Posted on

UK government borrowing hits record high in April and retail sales slump – business live | Business






Full story: Borrowing surge amid crisis





Retail sales slump: What the experts say









Covid-19 fears and Hong Kong tensions hit markets





UK internet shopping hits record high









UK borrowing: What the economists say









Introduction: Government borrowing hits £62bn in April

Updated





Source link

Posted on

Netherlands McDonald’s tests social distancing-inspired redesign for post lockdown business


Get all the latest news on coronavirus and more delivered daily to your inbox. Sign up here.

This could be the fast-food restaurant of the future.

As the coronavirus pandemic continues to have a significant impact on the service industry, some restaurants are trying to adapt to the virus. As one McDonald’s in the Netherlands shows, things could be a bit more spacious down the road.

Customers wait outside on social distancing markings at a prototype location of fast-food giant McDonald's for restaurants which respect the 1.5m social distancing measure, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Arnhem, Netherlands, May 1, 2020.

Customers wait outside on social distancing markings at a prototype location of fast-food giant McDonald’s for restaurants which respect the 1.5m social distancing measure, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Arnhem, Netherlands, May 1, 2020.
(REUTERS/Piroschka van de Wouw)

The fast-food chain is trialing a new design in the Dutch city of Arlem, Reuters reports. The location puts an emphasis on promoting social distancing, which will likely still be asked of customers even after lockdowns are lifted.

Images of the McDonald’s show clear markings on the floor to show customers where to stand in relation to other customers. One photo even shows markings placed on the sidewalk and into the road, telling customers where exactly to stand while waiting on line.

MCDONALD’S CANADA TO START USING IMPORTED BEEF DUE TO SUPPLY CHAIN ISSUES

A customer cleans his hands before entering a prototype location of fast-food giant McDonald's for restaurants which respect the 1.5m social distancing measure, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Arnhem, Netherlands, May 1, 2020.

A customer cleans his hands before entering a prototype location of fast-food giant McDonald’s for restaurants which respect the 1.5m social distancing measure, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Arnhem, Netherlands, May 1, 2020.
(REUTERS/Piroschka van de Wouw)

Other photos show clear plastic barriers placed between tables, food being delivered on hand trolleys (the company may be implementing table service at some locations to limit interactions between customers and employees), and a handwashing and sanitizing station near the restaurant’s entrance.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

A woman uses a touch screen at a prototype location of fast-food giant McDonald's for restaurants which respect the 1.5m social distancing measure, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Arnhem, Netherlands, May 1, 2020.

A woman uses a touch screen at a prototype location of fast-food giant McDonald’s for restaurants which respect the 1.5m social distancing measure, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Arnhem, Netherlands, May 1, 2020.
(REUTERS/Piroschka van de Wouw)

“We have tried to figure out how to keep our customers and employees safe while maintaining a restaurant atmosphere,” Eunice Koekkoek, a spokeswoman for McDonald’s Netherlands, told Reuters. “These are drastic changes, but we hope to make them in a way that customers don’t notice them too much.”

FOLLOW US ON FACEBOOK FOR MORE FOX LIFESTYLE NEWS

While it’s unclear if these changes will come to McDonald’s locations in the United States, a spokesperson told Business Insider that the company is moving “thoughtfully and judiciously to make changes to our operations in collaboration with our franchisees.”



Source link

Posted on

Trump won’t rule out taking coronavirus bailout cash for own business



Donald Trump may need his own bailout.

As the economy continues to shut down, the president refused to officially rule out the possibility that his own family company, The Trump Organization, may have to make use of federal funds to stay afloat.

“I don’t know,” Trump said when asked if his business would accept stimulus money. “I just don’t know what the government assistance would be for what I have. I have hotels. Everybody knew I had hotels when I got elected. They knew I was a successful person when I got elected, so it’s one of those things,” he said Saturday at his daily coronavirus briefing.

Trump said his business — like many others in the hospitality industry — has been negatively affected by the downturn.

“Is it hurting me? Yeah,” he said. “It’s hurting everybody.”

Trump said that while he often speaks to his sons, who currently run the family business, he has never provided them inside information.

Since declaring a state of emergency on March 13, Trump and state governments have moved to shut down large sectors of the economy to stop the spread of the deadly coronavirus.



Source link

Posted on

Stock markets rebound as Mark Carney predicts ‘large but temporary’ coronavirus shock – business live | Business














Carney comments drive markets higher

















Carney: Bank audio hack ‘whollly unacceptable’









Carney: Bank committees will meet regularly on coronavirus





Mark Carney: Coronavirus could be a large, but temporary, shock

Updated





UK builders return to growth









Updated





Source link

Posted on

Davos 2020: Javid, Merkel and Soros in spotlight – business live | Business






Mnuchin slaps down Thunberg’s fossil fuel concerns





Mnuchin and Javid to discuss Huawei this weekend





Ross: EU auto tariffs are still an option

Updated





Mnuchin on US-French tax row









Introduction: Brexit and trade worries





Source link

Posted on

Saudi Aramco becomes world’s biggest listed company as shares surge 10% – business live | Business


A screen advertising Saudi Arabia’s state-owned oil company Aramco with Arabic reads, “promising future” in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, this week

A screen advertising Saudi Arabia’s state-owned oil company Aramco with Arabic reads, “promising future” in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, this week Photograph: Amr Nabil/AP

Good morning, and welcome to our rolling coverage of the world economy, the financial markets, the eurozone and business.

It’s a massive day on the Saudi stock market as oil giant Aramco finally makes its debut — becoming the biggest listed company in the world.

Saudi Aramco is floating today, after raising $25.6bn through its sometime troubled IPO. That valued the company at $1.7trillion – even more than Apple ($1.2 trillion).

The opening auction on the Tadawul is underway as I type, so we’ll soon know if the float is a success.

If Aramco’s shares rally today, then the $2trillion valuation craved by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman could be in sight again.

But it’s an usual float – just 1.5% of Aramco’s stock is actually floating. The rest is owned by the Saudi state.

That scarcity could help push the stock higher, after international investors proved reluctant to back the IPO.

Human rights concerns, the climate crisis, and corporate government concerns all forced the Saudis to rein in their ambitious plans for the float, and restrict it to Middle East investors.

As my colleague Jillian Ambrose explains:


It was originally expected to sell about 5% through a dual-listing on the Saudi market and on a major international stock exchange.

The IPO lost the support of international investors, which are sceptical of the company’s valuation. Investors are also wary of Aramco’s close ties to the Saudi regime, which is embroiled in geopolitical conflict and whose behaviour has raised human rights concerns.
Among local investors demand for Aramco shares was almost three times oversubscribed after the Saudi government encouraged Middle Eastern investors and wealthy Saudi families to support the IPO.

Aramco’s shares were sold at 32 riyals each. The stock should start trading soon, so we’ll see if it spikes or slides…..

Also coming up today

The City is becoming more anxious about tomorrow’s general election.

A closely-watched poll from YouGov showed Boris Johnson’s likely majority has narrowed – from 68 seats to just 28. A hung parliament is still a real possibility, which knocked sterling a little last night.

The pound is trading around $1.3135 this morning, having hit $1.32 last night (before YouGov hit the wires).

Plus, America’s central bank is holding its last (scheduled) meeting of 2019, but we’re not expecting fireworks.

The agenda

  • 12.30pm GMT: US inflation: Expected to rise to 2.0% per year, from 1.8%
  • 3.30pm GMT: US weekly oil inventories
  • 7pm GMT: US Federal Reserve decision: expected to leave interest rates unchanged



Source link

Posted on

Pompeo says will discuss arms control issues, business ties with Russia’s Foreign Minister



US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in an interview to One America News Network that aired on Monday that he was going to discuss nuclear arms control issues and business-to-business ties with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Trend reports citing Sputnik.

He added that the United States wanted to bring China into the arms control negotiations and he was going to discuss that idea with Lavrov.

“We’ll talk about a whole host of things. I personally – the [US] President [Donald Trump], too – have said that where there’s work that we can do alongside Russia, we have an obligation to do it for the American people. I hope that Foreign Minister Lavrov and I can make progress on that. One of the areas that the President has asked us to work on is business-to-business relationships. We’ll try to work on those. There are arms control issues between our two countries.”

In February 2021, the Russian-US Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START), signed in 2010, expires. The US State Department said last week that it may announce its plans concerning the extension of START in the near future.

As of today, START remains the last major nuclear arms control treaty between the two countries.





Source link

Posted on

All joking aside, Trudeau isn’t doing much to convince the business community he’s serious


Poor Mona Fortier. She was so close to a title that would look great on any resume: associate minister of finance. But whoever runs Team Trudeau decided that moniker wasn’t descriptive enough. So Fortier, a member of Parliament from Ottawa, will spend the next phase of her career being introduced as the Minister of Middle Class Prosperity as well.

No need to spend a lot of time on the stupidity of that title. Chris Selley has already done so wonderfully in the National Post. “The title is kind of odd,” John Manley, the former minister of just about everything in Jean Chrétien’s government, including finance, said in an interview.

The unveiling of the cabinet was done without mandate letters, so we don’t know yet what Prime Minister Justin Trudeau expects of his 36 ministers. I asked for an interview with Canada’s new junior finance minister, but her assistant said that she was too busy too talk. No doubt. Whenever we can speak, I pledge to take Fortier more seriously than the Prime Minister’s Office did when it was handing out titles.

But I said we wouldn’t dwell on superficial stuff. What does the new cabinet say about how the Trudeau government will approach the economy? That matters, as one of Fortier’s first formal briefings surely will include the latest from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, which on Nov. 22 predicted that the global economy will expand 2.9 per cent this year, the weakest rate since the financial crisis a decade ago.

The OECD sees Canada’s gross domestic product growing only 1.5 per cent in 2019, compared with three per cent in 2017 and about two per cent in 2018. It also doubts the economy is on track to grow much faster for the next two years. The OECD called on the Bank of Canada to cut interest rates half a point by early next year, and advised governments against aggressive spending cuts at this time.

“Business confidence and investment in Canada are projected to recover only gradually,” the OECD said. “Exports and imports will remain subdued. Private consumption will support growth, but households will remain reluctant to spend from their income due to uncertainty, a slowing labour market and deleveraging.

Canadian retail sales increased 0.5 per cent in the third quarter, compared with a 1.1 per cent gain in the second quarter, Statistics Canada reported Nov. 22. Households “haven’t been very apt to spend in recent quarters, resulting in virtual stagnation in real retail sales since early 2018,” said Royce Mendes, an economist at CIBC World Markets.

The appointment of a minister for the middle class will do nothing to correct the business community’s impression of Trudeau.

The trouble with the first Trudeau government from the perspective of the business community was that it came across as entirely unserious about economic policy.

Finance Minister Bill Morneau, who was re-upped on Nov. 20, was afforded none of the stature that typically comes with his position. Trudeau was right to turn his back on balanced budgets, but he failed to tell a convincing story for why he was content to allow the deficit to grow wider and wider.

The government’s struggle to spend the infrastructure money in a timely manner appeared to be a lesson for what happens when you overpopulate your leadership team with thinkers and dreamers, at the expense of ministers with extensive real-life experience in business and politics.

The appointment of a minister for the middle class will do nothing to correct the business community’s impression of Trudeau.

“I’m looking for the government to do less virtue signalling and more listening to people,” said Manley, who is now special business adviser at Bennett Jones LLP, a law firm based in Toronto. “They were taken to the woodshed. I hope they know that.”

If John Ivison, the National Post’s political columnist, is right, the cabinet barely matters because a cabal of unelected advisers makes all the big decisions. And from the outside, it sure looks like the prime minister and his whisperers have created a system made to keep economic ministers busy figuring out who is in charge of what.

Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland and Environment Minister Jonathan Wilkinson lead the cabinet’s economy and climate committee. Morneau will have Fortier underfoot at Finance, while Navdeep Bains, who returns as innovation minister, will share his department’s resources with Economic Development Minister Mélanie Joly.

I’m looking for the government to do less virtue signalling and more listening to people

John Manley, former cabinet minister

Also in the picture: Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau, Transport Minister Marc Garneau, Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault, Infrastructure Minister Catherine McKenna, Immigration Minister Marco Mendicino, Trade Minister Mary Ng and Natural Resources Minister Seamus O’Reagan.

There’s your economic-crisis committee, more or less.

Manley said junior ministers aren’t necessarily a bother, and he included Maurizio Bevilacqua, the one-time minister of state for finance, in just about everything because he liked having “another pair of political eyes.”

However, under Jean Chrétien, everyone knew what his or her job was. At Industry, Manley had little involvement with the day-to-day oversight of the regional development agencies, but they required his signature to spend money. Ministers were given a lot of responsibility and it was their fault if they screwed up. Harsh, but it left room for the prime minister to get involved before it was too late.

There might be a lesson for the current prime minister in that. “When the PM owns everything, it’s all on him,” Manley said.

Financial Post

Email: [email protected] | CarmichaelKevin





Source link