Wall Street Journal 
Wall Street Journal Saturday March 28, 2020 [CCLXXV, US ed.]

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How Will The Pandemic Change Our World?

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HHHH $5.00

Trump Signs Record Stimulus Law

What’s News

House-approved relief package of $2 trillion offers aid to combat damage of pandemic

 U.K. Prime Minister Johnson became the first leader of a major government to announce testing positive for the virus. A1  The Trump administration is preparing to suspend collection of import tariffs for three months to give U.S. firms financial relief amid the pandemic. A9

WASHINGTON—President Trump signed a roughly $2 trillion economic-rescue package into law, hours after House lawmakers hustled back to the By Siobhan Hughes, Natalie Andrews and Lindsay Wise Capitol to pass the aggressive response to the coronavirus pandemic that has staggered the U.S. economy. The bill is the largest relief package in U.S. history and extends aid to many struggling

 A retired Venezuelan general surrendered to U.S. counternarcotics authorities a day after prosecutors indicted him. A13

Confusion and dread as loved ones fought a relentless pandemic

Raju Sarker had been sick in his dormiployer that morning to go to the hospital, tory for two days, staying away from the nor about his cough, persistent and draining. Singapore construction site where he The next day, he ignored her calls altogether. worked. He had a headache and chills. His He’d speak to her when he felt a little better, stomach didn’t feel right. He was exhausted. he thought, and texted: “I’ll call you later.” But on a phone call At the hospital, docwith his wife on Feb. 5, tors sent him straight This article was reported by Niharika the 39-year-old put on to the intensive-care Mandhana in Singapore, Drew a brave face. She was unit. A mysterious new Hinshaw in Warsaw, Kim Mackrael in back home in Banglavirus had emerged in Ottawa, Eric Sylvers in Milan and desh, two months from China and begun Suryatapa Bhattacharya in Tokyo, and giving birth. Mr. Sarker, springing up in neighwas written by Ms. Mandhana. hoping for a baby girl, boring countries, inhad been thinking cluding Singapore. Mr. about what his firstborn would call him: Sarker didn’t know much about it, except Baba, or perhaps Abba. that since Lunar New Year in January, he “Don’t worry,” he said, ending the conver- and his team, which installed informationsation in under two minutes. He didn’t tell technology infrastructure in data centers Please turn to page A10 his wife he had borrowed $250 from his em-

 China cleared Goldman and Morgan Stanley to take majority control of their local securities businesses. B10  The SEC is giving public companies additional time to file annual reports and other major disclosures. B10

NOONAN My Corona (or Is It Schmutz?) A17 NOTICE TO READERS The World Health Organization has said it is safe to handle newspapers during the coronavirus pandemic. The Wall Street Journal’s printing plants and delivery services, though, are taking precautions, frequently cleaning equipment and facilities while reducing human contact with the newspaper. A digital version of the print edition also can be viewed at https://www.wsj.com/itp. Markets..................... B11 Obituaries............... A13 Opinion.............. A15-17 Sports....................... A14 Style & Fashion D2-5 U.S. News............. A2-3 Weather................... A14


WASHINGTON— President Trump ordered General Motors Co. to sharply ramp up the production of ventilators to treat coronavirus patients, turning to a wartime presidential power that he had been reluctant to use. Mr. Trump on Friday invoked the Defense Production Act, or DPA, which dates back to the Korean War and gives the president powers to require businesses to produce

Five Lives. Five Countries. How Virus Swept the Globe.



 Boeing is set to emerge as a big winner of the stimulus package, even if the company declines to seek direct taxpayer help. B1


goods tied to national defense. For weeks he had said that the threat of invoking the DPA was sufficient. Previously he likened using the DPA to nationalizing American business. He reversed course Friday, saying GM was “wasting time” in negotiations with the federal government. With the number of confirmed cases of Covid-19—the disease caused by the new coronavirus—topping 100,000 in the U.S. on Friday, worries about a ventilator shortage have grown all the more urgent. GM was already working toward wide-scale ventilator production through a collaboration struck last week with medical-device firm Ventec Life Please turn to page A8

EXTRAORDINARY: Pope Francis delivered Friday an ‘Urbi et Orbi’ blessing, usually given only at Christmas and Easter, praying to end the coronavirus outbreak.


 Measures to curb the coronavirus could lower GDP in the U.S. and other developed countries by a quarter, the OECD said. A7  The Fed is reviewing new ways to support financing for state and local governments amid the pandemic. A9


Business & Finance

 Major U.S. stock indexes posted double-digit gains for the week, but they sank Friday and remain down more than 20% in 2020. B1

 Fed reviews ways to support financing for states............... A9

President orders GM to make ventilators, invoking wartime act as outbreak worsens

Alone in St. Peter’s Square, the Pope Streams a Prayer to the World for the Pandemic’s End

 States are exploring ways to expand voting by mail and early voting ahead of the November election to make sure balloting proceeds if the pandemic persists. A5

 Trump ordered GM to sharply ramp up the production of ventilators to treat coronavirus patients, turning to a wartime presidential power that he had been reluctant to use. A1

Normally, a civil servant— the disbursing officer for the payment center—would sign federal checks, said Don Hammond, a former senior Treasury Department official. The measure passed the Senate 96-0 earlier in the week and had overwhelming support in the House as well. But it needed to clear one last hurdle on Friday after Rep. Thomas Massie (R., Ky.) tried to force a recorded vote, arguing it would be irresponsible to use a voice vote on such a large bill. This angered many fellow lawmakers, who said making them show up in person risked spreading coronavirus and Please turn to page A6

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rump signed a roughly $2 trillion economicrescue package into law, hours after House lawmakers hustled back to the Capitol to approve the aggressive response to the coronavirus pandemic. A1  The U.S. surpassed 100,000 confirmed cases of the virus, led by a continued jump in infections in New York and in new hot spots across the country. A7


Americans through direct payments and expanded unemployment insurance. The package provides loans and grants to businesses, augments drained state coffers and sends additional resources to sapped health-care providers. “I want to thank Democrats and Republicans for coming together and putting America first,” Mr. Trump said Friday in the Oval Office. He added, in a nod to the size of the package: “I never signed anything with a T on it.” Mr. Trump has told people he wants his signature to appear on the direct-payment checks that will go out to many Americans in the coming weeks, according to an administration official. The White House didn’t comment.

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CONTENTS Books..................... C7-12 Business News...... B3 Design & Decor. D10-11 Food......................... D6-8 Gear & Gadgets D12-13 Heard on Street...B12

A Guide to Superior Slumber

PANIC ATTACK Why market panics happen—and what investors can do about it. B1

Global Gold Rush Has Bankers Searching for Bars i



Shortage spooks preppers and investors alike; ‘looking through the cupboard’ It’s an honest-to-God doomsday scenario and the ultimate doomsday-prepper market is a mess. By Liz Hoffman, Amrith Ramkumar and Joe Wallace As the coronavirus pandemic takes hold, investors and bankers are encountering severe shortages of gold bars and coins. Dealers are sold out or closed for the duration. Credit Suisse Group AG, which has minted its own bars since 1856, told clients this week not

to bother asking. In London, bankers are chartering private jets and trying to finagle military cargo planes to get their bullion to New York exchanges. It’s getting so bad that Wall Street bankers are asking Canada for help. The Royal Canadian Mint has been swamped with requests to ramp up production of gold bars that could be taken down to New York. With staff reduced at the Royal Canadian Mint because of the virus, the governmentowned company is producing only one variation of bullion bars, according to Amanda Please turn to page A2

Britain’s Boris Johnson Tests Positive for Virus BY MAX COLCHESTER AND BOJAN PANCEVSKI LONDON—British Prime Minister Boris Johnson became the first leader of a major government to announce he has tested positive for the new coronavirus, highlighting a challenge many governments may face as they seek to confront an unprecedented peacetime crisis. Mr. Johnson said his symptoms were mild and that he would continue to lead the country while he confined himself to his residence for a week. “I am working from home,” said Mr. Johnson in a video he posted online, adding that he would continue to li-

aise with his team “thanks to the wizardry of modern technology.” The 55-year-old’s diagnosis raises questions about whether other senior British politicians and officials leading the pandemic response have been infected. Later, leading members of his coronavirus team— Health Secretary Matt Hancock and Chief Medical Officer for England Chris Whitty—said they were isolating at home after Mr. Hancock tested positive and Mr. Whitty said he had developed symptoms. The heir to the British throne, Prince Charles, said Wednesday he had the virus. The prime minister’s illness Please turn to page A12

Researchers Probe Ways Infection Attacks Body BY SUMATHI REDDY It starts, most often, with a cough or a sneeze. Thousands of tiny, often invisible droplets of saliva or mucus disperse in the air. You walk by—within 6 feet of the offender—and inadvertently inhale the droplets. The novel coronavirus that causes Covid-19 begins like most other respiratory viruses. But scientists are still studying how the virus in some patients progresses to the lungs, causing viral pneumonia, difficulty breathing, and even death. The race to understand what happens in the body when someone gets infected comes as global death tolls spiral, patients flood emergency rooms, and hospitals clamor for supplies. Doctors have been forced to learn much about how the virus works as they go. There are some things scientists know based on how similar respiratory viruses work. That coupled with recent case reports from patients in China and Washington state have given scientists a basic underPlease turn to page A13

THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC The U.S. surpasses 100,000 confirmed cases, A7 MIT project will track patients via their phones, A9 Italy’s slow progress is a warning to the West, A12

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A2 | Saturday/Sunday, March 28 - 29, 2020



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THE NUMBERS | By Jo Craven McGinty

What Will It Take to Flatten the Curve? Without intervention

Capacity of U.S. health-care system

With intervention 0 Days since first case

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

overwhelmed, they predict. Suppressing the virus, according to their model, would require populationwide social distancing combined with home isolation of people with symptoms and school and university closings. The interventions would need to begin before hospitals become overwhelmed and remain in place for at least five months— perhaps longer. Abandoning the strategy before a vaccine or other treatment is developed and administered, they warn, could allow the pandemic to rebound. The evidence of that po-

tential outcome is the 1918 flu pandemic, when transmissions resurged after interventions were lifted. The researchers acknowledge there are many uncertainties, but they believe this strategy is the one most likely to ensure new infections won’t exceed U.S. and U.K. hospitals’ critical-care capacity—although they declined to estimate how many people might still die if these precautions are taken. “That’s just too difficult to give a clear answer to at the present time,” said Steven Riley, a professor of infectious-disease dynamics at Imperial College London who

disruptive or enduring as what they recommend has been attempted previously, and they didn’t analyze the social or economic hardships such extreme measures might cause. But one way to reduce the disruption, they said, would be to implement adaptive restrictions that are eased or tightened as transmissions of the virus ebb and flow, using the number of cases at any given time as a trigger to switch interventions on or off. In a study published this week, researchers at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health who examined intermittent distancing found that an “on” threshold of 37.5 cases per 10,000 people would keep the number of critical-care patients below 0.89 per 10,000 adults. “The need for intense social distancing is very strong,” said Marc Lipsitch, a professor of epidemiology at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health who contributed to the work. “People who get infected today take an average of around three weeks before they are sick enough to need intensive care, if they’re going to get that sick.” We have to act now, he said, to protect ourselves three weeks from now.

worked on the analysis. “If we look at China, they have achieved very low levels of incidence, so we would forecast very few deaths in the near future.”


he less aggressive strategy of mitigation modeled by the researchers calls for home isolation of people with symptoms of Covid-19, voluntary home quarantine of confirmed cases, and social distancing of people older than 70 (the group most at risk). Policies for isolation and quarantine would endure for three months, while requirements for social distancing of those over age of 70 would remain in place for one month longer. If this were done, the researchers predicted around 1.1 million Americans and 250,000 Britons would die, and demand for hospital critical-care beds would exceed the supply by a factor of eight. “Perhaps our most significant conclusion is that mitigation is unlikely to be feasible without emergency surge-capacity limits of the U.K. and U.S. health-care systems being exceeded many times over,” the researchers wrote in their analysis. They acknowledge that no public-health intervention as

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n the absence of interventions, that means 2.2 million Americans and 510,000 Britons could die, according to the projections, with hospitals’ critical-care capacity exceeded as early as the second week of April. “The world is facing the most serious public health crisis in generations,” Neil Ferguson, director of Imperial College’s MRC Centre for Global Infectious Disease Analysis, said in a statement. (He developed symptoms last week and self-isolated.) The Imperial College researchers evaluated two strategies to flatten the curve: mitigation focused on slowing but not stopping the virus’s spread and suppression aimed at reducing the average number of personto-person transmissions to less than one. (It’s currently around 2.2.) Only suppression—the most disruptive intervention—would prevent the health-care systems in the U.S. and U.K. from being

Interventions such as banning public gatherings can spread out a pandemic, preventing hospitals from being overloaded.

Number of daily cases

collaboration with the World Health Organization project that 4.4% of Covid-19 infections will require hospitalization. Of that number, 30% will need critical care, such as a ventilator. And half of the critically ill patients will die.

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By now you’ve heard the phrase “flatten the curve.” It refers to the quest to slow transmissions of Covid-19 so the accumulating number of infections looks like a gentle slope instead of a vertiginous spike. The matter is urgent, according to infectious-disease experts who’ve modeled strategies to curb the spread. Reining in the virus, they say, requires immediate and drastic social distancing. To be effective, the interventions must last for months— not just days or weeks—and to avoid overloading hospitals, they must cut transmissions by more than half. If instead the virus is allowed to multiply unchecked, a deluge of patients is expected to overwhelm healthcare systems that aren’t equipped to handle the number of people who will need treatment. Already, the U.S. has confirmed more than 100,000 cases, a figure that has doubled or tripled every three days for nearly a month. With widespread transmissions, even a fraction of critically ill patients could strain hospitals. Experts at Imperial College London in



Global Gold Rush Is On



Golfer Love’s Home Is Destroyed in Fire

The house of Hall of Fame golfer Davis Love III was destroyed by fire Friday morning in a blaze that couldn’t be con-

Continued from Page One Bernier, a senior sales manager. She said the mint has received “unprecedented levels of demand,” largely from U.S. banks and brokers. The price of gold futures rose about 9% to roughly $1,620 a troy ounce this week—that is 31.1034768 grams, per the U.K. Royal Mint—and neared a seven-year high. Only on a handful of occasions since 2000 have gold prices risen more in a single week, including immediately after Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy in September 2008. “When people think they can’t get something, they want it even more,” says George Gero, 83, who’s been trading gold for more than 50 years, now at RBC Wealth Management in New York. “Look at toilet paper.” Gold has been prized for thousands of years and today goes into items ranging from jewelry to dental crowns to electronics. For decades, the value of paper money was pinned to gold; tons of it sat in Fort Knox to reassure Americans their dollars were worth

something. Today they just have to trust. President Nixon unpegged the dollar from gold in 1971. The government still holds lots of gold in Fort Knox, though not as much as it did decades ago. The Federal Reserve Bank of New York has a massive gold stash. That gold isn’t released on the open market, though; it’s held as national reserve. London is the hub of physical gold trading that often changes hands. Gold is popular with survivalists and conspiracy theorists but it is also a sensible addition to investment portfolios because its price tends to be relatively stable. It is especially in-demand during economic crises as a shield against inflation. When the Federal Reserve floods the economy with cash, like it is doing now, dollars can get less valuable. “Gold is the one money that can’t be printed,” said Roy Sebag, CEO of Goldmoney Inc., which has one of the world’s largest private stashes, worth about $2 billion. (He’d rather not say where, for obvious reasons.) There are two ways to own gold: in bars or coins or jewelry stored in bank vaults, or in futures contracts traded on an exchange, which guarantee the holder a certain amount of gold at a certain price on a certain date. Those contracts trade on

trolled, even with 16 firefighters arriving within minutes, the fire chief said. No one was injured. Mr. Love, a former PGA champion and two-time Ryder Cup captain, is one of the most prominent figures at Sea Island. It is part of the “Golden Isles” about 40 miles north of the

Florida state line. He runs a PGA Tour event at Sea Island Golf Club, and the area is home to several PGA Tour players. Glynn County Fire Chief R.K. Jordan says the emergency call was placed from the horse barn at Mr. Love’s house at 5:18 a.m. —Associated Press

CME Group Inc.’s Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. The problem? Much of the world’s gold is in London and has been since the 17th century, when the Bank of England set up a vault. Today, the Bank of England says it has the second-largest collection of gold in its vault, behind only the New York Fed. The disruptions this week pushed the gold futures price, on the New York exchange, as much as $70 an ounce above the price of physical gold in London. Typically, the two trade within a few dollars of each other. That gulf sparked a highstakes game of chicken in the New York futures market this week. Sharp-eyed traders

started snapping up physical delivery contracts, figuring banks would have trouble finding enough gold to make good and they would be able to squeeze them for cash. That set off a scramble by banks. Goldmoney’s Mr. Sebag said bankers were offering him $100 or more per ounce over the London price to get their hands on some of his New York gold. Wade Brennan, a former gold trader at Scotiabank who now runs an investment firm called Kilo Capital, said he had heard from bankers in the U.S. who were literally checking the corners of their vaults for any gold that might have been overlooked. “Everyone’s looking through the cupboard,” he said.

CORRECTIONS  AMPLIFICATIONS The State Department offered a total of $60 million for the arrest and capture of several people charged with drug trafficking and conspiring with terrorists: $15 million for Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro, $10 million for each of four other top current and former officials, and $5 million for a senior member of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC. In some editions Friday, a World News

article about the charges incorrectly said the State Department offered a total of $65 million for the arrest and capture of Mr. Maduro and four current and former officials. Dave Matthews was booked for a live-stream performance on Twitter on Thursday, March 26. A Life & Arts article Thursday about what to watch incorrectly said the performance was scheduled for Wednesday.

Readers can alert The Wall Street Journal to any errors in news articles by emailing [email protected] or by calling 888-410-2667.


Man Is Accused Of Threatening Pelosi

A judge ruled that an 83year-old man charged with killing a camping couple in a Wisconsin park in 1976 isn’t mentally com-

A Texas man remained jailed Friday on federal charges that he made online posts threatening Democrats, including U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Gavin Perry, 27, of Wichita Falls, was charged Wednesday with transmitting a threatening communication in interstate commerce. Prosecutors said he wrote on Facebook that Democrats, including Rep. Pelosi, “will be removed at any cost necessary and yes that means by death.” Court records didn’t list a lawyer who could speak for him. —Associated Press

Getting gold to New York, where it can be sent on to gold dealers, jewelers, dentists and electronics makers, is a heavy lift in the best of times, and, it turns out, quite tricky during a pandemic. Most gold bars are stowed in the cargo hold of passenger planes. Security firms such as Loomis Group, which arrange the flights and meet planes on the tarmac, don’t like to move more than about five tons on any flight, in case the plane crashes and because of high insurance costs. From there, the haul is trucked under heavy guard to New York warehouses. For those able to deliver, there is big money to be made. In normal times, it costs

around 20 cents to fly an ounce of gold, just under 20 cents to melt the bars down and refabricate them to match New York’s delivery standards, and another 10 cents or so in financing costs, according to a retired senior gold trader. (London bars are heavier than those in demand in New York.) So if New York prices are $1 an ounce higher than in London, a bank can make $80,000 moving five metric tons of gold—almost risk-free. At Tuesday’s prices, the same load would net $11 million in profit, minus the cost of chartering the jet. ——Anna Isaac, Jacquie McNish and Alistair MacDonald contributed to this article.

The St. Simons Island, Ga., home of Hall of Fame golfer Davis Love III was destroyed by fire early Friday morning. No injuries were reported.


A New York City subway operator was killed and 16 passengers injured early Friday in a train-car fire under investigation as one in a string of possible arsons in subway stations, police officials said. Police, paramedics and firefighters responded to 911 calls reporting the fire on a northbound 2 train at the 110th Street subway station at Lenox Avenue in Manhattan’s Harlem neighborhood just after 3 a.m., according to transit and New York Police Department officials. Heavy smoke and fire was reported coming from the second car of the train, NYPD Deputy Chief Brian McGee said. After Fire Department of New York firefighters put out the fire, officers tended to three men and one woman suffering from smoke inhalation. A 36year-old man identified as a train operator by transit officials was discovered on the tracks and taken to Mount Sinai Hospital, where he was pronounced dead. Arson investigators are probing several other fires at three other subway stations, according to police officials. —Ben Chapman


Subway Operator Dies; Arson Possible

petent to stand trial. Marinette County Court Judge James Morrison ruled Thursday that Raymand Vannieuwenhoven didn’t understand the proceedings and couldn’t assist in his own defense against two counts of firstdegree murder. Mr. Vannieuwenhoven was charged last year in the fatal shootings of David Schuldes, 25, and Ellen Matheys, 24, in Silver Cliff, about 200 miles north of Milwaukee. Investigators didn’t have any major leads until 2018, when a Virginia lab identified the genealogical background of the suspect. —Associated Press


Defendant Unfit for Trial in 1976 Killings

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Saturday/Sunday, March 28 - 29, 2020 | A3

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The Charging Bull, usually ringed by crowds snapping photos, was pretty much on its own in lower Manhattan, as New York banned all large gatherings to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

New York Feels ‘Like the Twilight Zone’

From his perch working on the upper floors of 222 Broadway, Mr. Levy looks out on a silent city: darkened windows, deserted streets, shuttered businesses. Blocks south, as markets opened on Wednesday morning, an empty cobblestone plaza gave the New York Stock Exchange the air of a mausoleum. There is no morning rush hour at the Oculus transportation hub in the shadow of the World Trade Center. “It’s like the Twilight Zone,”

rush hour, the daily White House news briefing projected from one of Times Square’s largest LED screens. The shop windows in Midtown’s Diamond District were bare—no diamonds, just unadorned necklace stands. It was the same in a nearly deserted Chinatown: Nearly all the noodle shops, tea houses, restaurants and other businesses were closed. On Chinatown’s “Funeral Row,” the storefront shelves at Fook On Sing Funeral Supplies Inc. were empty. Normally, the windows there are full of miniature models of sports cars and mansions, so the dead may enjoy these luxuries in the afterlife. The dim corridors of Penn Station typically teem with commuters. Now, the daily racket of rolling luggage, squeaking sneakers and buzzing conversation has been replaced with soft jazz, played

over the building’s PA system. “This is the cleanest and clearest I’ve ever seen it,” said Netta Arnold, a therapist from Orange, N.J., who was among just a handful of people waiting for a commuter train. Even in normal times, New Yorkers have a particular understanding of personal space. They generally will tolerate being pressed tight against strangers in a packed subway car, but bristle at a stranger who sits too close if the train is empty. The coronavirus has altered and magnified this dynamic. Some sidewalks aren’t wide enough to allow passing pedestrians to keep the 6-foot distance recommended by officials, so they turn their heads, or step aside with a solemn nod, or veer into the streets. As New Yorkers have withdrawn from Manhattan offices, activity has picked up in other boroughs such as Queens and

Brooklyn, where more than half the city lives. On warm afternoons, Prospect Park in Brooklyn is thronged with cyclists, runners and children playing roller hockey. The city shutdown—mandatory, but difficult to enforce— has touched off disputes about proper social-distancing practices. Set foot on a basketball court, or post a picture from a crowded sidewalk, and you’ll hear about it. “I just want people to get with the program,” said Jan Combopiano, a voting-rights activist from Brooklyn. The shutdown also has drawn people together. Jim Walton, a veteran Broadway actor who grew up in Indiana, said the virus has made New Yorkers more friendly, in a small-town way. “I’ve waved and smiled at people as if we’re all in this together,” he said.

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By Rebecca Davis O’Brien, Will Parker and Charles Passy

Thousands of restaurants and small businesses are shuttered, leaving tens of thousands of workers without jobs. Sent home on the orders of Gov. Andrew Cuomo, office workers no longer crowd Midtown lunch stands. The tourist engines of the city have shut down. The lights of Broadway still advertise for canceled shows. The sidewalk outside Macy’s flagship store, in normally jam-packed Herald Square, is so quiet you can hear nearby HVAC systems humming. The few sightseers remaining step freely into the streets to capture views of a deserted New York City. Police officers leave their cars to take selfies in the middle of empty intersections. “It’s like 6 a.m. on a Sunday morning, but all the time.” said Brian O’Flaherty, an office-building manager still commuting from Long Island. During Tuesday’s evening

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Mr. Levy said. “That energy you get from New York—it’s all the people. Now there’s no people. It feels like you are in a quiet, sleepy town.” The eerie silence that has settled over New York is all the more striking because of the chaos unfolding, largely out of sight, in the city’s hospitals, which officials say are running out of room and equipment. The wails of ambulances pierce the air of quiet neighborhoods; nearly empty subway trains transport health-care workers around the clock. New York City has ground to a near halt as it battles the new coronavirus pandemic. The scope and speed of the change to the streetscape— and the growing human toll— has left many New Yorkers reaching for comparisons with past moments of collective trauma, such as 9/11 and superstorm Sandy in 2012.

Before dawn on Wednesday, Brian Levy, a union electrician, drove to work in Manhattan’s Financial District from his home on Long Island. The commute, normally clogged by traffic, took half as long—the roads were nearly empty.


Some of the nation’s most selective colleges became slightly less selective this year, as Harvard University, Dartmouth College and the University of Pennsylvania posted increased acceptance rates for the first-year class that will begin in the fall. Harvard admitted 1,980 candidates, or 4.9% of the 40,248 who applied. Last year, it offered spots to 30 fewer students, while receiving almost 3,100 additional applications, for a record-low 4.6% acceptance rate. Dartmouth, meanwhile, accepted 8.8% of applicants, up from a record-low 7.9% last year. And Columbia University’s admit rate rose to 6.1% from 5.3%, as applications dropped by almost 2,500 and the school admitted around 220 more students. The eight campuses making up the Ivy League, as well as a number of other highly selective colleges, notified applicants Thursday evening of who secured a slot for the coming fall’s first-year class. This is a challenging period for colleges, as the coronavirus pandemic has scrambled enrollment projections for their next classes. It is unclear how many students will be able to travel for the start of the next academic year, whether residence halls will be open, and whether families can afford tuition payments amid rapidly deteriorating economic conditions. Some schools moved students over to the admit pile from the wait list or “deny” group at the last minute, to help ensure they can enroll a full class. Acceptance rates can continue to shift as schools turn to their wait lists to round out their classes, so numbers aren’t considered final until the start of the school year. The uptick in acceptance rates at many exclusive schools reverses a yearslong trend that had generated a frenzy of competition—and scrutiny over just how each


Law and order is changing across America during the novel coronavirus pandemic, as police pull back on arrests for smalltime crimes and focus on breaking up gatherings that pose health risks, while coping with the perils of a job that can’t be done with social distancing. In Houston, three officers have tested positive for the coronavirus after apprehending a mentally ill man on the street last week who had flulike symptoms. “You can’t exercise social distancing when you’re taking police action,” said Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo. “It’s part of the risk we take.” In New York City, 236 police employees have tested positive, and 8.9% of the New York Police Department’s uniformed officers called in sick Wednesday, more than three times as high as a normal day. Large agencies such as New York’s can use overtime and staggered shifts to cover for sick or quarantined officers, but most of the nation’s 18,000 police departments can’t. “If you’ve got a department of 50 officers and you get 10 of them that get it, that’s really a difficult issue,” said Tom Manger, retired police chief of Montgomery County, Md. “On the flip side, most departments are seeing many fewer calls for service and the crime rates are really plummeting because no one’s out.” So far, crime has fallen on the empty streets of most big U.S. cities, including San Francisco, the first major city to order residents to stay at home. Serious crimes in New York City were down last week compared with a year ago, except for a 50% increase in car thefts. In Chicago, both violent and property crime are slightly below normal levels. In Dallas, violent and property crimes fell last week compared with the previous week. Law-enforcement officials are paying close attention to


Admit Rates Edge Up At Ivy League Schools


Police Practices Are Changing As Pandemic Grips the Country

A Chicago officer tells a cyclist that park trails are closed, part of efforts to fight the coronavirus. the ripple effects of paring back law-enforcement, mass layoffs and lockdown orders. With more people at home, police expect domestic violence to rise. With many shops closed, burglaries and thefts could increase, too. To help slow the spread of the virus, police chiefs are directing their officers not to arrest people for minor offenses and instead cite and release them. In Philadelphia, police are delaying arrests for nonviolent crimes such as drug offenses and prostitution. In Los Angeles, where eight officers have tested positive, petty criminals aren’t being jailed in some cases. “We are encouraging citing and releasing individuals for low-level nonviolent offenses and that is so we limit everybody’s exposure,” said Josh Rubenstein, a spokesman for the Los Angeles Police Department. Dallas police will no longer show up in person to take reports for car break-ins, graffiti and other minor offenses. Residents must file reports online. Two officers there have tested positive. In Chicago, arrests during the past week were down 46%, and traffic stops and investigatory stops were down 60% compared with a year ago. In Dallas, there have been

45% fewer arrests to date in March compared with the March 2019 period. New York City had a 42% drop last week when compared the same week last year. In Los Angeles County, arrests dropped from around 300 a day in normal times to about 60. In cities and states where residents have been ordered to stay at home, and nonessential businesses have been ordered to close, officers are shifting their time and energy to policing a new social order.

‘You can’t exercise social distancing when you’re taking police action,’ Officers in New York City are patrolling parks to enforce social distancing, visiting restaurants and bars to make sure they are closed, and checking supermarkets and public spaces to make sure crowds are sparse. In Warrenton, Mo., police arrested 26-year-old Cody Pfister for making a terrorist threat after he posted a widely shared video of himself licking items at a Walmart and saying,

“Who’s scared of coronavirus?” His lawyer, Patrick Coyne, said the situation is far different than when the video was made on March 10. “Everything has changed at warp speed, but that should not work retroactively and convert a tasteless and impulsive act into a criminal terrorist threat,” he said. Like many on the front lines of the pandemic, police are struggling with short supplies of face masks. They also are scrambling to sanitize squad cars that are occupied by a variety of officers and suspects. Officers on dangerous assignments are faced with decisions about whether to wear protective gear or not. Frederick Frazier, a Dallas police detective, said he chose not to wear gloves last week when a fugitive task force he is part of searched for violent offenders. “We’re not used to those gloves with our weapons,” he said. But some of the fugitives were taking no chances, he said. As they closed in to arrest an alleged marijuana dealer in East Dallas who was wanted for pointing a gun at a police officer, Det. Frazier could see that the suspect was wearing bright blue surgical gloves as he plied his trade. “Man, I don’t want to catch corona!” the man said, according to Det. Frazier.


coveted entry ticket is awarded. A 2018 civil trial laid bare Harvard’s admission practices, including the high offer rates for legacies, certain racial minorities and recruited athletes. And the Varsity Blues college-admissions scandal heightened skepticism over whether the admissions process is truly meritocratic. Yale’s acceptance rate edged up to 6.5% from 6.2% as that school continues to grow its undergraduate student body, and Penn’s acceptance rate rose to 8.1% from 7.7%. Brown University and Princeton University both posted drops in their admission rates: Brown slid to 6.9% from 7.1% last year, and Princeton edged down to 5.6% from 5.8%. Cornell University this year said it would no longer issue public statements highlighting its admission figures. Stanford University took that tack beginning two years ago, saying at the time that it hoped “to help de-emphasize the perceived importance of low admit rates at colleges and universities.” “While metrics such as application numbers and admissions rates are an area of focus for many as they review annual activity in higher education, Cornell’s thorough and holistic review processes mean that no one applicant’s chances can be guided by ‘averages,’ ” said Jonathan Burdick, vice president for enrollment. Cornell’s move comes amid a growing push to highlight metrics of a school’s quality beyond exclusivity, like student diversity, retention and graduation rates and job prospects. The class that will enter these storied institutions in the fall looks remarkably different from what the schools had just a decade or two ago, in terms of racial diversity, their families’ educational backgrounds and socioeconomic status. At Harvard, roughly 23% of new students’ families have annual incomes below $65,000.

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A4 | Saturday/Sunday, March 28 - 29, 2020
































Dispatches from the Nation’s Capital BY GABRIEL T. RUBIN NANCY PELOSI TRIED TO BAN LOBBYING by firms that receive funds as part of the coronavirus stimulus package, but the provision tucked into page 728 of House Democrats’ draft proposal quickly caught the eye of lobbyists who were assured by Hill contacts that the provision had no chance of being included in the final legislation hammered out by the Senate. “The corporation may not carry out any Federal lobbying activi-

after feeling pressure from Congress. It restarted in 2014 after it had repaid its $182 billion bailout. BILL HAGERTY, the former ambassador to Japan now running for Senate in Tennessee, is following President Trump’s lead and referring to the coronavirus as the “Wuhan coronavirus” or the “foreign virus,” terms rejected by public-health experts like Anthony Fauci. The Republican Hagerty was supposed to hold a telephone town hall meeting on Wednesday with White House adviser Larry Kudlow, and the event’s press release referred to the “Wuhan coronavirus” numerous times in quotes from Hagerty and Kudlow. The event was postponed. Hagerty has ratcheted up his anti-China rhetoric since leaving Japan, including writing a Breitbart op-ed last week blaming China for the virus’s spread. Trump says terms like “Chinese virus” aren’t racist, but told Fox News on Tuesday that he would stop saying it: “I decided we shouldn’t make any more of a big deal out of it.” Trump has taken issue with some Chinese

government attempts to blame the U.S. military for the virus, which experts agree began its spread in Wuhan. Hagerty told the Journal that he believes the Chinese government was to blame for the crisis, and that the U.S. “cannot allow them to rewrite history by deflecting blame for this deadly illness.” His former employer seems to agree: the State Department scuttled a G-7 joint statement because it didn’t call the coronavirus the “Wuhan Virus.” DEFICIT CONCERNS have been thrown out the window in a time of crisis, and proponents of larger government programs feel vindicated. “It’s actually a fascinating progressive moment, because what it’s shown is that all of these issues have never been about how are you going to pay for it,” Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said on a Bernie Sanders campaign live stream. Stephanie Kelton, a Sandersbacking economist, says there are plenty of other major programs that could be pursued without spending offsets, including canceling medical debt. Fiscal conservatives say that

CORONAVIRUS ATTACK ADS from Democratic groups debut against senators accused of selling stocks ahead of the market’s steep decline. Majority

MINOR MEMOS: Sports betting site puts odds on Trump using words like “tremendous” and “not our fault” in coronavirus daily press briefings.… New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo appears on his brother Chris’s CNN show, says “Mom told me I had to.”… Senators struggle with work from home, too: Illinois’s Tammy Duckworth forgets to mute conference call with Democratic Senate caucus, tells her toddler to “go potty and wash your hands then mommy will come downstairs.”

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‘He needs to continue to advocate for what we believe in,’ said one supporter.


Supporters of Bernie Sanders want him to stay in the presidential contest, despite an unlikely path to the Democratic nomination after a string of primary losses in March. The Vermont senator would have to completely upend the race by capturing more than 60% of the remaining delegates to overtake former Vice President Joe Biden and earn the party’s nomination to face President Trump in November. Mr. Biden’s allies have called for unity, but Mr. Sanders has shown no sign of leaving the race and has deflected questions about how long he will continue. In interviews with more than two dozen Sanders supporters, many of them acknowledged his second bid for the Democratic nomination was unlikely to be successful. But nearly all said they saw no reason for him to exit now, and most of those in states with primaries still to come said they planned to vote for the senator. Backers said the coronavirus pandemic that has shut down much of the U.S. highlights the need for many of Mr. Sanders’s signature issues, such as a Medicare for All health insurance program. They hope that his continued presence in the race will pressure the Democratic Party and Mr. Biden to adopt more of Mr. Sanders’s policies. “I think he should not give up, even if it looks like he’s not going to be the nominee. He needs to continue to advocate for what we believe in,” said Luis Yofe, 67 years old, who works in the travel industry and lives in Dallas. “For us to be enthusiastic, Biden and the party will have to adopt, in the platform for the general election, some of the key principles that Bernie is advocating.” Mr. Biden has adopted some policies in a nod to liberals, including an expanded free-college program. Mr. Sanders has said the proposal doesn’t go far enough. “I’m happy to talk with him, and I’ve indicated that I also hear his supporters,” Mr. Biden said on ABC’s “The View” this week. “He’s had very strong support from young

people, and I hear them.” Democratic Party officials are set to meet in mid-July to decide on their platform and nominate the candidate who will take on Mr. Trump in the general election. To win the nomination on the first ballot at the convention, a candidate must earn 1,991 delegates, a majority of those awarded through state caucuses and primaries. As of Thursday afternoon, Mr. Biden had roughly 300 more delegates than Mr. Sanders. But since the coronavirus crisis prompted some states to delay their contests, Mr. Biden is unlikely to sew up the nomination quickly if Mr. Sanders remains in the race. In an interview with NPR Friday, Mr. Sanders said it would be “a very steep road” to overtake Mr. Biden. The uncertainty caused by Covid-19, the illness caused by the new coronavirus, has given some hope to a handful of Mr. Sanders’s supporters that he still has a shot at the nomination. They say that the crisis has highlighted the need for a Medicare for All system because millions of people who lose their jobs because of the illness could also lose their health insurance. “I think that the Covid stuff is maybe the absolute best possible thing for his campaign right now,” said Kirsten Southwell, 29, a senior de-



CONGRESSIONAL OVERSIGHT becomes a casualty of the pandemic. The House Judiciary Committee canceled a March 31 hearing with Attorney General Bill Barr. That hearing would have been Congress’s first chance to question him about the handling of Trump associate Roger Stone’s sentencing, which prompted all of the front-line Justice Department prosecutors to resign from the case. Many in Congress worry that oversight of the Trump administration’s coronavirus response will be impeded by social-distancing measures that could keep Congress out of session.

Forward is running spots in Georgia attacking the state’s GOP Sens. Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue, both up for election this year. Both have denied allegations that they profited from information about the virus’s expected damage by selling stocks after they received a briefing from health officials. Republicans see the threat of coronavirus-related ads: a proTrump Super PAC has sent cease-and-desist letters to TV stations in swing states to try to block them from airing ads about Trump’s response to the virus.

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Sanders Backers Want Him to Stay in the Race

current economic conditions are exceptional and akin to wartime, so normal spending rules don’t apply. “Larger deficits are not only an inevitability, but are, unfortunately, a necessity,” the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget said.

signer at the Art Institute of Chicago. “I think it really confirms a lot of the things that Bernie has talked about.” Ms. Southwell and others are hoping that voters will see Mr. Sanders’s reaction to the crisis and go for him in droves, giving him the significant margins he would need in every state going forward. Mr. Sanders returned to Vermont on Thursday after voting the night before on a roughly $2 trillion stimulus package aimed at bolstering the U.S. economy as it strug-



ties,” the House draft said. It was one of several conditions on federal aid to corporations in Pelosi’s bill. Others included bans on stock buybacks, restrictions on executive pay and a ban on paying dividends to shareholders until the federal assistance was fully repaid. Some of those corporate-accountability conditions were ultimately included in the Senate legislation. Some legal experts saw the lobbying provision as a Democratic messaging effort that wouldn’t have survived legal scrutiny. “It’s highly likely to be struck down as unconstitutional under the ‘unconstitutional conditions’ doctrine,” because it violates corporations’ First Amendment rights to petition the government, said Robert Kelner, a partner at Covington & Burling who advises companies on lobbying-disclosure rules. Lobbying by firms that receive bailout money was controversial during the financial crisis, too, and had uneven outcomes: Major banks continued to employ lobbyists, while American International Group took a yearslong break from lobbying

Bernie Sanders greeted the crowd at a rally in Spartanburg, S.C., at the end of February. Below, a Sanders volunteer yelled at passing cars in Dearborn Heights, Mich., earlier this month. Some supporters acknowledged the Vermont senator’s bid was unlikely to be successful. gles with the spread of the coronavirus. Aides say the campaign’s focus is on the day-to-day operation and responding to the pandemic rather than what Mr. Sanders’s future holds. The campaign hasn’t put up a TV ad in more than a week and has stopped soliciting donations via email to fund its operation, instead pulling in money to support organizations that are involved in coronavirus relief. However, the campaign is still accepting donations on its website and recurring funds are still being pulled in. The Vermont senator is doing frequent virtual briefings, at times bringing on progressive lawmakers and activists. Mr. Sanders hasn’t indicated any intention to quit the race. His spokesman said recently that he would participate in a presidential debate in April if the Democratic National Committee held one. “He is being extremely presidential and he’s showing us exactly the way a leader would act in this moment,” said Katherine Abegg, 43, a textile research and development manager who lives in Brooklyn. Ms. Abegg wasn’t alone in her passion for Mr. Sanders. Eleven of the 25 people interviewed by The Wall Street Journal said they would have

a difficult time voting for Mr. Biden in November and planned to write in a name at the top of their ballot, leave it blank or stay home on Election Day. Most of those who said they would not cast their ballots for Mr. Biden said they lived in states that were likely to vote for the Democrat anyway. However, some Sanders supporters in Arizona, a 2020 battleground state, Idaho and Tennessee, both of which generally vote Republican, also said they wouldn’t cast ballots for Mr. Biden. An aide to Mr. Biden declined to comment beyond pointing to polling that shows the former vice president leading Mr. Trump in swing counties. One Sanders supporter, 58year-old Brenda Wilson of Cleveland, said Mr. Sanders should exit the race soon. Ms. Wilson said she is likely to cast her ballot for Mr. Biden when Ohio votes in June. “I still love him,” she said of Mr. Sanders, adding that if he remains in the race, he could hurt Mr. Biden’s chances against Mr. Trump. “I’m a true believer if there’s a stronger candidate, we should go with you,” she said. —Ken Thomas contributed to this article.

Virus Pushes Trump to a Rose Garden Campaign Strategy BY GERALD F. SEIB Sometimes presidents choose to adopt a Rose Garden strategy to campaign for re-election, opting to make their case with the White House as a dramatic backdrop. President Trump was forced to adopt such a strategy because of the coronavirus, and he worked this week to make the most of it. Mean-


while, his real campaign is chugging along in virtual form below the radar screen. Technically, Mr. Trump is using a pressroom strategy, because the White House briefing room rather than the Rose Garden just beyond its doors has become his forum for staying in front of voters. He now makes almost daily appearances there for a late-afternoon briefing and jousting session with White House reporters. Other officials, including Vice President Mike Pence

and government health experts, are on hand too, but Mr. Trump is the clear star of the show. On Monday, his appearance stretched for almost two hours. That has caused TV networks to debate whether to continue airing the briefings live. Meantime, the president stirred controversy this week by using that setting to argue for reopening the country’s businesses sooner rather than later, sparking a backlash from experts who fear such a move is simply too risky.

Still, in political terms, the approach appears to be paying dividends. Mr. Trump’s job-approval rating has ticked up in a series of polls. In the rolling Gallup survey, his weekly average has moved into positive territory with 49% approving of his performance while 45% disapprove. Meantime, his campaign says it is utilizing digital tools to reach voters while much of the nation is shuttered. Between them, the Republican National Committee

and the Trump campaign say they have 550,000 trained volunteers. Last Saturday, the campaign says, supporters made 1.5 million calls from their homes to other voters, urging them to visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for virus guidance—while also touting Mr. Trump’s record and urging supporters to register to vote online if they can. “The Trump Campaign has a significant advantage because of our early and on-

going investment in data and technological infrastructure,” asserts Ken Farnaso, deputy press secretary for the Trump campaign. Former Vice President Joe Biden is reacting in kind. The presumptive Democratic nominee has geared up his own version of a Rose Garden strategy by setting up a mini TV studio in his Delaware home, from which he has delivered an online speech, held a conference call with reporters and conducted televised interviews.

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Saturday/Sunday, March 28 - 29, 2020 | A5

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Officials want balloting options if the coronavirus pandemic persists. Early voting and voting by mail have increased across the country over the past two decades. Election experts said the coronavirus pandemic could supercharge that trend, overhauling how elections are conducted and accelerating the shift away from voting in person at a local polling site on Election Day.

Election workers sorting vote-by-mail ballots by party for the presidential primary at King County Elections in Renton, Wash., this month. seeking advice from counterparts in Colorado, Washington and elsewhere that already rely heavily on mail-in voting. Colorado Director of Elections Judd Choate said last week that nearly a dozen states have contacted him asking for advice since the outbreak began. All states allow some voters to cast mail ballots, but a third of states apply conditions for residents to use that method, such as being away on Election Day or having a disability. Some states conduct all-mail elections, though they generally also offer in-person voting and ballot drop-off sites. The coronavirus has already caused some states to delay primary elections. Ohio ordered its polls not to open for its March 17 primary and state lawmakers passed a plan to extend voting by mail until April 28. Coronavirus is now counted by state officials as an acceptable reason to vote by mail in West Virginia’s May 12 primary. Maryland is conducting an April 28 special congressional election by mail to limit coronavirus exposure. Geor-

Mailing It In More voting is done early and by mail—a trend likely to get a boost from coronavirus. Share of U.S. general election votes that were: Absentee ballots

Vote by mail

Early vote


States with the highest share of early voting, vote by mail and absentee voting, 2016 Ore.




100.0 %



















’04 ’06 ’08 ’10 ’12 ’14 ’16


Source: U.S. Election Assistance Commission

gia’s secretary of state said absentee-ballot request forms will be mailed to every registered voter ahead of the state’s May 19 primary. Washington, D.C., said Friday it will encourage mail-in ballots for its June 2 primary. Election officials need months to prepare options for the November vote, a date set

vote early, like some did for Democratic presidential candidates who then dropped out before primary day. “If you want to have the safest election, you have people show up on Election Day,” said Mr. Ashcroft, a Republican. Others say voting by mail can pose other challenges, such as for voters with certain vision disabilities. Casting ballots by smartphone or laptop is discouraged by cybersecurity experts as vulnerable to tampering. Voting by mail gained renewed attention as a reliable way to vote after the intelligence agencies’ assessment about Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. Even those who support a rapid expansion of mail voting said scaling up wouldn’t be easy. “Our election infrastructure right now is not currently prepared for the dramatic increase in mail voting that we’re going to have to anticipate and allow,” said Wendy Weiser, head of the Democracy Program at the Brennan Center.

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WASHINGTON—States are exploring ways to expand voting by mail and early voting ahead of the November general election to make sure balloting proceeds if the coronavirus pandemic persists. Election officials from state and local governments across the country held conference calls over the past week with the Department of Homeland Security and other agencies on the logistical, financial and legal obstacles to rolling out expanded vote-by-mail initiatives, according to people who participated in the calls. A call on March 20 featuring the U.S. Postal Service looked at the feasibility of implementing widespread mail voting, including the costs for mail-in ballot services and whether they could be reduced. Another call this week included the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to assess the coronavirus threat over the rest of the year.

The relief package passed by Congress on Friday offers $400 million to the states for coronavirus contingencies involving elections, including voting by mail if states choose. Democrats had pushed to mandate vote-by-mail options in every state, but were rebuffed by Republicans, who said the matter should be left to the states. State and federal officials said that rapidly moving to vote-by-mail systems within a matter of months poses formidable challenges, among them how to quickly print, process and count ballots and guard against tampering. Giving all U.S. voters the option to vote by mail for the November general election could cost as much as $1.4 billion, generally on top of what states already spend, according to the Brennan Center for Justice, a public-policy think tank. “It’s not necessarily possible for every jurisdiction in the country to ramp up to full vote by mail by November,” said Ben Hovland, chairman of the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, a federal group that promotes best practices for elections, and one of the officials discussing options with states. “I think it’s fair for every jurisdiction to expect an increase in vote by mail in 2020, so we’re having a lot of conversations about what they can do to prepare for that.” The discussions are taking place in part through communication channels the Department of Homeland Security set up with state officials after the 2016 election to confront cybersecurity threats to elections. In looking for voting alternatives, election officials are

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States Weigh Expansion of Vote-by-Mail

by federal law, so they need to get contingencies under way. Missouri Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft said that while he is open to changes, a decision shouldn’t be rushed. He said his concerns include logistics and protecting mail ballots from tampering. And, he said, there could be problems for voters who mail ballots or




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A6 | Saturday/Sunday, March 28 - 29, 2020


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How Fast the Economy Crashed— And Washington Responded The Fed and Congress sped up the response to the coronavirus pandemic using strategies tested a decade ago in the financial crisis

There are similarities between the financial crisis of 2008 and the coronavirus pandemic of 2020. A sudden, jarring breakdown in the economy and markets, followed by a massive response from policy makers to try to prevent a 21st-

century Great Depression. One big difference: speed. Washington has this time done in weeks what took a year and a half back then. The first signs of the financial crisis emerged in August 2007, when securities backed by subprime mortgages plunged. Congress and the White House ultimately allocated about

$2 trillion to subdue the disaster. The final big piece wasn’t enacted until February 2009. This year, Congress has in March alone passed three laws throwing about the same amount of money at the problem, barely two months after the first officially reported coronavirus death in China.


By Jacob M. Schlesinger and Hanna Sender

Total funds authorized by Congress Since China reports first death from coronavirus (Jan. 11, 2020)

Since early signs of the financial crisis* (Aug. 7, 2007)

2.00 1.75 1.50

The USNS Mercy Navy hospital ship entered the Port of Los Angeles Friday to help with patients. Eleven weeks after coronavirus outbreak, Congress passes $2 trillion Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act.

Eighty weeks after the crisis began, President Barack Obama signs into law the $787 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

1.25 1.00

*BNP Paribas becomes first major financial institution to report major mortgage-related distress by freezing subprime mortgage funds.

$700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program

President Signs Big Stimulus

Continued from Page One would needlessly stall aid to Americans. To prevent a delay, House 0.50 $8 billion preparedness Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) bill and $100 billion worked with House Minority $300 billion stimulus bill 0.25 Leader Kevin McCarthy (R., Camortgageguarantee bill lif.) and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D., Md.,) to as$152 billion stimulus bill 0 semble a flotilla of rank-and-file legislators to stop Mr. Massie. 0 100 200 300 400 500 days Many Democrats and RepubliDAYS SINCE THE CRISIS BEGAN cans boarded red-eye flights back to Washington or took Back then, the Federal Reserve was first to act, and for months took the lead as politicians long road trips to reach the hesitated to deal with the unpopular cause of aiding the banks. In retrospect, the Fed was also quorum—216—needed to outbehind the curve, because it had to improvise measures. This time, the central bank has been flank Mr. Massie. His maneuver able to quickly pull off the shelf a tested crisis tool kit. would have succeeded only if the House lacked a quorum or 5.5% Federal Funds Target Rate Since China reports first death Since early signs of the if he had support from one-fifth from coronavirus (Jan. 11, 2020) financial crisis (Aug. 7, 2007) of the lawmakers to insist on a 5.0 Dec  roll call. Neither was the case. New short-term funding loan program “We have our differences, 4.5 but we also know what is important to us,” Mrs. Pelosi said 4.0 March  when she joined Mr. McCarthy Covers Bear Stearns losses loans to at a news conference after the 3.5 investment banks and securities dealers vote. “America’s families are important to us.” Sept  3.0 The vote came at a tense Converts Morgan Stanley Goldman Sachs to banks aid to AIG time. The Capitol is awash in March -4  2.5 Cuts rates revives anxiety over the novel coronavifinancial crisis measures Nov  rus, and two additional mem2.0 Pumps bers of the House—Reps. Mike $8 billion Kelly (R., Pa.) and Joe Cunninginto credit Oct  1.5 ham (D., S.C.) announced Friday markets Loans to moneymarket mutual funds they tested positive for the ill1.0 new commercial paper ness. In all, at least five lawmaklending facility ers have contracted Covid-19, 0.5 including one, Rep. Ben McAdNote: Target rate is reported as a range from Dec. 16, 2008. Source: Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve ams (D., Utah), who is on oxy0 gen support in the hospital. 0 100 200 300 400 500 days In the most dramatic moment DAYS SINCE THE CRISIS BEGAN of the floor debate, Rep. Haley Stevens (D., Mich.) donned pink latex gloves as she delivered an impassioned plea to pass the bill, talking beyond her minute of allotted time and shouting The decline also appears to be much Another difference: politicians worry when her own leader, Mr. Hoyer, deeper. At the low point of the great much less about the budget deficit. As urged her to suspend so he recession, gross domestic product Congress weighed a big stimulus bill in could extend her more time, contracted by an annualized 8%. Now, the early 2009, lawmakers labored to keep while some Republicans jeered. median “pessimistic forecast” for a group the price below $1 trillion—a number Lawmakers are already disof economists surveyed last week by The they feared would look excessive. The cussing what could be needed in Wall Street Journal was a 10% drop for the $787 billion measure was considered by a subsequent economic-relief quarter ending June 30. Morgan Stanley many economists to be too tepid for the package—which would be the sees a more severe decline, saying Sunday scale of the crisis. In the coronavirus fourth to address the health crithat GDP could fall 30.1% for that period. debate, the deficit gets scant mention. sis. Mrs. Pelosi has said she wants to see more worker-safety Real GDP, annualized growth rate Total federal government deficit protections, along with access to Quarterly $2.5 t̀rillion Decision free health care for those who Economics 4% become sick from the virus. Optimistic Company estimates Just five days earlier, the made in mid-March Baseline 2.0 2 third relief package had hit a snag, and such a quick turnMoody’s around on the legislation 0 Analytics seemed to be out of reach, acPessimistic $1.5 J.P. Morgan cording to interviews with Sen–2 ate leaders in both parties, ECONOMISTS’ other lawmakers, senior House Sources: –4 1.0 MEDIAN FORECASTS Commerce Congressional Democratic and GOP aides, and Department Budget Office The Wall Street administration officials familiar forecast made (GDP); Wall Journal last week –6 with the negotiations. on March 6 Street Journal asked 34 leading In a meeting March 22 0.5 survey of 34 economists for economists March among the top four congressio–8 their forecasts 18-19 (forecasts); nal leaders in Senate Majority Congressional Leader Mitch McConnell’s ofBudget Office –10 0 (deficit); the fice, Mrs. Pelosi and the Senfirms (forecasts) 2007 ’09 ’11 ’13 ’15 ’17 ’19 2007 ’09 ’11 ’13 ’15 ’17 ’19 ’21 ate’s top Democrat, Chuck Schumer, ticked off objections to the measure as it stood. In Initial Jobless Claims particular, they raised the issue For all the talk of polarization, the March 15-21 of there not being enough overpolitical stars are better aligned now for 3.28 sight at the Treasury Departcrisis response. In 2008, the country was 3.0 million ment over a $500 billion corpoled by a weak, lame duck president, George rate assistance program for W. Bush. President Obama took over in Since China reports first death distressed industries, and Treafrom coronavirus (Jan. 11, 2020) 2009, facing staunch GOP opposition to his 2.5 sury Secretary Steven Mnuchin stimulus strategy. Those factors delayed indicated he was amenable to and limited legislation. President Trump working that out. enjoys strong support from his party, and 2.0 Mr. McConnell, who had rehis re-election rests on containing the leased his second draft of the economic fallout. Democrats tend to be bill that morning, was taken more supportive of big spending programs, 1.5 aback. To him, this wasn’t time regardless of who controls the White House. to open discussions, it was time The coronavirus crisis is still unfolding, Since early signs to close them. and there are mounting signs the economic of the financial crisis 1.0 (Aug. 7, 2007) “It was rather heated,” redestruction could be far worse. In the called Mr. Schumer later in an depths of the last recession, the number of interview, “and I said to Mitch, weekly initial claims filed for unemploy0.5 ‘You said it’s bipartisan. You ment insurance never came close to a and I know it’s not bipartimillion. A record 3.28 million Americans Note: Seasonally adjusted san.’ ” The New York senator Source: Department of Labor filed for jobless benefits for the week ended 0 believed Republicans were tryMarch 21—nearly five times the previous 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 ing to jam Democrats by forcrecord high set during the early 1980s ing them to accept the GOPWEEKS SINCE THE CRISIS BEGAN recession. Sources: Congressional Budget Office; White House

Friday’s House vote on the economic-relief package took place against an unusual backdrop, with lawmakers spread throughout the chamber and advised to use hand sanitizer, to avoid elevators and to keep proper social distance. “People who can see the chamber now will see that we are keeping a distance from one another, not out of hostility but out of love for one another and that we may keep one another healthy and safe,” said House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D., Md.) on Friday. House members were called to the vote because Rep. Thomas Massie (R., Ky.) had said he would try to force a formal roll-call vote on the relief package, which drew a rare rebuke from President Trump toward a fellow Republican. “Looks like a third rate

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Lawmakers Learn Social Distancing



One reason for the speed by authorities is that markets and the economy have crumbled much faster this time.

Grandstander named @RepThomasMassie. wants to vote against the new Save Our Workers Bill,” Mr. Trump wrote on Twitter earlier Friday. Mr. Massie was unbowed. “I swore an oath to uphold the constitution, and I take that oath seriously,” the lawmaker tweeted. “Is it too much to ask that the House do its job, just like the Senate did?” The uncertainty prompted many lawmakers to begin driving and flying to Washington well before dawn. Republican Rep. Tom Reed left his home in Corning, N.Y., at 3 a.m. to make it to the Capitol by the time debate started. Rep. Joe Kennedy (D., Mass.) said he got in his car at 4 a.m. to drive to Washington. “Once we vote, I’m driving right back,” he tweeted. Other lawmakers on flights back to the nation’s capital posted photos on social media, including one of a group of lawmakers sitting on a nearly empty plane, in rows 6 feet apart.

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$2.25 trillion

penned draft. “We weren’t throwing stuff,” Mr. McConnell, of Kentucky, said in an interview. “It was cordial. But aggressive.” Mrs. Pelosi started talking about her House version of the bill and what she planned to include: expanded unemployment insurance, aid to states and help for cash-strapped employer pension plans. It was, in part, a negotiating tactic. Her aim was to put pressure on Republicans to meet Democrats’ demands for changes to the Senate legislation. She also saw it as a back-up bill should Senate negotiations falter. As the House speaker walked out of the meeting, reporters overheard her give a grim update to a staffer: “We are so far apart.” Mrs. Pelosi, who shepherded two earlier emergency coronavirus bills through Congress with Mr. Mnuchin, had wanted a “four-points” leadership meeting earlier on. She had called Mr. McConnell on Tuesday, March 17, and asked for one, arguing that reaching agreement between the two Democrats, Mr. McConnell and Mr. McCarthy of California

Lawmakers are already discussing a subsequent virusrelief package. would be the most efficient approach. Mr. McConnell said no. Republican frustration with a previous piece of coronavirusrelief legislation, which Mr. McConnell told members to “gag and vote for it anyway,” also motivated the Senate GOP to take a more active role in the new round of talks. So Mr. McConnell assigned a handful of GOP working groups to start putting together a bill. The instruction was to find proposals that Republicans knew their colleagues wouldn’t oppose reflexively on ideological grounds. On Thursday, March 19, Mr. McConnell released his first draft. It didn’t include expanded unemployment benefits, as Democrats had wanted. It also didn’t include direct aid to states. Senators met on Capitol Hill on Friday, March 20, and broke into working groups. According to Mr. Schumer, the groups continued collaborating until about 7 p.m. last Saturday. That’s when Republicans stopped responding to their Democratic counterparts, he said. “All the groups shut down

at once,” he Mr. Schumer said. At about 9:23 p.m., Mr. McConnell issued a statement saying he had asked GOP committee chairmen to write final legislative text reflecting the compromises they had reached with Democrats, and to deliver it later that evening. But a 10 p.m. statement from Mr. Schumer’s office warned that Democrats weren’t on board. Republicans blamed Mrs. Pelosi, whom Mr. Schumer had been keeping apprised of the talks. Democrats pointed the finger at Mr. McConnell for producing new legislative text prematurely. Tensions soared after news at a closed-door GOP lunch on Sunday that Sen. Rand Paul (R., Ky.) had become the first senator to test positive for Covid-19. Within hours, two more Republicans, Sens. Mike Lee and Mitt Romney of Utah, entered quarantine because of close contact with Mr. Paul. Two other Republicans were already quarantined. Democrats agreed at their own lunch to block the 3 p.m. procedural vote. Mr. Schumer informed Mr. McConnell, but the GOP leader ultimately pressed ahead, knowing it would fail. Privately, Mr. McConnell wasn’t worried talks would fall apart. He didn’t think there was time for the usual legislative gamesmanship. Not now that Covid-19 had arrived in the Senate. “Every day that goes by, anxiety rises, jobs are lost,” he said. On Monday, Democrats blocked another procedural motion. Anger boiled over on the Senate floor. When Sen. Susan Collins (R., Maine) asked to speak and Mr. Schumer objected, Ms. Collins marched over and pointed her finger at Mr. Schumer’s face. “This is appalling!” she exclaimed. Behind the scenes, Mr. Schumer and Mr. Mnuchin were making progress. Around 7 p.m., encouraged, Mr. Schumer decided they were close enough to reach an agreement. He threw a log on the fire in his Capitol office fireplace, knowing that he likely would be there for hours. The two Senate leaders met on the Senate floor about 1:30 a.m. on Wednesday. There were still some i’s to dot and t’s to cross, Mr. Schumer said, and they had to decide if they would say there was a deal, or announce an agreement in principle. “We decided to say we had a deal,” he said, “to keep the momentum going and give some relief to the markets.” For Mr. McConnell, the moment wasn’t celebratory. “I think relief is a better word to use,” he said. “We both smiled and went to bed.”

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Saturday/Sunday, March 28 - 29, 2020 | A7

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U.S.’s Confirmed Cases Exceed 100,000

Infections continue to rise in New York and other hot spots across the country

The U.S. surpassed 100,000 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus Friday, led by a continued jump in infections in New York and in new hot spots across the country.

Coronavirus Daily Update

104,007 1,693 595,953 27,333 131,007 As of 10:30 p.m. ET March 27

U.S. cases

U.S. deaths

World-wide cases

World-wide deaths

World-wide recoveries

Source: Johns Hopkins University Center for Systems Science and Engineering


gests that the stresses facing the nation’s unemployment system could grow in the months and weeks ahead, as other states catch up on processing claims and more workers pursue those benefits. A spokeswoman with the Pennsylvania Labor Department and Industry said the state system didn’t suffer major disruptions like those reported in states such as California and New York. The state also relaxed the requirement that the unemployed be actively seeking work to qualify for benefits. Holly Chapman, 62, of Jefferson Hills, Pa., said she filed a claim online last Tuesday after being laid off from a catering company when a spate of weddings and other events were canceled.


Pennsylvania, the nation’s fifth-most populous state, recorded the largest number of unemployment claims in the U.S., an outsize jump that suggests other states could report higher numbers ahead. Jobless claims in the Keystone State rose to 378,908 last week, up from 15,439 the prior week, as the state’s economy reels from layoffs because of the novel coronavirus. The number of people filing for benefits represented nearly 5.8% of the state’s labor force. State officials said jobless claims were so high because they actively pushed workers to file for unemployment benefits and didn’t see the kinds of disruptions in filing other states experienced. Workers in many parts of the country complained they were unable to access websites and get through on phone lines, meaning other states may be accepting a high volume of delayed filings in the coming weeks. Also, workers still have plenty of time to file such claims, meaning numbers could rise everywhere as economic prospects dim because of the pandemic. Workers aren’t required to file for claims the week they are laid off. “I think Pennsylvania is indicative of what you’re going to see elsewhere,” said James Sweeney, chief economist at Credit Suisse. “I think you’re going to see claims pick up in a lot of other states in the coming weeks, and that’s pretty sobering considering the level we just saw.” Pennsylvania’s numbers came out Thursday along with a record number of workers nationwide, nearly 3.3 million, filing for jobless benefits last week. The state’s experience sug-

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti warned residents on Thursday of the city’s growing threat, telling residents that reports and images coming out of New York would likely be at their doorstep as early as next week. “It’s the most haunting images any leader could see, and it’s difficult for me to imagine that it won’t happen here,” Mr. Garcetti said. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Friday that crisis there is expected to peak in three weeks. Hospitals in New York City are already seeing massive rises in cases of patients with Covid-19, the pneumonialike disease caused by the coronavirus. Mr. Cuomo, who has been pushing to increase hospital capacity by at least 50%, said four additional temporary hospitals would be built in the city, add-


Portion of Pennsylvania’s workers filing jobless claims

“I think because I was Johnny on the spot, it was relatively painless for me,” she said. She added that co-workers who waited a couple of days encountered delays, but were eventually able to complete their claims. There is also still plenty of time for workers to file claims. Some applying last week may have been laid off before the pandemic hit, but sought benefits as job prospects dimmed. Ohio had the second-highest number of claims with 187,784, narrowly ahead of California with 186,809. By contrast, in New York, which has nearly seven million more residents than Pennsylvania, 80,334 workers, or about 0.8% of the labor force, filed for jobless benefits.

confirmed infections; China, where the outbreak originated late last year, had 81,905. New York remains the center of the pandemic in the U.S., with more than 46,000 confirmed cases, but states including Michigan, Illinois, California and Louisiana are poised for a jump in cases as the rate of infection—and of testing— continues to grow. U.S. Surgeon General Jerome

Adams said cities including Detroit, Chicago and New Orleans are expected to have a worse week next week. “The virus and the local community are going to determine the timeline. It’s not going to be us from Washington, D.C.,” Dr. Adams said on CBS on Friday. “People need to follow their data. They need to make the right decisions based on what their data is telling them.”

ing an additional 4,000 beds. As the need for hospital equipment increases, the Food and Drug Administration said Friday it has approved the emergency use of devices that can be modified into ventilators. Roughly 80% of Covid-19 cases tend to be mild or moderate, and more than 131,000 people globally have recovered. But those who are older or have underlying health conditions, such as heart disease, lung disease or diabetes, are at a higher risk. Across the world, governments have closed schools, shut down nonessential services, told people to work from home and urged that they avoid going out as much as possible. Travelers arriving in many countries have also been subject to quarantines requiring them to remain in their homes, hotel rooms or government centers for 14 days.


WASHINGTON—Measures taken to curb the spread of the new coronavirus could lower economic activity in the U.S. and other developed countries by a quarter, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development said Friday. In a report made available to leaders of the Group of 20 leading economies for a video conference they held Thursday, OECD economists estimated the likely impact on the sectors most affected by widespread business closures and orders for people to remain at home, and the size of those sectors in each national economy. The OECD calculated that the activities most directly affected by the shutdowns— ranging from restaurants to automobile makers—account for between 30% and 40% of total output in most of the developed economies. With activity in many of those sectors curtailed, it calculated that output was likely to be between 20% and 25% lower than is usual in large, developed economies. If the measures are sustained for three months, the OECD forecast total annual output would be 6% lower in the developed economies. Under this scenario for the U.S., where the economy was forecast to grow 2% this year before the virus struck, the OECD estimates output would fall 4% in 2020. “Our analysis further underpins the need for sharper action to absorb the shock, and a more coordinated response by governments to maintain a lifeline to people and a private sector that will emerge in a very fragile state when the health crisis is past,” OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría said in the report. Signs already point to a deterioration in U.S. economic conditions during March, as


But national leaders continue to face risks even as they meet face-to-face in emergency sessions to plot ways to curb the contagion, with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson testing positive for the virus Friday. The U.S. and Italy have both now overtaken China as the nations with the most confirmed infections. Italy, which has the highest death toll of any country at 9,134, had nearly 86,500

State’s Jobless Surge Signals Wider Trouble BY KRIS MAHER AND ERIC MORATH


U.S. Army personnel sit apart at New York's Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, which will be partially converted into a hospital for coronavirus patients.

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While testing for the deadly respiratory virus hasn’t been uniform across America or globally, making accurate case counts hard to pin down, confirmed infections in the U.S. have doubled or tripled every three days for nearly a month. Last Friday, the number of confirmed infections in the country exceeded 16,000, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. By Tuesday, that figure was 55,000. Two days later, it had surpassed all other countries’ reported totals, with just over 85,000. The pandemic has swiftly reverberated across the U.S., shutting schools, businesses, arenas and parks and silencing once-busy thoroughfares. A record 3.28 million workers applied for unemployment benefits last week. Hospital capacity in places like New York and Seattle has already passed a tipping point even as the health crisis continues to unfold. President Trump signed a $2 trillion stimulus bill passed speedily by House lawmakers earlier Friday, the largest economic-relief package in history. Major U.S. stock indexes posted double-digit gains for the week, but remain down more than 20% in 2020. The president also signed an executive order that authorizes the Pentagon to identify and potentially reinstate to active duty former military medical personnel and other specialized reservists to help the nation during the pandemic. Authorities around the world have stepped up enforcement of measures designed to help slow the spread of the virus, which has infected nearly 596,000 people and killed more than 27,000, according to Johns Hopkins data.

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By Talal Ansari, Lucy Craymer and Max Colchester

Costco signs greeted shoppers with messages about inventory in Overland Park, Kansas, this week.

the number of infections and deaths related to the virus climbed and multiple government authorities ordered nonessential businesses to close and urged people to stay home. A record 3.28 million U.S. workers applied for unemployment benefits just last week, and forecasters now expect the unemployment rate to rise steeply. The declines in other large economies would be similar to that in the U.S, according to the OECD. The organization’s economists estimated that output losses would likely be greatest in Greece, which has a large tourism industry, and least in Ireland, which relies heavily on digital businesses. Meanwhile in Italy, businesses and consumers became much more gloomy about their prospects this month, as the death toll from the coronavirus continued to climb and an already extensive lockdown tightened further. Istat, the official Italian statistics agency, said Friday its measure of consumer confidence slumped to 101.0 from

110.9 in February as Italians saw a significant worsening of the economic outlook, while its measure of business confidence plummeted to 81.7 from 97.8. The turn to pessimism among companies was most marked among service providers, many of which have been almost entirely deprived of customers by social distancing. The consumer confidence reading was the lowest since January 2015, while the business confidence measure was the weakest since December 2011. Consumer sentiment also soured in the U.S. this month, according to a University of Michigan survey released Friday. The survey’s index of consumer sentiment fell to 89.1 in March—its lowest level since 2016—down from 101.0 in February. The index’s drop—the fourth-largest one-month decline in nearly 50 years—hints at a broad pullback in spending as the virus upends daily life, said Richard Curtin, the survey’s chief economist.

“The extent of additional declines in April will depend on the success in curtailing the spread of the virus and how quickly households receive funds to relieve their financial hardships,” he said. U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Friday he expects the economy to rebound strongly after the widespread shutdown to contain the coronavirus is lifted, adding that the federal government is working at “lightning speed” to provide support. Asked if he agreed with some investors’ view that U.S. economic output could expand by 5% in the fourth quarter, Mr. Mnuchin said, “Absolutely.” Consumers just last month were still buoyed by a solid labor market and firming wages, and in turn boosted spending as personal income rose. Personal-consumption expenditures, or household spending, ticked up by a seasonally adjusted 0.2% from January and personal income was up 0.6%, the Commerce Department reported Friday.

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A8 | Saturday/Sunday, March 28 - 29, 2020

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Non-Coronavirus Drug Testing Is Interrupted

Bernadine Raicevich surrounded by her children, who decided to care for her at home until her death in Cleveland this past Sunday.

Nursing Home Visitor Ban Raises Difficult Questions

GM Told To Make Ventilators

Continued from Page One Systems. On Friday, the Detroit auto maker said, “Ventec, GM and our supply base have been working around the clock for weeks to meet this urgent need.” The president had criticized GM and its leadership earlier Friday, saying in a series of Twitter posts that the company had initially said it could supply 40,000 ventilators, but then later said it could make only 6,000 available by late April. In one of his Friday tweets, the president criticized GM Chief Executive Mary Barra as “always a mess.” White House officials said the two sides had been discussing a contract worth about $1 billion, but the talks broke down over the timeline for delivering the devices. Earlier Friday, after the president’s Twitter posts, GM and Ventec said they aimed to produce as many as 10,000 ventilators a month, in part through a new assembly line being set up at a GM facility in Indiana. Closely held Ventec normally makes a few hundred ventilators a month at its facil-

ity in Bothell, Wash. The most severely ill patients infected with the new coronavirus have such trouble breathing that they are put on a ventilator, an invasive therapy that involves inserting a tube into the patient’s windpipe. People involved in GM’s efforts said Ventec hadn’t made a firm commitment to deliver a specific number of ventilators, but rather provided the administration with a range of potential production volumes that would scale up to gradually starting in April. With hospitals in some areas experiencing a surge in Covid-19 patients, the Trump administration wanted a faster ramp up to meet the urgent need, a White House official said. GM, and other car companies that have moved to help boost the ventilator supply don’t plan to retool their existing vehicle-assembly plants to produce the devices. Instead, they are lending their expertise in supply-chain management, purchasing and manufacturing to help other medical-device makers boost output. In GM’s case, this meant establishing a new manufacturing line at its electronic-parts factory in Indiana. GM said about 1,000 employees would work on the project and that the company’s resources would be donated “at cost.” Some of GM’s auto-parts


Bernadine Raicevich when she attended nursing school.

and took turns caring for her around the clock, even though they felt she would have benefited from professional palliative care. Mrs. Raicevich, a retired nurse, died peacefully this past Sunday, with one of her daughters by her side. “I want to be a team player, but I wish they had fewer restrictions for people at the end of their life,” Mr. Race said. “Take my temperature at the door, put me in hazmat clothing. I’d gladly wear it and go see my mom,” he said. “I don’t think it’s too much to ask.” In Kentucky, Gov. Andy Beshear said in a statement last week that families should be notified “several days and up to one week in advance of” a substantial change in a patient’s condition, but didn’t specify how that should be determined. “Providers should



When the U.S. government barred family members from visiting relatives in nursing homes, it made an exception for “end of life situations”— setting off a painful, nationwide debate about the meaning of the phrase. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services issued the order on March 13 to protect nursing-home residents from the coronavirus after dozens of them died in facilities across the country. Many families see the policy as a painful but necessary step to protect the elderly and ill. But it has been hardest on those who fear their loved ones have just days to live, say families and nursing home officials. Some 1.4 million elderly and disabled adults live in more than 15,000 nursing homes, according to U.S. government data. Stanford Medical School estimates that about 20% of Americans end their days in nursing homes. Sherry Culp, who works at the Nursing Home Ombudsman Agency of the Bluegrass in Kentucky, fields calls from patients and families and communicates their issues to facilities. “The biggest concern that we are hearing from family members is that they have a resident in a nursing home

not wait until active dying.” At Jordan Center in Louisa, Ky., nursing home officials called families of its nearly 100 residents to ask how they felt about the coming ban on visits. All but five families said they were supportive. Two decided to take their residents home, and others initially refused to heed the ban, according to David McKenzie, Jordan Center’s administrator. Among them was an 82year-old woman who visited her husband with dementia every day, arriving before breakfast and leaving after dinner. “It was heartbreaking,” Mr. McKenzie said. “I can’t even imagine what it would be like to be separated from your spouse after being together for 67 years.” Mr. McKenzie met with the woman twice and convinced her to accept the ban. She now speaks with her husband via video calls. Kathleen Heren, an ombudsman at the Alliance for Better Long-Term Care in Rhode Island, has to improvise when advising facilities because the state hasn’t issued guidance. She recommends that facilities have family members visit “toward the end,” when hospice nurses see signs of imminent death, rather than at the start of hospice care. Just one or two family members should be allowed in at any time, she said. “It’s really a case of common sense,” Ms. Heren said. “There is no set answer to anything.”

The world-wide spread of the new coronavirus is throwing into disarray studies critical to the development of promising new medicines. The pandemic is causing delays in starting clinical drug trials and temporarily halting others, according to companies, consultants and industry officials. Patients enrolled in some studies have stopped showing up at trial sites, while hospitals the were seeing trial subjects are shifting attention to tackling coronavirus patients. Industry scientists, meanwhile, can’t travel for research. “Things are just getting canceled left and right,” said Christian Burns, president of ClinEdge LLC, which helps drug companies recruit drugtrial participants in more than 30 countries. The disruptions, which aren’t affecting research into coronavirus drugs and vaccines, mean it could take longer for new drugs aimed at treating conditions like diabetes and liver disease to reach patients, if the medicines eventually prove to work safely. Company revenue could suffer, too, if future sales of drugs are deferred because of trial delays. The drug studies most affected are in heavy-hit regions, such as Italy, China and South Korea, where lockdowns have restricted the ability of patients to leave their homes, enroll in trials and travel to study sites to get experimental treatments, industry officials say. Studies in the U.S. are also starting to feel an impact. Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. and Eli Lilly & Co. said this week they will hold off starting most new trials, citing safety concerns. Bristol is also temporarily halting infusions of experimental cellular therapies under study, while Lilly said it would pause enrolling new study subjects for trials already under way. Pfizer Inc. said Wednesday it is suspending recruitment of patients for most new and ongoing studies that don’t involve life-threatening conditions. Trials play a pivotal role in the introduction of new medicines. Regulators rely on the results to gauge whether an experimental drug is safe and works, and should be approved for use. Companies can spend tens of millions of dollars to carry out a single study. Many current drug trials for critical ailments are expected to continue, though, because hospitals and drugmakers view them as crucial for patients. Moreover, patients testing drugs for fatal or critical conditions such as cancer are motivated not to

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who they think is ‘end of life,’ but they are having trouble accessing the resident for inperson visits,” she said. “There is some confusion about what is ‘end of life,’” said Ms. Culp. The government directive didn’t define the phrase, and it left some delicate questions unanswered: How long before death should visits be allowed? How many relatives can visit? What safety procedures should be adopted to protect other residents? Last week Ms. Culp got a call from an 86-year-old man who worried he would be turned away from the nursing home where his wife was receiving hospice care. Ms. Culp assured him he had the right to visit because his wife was dying. Kentucky and some other states, responding to pleas from anguished families who wanted to visit dying relatives, have drawn up their own guidelines and definitions of end of life. “This includes any resident who is receiving hospice care, not just a resident who is facing imminent death,” the Ohio Department of Health wrote in a memo to nursing home administrators last week. That memo came too late for Joe Race, an Ohio trade association executive, whose 87year-old mother, Bernadine Raicevich, was dying of ovarian cancer. When her condition deteriorated earlier this month, Mr. Race called seven hospices. All said they would take her but that family members wouldn’t be allowed to visit. So he and his four siblings kept her home near Cleveland


Defining ‘end of life’ to allow people to see dying loved ones is being widely debated

skip treatments. The pandemic, though, threatens to delay research into much-needed treatments for other critical conditions. Nearly two-thirds of 170 clinical trial sites surveyed in the U.S. believe patients will be much less or somewhat less likely to enroll in new clinical research trials due to the coronavirus, according to a review last week from consultancy Continuum Clinical. And nearly half the sites expect patients enrolled in trials to be much less or somewhat less willing to keep participating. “That’s where this could be really damaging,” said Continuum President Neil Weisman. “If too many patients discontinue with a clinical trial, pharma companies aren’t going to have enough data to prove their products hit an endpoint and show their drug does what they hope it would do.” The Northwell Health system on Long Island, N.Y., has paused about 50 clinical trials to protect patients and free up more than 40 staffers for coronavirus drug research. “Right

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A ventilator is shown at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York this past week. suppliers began churning out parts for the ventilators in recent days, the people familiar with the effort said. “If you think about what goes into a vehicle—the air-circulation systems, filtration, electronics, lots of hoses—a lot of those types of components also are contained in ventilators,” said Carla Bailo, president of the Center for Automotive Research. The president has publicly admonished GM and Ms. Barra personally several times during

his tenure. Last year he repeatedly criticized GM for closing factories and laying off workers in Midwestern states. In his series of tweets, Mr. Trump said GM should reopen its plant in Lordstown, Ohio, to make ventilators, “or some other plant.” GM last year sold the Ohio factory to a start-up electric truck maker. President Trump also tweeted that Ford Motor Co. needed to “get going on ventilators, fast!!!” In the past two weeks, sev-

eral auto makers, including Ford, have disclosed plans to work with medical-device companies to boost ventilator production. Ford this week said it would work with General Electric Co. to increase ventilator supply but didn’t offer specifics. Toyota Motor Corp. said Friday that it is finalizing terms with two ventilator makers to help increase their capacity. The president said later Friday that the administration

The crisis threatens to delay research into treatments for other critical conditions. now, I’m prioritizing,” said Kevin Tracey, president of Northwell’s Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research. Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals Inc., which is based in Pasadena, Calif., last week suspended enrollment in a liverdisease trial for at least four weeks because the study needs patients who are at risk for coronavirus infections and who must get a liver biopsy, which requires visiting a clinic, said Chief Executive Christopher Anzalone. “There’s probably some type of disaster-planning going on in every single company,” said Laurie Halloran, chief executive of Halloran Consulting Group, which advises firms on clinical trials. To keep trials moving forward despite the virus, some drugmakers are trying to transfer to patients’ homes the work typically done at research sites. Scynexis Inc., of Jersey City, N.J., is directing patients in a trial for its experimental fungal treatment to have blood drawn at home or alternative sites, and to receive the drug at home, after some patients missed appointments in Italy and other European countries, said Chief Executive Marco Taglietti.

was working to sign contracts with more than a half-dozen other companies, including General Electric, Philips, Hamilton and Medtronic He said the administration had deals in place to collect 100,000 ventilators within 100 days. Speaking to reporters at the White House, Mr. Trump said he was skeptical that the U.S. would need as many ventilators as the administration was collecting, adding that he may send any surplus to other countries. To underscore the point, he said he spoke to the U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who tested positive for the virus, and asked how his British counterpart was doing. Mr. Johnson told him: “We need more ventilators.” Tesla Inc. Chief Executive Elon Musk has said he is working with medical device-maker Medtronic and has said the auto maker’s New York solar panel factory “will reopen for ventilator production as soon as humanly possible.” He also said he acquired ventilators from China and has been working to deliver them in the U.S. On Friday, Mr. Musk said on Twitter the biggest value Tesla was providing was precise delivery of ventilators to the intensive care units that need them most. “There are many ventilators in warehouses, but stuck in logistics/routing/paperwork issues,” he wrote. —Tim Higgins contributed to this article.

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Saturday/Sunday, March 28 - 29, 2020 | A9

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MIT Launches Tracking Project

Fed Weighs Support for States



A project to track Covid-19 patients via their phones is being launched by Massachusetts Institute of Technology researchers, potentially the first largescale project in the U.S. to trace their movement and that of those with whom they interact. The project requires both people who have the illness caused by the novel coronavirus and those who don’t to voluntarily download an app to their phones. The collected data is scrambled so that individuals can’t be identified, the researchers said. Such measures are aimed at alleviating the privacy concerns that in the U.S. have surrounded the prospect of this type of surveillance, the researchers said. Amid the pandemic, location tracking is increasingly common in other parts of the world where there are fewer protections for civil liberties. The researchers said they are in negotiations for backing from the World Health Organization about how the technology should be deployed. They also are working with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and have had several conversations with the White House, according to people familiar with the matter. Representatives for those agencies didn’t respond to requests to comment. Health officials and scientists have increasingly realized that more testing and so-called contact tracing—figuring out how to track people who have come in contact with the virus—is the key to stopping its rapid spread. In South Korea and China, governments used tracking devices for surveillance of citizens, a move that helped those countries identify and treat patients. Privacy advocates in the U.S. have said the pandemic calls for extraordinary measures but worry that once adopted, surveillance technologies will be hard to roll back. The MIT project’s success is dependent on amassing a large number of participants, and whether that is attainable in the U.S. isn’t yet clear. The MIT research group says it is also joining with big tech companies and large health-care systems, such as the Mayo Clinic and the Big Four accounting firm Ernst & Young, to aggregate as much data as possible through the app, called Private Kit. Several Facebook Inc. engineers are donating their time to the project, which is led by Ramesh Raskar, a former Facebook executive who also worked at Alphabet Inc.’s Google X unit. “Stopping epidemics is a game of numbers. It’s not about getting everybody or nobody (quarantined),” said Dr. Raskar, who has a doctorate in computer science. “The models show that even at 10% there will be gains.” He also said it is critical to develop contact-tracing strategies in locations before the virus takes hold. “In New York, it’s probably too late,” he said. The MIT effort comes as a host of startups and researchers are racing to develop new technology to fight various aspects of the novel coronavirus. Few have gained significant traction thus far. The Wall Street Journal reported last week about various proposals that have been considered, including the use of facial technology to identify people who have come in contact with patients with Covid-19. Facebook and Google are among the companies that have cooperated with a White House task force looking at technologies such as location tracking. The companies have said they are working with the government to develop solutions to help mitigate the pandemic. Right now in the U.S., when individuals are diagnosed with Covid-19 they are interviewed by public-health officials and asked whom they have come in contact with over the last several days. Those people are then reached by phone. This process can take several days for each individual. The lack of testing and visibility into who is infected has prompted widespread shutdowns of schools and businesses, with massive economic ramifications.

Federal Reserve officials are reviewing new ways to support financing for state and local governments, many of which are on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic and will face huge borrowing needs as revenues plunge, according to people familiar with the matter. The economic-rescue legislation Congress approved this week asks the Fed to charge headlong into areas it has long considered taboo—supporting lending to businesses, cities and states. The Fed traditionally avoided intervening directly in credit and fiscal policy, preferring to leave such matters to Congress and the White House. That is changing now because of the fast-moving economic crisis—and because Congress has essentially directed the Fed to get more involved by providing $454 billion to the Treasury to cover any losses in new Fed lending programs. The Fed has dramatically expanded its balance sheet over the past two weeks, by nearly $942 billion to $5.25 trillion as of Wednesday. The central bank has lent freely to help firms avoid a wave of defaults that could turn a recession into something much worse. Over two weeks, the Fed has unveiled six lending facilities, five of them enjoying a total of $50 billion in support from the Treasury. Those programs have freed up cash for major Wall Street institutions and will backstop money-market funds and markets for commercial debt. Democratic lawmakers have made support for city and state borrowing a priority in recent legislative talks, and the latest bill directs the Treasury secretary to seek a Fed lending pro-


Local governments are confronting skyrocketing borrowing costs

The Fed has dramatically expanded its balance sheet over the past two weeks. Above, Fed Chairman Jerome Powell earlier this month.

The Federal Reserve has expanded its balance sheet to $5.25 trillion.

maintained by the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association. Monday’s announcement by the Fed to include more municipal debt in existing lending facilities appears to have made only a small dent, bringing the index, which tracks bonds that adjust their rates weekly according to what investors are willing to pay, to 4.7% down from 5.2% the prior Wednesday. Interest rates on other short-term muni debt that spiked last week have fallen after the Fed said Monday it would purchase some municipal variable rate debt. Rates on water, power and sewer bonds issued by New York City and Los Angeles fell back to their typical rates of between 1% and 2% Thursday after hitting nearly 8% on Friday. Kent Hiteshew, who established an office of state and local finance at the Treasury De-

As of Wednesday, short-term interest costs on variable-rate municipal bonds have more than tripled compared with two weeks ago and are now higher than the rates governments typically pay on 30-year bonds, according to an index

partment in the Obama administration, has been hired by the Fed to advise on muni markets, according to people familiar with the matter. Among the questions Fed officials are considering: Whether to expand existing facilities to accommodate other municipal debt or to launch a new facility devoted to state and local finance. Fed officials will have to decide which municipal debt might be eligible for support and on what terms. There are limits to how far the Fed can lend using its emergency authorities. Its loans must be well secured, which the Fed typically satisfies by restricting borrowing to highly rated issuers. The Fed and Treasury brainstormed on ways to support hard-hit state and local treasuries after the 2008 financial crisis, but opted against doing so.

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a toe into muni-debt markets by expanding a money-market lending backstop to include certain types of municipal debt—and by purchasing some highly rated municipal debt in a facility backing the market for very short-term commercial debt.

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gram for municipal finance. State and local governments are confronting skyrocketing borrowing costs even as they are straining to pay expenses associated with the spread of the virus. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told Fed Chairman Jerome Powell last week “to think big and help our states,” she said in an interview on PBS this week. “They are taking a big bite of this wormy apple and they need much more in terms of resources.” Under its governing law, the Fed can’t directly buy corporate debt, and it is limited to purchasing municipal debt of six months or less. But it can work around these restrictions by creating lending facilities that lend or purchase debt, subject to approval of the Treasury secretary. The Fed has already dipped

Tariff Collections to Be Paused, Officials Say BY ALEX LEARY AND WILLIAM MAULDIN




WASHINGTON—The Trump administration is preparing to suspend collection of import tariffs for three months to give U.S. companies financial relief amid the coronavirus pandemic, according to administration officials. “Customs duties will be suspended for three months,” a senior administration official said Friday. Companies would still be liable for the tariffs at a later date, which hasn’t been determined, another official said. There would be no formal changes to tariff policy, officials said. Asked about The Wall Street Journal’s report at a news briefing late Friday, Mr. Trump called the report “fake news.” Mr. Trump signed a roughly $2 trillion economic-stimulus bill Friday as the economy has been brought to a standstill by the coronavirus pandemic. Business groups have called for tariff relief. They have faced resistance from trade hawks and domestic industries such as steel calling for protection from what they see as unfairly traded imports. U.S. Customs and Border Protection in recent days sent out a formal notice saying it would provide temporary delays for customs duties on a case-by-case-basis, only to rescind the offer on Thursday. Even so, the administration

The U.S. is moving to suspend customs duties for three months. Above, a steel plant in Pennsylvania.

officials said the White House was now moving to stop the collection of tariffs, while leaving the tariffs in place. A spokesman for Robert Lighthizer, the U.S. trade representative, didn’t immediately reply to a request to comment. The plans for tariff-payment delays doesn’t by itself mean

the administration is backing away from the use of trade barriers to defend domestic industry. Trade experts say the combination of the 2020 presidential election and a possible recession suggests the administration would face a political backlash if it removed the tariffs, including in manufactur-

ing-heavy states of the Midwest. “This whole crisis is a vindication of President Trump’s tariff policies, which over the last three years have already begun to bring some of our supply chains and jobs home,” White House trade and manufacturing adviser Peter Na-

varro told the Journal last week. On Friday, Mr. Navarro was appointed by Mr. Trump to oversee government efforts to arrange private production of essential items during the pandemic. Mr. Navarro couldn’t immediately be reached by phone Friday. Mr. Trump has imposed global tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, as well as tariffs on hundreds of billions of dollars of Chinese products in a trade war sparked off by China’s treatment of American intellectual property and trade secrets. Other imports also face duties based on findings of foreign “dumping” or subsidies, and the U.S. maintains usually low tariffs on a host of products from most countries under international agreements. Washington and Beijing in January signed a “phase one” agreement that serves as a truce in the trade war. The U.S. didn’t remove tariffs on any Chinese products under that pact, they only reduced the rates of some tariffs. The pact requires China to buy $200 billion more in U.S. exports than it previously did, and Mr. Trump has said he expects the pact to be upheld. The two countries have recently seen tensions grow over the virus, which spread from China, as well as a spat that has seen both nations reduce the number of foreign correspondents permitted from the other country.

EPA Delays Switchover From Winter to Summer Fuel BY TIMOTHY PUKO WASHINGTON—The Environmental Protection Agency is delaying the changeover to summer gasoline by several weeks, saying otherwise the coronavirus pandemic could cause a fuel shortage. Lobbyists have described this as possibly the biggest of several waivers the Trump administration is giving to industry and water authorities while they keep many workers at home to slow the pandemic’s spread. The Wall Street Jour-

nal reported on Tuesday that such a move was likely. The EPA said Friday it would waive requirements to sell the cleaner fuel until May 20, giving wholesalers and refiners at least about three extra weeks to sell off a backlog of the winter blend. The action delays an annual switch in the spring to cleaner-burning blends of gasoline designed to keep air pollution levels from rising sharply in hotter, sunnier months. The action drew objections

from the environmental group Defend Our Future, an arm of the Environmental Defense Fund, which said it would weaken public-health protections at a time when air pollution may make people more vulnerable to the pandemic. “This decision could lead to more pollution and worse air quality, which will jeopardize human lives,” the group’s Matt Oberhoffner said in a statement. States make the transition to summer gasoline between April 1 and May 1, and several

had already asked the EPA to step in for clarity across the country, said Tom Kloza, the top analyst at IHS Markit Ltd.’s Oil Price Information Service. Mr. Kloza expects that with travel limited by the pandemic April gasoline demand will drop to levels unseen since the 1960s, off seasonal norms by more than 40%. The EPA says that if distributors aren’t able to sell off the backlog of winter gas in their storage tanks, they won’t be able to start putting summer gasoline into them, blocking

supply of the cleaner fuel from the market. In the same announcement, the EPA also said it intends to extend ethanol-blending compliance deadlines for small refineries, and won’t revisit prior exemptions given to them that were brought into question by a recent court ruling. It says it is prioritizing rules connected to potentially acute risks and imminent threats during the pandemic and calls revisiting these ethanol exemptions for small refiners a low priority.

For personal, non-commercial use only. Do not edit, alter or reproduce. For commercial reproduction or distribution, contact Dow Jones Reprints & Licensing at (800) 843-0008 or www.djreprints.com.

A10 | Saturday/Sunday, March 28 - 29, 2020


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Budapest In Paris, dining on truffle ravioli and the first oysters of his life, Gabor Szabo and his Brazilian wife wondered if they should be worried about the sickness that had arrived


Continued from Page One and office towers, had been instructed to wear face masks on the job. Governments were calling it the novel coronavirus. Over the next two months, it would spread widely, carried by the most-connected human population in history to all corners of the world. In this era of globalization, families scattered across continents would watch from afar with confusion, dread and helpless foreboding as their loved ones fought a disease the world knew very little about. It would upend five lives, all exposed to the virus as it traveled from country to country, week after week. But before all that, on the afternoon of Feb. 8, Mr. Sarker’s coronavirus test came back. It was positive.

Milan With infections of the recently named Covid-19 disease surging in Italy, authorities had begun quarantining towns in the country’s wealthy north. Ivo Cilesi thought he might still manage to make a quick road trip from his apartment outside Milan to Genoa, the seaside town of his youth. A renowned therapist, he had pioneered a technique of treating dementia patients with imaginary train rides,

Italian therapist Ivo Cilesi and his partner Giovanna Lucchelli before he suddenly took ill; below, Iranian photojournalist Aitai Shakibafar stands inside a home that was destroyed by flooding. going to be stuck inside because I’m not feeling well.” They stayed home. At breakfast on Friday, Mr. Cilesi suddenly panicked. “I can hardly breathe, I can hardly breathe,” he gasped. “Relax, what’s going on?” his partner asked. As she dialed Italy’s 112 emergency number, a thought struck her: He wasn’t protesting her call for an ambulance. He was shaking.

‘I can hardly breathe, I can hardly breathe.’


earning the nickname Dr. Train. Nursing homes tended to inject these elderly full of sedatives. Instead, he helped them cope with music or dolls, aiming to bring dignity to the people society tended to shove aside. He and his partner had already packed their bags for a long weekend, when on Feb. 26 he found himself strangely exhausted. “Why go to the beach,” he said, “if we’re just

Baby items sent by Raju Sarker to his wife in Bangladesh.

The doctor said 10% of Aitai Shakibafar’s lungs were damaged. She quickly became a suspect for the new disease that was spreading rapidly through her country, Iran. Twice, Ms. Shakibafar had coughed up blood in her hands, her nails still painted with the Minnie Mouse icon from the beauty salon where the 30-year-old wondered if she’d caught it. A female photojournalist in a male-dominated industry, Ms. Shakibafar was often the only woman snapping pictures from the scene of a disaster. Rather than join her sister in Canada, she preferred to take her camera to far-flung corners of their home country reeling from floods and economic deprivation. At dusk on March 5, Ms. Shakibafar lay down in the back seat of her car with her father behind the wheel, racing through the streets of Tehran. The hospital waiting-room was teeming with people. But medical staff saw she was having trouble breathing. As she was being admitted to the intensive-care unit, she felt faint. Someone got her a wheelchair.

Washington, D.C.




in Europe. It was Feb. 16, their seventh anniversary, and they were a long way from home, Rio de Janeiro. The couple would soon fly to Hungary to spend time with Gabor’s dad, a cancer patient. Battling lymphoma at age 70, Albert Szabo was eager to get to know the daughter-inlaw he had recently met for the first time. For years, the family had drifted apart. Gabor chased jobs from con-

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Ivo Cilesi’s panicked call for help before an ambulance arrived

The same day, Liza Paqueo, a specialist in urban forest programs at the U.S. Forest Service in Washington, D.C., was surprised to see missed FaceTime calls from her mother in the Philippine capital Manila, where it was well past midnight.

leagues called Dr. Train, was struggling to breathe. Medics fitted an airway pressure-release ventilator onto his face. At the hospital, Ms. Lucchelli paced the corridor while her partner vanished into an X-ray room. A chest scan showed he had progressed to pneumonia. Doctors thought: coronavirus. They carried Mr. Cilesi, by now unconscious, into an isolation ward, closed off to all but a strained crew of physicians racing to handle the influx. They would have to wait and see if his oxygen levels crept up. Ms. Lucchelli returned home for the evening, expecting the hospital to call. Normally, when the two weren’t together, Mr. Cilesi dialed many times daily, or called her sister if she didn’t answer. “Make sure your phone is always charged so I can reach you anytime,” he would say. The next morning, the doctor gave her the news. The test was positive for coronavirus. Mr. Cilesi was taken to a larger hospital, and given experimental-drug treatments and muscle relaxants to prevent chest damage. Tubed into a high-performance ventilator, he was rolled onto his belly to give his lungs room to expand. Every time she dialed the hospital helpline for updates, the doctors were too busy, the staff stressed. She wondered where her partner had contracted coronavirus, maybe in one of the three hospitals where he worked, in between a life of research and medical conferences abroad. Friends of Ms. Lucchelli told her not to worry. Mr. Cilesi was relatively young, full of energy and strong like his father. This is like the flu, well-wishers said, and he would recover. Only the very old and very sick don’t, they said.

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Five Lives Upended By Crisis

struction to running his own restaurant in South America, enjoying a global lifestyle once incomprehensible for his father, a Hungarian who grew up under Communist dictatorship. Previously, the elder Mr. Szabo had been able to speak to his daughter-in-law only in short messages typed into Google translate, each Portuguese-Hungarian exchange full of humorous errors. The family had spent two days at the home of Mr. Szabo, a retired truck driver, when Gabor developed a fever, sore throat and cough. He visited a hospital that sent him back to his father’s house without testing for coronavirus. The ailment cleared up. On Feb. 23, the elder Mr. Szabo noticed he had the same symptoms. “There is nothing wrong, these are just side effects of chemotherapy,” he told the couple.

The two spoke every day, often more than once. Her mother sometimes called in the middle of the night to nudge Liza to play her turn on Words With Friends, an online Scrabble-like game the two competed fiercely on. Her mother had last made D-O-L-T for 36 points, followed by H-OA-X by Liza. It was her mother’s turn. That day, though, the call was about something else. Her mother, Nida Cortes Paqueo, was in a hospital bed. An Xray showed she had pneumonia in her right lung. Liza was shocked, but didn’t think it could be the novel coronavirus. There were still only a limited number of cases in the Philippines, and U.S. figures were just starting to grow. Besides, her mother took long walks, danced the rumba with friends she had known for half a century and, while

she had a sore throat and fatigue for a few days, nothing seemed especially alarming. Mrs. Paqueo had enjoyed a steak dinner for her 67th birthday a few days earlier. Now in the hospital, she was losing her appetite. Mrs. Paqueo asked family members to bring her fruit and a salty shrimp dish. But when they did, she would often not eat. Liza scolded her mother, so on FaceTime, Mrs. Paqueo showed her she was eating bread and sausage. “Good job,” Liza said. “Now don’t ask for your usual Coke Zero. You need calories.” she added, making her mother laugh, then cough.

Milan A doctor and an ambulance crew stormed through the door of Giovanna Lucchelli’s apartment outside Milan. Her partner, the therapist col-

Budapest At Albert Szabo’s cancer-related checkups in Hungary, physicians chalked up his high temperature to lymphoma complications. But by March 5, he was exhausted and could eat nothing more than a few bites of a banana or tangerine. When he told a doctor he was struggling to breathe, confusion shot through the room. “Why didn’t you start with that?” the doctor asked, scouring his medical history for an explanation. Hospital staff fit Mr. Szabo with an oxygen mask while the doctor worked on a diagnosis. Maybe it was a postsurgery pulmonary embolism? he wondered. Then Mr. Szabo’s son Gabor mentioned the possibility of coronavirus. It hadn’t been their first thought, but medics rushed into action, putting on face masks and scrambling to protect themselves. The elder Mr. Szabo was frightened and numb as medical staff carried him away, his face obscured by the oxygen mask. Normally, the tough old man would have said a few defiant words, his son thought. Two days later, Gabor got a call from a brother elsewhere in Hungary: “They were just saying on TV that our father is the fifth patient in Hungary Please turn to the next page

As the new coronavirus forces big changes in how we work, The Wall Street Journal is looking at how different people are coping with the stresses and risks. For earlier articles in the series, visit wsj.com/makingitwork. BY STEVEN RUSSOLILLO Maddisen Maxwell’s Highland Park, N.J., hair salon has seen tough times. Michael B Hair & Style opened its doors in December 2008, during the throes of the Great Recession. A van rammed into the storefront years later, prompting it to close for months while repairs took place. Turmoil created by the coronavirus pandemic is more stressful than those early trials. Tough as it is, the 41-yearold stylist can’t let it sink her business. “Obviously we can’t do hair virtually,” Ms. Maxwell said by

phone earlier this week. “But we’re trying to find what aspects of our brick-and-mortar business we can take online.” After years of thinking about ways to branch out into digital services, the crisis is forcing her hand. On Thursday, a week after closing the salon as cancellations had been piling up, she turned it into a studio. She used a gray screen, lights and an iPhone camera to shoot a video tutorial on washing and maintaining curly hair. She performed on a mannequin to adhere to social-distancing norms. A hair stylist for over 20 years, Ms. Maxwell is hopeful her online offerings will meet enough demand to supplement at least some of the lost revenue that can come from a $60 blowout and style or a $300 weave during normal times. A majority of her clients are African-Americans who she says rely on getting their hair styled professionally as opposed to doing it themselves. She hopes e-consultations can help.

“They’re really struggling trying to figure out what to do,” she said. Ms. Maxwell started sensing a few weeks ago there would be demand for services outside the salon. Before the pandemic worsened, some women were asking her to do home visits. Last week, New Jersey said salons needed to temporarily close to help prevent the virus from spreading. Yet clients still need their hair done. Based on feedback from clients, she intends to offer half-hour FaceTime consultations for $50 to those who want help while coloring or styling their hair from home. In addition, she is packaging and selling products like shampoo and moisture masks in what she is branding as beauty boxes that go for as much as $150. Shortly after launching the boxes she sold three of them. Ms. Maxwell still has a lot of headaches to sort out. Her four employees, for example, remain on the salon’s books


Hair Stylist’s Survival Plan Is to Build a Digital Salon

Maddisen Maxwell dried a mannequin’s hair at her salon in Highland Park, New Jersey on Thursday.

and she hopes to keep paying them with government stimulus money. Even with the innovation and government help, her business needs to make drastic changes. She plans to eventually cancel the salon’s current lease, saving $4,000 a month that had been going toward rent. She is merging with her sister’s salon a few towns away. “It was the only way for us to keep moving forward,” she said. If she had tried to main-

tain the status quo for a few more weeks, Michael B Hair & Style would have gone out of business. “This at least lets me continue.” Ms. Maxwell and her husband, Dalles, are co-owners of the salon, and have three children at home. Mr. Maxwell’s mother and aunt, both retired teachers, are helping their three children—ages 7, 10 and 17—with distance learning at home. That has freed Mr. Maxwell to focus on a few side gigs to keep bills paid while

the salon is closed. He has been working with a meal-prep startup focused on healthy eating. And a carpenter on the side, he recently started a contracting business with a few kitchen and bathroom projects for friends and neighbors who allowed him in their homes despite concerns over coronavirus. “I wanted to start it for years. Now it’s in high gear,” he said. “I’m starting with small projects, that’s getting some money coming in.”

For personal, non-commercial use only. Do not edit, alter or reproduce. For commercial reproduction or distribution, contact Dow Jones Reprints & Licensing at (800) 843-0008 or www.djreprints.com.


Saturday/Sunday, March 28 - 29, 2020 | A11

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THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC Cumulative coronavirus cases

Continued from the prior page with coronavirus.”



Jan. 22

March Asia Pacific 2

1 Feb. 8 Raju Sarker tests positive in Singapore.

her family and friends she wanted her funeral to be a party. Her favorite song “What a Wonderful World” by Louis Armstrong, would play, and tunes by Earth, Wind & Fire. By March 8, the pneumonia had spread to her left lung. She and her husband, a 72year-old economist who had worked for years at the World Bank, were tested for Covid-19. They saw each other briefly that day before being taken to separate rooms. The results would come in 48 hours. Medics put a breathing mask over her face and fitted her with a feeding tube. From the U.S., her daughter Liza inquired about the coronavirus test every few hours. A U.S. citizen, she has lived in the country since 1985, when her parents moved there for work. The disease was now spreading in America. A specialist in infectious diseases gave a webinar at her office. Liza asked if Tamiflu, which was being given to her parents, would be effective against Covid-19. The expert said most likely not.

wrenching question: If Mr. Sarker died, would they want the body flown back home? He came to the conclusion that they would. For peace of mind. Still, there were logistical matters to consider. The body

A friend on the phone to Raju Sarker’s pregnant wife

North America Others

2 Feb. 23 Albert Szabo develops flu-like symptoms in Hungary.

4 March 5 Aitai Shakibafar is admitted to the intensive-care unit in Iran.

3 Feb. 28 Ivo Cilesi is rushed to a hospital in Italy.

5 March 10 Liza Paqueo in the U.S. learns her mother in the Philippines is in critical condition

The nurses counseled her. “More than drugs, hope can help you,” one said. They also talked about their own worries on the medical front lines. Ms. Shakibafar struggled with the sense of doom around her. She played an Iranian love song from the 1990s on her phone and sometimes sang along, mumbling into her oxygen mask. After five days in the ICU that felt like a terrible nightmare, Ms. Shakibafar was sent to a ward and then discharged. She cried. “I saw the sky with a different perspective,” she said.

Milan Mr. Cilesi, the 61-year-old Italian therapist, never regained consciousness after his

mother had passed away at 7:27 a.m. on March 11, the day the coronavirus was officially declared a pandemic. Her coronavirus test came back positive a few hours later, as did her husband’s. He is still fighting the disease. Mrs. Paqueo was cremated. Her burial plot lies empty.

“My father is showing again how tough he is,” his son said. “It’s hard to take out my dad, he is like an old oak tree.”

Bangladesh In Bangladesh, Sanjida felt desperate. Her baby was due in a few weeks and Mr. Sarker had been in intensive care for more than a month. She wanted to see her husband. Since she couldn’t travel to Singapore, doctors agreed to hold up a phone close to his face on a WhatsApp video call. Mr. Sarker’s eyes were closed, sunken, but he could hear, doctors said. The last time the two had spoken to each other, more than a month ago on Feb. 5, he had told her not to worry. She

Budapest The medical team in Hungary didn’t think Mr. Szabo would last even a week. The odds were bleak for the 70year-old retired truck driver, still battling lymphoma from a coronavirus isolation ward. But on March 11, a doctor woke him up, and told the old man that his family was with him. Mr. Szabo, on a ventila-

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needed to be washed before burial under Islamic customs, but that wouldn’t be possible because of the infection, he was told. They would also need permission from Bangladesh authorities.

Middle East

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Liza Paqueo with her mother, Nida Cortes Paqueo, above. Albert Szabo, right, with the truck he used to drive in Hungary.



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Note: Data as of March 25 Source: Johns Hopkins CSSE

‘Look, they’re all working very hard. Just pray for him.’

Sarker sent money to support his wife and widowed mother. The last time he was home, in the summer of 2019, she cooked him his favorite foods: beef curry, taro stir fry. In July, she learned she was pregnant, and when Mr. Sarker left for Singapore, they agreed he would return after the birth. She wondered now if her husband would live to see their child. That night, unbeknown to her, her father grappled with a





That night, in an isolation room in Singapore, Mr. Sarker’s blood pressure was dropping fast. Doctors summoned his local contact, Jakir Khan, a man Mr. Sarker had grown up with in Bangladesh. An image of Mr. Sarker’s lungs showed cloudy white patches, which meant heavy damage. His kidneys weren’t working either. Mr. Khan made a video call to Mr. Sarker’s wife in Bangladesh. He didn’t share the details of her husband’s dire condition, worried it could trigger complications in her pregnancy a few weeks from childbirth. But if these were his final moments, she should at least see him, Mr. Khan thought. He pressed the phone against the glass wall of the isolation room. Mr. Sarker lay on his stomach, his face turned to one side, obscured by tubes. She strained to see. Mr. Khan panned the camera toward a cluster of doctors. “Look, they’re all working very hard. Just pray for him,” he said to her. No one had spelled it out, but Sanjida Akhter could tell her husband’s life was in real danger. Her parents had been crying. An only son, Mr.



Mrs. Paqueo was a planner. She had picked out her burial plot in her hometown of Surigao in the Philippines years ago. It is on a hill overlooking open waters. She’d instructed

U.S. Eases Curbs on Seasonal Labor Visas BY MICHELLE HACKMAN WASHINGTON—The State Department is further easing requirements on seasonal foreign worker visas, following agriculture industry warnings that a bottleneck created by coronavirus-related curbs could prompt a farm-labor shortage at the peak of spring harvest. Under the latest rules, which the State Department issued Thursday, most applicants will no longer need an in-person interview to get visas for farm or other seasonal work, such as landscaping, fishing or working at resorts. That requirement had slowed the number of workers entering the U.S. The State Department paused most visa processing in embassies and consulates abroad due to the pandemic. Under a different set of rules issued last week, only returning workers—nearly all of whom come from Mexico— were allowed to skip the interview. Though the new rules ap-

ply to all seasonal workers, most of those entering the country at the moment are coming to plant and harvest crops. U.S. farmers rely heavily on the seasonal guest-worker visas, known as H-2A, which can legally account for as many as one in 10 of a farm’s workers. The industry pressed the Trump administration to ease requirements. “American farmers are dependent on guest workers from the H-2A program to harvest our crops, and American consumers are dependent on the food from these harvests for continued sustenance during the present crisis,” said Dave Puglia, president of Western Growers. The easing of H-2A curbs has angered groups advocating tighter restrictions on immigration—some of President Trump’s staunchest allies— who say the government shouldn’t be making it easy for employers to hire foreign labor when so many Americans are losing their jobs.

In the intensive-care unit in Tehran, Ms. Shakibafar breathed through an oxygen mask, garbed in a purple hospital gown. There were nine beds in the room, which was filled with patients like her who were struggling to breathe. Ms. Shakibafar’s Covid-19 test came back positive several days after she was admitted. People were dying around her. Hospital staff rushed into the room several times, drawing a curtain and intubating a near-death patient. If their efforts failed, the body was wheeled out. When she felt able, Ms. Shakibafar talked to some of her neighbors. She cajoled a bearded man who looked to be in his 50s to eat. The next morning, his bed was empty. At first the nurses said he’d been moved to a hospital ward, not wanting to upset her. When she asked again, they said he had died.

collapse that late-February day when he was rushed to the emergency room in the middle of breakfast. On March 2, Ms. Lucchelli learned he had died overnight. She sent a suit and a photo of Mr. Cilesi to the mortuary, but the risk of contracting the virus was too high for the morticians, who could only lay the clothes atop the body before they cremated it. At least dress him in a hat, she asked. “Ivo loved hats.”

tor, couldn’t speak but blinked to signal he understood. There was surprising news: His lungs and circulation were both improving, though he still wasn’t out of the woods. The doctor called it a miracle. Gabor thinks his father may have been lucky. Being one of Hungary’s first patients, doctors were able to

had the same message for him. She wanted to sound upbeat, and somehow pull him back from the jaws of death. “You’re having a son,” she said. “I went to the doctor and he said I’m due to give birth on April 1. Get better and come home soon.” Mr. Sarker’s latest Covid-19 test came back negative. But

‘It’s hard to take out my dad, he is like an old oak tree.’

Washington, D.C.

Liza got an urgent text from Manila as she had a late lunch on March 10. On the phone with a relative, she learned her mother’s heart had stopped. Doctors gave Mrs. Paqueo chest compressions for eight minutes and revived her. Liza took an Uber to her brother’s house to be with family. It was there that she got the call. Mrs. Paqueo’s pupils were dilated. Their

Albert Szabo’s son, who came from Brazil to visit him

give him their full attention. Recovered from his own likely bout of coronavirus, Gabor plans on staying in Europe in the months to come, perhaps taking up work in Sweden to support his parents. After years in Brazil and a battle with a global pandemic, he thinks maybe now is the time to remain close to family.

after seven weeks in the hospital, he still can’t breathe on his own, and his condition remains critical. Every day, Sanjida worries she’s one step closer to her child’s birth and perhaps her husband’s death. Her hospital bag for the delivery is packed. —Szabolcs Panyi contributed to this article.

Building Industry Seeks Exemption BY DAVID HARRISON AND KEIKO MORRIS The construction industry is pushing to keep projects up and running even as some begin to shut down around the country to slow the spread of the coronavirus. In Washington, D.C., and in state capitals, industry groups are lobbying to designate construction workers as essential personnel exempt from stayat-home orders. The industry employs 7.6 million Americans, or 5% of the workforce. That effort has had mixed success. Illinois and California have deemed construction essential but Pennsylvania and Washington state have ordered building sites closed except those deemed essential, such as health-care facilities. New York state at first exempted construction but amended its order Friday to shut down all projects except those deemed critical, such as those involving roads, transit, bridges and health care. Last week, industry groups and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce wrote to President Trump, urging his administration to exempt construction


Ms. Shakibafar during the first of five days in intensive care.





A virus warning sign posted at a construction site in Lebanon, Ky.

workers from local quarantine orders. “Shutting down the ability of our industries to serve our nation and maintain our physical infrastructure will impact the economic viability of the entire nation, not to mention numerous businesses,” they wrote. Their plea highlights the trade-off between battling the spread of the virus and keeping the economy on track. On Tuesday, Mr. Trump said he hoped to have the country back at work in just two

weeks—a timeline at odds with the advice of health professionals. Construction accounts for 4.1% of gross domestic product, but the impact of a nationwide shutdown would spread to manufacturers of building materials and equipment as well as to architects and engineers, said Ken Simonson, chief economist of Associated General Contractors of America, a trade group. While most construction sites remain open, a growing number are shutting down in

response to state orders. A survey by the Associated General Contractors released Friday found that 39% of companies had projects stopped by clients or local authorities, up from 28% last week. As sites close, more workers will likely turn to unemployment benefits, further swelling the ranks of recipients. On Thursday, the Labor Department reported a record 3.28 million applications for unemployment benefits in the week ended March 21. The $2 trillion rescue package approved by Congress won’t be enough to help the industry, the AGC said. The group wants lawmakers to spend more on infrastructure, grant relief from losses on federally funded projects and protect construction worker pension plans. Industry groups say construction workers are less at risk from the virus because they often work outdoors and wear protective equipment such as masks and gloves. About 13% of respondents to the AGC’s latest survey said they knew of an infected person on their job site, up from 8% in last week’s survey.

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A12 | Saturday/Sunday, March 28 - 29, 2020

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Italy’s Slow Progress Is Warning to West One of the most draconian lockdowns hasn’t stamped out the virus entirely

Johnson Tests Positive

Patients were treated in an emergency temporary overflow hospital building set up to ease the pressure on the health-care system in Brescia, Italy, on Monday.

Hoping for the Peak Italy is waiting to see if coronavirus infections and deaths will start to decline. New confirmed coronavirus cases and deaths

Continued from page A1 demonstrates the difficulties of leadership, which demands personal meetings with senior aides and displays of public reassurance, while conforming to public guidelines to limit contact with others. Many leaders have failed to follow their own government advice. Government offices and legislatures around the world are often housed in archaic buildings that push policy makers into proximity. The British government is run from a warren of interconnected old buildings around Downing Street in central London that serve as residences for the prime minister and others, and as offices for other ministers and senior civil servants. Several other leaders, including President Trump, Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who were in close contact with people with the infection, have so far tested negative. Mr. Trump was tested after he hosted a dinner at his Florida resort for a delegation around Brazilian President

New cases

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Nationwide lockdown

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Medical personnel prepared to evaluate a patient who arrived in an ambulance at a hospital in Brescia, Italy, this past week.

“In China, it took two months of complete closure to go down to zero contagions. What’s been done here so far has helped save [the northern region of] Lombardy but it’s not over yet,” he said. China’s Zhejiang province reported one new domestic infection on Thursday. Italy enacted its first lockdown measures on Feb. 22, quarantining 11 towns at the center of the initial clusters of infections in the northern regions of Lombardy and the Veneto. But much of the country continued normally. Some 40% of those leaving their homes before the virus’s arrival were still doing so regularly before a recent tightening of the rules, according to mobilephone location data cited by officials.

no n-

Doctors in Brescia, a northern Italian town at the center of the country’s new coronavirus pandemic, have seen glimmers of hope in their battle against the disease in recent days. The virus has killed more than 1,000 people there and the number of infected admitted to its large hospital is beginning to decline, down by half to 50 a day, suggesting the extreme lockdown imposed on the population could be working. But local officials believe the true number of those infected with the virus is perhaps six times the official figure of 7,305. And they are taking new steps: Those discharged from hospital but still positive for the virus are sent to temporary quarantine facilities for two weeks before returning home, a measure gradually being introduced elsewhere in the country. More than two weeks after Italy enacted a nationwide quarantine that remains the most drastic in the West—people are largely barred from leaving their homes—the growth of new infections is slowing to single-digit percentage increases each day, lower on average than a week ago. However, progress is uneven and slow, with an additional 919 people dying on Friday, the highest one-day total since the outbreak began. That brought the total in Italy to 9,134 dead of the disease, the most in the world. More than 86,000 people in Italy have tested positive for the virus so far. But the head of Italy’s emergency services said up to 650,000 Italians may have been infected, many of them asymptomatic, meaning that even tighter quarantine measures could fail to stop the spread. The country’s experience— which has served as the template for the lockdowns throughout much of the West and which followed several weeks of more-limited quarantines in the country’s north— shows that such measures are very slow to produce results and ultimately could fail to stamp out the virus entirely. That is instructive for other countries that must decide how hard to clamp down on their populations, and how to calculate the attendant economic damage. At the moment, the U.S. has a patchwork of policies, while most of Europe is under some form of a lockdown. “The restrictions had a big impact. It’s the only thing that allowed us to survive,” said Alessandro Triboldi, head of Brescia Poliambulanza Hospital. “But we need to get into our heads that we’re in this for the long haul.”



Jair Bolsonaro. More than 20 members of the delegation later tested positive. Mr. Bolsonaro, who has been playing down the dangers of the epidemic, has since said that his test came back negative. Most leaders have asked citizens to stop shaking hands and quarantine as soon as they experience symptoms, but not all have led by example. Mark Rutte, the Dutch premier, held a press conference on March 10 to announce that everyone must stop shaking hands and instead use greetings such as bumping elbows—yet during the address he shook hands with an aide. In late February, as the virus took hold in the U.K., Mr. Johnson paid a visit to a hospital, saying later he had shaken hands with patients. On March 11, he met with Queen Elizabeth II. Pedro Sánchez, the Spanish prime minister, refused to go into quarantine after his wife tested positive on March 15. After a doctor who had given her a pneumonia vaccine tested positive, Ms. Merkel retreated to her modest apartment overlooking Berlin’s Museum Island, which she shares with her husband. She chaired a cabinet meeting on Monday by telephone. In the cabinet room, her ministers sat at a large round table, preserving a distance of about 6 feet between them, according to a spokesman.

On March 10, the government extended restrictions to the whole country. Residents can leave their homes only to buy food or medicine or seek medical care. Violators face fines of up to €3,000 ($3,900) or jail time. Italy’s lockdown still isn’t as strict as China’s and the country hasn’t adopted the aggressive tactics that helped stop the virus in Wuhan, where the pandemic is thought to have originated. There, mild or suspected cases—including healthy relatives of those infected—were placed in makeshift quarantine centers in hotels and schools. Doctors treating coronavirus patients were separated from their families. By contrast, in Italy, those with mild symptoms have so far been told to

self-isolate at home, and are rarely tested for the virus. Chinese authorities provided Wuhan with doctors, food and other supplies to get through the quarantine, a scenario impossible to replicate in Italy, because the virus has spread nationwide. Italy’s experience shows that Western-style lockdowns that don’t involve the coercive measures of Wuhan may have to be maintained for longer than Western societies are willing to tolerate to see results. “The issue is whether you can sustain a lockdown for the time it takes to work—three, four, five, six months or longer—while the economy goes south,” said Gabor Kelen, director of the Department of Emergency Medicine at Johns Hopkins Medicine.

Frustration with the lockdown has drawn attention to a push by authorities in the Veneto, the region east of Lombardy, to launch a mass-testing campaign as a way of controlling outbreaks and eventually loosening quarantines. Indeed, the experience of the small town of Vo’ Euganeo has shown that extensive testing coupled with a lockdown can help tame the virus more quickly than just containment. Vo’ had Italy’s first death attributed to the coronavirus. Lucia Menaldo, owner of an eyeglasses store in Vo’, was incredulous when she learned on Feb. 22 that authorities were placing the entire town of 3,400 people under a hard quarantine with no one allowed in or out. “Initially people were mad.

U.K. Prime Minister Johnson said on Instagram that he is self-isolating after testing positive for the virus.

“It is unfortunately not yet possible to do that via hologram,” said Olaf Scholz, the vice chancellor. Austria plans for Chancellor Sebastian Kurz’s entire inner circle to quarantine together if someone close to him tests positive. Despite being sick, Mr. Johnson spoke to Mr. Trump by phone Friday. The president wished Mr. Johnson a

quick recovery, Downing Street said. Mr. Johnson noticed he had mild symptoms, including a cough and a fever, on Thursday afternoon and was tested shortly after. He then stood outside his official residence at 10 Downing Street to participate in countrywide applause of the National Health Service, standing a few feet away from the country’s chan-

cellor of the exchequer. Mr. Johnson was informed at midnight he had the virus. Under U.K. health guidance, a person who is infected must self-isolate for a week to allow the virus to subside. Any people living in the same household as that person must isolate for two weeks, as it can take days for signs of infection to show. The British government has


Deaths 0 March 1



Note: Through March 27 Source: Italian government

How could you not be when you see military and police roadblocks keeping you from leaving town?” she said. “Now we know that those roadblocks saved us.” As Vo’ fell under quarantine, Andrea Crisanti, a microbiology professor and infectious-diseases expert at the nearby University of Padua, saw an opportunity. He had developed a test for the coronavirus by mid-January using information made public by Chinese doctors. Dr. Crisanti oversaw the testing of 95% of the residents of Vo’ in the days after the first infection was reported. He found that 3% of the population had been infected and that just under half of those who tested positive were asymptomatic. When everybody was tested two weeks later, the rate of infection had fallen to 0.1% with only eight new infections, all of whom lived with previously infected people. “The main lesson from Vo’ is that when you have a cluster of infected people, you should do a very aggressive lockdown and then test as many people as possible,” Dr. Crisanti said. a hierarchy of ministers to replace Mr. Johnson if he can’t perform his duties, of which Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab would be next in line, a government spokesman said. French lawmakers have been among those hit hardest by the epidemic. Some 30 lawmakers and staffers at the National Assembly have tested positive for the virus. As a result, France’s political parties agreed to designate 20 members who lived close to the grand riverside palace to represent them and vote on behalf of the 557 not present. The house also postponed all nonessential bills. The Spanish parliament allowed remote voting in 2011, but speeches can be made only “personally and aloud” in the House. So this past week, Mr. Sánchez addressed a nearempty chamber to request a 15-day extension of the state of emergency, with 307 of 350 deputies voting online. Last week, the Swiss federal assembly, founded in 1500, moved to allow its 200 legislators to convene by video or telephone. And on March 20, the European Parliament, the European Union’s legislative body, changed its own rules to allow members to vote on bills and motions by email, attaching a photo of their ballot. —Laurence Norman in Brussels and Xavier Fontdegloria in Barcelona contributed to this article.

For personal, non-commercial use only. Do not edit, alter or reproduce. For commercial reproduction or distribution, contact Dow Jones Reprints & Licensing at (800) 843-0008 or www.djreprints.com.


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Saturday/Sunday, March 28 - 29, 2020 | A13


S TA N L E Y S P O R K I N 1932 — 2020

C AT H E R I N E H A M L I N 1924 — 2020

SEC Official Cracked Down on Bribery

Gynecologist Healed Horrific Childbirth Wounds

“schnook government worker” watching congressional hearings on TV, as he put it, Mr. Sporkin learned of slush funds used by companies to make illegal political contributions. How, he wondered, did companies hide these payments in their books? When he became the SEC’s enforcement chief in 1974, Mr. Sporkin led a probe into slush funds. His investigators found evidence that Exxon, Lockheed, 3M and hundreds of others had made questionable payments overseas. The findings spurred Congress to pass the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act of 1977, barring companies from paying foreign officials to win business. Mr. Sporkin acknowledged that U.S. executives operating overseas sometimes were subject to “shakedowns” by foreign officials.


he Hamlins worked as gynecologists and obstetricians in Britain, Hong Kong and Australia before noticing an advertisement seeking someone to set up a school of midwifery in Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia. They arrived in 1959, expecting to remain a few years. But their work, which shifted to a focus on treating fistulas, became a lifetime mission for both. “I believe that Reg and I were guided here by God,” she wrote. The transition was rough. Nights brought the howls of hyenas. Dr. Hamlin described them as “unattractive animals” but added that they were good at removing rubbish. The Hamlins drove a sec-

 Read a collection of in-depth profiles at WSJ.com/Obituaries

How Virus Attacks Is Probed

Continued from page A1 standing of how coronavirus operates in the body. It most commonly enters the nose through those minuscule droplets, says Steve Lawrence, an infectious disease doctor at Washington University and Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis. This is why public-health experts and governments focus on social distancing as a prevention strategy. It can also enter through the eyes or mouth. Once the virus’s particles enter the body, they begin to attach to a particular receptor on the surface of cells, usually starting with those in the mucous membranes in the nose and throat. Spiky proteins on the surface of the coronavirus latch onto cell membranes. Though most people start with an upper respiratory infection, it’s also possible that deeply inhaled droplets can go directly into the lungs, says Brian Garibaldi, an associate professor of pulmonary and critical care at Johns Hopkins University. “It has a special protein that binds more tightly to cells in the lower respiratory tract,” he says. Wherever it lands, the virus hijacks cells and starts replicating, ultimately producing millions of viral particles that flood the body. “Like other viruses it takes over the cellular machinery of the cell and makes more copies of itself and spreads,” says Dr. Garibaldi. When your immune system recognizes there’s a new virus it uses signaling molecules called cytokines to start calling in reinforcements to the site of infection. “Many of those cytokines end up causing a fever,” says Dr. Garibaldi. Once the virus has attacked enough cells in the upper respiratory system, most people will start to feel symptoms. This happens on average five days after being exposed, but it can be sooner or as many as two weeks later, studies show.


Central Bank Issues Emergency Rate Cut The Bank of Canada issued an emergency rate cut on Friday and unveiled plans to expand its balance sheet in its latest effort to shelter the economy from the new coronavirus pandemic and stabilize rocky financial markets. The move to lower the benchmark overnight interest rate by half a percentage point, to 0.25%, brought the key rate to its lowest level since the global financial crisis about a decade ago. The central bank also will venture into large-scale asset purchases through the acquisition of Government of Canada securities and commercial paper. Bank of Canada Gov. Stephen Poloz said the rate cut and asset-purchasing programs are intended to support the financial system so it keeps on providing credit. —Kim Mackrael



Retired Venezuelan General Cliver Alcalá turned himself in to the U.S. counternarcotics authorities Friday, a day after American prosecutors indicted him and other Venezuelan officials, including President Nicolás Maduro, on drug-trafficking charges, according to four people familiar with the matter. Mr. Alcalá waived extradition and surrendered to Colombian police before he was flown from Colombia to New York, where he is expected to collaborate with U.S. prosecutors building cases against other Venezuelan-regime figures accused of having links to narcoterrorist groups, the people said. On Thursday, the U.S. unveiled a $10 million reward for Mr. Alcalá’s capture for his alleged role in permitting Colombian cartels to move cocaine through Venezuela and converting the country into a major transit hub in the global narcotics trade. Mr. Alcalá, who has repeatedly denied drug charges, couldn’t be reached for comment. There was no immediate response from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency. —Kejal Vyas

she recalled being a tomboy who rode horses and climbed trees. After boarding school, she earned a medical degree at the University of Sydney in 1946. A lecture by a missionary inspired her to find a Christian mission for her medical work. She met Reginald Hamlin at a Sydney women’s hospital, where he was the medical superintendent. He was 15 years older. They married when she was 26.


Former General Surrenders to U.S.


or decades, few people outside Africa knew of Catherine Hamlin’s mission of medical treatment for women in Ethiopia. The injuries treated by Dr. Hamlin, who died March 18 at the age of 96, were unimaginable to most people in wealthier countries: obstetric fistulas, or holes in the tissue between the birth canal and bladder or rectum. These injuries typically occur during prolonged labor, leading to stillbirth, among women in remote areas lacking medical care. Because the injuries leave sufferers leaking urine or feces through their vaginas, these women typically become outcasts. A network of nonprofit hospitals in Ethiopia created by Dr. Hamlin and her husband, Reginald Hamlin, has treated more than 60,000 Ethiopian women for these wounds over the past 61 years, according to the Catherine Hamlin Fistula Foundation. That work continues. The Hamlins’ mission—long funded by donors in Australia, Canada and other countries—became widely known in the U.S. in 2004, when Catherine Hamlin appeared on “The Oprah Winfrey Show.” “If men were getting fistulas,” Dr. Hamlin said during her TV chat with Ms. Winfrey, “something would have been done years and years ago.” Ms. Winfrey replied: “If a man had a hole in his penis? You’re darn right about that.” Ms. Winfrey made a large donation; many of her viewers chipped in as well. Elinor Catherine Nicholson, one of six children, was born Jan. 24, 1924, in Sydney. Her father came from a family that prospered in business, including the manufacture of elevators. In a 2001 memoir, “The Hospital by the River,”

ondhand Volkswagen Beetle and spent much of their time tangling with local bureaucrats. To learn surgical techniques for fistulas, they wrote to an Egyptian obstetrician and sought advice from other authorities in England and Germany. They also developed their own surgical techniques and taught them to other doctors in Ethiopia and elsewhere. Hearing of cures, women traveled hundreds of miles, sometimes on foot, to their hospital. “What a tragic sight they were,” Dr. Hamlin wrote. “Offensive to smell, dressed in rags, often completely destitute.” After being cured, one woman wanted to kiss the Hamlins’ feet. They befriended and admired the Ethiopian emperor, Haile Selassie. After he was deposed in 1974, the Hamlins endured a long period of violence and political turmoil. Their strategy was to keep a low profile. “I am sure we were left alone because we were a completely free hospital,” she wrote. “As Reg used to say, we were true socialists.” Regular fundraising trips overseas allowed them to build larger and better facilities. Donors included World Vision Canada and Rotary clubs. When Reg Hamlin died of cancer in 1993, Catherine Hamlin was tempted to retire. She said the hospital gardener took her hand and pleaded: “Don’t leave us; we’ll all help you.” She stayed for the rest of her life and died at her home in Addis Ababa. Among many other honors, she was made a Companion of the Order of Australia in 1995. The Ethiopian government presented her with the Eminent Citizen Award last year. Her survivors include a son and four grandchildren.




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Mr. Sporkin led a probe that found many firms had made questionable payments overseas.

Still, he said, much of the bribery stemmed from “greedy businessmen trying to get an edge.” When companies demanded guidance on how to comply with the law, Mr. Sporkin was dismissive. “We don’t have guidelines for rapists, muggers and embezzlers, and I don’t think we need guidelines for corporations who want to bribe foreign officials,” he said in 1979. He went on to serve as general counsel of the Central Intelligence Agency in the early 1980s and as a federal district judge in the District of Columbia from 1986 to 2000. In one of his most celebrated moments as a judge, he elicited testimony by a drug dealer in 1989 about supplying crack cocaine to Marion Barry, then mayor of Washington. Judge Sporkin overruled prosecutors who tried to suppress that information. During trials, he was known for leaning back in his chair and seeming to stare at the ceiling or even doze. Then he would suddenly strike with a question. Stanley Sporkin was born Feb. 7, 1932, in Philadelphia. His father, Maurice Sporkin, was a lawyer who became an assistant district attorney and later a judge in the Court of Common Pleas. In a 2000 interview with the Washington Post, Stanley Sporkin recalled his father making a ruling in the early 1950s that desegregated a whites-only swimming pool in Philadelphia. “The whole concept I had of doing justice came from watching him,” he said. Mr. Sporkin studied accounting at the Pennsylvania State University, where he graduated in 1953 with Phi Beta Kappa honors. Two years later, he married Judith Imber. He earned his law degree at Yale. He trusted his instincts. “By and large,” he told the Associated Press in 1974, “good ethical common sense will give you the right answer every time.” —James R. Hagerty

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tanley Sporkin forced changes in corporate behavior in the 1970s as a crusading enforcement chief at the Securities and Exchange Commission who cracked down on bribery of foreign officials. Mr. Sporkin, who died of congestive heart failure Monday at the age of 88, didn’t accept the typical excuses for bribery—that “everybody does it” or “it’s the only way to win contracts overseas.” What worried him, Mr. Sporkin said in 1976, was the effect it had on young people going into business: “They are being trained to be crooks, trained to falsify records, trained to pay bribes.” His crusade was an unlikely offshoot of the Watergate investigation of the early 1970s. As a

A researcher in the epidemiology lab at the Pasteur Institute of Lille examines infected cells. The lab is seeking to determine how the virus acts.

Early symptoms include a dry cough and fever, and sometimes a sore throat, as well as aches and fatigue. Loss of taste and smell have also been reported. For most people— roughly 80% according to reports from China—the symptoms dissipate in a few days or weeks. But for some people, mainly those who are older or have other medical conditions, the virus invades cells in the lungs. When it moves into the lungs, it is considered more serious. That could happen two to seven days after symptoms start, says Daniel Kuritzkes, chief of the division of infectious diseases at Boston’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Once the virus infects the cells that line the air sacs in the lungs, viral pneumonia develops. Shortness of breath is an indication that the virus is damaging the inflamed lungs. And the lungs often face a two-way assault. There is damage from the virus but a second equally debilitating response takes place: The body’s own immune system goes into over-

drive, causing more damage. Some patients’ immune systems flare up, producing white blood cells that flood the infection site in the lungs, causing damage. They secrete a lot of cytokines that enhance the inflammation, says Dr. Kuritzkes. “That can make it difficult for people to breathe. All this fluid

Spiky proteins on the surface of the virus latch onto cell membranes. that accumulates and all these extra cells that don’t belong there create a barrier for oxygen exchange,” he says. One feature that distinguishes Covid-19 from other viruses such as the flu is the high frequency of pneumonia, even in people with only mildly symptomatic cases, he says. Studies of Covid-19 patients whose lungs were examined show distinctive and unusual

patterns. Adam Bernheim, a cardiothoracic radiologist at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, and co-researchers studied the CT scans of 121 coronavirus patients from China. Writing in the journal Radiology, they found a striking pattern: Pneumonia progressed along the lungs’ outer edges, seen in gray spots. “A normal lung is black, because it contains air,” says Dr. Bernheim. “In coronavirus with pneumonia, air is being replaced by cells, inflammation, fluid, debris and pus, so it starts to turn gray or even white.” The spots developed in some patients within two days of the first symptoms and were nearly universal three days or more later. Dr. Bernheim says the pattern is different from garden-variety bacterial pneumonia, which often shows one very dense white area. When the lung becomes progressively more damaged, that triggers what is known as acute respiratory distress syndrome, or ARDS. This typically develops within seven to 14 days. There is no therapy for

ARDS, so patients need help breathing. “The ventilator is buying time for the lung to repair itself,” says Dr. Garibaldi. Matthew Arentz, a pulmonary and critical-care doctor at EvergreenHealth in Kirkland, Wash., published a study in JAMA this month looking at the chest images of the first 21 critically ill Covid-19 patients in the U.S. Eighty-four percent required mechanical ventilation and only four people survived, says Dr. Arentz. X-rays showed pneumonia in 19 of the 21 patients, all of whom developed ARDS. Most of the patients who died were unable to maintain adequate oxygen levels due to diseased lungs. But one-third developed heart failure. Some doctors say that abrupt onset of heart problems seems to be another distinctive trait of Covid-19. “We don’t know if the virus is doing something to the heart or the heart may have been stressed by the patient’s critical illness because a lot of these patients are older and have other health problems,” says Dr. Arentz.

For personal, non-commercial use only. Do not edit, alter or reproduce. For commercial reproduction or distribution, contact Dow Jones Reprints & Licensing at (800) 843-0008 or www.djreprints.com.

A14 | Saturday/Sunday, March 28 - 29, 2020


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A Shot at Olympic Glory Is on Hold Kareem Maddox quit his podcasting job to play 3x3 basketball in the Olympics this summer. What does he do now? BY BEN COHEN

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Kareem Maddox of the U.S., center, in action against Puerto Rico during the men’s basketball 3x3 final match at the 2019 Pan American Games in Lima, Peru. Public Radio stations in California international flights and hunted for and Colorado, and he became the internet connections in foreign host of “All Things Considered” in countries. “I remember one stretch Greeley, Colo. But he spent most of when I didn’t know where I was for his free time working on his game a week,” Maddox said. and tweaking his shot. He made The first time he felt the Olymhimself so much better that he realpics were really within reach was ized that he wanted to be doing when Maddox’s team won the last something different—which is how two U.S. national championships he found himself playing for and beat teams with players a team in Poland. who had NBA experience. Then it was time to On one team was a guy do something differwho played briefly for ent again. Maddox the Golden State Scoring average for had years of experiWarriors. On the Kareem Maddox during ence playing 3x3 other team were with Princeton guys who worked in his senior year at alumni when the IOC podcasting and priPrinceton in the approved the sport vate wealth manage2010-11 season. for Tokyo right around ment. But there are the same time Gimlet lots of little quirks in 3x3 posted a job opening for a basketball, and this was a producer on a show called “The wonderful experiment in what Pitch.” Maddox decided to do both. happens when pure talent meets in“I would say that Kareem is the stitutional knowledge. The experifirst prospective Olympian that I ence won. “It was four guys who worked with—that I know of,” said were more talented than us, but we Blythe Terrell, the show’s former just knew how to play,” Maddox editor. said. “And we’re not complete The podcast, which is a bit like bums.” the radio equivalent of “Shark He was one of the four players Tank,” was a full-time job. 3x3 basselected by a USA Basketball comketball was his second-full time job. mittee to represent his country at He pushed the idea of remote work this month’s Olympic qualifying to its extreme as he edited tape on tournament, and the Americans



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70s 80s 90s

d p Spring p i fi ld Indianapolis Springfield 60s Charles h Charleston 100+ h d Richmond Kansas LLouisville Lo ill . L Lou St. Louis City h Wichita igh h Raleigh h ill Nashville 70s Charlotte C h l tt kl homa ma City City Oklahoma Santaa FFe p Memphis 60s C b Columbia Ph Phoenix 50s Alb q q Albuquerque Warm Rain Atl t Atlanta 70s LLittlee Rockk Tuc Tucson D Dallas i gh Birmingham Jack Jackson El Paso 90s Ft. Worth Cold T-storms 80s Jacksonville 70s b Mobile A ti Austin 90s Stationary 90s New Snow ew Orleans l d Orlando an Antonio A San t Houston Tampa 70s Las Veg Vegas

A h g Anchorage


Top k Topeka

Colorad C l d Colorado p Springs


Honolulu l


U.S. Forecasts s...sunny; pc... partly cloudy; c...cloudy; sh...showers; t...t’storms; r...rain; sf...snow flurries; sn...snow; i...ice Today Tomorrow City Hi Lo W Hi Lo W Anchorage 32 14 sn 30 16 pc Atlanta 83 65 pc 79 58 pc Austin 80 49 pc 79 62 pc Baltimore 54 50 r 74 52 sh Boise 55 41 c 54 38 r Boston 53 38 s 45 40 r Burlington 55 38 pc 46 40 r Charlotte 85 67 pc 85 60 t Chicago 59 45 r 51 38 pc Cleveland 63 57 r 66 43 pc Dallas 75 51 pc 77 57 s Denver 48 27 pc 52 30 c Detroit 54 53 r 59 41 c Honolulu 80 69 pc 80 69 sh Houston 82 58 t 82 65 pc Indianapolis 73 50 t 59 40 s Kansas City 70 44 c 64 40 s Las Vegas 67 53 c 65 49 pc Little Rock 76 49 t 73 49 pc Los Angeles 66 51 pc 65 49 c Miami 85 75 s 86 75 s Milwaukee 51 45 r 50 39 sh Minneapolis 48 39 r 47 34 r Nashville 80 60 c 72 51 pc New Orleans 90 74 pc 84 72 c New York City 52 45 r 56 50 sh Oklahoma City 71 42 s 72 46 s




City Omaha Orlando Philadelphia Phoenix Pittsburgh Portland, Maine Portland, Ore. Sacramento St. Louis Salt Lake City San Francisco Santa Fe Seattle Sioux Falls Wash., D.C.

Today Lo W 40 r 67 s 47 r 54 c 59 t 36 pc 47 r 48 r 48 t 34 sh 50 c 26 s 45 r 36 r 54 r

Tomorrow Hi Lo W 59 37 pc 93 69 s 68 52 sh 76 54 pc 73 45 pc 45 36 r 56 45 r 62 42 sh 65 42 s 53 38 pc 60 49 sh 58 33 pc 53 43 r 53 31 pc 77 55 c

International City Amsterdam Athens Baghdad Bangkok Beijing Berlin Brussels Buenos Aires Dubai Dublin Edinburgh

Flurries Ice

Hi 60 94 50 71 68 53 54 57 76 49 58 51 51 46 57

Hi 53 60 77 100 58 57 56 80 90 48 45

Today Tomorrow Lo W Hi Lo W 39 pc 45 32 c 49 c 61 48 pc 57 t 76 54 pc 81 pc 100 82 pc 35 s 65 40 pc 36 pc 41 26 sh 36 pc 46 26 c 69 pc 81 70 s 76 c 91 72 pc 33 pc 42 33 pc 29 sh 45 34 c

City Frankfurt Geneva Havana Hong Kong Istanbul Jakarta Jerusalem Johannesburg London Madrid Manila Melbourne Mexico City Milan Moscow Mumbai Paris Rio de Janeiro Riyadh Rome San Juan Seoul Shanghai Singapore Sydney Taipei City Tokyo Toronto Vancouver Warsaw Zurich

Hi 63 60 91 77 51 89 58 69 55 60 95 80 84 65 60 93 63 83 98 59 84 56 49 91 74 72 67 45 51 61 60

Today Lo W 36 pc 41 c 65 s 70 sh 46 r 77 t 49 pc 54 c 36 pc 38 pc 78 s 67 pc 55 pc 40 c 39 c 80 pc 39 pc 73 s 67 pc 44 pc 74 sh 31 pc 44 r 76 pc 65 pc 60 r 39 r 41 r 42 r 35 pc 37 c

MLB, Players’ Union Reach Deal BY JARED DIAMOND



p s / . Paul Mpls./St.









Angel Los A Angeles


Billings Boise


n Francisco San