Coronavirus live updates: Fed’s Bullard calls shutdown ‘massive investment in public health’

About Covid19 signs are seen at the Times Square in New York City, United States on March 20, 2020.

Tayfun Coskun | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images

This is CNBC’s 24-hour blog covering all the latest news on the coronavirus outbreak. All times below are in Eastern time. This live blog will be updated throughout the day as the news breaks.

  • Global cases: More than 311,000
  • Global deaths: At least 13,407
  • U.S. cases: At least 26,747
  • U.S. deaths: At least 340

The data above was compiled by Johns Hopkins University

8:39 am: Airlines tell Congress they need cash coronavirus aid or thousands will be furloughed

U.S. airlines on Saturday warned they will have to furlough workers unless Congress approves a $58 billion aid package that includes grants, not only loans, as the industry reels from the impact of coronavirus.

Senate Republicans last week proposed legislation that included a $58 billion in aid for passenger and cargo carriers, but in the form of loans airlines would later have to repay.

“Time is running out,” wrote the CEOs of SouthwestDeltaAlaskaAmericanUnitedJetBlueHawaiianUPS Airlines and FedEx, and their lobbying group, Airlines for America, to congressional leaders. It was one in a series of grim messages from airline chiefs and labor unions this week about the abrupt collapse in bookings that coronavirus caused and the potential toll on workers. “Unless worker payroll protection grants are passed immediately, many of us will be forced to take draconian measures such as furloughs.”

U.S. airlines employ close to 750,000 people and airlines are now shrinking their international networks to the smallest in decades, cutting thousands of domestic flights, parking hundreds of jets and urging employees to take unpaid leave, in a bid to save cash as demand crumbles. —Leslie Josephs

7:42 am: Fed’s Bullard says shutdown is not a recession but an investment in survival

In normal times massive unemployment and a collapse in economic output would be tragic.

This time, as the coronavirus cloisters millions of Americans and shuts down the U.S. economy, it should instead be saluted as an investment in public health that lays the groundwork for a rapid rebound.

That is the view of St. Louis Federal Reserve President James Bullard, who argues that a potential $2.5 trillion hit coming to the economy is both necessary and manageable if officials move fast and keep it simple. It may seem an unconventional view in a moment of global anxiety, but Bullard argues the shutdown measures now being rolled out are essential to shortening the course of the pandemic.

They must also be coupled with massive federal government support to sustain the population through its coming isolation and prime the economy to pick up where it left off.

To Bullard that means: Match any lost wages. Match any lost business. No questions asked. —Reuters

6:51 am: Spain’s death toll passes 1,700, cases exceed 28,000

Spain’s death toll rose to 1,720 from  a previous count of 1,326 on Sunday, according to multiple media reports citing the most recent health data, which also reported cases at 28,572 from a previous tally of 24,926. Spain is currently under nationwide lockdown. 

Spain’s prime minister is seeking to extend the country’s 15-day state of emergency, first declared on March 14, for a further 15 days to stem the spread of the coronavirus outbreak, which is the second-worst in Europe. 

4:48 am: U.K. receives new ventilator prototypes: housing minister

Manufacturing of new ventilators should start “quickly,” U.K. Housing Minister Robert Jenrick said Sunday, discussing the first of the new ventilator prototypes the country has received to help its health services fight the coronavirus pandemic. 

“We’ve been overwhelmed with offers of support. There’s now a number of manufacturers who are working with us,”  Jenrick told Sky News in an interview Sunday. There are currently 13,000 ventilators available for use by the country’s National Health Service, he said, but stressed that more are needed.

Read CNBC’s coverage from CNBC’s Asia-Pacific and Europe teams overnight here: Spain death toll passes 1,700, India begins curfew

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