US crude oil prices temporarily dropped by more than 100% on Monday. Library picture: An oil well is seen in Midland, Texas, 27 January 2019. Photo credit: SG Arts / Shutterstock.com
Branson pledges personal property in bid to save Virgin, Luxair announces new flight restart date and Israel finally gets a government. Delano’s breakfast briefing for Tuesday.
Coronavirus causes oil price to fall below zero
The price of US oil was negative for the first time in history. Producers were paying buyers to take oil deliveries as storage capacity begins to run out. On Monday, the price of West Texas Intermediate, the US crude oil benchmark, closed at -$37.63 a barrel for May deliveries. The price was $18.27 on Friday and $60 at the beginning of the year, and had never fallen below $10. Prices went back into positive territory in early Tuesday trading. Sources: BBC, CNBC, Euronews, Deutsche Welle, Financial Times, The Guardian and Marketwatch.
Trump to suspend immigration
Donald Trump said he was temporarily banning all immigration into the US to combat the covid-19 outbreak. It was not immediately clear how his executive order would be carried out. Sources: BBC, CNN, The Guardian, Reuters and South China Morning Post.
Facebook banning anti-quarantine rally posts
The social media giant Facebook said it removed some (but not all) anti-stay-at-home protest events in several US states. Sources: CNN, Reuters and The Verge.
Bolsonaro protests Brazilian lockdown
Brazil’s president, Jair Bolsonaro, joined a demonstration calling for the lifting of movement restrictions and for military intervention against the country’s congress and supreme court. Sources: BBC, CNN and The Guardian.
Branson to mortgage island home to help save Virgin Atlantic
Sir Richard Branson said his Virgin Atlantic airline needed a £500m commercial loan from the UK government to stay afloat and pledged his private Caribbean resort as collateral. His Australian carrier entered administration. Sources: BBC, Bloomberg, CNBC, Financial Times, The Guardian, Reuters and Sky News.
Luxair pushes back restart date
The grand duchy’s national airline, Luxair, said it would begin flying again on 30 May (instead of its previously planned date of 4 May) based on government guidelines. Source: Delano.
Big fast food chain to hand back small business loan
Shake Shack, a US burger chain with 189 locations and nearly 8,000 employees, said it was returning a $10m emergency loan to an oversubscribed US government scheme intended to help small businesses. The company said the programme’s rules were “extremely confusing”. Sources: CNN, Financial Times, Marketwatch and NPR.
Exceptional jobless claims
With casinos closed, professional gamblers in Las Vegas are likely to qualify as “independent contractors” and be able to claim unemployment payments during the virus shutdown period, per Marketwatch.
Unity government finally agreed in Israel
After more than a year of political stalemate and three general elections, Israel finally has a government. Likud, the party of the long-time prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and Blue and White, the party of the opposition leader Benny Gantz, will form an ‘emergency’ coalition government. Netanyahu will continue to serve as PM for 18 months and then Gantz will be PM for 18 months. Sources: Associated Press, Axios, Deutsche Welle, The Guardian and Haaretz.
Kim in “grave danger” after heart surgery
North Korea's leader, Kim Jong Un, is reportedly in grave condition following a cardiovascular procedure earlier this month. Sources: Bloomberg, CNN and Reuters.
SAP drops co-CEO structure
Europe’s largest technology company, the software vendor SAP, said it would switch from two co-CEOs (Christian Klein and Jennifer Morgan) to a single CEO (Klein). Sources: Marketwatch, The Register and Seeking Alpha.