Tag: virus

Posted in Money

Virus fears force animal sellers online for Muslim festival

Prancing in front of a camera with its blond mane blowing in the wind, “007” is one of thousands of goats being sold online as Muslims prepare for a key religious festival shaken this year by the coronavirus pandemic.

Millions of goats, sheep and cattle are slaughtered annually at Eid al-Adha — the festival of sacrifice — one of two major holy days observed by Muslims across the world, including some 600 million in South Asia.

The pandemic has, however, badly hit India, Bangladesh and Pakistan, which have shut or heavily restricted major markets, while fears about catching the virus are keeping customers away ahead of the main festival on Saturday.

“We were traumatised by the loss of two of my uncles to COVID-19 and didn’t want to sacrifice an animal,” Saddid Hossain told AFP in Bangladesh’s capital Dhaka.

“But we have to stay within our religious tradition, so we’d

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Posted in Finance

Donald Trump cancels Republican convention speech over virus fears

Donald Trump admitted that his speech would be risky because of the outbreak - REUTERS
Donald Trump admitted that his speech would be risky because of the outbreak – REUTERS

Donald Trump has cancelled his Republican convention speech in Florida because of the coronavirus outbreak there, saying he did not want to “take any chances”.

The US president had moved his speech to the state from North Carolina, claiming the governor there would not let him hold one with a big crowd, but now has cancelled that plan.

Mr Trump said he will still do a speech formally accepting his party’s nomination but that the details had not yet been worked out, suggesting it was possible it could be online only.

“I’ll still do a convention speech in a different form but we won’t do a big, crowded convention per se. It’s just not the right time for that,” Mr Trump said.

Follow the latest updates below.

02:49 AM

An Israeli firm is developing a

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Posted in Business

Virus Resurgence Sends A Clear Message To Small Businesses That The Future Remains Uncertain

Small business owners are contending with some of the most trying economic conditions in recent memory. Suppliers are seeing their orders limited by a hobbled supply chain, shops and retailers are facing lower sales from a financially insecure client base and restaurants and bars are being forced to weigh the needs of their staff against the lower capacity imposed by socially-distanced dining areas.

But the most trying aspect of running a small business in the time of a pandemic is the reality that these conditions may continue for months on end. The U.S. and many other countries are already seeing a resurgence of infections and hospitalizations after just a few weeks of reopening measures.

Small Business Strife

The COVID-19 pandemic has put a halt to many business owners’ innate hopes for future growth. A recent article from William Dunkelberg, the Chief Economist for the National Federation of Independent Business, describes

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Posted in Personal

Middle East mythbusters battle virus ‘infodemic’

Baghdad (AFP) – Browse through Arabic-language social media pages and you could walk away thinking COVID-19 is an American hoax, isn’t deadly and can be swiftly cured with a garlic clove.

Arabic pages on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are brimming with fake news stories on the novel coronavirus, from benign inaccuracies to full-throated conspiracy theories.

As authorities work to stem the spread of the novel coronavirus, civic platforms across the Middle East are stepping up to combat the Arabic “infodemic” they say is as dangerous as the infection itself.

“We correct the news and save lives,” said Baher Jassem, an Iraqi activist from the Tech 4 Peace collective, which switched from its four-year campaign against fake political and economic news to setting the record straight on COVID-19.

Every few hours, the collective’s Facebook, Instagram and Twitter pages publish screenshots of fabricated news stories about the virus, from claims about new

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Posted in Insurance

As the Virus Deepens Financial Trouble, Colleges Turn to Layoffs

Dorms on East Green at Ohio University in Athens, Ohio, June 21, 2020. (Maddie McGarvey/The New York Times)
Dorms on East Green at Ohio University in Athens, Ohio, June 21, 2020. (Maddie McGarvey/The New York Times)

LAKEWOOD, Ohio — Hammered by mounting coronavirus costs and anticipating lost revenue from international students, fall sports and state budgets gutted by the pandemic, colleges and universities nationwide have begun eyeing what until now has been seen as a last resort — thinning the ranks of their faculty.

The University of Akron this week became one of the first schools in the country to make deep cuts in the number of full-time professors on its staff, with the board of trustees voting Wednesday to lay off about a fifth of the university’s unionized workforce to balance its budget, including nearly 100 faculty members.

Other universities have also trimmed teaching positions, although most have limited themselves to those without tenure. This month, the University of Texas at San Antonio laid off 69 instructors,

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Posted in Insurance

California unemployment falls, but virus surge likely to reverse job gains

California added 558,200 jobs from mid-May to mid-June and state unemployment fell from 16.4% to 14.9% — but don’t start celebrating yet. The numbers don’t account for the resurgence of COVID-19 cases throughout the U.S. and in California in the last half of June or the retreat in plans to reopen the economy. The numbers were released Friday morning by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, which slightly revised the earlier jobless figure from 16.3% to 16.4%.

Leisure and hospitality added the most jobs, at 292,500, benefiting from statewide reopenings of bars and dine-in restaurants, according to the California Employment Development Department. As of mid-June, that sector had regained more than a third of job losses from March and April. Construction jobs had the highest percentage gain, clawing back 68% of jobs lost during the pandemic. Government suffered the largest decline in jobs, at 36,300.

But the dial-back is bound

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Posted in Personal

Election costs soar in prep for virus voting

WASHINGTON (AP) — The demand for mail-in ballots is surging. Election workers need training. And polling booths might have to be outfitted with protective shields during the COVID-19 pandemic.

As officials prepare for the Nov. 3 election, one certainty is clear: It’s coming with a big price tag.

“Election officials don’t have nearly the resources to make the preparations and changes they need to make to run an election in a pandemic,” said Wendy Weiser, head of the democracy program at the Brennan Center for Justice. “We are seeing this all over the place.”

The pandemic has sent state and local officials scrambling to prepare for an election like few others, an extraordinary endeavor during a presidential contest, as virus cases continue to rise across much of the U.S.

COVID-related worries are bringing demands for steps to make sure elections that are just four months away are safe. But long-promised

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Posted in Finance

Florida Breaks Record Daily Cases in U.S. Outbreak: Virus Update

(Bloomberg) —

Florida reported 15,300 new virus cases, the biggest one-day rise since the coronavirus pandemic began in the U.S. The number exceeds records from New York, California and Texas, all of which have reported daily counts at almost 12,000. Reported deaths in Florida dropped to 44, from 95 the day before.

U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos said “the rule should be that kids go back to school this fall,” despite rising cases around the country.

South Africa may reintroduce tighter regulations on the movement of people and curb sales of alcohol as coronavirus infections soar, the Sunday Times reported. Hungary is also restricting travel after spikes in neighboring countries. Infections in Germany increased by 377.

Key Developments:

Global Tracker: Cases top 12.7 million; deaths surpass 565,000Aversion to mask-wearing holds back U.S. economyU.K. set to tighten rules on wearing face masksWall Street forges a new relationship to data in coronavirus

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Posted in Finance

Florida Cases Hit Record; Push to Open Schools: Virus Update

(Bloomberg) —

Florida reported its highest-ever increase of Covid-19 cases, 15,300, or a 6% rise compared to a 4.8% average over the last week. Reported deaths dropped to 44, from 95 the day before.

U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos said “the rule should be that kids go back to school this fall,” despite rising cases around the country.

South Africa may reintroduce tighter regulations on the movement of people and curb sales of alcohol as coronavirus infections soar, the Sunday Times reported. Hungary is also restricting travel after spikes in neighboring countries. Infections in Germany increased by 377.

Key Developments:

Global Tracker: Cases top 12.7 million; deaths surpass 565,000Aversion to mask-wearing holds back U.S. economyU.K. set to tighten rules on wearing face masksWall Street forges a new relationship to data in coronavirus ageConflicting visions emerge for South Africa’s post-virus revivalAnonymity helped overcome stigma in Korean nightclub probe

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Posted in Personal

Virus spread, not politics should guide schools, doctors say

As the Trump administration pushes full steam ahead to force schools to resume in-person education, public health experts warn that a one-size-fits-all reopening could drive infection and death rates even higher.

They’re urging a more cautious approach, which many local governments and school districts are already pursuing.

There are too many uncertainties and variables, they say, for back-to-school to be back-to-normal.

Where is the virus spreading rapidly? Do students live with aged grandparents? Do teachers have high-risk health conditions that would make online teaching safest? Do infected children easily spread COVID-19 to each other and to adults?

Regarding the latter, some evidence suggests they don’t, but a big government study aims to find better proof. Results won’t be available before the fall, and some schools are slated to reopen in just a few weeks.

“These are complicated issues. You can’t just charge straight ahead,” Dr. Tom Frieden, former director of

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