Paracetamol offers no relief after latest headache index Robert Chung Ting-yiu (above) and his University of Hong Kong Public Opinion Programme have caused headaches for many of our public officials over the years. So it was little surprise when the results of the good doctor's latest work landed on our desk yesterday - 'The Hong Kong Headache Index during the present economic turmoil'. There are actually three of them - the Headache Frequency Index, the Headache Duration Index and the Headache Severity Index - and it's the last one that really caught our attention: the HSI. Is he trying to tell us something about the Hang Seng Index? The survey, commissioned by the Drug Education Resources Centre of the Society of Hospital Pharmacists of Hong Kong, showed that 505 employed workers between 30 and 49 had an average headache frequency of 6.9 over the period from last September to February, with an average severity of 4.3 (10 is the highest). Sixty-two per cent of the respondents said it was job-related, 32 per cent said it was the worries of increased workload, while 30 per cent said it was worries about lay-offs and 17 per cent said it was anxiety over pay cuts. Ironically, the Hang Seng Index is probably providing a cure to some of the pain at the moment as it stands at a six-month high. History notes How time flies - this summer sees Standard Chartered notch up 150 years in Hong Kong. As part of the celebrations, the bank hosted a five-table lunch yesterday to take reporters down memory lane. The journey included stops at the first banknotes issued by the lender beginning in 1862, one a hand-signed $5 note for 'The Chartered Bank of India, Australia & China' issued three years before HSBC began printing money in Hong Kong. Fast forward 100 years and the lender was expanding its retail customer base by giving away Donald Duck and Mickey Mouse piggy banks, while in the 1970s it created its own brand image with a bowler-hatted Mr Chartered appearing on piggy banks, boxes of matches and key rings. The '70s also saw Standard Chartered become the first bank to launch a punch-coded 24-hour cash card that was fed into a machine for a fixed-amount withdrawal of HK$250. However, we have yet to come across anyone who can remember using such a card. We have been told StanChart staff are being given an extra day's birthday leave this year to celebrate the anniversary. It should be noted that it is paid leave, unlike the cost-cutting measures adopted at many other corporates these days. Come lie with us Our Cathay Pacific contacts insist the report that appeared in the Sunday Morning Post about a couple in first class being offered the use of a crew rest area so they could join the 'mile high club', is too far-fetched. The lovemaking claims were made by a doctor who posted on his blog his recent experience with his girlfriend on a long-haul flight from Toronto to Hong Kong. True or not, it certainly sheds a different light on a Cathay advertisement that appeared in the Economist magazine. The advert showed what we presume was meant to be a note to the airline from a satisfied customer. It reads: 'What I loved was the extra effort you took to make me feel comfortable.' Hmm! Maybe Cathay should stop worrying about the doctor's claims and adopt the extra service as a gimmick to fill up all those empty first-class seats. Numbers game You really need luck to raise money in the stock market, where there seems to be more privatisations than new listings these days. Enter China Zhongwang Holdings, which aims to be the world's biggest initial public offering so far this year. It has the auspicious stock code 1333 - 'three' is a lucky Chinese number and three of them even more so. To make sure the aluminium company will be a hot sell, it will be priced at between HK$6.80 and HK$8.80. That means a minimum board lot of 1,000 shares at the high-end valuation will fetch, including the brokerage fees, a very auspicious figure of HK$8,888.80.