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Daily COVID-19 Updates: May 13

May 13, 2020
Powell Warns of Permanent Economic Damage; Boeing Finishes April with 0 New Sales; Manufacturers Doing Their Part

The slow reopening of America is still ongoing despite concerns from scientists that doing so without following safety guidelines could cause a “second wave” of COVID-19 infections to cross the country. Disturbingly, South Korea and China have begun re-testing citizens in affected areas after both countries, believed to have stopped the virus cold weeks ago, began noting new cases.

Jerome H. Powell, chair of the Federal Reserve, also had alarming news. He warned publicly that the current, COVID-19-driven economic depression was one “without modern precedent” which could lead to permanent damage if enough financial support was received. Powell praised existing relief efforts, but said the recovery “may take some time to gather momentum,” but that costly additional funding would be worthwhile.

In Congress, House Democrats unveiled a fifth COVID-19 bill which would allocate more than $3 trillion more in relief funding to states, cities, hazard pay funds, another round of individual payments, and the Post Office. Senate Republicans publicly dismissed the bill as premature and some of the items as Democratic “pet priorities.” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, in comments to reporters, said the country should try to find a “middle ground” between sustained lockdowns and “total normalcy.”

Tesla Reaches Deal with County to Reopen Fremont Factory Next Week

Tesla Motors’s latest clash with local officials appears to be over, as county officials have announced they and the electric-vehicle company have come to an agreement. According to the officials, manufacturing will be allowed to resume next week. Elon Musk, Tesla Motors CEO, has made no bones about his opposition to the length of the quarantine orders and openly defied the officials by reopening the plant for production on Monday and Tuesday.  

Boeing Finishes April with 0 New Sales

According to records posted on Boeing’s website today, the Chicago-based aerospace manufacturer failed to sell any new planes during the month of April, and to date has marked -516 net orders in 2020.

The COVID-19 virus has hammered domestic air travel, leading to dozens of cancellations from cash-strapped airlines, even as Boeing contends with the remnants of the 737 MAX fallout and its own factories’ lost production from being shut down in March. Read the full story here.

Manufacturers Doing Their Part

Keter North America, a global manufacturer of outdoor furniture, leisure, and storage products, announced today it had begun producing reusable face shields at factories in Anderson, Indiana and Milton, Ontario. According to Keter, the facilities each have the capacity to make about 50,000 face shields a week.

Novelis, an aluminum producer and recycler, announced today it had donated $180,000 in cash and PPE to local hospitals, food banks, community health organizations, and school systems. 

About the Author

Ryan Secard | Associate Editor


Focus: Workforce and labor issues; machining and foundry management

Associate Editor Ryan Secard covers topics relevant to the manufacturing workforce, including recruitment, safety, labor organizations, and the skills gap. Ryan has written IndustryWeek's Salary Survey annually since 2021 and has coordinated its Talent Advisory Board since September 2023.

Ryan got started at IndustryWeek in August 2019 as an editorial intern and was hired as a news editor in 2020 before his 2023 promotion to associate editor, talent. He has a Bachelor of Arts in English from the College of Wooster.

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