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07/04/2020   Seattle PI Business

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — The hard-hit Australian state of Victoria has recorded 74 new coronavirus cases after announcing a record 108 new infections on Saturday.

The Saturday increase resulted in state Premier Daniel Andrews announcing a lockdown of nine inner-city public housing blocks containing 3,000 people, where 27 cases have been detected.

Police are guarding every entrance of the housing estates and residents are not allowed to leave their homes for any reason.

Andrews said the residents will have their rent waived for the next two weeks and will receive one-off hardship payments of between 750 and 1,500 Australian dollars ($520 to $1,040). The government said it would arrange the delivery of food and medical supplies to all homes.

“This is about protection for you and your loved ones,” Andrews said. “And then, by extension, it’s about protecting the entire state and we don’t make those decisions lightly.”

Australian Medical Association President Tony Bartone called for a temporary halt to the easing of COVID-19 restrictions across the country after the alarming surge in Victoria.

“These new outbreaks send a strong signal that the other states should rethink the pace of easing of their COVID-19 restrictions until community transmission in Melbourne is under control to avoid the risk of a similar situation playing out in their own communities,” he said in a statement.

“Before rushing back to the pub, the footy crowds, or the big weddings and parties, Australia should pause and play it safe.”

In other developments in the Asia-Pacific region:

— South Korea has recorded 60-plus COVID-19 cases for a third consecutive day as the virus spread beyond the greater Seoul area. The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Sunday it...

07/04/2020   Seattle PI Business

SEOUL, South Korea — South Korea has recorded 60-plus COVID-19 cases for a third consecutive day, a continuation of a virus spread beyond the greater Seoul area.

The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Sunday it has confirmed 61 additional cases, bringing the national total to 13,091. It says the death toll remained at 283.

The agency says 43 of the newly reported cases were locally infected patients. All but two of those cases were either from the Seoul metropolitan area or two central cities, Gwangju and Daejeon. The remaining 18 cases were linked to international arrivals.

South Korea has been grappling with an uptick in new infections since it eased social distancing rules in early May. South Korea recorded 63 new cases on both Saturday and Friday.



— Pubs and hair salons are back in Britain and while many are welcoming the easing of the lockdown, some still have concerns about the virus.

— An Independence Day like no other: This year, July Fourth comes at a time when Americans are more divided than ever.

— While many July Fourth celebrations across the U.S. are subdued this year, President Donald Trump has promised a “special evening” in Washington that could bring tens of thousands to the National Mall.

— Will the Sun Belt remain gripped by doubt and uncertainty for months or years? A look at the economic impact of the pandemic on business owners, workers, consumers and home buyers.

—With many U.S. nursing homes locked down to prevent COVID-19 outbreaks, officials are issuing reminders that those $1,200 stimulus checks belong to residents.


Follow all of AP’s pandemic coverage at and...

07/04/2020   Yahoo! Business

Asia Today: South Korea reports 60-plus cases, 8 in ChinaSouth Korea has recorded 60-plus COVID-19 cases for a third consecutive day as the virus spread beyond the greater Seoul area. The agency says 43 of the newly reported cases were locally infected while the other 18 were linked to international arrivals. It says 41 of the 43 cases were either from the Seoul metropolitan area or two central cities, Gwangju and Daejeon.

07/04/2020   Yahoo! Business

Fourth of July: Trump vows to defeat 'radical left' in Independence Day speechThe president says his Covid-19 strategy is "moving along well", despite a nationwide surge in cases.

07/04/2020   Yahoo! Business

'We refuse to celebrate': July 4th protesters say not all Americans are freeProtesters held marches, rallies and sit-ins in cities and towns across the nation on July 4th.

07/04/2020   Seattle PI Business

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A weekly Kansas newspaper whose publisher is a county Republican Party chairman posted a cartoon on its Facebook page likening the Democratic governor's order requiring people to wear masks in public to the roundup and murder of millions of Jews during the Holocaust.

The cartoon on the Anderson County Review's Facebook page depicts Gov. Laura Kelly wearing a mask with a Jewish Star of David on it, next to a drawing of people being loaded onto train cars. Its caption is, “Lockdown Laura says: Put on your mask ... and step onto the cattle car.”

The newspaper posted the cartoon on Friday, the day that Kelly's mask order aimed at stemming the spread of the coronavirus took effect. It's drawn several hundred comments, many of them strongly critical. Dane Hicks, the paper’s owner and publisher, said in an email to The Associated Press that he plans to publish the cartoon in the newspaper’s next edition Tuesday.

Kelly, who is Catholic, issued a statement saying, “Mr. Hicks’ decision to publish anti-Semitic imagery is deeply offensive and he should remove it immediately.”

But Hicks said in an email that political cartoons are “gross over-caricatures designed to provoke debate” and “fodder for the marketplace of ideas.”

“The topic here is the governmental overreach which has been the hallmark of Governor Kelly’s administration,” he said.

As for the cartoon's reference to the Holocaust, Hicks said critics of President Donald Trump have compared him to Adolf Hitler, and, “I certainly have more evidence of that kind of totalitarianism in Kelly’s actions, in an editorial cartoon sort of way, than Trump’s critics do, yet they persist in it daily."

Hicks' newspaper is based in the Anderson County seat of Garnett, about 65...

07/04/2020   Yahoo! Business

Boeing is reportedly ending production of its 747 jumbo jetBoeing is apparently ending a long chapter in jumbo jets with plans to end 747 production in two years.

07/04/2020   Yahoo! Business

Olympics, virus dominate Tokyo governor voteThe postponed Olympics and a worrying second surge in coronavirus cases will be the main issues when Tokyo voters Sunday elect a governor to run one of the world's most populous cities. Incumbent Yuriko Koike, a media-savvy veteran of the Japanese political scene, who ran against Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at the last national election by creating a new party, is widely expected to win a second term. The election comes as Tokyo fights a coronavirus spike that has seen more than 100 new cases reported in recent days -- many from clusters in the city's host and hostess clubs.

07/04/2020   Yahoo! Business

Incumbent Koike seen ahead as Tokyo votes for governor amid pandemicVoters in Tokyo went to the polls on Sunday to elect their governor, with incumbent Yuriko Koike forecast to clinch a victory, as Japan's capital struggles with rebounding coronavirus infections and prepares for next year's Olympics. The metropolis accounts for 11% of Japan's population, but has represented half of the country's daily infections in recent weeks. Koike, who became Tokyo's first woman governor in 2016, saw her popularity surge this year as her straight-talking approach to the outbreak won the public's support.

07/04/2020   Yahoo! Business

Trump targets 'Marxists' in July 4th speech, boasts of coronavirus response despite record case numbersTrump said his administration is defeating "Marxists" in his July 4th speech and defended his coronavirus response despite record high cases.

07/04/2020   Yahoo! Business

Bronstein, Gewirtz & Grossman, LLC Alerts Consumers of Elmiron Dangers and LawsuitAttorney Advertising — Did you take Elmiron for 6 months or longer for urinary pain from interstitial cystitis and experience maculopathy or any vision loss or eye damage?

07/04/2020   Yahoo! Business

Hedge Funds Are Selling ANI Pharmaceuticals Inc (ANIP)Insider Monkey has processed numerous 13F filings of hedge funds and successful value investors to create an extensive database of hedge fund holdings. The 13F filings show the hedge funds' and successful investors' positions as of the end of the first quarter. You can find articles about an individual hedge fund's trades on numerous financial […]

07/04/2020   Yahoo! Business

Do Hedge Funds Like First Foundation Inc (FFWM)?The latest 13F reporting period has come and gone, and Insider Monkey is again at the forefront when it comes to making use of this gold mine of data. We at Insider Monkey have plowed through 821 13F filings that hedge funds and well-known value investors are required to file by the SEC. The 13F […]

07/04/2020   Yahoo! Business

Do Hedge Funds Really Like Central European Media Enterprises Ltd. (CETV)?The latest 13F reporting period has come and gone, and Insider Monkey is again at the forefront when it comes to making use of this gold mine of data. We at Insider Monkey have plowed through 821 13F filings that hedge funds and well-known value investors are required to file by the SEC. The 13F […]

07/04/2020   Yahoo! Business

Do Hedge Funds Really Like American Software, Inc. (AMSWA)?We know that hedge funds generate strong, risk-adjusted returns over the long run, which is why imitating the picks that they are collectively bullish on can be a profitable strategy for retail investors. With billions of dollars in assets, professional investors have to conduct complex analyses, spend many resources and use tools that are not […]

07/04/2020   Yahoo! Business

Hedge Funds Are Selling Grid Dynamics Holdings, Inc. (GDYN)The latest 13F reporting period has come and gone, and Insider Monkey is again at the forefront when it comes to making use of this gold mine of data. We at Insider Monkey have plowed through 821 13F filings that hedge funds and well-known value investors are required to file by the SEC. The 13F […]

07/04/2020   Yahoo! Business

Hedge Funds Are Souring On RPT Realty (RPT)At the end of February we announced the arrival of the first US recession since 2009 and we predicted that the market will decline by at least 20% in (see why hell is coming). In these volatile markets we scrutinize hedge fund filings to get a reading on which direction each stock might be going. […]

07/04/2020   Yahoo! Business

Dominican Republic votes in election postponed over virusOne of the top candidates for the presidency has recovered from Covid-19.

07/04/2020   Yahoo! Business

Globalstar, Inc. (GSAT): Hedge Fund Sentiment UnchangedHow do you pick the next stock to invest in? One way would be to spend days of research browsing through thousands of publicly traded companies. However, an easier way is to look at the stocks that smart money investors are collectively bullish on. Hedge funds and other institutional investors usually invest large amounts of […]

07/04/2020   Yahoo! Business

Brookfield Property REIT Inc. (BPYU): Are Hedge Funds Right About This Stock?We know that hedge funds generate strong, risk-adjusted returns over the long run, which is why imitating the picks that they are collectively bullish on can be a profitable strategy for retail investors. With billions of dollars in assets, professional investors have to conduct complex analyses, spend many resources and use tools that are not […]

07/04/2020   Yahoo! Business

Primoris Services Corp (PRIM): Hedge Funds In Wait-and-See ModeWe know that hedge funds generate strong, risk-adjusted returns over the long run, which is why imitating the picks that they are collectively bullish on can be a profitable strategy for retail investors. With billions of dollars in assets, professional investors have to conduct complex analyses, spend many resources and use tools that are not […]

07/04/2020   Yahoo! Business

Do Hedge Funds Like Argan, Inc. (AGX)?The latest 13F reporting period has come and gone, and Insider Monkey is again at the forefront when it comes to making use of this gold mine of data. We at Insider Monkey have plowed through 821 13F filings that hedge funds and well-known value investors are required to file by the SEC. The 13F […]

07/04/2020   Yahoo! Business

Red Rock Resorts, Inc. Announces Death of President Richard J. HaskinsRed Rock Resorts, Inc. ("Red Rock Resorts," "the Company" or "Station Casinos") (NASDAQ: RRR), issued the following statement:

07/04/2020   Seattle PI Business

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Australian Finance Minister Mathias Cormann, one of Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s most senior Cabinet members, says he is retiring from politics at the end of the year.

Belgium-born Cormann, who has been finance minister since 2013, entered federal politics in 2007 and became the leader of the government in the Senate, the upper house of Parliament, in 2017.

His decision to remove his support for former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and instead support Peter Dutton was seen as a major reason for the 2018 change that led to Morrison becoming the country’s leader.

“Having decided not to re-contest the next election, I can confirm that I have advised the prime minister that the end of this year would be an appropriate time for an orderly transition in my portfolio,” Cormann said in a statement Sunday.

Cormann said he would spend the next six months working with Morrison and Treasurer Josh Frydenberg on finalizing the July economic statement, the budget in October and the half-yearly budget update in December.

The budget is usually delivered in May, but has been delayed until October because of the coronavirus.

Cormann, 49, decided to migrate to Australia permanently from Belgium after visiting Perth, Western Australia, in 1994.

07/04/2020   Seattle PI Business

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexico topped 30,000 COVID-19 deaths Saturday, overtaking France as the country with the fifth-highest death toll since the coronavirus outbreak began.

Officials reported 523 more confirmed coronavirus deaths for the day, bringing the nation's total to 30,366 for the pandemic. Mexico's total confirmed infections rose by almost 6,000 to 251,165, about on par with Spain, the eighth highest caseload.

Also Saturday, about 200 street vendors briefly blocked several major avenues in downtown Mexico City on Saturday to demand they be allowed to sell again amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The sidewalks of the colonial-era downtown are usually crowded with vendors who lay out their wares on wire racks or blankets. But since March, the city has banned such informal commerce and closed most established businesses in the district to stem the spread of the new coronavirus.

Protesting vendors carried signs and chanted slogans claiming they could no longer bear the lockdown. Most have no unemployment insurance, and after three months of not selling many are growing desperate.

Officials had allowed a partial reopening of downtown this week although virus cases continue to climb, but they reversed course Friday after a lack of sanitary measures were reported at some stores. While most customers and employees wore some form of face mask, many stores didn’t reduce the number of clients allowed in or provide the required foot-wiping pads or sanitizer gel.

The joint reopening plan required the active participation of the government, the public and store owners, and Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum said it would now be rethought.

Reopening plans in other parts of the city were not affected by the reversal on the downtown area.

07/04/2020   Seattle PI Business

LAS VEGAS (AP) — The nearly quarter-million dollars in winning wagers reportedly placed at MGM Resorts last Sunday might be the largest sportsbook loss in Las Vegas history on bets made after an event has started.

Seven longtime Las Vegas bookmakers can’t recall a larger loss, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports. But each oddsmaker has taken hits on past posts and said it’s a fairly common occurrence at books.

According to an ESPN report, Sunday’s bets were allowed to be placed because incorrect start times were posted on some Korean and Chinese baseball games due to a manual entry error.

Nearly all of the approximately 50 wagers were placed on self-serve kiosks at the Bellagio between 1:30 a.m. and 3 a.m. when the games in question started at 1 a.m. and 2 a.m.

Among the bets was a $250, 10-leg parlay that paid more than $137,100.

The Nevada Gaming Control Board is reportedly investigating the matter. Anytime there is a dispute in excess of $500, the state’s books are required to contact the board, which conducts an investigation and makes a ruling the books must abide by.

“It’s happened to all of us,” Westgate sportsbook director John Murray said. “I think every sportsbook probably since the beginning of time has dealt with this at some point.

“We’ve had past post situations where our employees put in the wrong time or put in the wrong number or they forgot to close something. It’s manual entry and humans are going to make mistakes.”

Robert Walker, USBookmaking director of sportsbook operations, is still haunted by getting past-posted during his tenure as MGM Resorts sportsbook director from 1996-2008.

“I still haven’t gotten over some mistakes I made at The Mirage 20 years ago,” he said. “There’s no worse feeling than when you...

07/04/2020   Seattle PI Business

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Denim retailer Lucky Brand Dungarees has filed for bankruptcy protection, blaming its troubles in part on the coronavirus pandemic, and said it has a deal lined up to sell the company.

Lucky said it plans to close 13 stores and could shutter more during the bankruptcy process.

Los Angeles-based Lucky filed for Chapter 11 protection on Friday in federal bankruptcy court in Delaware.

In a court filing, chief restructuring officer Mark Renzi described a proposal to sell Lucky to buyers led by apparel retail operator SPARC Group for $140.1 million in cash and $51.5 million in credit. Lucky said the offer would preserve much or all of the company’s current network of stores.

SPARC operates under the Aeropostale and Nautica brands that that are owned by Authentic Brands Group and mall operator Simon Property Group, one of Lucky’s key landlords, according to the filing.

Renzi said the company has a backup bid, and Lucky asked the court to approve a bid process to see if there are better offers. The company anticipates a sale closing by mid-August.

Lucky Brand operates more than 200 U.S. stores, mostly in shopping malls, and sells items at other chains including Macy’s, Nordstrom and Costco.

Renzi said Lucky was undermined by a shift among shoppers away from bricks-and-mortar stores, compounded by temporary store shut-downs due to the virus outbreak this spring.

The chain was also hurt by limited liquidity, which made it harder to get new inventory from vendors. Renzi said some key venders began requiring payment on delivery or other new terms, adding to financial pressure on the company.

Lucky said that early this year it had about 3,000 employees, most of them part-timers. After stores closed down because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the company...

07/04/2020   New York Times Business News
Summer camp in the pandemic looks just like a screen. But what happens when kids run away from the computer?
07/04/2020   Seattle PI Business

LE COUDRAY-MONTCEAUX, France (AP) — France’s new prime minister said Saturday his government will focus on keeping French manufacturing jobs and bringing others back to France from lower-wage countries as it tries to dig the country out of deep recession.

Prime Minister Jean Castex made the announcement on his first outing in his new job, to a semiconductor factory near Paris that received extensive government aid to withstand the coronavirus lockdown in France.

He didn't lay out how his government would save jobs, but called for investment in training and new production tools. Castex and President Emmanuel Macron are expected to announce the makeup of the new Cabinet in the coming days.

Its goal will be to work out how "to ensure the return of jobs and the sustainable maintenance of industrial jobs exposed to global competition," Castex told reporters at the X-FAB factory in Le Coudray-Montceaux south of Paris.

The government sees the factory, which makes semiconductors used in cars, phones and other equipment, as an example of European cooperation and innovation.

Before being named prime minister Friday, Castex coordinated France’s strategy for gradually easing lockdown measures and reviving economic activity.

07/04/2020   Seattle PI Business

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump on Saturday signed into law a temporary extension of a subsidy program for small businesses battered by the coronavirus,

The legislation extends the June 30 deadline for applying for the program to Aug. 8. Lawmakers created the program in March and have modified it twice since, adding money on one occasion and more recently permitting more flexible use of the funding despite some grumbling among GOP conservatives.

About $130 billion of $660 billion approved for the program remains eligible for businesses to seek direct federal subsidies for payroll and other costs such as rent, though demand for the Paycheck Protection Program has pretty much dried up in recent weeks.

The Democratic-controlled House voted on Wednesday to approve the extension of the program after the Republican-controlled Senate did the same.

Trump had been expected to sign the measure.

07/04/2020   Seattle PI Business

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — At the beginning of March, Joey Conicella and Alex Marin were riding high. Their new Orlando restaurant, Hungry Pants, had drawn rave reviews. With revenue rising, they planned to hire more servers. Sunday brunch service was coming soon.

That was just before the coronavirus struck suddenly, forcing them to close. But in May, as authorities eased safety and social-distancing rules, Hungry Pants reopened at smaller capacity, fueled by hope, hand sanitizer and a government loan.

Now, a spike in confirmed viral cases is making Conicella and Marin anxious about the future — for their business and for the region — even as they keep their restaurant open.

“It's been a roller-coaster ride,” Conicella said glumly.

For residents across America's Sun Belt — business owners and workers, consumers and home buyers — the past three months have delivered about the scariest ride in memory. With confirmed viral cases surging through the region, it's far from clear whether the stops, starts and bumps in the economy have ended. Or are they the new normal? Will the Sun Belt remain gripped by doubt and uncertainty for months or years?

What is clear is that no one feels able to relax and assume the best.

“I’m very nervous,” said Danielle Judge, owner of Rowdy's Pet Resort in Apollo Beach. “I’ve put my life’s work into this business, and it's really hanging on a thread.”

Judge had thought the worst was over after she had managed to reopen in May and her loan from the government's Paycheck Protection Program had gone through. Now, her business is stalling once again as reported viral infections have accelerated. Again, she's worried.

“I didn’t fathom that a whole country could stay shut down and affect people’s businesses and...

07/04/2020   Seattle PI Business

NEW YORK (AP) — Nursing home residents are among the Americans getting $1,200 checks as part of the U.S. government’s plan to revive the economy. But with many long-term care facilities under lockdown to prevent COVID-19 outbreaks, what are the rules around how the money is handled?

The situation underscores the vulnerability of many elderly residents and potential confusion about what homes can and can’t do with residents’ money.

One worry is that nursing homes could pressure residents to use the checks to pay outstanding balances. Another is that relatives who aren’t legal representatives could demand to be in charge of the money, putting staff in difficult situations.

Visitor bans put in place months ago are making it difficult to tell whether such problems are widespread, since residents may be reluctant to express concerns by phone, said Lindsay Heckler of the Center for Elder Law and Justice.

“We just don’t know,” she said.

Residents can have personal accounts at nursing homes that are subject to federal regulations, a common setup that can be convenient for both parties.

For those on Medicaid, income such as Social Security checks may have to go to the nursing home to cover the cost of care. But residents are entitled to keep about $50 a month of income for personal spending, which is often deposited in those personal accounts at the home — and is in many cases where stimulus money would be deposited.

Gregory Cole, a 70-year-old in southwest Ohio, said he walks up to a window at his nursing home when he wants to withdraw money from his account.

“I let her know I would like to pull out $30, and I’d like $20 in one dollar bills for the candy machine and the pop machines,” said Cole, whose home has been under lockdown since mid-March.



07/04/2020   Seattle PI Business

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Australia’s Victoria state recorded 108 new coronavirus cases Saturday, forcing authorities to lock down nine public housing towers and three more Melbourne suburbs.

Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews said 3,000 people in the housing towers will go into “hard lockdown,” meaning “there will be no one allowed in ... and no one allowed out.”

Residents in the Flemington and Kensington housing units will receive deliveries of food and medicine, along with alcohol support.

The suburbs of Kensington, Flemington and North Melbourne will join 36 others in being subject to stage 3 coronavirus restrictions. Residents can only leave their homes for food or essential supplies, medical care or care-giving, exercise or for work or education.

After a recent flareup, Victoria has 509 active cases of COVID-19 with 25 people hospitalized, including three in intensive care.

In other developments in the Asia-Pacific region:

— India on Saturday recorded its highest single-day spike in new coronavirus cases, with 22,771 people testing positive in the last 24 hours. India has now confirmed 648,315 cases — fourth in the world behind the U.S., Brazil and Russia. It also has reported 18,655 deaths from the virus. Of the 442 deaths in the last 24 hours, 198 were in Maharashtra state.

— Tokyo confirmed 131 new cases of the coronavirus on Saturday, exceeding 100 for a third day in a row and hitting a new two-month high, prompting Gov. Yuriko Koike to urge residents to avoid nonessential out-of-town visits. The number of cases in the Japanese capital has been increasing since late June, triggering concerns of a resurgence in infections after a state of emergency was lifted in late May. Koike urged residents to avoid nonessential visits to neighboring...

07/04/2020   New York Times Business News
Masked commuters at Pyongyang Station in Pyongyang, North Korea, in April.
07/03/2020   Seattle PI Business

WASHINGTON (AP) — On an average day, President Donald Trump sends about 14 posts to the 28 million Facebook followers of his campaign account. His Democratic rival, Joe Biden, delivers about half that many posts to an audience of just 2 million.

The numbers are similarly skewed in other spheres of the social media landscape.

On Twitter, Trump's 82.4 million followers dwarf Biden’s 6.4 million. The president has spent years cultivating a ragtag digital “army” of meme makers and political influencers who retweet campaign messages hundreds of times daily. Trump is outspending Biden on Google and YouTube advertising by nearly 3 to 1.

As his reelection bid faces growing obstacles, his primacy in the dizzying digital world is one of his top advantages, giving him a massive platform to connect with supporters and push a message that ignores his vulnerabilities related to the pandemic, unemployment and race relations. Biden and his allies are now working feverishly to establish a social media force of their own.

For the first time, Biden outspent Trump on Facebook advertising in June, pouring twice as much money into the platform as the president. His campaign is recruiting Instagram supporters to hold virtual fundraisers. And it’s plotting ways to mobilize the power of hundreds of teens on TikTok who reserved tickets for Trump's recent Oklahoma campaign rally and took credit for sinking the event by artificially inflating the crowd count before it began.

But Trump's head start may be tough to overcome.

“Vice President Biden and Trump have very different challenges right now," said Tara McGowan, the founder of liberal digital firm Acronym and former digital director for the Democratic super PAC Priorities USA during the 2016 campaign. "Trump needs to hold his...

07/03/2020   Seattle PI Business

LOS ANGELES (AP) — California Gov. Gavin Newsom warned local elected officials on Friday they risk state sanctions if they don't enforce health orders as the coronavirus pandemic worsens, while about 200 state inspectors fanned out to look for violators over the long holiday weekend.

“A local government that refuses to abide by, ensure compliance with, or take enforcement action against noncompliance with these statewide public health directives, or that takes action that is otherwise incongruent with these directives, could jeopardize their eligibility for state funding,” Newsom said in letters to local officials.

The state budget that took effect this week includes $2.5 billion intended to help local governments pay for services that are needed because of the pandemic. But it is contingent on them following emergency health orders designed to slow the spread of the virus.

Law enforcement and other officials in some areas have publicly said they will not enforce the state health orders. But Newsom noted that it is a misdemeanor to violate state or local emergency orders or most local ordinances and encouraged “all peace officers” to enforce the orders.

“We are in unprecedented times,” he wrote, saying it is important to fight the pandemic “as a unified California.”

With testing showing a rising COVID-19 testing positivity rate and increasing hospitalizations, Newsom has rolled back or limited businesses reopening in Los Angeles and 20 other counties. San Diego County, the state’s second-largest behind L.A. County with more than 3 million people, was added to the state’s watch list on Friday.

Recently reopened bars, indoor restaurant dining and other indoor entertainment venues were ordered closed back down in those counties for at least three...

07/03/2020   Seattle PI Business

LOS ANGELES — California Gov. Gavin Newsom is warning local elected officials that they risk losing state funding if they don’t enforce health orders as the coronavirus pandemic worsens.

Newsom has rolled back or limited some businesses reopening in Los Angeles and 20 other counties, now including San Diego. Recently reopened bars, indoor restaurant dining and other indoor entertainment venues were ordered closed in those counties for at least three weeks.

About 200 state inspectors fanned out Friday to look for violators over the long Fourth of July weekend. The new enforcement strike teams issued seven citations in their first day of operation.



— Florida reports nearly 9,500 new virus cases.

— Confirmed coronavirus cases are rising in 40 of 50 states.

— Kim Jong Un urges North Koreans to keep up virus fight.

— South Africa’s hospitals bracing for surge of virus patients.

— Pubs in England can reopen on Saturday for the first time since they were closed on March 20 as part of the coronavirus lockdown. Those that reopen will have to make sure they are safe for staff and customers alike.

— With coronavirus-related restrictions being eased and temperatures climbing, people are flocking back to the Jersey Shore. And with the July Fourth holiday on the horizon, that’s making some people nervous.

— Nearby South American countries are grappling with uncontrolled spread of the novel coronavirus, but Paraguay appears to be controlling the disease. It’s had just a few thousand confirmed cases and a few dozen deaths.


Follow all of AP’s pandemic coverage at and



07/03/2020   Seattle PI Business

ATLANTA (AP) — For many Americans, the Fourth of July will be more intimate this year. It also could be riskier.

Saturday will be unlike any Independence Day in recent memory. From Atlanta to San Diego, hundreds of fireworks shows have been canceled as officials restrict large gatherings during the coronavirus pandemic, especially as infections surge across the U.S.

With fewer professional celebrations, many Americans are bound to shoot off fireworks in backyards and at block parties. And they already are: Sales have been booming. Some public safety officials say consumer fireworks in more hands means greater danger of injuries and wildfires in parts of the country experiencing dry, scorching weather.

“The general public is buying more than ever before,” said Steve Houser, president of the National Fireworks Association.

While it's not clear exactly what is driving people to shops, some sellers think fireworks are a diversion for people who have been stuck at home during the pandemic.

“We’re seeing new customers ... who usually don’t come to the fireworks tents,” said Robert Fletcher of Desert Sky Fireworks, which has locations across Arizona.

Cities like Los Angeles and San Francisco have received more complaints of illegal fireworks this summer than in previous years. While most states allow at least some types of consumer fireworks, many cities prohibit them, even non-explosive sparklers. But they acknowledge it is difficult to stop people from buying them just outside city limits where they're legal.

In Arizona, which has battled wildfires for weeks, thousands of people have signed an online petition calling for Gov. Doug Ducey to ban fireworks this summer.

Delanie Thompson, 28, said she started the petition after seeing a neighbor’s house...

07/03/2020   Seattle PI Business

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexico’s coronavirus outbreak rose by about 6,740 newly confirmed cases Friday for a second straight day, while 654 more deaths raised the country's total to 29,843.

The number of deaths is the sixth-highest highest in the world, and Mexico is just a few dozen from overtaking France for the fifth-highest death toll, though Mexico's population is about double that of France.

The continued increase in cases and deaths has stalled Mexico's planned re-opening. The northern border state of Nuevo Leon, home to the city of Monterrey, declared a weekend curfew from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m.

Given the spike in cases in the United States, several Mexican border states announced they would establish temperature checks for visitors coming from the U.S., or require they show have hotel reservations or are engaged in some essential business or work activity.

The Mexico City government said Friday it will re-close some of the streets and businesses allowed to open during the week in the capital's historic colonial-era downtown, after crowding and a lack of sanitary measures were reported at some stores. While most customers and clients wore some form of face mask, many stores didn’t reduce the number of clients allowed in, provide foot-wiping pads or sanitizer gel.

Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum said the re-closing of the Centro area “is not a punishment, it is simply a pause in the voyage.”

The joint plan required the active participation of the government, the public and store owners, and Sheinbaum said it will now be rethought.

“We planned it together, we tried it and it got out of control,” she said.

07/03/2020   Seattle PI Business

The U.S. headed into the Fourth of July weekend with many parades and fireworks displays canceled, beaches and bars closed, and health authorities warning that this will be a crucial test of Americans' self-control that could determine the trajectory of the surging coronavirus outbreak.

With confirmed cases climbing in 40 states, governors and local officials have ordered the wearing of masks in public, and families were urged to celebrate their independence at home. Even then, they were told to keep their backyard cookouts small.

“This year is a huge bummer, to say the least,” said Ashley Peters, who for 14 years has hosted 150 friends and relatives at a pool party at her home in Manteca, California, complete with a DJ, bounce house, water slide and shaved-ice stand. This time, the guest list is down to just a few people.

Pulling the plug on the bash, she said, was a “no-brainer” because so many of those she knows are front-line workers, including her husband, a fire captain. “I woke up and told my husband I wish it was just July 5,” she said.

Health experts agree this will be a pivotal moment in determining whether the nation slides into a deeper mess. The fear is that a weekend of crowded pool parties, picnics and parades will fuel the surge.

“We’re not going to be arresting people for having gatherings, but we’re certainly going to discourage it,” said Dr. Jeff Duchin, public health director for Seattle and King County.

Those who decide they must gather with a small group of family members need to be careful, he said: “Don’t share utensils, don’t share objects, don’t pass them back and forth, because you’re passing that virus around as well."

The warnings were sounded after a Memorial Day weekend that saw many people emerge from...

07/03/2020   Seattle PI Business

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — As Texas began mandating face coverings Friday on the orders of Republican Gov. Greg Abbott, his party charged ahead with plans for a massive convention this month in Houston, magnifying the conflicting responses in the Texas GOP to a rampant resurgence of the coronavirus.

Abbott, governor of America's biggest red state, has dodged saying whether he supports still holding an indoor three-day convention beginning July 16. The event typically draws thousands of people — making it one of America's biggest political conventions — but comes this year at a moment when Houston is one of the nation's biggest virus hotspot.

On Friday, Houston's mayor urged the Texas GOP to again reconsider as the party views their convention as a test run for the Republican National Convention next month in Florida, where President Donald Trump is expected to accept the Republican nomination.

“This is a convention that Trump wants," said Leslie Thomas, a state GOP committee member from Dallas, during a party meeting late Thursday. "Like it or not, Texas is the Republican state. We bear that. So we need to stand our ground.”

The conflict underscores the pressure Abbott has faced from within and outside his party as he tries to gain control of an alarming resurgence of the virus in Texas. Conservative activists blasted the new mask order, condemning it as heavy-handed. Abbott made new appeals to those he says are failing to grasp the severity of the crisis in Texas, which earlier this week set a record with more than 8,000 newly confirmed cases in one day.

“It just seems like people are not comprehending the magnitude of the problem,” Abbott told San Antonio television station KSAT.

The U.S. set another record on Friday with 52,300 newly reported cases,...

07/03/2020   Seattle PI Business

PARIS (AP) — Air France and regional subsidiary Hop announced 7,500 job cuts Friday after the virus pandemic grounded most flights and darkened prospects for future air travel.

Activists from multiple unions protested at Air France headquarters at Paris’ Charles de Gaulle Airport as talks began Friday morning about future job prospects at France's flagship airline.

They’re particularly angry that the French government didn’t require Air France to protect jobs when it won 7 billion euros ($8 billion) in state bailout funds in May. Workers warned that the job cuts will ripple across the French economy, and said bailout funds should be used to rebuild the company instead of pushing people into unemployment.

After a day of talks with personnel representatives, company management announced Friday night that it will cut about 6,500 of 41,000 jobs at Air France and 1,000 of the 2,400 jobs at Hop by 2022.

The company said most of the losses will come through not replacing retiring and departing workers and that it would encourage voluntary departures and early retirements before imposing layoffs.

Airlines around the world are forecast to lose $84 billion this year, with revenue halved. Some have filed for bankruptcy or sought bailouts to survive the near-shutdown in their activity, and officials predict the industry will take years to recover.

“It’s too easy to take COVID-19 as an excuse,” said Julien Lemarie, a 35-year-old Hop mechanic demonstrating at the airport. “The scale of this plan… it’s enormous, it’s an absolute sledgehammer blow.”

Air France said its traffic sank 95% over the worst three months of the coroavirus pandemic and it was losing 15 million euros a day — and that it doesn't expect to recover until 2024. The airline argued that...

07/03/2020   New York Times Business News
The Chicago Tribune Freedom Center, where the newspaper and others are printed. The newspaper’s parent company, Tribune Publishing, has been in negotiations with a shareholder, the hedge fund Alden Global Capital.
07/03/2020   New York Times Business News
There is plenty of inventory at American Fireworks in Hudson, Ohio.
07/03/2020   New York Times Business News
Through a government program, Brian Byrne, director of an event-planning business in Ireland, was able to keep his employees on the payroll after the pandemic hit. “It oddly hasn’t been a stressful time,” he said.
07/03/2020   New York Times Business News
Leland Gilmore, with his dogs Oakley and George, near Mount Hood in Oregon. “These are little escape vessels, escape pods,” said Mr. Gilmore, whose business, Benchmark Vehicles makes custom vans for up to $300,000, van not included.
07/03/2020   New York Times Business News
James Sherwood, right, with Prince and Princess Michael of Kent aboard the Orient Express, the fabled luxury train service that Mr. Sherwood revived. 
07/03/2020   New York Times Business News
The tragic history of “I can’t breathe.” Why you can have a kid or a job right now, not both. How Brooklyn Drill went global. Farewell, Carl Reiner. And more.
07/03/2020   New York Times Business News
While traditional unemployment insurance usually leaves out students, they may be eligible for federal pandemic aid. But some states don’t make it easy to get.
07/03/2020   New York Times Business News
Rachel Robasciotti said her investment firm has long kept a private list of companies it didn’t invest in. Now, she said, “We are saying, here are the companies we don’t invest in and why.”
07/03/2020   Small Business CEO

Your employees may feel a range of emotions as the office reopens for business. Excited to see friends again, of course, but also nervous about new expectations and cautious amid new surroundings. Were those plexiglass barriers always there?

New normal workplace

The comfort and safety of workers is paramount as you return to an office setting, and you as a small business leader can take plenty of precautionary measures to alleviate many of the worries people have about clustering together again. Some will likely be changes to your physical space, such as designated traffic lanes and occupancy limits. Others will represent evolutions in your policies and best practices.…

The post 3 Ways to Make the Conversion Back to the Workspace Easier appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.

07/03/2020   New York Times Business News
For Mike Hutchings, who has fished the waters of Maine for more than 50 years, the effect of the pandemic boils down to whether he can make enough money to keep his boat profitable.
07/03/2020   New York Times Business News
The Viceroy L’Ermitage Beverly Hills was owned by a fugitive financier involved in a $2.5 billion fraud. Interested? It’ll cost north of $100 million.
07/02/2020   New York Times Business News
Richelieu Dennis, the owner of Essence Ventures, at the 2018 Essence Festival in New Orleans.
07/02/2020   New York Times Business News
The latest on stock market and business news during the coronavirus outbreak.
07/02/2020   New York Times Business News
Republican and Democratic lawmakers are coming to the conclusion that Congress needs to do more to bolster the economy as virus cases soar.
07/02/2020   New York Times Business News
Some 4.8 million positions were added last month, but renewed shutdowns could accelerate the continuing layoffs.
07/02/2020   New York Times Business News
Boeing has completed test flights for the recertification of the 737 Max.
07/02/2020   New York Times Business News
Tesla’s sales dipped in the second quarter because of coronavirus shutdown orders, but the company’s stock has soared during the pandemic.
07/02/2020   New York Times Business News
A Florida State University telecommuting policy caused confusion after the school said it would not allow employees to care for children while working remotely starting in August.
07/02/2020   New York Times Business News
Gay Culverhouse, the former president of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, in 2009 testifying before Congress about legal issues relating to head injuries suffered by football players. 
07/01/2020   Tri-City Area Journal of Business

Chuck DeGooyer, the longtime leader who was instrumental in establishing the Tri-Cities Cancer Center more than 25 years ago, will retire at the end of the year.  DeGooyer, who has served as chief executive officer of the cancer for seven years, announced his plans to step down on July 1. His last day is Dec. 31, 2020.  DeGooyer helped form cancer…

The post Tri-Cities Cancer Center CEO announces retirement  appeared first on Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.

07/01/2020   Small Business CEO

As an entrepreneur who is managing an online shop, you know that Ecommerce is always changing. It can be quite challenging to keep up with every trend that appears on the internet. But here are 5 trends that you shouldn’t ignore!

Boosting eCommerce sales

Sometimes it feels like online selling trends are changing faster than you are able to adapt them into your business. While you read about one trend, you might find out it is already gone. But as some of them are here to stay, you should make sure that you implement them to keep up with your competitors.

Personalize the Customer Experience

One of the big downsides of online shopping is the personal aspect and the lack of face-to-face interaction.…

The post 5 Ecommerce Trends that Every Entrepreneur Needs to Know appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.

07/01/2020   Small Business CEO

An outdoor sign serves as the face of the company. These are usually placed directly at the place of business as the first introduction into who you are and what you have to offer.

Retail store sale sign

The message needs to make a powerful statement in very few words and images serving as an invitation to the potential customer to come in and find out more, which is where the interior signs take over.

Proper placement for the large custom vinyl banners is within the store’s front window, with lights to be a focal point day and night. Using a spotlight is a great idea to ensure that the display is seen even when other businesses have gone dark.…

The post Large Outdoor Signs Vs. Smaller Indoor Signs appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.

06/30/2020   Small Business CEO

Completed 4 years of grueling college work and graduated with the best of it? You are now able to join a job market that should ideally be ready to reward you for all your hard work, right? Well, congratulations may be in order but there are quite literally millions of other people just like you with the same dreams and aspirations.

Cisco Certification CCNA 200-301

Did we mention that the job market that is so swift and cutthroat, barely recognizes your presence and does not create space for you? Besides, you have the added complexity of choosing a field where today’s biggest advancement will become obsolete by tomorrow morning.…

The post Everything You Need to Know About New Cisco CCNA and Its 200-301 Test. Why Is It You Who Should Pursue It? appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.

06/29/2020   Small Business CEO

Random email blasts have become a ‘thing of the past’!

Gone are the days when a single email message was enough for all the subscribers. Current times are bringing in customization like never before. The moment your subscribers will feel that your emails aren’t bringing any unique value proposition to the table, they will start losing interest or worst still, will mark your emails as spam. The benchmark email marketing success theory relies upon personalization; and email list segmentation is its linchpin!

eCommerce email segmentation

Generalizing your audiences can cost you, thus, email segmentation tops the list of email marketing best practices.

Email Segmentation is a process of splitting up your subscribers into smaller groups based on different criteria.…

The post 10 Advanced Email Segmentation Tactics for eCommerce appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.

06/29/2020   Small Business CEO

Although landlord and tenant disputes are common, for the latter it can be more stressful and damaging. Fortunately, with the help of a tenant lawyer, tenants based in Los Angeles can expect their situation to ease and be manageable.

Talking to a tenant lawyer

Read on to know and manage your expectations when it comes to hiring a tenant lawyer Los Angeles

How can a tenant lawyer in Los Angeles help?

A tenant lawyer will provide legal counseling and represent you in any disputes you might have with your landlord. At the same time, your lawyer can dissect your lease contract to make sure that your rights as a tenant are not stepped on and the stipulated terms are compliant with the law.…

The post Everything You Need to Know About a Tenant Lawyer in Los Angeles appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.

06/28/2020   Small Business CEO

Tech companies are launching advanced innovations left, right, and center. Every business is looking for efficient software to improve performance to counter the stiff competition.

Steve Jobs - iPad launch

photo credit: Flickr

Amid all the growth, chaos, and changes, loyal customers are waiting to see what you come up with next! For such a segment, your latest feature could be a lifesaver.

However, there’s a group of prospective customers that don’t even know your product or its feature exists. To help this segment learn about the new feature, you need to conduct an effective announcement. The strategy is to include the users to smoothen the adoption process while saving your resources.…

The post Announcing New Features through Customer Engagement to Promote Product Adoption appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.

06/28/2020   Small Business CEO

Quite contrary to popular belief, you can’t just add a ‘kart’ to your website and call it a start-up. It is not even a traditional business, or one-man-show either. A start-up is launched when it has a unique idea or product that fills the gap between demand and supply or is the solution that many people would like to have.

Creating video content for YouTube

A tech-enabled platform ( BharatSthali Sarees ) to bring handloom sarees at your doorsteps on a shoestring budget is a start-up, and so is a business trying to bring some management and technology-led innovation into the disorganised industry of handymen and technicians.…

The post Digital Marketing for Start-ups: Where do start-up businesses go wrong, and why do they fail? (Plus how to avoid the pitfalls of start-up marketing) appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.

06/26/2020   Small Business CEO

We all know that everything is going mobile nowadays. More and more businesses start to digitize their services, and this is no exception for the retail industry. Stores are slowly but surely taking up on app development. If you’re interested how these retail apps work and how to build one, you can learn here.

Retail app for smartphone

Since smartphones have changed the way we interact with businesses for the better, we are going to discuss why the retail industry needs to use the mobile medium and create an app.

1. It’s Simply More Convenient

Comfort is one of the main reasons why retail stores need to take on app development.…

The post Why Do Retail Stores Need Mobile Apps appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.

06/25/2020   Small Business CEO

Email marketing is the secret weapon that small businesses need to succeed.

Cafe owners doing email marketing

photo credit: Ketut Subiyanto / Pexels

When you’re running a small business, everything you do has a direct influence on your bottom line. That’s why it’s important that you spend your time wisely and where it can make the biggest impact.

If you’re looking for ways to prioritize how and when you should communicate with your customer — look no further than email marketing.

Email is a great way to reach your customers. Not only is it cost-effective, but many customers want to hear from the companies they love through email.…

The post 4 Ways Small Businesses Can Benefit From Email Marketing appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.

06/22/2020   Tri-City Area Journal of Business

Jackson Contractor Group Inc. of Walla Walla breaks ground in July on the Pasco Fire Department’s long-anticipated new fire station and headquarters. Jackson submitted the winning bid of $7.5 million to build the 21,800-square-foot Fire Station 84, administrative offices and storage at 4929 W. Court St. The project is expected to be completed in February…

The post Pasco tees off on its next fire station project in July appeared first on Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.

06/22/2020   Tri-City Area Journal of Business

Dutch Bros Coffee, the popular Oregon coffee chain with a dedicated fan base, will open its seventh local stand in Richland, where it has a deal to buy land on the road leading to the new Duportail Bridge. Bruce Barnes, a Pasco-based Dutch Bros franchisee, will buy a 42,000-square-foot site for the Tri-Cities’ seventh Dutch…

The post Dutch Bros adding coffee stand on approach to Duportail Bridge appeared first on Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.

06/22/2020   Tri-City Area Journal of Business

The West Richland City Council has hired the construction and design team for the first phase of the city’s new police station. Chervenell Construction of Kennewick and Design West Architects of Kennewick were awarded a progressive design-build contract June 2. The contract is not to exceed $819,672. Design West chose TreanorHL Architects, based in Lawrence,…

The post West Richland hires contractors for police facility appeared first on Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.

06/17/2020   Tri-City Area Journal of Business

The Benton County Commission encourages area residents to wear face masks to reduce the spread of the virus that causes Covid-19.   The move came after the Washington Department of Health said it was pausing applications to move both Benton and Franklin counties to Phase 2 of the Safe Start program because of high infection rates in the Tr-Cities.  Phase 2 allows the following…

The post Benton County Commission endorses face masks to reach Phase 2 appeared first on Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.

06/16/2020   Tri-City Area Journal of Business

During the past few weeks, I’ve been reading a lot about hope and its necessary role in healing, recovery and moving forward, not only as individuals, but as communities and a nation. I’ve been talking to our local team about the role the U.S. Small Business Administration, or SBA, must have in providing hope to…

The post Paycheck Protection Program still has $130B to support struggling businesses appeared first on Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.

06/15/2020   Tri-City Area Journal of Business

While Lamb Weston and Mid-Columbia potato growers were dealing with an unexpected surplus of spuds this spring, Mid-Columbia asparagus farmers had a different tale to tell. They had the skilled cutters they needed to bring in the harvest and prices were strong. 2020 was a solid year for the iconic first shoots of spring, thanks…

The post Uncertainty abounds: What does 2020 hold for agriculture? appeared first on Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.

06/15/2020   Tri-City Area Journal of Business

While the quality of grapes and winemaking in Washington state remain world-class, the global glut of wine continues to cut into the industry’s bottom line. Consumers stand to benefit, whenever shelter-in-place restrictions and pandemic-affected spending allow. “The Washington grape market is suffering from a structural imbalance between supply and demand that will likely require substantial…

The post Global gut: Wine grape glut may cut into industry’s profits appeared first on Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.

06/15/2020   Tri-City Area Journal of Business

Washington’s agricultural exporters faced brutal headwinds in 2019 and they are facing them again in 2020. Trade wars, retaliatory tariffs targeting the state’s most iconic crops and a new Pacific Rim trade alliance that didn’t include the U.S. marred the 2019 season, driving producers to seek new markets in Vietnam, the Philippines and Indonesia, among…

The post To market: Exporters turn to new trade agreements, Zoom appeared first on Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.

06/15/2020   Tri-City Area Journal of Business

Covid-19 could hurt southeast Washington’s cherry crop by limiting the number of fruit pickers allowed in orchards. The fickle crop is healthy, delicious and highly profitable, but a litany of factors can threaten its success. If weather cooperates and diseases are kept at bay, the fruit must be picked, packed, shipped, stocked and bought before…

The post Cherry picked: Growers worry about finding enough workers appeared first on Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.