JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon returns to work after heart surgery, recovering 'well'

Dimon: America has world’s most dynamic health care system

In an exclusive interview, JP Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon argues lawmakers need well-designed health care policy without killing the ‘golden goose’ of America’s dynamic system of health care.

JPMorgan Chase Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon has returned to lead the largest U.S bank, after recovering from recent heart surgery, according to an internal memo to employees seen by Reuters.

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Dimon, who is working remotely due to the widespread lockdown caused by the coronavirus outbreak, had an emergency heart surgery on March 5 to repair a tear to his aorta.

In an email to employees on Thursday, Dimon said he was "happy to be back to work this week".

"I have been recuperating well and getting stronger every day," said Dimon, who is widely seen as the face of the U.S. banking industry.


"These are unprecedented times, and like all of you, my heart goes out to the individuals and families most affected by COVID-19," he said.

While Dimon was away for surgery, the bank's co-presidents and co-chief operating officers, Daniel Pinto and Gordon Smith, were running the daily operations at JPMorgan.

In March, Reuters reported that Dimon's recovery from the surgery was going well and that he could be back to work as soon as mid-April.


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Genius Dyson fan creates 'natural breeze' in your house – and lets you change humidity with an app

DYSON has unveiled its most elaborate "fan" yet – a three-in-one heater/cooler, purifier and humidifier.

The smart fan even promises to create a "natural breeze" in your home, and can be controlled via an app.

It's appropriately named the Dyson Pure Humidify + Cool, and is designed to tackle the problem of "dry air" at home.

One of the big selling points of Dyson's humidifier technology is that it promises to be "clean".

Part of the problem with general humidifiers is that they rely on a water tank, which can quickly become a breeding ground for bacteria.

But Dyson's fan(cy) new gizmo uses UV-C light to damage the bacteria in the water.

It says this process happens within one-trillionth of a second, and ensures that 99.9% of bacteria in the water is denatured and killed.

This water is then pulled through into the core machine to provide humidification throughout the home.

As with previous fans, Dyson also promises heating and cooling controlled by a remote or smartphone app.

And Dyson has also bundled in its air-purification tech too – which is good news for allergy sufferers.

One of the quirkiest new features is the new "Breeze Mode'.

Dyson's engineers used sensors to collect 40million data points about how wind moves.

And they've used that info to recreate what they say is a "natural outdoor breeze" using the Dyson fan.

The barrels of the fan oscillate in very specific patterns to create a breeze-like airflow – but indoors.

"People are often surprised that at Dyson we have a team of highly skilled microbiologists and an array of high-tech biochemistry labs, to properly research the problems we want to solve," said Dyson's Charlie Park.

"Combining this knowledge with key engineering principles like aerodynamics, filtration and sensing, Dyson engineers and scientists developed a three-in-one, year-round machine to tackle dry, dirty air and maintain a comfortable indoor environment."

You can control the new Dyson entirely using a smartphone app.
This includes the ability to schedule the fan to switch on or off at certain times – and the tasks you'd like it to perform.

And for anyone with access to an Amazon Echo, you can also control the Dyson fan using Alexa – i.e. with your voice.

The new model costs £599.99, and is available in White/Silver.

In other news, Dyson recently unveiled a sci-fi robot vacuum cleaner.

Dyson has invented "purifier headphones" that blow "clean air" into your mouth.

Dyson recently unveiled a sci-fi lamp that transforms the light it projects throughout the day.

And, Dyson unveiled a handful of new sci-fi gadgets last year – you can ready about them here.

Are you tempted by this Dyson fan? Let us know in the comments!

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Varney: Trump's performance against coronavirus 'not looking good' for Democrats

Varney: Trump looks good in the polls amid coronavirus

FOX Business’ Stuart Varney on the Democrats’ attempt to take down President Trump once the coronavirus passes.

FOX Business’ Stuart Varney, in his latest “My Take,” argues that President Trump’s managing of the coronavirus outbreak only leaves the Democrats in a bad position for the upcoming election.

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“We are seven months from the election and the Democrats know they have a problem,” he said. “Likely candidate Joe Biden is sidelined and gets no traction. The primaries and the Milwaukee convention are in chaos.”


Varney said, worst of all for Democrats, Trump’s performance during the coronavirus outbreak has given him popular approval and is boosting him in the polls.

“At this stage, the Democrats are not looking good,” he said.

President Donald Trump speaks about the coronavirus in the Rose Garden of the White House, Monday, March 30, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Varney said he believes Speaker Nancy Pelosi has “something up her sleeve” such as a new round of investigations after calling for an “after-action review.”

“You know what that means,” he added. “After the virus, investigate the president’s actions and come up with some dirt. Some kind of scandal. And put it all on national television!”


According to Varney, Congressman Adam Schiff has already joined Pelosi’s efforts by demanding a “9/11 style” commission.

“There is no end to the Democrats' contempt for this president,” Varney said. “Adam Schiff is just dying to get back on television.”

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi signs the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act after it passed in the House on Capitol Hill, Friday, March 27, 2020. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Varney said Democrats have tried to “smear” President Trump with Russia investigations and impeachment and now they’re “at it again.” Varney believes there's nothing else the Democrats can do but “investigate and come up with an October surprise.”


“It’s a desperate political strategy … what a gamble,” he said. “If it fails, it surely opens the door to a second Trump term.”

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Luckin, China’s Starbucks Rival, Plunges 81% on Accounting Probe

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Luckin Coffee Inc. plunged as much as 81% on Thursday after the company said its board is investigating reports that senior executives and employees fabricated transactions.

The company’s announcement that Chief Operating Officer Jian Liu and several employees reporting to him engaged in misconduct casts doubt on the foundations of the Chinese coffee chain’s meteoric rise and its emergence as a key competitor to Starbucks Corp.

Liu and others have been suspended and investors shouldn’t rely on previous financial statements for the nine months ended Sept. 30, the company said. The transactions in question occurred last year and totaled about 2.2 billion yuan ($310 million), according to the filing.

“Certain costs and expenses were also substantially inflated by fabricated transactions during this period,” Luckin said, while noting the special board committee investigating the matter hasn’t independently verified the figure.

The coffee chain, founded in 2017, operated about 4,500 stores by the end of 2019 in China, and has aimed to upset Starbucks’ dominance of the Chinese market. Its goal had been to open 10,000 stores by the end of 2021.

The shares plunged after Muddy Waters tweeted on Jan. 31 that the company had a short on the stock after it received what it called a “credible” unattributed 89-page report that alleged accounting issues with the chain and a broken business model. Luckin Coffee denied the allegations.

That followed the company raising $778 million from a share sale and a convertible bond offering in early January, according to people familiar with the deal. The company raised $645 million in a U.S. listing in May 2019.

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Coronavirus masks, apps: The race is on to avoid hidden carriers

Tech ‘supplements’ teaching, learning through coronavirus: American Federation of Teachers President

American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten discusses how educators are shifting learning methods during the coronavirus outbreak.

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PARIS — The worldwide race to protect people against unwitting coronavirus carriers intensified Thursday, pitting governments against each other as they buy protective gear and prompting new questions about who should wear masks, get temperature checks or even be permitted to go outside.

In the Chinese city of Wuhan, where the pandemic began in December, a green symbol on residents' smartphones dictates their movements. Green is the "health code" that says a user is symptom-free and it's required to board a subway, check into a hotel or enter the central city of 11 million. Serious travel restrictions still exist for those who have yellow or red symbols.


In northern Italy, the country with the most virus deaths in the world at over 13,000, guards with thermometer guns decide who can enter supermarkets. In Los Angeles, the mayor has recommended that the city's 4 million people wear masks. Same goes for grocery store customers in Austria.

And a top health official in France's hard-hit eastern region said American officials swooped in at a Chinese airport to spirit away a planeload of masks that France had ordered.

In this April 1, 2020 photo, a passenger scans a QR code to get his green pass at a subway station in Wuhan in central China’s Hubei province. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)

"On the tarmac, the Americans arrive, take out cash and pay three or four times more for our orders, so we really have to fight," Dr. Jean Rottner, an emergency room doctor in Mulhouse, told RTL radio.

A study by researchers in Singapore on Wednesday estimated that around 10% of new infections may be sparked by people who carry the virus but have not yet suffered symptoms.

In response, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention changed how it defined the risks of infection, saying essentially that anyone may be a carrier, whether they have symptoms or not. But neither it nor the World Health Organization changed their recommendations that everyone did not have to wear masks.

Nine leading European university hospitals warned Thursday they will run out of essential medicines for COVID-19 patients in intensive care in less than two weeks. The European University Hospital Alliance said countries should cooperate, not compete, to ensure a steady supply of these drugs for critically ill virus patients.


Spain reported a record number of daily virus-related deaths, 950 in 24 hours, bringing its total deaths to 10,003 even as its infection rate appeared to be slowing.

In the United States, from New York to Los Angeles, officials warned that the worst is still ahead.
"How does it end? And people want answers," New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said. "I want answers. The answer is nobody knows for sure."

In this March 18, 2020 file photo, visitors to the Department of Labor are turned away at the door by personnel due to closures over coronavirus concerns in New York. (AP Photo/John Minchillo, File)

New York state's coronavirus death toll doubled in 72 hours to more than 1,900. Cuomo has already complained that U.S. states are competing against each other for protective gear and breathing machines, or being outbid by the federal government.

President Donald Trump acknowledged that the federal stockpile is nearly depleted of the personal protective equipment needed by doctors and nurses.

"We're going to have a couple of weeks, starting pretty much now, but especially a few days from now, that are going to be horrific," he said.

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said even a "tucked-in bandanna" could slow the spread of the virus and remind people to keep their distance from each other.

"I know it will look surreal," he said, donning a mask. "We're going to have to get used to seeing each other like this."

In Japan, where masks are a household stable, the government planned to mail two gauze masks each to the country's 50 million households.


In Greece, authorities placed an entire refugee camp of 2,400 people under quarantine Thursday after discovering that a third of the 63 contacts of just one infected woman tested positive — and none had showed symptoms.

Altogether, more than 952,000 people around the world have contracted the virus, according to Johns Hopkins University. More than 48,000 have died from the virus and another 202,000 have recovered.

The real figures are believed to be much higher because of testing shortages, differences in counting the dead and mild cases that have gone unreported. Critics also say some governments have been deliberately under-reporting cases in order to avoid criticism.

Frank Ulrich Montgomery, chairman of the World Medical Association, on Thursday called China's recent low figures on coronavirus infections "nonsense," but added that many countries are working with uncertain data.

In Italy, a new study found a hidden toll from coronavirus in the province of Bergamo, more than doubling the official number of 2,060 dead to a new estimate of 4,500.


As hot spots flared in New Orleans and Southern California, the nation's biggest city, New York, was the hardest hit of them all. Bodies were being loaded onto refrigerated morgue trucks by forklifts outside overwhelmed hospitals.

"It's like a battlefield behind your home," said 33-year-old Emma Sorza, who could hear the sirens from Elmhurst Hospital in Queens.

Cuomo said projections suggest the crisis in New York will peak at the end of April, with a high death rate continuing through July.

For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough.

But for others, especially older adults and people with health problems, it can cause severe symptoms like pneumonia and lead to death.

More than 95% of those who have died of coronavirus in Europe have been older than 60 but young people should not be complacent, WHO said Thursday.

"Young people are not invincible," Dr. Hans Kluge told reporters. The U.N. health agency says 10% to 15% of people under 50 with the disease have moderate or severe cases.

Major global stock markets and U.S. futures rose Thursday following a rocky start to the day.

Many countries are now modeling their response to the virus after China, which in January closed off an entire province of over 70 million people.

People in Wuhan, once the epicenter of the crisis, are starting to return to work, tracked by a smartphone app that shows if they are free of symptoms.

Walking into a subway station, Wu Shenghong, a manager for a clothing manufacturer, used her phone to scan a barcode on a poster that triggered her app. A green code and part of her identity card number appeared on the screen and a guard wearing a mask and goggles waved her through.

If the code had been red, that would tell the guard that Wu was infected or had symptoms and was awaiting a diagnosis. A yellow code means she had contact with an infected person but hadn't finished a two-week quarantine.

People with red or yellow codes "are definitely not running around outside," said Wu, 51. "I feel safe."

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US jobless claims hit 6.6 million as coronavirus layoffs continue

More than 6.6 million Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week as the coronavirus continued to gut the US labor market, the feds said Thursday.

The seasonally adjusted number of initial jobless claims reported by the US Labor Department surpassed the prior week’s record-shattering revised total of 3.3 million — another signal that the pandemic will cause unemployment to skyrocket.

The figure blew past experts’ expectations for another surge in unemployment claims in the last full week of March as states imposed strict rules aimed at stemming the spread of the deadly coronavirus, leading many businesses to close and lay off workers. Economists surveyed by Reuters predicted 3.5 million claims, though banking giant Goldman Sachs expected 6 million.

The latest grim number came ahead of the federal government’s monthly jobs report on Friday. Experts say the closely watched report will understate the full impact of the crisis because it only covers the first part of March, before the worst of the virus-related job losses.

More than 80 percent of Americans are living under lockdown measures that have brought economic activity to a screeching halt in large swaths of the country, raising fears of a deep recession. The resulting surge in jobless claims has overwhelmed state unemployment offices, whose crashing websites and jammed phone lines have prevented some workers from applying for benefits at all.

Some experts say the recent claim numbers suggest the nation’s unemployment rate will more than quadruple thanks to the pandemic. The true rate likely exploded to 17 percent in March from a 50-year low of 3.5 percent that the feds reported for February, according to a projection by William M. Rodgers III, the Labor Department’s former chief economist.

“We anticipate the largest one-month spike in the unemployment rate in history, which underscores the critical importance of extending support to working families and those who have recently lost their jobs,” Rodgers and Andrew Stettner wrote in their report for the Century Foundation, a progressive think tank.

Congress and President Trump have tried to staunch the economic bleeding with a $2.2 trillion stimulus package that expanded eligibility for unemployment benefits and increased the amount of payments by $600 a week. Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has expressed support for another stimulus bill, though it’s uncertain whether Republicans will join the push.

With Post wires

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BoE Holds Rate, QE; Sees Risk Of Longer-Term Damage From Covid-19 Outbreak

Policymakers of the Bank of England unanimously decided to hold the interest rate at a record low and asset purchase programme and signaled further easing if required.

The bank also noted risk of longer-term damage to the economy from the coronavirus, or covid-19 outbreak.

At the regular policy meeting, the Monetary Policy Committee governed by Andrew Bailey decided to maintain the interest rate at 0.1 percent and the quantitative easing at GBP 645 billion.

The bank had altogether reduced the rate by 65 basis points at two unscheduled meetings this month. At a special meeting on March 19, the bank had cut its bank rate by 15 basis points and expanded bond purchases by GBP 200 billion.

The MPC said it can expand asset purchases further if needed. The committee said it stands ready to respond further as necessary to guard against an unwarranted tightening in financial conditions, and support the economy.

The economic consequences of the spread of the coronavirus are becoming more apparent and a “very sharp reduction” in activity is likely, policymakers noted. There is a risk of longer-term damage to the economy, especially if there are business failures on a large scale or significant increases in unemployment.

The nature of the economic shock from Covid-19 is very different from those to which the MPC has previously had to respond, the bank said.

The scale and duration of the shock to economic activity, while highly uncertain, will be large and sharp but should ultimately prove temporary, particularly if job losses and business failures can be minimized, the bank added.

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Martin Lewis on why a mortgage holiday could be a ‘no brainer’ – but is it right for you?

The impact of the coronavirus UK epidemic is not only having a devastating impact on people’s health, but much of the population will have been affected financially too. During these unprecedented times, Money Saving Expert founder Martin Lewis has been answering questions from concerned members of the public.


  • Furlough loophole leaves employee with no income in coronavirus crisis

Today, he appeared on the BBC radio show 5 Live Breakfast.

During the segment, a caller asked about the mortgage holiday option for those affected by coronavirus.

It came as presenter Nicky Campbell explained that many homeowners have expressed concerns that they could encounter issues further down the line.

Explaining what applying for a break in payments from the lender means, Mr Lewis replied: “It’s a mortgage payment holiday – you apply to have a payment holiday and that means you do not have to make your mortgage payments for three months.”

He went on to put this into context, giving the example of a person who has 20 years left on their mortgage term when they apply for the mortgage payment holiday.

The financial journalist explained that at the end of the three months, the term remaining would be 19 years and nine months.


“You will have to pay all that you would have paid and the interest accrued over those three months over the 19 years and nine months,” he said.

While conceeding that this situation may sound scary to borrowers, he went on to explain what it means in practice.

“If you had a £700 a month mortgage – that’s how much you’re paying now. You put a three-month mortgage holiday and you had 20 years left at the start of that three months, your mortgage payments would increase from roughly (and it depends on your mortgage rates – give me wriggle room) but roughly £700 a month to £712 a month for the remainder of your mortgage.

“So, to get that cash flow gain now, you’ll be paying £12 a month more for the rest of your mortgage period.”

So, is getting a mortgage holiday the right move for everybody?

Mr Lewis pointed out that for some people who have been hit by coronavirus, the short-term freeze on outgoings for mortgage payments may be of benefit – although that’s not to say it would be for everyone.


  • Mortgage lenders to offer extension for home movers hit by coronavirus

“For most people who are in emergency and need those funds, that means this is a ‘no brainer’,” he said.

“The immediate impact of the cash flow being reduced now easily easily outweighs having to pay £12 more a month on £700.

“Obviously, the shorter your mortgage and the higher your interest rate, the bigger the gap.”

Elsewhere in corononavirus news, in the past two weeks during the coronavirus crisis, 950,000 people have applied for Universal Credit – up from around 100,000 in a normal two-week period.

Around a quarter, 70,000 of applicants of around 270,000 applications in one work, applied for an advance payment.

The DWP has said that around 10,000 existing staff are being moved to process new claims.

Amid the unprecedentaded demand, those looking to put in a claim for Universal Credit or Employment and Support Allowance are being told they should apply online.

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Senate Passes $2 Trillion Coronavirus Stimulus Package

Senate passed a $2 trillion fiscal stimulus package intended to provide economic relief during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

The Republican-majority Senate unanimously approved the measure with all 96 members present voting in favor late Wednesday. The Bill is expected to pass through the House on Friday, and President Donald Trump said he won’t delay signing the fast-tracked bill once it passes the Congress.

Speaking ahead of the final vote, which was delayed by a dispute between Republican and Democratic senators over unemployment benefits, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said, “Our nation is obviously going through a kind of crisis that is totally unprecedented in living memory”.

He described the bill as a “war-time level of investment” in the country, providing financial assistance to individuals and companies.

The massive bill includes $250 billion in direct payments to individuals and families, $350 billion in small business loans, $250 billion in unemployment insurance benefits and $500 billion in loans for distressed companies.

The legislation will provide direct payments of $1,200 to individuals making up to $75,000 a year, $2,400 to couples making up to $150,000 and an additional $500 per child.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said the bill includes “unemployment compensation on steroids,” expanding eligibility to self-employed workers and increasing the maximum benefit by $600 a week for four months.

The Bill would provide increased oversight of a proposed $500 billion corporate bailout fund, which had been a key sticking point among Democrats.

It also reportedly includes $130 billion in funding for hospitals as well as $150 billion for state and local governments.

The coronavirus disaster aid bill, the largest economic stimulus in U.S. history, comes at a time various government agencies are attempting to contain the COVID-19 outbreak as schools, businesses and public events in the country are closed or canceled.

COVID-19 death toll in the United States has crossed 1000, and more than 70,000 people have been infected with the virus.

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Refunds to come slow as airline revenues choke

International airlines are offering affected passengers an option of refund, vouchers, discounts on future bookings, and the opportunity to hold tickets for up to two years following travel bans.

Travel agents are anticipating long delays in ticket refunds on account of a surge in requests and the stressed financial condition of airlines.

International airlines are offering affected passengers an option of refund, vouchers, discounts on future bookings, and the opportunity to hold tickets for up to two years following travel bans.

Refunds are being processed as per applicable rules, which could include a cancellation fee.

Travel agents, however, say there is an uncertainty over how soon the refunds would be paid.

“We do not know whether it will take one week, one month, or even longer,” said Rajat Bagaria, national joint secretary of the Travel Agents Federation of India.

Last week, travel agents, airline executives, and the International Air Transport Association (IATA) representative held a tele-conference on issues related to agents’ remittances and refunds.

Full service airlines give agents seven days to make payments for ticket sales.

In a normal scenario, agents deduct the refund amount while making their weekly remittance.

But in March, several airlines suspended this facility and asked agents to make separate refund applications that would be processed by their finance teams.

“Agents have not received the refund money from airlines.

“Customers who enjoy credit, too, have not paid and advances given to low-cost airlines are stuck as flights are suspended,” Bagaria added.

“Travel agents are handicapped and many will have to pay their March salaries out of their pocket.

“April is an even bigger challenge for agents, as there are zero sales,” said Madhav Oza, director of Blue Star Air Travels.

Cathay Pacific said the airline was receiving an increase in refund requests.

“While we endeavour to process refunds quickly, the process may take longer than normal.

“We have already started initiating refunds for passengers who have booked tickets through our direct channels,” it said.

An Emirates spokesperson, said: “Our teams are working round the clock to assist impacted passengers, and with the scale of our operations, there is a substantial backlog, that will take time to process.”

Lufthansa said reimbursements (refunds) remain possible in principle, but in the current situation it is not possible within the usual limits. The German airline is also offering a €50 discount on rebooking and an option to choose a new destination.

  • Coronavirus Attack

Photograph: Reuters

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