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Dow notches best quarter since 1987, a rebound helped by low interest rates and government stimulus amid COVID-19

CLOSE Where does the U.S. stimulus money come from? Here’s how the Federal Reserve is saving the economy from the COVID-19 crisis. USA TODAYStocks notched their best quarter in decades, as government stimulus and low interest rates helped markets start to recover from the damage of the coronavirus pandemic at the start of the year.The Dow…

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Dow notches best quarter since 1987, a rebound helped by low interest rates and government stimulus amid COVID-19

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Where does the U.S. stimulus money come from? Here’s how the Federal Reserve is saving the economy from the COVID-19 crisis.

USA TODAYStocks notched their best quarter in decades, as government stimulus and low interest rates helped markets start to recover from the damage of the coronavirus pandemic at the start of the year.The Dow Jones industrial average posted its strongest quarter since 1987 after surging 17.8% in the past three months. On Tuesday, the blue-chip average rose 217.08 points, or 0.9%, to 25,812.88.The Standard & Poor’s 500 soared nearly 20% in the second quarter, its best quarterly gain since 1998. It climbed 1.5% Tuesday to 3,100.29. The Nasdaq Composite rallied 30.6% in the second quarter, its best such period since 1999. The technology-heavy index advanced 1.9% Tuesday to 10,058.76.The rebound marks an about-face after Wall Street posted its worst period since the 2008 financial crisis when the pandemic battered the global economy in the first three months of the year. A series of fiscal and monetary stimulus measures from Washington and the Federal Reserve have helped calm financial markets in recent months after policymakers rushed to support the economy from the deepest economic slump since the 1930s.The S&P 500 has rallied within about 9% of its February record, bouncing back more than 35% since the March lows. A recent bout of volatility, however, could threaten the stock market’s rebound as a resurgence in virus cases stoke fears of another round of lockdowns.A dream home, a vintage school bus and quirky skates: Here’s what couples are buying with their pandemic wedding fundsOuch!: COVID-19 is forcing some people to put retirement on holdInvestors have weighed evidence of an economic recovery against a rise in reported coronavirus contagions in some countries and states. Traders are worried about Texas and other states having to roll back their reopening plans as infections surge.The number of confirmed cases globally is over 10.3 million, and the death toll is more than 505,500. There are more than 2.5 million cases in the U.S. and an excess of 129,000 deaths, according to the Johns Hopkins University data dashboard.New infections could increase to 100,000 a day if the nation doesn’t get the ongoing surge under control, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the top infectious disease expert at the National Institutes of Health, told Congress Tuesday.The major risks investors face in the second half of the year include uncertainty around a second wave of the virus, the upcoming U.S. presidential election in November and renewed trade tensions with China, analysts say.“While the initial stages of lockdown easing have delivered a substantial bounce in activity, the next phase of the transition to normal will be far harder and the speed will be contingent on the number of new COVID-19 cases,” Ben May, director of global macro research at Oxford Economics, said in a note. “The renewed rises in COVID-19 cases in parts of the U.S. is a clear worry.”A simmering trade dispute between Washington and Beijing has reemerged after the world’s two biggest economies signed a “Phase One” trade deal in January following an 18-month trade spat. Relations later deteriorated when the Trump administration blamed China for not sounding the alarm about the pandemic earlier.Meanwhile, if Democrats sweep Capitol Hill and the White House, which many investors see as at least possible, it could mean higher tax rates, which could weaken corporate profits.“The world is increasingly becoming bifurcated, with the U.S. and China at opposite poles,” BlackRock analysts said in the firm’s 2020 Midyear Outlook report. “Domestic polarization is on the rise, too, with the U.S. presidential election set to take place against the most tumultuous domestic backdrop since 1968. The two parties are as far apart on policy as they have ever been, making the result consequential for markets.”The “Fearless Girl” statue stands in front of the New York Stock Exchange on March 16, 2020. (Photo: Mark Lennihan/AP)On Tuesday, Fed Chairman Jerome Powell and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin testified before the House Financial Services Committee about the pandemic response.In prepared remarks, Powell repeated a pledge that the central bank will keep interest rates at their current ultra-low levels until it is sure the economy has weathered the pandemic crisis.The outlook for the U.S. economy is “extraordinarily uncertain” and the success of the recovery effort will depend in large part on the country’s ability to contain the spread of the pandemic, according to testimony from Powell released Monday by the Fed.”A full recovery is unlikely until people are confident that it is safe to re-engage in a broad range of activities,” Powell says.Investors will get further clues about the health of the economy when weekly unemployment aid applications and the June jobs report are both released Thursday. CLOSE

As families struggle in the new pandemic economy, here’s what you need to know about loans, providers and how to get the best deal.

USA TODAYMarkets overseas were buoyed somewhat by stronger than expected manufacturing data from China, the world’s second-largest economy. But other new economic indicators were mixed.A barrel of U.S. crude oil slid 43 cents to settle at $39.27 Tuesday, but it’s still nearly double where it was at the end of the first quarter. It’s also in a different world from April, when prices in one corner of the U.S. crude market briefly went below zero amid worries that collapsing demand would leave nowhere to store all the unused oil. Brent crude oil fell 56 cents to settle at $41.15 a barrel.The yield on the 10-year Treasury rose to 0.66% from 0.63% late Monday. It too has rallied back from its lows when recession worries were at their height. It set a record low in March when it briefly dipped below 0.50%, according to Tradeweb. The yield tends to move with investors’ expectations for the economy and inflation.In Europe, France’s CAC 40 dipped 0.2%, while Germany’s DAX gained 0.6%. Britain’s FTSE 100 lost 0.9%.Elsewhere, Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 gained 1.3%. South Korea’s Kospi added 0.7% and Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 rose 1.4%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng ticked up 0.5%. The Shanghai Composite closed up 0.8%.Contributing: The Associated PressRead or Share this story: https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/2020/06/30/dow-stocks-track-best-quarter-decades/3284359001/Find New & Used CarsNew CarsUsed CarsofPowered by Cars.com
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Woman suspected of mailing ricin to White House arrested at U.S.-Canada border | CBC News

WorldThree U.S. law enforcement officials say a woman suspected of sending an envelope containing the poison ricin, which was addressed to White House and President Donald Trump, has been arrested at the New York-Canada border.RCMP says ‘initial information … suggests that the letter originated in Canada’The Associated Press · Posted: Sep 20, 2020 7:57 PM ET…

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Woman suspected of mailing ricin to White House arrested at U.S.-Canada border | CBC News

WorldThree U.S. law enforcement officials say a woman suspected of sending an envelope containing the poison ricin, which was addressed to White House and President Donald Trump, has been arrested at the New York-Canada border.RCMP says ‘initial information … suggests that the letter originated in Canada’The Associated Press · Posted: Sep 20, 2020 7:57 PM ET | Last Updated: September 21The RCMP is working with the FBI after federal U.S. officials intercepted an envelope addressed to the White House that contained the poison ricin. 1:59Three U.S. law enforcement officials say a woman suspected of sending an envelope containing the poison ricin, which was addressed to White House and President Donald Trump, has been arrested at the New York-Canada border. The officials say the woman was taken into custody by U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers and is expected to face federal charges. The officials were not authorized to discuss the ongoing investigation publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity. Aaron Bowker of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection office confirmed with CBC News that the arrest took place at the Peace Bridge at Buffalo and that the individual was travelling from Canada into the U.S. An RCMP spokesperson told CBC News on Saturday that it was assisting the FBI in the investigation and that “initial information from the investigation suggests that the letter originated in Canada.”With files from CBC News
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Lisa Murkowski, Susan Collins oppose vote on Ruth Bader Ginsburg replacement before election

CLOSE Supreme Court justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died at age 87. Ginsburg is most noted for her lifelong fight for equality for women. USA TODAYSen. Lisa Murkowski definitively said Sunday she does not support voting on a nominee to replace Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court before the Nov. 3 election, repeating a belief…

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Lisa Murkowski, Susan Collins oppose vote on Ruth Bader Ginsburg replacement before election

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Supreme Court justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died at age 87. Ginsburg is most noted for her lifelong fight for equality for women.

USA TODAYSen. Lisa Murkowski definitively said Sunday she does not support voting on a nominee to replace Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court before the Nov. 3 election, repeating a belief she had expressed previously when the question was theoretical.”For weeks, I have stated that I would not support taking up a potential Supreme Court vacancy this close to the election. Sadly, what was then a hypothetical is now our reality, but my position has not changed,” the Alaska Republican said in a statement. Hours before Ginsburg’s death was announced, Murkowski told Alaska Public Media on Friday she would not vote on a nominee so close to an election. She cited the decision in 2016 not to move forward with a vote on Merrick Garland, who was nominated by then-President Barack Obama in March, because Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell thought it should be left up to the voters in November. “The closer you get to an election, that argument becomes even more important,” she said.November election: Trump, Democrats thrust Supreme Court fight forward as a central issue”I did not support taking up a nomination eight months before the 2016 election to fill the vacancy created by the passing of Justice Scalia,” Murkowski said Sunday. “We are now even closer to the 2020 election – less than two months out – and I believe the same standard must apply.” McConnell, R-Ky., has said the Senate would hold a full vote on President Donald Trump’s nominee. Trump has said he plans to offer up a nominee soon. Murkowski joins Sen. Susan Collins of Maine as the only two Senate Republicans to explicitly reject the idea of voting on a nominee before the election. Two more GOP senators would have to join them to give Democrats the 51 votes needed to block a potential nominee. On Saturday, Collins – a moderate from Maine who is locked in a tight battle for reelection – said “in order for the American people to have faith in their elected officials, we must act fairly and consistently – no matter which political party is in power.” She said Trump has the constitutional authority to put forward a nominee and she would have no problem with the Senate Judiciary Committee beginning the review process. “Given the proximity of the presidential election, however, I do not believe that the Senate should vote on the nominee prior to the election,” she said. “In fairness to the American people, who will either be re-electing the president or selecting a new one, the decision on a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court should be made by the President who is elected on November 3rd.” Who might succeed Justice Ginsburg?: Trump’s short list begins with these five women (and one man)Pelosi: Democrats ‘have our options’ when asked about impeaching Trump if he replaces GinsburgAutoplayShow ThumbnailsShow CaptionsLast SlideNext SlideRead or Share this story: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/elections/2020/09/20/lisa-murkowski-opposes-ruth-bader-ginsburg-replacement-before-election/5845511002/Find New & Used CarsNew CarsUsed CarsofPowered by Cars.com
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Montreal, Quebec City to face new restrictions as Quebec tries to fend off 2nd wave of COVID-19 | CBC News

The Quebec government is expected to announce today that it is reducing the size of private gatherings and imposing new restrictions on bars and restaurants in the province’s two biggest cities, after an increase in COVID-19 infections. Radio-Canada has learned that Montreal, Quebec City and the Chaudière-Appalaches region, which is south of Quebec City, will…

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Montreal, Quebec City to face new restrictions as Quebec tries to fend off 2nd wave of COVID-19 | CBC News

The Quebec government is expected to announce today that it is reducing the size of private gatherings and imposing new restrictions on bars and restaurants in the province’s two biggest cities, after an increase in COVID-19 infections. Radio-Canada has learned that Montreal, Quebec City and the Chaudière-Appalaches region, which is south of Quebec City, will be placed on “moderate alert.”That is the orange, or second-highest, alert level under the province’s regional system for categorizing the danger posed by the novel coronavirus. Government officials told Radio-Canada they are still finalizing their decision, but barring any other major developments, the announcement is expected to be made Sunday. On Saturday, Quebec reported 427 new cases of COVID-19, the highest daily increase since May. Being placed in the orange category — up from yellow, designated as the “early warning” level — will come with tightened public-health restrictions. According to Radio-Canada, these restrictions are likely to include:  Reducing the maximum number of people allowed at a private gathering from 10 to six. Reducing the maximum number of people allowed per restaurant table from 10 to six. Requiring bars to stop serving alcohol earlier than midnight. A provincewide police operation was conducted this weekend to investigate whether bars are respecting public-health rules. Sources told Radio-Canada that further measures could be taken pending the results of the operation.  Gatherings in indoor and outdoor public places are also expected to be limited to 50, as opposed to 250 people. But government officials said there will be exceptions to that rule. For example, in theatres and cinemas where physical distancing is easily respected, the 250-person limit would remain, but wearing a mask would be mandatory at all times, even when seated. It is still unclear whether school activities will be affected by the decision to place the three regions in the orange level. Quebec Health Minister Christian Dubé, public health director Dr. Horacio Arruda and Dr. Éric Litvak, medical advisor to public health, will give an update on the COVID-19 situation in Montreal at 5 p.m. ET Sunday.
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