The outbreak of the coronavirus has dealt a shock to the global economy with unprecedented speed. Following are developments Tuesday related to the national and global response, the work place and the spread of the virus.
TRAVEL: The pandemic has altered travel behavior in multiple ways and severely damaged cruise operators and airlines, though there are signs of a life.
— The United States and China have agreed to let each other’s airlines make four weekly flights between countries, according to the Transportation Department, easing an impasse between the world’s two biggest economies. U.S. airlines suspended flights to and from China earlier this year.
Delta and United sought to resume flights but complained that China was blocking them while Chinese carriers continued flying to the U.S. Delta said it will fly once a week from Seattle to Shanghai with a stopover in Seoul, and it will add a second weekly flight from Detroit in July. United did not immediately comment.
— Thailand approved three projects worth at total of more than 22 billion baht ($707 million) to help the country ’s reeling tourism industry. The funds are intended to stimulate domestic travel between July and October. Tourism receipts normally account for more than 10% of Thailand’s GDP.
— Recreational vehicle rentals are predicted to dominate this year’s July 4th holiday plans. Bookings on RVshare, a peer-to-peer RV rental marketplace, are up 81% from a year ago for the holiday weekend and continue to increase. RV bookings have nearly tripled since last year and have climbed by more than 1,600% since early April with so many people looking for a safe way to travel and vacation.
RESTAURANTS: The viral outbreak has taken a devastating toll on restaurants and service industry worker s. The push to reopen public places is just beginning.
— Sales at Denny’s are still vastly below pre-pandemic levels, but there is improvement as locations reopen. Same-store sales in the U.S. fell 40% for the week ended June 10, the company said in a regulatory filing, compared with a 47% decline for the week ended June 3. Denny’s had 1,234 dining rooms open the week of June 10, compared with 1,116 for the week prior.
HOUSE RULES: Casinos are pushing for new rules, including cashless gambling payments. Thousands of people flocked to Las Vegas two weeks ago, though it remains to be seen of those crowds can be sustained.
— Revenue at Caesars Entertainment properties that reopened in Nevada during the first week of June dropped as much as 58% compared with a year ago through June 10.
Including properties outside of Nevada, which began to open as early as May, revenue through June 10 was between flat and up 2%, the company said in a regulatory filing.
Caesars reopened two properties in Louisiana and two properties in Mississippi last month. It reopened one property in Iowa and one property in Missouri on June 1. Caesars has five properties in Nevada, four of which reopened on June 4 and one on June 5. Of the five recently reopened properties in Nevada, two of the four which opened on June 4 and the one which opened on June 5 are located in Las Vegas.
GOVERNMENT & CENTRAL BANKS: New data shows that economies are coming back to life after being shut down by the pandemic, but very slowly.
— The Dutch Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis predicted Tuesday that the coronavirus will deliver an unprecedented hit to the country’s economy this year, causing a 6% contraction in gross domestic product. Unemployment will more than double by 2021 from 3.4% to 7%, although the economy would grow by 3% in the year, according to the bureau. Should a second wave of arrive, the economy will likely shrink in 2021 and unemployment could rise to 10%, the bureau said.
— Japan’s central bank echoed the Federal Reserve’s pledge of support for financial markets by beefing up its support for corporate lending. The Bank of Japan ended its policy meeting Tuesday without a change to its minus 0.1% benchmark interest rate and ultra-lax monetary stance. It expanded purchases of commercial paper, corporate bonds and lending t commercial banks, from 75 trillion yen to 110 trillion yen ($690 billion to $1.02 trillion).
MARKETS: Stocks are rallying worldwide on Tuesday, and Wall Street is heading for its third straight gain after U.S. retail sales rebounded last month by much more than economists were expecting.
PERSONAL SPACE: Social distancing is getting a high-tech spin at Amazon. The company is deploying cameras and TV screens with machine learning technology in busy areas of its warehouses so that workers will be alerted when they get too close to colleagues. On the screen, the image of an employee will turn red if they get within 6 feet of someone else. Amazon is rolling out hundreds of the units to its warehouses.