Covid-19 Economic Impact

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
2020-07-01T22:30:02+00:00
Alitalia to resume international flights from Milan
Alitalia to resume international flights from Milan
Credit: ERIC SALARD (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

Alitalia on Wednesday resumed international flights from Milan Malpensa airport to Amsterdam, Brussels, Paris and London, as Italy gradually reopens its airports to foreign travellers and scraps restrictions imposed to contain the Covid-19 outbreak.

Also, during this month, the company will start flying to a dozen domestic destinations from Milan Malpensa.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
2020-07-02T13:25:51+00:00
Airbus to cut 15,000 jobs as pandemic causes plunge in demand
Airbus A380
Airbus A380 Credit: unsplash.com/G-R Mottez

In a statement released on Tuesday, Airbus announced it would be cutting around 15,000 jobs over the next twelve months as the company experiences a plunge in demand for new aircraft. The European Aerospace corporation has production facilities in Spain, the UK and Germany and employs over 134,000 people globally.

"Airbus is grateful for the government support that has enabled the company to limit these necessary adaptation measures," the statement read. "However with air traffic not expected to recover to pre-Covid levels before 2023 and potentially as late as 2025, Airbus now needs to take additional measures to reflect the post Covid-19 industry outlook."

Politics • American • US
2020-06-30T20:00:01+00:00
Arizona closes various business amid new rise in Covid-19 case
Arizona closes various business amid new rise in Covid-19 case
Credit: unsplash.com / PJ Gal-Szabo

Arizona is closing a broad range of business again as the state sees a rising number of Covid-19 infections. Among the businesses affected are bars, gyms, theatres and water parks.

"Our expectation is that next week, our numbers will be worse," Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey said. "It will take several weeks for the mitigations we are putting in place to take effect."

Business • Economy
2020-06-29T19:00:01+00:00
Cirque du Soleil files for bankruptcy
Cirque du Soleil files for bankruptcy
Credit: Elemaki / CC BY (Creative Commons Attribution 3.0)

Cirque du Soleil has filed for creditor protection under the Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act in Quebec, Canada on Monday. The Montreal-based company stated that the Covid-19 pandemic had caused "immense disruption and forced show closures," including six shows in Las Vegas and 10 shows on tour worldwide.

"For the past 36 years, Cirque du Soleil has been a highly successful and profitable organization. However, with zero revenues since the forced closure of all of our shows due to COVID-19, management had to act decisively to protect the company's future," so president and CEO Daniel Lamarre said in a statement.

Cirque du Soleil has received $300 million in funding from Quebec's major institutional investors and multinational private equity firms to "support a successful restart, provide relief for Cirque du Soleil's affected employees and partners, and assume certain of the company's outstanding liabilities."

The company also announced the termination of approximately 3,480 employees previously furloughed in March.

Arts, Entertainment, Culture • TV & Movies
2020-06-27T15:30:02+00:00
Mulan release has been delayed to August
Mulan trailer image
Mulan trailer image Credit: YouTube (Reproduction)

Disney postponed the debut of its live-action movie Mulan to August 21. The picture was originally scheduled to debut in March but was moved to July 24 when the Covid-19 pandemic forced movie theaters around the world to close.

Sports
2020-06-26T18:16:02+00:00
Rugby's Super League announces 2020 season will resume in August
Rugby's Super League announces 2020 season will resume in August
Credit: Superleague (Reproduction)

The 2020 Super League season will resume on August 2. The first round after the pause will have Hull KR facing Toronto Wolfpack, St Helens against Catalans Dragons and Huddersfield versus Leeds, with all matches being played behind closed doors at a single venue.

Super League Board decided the season to have 15 rounds of matches followed by a semi-final play-off, with the winners of the semi-finals will contest the Betfred Super League Grand Final, taking place towards the end of November 2020.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
2020-06-25T23:30:02+00:00
Lufthansa shareholders approve €9 billion bailout
Planes parked in Frankfurt
Planes parked in Frankfurt Credit: Oliver Roesler (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

Lufthansa shareholders voted in favour of a €9 billion bailout from the German government on Thursday, following a tense week in which Heinz Hermann, the company's most significant shareholder, threatened to block the deal.

"We have no more money," Chairman Karl-Ludwig Kley told shareholders. "We are living from the reserves we set aside. Without support, bankruptcy looms in the next few days."

Ryanair announced it plans to challenge the deal through European courts.

Politics • American • US
2020-06-25T19:00:01+00:00
The United States have payed $1,4 billion in Covid-19 support to dead people
The United States have payed $1,4 billion in Covid-19 support to dead people
Credit: Petr Kratochvil (Public Domain)

Steven Mnuchin the United States Secretary of the Treasury has announced that family members of dead people who have accidentally gotten the "stimulus check" as Covid-19 support should pay back the money to the financial authorities. In total $1,4 billion have been paid to dead people because the authorities in charge ignored or forgot the official reports on dead people.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
2020-06-25T12:30:02+00:00
EasyJet raises $520 million in share sale
Airbus A320 of EasyJet
Airbus A320 of EasyJet Credit: MercerMJ (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 2.0)

EasyJet raised about $520 million in a share sale, almost 15% of its existing share base, to enable the company to survive for many more months even if air travel does recover in a slower pace than predicted.

The company has said it does not expect passenger demand to come back to pre-pandemic levels until 2023 and is planning to cut up to 4,500 jobs.

Lifestyle • Travel
2020-06-25T08:47:19+00:00
Eiffel Tower reopens after longest closure since World War II
Eiffel Tower reopens after longest closure since World War II
Credit: Société d’Exploitation de la Tour Eiffel (SETE)

The Eiffel Tower reopened on Thursday after the Covid-19 pandemic forced the Paris landmark’s longest closure since World War II.

Access to the tower's first and second level is only possible via staircases until early July, while lifts are closed to ensure a safe distance between people to limit infection risk. The summit of the iconic monument will remain off-limits to the public for now.

Also, visitors over the age of 11 are required to wear face masks.

Transportation • Cars & Automobiles
2020-06-24T12:30:01+00:00
Volkswagen in talks to acquire French car rental firm Europcar
Europcar in the Hamburg Airport
Europcar in the Hamburg Airport Credit: Hamburg Airport

Reuters reports that German carmaker Volkswagen approached French car rental firm Europcar, that struggles to cope with the economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. The deal, if completed, would signal a reversal of strategy for Volkswagen, that sold Europcar in 2006 for €3.32 billion.

In May, Europcar's competitor Hertz filed for bankruptcy protection.

Politics • European • Germany
2020-06-22T17:30:02+00:00
German labor minister demands compensation from meat company after 1,300 Covid-19 cases at processing plant
Maximilian Tönnies, Andres Ruff, Clemens Tönnies
Maximilian Tönnies, Andres Ruff, Clemens Tönnies Credit: Tönnies

The German federal minister of labor and social affairs Hubertus Heil has demanded that the meat processing company Tönnies should be held liable and forced to compensation payments due to the Covid-19 outbreak in its meat processing plant in Rheda-Wiedenbrück. Over 1,300 people have tested positive and all of the 6,500 workers are under mandatory quarantine. Due to problems with the documentation inside the company and the number of cases, schools and daycare centers in the region have been closed. Heil stated that "There must be a civil liability of the company" and accused the company of taking "an entire region hostage".

Lifestyle • Travel
2020-06-21T12:30:02+00:00
After a three-month lockdown, Spain is reopening its borders to tourists
Chueca neighborhood of Madrid, May 2020
Chueca neighborhood of Madrid, May 2020 Credit: Nemo / CC BY-SA (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

Spain is reopening for tourism after a three-month strict lockdown. The country is welcoming back tourists, however, Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez urges to uphold social distancing measures and the use of face masks. Sánchez said to remain "on our guard" as a second wave of Covid-19 "must be avoided at all costs". Portugal will keep its borders with Spain closed until July 1.

Business • Economy
2020-06-19T10:30:02+00:00
Target to raise minimum wage to $15/hour
Target Store in Oregon
Target Store in Oregon Credit: MB298 / CC BY-SA (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

Target will raise its hourly minimum wage to $15 an hour by July 5. This will impact 275,000 employees working in Target stores and distribution centres. Furthermore, hourly employees will receive a one-time $200 bonus "for their efforts throughout the coronavirus pandemic".

Politics • European • United Kingdom
2020-06-17T02:30:02+00:00
United Kingdom announces "Covid summer food fund" after celebrity campaign
Marcus Rashford, FIFA World Cup 2018
Marcus Rashford, FIFA World Cup 2018 Credit: Oleg Bkhambri (Voltmetro) / CC BY-SA (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

After a public campaign by Manchester United's player Marcus Rashford, the spokesperson of prime minister Boris Johnson has stated that "the prime minister welcomes Marcus Rashford’s contribution to the debate around poverty, and respects the fact that he has been using his profile as a sportsman to highlight important issues". This came after Boris Johnson had announced that the food program providing free school meals would be extended over the summer at a cost of £120m. The program had previously been extended over the Easter break and every entitled family would receive a voucher at the end of the term over £15 per week that can be spent in supermarkets.

Arts, Entertainment, Culture • TV & Movies
2020-06-16T05:30:02+00:00
Oscars 2021 ceremony pushed back by two months
Oscars 2021 ceremony pushed back by two months
Credit: Staff Sgt. Carlos Lazo (Public Domain)

Oscars 2021 has been postponed by two months, from February 28 to April 25.

The organisers of The Academy Awards also announced the eligibility window would be extended until the end of February, as the Covid-19 pandemic halted work on several films due to be released by the end of the year.

This is only the third time the Oscars have been delayed -- in 1938, due to the LA flooding; in 1968 after the assassination of Dr Martin Luther King Js; and in 1981 after the attempted assassination of President Ronald Regan.

The Academy also shared that nominations will be announced on March 15.

Business • Economy
2020-06-15T22:30:01+00:00
German Federal Statistical Office: Winners and losers in the first quarter of 2020
German Federal Statistical Office: Winners and losers in the first quarter of 2020
Credit: Robert Anasch

The Covid-19 pandemic in the first quarter of the year not only caused losers: in general, sales were 2.4% below the previous quarter. While it hit the travel agencies business sector particularly hard with -22.9%, the security sector (+ 1.5%) and the area of architecture and engineering firms (+ 3.5%), for example, recorded sales increases.

Overall, an increase in employment in selected service areas compared to the first quarter of 2019 was also recorded.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
2020-06-15T19:30:01+00:00
Swedish and Danish governments to rescue SAS airline
SAS plane at Gothenburg Landvetter Airport, Sweden
SAS plane at Gothenburg Landvetter Airport, Sweden Credit: Miguel Ángel Sanz

The Scandinavian airline SAS presented on June 15 a recapitalisation plan estimated in $1.3 billion. The company's two principal shareholders Sweden, with a 14.8% stake in the carrier, and Denmark, with a 14.2% share, are expected to inject capital to help the airline face the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The aim of the plan is to ensure that SAS is fully funded and that shareholders’ equity will be at levels reported before the COVID-19 pandemic when anticipated business volumes return to pre-corona levels in 2022,” SAS said in a statement.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
2020-06-15T06:00:01+00:00
German airline Condor to cut up to 1,000 jobs
Condor Airlines Airbus A320
Condor Airlines Airbus A320 Credit: Condorfan2205 (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

Condor's CEO, Ralf Teckentrup, told the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung the German airline will have to cut “between 650 and 1,000 jobs,” due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The company formerly owned by the Thomas Cook Group Plc is also planning a move to a smaller headquarters and save € 1 million per month.

Politics • American • South America
2020-06-14T17:30:01+00:00
Chile: Congress agrees to $12 billion Covid-19 emergency plan
National Congress of Chile
National Congress of Chile (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 2.0)

Chile's Finance Minister Ignacio Briones announced an emergency plan, totalling $12 billion, to citizen support and economic stimulus package to overcome the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic. The plan became a reality after the government reached a cross-party agreement in Congress this Sunday.

The government faces criticism from medical experts about the handling of the crisis, and last Saturday President Sebastian Pinera removed the health minister, Jaime Manalich.