30th Mar 2020CIO
Top Industry News from the Past Week
Following the first full week of the majority of business sending employees home, either to keep working or sit tight and wait for the worst of the COVID-19 outbreak to blow over, read about some of the major new stories from around the world last week.
With restrictions on travel, work and general movement coming into place all over the world, it is revealed that now around two billion people across the globe have been affected by some level of lockdown.
Countries like India have only recently been be subjected to a full shutdown of activity following an increase in the number of cases, while areas of Europe are trying their hardest to slow down the spread of infection, with Italy and Spain now the countries with the highest number of cases, overtaking China which saw the first case back in December 2019.
On February 25th 2020, the Dow Jones stood at 27081.36. Since the number of cases of COVID-19 started to rapidly increase, the stock has fallen dramatically, including a drop of 3,000 points in mid March, its biggest hit since the ‘Black Monday’ stock market crash of 1987. While Dow clearly makes the headlines due to its reputation, this trend has become a common theme in most markets around the world,
However, since bottoming out at around 18,500 early last week, there has been a significant upturn in the market climbing back up to 21.000 by the end of the week. Could this be a sign of an upturn in fortunes worldwide? Only time will tell, but some suggest that it will be some time before the world and financial markets will return to some level of normality.
The couple of weeks has seen the car industry apply the brakes on production across the UK with BMW, Toyota, Jaguar Land Rover and Honda temporarily shutting down factories, following the likes of Nissan and Vauxhall who have seen sales and their ability to retrieve parts fall.
Meanwhile following the government’s decision to close down all pubs and restaurants on Friday 20th, several businesses are announcing it will be highly unlikely that they will be able to reopen once sanctions have been lifted due to lack of revenue.
Mid week it was revealed that Boeing is expected to get billions of dollars in bailouts from the US Senate. This news comes in spite of the backlash over the 737 Max crisis, the worst in company history where two crashes in the space of five months caused 346 deaths in late 2018-early 2019.
The Senate bill also provides $58 billion in relief for a number of US airlines, which have been severely impacted by travel restrictions in the wake of the spread of COVID-19 and comes after Air New Zealand was offered a bailout of $740 million in the last few weeks.
As major sporting events across the world, from the Premier League and Euro 2020, to the French Open tennis tournament slowly lost the battle to stay on track and complete/take place throughout this summer, this week it was announced that the 2020 Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games, due to take place in Tokyo, Japan, would also be postponed and rearranged for the summer 2021 at the very latest.
The change has of course led to a number of logistical issues given the size and scale of the event and the decision was carefully deliberated for some time, however due to the current circumstances the decision has been met with praise as the health of all those involved, competitor and spectator alike, must be put first above all else.
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