News - Thursday, November 17th

News

Families Struggle - More and more families in the region are finding themselves in a precarious situation due to rising living costs. A report in Nice Matin suggests that families are being forced to prioritise eating or heating, while local charities are struggling to support people in need. The President of the Restaurant du Coeur charity, Patrice Douret, has said that it helps 1.2M people in France including 12,000 people in need in the Alpes Maritimes. Over half of those are under 25. The local Red Cross charity has launched an appeal for donations saying that requests for help have tripled.

Air France Cabin Crew Strike - Flying to and from France could be more complicated over the Christmas holiday period as Air France cabin crew have threatened strike action. Two unions representing employees issued a warning of industrial action on December 22 and January 2nd. Negotiations on a collective agreement for cabin crew are in progress, relating to their working conditions, pay and progression within the company.

Route du Rhum Tragedy - Two people died yesterday when a motorboat following the Route du Rhum solo trans-Atlantic sailing race capsized off the coast of Guadeloupe, just as the winner was reaching the finish line. The boat had been carrying 11 people in the bay of Pointe-a-Pitre when the accident occurred, and rescuers quickly came but two people were already in cardiac arrest. One of the victims, François Naveilhan, is from Nice and had previously worked at OGC Nice football club.

The tragedy overshadows the race, which was won by Charles Caudrelier in record time. He arrived at the Caribbean island yesterday after 6 days, 19 hours, 47 minutes, 25 seconds at sea. The 3,542-nautical mile race began last week from the French port city of Saint-Malo.

Call For Blood Donors - A vital partnership agreement was signed yesterday between Monaco and France in the presence of Prince Albert to help facilitate the exchange of donor blood supplies between France and Monaco. The Principality is struggling to reach the 5,000 blood donations per year it needs to be self-sufficient.

The Princess Grace Hospital is also launching a new awareness campaign to encourage Monegasques, residents and workers to give blood which is crucial to the treatment of the 800 or so patients who receive transfusions in Monaco each year. Blood donation is possible three days a week but donors must call ahead to reserve an appointment or sign up using the hashtag TeamDonneur.

IPAG Director General dies - The IPAG Business School has announced the unexpected death of its director general, Jean-François Fiorina at the age of just 58. M. Fiorina had taken up his duties at Ipag during the last school year. He had previously been deputy director general of the Grenoble management school - a position he held for 20 years.

Marseille – Cairo Direct - From next month, there will be regular direct flights from Marseille to Cairo. The flights will operate daily from Monday to Friday starting on December 16th. There are currently no direct flights to Cairo from Nice airport.

Fontvieille Shopping Centre Renovations - More details have been released about the plans for the Fontvielle shopping centre in Monaco, as it celebrates it’s 30th birthday this week. The 300 million euro project will mean more shops, a bigger car park, a multiplex cinema and perhaps even a gondola. Dates are still to be confirmed, but constructions are not expected to start before the end of 2024.

Monaco National Day Celebrations - This coming Saturday 19 November, Monaco will be celebrating its National Day. To mark the occasion, Monaco Town Hall is organising several shows, including a drone show, which can be seen from all over the Principality. 200 luminous drones will set off over the Prince’s Palace and into the night skies on Friday 18 November, at 8pm. The 12-minute show will be dedicated to Prince Albert I and his explorations, as the Principality commemorates the 100th anniversary of his death this year. Access to the old town will be closed after 7.45pm for safety reasons.

Boost for Monaco’s Protection of Animals - Monaco’s Society for the Protection of Animals shelter has received a visit from the Princess Charlene Foundation and the Monegasque Rugby Federation, who jointly presented the association with a generous cheque to help with upkeep and costs. The donation will go toward the daily needs of the shelter, including medical equipment for the regular care of the roughly 30 animals housed there.

No ice rink in Monaco - There will be no ice rink this winter in Monaco, due to energy savings. The government made the announcement yesterday that the 20-year-old winter skating tradition in the Principality will be replaced by a roller rink.

Beaulieu Carpooling Scheme - Beaulieu-sur-Mer has become the latest municipality to launch a carpooling scheme. A Facebook page is available to enable people to consult and post messages to organise carpooling to or from the town. It's a public Facebook page called "Co-voiturage Beaulieu-sur-Mer".

Service Station Re-opens - A modernised service area on the A57 motorway has been officially opened today. La Chaberte services is located on the motorway near to Toulon. After a year of modernization work, the rest area now offers users of the A57 an expanded and enriched range of services.

Tribute to RMC journalist - A plaque has been placed in Nice as a tribute to Radio Monte Carlo journalist Anne de la Vallette. Mme de la Vallette had distinguished herself by participating in the successful outcome of a hostage-taking at Nice airport in 1974. A plaque in her name was unveiled in the Mozart garden in Nice.

Business

UK Food Prices - Food prices in the UK are rising at their fastest rate for 45 years, with the cost of basics such as milk, cheese and eggs surging. Food price inflation hit 16.2% in the year to October, up from 14.5% in September. Energy and fuel costs also rose sharply, pushing the overall inflation rate to 11.1%, its highest level since 1981. The latest figures come ahead of today’s Autumn Statement, in which Chancellor Jeremy Hunt is expected to announce billions of pounds worth of public spending cuts and tax rises. Mr Hunt said his plans would aim to bring spiralling price rises under control, adding that he would take "tough but necessary decisions" to get the economy back on track.

Air France KLM - Air France-KLM shares fell more than 10 percent yesterday after the European airline group announced the sale of bonds convertible into new shares worth 300 million euros to pay back state aid and boost capital. Air France-KLM made significant losses in 2020 and 2021 after the coronavirus pandemic slashed passenger numbers to around a third of normal levels, but so far this year they have made a profit. The French and Dutch governments provided 10 billion euros in loans to Air France-KLM to help the airline as planes were grounded during the epidemic. The bond sale is to raise funds to pay back those loans.

Twitter - Elon Musk has said that he expected to reduce his time at Twitter and eventually find a new leader to run the social media company, adding that he hoped to complete an organizational restructuring this week. Musk made the remarks while testifying in a Delaware court to defend against claims that his $56 billion pay package at Tesla Inc was based on easy to achieve performance targets and was approved by a compliant board of directors. Meanwhile a Tesla board member has said that Elon Musk has already identified a potential successor as CEO at Tesla.

Ukraine Aid - Australian mining billionaire Andrew Forrest has launched a fund that is hoped to be worth at least $25bn to help rebuild war-torn Ukraine. Mr Forrest and his wife have committed $500m to the fund, which its organisers say could eventually grow to $100bn. The Ukraine Green Growth Initiative plans to invest in primary infrastructure such as energy and telecoms networks.

 

FOREIGN EXCHANGES

€1 = £0,87 $1,04 SF 0,97

£1 = €1,14 $1,18 SF1,12

$1 = €96 cents, £84 pence, 94 Swiss centimes

BITCOIN down slightly to $16486

ETHEREUM also down slightly to $1202

 

COMMODITIES

An ounce of gold is $1783

Barrel of Brent Crude oil is $91,80

 

MARKETS

FTSE 100 down slightly to 7351

CAC 40 down to 6607

DOW JONES stable at 33553

NASDAQ 11183

NIKKEI down slightly to 27941

 

Sport

World Cup Update - Yesterday, France’s captain Hugo Lloris confirmed that he will not join other European national team captains in wearing an anti-discrimination armband during World Cup matches. The 2018 World Cup winner said “When we welcome foreign visitors to France, we often would like them to respect our rules and our culture. I will do the same when I go to Qatar,”. The World Cup gets underway on Sunday 20th November with hosts Qatar facing Ecuador. 

Opta stats have used artificial intelligence to perform a detailed simulation of all matches in the tournament. Using betting market odds and performance rankings, they have predicted that the tournament will most likely be won by Brazil beating Argentina or France in the final. England are 5th favourite to win and are predicted to be eliminated in the quarter finals.

France begins their defence of the World Cup trophy against Australia next Tuesday before also playing Denmark and Tunisia in the group stages. Following a late call-up for Axel Disasi, six players from AS Monaco will be heading off to Qatar for the World Cup. Only Paris St Germain and Rennes have more representatives from Ligue 1. Two recent signings for OGC Nice will also be performing on football's biggest stage. Kasper Schmeichel of Denmark and Aaron Ramsey of Wales will also be heading to Qatar this week.

In the international friendlies yesterday ahead of the World Cup, there were big wins for Argentina, Czech Republic and the Ivory Coast. Argentina beat the United Arab Emirats 5-0 extending their unbeaten run to 36 matches, the check Republic also won 5-0 against the Faroe Islands the Ivory Coast won 4-0 against Burundi.

Meanwhile in their final match of the year, Scotland were beaten 2-1 by Turkey.

In other premier league football news, Brentford and England striker Ivan Toney has been charged by the Football Association with 232 alleged breaches of betting rules.

Tennis - Novak Djokovic put in a clinical display against the Russian Andrey Rublev 6-4 6-1 yesterday to reach the semi-finals of the ATP Finals. Earlier in the day, he confirmed he would be playing at next year's Australian Open, saying he was "very happy" his visa ban had been overturned. The Serb, a nine-time champion, was deported before this year's event after his visa was cancelled in a row over his Covid vaccine status. He was automatically banned for three years from entering Australia, but on Tuesday learnt a visa would be granted.

Also yesterday, Stefanos Tsitsipas beat Daniil Medvedev in a final set tie break.

Golf - Jon Rahm has branded golf's new world ranking system as "laughable" after it left this week's season-ending finale on the DP World Tour with half as many points as the regular PGA Tour event being played simultaneously in the United States. World number five Rahm is one of several leading names in Dubai for the $10m DP World Tour Championship.

The 50-strong field is headed by number one Rory McIlroy and boasts eight players from the world's top 30. By contrast the PGA Tour's RSM Classic in Georgia has only four golfers from the top 30, with number 12 Tony Finau its highest ranked competitor. 

Cricket - Just a few days after winning the T20 World Cup, England’s cricketers are in action again. The first of 3 one-day internationals started earlier this morning in Adelaide. England batted first and fell to 66-4 before recovering to 151-5 (after 29 overs).

Rugby - The World Rugby Awards are set to take place at the Salle des Etoiles on the 20th November. Held under the High Patronage of Princess Charlene, the awards will celebrate the “on-field achievements of the calendar year and recognise those who made an outstanding contribution to the sport”.

Amongst the nominees are world-famous names of the sport such as Jonny Sexton, Lukhanyo Am, Antoine Dupont and Josh van der Flier. After France’s Six Nations Grand Slam success in the spring, France boss Fabien Galthié has been nominated for Coach of the Year, on the back of their Gland Slam success at this year’s 6 nations tournament.

Fans can also have their say on social media by voting for the two International Rugby Players’ Men’s and Women’s Try of the year. The vote closes this evening just before 11pm.

Weather

Both sunny and cloudy spells, no rain expected during the day but there is a possibility of showers tomorrow evening. Light winds and temperatures rising to 18° around Monaco. Winds are stronger in the Var from the west with temperatures peaking at 20° early this afternoon around St Tropez.

Friday will be mostly good with some clouds in the afternoon.

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