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By Amanda Cooper
LONDON (Reuters) – The dollar hovered near a nine-month low against the euro and surrendered recent gains against the yen on Tuesday, as traders weighed the risks of a U.S. recession against the outlook for Federal Reserve monetary policy.
Euro zone data on Tuesday reinforced the view that the economy is surviving a winter of intense price pressures reasonably well, analysts said.
The U.S. dollar index – which measures the greenback against a basket of six major currencies, fell 0.1% to 101.93, heading back towards the 7-1/2-month low of 101.51 reached last week.
“The U.S. is no longer the cleanest shirt in the global economic laundry,” said Ray Attrill, head of foreign-exchange strategy at National Australia Bank, who expects the dollar index to fall to 100 by end-March and the euro to rise to $1.10.
“That’s integral to our bearish U.S. dollar view, that the U.S. is not going to be the global growth leader.”
Money market traders see only two more quarter-point rate hikes by the Fed to a peak of around 5% by June, before it starts cutting rates later in the year. The Fed itself has insisted it still has 75 bps of increases in the pipeline.
By contrast, the euro has gained nearly 0.8% in the last week, lifted by a barrage of European Central Bank officials signalling that tackling inflation is going to require more rate rises than markets currently anticipate.
Surveys on Tuesday showed euro zone business activity made a surprise return to modest growth in January, and service-sector activity in Germany expanded for the first time since June, although price pressures remained sticky.
“There is probably enough in there to cement another 50 basis points in increases from the ECB,” TraderX market strategist Michael Brown said.
The euro, which traded around its highest since last April on Monday, was last flat against the dollar at $1.08725, narrowly down from a session high of $1.0898.
Meanwhile, ECB President Christine Lagarde on Monday reiterated that the central bank will keep raising interest rates quickly to tame inflation, which is still more than 5 times its target rate of 2%.
Elsewhere, the dollar fell 0.4% to 130.18 yen, breaking a two-day rally.
Last week, the dollar fell as low as 127.215 yen, its weakest since May, before a Bank of Japan policy review as investors bet the BOJ would begin to end its stimulus programme. The BOJ, however, left policy unchanged, giving the dollar some respite.
But analysts believe a shift by the BOJ will happen sooner, rather than later, as policymakers make tweaks to their yield curve control (YCC) mechanism, which pins short-term rates at -0.1% and keeps 10-year yields in a band around zero.
“Clearly, the market regards the YCC policy as well past its use-by date, and it’s only a matter of time – and probably months rather than quarters – until the BOJ sounds the death knell on it,” said NAB’s Attrill, who predicts dollar-yen will decline to 125 by end-March.
“The era of yen weakness is rapidly falling behind us.”
The more volatile G10 currencies edged up against the dollar. Sterling and the New Zealand dollar were both last up 0.2% at $1.2399 and $0.6504, respectively, while the Australian dollar was flat around $0.7023, hovering close to its highest in five months.
(This story has been corrected to show that euro/dollar was trading at $1.08725, not $1.8725, in paragraph 10)
(Additional reporting by Kevin Buckland in Tokyo; Editing by Jacqueline Wong, Simon Cameron-Moore and Christina Fincher)
Chrishell Stause shares pic from hospital bed after removing ovarian cyst
Chrishell Stause spent her Wednesday in a hospital, revealing she underwent a “minor surgery” to have an ovarian cyst removed.
The reality TV star, who is best known for starring in the hit Netflix show “Selling Sunset,” shared a snap from the hospital bed shortly after the operation took place.
Stause told her 3.6 million Instagram followers that the cyst had caused her major discomfort, forcing her to have it removed.
“Had minor surgery today and had a large ovarian cyst removed,” the 41-year-old wrote on her Instagram Story. “Thank you Dr. Hakakha for taking such good care of me.”
Stause went on to issue a suggestion to her fans, urging them to get a check-up if they experience “bad, unexplained cramps.” She went on to tell followers, “Don’t ignore it.”
The “All My Children” alum added that she was “feeling good” and was “being looked after by my 💜,” possibly in reference to her partner, G Flip.
Stause revealed in May 2022 on a reunion episode of the hit Netflix show that she was in a relationship with G Flip, 28, who identifies as non-binary and uses they/them pronouns.
The pair first laid eyes on one another at a Halloween party in LA in 2021 but reconnected at another gathering months later.
Stause – who was fresh off her breakup with her “Selling Sunset” boss and co-star, Jason Oppenheim – said she shared a kiss with G Flip at the bash, but initially didn’t think much of it.
The lovebirds later had the chance to get to know each other while filming a steamy music video for G Flip’s single “Get Me Outta Here.” Stause played G Flip’s love interest in the clip.
After sparks flew, the pair decided to go public with their romance on the “Selling Sunset” Season 5 reunion.
Days after Stause went public with the relationship, G Flip got a tattoo on their leg of the song’s title.
As well as her ill-fated romance with Oppenheim, Stause was previously married to “This Is Us” star Justin Hartley. The pair tied the knot in 2017 but called it quits just two years later.
By: Ny Post
Elon Musk’s Neuralink may have illegally transported pathogens, animal advocates say – One America News Network
By Rachael Levy
(Reuters) – An animal-welfare organization said it plans to ask a U.S. government agency on Thursday to investigate Elon Musk’s brain-implant company Neuralink over records it said show potentially illegal movement of hazardous pathogens.
The Physicians Committee of Responsible Medicine (PCRM) said in a letter to the U.S. Department of Transportation, which was shared with Reuters, that it has obtained emails and other documents that suggest unsafe packaging and movement of implants removed from the brains of monkeys. These implants may have carried infectious diseases in violation of federal law, PCRM said.
The letter said records that the group obtained showed instances of pathogens, such as antibiotic-resistant staphylococcus and herpes B virus, that may have been transported without proper containment measures.
PCRM’s letter adds to the scrutiny facing Neuralink, which is developing a brain implant it hopes will help paralyzed people walk again and cure other neurological ailments.
In December, Reuters reported that Neuralink has been under a federal investigation over potential animal welfare violations and that some of its staff made internal complaints about experiments being rushed, causing needless suffering and deaths.
The incidents that involved potential breaches of hazardous material transportation regulations happened in 2019, when Neuralink relied on University of California, Davis to help carry out its experiments on primates, according to the documents cited by PCRM.
While Neuralink’s partnership with UC Davis ended in 2020, PCRM said the company continues to employ the neurosurgeon who oversaw the experiments and other staff involved may also still be employed.
Reuters reviewed the UC Davis records cited by PCRM in its letter. It is unclear whether further records exist that provide a different or fuller account of what happened. PCRM obtained the records from UC Davis through public information requests. Neuralink messages and records not shared with UC Davis are not subject to such information requests.
Representatives for Neuralink, including Musk, and the Department of Transportation did not respond to comment requests. A UC Davis spokesperson would only say that the university abides by all biohazard and lab safety regulations.
PCRM’s letter said pathogens were carried on removed implants from monkeys after improper sanitization and packaging. The group said those pathogens could cause serious health issues in infected humans, such as bloodstream infections, pneumonia and severe brain damage, among other problems.
PCRM, which opposes the use of animals in medical research, did not identify any harm as a result of these incidents, but said Neuralink’s actions “may pose a serious and ongoing public health risk.”
“The company’s documented track record of sloppy, unsafe laboratory practices compel DOT to investigate and levy appropriate fines,” PCRM said in the letter.
PCRM said it also found instances that appear to describe UC Davis employees urging immediate biohazard training for Neuralink employees following incidents that had caused contamination concerns. On one occasion in April 2019, a UC Davis employee wrote in an email that the university’s primate center is “at risk” for “monkey contaminated hardware.”
“This is an exposure to anyone coming in contact with the contaminated explanted hardware and we are making a big deal about this because we are concerned for human safety,” wrote the employee, whose name was redacted from the records.
PCRM has raised concerns about Neuralink in the past. Last year, it wrote to federal officials about alleged animal-welfare issues during Neuralink’s research partnership with UC Davis, citing another set of records it obtained. A federal prosecutor in the Northern District of California referred PCRM’s complaint to the USDA Inspector General, which later launched the federal probe into Neuralink, Reuters previously reported.
During its partnership with UC Davis, Neuralink grew frustrated with what it regarded as the slow pace of testing on primates, current and former company employees told Reuters, and has since built out extensive in-house animal testing facilities. The company has missed deadlines set by Musk to proceed to human trials, however. His pressure on Neuralink’s staff to make progress contributed to mistakes plaguing some experiments, Reuters reported.
(Reporting by Rachael Levy in Washington, D.C.; Editing by Greg Roumeliotis and David Gregorio)
Stephen ‘Twitch’ Boss’ widow Allison files for half of his estate after his death
Allison Holker Boss, the widow of Stephen “tWitch” Boss, has asked a California court to grant her half of the late dancer’s estate after he died without a will.
Stephen, who was a regular fixture on “The Ellen Show,” died by suicide on Dec. 13. He was 40.
In court documents obtained by Page Six Wednesday, Allison filed a California Spousal Property Petition in the Superior Court of California on Feb. 6 to formally request all of her late husband’s assets to be put in her name.
As Stephen did not have a will in place at the time of his death, Allison asked the court for “confirmation of property belonging to the surviving spouse” and “determination of property passing to the surviving spouse” — a standard procedure in such cases.
In the filing, Allison Boss, who shared kids Weslie, 14, Maddox, 6, and Zaia, 3, with the late dancer, said he did not have a net worth when they married in 2013.
Allison said he “owned only personal effects of little value” before landing a permanent spot on “The Ellen Show.”
The filing also mentions the property the mother of three wants to receive as Stephen’s surviving spouse but notes she is not requesting administration over her late husband’s estate.
“This includes any interest in a trade or business name of any unincorporated business or an interest in any unincorporated business that the deceased partner was operating or managing at the time of death,” the documents state.
She said there were “no written agreements between” them prior to his death, as she requested Stephen’s half of Stephen Boss Productions and his Goldman Sachs investment account.
Per the court filing, Allison is also requesting royalties from Cast and Crew Production Services; Disney Worldwide Services, Inc.; GEP Talent Services, LLC; and SAG/AFTRA.
Stephen was found dead in a Los Angeles motel room near his home in California at the age of 40 after he took his life via a gunshot wound to the head.
Authorities also found a suicide note which alluded to previous struggles but its exact contents have not been released.
If you or someone you know is affected by any of the issues raised in this story, call or text the Suicide & Crisis Lifeline at 988.
By: Ny Post
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