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Wall Street Gains as Washington’s Rescue Deal Inches Forward: Live Updates

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Stocks on Wall Street rose on Wednesday, as investors sized up a $2 trillion coronavirus rescue package intended to shore up the American economy, but the gains faded late in the day as debate over the bill continued without a vote in the Senate.

The legislation would be the biggest fiscal stimulus package in modern American history, and more than double the size of the roughly $800 billion stimulus package that Congress passed in 2009, during the last recession.

The S&P 500 climbed more than 1 percent, adding to a 9.4 percent gain on Tuesday that had come as investors anticipated that Democrats and Republicans would reach a deal over the plans.

Some of the companies expected to benefit from government help led the gains. Boeing was up more than 20 percent, helping lift the Dow Jones industrial average. American Airlines and Carnival Corporation jumped more than 10 percent.

Wednesday’s rally followed one of the best days for stocks on Wall Street since 2008 .

Governments elsewhere are also laying out plans to help. On Monday, Germany prepared an emergency budget and rescue fund for companies that includes state-supported loans. European Union leaders are working on additional measures to help loosen up money for some countries to help soften the economic blow of the virus.

Investors have welcomed the plans, but few are willing to conclusively say that the worst of the market sell-off is over.

In the United States, widespread social distancing measures put in place to control the spread of the coronavirus have hammered consumer spending, the heart of the American economy.

Economists are expecting almost unthinkable declines in the gross domestic product in the second quarter. Analysts at Capital Economics said on Wednesday that they expected U.S. growth to fall 40 percent in the second quarter at an annualized pace, as the unemployment rate jumps to 12 percent, higher than its 10 percent peak in 2009.

The airline industry is poised to receive an enormous bailout as part of the stimulus bill, a draft of which sets aside around $30 billion to pay employees of passenger and cargo employees. It also provides loans to passenger and cargo carriers in addition to some tax relief.

In exchange for the aid, airlines are prohibited from stock buybacks and dividends until a year after the loan is repaid. They must also maintain current staffing levels through September.

THE CONTEXT In recent weeks, the outlook for the global aviation business has soured significantly, with major carriers like American Airlines fighting for survival and United Airlines eliminating virtually all of its international flights for April. During that time, airline executives and industry groups had been lobbying the White House and members of Congress for aid.

The provisions almost exactly mirror what the industry lobbying group, Airlines for America, said would be necessary to stave off devastation of the industry.

THE RESPONSE As executives and union officials pored over the details of the stimulus deal on Wednesday morning, Sara Nelson, the influential president of the Association of Flight Attendants union, claimed victory.

If you want to shut down an economy to fight a pandemic without driving millions of people and businesses into bankruptcy, you need the government to cut some checks. The coronavirus response deal that congressional leaders struck early Wednesday will get a lot of checks in the mail, but those checks will soothe financial pain for only a few months.

Among the items in the bill are:

  • $350 billion in loans for small businesses to help bridge their expenses for up to 10 weeks. Firms would not need to repay up to eight weeks of the loans if they refrain from laying off employees, or move by June to rehire workers they have already laid off.

  • $500 billion in aid to airlines and other large corporations that have been hurt by the cratering of consumer demand. Much of the money would be used to backstop loans and other assistance that the Federal Reserve said it planned to extend to companies.

  • A $1,200 payment for each adult, and $500 per child, in households that earn up to $75,000 per year for individuals or $150,000 for couples. The assistance phases out for people who earn more. Democratic aides in the Senate said on Wednesday that eligible Americans with direct-deposit bank account information on file with the Internal Revenue Service — about 70 million people — should see their payments arrive within a few weeks of the bill being signed into law. Those who did not have such information on file and would instead by mailed a check will need to wait up to four months to receive one, the aides said.

The hotel industry has taken a particularly damaging hit from the coronavirus pandemic devastating the American economy.

As many as four million hotel employees — housekeepers, maintenance workers, desk clerks and others — have been laid off or will be let go in coming weeks, according to the American Hotel and Lodging Association. And the industry has asked for a $150 billion bailout.

The industry is particularly concerned about the roughly $350 billion in mortgages, construction loans and commercial and industrial loans taken out on hotels and held by banks, insurance companies and investors. Much of that debt was borrowed by individual franchisees who have taken out mortgages on the hotels they own, rather than by major chains like Marriott International and Hilton Hotels & Resort.

Vinay Patel is one of those anxious borrowers. In recent days, the occupancy rates at the nine hotels he owns in the Northern Virginia area have plummeted from about 50 percent to only a handful of rooms each night.

“It’s just gut-wrenching,” Mr. Patel said. “I’ve reached out to my lenders saying, ‘We have to work through this together.’”

President Trump is a ratings hit, and some journalists and public health experts say that could be a dangerous thing.

Since reviving the daily White House briefing — a practice abandoned last year by an administration that bristles at outside scrutiny — Mr. Trump and his coronavirus updates have attracted an average audience of 8.5 million on CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC, roughly the viewership of the season finale of “The Bachelor.” On Monday, nearly 12.2 million people watched Mr. Trump’s briefing on cable news, according to Nielsen — “Monday Night Football” numbers.

And the audience is expanding even as Mr. Trump has repeatedly delivered information that doctors and public health officials have called ill-informed, misleading or downright wrong.

The veteran anchor Ted Koppel said on Wednesday that television news executives had forgotten a crucial distinction of their profession. “Training a camera on a live event, and just letting it play out, is technology, not journalism; journalism requires editing and context,” he wrote in an email.

One of the most contentious questions dogging talks over the $2 trillion economic stabilization bill was over who would be in charge of a $500 billion “slush fund” with few strings attached, and how to ensure that such a sweeping bailout is administered fairly and without preferential treatment.

The final bill is expected to include the appointment of a new special inspector general to oversee the disbursement of funds to companies and ensure they qualify, according to a congressional aide.

The legislation would also create a five-person oversight panel, chosen by congressional leaders, and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin would be required to make regular appearances before Congress to discuss the bailout package and how it was being carried out.

Those guardrails are similar to what lawmakers put in place for the Troubled Asset Relief Program, the $700 billion bank bailout that Congress passed during the 2008 financial crisis.

Government agencies calculate these trade-offs regularly. The Environmental Protection Agency has established a cost of about $9.5 million per life saved as a benchmark for determining whether to clean up a toxic-waste site.

In a paper this week, three economists tried to calculate the optimal way to slow the spread of the coronavirus without economic costs that exceed the benefits.

In one set of assumptions — leaving it to individuals to decide whether to isolate themselves — the authors say that about 1.7 million people in the United States would die within a year and that consumer demand would decline by $800 billion in 2020, or about 5.5 percent.

They say that under an alternative approach — involving tighter restrictions on movement and commerce — the decline in consumption in 2020 more than doubles, to $1.8 trillion, but deaths drop by half a million. The difference amounts to $2 million in lost economic activity per life saved.

They are scrounging for fabric, cutting it up, stitching it together. They are repurposing drapes, dresses, bra straps, shower curtains, even coffee filters. They are building supply chains, organizing workers, managing distribution networks.

Most of all, they are sewing.

All over the country, homebound Americans are crafting thousands upon thousands of face masks to help shield doctors, nurses and many others from the coronavirus.

At the White House’s urging, manufacturing companies are beginning to ramp up their production of masks. But it could be weeks before the new supplies start rolling off the assembly lines.

In the meantime, some of the void is being filled by legions of sewers, called to duty in a matter of days via social media and word of mouth, their skills no longer taken for granted or dismissed as a mere hobby. They are making masks for America, much as a previous generation manufactured ammunition and tended “victory gardens” during World War II.

HUB FOR HELP

Older Americans are at a high risk for serious illness from the coronavirus, and most who are over age 65 are covered by Medicare.

Medicare already covers its enrollees for much of what they might need if they contract the virus and become seriously ill — and it has expanded some services and loosened some rules in response to the crisis. Read more on how navigate Medicare right now.

Ask us your money questions at this difficult time. If you have questions or ideas, write to hubforhelp@nytimes.com and Ron Lieber, Tara Siegel Bernard and our personal finance team will read every message.

  • BuzzFeed chief executive Jonah Peretti told employees Wednesday that their salaries would be reduced by up to 13 percent (and up to 25 percent for executives) in April and May in order to avoid layoffs. BuzzFeed is the first major digital news outlet to institute cutbacks in response to the pandemic-induced economic headwinds that have already swept across other sectors of the news industry.

  • Ford Motor said on Wednesday that it would keep its North American plants closed beyond March 30, the day it had previously hoped to restart production. BMW also said it would idle its factory in Spartanburg, S.C., on Sunday, five days sooner that is had previously planned, and keep it shut through at least April 12. And Volvo said it would close a plant in Ridgeville, S.C., from Thursday until at least April 14.

  • Gap said it would help source masks and protective gowns from its vendors for California hospitals. Canada Goose said it would reopen two manufacturing facilities to produce scrubs and patient gowns for health care workers and patients in Canada.

Reporting was contributed by Niraj Chokshi, Jim Tankersley, Alan Rappeport, Alexandra Stevenson, David Gelles, Julie Creswell, David Yaffe-Bellany, David Enrich, Rachel Abrams, Steven Kurutz, Eduardo Porter, Clifford Krauss, Michael M. Grynbaum, Edmund Lee, Sapna Maheshwari, Brian X. Chen, Neal E. Boudette, Elaine Yu, Daniel Victor, Jason Karaian, Kevin Granville and Carlos Tejada.

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Officers Arrest Suspect Who Took American Flags From Citrus Heights Business On July 4th – CBS Sacramento

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NWI Business Ins and Outs: Munster Donut reopens, self-serve craft beer comes to Chesterton, Sip adds third location in Cedar Lake | Northwest Indiana Business Headlines

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Baxter prints business cards, banners, signs, brochures, raffle tickets, political signs and many other products.

For more information, visit baxterprint.com or call 219-923-1999.

A wine bar known as Wine House is coming to a house in downtown Highland.

A sign posted outside said, “think Rainey Street,” a reference to the Rainey Street neighborhood in Austin, Texas. The hipster haven, a lively hub of nightlife, features many sophisticated bars operating out of repurposed houses.

Merrillville-based Commercial In-Sites has brokered deals for Moda Beauty Bar and Down Syndrome Association of Northwest Indiana to come to Oakside Plaza on U.S. 41 in Schererville.

“Moda Beauty Bar is a chic aesthetic boutique specializing in skin care, lashes, brows, permanent make up and sunless tanning. This will be the second location for Moda Beauty Bar in the Region,” Commercial In-Sites said in a news release. “The Down Syndrome Association founded over 30 years ago is a non-profit organization serving children, adults, families and interested persons working to improve the quality of life for those individuals having Down syndrome.”

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Beach Business Bounces Back Over Holiday Weekend, Amid Concern Over New Restrictions – NBC 7 San Diego

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Phenomenal. 

That’s how Skyler McManus described business at Hamel’s on the Mission Beach boardwalk Fourth of July weekend.

“It’s actually picked way up,” the business owner
said.  “It almost feels like it was last year.”

McManus and other store and restaurant owners at Mission Beach said they were thankful that the city of San Diego decided not to close beach parking lots after the state requested they do so to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

Heavy crowds Saturday were not as large as usual, but
most of the people who parked on the sand appeared to be out-of-towners from
places like Arizona and Nevada. 

They brought their wallets and spent money on food, souvenirs, bicycle, and surfboard rentals.

“The business that we’re getting is a little bit higher
than usual because people are really looking for that recreational option at
the beach,” said Matthew Gardner, who owns Mission Beach Rentals on the south
end of Belmont Park.

Gardner told NBC 7 his business has been better than usual since the middle of June when COVID-19 restrictions were eased and people began leaving the shelter of their homes.

Gardner said he feels sorry for his friends in the
restaurant business because they’re the ones most likely to face new restrictions
now that the numbers of coronavirus cases are rising in San Diego County.

“My heart goes out to them,” Gardner said. “We had a short recovery period and it takes a lot of effort, it takes a lot of financial and time commitment to get your businesses back open again and to hire people again. Also, to figure out what’s gonna be happening again, and to have the rug pulled out from under you again, that’s a really difficult thing to manage as a business.”

Restaurants in San Diego County learned shortly before the long holiday weekend that the county health department had imposed a 10 p.m. curfew on top of social distancing requirements that allow them to only seat half as many customers.

“We did all right yesterday, but not what we usually do,” said Mike Soltan, who owns Kojak’s Greek and American Restaurant.  “We had to close the door by 10 and there were like 1,000 people outside so we (had to) lock them out.”

On a normal Fourth of July, Soltan says his restaurant continues serving gyros and burgers to hungry crowds until 2 a.m.

Soltan hopes any new restrictions won’t impact his
business.  He said it would be crippling if beaches or beach parking lots
were closed.

“We don’t need another shutdown, I mean we’re already hurting the way it is, so hopefully, you know, things won’t be as bad,” he said.

If new restrictions are imposed, they would go into effect by Tuesday, July 7, and last a minimum of three weeks.

CORONAVIRUS IN SAN DIEGO COUNTY: What You Need to Know: Latest Developments | Resources | How to Help | What Has Reopened? | Photos: Coronavirus Impact in SD

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