Glencore has become the first major mining company to scrap its dividend for the year. On Thursday (Aug 5) it said that the economic outlook was just too uncertain. Instead, the mining giant will focus on cutting its debt. Glencore's debt jumped to $19.7 billion in the first half of the year - over 2 billion more than at the end of 2019. That's partly due to a fall in oil prices, as well as a $3.2 billion charge. Its shares listed in London, had slumped nearly 3.7% in morning trade. Glencore, which both mines and trades commodities worldwide, had expected to pay $2.6 billion in dividends this year. Rivals Rio Tinto and Anglo American have already gone ahead with their payouts. Oil market volatility though helped Glencore's trading divisions post record adjusted earnings before interest and taxes of $2 billion. And the company expects to be at the top end of the $2.2 billion to $3.2 billion range by the end of the year. However, the miner posted a net loss of $2.6 billion in the first-half, down from a profit of $226 million a year ago. Glencore's CEO says it will wait to see how the global crisis evolves and review whether to resume dividend payments next year.
BCCI on Thursday confirmed that they and Vivo have suspended the title sponsorship deal for Indian Premier League. The IPL will have a new title sponsor for its 13th edition, slated to be held in UAE from September 19 to November 10.
Ammonium nitrate was the chemical that led to Beirut’s huge warehouse explosion. It is a common industrial chemical, but has a history of destruction, often used in fertilizers and in quarrying and mining, Ammonium nitrate is considered relatively safe if uncontaminated and properly stored, but it can be extremely dangerous, especially when mixed with fuel. A large quantity can trigger an explosion if exposed to intense heat; the larger the quantity, the more risk of detonation. In Beirut, 2,750 tons were stored without no apparent safety measures. Experts say it could be one of the largest non-nuclear explosions in history. Ammonium nitrate explosions have certain characteristics, shown in the footage. Initial white-grey smoke indicates white ammonium nitrate fumes. The subsequent explosion released a shockwave mushroom cloud, and red-brown smoke - comprising of nitrous oxide. It wasn’t the first of such incidents. Some of the world's deadliest industrial accidents involved ammonium nitrate. In 1921, an explosion at the Oppau plant in Germany killed 565 people. In 2015, explosions at a warehouse in the Chinese port of Tianjiin killed at least 116. Ammonium nitrate can be used intentionally as an explosive, too. When mixed with other substances, the chemical can form a bomb. It was used by the Irish Republican Army bombings in London in the 1990s, the 1995 bombing of a federal building in Oklahoma City, and the 2002 blasts in Bali nightclubs. Many of the homemade bombs used against U.S. troops in Afghanistan contained ammonium nitrate. [Gen. Larry Nicholson, commander of marine expeditionary brigade, saying:] "... there's still an enormous IED (improvised explosive device) threat out there." In the case of Lebanon, experts have said if it was intentionally mixed as an explosive, it wouldn’t likely have the red-brown plume. That lends weight to the likelihood that it was a tragic accident. REUTERS / DIOCESE MARONITE D'ANTELIAS PAROISSE SAINT MARON - BAOUCHRIEH / KARIM SOKHN / INSTAGRAM/ KSOKHN + THEBIKEKITCHENBEIRUT / MAHMOUD NAKIB / GABY MAAMARY / TALAL TRABOULSI / DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE HANDOUT / PAUL SAAD / DAN VAN DUREN / NIDAL MAJDALANI
Windsor Castle opens its private garden for the first time in 40 years The castle is one of Queen Elizabeth’s homes Location: Windsor and a staple of the British royal family The East Terrace Garden has been a private area for generations of royals dating back to the 1820s Courtesy: Royal Collection Trust - Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2020 Courtesy: Royal Collection Trust / Patrick Lichfield (SOUNDBITE) (English) LEARNING CURATOR AT WINDSOR CASTLE, RICHARD WILLIAMS, SAYING:" So, the first garden built here was created in 1824 during the reign of George IV. But before that, in the Middle Ages, it would have been the defensive ditch, so to protect the castle walls. Then Charles II in the 17th century created this terrace that we're standing on and also put in bowling lawns because he really enjoyed bowling. // But it's in the 20th century, its current look, was very much the responsibility of the Duke of Edinburgh. So, he effectively redesigned it in 1971, laying out the design of the rose beds and even designing the fountain at the center, which is in the shape of a lotus flower." Visitors will be now able to tour the garden which features 3,500 rose bushes planted around a central fountain
Shivamogga (Karnataka), Aug 06 (ANI): The continuous heavy downpour in Karnataka’s Shivamogga has caused extensive damage to harvested paddy and other crops in the district. Paddy field was submerged at Hindlemane village in Humcha Hobli area of Shivamogga district due to heavy rainfall in the region.
Patna (Bihar), Aug 06 (ANI): Four officers of Bihar Police team including the Investigating Officer, who were in Mumbai to probe the Sushant Singh Rajput’s death case, returned to Patna on August 06. CM Nitish Kumar on August 04 recommended Central Bureau of Investigation to probe into Sushant Singh Rajput’s death case. Patna (Central) Superintendent of Police (SP) Vinay Tiwari continues to be quarantined in Mumbai.
New Delhi, Aug 06 (ANI): There are 10,072 active coronavirus cases in Delhi, out of which 1076 were reported yesterday, informed Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain on August 06. “Yesterday, 1076 new COVID-19 cases were reported in Delhi, taking the total tally to 1,40,232. 890 people were recovered yesterday from infection and 10,072 are currently active, including 2,095 receiving treatment in the hospital,” said Jain on coronavirus situation in the national capital.
New Delhi, Aug 06 (ANI): A massive fire broke out at a COVID care hospital in Gujarat’s Ahmedabad on August 06. Around eight people lost their lives, including five men and three women in the fire incident at Shrey Hospital. One paramedic also received burn injuries. Reportedly, the fire occurred due to a short circuit in ICU of the fourth floor of hospital. An inquiry into the matter is underway. Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced ex-gratia of Rs 2 Lakhs each from Prime Minister's National Relief Fund (PMNRF) to the kin of the deceased. Rs 50,000 to be given to those injured due to the fire. Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani has announced an ex gratia amount of Rs 4 lakhs each to the families of the eight victims who died in the fire at Shrey Hospital in Ahmedabad. The CMO added that Rs 50,000 would be given to those injured in the incident. Earlier today as per Gujarat Chief Minister's Office, Gujarat Chief Minister has ordered a probe in the incident. “CM Vijay Rupani has ordered a probe in the incident of fire at Shrey Hospital in Ahmedabad. Sangeeta Singh, Additional Chief Secretary (Home Department) will be leading the probe. The CM has ordered for a report within 3 days.”
6th August is the first death anniversary of senior BJP leader Sushma Swaraj who had endeared herself in her role as the External Affairs Minister over the first term of the Modi govt. As her health failed, S Jaishankar replaced her as the Foreign Minister when the BJP govt was sworn in last year. On Thursday, her junior colleague remembered her fondly, sharing pictures with Swaraj when he was serving as the foreign secretary. This is what he said.
Saudis are turning to the keto diet to shed lockdown pounds The Ketogenic method requires dieters to reduce carbs and consume a lot of fat putting the body into a metabolic state known as ketosis (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) FOOD BLOGGER, RUBA KHAWAJA, SAYING: "I liked starting the keto diet because, frankly, I felt for a period that the keto diet is the only thing that will help me start a healthy life, get rid of many problems that I have, and most importantly lose extra weight. I wanted to set up an Instagram account so that I can benefit people who do not know about the keto diet because they always have questions and do not have answers." Ruba shares recipes with her followers which include substitutions for carbs typically used in Middle Eastern cuisine like cauliflower instead of rice The popularity of keto food has prompted Saad Eddin sweet shop to add it to their menu (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) CHEF AT SAADEDDIN SWEETS COMPANY, RICHARD EL HELOU, SAYING: "We serve keto products such as muffins and chia pudding, we have special keto bread. After the positive feedback from our customers and seeing how much they loved this, we hopefully plan to expand."
Macron called for urgent support for Lebanon, two days after the incident. The French president, making the first visit by a foreign leader since the explosion, promised to help organize international aid for Lebanon but said its government must implement economic reforms and crack down on corruption. At the port, destroyed by Tuesday's giant mushroom cloud and fireball, families gathered seeking news about the missing, amid public anger at the authorities for allowing highly explosive material to be stored there for years in unsafe conditions. "Beyond the blast, we know the crisis here is serious, it involves the historic responsibility of leaders in place," Macron told reporters. Lebanese officials have blamed the disaster on a huge stockpile of a highly explosive material stored for years in unsafe conditions at Beirut port. But many Lebanese people who have lost jobs and watched savings evaporate in a financial meltdown have blamed it on politicians who have benefited from decades of state corruption and bad governance.
The city said that given the significance of the 75th anniversary of the bombing, that killed 140,000 people before the end of 1945, they had decided to hold the ceremony despite the spread of coronavirus, but with strict precautions in place. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe attended as usual, but the number of foreign visitors was down. Overall attendance was scaled back to less than 10 percent of usual, with chairs spaced far apart and most attendees wearing masks. Thousands usually pack the Peace Park in central Hiroshima to pray, sing and lay paper cranes as a symbol of peace, entrance was sharply limited and only survivors and their families could attend the memorial ceremony itself. At 8:15 a.m. on Aug 6, 1945, U.S. B-29 warplane Enola Gay dropped a bomb nicknamed "Little Boy" and obliterated the city, killing 140,000 of an estimated population of 350,000, with thousands more dying later of injuries and radiation-related illnesses.
South star Rana Daggubati and his fiancee Miheeka Bajaj's wedding festivities have already begun. South star Rana Daggubati and his fiancee Miheeka Bajaj's wedding festivities have already begun.
Britain's economy will probably take longer to get back to its pre-crisis size than was thought, Although the scale of this year's hit might not be as bad as feared. That's according to the Bank of England Thursday (August 6). The British central bank forecasts the economy could recover to pre-crisis levels by the end of 2021. In May, the BoE had said the UK might reach that size during the second half of next year. Although it believed the economy might take longer to recover than thought, the bank's projections for 2020 are not as grim as they were in May. Unemployment is expected to peak at 7.5% at the end of this year - lower than the BoE's last estimate of just under 10%. The overall UK economy is on course for a 9.5% drop this year, the BoE said. It would be the worst performance in 99 years but not as severe as the 14% plunge the central bank called in May - that would have been the worst in more than three centuries. The BoE also said GDP would rebound by 9% next year, weaker than the 15% surge it called in May's scenario. The Bank also announced it will make no changes to its huge bond-buying programme, or its key interest rate - which stands at just 0.1%. They warned it could hurt the balance sheets of banks if it took interest rates below zero. After the BoE's forecast, the less pessimistic tone for Britain's economy saw Sterling strengthen to a new five-month high against the dollar.
It could be another 4 years before air travel demand bounces back. That's the latest warning from Germany's Lufthansa. On Thursday (Aug 5) it reported its worst ever quarterly operating loss in its 65 year history. The steep drop in revenue saw the airline lose 1.7 billion euros or just over $2 billion. Lufthansa said the collapse in demand for air travel meant it carried 96% fewer passengers between April and June than a year earlier. Leading to the 80% drop in Q2 revenue. Germany's flagship carrier has made some major cuts to try and weather the turbulence. And the company's CEO said on Thursday it would not be spared a "far-reaching restructuring". Last month Lufthansa said it would cut 20% of its leadership positions and 1,000 administrative jobs. It's seeking to repay a 9 billion euro state bailout. The company has said forced redundancies can no longer be ruled out in Germany. Lufthansa plans to increase short and medium-haul capacity to around 55% of the prior-year in the fourth quarter. Rival Air France-KLM, which also secured state-backed aid, aims to operate at two thirds of capacity before the end of the year. Lufthansa said it expects to post an adjusted operating loss in the second half of 2020.
A massive fire broke out in the market of Ajman area in the United Arab Emirates on Wednesday evening. Several fire fighting engines were seen rushing towards the spot while the authorities are yet to ascertain the cause of the fire. No casualty has been reported so far.
Residents were seen wading through thigh-high water on Wednesday (August 05) to reach their destinations. Floodwaters reached residential houses, breached roads and disrupted public transport. Rains in Mumbai have crippled normal life with the financial hub struggling with the monsoon rains as widespread construction and rubbish-clogged drains and waterways make it increasingly vulnerable to flooding. Residents who stepped out to carry out daily activities said they feared falling in holes while commuting on flooded roads. Annual rainfall is essential in India as rains support two-third of the 1.3 billion population living in rural areas who rely on farming. But excessive rainfalls cause problems like floods, landslide, and water borne diseases.
Television actor Samir Sharma was found dead at his Mumbai flat. He was 44 years old. His body was found hanging from his kitchen ceiling by a night watchman who then alerted the neighbours. Sharma had posted on depression after actor Sushant Singh Rajput's death.
The explosion on Tuesday (August 4) pushed up to 250,000 out of their homes after the shockwaves ripped out doors and shattered windows miles inland. The death toll is expected to rise. Officials blamed the blast on a huge stockpile of highly explosive material stored for years in unsafe conditions at the port. The performance of traditional Scottish folk song Auld Lang Syne could bring hope to some in Lebanon's capital, a city still scarred by civil war that ended three decades ago and reeling from an economic meltdown and a surge in coronavirus infections.
Mumbai, Aug 06 (ANI): Different parts of Maharashtra face severe waterlogging and flood-like situation following incessant heavy rainfall. Waterlogging was witnessed in Wadala area of Mumbai on August 06. A local in Wadala area carried a kitten on his motorcycle after rescuing it, amid heavy rainfall in the city. Speaking to ANI, the local said, “I am taking the kitten home with me.”
Cricketer Hardik Pandya and actor Natasa Stankovic welcomed their first child on July 30. Both have been sharing pictures with their newborn. On Wednesday, Hardik Pandya took to Instagram to share pictures from their celebration at the hospital as Natasa got discharged.
Israa Seblani, radiant in her long white gown and veil, was posing near the couple's wedding venue, Le Gray Hotel, when the explosion hit. On Wednesday (August 5), crews were clearing glass in front of the hotel where Seblani and her husband, Ahmad Subeih, had planned to spend their first night as newlyweds. Subeih said when they went to retrieve their belongings from the hotel, the scene was unbelievable. Investigations blamed negligence for the massive warehouse explosion that sent a devastating blast wave across Beirut, leaving thousands injured.
New Delhi, Aug 06 (ANI): Former union minister Manoj Sinha is appointed as the new Lieutenant Governor of J&K on August 06. First Lieutenant Governor of Union Territory Girish Chandra Murmu resigned on August 05. President Ram Nath Kovind appointed Sinha to the post after accepting the resignation of Murmu.