Worst plunge in 3 decades … EU investing in German vaccine-maker … Amazon hiring, paying more

NEW YORK (AP) — The stock market plunged to its worst day in more than three decades as voices from Wall Street to the White House said the coronavirus may be dragging the economy into a recession. With today’s 12% drop, the S&P 500 has plummeted nearly 30% since setting a record less than a month ago. Losses accelerated late today after President Trump said the economy may be headed for a recession and asked Americans to avoid gatherings of more than 10 people. 

BERLIN (AP) — The European Union is making a multimillion-dollar investment in a German company that is working on a coronavirus vaccine. The E.U.’s move comes amid reports that the U.S. government has expressed interest in acquiring the firm. The funding, 80 million euros or about $89.4 million dollars, is part of a coordinated response by the EU to the coronavirus.

NEW YORK (AP) — Amazon says it needs to hire 100,000 people across the U.S. to keep up with a crush of orders as the coronavirus spreads and keeps more people at home, shopping online. The online retailer is also raising pay by $2 an hour through the end of April for hourly employees. Amazon is warning shoppers it could take longer than the usual two days to get packages, and it’s working to get more household cleaning supplies in stock, because they’ve been selling out.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — A Chinese company is terminating its plans for a $1.8 billion paper mill in southwest Arkansas that had already been delayed by trade tensions. Sun Paper on Sunday told Gov. Asa Hutchinson and economic development officials it would not move forward with the mill it had planned for Arkdalephia. The company cited trade tensions between the United States and China, economic uncertainty and the novel coronavirus outbreak. Arkdelphia officials last month said they were marketing the land for the mill to other potential projects. 


BERKELEY, Calif. (AP) — Pacific Gas & Electric has received court approval to raise $23 billion to help pay its bills over destructive California wildfires. It comes after Gov. Gavin Newsom dropped his opposition to a financing package designed to help the nation’s largest utility get out of bankruptcy. The approval moves PG&E closer to emerging from one of the most complex bankruptcy cases in U.S. history. PG&E told a judge it has lined up commitments from investors to buy up to $12 billion in stock amid the Wall Street turmoil caused by the coronavirus to supplement $11 billion in new loans. 

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