Morning Headlines: Thursday 16th August 2018

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Stockmann Announces Profit Boost

The Stockmann group has announced increased profits this morning. From April to June, the department store posted profits of €24 million. That’s up from €15 million just one year ago. However, net sales actually fell: to €279 million, from €281 million last year. According to the company, the improved results comes from the Lindex clothing line, where sales grew in all markets and all sales channels. It was a different story last year when poor sales at Lindex helped drag down Stockmann’s turnover and profit margin.

Drug Driving Problems 

A growing number of drivers in Finland are under the influence of medicines and drugs. That’s according to a new warning from insurance company LähiTapiola out this morning, and looks at statistics which show a third of drivers caught under the influence, were affected by medicines or drugs rather than alcohol. LähiTapiola says other emerging trends in road safety include increased accidents caused by mobile phones, and also an increase in accidents caused by elderly drivers. It’s not all bad news however! The insurance company says that over the last 20 years there’s a safer driving culture in Finland, and the annual number of road deaths has halved. In 2017, there were 212 road traffic deaths; whereas back in the early 2000s the number was closer to 400 annual traffic deaths.

Military Service Exemptions

The percentage of young men exempted from Finnish military service varies depending where in the country they are conscripted. New figures reported this morning by the Lännen Media group show that in North Savo and Pirkanmaa regions more than 20% of those called up eventually get exemptions from their mandatory service. However in Lapland and south east Finland less than 15% get exemptions. It’s possible that despite common guidelines, different provinces might be interpreting how to apply the exemption rules in different ways.

Thursday Morning Weather

A warmer, sunnier start to Thursday morning across most of the country except northern Lapland. Temperatures in the south start at +16°C with sunny skies stretching up past Oulu. There’s very little wind either this morning which makes things feel even warmer in the sun. In Lapland, expect rain in the far north and east, with some sun managing to break through the clouds in places.

Finnish Meteorological Institute forecast for Thursday morning 16th August 2018 / Credit: FMI