Thursday, 29 Oct 2020

U.K. Car Sales Stumble Again, Erasing Hopes of Quick Recovery

France to Close Paris Bars as Covid-19 Cases Spike, AFP Says

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The French government is planning to shut down bars in the Paris region and impose other new restrictions in the area as the country struggles to contain a spike of new coronavirus cases and avoid a second nationwide lockdown, according to Agence France Presse.

Paris and its inner suburbs will be declared a maximum alert zone on Monday, then the measures will go into effect Tuesday to last 15 days, AFP reported late on Sunday, citing a statement from France’s Prime Minister’s Office.

The benchmarks for French cities fall under local virus-alert criteria set out last month by President Emmanuel Macron’s government, which says it doesn’t want a second nationwide lockdown.

France’s virus cases increased the most in Europe over the past two months and monthly virus-related deaths tripled in September. The country reported a record number of laboratory-confirmed new cases on Saturday.

U.K. Restaurant Chain PizzaExpress Unit Files for Chapter 15

A unit of British restaurant chain PizzaExpress is seeking bankruptcy protection in the U.S.

PizzaExpress Financing 2 Plc filed for Chapter 15 in the Southern District of Texas Court, according to filing.

Chapter 15 shields foreign companies from lawsuits by U.S. creditors while they reorganize in another country.

The iconic restaurant chain had been struggling even before the pandemic as changing dining trends reduced demand for its pizzas, and as Hony’s efforts to expand its business outside the U.K. stretched its balance sheet.

Covid-19 lockdown measures forced it to close most of its restaurants earlier this year, making a financial and business restructuring more urgent. The company failed to pay 20 million pounds of bond interest that came due July 31.

As part of a restructuring proposal that PizzaExpress announced in August, bondholders agreed to take over most of the business, while current owner Hony Capital will keep the Chinese operations.

Live Updates: 2020 presidential race continues following Trump's COVID-19 diagnosis

Trump’s medical team gives health update after COVID-19 diagnosis

Several close advisers and allies, including 2 Republican Senators on the Judiciary Committee, also tested positive for the virus; Alex Hogan reports from New York.

The 2020 presidential election campaign has been thrown into uncertainty after President Trump announced on Friday he had tested positive for the coronavirus.

With four weeks left until Election Day, it was unclear what the campaign trail will look like going forward.

Trump is at Walter Reed medical center and could be discharged as early as Monday.

Follow below for the latest updates. Mobile users click here.

Trump leaves hospital! POTUS pays surprise visit to supporters after coronavirus diagnosis

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While in the car, he waved at supporters and reporters in the area.

He later returned to hospital, where he is receiving treatment for Covid-19, the White House announced.

Man shot Sunday night near Colfax and Pearl in Denver – The Denver Post

Denver Police is investigating a shooting that sent one man to the hospital on Sunday night.

The shooting occurred at East Colfax Avenue and North Pearl Street. The man shot went to a hospital where received treatment for non-life-threatening injuries.

Anyone has information on this is being asked by police to call Crime Stoppers at 720-913-7867.

— Denver Police Dept. (@DenverPolice) October 5, 2020

This is a developing story.

Live coverage: DPM Heng Swee Keat's ministerial statement on progress in combating Covid-19, S'pore's fiscal position

Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat, speaking in Parliament on Monday (Oct 5), outlines the progress Singapore has made in combating Covid-19, and its strategies to emerge stronger from the crisis.

U.K. Car Sales Stumble Again, Erasing Hopes of Quick Recovery

U.K. car sales fell for a second straight month, sliding 4% in the country’s weakest September for auto purchases in more than 20 years.

The decline in demand, revealed Monday in preliminary data from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, follows a 5.8% drop in August and appears to dash hopes for an early recovery from a coronavirus-driven slump.

The figures are especially disappointing because September is usually a key month for U.K. auto retailers, with a change of year on license plates spurring purchases. The declines makes for the worst September since the two-plate system was introduced in 1999, the SMMT said.

Car registrations in July brought the first monthly sales gain of the year as showrooms reopened following months-long lockdowns. While that provided some relief as the industry cut jobs and capacity to weather the pandemic, the latest numbers suggest it was a blip representing limited pent-up demand.

The percentage drop was limited by sluggish sales in September 2019, with the dip stretching to 16% when compared with the 10-year average, accoding to the SMMT. The industry is facing more than 21 billion pounds ($27 billion) in lost revenue by the end of the year, the group said.

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