Financial Daily Dose 3.26.2020 | Top Story: Senate passes $2 Trillion COVID-19 relief bill

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The Senate unanimously passed a hotly anticipated third COVID-19-related stimulus bill last night, and the House is set to take up the measure today and vote tomorrow on the bill that would deliver $2 trillion in loans, tax breaks, and direct payments to companies and individuals alike – Bloomberg and NYTimes and WSJ

A “last-minute dispute” over provisions that would expand unemployment insurance and jobless aid delayed a final vote on the legislation, with 4 Senators objecting that the expansion “could lead to layoffs and incentivize workers to collect unemployment payments rather than take a job.” Seriously – NYTimes and WSJ and Bloomberg and MarketWatch

The holdup emerged after markets closed on Wednesday, helping the cause for Wall Street, which saw a second straight day of gains for the Dow and S&P 500 – NYTimes and WSJ and MarketWatch

No matter what form the stimulus agreement finally takes, and as staggering as $2 trillion sounds, it won’t be enough to see us through more than a few months – NYTimes and WSJ and Bloomberg

COVID-19’s effects on the airline industry have made headlines from the early days of the virus outbreak. Less prominent, but no less pained, are hoteliers—especially the big-brand franchisees—and their staffs, some 4 million of whom “have been laid off or will be let go in coming weeks” as the travel and hospitality sector shrivels up almost entirely – NYTimes

The SEC’s taken additional steps to help out public companies and investment funds impacted by the pandemic, extending certain filing periods and exempting funds and advisors from “having to hold in-person board meetings,” among other things – Law360

Oil producer Occidental Petroleum Corp. has reached a truce with activist Carl Icahn that will see the company ceding several Board seats to Icahn deputies, cut salaries by up to 30% to reduce expenses, and clear any planned acquisitions of companies or assets with a new BOD oversight committee – WSJ

Details of a Moody’s/SoftBank dispute that bubbled up after the ratings firm downgraded Masa Son’s company ratings by two notches and “questioned the ‘unexpected size and apparent urgency’” of SoftBank’s “massive share-and-debt buyback plan” – WSJ

S&P, meanwhile, cut Ford’s credit rating to BB+ and “may cut it further,” making the “carmaker the largest fallen angel to date” – Bloomberg

GE authorities notified California officials last Friday of a massive breach at its Canon Inc. subsidiary that exposed “bank account numbers, Social Security numbers and other sensitive information from General Electric Co. current and former employees” during an email account intrusion in early February – Law360

Groupon’s CEO and COO are both out, effectively immediately, but will remain with the company. Groupon North America president Aaron Cooper has taken over as interim CEO while the company searches for a permanent replacement – WSJ

And since all history does is repeat itself, let’s check in with the state of the country’s riskiest loans in the midst of the current economic crisis. Any guesses on the direction in which we’re heading? – Bloomberg

Some timely best practices for those video meetings that are likely dominating your calendar these days – NYTimes

Stay safe,

MDR

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