Author: News Room

A weakened Hurricane Ian moved up through the Carolinas into Virginia on Saturday as the death toll in Florida from one of the biggest storms to hit the state continued to rise.By the time Ian entered North Carolina it had reduced in strength from a category-one hurricane to a post-tropical cyclone. However, the National Hurricane Center warned that residents in North Carolina and Virginia could still see flash flooding “across portions of the central Appalachians and the southern mid-Atlantic”. On Saturday, President Joe Biden declared an emergency in North Carolina and ordered the Department of Homeland Security and the Federal…

Read More

The workbench in Azusa Fukushima’s studio in rural Ibaraki, north-east of Tokyo, is her own invention, proportioned exactly so that thread can be pulled taut against her own weight. Cotton – dyed with natural Japanese indigo, persimmon, or madder – is bound around stalks of dried sorghum grass. With each stitch, the bundle finds its shape: a classic “clam”, or hamaguri-gata, which echoes a spray of sorghum. The result is an object of natural and utilitarian beauty, appreciated by a growing community of makers and buyers from east London to LA. The sorghum tabletop brush, £35, being made at Azusa Fukushima’s…

Read More

They crossed the border looking exhausted, dragging their suitcases through the mud, but the group of young Russians fleeing the threat of conscription into the army were also grinning as they entered Kazakhstan. “Wow the air feels easier to breathe here already,” one young person with a backpack exclaimed. The party, from the central Russian city of Kolomna, more than 1,200km from the Kazakh border, spent two nights sleeping out in the open as they joined a long queue of people and vehicles waiting to leave Russia.They were among what Kazakhstan has said are nearly 100,000 Russians and counting who…

Read More

Health secretary Thérèse Coffey has rejected advice from officials to procure additional doses of monkeypox vaccine, stoking concern that the UK is ill-prepared for a resurgence of the disease.Officials at the UK Health Security Agency, the body responsible for infectious disease protection, had recommended that extra vaccines be secured to protect against monkeypox in the longer term.However, Coffey decided not to purchase a recommended 70,000 extra doses on September 21 owing to concerns that it did not represent value for money, leaving UKHSA officials “in shock”, according to people familiar with the matter.Until May, monkeypox was endemic in sub-Saharan Africa,…

Read More

Ukrainian forces have encircled thousands of Russian troops in the eastern city of Lyman less than 24 hours after Vladimir Putin announced the annexation of the area and vowed to defend it with all military means.Lyman has been a key staging ground for Russian forces in their campaign in the northern Donetsk region, one of the four Ukrainian provinces Russia claimed as its territory on Friday. Its capture is crucial for Ukraine’s counter-offensive, which has swept from west to east with the aim of cutting the north-south supply lines that sustain Russia’s campaign in the Donbas region, comprised of Donetsk…

Read More

The UK’s biggest banks are set to make bumper profits from rocketing interest rates even as they pull mortgage products from the shelves and leave savers with meagre returns on their deposits.The financial turmoil sparked by Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng’s “mini” Budget has seen markets betting interest rates in the UK could peak at 5.8 per cent next spring, creating a bonanza for high street lenders who will rake in returns for holding nearly £900bn of deposits at the central bank.“There’ll be an embarrassment of riches — bank margins will look very wide in the third quarter,” said one senior banker,…

Read More

TikTok is launching live shopping in North America and plans to outsource its operation after the social media platform’s experiments with ecommerce in the UK struggled to take off. Los Angeles-based TalkShopLive is due to enter a partnership with TikTok on bringing TikTok Shop to the US. It will provide the underlying technology and support for live streams hosted by influencers, brands and retailers that want to sell their products on the app, said two people familiar with the operations.The companies are still finalising the arrangements and no contracts have been signed.TikTok Shop, which allows users to buy products through…

Read More

Prime minister Liz Truss has conceded that her government’s £45bn “mini” Budget had caused short-term “disruption”, but insisted that she had an “iron grip on the national finances” and would deliver economic growth.Truss argued that the existing economic status quo in the UK “was not working”, adding that the country had for too long been held back by “low growth and high taxes”. As a result, her government was willing to “do things differently”, she said, writing in the Sun newspaper.“It involves difficult decisions and does involve disruption in the short term,” she added.Her comments follow a week of economic…

Read More

What may be Florida’s most destructive hurricane is threatening to swamp the state’s property insurance market, posing a stiff challenge to a star governor with national political aspirations.Even before Hurricane Ian made landfall on Wednesday, the state’s property insurance market was buckling. Six companies had already fallen into insolvency this year as underwriting losses exceeded $1bn for the second consecutive year. Insurers, in turn, have been exiting the state and curtailing renewals, leaving homeowners with dwindling options for coverage and soaring prices.“The homeowners insurance market in Florida has already seen escalating losses, increases in premiums, and insolvencies before there was…

Read More

As the biggest state intervention in modern history to shield British households from soaring energy bills came into effect on Saturday, the focus has turned to a sweeping reform of wholesale energy markets to try to ensure there is no repeat of the crisis. During his controversial “mini” Budget last month, chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng promised an overhaul of a system “where gas sets the price for all electricity” to one that reflects “the UK’s homegrown, cheaper and low-carbon energy sources, which will bring down consumer bills”.The move is similar to an initiative by the EU as Russian president Vladimir Putin…

Read More