Sam Meredith
Sam Meredith
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Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine found to be effective against Covid variant discovered in UK

Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine found to be effective against Covid variant discovered in UK

Key PointsLONDON — The coronavirus vaccine developed by - is likely to be just as effective against a highly transmissible mutant strain of the virus that was first discovered in the U.K., according to a study by the two companies.The variant, known as B.1.1.7., was estimated to have first emerged in the U.K. in September 2020. It has an unusually high number of mutations and is associated with more efficient and rapid transmission.The characteristics of the variant had led to concerns about the effectiveness of Covid vaccines against it.However, research on preprint server bioRxiv showed...

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Sam Meredith
6d ago
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Italy's government in crisis after former PM pulls support for ruling coalition

Italy's government in crisis after former PM pulls support for ruling coalition

Key PointsLONDON — Italy's former Prime Minister Matteo Renzi on Wednesday announced his intention to pull his centrist party out of the ruling coalition, plunging the country back into political chaos as it battles a resurgence of the coronavirus.Speaking at a highly-anticipated press conference, Renzi said two ministers from his Italia Viva party would resign. It leaves the government without a majority in parliament and on the brink of collapse.Support from Renzi's party had been critical to the survival of the coalition led by the anti-establishment Five Star Movement and the...

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Sam Meredith
Jan 13
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BioNTech says Covid vaccine is effective against key new strains; to publish more data in days

BioNTech says Covid vaccine is effective against key new strains; to publish more data in days

Key PointsBioNTech CEO: Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine effective against strains in UK, South AfricaThe CEO of German pharmaceutical company has said he remains confident the company's Covid vaccine, developed in partnership with , will be effective against the highly-infectious variants of the virus discovered in the U.K. and South Africa."We are confident that based on the mechanism of our vaccine, even though there are mutations, we believe that the immune response which is induced by our vaccine could also deal with (a) mutated virus," Dr. Ugur Sahin, co-founder and CEO of BioNTech, told...

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Sam Meredith
Jan 11
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1 in 30 Londoners has Covid as city mayor declares a major incident

1 in 30 Londoners has Covid as city mayor declares a major incident

Key PointsLONDON — London Mayor Sadiq Khan on Friday declared a major incident over the rapid spread of the coronavirus in the U.K.'s capital city.He had previously warned the virus was "out of control" and the National Health Service was "on the cusp of being overwhelmed.""I have declared a major incident in London because the threat this virus poses to our city is at crisis point," Khan said via Twitter."One in 30 Londoners now has COVID-19. If we do not take immediate action now, our NHS could be overwhelmed and more people will die," he added.Major incidents have previously been...

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Sam Meredith
Jan 8
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OECD lifts global economic outlook on vaccine progress, sees China driving recovery

OECD lifts global economic outlook on vaccine progress, sees China driving recovery

Key PointsGovernments must maintain fiscal support, OECD's Chief Economist saysLONDON — The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) expects the global economy to build momentum over the coming two years, with real gross domestic product (GDP) growth projected to reach pre-pandemic levels by the end of 2021."For the first time since the pandemic began, there is now hope for a brighter future," the OECD said Tuesday, citing progress with coronavirus vaccines and unprecedented government and global bank action to mitigate the economic impact of the crisis."The worst has...

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Sam Meredith
Dec 1
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Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid vaccine shows an average 70% effectiveness in preventing the virus

Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid vaccine shows an average 70% effectiveness in preventing the virus

Key PointsLONDON — British pharmaceutical giant said Monday an interim analysis of clinical trials showed its coronavirus vaccine has an average efficacy of 70% in protecting against the virus.It comes after a string of encouraging vaccine results in recent weeks, following late-stage trial readouts from - and .Pfizer and Moderna reported preliminary results showing that their respective vaccines were around 95% effective.It is hoped a Covid vaccine could help to bring an end to the coronavirus pandemic that has claimed more than 1.3 million lives worldwide.The AstraZeneca vaccine,...

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Sam Meredith
Nov 23
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Dr. Fauci says it appears Covid strain from Danish mink farms won't be a problem for vaccines

Dr. Fauci says it appears Covid strain from Danish mink farms won't be a problem for vaccines

Key PointsLONDON — America's leading expert on infectious disease said a mutated version of the coronavirus found in Denmark's mink farms does not appear to have derailed hopes for a vaccine.The Danish government ordered a earlier this month, shortly after it was discovered a new coronavirus strain had passed from the animals to humans.The World Health Organization has since of biosecurity measures in mink farms across the globe to prevent further spillover events.The United Nations agency said it is a "" from deciding on whether the mutation may have any implications for diagnostics or...

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Sam Meredith
Nov 13
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Dr. Fauci says ‘help is on the way’ with vaccines, but doubts Covid can ever be eradicated

Dr. Fauci says ‘help is on the way’ with vaccines, but doubts Covid can ever be eradicated

Key PointsLONDON — White House coronavirus advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci said Thursday a vaccine to bring an end to the pandemic now appears to be on the horizon, but he warned it may not be enough to help eradicate the disease.Speaking at a webinar hosted by think tank Chatham House, America's leading expert on infectious disease dismissed the idea that people may become complacent following a breakthrough in the race to deliver a safe and effective vaccine."I think the opposite. ... I really do" Fauci said. "The cavalry is coming but don't put your weapons down, you better keep fighting...

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Sam Meredith
Nov 12
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Pfizer, BioNTech say Covid vaccine is more than 90% effective—'great day for science and humanity'

Pfizer, BioNTech say Covid vaccine is more than 90% effective—'great day for science and humanity'

Key PointsPfizer CEO on Covid vaccine efficacy: 'It is a great day for humanity' and announced Monday their coronavirus vaccine was more than 90% effective in preventing Covid-19 among those without evidence of prior infection, hailing the development as "a great day for science and humanity.""I think we can see light at the end of the tunnel," Pfizer Chairman and CEO Dr. Albert Bourla told CNBC's Meg Tirell on "." "I believe this is likely the most significant medical advance in the last 100 years, if you count the impact this will have in public health, global economy."The announcement...

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Sam Meredith
Nov 9
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A new coronavirus variant is seen spreading across Europe, research says

A new coronavirus variant is seen spreading across Europe, research says

Business News and FinanceVIEW IN APPA Facebook iconA Twitter iconA LinkedIn iconAn email iconKEY POINTS LONDON — A variant of the coronavirus that is believed to have originated in Spain has spread across Europe and now accounts for most of the new cases reported in several countries in the region, according to the .The research, which is due to published on Thursday and has not been peer reviewed, details how an international team of scientists has closely monitored the coronavirus through its genetic mutations.Each variant of the coronavirus has its own genetic signature, meaning it can...

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Sam Meredith
Oct 29
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Coronavirus antibodies decline after infection, study finds, raising questions about herd immunity

Coronavirus antibodies decline after infection, study finds, raising questions about herd immunity

Key PointsLONDON — Antibodies against the coronavirus fell as people recovered from Covid-19, according to the findings of a major U.K. study, potentially dealing a blow to those pushing for so-called herd immunity.Researchers from Imperial College London screened 365,000 people in England over three rounds of testing between June 20 and Sept. 28.Analysis of finger-prick tests carried out at home found that rather than people building immunity over time the number of people with antibodies that can fight Covid declined roughly 26%.Dr. Fauci pushes back on Sen. Rand Paul's claim that New...

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Sam Meredith
Oct 27
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Virus that causes Covid-19 can survive for 28 days on common surfaces, research says

Virus that causes Covid-19 can survive for 28 days on common surfaces, research says

Key PointsLONDON — The coronavirus can survive for 28 days on surfaces such as glass, steel, vinyl, paper and polymer banknotes, , reinforcing the importance of effective cleaning and handwashing to curb the spread of Covid-19.The from Australia's national science agency, CSIRO, appeared to show that SARS-CoV-2 can survive on surfaces for significantly longer than many had anticipated.The study, which was peer reviewed, also found the virus was "extremely robust" at lower temperatures, remaining infectious for a longer period when compared with higher temperatures.The researchers tested the...

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Sam Meredith
Oct 12
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'Follow the rules': Boris Johnson urges Brits to stick to the Covid plan to avoid a full lockdown

'Follow the rules': Boris Johnson urges Brits to stick to the Covid plan to avoid a full lockdown

Key PointsLONDON — U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Wednesday called on Britons to stick to the rules in order to avoid tougher coronavirus restrictions, as the country grapples with a swift upsurge in the number of reported coronavirus cases."The best way forwards to protect the NHS, save lives, to keep our children in school and the economy moving is to follow the rules wherever we live," Johnson said."I don't want to go back to a national lockdown where the overall guidance is stay at home," Johnson said, responding to a question sent in from a member of the public. "That is not what...

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Sam Meredith
Sep 30
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UK reaches agreement with Japan to clinch its first major post-Brexit trade deal

UK reaches agreement with Japan to clinch its first major post-Brexit trade deal

Keep Me Logged InKey PointsLONDON — The U.K. and Japan on Friday agreed in principle to a trade deal, in a move that sees the U.K. strike its first major agreement post-Brexit.The announcement, which the U.K. hailed as a "historic moment," comes as Britain with its closest trading partners in the European Union.Britain's trade department said U.K. businesses would benefit from tariff-free trade on 99% of exports to Japan. It also suggested the deal would see the country increase trade with Japan by £15.2 billion ($19.5 billion). The deal will include digital and data provisions that go "far...

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Sam Meredith
Sep 11
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Russia says coronavirus vaccine to be tested on 40,000 volunteers amid safety concerns

Russia says coronavirus vaccine to be tested on 40,000 volunteers amid safety concerns

Keep Me Logged InKey PointsRussia claimed its coronavirus vaccine, the first to be registered worldwide, will soon be tested on 40,000 people in order to test its reliability. The vaccine, called "Sputnik V," has been hailed by Russian authorities as safe and effective after it received domestic regulatory approval earlier this month. Full-scale production is due to start in September.Health experts and public officials, however, have over the proposed vaccine, citing the speed of its approval and the lack of available data. The results of two months of small-scale human trials in Russia...

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Sam Meredith
Aug 20
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EU to impose sanctions on Belarusian officials for election fraud, calls for a new vote

EU to impose sanctions on Belarusian officials for election fraud, calls for a new vote

Keep Me Logged InKey PointsThe European Union announced plans to impose sanctions on Belarusian officials on Wednesday, with leaders of the 27 heads of state in agreement a new vote would be required following the contested re-election of President Alexander Lukashenko.European Council President Charles Michel said in a video briefing that the bloc would soon impose sanctions on a "substantial number" of individuals responsible for violence, repression, and election fraud. The bloc had previously described the vote as "neither free nor fair." "We stand firmly behind the right of the...

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Sam Meredith
Aug 19
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Turkey's pursuit of contested oil and gas reserves has ramifications 'well beyond' the region

Turkey's pursuit of contested oil and gas reserves has ramifications 'well beyond' the region

Keep Me Logged InKey PointsAn intensifying dispute in the Eastern Mediterranean over oil and gas exploration rights at sea has seen tensions flare between Turkey and Greece, with one regional expert describing the situation as the "most dangerous" in years.Turkey and Greece, both members of NATO, are at loggerheads over competing claims to energy reserves in contested Eastern Mediterranean waters. The countries and territories of this region include Greece, Turkey, Cyprus, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Israel, Palestine, Egypt and Libya.Last week, Turkey sent the Oruc Reis survey vessel, escorted...

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Sam Meredith
Aug 18
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Belarus' president remains defiant after largest protest in country's history, NATO 'closely monitoring' situation

Belarus' president remains defiant after largest protest in country's history, NATO 'closely monitoring' situation

Keep Me Logged InKey PointsBelarusian President Alexander Lukashenko has rejected calls to quit following his contested re-election, warning that the former Soviet republic would "perish as a state" if it was forced to repeat the vote.Opposition protesters took to the streets for the eighth consecutive day of anti-government demonstrations on Sunday, demanding the departure of the country's .It comes as anger grows over reports of police violence and allegations of electoral fraud and poll-rigging in the August 9 presidential election.Lukashenko, who has been in power since 1994, claimed a...

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Sam Meredith
Aug 17
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'Europe's last dictator' battles coronavirus, mass protests and suspected Russian mercenaries to stay in power

'Europe's last dictator' battles coronavirus, mass protests and suspected Russian mercenaries to stay in power

Business News and FinanceVIEW IN APPA Facebook iconA Twitter iconA LinkedIn iconAn email iconKEY POINTS The most competitive presidential election campaign in Belarus for decades has seen a wave of discontent against the eastern European country's authoritarian leader coincide with a dramatic escalation in tensions with Russia.Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko, 65, is seeking his sixth term in office having been in power since 1994. The opposition has united behind Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, 37, who despite initially being reluctant to stand after her husband was barred from running...

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Sam Meredith
Aug 3
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Shell's second-quarter profit slumps 82% on coronavirus hit to oil prices, energy demand

Shell's second-quarter profit slumps 82% on coronavirus hit to oil prices, energy demand

Keep Me Logged In Oil giant on Thursday reported a sharp drop in net profit for the three months through to the end of June, following an unprecedented period of energy market turmoil and significantly weaker oil and gas prices.The Anglo-Dutch company reported adjusted earnings of $638 million for the second quarter of 2020. That compared with net profit of $3.5 billion over the same period a year earlier and $2.9 billion in the first three months of 2020.Analysts had warned that "Big Oil" companies, referring to the world's largest energy majors, were likely to report "" second-quarter...

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Sam Meredith
Jul 30
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U.S.-China war of words will be 'tough and scary' through the election, Jim O'Neill says

U.S.-China war of words will be 'tough and scary' through the election, Jim O'Neill says

Keep Me Logged InKey PointsThe world's two largest economies appear set to dial up their exchange of sharp language ahead of the U.S. presidential election in November, according to the former chairman of Goldman Sachs Asset Management.It has amplified concerns about whether simmering diplomatic tensions between the U.S. and China could soon spill over.China's Foreign Ministry on Friday that it is revoking the license for the U.S. consulate general in the southwestern city of Chengdu. The retaliatory move came shortly after the U.S. had China to close its consulate in Houston.When asked on...

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Sam Meredith
Jul 24
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State Department orders China to close consulate in Houston — China vows retaliation

State Department orders China to close consulate in Houston — China vows retaliation

Keep Me Logged InKey PointsU.S. State Department just ordered China to close its consulate in HoustonThe State Department confirmed on Wednesday the U.S. has ordered China to close its consulate in Houston, prompting Beijing to insist on firm countermeasures unless Washington immediately reverses its decision.The move is an escalation of political tensions between the world's two largest economies.State Department spokesperson Morgan Ortagus said the directive to close China's consulate general Houston was made to protect American intellectual property and the private information of its...

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Sam Meredith
Jul 22
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Hundreds of scientists claim WHO is downplaying risk of airborne spread of coronavirus

Hundreds of scientists claim WHO is downplaying risk of airborne spread of coronavirus

Keep Me Logged InKey PointsA group of 239 scientists from 32 different countries have published an open letter to the World Health Organization and other health agencies, calling for them to update their information on the coronavirus.In an article entitled "It is Time to Address Airborne Transmission of COVID-19," the group of scientists argue that the WHO needs to give more weight to the role of the airborne spread of Covid-19. The New York Times first  the news on Saturday."There is significant potential for inhalation exposure to viruses in microscopic respiratory droplets...

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Sam Meredith
Jul 6
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Oil major Shell to write down up to $22 billion of assets in second quarter

Oil major Shell to write down up to $22 billion of assets in second quarter

Keep Me Logged InKey PointsOil giant  said on Tuesday it will write down the value of its assets by up to $22 billion in the second quarter, after revising down its long-term outlook for oil and gas prices.It comes after the energy company announced in mid-April an ambition to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050.Shell said in a statement to investors that it had reviewed a significant portion of its business given the impact of the coronavirus pandemic and the "ongoing challenging commodity price environment."It said it would take aggregate post-tax impairment charges in the...

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Sam Meredith
Jun 30
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Goldman Sachs says the only other commodity 'looking as precarious as oil' is livestock

Goldman Sachs says the only other commodity 'looking as precarious as oil' is livestock

Business News and FinanceVIEW IN APPA Facebook iconA Twitter iconA LinkedIn iconAn email iconKEY POINTS The head of commodities research at believes the two big commodity stories looking ahead to 2021 and beyond will concern oil and livestock. The forecast comes at a time when the coronavirus pandemic has prompted many countries across the globe to effectively shut down. It has created an unprecedented demand shock in energy markets, with U.S. oil prices for the first time ever last month.Both major oil benchmarks have registered modest gains in recent weeks. However, Brent crude futures...

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Sam Meredith
May 13
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