Tuesday, May 26, 2020
4:50 pm ET: Around the World in 90 Seconds: May 26, 2020
Brazil's President Bolsonaro downplays the pandemic, a UK official and ally of Prime Minister Boris Johnson deals with a scandal, Japan loosens restrictions, Australia has a new cluster, and Spain looks to reopen to tourists. Here are your international coronavirus headlines.
4:49 pm ET: Wall Street Closes Up as Recovery Hopes Overshadow Virus Worries
Wall Street is closing higher as hopes for economic recovery overshadow worries over the coronavirus pandemic. The S&P 500 jumped to a nearly three-month high, recovering much of its post-pandemic losses. Investors are shifting their focus to how various nations are adapting to getting back to business while striving to keep new COVID-19 cases in check. Reassuring comments by the head of China’s central bank also helped spur buying. Benchmarks in Paris, London, and Tokyo also gained on Tuesday. Read more...
— The Associated Press
3:48 pm ET: Consumer Confidence Up Slightly but Remains Near Six-Year Low
With large crowds not recommended (or downright illegal) to prevent further COVID-19 outbreaks, the future of music festivals hangs in the balance. Cheddar's J.D. Durkin talks favorite festival moments and the obstacles organizers face for future shows.
3:25 pm ET: Consumer Confidence Up Slightly but Remains Near Six-Year Low
U.S. consumer confidence inched up this month, showing signs of stabilizing, but remains near a six-year low in the face of the widespread business shutdowns that have sent the economy into recession. The Conference Board says its confidence index ticked up to a reading of 86.6 in May from 85.7 in April. Read more...
— The Associated Press
In this April 21, 2020, file photo, a man rides his bike on Waikiki Beach in Honolulu. The coronavirus pandemic has been particularly brutal to the tourism-dependent economies of Nevada and Hawaii, lifting the unemployment rate in both states to about one-quarter of the workforce. (AP Photo/Caleb Jones, File)
2:11 pm ET: NYSE COO: Reopening Trading Floor 'Emblem' of Return to 'Normalcy'
Welcome back to Wall Street.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and NYSE President Stacey Cunningham rang the opening bell on Tuesday as the first live traders returned to the floor of the New York Stock Exchange since the COVID-19 pandemic shut down the building in March.
"While it's one milestone along a long journey, it's definitely an important milestone for the stock exchange to reopen the trading floor," a masked NYSE COO Michael Blaugrund told Cheddar. Read more...
— Mike Nam
1:45 pm ET: Georgia Governor Offers State as Alternative GOP Convention Host
Georgia’s governor is offering his state and its “world-class facilities” as host of the Republican National Convention — a day after President Donald Trump threatened to pull the convention out of North Carolina if that state’s Democratic governor doesn't assure him that the August gathering can go forward despite coronavirus fears. Read more...
— The Associated Press
10:30 am ET: Wall Street Up as Recovery Hopes Overshadow Virus Worries
Wall Street is opening sharply higher as hopes for economic recovery overshadow worries over the coronavirus pandemic. The S&P 500 jumped to nearly a three-month high, recovering much of its post-pandemic losses. Investors are shifting their focus to how various nations are adapting to getting back to business while striving to keep new COVID-19 cases in check. Reassuring comments by the head of China’s central bank also helped spur buying. Benchmarks in Paris, London, and Tokyo also gained on Tuesday. Read more...
— The Associated Press
New York Stock Exchange employees wait to enter the building as the trading floor partially reopens, Tuesday, May 26, 2020. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)
10:25 am ET: Bell Rings Again at New York Stock Exchange as Floor Reopens
The trading floor of the New York Stock Exchange reopened for the first time in two months with New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo ringing the iconic bell, but the controlled chaos was more subdued Tuesday under new pandemic rules.
The floor, known worldwide for an anarchic atmosphere with traders shouting orders over one another, has been closed since mid-March due to the coronavirus outbreak. The NYSE says fewer traders will be on the floor at a given time for now in order to support six-feet social distancing requirements. They also must wear masks. Read more...
— The Associated Press
8:10 am ET: Need2Know: Summer in America, Sweden’s Failure & Liftoff Tomorrow
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COVID-19: SUMMER IN AMERICA: With the death toll from the coronavirus pandemic approaching 100,000, many Americans marked a subdued Memorial Day weekend, and got a look at what the strange summer of 2020 is shaping up to be. All states are now in some stage of reopening, though the long weekend reflected how regional the pandemic now feels in its third month: crowds of mask-less partiers packed the lakes of the Ozarks and police in Houston responded to 500 complaints of overcrowding at bars. At the same time, the beaches and boardwalks in Southern California and the Northeast were relatively uncrowded by comparison. WSJ
CHURCHES REOPENING: On Friday, President Trump said he would “override” states if they didn’t immediately allow religious institutions to reopen for in-person worship. Three days later, California Gov. Gavin Newsom gave the go-ahead for California churches to allow religious services to restart, with restrictions. Attendance at houses of worship in the state will be limited to 100, and worshippers will be encouraged to wear masks and refrain from singing, hugging and shaking hands. POLITICO
TRUMP TWEETS: President Trump spent a good chunk of Memorial Day weekend golfing and tweeting attacks on his rivals, including promoting tweets that mocked the looks of Stacey Abrams and Nancy Pelosi and called Hillary Clinton a “skank.” He also repeatedly gave credence to a debunked conspiracy theory that the MSNBC host Joe Scarborough killed someone years ago. On Memorial Day, he laid a wreath at Arlington National Cemetery. WASH POST
SWEDEN'S HERD IMMUNITY EXPERIMENT: Sweden’s closely watched experiment in allowing its population to build up herd immunity to the virus without drastically curtailing its economy is, so far at least, not producing the expected results. Swedish officials were hoping that the level of herd immunity in Stockholm would reach the 60 percent threshold by the end of the month -- now they say that’s not even close to happening. Sweden has the highest COVID-19 mortality rate in Europe. NPR
CAR RENTAL COLLAPSE: What’s bad for the car-rental industry could be good for anyone in the market for a used car. Hertz became one of the largest companies to file for bankruptcy on Friday, and is expected to sell off a large chunk of its fleet. Its competitors aren’t doing much better, and industry experts expect them to dump huge numbers of rental cars onto the market in the coming months. Used cars bought directly from car-rental companies are typically substantially cheaper. CNN
T-MINUS ONE DAY: Tomorrow afternoon in Cape Canaveral, Florida, for the first time in history, a private company will attempt to launch humans into space. The big SpaceX-NASA mission passed a critical review over the weekend, and is on schedule for a 4:33 p.m. ET liftoff Wednesday. NASA estimates the launch has a 1-276 chance of catastrophic failure, which the two astronauts who will be strapped aboard say presents a “comfortable” risk. BUSINESS INSIDER
IRON MIKE COMEBACK: Mike Tyson might be getting closer to making a comeback. A bare-knuckle boxing promoter is offering 53-year-old Tyson more than $20 million to come out of retirement and compete in a fight, what would be his first since 2005. Tyson has been teasing a comeback by posting videos of his training sessions. BLEACHER REPORT
SPOTTED...Joe Biden, in his first public outing since mid-March, wearing a mask while visiting a veterans memorial in Delaware: SEE PIC
SWIFT VS. SCOOTER: The Taylor Swift fan hive is buzzing over the question: did the pop star just pull one over on her nemesis, the producer Scooter Braun? Swift is promoting a new cover of her hit Look What You Made Me Do for the Killing Eve soundtrack, but the artist listed on the song is a band that doesn’t exist. The theory: Swift’s brother did the vocals and she wrote it under a pseudonym, all so that Braun -- who owns her masters -- wouldn’t get paid if the song is a hit. PEOPLE
LEFTOVERS: WHAT'S SAFE? It’s probably the biggest set of questions in the world right now: what’s safe to do? What isn’t? What’s safer than the alternative? NPR’s Morning Edition asked experts to weigh in on the relative risk of summer activities from camping to dining out: LISTEN