Coronavirus

Mixed Outlook for Retail Building Products Amid Coronavirus

The Building Products – Retail industry comprises U.S. home improvement retailers, manufactures of industrial and construction materials and distributors of wallboard and ceilings systems. Some of the industry participants also offer products and services for home decoration, repair and remodeling, and in-home delivery and installation services.

The industry players provide a wide array of products, ranging from cement or concrete foundation materials to roofing boards and shingles. The companies also sell lumber, insulation materials, drywall, plumbing fixtures, hard-surface flooring, lawn and garden, and decor products. Some players also deal in threaded fastener products, and manufactured and natural stone tiles. The industry players cater to professional homebuilders, sub-contractors, remodelers and consumers.

Let’s take a look at the industry’s three major themes:

  • The industry’s prospects remain closely tied to U.S. housing market conditions, and repair and remodeling (R&R) activity. The bleak near-term prospects of the housing market amid coronavirus-induced high unemployment and
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Mastercard sees spending return as economies open after coronavirus gloom

By Noor Zainab Hussain

(Reuters) – Mastercard Inc <MA.N> said it expects consumer spending to gradually return to “pre-COVID” levels as people start using their cards again on clothing and domestic travel with countries easing lockdown measures that have brought the world to a standstill.

The world’s second-largest payment processor on Wednesday reported better-than-expected first-quarter earnings and said it has started seeing early signs of spending levels stabilizing.

The novel coronavirus pandemic has shut down large parts of the global retail industry as stores remain shut and shoppers stay at home to avoid catching the highly contagious illness.

The outbreak has also hammered the global economy, pushing companies to layoff employees by the millions. That, in turn, could weigh on credit card issuers as more people default on their payments.

“We believe we are currently in the stabilization phase in most markets. The next phase is normalization, where governments gradually

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No emergency fund in coronavirus crisis? Here’s what to do now

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At a time when the stock market has declined significantly from its pre-pandemic highs, now may seem like the perfect time to invest. Here’s why you probably shouldn’t.

As the saying goes, when markets get volatile, “cash is king.” That wisdom holds doubly true now, as the coronavirus pandemic has not just sent markets into a tizzy, but inflicted significant damage on virtually every sector of the economy.

TRUMP SAYS HE’LL SIGN CORONAVIRUS LIABILITY EXECUTIVE ORDER THAT HELPS MEAT PRODUCERS

At a time of significant financial stress, American families who have a large emergency fund can sleep easier, knowing that they can rely on their cash cushion to help get them through this downturn. But some families don’t have a sizable emergency fund saved up—or don’t have one at all.

If you

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How coronavirus could alter the way we shop for clothes from now on

Normally, this would be the time of year when many people would be refreshing their wardrobes for warmer weather and looking for the latest spring and summer styles. But these are far from normal times, and our shopping priorities have drastically shifted from buying cute spring dresses to stockpiling groceries.

Over the last few weeks, retailers have quickly pivoted to online-only operations as the spread of coronavirus has forced brick-and-mortar stores to temporarily close. Many brands are struggling to adjust to the “new normal.”

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As the outbreak continues to evolve, many retailers and shoppers are wondering: Will stores be able to survive the pandemic? Will more consumers turn to online shopping? And will coronavirus end up changing the way we all shop for clothes? TODAY Style spoke to industry experts to get some insight on how coronavirus might

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Lowe’s is the latest retailer requiring workers to wear masks during coronavirus

Lowe’s Home Improvement joins a growing list of retailers requiring its workers to wear masks amid the novel coronavirus crisis.

Lowe’s announced Monday it immediately will require all associates to wear a face mask or approved face covering while working in a store or at a customer’s home. Masks and gloves will be made available to workers, the Mooresville.-based company said in a press release.

The company also will “continue to evaluate and adjust our operations to meet the evolving guidelines from the CDC and local officials around customer and associate safety,” said Marvin Ellison, Lowe’s CEO and president.

Masks or face coverings are not required by North Carolina or Mecklenburg County government officials.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings, along with following social distancing measure, to slow the spread of the virus and help people who may have the virus

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Nature in the Days of the Coronavirus

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As many of us are spending more time at home in the era of coronavirus, our backyards have become our havens, our places to stand in the sun or dig in the dirt. And green spaces go beyond the yard—a balcony, a window over a park across the street, or some houseplants in a corner. Any of these can put us a bit closer to nature. 

Here you’ll find what some of us at CR and some of you are up to in our “backyards,” along with tips and inspiration on new ways to enjoy your space. Just click on any of the photos or videos. Share your backyard activities on Instagram with the hashtag #BackyardOasis and tag @consumerreports and we might include your post here.

Grilling

Grills are getting a whole lot more use as “going out

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