Lexus LBX via PALexus LBX via PA

News Round-Up

Aug 11: Motor insurance record high; Junior doctors strike again; Wilko in administration; More Lexus LBX details

  • Here are the headlines for Friday, August 11

Time 6:37 am, August 11, 2023

Average price paid for motor insurance reaches record high

The average price paid for motor insurance has surged by just over a fifth (21 per cent), or nearly £90 in cash terms, over the past year, to reach the highest levels since records started in 2012, according to the Association of British Insurers (ABI).

The average premium paid for private comprehensive motor insurance in the second quarter of 2023 was £511, which was also up by seven per cent on the previous quarter.

The ABI said ‘sustained cost pressures’ faced by insurers, such as vehicle repairs, energy costs and labour rates, have pushed up the price of motor insurance.

Junior doctors stage fresh walkout

New doctors are downing stethoscopes to pick up placards and join picket lines across England.

Junior doctors from the British Medical Association are staging a four-day walkout from 7am today over pay and working conditions – their fifth round of strikes.

Some of them have only been working in the NHS for nine days, having started their first NHS jobs on August 2.

Wilko falls into administration with 12,500 jobs at risk

Budget retailer Wilko has entered administration after failing to secure a rescue deal, putting around 12,500 jobs in jeopardy.

The chain, which runs more than 400 stores across the UK, told staff yesterday it had hired administrators from PwC to oversee the process.

Wilko will continue to trade from all its stores ‘without any immediate redundancies’, the administrators have said.

BBC journalists vote to continue industrial action

BBC journalists have voted to continue taking industrial action in a long-running dispute over cuts to local services.

Members of the National Union of Journalists (NUJ) backed more strikes by 70 per cent and other forms of industrial action by 83 per cent after being reballoted.

NUJ members at BBC Local in England in local radio, regional TV and online have already taken strike action on three occasions and are continuing to operate a work-to-rule.

Labour urges wider support for firms to train staff amid skills warning

Businesses struggling to train staff or recruit skilled workers should be given more help to get the workforce they need, Labour has said.

Shadow business secretary Jonathan Reynolds said Labour would address the shortage of workers with the skills businesses need by widening funding for a greater range of apprenticeships if it comes to power.

The pledge comes as analysis of Office for National Statistics data by the party suggests a growing number of businesses are reporting staffing challenges, with 500,000 companies having to pause some activity because of a shortage of workers with the right skills.

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AI platforms recommended for use to save radiographers time

Artificial intelligence (AI) has been recommended for use to aid NHS clinicians for the first time in a move that could help save radiographers hundreds of thousands of hours.

Nine platforms have been given the green light in draft guidance from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice), which said they could relieve ‘severe pressure’ on radiology departments and save the health service money.

AI is used by radiographers to create outlines of cancer patients’ healthy organs in cases such as lung, prostate or colo-rectal cancers to ensure beam radiotherapy doesn’t damage healthy cells. At the moment, radiographers outline healthy organs on a CT or MRI scan by hand but Nice said evidence showed AI platforms ‘generally produce similar quality contours’ as those carried out manually, with most only needing ‘minor edits’.

Maui fire deaths surge to 53 and likely to go higher, governor says

Hawaii governor Josh Green says 53 people were killed in the devastating Maui wildfires and the death toll will likely continue to rise.

A search of the wildfire devastation on the Hawaiian island yesterday revealed a wasteland of obliterated neighbourhoods and landmarks charred beyond recognition.

A flyover of historic Lahaina showed entire neighbourhoods that had once been a vibrant vision of colour and island life reduced to grey ash.

Russia to launch first mission to the moon in almost 50 years

Russia is scheduled to launch its first mission to the moon in nearly 50 years today, racing to land on the lunar south pole before a spacecraft from India gets there.

The launch of the Luna-25 craft to the moon will be Russia’s first since 1976 when it was part of the Soviet Union and will be conducted without assistance from the European Space Agency, which ended co-operation with Russia after its invasion of Ukraine.

The Russian lunar lander is expected to reach the moon on August 23, around about the same day as an Indian craft that was launched on July 14.

Lexus LBX front view via PA

Lexus reveals more details about new LBX

The new Lexus LBX crossover will start from £29,995, the firm has announced.

Five specifications will be available, with each bringing one of Lexus’s different ‘atmospheres’. All cars will have 17-inch alloy wheels as standard, with the option of 18-inch machined alloys on two of the specs.

All cars get a 9.8-inch colour touchscreen, dual-zone climate control, front and rear parking sensors plus smartphone integration for Apple and Android devices.

Yesterday’s headlines on Car Dealer you might have missed

Market movements

The FTSE 100 closed 31.30 points up yesterday to end the day on 7,618.60. The Cac 40, meanwhile, was up 111.58 points at 7,433.62, the Dax was up 143.94 points at 15,996.52 and the Dow Jones was up 52.79 points at 35,176.15.

Weather outlook

It’ll be mostly dry with sunny spells in the UK this morning once early rain in Scotland clears, says BBC Weather. There’ll be a few showers in the afternoon, and it’ll be cloudy and breezy as well in the north-west, with patchy rain in the south-east.

Saturday will be breezy, with the west and north seeing showers drift in, some thundery at times. It’ll be mostly dry and sunny in the east in the morning but a few showers will arrive later.

John Bowman's avatar

John has been with Car Dealer since 2013 after spending 25 years in the newspaper industry as a reporter then a sub-editor/assistant chief sub-editor on regional and national titles. John is chief sub-editor in the editorial department, working on Car Dealer, as well as handling social media.

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