Coronavirus latest: New York positivity rate continues to tick upwards

Spain’s coronavirus rates have shot up, fuelled by an increase in infections among younger people, as the country hopes to attract tourists to help kick-start its economy. The rate has risen to 204 infections per 100,000 over 14 days, just above levels in Russia, the health ministry said on Monday.

The Japanese government is under pressure to reverse course and hold the Tokyo Olympics behind closed doors as Covid-19 cases risel. After bottoming out at fewer than 400 cases a day in mid-June, new diagnoses climbed to almost 600 a day, raising fears of a surge when the games are held July 23-August 8.

Hospital admissions in the UK remain low as vaccines weaken the link between infections and hospitalisation, Britain’s chief medical adviser has said. “But it’s a weakened link, not a completely broken link,” Patrick Vallance said on Monday, adding that deaths are expected to rise as restrictions are eased. 

Efficacy of the BioNTech/Pfizer vaccine against infection with the Delta variant of coronavirus is lower than initially thought, a study has revealed. Data suggest the jab is 64 per cent effective at halting infection among those who are fully inoculated, down from a previous 94 per cent, Israel’s health ministry found.

An Airbus A380-800 aircraft, operated by Emirates, taxis at Dubai International Airport © Christopher Pike/Bloomberg

Emirates is leading a charge by airlines to escape hefty payment processing fees levied by the credit card industry, after the carrier adopted a rival system developed by Deutsche Bank. Iata estimates that prior to the pandemic, airlines paid $8bn a year to process payments to credit card firms.

Trade union Unite has added to calls for the UK government to keep the requirement to wear masks on public transport, warning that scrapping the rule would be an “act of gross negligence”. Boris Johnson, prime minister, on Monday unveiled plans to end mandatory face coverings in England.

Asset manager LGIM said private equity firms must not be allowed to acquire Wm Morrison for “wrong reasons”, such as profiting from the supermarket chain’s property portfolio. Buyout groups have announced at least 12 deals for UK-listed companies this year, as Brexit and the pandemic weigh on share prices.

The global chip shortage proved a roadblock to recovery for UK car sales last month, with new registrations still well below pre-pandemic levels. Some 186,128 new cars were sold in June, according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, 28 per cent higher than the same month last year.

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