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COVID 19 Update 37

Post: Apr. 16, 2020

Trump Announces Guidelines to ‘Open Up’ U.S. Economy, Ease Coronavirus Restrictions – Leaves Much to States

The White House proposed a list of six metrics states should “satisfy before preceding to a phased opening.” They include:

  • A decline in influenza-like illnesses reported within a 14-day period and a downward trajectory of covid-like cases reported within a 14-day period;
  • A decline in documented cases of COVID-19 within a two-week period or a decline in the share of coronavirus tests that come back positive, if test volume increases or remains flat; and
  • Hospitals within a jurisdiction should have the capacity to treat all patients without “crisis care” and there should be a “robust testing program in place for at-risk health care workers” including tests for COVID-19 immunity.

If states meet these criteria, the guidelines suggest a three-phased approach to reopening the economy. 

Read More at Marketwatch

Governor Cuomo Extends PAUSE to May 15th and Offers More Insight on the Phased Reopening of the Economy

The Governor announced that his New York on PAUSE efforts would be extended until May 15. He also expanded on his proposal to do a phased-in reopening of the economy. The phased-in reopening will not just be which businesses reopen, but what percentage of their workforce will be allowed to return to work. The plan calls for a rise from  25%, 50%, and 75% over an unspecified time. The Chart below contains the 3 slides re-open the Governor shared during his April 16th briefing.

NY Reopen chart 04162020

Jobless Claims Up by 5.2 Million, Totaling 22 Million in 4 weeks

An additional 5.2 million people filed initial unemployment claims last week, which brings the four-week total of initial unemployment claims to about 22 million. This effectively wipes out job gains for nearly the past decade.

Read More at The Wall Street Journal 

NY Fed Supplemental Survey Report for April 2020 – Business Report Extensive Fallout from Coronavirus 

Supplemental questions in the April 2020 Empire State Manufacturing Survey and Business Leaders Survey focused on effects that the coronavirus pandemic has had on various aspects of business.

“Businesses were asked how concerned they were about their ability to deal with a variety of financial metrics over the next month. A slight majority of manufacturers and a sizable majority of service firms indicated that they were very concerned about maintaining adequate cash flow, and roughly half were very concerned about collecting payables from customers. Also fairly high on the list of concerns were the longer-term issues of maintaining solvency and incurring excessive debt. In open-ended comments, many businesses indicated that they could weather the pandemic and related shutdown for a month or two, but would be increasingly concerned if it took significantly longer for business to return to something close to normal.”

See the Survey Results

Small Business Loan Program Out of Money Amid Impasse Over New Funds – Both PPP and EIDL Run Dry

The Treasury Department and Small Business Administration (SBA) have tapped the entirety of funding allotted for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), which offers forgivable loans to small businesses intended to keep workers on the payroll and small firms from going under.

“The SBA is currently unable to accept new applications for the Paycheck Protection Program based on available appropriations funding. Similarly, we are unable to enroll new PPP lenders at this time,” the SBA said in a statement Thursday morning.

The SBA also said that the $10 billion Congress appropriated for Economic Injury Disaster Loans had dried up. The program was meant to get fast cash to businesses, providing them with a $10,000 advance within just a few days of application for loans of up to $2 million.

Read More at the Hill

Contact Congress to let them know how important it is to QUICKLY add funds to the PPP and EIDL programs. 

N.Y. AG files Suit Over US Labor Dept. Paid-Leave Rule

New York Attorney General Letitia James has filed a lawsuit over a US Labor Department rule that lets employers reject paid sick leave and emergency family leave if they conclude that no work is available for employees, even if the workers are eligible for such leave. James alleges that the rule conflicts with provisions of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.

Read the Full Story at The Hill

China’s GDP shrank 6.8% year-over-year in the first three months of 2020, the first quarterly decline since at least 1992

China on Friday reported a 6.8% year-over-year contraction in its economy for the first three months of the year—the first quarterly decline in gross domestic product since official record-keeping began in 1992 and likely the first since Mao Zedong’s death in 1976, economists said.

The fall was even steeper compared with the previous quarter: a 9.8% pullback as the coronavirus that first emerged in the central Chinese city of Wuhan spread across the country and around the world, delivering an economic blow unprecedented in modern times.

In the manufacturing sector official data released Friday showed industrial production down just 1.1% in March compared with last year. Other metrics, such as daily power production and coal consumption, have regained all or most of last year’s levels.

Read More in the WSJ