Health and Science

California launches meal delivery program for seniors, US coronavirus death toll tops 50,000

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Here's an inside look at General Motors' coronavirus face mask plant
Here's an inside look at General Motors' coronavirus face mask plant

As the number of U.S. deaths tops 50,000, several states are moving forward with plans to reopen businesses to spur economic growth. Some governors have begun easing restrictions despite warnings from world health officials that it may be too soon to do so without sparking a second wave of Covid-19 infections.

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  • Global cases: More than 2.7 million
  • Global deaths: At least 195,920
  • US cases: More than 890,500
  • US deaths: At least 51,017

The data above was compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

8:20 pm: Hollywood's small businesses in crisis

How COVID-19 is impacting small businesses in Hollywood
How COVID-19 is impacting small businesses in Hollywood

Hollywood may be known for its big studios with thousands of employees and giant sound stages. But of the 5,900 businesses in Hollywood, 99.5% have less than 500 employees, and over 90% have fewer than 10 employees.

Those are costumers, prop rentals, caterers, and trailer rental companies, sound mixing specialists and film editors — everything used in the making of movies, TV shows, or commercials.

After Covid-19 caused entertainment productions to come to a screecuing halt, the vast majority of those companies have seen their revenues plummet to zero in the past month. forcing many to lay off or furlough employees. —Julia Boorstin

7:45 pm: Updated map shows more than 2.7 million worldwide confirmed cases

7:20 pm: California cities project 2-year losses of $6.7 billion

People wait in line to receive food at a Food Bank distribution for those in need as the coronavirus pandemic continues on April 9, 2020 in Van Nuys, California.
Mario Tama | Getty Images

California's 482 cities say they will collectively lose $6.7 billion over the next two years because of the coronavirus pandemic, prompting layoffs and furloughs for public workers and potential cuts to basic services such as sanitation, public safety and housing.

But that estimate, compiled by the League of California Cities, assumes the stay-at-home order lifts by June 1 — an unlikely scenario in a state where Gov. Gavin Newsom and public health officials have said bans on large gatherings and unnecessary travel will likely extend well into summer.

"Obviously, the longer the stay-at-home orders are in place, the longer businesses are closed, the greater the revenue shortfalls will be," said Carolyn Coleman, the league's executive director.

Cities large and small say they are feeling the pain of an abrupt economic halt as most businesses and restaurants have closed and people aren't traveling because of the mandatory stay-at-home order.

Congress sent $5.8 billion to California local governments as part of a $2.2 trillion aid package, but most of that money went to counties. Only six California cities qualified because they had populations greater than 500,000 people: Fresno, Los Angeles, Sacramento, San Diego, San Francisco and San Jose. —Associated Press

6:56 pm: U.S. states, cities forecast deep revenue hit from coronavirus outbreak

U.S. states and cities are staring into a financial abyss as they assess tax revenue shortfalls from the depressive impact the coronavirus outbreak has on their economies.

With social distancing and stay-at-home orders in most of the nation to slow the virus' spread, nonessential businesses and services have shuttered, leading to skyrocketing unemployment and lower consumer spending. As a result, cities and states are starting to project deep revenue losses, particularly for big money generators like income and sales taxes.

Barclays has estimated tax revenue losses for states and municipalities will total $350 billion or more for fiscal years 2020 and 2021. The $2.3 trillion U.S. CARES Act allocated $150 billion to the governments exclusively to cover virus-related expenses they incur.

Mayors and governors are clamoring for more federal money with the National Governors Association asking for $500 billion and U.S. city and county groups seeking $250 billion. In the meantime, some governments are tapping reserve funds and taking action to reduce spending, including laying off or imposing unpaid furloughs on workers.

Republicans and Democrats in the U.S. Congress girded for a new battle over federal assistance to states and local governments. While Democratic leaders have advocated for the move, U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Wednesday said he favored allowing bankruptcy for cash-strapped states over sending them more federal money. —Reuters

6:48 pm: FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn discusses trials in the works for coronavirus vaccines and therapeutics

FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn on coronavirus trials and therapeutics
FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn on coronavirus trials and therapeutics

6:37 pm: Red Cross president says COVID-19 crisis needs huge economic recovery plan

A volunteer of Spanish Red Cross transfers Covid-19 patients to the La Albubilla nursing home where patients who have tested positive at Covid-19 remain on April 1, 2020 in Huesca, Spain.
Alvaro Calvo | Getty Images

The head of the world's largest humanitarian network urged governments to start thinking about tackling the economic damage from the coronavirus with something like the Marshall Plan used by the United States to help countries recover after World War II.

Francesco Rocca, president of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, which operates in 192 countries, warned of the risk of social unrest, hunger and starvation as a result of the pandemic.

"We need to plan together with institutions a social response before it is too late," he said.

Rocca said during a video news conference that the lack of any source of income for millions of people because of lockdowns is "a huge concern for us, both in Western countries as well as in the countries in fragile and protracted crisis."

Without a major economic recovery program, he said, people will abandon their communities if "their only option is hunger and starvation," which will increase migration.

Rocca, who also heads Italy's Red Cross, said this "should give a wake up a call to the international community."

The Marshall Plan was an American initiative approved in 1948 to help Western Europe recover after the defeat of Nazi Germany. The U.S. transferred $12 billion to West European countries to spur their economic recovery, which according to one estimate would be equivalent to over $128 billion in 2020.

Rocca said he thinks a similar economic initiative "is an imperative on which the governments should start to think." —Associated Press

6:24 pm: As working from home becomes more widespread, many say they don't want to go back

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced millions of Americans to work from home. But when it's all over, many people are thinking that trip from the kitchen to the living room may not be such a bad commute.

States of Play, a joint CNBC/Change Research survey of swing states, finds 42% of respondents nationwide say they are working from home – a huge jump from only 9% who say they worked completely from home before the pandemic. Some 14% say they are working from home more than before, while 19% are working from home for the first time.

A 58% majority report they are still working outside the home.

Once the economy reopens, 24% say they'd like to work either entirely or more from home compared to how they worked before, while 55% plan to head back to the office and 20% are not sure. —Jackson Burke

6:09 pm: As coronavirus crushes travel industry, Expedia maps out private equity survival strategy

Passengers sit at a distance inside a flight from Miami to Atlanta in Miami, on April 23, 2020.
Chandan Khanna | AFP | Getty Images

As online travel giant Expedia struggles to survive the ravages of the coronavirus crisis, private equity has jumped in to help the company stay afloat and potentially ready it for sale when the economy restarts. 

Apollo Group and Silver Lake Partners' $1.2 billion in cash infusion announced on Thursday could help the online travel operator tackle the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic as well as longer-term obstacles like Google's threat to its business and whether a sale could be in the cards.

"Management appears to be cleaning up the business to hand off at some point," wrote Scott Devitt, internet analyst at Stifel to investors.

David Sambur, co-lead partner of Apollo's private equity business, and Greg Mondre, Co-CEO and managing partner of Silver Lake Partners will join Expedia's board.

"Expedia is the exact type of business we look to invest in: it's an innovator and market leader and has changed how the world purchases travel and experiences," Sambur said.

Both private equity firms appear to be betting on the beleaguered travel and hospitality sector as it faces a bleak short-term outlook. —Seema Mody

5:47 pm: Leaked White House emails reveal behind the scenes battle over chloroquine in coronavirus response

President Donald Trump addresses his administration's daily coronavirus task force briefing as his daughter and senior advisor Ivanka Trump, Acting Department of Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Vice President Mike Pence, White House Coronavirus Response Coordinator Ambassador Debbie Birx and National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Anthony Fauci listen at the White House in Washington, March 20, 2020.
Jonathan Ernst | Reuters

Trump White House appointees pressured government health officials to make an unproven malaria drug available to the public to treat the disease caused by the new coronavirus without a doctor's supervision, according to internal emails published by Vanity Fair on Friday.

The pressure tactics caused panic and pushback from scientists and doctors at several federal health agencies, who refused to suspend drug regulations in order to distribute the potentially dangerous treatment to the public outside of hospitals.

The report adds a new layer to the looming crisis facing the Trump administration over its efforts to promote and procure drugs containing chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine. Long used to treat malaria and select auto-immune diseases, chloroquine has not been proven effective to treat Covid-19.

On Friday, CNBC reported on the findings of a clinical trial of chloroquine that was halted amid safety concerns after researchers cited a "primary outcome" of death among patients who were given high doses of chloroquine. —Christina Wilkie

5:35 pm: AutoNation joins growing wave of companies returning small business rescue funds

AutoNation announced that it is returning its federal small business funds from the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). the Small Business Administration (SBA) issued new guidelines Thursday morning, the auto retailer held a board meeting during which it "decided to cancel all PPP applications and return all PPP funds by the safe harbor date of May 7th," said Marc Cannon, AutoNation communications head.

The company received nearly $95 million, which is triple the amount any company is known to have received through the program, according to the Washington Post. AutoNation said it was eligible to apply for funding and intended to use the money "for [its] employees and nothing else," and would have used the funds to rehire all 7,000 associates that were previously furloughed. However, it received backlash from small business owners who were unable to receive any financial assistance before the initial funding ran out. Earlier this week, publicly traded companies Shake Shack and Ruth's Hospitality Group also repaid their loans after receiving $10 million and $20 million respectively, but some large companies are refusing to pay back the cash. —Jasmine Kim

5:15 pm: California launches meal delivery program for seniors

Employees of Meals on Wheels San Francisco prepare upwards to 10,000 meals per day for delivery to seniors during the coronavirus crisis in San Francisco.
Kate Munsch I Reuters

California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced the launch of a new program Friday called "Restaurants Deliver: Home Meals for Seniors," which will use local eateries to prepare and deliver free food for older adults in need.

Created through a partnership with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the statewide program went into immediate effect Friday, and is the first of its kind in the U.S., according to Newsom.

He estimated that there are over 5.7 million seniors in California and that 1.7 million of them live alone and may be unable to cook their own meals. In addition to helping these residents, Restaurants Deliver is also designed to create jobs. 

"This partnership will allow for the ability for restaurants to start rehiring people or keep people currently employed," Newsom said at a press briefing Friday. 

Restaurants Deliver will provide three meals a day, seven days a week for seniors and Newsom said there is currently no cap on the number of meals that will be prepared. The state and FEMA will reimburse local governments for most of the program's cost, according to Newsom. —Hannah Miller


4:35 pm: Kegs are going bad as coronavirus keeps restaurants closed. Boston Beer has a solution

Jim Koch, founder of Boston Beer
Scott Eells | Bloomberg via Getty Images

As bars and restaurants remain shuttered in response to the coronavirus pandemic, Boston Beer is turning millions of dollars of expired beer into ethanol to recoup some of its lost sales.

Beer sales rose 11.6% in the week ended April 11, according to Nielsen data, as consumers drink more at home. But the spike doesn't benefit craft brewers as much because they rely on sales in restaurants and bars. The shift in consumption trends is leading to expired kegs for many craft beer manufacturers.

Supply chain disruptions caused by the pandemic have led farmers to dump milk and crush eggs, even as grocery stores struggle to keep high-demand food items in stock.

Boston Beer, parent of Sam Adams, is taking a less wasteful approach when it comes to the $5.8 million in beer returned by retailers and distributors during its first quarter.

The company's founder and chairman Jim Koch said on CNBC's "The Exchange" Friday that it will distill the returned beer into ethanol, so it can be blended into gasoline. The company, the second-largest craft brewer in the nation, according to the Brewers Association, has been recycling stale beer like this for decades to ensure freshness, but lately it has stepped up the volume. —Amelia Lucas

Here's how coronavirus is impacting the craft beer industry
Here's how coronavirus is impacting the craft beer industry

4:15 pm: MGM reportedly cuts 7% of staff, United Artists Releasing furloughs one-third of its employees

Daniel Craig stars as James Bond in "No Time To Die."

MGM reportedly has laid off around 7% of its staff as the coronavirus pandemic had made basic job duties impossible to perform while movie releases are delayed and theaters are shuttered.

Variety reported Friday that around 50 jobs at MGM had been cut across all departments including scripted and unscripted TV and feature films.

The studio's marketing and distribution arm United Artists Releasing also furloughed one-third of its staff, the publication reported. Additionally, senior management at both companies are expected to take salary reductions.

"In the face of these global economic and industry business challenges, we have undertaken certain actions to mitigate the current financial impact on our business and to ensure MGM is well positioned for the future," MGM brass wrote in a memo obtained by Variety. "Unfortunately, these changes necessitate some permanent reductions of our workforce. All impacted employees have been notified." —Sarah Whitten

4:11 pm: Peloton stock pops after reporting largest class ever as coronavirus restrictions keep gyms closed

Shares of Peloton gained more than 6% on the day after the company said it held its largest class ever earlier this week, with more than 23,000 people streaming it from home.

The company's stock is up more than 13% since Jan. 1 as the coronavirus pandemic keeps gyms around the country shuttered and consumers look for opportunities to exercise at home. Peloton's at-home business model appears to be among the few able to thrive as much of society shuts down to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Peloton said in a statement to CNBC that more than 23,000 tuned in for more than 10 minutes each to a live workout on Wednesday, which topped the previous record for most users in one class of 19,000. —Will Feuer

4:05 pm: Dow jumps more than 200 points as oil extends rebound, but posts first weekly loss in three

Stocks rose as oil prices clawed back even more of their historic losses from earlier in the week while investors weighed the prospects of a potential coronavirus treatment from Gilead Sciences. 

The Dow Jones Industrial Average traded 300 points higher, or 1.3%. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite gained 1.6% and 1.7%, respectively. Tech was the best-performing sector in the S&P 500, gaining 1.8% as Apple climbed over 2%. 

For the week, however, the Dow was down 2.5% while the S&P 500 has fallen over 1%. The Nasdaq was down 0.8% week to date. It would be Wall Street's first weekly decline in three. —Fred Imbert

3:51 pm: Navy recommends reinstating captain of coronavirus-stricken aircraft carrier

Captain Brett Crozier addresses the crew for the first time as commanding officer of the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt during a change of command ceremony on the ship's flight deck in San Diego, California, U.S. November 1, 2019.
U.S. Navy | Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Sean Lynch | Reuters

The U.S. Navy's top officials recommended that the