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Corn rises for seventh day, hits near 8-year top on global supply woes

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Author of the article: SINGAPORE — Chicago corn futures rose for a seventh consecutive session on Tuesday, with the market touching a nearly eight-year high as adverse weather in Brazil and the United States raised concerns over global supplies. Wheat climbed to its highest since February 2013, while soybeans hit a near eight-year peak. “The…

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SINGAPORE — Chicago corn futures rose for a seventh consecutive session on Tuesday, with the market touching a nearly eight-year high as adverse weather in Brazil and the United States raised concerns over global supplies.

Wheat climbed to its highest since February 2013, while soybeans hit a near eight-year peak.

“The market remains worried about Brazil’s second corn crop being irredeemably out of synch with seasons,” said Tobin Gorey, director of agricultural strategy at Commonwealth Bank of Australia. “And cool weather in the U.S. is making people think, if not quite worry, about planting delays.”

The most-active corn contract on the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) added 0.1% at $6.58-1/4 a bushel by 0159 GMT, near the session’s peak of $6.66 a bushel, its highest since June 2013.

Soybeans fell 0.4% to $15.35 a bushel, after hitting a June 2013 high earlier in the session at $15.45 a bushel. Wheat rose 0.3% to $7.42-1/2 a bushel, not far from its highest since February 2013 at $7.47 a bushel hit earlier in the day.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) said the country’s farmers were able to plant 17% of their intended corn acres as of Sunday, in line with the average estimate in a Reuters poll of analysts. ]

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But corn planting is still lagging behind the five-year average pace of 20%.

Soybean planting was 8% complete by Sunday, the USDA said, matching the average analyst estimate and ahead of the five-year average of 5%.

Potential yields of this year’s winter grain crops in the European Union have declined slightly since March as cold and dry weather hampered development and also delayed sowing of spring varieties, the EU’s crop monitoring service said.

Russian wheat export prices rose for a third week in a row last week, buoyed by higher prices in Chicago and Paris on supply concerns, analysts said on Monday.

Commodity funds were net buyers of CBOT corn, wheat, soybean, soyoil and soymeal futures contracts on Monday, traders said. (Reporting by Naveen Thukral; Editing by Rashmi Aich)

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Health Care Unions Launch Nursing Week with Urgent Plea of Support for Registered Practical Nurses

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Author of the article: SEIU Healthcare and CUPE’s Ontario Council of Hospital Unions release data showing the trauma and turmoil experienced by RPNs TORONTO — SEIU Healthcare and CUPE’s Ontario Council of Hospital Unions are launching nursing week with an urgent plea of support for registered practical nurses (RPNs). The two unions released polling and…

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SEIU Healthcare and CUPE’s Ontario Council of Hospital Unions release data showing the trauma and turmoil experienced by RPNs

TORONTO — SEIU Healthcare and CUPE’s Ontario Council of Hospital Unions are launching nursing week with an urgent plea of support for registered practical nurses (RPNs). The two unions released polling and survey data showing trauma and turmoil experienced by RPNs on the frontline of our healthcare system.

Registered practical nurses are carrying the weight of a pandemic on their shoulders without the financial or emotional support they need. Low staffing levels in our hospitals mean the work is dangerous and causing mental and physical exhaustion. And a reliance on part-time employment means RPNs continue to go without adequate paid sick days and without isolation pay due to COVID-19.

It is incumbent upon Premier Ford’s government and the Ontario Hospital Association to immediately authorize the resources necessary to provide:

  1. Increased staffing levels with full-time jobs that come with permanent wage increases above the rate of inflation that can only come with an exemption from Bill 124
  2. Guaranteed access to mental health support
  3. Safe working conditions with full PPE, on-site second dose vaccinations, and paid sick days

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SEIU Healthcare and CUPE’s Ontario Council of Hospital Unions represent approximately 80,000 workers in Ontario’s hospital system, including about 20,000 registered practical nurses (RPNs).

POLLING AND SURVEY DATA AT A GLANCE:

  • 93% of RPNs report experiencing mental and physical exhaustion
  • 66% of RPNs report seeing a co-worker experiencing violence at work
  • 37% of Toronto based RPNs considering leaving the profession due to low pay
  • 1 in 3 RPNs were denied paid time off when forced to isolate due to COVID-19

QUOTES:

“Research show us that denying registered practical nurses fair wages and safe staffing levels mean our hospitals are about to experience an exodus of frontline staff. The burnout is real and decision makers must heed the warnings. Nurses cannot continue to take on more work done by fewer staff—staff who are now carrying the emotional and physical weight of a pandemic. Premier Ford’s government made hallway healthcare worse and allowed wait times to grow, all before the pandemic hit us. In the aftermath of the pandemic, we’re asking for a better deal for Ontario’s registered practical nurses.” Sharleen Stewart, President of SEIU Healthcare

“Our polling paints a stark picture of exhausted nurses who feel unvalued and unsupported. A large number are considering leaving nursing. At every turn, doors have been slammed in their faces. Refused the protective equipment they need to work safely. Not fully vaccinated despite working with Covid-19 patients. Not being paid if they catch Covid-19 at work and must take 10 days off. Told to accept real wage cuts. Nurses have really stepped up for the people of Ontario during this crisis and they deserve so much more from their government than platitudes.” Michael Hurley, President of CUPE’s Ontario Council of Hospital Unions

View source version on businesswire.com: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20210509005028/en/

Contacts

Stella Yeadon, CUPE Communications

416-559-9300

syeadon@cupe.ca

Corey Johnson, SEIU Healthcare Communications

416-529-8909

c.johnson@seiuhealthcare.ca

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UK rail operators withdraw some Hitachi trains due to cracks

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Author of the article: LONDON — The British government asked the rail industry on Sunday to urgently announce how it was going to deal with disruption to services after several operators were forced to withdraw part of their fleets because of cracks discovered on certain trains. Checks carried out on Saturday on Class 800 Series…

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LONDON — The British government asked the rail industry on Sunday to urgently announce how it was going to deal with disruption to services after several operators were forced to withdraw part of their fleets because of cracks discovered on certain trains.

Checks carried out on Saturday on Class 800 Series trains made by Japan’s Hitachi identified cracks on part of the chassis of some trains, prompting operators including GWR and LNER to remove all their trains of that class.

“I have directed the rail industry to urgently set out a comprehensive plan to ensure services can safely resume as soon as possible,” Rail Minister Chris Heaton Harris said in a statement.

“I expect operators to explore all options for replacement services to help people complete their journeys, and have asked Hitachi for a safety inspection plan, as well as longer term repair strategy.”

Hitachi apologized to passengers and operators, saying the trains had been withdrawn as a precautionary measure.

“We are working as quickly and safely as possible to investigate the issue across the remainder of the fleets,” it said in a statement posted on Twitter.

GWR, which operates services between London and various destinations in western and southwestern England and in Wales, said it had canceled a significant number of its services.

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It said it expected disruption to continue on Monday and into the week ahead.

“The problem continues to be investigated by Hitachi and once trains have been checked and cleared, we hope to be able to release them back into service as soon as possible,” said GWR, which is owned by FirstGroup.

LNER, which operates services between London and cities in eastern and northeastern England and in Scotland, gave similar information on its website, urging passengers not to attempt to travel on Sunday and promising to rebook or refund tickets.

The rail minister warned passengers that disruptions were likely to continue “for some time,” calling on operators to organize replacement bus and coach services to help alleviate the problem. (Reporting by Estelle Shirbon Editing by Frances Kerry)

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Jerusalem tense over evictions and holidays

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Author of the article: JERUSALEM — East Jerusalem has seen nightly clashes during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, with Palestinians pitted against Israeli police and settlers. The issues and the scale of the protests have varied, covering religion, land and politics, but running through them all is the core conflict between Israelis and Palestinians…

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JERUSALEM — East Jerusalem has seen nightly clashes during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, with Palestinians pitted against Israeli police and settlers.

The issues and the scale of the protests have varied, covering religion, land and politics, but running through them all is the core conflict between Israelis and Palestinians over the city that has sites sacred to Judaism, Islam and Christianity. Here are some of the factors that have brought Jerusalem to near boiling point:

When did the protests start?

From the beginning of Ramadan in mid-April, Palestinians clashed nightly with Israeli police who put up barriers to stop evening gatherings at the walled Old City’s Damascus Gate after iftar, the breaking of the daytime fast.

Palestinians saw the barriers as a restriction on their freedom to assemble. Police said they were there to maintain order.

Why did the violence flare up again?

An Israeli Supreme Court hearing was due on May 10 in a long-running legal case about whether several Palestinian families would be evicted and their homes in Sheikh Jarrah, a neighborhood near Damascus Gate, given to Israeli settlers.

Some settlers have already moved into the street affected – living next door to the Palestinians facing possible removal.

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As the court hearing neared, Palestinians and left-wing Israelis began holding larger demonstrations, saying more evictions could cause a domino effect throughout the overwhelmingly Palestinian neighborhood.

Sheik Jarrah also contains a site revered by religious Jews as the tomb of an ancient high priest, Simon the Just, leading to frequent tensions between Palestinian living there and religious Jews visiting it.

The case, in which a lower court ruled that the land in question belonged to Jews in East Jerusalem before the 1948 War, has gathered domestic and international attention, amid criticism of Israeli settlements in East Jerusalem.

What next?

On Sunday the Supreme Court hearing on the evictions was postponed, pushing at least one flashpoint past the end of Ramadan and allowing more time for a resolution. A new session will be scheduled within 30 days.

Monday is Jerusalem Day, Israel’s annual commemoration of its capture of East Jerusalem during the 1967 war. The event usually sees a march through the walled Old City by Jewish pilgrims, including ultra-nationalists, which could be another flashpoint.

Why is Jerusalem so sensitive?

Politics, history and religion.

At the heart of Jerusalem’s Old City is the hill known to Jews across the world as Temple Mount – the holiest site in Judaism – and to Muslims internationally as The Noble Sanctuary. It was home to the Jewish temples of antiquity. Two Muslim holy places now stand there, the Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa Mosque, the third holiest place in Islam.

Christians also revere the city as the place where they believe that Jesus preached, died and was resurrected.

Israel sees all of Jerusalem as its eternal and indivisible capital, while the Palestinians want the eastern section as a capital of a future state. Israel’s annexation of East Jerusalem is unrecognized internationally.

(Reporting by Maayan Lubell Editing by Stephen Farrell and Raissa Kasolowsky)

In-depth reporting on the innovation economy from The Logic, brought to you in partnership with the Financial Post.

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