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Business

California’s April jobless rate higher than Great Recession

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California’s unemployment rate nearly tripled to 15.5% in April as the nation’s most populous state lost more jobs in one month from the coronavirus than it did during the Great Recession a decade ago, state data released Friday showed. Just two months ago, ...

Job market remains grim even as U.S. tentatively reopens

WASHINGTON (AP) — Signs of renewed business activity are surfacing across the country as states gradually reopen economies and some businesses call a portion of their laid-off staffers back to work. Yet with millions more Americans seeking unemployment aid last week, the U.S. job market ...

Officials release edited coronavirus reopening guidance

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. health officials on Thursday released some of their long-delayed guidance that schools, businesses and other organizations can use as states reopen from coronavirus shutdowns. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention posted six one-page “decision tool” ...

Trump administration ease rules limiting truck driver hours

The Trump administration eased rules Thursday that limit working hours for truck drivers, and the changes brought immediate protests from labor and safety groups. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration extended the maximum working day for short-haul drivers from 12 hours to 14 hours ...

Craft brewers upended by COVID-19 closure of tap rooms, bars

MARSHFIELD, Vt. (AP) — Sales of wine, spirits and other alcoholic beverages have risen during the coronavirus pandemic like foam in a freshly poured glass of beer. Just not for some craft brewers. Craft beer, particularly brews made by small, artisan producers, is often consumed in ...

Rangers, IRS volunteers lead in returns of federal workers

WASHINGTON (AP) — Returning Internal Revenue Service workers in Kansas City are being directed to a room well-stocked with face masks, while some other IRS offices were still telling staffers to buy or make their own as the Trump administration starts rolling out a location-based plan for ...

Auto plants to reopen as country weighs virus risks

MEXICO CITY (AP) — On a day Mexico saw its worst daily increase yet in coronavirus cases, foreign-owned auto plants began setting dates for reopening. Volkswagen de Mexico said late Thursday it is planning to reopen its assembly plant in Puebla state and its engine factory in Guanajuato ...

U.S. unemployment surges to a Depression-era level of 14.7 percent

WASHINGTON (AP) — The coronavirus crisis has sent the U.S. unemployment rate surging to 14.7%, a level last seen when the country was in the throes of the Depression and President Franklin D. Roosevelt was assuring Americans that the only thing to fear was fear itself. And because of ...

Loan program is short-term fix, not cure-all, for businesses

NEW YORK (AP) — The Trump administration has dispensed about $530 billion to millions of small businesses to cushion them from the sharp downturn induced by the coronavirus. The question is: how effective will the Paycheck Protection Program be? Some small business owners say the ...

Uber lays off 3,700 as virus upends sharing economy

NEW YORK (AP) — In a world where the coronavirus pandemic has turned social distancing into a new way of life, companies whose business models bank on people’s willingness to share their personal space are now struggling. Uber said Wednesday it’s cutting 3,700 full-time workers, or ...

Stocks slide as Amazon, other companies detail virus fallout

Stocks ended lower on Wall Street Friday, giving up their gains for the week, after Amazon and other big companies laid out how the coronavirus pandemic is hitting their bottom lines. The S&P 500 index fell 2.8%. Amazon sank after its profits fell because of a sharp increase in costs ...

Workers must risk infection or losing unemployment payments

ATLANTA (AP) — Some of the millions of American workers laid off because of the coronavirus are beginning to face a tough choice — return to work and risk infection, or stay home and risk losing unemployment payments. The decision is most pressing in states where governors have started ...

National parks balancing demands for cell service, silence

PHOENIX (AP) — Musetta Vander has been to several of the most iconic national parks and landscapes in the U.S., capturing herself doing a yoga pose among the Joshua trees, driving on a tree-lined highway framed by Yosemite’s towering rock formations and sitting at the edge of a cliff ...

Coronavirus relief pushing U.S. deficits to staggering heights

WASHINGTON (AP) — Spend what it takes, Washington said as it confronted the coronavirus. Well over $2 trillion later, it’s unclear where that spending will end. One of the lasting legacies of the coronavirus pandemic will be staggering debts and deficits on the U.S. balance sheet, with ...

Expert claims reprisal for opposing virus drug Trump touted

WASHINGTON (AP) — The head of a government agency combating the coronavirus pandemic is alleging that he was ousted for opposing politically connected efforts to promote a malaria drug that President Donald Trump touted without proof as a remedy for COVID-19. Rick Bright, former director of ...

Gov’t puts pressure on public companies to return loans

NEW YORK (AP) — Big public companies that received loans under a government program intended to help small businesses devastated by the coronavirus outbreak could be forced to return it. The Small Business Administration issued an advisory Thursday clearly aimed at companies like restaurant ...

Tyson Foods idles largest pork plant as virus slams industry

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Tyson Foods suspended operations Wednesday at an Iowa plant that is critical to the nation’s pork supply but was blamed for fueling a massive coronavirus outbreak in the region. The Arkansas-based company said the closure of the plant in Waterloo would deny a vital ...

World cruise, begun before pandemic, nears end of odyssey

ROME (AP) — Passengers on a luxury liner’s around-the-world cruise, begun before the globe was gripped by the coronavirus pandemic, are finally approaching the end of their odyssey after 15 weeks at sea. Their ship, the Costa Deliziosa, heads to ports in Spain and Italy, two of the ...

Hope takes the reins on Wall Street, stocks rally worldwide

NEW YORK (AP) — In Wall Street’s tug of war between hope and pessimism about the coronavirus pandemic, hope is fighting back. U.S. stocks joined a worldwide rally Friday and closed out their first back-to-back weekly gain since the market began selling off two months ago. The S&P 500 ...

UK boosts help for abuse victims during virus lockdown

LONDON (AP) — The British government on Saturday launched a campaign to help domestic violence victims during the coronavirus lockdown following an increase in the number seeking assistance, while figures showed that the number of people in the U.K. dying after testing positive for COVID-19 ...