.S. to Switzerland where she continued her experiments in breeding German Shepherd dogs of great intelligence and easy dispositions. Her dogs were soon in great demand all over Europe for police work. A school was developed in Europe to train the intelligent dogs for what we know today as the seeing eye dogs for the blind. She returned to the U.S. to establish the seeing eye movement, setting up a training school for dogs and owners. At her death her school had trained more than 1300 guide dogs for the blind - all based on her breeding acumen.
    1902-birthday of actor/comedian Stepin Fetchit, Key West, FL Died, Woodland Hills, CA. 1985,+Stepin
    1903-birthday of African-American poet Countee Cullen, Baltimore, MD
    1905-birthday of trumpet player Sidney DeParis, Crawfordsville, IN
    1909-Benny Goodman' birthday
    1909 - A very narrow but intense tornado, rated f4 on the Fujita Scale, cut across the sleeping town of Zephyr, Texas shortly after midnight. 34 people were killed and 70 were injured. Many homes were literally swept away with nothing left on the sites, just vacant lot after vacant lot.
    1910-birthday of African-American Ralph Metcalfe, Olympic gold medal sprinter born at Atlanta, GA. Metcalfe set world records in the 100 years, 100 meters and 200 meters between 1932 and 1936. At the 1936 Berlin Olympics he finished second to Jesse Owens in the 100 meters and won a gold medal as a member of the 400-meter relay team. After World War II, Metcalfe was very active in Democratic politics, serving as a convention delegate, first Illinois Athletic commissioner, elected four times to the US House of Representatives. He founded the Ralph H. Metcalfe Youth Foundation which provided athletic and educational programs for youth. He was named a member of the President's Commission on Olympic Sports in 1975. The federal building at 77 W. Jackson in Chicago was named for him when it was dedicated in 1991. Died at Chicago, IL, October 10,1978
    1911-The first Indianapolis 500. The race was created by Carl Fisher, who in 1909 replaced the stone surface of his 2.5-mile racetrack with a brick one—hence the nickname “The Brickyard.” The first long-distance race was won by Ray Harroun, 29 years old, who drove a 16-cyclinder Marmon Wasp over the 2.5 mile oval course for a distance of 500 miles in 6 hours, 41 minutes, 8 seconds, an average of 74.7 miles per hour. Only 38 of the 44 cars entered completed the race. One contestant was killed in an accident. The race was witnessed by 85,000 spectators.
    1912-During the second running of the Indianapolis 500, driver Ralph Mulford was told he would have to finish the race to collect 10 th -place money. Mulford did so, but it took him eight hours, 53 minutes, more than 2 ½ hours longer than the winner. He stopped for fried chicken several times along the way, and the rule was changed the following year.
    1922- Lincoln Memorial Dedication. If you haven't seen it in person, it is well worth the trip. The memorial is made of marble from Colorado and Tennessee and limestone from Indiana. It stands in West Potomac Park at Washington, DC. The outside columns are Doric, the inside, Ionic. The Memorial was designed by architect Henry Bacon and its cornerstone was laid in 1915. A skylight lets light into the interiors where the compelling statue “Seated Lincoln,” by sculptor Daniel Chester French, is situated
    1923 - Howard Hanson's 1st Symphony "Nordic," premiered.
    1927-- birthday of actor Clint Walker , Hartford,IL ( My father Lawrence Menkin wrote many of the TV show Cheyenne series that Clint Walker starred in, that's the main reason he makes this list.
    1935-Tommy Dorsey splits from Jimmy after disagreement on tempo on “I'LL Never Say Never Again Again” at the Glen Island Casino, New Rochelle, NY. They would not talk to each other until the 1950's, playing only one more time together on a television special.
    1943-Battle of the Aleutian Island. The islands of Kiska and Attu in the Aleutian Islands off the coast of Alaska were retaken by the US 7 th Infantry Division. The battle (Operation Land grab)began when an American force of 11,000 landed on Attu May 12. In three weeks of fighting US casualties numbered 552 killed and 1,140 wounded. Only 28 wounded Japanese were taken prisoner. Their dead amounted to 2,352 of whom 500 committed suicide.
    1943-birthday of Gale Eugene Sayers, pro Football Hall of Fame running back, born Wichita, KS.
    1950-Top Hits
My Foolish Heart - The Gordon Jenkins Orchestra (vocal: Eileen Wilson)
Bewitched - The Bill Snyder Orchestra
It Isn't Fair - The Sammy Kaye Orchestra (vocal: Don Cornell)
Birmingham Bounce - Red Foley
    1956-African-Americans in Tallahassee began a bus boycott in that city. They were protesting the system of segregation that required non-whites to ride in the back of busses.
    1958-Top Hits
All I Have to Do is Dream - The Everly Brothers
Return to Me - Dean Martin
Do You Want to Dance - Bobby Freeman
Just Married - Marty Robbins
    1963 - No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: "It's My Party," Lesley Gore.
    1964- Wynonna Judd birthday, U.S. country western singer who won the Grammy 1985, 86, 87, 89 She was voted top female country artist award in 1994.
    1966-Top Hits
When a Man Loves a Woman - Percy Sledge
A Groovy Kind of Love - The Mindbenders
Paint It, Black - The Rolling Stones
Distant Drums - Jim Reeves
    1967 - Daredevil Evel Knievel jumped 16 automobiles in a row in a motorcycle stunt at Ascot Speedway in Gardena, Georgia.
    1971 - The spacecraft Mariner 9 was launched in the direction of Mars. It became the first craft to orbit another planet, returning many images of Mars. The images revealed what appear to be riverbeds on the surface, suggesting the presence of water on Mars at some point in the past. Mariner 9 photographed the entire surface of Mars.
    1973 - No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: "My Love," Paul McCartney & Wings. The song is McCartney's first No. 1 song with Wings, a group he formed after the breakup of the Beatles.
    1974-Top Hits
The Streak - Ray Stevens
Dancing Machine - The Jackson 5
The Show Must Go On - Three Dog Night
No Charge - Melba Montgomery
    1975 - Alice Cooper received a gold record for the romantic album, "Welcome to My Nightmare". Alice's real name was Vincent Furnier. He changed his name to Alice Cooper in 1966 and was known primarily for his bizarre stage antics. He appeared in the film "Prince of Darkness" in 1987 and had 11 hits on the pop/rock charts in the '70s and '80s, including a pair of million-selling singles: "I Never Cry" and "Poison
    1982-Top Hits
Ebony and Ivory - Paul McCartney with Stevie Wonder
Don't Talk to Strangers - Rick Springfield
I've Never Been to Me - Charlene
Just to Satisfy You - Waylon & Willie
    1977-- "In company with the first lady ever to qualify at Indianapolis -- Gentlemen, start your engines." So began the 1977 Indianapolis 500, and the lady in question was the American race car driver Janet Guthrie.

    1985 - ABC-TV announced that every game of the baseball World Series would be played under the lights for the biggest baseball audience possible.
    1985 -The temperature in Oklahoma City reached a sizzling 104 degrees, making it the highest ever for so early in the season. Also, this marked the very first time the temperature had reached the 100 degree plateau in the month of May at Oklahoma City.
    1986 - Hanford, Washington hit a scorching 104 degrees, breaking the all-time record high temperature for May for Eastern Washington. Yakima, Washington hit 102 degrees, a record high for the month of May for Yakima. Records also fell at Boise and Reno.
    1988 - No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: "One More Try," George Michael.
    1990-Top Hits
Vogue - Madonna
All I Wanna Do is Make Love to You - Heart
Hold On - Wilson Phillips
Walkin' Away - Clint Black
    2001-- Barry Bonds hits career homer No. 522 passing Willie McCovey and Ted Williams to move up to #11 on the all time list, and making him the number one lefty home run hitter in National League history. The round tripper is the 17th hit by the Giant outfielder in May breaking the record set by Mickey Mantle (1956) and Mark McGwire (1998).
    2002-World Trade Center Recovery and Cleanup Ends. A solemn and mostly silent ceremony marked the symbolic end of recovery operations t Ground Zero, the former site of the World Trade Center, after the September 11,2002, terrorists attacks. The last standing steel girder was cut down on May 28. An honor guard carried an empty stretcher draped with an American flag to represent those victims who were not recovered from the ruins. Members of the NYPD, NYPD and city, state and federal workers, as well as family members and Ground Zero recovery teams, participated in the ceremony.

Stanley Cup Champions This Date

•  Edmonton Oilers



Spring Poem

T. Roosevelt

Workingmen believed
He busted trusts
And put his picture in their windows.
“What he'd have done in France!”
They said.
Perhaps he would---
He could have died
Though generals rarely die except in bed,
As he did finally.
And all the legends that he started in his life
Live on and prosper,
Unhampered now by his existence.

Ernest Hemingway, Paris, 1923




The object is to insert the numbers in the boxes to satisfy only one condition: each row, column and 3x3 box must contain the digits 1 through 9 exactly once. What could be simpler?


Ten Top Stories each week chosen by readers (click here)
Top Stories chosen by editor Kit Menkin (chronological order)