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Nancy Porte

I’ve known Nancy Porte for a long time. Probably about seven to eight years. Aside from her genuine niceness, she is one of those people who have the experience and insight to actually teach a teacher. Nancy is the VP of Global Customer Experience at Verint, a company that is focused on CX as its raison d’etre. And she’s really, really good at her job. But she is also really good at thinking through CX-related concepts and values. So, I’d pay attention to what she is saying here. There aren’t too many left-brained applications of right-brained concepts out there. But think about it: Both make it whole-brained. (Here is a link to Verint’s CX video that has Nancy in some clips)

Your stage, Nancy.


We’ve all heard it before: It costs less to keep a customer than to obtain a new customer. Rather than add new logos, companies now understand the value of providing a positive customer experience to grow revenues from their existing customer base. After all, growth is hard to come by when you have dissatisfied customers leaving the stable.

Enterprise customer experience (CX) initiatives, designed to boost customer satisfaction and loyalty, have become part of the corporate landscape. In general, organizations know these initiatives are worthwhile — but to what extent? And what specific actions move the mark?

Business leaders who approve business plans – and funding – are focused on supporting overarching organizational goals of cost containment and revenue growth. Customer experience initiatives aren’t immune to the need for business justification. As we move toward the emergence of data-driven predictive models, we need to understand, what is the financial upside of a happy customer? And what are the specific dials to turn to get existing customers to buy more from your company?

CX professionals

By Roger Bales and Martha Conklin

Many of California’s 33 million acres of forests face widespread threats stemming from past management choices. Today the U.S. Forest Service estimates that of the 20 million acres it manages in California, 6-9 million acres need to be restored.

Forest restoration basically means removing the less fire-resistant smaller trees and returning to a forest with larger trees that are widely spaced. These stewardship projects require partnerships across the many interests who benefit from healthy forests, to help bring innovative financing to this huge challenge.

The California Wildfires in Photos

california wildfires

We are engineers who work on many natural resource challenges, including forest management. We’re encouraged to see California and other western states striving to use forest management to reduce the risk of high-severity wildfire.

But there are major bottlenecks. They include scarce resources and limited engagement between forest managers and many local, regional and state agencies and organizations that have roles to play in managing forests.

However, some of these groups are forming local partnerships to work with land managers and develop innovative financing strategies. We see these partnerships as key to increasing the pace and scale of forest restoration.

Under contemporary conditions, trees in California’s forests experience increased competition for water. The exceptionally warm 2011-2015 California drought contributed to the death of over 100 million trees. As the forest’s water demand exceeded the amount available during the drought, water-stressed trees succumbed to insect attacks.

Funding is a significant barrier to scaling up treatments. Nearly half of the Forest Service’s annual budget is spent on fighting wildfires, which is important for protecting communities and other built infrastructure. But this means the agency can restore only a fraction of the acres that need treatment each year.

The Benefits of Restoration

Forest restoration provides many benefits in

By Hari Kishan and Rahul Karunakar

BENGALURU (Reuters) – The recent surge in the U.S. dollar will last less than three months, according to a majority of foreign exchange strategists polled by Reuters who said the greenback would have a roller coaster ride in the run-up to the U.S. presidential election.

In September, the dollar rose more than 2% – its best monthly performance this year. But the greenback is still down more than 3% in 2020, a loss which was not expected to be recouped over the coming year, according to the Reuters poll of around 80 strategists taken between Sept. 28 and Oct. 5.

While last week’s ill-tempered debate between President Donald Trump and Democratic challenger Joe Biden reinforced concerns the outcome of the Nov. 3 presidential election could be questioned and boosted the greenback, hopes for U.S. stimulus have had markets in the mood for riskier bets.

The expected pull and push in the currency market in the lead up to the election was underscored by the wide range of forecasts in the one-month-ahead predictions compared to the previous month.

While Trump’s positive test for COVID-19 and data on U.S. currency futures positions point to upside potential in the dollar’s recovery, nearly three-quarters of analysts, 54 of 75, in response to an additional question said the greenback’s recent surge would last less than three months.

That included 13 respondents who said the dollar’s run-up was already over, while the remaining 21 predicted it to run for over three months.

“The outlook for the next month or so is messy to be honest, because of the U.S. election… but the dollar will benefit from the ongoing political uncertainty in the next few weeks,” said Kit Juckes, head of FX strategy, at Societe Generale.

EUR/USD and U.S. Treasuries/German Bund

In March 2020, the dollar index rose to its highest level in eighteen years since 2002. The move to a high of 103.96 came during a risk-off period and a flight to quality during the early days of the spread of the global pandemic to Europe and the United States. Since then, the dollar declined, reaching its latest low on September 1 at 91.750 on the nearby December futures contract. In under six months, the world’s reserve currency fell by 11.7%.

The dollar index futures contract trades on the Intercontinental Exchange. It measures the value of the Us currency against other leading reserve currencies. Since central banks worldwide hold dollars and euros as the primary foreign exchange instruments, the dollar index has a 57.6% exposure to the European currency. Governments, central banks, and monetary authorities worldwide manage the currency markets to stabilize the global financial system. The 11.7% move in under half a year was a significant decline in the value of the dollar over a short period. In September, the index bounced from its low and was over the 94 level on September 29, but the US currency’s overall trend remains lower. The Invesco DB Us Dollar Index Bearish Fund (UDN) moves higher when the value of the dollar index declines. The UUP product operates inversely, as it moves higher when the dollar appreciates against the euro and other world reserve currencies.

A rebound in the dollar index in September

The December dollar index futures contract reached a low of 91.750 on September 1. Throughout September, the index made a series of higher lows and higher highs as the dollar recovered.

Source: CQG

As the daily chart highlights, the dollar index reached a high of 94.795 on September 25, a 3.3% rebound from the low. On the final day