• G20 ministers talk amid impasse over oil output deal
    AFP News

    G20 ministers talk amid impasse over oil output deal

    G20 energy ministers will hold a virtual meeting Friday after an oil production cut agreement between OPEC and its allies to shore up prices hit an impasse, with Mexico rejecting the proposed curbs. Mexico declined to back the multilateral deal announced after marathon overnight talks to slash output in May and June by 10 million barrels per day and by eight million bpd for the rest of the year. The standoff has cast doubt on efforts to bolster oil prices, pushed to near two-decade lows by the demand-sapping coronavirus pandemic and a Saudi-Russia price war.

  • Netherlands refuses to 'Go Dutch' on EU coronavirus debt
    Reuters

    Netherlands refuses to 'Go Dutch' on EU coronavirus debt

    As the European Union hammered out an emergency economic package this week for countries reeling from the COVID-19 pandemic, the Dutch held true to their reputation for thriftiness by refusing to support a plea by southern members to take on collective debt. EU powerhouse Germany, Austria, Finland and others had also expressed objections to debt mutualisation, but Dutch Finance Minister Wopke Hoekstra was ultimately the sole holdout in 16 hours of talks that failed to work out a deal on Wednesday. When the EU finance ministers returned to talk in a Thursday evening video conference, The Hague agreed to ease terms for accessing financing from the euro zone's EMS bailout fund to help with healthcare costs, but held firm against shared debt.

  • Nissan restructuring may assume cut of 1 million cars to annual sales target - sources
    Reuters

    Nissan restructuring may assume cut of 1 million cars to annual sales target - sources

    Nissan Motor Co Ltd's management has become convinced the struggling automaker needs to be much smaller and a restructuring plan due out next month would likely assume a cut of 1 million cars to its annual sales target, senior company sources said. The pandemic has only piled on urgency and pressure to renewed efforts to downsize. No new sales target has been finalised and it remains unclear whether one will be formally disclosed.

  • Reuters

    Exclusive: KKR's Envision Healthcare hires bank to explore debt restructuring - sources

    Envision's move underscores the struggles facing the medical industry in the wake of the novel coronavirus outbreak. Envision has hired investment bank Houlihan Lokey Inc <HLI.N> to explore a range of debt restructuring options, according to the sources. The healthcare services provider will have to make more significant cuts to its debt, the sources added.

  • Startups, VCs in India request 'relief package' from the government to fight coronavirus disruption
    TechCrunch

    Startups, VCs in India request 'relief package' from the government to fight coronavirus disruption

    More than six dozen startup founders, venture capitalists, and lobby groups in India have requested the government to grant them a “robust relief package” to help combat severe disruptions their businesses face due to the coronavirus outbreak. In a joint letter to India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi, startups requested the government to bankroll 50% of their workforce's salaries for six months, provide interest-free loans from banks, waive rent for three months, and offer tax benefits among other things.

  • The Smart Investor

    Get Smart: Your Stock is Down 50%, What Should You Do Now?

    Should you bite the bullet and sell?The post Get Smart: Your Stock is Down 50%, What Should You Do Now? appeared first on The Smart Investor.

  • Spain's coronavirus death toll curve flattening at last
    Reuters

    Spain's coronavirus death toll curve flattening at last

    The coronavirus death toll curve in Spain flattened further on Friday as the government discussed different strategies to start phasing out one of the world's strictest lockdowns. Spaniards have been off the streets since mid-March, but a slowdown of the COVID-19 disease's spread and its death toll has enabled officials to start discussing a gradual easing. "Any step towards de-escalation of such an intense lockdown must be done with extreme caution," Deputy Prime Minister Pablo Iglesias told local TV channel TVE.

  • Diamond miner Alrosa reports 60% sales fall as coronavirus hits trade
    Reuters

    Diamond miner Alrosa reports 60% sales fall as coronavirus hits trade

    Russian diamond producer Alrosa on Friday reported a 60% fall in March sales versus a year earlier citing the spread of the coronavirus for the fall in demand. The virus also hit the diamond trade, which traditionally involves a lot of travelling, with border closures and quarantine measures across the world. "In this turbulent environment, the situation at the start and at the end of our trading session in March was completely different," Alrosa said.

  • US threatens to block China Telecom from American market
    AFP News

    US threatens to block China Telecom from American market

    The United States has threatened to cut off Beijing-controlled China Telecom from serving the US market because of legal and security risks, announced the Justice Department. A recommendation by the government's top departments, including Defense, State and Homeland Security, said the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) should "revoke and terminate" all authorizations for the Chinese giant's US subsidiary, China Telecom (Americas), to provide international telecommunications services to and from the United States.

  • New York Power Plant Sold Up to 30% of Its Bitcoin Mining Hash Rate to Institutional Buyers
    Coindesk

    New York Power Plant Sold Up to 30% of Its Bitcoin Mining Hash Rate to Institutional Buyers

    Greenidge Generation, an upstate New York power plant that's using proprietary facility to mine bitcoin, has sold up to 30 percent of its computing power to institutional buyers.

  • Reuters

    Philippine penitents perform Easter rites despite coronavirus

    Some Catholic penitents flagellated themselves and prayed outside closed churches in the Philippines to commemorate the death of Jesus on Good Friday, despite strict government orders for people to stay indoors to contain the coronavirus. The capital, Manila, and many parts of the Catholic-majority Southeast Asian country have been in "enhanced community quarantine", but that did not stop some devotees from doing their annual penitence for Lent. "We are here because we want the spread of COVID-19 to end and we pray that things in our country will go back to normal," said Edward Degusano, who joined a self-flagellation ritual outside a church in Manila.

  • AFP

    China inflation slows as lockdowns ease

    Inflation in China grew at its slowest pace since last October, official data showed Friday, falling from eight-year highs due to a drop in food prices as the country gradually lifts virus lockdowns. Consumer prices jumped 4.3 percent in March year-on-year, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said, after increasing 5.2 percent in February. Weak oil prices and suppressed demand due to drastic coronavirus measures meant that consumer inflation last month grew at the slowest pace since October, according to NBS data.

  • Global oil output cuts held hostage to standoff
    Reuters

    Global oil output cuts held hostage to standoff

    Oil producers in the OPEC+ group, led by Saudi Arabia and Russia, were expected to pressure Mexico on Friday to seal an accord for a collective cut in output of 10 million barrels per day, before asking other nations for a further 5 million bpd of cuts. The United States has encouraged global cooperation to bolster an oil market that collapsed as the coronavirus pandemic accelerated in March and producers resorted to a price war after failing to agree on how to prop up prices. Oil prices tumbled on Thursday despite OPEC+ nearing agreement as the lockdowns ordered across the world sucked life out of the global economy, and traders reckoned that even a combined reduction of 15 million bpd would be too little to stabilise the market.

  • China encourages export goods sales domestically as virus batters global trade
    Reuters

    China encourages export goods sales domestically as virus batters global trade

    China will promote the sales of export products in domestic markets, as foreign trade faces unprecedented challenges due to the coronavirus pandemic, an assistant commerce minister said on Friday. As the coronavirus spreads to almost all of China's trading partners, the world's second-largest economy is set to reach a grim milestone for full year growth, with the pace of expansion likely to be the slowest since the Cultural Revolution ended in 1976. "Due to the rapid spread of the epidemic in the world, foreign demand has slumped and the biggest difficulty facing foreign trade companies is the plunge in orders," said Ren Hongbin, the assistant minister at the Ministry of Commerce.

  • Associated Press

    Renault seeking 4-5 billion euros in state-backed loans

    Renault says it is seeking billions in state-backed loans, cancelling its dividend for 2019 and its chairman is taking a pay cut, as the French automaker tries to weather the coronavirus crisis. Jean-Dominique Senard’s pay will be cut by 25% for the second quarter of 2020. Senard said Renault isn’t seeking to be nationalized but is working to secure state-backed bank loans to cushion the shock of the coronavirus crisis that has slammed demand for vehicles and shut down production.

  • Irish recipients of coronavirus wage subsidy surpass 200,000
    Reuters

    Irish recipients of coronavirus wage subsidy surpass 200,000

    Over 200,000 Irish workers are now in receipt of a new wage subsidy scheme, Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe said on Friday, meaning the state is supporting nearly 30% of the labour force as a direct result of the coronavirus. Another 507,000 people could claim the new emergency COVID-19 unemployment payment by Monday, although 33,000 have since closed their claims, most moving to the subsidy scheme.

  • Reuters

    Coronavirus impact cuts Japan March hotel occupancy rate to lowest on record -research firm

    Japan's hotel occupancy rate tumbled to 30.5% in March, according to preliminary data from global hotel research firm STR, the worst monthly average in the latter's records as the coronavirus pandemic slashed numbers of people travelling. The survey provides the first snapshot of the impact of the virus on Japan's hotel industry. The March occupancy rate HOTELSrepresents a huge drop from 84.7% in the same month a year ago, and is the lowest since STR started the survey for Japan in 1996.

  • Associated Press

    Southeast Asian ministers endorse plans for pandemic fund

    Southeast Asian foreign ministers have endorsed the setting up of a regional fund to respond to the coronavirus pandemic and discussed a planned video summit of their leaders with counterparts from China, Japan and South Korea. The Department of Foreign Affairs in Manila said Friday that the top diplomats of the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations linked up by video Thursday in a meeting led by Vietnam.

  • Asian markets rise after Fed stimulus boosts Wall St
    AFP News

    Asian markets rise after Fed stimulus boosts Wall St

    Asian markets were mostly higher on Friday after the latest US coronavirus stimulus measures boosted Wall Street overnight. In its latest attempt to ease the economic pain inflicted by the COVID-19 pandemic, the US Federal Reserve said it would pump $2.3 trillion through new lending programmes. The pandemic has now claimed more than 94,000 lives around the world and hammered economies, sending governments and central banks scrambling to put together unprecedented, massive emergency measures.

  • Reuters

    China firmly opposes U.S. action against China Telecom: foreign ministry

    China's foreign ministry said on Friday that Beijing is opposed to any action by the United States to revoke China Telecom Corp's authorisation to provide international telecommunications to and from the United States. Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian told reporters during a daily briefing that the United States must stop politicizing commercial matters.

  • Reuters

    China firmly against U.S. action against China Telecom - foreign ministry

    China's foreign ministry said on Friday that Beijing is opposed to any action by the United States to revoke China Telecom Corp's authorisation to provide international telecommunications to and from the United States. Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian told reporters during a daily briefing that the United States must stop politicizing commercial matters.

  • Top oil producers except Mexico agree to output cuts: OPEC
    AFP News

    Top oil producers except Mexico agree to output cuts: OPEC

    Major oil producers except Mexico agreed to cut output in May and June by 10 million barrels per day, OPEC said Friday, after marathon talks to counter a collapse in prices. The videoconference led by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries has been seen as the best chance of providing support to prices, which have been wallowing near two-decade lows due to the coronavirus pandemic and a price war between key players Saudi Arabia and Russia. The agreement, which also reduces production by eight million bpd from July to December, depends on Mexico's consent for it to take effect, the oil cartel said after the meeting.

  • France has earmarked 20 billion euros for corporate bailouts - finance minister
    Reuters

    France has earmarked 20 billion euros for corporate bailouts - finance minister

    The French government has set aside 20 billion euros ($21.7 billion) to help big companies that need their capital base shored up by the state, Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said on Friday. "We've decided to put credit on the fund, to put 20 billion euros on the special fund to support to the capital of companies that need it, whether public or private," Le Maire said on Europe 1 radio.

  • World shares steady as OPEC struggles to reach deal
    Associated Press

    World shares steady as OPEC struggles to reach deal

    Asian shares are steady in quiet Good Friday trading after Wall Street closed out its best week in 45 years thanks to the Federal Reserve's titanic effort to support the economy through the coronavirus crisis. Many world markets were closed for Easter weekend holidays.

  • AFP

    Tokyo shares close higher on massive US stimulus

    Tokyo stocks closed higher on Friday, extending rallies on Wall Street after the US Federal Reserve unveiled another round of massive stimulus. The Nikkei 225 index rose 0.79 percent, or 152.73 points, to 19,498.50 while the broader Topix index gained 0.92 percent, or 13.06 points, to 1,430.04. The Nikkei opened higher, taking a positive lead from Wall Street, where stocks advanced after the Federal Reserve unveiled new stimulus that offset news of another huge spike in jobless claims.