Coaches welcome WTA trial of allowing coaching from box

By Sudipto Ganguly

MELBOURNE (Reuters) – Coaches have welcomed the WTA Tour’s decision to allow them to help players from the stands this season after the issue became a hot-button topic in the wake of the 2018 U.S. Open final when Serena Williams (NYSE:) was controversially penalized.

Williams’s coach Patrick Mouratoglou gestured to Williams during her defeat by Japan’s Naomi Osaka at Flushing Meadows, leading to a code violation and sparking a heated row between the American great and the chair umpire.

Coaching from the stands would still be banned at Grand Slam events but the top women’s tour was quoted by ESPN.com as saying it would trial the new system at all WTA Premier and International tournaments this year.

Darren Cahill, coach of women’s world number three Simona Halep, said it was a step in the right direction.

“I think as an industry, a coaching industry in tennis, it’s important that we do evolve and do this,” he said on Monday.

“I’m really for it. I think the WTA is doing a good thing.”

The WTA, which has allowed players to call their coaches onto court at certain points during matches, said in the ESPN report: “The new trial will allow coaches to coach their player in the form they are currently coaching from the box without getting penalized.

“Whether it’s verbal words of encouragement or few words when their player is on the same side of the court to any hand signals, such coaching as it takes place now from the box will be allowed.”

Australian Cahill said he would have little to offer from the box, even in similar situations to Monday when his player Halep was yelling at the stands and whacking her racquet into the ground.

“Even today, you know, if I was allowed to coach today, you’d be surprised how little coaching the coaches will do if they’re allowed to do it,” said Cahill, who has also worked with Lleyton Hewitt and Andre Agassi.

“The reason why probably a lot of it goes on at the moment is because you’re not allowed to do it so you’re trying to get the sneaky coaching message across.

“But if you were allowed to do it, it’s a simple one line, ‘Hey, Simona, hold your line’. Okay, that’s coaching. But it’s not over-the-top coaching.”

Artemon Apostu-Efremov, who is also part of Halep’s coaching staff, hoped the trial would be a success.

“I think it’s a step that should have been taken quite a while ago, because coaches are part of the game,” he said.

“Mostly in all the sports you see coaches interact with the athletes.”

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

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Sports and General News

Eurostoxx futures -1.3% in early European trading

The negative risk mood carries over to Europe in early trades

  • German DAX futures -1.3%
  • French CAC 40 futures -1.4%
  • UK FTSE futures -1.2%

That just reaffirms the fact that risk aversion remains the name of the game currently. US futures are also down by ~1% and that will hardly offer any comfort for risk trades as we being European trading.

USD/JPY is still keeping slightly above the 109.00 handle while AUD/USD is at session lows, just under the 0.6800 level currently.

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Yen jumps, yuan slumps on worries China struggling to contain virus

By Stanley White

TOKYO (Reuters) – The yen rose and the yuan fell in offshore trade on Monday as worries that China is struggling to contain the spread of a pneumonia-like virus sparked a bout of risk aversion.

Japan’s currency, often sought as a safe-haven in times of uncertainty, rose to the highest in almost three weeks versus the dollar, while the yuan fell to its lowest since Jan. 8.

China’s cabinet announced it will extend the Lunar New Year holidays to Feb. 2, to strengthen the prevention and control of the new coronavirus, state broadcaster CCTV reported early on Monday. The holidays had been due to end on Jan. 30.

Hong Kong has also banned the entry of visitors from China’s Hubei province, where the new coronavirus outbreak was first reported, highlighting the difficulty officials face during a peak travel season.

Health authorities around the world are racing to prevent a pandemic of the virus, which has infected more than 2,000 people in China and killed 76.

There are concerns that tourism and consumer spending could take a hit if the virus spreads further, which would discourage investors from taking on excessive risk.

“There is a lot of uncertainty about how much further the virus will spread, and this is behind the moves in currencies,” said Yukio Ishizuki, foreign exchange strategist at Daiwa Securities in Tokyo.

“I thought dollar/yen would be supported at 109, but it broke through that, so now the next target is 108.50. This risk-off mood is likely to continue for a while.”

The yen rose 0.3% to 108.91 per dollar on Monday, reaching its strongest level since Jan. 8.

Japan’s currency also jumped around 0.5% versus the Australian () and New Zealand dollars () as worries about the virus drew traders toward safe-haven currencies and away from currencies that are more sensitive to risk.

In the offshore market, the yuan fell more than 0.3% to 6.9625 against the dollar, its weakest since Jan 8.

The () against a basket of six major currencies was little changed at 97.884.

Traders said market moves could be exaggerated due to low liquidity, because financial markets in China, Hong Kong, and Australia are closed for holidays.

The virus, which emerged late last year from illegally traded wildlife at an animal market in the central Chinese city of Wuhan, has spread to other countries, including Singapore, South Korea, Canada, Japan, and the United States.

China’s Hubei province, where Wuhan is located, said on Monday that 76 people have died and 1,423 new cases of the coronavirus outbreak have been identified as of end of Sunday.

The outbreak has evoked memories of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) in 2002-2003, another coronavirus which broke out in China and killed nearly 800 people in a global pandemic.

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Forex News

China’s national health minister warns virus appears to be infectious during incubation and is getting stronger

“The virus’s ability to spread seems to be getting somewhat stronger”

"The virus's ability to spread seems to be getting somewhat stronger"

China’s National Health Commission Minister Ma Xiaowei today said the incubation period for the virus can range from one to 14 days, and the virus is infectious during incubation, which was not the case with Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome.

“According to recent clinical information, the virus’s ability to spread seems to be getting somewhat stronger,” Ma told a media briefing.

He warned that containment efforts will be intensified.

China has now announced that going forward there will be daily briefings at 9 am Beijing time. That’s 0100 GMT or 8 pm in New York.

The WHO repeated on Sunday that it has not yet declared the virus to be a global emergency.

Separately, researchers are debating on what to name the coronavirus. While it’s being simply labeled as ‘coronavirus’ colloquially, that’s a scientific term that’s used for a type of virus. The interim name is novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) in scientific communities. Many are pushing to name it Wuhan coronavirus but the WHO discourages including place names so they might call it SARS-2. Colloquially, I don’t think that name will work and I suspect that something like the ‘Wuhan flu’ will win out in the general public.

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A city 1000km from Wuhan just declared a full lockdown

Shantou, a city of 5.5m on the southern coast will go on lockdown

Shantou, a city of 5.5m on the southern coast will go on lockdown

The city of Shantou on the southern coast of China in Guangdong province has announced it will be the first outside of Hubei province to go on lockdown.

That means no individual, vehicle or boat will be allowed to entering the city beginning on January 27. What’s different here is that Hubei cities are preventing people from leaving; in Shantou, they’re baring them from entering.

The choice of this city is extremely concerning. There are only 2 confirmed cases there and many are speculating this is a sign that the entire country is about to be put on lockdown. While that would be economically devastating in the short-term, it would be China’s best chance of halting the spread of the virus.

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U.S. Treasury chief Mnuchin says optimistic about U.S.-UK trade deal

© Reuters. U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin speaks at Chatham House in London © Reuters. U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin speaks at Chatham House in London

By Elizabeth Howcroft and William Schomberg

LONDON (Reuters) – U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said that he was optimistic the United States and Britain, soon to be out of the European Union, would strike a trade deal this year and that he had discussed it with Britain’s finance minister on Saturday.

U.S. President Donald Trump is keen for progress on trade talks before November’s presidential election, while in Britain the prospect of a deal has been touted by Brexit supporters as a way to offset the impact of leaving the EU and to exert leverage over the bloc in trade talks between London and Brussels.

“I’m quite optimistic. I think the prime minister and the president have a very good relationship,” Mnuchin told an audience at the Chatham House think tank in London.

Mnuchin said he had a breakfast meeting with his British counterpart minister Sajid Javid on Saturday, having also spoken to him this week at the World Economic Forum in Davos.

“We’re focused on trying to get this done this year because we think it’s important to both of us,” he said.

After the United States recently concluded the initial phase of a trade agreement with China, deals with Britain and the European Union were now the priority, Mnuchin said.

While Mnuchin conceded that Britain may need to finalize some issues with the EU before it could discuss them with Washington, he didn’t see this leading to a delay.

“I think a lot of the issues can be dealt with simultaneously and again we look forward to continuing a great trade relationship, and, if anything, I think there will be significantly more trade between the U.S. and the UK,” he said.

Asked by a reporter if Britain’s plan to implement a digital services tax on U.S. technology giants such as Facebook (O:) and Google (O:) could hinder the trade negotiations, Mnuchin said that he discussed the issue on Saturday with Javid.

Washington is threatening to put tariffs on products from the EU’s member states if they follow through with a plan to introduce a new tax on U.S. tech giants.

“The U.S. feels very strongly that any tax that is designed specifically on digital companies is a discriminatory tax and is not appropriate,” Mnuchin said.

Britain has said it intends to implement the tax, while France has put off its plans to wait for broader negotiations within the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

Mnuchin said he wanted to narrow the U.S. trade deficit with the EU but that differences between the bloc’s member states would complicate negotiations.

“When we talk about the EU, one of the challenges is some of these issues are really only a couple of countries, but I think, as you know, because of the EU we can’t negotiate these things on a bilateral basis,” he said.

“One of the challenges of dealing with the EU is even within the EU they have different views,” he added.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

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Economy News

Euro near seven-week lows before PMI data release

© Reuters. Euro currency bills are pictured at the Croatian National Bank in Zagreb © Reuters. Euro currency bills are pictured at the Croatian National Bank in Zagreb

By Saikat Chatterjee

LONDON (Reuters) – The euro held near seven-week lows on Friday after the European Central Bank struck a more dovish tone at Thursday’s meeting than some had expected.

Investor attention will turn to the flash PMI releases for January, which are some of the first indicators of how the global economy has performed moving into 2020.

The key data, the euro zone and German PMI figures, are expected to rise from previous readings. Higher-than-expected readings could trigger a rally.

The euro fell against the dollar (), to $ 1.1049. It was near a five-week low against the British pound () and 33-month low against the Swiss franc ().

“Sentiment has steadied overnight as evident from the Swiss franc’s weakness against the euro and the dollar with markets firmly focused on the PMI data,” said Thu Lan Nguyen, a FX strategist at Commerzbank (DE:) based in Frankfurt.

ECB President Christine Lagarde told a news conference after Thursday’s meeting that risks to euro zone growth remained tilted to the downside. Markets took her tone as dovish.

“Some people were hoping that Lagarde could talk about the possibility of policy normalization after Riksbank ended negative interest rates late last year. But there was absolutely no such indication from her,” said Kazushige Kaida, head of foreign exchange at State Street (NYSE:) Bank.

Riksbank, the central bank of Sweden, ended five years of negative interest rates last month, despite a slowdown in the Swedish economy.

The () held at 97.717 and was on track for a third consecutive week of gains.

The Australian dollar traded at $ 0.6843 , erasing the gains made after a strong jobs report the day before and heading for a fourth consecutive week of losses.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

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Forex News

Forex – Dollar Gains as U.S. Services Activity Hits Highest Since March

© Reuters.  © Reuters.

By Yasin Ebrahim

Investing.com – The dollar climbed against its rivals Friday as data showing ongoing strength in the U.S. services sector offset a continued slowing in manufacturing to a three-year low.

The , which measures the greenback against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, rose by 0.18% to 97.87.

The IHS Markit flash purchasing managers index for manufacturing slipped to a three-month low in January, but the services PMI rose to the highest level since last March.

Strength in the greenback was also supported by plunge in the pound and euro.

fell 0.29% to $ 1.308 and more losses could follow when trade negotiations between the U.K. and the EU begin after the U.K. leaves the trading bloc on Jan. 31, said Jane Foley, senior foreign-exchange strategist at Rabobank.

“Once those negotiations get underway in February and March, some of us could be in for a rude awakening,” Foley added.

fell 0.20% to $ .1013 shrugging off better-than-expected PMIs from Germany amid expectations that the European Central Bank is set to persist with negative rates at least until the end of the year.

fell 0.21% to $ 109.26 as the yen was supported by an uptick in safe-demand after the CDC confirmed that a second case of the coronavirus had been identified in the U.S.

rose 0.18% to C$ 1.315 as oil prices continued to retreat on fears that a continued spread of the virus could dent air travel, keeping a lid on oil demand.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

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Forex News

Hong Kong declares emergency over coronavirus and closes schools

Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam said Saturday her government is raising its response level to the highest level – emergency – and closing schools for two weeks, as authorities rush to contain the deadly coronavirus outbreak. 

The outbreak, which started in the central Chinese city of Wuhan, has left 41 people dead in China. The country’s National Health Commission says 1,287 people are infected. 

Wuhan has been locked down for days, with public transportation halted and flights and trains out of the city suspended.  Lockdowns now embrace more than a dozen cities across China, affecting more than 50 million people, The Associated Press reports.

Despite efforts to prevent the outbreak from spreading, cases have cropped up overseas. The U.S. confirmed a second case of coronavirus on Friday. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said more than 60 people in 22 states are being monitored for possible infection

Authorities believe the virus, which causes flu-like symptoms, moved into the human population from an infected animal at a market in Wuhan. Chinese health officials and the World Health Organization confirmed this week that the virus has been transmitted person-to-person, but it remains unclear how easy it is to contract from another infected individual.

HONG KONG-CHINA-HEALTH-VIRUS
People wear masks after visiting Wong Tai Sin temple on the first day of the Lunar New Year of the Rat in Hong Kong on January 25, 2020, as a preventative measure. DALE DE LA REY/AFP via Getty Images

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World – CBSNews.com