COVID-19 Deaths Cross 130000 In US

With 359 new deaths reporting in the last 24 hours, the total COVID-19 death toll in the U.S. increased to 130306, as per Johns Hopkins University’s latest update Tuesday.

The daily infection rate rose to 49,896, taking the number of coronavirus cases in the country to 2,888,729.

Texas’ coronavirus hospitalizations hit new daily high of 10710 on Monday, taking the total number of COVID-19 patients in the state above 200,000.

In the wake of a massive surge in infection rate, the mayor of Miami-Dade County declared curfew. An executive order signed by Carlos A. Giménez Monday requires indoor dining at restaurants, gyms, banquet facilities and other entertainment venues to shut down from Wednesday.

Dr Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, warned that the United States was still “knee-deep in the first wave” of the pandemic.

Following is the latest state-wise infection and casualty data of the worst-affected regions.

New York (32206 deaths, 397131 infections), New Jersey (15211 deaths, 173402 infections), Michigan (6218 deaths, 72941 infections), Massachusetts (8183 deaths, 109974 infections), Louisiana (3288 deaths, 65226 infections), Illinois (7020 deaths, 147251 infections), Pennsylvania (6753 deaths, 94403 infections), California (6373 deaths, 264681 infections), Connecticut (4335 deaths, 46717 infections), Texas (2628 deaths, 194932 infections), Georgia (2860 deaths, 95516 infections), Virginia (1853 deaths, 65748 infections), Maryland (3243 deaths, 69632 infections), Florida (3731 deaths, 200111 infections), Indiana (2693 deaths, 48201 infections), Ohio (2911 deaths, 57150 infections), Colorado (1701 deaths, 34048 infections), Minnesota (1508 deaths, 38136 infections), Arizona (1825 deaths, 98103 infections) Washington (1359 deaths, 35898 infections), North Carolina (1423 deaths, 72992 infections), Mississippi (1111 deaths, 30900 infections), Tennessee (645 deaths, 51316 infections) and Missouri (1051 deaths, 23816 infections).

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New Welsh factory at risk as Jim Ratcliffe’s Ineos looks to make cars in France

Billionaire industrialist Sir Jim Ratcliffe may abandon plans to build car plants in Wales and Portugal in favour of buying an existing factory in France in a move which could put 1,000 new jobs at risk.

The Brexit-backing owner of Ineos has reportedly stalled work on the plants where the chemicals giant had planned to launch its car-making ambitions by building an heir to the Land Rover Defender, and may decide to scrap plans for the twin sites within weeks.

Ineos had planned to develop a car plant in Portugal to begin making body parts for the “rugged, uncompromised off-roader” by the end of next year, and had planned to run a new factory at Bridgend in South Wales to assemble the final vehicle.

The company was aiming to build up to 25,000 of its new Grenadier vehicles at the Bridgend plant every year before expanding its family of vehicles to include other models.

The plans have been cast in serious doubt after Ineos confirmed it has paused work on the construction of the plants while it is in talks with Mercedes-Benz about buying an existing facility in France.

Mercedes-Benz announced plans on Friday to sell the Hambach plant, which employs about 1,600 staff and is responsible for making Smart brand cars. Ineos had initially dismissed the plant as too small, but has resumed talks with Mercedes following a £445m upgrade in 2018.

Mark Tennant, the commercial director of Ineos Automotive, told the Financial Times that the Mercedes plant is “a serious business consideration” and that talks would take “weeks rather than anything longer”.

The decision to scrap plans for a new car plant in Bridgend, South Wales, spells further economic pain for the local community already reeling from news that Ford will shut its factory later this year after after more than 40 years.

Many of the 1,700 people working at the 60-acre Ford site halfway between Cardiff and Swansea had hoped to eventually find employment at the new Ineos plant which was under construction next door.

It would also mean that Ratcliffe’s British successor for the Land Rover Defender will use an engine designed in Germany by BMW and built in France. The Brexit supporter, and one of Britain’s richest men, left the UK to live in Monaco in 2018, just months after receiving his knighthood.

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Uber's Postmates deal: One trader says it's time to short the stock

Uber just added Postmates to its portfolio.

The ride-hailing company agreed to buy the food-delivery service on Monday for $3.65 billion in an all-stock deal. The news added to Uber shares' recent gains, rallying 6% on top of a 25% surge in the past three months.

Danielle Shay, director of options at Simpler Trading, said Uber is not on her buy list.

"Uber is one of the IPOs in the market that we've seen that has been a laggard for the majority of the year," Shay told CNBC's "Trading Nation" on Monday.

While Uber rallied in the second quarter, it has trailed the rest of the IPO stocks, names that have been public for less than two years. Uber is up 9% this year, while the IPO Renaissance ETF has surged 35%.

"The acquisition of Postmates is number one, expensive. Number two, the market share that Postmates has is incredibly small especially compared to DoorDash, and I think when you're looking at this and thinking is this going to be the straw that gets Uber out of this hole? I don't think so," said Shay. "Uber is a short on this news. I think you can short it around $35 and if it trades up to $40 I think I would short it there as well."

Uber closed Monday's session at $32.52 a share.

Ari Wald, head of technical analysis at Oppenheimer, is not as bearish on the stock. He sees continued momentum behind IPO stocks, including Uber.

"We do think it should be provided a tailwind with the strength IPOs in general. It's an 8% weighting in the Renaissance IPO ETF — that IPO ETF rates positively in our momentum work. We think it continues to lead," Wald said during the same segment.

Wald added that the hot IPO market may not be as frothy as some fear. 

"Take this for instance, that IPO index is up 25% over the last 12 months, but for comparison purposes, it was up over 300% into the year 2000 peak. A real far cry from that, a much steadier ascent, strong but not too strong, we think it continues," said Wald, basing the historical comparison on a composite of the IPO ETF and Bloomberg's IPO index.


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Novavax Covid Vaccine Gets $1.6 Billion in U.S. Funding

Novavax Inc., one of the front-runners in the race to develop a Covid-19 vaccine, will receive $1.6 billion from the U.S. government, the biggest contribution yet from the Operation Warp Speed program.

The funds will allow the company to conduct advanced human studies and establish manufacturing to deliver 100 million doses as soon as late 2020, Gaithersburg, Maryland-based Novavax said in a statement. The shares rose 32% in premarket trading.

Novavax is among companies striving to develop an inoculation against the novel coronavirus that’s spreading quickly in countries including the U.S., India and Mexico. President Donald Trump’s Warp Speed program has backed efforts at a number of companies, including Johnson & Johnson, Merck & Co., Pfizer Inc., Moderna Inc. and AstraZeneca Plc, to get doses as early as possible.

Operation Warp Speed seeks to compress a process that is typically years long into a matter of months. The drive is being led by General Gustave Perna, who directs the U.S. Army Materiel Command, and former GlaxoSmithKline Plc executive Moncef Slaoui.

44,953 in U.S.Most new cases today

-6% Change in MSCI World Index of global stocks since Wuhan lockdown, Jan. 23

-1.​058 Change in U.S. treasury bond yield since Wuhan lockdown, Jan. 23

-2.​3% Global GDP Tracker (annualized), May

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The funds will help Novavax begin a final-stage study of its vaccine candidate as early as this fall, with as many as 30,000 subjects, according to the statement.

The biotech company earlier secured as much as $388 million in May from the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, the single largest contribution from the organization at the time. The company’s vaccine candidate is meant to provoke the production of antibodies that block the “spike” protein the coronavirus uses to infect host cells.

Separately, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc. secured a $450 million award from the program under the auspices of the U.S. Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, or BARDA. The Tarrytown, N.Y.-based company will use the funds to scale up production of an antibody cocktail to prevent infection.

Analysts are expecting results from Regeneron’s antibody program sometime in the third quarter. Novavax plans to report a first look at its vaccine in patients later this month.

Drug companies and university researchers are investigating more than 140 experimental inoculations, according to the World Health Organization. Moderna, Pfizer and the University of Oxford, working with AstraZeneca, are among the companies and institutions that have started studies of their vaccines in healthy patients.

— With assistance by Cristin Flanagan, and Riley Griffin

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A majority of financial services companies plan to double-down on AI and other high-tech tools that have helped the industry thrive during the coronavirus crisis, according to a new study

  • Investments in cloud computing and other digital technologies helped ensure the financial services industry's resilience during coronavirus pandemic.
  • Now, those investments are poised to accelerate for the majority of firms, according to a study released on Tuesday by Broadridge Financial Solutions. 
  • Of the 500 respondents, 58% expect to bolster investments in interactive tools and 54% plan to boost funding for AI-based initiatives. 
  • "We're past the survival mode piece and people are really thinking about how to positively leverage this," Broadridge Financial Solutions CEO Tim Gokey told Business Insider
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Financial services firms are expected to bolster their investments in many of the digital tools that helped ensure the industry's resilience during the coronavirus pandemic, according to a new study released on Tuesday. 

Powerhouses like JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America were already well-along in their digital transformations prior to the outbreak — especially when compared to laggards in sectors like healthcare. Many have invested significantly in boosting their number of in-house data scientists and software engineers, for example, and they're already using advanced tech like artificial intelligence to personalize marketing messages and better inform investors on their portfolio companies, among other applications.  

But as the coronavirus pandemic brought on new consumer demands, even smaller banks, asset managers, and others in the industry started pivoting quickly, too. The transformations were evident, for example, in the speed at which many lenders were able to automate the process of distributing loans to businesses applying for federal assistance during the outbreak. 

Overall, 45% of financial services companies expect a moderate level of tech change, while 10% said they are planning more large-scale digital overhauls, according to survey results from Broadridge Financial Solutions  — a technology vendor that provides tools to the industry to improve customer service, regulatory reporting, and investor outreach. Broadbridge surveyed senior executives from 500 commercial and investment banks, hedge funds, and asset managers. 

"We're past the survival mode piece and people are really thinking about how to positively leverage this," CEO Tim Gokey told Business Insider.  "It's going to cause a lot of rethinking, a lot of investment." 

Top suppliers are already preparing for the expected surge. Google Cloud, for example, recently hired a 32-year Citigroup veteran as vice president of financial services to help capture more business from the industry.  

AI, cybersecurity as a focus 

Financial firms are focusing on more high-tech products, too: 58% of Broadridge's respondents expect to increase their investments on interactive tools, while 54% plan to boost funding for AI-based initiatives. 

Goldman Sachs Chief Technology Officer Atte Lahtiranta, for example, previously said the coronavirus pandemic would spur greater funding for initiatives like a virtual reality-based trading desk. 

Those types of investments could also lead firms to hire more software engineers and data scientists, as well as individuals that can help market the new products to customers. CTBC Bank's US CEO Noor Menai, for example, recently told Business Insider the company was weighing a bigger budget to recruit individuals from Amazon and other tech giants. 

And with more employees working remote through the remainder of the year due to the outbreak, 63% plan to invest more heavily in cybersecurity and risk management tools. 

"People are seeing that the future of work is going to be much more using their offices as a meeting place or as a gathering hub. And there's going to be a lot of people currently working more flexibly," Gokey said. "When you do all that, it's extending your perimeter dramatically from where it was before." 

Other top priorities include improving client communication and bettering customer service operations. 

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UK jobless rate ‘could near 15% in second coronavirus wave’

The number of unemployed people in Britain could soar to almost 15% of the working population if the country experiences a second wave of the coronavirus pandemic, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation & Development (OECD) has said.

A rise in the unemployment rate to 14.8% would take the UK to a higher level than France, Germany and Italy, but lower than Spain, according to the Paris-based thinktank, which is funded by 35 mostly rich countries.

If a second wave of Covid-19 can be avoided, the UK’s unemployment rate is likely to rise to 11.7% by the end of the year, the highest level since 1984 when it peaked at 11.9%. The current UK unemployment rate is 3.9%.

The average unemployment rate is projected to reach 19.2% in Spain by the end of 2020 and 20.1% following a “double hit”, while Germany’s jobless rate is only expected to reach 5.6% following a second lockdown or 5% if the economy remains open into next year.

The UK’s gloomy outlook follows a forecast last month by the OECD for economic growth this year that showed Britain’s economy is likely to suffer the worst damage from the Covid-19 crisis of any country in the developed world.

At the time, the OECD said UK unemployment would peak at 9%, saying the UK was more exposed than most to the global slowdown in trade that followed the lockdowns imposed by most governments following the coronavirus outbreak.

One reason for the worsening outlook in the latest report was the acceleration in recent months of a trend for companies to shed white collar, administrative office jobs at a faster rate than other countries. These roles are lost as firms come to rely increasingly on computer systems to perform administrative functions, leaving jobs growth confined to professional and low-skilled operations.

“In the UK, new online job postings for middle-skill occupations contracted twice as much between February and April 2020 as for low-skill occupations, and 40% more than for high-skill occupations,” it said.

“These results point to the possibility that the Covid-19 shock will reinforce the existing trend of employment polarisation.”

Stefano Scarpetta, the director for employment, labour and social affairs at the OECD, said he was especially concerned that a generation of young people would be denied employment or retraining, restricting their ability to gain a sustainable, skilled job.

“In the aftermath of the global financial crisis, governments acted far too late to address the labour market difficulties of youth, which left them with long-lasting scars that were still visible before the Covid-19 outbreak,” he said.

“There is no time to waste to put in place a comprehensive policy package ensuring that no young worker is left behind.”

The OECD also had a warning for all governments over the coming months, saying they must guard against a slap-dash approach to Covid-19 safety standards to protect the half of workers who will come into close contact with colleagues and customers as part of their job.

Fearing a second wave of the pandemic in the autumn, it said ministers should also extend sick leave to allow all staff to self-isolate when they discover they have coronavirus symptoms.

It said: “About half of all workers are employed in a job that requires significant physical interactions and therefore face a risk of contagion. Strong occupational safety and health standards, defined and enforced by public authorities and/or by social partners, remain a top priority.

“Paid sick leave can continue to perform an important role in containing and mitigating the spread of the virus and protecting the incomes, jobs and health of sick workers and their families. Moving forward, countries should consider closing long-known gaps in paid sick-leave regulations while reinforcing work incentives and employment support to facilitate a return to work.”

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In Los Angeles, the massive Dodger Stadium testing site closed for 4 days, even as the city sees a rise in cases and the county struggles to meet the demand for testing

  • Los Angeles' largest coronavirus testing site at Dodger Stadium closed for four days over the weekend, local outlet KTLA reported. 
  • The site could administer 6,000 tests a day and is anticipated to allow for 6,500 tests once it reopens. 
  • LA county medical services director Dr. Christina Ghaly said the city was already struggling to meet its testing needs prior to this weekend. 
  • Cases in the county are rising, and experts are worried that the Fourth of July weekend is going to cause another surge in cases. 
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Los Angeles' largest coronavirus testing site at Dodger Stadium closed for four days over the weekend, local outlet KTLA reported.

A spokesperson for Mayor Eric Garcetti's office, Andrea Garcia, told KTLA that when the site reopens it will have the capacity to test 6,500 people a day.

"The Dodger Stadium location was not scheduled to be open [Monday] but it will be open tomorrow. No appointments were canceled. City sites provided 2,800 tests today and will provide 80,000 tests this week," Garcia's office told local news outlet KCAL.

According to KCAL, the site is supposed to open on Tuesday.

However, KTLA reported that the center did not have available appointment slots until Wednesday. 

"We encourage folks to go onto the website to make appointments," Garcia told the outlet. "It's not closing; it was just from a holiday."

Los Angeles county medical services director Dr. Christina Ghaly Ghaly told the outlet that the county plans to have more testing availability this week. However, Ghaly said the county was already struggling prior to this weekend to meet testing demands, according to KTLA. 

"There continues to be high demand for testing services," Ghaly said during a briefing Monday. "We opened up 6,000 slots this morning; those are currently full. We'll add additional slots and open those up tomorrow and the next day."

Coronavirus cases in Los Angeles County have been on the rise, and more young people have been hospitalized for COVID-19, KTLA also previously reported. 

On Friday, the county hit a record 3,187 new daily coronavirus cases. On Monday, 1,584 new coronavirus cases were recorded and 48 deaths. 

According to the Los Angeles Times, Barbara Ferrer, the Los Angeles County director of public health said that as of this Saturday, "almost 50% of new cases occur among younger people" or adults under 40. 

The Times added that only a third of the county's population is between the ages of 18 and 39. Additionally, in early April young adults under 40 only made up 30% of new coronavirus cases. 

Hospitalizations have also increased with 1,921 people in the hospital for coronavirus, according to KTLA. The outlet reported that health officials said 28% of those hospitalized were in the ICU, and 18% were on ventilators. 

Additionally, the LA Times reported that younger adults are now being hospitalized at higher rates. As of Saturday, The youngest adults, those 40 and under made up 25% of hospitalizations compared to around 15% at the end of April. Those who are between the ages of 41 and 64 made up 45% of hospitalizations compared to around 35% at the end of April. Thos over 65 now makes up less than 30% of hospitalized cases compared to 50% back in April. 

 Experts across the country are concerned that this past holiday weekend would lead to yet another surge in cases.

"Our numbers are going through the roof," Dr. Cameron Kaiser, the public-health officer in nearby Riverside County, told The New York Times. "We started seeing more and more cases after Memorial Day, and we can't afford another jump after the Fourth of July."

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Saniderm Advanced Hand Sanitizer Recalled After FDA Warning

UVT, Inc. recalled 38,830 liters of Saniderm Advanced Hand Sanitizer following a warning by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration about the potential presence of undeclared Methanol, a toxic chemical.

The FDA last week urged consumers not to use any hand sanitizer products made by Mexico-based Eskbiochem SA de CV. The agency identified nine hand sanitizers, including Saniderm Advanced, containing methanol or wood alcohol, a substance that can be toxic when absorbed through the skin or ingested.

Methanol is not an acceptable ingredient for hand sanitizers and should not be used due to its toxic effects.

Methanol exposure could result in nausea, vomiting, headache, blurred vision, permanent blindness, seizures, coma, permanent damage to the nervous system or death.

The agency specially warned young children who accidentally ingest these products, and adolescents and adults who drink these products as an alcohol substitute.

However, UVT and FDA have not received any reports of adverse events related to the recalled products.

The products are packaged in 1-liter bottles, with lot number 0530, and expiration date of April 2022. The product was distributed across the United States.

FDA issued the warning following tests on samples of Lavar Gel and CleanCare No Germ. The agency on June 17 had contacted Eskbiochem to recommend the company remove its hand sanitizer products from the market, but was yet to take any related action.

Apart from Saniderm Advanced, the FDA warning also targets All-Clean, Esk Biochem, CleanCare NoGerm Advanced, and Lavar 70 Gel hand sanitizers, among others.

Hand sanitizers are in huge demand amid the coronavirus pandemic as CDC recommends to use sanitizers that contain at least 60 percent ethanol as an effective way to fight against the virus.

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One of Australia's most populous cities is re-entering lockdown as its number of coronavirus cases spikes

  • Melbourne, Australia, will re-enter stage three lockdown from midnight on Wednesday night for six weeks.
  • The stay-at-home order means people should not leave their homes except for four reasons: essential shopping, giving or receiving medical care, attending work if it cannot be done at home, and exercise.
  • The announcement followed news the New South Wales-Victoria border would close from midnight on Tuesday night.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Melbourne will re-enter stage three lockdown for six weeks from midnight on Wednesday night, as coronavirus case numbers continue to spike in the Australian state of Victoria.

"The public health team has advised me to reimpose stage 3 stay-at-home restrictions – staying at home except for the four reasons to leave – effective from midnight tomorrow night for a period of six weeks," said Premier Daniel Andrews at a press conference on Tuesday night.

The restrictions will be in place until at least August 19.

The four reasons people can leave their homes are for essential shopping, giving or receiving medical care, attending work if it cannot be done at home, and for exercise. Andrews stressed that people leaving the home for exercise cannot leave metropolitan Melbourne.

The new restrictions apply to both metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire in regional Victoria, where Andrews said there is also an "unsustainably high number of cases" of COVID-19.

 "We have to be realistic about the circumstances that we confront," Andrews said. "We have to be clear with each other that this is not over. And pretending that it is because we all want it to be over is not the answer. It is indeed part of the problem."

On Tuesday, Victoria recorded 191 new cases of COVID-19, the highest single-day increase since the beginning of the pandemic. Of that number, only 37 were linked back to known outbreaks, and none are associated with hotel quarantine.

The last week has seen a dramatic escalation of the coronavirus situation in Victoria.

On June 30, the Victorian government imposed lockdowns on 10 Melbourne postcodes – later expanded to 12 – due to "unacceptably high" levels of community transmission. Residents in those postcodes are only permitted to leave their homes for work, to provide care, to exercise, or to buy groceries.

On Saturday, the Victorian government announced some 3,000 people residing in nine public housing towers in Melbourne would be subject to a 'hard lockdown' for at least five days – meaning they cannot leave the premises for any reason. At least 500 police officers are assigned to the towers per shift.

In Tuesday's press conference, Premier Andrews announced that once testing had concluded in the towers, residents would be subject to the less strict rules that apply to the rest of Melbourne.

"The strategy here is to complete the testing and then as soon as possible, once that testing is complete, to have those nine towers moved to the same footing that the rest of Melbourne will move to at 11:59 p.m. tomorrow night," Andrews said.

On Monday, it was announced the New South Wales-Victoria border would close from midnight on Tuesday, July 7.

"Today and tomorrow is the last time in which any Victorians will be allowed across the border unless they have a special permit or some exemption," New South Wales Premier Gladys Berejiklian said at a press conference on Monday.

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European Shares Mixed As Virus Worries Persist

European stocks were mixed on Tuesday as fears surrounding a surge in coronavirus cases around the world offset encouraging factory activity data from China.

World Health Organization chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesu warned Monday that “the worst is yet to come.”

“The lack of national unity and lack of global solidarity and the divided world … is actually helping the virus to spread,” he said at a briefing in Geneva.

Separately, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell has welcomed the return of economic activity, but cautioned the outlook for the United States is still “extraordinarily uncertain.”

In economic releases, Eurozone inflation accelerated in June as prices of energy decreased at a slower pace, preliminary data from Eurostat showed.

Inflation rose to 0.3 percent from 0.1 percent in May. Economists had forecast the rate to remain unchanged at 0.1 percent.

U.K. GDP numbers for the first quarter came in far gloomier than expected. Gross domestic product fell 2.2 percent sequentially instead of 2 percent decrease estimated initially. The latest drop was the joint largest contraction since the third quarter of 1979.

The pan European Stoxx 600 was marginally lower at 359.66 after gaining 0.4 percent on Monday.

The German DAX edged up 0.2 percent, while France’s CAC 40 index was marginally lower and the U.K.’s FTSE 100 dropped 0.6 percent.

Tech stocks were moving up after an upbeat revenue forecast from U.S. firm Micron Technology.

ASM International and STMicroelectronics rallied over 2 percent, while Infineon Technologies gained about 1 percent.

Banks were broadly lower, with Commerzbank, Deutsche Bank and BNP Paribas falling over 1 percent.

Royal Dutch Shell lost 2.8 percent. The oil and gas company expects post-tax impairment charges to be in the range of $15 billion to $22 billion in the second quarter, after revising its outlook for commodity prices and margin outlook amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

Electronics manufacturer Filtronic tumbled 3 percent. The company said there is considerable uncertainty in the markets in which it operates.

InterContinental Hotels Group declined 1.2 percent. The company confirmed around 10 percent of its hotels worldwide are now closed.

Infrastructure group Balfour Beatty rose about 1 percent after bagging a Hong Kong contract worth around £577m.

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