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As New Year Comes Around, The World Rings With Celebration

The United Nations issued a somber warning to the world of continued threats of climate change, growing intolerance, geopolitical divisions and inequality, but also expressed "reasons for hope."

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New Year
The World Rings in 2019. VOA

Fireworks displays lit up cities across the world Tuesday as people marked the beginning of 2019.

Tens of thousands of people packed New York City’s Times Square where the traditional ball drop took on extra meaning this year in recognizing journalism and free speech.

In another first, New York police used a drone to monitor the crowds. The camera-carrying drone was be added to the arsenal of more than 1,200 fixed video cameras that will be deployed by police.

New Year
Confetti drops over the crowd as the clock strikes midnight during the New Year’s celebration in Times Square as seen from the Marriott Marquis in New York, Jan. 1, 2019. VOA

In Paris, revelers gathered on the Champs-Elysees to watch fireworks, as well as a light show above the Arc de Triomphe, despite continuing antigovernment protests.

In a televised address, French President Emmanuel Macron acknowledged Monday the French government “can do better” to help people economically.

In Berlin, residents and tourists enjoyed a huge open-air concert at the Brandenburg Gate with fireworks set off at midnight.

Londoners heard the familiar chime of Big Ben at midnight, even though the famous clock is undergoing renovations and has been disconnected. A specially built electric mechanism was used to power the clock’s hammer. Revelers in London also watched fireworks over the River Thames.

New Year
Fireworks light up the sky around the London Eye wheel to welcome the New Year in London, Britain, Jan. 1, 2019. VOA

Russia ushered in the New Year over several time zones, having started in far eastern Kamchatka.

Fireworks were set off over Moscow’s Red Square, and concerts and light shows were held across the city’s parks. More than 1,000 ice rinks were also opened in the Russian capital for celebrators.

Revelers in Dubai saw fireworks and a colorful light show at the world’s tallest tower, Burj Khalifa. Elsewhere in the United Arab Emirates, a fireworks display in Ras al-Khaimah reaching nearly 12 kilometers attempted to set a new Guinness World Record.

New Year
Fireworks explode at the Burj Khalifah, said to be the world’s tallest building, on New Year’s Eve to welcome 2019 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Dec. 31, 2018. VOA

Australia, New Zealand, and surrounding Pacific Island nations were among the first countries to ring in 2019 with fireworks and other celebrations.

Monday evening thunderstorms threatened the fireworks show in Sydney, but an estimated 1 million people gathered around various points in Australia’s largest city to witness the annual show.

Over 400 couples in the Indonesian capital of Jakarta rang in the New Year by participating in a mass wedding ceremony amid tight security.

Thousands of spectators gathered in the South Korean capital of Seoul for a laser show, as well as a fireworks display at the city’s COEX Mall, as a traditional bell-tolling ceremony rang in 2019 at City Hall.

New Year
People attend a ceremony to celebrate the new year in Seoul, South Korea, Jan. 1, 2019. VOA

In Japan, many locals went to temples to celebrate the New Year, while others attended an exhibition match between retired U.S. boxing superstar Floyd Mayweather and Japanese kickboxer Tenshin Nasukawa — a multimillion dollar fight outside of Tokyo that Mayweather said “was all about entertainment.”

Also Read: The New Year’s Eve Ball To Drop For Honoring Journalism

The United Nations issued a somber warning to the world of continued threats of climate change, growing intolerance, geopolitical divisions and inequality, but also expressed “reasons for hope.” (VOA)

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This Decade to be Good for the Financial Health of Millennials

2020s Could Be Decade Millennials Finally Get Ahead

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Millennials
Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share via Email Print this page The 2020s might be the decade faltering millennials finally roar to financial health. Pixabay

By Dora Mekouar

The 2020s might be the decade faltering millennials finally roar to financial health and lifestyle after a tough start brought on by the Great Recession, which lasted from 2007 until 2009.

Coming of age during the worst economic downturn in the United States since the 1930s meant that many of these young people, who are now in their mid-20s to late-30s, experienced a delayed entrance into the job market or accepted lower-paying jobs for which they were overqualified.

Many millennials were hard hit due to a variety of factors, including high unemployment, student loan debt, and an increased cost of living, particularly if they graduated from high school or college during the downturn.

Millennials
Millennials Andy and Stacie Proctor stand in their new home in Vineyard, Utah. VOA

“Since then, we’ve really had a lot of wage stagnation, particularly given that so many millennials started behind where they thought they would be,” says Jason Dorsey, president and lead millennial researcher at the Center for Generational Kinetics. “And it’s taken them longer to recover — if they have recovered.”

Experts also say U.S. millennials are the first generation to feel the full impact of decades of rising inequality in America.

A recent study found millennials are significantly financially worse off than previous generations were at the same age. Since 1996, the net worth of people under 35 has dropped by more than one-third, or 34 percent.

But things could be looking up for these younger Americans now that the average U.S. millennial is over the age of 30 and poised to enter the wealth-accumulation stage of their life.

“They’ve had a lot of time to learn about what it takes to succeed? What are the kinds of decisions that lead to the outcome that you want?” Dorsey says. “And for many millennials, boomers [people aged 55 to 75] are finally going to transition increasingly out of the workforce, which is going to create opportunity for them to actually move up into more management-style roles.”

Millennials
Juan Hernandez, 25, is among millennials nationwide with student debt who are worried about being able to qualify for a loan and come up with a down payment for a home. VOA

Millennials are at the age when Americans traditionally buy homes, start saving for the future, and invest for their retirement. It also will help that many have paid down their student debt now that they’ve been out of college for a number of years.

“And at the same time, many of them will become potentially two-income households and that’s also really helpful for many of them,” Dorsey says. “It’s sort of a perfect storm. It just happens to align with the 2020s. It’s not that the 2020s are this famous decade, but more so that millennials are hitting the times when they should start really saving and investing, and earning higher incomes relative to their spending.”

Also Read- Lower Physical Activity in Adulthood Leads to Obesity: Study

And if millennials blame previous generations for their current financial straits, it might cheer them up to know this is also the time many of them can expect to start inheriting wealth from their more well-off baby boomer parents or other relatives. (VOA)