Germany, Spain Cases Slow; Dimon Sees Recession: Virus Update

2020-04-06 06:29:13

(Bloomberg) —

Germany and Spain reported lower numbers of new cases, a tentative sign that lockdown measures are easing the outbreak. JPMorgan Chase & Co. Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon said he expects the fallout to include a major economic downturn and stress similar to the crisis that almost brought down the U.S. financial system in 2008.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said he’ll propose a state of emergency in prefectures including Tokyo and Osaka for about a month, after a renewed surge in coronavirus infections. U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson was hospitalized as a precaution, after struggling to recover from the infection he contracted.

Stock markets rallied after President Donald Trump said he sees signs the pandemic is beginning to level off in the U.S. In New York State, fatalities fell for the first time on Sunday, though Governor Andrew Cuomo said it was too early to say if the outbreak had reached a peak.

Key Developments:

Global cases near 1.3 million; deaths reach 69,789: Johns HopkinsSouth Korea sees lowest new cases since surgeTesla shows ventilator prototype made from car componentsIndia bans exports of “game changer” virus drugWuhan emerges from lockdown with a missionVirus spurs global free-for-all in medical trade

Dimon Sees ‘Bad Recession’ and Echoes of 2008 Crisis Ahead (6:11 a.m. NY)

“At a minimum, we assume that it will include a bad recession combined with some kind of financial stress similar to the global financial crisis of 2008,” the CEO said Monday in his annual letter to shareholders. “Our bank cannot be immune to the effects of this kind of stress.”

Nigeria to Borrow $6.9 Billion to Offset Virus Impact on Economy (7:03 a.m. NY)

The government plans to raise as much as $6.9 billion from multilateral lenders to offset the impact of the pandemic. The state will seek $3.4 billion from the International Monetary Fund, $2.5 billion from the World Bank and a further $1 billion from the African Development Bank, Finance Minister Zainab Ahmed told reporters Monday.

French Firms Have Requested Guarantees for EU20 Billion of Loans (6:58 p.m. NY)

French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said 100,000 companies requested government loan guarantees for a total of 20 billion euros ($21.6 billion). In addition, more than 500,000 small companies have requested aid from France’s solidarity fund.

Redhill Announces First Covid-19 Patient Treated With Opaganib (6:19 a.m. NY)

RedHill Biopharma said the first patient with a confirmed coronavirus diagnosis was dosed with opaganib in Israel, and additional patients are expected to be treated in the coming days. Pre-clinical data demonstrated anti-viral effects in other viruses, anti-inflammatory activities and the potential to reduce lung inflammation, the company said.

Hungary Announces Virus Stimulus Plan of Up to 20% of GDP (6:17 a.m. NY)

Hungary’s government will pay some-private sector wages, offer loan guarantees and boost spending on infrastructure and pensions as part of a major fiscal stimulus plan aimed at averting a recession and mass unemployment as the coronavirus pummels the economy. The package, valued at 18% to 20% of gross domestic product including planned stimulus from the central bank, will also see the 2020 budget deficit rise to 2.7% of GDP from 1%, Prime Minister Viktor Orban said on Monday.

Iran Reports 136 New Deaths, Compared With 151 on Sunday (5:53 p.m. HK)

The nation also reported 2,274 new infections, taking the total to 60,500. Total deaths now stand at 3,739.

Austria Takes First Steps Toward Economic Restart Next Week (5:43 p.m. HK)

Austrian small retailers, hardware and gardening shops will reopen next week after national lockdown measures succeeded in slowing the spread of coronavirus. Chancellor Sebastian Kurz said. But social distancing rules will apply at least until the end of April.

Nestle Struggles to Keep Up With Rising Demand, CEO Says (5:40 p.m. HK)

Nestle SA is struggling to keep up with consumers’ appetites as obstacles slow down production at the world’s largest food and beverage company, Chief Executive Officer Mark Schneider said. The maker of Pure Life bottled water and DiGiorno pizzas is seeing very strong demand for essential food and drink items, though many of its factories are unable to run at 100% capacity, Schneider said in an interview on Bloomberg Television.

Spain Reports Lowest Number of New Virus Cases Since March 22 (5:34 p.m. HK)

Spain reported the lowest number of new cases in more than two weeks, a sign that Europe’s biggest outbreak is slowing. New infections were 4,273, taking the total to 135,032, according to Health Ministry data on Monday. The death toll rose by 637 to 13,055 in the past 24 hours, a smaller gain than Sunday’s 674 and the lowest number of daily fatalities since March 24.

Airbus Tells Employees Production Rebound Unlikely in Short Term (5:33 p.m. HK)

Airbus SE has told employees that a return to full operations isn’t feasible in the short term because of parts shortages and the inability of struggling airlines to take delivery of new aircraft, according to a person familiar with the matter.

Dubai Said in Talks to Raise Funds as Shutdown Weighs on Economy (5:30 p.m. HK)

Dubai is in talks to raise funds to shore up its finances as the pandemic shuts down much of the economy, according to people familiar with the matter. The emirate’s Department of Finance is holding discussions with banks about a potential bond sale or loan, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private.

Poland Backs EU Plan to Issue Coronavirus Bonds: Premier (5:02 p.m. HK)

Poland is ready to participate in mechanisms to guarantee the issuance of coronavirus bonds by the European Union to help fight pandemics, Premier Mateusz Morawiecki tells parliament.

Japan’s Abe Moves to Declare Emergencies in Tokyo, Osaka Areas (4:57 p.m. HK)

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said he will propose a state of emergency in prefectures including Tokyo and Osaka for about a month, after a renewed surge of coronavirus cases in some of Japan’s biggest metropolitan areas. The move hands powers to local governments to try to contain the spread, including by urging residents to stay at home.

Abe also announced a much larger-than-expected stimulus package of 108 trillion yen ($988 billion) to support households and businesses struggling from the impact of the pandemic.

Hong Kong Reports 24 Additional Coronavirus Cases April 6 (4:45 p.m. HK)

Eighteen had travel history, including five who returned from Peru on a government chartered flight, Hong Kong Department of Health official Chuang Shuk-kwan said. That brings the city’s total number of confirmed coronavirus cases to 914.

U.K.’s 50 Billion-Pound Subsidies for Companies Wins EU Approval (4:30 p.m. HK)

The U.K.’s plan to grant 50 billion pounds ($61.5 billion) to companies suffering the economic effects of the coronavirus outbreak won approval from the European Commission.

Indonesia Coronavirus Cases Seen Soaring to 95,000 by Next Month (4:28 p.m. HK)

Coronavirus may infect as many as 95,000 people in Indonesia by next month before easing, as authorities ordered people to wear face masks to contain the pandemic. The dire forecast is based on a projection by the nation’s intelligence agency, University of Indonesia and Bandung Institute of Technology, Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati said.

Denmark Faces Budget Deficit of 6.5% Under Optimistic Scenario (4:04 p.m. HK)

Denmark faces a budget deficit of 6.5% of gross domestic product this year under the most optimistic scenario provided by the Danish Economic Councils, an independent government adviser. In that model, GDP would fall by 3.5% this year as the economy quickly returns to normal, the group, known as the Wise Men, said in a statement on Monday.

Milan Region Official Sees Italy Lockdown Lasting 2-3 More Weeks (3:51 p.m. HK)

Italy’s lockdown should be prolonged for at least another couple of weeks, Lombardy’s top health official said. “Clearly, we cannot stay indoors for ever, but we believe that this sacrifice needs to be continued at least for another two to three weeks,” Giulio Gallera, the top health official of the Lombardy region, said on Canale 5. “Then, we’ll have to use precautions — masks, or other facial protections — to avoid starting another round of outbreaks.”

Russia Reports 18% Increase in Covid-19 Cases (3:36 p.m. HK)

Russia reported 954 new cases of overnight, bringing the total number to 6,343, Interfax said, citing Russian consumer health watchdog Rospotrebnadzor. There were two deaths, for a total of 47.

Japan Consumer Confidence Tanks to Lowest Since Financial Crisis (3:23 p.m. HK)

Japan’s consumer confidence tumbled in March, reflecting the massive hit to shoppers as the pandemic keeps people indoors. The cabinet office released numbers Monday showing a 7.4 percentage-point drop to 30.9. It also cut its overall assessment of consumers’ mindset to “worsening” from “stalling” in the previous month.

Germany’s Virus Outbreak Slows With Lowest New Cases in Six Days (3:13 p.m. HK)

Germany saw the lowest number of new coronavirus cases in six days in a tentative sign that lockdown measures are easing the outbreak. As restrictions across Europe’s largest economy enter their fourth week, infections rose by 4,031 to 100,123, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. The death toll increased by 140 to 1,584 on Monday, the lowest daily increase in five days.

Paris Hospitals Head Sees Some Stability in France (2:56 p.m HK)

The epidemic in France has “sort of” stabilized thanks to confinement measures, Martin Hirsch, head of Paris hospitals, said Monday on France Inter radio. The decrease in cases will be slow and any loosening of the confinement could actually restart the epidemic, he said.

Indonesia Orders Citizens to Wear Face Masks (2:43 p.m. HK)

Indonesian President Joko Widodo ordered citizens to wear face masks when leaving home to contain the pandemic that’s killed almost 200 people in the world’s fourth most populous nation.

Authorities must ensure availability of face masks for every household, Widodo told a cabinet meeting. The appeal for compulsory use of masks follows a change in the World Health Organization’s advisory on use of protective face covers, the president said.

Singapore Adds $3.6 Billion to Stimulus (2:26 p.m. HK)

Singapore increased its cash payout to households and announced additional steps to save jobs in a third stimulus package as the city state prepares to go into a partial lockdown to contain a spike in coronavirus cases.

The additional stimulus will cost S$5.1 billion ($3.6 billion), taking the nation’s total virus relief to almost S$60 billion, or 12% of gross domestic product, Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat said Monday in Parliament. The government will seek to draw an extra S$4 billion from past reserves and push up its budget deficit in the current fiscal year to 8.9% of GDP, he said.

Thailand Sees Fewest New Cases Since March 20 (1:18 p.m. HK)

Thailand reported 51 new coronavirus cases, the lowest number since March 20. The new infections bring the total number of cases to 2,220. The country confirmed three more deaths, bringing total fatalities to 26, according to Taweesilp Witsanuyotin, a spokesman for the Covid-19 center.

Tesla Shows Ventilator Prototype (12:06 p.m. HK)

Tesla Inc. engineers showed footage of a prototype ventilator the company is trying to make with auto parts amid a shortage of the machines for coronavirus patients. According to the video on Tesla’s YouTube channel, the design includes a touch screen, computer and control system from a Model 3 electric car.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said supply-chain disruption is the biggest hurdle for every manufacturer, including Tesla. “Their timeframe frankly doesn’t work for our immediate apex,” he said at a press conference.

South Korea Sees Lowest New Cases Since Surge (9:51 a.m. HK)

South Korea reported 47 new coronavirus cases over 24 hours, the lowest number since the start of a surge on Feb. 21 connected to a religious sect. The health ministry said there are a total of 10,284 cases in the country, with 186 total deaths. The nation has seen five consecutive days of less than 100 new cases within a 24 hour period, according to statements. The latest development comes after the government extended its advisories of social distancing for two more weeks as of Sunday, canceling group events and recommending against religious activities and protests as well as delaying school classes nationwide.

China Finds 78 New Asymptomatic Cases (8:41 a.m. HK)

China reported 78 new cases of people who tested positive but showed no symptoms of the coronavirus, according to the National Health Commission.

The country reported 39 additional cases for April 5, with all but one imported. Of the confirmed cases, five of them were earlier classified as asymptomatic. China has a total of 81,708 confirmed virus cases.

Hubei province reported one new fatality, bringing the country’s total death toll to 3,331.

Trump, Pence Say There Are Signs U.S. ‘Stabilizing’ (8:13 a.m. HK)

President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence said they see signs the U.S. coronavirus outbreak is beginning to level off or stabilize, citing a day-to-day reduction in deaths in New York, the Covid-19 epicenter in the country.

“We’re beginning to see the glimmers of progress,” Pence said at a White House news conference on Sunday. “The experts will tell me not to jump to any conclusions, and I’m not, but like your president I’m an optimistic person.”

New York state reported 594 new coronavirus deaths on Sunday, a reduction of 36 from Saturday. Governor Andrew Cuomo said in a daily briefing that the data may show the state is reaching a “plateau” — or could be “just a blip.”

But Trump was more optimistic. “Maybe that’s a good sign,” he said. “We hope we’re seeing a leveling off.”

Democrats Urge Mnuchin to Move Quickly on Airlines (8:12 a.m. HK)

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer urged the Treasury Department to move more quickly to help airlines to save industry jobs and refrain from imposing “unreasonable conditions” that might spur some carriers to decline payroll assistance.

In a letter Sunday to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, Pelosi and Schumer stressed that provisions of the $2.2 trillion stimulus passed by Congress were aimed specifically at bolstering aviation jobs. The lawmakers expressed concern that guidelines released by the department a week ago didn’t go far enough to safeguard workers.

Apple Designs Face Shields (6:30 a.m. HK)

Apple Inc. is designing face shields for medical workers and separately has sourced over 20 million masks through its global supply chain, Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook said on Twitter.

The company’s design, engineering, packaging and operations teams are working with suppliers to get the shield made and shipped. The first shipment was delivered to a Santa Clara, California, hospital last week.

The shields are fully adjustable and assemble in under two minutes, he said, adding that Apple plans to ship over a million this week and another million weekly after that.

Scotland Medical Chief Quits Over Lapse (6 a.m. HK)

Scotland’s chief medical officer quit after flouting U.K. lockdown guidelines. Catherine Calderwood had apologized for traveling to her second home about 40 miles from Edinburgh. She later spoke with Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, she said in a statement issued by the government.

“We have agreed that the justifiable focus on my behavior risks becoming a distraction from the hugely important job that government and the medical profession has to do,” Calderwood said.

U.K. Premier Sent to Hospital (4:15 p.m. NY)

U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson was admitted to a hospital Sunday night after having “persistent symptoms” 10 days after testing positive for Covid-19, a spokesperson said.

“This is a precautionary step,” the official said.

Johnson had been in isolation with a high temperature which had not abated. Two days ago, he posted a video on Twitter about his condition.

He remains in charge of the government, and is in contact with ministerial colleagues and officials.

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