Wednesday, February 20, 2019



Queen to rock Oscars with live performance


Women in Hollywood see some gains after Oscars equality plea

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – A year after best actress winner Frances McDormand used the Oscars stage to advocate for more women in front of and behind the camera, Hollywood is celebrating some progress – but remains far from reaching parity with men. McDormand urged powerful celebrities to insist on inclusion riders: contractual provisions that require…


Sexism still an issue, says Parton, as ‘9 to 5 the Musical’ opens

LONDON (Reuters) – Nearly 40 years after playing a secretary who takes revenge on her sexist boss in “9 to 5”, Dolly Parton again beat the drum for gender equality at the West End premiere of a musical version of her hit 1980 movie. The country superstar joined the cast of “9 to 5 The…


Box Office: ‘Alita: Battle Angel’ Wins Dismal Presidents Day Weekend

LOS ANGELES ( – Fox’s sci-fi adventure “Alita: Battle Angel” dominated in North America, but its opening weekend win isn’t leaving the box office with much to celebrate. Tracking services estimate that this will be one of the lowest grossing Presidents Day weekends in years. “Alita,” the cyberpunk CGI spectacle, earned $27 million when it…



Chinese frozen food firm recalls products suspected of African swine fever contamination

BEIJING (Reuters) – Major Chinese frozen food producer Sanquan Food Co Ltd said on Monday it has recalled products that may be contaminated with African swine fever, following media reports that some of its dumplings tested positive for the virus. African swine fever is incurable in pigs but does not harm people. An epidemic of…


Mongolia suspends KFC outlets after hundreds show food poisoning symptoms

ULAANBAATAR (Reuters) – Mongolia has temporarily suspended operations of all KFC restaurants in the country to conduct an inquiry, as 42 people were hospitalized and hundreds showed food poisoning symptoms after eating at one of the outlets of the fast-food chain. The incident occurred in Ulaanbaatar last week and was caused by poor internal hygiene…


As medical costs mount, Japan to weigh cost-effectiveness in setting drug prices

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japanese doctor Yasushi Goto remembers prescribing the cancer drug Opdivo to an octogenarian and wondering whether taxpayers might object to helping fund treatment, which at the time cost hundreds of thousands of dollars, for patients in their twilight years. Japanese have easy access to new medicines, whose prices are decided by the…

New Technology


Macquarie backs drone map, electric-vehicle businesses

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Macquarie Group, the world’s largest manager of infrastructure assets, has seeded money in a map system for drones and an electric-vehicle sharing business, it said on Monday. The investments highlight how money managers are looking beyond traditional infrastructure projects, such as toll roads and airports, to burgeoning technologies. “The overarching theme…


Huawei founder says Huawei CFO arrest was politically motivated: BBC

(Reuters) – Huawei founder Ren Zhengfei said on Monday that the arrest of his daughter, Huawei Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou, was politically motivated. “Firstly, I object to what the U.S. has done. This kind of politically motivated act is not acceptable,” Ren told the BBC in an interview. Canada arrested Meng on Dec. 1…


Britain does not support total Huawei network ban: sources

(Reuters) – British security officials do not support a full ban of Huawei from national telecoms networks despite U.S. allegations the Chinese firm and its products could be used by Beijing for spying, people with knowledge of the matter said. Huawei, the world’s biggest producer of telecoms equipment, faces intense scrutiny in the West over…


Uber agrees to pay VAT in Egypt: tax chief

CAIRO (Reuters) – Uber has agreed to pay value-added tax on its services in Egypt, Egyptian officials said on Monday, a move that may help resolve a long-simmering feud with traditional taxi drivers. The agreement would also apply to other ride-hailing companies, the head of the Egyptian Tax Authority, Abdel Azeem Hussein, said, although Uber’s…


Germany bans Wirecard ‘shorting’ as prosecutors probe FT journalist

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Germany’s financial watchdog has banned “short” selling of Wirecard shares due to volatility in the payments firm’s stock following reports in the Financial Times which are now the subject of an investigation by German authorities. Munich prosecutors said on Monday they were investigating a Financial Times journalist, confirming that they had widened…



The real ‘Jaws’: Great white shark’s genetic secrets revealed

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The great white shark, one of the most fearsome predators in the world’s oceans in both fact and fiction, is a formidable creature — right down to its genes. Scientists on Monday said they have decoded the genome of Earth’s largest predatory fish, detecting numerous genetic traits that help explain its remarkable…


Japan approves test of iPS cells for treating spinal injuries

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japanese scientists will test the use of human-induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS) to treat spinal cord injuries, a health ministry panel that approved the research project said on Monday. The research team from Tokyo’s Keio University planned to inject about two million iPS cells into the damaged areas of an individual patient…