Press | Vox Markets
Scientists are applying for permission to infect healthy volunteers with Covid-19 amid fears the number of cases in the UK has fallen so steeply that it will be difficult to test potential vaccines.
The health research company Hvivo, which runs a quarantine laboratory in east London, has joined scientists who say the world needs a vaccine so urgently that researchers should resort to a controversial method known as a “human challenge study”.
Under Hvivo’s proposals, up to 100 paid volunteers aged between 18 and 30 will take part — half will receive an experimental vaccine and half a placebo. All will be exposed to the virus and monitored for symptoms. Typically, volunteers are paid up to £3,500.
Shares in Norwegian Air crashed by more than a quarter to a 15-year low as the coronavirus outbreak pushes struggling airlines to the brink.
AAOG
Anglo African Oil & Gas (AAOG) tumbled after it took emergency measures to avoid a disaster at its money-spinning platinum unit.
The oil price fell 10 percent as a row between producers added to fears over the impact of coronavirus.
Disgraced fund manager Neil Woodford is in talks about making a spectacular comeback just months after being sacked in one of the City’s biggest investment scandals.
TENG
Ten Lifestyle Group (TENG) was one of the latest coronavirus victims last week after it warned on Friday its full-year revenue growth would come below expectations.
EZH
Despite the travel sector malaise, easyHotel (EZH) managed to advance 23 per cent to 83p after Citrus Holdco agreed to provide £11million by acquiring shares at 95p each, a 35 per cent premium on the previous closing price.
ANGS
Angus Energy (ANGS) rocketed 34 per cent to 0.9p after an independent study estimated its Saltfleetby onshore field held 16 billion cubic feet of gas.
Nissan is ploughing £400million into its Sunderland car plant in a vote of confidence in Brexit Britain.
CINE
Short positions against Cineworld Group (CINE) at near record high. Company grapples with high debt and concerns about coronavirus impact on box office attendance.
BARC
Bob Diamond picks ex-colleague Ricci as Panmure chief. Two of the ‘three musketeers’ at Barclays (BARC) reunite at ailing UK stockbroker.
 
German airline Lufthansa is planning to slash half of its flights and is considering grounding its entire fleet of A380 superjumbos, as the fallout from the coronavirus continues to hit the global air travel industry.
BOE
Boeing Co (BOE)‘s ‘culture of concealment’ led to fatal 737 Max crashes, report finds. Preliminary findings conclude Boeing ‘jeopardized the safety of the flying public’ in its attempts to get Max approved by regulators.
TLW
Climate crisis and Covid-19 conspire to crush oil firms like Tullow Oil (TLW). The prospector’s results, due this week, are likely to reveal that it and its rivals are facing a serious crisis.
Virgin Media breach allegedly involved porn site requests. Insecure database contained requests to block or unblock sites, says cybersecurity firm.
LLOY
Serious Fraud Office probes Lloyds Banking Group (LLOY) property claims. The Serious Fraud Office has begun interviewing witnesses and is weighing up whether to launch a formal criminal investigation.
JCB heir and Wrightbus owner Jo Bamford: ‘We can sell our hydrogen bus around the world’. The Wrightbus boss has a dream: using JCB skills, he hopes to turn its iconic red ‘Boris bus’ green.
Beny Steinmetz and a company linked to the diamond tycoon have had assets including a yacht and two private jets frozen by the High Court as part of a compensation battle with Vale, the Brazilian mining giant.
Fears for major Gatwick customer Norwegian over airline’s debt pile. Investor bets against Norwegian as fears mount over airline’s future.
GSK
GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) brings bosses’ pension payments in line with staff. The 13pc cut in pension contributions will affect all GSK directors, barring its US-based chief science officer Hal Barron.
Virgin Media is facing further embarrassment after it was revealed more than 1,000 records that tied its customers’ personal details to highly sensitive online material were among those exposed by a breach.
Jaguar Land Rover’s outgoing boss has accused Greta Thunberg and Extinction Rebellion of “doing wrong in many areas” by highlighting problems but offering no solutions to climate change.
PRU
Prudential (PRU) is set to reveal plans for a partial float or sale of its American insurance business as an activist investor circles.
A fierce argument over the future of FTSE 250 investment trust Pollen Street Secured Lending intensified this weekend after the board was accused of “outrageous” behaviour for failing to look after shareholders’ interests.
SAA
Hedge funds and private equity firms have been circling M&C Saatchi (SAA) as the embattled advertising agency continues to suffer in the wake of an accounting scandal and the departure of a clutch of directors, including its co-founder.
Disgraced fund manager Neil Woodford is plotting an audacious comeback by persuading wealthy British investors to buy back some of his old biotech holdings.
ORPH
Human guinea pigs in a London lab are to be given a form of the killer virus as the search for a lucrative jab hots up. Cathal Friel, executive chairman of Hvivo’s parent company, Open Orphan plc (ORPH), said it placed the company at the “forefront of the fight against the outbreak”.
ITV
ITV (ITV) has become the latest business to announce a hit from coronavirus as it revealed that travel companies are deferring their TV advertising because of the disease. The broadcaster predicts that advertising revenue will be down by 10 per cent in April.
FLYB
Regional airline Flybe Group (FLYB) has collapsed leaving passengers stranded at the wrong airports as planes are impounded. The regional carrier narrowly avoided going bust in January, but has continued to lose money until it went to the wall last night.
AV.
Insurance giant Aviva (AV.) has said it provided support to ‘several thousand’ customers amid the recent UK winter storms as it posted a record annual earnings haul.
ITV
ITV (ITV) forecasts a 10% drop in advertising revenues due to coronavirus. Shares fall 8.5% as ITV says companies in the travel sector are pulling ads as the virus spreads.
John Lewis staff bonus at 67-year low as more closures announced. Three Waitrose stores to shut this year, putting about 400 jobs at risk.
ADM
Admiral Group (ADM) to be the second FTSE 100 firm to have women as CEO and chair. Milena Mondini de Focatiis to be insurer’s new boss, working alongside chair Annette Court.
British Gas and VW unveil three-year electric vehicle deal. Engineers to install the fastest home car-charger available in an exclusive one-stop package.
The John Lewis Partnership has handed staff a token 2 percent bonus, the lowest award since 1953, despite profits slumping by a quarter and the new chairman saying that a turnaround could take three to five years.
ITV
ITV (ITV) warned that airlines and travel companies had cut their advertising spending sharply in response to the coronavirus outbreak.
INTU
Shareholders in Intu Properties (INTU) Properties face being wiped out after the owner of some of Britain’s biggest shopping centres was forced to scrap a £1.5 billion emergency fundraising.
AV.
Profits at Aviva (AV.) rose by 6 per cent last year to £3.2 billion as the insurer posted gains in life and general insurance.
CPI
The resuscitation of Capita (CPI), once the giant of the British outsourcing industry, is proving more difficult, taking longer and costing more money, its chief executive has admitted.
A row has broken out between James Benamor and Amigo Holdings (AMGO) after the founder of the troubled guarantor loans business claimed the company was “committing slow-motion suicide”.
ITV
ITV (ITV) warns of a 10pc slide in advertising. Broadcaster says it is on track to hit annual targets but it is ‘too difficult to assess the further implications’ of coronavirus outbreak.
Opec nears oil supply cut as coronavirus devastates global demand. Without support from the oil cartel, experts predict that prices could drop as low as $30 a barrel.
John Lewis staff get lowest bonus since 1953. Annual profits at the employee-owned retailer fall by almost a quarter to £123m.