Trump Makes Move to Stem Coronavirus Economic Impact

Trump Makes Move to Stem Coronavirus Economic Impact

( – On Monday, President Trump said he will ask Congress for economic stimulus measures aimed at helping workers and businesses caught in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.

The Dow dropped a massive 2,013 points on Monday, which was the largest one-day drop in history, spurred on by coronavirus fears. An oil price war between Saudi Arabia and Russia is also destabilizing the economy with oil prices dropping 24%.

Trump and Mnuchin Present Targeted Proposals

Trump said in his opening statement that his administration is going to work with both small and large companies they are not penalized for something that is out of their control.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin added that this situation is not like the financial crisis of 2008. He emphasized that the focus of these proposals is specifically on parts of the economy that have been impacted by the current coronavirus. Workers quarantined at home who still need to financially provide for their families, in particular, are being targeted.

Proposals made by the administration will include:

  • A payroll tax cut and relief for hourly workers
  • Small business loans by the Small Business Administration for companies working with airlines, hotels, and cruise ship industries
  • Possible alternatives regarding IRS tax payments to help companies and individuals keep more cash on hand

The president said he was planning to hold a press conference for Tuesday after meeting with Senators to talk about “major” economic proposals.

Stock futures have been trending upward since the president’s statement.

Economists Warn Lawmakers, Yet Economy Is Strong

Economists have recently warned lawmakers and policymakers about the need to stimulate the economy to avoid a recession. They are concerned about job losses that would come from a weakened financial standing. Protecting small and midsize businesses who don’t have the resources to handle a potential downsizing in the economy is also important.

Trump has been saying that the economy is doing well and is growing while blaming Democrats and the media for stoking fears.

“We have a strong economy,” Trump said to reporters. “But this has blindsided the world.”

Despite the coronavirus outbreak, non-farm payrolls grew larger than expected in February. The Labor Department reported that businesses added 273,000 new jobs (economists were looking for growth of 175,000 new jobs). The unemployment rate was 3.5% – the lowest level in 50 years. Average hourly earnings also grew by 3% over last year.

In addition, the Labor Department revised the job increases during December and January by 85,000, bringing up the three-month average to 243,000 new jobs.

By Don Purdum, Freelance Contributor

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