Trump seeks big economic stimulus as coronavirus threat forces U.S. cities to go quiet

WASHINGTON/NEW YORK (Reuters) – The Trump administration on Tuesday pursued an enormous $850 billion stimulus bundle to buttress a U.S. economic system reeling from the coronavirus threat, whereas the streets of main American cities emptied in response to stepped-up warnings in regards to the pandemic.

An individual crosses the road within the International District-Chinatown neighborhood throughout the outbreak of coronavirus illness (COVID-19), in Seattle, Washington, U.S., March 16, 2020. REUTERS/Lindsey Wasson

Millions of Americans hunkered down of their properties as an alternative of commuting to work or faculty as New York and different main cities escalated “social distancing” insurance policies by closing colleges, bars, eating places and theaters. The variety of reported U.S. circumstances of the respiratory sickness surged and U.S. deaths from the coronavirus climbed to at the least 89.

In one of the vital restrictive insurance policies enacted within the United States to date, officers in six San Francisco Bay Area counties ordered residents to keep at house starting on Tuesday for all however probably the most essential outings till April 7. The order applies to some 6.7 million individuals.

The six counties account for about 30% of the output in California’s economic system, the largest within the United States.

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio informed CNN he would think about imposing an identical shelter-in-place directive for probably the most populous U.S. metropolis.

It was St. Patrick’s Day however the temper was sober, not joyous, after conventional parades and events celebrating the Irish heritage of many Americans had been canceled throughout the nation and normally crowded pubs had been shuttered.

Even so, de Blasio used the event to rally his metropolis, hailing the “indomitable spirit” of America’s Irish immigrants, a lot of whom have settled in New York.

“New York City’s streets may be empty this St. Patrick’s Day, but thanks to that very same spirit, our hearts are full,” he wrote on Twitter.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on Tuesday deliberate to focus on the proposed $850 billion stimulus bundle when he meets with Senate Republicans on the Capitol, in accordance to a U.S. authorities official who spoke on the situation of anonymity. The bundle would come with $50 billion for airways – laborious hit by the pandemic – and $250 billion for small enterprise loans.

The Senate on Tuesday ready to weigh a multibillion-dollar emergency spending invoice handed by the House of Representatives on Saturday.

Wall Street’s predominant indexes rose on Tuesday, a day after recording their largest tumble because the crash of 1987 over fears of the economic toll of the fast-spreading outbreak. The broad S&P 500 was up four% in late morning buying and selling


The coronavirus additionally affected politics as three states maintain major elections on Tuesday within the state-by-state course of of choosing a Democratic candidate to problem President Donald Trump within the Nov. three U.S. election.

Democratic candidates Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders sq. off in Florida, Illinois and Arizona, however Ohio officers canceled that state’s major due to coronavirus fears hours earlier than the vote was to start.

The tally of confirmed U.S. circumstances has multiplied rapidly over the previous few weeks as testing elevated, surpassing four,600 and prompting fears American hospitals may quickly be overwhelmed, as Italian medical facilities have been strained to the breaking level by the pandemic.

New York, Washington state and California have probably the most confirmed circumstances with Washington accounting for almost all of fatalities, many linked to an outbreak at a nursing house within the Seattle space.

The United States has lagged behind different industrializednations in its skill to check for the novel coronavirus.

After beforehand downplaying the hazard and declaring the state of affairs below management, the White House urged Americans on Monday to keep away from gatherings of greater than 10 individuals and known as for closing bars, eating places and different venues in states the place native virus transmission exists.

Trump’s change in tone adopted newly pressing messaging from governors and mayors throughout the nation who’ve taken their very own drastic measures to gradual the virus’ unfold.

The states of New Jersey, New York and Connecticut struck a regional settlement to shut all film theaters, casinos and gymnasiums on Monday. Restaurants and bars within the three states – the place greater than 22 million individuals reside – will serve takeout and supply solely.

Deborah Birx, White House coronavirus response coordinator, wouldn’t say whether or not the Trump administration was shut to issuing some kind of home journey restriction.

“We’re looking very carefully at the data every day and that’s why you see this escalation in guidelines from the president,” she stated on Fox News.

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Integrating information and understanding how the brand new outbreaks are occurring – from journey between states, or inside states – is essential to formulating the response and updating tips, Birx stated.

“As we track down these outbreaks, if we see that that is happening from flight travel, then I think the president will react, but we don’t have enough information right now to suggest that,” she stated.

Asked if individuals had been getting sick on airplanes, Birx stated, “We don’t know.”

Reporting by Doina Chiacu in Washington and Maria Caspani in New York. Additional reporting by Jeff Mason, Lisa Lambert, David Shepardson and Susan Heavey, Joseph Ax, Gabriella Borter, Barbara Goldberg, Brendan O’Brien; Writing by Will Dunham; Editing by Bill Berkrot

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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