Via Zerohedge


  • Trump and states battle over who decides on reopening
  • European cases (Germany, Spain) continued to slide
  • Russia reports another record jump in new cases
  • Cuomo says he would disobey Trump order to reopen economy if it endangered his state
  • China reports another 89 new infections
  • US Dept. of Ag prepares to unveil coronavirus farm bailout
  • Florida surgeon general says social distancing should continue until a vaccine is released
  • Cali pastors sue state to reopen churches
  • Iran plans to divest 10% of Shasta as selloff of state assets begins
  • NATO warns supply chains of important medical supplies should be moved out of ‘non-member’ states

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Update (0800ET): New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo was back on CNN Tuesday morning (the network where his brother Chris works as an anchor) to rebut the president’s claims that the true authority about when to reopen the country rests with the White House. During the governor’s spot, he insisted he would sue the federal government and – if it comes down to it – simply resist Trump’s order if it “endangered” New Yorkers.

Cuomo, who is always shown great deference by CNN’s servile reporting staff, added that although Trump did the right thing by stopping travel from China, he did not issue the order to shut the US economy – that was done in a piecemeal way by the states, beginning with California.

We suspect this pissing contest will consume a surprisingly large amount of this week’s news cycle.

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As states on the West and East coasts of the US promised to work together to develop plans for regional reopenings of economy – plans that could be released as soon as Tuesday, according to Cali Gov. Gavin Newsom – President Trump on Tuesday continued to insist that the decision of when to reopen the economy rests with him alone.

The issue of when to reopen the economy, and the battle between the states and Trump, appears to be the big issue looming over the US this week, now that it’s become clear that the urgent shortage of supplies that certain Democratic governors had warned of actually wasn’t a problem after all.

Last night, we shared a detailed timeline developed by Morgan Stanley illustrating how the bank’s analysts expect the reopening will unfold.

Tensions between the President and the press reached a new breaking point last night, as Trump jousted with a CBS News reporter and insisted that “everything we did was perfect” and that he had “total authority” over when to reopen the economy, which he said would happen “ahead of schedule.” Meanwhile, Dr. Fauci insisted he didn’t mean to imply that the administration should have ordered a lockdown in mid- or late-February, a time when even Dr. Fauci was cautioning the public that the most strict measures weren’t necessary – at least not yet.

All the while, US deaths are nearing 25,000, as the total number of confirmed cases in the country near 600k.

Meanwhile, over in Europe, Italy and Spain are beginning to let more workers return to their shops and worksites while French President Emmanuel Macron last night warned that France still had a long way to go, before extending the French lockdown until mid-May while acknowledging that “we weren’t prepared”.

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This week’s Bank of America fund manager survey discovered that fund managers are sitting on more cash right now than at any time since 9/11.

As millions of Americans clamor for bringing more of the medical supply chain back under the control of the US, now that the world has seen what relying too heavily on China-based supply chains can lead to, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said Tuesday that there would be a meeting of alliance members to discuss moving more production of critical medical supplies out of “non-member” countries.

“We have to look into issues like supplies of medical equipment, protective suits, medicines…and also ask questions about whether we are too dependent on production coming from outside, whether we need to produce more of this equipment from our own countries,” he told reporters on Tuesday.

In the UK, the FT reported that more deaths were recorded in England and Wales during the week ending on April 3 than in any week since comparable estimates started 15 years ago, the Office for National Statistics said on Tuesday.

Global cases of the virus increased by 71,572 yesterday, the 4th day in a row that the number of newly infected around the world has fallen. Still, the pace of increases brought the total number north of 1.9 million.

Meanwhile, with the IMF and World Bank annual meetings slated to begin later this week, the IMF has said it would supply grants to some of the poorest nations in Africa and Asia.

Vladimir Putin now officially has reason to panic as Russia records 2,774 new coronavirus cases on Tuesday, a third consecutive record daily increase. Russia now has 21,102 cases of the virus, and 170 people have died from the disease. Russia’s outbreak has soared over the past 2 weeks, as numbers have doubled roughly every 4 days. China, meanwhile, reported 89 new cases, a slight drop from yesterday, with almost all of the being classified as ‘foreign’ cases.

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Following warnings that first emerged late last week, Iran is set to kick off its privatization push to save its economy from the coronavirus: To accomplish this, Iran will sell off 10% of Shasta, the investment arm of the Social Security Organization of Iran – which is one of the state’s crown-jewel assets.

As cases in Europe continued to slow, Germany reported 2,082 new coronavirus cases on Tuesday, the lowest number in more than three weeks, and an increase of under 2%. Germany has confirmed 125,098 cases so far, according to official data from the Robert Koch Institute in Berlin. Spain also reported a less-than-2% (1.8%) jump in new cases, its slowest rate since the beginning of the outbreak, according to the Washington Post.

In the US, the US Department of Ag will reportedly unveil as much as $15.5 billion as part of the first phase of coronavirus aid to the farming industry on Tuesday. Meanwhile, late yesterday, Florida’s surgeon general reportedly said that social distancing should continue until a vaccine has been developed. The Trump administration, meanwhile, has requested a roughly 3-month delay on all US census field operations. The administration also asked Congress to postpone the deadline for delivering key data that will affect redistricting.

As millions of religious Americans continue to skip worship-related gatherings like Church, several pastors in California are suing the state and local officials over their stay-at-home edicts prohibiting in-person services, claiming these rules violate the 1st Amendment. And finally, more than 2,100 US cities are bracing for serious budget shortfalls.