Real estate stock, 138 Student Living and Paramount Trading led gains during Tuesday’s trading of the Jamaica Stock Exchange (JSE). 138SL gained 22.5 per cent to close at $5.33 followed by Paramount up 15.7 per cent to close at $1.70. On the other hand, Ciboney led declines down 16.7 per cent to close at $0.10 and Salada Foods down 8.6 per cent to close at $32.00. The JSE Combined Index advanced by 1,459.19 points (0.30 per cent) to close at 482,191.52 and the JSE Index advanced by 1,450.74 points (0.30 per cent) to close at 489,708.41. The JSE All Jamaican Composite Index advanced by 1,598.69 points ( 0.30 per cent) to close at 537,936.99, so too did the JSE Select Index, which advanced by 68.52 points ( 0.55 per cent) to close at 12,552.48. The JSE Cross Listed Index advanced by 0.15 points (0.17 per cent) to close at 90.10 and the Junior Market Index advanced by 11.51 points (0.39 per cent) to close at 2,939.03. The JSE USD Equities Index declined by 0.12 points (0.05 per cent) to close at 230.51. The JSE Financial Index advanced by 0.69 points (0.52 per cent) to close at 132.85 as well as the JSE Manufacturing & Distribution Index, advancing by 0.41 points (0.45 per cent) to close at 92.37. Overall Market activity resulted from trading in 80 stocks of which 34 advanced, 32 declined and 14 traded firm. Market volume amounted to 23,201,228 units valued at over $150,345,605.59. Sagicor Select Funds Limited - Financial was the volume leader with 6,462,085 units (27.85per cent) followed by Wigton Windfarm with 5,639,486 units (24.31per cent) and Mailpac Group Limited with 3,021,977 units (13.03per cent).

Technology outfit, Amber Group Limited has partnered with National Commercial Bank Jamaica Limited (NCBJ) to launch the Amber Pay mobile app. Amber Pay will allow merchants to process their customers’ payments utilizing a smartphone or tablet, ultimately eliminating the need to carry cash or a physical wallet. The onboarding process is quick and easy and once registered, users will experience the convenience of having an electronic wallet that houses most major debit and credit cards, enabling them to make secure transactions, Amber Pay said in a press release. All current NCB merchants will be able to accept payments through the Amber Pay App through a simple registration process. Merchants who are not currently serviced by NCB can sign up at any time subject to approval by NCB. SME’s make up a large percentage of the business sector in Jamaica and they stand to gain significantly from accepting payments through this solution, according to Amber Pay. What’s more, Amber Pay can be fully integrated with NCB’s portable POS machines allowing for on-the-go payments. Group Managing Director of Amber Group, Michael McNaughton, believes that the real advantage to merchants is the business intelligence that will be generated by the technology. “What we’ve been able to do through Amber Pay, is to provide SME’s with the same tools as big businesses. These businesses will have this information available to them throughthis solution which utilizes Amber’s globally used business intelligence expertise,” he said. Amber Group Managing Director, Michael McNaughton McNaughton noted that solution strongly emphasizes sales and customer analytics; providing merchants with data such as real-time transaction details on a management dashboard, customer demographics and purchasing trends. “We are providing valuable analytics that will help them improve productivity and increase efficiency and profitability while building better relationships with their customer bases while strengthening the local economy,” McNaughton said. Amber Group will provide the technology and innovation that powers the Amber Pay app through its Amber Innovations Limited subsidiary, however, the processing and settlement of all transactions will be facilitated exclusively and securely through NCB’s payment network. Kirk Prendergast - Product and Portfolio Manager, NCB said the financial institution is constantly advancing the way payments are accepted in order to provide greater benefits for both its merchants and customers. “NCB is looking forward to taking Jamaican businesses to the next level of payment processing. Having this solution will help to manage customer relationships, meet and exceed customer demands and drive key business decisions”, he said. The developers of Amber Pay reiterated that customers will no longer have the hassle of lengthy transaction times; they will have the ability to make payments without having to present a card, as well as, comfort knowing there is a reduced risk of card theft and fraud. Features of the Amber Pay app include: Unique rewards platform which allows users to earn points from every transaction Geo-mapping - real-time merchant locator based on your preferred business sector Offers and rewards In-app digital receipts Real-time spend analytics Budgeting tools and detailed transactions history


Attorney-at-law Bert Samuels has rubbished rumours circulating that his client, deejay Popcaan washeld with an illegal gun by cops during a routine spot check on Tuesday. "It's a total fabrication, there is nothing even close to that. I spoke to Popcaan tenminutes ago, and it's a total rumour, nothing like that," Samuels said. The rumour began to circulate as a result of a video making the rounds on social media with a woman narrating the news that the deejay had been held with a gun.

This year's Machel Monday was the last for Machel Montano but the soca king is not retiring from staging events. Instead, come 2021, Montano will be taking his brand to the high seas. Montano announced last night that he will be launching a soca cruise next year. It will be called Melé. It will be the third soca cruise to enter a market dominated by the popular Ubersoca and Soca on the Seas. "Imagine you are on the shore. Machel Monday is the shore and you are going out to the sea...launching into water. I am taking this from the land and heading to sea," he said to the strains of 'Water Flowing'. "Are you ready to go with me? We are going on the water with the greatest Carnival band, we leaving land and for the first time we are going on the sea," he said as a video promo for the cruiseplayed on screen. Loop understands that the cruise will take place either in April or May and will sail from Florida for four nights. Registration for the cruise will open at noon on March 1. For more info visit the site here.

Defending champions Edwin Allen High and St Jago High have surged into the lead heading into Wednesday's second and final day of the 2020Central Athletics Championships at the GC Foster College in Spanish Town. Edwin Allen High are leading the girls' championship after Tuesday's opening day with 108.5 points after 12finals scored, 5.5 points ahead of second-place St Jago High (103 points), while Hydel Highare in third place on 79 points. Holmwood Technical (53 points) and Vere Technical (34.5 points) complete the top five. St Jago High have tallied 112points in the boys' championship after 11 finals scored, a 64-pointlead over second-place Edwin Allen on 48 points, while Bridgeport High are third on 34 points. Knox College (34 points) and Jonathan Grant High (22 points) complete the top five. Seven meet records were broken and one equalled on the day. Three of the meet records in addition to the one that was equalled came in finals. The meet records, which came in finals were the Girls’ Class 3 1500m, the Boys’ Class 1 high jump and the Boys’ Class 2 1500m. The Boys’ Class 2 high jump record was equalled in the final. Edwin Allen’s Rickeisha Simms broke the Girls’ Class 3 1500m meet record. Simms outclassed her rivals to win in 4:44.75 to lower the previous record of 4:45.34 set in 2017 by Aneisha Lawrence of Bellefield High School. St Jago High’s Nekeisha Henry was well beaten into second-place in 4:51.01, while Holmwood Technical’s Cindy Rose finished third in 4:55.92. St Jago High were responsible for another meet record in a final through Demar Marshall who won the Boys’ Class 1 high jump by clearing 2.09m to surpass the previous mark of 2.05m set in 2017 by his teammate Lushane Wilson. Kimarley Cooper of Vere Technical, Kymani Thomas of St Jago High and Odane Smith of Edwin Allen High, all cleared 1.90m for second, third and fourth places. St Jago High’s Tafar-Hi Hinds scored an impressive victory in the Boys’ Class 2 1500m. He dismantled the field in 4:13.70 to erase the previous meet record of 4:14.44 set in 2016 by his teammate Renardo Johnson. It was a one-two finish for St Jago High as Corlando Chambers finish second, well beaten with a time of 4:21.22, while Tavaughn Martin on Bellefield High ended third in 4:22.10. Jordan Richards of Manchester won the Boys’ Class 2 high jump with an effort of 1.90m to equal the previous meet record held jointly by St Jago High athletes Damar Marshall (2016) and Kymani Thomas (2018). St Jago High’s Demario Prince cleared 1.85m for second place, while Andrew Simpson finished third with an effort of 1.70m. The remaining meet record came in the preliminary rounds of the Girls’ Class 2 100m, the Girls’ Class 1 100m, the Boys’ Class 1 100m and the Boys’ Class 2 400m hurdles Brandy Hall of Edwin Allen High won her preliminary round heat of the Girls' Class 2 100min 11.46 seconds to erase the previous meet record of 11.58 set in 2019 by Saskieka Steele of Holmwood Technical. The previous record-holder Steele (11.50) and Edwin Allen’s Tia Clayton (11.55) also dip below the record. Kayla Bonnick of St Jago High won her heat of the Girls’ Class 1 100m in 11.64 to erase the previous meet record of 11.72 held jointly by Vere Technical’s Rene Medley (2015) and Shurria Henry (2019). Javari Thomas of St Jago won his preliminary round heat of the Boys’ Class 1 100m in 10.52 seconds to erase the previous meet record of 10.58 set in 2018 by Odane McPherson of Greater Portmore High. Thomas’ teammate Jamar Treasure also dip below the previous meet record with a 10.54-second clocking. Jaheene Bell of St Jago High won his preliminary round heat of the Boys’ Class 2 400m hurdles in 55.90 to erase the previous meet record of 56.11 set in 2017 by Shamar Brown. Meanwhile, the eagerly awaited clash between impressive Class 1 sprinters Ashanti Moore of Hydel High and Kevona Davis from Edwin Allen High will not take place at the championship. Moore was missing from the 100m and 200m events. Davis only completed in the 200m and easily qualified for Wednesday's final in 23.59 seconds, the fastest qualifying time.Kishawna Wallace of Holmwood with 24.48 is the second-fastest going into the final. Central Championships is the third of four regional qualifying meets for the March 14 Digicel Grand Prix finale - the G C Foster Classics with over $5 million in prizes. The other qualifying meets are Western Championships and the Digicel/Anthrick Corporate Area Championships, which took place last Saturday at GC Foster College and the National Stadium, respectively and Eastern Championships, which will take place from February 24 to 25 at the National Stadium. The Digicel Grand Prix Athletics Championship comprises 10 events. The events are the 100m, 200m, 400m, 800m, long jump, high jump, discus, 4x400m, medley relay and 400m hurdles. One again, school teams (boys and girls) will vie for the title of Digicel Grand Prix champion and $1 million each towards gym equipment or development of their school’s training facilities. There will also be an overall second and third place cash prizes of $500,000 and $200,000 respectively. KC and Hydel High are the reigning boys and girls' champions of the Digicel Grand Prix Championships, which is now in its sixth year.

Top shooters in the Jamaica Skeet Club's Spring Open Sporting Clays Tournament celebrate their win. (From left): Jordan Samuda, Noah Azan, Peter Mahfood, Marguerite Harris, and Ray McMaster, the overall winner at the tournament held earlier this month at the Jamaica Skeet Club in Portmore.

Ray McMaster recently outshot his competitors in the Jamaica Skeet Club's Spring Open Sporting Clays Tournament, at the club's headquarters in Portmore, to win his first sporting clays tournament. McMaster shot 87 ahead of last year's runner up Geoffrey Ziadie and Gerry Chin, who both shot 86 and had to duel in a shoot-off to determine the runner-up. Ziadie got the better of Chin after putting away five of eight targets to Chin's three, to bag the runner-up spot for the second year in a row, while Chin became the 'A' Class champion. McMaster was pleased with the win. "To be honest, I am grateful for the score but it could be better but on the day, the score of 87 won and I am very grateful." He further said,"it was a challenging course, fair target I thought, very good course. Oneil Brown (course setter) at his best again. I just thought it was an excellent course. This course can stand up anywhere in the United States." According to McMaster the tournament condition "was slight windy at times, moving the targets, changing the trajectory of lines of the target and you just had to bury your head and keep looking at the targets. "Occasionally we have a little bit of sun and most time I was begging when I am in the cage for the sun to come up but other than that the overcast did play on all of us, not just me, on all of us and you just had to really focus on the target and looking at them hard." McMaster now looks forward to the Gator Cup. Fifteen Jamaicans will compete in the Gator Cup including McMaster's wife, Wendy. She won the Spring Open last year but did not compete this year as she was off the island. Marguerite Harris won the female section, She shot 63 ahead of Renee Rickhi (59) and Yasmin Benjamin (50). Harris was pleased with the win. She said, "it feels very good. It was a difficult course, challenging, and we had four pairs so that made it a little bit harder." The shooters had to pick off 100 birds or targets on the day. Three of the 75 shooters who competed in the Spring Open Sporting Clays gained promotion to higher classes after winning their classes. President of theJamaica Skeet Club Jordan Samuda won the 'B' Class and will now move on to 'A' Class. Joshua Lym waspromoted to 'D' Class and David Ffrench to 'E' Class. The top three in the various classes were: A Class – Gerry Chin (86), Bobby Chung (84) and Peter Mahfood (83) B Class – Jordan Samuda (84), Robin Rickhi (78) and Robbie Subaran (77) C Class - Craig Davis (84), Damien Sawyer (79) and Omar Francis (77) D Class – Justin Samuda (80), Dale Delapenha (68) and Anthony Desnoes (67) E Class - Joshua Lym (65), Bradley Wright (64) and Richard Rerrie (64) Hunters Class – David Ffrench (71), Steven Silvera (69) and Carlton Davis (63) Ladies Class – Marguerite Harris (63), Renee Rickhi (59) and Yasmin Benjamin (50) Juniors - Peter Mahfood (83), JJ Ralston (76) and Cameron Phang Sang (76) Sub Juniors - Noah Azan (62( and Justin Clarke( 54)

A shooting incident on Monday night has left one man dead and one man warded in a serious condition. The deceased has been identified as Harry Bachan, of Sunset Drive, Benny Road, Valencia. The wounded man was identified as Gabriel Bedeau, 17, of Benny Road. According to police reports on Monday night officers received information of a shooting along Benny Road. Upon arriving, they found Bedeau on the roadway bleeding from multiple injuries. The wounded man was rushed to the Arima District Hospital where he was treated. However, due to the poor lighting along the roadway, Bachan’s body was not discovered until 7:30 am on Tuesday. Up to today, police have no one in custody for the killing. More on this as it becomes available.

This Oct. 22, 2013, file photo shows Serena Williams of the US keeping her eyes the ball. Williams has been voted the AP Female Athlete of the Decade for 2010 to 2019. Williams won 12 of her professional-era record 23 Grand Slam singles titles over the past 10 years. No other woman won more than three in that span. (AP Photo/File)

Serena Williams dominated the decade, on the court and in conversation. There were, to begin with, the dozen Grand Slam single titles — no other woman had more than three over the past 10 seasons — and the 3 1/2 years in a row at No. 1 in the WTA rankings. And then there was the celebrity status that transcended tennis, making everything she did and said newsworthy, whether it was the triumphs and trophies and fashion statements or the disputes with tournament officials, the magazine covers or the Super Bowl ad with a message about women's power, the birth of her daughter or the health scare that followed. Still winning matches and reaching Grand Slam finals into her late 30s, still mattering as much as ever, Williams was selected by The Associated Press as the Female Athlete of the Decade on Saturday after a vote by AP member sports editors and AP beat writers. The AP Male Athlete of the Decade will be announced Sunday. "When the history books are written, it could be that the great Serena Williams is the greatest athlete of all time. ... I like to call it the 'Serena Superpowers' — that champion's mindset. Irrespective of the adversity and the odds that are facing her, she always believes in herself," said StaceyAllaster, CEO of the WTA from 2009-15 and now chief executive for professional tennis at the U.S. Tennis Association, which runs the U.S. Open. "Whether it was health issues; coming back; having a child; almost dying from that — she has endured it all and she is still in championship form,"Allastersaid. "Her records speak for themselves." Gymnast Simone Biles, the 2019 AP Female Athlete of the Year, finished second to Williams in voting for the decade honor, followed by swimmer Katie Ledecky. Two ski racers were next, with Lindsey Vonn finishing fourth and Mikaela Shiffrin fifth. Three of Williams' five AP Female Athlete of the Year awards came during the last decade, in 2013, 2015 and 2018. She also won in 2002 and 2009. "She's been my idol growing up," Biles said. "She's remained humble. She's stayed true to herself and her character and I think that's really neat about an athlete," Biles said. "Once you start winning, some get cocky, but she's stayed true to herself, win or lose." It's the defeats that seem to drive Williams, helping propel her to heights rarely reached by any athlete in any sport. "Whenever I lose, I get more determined, and it gives me something more to work toward," Williams said in a 2013 interview with the AP. "I don't get complacent, and I realize I need to work harder and I need to do better and I want to do better — or I wouldn't be playing the game." With a best-in-the-game serve, powerful groundstrokes and relentless court coverage, she has won 23 Grand Slam singles titles, more than anyone else in her sport's professional era, which began in 1968. More than half came from 2010-19: four at Wimbledon, three apiece at the U.S. Open and Australian Open, two at the French Open. That includes a run of four in a row from the U.S. Open in 2014 through Wimbledon in 2015, her second self-styled "Serena Slam." Williams also was the runner-up another seven times at major tournaments over the past decade, including four of the seven she's entered since returning to the tour after having a baby in 2017. In all, she made the final at 19 of the 33 majors she entered during the decade, a nearly 58% rate. The decade began inauspiciously in 2010, when Williams cut her feet on broken glass at a restaurant and was hospitalized with blood clots in her lungs. Among her many accomplishments, though: — reaching at least one Slam final every year, a streak that dates to 2007; — winning gold medals in singles and doubles (with her sister, Venus) at the 2012 Olympics; — becoming the oldest woman to win a Grand Slam singles trophy in the professional era; — becoming the oldest No. 1 in WTA history and equaling Steffi Graf's record for most consecutive weeks atop the rankings; — leading the tour with 37 singles titles, 11 more than anyone else in the decade. The day she won Wimbledon in 2016, Williams discussed the way she constantly measures herself. "I definitely feel like when I lose, I don't feel as good about myself," she said. "But then I have to, like, remind myself that: 'You are Serena Williams!' You know? Like, 'Are you kidding me?'" Williams continued with a laugh. "And it's those moments that I have to just, like, come off and be like, 'Serena, do you know what you've done? Who you are? What you continue to do, not only in tennis (but also) off the court? Like, you're awesome.'"