Covid-19 Economic Impact

Politics • European • European Union
2020-04-09T21:31:01+00:00
EU's one trillion euro coronavirus plan most important in its history - France's Le Maire

French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said European Union member states had agreed to mobilise 1 trillion euros to shore up the economy in response to the coronavirus crisis, in the most important economic plan in the EU's history. Le Maire said on a call with reporters that the European Stability Mechanism will be activated with light conditionality. He also said the agreement will make 500 billion euros available immediately and that a recovery fund will follow.

Business • Economy
2020-04-09T13:19:51+00:00
U.S. weekly jobless claims top 6 million for second straight week

The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits in the last three weeks has topped 15 million, as weekly new claims topped 6 million for the second straight time last week. The Labor Department said first-time claims for unemployment benefits in the week ended April 4 totaled about 6.6 million, down modestly from an upwardly revised 6.87 million the week before.

Business • Economy
2020-04-09T11:24:11+00:00
Irish coronavirus adjusted unemployment rate soars to 16.5%

Ireland's unemployment rate has risen to 16.5% at the end of March including those receiving emergency coronavirus jobless benefits, the state's statistics office said on Thursday. The new COVID-19-adjusted unemployment measure was based on the 283,037 people on the higher emergency payment and 207,200 on regular benefits at the end of the month. A further 224,000 received the emergency payment in the first three days of April, the employment affairs office said on Monday.

Sports • Soccer
2020-04-09T03:53:37+00:00
Real Madrid players agreed to 10-20% pay cut amid coronavirus pandemic

Real Madrid's soccer players, coaches and "main directors" agreed on a pay cut between 10-20% this year to help the club mitigate a decrease in income "as a result of the suspension of competitions and the paralysis of a large part of its commercial activities". Madrid's basketball team also agreed on a voluntary pay cut.

Lifestyle • Hotels
2020-04-08T11:13:31+00:00
Portuguese hotels to lay off 85% of workers in April, says Hotels Association AHP

Around 85% of hotel workers in Portugal will be temporarily laid off in April due to the impact the fast-spreading coronavirus is having on the country's tourism-dependent economy, Hotels Association AHP said on Wednesday. It said 93.8% of Portuguese hotels will or have already applied to be able to temporarily lay off workers. The measure allows companies to temporarily suspend jobs or reduce working hours but does not let them fire or make workers redundant.

Business • Economy
2020-04-08T10:39:01+00:00
German economy likely shrank by record 9.8% in second-quarter due to coronavirus, institutes say

The German economy, Europe's largest, probably shrank by 9.8% in the second quarter, its biggest decline since records began in 1970, due to measures imposed to slow the spread of the coronavirus, Germany's leading think tanks said on Wednesday. That would be more than double the drop seen in the first quarter of 2009, during the global financial crisis, the institutes said.

Business • Farming & Agriculture
2020-04-08T10:39:52+00:00
Malaysia's biggest palm oil-producing state says plantations to remain closed

Malaysia's biggest palm oil-producing state, Sabah, will uphold its decision for plantations and millers in six districts to suspend operations until mid-April as part of its coronavirus containment measures. Sabah chief minister Shafie Apdal told reporters after a cabinet meeting on Wednesday that the state's first priority was to save lives, and that it will only look at challenges facing businesses, factories and plantations after that.

Politics • European • European Union
2020-04-08T09:36:32+00:00
Spanish government official warns European Union's future at risk over financial response to coronavirus

Government spokeswoman Maria Jesus Montero said Europeans will begin to lose trust in the EU if it does not act together in the crisis, which she compared to the Second World War. "We need the help of other countries, and that's why the European Community was originally formed, at that time after a physical war, now we are fighting a war against an epidemic," she said in an interview on Antena 3 TV channel.

Business • Economy
2020-04-08T08:15:56+00:00
Britain eases rules to speed up company capital raising

The British Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) set out temporary measures on Wednesday to help companies raise cash quickly to get through the epidemic that has shuttered much of the economy. The FCA said one of the measures is that companies with a premium listing on the London Stock Exchange can ask the FCA for permission not to hold a general meeting to approve a capital raising.

Politics • European • European Union
2020-04-08T07:54:55+00:00
European Central Bank urges measures worth 1.5 trillion euros to tackle virus crisis in euro zone

The European Central Bank told euro zone finance ministers that the euro zone could need fiscal measures worth up to 1.5 trillion euros to tackle the economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 epidemic, officials told the news agency Reuters. But at a videoconference that ended on Wednesday without a deal after 16 hours of talks, Germany, the Netherlands and other northern European countries were ready to support EU measures worth only 500 billion euros, officials who participated in the meeting said.

Politics • Middle Eastern
2020-04-08T07:46:39+00:00
Iran's President urges IMF to give Tehran $5 billion coronavirus loan

Iran's President Hassan Rouhani said on Wednesday the International Monetary Fund would be guilty of "discriminatory behaviour" unless it provides $5 billion in emergency funding to help Tehran fight the coronavirus outbreak. "I urge international organisations to fulfil their duties ... we are a member of the IMF ... There should be no discrimination in giving loans," Rouhani said in a televised cabinet meeting.

Politics • European
2020-04-06T09:10:02+00:00
Spanish government is working on universal basic income plans

The Spanish deputy prime minister and minister for economy has announced that the government is working on rolling out a version of a universal basic income. The government's social security minister Jose Luis Escriva is working on the project with the aim of rolling the universal basic income out as soon as possible. Furthermore, the income is designed to become "a permanent instrument" that stays after the coronavirus pandemic.

Business • Economy
2020-04-02T20:38:36+00:00
Germany permits 40,000 foreign workers to work inside Germany in April and May

After previously banning the entry of seasonal workers from outside Germany as part of the measures against the coronavirus, the German agriculture minister Julia Klöckner has announced that around 40,000 workers will now be allowed inside the country. In order to secure the harvest of fruits and vegetables, mainly strawberries and asparagus, and at the same time prevent the coronavirus from spreading further, foreign seasonal workers are required to travel by plane and employers are required to do mandatory health checks on arrival. For the first 14 days, the newly arrived workers are also required to work separately from other workers and are not allowed to leave the premises of the company.

Business • Economy
2020-04-02T13:53:37+00:00
Rising unemployment numbers in the US: 6.65 million new filings in past week

The federal labor department has announced that the unemployment numbers in the United States have continued rising. With more than 6.65 million people filing for unemployment benefits in the United States in the last week, adding to the around 3.3 million in the week before, the United States have an unprecedented rise in people filing for unemployment benefits.

Technology • Internet & Web
2020-03-31T11:03:56+00:00
Airbnb announces $250 million fund to support hosts during pandemic

In order to support the hosts, that rent out their living space on Airbnb, the platform has announced to pay out up to $250 million in order to compensate parts of the losses resulting from the coronavirus pandemic and cancellations. Guests will be able to cancel bookings made "on or before March 14 with a check-in between March 14 and May 31, 2020" for a full refund and Airbnb bill pay the hosts 25% of the normal cancellation policy.

Business • Economy
2020-03-31T06:43:21+00:00
Amazon, Instacart workers strike amid working conditions under coronavirus pandemic

Amazon warehouse workers on New York’s Staten Island, and Instacart works across the United States, went on strike Monday to call attention to what they called a lack of protections for employees who continue to come to work amid the coronavirus outbreak.
Workers for both companies want more access to paid sick time off. At this time, it's available only to those who have tested positive for the coronavirus or get placed on mandatory self-quarantine.
Amazon workers want their warehouse to be closed for a longer cleaning, with guaranteed pay.
Instacart's grocery delivery workers ask for disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer and better pay.

Sports
2020-03-30T21:02:43+00:00
Juventus players agree to take pay reduction of €90 million

Juventus on Saturday announced that they reached an agreement to cut their players’ and coach Maurizio Sarri’s monthly payments of March, April, May, and June 2020.
This agreement that will save the club €90 million was brokered by the defender Giorgio Chiellini with Cristiano Ronaldo agreeing to sacrifice €3.8 million.
The club stated "Should the current season's matches be rescheduled; the Club will negotiate in good faith with the players and the coach conditional increases of compensation according to the actual resumption and finalization of official competitions,"

Technology • Games
2020-03-29T10:19:05+00:00
PlayStation to provide full pay to employees, regardless of ability to perform remote work

Reporter Patrick Klepek announced on Twitter that he obtained a memo stating that all PlayStation employees are set to work from home until April 30. Employees will be paid "regardless of ability to perform remote work due to job function or responsibilities". Additionally, employees will receive a one-time payment of $1,000 to purchase any equipment needed to continue their work remotely.

Business • Economy
2020-03-29T07:40:24+00:00
China and Vietnam are planning to impose ban on wildlife trade

Following the worldwide spread of the coronavirus, originating from a "wet market" in Wuhan on which live animals were bought and sold, China and Vietnam are planning to impose a ban on such markets. The formal bans are expected to be signed into law later this year.

Business • Economy
2020-03-27T04:59:30+00:00
CEO of Texas Roadhouse forgoes salary in order to pay restaurant workers

The Chief Executive Officer and founder of the steak restaurant chain Texas Roadhouse, W. Kent Taylor has announced to forgo his regular salary payments as well as additional bonus payments in order to make the salary payments of frontline restaurant workers possible. The company also announced that it would not pay dividends in order to have more money on hand because of the coronavirus pandemic.