Evening Update Friday 27 August 2021

Lenval Hospital in Nice has confirmed it has treated twelve new-born babies for Coronavirus in the last two weeks. They say the babies caught the virus from parents or grand-parents, most of whom were not vaccinated. After a few days treatment at the hospital, all babies were able to return home.

Meanwhile, covid vaccinations may have helped prevent the worst of the Delta virus, but according to Health Minister Olivier Véran, the fourth wave is not behind us it is just declining. He estimated the goal of 50 million primary vaccinations will be reached in the first week of September, and that would increase further with a campaign planned for school vaccinations starting next week.

The price of gas is going up significantly. After an 10% increase in the regulated tariff in July, plus another 5.3% in August, another increase of 8.7% has been announced for next month. The Energy Regulator said increases are occurring across Europe and Asia due to sharp increases on the world market.

France international footballer Benjamin Mendy has been remanded in custody after appearing in court charged with four counts of rape and one of sexual assault in the UK. The charges relate to three alleged complainants, one of whom is under 18. No pleas were entered as the charges were put to him via an interpreter.

Prisons in France remain over-crowded with over 68,000 people behind bars, an occupancy rate of 113%. In remand centres, where prisoners awaiting trial and those serving short sentences are held, the occupancy rate is 132%. The statistics, released by the Ministry of Justice, also show nearly 1,300 detainees were forced to sleep  on mattresses placed on the floor.

A complaint is to be filed with police against AntiVax protestors, by the Mayor of Nice Christian Estrosi.  He described their attempt to enter the vaccination centre at the Palais des Expositions yesterday as unacceptable and an action which led to its temporary closure.

BUSINESS

Apple CEO Tim Cook has cashed in a performance bonus of five million Apple shares worth more than $750m. The bonus was part of a deal he struck when he took over from co-founder Steve Jobs. 

The world’s biggest maker of graphics and AI chips Nvidia is likely to seek EU antitrust approval for its $54 billion takeover of British chip designer Arm. When they do, regulators are expected to launch a full-scale investigation which could take six months or more. Nvidia announced the Arm deal last year, sparking an immediate backlash in the semi-conductor industry.

The Reserve Bank of India has said it may launch a digital currency program before the end of the year. Central banks including those in China, Europe and the UK, are exploring digital currencies that would be issued by them and would essentially be an online version of their respective fiat currencies. It follows a decline in the use of cash and growing interest in crypto-currencies like BitCoin.

SPORT

Football - While this weeks draw with Shaktar Donetsk has put AS Monaco out of the running for the Champions League, the ‘red and whites’ will progress in the Europe League. They have been drawn to face PSV Eindhoven, Real Sociedad, and Sturm Graz in the group stages. In other groups, Marseilles have been drawn against Lazio and Locomotiv Moscow, while Lyon will face Scottish Premiership champions Rangers. In Champions League, Paris St Germain have been drawn against Manchester City.

Cristiano Ronaldo has quit Juventus. The Juventus manager said ‘things change, that’s the law of life, but Juventus remains which is the most important thing’. He confirmed Ronaldo had spoken to him about his intentions to quit and for that reason he will not be called up for any more games. Ronaldo then spent 90 minutes at the training ground to empty his locker and say goodbye to his team mates.

Real Madrid are increasingly confident of completing a deal to sign Kylian Mbappe from Paris Saint-Germain before the transfer window closes on Tuesday. After an initial bid of €160m was rejected, it’s said the new offer of €180m has got both sides talking.  Mbappe has told PSG that it’s his dream to play for the Spanish side.

Golf - Rory McIlroy has claimed a share of the BMW Championship lead, alongside Jon Rahm and Sam Burns, after the opening round in Baltimore. It puts McIlroy 28th in the standings for next week's season-ending Tour Championship, where only the top 30 qualify.

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