EsadeGeo Daily Digest, 18/03/2020

The New York Times – Shane Goldmacher / 4 takeaways from Tuesday’s Democratic primaries

  • Biden is winning almost everywhere – by a lot: In Florida, a voter survey showed Mr. Biden winning men and women, white voters and nonwhite voters, those with college degrees and those without — all with more than 60 percent of the vote. He was similarly dominant in Illinois.
  • Sanders still relishes his megaphone: Mr. Sanders held a live-streamed event on Tuesday evening and rolled out a proposal for counteracting the potential looming recession from the coronavirus. It was an encapsulation of where Mr. Sanders is in the race: a candidate pressing more for his ideas than himself
  • Biden is pivoting to the general while trying to bring in Sanders fans: Mr. Biden spoke first and foremost about the virus upending people’s lives. He invoked empathy for the suffering, offered prayers for the sick, expressed concerns over hospitals being overloaded and cited the hardships being endured by average Americans. He also tried to reach out to supporters of Mr. Sanders, citing the “remarkable passion and tenacity” of his rival.
  • Coronavirus clouds the future of the primary: Georgia postponed its primary next week. Ohio was supposed to have voted on Tuesday but the governor pushed back its primary. Kentucky, Maryland and Louisiana have delayed or moved to delay theirs as well. And most future contests are in limbo given the restrictions on group gatherings being pressed by state and federal officials.
  • The Washington Post – Michael Scherer, Annie Linskey and Sean Sullivan / Joe Biden romps over Bernie Sanders in Florida, Illinois and Arizona in Tuesday balloting

Foreign Affairs – Mohamed A. El-Erian / The coming coronavirus recession

  • The global economy will go into recession this year. The downturn will be sudden and sharp. And although a constructive response from policymakers, companies, and households could limit its duration, its effects will be felt for decades to come. Revenues will decline sharply. Costs will go up. Cash cushions will be deployed. Credit lines will be drawn. New bond issuances will be almost impossible.
  • Most economic forecasts for 2020 predicted a year of steady if not rising growthAnd there were plenty of reasons to be optimistic: the “Phase One” trade agreement between China and the United States, the reduction of Brexit-related uncertainties, and strong consumer spending, especially in the United States and Germany.
  • Then came the novel coronavirus. With the economic shock of the health crisis spreading around the world, economists are scrambling to revise their projections. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development recently slashed its forecast for 2020 growth by half.
  • The sudden economic disruption caused by the new coronavirus is especially destructive because it is denting and in many cases destroying both supply and demand. Such a shock, common in fragile or failed states and countries hit by big natural disasters, is highly unusual in advanced economies. Consider the effect on the airline industry, which is a leading indicator for many other sectors rather than an exception.
  • The Economist / Governments are still struggling to get ahead of the coronavirus

Financial Times – James Polity, Victor Mallet and Jim Pickard / Western countries embark on trillion-dollar virus fightback

  • Western governments have mounted a multi-trillion-dollar fightback to limit the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic with Donald Trump’s White House proposing to send a cheque to every American. The sudden White House shift to more aggressive economic interventions to the outbreak came alongside attempts by Britain, France, Germany and Spain to use their balance sheets to prop up business activity and protect household incomes.
  • World leaders have been forced to tear up the traditional economic playbook in response to the historic jolt to the global economy. A senior US official said a scheme to directly pay individual Americans, publicly unveiled on Tuesday by Treasury secretary Steven Mnuchin, would be part of a broader stimulus package proposed to Congress totalling as much as $1.2tn.
  • Europe’s largest economies announced more concrete plans, with Britain unveiling a £330bn package of emergency loan guarantees to business and £20bn of fiscal support. Rishi Sunak, the UK chancellor, said: “This is not a time for ideology or orthodoxy, this is a time to be bold… I’ll do whatever it takes.”
  • Pedro Sánchez, Spain’s prime minister, also triggered the “biggest mobilisation of resources in Spain’s democratic history” to fight the economic crisis, which included €100bn of state loan guarantees. France, meanwhile, approved a €45bn rescue package, pledging an array of possible measures, including nationalising companies.
  • Politico – Mujtaba Rahman / Europe’s economy is in safe hands – for now

Bloomberg – Peter Martin et al. / China guts U.S. press corps in Beijing with mass expulsions

  • China took the unprecedented step of expelling more than a dozen U.S. journalists from three American newspapers, escalating a wider battle with the Trump administration as the coronavirus pandemic threatens to drag the global economy into a recession.
  • China’s foreign ministry on Tuesday said U.S. reporters at the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Washington Post must hand in their media cards within 10 days, calling the move a response to U.S. caps on Chinese media imposed early this month. It wasn’t immediately clear how many journalists would have their visas revoked.
  • The journalists are prohibited from relocating to work in Hong Kong and Macau, semi-autonomous regions that in theory enjoy greater press freedoms and control over immigration policy. China also asked five U.S. media outlets to submit detailed personnel and asset information to the government, a decision that mirrored a U.S. move to designate five Chinese media outlets as “foreign missions.”
  • The virus pandemic has further hurt ties, with the U.S. accusing Beijing of delaying visits to China by American health experts in the aftermath of the outbreak. In recent days they’ve blamed each other for the origin of Covid-19, with Trump calling it a “Chinese Virus” in a tweet on Tuesday.
  • The Guardian – Graham Russell and Helen Davidson / US media accuse China of ‘cold war’ mentality after move to expel journalists

Today’s op-ed:

The selected pieces do not necessarily reflect the views of Javier Solana and EsadeGeo. The summaries above may include word-for-word excerpts from their respective pieces.

Política Internacional |