Glacier FarmMedia COVID-19 & the Farm

Global Markets: lockdown in northern Italy

By MarketsFarm

WINNIPEG, March 10 (MarketsFarm) – The following is a glance at the news moving markets in Canada and globally.

– Large swaths of northern Italy are under lockdown in order to stymie the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus. All travel in the northern peninsula must be avoided, unless justified by professional or health-related reasons, according to Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte. Italy reported more than 400 deaths from COVID-19 as of Monday night, which is over 50 per cent of the deaths outside of China. The restrictions will be in place until April 3.

– Both Ashraf Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah were inaugurated as Afghanistan’s president on Monday. Ghani was voted into office nearly six months ago, though the election was contested due to record low turnout and allegations of vote-rigging. As Ghani’s political rival, Abdullah also declared himself the winner, and organized a concurrent swearing-in ceremony. The inter-country feud has added another layer of complication to ongoing peace talks between the United States, Afghanistan, and the Taliban. According to Al Jazeera, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo issued a statement saying that Washington “strongly” opposes the creation of a “parallel government and any use of force to resolve political differences.”

– After oil prices plummeted by 30 per cent on Monday, world leaders are planning to announce new policies to protect and stimulate economies. U.S. President Donald Trump has mentioned “major steps” to safeguard the economy, but no concrete details have been announced. Australia’s economic plans will be announced later today, and Prime Minister Scott Morrison said he plans to “keep businesses in business.” Japan has also announced a stimulus package totaling US$4 billion.

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