Evening Update Monday 18 April 2021

Emergency services are continuing to search for a missing yacht crew member, after a fire completely destroyed a 30 metre yacht in the port of Saint-Mandrier-sur-Mer in the Var. The fire aboard the Austrian registered Lady Amethyst was attended to by 55 fire-fighters, who rescued three crew members, however one is still missing. The recused crew are being treated at hospitals in Toulon for smoke inhalation.

Official figures from Monaco show the Principality has 9,611 official Monegasque citizens, of which 54.4% are women. Life expectancy is also longer for women at 88.7 years compared to just under 85 years for men.  Monegasque nationality brings many privileges, including zero-tax and national priority for housing and employment and all requests for naturalization are approved directly by Prince Albert. In 2021, the sovereign granted nationality to three men and five women.

Marine Le Pen has responded to accusations of embezzlement by saying she is used to the ‘dirty tricks of the EU’. She said will contest all of the accusations made against her. Meanwhile Emmanuel Macron has accused Le Pen of hiding from the people by meeting only those who agree with her views. Macron said he is never afraid to meet with people who do not think like him.

The two contenders for the presidential election next weekend will debate head-to-head on television Wednesday night. Both candidates are looking for votes from the eliminated third place Jean-Luc Mélenchon. Of 310,000 Mélenchon supporters who took part in a survey by La France Insoumise, 33.4% said they would vote for Macron vote, with 62% saying they would either vote blank or abstain.

Santé Publique France have revealed 39 people have been treated for salmonella as a result of eating Kinder chocolate eggs from the affected factory in Belgium. The factory has since been closed as people warned not to eat the eggs.  Santé France say six of the affected are in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region with an average age of three-years-old. Across the EU, the European Food Safety Authority say they are aware of 150 cases across nine countries.

The palace in Monaco has released photos of Prince Albert with Princess Charlene celebrating Easter with the children. The photographs, which are the first since last year, show the family attending a private Easter service and later beside the palace swimming pool. Later in the day, His Serene Highness tested negative for Covid and was able to attend the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters tennis finals. 

2022 is set to be a historic year for tourism in France with new data released by the Gites de France showing reservations up 49.56% on last year. Hotels and camp sites were practically fully booked over Easter with the occupation rate much higher than pre-pandemic levels

An anonymous player has won €20 million on the French Loto this week-end, putting him among the 10 biggest winners of all-time in France. The lucky player correctly guessed the numbers 4-21-27-30-41 and the bonus number 6

The first 100% organic Leclerc supermarket in France has closed four years after it first opened with a mission to “become the European leader in organic” produce. The group said it was rebranding the shop as a regular “Leclerc Express” store due to a lack of clients.

BUSINESS

Elon Musk has tweeted ‘Love Me Tender’ in response to Twitters adoption of a poison pill strategy to protect it from Musk’s $43 billion cash offer to buy the company. Shares of Twitter are up today but nowhere near Musk’s offer of $54 a share.

On the American markets, stock index futures have dipped today as Treasury yields continued to rise in expectation of a tighter monetary policy. With the mega-caps, as Netflix, Tesla and Johnson & Johnson are set to report this week, analysts expect aggregate annual S&P 500 earnings to grow 6.3%, which is less optimistic than the 7.5% projected at the start of the year.

China’s economy grew faster than expected despite the impact of Covid, with first-quarter GDP rising 4.8%, topping expectations of a 4.4% increase. However, official figures also show the unemployment rate across 31 major Chinese cities rose from 5.4% in February to 6% in March. That’s the highest on record according to official data going back to 2018.

SPORT

Football - AS Monaco are in training for this Wednesdays huge derby match against OGC Nice. The match is not just a clash between local giants but critical for the European aspirations of both clubs.

Both sides are on-form with Monaco putting on a thrilling 3-2 win against Renne on Friday. It’s their fourth win in a row and puts them at sixth place in the league. Meanwhile Nice moved back up to 4th place with a 2-1 win against Lorient. The derby game will take place at Stade Louis II this Wednesday with kick-off at 6pm.

In the UK, this year’s FA Cup final will be between Chelsea and seven time winners Liverpool. It’s a repeat of this year’s League Cup Final which Liverpool won on penalties. The final will be played on May 14th.

Rugby - Munster have confirmed they are unable to play their European Cup Quarter Final match at their home ground as it’s been pre-booked by Ed Sheeran for two concerts. The game against Toulouse will be moved to Dublin instead in early May.

Boxing - Dillian Whyte has hit back at his critics ahead of his heavyweight title clash against Tyson Fury on Saturday, saying that he won't be drawn into mind games. Whyte refused to appear at a press conference to launch the fight, opting instead to remain at his training camp in Portugal. Tyson described the move as ‘showing the white flag’. In retaliation, Whyte said he considered Tyson’s mouth to be like a toilet which he just keeps on flushing and flushing and flushing.

Tennis - Stefanos Tsitsipas is celebrating this weekend after winning the Rolex Monte-Carlo Tennis Masters yesterday.  However, his opponent, the rising Spanish player Alejandro Davidovich Fokina, gave the Greek a run for his money with the match being decided by a tense tie break.

After being presented the winner’s trophy by Prince Albert of Monaco, Tsitsipas told the crowd it was a special win because when he was just six, the Masters at Monaco was the first tennis tournament he ever attended and it was that which gave him the ambition to take up tennis. Today, Tsitsipas is a resident of Monaco and trains regularly with his coach near Nice.

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