Economy

States reopen even as coronavirus deaths mount: Here is this week's news recap and our best reads

People wait for a distribution of masks and food from the Rev. Al Sharpton in the Harlem neighborhood of New York, after a new state mandate was issued requiring residents to wear face coverings in public due to the COVID-19 coronavirus, Saturday, April 18, 2020.
Bebeto Matthews | AP

Here's a brief recap of the week. 

More states are looking toward reopening their economies as Americans grow restless under quarantine, even as White House medical advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci warned that coronavirus could return with a vengeance in the fall

The death toll from the virus in the U.S. now stands at 65,068, higher than the number of Americans who fell during the Vietnam War. More than 1.1 million people have been infected in the U.S.

As the death toll mounts, so does the economic fallout. The nation continues to hemorrhage jobs, with unemployment claims topping a staggering 30 million for the past 6 weeks. The Federal Reserve vowed to hold interest rates at zero for the duration of the crisis as Chairman Jerome Powell acknowledged the economy will need more stimulus for a robust recovery. 

The Paycheck Protection Program reopened this week after receiving another $310 billion in funding for small businesses, though the money is going fast again. The Small Business Administration shut big banks out of the electronic portal for eight hours Wednesday to give small lenders a chance to have their clients processed.

Tech earnings were hit by the pandemic, with Amazon planning to spend all $4 billion of its Q2 profits on the response to coronavirus. United Airlines, meantime, posted its biggest quarterly loss since the 2008 financial crisis. 

There was some good news on the treatment front amidst the gloom — early results from drug trials of Gilead's remdesivir showed 50% of patients improved. The FDA has granted the drug emergency-use authorization

Those are the headlines. Here are CNBC's best deep dives from the week. 

Trump push to keep meatpacking plants open comes as pork producers profit from China trade deal

A farmer checks on young female pigs at a hog farm in Smithville, Ohio on Thursday, April 30, 2020.
Dane Rhys | Bloomberg | Getty Images

President Donald Trump's executive order this week requiring American meatpacking plants to stay open during the coronavirus pandemic is raising new questions about the United States' massive meat exports, particularly the export of pork to China. Read the full story here.

The market is rebounding on hope for a treatment, new index tracking coronavirus-drug makers shows

A new CNBC index that tracks the stock performance of companies working on a coronavirus cure shows just how closely the broader stock market rebound is pegged to a viable Covid-19 treatment or vaccine. Read the full story here.

Coronavirus patients describe symptoms that last a month or more

Teresa Rodriguez
Source: Teresa Rodriguez

Patients diagnosed or suspected to have Covid-19 are posting via online forums and on social media about symptoms that feel endless. Many say it comes in waves. Read the full story here

This pregnant Goldman Sachs trader says Wall Street will never be the same after the coronavirus

Moran Forman of Goldman Sachs, 33, in her home office in the Chelsea neighborhood of New York.
Source: Goldman Sachs

For decades, Wall Street has been a place rooted in vast physical rooms filled with tightly-packed rows of monitors, specialized phones called turrets and workstations operated (mostly) by men between the ages of 22 and 45. This culture survived every calamity, manmade and otherwise, to happen to institutional trading in the last 20 years.

But now, after the coronavirus pandemic forced traders to work from home, Wall Street has gone virtual, setting off a cultural shift that is only beginning to be understood. Read the full story

Big money donors are pressuring Joe Biden against picking Elizabeth Warren for VP: 'He would lose the election'

Former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) react during a break at the Democratic Presidential Debate at Otterbein University on October 15, 2019 in Westerville, Ohio. A record 12 presidential hopefuls are participating in the debate hosted by CNN and The New York Times.
Win McNamee | Getty Images

Donors concerned about a Biden-Warren ticket are worried about a range of issues, from Democrats potentially losing her seat in the Senate to Warren being possibly too divisive on the campaign trail against President Donald Trump.

Other financiers have privately encouraged Biden to hold back on choosing a running mate and focus on issues connected to Americans' struggles with the coronavirus, which has infected more than a million in the U.S. and cost the economy more than 30 million jobs. Read the full story

How a handful of Apple and Google employees came together to help health officials trace coronavirus

Singapore's contact tracing app, TraceTogether, which is being used as a preventive measure against the Covid-19 coronavirus in the city-state.
Catherine Lai | AFP via Getty Images

One of the most ambitious projects in Apple history launched in less than a month, and was driven by just a handful of employees. Read the full story here

The biggest US mall owner prepares to reopen 49 properties. Here's how that will work

VIDEO2:2502:25
Simon Property Group to reopen 49 malls and shopping centers

Simon Property Group is reopening 49 of its malls and outlet centers Friday through Monday, a memo said, including Haywood Mall in Greenville, South Carolina, and Lenox Square in Atlanta. Read the full story here

Fed holds rates near zero — here's what that means for you

Although the federal funds rate, which is what banks charge one another for short-term borrowing, is not the rate that consumers pay, the Fed's moves still affect the borrowing and saving rates they see every day. Read the full story here