Coronavirus update: As the number of cases skyrockets, how can you keep safe?

First, it’s imperative if you have any symptoms of coronavirus – a new, continuous cough, fever, or loss or change to sense of taste or smell – to try to get tested.

While waiting for a test, in order to prevent the spread of the disease, you will be required to self-isolate at home.

Tell others, who you’ve been in close contact with in the past 48 hours since symptoms began, that you’re feeling under the weather.

While awaiting test results, you must not leave your home (aside from getting a test).

Tom Kerridge weight loss: Chef's number one weight loss tip – ditch this from diet now

Tom Kerridge lost 12 stone after gradually putting on lots of weight during his career as a chef and landlord. It is this lifestyle he has credited for piling on the pounds.

There are multiple factors behind this fact, including the calories in alcohol and the after affects of drinking on the body.

Alcohol contains a fair amount of calories, but limited nutritional value.

A glass of wine contains about 125 calories and a can of beer around 155.

As most of us have experienced, alcohol reduces the ability to make sensible decisions.

Adele is said to have followed the Sirtfood diet.

The diet is based on seven proteins found in the body that have been shown to regulate a variety of functions.

Foods allowed on the diet include green tea, dark chocolate, apples, blueberries and even red wine is encouraged in moderation.

Is it also recommended to drink a green juice and drink 1000 calories a day in the first stage of the diet.

Dementia symptoms: The number of years it can take for a person to develop symptoms

Two proteins in the brain – amyloid and tau – rapidly increase in the brain during Alzheimer’s. The exact cause behind this mutation is yet to be uncovered, nonetheless, it leads to visible symptoms.

The charity Dementia UK explained how the proteins amyloid and tau affect the brain.

Both are naturally occurring proteins in the brain, yet in Alzheimer’s disease beta-amyloid malfunctions.

This malfunction of the amyloid protein becomes toxic, entangling itself with dead brain cells – essentially forming plaques in the brain.

These brain changes could be happening for around 10 years before a person starts showing signs of Alzheimer’s.

The symptoms tend to occur gradually and worsen over time, which can include the following:

  • Difficulty remembering recent events while having a good memory for past events
  • Poor concentration
  • Difficulty recognising people or objects
  • Poor organisation skills
  • Confusion
  • Disorientation
  • Slow, muddled or repetitive speech
  • Withdrawal from family and friends
  • Problems with decision making, problem-solving, planning and sequencing tasks

A loved one showing signs of the illness may be stubbornly clinging onto their sense of normality.

This may include refusing to seek medical attention from the GP’s clinic.

If this explains a situation you’re currently in, and you’re hoping a loved one seeks help, Dementia UK shares its tip.

For partners, the charity advises you to “suggest you both go together for a NHS Health Check”.

“Or ask [them] to come with you, as you’d like some support” it added, however do write a brief letter setting out your concern to the GP before the appointment.

Alzheimer’s can be a difficult condition for the sufferer and their loved ones.

Thankfully, there is lots of support available on Dementia UK, who understand the challenges of the brain disease.

One of their services includes Admiral Nurses who offer support for families living with this condition.

They’re able to give expert guidance and practical solutions for any queries you might have.

Coronavirus HORROR: Number of cases in England doubling each week

Researchers from Imperial College London estimated the number of COVID-19 cases in the country has been doubling on average every seven to eight days. They found this increase is taking place across the country and in multiple age groups.

The study calculated the R rate for England is now at 1.7.

This means each coronavirus patient on average passes the disease to another 1.7 people.

Any R rate greater than one means the virus is spreading exponentially through the community.

On Friday the Government said it estimated the R rate for the entire UK to be between one and 1.2.

Speaking to The Times Professor Paul Elliott, who ran the study at Imperial, denied the increase can be attributed to more widespread testing.

He said: “Our large and robust dataset clearly shows a concerning trend in coronavirus infections, where cases are growing quickly across England and are no longer concentrated in key workers.

“What we are seeing is evidence of an epidemic in the community and not a result of increased testing capacity.

“This is a critical time and it’s vital that the public, our health system and policymakers are aware of the situation as we cannot afford complacency.”

READ MORE: Queen heartbreak – Will the Queen EVER return to Buckingham Palace?

Scotland and Wales are introducing similar rules but they won’t apply to children aged under 12.

Professor Elliot emphasised the value of detecting an increase in coronavirus cases quickly so authorities can react.

He said: “The really important thing here is that, if you like, this system was set up as an early warning system.

“And I think it has picked up the signal early.”

The number of coronavirus cases in the UK were estimated to be doubling every three to four days before the first national lockdown was introduced.

The northeast, northwest and Yorkshire and the Humber are the regions of England currently worst infected.

Cases have increased for all age groups but are particularly pronounced amongst those aged 18-24.

Reacting to the increase in cases Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: “We’ve seen all across the world how a rise in cases, initially among younger people, leads to hospitalisations and fatalities.

“The pandemic is not over, and everyone has a role to play to keep the virus at bay and avoid further restrictions.

“It’s so important that everyone abides by the law and socialise in groups up to six, make space between you and those outside your household, get a test and self-isolate if you develop symptoms and wash your hands regularly.

“It is vital you engage with NHS Test and Trace service if contacted to provide details of your close contacts and self-isolate if you are asked to do so.”


DVLA new “70” number plates which were banned for being too rude revealed

DVLA experts have revealed a hefty list of designs made up of unique combinations which could represent swear words or seedy phrases. The DVLA host special meetings twice a year at each number plate launch to look at the list of designs and pick out those that could cause problems.

A DVLA spokesman confirmed the “vast majority” of designs are made available to drivers.

However, they confirmed that some designs are held back if they could cause embarrassment, offence or lead to poor taste.

The spokesman said: “The vast majority of registration numbers are made available but the agency holds back any combinations that may cause offence, embarrassment, or are in poor taste.

“Many people enjoy displaying a personalised registration number and there are over 50m registrations available on our website with almost endless possibilities of combinations to suit a person’s taste, interests and budget.”

READ MORE: DVLA number plates revealed with some valued at £70,000

“BR70 MOB” and “BR70 GUN” were also likely listed for their connotations with gang lifestyle.

“DR70 UGS” and “MU70 GER”, “PE70- VRT” and “RA70 APE” were also listed by the DVLA as being offensive for use.

A range of UK styles designs was also banned for those wishing to purchase a unique design for the end of the EU transition period.

Designs such as “UK70 EDL”, “UK70 KLR” and “UK70 WAR” were also listed as restricted designs.

A total of 33 percent of drivers said they wanted to own a cheeky or controversial design compared to just 31 percent which wanted to have their name.

Mat Watson, motoring expert at carwow revealed drivers could still get away with “surprising” designs as long as they were creative with the lettering.

He said: “Drivers are always looking at ways to personalise their car, with modern drivers now more than ever seeing it as an extension of who they are and a reflection of their status, so it’s no surprise to see how many vanity plates are on the road.

“Considering there are strict guidelines around what number plate combinations are and aren’t approved, with swear words and saucy acts all previously banned by the DVLA.

“Some of the plates you can get away with are quite surprising providing you’re willing to be creative, and the new numbers certainly give drivers something to work with!”

How to live longer: The number of hours of sleep you need to boost life expectancy

The majority of chronic diseases, which shorten your lifespan, can be avoided by a healthy lifestyle. This includes exercising regularly, a good diet and sufficient sleep. But how much sleep do you need?

Researchers from Peking University, China, questioned if sleeping patterns had an effect on cardiovascular events.

They looked at the data of 52,599 healthy participants over a four-year period, identifying four “distinct sleep duration trajectories”.

The scientists labelled them: “normal stable, normal decreasing, low increasing, and low stable”.

Hours of sleep

  • Normal stable: 7.4 to 7 .5 hours of sleep
  • Normal decreasing: 5.5 to 7 hours of sleep
  • Low increasing: 4.9 to 6.9 hours of sleep
  • Low stable: 4.2 to 4.9 hours of sleep

While managing up to seven hours of sleep (the “normal decreasing” group) was “associated with increased risk of all-cause mortality”.

This data suggests that only managing seven hours of sleep per night puts you at an increased chance of earlier death.

The highest risk of CVEs and death was those who only managed around four hours of sleep a night.

In addition, the researchers also noted that “unstable” sleeping patterns – one that varies – was “significantly associated with increased risk of CVEs and all-cause mortality”.


This suggests it’s not only the number of hours you sleep that affects your health, but also sleep hygiene.

Good sleep hygiene refers to waking up and going to bed at the same time, every day.

But what about if you sleep eight hours or more, would that boost life expectancy?

Dr Daniel Kripe, a researcher from the University of California, probed with the exact same query.

Combining the data from both of these studies, it would seem 7.5 hours of sleep per night is the magical number for longevity.

Any more, or less, and the chances of dying increased alongside higher incidences of heart attacks, strokes or arterial fibrillation.

More studies would need to reveal the same results in order for the hypothesis to increase in validity.

However, these are promising findings – one that may help to boost you life expectancy if you follow suit.

A growing number of Chinese companies are blaming trading typos for insider stock sales

An investor watches the electronic board at a stock exchange hall on November 26, 2018 in Nanjing, Jiangsu Province of China. 

VCG via Getty Images

BEIJING — In a sign of how murky the Chinese stock markets can still be, some publicly listed companies have disclosed odd instances of “accidental” stock sales in the last few weeks.

For example, Shenzhen Changfang, a manufacturer of light-emitting diode (LED) products, said in a filing that on Friday a shareholder named Nie Xianghong accidentally sold 16,000 shares by typing in the wrong stock ticker. She was acting in accordance with Li Dichu, one of the company’s top 10 investors who has a roughly 11% stake and had planned to trim his holdings by about 3% of the company’s shares, the filing said. 

In a publicly released response Monday to the Shenzhen Stock Exchange’s letter of concern, the company said there was no insider trading or market manipulation. 

The company also disclosed in filings that Li and a few other major investors have yet to complete their share reduction plans. The stock price has more than doubled from Sept. 2 to Sept. 7 despite disclosure of sharp revenue losses from the shock of the coronavirus in Changfang’s export markets such as India.

This and other trading “errors” by major shareholders come after mainland Chinese stocks have recorded significant gains this year. The CSI 300 is up more than 12% and the Shanghai composite has risen 7% for the year so far. 

Regulators have also moved ahead with efforts this year to open up domestic financial markets further to foreign institutions, and remove some restrictions on stock listings and trading. 

However, analysts generally emphasize that stricter punishment for securities fraud is needed for China’s stock markets to mature.

Other filings this month reveal the accidental stock sales can occur at both smaller and very well-known companies.

Sany Heavy Industry, a giant in the manufacturing of construction machines, disclosed Friday that due to “misoperation” in the transaction process, Mao Zhongwu sold 96,700 more shares than he had said he would reduce his holdings by. Mao is one of Sany’s top 10 shareholders and will be fined 300,000 yuan ($43,852) for his illegal sales, according to company filings.

Jiangsu Lettall Electronic, a supplier for LCD TV companies, said in a filing on Sept. 3 that Zhang Defeng, the former chairman of the company’s board of supervisors, mistakenly sold 42,000 shares before the expiration of the six-month lockup period following the expiration of his term in May.

On Sept. 1, TCL Technology said in a filing that shareholder Li Dongsheng also typed in the wrong ticker and sold 5 million shares, by mistake.

Car insurance loophole poses ‘risk’ to drivers with private number plates for this reason

“However, then the insurer owns the vehicle that the registration number is assigned to and therefore owns the rights to the registration number.

“You may be able to buy the plate back from your insurer, as long as they haven’t already sold it on or destroyed the vehicle.

“If your vehicle is stolen, with the plate, you’ll then have to wait 12 months to get your personalised plate back and prove the car had a valid MOT and tax at the time of theft.

“Registration numbers move with the vehicle they are assigned to, not the person who bought it. So, if the vehicle is written off and the car scrapped – the number plate can disappear with it.”  

DVLA number plates: Motorists can secure '70' unique designs for just £250 in auction

DVLA chiefs have a special sports focus at the latest auction with several designs set to embrace fans of top Premier League football clubs. Fans of Newcastle United could be battling to secure the unique “700 ON” design which already has a costly starting price of £2,200.

But this is expected to rise even further with demand set to be high for the unique design which could become a collector’s item for an enthusiast.

Newcastle supporters could be tempted by “LOV 1TT” inspired by the famous 1996 TV rant by former manager Kevin Keegan.

“AR69 NAL” is set to hit the hammer with an initial price of just £400 with “XAV 111A” starting at £350.

Alongside the football-themed designs, sports fans can also get their hands on “CYC 13E” which starts at a £300 reserve.

READ MORE: This phrase is the most popular private number plate

“Our online sale in July was a tremendous success and, once again, reflected just how our loyal customers and general motorists who join us for the first-time value personalised registrations.”

The online sale got underway at 10am on Tuesday with the virtual hammer set to end the auction on September 8.”

Other unique designs up for grabs at the auction includes “FR20 ZEN” and “JA11 CKO” with a starting price of £400.

Place names also look set to be popular with “LE15 TER ” holding an impressive starting price of £700.

“OX17 FORD” could also be popular with the DVLA splashing a £400 reserve on the special design.

“MR57 ORM”, “ME66 ANS” and “DE18 BRA” have been set an initial price of £400 and could spring a surprise at auction.

But one design has been given a giant reserve of £2,500 meaning this is expected to be popular during the auction.

The “360 A” design has the highest starting price and could be snapped up due to its unique simplicity.

Drivers can register online at to get involved and secure a dream design.

A total of 1,250 lots are up for grabs with starting prices ranging from £250 to £2,500.

Although some designs will be less popular and could sell for near their starting price, other unique designs could dramatically increase from their reserve price over the next few days.

Private number plates have become a big business for the DVLA with over 400,000 designs old between 2018 and 2019.

The average price for registrations sold at a timed auction stands at £877 while this increases to over £3,000 at a live auction.

A recent DVLA survey revealed that 69 percent would consider buying a private plate due to a personal connection such as a name or initial.

IPO shares are up a surprising 60% this year with a number of big debuts expected ahead

A stock trader wearing a mask walks near social distancing signs the day a new IPO is launched at the New York Stock Exchange as the city continues Phase 4 of re-opening following restrictions imposed to slow the spread of coronavirus on August 27, 2020 in New York City. The fourth phase allows outdoor arts and entertainment, sporting events without fans and media production.

Alexi Rosenfeld | Getty Images

No one would have believed this even three months ago, but this may turn out to be the biggest year for IPOs since Alibaba went public in 2014. 

Already, 111 companies have raised $37.8 billion, according to Renaissance Capital. In 2014, the year Alibaba went public, $85 billion was raised.

And that is without the SPAC market, which is also on fire.

What’s behind the enthusiasm? 

Element 1 for a hot IPO market: A hot stock market

“First and foremost, the stock market is on fire,” one IPO trader, who asked to remain anonymous, told me. “As long as you have a hot equity market, you are going to have a hot IPO market.”

Element 2: Recent IPOs outperforming

Second, recent IPOs have been burning it up.  “Seventy percent of all IPOs are trading above their issue price, way above the average of about fifty percent,” Kathleen Smith from Renaissance Capital, who advises investors on IPOs, told me. “IPOs are now attracting momentum players.”

The Renaissance Capital IPO ETF (IPO), a basket of the 60 or so largest IPOs in the last two years, is up 64% year-to-date, far outperforming the broader market.

Most importantly, tech companies dominate the outperformers, particularly software.

 Recent IPOs (from issue price)

  • Vroom                      up 235%
  • Zoom Info               up 83%
  • Rocket Companies   up 87%
  • Li Auto                    up 54%
  • Jamf                        up 47%

Element 3: A strong pipeline

And software is what is coming: a tidal wave of enterprise software companies are seeking to go public right after Labor Day to capitalize on the positive convergent trends. Snowflake (cloud data analysis), Unity Software (3-D video games), Bentley Systems (software for construction projects), GoodRx (prescription drug pricing platform), JFrog Holdings (software update platform), and Sumo Logic (data analysis) all have S-1s out and will likely seek to public soon after Labor Day.  

Two other firms — Asana (project management) and Palantir — have both said they would use a direct listing approach to go public.

All have the magic ingredient: strong revenue growth.

Revenues (YOY growth)

  • Snowflake:  up 173%
  • Unity Software up 42%
  • Sumo Logic     up 50%
  • JFrog                up 65%
  • GoodRx            up 55%

Source:  Renaissance Capital

It’s still growth over profitability

What about profitability? Of these, three (Snowflake, Unity Software, Sumo Logic) are losing money, while JFrog and GoodRx are profitable, Smith tells me.

Regardless, it’s growth that matters.

“The bottom line is, investors are still chasing growth,” Smith told me. “The risk is that whatever they say they are going to do in the road show, they better do it and show a path to profitability.”

Why is software so dominant? The work-from-home phenomenon is forcing companies to modernize their tech infrastructure, so everyone from retailers to banks to law firms and doctor’s offices need to upgrade.

“What this virus has done is accelerate ten years of change into six months.” Pat Healy, who advises companies going public with Issuer Network. “These are tools that help people work remotely, and demand for these tools is going through the roof.”

A magic mushroom IPO?

Finally, in a sea of tech offerings, there is one odd-man out: Compass Pathways (CMPS), a UK-based company that is seeking to market a psilocybin-based therapy for depression.

Psilocybin? As in psychedelic mushrooms? Yep, that’s it.

I guess Timothy Leary was right. 

“This gives new meaning to a market high,” one trader quipped.

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