Coronavirus

EU Eases State Aid For Cos. As Banks Worldwide Pledge Help Funding

European Union

The coronavirus is spurring governments and companies to take action to help businesses and individuals. Here are the latest updates on the coronavirus around the world.

Margrethe Vestager, European Union antitrust chief, said businesses impacted by COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, will be able to get subsidized state guarantees on bank loans and state grants of as much as $551,200 with new temporary measures, Reuters reported. The official said the action would offer liquidity to keep businesses running as well as make sure there is consistency throughout the zone. Governments will also have the ability to facilitate private and public loans with interest rates that are subsidized through the proposed temporary structure.

In other news, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) provided new guidance on contending with the challenges encountered by companies and consumers amid the coronavirus pandemic, the Financial Times reported. Actions encompass letting customers cash in deposits with a fixed term ahead of schedule or waiving charges for savings accounts. More measures to assist mortgage borrowers are currently under discussion. The report also noted that cardholders who are in debt will now have until Oct. 1 to reply to communications from lenders without being cut off from their cards.

On another note, integrated payment processing firm Shift4 Payments has detailed multiple measures to help reduce the financial burden the coronavirus has caused, according to an announcement. The company is waiving online ordering fees, gift card fees, SkyTab mobile payment fees, SkyTab monthly data fees or overage charges, and SkyTab hardware costs. The company noted that many eateries are moving to delivery and takeout operations amid new limitations banning dine-in service.

Meanwhile, the World Bank has made an additional $2 billion in funds available for COVID-19 response, Reuters reported. The change will provide an overall $8 billion to the International Financing Corp. of the World Bank to help private companies and their staff impacted by the coronavirus’ economic effects.

In other news, as schools in the United States close, Burger King will soon start providing two complimentary kids meals for each adult meal, Bloomberg reported. Parent company Restaurant Brands International Inc. CEO Jose Cil told the outlet that the deal is for food ordered via the mobile phone app or online. As it stands, restaurants throughout the nation are moving to primarily delivery, drive-thru and takeout to cut down on human contact. The company official spoke following a conference call with President Donald Trump and those in the restaurant industry that had taken place earlier.

And, Bank of America said in an announcement that it is committing $100 million to help local communities amid the coronavirus. Bank of America Chairman and CEO Brian Moynihan said in the announcement, “We must all work together as one global community — public and private sectors, as well as individuals — to address this healthcare and humanitarian crisis.” The company said the funds will grow access to learning due to school closures and grow medical response capacity, among other issues.

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NEW PYMNTS DATA: HOW WE SHOP – SEPTEMBER 2020 

The How We Shop Report, a PYMNTS collaboration with PayPal, aims to understand how consumers of all ages and incomes are shifting to shopping and paying online in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our research builds on a series of studies conducted since March, surveying more than 16,000 consumers on how their shopping habits and payments preferences are changing as the crisis continues. This report focuses on our latest survey of 2,163 respondents and examines how their increased appetite for online commerce and digital touchless methods, such as QR codes, contactless cards and digital wallets, is poised to shape the post-pandemic economy.

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