COVID-19

Trump suspends travel from Europe to U.S. for 30 days

Associated Press Mar 12, 2020
President Trump addresses the nation from the Oval Office about the widening COVID-19 crisis on March 11, 2020 in Washington. Doug Mills — Pool/Getty Images
COVID-19

Trump suspends travel from Europe to U.S. for 30 days

Associated Press Mar 12, 2020
President Trump addresses the nation from the Oval Office about the widening COVID-19 crisis on March 11, 2020 in Washington. Doug Mills — Pool/Getty Images

President Donald Trump says he is suspending travel from over two dozen European countries to the U.S. for 30 days beginning Friday as he seeks to combat a viral pandemic. Trump made the announcement Wednesday in an Oval Office address to the nation, blaming the European Union for not acting quickly enough to address the novel coronavirus and saying U.S. clusters were “seeded” by European travelers.

Trump says the restrictions won’t apply to the United Kingdom, and the U.S. will monitor the situation to determine if travel can be reopened earlier. The White House has also canceled a planned trip by the president to Nevada and Colorado this week, “out of an abundance of caution.”

Stock futures are pointing to more losses in U.S. stock markets Thursday with Trump’s speech appearing to disappoint investors. Shares tumbled in Europe and Asia after the World Health Organization declared a coronavirus pandemic and the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell into bear market territory. Thailand’s exchange halted trading for a half-hour after the benchmark hit its 10% limit down. Benchmarks in Paris, London and Frankfurt all opened more than 5% lower.

Futures for the S&P 500 moved from a loss of 0.4% just before Trump spoke from the Oval Office at 9 p.m. EST to a loss of 3.3% an hour later. Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average were showing a drop of 3.5%.

The declines in the futures markets follow steep losses in regular trading Wednesday as investors become increasingly worried that responses from government and central banks will be insufficient to prevent the outbreak from severely impacting the global economy. The Dow’s drop of 1,464 points dragged it 20% below the record set last month.

COVID-19 Economy FAQs

Are states ready to roll out COVID-19 vaccines?

Claire Hannan, executive director of the nonprofit Association of Immunization Managers, which represents state health officials, said states have been making good progress in their preparations. And we could have several vaccines pretty soon. But states still need more funding, she said. Hannan doesn’t think a lack of additional funding would hold up distribution initially, but it could cause problems down the road. “It’s really worrisome that Congress may not pass funding or that there’s information circulating saying that states don’t need additional funding,” she said.

How is the service industry dealing with the return of coronavirus restrictions?

Without another round of something like the Paycheck Protection Program, which kept a lot of businesses afloat during the pandemic’s early stages, the outlook is bleak for places like restaurants. Some in the San Francisco Bay Area, for example, only got one week of indoor dining back before cases rose and restrictions went back into effect. Restaurant owners are revamping their business models in an effort to survive while waiting to see if they’ll be able to get more aid.

How are hospitals handling the nationwide surge in COVID-19 cases?

As the pandemic surges and more medical professionals themselves are coming down with COVID, nearly 1 in 5 hospitals in the country report having a critical shortage of staff, according to data from the Department of Health and Human Services. One of the knock-on effects of staff shortages is that people who have other medical needs are being asked to wait.

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