Daily Briefing – 270

COVID Update 

Governor Cuomo issued a press release yesterday morning providing an overview of New York’s COVID-19 tracking data from Monday March 22nd. 

Hospitalization tracking data for the Mid-Hudson region and the rest of the State are below.  


  • Patients Currently in Hospital statewide: 4,641
  • Hospitalizations Mid-Hudson Region: 551

ICU Beds In Use (All Uses)

  • Occupied ICU Beds Statewide: 4,242
  • Occupied ICU Beds Mid-Hudson Region: 415

Other Data

  • Statewide Positivity Rate: 3.34%
  • Mid-Hudson Positivity Rate: 4.76%

Useful Websites:

Cuomo: Budget Might Be Late, “Significant” Tax Hikes Not Needed

Governor Cuomo’s administration on Monday signaled there isn’t a need for “significant” increases in taxes for the state budget this year. The stance potentially puts Cuomo at odds with Democratic state lawmakers, who have proposed measures to increase taxes on upper income earners and the financial industry that would generate $7 billion.

Whether the spending plan can be put to bed by next week is up in the air, Cuomo said Wednesday, pointing to the recent COVID-19 diagnosis of Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie. the COVID-19 diagnosis and quarantining of the speaker’s staff would lead to a delay in a basic function of the state government was rebuked by Heastie.

Read more at Spectrum News

NYS Vaccine Update

154,705 doses have been administered across New York in the last 24 hours, and more than 1 million doses have been administered over the past seven days. Delivery of the week 15 allocation begins mid-week.   

As of 11 am Tuesday 5,373,954 (plus 88,344 from a day earlier) New Yorkers have received at least one vaccine dose and 2,860,176 are fully vaccinated (Plus 71,334).  In the Hudson Valley 532,256 (plus 10,711) have at least one dose and 251,792 (plus 6,327) are fully vaccinated. 

Vaccine Update – Texas and Georgia Join Growing List of States Making All Adults Eligible for Vaccine

Texas, Indiana and Georgia announced Tuesday that residents 16 years and older will be eligible for Covid-19 vaccinations starting Thursday for Georgia residents, Monday for Texans and on March 31 for Indianans. 

West Virginia, Alaska and Mississippi are the only states where all adults are eligible to receive shots. Widening the eligibility for vaccines comes at a time when federal health officials have warned of a possible fourth surge of the virus as troubling new variants spread, urging Americans to get vaccinated. About 25 percent of the total U.S. population has received at least one shot, and 14 percent are fully vaccinated

Read more at the New York Times

With $9 Billion Coming to NYS to Help Schools With COVID – More in the Hudson Valley Are Reopening

As area school districts get ready for more in-person learning, hundreds of millions of federal dollars are coming to the region to help with the fallout of Covid-19. The American Rescue Plan will provide $130 billion to support education nationwide, and $9 billion is coming to New York State.

Newburgh Free Academy, and the city school district will be getting $30-$31 million in relief coming over the next few years. The Middletown School District will be getting $17.7 million to help recover from the pandemic.

Read More at Mid-Hudson News

U.S. Durable Goods Orders Fall in February

New orders for key U.S.-made capital goods unexpectedly fell in February, suggesting some cooling in business spending on equipment after recent strong growth.

Orders for non-defense capital goods excluding aircraft, a closely watched proxy for business spending plans, dropped 0.8% last month, the Commerce Department said on Wednesday. These so-called core capital goods orders gained 0.6% in January. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast core capital goods orders rising 0.5% in February.

Read more at CNBC

Richmond Fed: Growth of Mid-Atlantic Manufacturing Activity Quickens in March

Manufacturing activity across the central Atlantic region of the U.S. expanded in March at slightly quicker pace than that of the previous month, data from a survey from the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond showed Tuesday. The index is compiled by surveying manufacturing firms across the Fifth Federal Reserve District, which encompasses the District of Columbia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia and most of West Virginia. Positive readings signal expansion, while negative readings indicate contraction.

Manufacturing activity in the area has been expanding uninterruptedly since July 2020, but the expansion pace has slowed significantly in recent months from a record-high peak reached in October.

Read more at Morningstar

PPP Expires March 31, 2021; SBA Issues Updated First and Second Draw Applications

Since President Biden has taken office, eligibility to obtain a First and Second Draw Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) has been expanded. As such, the Small Business Association (SBA) recently updated First and Second Draw PPP applications. Changes to these forms include the “per location” exception for certain entities as established in the American Rescue Plan of 2021.

As of now, the PPP is set to expire on March 31, 2021. However, the PPP Extension Act of 2021 – which would extend the PPP to May 31, 2021 – was passed with bipartisan support in the House of Representatives and is awaiting action in the Senate.

Read More at Bond Schoeneck and King (includes links to 1st and 2nd draw forms)

SBA to Increase Lending Limit for COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loans

The U.S. Small Business Administration is increasing the maximum amount small businesses and non-profit organizations can borrow through its COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program. Starting the week of April 6, 2021, the SBA is raising the loan limit for the COVID-19 EIDL program from 6-months of economic injury with a maximum loan amount of $150,000 to up to 24-months of economic injury with a maximum loan amount of $500,000.

Read more at SBA

Egypt’s Suez Canal Blocked by Huge Container Ship Further Disrupting Global Logistics

Dozens of vessels are stuck after a giant container ship became wedged across Egypt’s Suez Canal, one of the world’s busiest trade routes. Egypt says it has reopened the canal’s older channel to divert traffic, amid fears it could remain blocked for days. The incident has already created long tailbacks on the waterway, stopping dozens of other vessels from passing.

About 12% of global trade passes through the Suez Canal, which connects the Mediterranean to the Red Sea and provides the shortest sea link between Asia and Europe. The Ever Given, registered in Panama, was bound for the port city of Rotterdam in the Netherlands from China and was passing northwards through the canal on its way to the Mediterranean.

Read more at BBC

Pfizer Testing A Pill To Treat Covid

Pfizer, which brought the first U.S.-approved Covid-19 vaccine to market, is conducting a stage one clinical trial on an oral antiviral therapy that a Covid-19 patient could take when they first develop symptoms, which would make it the first oral antiviral treatment of its kind for coronavirus. Pfizer will share details on the study and pre-clinical data on April 6 during an American Chemical Society meeting

Vaccinations and therapeutic treatments could be the way to return to normal activities. The U.S. has granted emergency use authorizations for other treatments such as antibody treatments developed by Eli Lilly and Regeneron, and a combination treatment using Remdesivir and baricitinib (an anti-inflammatory).  

Read more at Forbes

Intel Announced ‘IDM 2.0’ Strategy for Manufacturing, Innovation and Product Leadership

Intel said it would spend $20bn on two new chipmaking factories in Arizona. Under a turnaround plan unveiled by its new boss, Pat Gelsinger, the firm will start making chips for other manufacturers. That will put it more directly into competition with the dominant Asian chipmakers, Taiwan’s TSMC and Korea’s Samsung Electronics. Investors took heart; shares rose in after-hours trading.

Read more at Businesswire

Germany’s Merkel Reverses Plans for Easter Lockdown

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has cancelled plans for a strict lockdown over Easter, just a day after the measures were announced. Calling the plan a “mistake”, Mrs. Merkel said she took “ultimate responsibility” for the U-turn.

The proposed lockdown was agreed with regional leaders in talks overnight on Monday, with restrictions set to be tightened between 1-5 April. But the plan was reversed following a crisis meeting on Wednesday. It had been widely criticised by business leaders and scientists. The lockdown would have been Germany’s strictest yet, with most shops closed and gatherings limited.

Read more at the BBC