Welcome to this week’s overview!
In the news this week…
- U.S. coronavirus cases topped 7 million, accounting for more than 20% of the world’s total.
- The pandemic has continued to ravage Latin America where the double threat of hunger and contagion have destroyed informal economies in particular.
- In Europe, further lockdown restrictions have been implemented with the UK on a 10pm curfew and Russia hits its daily record of cases since 23rd June.
- China’s annual production capacity of COVID-19 vaccines is expected to reach 610 million doses by the end of the year, the country’s National Health Commission said.
- Oil prices edged higher but were set for a weekly decline due to mounting worries about the impact on fuel demand of a widespread resurgence in coronavirus infections, as well as some concern about the likely return of exports from Libya.
- In the UK, Chancellor Rishi Sunak has revealed the plan to introduce a new 6-month ‘Job Support Scheme’, which will replace the furlough scheme ending on the 31st October. The support scheme will top up the salaries for employees which can no longer work full time.
- For example, if an employee works one third of their normal time, both the government and the employer will then pay one third of the unworked hours. Whereas furlough was considered an emergency stop gap protecting all jobs during lockdown, the new scheme will only protect “viable jobs which provide genuine security”.
- CaixaBank took over Bankia, creating Spain’s largest lender with over €650bn in assets. Whilst in Germany, Deutsche Bank is preparing to close 20% of stores, as the pandemic has shifted customers to online banking. On a global scale, HSBC’s stocks have slumped to a 25-year low, with many of the stakeholders losing confidence.
- Australia said it would ease lending standards for banks in a move designed to free up credit and revive the economy.
Thank you for reading & hope everyone has a good weekend!