By Shrutee Sarkar
BENGALURU (Reuters) – The resurgence in coronavirus cases is the biggest threat to the recovering euro zone economy, according to a Reuters poll of economists, who say growth and inflation are more likely to create negative surprises over the coming year than positive ones.
Around 30 million people have been infected by the virus globally, and more than 900,000 have died, triggering some of the deepest recessions on record and breaking up supply chains around the world. COVID-19 global tracker https://www.reutersagency.com/en/coverage/covid-19-global-tracker
While a strong euro zone rebound is underway as lockdown restrictions have been eased and businesses reopened, France and Spain among others in the 19-member bloc are grappling with a virus resurgence.
That is raising the possibility of renewed restrictions and lockdowns.
“A flaring in the number of COVID-19 infections over the summer months has made it very clear that if there is no effective vaccine, growth will be handicapped,” said Peter Vanden Houte, chief economist at ING.
“There is also the fear of negative second-round effects once the current recession starts to be reflected in a swelling number of unemployed…(and) we cannot exclude higher precautionary savings dampening consumption.”
A return to where the economy was before the outbreak earlier this year is not expected until at least end-2022.
That comes despite the European Central Bank’s planned 1.35 trillion euros of pandemic-related additional asset purchases and an historic 750 billion euro recovery fund from the European Union due to kick in next year.
But the concern is that no new stimulus is on the horizon, other than national governments extending worker furloughs put in place early this year as they struggle with soaring debt.
Euro zone unemployment, which finally declined just before the coronavirus struck to where it was before the last financial crisis more than a decade ago, is already rising.
Ninety percent of economists, or 37 of 41 who responded to an additional question in the Sept. 15-17 Reuters poll, said a further surge in infections was the biggest risk to the euro zone economy over the coming year.
The remaining handful of respondents cited a strong euro, and no trade deal reached between the EU and United Kingdom when the Brexit transition period expires at the end of the year.
For a graphic on Reuters Poll: Euro zone economic outlook:
The Reuters poll of over 80 economists pointed to 8.1% quarterly growth this quarter, by far the strongest on record, following an historic 11.8% contraction in Q2. That forecast was unchanged from the August poll.
Quarter-on-quarter growth is then set to slow sharply to a still-strong 2.5% in Q4, but down from 3.0% predicted last month.
In a worst-case scenario, the economy was forecast to grow 4.5% in Q3, compared to 4.0% in the last poll. The worst-case for Q4 is now just a 0.4% contraction versus a 2.0% fall in the August poll.
But over 80% of respondents said the risks to both their euro zone growth and inflation forecasts were skewed more to the downside over the coming year.
“The virus is making new waves and the economy is still far from operating at pre-COVID levels in most sectors,” said Elwin de Groot, head of macro strategy at Rabobank, who expects no growth in the final three months of this year.
“But as governments are likely to shift towards more targeted measures – rather than blanket ones – the ‘true’ economic damage may only reveal itself in the next quarters.”
Most economists have remained pessimistic about the bloc’s growth outlook since the pandemic struck, and some have lowered their inflation views even further from last month.
The consensus for this quarter was 0.1% versus 0.3% predicted a month ago, followed by stagnation the next quarter. On a full-year basis, results were broadly in line with the ECB’s staff projections, at 0.4% for 2020, 1.0% for 2021 and 1.3% for 2022.
For a graphic on Reuters Poll: Euro zone economic growth and inflation outlook:
(For other stories from the Reuters global long-term economic outlook polls package:)
(Reporting by Shrutee Sarkar and Richa Rebello; Polling by Hari Kishan and Nagamani Lingappa; Editing by Ross Finley and Alexandra Hudson)
US economy sees record third-quarter rebound – The Globe and Mail
US economy grew at 33% rate in Q3 but recovery is incomplete – Yahoo Canada Finance
First Patient Cases with PURE EP System Conducted at Deborah Heart and Lung CenterWestport, CT, Oct. 29, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — BioSig Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ: BSGM) (“BioSig” or the “Company”), a medical technology company developing a proprietary biomedical signal processing platform designed to improve signal fidelity and uncover the full range of ECG and intra-cardiac signals, today announced that the Company installed its PURE EP™ System and started conducting patient cases at Deborah Heart and Lung Center in Browns Mills, New Jersey.PURE EP™ System evaluation and clinical data collection is being conducted under the leadership of Raffaele Corbisiero, M.D.“We are pleased to commence our clinical operations at Deborah Heart and Lung Center. As an innovative and rapidly growing company, we are excited to have physicians at Deborah not only utilize our technology, but also contribute to its advancement. Given COVID-19’s detrimental effects on cardiovascular health, this relationship cannot come at a more important time,” commented Kenneth L. Londoner, Chairman, and CEO of BioSig Technologies, Inc. “Intracardiac signals are the foundation of everything we do in EP, but we can’t treat what we don’t see. I am impressed by our early experience with PURE EP™ showing more of the cardiac signals we want to see,” commented Raffaele Corbisiero, M.D., Deborah Heart and Lung Center.BioSig is currently conducting patient cases under the clinical trial titled “Novel Cardiac Signal Processing System for Electrophysiology Procedures (PURE EP 2.0 Study)” at Texas Cardiac Arrhythmia Research Foundation (TCARF) in Austin, Texas and Mayo Clinic Florida Campus in Jacksonville, Florida. The Company recently added Massachusets General Hospital and the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania to its clinical sites. About BioSig Technologies BioSig Technologies is a medical technology company commercializing a proprietary biomedical signal processing platform designed to improve signal fidelity and uncover the full range of ECG and intra-cardiac signals (www.biosig.com).The Company’s first product, PURE EP ™ System is a computerized system intended for acquiring, digitizing, amplifying, filtering, measuring and calculating, displaying, recording and storing of electrocardiographic and intracardiac signals for patients undergoing electrophysiology (EP) procedures in an EP laboratory.Forward-looking Statements This press release contains “forward-looking statements.” Such statements may be preceded by the words “intends,” “may,” “will,” “plans,” “expects,” “anticipates,” “projects,” “predicts,” “estimates,” “aims,” “believes,” “hopes,” “potential” or similar words. Forward- looking statements are not guarantees of future performance, are based on certain assumptions and are subject to various known and unknown risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond the Company’s control, and cannot be predicted or quantified and consequently, actual results may differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Such risks and uncertainties include, without limitation, risks and uncertainties associated with (i) the geographic, social and economic impact of COVID-19 on our ability to conduct our business and raise capital in the future when needed, (ii) our inability to manufacture our products and product candidates on a commercial scale on our own, or in collaboration with third parties; (iii) difficulties in obtaining financing on commercially reasonable terms; (iv) changes in the size and nature of our competition; (v) loss of one or more key executives or scientists; and (vi) difficulties in securing regulatory approval to market our products and product candidates. More detailed information about the Company and the risk factors that may affect the realization of forward-looking statements is set forth in the Company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), including the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K and its Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q. Investors and security holders are urged to read these documents free of charge on the SEC’s website at http://www.sec.gov. The Company assumes no obligation to publicly update or revise its forward-looking statements as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. CONTACT: Andrew Ballou BioSig Technologies, Inc. Vice President, Investor Relations 54 Wilton Road, 2nd floor Westport, CT 06880 email@example.com 203-409-5444, x133
U.S. economy posts record growth in Q3; COVID-19 scarring to last – The Guardian
By Lucia Mutikani
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. economy grew at a historic pace in the third quarter as the government injected more than $3 trillion worth of pandemic relief which fueled consumer spending, but the deep scars from the COVID-19 recession could take a year or more to heal.
The 33.1% annualized growth rate reported by the Commerce Department on Thursday, the last major economic scorecard before next Tuesday’s presidential election, did not ease the human tragedy inflicted by the coronavirus pandemic, with tens of millions of Americans still unemployed and more than 222,000 dead.
The economy remains 3.5% below its level at the end of 2019 and incomes plunged in the third quarter. Nevertheless, with five days remaining to Election Day President Donald Trump, trailing in most national opinion polls, cheered the report.
“Biggest and Best in the History of our Country, and not even close,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “So glad this great GDP number came out before November 3rd.”
Trump’s Democratic challenger Joe Biden highlighted the lack of full recovery and the rapidly petering growth spurt.
“We are in a deep hole and President Trump’s failure to act has meant that third-quarter growth wasn’t nearly enough to get us out of (it),” said Biden. “The recovery that is happening is helping those at the top, but leaving tens of millions of working families and small businesses behind.”
According to Christopher Way, an associate professor of government at Cornell University, the report “will have absolutely zero effect on the election and it is economic performance in the first half of an election year that matters.”
The rebound in gross domestic product followed a 31.4% rate of contraction in the second quarter, the deepest since the government started keeping records in 1947. On a year-on-year basis GDP jumped 7.4% last quarter after sinking 9.0% in the April-June period. The rebound reversed about two-thirds of the 10.1% drop in GDP in the first half. By comparison, the economy contracted 4% peak to trough during the 2007-09 Great Recession.
Economists polled by Reuters had forecast GDP expanding at a 31% rate in the July-September quarter. The economy plunged into recession in February.
The government’s rescue package provided a lifeline for many businesses and the unemployed, juicing up consumer spending, which on its own contributed 76.3% to the surge in GDP.
But government funding has been depleted with no deal in sight for another round of relief. New COVID-19 cases are spiraling across the country, forcing restrictions on businesses like restaurants and bars.
“We still don’t have the level of GDP surpassing the pre-COVID level until fourth-quarter 2021 and closing the output gap will take even more time,” said Kevin Cummins, chief U.S. economist at NatWest Markets in Stamford, Connecticut.
Foreshadowing a slowdown in consumer spending, personal income tumbled at a $540.6 billion rate in the third quarter after surging at a $1.45 trillion pace in the prior period. The drop was attributed to a decline in government transfers related to the pandemic relief programs.
Though savings remain high, the pace at which Americans are stashing away money is moderating. That, together with persistent layoffs and slowing employment growth could restrain consumer spending in the coming months.
Stocks on Wall Street were trading higher. The dollar rose against a basket of currencies. U.S. Treasury prices fell.
A separate report from the Labor Department on Thursday showed initial claims for state unemployment benefits fell 40,000 to a seasonally adjusted 751,000 in the week ending Oct. 24. Including a government funded program, 1.1 million people sought unemployment benefits last week.
Though claims have dropped from a record 6.867 million in March, they remain above their 665,000 peak seen during the 2007-09 Great Recession. About 22.7 million Americans were receiving unemployment benefits in early October, though many have exhausted their eligibility for state aid.
Just over half of the 22.2 million jobs lost during the pandemic have been recouped.
Consumer spending, which accounts for more than two-thirds of the U.S. economy, rebounded at a historic rate of 40.7% in the third quarter, driven by purchases of goods like motor vehicles, clothing and footwear. Americans also boosted spending on recreation, healthcare and dining out. But spending on services remained below its fourth quarter level.
Spending was boosted by billions of dollars in government transfers, including a $600 weekly unemployment subsidy and a one-off $1,200 check to households. Growth estimates for the fourth quarter are below a 5% rate.
“Without further stimulus, the winter may indeed be very painful,” said Jeff Madrick, senior fellow at The Century Foundation in New York.
The shift toward goods spending pulled in imports, resulting in a widening of the trade deficit. Some of the imports, however, ended up in warehouses. The accumulation of inventory offset the trade hit to GDP growth.
There was also a turnaround in business investment after the second-quarter drubbing, but the bounce could be temporary as demand for goods that do not complement life-style changes brought by COVID-19 remains weak. Boeing Co reported its fourth straight quarterly loss on Wednesday.
The pandemic has also crushed oil prices, weighing on spending on nonresidential structures like gas and oil well drilling. Business spending on nonresidential structures contracted for a fourth straight quarter.
Record low interest rates boosted housing. Government spending fell, pressured by cuts at state and local governments, whose finances have been squeezed by the coronavirus.
(Reporting by Lucia Mutikani; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)
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