Employment in Trump-supporting states fared better than others

Coronavirus Business Update: Voters put the economy in front of the pandemic in the US elections

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Latest news

The close race shows the major weaknesses of the democratic campaign

The U.S. presidential election result is up to date after Donald Trump defied polls to suggest that many voters didn’t focus their ballots on his handling of coronavirus.

A CNN poll found that the economy – the only issue that consistently rated Trump better than Democratic rival Joe Biden – was the top concern for voters, followed by racial inequality and coronavirus.

The president’s approval ratings appeared to be falling in early October after he was hospitalized with Covid-19, and polls showed that most Americans disapproved of his handling of his own infection.

However, the close race showed major weaknesses in the Democratic campaign despite the high death toll from the pandemic, which critics attributed to the White House management.

The U.S. elections closed nearly four years of turmoil for the world’s largest economy as Trump secured a $ 1.7 billion tax cut, sparked trade wars around the world, and then grappled with the aftermath of a pandemic that affects millions of Americans made unemployed.

The five states that did their best for employment as of September 2020 were generally politically okay with Mr Trump after backing him with an average margin of 12.6 percentage points in 2016, and were mostly in the West.

Markets

Line chart of the rebased performance of the five mainstream risk premiums YTD shows that only the momentum factor beat the broader stock market in 2020

The length and depth of the problems of value investing obscure the fact that it is nowhere near the only victim of the current market environment, argues FT global financial correspondent Robin Wigglesworth. “It would be a brave person to declare that the sun has set on quantitative investing. One could argue that the entire money management industry today – to varying degrees – is in some form or way driven by quantitative research. “

Illegal gold miners are pouring into the Amazon with a new, fast-getting rich culture, bringing new heavy machinery and financial know-how with them. With the rise in the price of precious metals during the coronavirus crisis, production in the Amazon region has also increased – and deforestation as a result. Much of the gold is exported, mainly to western countries including the UK, USA and Canada.

Dwindling expectations of a key US presidential election win for Joe Biden have boosted Treasuries and major US technology stocks as investors curtailed their business in response to the adoption of a Democratic “blue wave” from the White House and Congress. The S&P 500 was up 2.9 percent in early New York trading, led by technology stocks rather than economy-sensitive stocks that had preferred to rally in a blue-wave scenario.

Companies

Now that the fortunes of hand sanitizer and soap makers have changed, the pandemic is likely to do the same for another previously unannounced industry – outdoor heater manufacturers. A wave of new restrictions on indoor gatherings in western countries leading into the winter has created a mess for radiators that allow people to socialize safely and warmly.

Bar chart of net change in store openings shows independent businesses weather the pandemic better than chain stores

Independent businesses weather the Covid-19 pandemic better than many of the big chains that dominate the UK’s main streets as they benefit from falling rents and make greater use of online platforms. New research by the Local Data Company shows that while the pandemic contributed to 1,833 independent stores, cafes and other businesses closing in the first eight months of the year, 6,001 chain store branches – defined as at least five premises – closed.

Ikea has shrugged off the impact of a second round of coronavirus lockdowns in Europe as “incomparably” less than the first, declaring it will be able to continue producing its flat-pack furniture this time around. The uneven release of the initial lockdown was more disruptive as it put a strain on the logistics in their supply chain, forcing them to provide significant financial aid to some of their hundreds of outside suppliers.

Global economy

According to a widely watched corporate survey, service companies in Italy and Spain saw their activity decline again last month as restrictions to contain the second wave of Covid-19 companies hurt businesses. Airlines, hotels, retailers and hairdressers rely on human contact and have therefore been hit hardest by the restrictions on social interaction and movement of people put in place to contain the spread of the virus.

ChinaBusiness owners have spent a record time raising money owed them this year as customers, led by large corporations and local governments, postponed payments after an economic slowdown. Official data shows that it took an average of 54 days for private Chinese manufacturers to get paid for the first three quarters of this year. That’s more than 45 days in 2019 and 27 days five years ago.

English consumers are flocking to shops, restaurants and pubs as retailers have extended their hours to catch last-minute sales ahead of the country’s four-week lockdown. According to Springboard, a retail data provider, traffic to shopping malls and main streets increased 19 percent on Tuesday compared to the same day last week.

Get in touch

How is your workplace dealing with the pandemic? How do you deal with it as a professional or a manager? And what do you think companies and markets – and our daily lives – will look like when we show up? Also tell us what you think about this newsletter and how we can make it more useful for you. Email us at [email protected] We can publish your contribution in an upcoming newsletter. Many thanks.

In response to the NHS returning to the highest emergency level with rising Covid cases, the FT reader writes “committed skeptic”:

Will they also report that the hospital occupancy rate for this time of year is not higher than usual, that the number of cases is already rising more slowly than the best-case scenario in their models, that currently no hospitals are at risk of an imminent collapse from Covid patients, how many of the daily positive test results got Covid in the hospital (and not in the community), and how many of those counted as deaths actually died from Covid instead of just testing positive within 28 days of death?

science

A little bit of data can be a dangerous thing: our monthly FT Health newsletter highlights how digital technology has helped speed the coronavirus response but has drawn attention and policymaking to statistics that are the easiest to measure . The report on the future of AI and digital health explores the potential and pitfalls in improving outcomes. Click here to get FT Health in your inbox on the first Wednesday of each month.

The graph shows that different models and methods provide very different estimates of the current number of infections in the UK, although all are well below the estimated values ​​in March

Cases, hospitalizations and deaths in the UK are still on the rise, but there is evidence that the rate of growth of the virus is already slowing. The second wave was more severe than the government’s “reasonable worst-case scenario”, but epidemiologists disagree on the likely number of cases and deaths. In a feature known to economists that also deals with uncertain data and human behavior, the forecasts vary widely.

Coronavirus induces strong and long-lasting cellular immunity after infection, new research suggests suggesting people are unlikely to get the disease again quickly and increase the likelihood that vaccines will be effective. Antibodies – relatively small protein molecules – are much easier to detect and analyze in blood samples than the much larger and more complex T cells. They have therefore been studied in more detail by researchers.

The most necessary

Budget cuts, constraints imposed by Covid-19 and poor data have limited the power of the Health & Safety Executive, the UK’s workplace regulator, when it is needed most, argues FT employment columnist Sarah O’Connor . “When England hits its second lockdown, key workers are back on the front lines to feed and feed the rest of us. We have to do better to protect them while they do it. “

Last thought

Financial bubbles provide exciting material for historians, not least because they are so often accompanied by financial skulduggery and economically debilitating banking crises. Two new books explore how
The most damaging occur when the inflated asset class is deeply integrated with the rest of the economy and the banking system. Policy-driven bubbles tend to be more economically and socially damaging than technology-based bubbles, which often fuel innovation in a variety of ways.