6 million workers on leave in Japan as coronavirus takes toll

TOKYO — A record 5.97 million Japanese people were employed but not working last month, official data released Friday shows, as the private and public sectors try to shield workers from the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

The figure, which includes furloughed employees as well as those on parental leave, is about 9% of Japan’s entire work force. The total had hovered around 2 million for the preceding year.

“This is a phenomenon we did not see during the Lehman shock,” said Minister of Internal Affairs and Communications Sanae Takaichi, referring to the global financial crisis of 2008 and

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Budweiser honors healthcare workers and military heroes in new campaign

Dive Brief:

  • Budweiser kicked off a new marketing campaign showcasing new limited-edition packaging and honoring frontline heroes who have given their lives protecting others, including military heroes and essential workers during the COVID-19 crisis, ​the company announced via a press release.
  • As part of the effort, the AB InBev brand made a short film called “Take Two Minutes,” which shows the parallel lives of a soldier and a nurse, both putting on their uniforms and their masks and heading out of their homes to their respective frontlines.
  • Another spot, “Taste of Freedom,” promotes three new limited-edition Budweiser
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250,000 firms could lay off workers as Sunak mulls furlough withdrawal

As many as 250,000 businesses could be forced to lay off staff because they cannot contribute to wage bills as the taxpayer-backed furlough scheme is wound down, a bleak survey suggests.

A quarter of the 1m companies relying on Rishi Sunak’s wage subsidies will be forced to make “difficult decisions” on layoffs in the coming months, said the Institute of Directors lobby group (IoD).

It will spark fears of a surge in unemployment when the lockdown lifts, hammering Britain’s ability to bounce back fast.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak is expected to shortly unveil his plan to wind down  the furlough scheme,

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Coronavirus latest: Chicago workers file suit against McDonald’s over safety

The Nikkei Asian Review is tracking the spread of the new coronavirus that originated in the central Chinese city of Wuhan.

Global cases have reached 4,696,849, according to the World Health Organization.

The worldwide death toll has hit 315,131.

To see how the disease has spread, view our virus tracker charts:

(Source photo by AP) 

Here are the latest developments (Tokyo time):

Wednesday, May 20

4:27 a.m. McDonald’s workers in Chicago file a class action lawsuit against the burger chain saying it has not adopted government cornoavirus guidelines.

In California, workers at three McDonald’s sites file for action 

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