Other News & Stories

Service Sector Saves UK Economy

UK service sectorBritain’s vast services sector propelled the economy back into growth in the first quarter of the year, making up for falls in both manufacturing and construction output.

The country’s official economic data on Thursday showed an economy carried aloft by its shopkeepers, waiters, truck drivers and car mechanics.

“There is little sign of rebalancing,” said Amit Kara, an economist at UBS. “The manufacturing sector has shrunk in three out of the last four quarters, whereas the services sector has expanded in three out of the last four quarters.”

Britain’s economy has been flat over the past few years. Its manufacturing and construction sectors have fallen into deep double-dip recessions, while the services sector has grown slowly but steadily since the crisis. Construction output is still about 20 per cent below the economy’s pre-crisis peak and manufacturing output is still about 10 per cent below.

Find out more about this story from the Financial Times.

April 26, 2013 at 7:32 amBrain Serve

Google Predicts Markets

google predictsSearches of financial terms on Google can be used to predict the direction of the stock market. People do more searches on terms such as “stocks”, “portfolio” and “economics” when they are worried about the state of the markets. Rises in search volumes for such terms are generally followed by stock market declines. By contrast, a fall in financial searches often points to greater optimism among investors, leading to a rising market. With the power of hindsight, trading on the basis of Google search volumes would have led to significant investment gains.

Google releases data each week showing the volume of searches for specific keywords, providing the raw material for the analysis. The increasing availability of large data sets has given rise to data attempts to forecast financial markets. There is little evidence yet of such efforts yielding profits, though.

What other contemporary technology can predict markets? Find out more from London’s Richard Waters from the Financial Times.

April 26, 2013 at 7:16 amThe Marketing Section

Organs To Be Transported ‘Alive’ Outside Body

organ care systemThe TransMedics Organ Care System keeps the heart beating during transport. This brings less damage to the organ, hence the recipient’s body does not have to work as hard to accept it.

Patients who underwent live organ transplants also spent less time on a mechanical ventilator, less time in the ICU and had fewer complications. The portable transplant system also enables doctors to keep organs outside the body longer. This gives hospitals the opportunity to increase transplantation without increasing the number of organ donors.

Doctors in the future could even use the TransMedics device to fight chronic diseases. If they could remove the lungs of a stage IV cancer patient and attack the organs with radiation outside the body, they could potentially place the same cancer-free lungs back in the patient a few days later. This eliminates the need for donor lungs effectively.

Will this science fiction story eventually turn into history? Find out more from CNN’s Jacque Wilson.

April 26, 2013 at 7:11 amHead of Health