6th Apr 2020
Top Industry News from the Past Week - Monday 6th April 2020
Another Monday, another week at home, another week of uncertainty and fighting hard to work together and keep each other safe. To help you catch up on the week just passed, here are some of the major new stories from around the world last week.
As expected as March turned into April, it was revealed that the damage to the world’s economy and markets led to the lowest financial quarter since 2008 as death tolls and unemployment numbers continued to rise rapidly, with some countries seeing the amount of people out of work reaching the highest numbers in living memory.
Asian markets such as China and South Korea have seen a slight turnaround in fortunes as numbers of positive COVID-19 tests begin to level out, however as the overall number of cases slowly approaches the one million mark, it is unlikely that an upswing in fortunes will occur until at least the summer.
As a result of the government restrictions and fears over loans and payments, many mortgage providers in the UK, including Nationwide, are holding off on agreeing to new mortgage or home loan deals to those with less that 25% equity, forcing first time homeowners to rethink their plans for the foreseeable future.
The hope for providers is that this will allow them to focus on assisting existing customers and process ongoing applications until such a time when restrictions are reduced and financial situations improve.
The timing of the outbreak poses a big problem for UK universities as current students approach their end of year exams, some hoping to complete their degree this summer. There is also a worry concerning those individuals who were due to enrol in higher education this summer and whether numbers are likely to reduce over fears restrictions will still be in place come September.
As a result, universities in England could face fixed limits on the number of students they may recruit in an effort to provide all schools the opportunity to bring in enough students to remain financially stable. The proposals are still ongoing and the hope is that these measures will not need to be enforced except as a last resort.
It was announced that around 36,000 British Airways, mainly operating out of London’s Gatwick and City airports, would be suspended after most of its fleet were grounded for the foreseeable future. Certain details are still to be finalised and several employees revealed they were not made aware of the plans before hearing about it on television news.
Several airlines are in similar situations as more and more planes will remain grounded for several months, leading to a wave of passengers looking to gain refunds or move flights to later in the year, leading to uproar at certain airline policies or a lack of support staff available to field calls or answer questions.
On a more positive note, while markets drop and governments scramble for solutions, life must go on and as a result, several industries are seeing numbers thrive as people find themselves stuck at home for the foreseeable future. Bicycles and home exercise items are highly sought after, along with indoor and outdoor games to entertainment as the weather turns.
Also, as springtime has arrived, people are venturing into the garden for the first time this year tending to gardens and vegetable patches. Or for those not so green fingered, books, TVs and electrical goods are seeing a rise in sales as we prepare for several months of isolation.
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