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  • Off to the cafe: Sweden is outlier in virus restrictionsUpdated: 03/29/2020 9:47 AM

    STOCKHOLM (AP) — The streets of Stockholm are quiet but not deserted. People still sit at outdoor cafes in the center of Sweden's capital. Vendors still sell flowers. Teenagers still chat in groups in parks. Some still greet each other with hugs and handshakes. After a long, dark Scandinavian winter, the coronavirus pandemic is not keeping Swedes at home even while citizens in many parts of the world are sheltering in place and won't find shops or restaurants open on the few occasions they are permitted to venture out.See full story
  • Death of German finance official linked to virus crisisUpdated: 03/29/2020 9:30 AM

    BERLIN (AP) — The state finance minister of Germany’s Hesse region, which includes Frankfurt, has been found dead. Authorities said he appears to have killed himself and the state's governor suggested Sunday that he was in despair over the fallout from the coronavirus crisis. The body of Thomas Schaefer, a 54-year-old member of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union, was found Saturday on railway tracks at Hochheim, near Frankfurt. Police and prosecutors said that factors including questioning of witnesses and their own observations at the scene led them to conclude that Schaefer killed himself.See full story
  • Stimulus billions can't buy hospitals out of shortage crisisUpdated: 03/29/2020 8:21 AM

    The billions of tax dollars headed for hospitals and states as part of the $2.2 trillion coronavirus response bill won't fix the problem facing doctors and nurses: a critical shortage of protective gowns, gloves and masks. The problem isn’t a lack of money, experts say. It’s that there’s not enough of those supplies available to buy. What’s more, the crisis has revealed a fragmented procurement system now descending into chaos just as demand soars, The Associated Press has found. Hospitals, state governments and the Federal Emergency Management Agency are left bidding against each other and driving up prices.See full story
  • SeaWorld furloughs 90% of workers because of virus crisisUpdated: 03/28/2020 5:12 PM

    NEW YORK (AP) — The outbreak of the coronavirus has dealt a shock to the global economy with unprecedented speed. Following are developments this weekend related to the global economy, the work place and the spread of the virus. ______ SEAWORLD FURLOUGHS: SeaWorld Entertainment is furloughing 90% of its workers because the novel coronavirus had forced the company to close its 12 theme parks. The employees will be paid through the beginning of next week. After next week, the workers will be off without pay for an uncertain time, the Orlando-based company said Friday in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing.See full story
  • What's essential? In France: pastry, wine. In US: golf, gunsUpdated: 03/28/2020 4:31 PM

    The coronavirus pandemic is defining for the globe what's “essential” and what things we really can't do without, even though we might not need them for survival. Attempting to slow the spread of the virus, authorities in many places are determining what shops and services can remain open. They're also restricting citizens from leaving their homes. Stay-at-home orders or guidance are affecting more than one-fifth of the world's population. This has left many contemplating an existential question: What, really, is essential?See full story
  • Hawks no more: Fiscal conservatives embrace rescue packageUpdated: 03/28/2020 1:44 PM

    NEW YORK (AP) — Republicans who have spent the past decade howling about the danger of ballooning deficits embraced the coronavirus rescue package approved by Congress and signed by President Donald Trump, shrugging off past concerns about spending in the face of a public health crisis. In many cases, the conservatives who backed the $2 trillion bill — the largest economic relief measure in U.S. history — were the very same who raged against the nearly $800 billion economic stimulus package backed by the Obama administration.See full story
  • How to prep for and spend your government relief checkUpdated: 03/28/2020 11:38 AM

    The coronavirus pandemic has upended the lives and finances of millions. A federal relief package aiming to provide payments to distressed consumers passed Friday — but that money is not likely to land for a number of weeks. While you'll have to wait for whatever money you might be eligible for, now is the time to prep your finances and plan. The best use of this money depends on your individual circumstances. Here’s how to think it through. DO THIS PREP WORK, REGARDLESS OF YOUR SITUATION This is the time to examine your money situation and build savings, if possible.See full story
  • Farmworkers key to keeping US fed are wary of virus spreadUpdated: 03/28/2020 11:30 AM

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Salvador Calzadillas isn't worried about catching the coronavirus when he's picking mandarin oranges in the trees in central California. But he said the mere act of getting to the groves each day puts him and his wife, also a farmworker, at risk, and there’s nothing they can do to change that. Farmworkers, after all, can't work from home. Calzadillas and his wife are among half a dozen workers who crowd into a car or van to get to the groves a 40-minute drive away. There, they are huddled in a group to get daily instructions — without regard for social distancing, he said.See full story
  • On Wall Street, some optimism penetrates the uncertaintyUpdated: 03/28/2020 10:22 AM

    Stocks rallied this week as Washington acted to provide $2.2 trillion of relief to an economy shocked by the coronavirus outbreak, leaving some on Wall Street cautiously optimistic that the panicky selling that had gripped the market earlier may have come to an end. Even after a loss on Friday, the S&P 500 had its best weekly percentage gain since March 2009. The Dow Jones Industrial Average posted its biggest weekly rally since 1938. The gains came after two brutal weeks that conjured memories of the market’s sell-off in 2008 as the government and the Federal Reserve scrambled to contain the financial crisis.See full story
  • Highlights of Trump-signed $2.2T economic relief packageUpdated: 03/28/2020 12:10 AM

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Highlights of a $2.2 trillion package to help businesses, workers and a health care system staggered by the coronavirus that President Donald Trump signed into law Friday after the House voted final congressional approval. — Loans and guarantees to businesses, state and local governments: $500 billion. Up to $50 billion for passenger airlines and $8 billion for air cargo carriers, half for paying workers. $17 billion for “businesses critical to maintaining national security." Borrowers must be U.S.-based.See full story

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