• Kill the virus, not democracy - EU tells Hungary Link https://t.co/gl1JrRaTHg
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 16:57

    BRUSSELS (Reuters) - European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen expressed concern on Thursday that coronavirus restriction measures taken by Hungary went too far and insisted they should be limited in time and subject to scrutiny.

    Hungary’s parliament on Monday granted Prime Minister Viktor Orban an open-ended right to rule by decree and introduced jail sentences for anyone hindering measures to curb the spread of the virus or spreading false information about the pandemic.

    “I am concerned that certain measures go too far and I am particularly concerned about the situation in Hungary,” von der Leyen told a news conference on Thursday.

    “These emergency measures have to be limited to what is necessary, they have to be strictly proportionate because they have to be adequate in this situation, they should not last indefinitely and very importantly they should be...

  • Residents of Wuhan are flocking to noodle shops for a steaming hot bowl of the city's culinary signature after spending more than two months indoors https://t.co/eRqtMnZwi4
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 15:12
  • Bank of Korea to prepare for emergency situations, review further measures to stabilise bond market Link https://t.co/imd2gVpg7F
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 10:27

    SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korea’s central bank chief said on Thursday the bank needs to prepare for emergency situations as it cannot rule out credit crunch risks in local financial markets given uncertainties in global financial markets amid the spread of the coronavirus.

    “If the (bond market) situation worsens, the Bank of Korea (BOK) could also review lending money to non-bank financial institutions to stabilise the corporate bond market,” BOK Governor Lee Ju-yeol said in a statement.

    Lee’s remarks came hours after the bank accepted 5.25 trillion Korean won ($4.28 billion) in bids from financial institutions for 91-day repurchase agreements at a rate of 0.78%, a move intended to calm money markets hammered by the coronavirus pandemic.

  • Infection rate steepens as India searches for 9,000 exposed to Delhi cluster Link https://t.co/s5HXPJS2pD
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 10:22

    NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India reported its biggest single day increase in coronavirus cases as officials on Thursday raced to track down some 9,000 people exposed to the country’s biggest infection cluster during a Muslim missionary group’s gathering in the capital last month.

  • The U.S. Navy declined to rule out punishing the captain of the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt, who wrote a scathing letter to Navy leadership asking for stronger measures to control a coronavirus outbreak onboard Link
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 10:22

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Navy on Wednesday declined to rule out punishing the captain of the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt, who wrote a scathing letter to Navy leadership asking for stronger measures to control a coronavirus outbreak onboard.

  • Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced free childcare for six months as part of an effort to keep businesses going during the coronavirus pandemic Link https://t.co/vauU5ht8VY
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 10:22

    SYDNEY (Reuters) - Australia on Thursday announced free childcare for six months as part of a bid to keep businesses operating through the coronavirus pandemic, as data on new infections supported early signs of “flattening the curve.”

    The childcare centre subsidy adds to a growing list of support packages worth some A$200 billion ($121 billion) for airlines to mall owners as the government attempts to “hibernate” the Australian economy, to be reawakened when the crisis has passed.

    “We will demonstrate to the world here in Australia how such societies can deal with these sort of challenges our way, the Australian way,” Morrison said during a televised press conference. “So stay positive, Australia. Stay connected, stay strong. We will get through this together.”

    Morrison and state officials have introduced unprecedented restrictions on public movement to stop the...

  • Indian farmers feed strawberries to cattle as lockdown hits transport Link https://t.co/3xd7aEAPAc
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 10:17

    SATARA, India (Reuters) - As hundreds of millions of Indians remain locked down to stem the spread of coronavirus, some of its cattle are getting treated to strawberries and broccoli that farmers are struggling to transport and sell in cities amid the three-week lockdown.

    Demand for such premium farm produce typically jumps in the summer, but with India’s farm supply chain in disarray, farmers are unable to get goods to market.

    The sudden drop in demand is hurting millions of farmers in the world’s second-most populous country, with coronavirus cases surging to more than 1,900 in India, while the death toll rose to 50 on Wednesday.

    “Tourists and ice cream producers are the main buyers of strawberries, but there are no tourists now,” said Anil Salunkhe, while feeding strawberries grown in his two-acre farm to his cows in Satara district, some 250 km (155 miles)...

  • Italy PM says no plans to nationalize companies, will use special powers: paper Link https://t.co/FbejtKbKoj
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 10:17

    MILAN (Reuters) - Italy has no plans to nationalize any company but will use special powers to protect strategic assets that could become a prey as a result of the coronavirus emergency, Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte told Il Fatto Quotidiano in an interview.

    The move reflects concerns in the ruling coalition government that investors’ appetites for strategic assets could be whetted by collapsing share prices due to market turbulence triggered by the coronavirus epidemic.

    The so-called golden powers give Rome the right to veto stake building in strategic industries and Conte said such instruments should also “be strengthened at the European level for operations between countries”.

    Conte added that he would like a planned second emergency decree that will include additional measures to mitigate the impact of the health crisis on Italy’s economy to be passed before the...

  • President Donald Trump has invited U.S. oil executives to the White House to discuss ways to help the industry ‘ravaged’ by slumping energy demand during the coronavirus outbreak Link https://t.co/zwUrcCZLYd
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 10:12

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump said he has invited U.S. oil executives to the White House to discuss ways to help the industry “ravaged” by slumping energy demand during the coronavirus outbreak and a price war between Saudi Arabia and Russia.

    Trump also said he had talked recently with the leaders of both Russia and Saudi Arabia and believed the two countries would make a deal to end their price war within a “few days” - lowering production and bringing prices back up.

    “I’m going to meet with the oil producers on Friday. I’m going to meet with independent oil producers also on Friday or Saturday. Maybe Sunday. We’re going to have a lot of meetings on it,” Trump told reporters at a media conference.

    “Worldwide, the oil industry has been ravaged,” he said. “Its very bad for Russia, its very bad for Saudi Arabia. I mean, its very bad for both. I...

  • SoftBank terminates $3 billion tender offer for additional WeWork shares agreed last year with shareholders, including ousted co-founder Adam Neumann, drawing threats of legal action from other board members Link https://t.co/UyxE0bAlZj
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 10:07

    (Reuters) - SoftBank Group Corp (9984.T) said it has terminated a $3 billion tender offer for additional WeWork shares agreed last year with shareholders, drawing threats of legal action and plunging the floundering office space company further into crisis.

  • World food prices fall sharply in March because of coronavirus, oil slump: U.N Link https://t.co/GH72bjUhKh
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 10:07

    ROME (Reuters) - World food prices fell sharply in March, hit by a drop in demand tied to the coronavirus pandemic and a plunge in global oil prices, the United Nations food agency said on Thursday.

  • Who gets in the 2021 Olympic Games and who misses out? As sporting bodies consider revamping qualification criteria, experts warn of messy legal challenges from athletes over confusion on who makes the cut Link by @SNkeats https://t.co/pmEvkRaw88
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 10:02

    (Reuters) - The decision to delay the Tokyo Olympics by a year is sparking both anxiety and hope among the world’s athletes as the coronavirus pandemic adds to confusion over who might qualify for the Games, now in 2021.

  • Oil majors pull FTSE 100 up; coronavirus fears persist Link https://t.co/wGhPqZLmPF
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 09:57

    (Reuters) - Surging oil prices lifted UK’s commodity-heavy FTSE 100 on Thursday, although the mood was fragile as Britain saw a record surge in deaths from the coronavirus pandemic that threatens to plunge the world economy into a deep recession.

  • 'Everybody is frustrated' over UK testing, top health official says Link https://t.co/sALRwu6owz
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 09:52

    LONDON (Reuters) - One of Britain’s top health officials said on Thursday that everybody was frustrated that the United Kingdom was not testing enough people yet.

    “Everybody involved is frustrated that we haven’t got to the position yet that we need to get to,” Paul Cosford, emeritus medical director of Public Health England, told BBC radio.

    “We’ve got not as far as we’ve wanted to but we’ve got up to almost 13,000 tests a day being available,” he said.

    When asked about the 31% rise in the latest UK death toll numbers, Cosford said the day-to-day numbers were difficult to interpret on one day’s change.

    “My expectation ... is that we will continue to see an increase in the numbers of people being infected and admitted to hospital over the next two to three weeks but we should hit a plateau if all the social distancing measures are working in about two to three...

  • Two masks, no lockdown: Japan PM's latest coronavirus move riles social media Link https://t.co/Bu67jT3KUI
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 09:42

    TOKYO (Reuters) - Facing calls to declare a coronavirus state of emergency, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was flamed on social media on Thursday for instead offering people free cloth masks, pointing to growing frustration for some over his handling of the crisis.

  • China's Shenzhen bans the eating of cats and dogs after coronavirus Link https://t.co/ndJMSnldy6
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 09:37

    SHENZHEN, China (Reuters) - The Chinese city of Shenzhen has banned the eating of dogs and cats as part of a wider clampdown on the wildlife trade since the emergence of the new coronavirus.

  • Britain says Basel bank rule delay will aid response to coronavirus Link https://t.co/ziDM7PBN3z
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 09:32

    LONDON (Reuters) - Delaying remaining elements of new global bank capital rules for a year will give lenders in Britain time to focus on dealing with fallout from the coronavirus epidemic, the Bank of England and Britain’s finance ministry said on Thursday.

    The Basel Committee of banking regulators from across the world agreed to the one-year delay to 2023 last week.

    “This will provide operational capacity for banks and supervisors to respond to the immediate financial stability priorities from the impact of Covid-19,” the BoE’s Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) and finance ministry said in a joint statement.

    The PRA and finance ministry said they were committed to the full, timely and consistent implementation of the new rules and “we will work together towards a UK implementation timetable that is consistent with the one year delay”.

  • U.S. Navy does not rule out punishing captain who criticized coronavirus response Link https://t.co/MIUD2DFCEe
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 09:27

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Navy on Wednesday declined to rule out punishing the captain of the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt, who wrote a scathing letter to Navy leadership asking for stronger measures to control a coronavirus outbreak onboard.

  • Goodbye, green: Bangkok laments park closures in virus battle Link https://t.co/2Zh3lgNavF
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 09:22

    BANGKOK (Reuters) - For many residents of bustling Bangkok, a daily walk or run through central Lumpini Park is considered a sanity saver, and especially these days as most people remain indoors during the coronavirus outbreak.

  • BA in union talks to suspend around 32,000 staff: source Link https://t.co/KjMv7gOjM7
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 09:17

    LONDON (Reuters) - British Airways (ICAG.L) is in talks with its union about a plan to suspend around 32,000 staff so it can survive the coronavirus pandemic, a person familiar with the situation said.

  • Spain sheds nearly 900,000 jobs since coronavirus lockdown Link https://t.co/gLw9QU5Um2
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 09:12

    MADRID (Reuters) - Spain has shed close to 900,000 jobs, more than half of them temporary, since it went into lockdown in mid-March to fight the coronavirus outbreak, social security data showed on Thursday.

  • Britain's food banks prepare for surge in demand as millions lose their jobs Link https://t.co/kHu3VkLqff
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 09:07

    LONDON (Reuters) - Before the parcel from the food bank arrived, Natasha Cartey had just half a bag of rice and a tub of butter. She was wondering when her next meal would be.

  • Asian share markets were pinned down, haunted by the rising U.S. coronavirus death toll, and investors braced for more signs of economic pain ahead of another likely record week of U.S. jobless claims Link
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 09:07

    SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Asian share markets were pinned down on Thursday, haunted by the rising U.S. coronavirus death toll, and with investors braced for more signs of economic pain in the world’s largest economy, ahead of another likely record week of jobless claims.

  • T-Mobile and Sprint have officially completed their $23 billion merger, bringing an end to intense scrutiny from Capitol Hill lawmakers and multiple U.S. states Link https://t.co/yhEJ4muXkC
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 09:02

    (Reuters) - T-Mobile US Inc said on Wednesday it officially completed the $23 billion merger with Sprint Corp, solidifying its position as the No.3 wireless providers in the United States.

    The deal comes after a long legal battle between multiple state attorneys general which argued that a merger between T-Mobile and Sprint would be anticompetitive.

    The combined company will now operate under the T-Mobile name and will trade on the NASDAQ as “TMUS.”

    The deal also enables T-Mobile and Sprint to join their high-band and low-band spectrum that could allow a faster roll-out of national 5G.

    Sprint acknowledged risks in an SEC filing, saying that its internal controls over financial reporting could negatively impact the combined company.

    A U.S. federal judge approved the deal, which was originally valued at $26 billion, in February, rejecting a claim by a...

  • Oil refiners face reckoning as demand plummets Link https://t.co/ayFBMSzyao
    Reuters Thu 02 Apr 2020 08:57

    Within weeks, the industry will need to cut output by 30% or more as the coronavirus pandemic keeps much of the world at home with little need to drive or fly. Smaller and financially weak oil refiners may not emerge from the crisis, say refining consultants and traders.

    “This Covid isn’t going to kill the refining industry, but it might kill those with underlying conditions,” said John Auers, a refining analyst at consultancy Turner, Mason & Co.

    Plant closings and production cutbacks are appearing across the globe. In Amsterdam, Canada, India, Italy and South Africa, small refiners have halted processing. Even the most complex and profitable U.S. and European operators are cutting runs to produce as little fuel as possible without shutting down.

    The coronavirus outbreak has cut global gasoline demand by 50% and jet fuel demand by 70%, according to consultancy Facts Global Energy.

    About 5 million barrels per day (bpd) of the 18 million bpd U.S....

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