COVID19

Overcrowded Housing Invites Covid-19, Even in Silicon Valley

It was not surprising when three-quarters of the house tested positive. There were 12 people in three bedrooms, with a bathroom whose door frequently required a knock and a kitchen where dinnertime shifts extended from 5 p.m. well into the evening.

Karla Lorenzo, a Guatemalan immigrant who cleaned houses in San Francisco and Silicon Valley, lived in the big room along the driveway. Big is a relative term when a room has five people in it. She and her partner, Abel, slept in a queen-size bed along the wall. There was a crib for the baby at the foot, with

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Despite Covid-19 we can hope for a stream of rising dividends from L&G

Investment trusts now dominate our Income Portfolio. If we include our two venture capital trusts they account for 14 of our 24 holdings. We also have seven bonds, so just three individual listed businesses remain: National Grid, New York-listed New Residential Investment and Legal & General.

The last-named reported interim results on Wednesday and Questor read them with a sense of relief. Although we had not expected a dividend cut it is always, in the current climate, a possibility, as BP brought home to investors on Tuesday. In the end L&G maintained its own interim payment at last year’s level

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Covid-19 is the last straw for Europe’s broken banking system

A report by consultants Oliver Wyman estimates that credit losses for European banks could reach €830bn over the next three years in its “adverse scenario”.

This would push non-performing loans to 10pc, rising to 12pc in Portugal, 13pc in Italy, and 47pc in Greece. The central case would see €400bn of losses.

So far lenders have taken a hit of just €30bn in loan loss provisions. It said up to half of the European banking system will emerge from the pandemic “in a kind of limbo”, just keeping its head above water.

Lenders do not generate enough from retained earnings

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Back-to-school marketing is more somber under COVID-19, but carries silver linings

From packed yellow buses to doorbuster deals, staples of back-to-school marketing this year are sparse as the coronavirus pandemic casts a pall over one of the most important sales windows for retail marketers — a period that also typically sees fun, sunny creative messaging thrive.

A quieter, somber start to the season is understandable as teachers in hotspot states like Texas draw up wills for fear of contracting the novel coronavirus, which causes the deadly illness COVID-19. The staid atmosphere is yet another sign of how the ongoing health crisis has fundamentally altered marketing strategies, with even historically safe promotional

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