European stocks lower…S Korea’s releasing Samsung scion
BEIJING (AP) – European stocks opened lower today and Asian markets advanced. In early trading, the FTSE 100 in London fell 0.3% and the DAX in Frankfurt shed 0.1%. The CAC 40 in Paris was little changed. In Asian markets, the Shanghai Composite Index gained 1.1% after Chinese exports rose 18.9% in July over a year earlier. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng gained 0.4%. The Kospi in Seoul fell 0.3%. Wall Street futures are lower.
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) – South Korea says it will release billionaire Samsung scion Lee Jae-yong on parole this week after he spent 18 months in prison for his role in a massive corruption scandal that triggered nationwide protests and led to the ouster of the country’s previous president. The announcement by the Justice Ministry, which comes with a year left on Lee’s 30-month sentence, extends a history of leniency toward major white-collar crime and preferential treatment of convicted tycoons.
UNDATED (AP) – Moderna will become the third COVID-19 vaccine available in Australia beginning next month after the country’s vaccine regulator approved it today for adults. The government says the first million doses will arrive in late September and 10 million are scheduled to be delivered this year. Australia has a shortage of Pfizer and a glut of locally manufactured AstraZeneca, which many are refusing to take because of the slight risk of blood clotting.
MIAMI (AP) – A federal judge has granted Norwegian Cruise Line’s request to temporarily block a Florida law banning cruise companies from asking passengers for proof of coronavirus vaccination before they board a ship. A U.S. district judge granted the preliminary injunction in a lawsuit challenging the state’s “vaccine passport” ban, which was signed into law in May by Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis. The state’s attorney has said the law’s aim is to prevent discrimination against passengers who don’t get vaccinated. Norwegian says vaccine proof is needed to safely resume its cruises.
CAIRO (AP) – Russia has resumed flights to Egypt’s Red Sea resorts, ending a six-year ban following the bombing of a Russian airliner that killed all 224 people onboard. The local branch of the Islamic State group said it downed the plane over Sinai in October 2015. An EgyptAir flight carrying 300 tourists took off from Moscow this morning and and hours later landed in Hurghada, a popular Egyptian beach resort. The Russian tourists, most of them wearing facemasks, were greeted with flowers and balloons upon disembarking.