Global stock markets slid again Wednesday as investors worried about the risks of reopening economies from coronavirus shutdowns too soon.
Source: Associated Press
TRAVEL & LEISURE: Boeing said this week that it’s gone another month without a single airplane order, cruise ships are devoid of passengers and gasoline prices are plunging because few people are commuting to work or taking road trips. Global travel is close to a standstill.
— One of the biggest tourism companies in the world is cutting 8,000 jobs and will try to slash spending by about 30%. CEO Fritz Joussen did say Wednesday that a partial resumption of business could begin by June or early July in areas where testing is taking place or regions that have been cleared by governments.
The company employs between 60,000 and 70,000 people depending on the season.
— Six Flags is launching a new guest reservation system that will allow it to manage daily attendance levels and avoid overcrowding at theme parks. Advanced reservations through the company’s website will be required to enter parks. People can get on a waiting list if the park is at capacity. Members of loyalty clubs and season ticket holders get priority.
— Scandinavian Airlines joined a growing list of carriers that will require passengers six and older to wear protective face masks. Non-essential items like magazines, pillows, and blankets are no longer available, and meal service is postponed.
HOUSING: There are mixed messages on the housing front. The activity has fallen sharply with fewer people willing to show their homes or to look at them. And 33 million people have lost jobs in the pandemic. Mortgage payments are being skipped.
— First-quarter mortgage delinquency rates jumped 59 basis points from the previous quarter, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s National Delinquency Survey.
Marina Walsh, MBA’s Vice President of Industry Analysis, said it’s “reminiscent of the hurricane-related, 64-basis-point increase seen in the third quarter of 2017.”
— For the fourth consecutive week, mortgage applications rose, suggesting that the spring buying season may not be a complete loss. And applications to buy a home jumped by a healthy 11% last week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.
Those applications are still down sharply from last year, but the gap between 2020 and 2019 appears to be shrinking. Purchase volume annually fell by 19% annually. Last month, it was down 35%.
LONG OCEAN PASSAGE: Global commerce has seized up in the pandemic, skewing trade numbers and emptying ports.
— The world’s biggest shipping company expects a quarter of its typical annual volume will be lost this year.
Denmark’s A.P. Moller-Maersk said Wednesday that its outlook for the year contains “high uncertainties,” The shipper had expected growth between 1% and 3% before the outbreak.
MARKETS: — Global stock markets slid again Wednesday as investors worried about the risks of reopening economies from coronavirus shutdowns too soon.