The ban on noisy freight cars will take effect from mid-December | Free Press

In 2017, a law was passed according to which noisy freight cars must be withdrawn from circulation. The new rules will take effect from December 13. But there are exceptions.

Berlin (dpa) – In order to protect residents on railway lines from noise, a ban on particularly noisy freight cars on the German rail network will apply from mid-December.

To this end, checks should be carried out and the railway companies requested to comply with the requirements, as indicated in a letter from the Federal Ministry of Transport to the industry. According to this, violations should only be punished with sanctions after one year. The background is that the capacity of the workshops is severely restricted due to the corona pandemic and the conversion of freight cars has been delayed or completely stopped since the beginning of the summer.

The new regulations that will apply from December 13 are based on a law passed in 2017. According to the ministry, 98.6 percent of the 183,000 freight cars on the German network now meet permitted noise levels. This also applies to international freight transport. For several years, the federal government has been promoting conversions to quieter wagons. Composite brake shoes are installed so that the tread surfaces of the wheels are not roughened as with old gray cast iron brake shoes. With smooth wheels on smooth rails, trains run more quietly.

As an exception, freight trains with noisy wagons are still allowed if they run so slowly that they are no louder than the quieter modern wagons. The exceptions also apply to routes with a certain quality, or if freight wagons cannot be converted to quieter brake shoes for technical reasons. The Federal Railroad Authority will oversee the new regulations. Since the end of 2012, there have also been incentives for noise reduction in the fee system for the use of the rail network: noisy freight cars cost more than quieter ones.

On major routes, such as the Rhine Valley, there have been protests against the noise of freight trains running at night for years.


Qantas airline wants to introduce mandatory vaccination for air travelers | Free Press

The Australian airline Qantas plans to carry out vaccinations at least for international flights. Qantas boss Joyce expects similar rules around the world.

Sydney (AP) – Concerned about the further spread of the corona virus, Australian national airline Qantas wants to introduce mandatory vaccinations for its passengers.

As soon as a vaccine is available, the airline’s terms and conditions will be adjusted accordingly, Qantas chief Alan Joyce told Australian broadcaster Nine News. While the next steps for domestic flights have yet to be decided, the situation with intercontinental connections is clear: “We will require international travelers to be vaccinated before allowing them to get on board.”

In her own words, Joyce assumes that her airline is not alone in this, but similar rules will be introduced around the world. “I think it will be normal, judging from conversations with my colleagues from other airlines.”

Unlike Qantas, Lufthansa does not want its passengers to have proof of a corona vaccination. The introduction of such an obligation is not currently planned, said a corporate spokesman in Frankfurt. The national governments of the countries are also responsible for the respective entry requirements. They would first have to come up with a plan to distribute the requested vaccine doses as soon as they are available.


Dax starts with profit

Frankfurt / Main (dpa) – Positive indications from Wall Street and the Far East stimulated the German stock market on Tuesday morning. The leading Dax Index gained 0.97 percent to 13,254.44 points in the first few minutes of trading, while the MDax of the 60 midsize stocks advanced 0.89 percent to 29,256.66 points on Tuesday. The EuroStoxx 50 was up about 1.1 percent, while New York was …


Deutsche Börse increases Dax to 40 members | Free Press

After the Wirecard scandal, there was a lot of criticism of the Deutsche Börse rules. This has now been overhauled and has changed a lot for the store operator.

Frankfurt / Main (dpa) – Deutsche Börse increases the leading German Dax index from 30 to 40 members. At the same time, it cuts the number of MDax stocks, the medium-sized company index, from 60 to 50.

In addition, only companies that have been profitable in the last two years will be included in the Dax, as announced by Deutsche Börse in Frankfurt. So you must have obtained earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (Ebitda).

After the scandal surrounding the now insolvent financial services provider Wirecard and the subsequent inclusion of previously unprofitable food provider Delivery Hero, there was much criticism of the market operator’s regulations. At the end of June, Deutsche Börse announced a review for the Dax family and made suggestions. In recent weeks, market participants such as banks, fund companies and associations have been able to comment on this.


Lights and shadows for candle makers in the Corona crisis | Free Press

Stuttgart (dpa) – The crown pandemic and the associated beautification trend are also making itself felt among candle makers, but in very different ways.

If you are broad-based and supply to garden centers or large retail chains, things are going pretty well for you, said Stefan Thomann, managing director of the European Candle Association, the Stuttgart-based association of candle makers. On the other hand, those who mainly have churches or small businesses such as florists among their clients have felt the crisis fully. “There has been a massive drop in sales,” Thomann said.

Thomann estimates that it is still possible to finish just below the previous year. However, 2019 was not a good year for sails: too warm, too summery than fall should have been.

The number of candles that are sold and bought each year in Germany can only be roughly estimated. According to the European Statistical Office, in 2019 almost 63,000 tons of candles were produced in this country with a value of around 143 million euros, about 9,000 tons less than in 2018.If this is offset by imports and exports, they were released on the market. about 171,000 tons of candles, about 10,000 tons less than in the year. prior to.

This year, the weather played a secondary role, Thomann said. Corona was clearly the determining factor. The pandemic created a high demand for hardware stores and garden centers at times because many people had to spend a lot of time at home unfamiliar and sometimes unintentional. “People make it nice at home,” Thomann said. At least in part, this was also evident in candle sales.

In contrast, there would be stores forcibly closed in the spring and often much tighter restrictions abroad. “Ikea had closed its branches for weeks,” Thomann said. “That plays a role throughout the year.” Business with the churches has also suffered greatly.

Whether the pandemic will permanently change the industry can only be said at the end of the season. “But what can be clearly seen: higher quality sails are being bought,” Thomann said. It is not clear if this is done consciously. “The candle is more of a to-go item.” The purchase is rarely planned in advance and implemented in a specific way.

The trend towards greater sustainability has now reached the industry as well, for example in regards to buyers’ demands on the raw materials used. “But that started before Corona,” Thomann said.


Sentence: Federal Republic is not responsible for diesel traps | Free Press

Trap diesel car buyers have to stick with the manufacturer for compensation. Who else, one wonders? VW and Audi customers had sued the Federal Republic.

Frankfurt / Main (dpa): buyers of trap diesel vehicles cannot yet count on compensation from the Federal Republic of Germany. The Frankfurt Regional Court has rejected the corresponding lawsuits of VW and Audi customers, as reported by the judiciary on Monday.

Germany has not implemented European law improperly in national law and has not “qualified” violated control obligations towards the auto industry, the judges found. Car buyers would have to stick with manufacturers on compensation.

A spokeswoman for the court explained that the judgments (docket numbers 2-04 OR 425/19, 2-04 OR 449/19, 2-04 OR 455/19 and 2-04 OR 123/2) can still be appealed to the Court Frankfurt Regional Superior. Similar lawsuits are pending in other regional courts as well, as the place where the vehicle was purchased ultimately establishes jurisdiction.

The judges consider sufficient the possible sanctions provided by the State against the manufacturers in case of controversial manipulation. The homologation could be withdrawn, fines imposed and, finally, the sale of cars with manipulated software could also be prosecuted as fraud.

Nor was it “reprehensible” that the Federal Motorized Transport Authority trusted the manufacturer’s information on the measurements of the distance traveled, explained the civil chamber. Officials should not have assumed the fraud. “The fact that the well-known vehicle manufacturer, in whose parent company the state of Lower Saxony has a significant stake in terms of the joint-stock company law, manipulated measurements with the help of the deactivation device was probably considered absurd until the autumn of 2015 “, said the reasons for the sentence.


The aviation industry expects sales to fall 40 percent | Free Press

Berlin (dpa) – The German aerospace industry is experiencing a severe setback after years of growth in the Corona crisis.

“We, as an association, are assuming a fall in sales for the civil aviation industry of around 40 percent this year,” said Dirk Hoke, president of the Federal Association of the German Aerospace Industry (BDLI) of the dpa . The order books are still well full, but the airlines are short of money. “There is very little interest in accepting planes.” A significant drop in sales is also expected next year.

“It’s a difficult time for us, but we also see opportunities,” Hoke said. “We should use the time to invest in climate-friendly technologies.” Europe could play a key role on the path to climate-neutral flights if it sets the right course now.

This is what the Berlin Aviation Summit online on Tuesday will be about. There: the EU Commissioner for Transport, Adina Valean, Federal Minister of Economy Peter Altmaier (CDU) and the heads of Boeing and Airbus, Michael Arthur and Guillaume Faury.

“Only sustainable aviation will give us the license to grow,” said Vice President Reiner Winkler. Work on efficient engine technologies and synthetic fuels will continue. “Research funding could be further expanded to accelerate this.”

Because in the crisis the pressure to save on companies grows, especially among medium-sized suppliers. Some of them are vital to the entire industry because they are the only ones offering the specialized solutions that everyone needs.

For years, the industry could plan that air traffic would double every 15 years. Now it has reduced the workforce between eight and ten percent, also reducing working hours. Companies want to avoid layoffs, as Winkler said. “Everyone has an interest in keeping highly skilled employees.” Short-term work helps a lot.

However, the road to the old force will be long in aviation. Hoke said: “In the optimistic case we assume that we will again reach the number of passengers in 2019 in 2023, in the pessimistic case 2025.” Another testing strategy is necessary. As long as travelers from risk areas only came out of quarantine after five days with a negative test, most passengers would not even start a trip.

Not all airlines will survive the crisis, Winkler said. From the point of view of the aviation industry, passengers will also feel the market shake. It is true that prices were formed in the market. “But one can assume that flying will often be more expensive than in the past,” Hoke said. “For 9.90 euros to Mallorca, that cannot cover the expenses.”


The arrest of car manager Carlos Ghosn was a violation | Free Press

The adventurous escape from Japan’s former automobile boss Ghosn was a good six months ago. A UN task force previously viewed his treatment in part as “deprivation of liberty.” Japan disagrees.

Geneva (dpa) – A UN working group has described the preventive detention of the former head of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi automobile group, Carlos Ghosn, in Japan as a “deprivation of liberty”.

This has violated several articles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, according to the assessment of the working group on arbitrary detentions published in Geneva on Monday.

Ghosn was arrested and charged in Tokyo on November 19, 2018, among other things, for violating the requirements of the stock market. In April 2019, he was released on bail under strict conditions. Ghosn then fled in dubious circumstances on a private jet through Turkey to Beirut in late December. It is said to have been hidden in a box that was declared as luggage for musical instruments at the airport and was not radiographed. The native Brazilian has Lebanese and French citizenship. Ghosn had denied the accusations against him several times in Japan.

Ghosn’s team reported, among other things, that the manager was questioned without a lawyer and was partially held in solitary confinement. He had been temporarily denied exit from the cell and was prevented from sleeping by permanent light sources. The Japanese government rejected the allegations in a statement to the task force. Ghosn was treated in accordance with Japanese law, which respects human rights.


Extended partial lockdown continues to slow the economy | Free Press

Berlin (dpa) – In the event of a prolonged partial lockdown in the Crown crisis, the German economy threatens a new setback from the perspective of economists.

For the last quarter, they expect a drop in economic output again, but less than in the spring. The restrictions that have been in place since early November are already causing serious losses, according to the retail and restaurant industries, for example. In the case of longer restrictions, the companies affected also demand an extension of the aid.

This Wednesday, Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) is discussing the next steps in the crown pandemic with the prime ministers of the federal states. An extension of the partial blockade is evident, which has been in force since the beginning of November and was initially limited to the end of the month. An extension is proposed until December 20. State aid for affected companies could be expanded accordingly, he said.

DIW President Marcel Fratzscher emphasized that containing the pandemic must continue to have the highest priority, also with an eye to the economy. The greatest risk for economic recovery is a wave of long-term contagion, which generates even more uncertainty for companies, the self-employed and consumers: “In the short term, we have to act consistently to protect the economy in the medium term.” The longer politicians delay the necessary measures, the more difficult it will be to stop the wave of infections and the greater the economic damage.

Michael Hüther of the Institut der deutschen Wirtschaft (IW) called for the November aid to be extended in the event of longer restrictions. “Basically, like replacing 75 percent of the previous year’s monthly billing, solutions have been chosen that can only be justified in the short term and that work.” For the economists of “Deutsche Bank Research”, the aid should remain “strictly oriented towards the points of necessity, precision and adequacy, since the fiscal resources are finite and the State cannot offer a comprehensive insurance”.

Should the partial lockdown continue, Holger Schmieding, chief economist at Berenberg Bank, will increase the probability of a slight decline in German gross domestic product in the fourth quarter. “That should be very soft compared to the hiatus in March and April,” said Schmieding of the German press agency. Schools and stores are not closed, manufacturing is doing well, order books are fuller than usual. As soon as restrictions are relaxed, the economy will catch up with the possible setback.

In the opinion of ING Bank’s Carsten Brzeski, a further decline in economic output is inevitable. Services have weakened since September. The blockade worsened this trend. The lack of perspective on how long the measures will take will put pressure on consumer and business confidence. The only positive unknowns at this time are industry and exports, which entered strongly in the fourth quarter.

In their report in early November, the “economic savants” have already prepared for a longer lockdown. “The Council of Experts has already taken into account the November closing light in its forecast, and also assumed that the restrictions will be extended through the winter,” said the head of the advisory body, Lars Feld, the “Handelsblatt”. Their impression is that the federal and state governments stick to the basic approach: keep working, but restrict contacts in your spare time. “This is strong protection for the German economy, as shown now in November, for example, in surveys of companies such as the Purchasing Managers Index.”

The mood among eurozone purchasing managers deteriorated significantly in November. The prestigious purchasing managers index of the British institute IHS Markit fell 4.9 points to 45.1 points. The sentiment indicator is well below the growth threshold of 50 points. Services are mainly affected by restrictions on public life. In industrial companies, however, the mood has only slightly deteriorated. Sentiment data still suggests growth in the manufacturing sector.

According to a survey by the retail association HDE, the number of customers in city centers in the third week of November was 40 percent lower than the previous year. Sales were nearly a third below the previous year’s figure. “If politicians do not promptly intervene with aid programs, we will soon pass the tipping point from which many distributors will no longer be able to save themselves,” said Stefan Genth, CEO of HDE. He asked politicians to open up November aid to retailers as well. Also, bridging aids should be adjusted.

If politicians decide to close hotels and restaurants more, there must also be a commitment to more help, according to the restaurant industry. “The November aid has to become winter aid,” Ingrid Hartges, executive director of the Federal Dehoga Association, told the “Rheinische Post” (Monday). The fitness industry also complains about the lack of prospects and warns of bankruptcies if the studios are not allowed to reopen soon.

In the spring, the German economy collapsed 9.8 percent with the first major lockdown. With unexpectedly strong third-quarter growth of 8.2 percent compared to the previous quarter, Europe’s largest economy made up for some of the crown-related decline.


Tesla boss Musk overtakes Bill Gates in billionaire ranking | Free Press

In a single day, Tesla boss Musk’s fortune grew by $ 7.2 billion thanks to rising Tesla prices. Now he is considered the second richest person in the world.

New York (AP) – US electric car maker Tesla’s rally on the stock market is causing company chief Elon Musk’s assets to continue to rise.

According to the “Bloomberg Billionaires Index” ranking of billionaires, the 49-year-old star businessman surpassed Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and is now the second richest person in the world.

Thanks to the sharp rise in Tesla’s share price by 6.5 percent, Musk’s fortune rose in a single day by 7.2 billion to 127.9 billion dollars (108 billion euros). Since the beginning of the year, it has already grown a whopping $ 100.3 billion.

Gates recently hit $ 127.7 billion on the Bloomberg super-rich lists. Your fortune would be significantly higher if you didn’t donate that much money. At the top of the list of billionaires remains the undisputed head of Amazon, Jeff Bezos, whose fortune is estimated at $ 182 billion by the “Bloomberg Billionaires Index.”

As the main shareholders of their companies, Musk and Bezos benefit above all from their strong price performance on the stock market. Tesla’s stake has risen 675 percent in the last twelve months. With a market value of just under $ 500 billion, the group is by far the most highly-traded automaker in the world, despite relatively low production figures and modest profits.

Figures from billionaires charts, such as the Bloomberg Billionaires Index or Forbes lists, are only estimates based on publicly available information about assets such as stocks, real estate, art objects, and other luxury items. On Forbes’ list of billionaires, Musk is fourth with a fortune of $ 110.5 billion.