Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says the United States can’t shut down its economy again because of the coronavirus – despite fears mounting of a second wave of infections.
Mnuchin, speaking on CNBC, said there will be no more shutdowns to stop the spread of COVID-19 even as states like Texas and Florida show record spikes in daily infections.
‘We can’t shut down the economy. I think we’ve learned that if you shut down the economy, you’re going to create more damage,’ Mnuchin said.
He said that another $1 trillion in rescue funds will flow into the economy over the next month and that he was prepared to go back to Congress for more money to protect jobs and workers.
Facing budget shortfalls and double-digit unemployment, governors of states that are COVID-19 hotspots have pressed ahead with reopenings that are now raising fears of a second wave of infections.
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says the United States can’t shut down its economy again because of the coronavirus – despite fears mounting of a second wave of infection
Mnuchin said aid for states would be subject to negotiations with lawmakers.
His comments were echoed by President Donald Trump, who tweeted ‘We will have a very good Third Quarter, a great Fourth Quarter, and one of our best ever years in 2021. We will also soon have a Vaccine & Therapeutics/Cure. That’s my opinion. WATCH!’
Trump’s tweet came after the Federal Reserve on Wednesday predicted an economic contraction of 6.5 percent this year, while warning the outlook remained uncertain.
‘The Federal Reserve is wrong so often,’ Trump said. ‘I see the numbers also, and do MUCH better than they do.’
Orders to close businesses to stop the spread of the virus beginning in mid-March have badly harmed the world’s largest economy, leading to tens of millions of layoffs and an unemployment rate of 13.3 percent in May – a figure reminiscent of the Great Depression 90 years ago.
Wall Street stocks reversed days of gains on Thursday, with the Dow plunging 1,800 points into the red after the Labor Department reported another 1.5 million people filed new claims for unemployment benefits last week. The Dow rebounded on Friday by opening 600 points higher.
The virus still remains deadly across the United States. More than 112,000 Americans have now died from COVID-19 and over two million have been infected from the virus.
FLORIDA: Florida reported its highest daily tally of new coronavirus cases on Thursday with 1,698 additional infections. It came as Governor Ron DeSantis unveiled a plan to restart public schools at ‘full capacity’ in the autumn, arguing the state’s economy depended on it
TEXAS: Texas reported a record-breaking number of new coronavirus cases in a single day after reporting 2,504 new cases on Tuesday, surpassing the previous single-day record of 1,949 on May 31
ARIZONA: Arizona has seen its daily infections surge this month. Official figures show a 211 percent rise in virus cases in the state over the past 14 days
The number of daily infections are spiking in states like Texas and Florida to the highest they have been throughout the pandemic.
Some states like Arizona, Texas and North Carolina are now seeing more hospitalizations from COVID-19 than they did a month ago.
Arizona Governor Doug Ducey and Texas Governor Greg Abbott say their hospitals have the capacity to avoid the experiences of New York, where the system was stretched to near breaking point as some COVID patients were treated in hallways and exhausted workers stacked bodies in refrigerated trailers.
Governors of hotspot states are also facing pressure to fire up economies facing fiscal year 2021 budget shortfalls.
‘This is about saving lives, this is also about livelihoods in the state of Arizona,’ Ducey said, adding that a second shutdown of the economy was ‘not under discussion’ despite official figures showing a 211 percent rise in virus cases over the past 14 days.
As Florida reported its highest daily tally of new coronavirus cases on Thursday, Governor Ron DeSantis unveiled a plan to restart public schools at ‘full capacity’ in the autumn, arguing the state’s economy depended on it.
North Carolina reported record COVID-19 hospitalizations for a fifth straight day on Thursday, a day after legislators passed a bill to reopen gyms, fitness centers and bars in a state where more than one in 10 workers are unemployed.
Wall Street stocks reversed days of gains on Thursday, with the Dow plunging 1,800 points into the red after the Labor Department reported another 1.5 million people filed new claims for unemployment benefits last week. The Dow rebounded on Friday by opening 600 points higher
Another 1.5 million laid-off workers applied for unemployment benefits last week. The latest figure from the Labor Department on Thursday marked the 10th straight weekly decline in applications for jobless aid since they peaked in mid-March with 6.87 million applications
Nearly 44 million Americans have been thrown out of work in the three months since COVID-19 struck hard in March, forced widespread business closures and sent the economy into a deep recession