GBP - British Pound
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has been hospitalised for tests on Sunday and is expected to stay overnight after failing to shake off coronavirus symptoms, which included having a high fever for over ten days. Prime Minister Boris Johnson is "still very much in charge of the government" despite spending the night in hospital with coronavirus, Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has said. Downing street wanted to make it clear that this was purely a "precautionary step" taken on the advice of his doctor. Jenrick told BBC Breakfast: "We hope that as a result of these tests [the prime minister] will be able to come back to Downing Street as soon as possible. US President Donald Trump is among those who has sent his wishes to Mr Johnson. "All Americans are praying for him. He's a great friend of mine, a great gentleman and a great leader," Mr Trump said, adding that he was sure the prime minister would be fine because he is "a strong person".
Though only 9,291 cases (as of last Friday) have been confirmed in London, according to a study by some of the UK government's scientific advisors, one in 15 people living in London could already be affected with the coronavirus. Imperial College London’s Covid-19 Response Team estimate that between 1.2%-5.4% of the UK population may have already been infected by 28th March.
In Scotland, the chief medical officer has resigned after making two trips to her second home during the coronavirus lockdown. Dr Catherine Calderwood had apologised for her actions, and initially said she planned to continue in the role. She was backed by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, who said Dr Calderwood had made a mistake but should stay in her job but Dr Calderwood released a statement later on Sunday saying she had quit. The UK government released specific advice that trips to a second home were forbidden under the lockdown guidelines.
US unemployment’s claims doubled to 6.6million last week from 3.3million between 15th-22nd, that’s over 10million Americans filling for unemployment in March. Gap, Kohl’s and Macy’s alone have put more than 227,000 workers on unpaid leave last week which will inevitably affect the up and coming U.S economic figures. Following on from the record surge in job losses, mortgage Lenders are preparing for one of the biggest wave of delinquencies in history. With 30% of Americans holding a home loan, it’s expected 15 million could stop paying their monthly repayments if the U.S economy is to remain closed throughout the summer or beyond, according to research published by Moody’s.
Russia and Saudi Arabia, along with other large oil producers are attempting to negotiate on an oil supply deal to stem the market from a crash. Some progress was made on Sunday although CNBC reports that the virtual meeting between OPEC and its allies scheduled for Monday, April 6 has been postponed as tensions mount between Saudi Arabia and Russia. Oil soared nearly 50% last Thursday on its biggest ever one-day rally after US President Trump stoked hopes of a supply cut deal led by Saudi Arabia and Russia to alleviate the price collapse triggered by the tensions between the two countries a few weeks ago.
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