COVID-19

In France, outdoor mask requirements are seen by some as good for business

John Laurenson Sep 18, 2020
Heard on: Marketplace Morning Report
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A woman wearing a protective face mask walks on a street in the French city of Bordeaux, which has imposed stricter mask-wearing measures. Philippe Lopez/AFP via Getty Images
COVID-19

In France, outdoor mask requirements are seen by some as good for business

John Laurenson Sep 18, 2020
A woman wearing a protective face mask walks on a street in the French city of Bordeaux, which has imposed stricter mask-wearing measures. Philippe Lopez/AFP via Getty Images
HTML EMBED:
COPY

In France, many cities and dozens of towns have made it compulsory to wear face masks not only in stores but outdoors – at least in busy areas, which some say is good for business.

One of the early communities to adopt the outdoor mask policy is the up-market seaside resort town of LeTouquet, on France’s North coast. In the main street, there are lots of designer stores. And this message can be heard in French and English over the loudspeakers: “Ladies and gentlemen, as part of the respect of current health instructions to limit the spread of the COVID-19 virus, we remind you that wearing a mask is now mandatory in the city center.”

Speaking in French, Le Touquet’s Deputy mayor Denis Caloin said the community is more attractive as a place to visit with compulsory masks, “because people feel safe.”

Click the audio player above to hear the full story.

COVID-19 Economy FAQs

How are Americans feeling about their finances?

Nearly half of all Americans would have trouble paying for an unexpected $250 bill and a third of Americans have less income than before the pandemic, according to the latest results of our Marketplace-Edison Poll. Also, 6 in 10 Americans think that race has at least some impact on an individual’s long-term financial situation, but Black respondents are much more likely to think that race has a big impact on a person’s long-term financial situation than white or Hispanic/Latinx respondents.

Find the rest of the poll results here, which cover how Americans have been faring financially about six months into the pandemic, race and equity within the workplace and some of the key issues Trump and Biden supporters are concerned about.

Are people still waiting for unemployment payments?

Yes. There is no way to know exactly how many people have been waiting for months and are still not getting unemployment, because states do not have a good system in place for tracking that kind of data, according to Andrew Stettner of The Century Foundation. But by his own calculations, only about 60% of people who have applied for benefits are currently receiving them. That means there are millions still waiting. Read more here on what they are doing about it.

What’s going to happen to retailers, especially with the holiday shopping season approaching?

A report out Tuesday from the accounting consultancy BDO USA said 29 big retailers filed for bankruptcy protection through August. And if bankruptcies continue at that pace, the number could rival the bankruptcies of 2010, after the Great Recession. For retailers, the last three months of this year will be even more critical than usual for their survival as they look for some hope around the holidays.

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