COVID-19

Why is the stock market doing well right now?

Andie Corban and Kai Ryssdal Apr 27, 2020
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Traders at the New York Stock Exchange in 2014. Investors are focusing on government support for big companies, professor says. Andrew Burton/Getty Images
COVID-19

Why is the stock market doing well right now?

Andie Corban and Kai Ryssdal Apr 27, 2020
Traders at the New York Stock Exchange in 2014. Investors are focusing on government support for big companies, professor says. Andrew Burton/Getty Images
Share Now on:
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In the past few weeks, more than 26 million Americans have filed unemployment claims, retail sales plummeted and small businesses have struggled to acquire loans. Despite this, the stock market has looked mostly positive after sharp declines in March.

Marketplace host Kai Ryssdal spoke with Anat Admati, professor of finance at Stanford University Graduate School of Business, about the disconnect between the markets and the real economy.

“The stock market is high because it doesn’t really represent the entire economy,” Admati said. “Small businesses have to survive somehow, and it’s becoming incredibly difficult for them.”

She said investors are likely focusing more on bailouts for big corporations than struggling small businesses and workers.

Click the audio player above to hear the interview.

COVID-19 Economy FAQs

Which businesses are allowed to reopen right now? And which businesses are actually doing so?

As a patchwork of states start to reopen, businesses that fall into a gray area are wondering when they can reopen. In many places, salons are still shuttered. Bars are mostly closed, too, although restaurants may be allowed to ramp up, depending on the state. “It’s kind of all over the place,” said Elizabeth Milito of the National Federation of Independent Business.

Will you be able to go on vacation this summer?

There’s no chance that this summer will be a normal season for vacations either in the U.S. or internationally. But that doesn’t mean a trip will be impossible. People will just have to be smart about it. That could mean vacations closer to home, especially with gas prices so low. Air travel will be possible this summer, even if it is a very different experience than usual.

When does the expanded COVID-19 unemployment insurance run out?

The CARES Act, passed by Congress and signed by President Donald Trump in March, authorized extra unemployment payments, increasing the amount of money, and broadening who qualifies. The increased unemployment benefits have an expiration date — an extra $600 per week the act authorized ends on July 31.

You can find answers to more questions here.

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