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COVID-19 Crisis: Fewer Cases, More Reopenings

3 MINUTE READ | May 18, 2020

COVID-19 Crisis: Fewer Cases, More Reopenings

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Abby Long

Abby is PMG’s senior managing editor, where she leads the company’s editorial program and manages the PMG Blog and Insights Hub. As a writer, editor, and marketing communications strategist with nearly a decade of experience, Abby's work in showcasing PMG’s unique expertise through POVs, research reports, and thought leadership regularly informs business strategy and media investments for some of the most iconic brands in the world. Named among the AAF Dallas 32 Under 32, her expertise in advertising, media strategy, and consumer trends has been featured in Ad Age, Business Insider, and Digiday.

PMG is providing near-daily briefings to track the novel coronavirus outbreak and its impact on the economy and business world for our customers. The briefing for May 18th, 2020 was sent to PMG customers this morning, and can be found below.

I hope you had a restful weekend. Let’s get to it. 

  • Weekend in review

  • Cases slow as America reopens

  • The week ahead

It was a suspiciously slow news weekend. Reports of new cases have appeared to decline nationally, though the logistics for testing en masse continue to be a top concern. According to The New York Times, only about three percent of the U.S. population has been tested for the virus. 

The latest: “The first coronavirus vaccine to be tested in people appears to be safe and able to stimulate an immune response against the virus, its manufacturer, Moderna, announced on Monday.”

Virtual commencements took place around the world, with “Graduate Together” and “Show Me Your Walk” by Chase taking the limelight in the U.S. Sports returned with NASCAR holding its first crowd-free race and soccer with new rules and no crowds. And just in time, too, as the final episodes of “The Last Dance,” ESPN’s documentary on Michael Jordan and the 1997-98 Chicago Bulls aired Sunday night. On CBS’s “60 Minutes,” Jerome Powell, the chairman of the Federal Reserve, shared his thoughts on the country’s economic health. 

“This economy will recover; it may take a while… it may take a period of time, it could stretch through the end of next year, we don’t really know.”

On the topic of if the economy could recover without a vaccine? 

“Assuming that there’s not a second wave of the coronavirus, I think you’ll see the economy recover steadily through the second half of this year,” Powell shared. “For the economy to fully recover, people will have to be fully confident, and that may have to await the arrival of a vaccine.”

Meanwhile, Boris Johnson, the UK Prime Minister, warned there might never be a vaccine, and other methods to control the virus must be put into place.

Other news of note:

  • Japan has officially entered a recession.

  • Facebook will buy Giphy ~$400M. 

  • JCPenney filed for bankruptcy.

  • Apple plans to reopen 25 more stores in the U.S. and 12 in Canada this week.

Today is also the day that organizations decide whether to return government loans. 

More than two-thirds of states in the U.S. are significantly relaxing restrictions, and most states are heading in the right direction against the virus. 

A look at case rates across the U.S., provided by _The New York Time_s. 

Source: The New York Times

I found this graph from Axios quite insightful and encouraging. 

Source: Axios

Reopenings are a sign of promise for the economy as businesses weigh safety concerns with financial needs. 

All Week: Retail earnings (Target, Lowe’s, L Brands, Walmart, Home Depot, and Kohl’s)

Monday: World Health Organization annual meeting, automakers go back to work

Tuesday: Jerome Powell will testify to the Senate Banking Committee, American Workforce Policy Advisory Board meets (virtually) for the first time. 

Thursday: Elvis Presley’s Graceland reopens with limited capacity.

The Weekend: Memorial Day Weekend

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