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02/04/20 COVID-19 Global News Update

02 April 2020

Overview of the latest developments on Coronavirus (COVID-19)

International

Coronavirus: Oil prices rise on hopes of a price war truce

Apr 2nd, 2020viaBBC - Front Page

Global oil prices have risen after Donald Trump said he expected Saudi Arabia and Russia to reach a deal soon to end their price war. The cost of crude had fallen to 18-year lows as the two countries slashed prices and ramped up production.

Insurers fret as company bosses face coronavirus legal claims

Apr 1st, 2020viaReuters UK - Business News

Insurers are increasingly worried about shareholders, employees or customers bringing coronavirus-related claims against company executives and are considering excluding the virus from policies which protect the bosses, industry sources say.


UK

Coronavirus: Loan and credit card payments set to be frozen

Apr 2nd, 2020viaBBC - Front Page

The Financial Conduct Authority wants banks to help borrowers in difficulty because of the outbreak.

Coronavirus: FTSE 100 rises after tough start to the quarter

Apr 2nd, 2020viaCity AM - News

The FTSE 100 has risen this morning after a steep fall yesterday as investors try to find a footing as the coronavirus pandemic slows economies around the world. Britain’s FTSE 100 index was 0.9 per cent higher shortly after the bell at 5,499 points.

British Airways expected to lay off 36,000 staff amid coronavirus crisis

Apr 2nd, 2020viaGuardian UK - Business

British Airways is expected to announce it will suspend 36,000 staff, from cabin crew to ground staff, engineers and head office employees, because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Coronavirus: UK house prices growth ‘grinding to a halt’

Apr 2nd, 2020viaCity AM - News

UK house prices rose three per cent last month just before the coronavirus outbreak hit, according to Nationwide figures released today.

UK says banks must not refuse funds to good firms in trouble over coronavirus

Apr 1st, 2020viaReuters UK - Top News

It would be unacceptable for banks to unfairly refuse funds to good businesses that are in difficulty because of the coronavirus pandemic, Britain’s business minister Alok Sharma said on Wednesday.

Treasury set to overhaul coronavirus loan scheme to avoid insolvencies

Apr 1st, 2020viaCity AM - Business

The chancellor Rishi Sunak is reportedly set to overhaul the government’s emergency coronavirus loan scheme over concerns that small and medium sized businesses may go bust before they can access the funds.

Coronavirus: M&S gives staff 15 per cent bonus

Apr 1st, 2020viaCity AM - News

Marks and Spencer will give frontline staff across its stores and supply chain a 15 per cent bonus for their work during the coronavirus pandemic.

Ex-chancellor Alistair Darling calls for coronavirus VAT cut

Apr 1st, 2020viaCity AM - News

Former Labour chancellor Alistair Darling has called for the government to temporarily cut VAT to help people deal with the economic fallout from the coronavirus crisis.


Day-to-Day Impact

Coronavirus: Up to 3,000 armed forces reservists to aid military response

Apr 2nd, 2020viaBBC - Front Page

Up to 3,000 armed forces reservists are being called up to aid the military response to the coronavirus pandemic. Individuals with specialist skills will provide medical and logistical support to the NHS, engineers and accountants, the Ministry of Defence said.

Coronavirus: Testing will 'unlock puzzle', PM says

Apr 2nd, 2020viaBBC - Front Page

Testing is the solution to "unlock the puzzle" of coronavirus, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said. Mr Johnson was speaking after it was revealed some 2,000 NHS England staff have been tested for the virus, out of a workforce of about 1.2 million.

Climate summit in Glasgow postponed to 2021 because of coronavirus pandemic

Apr 1st, 2020viaReuters UK - Top News

A climate summit that had been due to take place in Glasgow in November has been postponed to 2021 because of the coronavirus outbreak, officials said on Wednesday, throwing new uncertainty into talks to tackle global warming.

Coronavirus lockdown raises risk of online child abuse, charity says

Apr 1st, 2020viaThe Guardian News

A shortage of moderators who combat sexual abuse online combined with children spending more time on the internet at home has created a “perfect storm” for abusers to take advantage of the Covid-19 pandemic, one of the UK’s biggest safeguarding charities has warned.

UK to set up virtual parliament during coronavirus shutdown

Apr 1st, 2020viaThe Guardian News

The government is to set up a virtual parliament to allow MPs to scrutinise its response to the coronavirus crisis following demands from the Commons Speaker, Lindsay Hoyle, and opposition parties.

NHS rules hampering coronavirus testing drive, say scientists

Apr 1st, 2020viaThe Guardian - Health

The introduction of mass testing for coronavirus is being hampered by health officials enforcing strict rules around what chemical brands and suppliers can be used to produce the tests, scientists warn.

Private schools in UK struggling as coronavirus costs bite

Apr 1st, 2020viaThe Guardian - Education

Private schools in the UK are facing a battle for survival in the face of the coronavirus crisis as parents who have lost their income cancel direct debits and overseas pupils who have gone home decide whether to return.

Wimbledon tennis championships cancelled over coronavirus

Apr 1st, 2020viaCity AM - Business

The Wimbledon tennis championships were cancelled for the first time since World War Two today as the coronavirus pandemic wiped another blue-riband sports event off the calendar.

Government set to launch coronavirus ‘contact tracking’ app

Apr 1st, 2020viaCity AM - News

The government is gearing up to launch a new app that will alert users if they have come too close to someone who has tested positive for coronavirus.

Nearly 1m people apply for Universal Credit as coronavirus lockdown paralyses economy

Apr 1st, 2020viaCity AM - Business

Nearly 1m people in the UK have applied for Universal Credit in the two weeks since Prime Minister Boris Johnson implemented strict lockdown measures, the government said today. There are normally around 100,000 applicants per two week period – in the last two weeks there were 950,000.

Edinburgh festivals cancelled due to coronavirus

Apr 1st, 2020viaBBC - Front Page

Five cultural events, including the Fringe and the Military Tattoo, will not take place in August.


Global Situation

'On the light side': Trump casts doubt on China's coronavirus figures

Apr 2nd, 2020viaThe Guardian Australia World News

Donald Trump has said China’s reported death toll and infections from the coronavirus seem “a little bit on the light side,” as US lawmakers and members of the intelligence community accused Beijing of intentionally under reporting the scale of the outbreak.

Australia begins pre-clinical testing for coronavirus vaccine

Apr 2nd, 2020viaReuters UK - World News

Australia’s national science agency said on Thursday it has commenced the first stage of testing potential vaccines for COVID-19, as it joins a global race to halt the coronavirus pandemic.

Australia gives free childcare as coronavirus case curve flattens

Apr 2nd, 2020viaReuters UK - Top News

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.”

Number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Germany rises to 73,522 - RKI

Apr 2nd, 2020viaReuters UK - World News

The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Germany has risen to 73,522 while 872 people have died of the disease, statistics from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for infectious diseases showed on Thursday.

Global coronavirus infections near million mark after 'near exponential growth'

Apr 2nd, 2020viaGoogle News - Top Stories

Covid-19 infections are nearing the one million mark after “near exponential growth” saw global cases more than double in the past week.

U.N. nuclear agency sending coronavirus testing gear to 40 countries

Apr 1st, 2020viaReuters UK - World News

The U.N. atomic agency is sending an initial batch of equipment to about 40 countries with which they will be able to perform a standard test for the coronavirus involving a technique derived from nuclear science, it said on Wednesday.

Spain's coronavirus cases top 100,000 as masks, sanitiser flown in

Apr 1st, 2020viaReuters UK - Health News

Two planes packed with protective equipment arrived to restock Spain’s overloaded public health system on Wednesday as its confirmed coronavirus cases rose beyond 100,000 and it recorded its biggest one-day death toll from the outbreak.

COVID-19 infections growing exponentially, deaths nearing 50,000: WHO

Apr 1st, 2020viaReuters UK - Health News

The head of the World Health Organization (WHO) voiced deep concern on Wednesday about “the rapid escalation and global spread” of COVID-19 cases from the new coronavirus, which has now reached 205 countries and territories.

Dutch propose emergency fund for coronavirus nations

Apr 1st, 2020viaReuters UK - World News

The Netherlands on Wednesday proposed establishing a fund for nations worst hit by the new coronavirus and has asked other countries in the European Union to contribute, Dutch Finance Minister Wopke Hoekstra said.

U.N. warns of 'dire' effects of coronavirus, 'greatest test' since WWII

Apr 1st, 2020viaReuters UK - World News

The United Nations warned of potentially “dire” long-term effects of the coronavirus outbreak on countries and the global economy and called for greater international cooperation to fight the pandemic.

Coronavirus could be final straw for EU, European experts warn

Apr 1st, 2020viaGuardian UK - Italy

The European Union has weathered the storms of eurozone bailouts, the migration crisis and Brexit, but some fear coronavirus could be even more destructive.

British American Tobacco working on plant-based coronavirus vaccine

Apr 1st, 2020viaGuardian UK - Business

British American Tobacco, the maker of brands including Lucky Strike, Dunhill, Rothmans and Benson & Hedges, has said it has a potential coronavirus vaccine in development using tobacco plants.


To read more from DWF on COVID-19 visit our insights hub >

Further Reading

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