Italy’s prime minister said “there is no more time” in the combat against the coronavirus, as he decreed that “the whole of Italy will become a protected zone.” Pictured: Screengrab of a video address by Italian PM Giuseppe Conte, 9 March 2020. Image credit: Palazzo Chigi on Twitter
Chinese steelmaker interested in French plant near Luxembourg border, women join Facebook board and EU talks migration with Turkey. Delano’s breakfast briefing for Tuesday.
Coronavirus: Luxembourg-linked case
A cross-border commuter, who lives in France and works in Luxembourg, has contracted covid-19. The person was apparently infected in France, Luxembourg’s health department said on Monday evening. Luxembourg public health officials are checking people who were in contact with the cross-border worker in the grand duchy. Also on Monday evening, Luxembourg’s health ministry recommended that all events with more than 1,000 participants in a confined space be cancelled or delayed.
Coronavirus: Italy lockdown
Italy’s government has extended its quarantine from the regions around Lombardy to the entire country. The Italian prime minister asked residents to stay at home, except for essential reasons, and banned public gatherings. More than 400 people have died in Italy due to covid-19, making it the second hardest hit country after China. Sources: AFP, BBC, CNBC, Financial Times and The Guardian.
Coronavirus: Cruise ship finally docks
The “Grand Princess”, a cruise ship with 3,500 on board that was held off the Pacific coast for 5 days, has docked in the Port of Oakland, on San Francisco Bay. 21 people on board have tested positive for covid-19. Passengers are disembarking, but will be held in a 2 week quarantine on military bases; crew members will serve their quarantine on the ship. Sources: Associated Press, BBC and San Francisco Chronicle.
Coronavirus: Israel introduces blanket quarantine
Everyone entering Israel will now be required to undergo a 14-day quarantine. Sources: AFP, BBC and NPR.
Coronavirus: Markets drop sharply
Shares had their worst day since the 2008 financial crisis in what one analyst called “utter carnage”. The main European, UK and US stock indices were down by 7%-8%; Asian markets were down by 3%-5%. Many oil firms lost 20% and some financial shares slumped by 10%. Investors poured into ‘safe’ bonds; US Treasury yields closed under 1%. Sources: BBC, CNBC, Financial Times, The Guardian, Marketwatch, Reuters and South China Morning Post.
Despite the rapid drop in demand, some airlines are operating “ghost flights” without passengers to maintain valuable runway slots at key airports like London Heathrow. Sources: BBC, Citylab, Gizmodo, New York Post and TNW.
Coronavirus: Most Apple shops open again in China
All but 4 of Apple’s 42 stores in China, one of its largest markets, have reopened. Source: CNBC.
Amazon selling checkout systems to other retail brands
Amazon said it would sell its “Just Walk Out” technology, which lets store customers pay for purchases without queuing for a cashier or automated terminal, to rival retailers. Source: Ars Technical, Reuters and TNW.
China’s Jingye Group, which took over the UK and Dutch assets of British Steel, said it also wanted to buy British Steel’s French operations, in Hayange (about 25km south of Dudelange). Sources: BBC, Financial Times and The Guardian.
EU pledges to work with Turkey on migration
“Frank” meetings between Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey’s president, and EU and Nato leaders about the reemerging migrant crisis on the Greek-Turkish border were inconclusive, but talks will continue. Sources: AFP, CBC, Deutsche Welle, Financial Times and The Guardian.
Tuesday 10 March, 6pm-7pm: St George’s International School hosts a year 6 to year 7 transition information session. Tuesday 10 March, 7pm: Practice English, French, Luxembourgish or 3 more languages with other learners at the Club Polyglotte meetup near the central train station. Wednesday 11 March, 8:30am-10am: The British Chamber of Commerce holds a leadership workshop on “Engaging your employees” in the Gare district. Wednesday 11 March, 6:30pm: Sacred Heart University hosts a conference on “technology, education and blockchain” in Kirchberg. Wednesday 11 March, 6:30pm: This edition of the Crypto Apéro series, at Rotondes, looks at how members of minority groups use the internet and the hostility they sometimes face. Thursday 12 March, 7pm: LuxAfrica, a group that promotes links between businesses and professionals, hosts a networking evening in the Grund. Tuesday 17 March, 6:30pm: Delano Live event on online privacy (deadline to win free tickets: Thursday 12 March, 12noon).
Here are 5 business & finance stories you may have missed
Art market: UBS, a bank, found that “millennial collectors are currently spending over six times the money on art that baby boomer collectors are,” per Observer.com. Coronavirus: Sales are up at startups making UV sanitizing devices, per Crunchbase. Fintech: If you’re wondering how millennial-focused peer-to-peer payment apps like Venco make money, the answer is that they don’t, per CNBC. Funds industry: “Asset managers have embarked on a hiring spree” to fill ESG roles, per the Financial Times. Gender equality: Around 25% of portfolio managers in mainland China, Hong Kong and Singapore are women, compared to roughly 10% in the US and the global average of 14%, per the South China Morning Post.