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Some share markets rebound after US plunge, but concerns linger
Al Jazeera English - 2020-03-17
In Asia, the Japanese benchmark Nikkei 225 index ended little changed ... "It's a knee-jerk reaction as most of us have not seen a pandemic before." The Philippines closed trading on its stock exchange in response to the viral outbreak, the first country in the world to do so. The government also quarantined the entire island of Luzon ...

Pag-IBIG Fund offers three-month moratorium on all loans
BusinessMirror - 2020-03-17
In what it called a "solemn statement"... IN an effort to help micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) find financing for their business, especially in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic ...

DOH: Four hospitals testing for COVID-19 this week, faster diagnosis seen
CNN Philippines - 2020-03-17
Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 17) -- Soon, the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine will not be the only facility conducting clinical tests for coronavirus disease or COVID-19. Health Assistant Secretary and spokesperson Ma. Rosario Vergeire told CNN Philippines on Tuesday that four more hospitals will start testing for COVID-19 ...

Bulacan town mayor tests positive for COVID-19
CNN Philippines - 2020-03-17
Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 17) -- The mayor of Baliuag town in Bulacan announced Tuesday that he has tested positive for COVID-19. Mayor Ferdie Estrella said on his Facebook page that he received confirmation from the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine on his diagnosis. Estrella said he has a runny nose and has been feeling ...

Gov't eyes infrastructure work as another exemption to Luzon lockdown
philstar.com - 2020-03-17
MANILA, Philippines -- Amid many exemptions to the month-long Luzon lockdown, the government would like to add one more: infrastructure projects. The Transportation and Public Works departments are preparing a list of infrastructure projects it want to proceed during the community quarantine, a mitigating effort meant to somehow alleviate the ...

Robredo donates gear to health workers, pledges free shuttle rides
CNN Philippines - 2020-03-17
Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 17) -- Vice President Leni Robredo started her own efforts to help health workers amid the country's fight against the coronavirus disease officially known as COVID-19. Robredo on Tuesday said she will provide free shuttle services to these workers and other frontliners beginning Wednesday. She has yet to ...

Confusion, concern as locked-down Philippines starts coronavirus quarantine
Reuters - 2020-03-17
Millions of people woke up confused, confined and frustrated in the Philippines on Tuesday, as a sweeping home quarantine order kicked in with just a few hours of warning, and Southeast Asia prepared tighter measures against a surge in coronavirus cases.

COVID-19 cases in PH now at 187, one more patient recovers
CNN Philippines - 2020-03-17
Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 17) -- The Philippines on Tuesday confirmed 45 new cases of the coronavirus disease or COVID-19, bringing the total to 187. The Department of Health also reported that a fourth patient has recovered from the highly contagious disease. In its 4:00 p.m. bulletin, the DOH said a 31-year-old Filipino man from ...

PUVs still operating despite Luzon quarantine order will be impounded, PNP chief warns
CNN Philippines - 2020-03-17
Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 17)-- The Philippine National Police chief warned Tuesday that public transport vehicles caught disobeying the community quarantine order throughout Luzon will be impounded. "We very well know that the law excuses no one," PBGen Archie Gamboa Gamboa told CNN Philippines' The Source. "Sinabihan ko kanina ang ...

Philippines Reports 45 New Coronavirus Infections
New York Times - 2020-03-17
The Philippines' health ministry on Tuesday reported 45 new confirmed cases of coronavirus, bringing the country's total to 187, all but three of those in the past 11 days.

Taguig City on lockdown starting Wednesday amid COVID-19 threat
CNN Philippines - 2020-03-17
Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 17) - Taguig City will be placed under lockdown starting Wednesday to help stop the spread of COVID-19 in the country. Mayor Lino Cayetano issued the travel restriction within the city a day after President Rodrigo Duterte placed the whole Luzon under enhanced community quarantine. The Taguig City government ...

DOLE: 250,000 workers to get aid amid COVID-19 quarantine
CNN Philippines - 2020-03-17
Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 17) -- A ?1.3-billion financial assistance program will be given for workers affected by the enhanced community quarantine in Luzon amid the coronavirus disease or COVID-19 outbreak, the Department of Labor and Employment said. Under the COVID-19 Adjustment Measures Program, each worker will receive ...

Asian Shares Mixed After Historic Wall Street Rout
Nasdaq - 2020-03-17
The Philippines shut its markets temporarily ... banks took a joint step to provide more cash dollars on Sunday. The Nikkei average fell over 3 percent in early trade on fears over the coronavirus ...

Clearer details on enhanced quarantine could provide better guidance for employers, workers
CNN Philippines - 2020-03-17
Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 17) -- A business group said confusing and sometimes contradicting information from authorities are not helping workers and employees during the period of enhanced community quarantine in Luzon. Speaking to CNN Philippines Tuesday, Sergio Ortiz-Luis Jr., president of the Employers Confederation of the ...

Benguet vegetable farmers to keep tilling amid Luzon quarantine
philstar.com - 2020-03-17
BENGUET, Philippines -- Vegetable farmers whose crops are ready for harvest will be allowed to tend their farms, Benguet Gov. Melchor Diclas declared amid fears that the enhanced community quarantine imposed on all of Luzon will hamper the economic activities of farmers. "It is about food security," Diclas declared as the national government ...

As April 15 tax deadline nears, BIR OKs options for quarantine-locked taxpayers
Philippine Daily Inquirer - 2020-03-17
As the April 15 deadline to file annual income tax returns (ITRs) fast approaches, the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) has urged taxpayers to pay online or submit tentative returns if unable to get out of their homes to transact in a BIR office amid COVID-19 quarantine measures that now covers the entire island of Luzon. Revenue Memorandum ...

Insurers told to fast-track COVID-19 claims
Philippine Daily Inquirer - 2020-03-17
The Insurance Commission has ordered insurers to fast-track claims related to COVID-19 and make their processes easier for plan holders afflicted by the disease. Insurance Commissioner Dennis B. Funa on March 16 issued Circular Letter No. 2020-13, which listed the guidelines to strengthen claims management policies of insurance and reinsurance ...

Health workers walk to work, sleep in clinics as quarantine halts transportation
philstar.com - 2020-03-17
FOLLOW: LIVE updates: COVID-19 in the Philippines and the Luzon quarantine "Essential workers," including health professionals, may still report to work and people can also still go out to buy basic necessities, but, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles stressed on Monday: "The idea here is to keep everybody on home quarantine." If people ...

BSP expected to cut rates on Thursday
philstar.com - 2020-03-17
MANILA, Philippines -- The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) is seen cutting interest rates by 50 basis points or more on Thursday to cushion the impact of the coronavirus disease 2019 or COVID-19 on the economy. BSP Governor Benjamin Diokno said in a television interview that monetary authorities have enough space as the Monetary Board has ...

Where are the funds? DOH has P19 billion ready for COVID-19 response
philstar.com - 2020-03-17
MANILA, Philippines -- A limited number of testing kits and slow response to the spread of the coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) have put the Department of Health under fire. But official data and pronouncements from government officials would show that funding is not the problem, at least not for now. Collated data from the health, budget ...

Virus whammy: Asian stocks plunge as Philippines shuts markets
Al Jazeera English - 2020-03-17
The Philippines became the first country to shut its financial markets and stopped ... MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan gave up early gains to trade 0.5 percent lower. Japan's Nikkei stock index fell 0.06 percent and South Korea's KOSPI was off 2.16 percent. Australian shares were up 2.73 percent although this ...

Asian shares bounce after Wall Street dive, recession warning
Philippine Daily Inquirer - 2020-03-17
BANGKOK -- Shares reversed early losses in Asia on Tuesday after the U.S. stock market plunged to its worst day in more than three decades and huge swaths of many economies came to a standstill ...

Enforcers urged to be lenient on first day of Luzon quarantine as citizens left 'uninformed'
CNN Philippines - 2020-03-17
Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 17)-- Officials manning checkpoints for the Luzon-wide quarantine were urged to be more lenient on the first day of the measure's implementation, as some Filipinos struggle to get home. Interior Undersecretary and Spokesperson Jonathan Malaya told CNN Philippines that some commuter-workers were left ...

DILG: Non-essential businesses that remain open during Luzon quarantine will be forcibly closed
CNN Philippines - 2020-03-17
Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 17) - Private companies and businesses that do not render essential services but are continuing operations during the Luzon quarantine will be forcibly closed, the Department of Interior and Local Government warned Tuesday. In an interview with CNN Philippines' Newsroom Ngayon, Interior and Local ...

Filipinos who went to Malaysia for religious event asked to report to health authorities
Philippine Daily Inquirer - 2020-03-17
On Sunday, the Malaysian health minister said 77 of the COVID cases were linked to the event that was held in Selangor. Some 16,000 from different countries attended the gathering. Of these ...

PH lifts travel ban to China for OFWs
Philippine Daily Inquirer - 2020-03-17
MANILA, Philippines -- The Philippines has lifted a travel ban to mainland China except for Hubei province, mainly to allow the return of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) there. The lifting of the travel ban was recommended by an Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Disease (IATF) on March 12, the Department of ...

Mountain trekking for a total body workout
BusinessMirror - 2020-03-17
Fitness programs and activities need not be limited to the confines of the gym, health club, exercise classes and endless pavement pounding. Various sports and outdoor activities that will have your heart racing and endorphins flowing are just waiting for you to take them on. One such activity that I get to do every once in a while is ...

SEC oks guidelines on remote participation in corporate meetings
Philippine Daily Inquirer - 2020-03-17
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has approved the guidelines for remote participation in corporate meetings in support of an expanded community quarantine to contain the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The guidelines, issued through SEC Memorandum Circular No. 6, Series of 2020 on March 12, immediately took effect upon approval by ...

91-day bids rejected as investors seek higher rates
Philippine Daily Inquirer - 2020-03-17
While the economy grapples with the COVID-19 pandemic, the Bureau of the Treasury on Monday rejected bids for the benchmark 91-day bills on reduced demand as investors held on to their cash. Tenders for the P6 billion in three-month debt paper that the Treasury offered fell short at P4.97 billion while average bid rates further rose by 57.6 ...

Philippine Central Bank Inclined to Cut by 50 BPS: Governor
Bloomberg - 2020-03-17
Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Governor Benjamin Diokno discusses how the central bank and the government are trying to protect the Philippine economy amid the coronavirus outbreak. Diokno said Monday the bank will consider cutting its key interest rate by as much as a half-percentage point at its regularly scheduled meeting this Thursday.

Philippines suspends stock market trade over virus fears
Philippine Daily Inquirer - 2020-03-17
MANILA, Philippines -- The Philippines suspended trade on its local stock exchange Tuesday, becoming the first country to close its financial market over coronavirus fears. President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday ordered most of the 55 million people on the main island of Luzon, which includes the capital Manila, to stay at home for the next month ...

Coronavirus: Philippines quarantines island of 57 million people
Al Jazeera English - 2020-03-17
He also urged businesses to release the mandatory 13th-month pay to their employees. According to the health department's latest figures, there are 142 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the Philippines and 12 deaths. Presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo earlier explained that, under an enhanced community quarantine, "strict home quarantine shall be ...

Grab Philippines suspends rides, food and package delivery services amid Luzon quarantine
CNN Philippines - 2020-03-17
Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 17) -- Grab Philippines on Tuesday announced the suspension of its ride, food delivery, and package delivery services in Luzon in line with the implementation of enhanced community quarantine. "To safeguard communities from COVID-19, we are temporarily pausing GrabCar, GrabFood, and GrabExpress operations ...

Duterte quarantines 57m in Philippines, expanding virus fight
NIKKEI - 2020-03-17
Duterte's decision to expand the quarantine comes after the Philippine capital entered a 30-day lockdown on Sunday. COVID-19 cases in the Philippines saw a spike in recent days, totaling 142 cases and 12 deaths as of Monday. "Everyone will stay at home," Duterte said in a recorded televised address late Monday, saying only those buying food and ...

PCCI to set up Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship
BusinessMirror - 2020-03-17
Jean Pacheco. THE Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI), the largest business organization in the country, will set up the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship to serve as "incubator" for "start-up" businesses in the country. In his meeting with DTI Secretary Ramon M. Lopez, PCCI President Benedicto Yujuico laid out ...

Philippines Becomes First Country to Shut Financial Markets Thanks to Virus
YAHOO! - 2020-03-17
Follow Bloomberg on LINE messenger for all the business news and analysis you need.The Philippine stock exchange chief said he plans to reopen the $188 billion market on Thursday, seeking a quick resu

Forex, stock markets shorten trading hours
Philippine Daily Inquirer - 2020-03-17
Financial market regulators have shortened daily stock and foreign exchange trading operations in the Philippines in line with the monthlong community quarantine and curfew imposed by the government on Metro Manila to contain the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Starting March 16 to April 14, trading at the Philippine Stock Exchange ends at 1 p ...

444 Filipinos from virus-stricken cruise ship arrive in Clark
Philippine Daily Inquirer - 2020-03-17
MANILA, Philippines - A total of 444 Filipinos aboard the Grand Princess cruise ship marooned in California, United States due to confirmed cases of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) arrived early Monday morning at Clark Airbase in Pampanga. In a statement, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said the chartered flight from San ...

Local shares retreat as response to COVID-19 emergency leaves investors unimpressed
philstar.com - 2020-03-17
MANILA, Philippines -- Philippine shares on Monday ended a shortened trading session bleeding, opening the week in a sour note as investors count the potential economic fallout from desperate measures imposed by authorities around the world to fight the coronavirus pandemic. Local equities continue to be whipsawed by the disease, sending the ...

Philippine stock market suspends trade indefinitely as coronavirus spreads
The Straits Times - 2020-03-17
SINGAPORE (REUTERS) - The Philippine Stock Exchange suspended trade indefinitely on Tuesday (March 17), citing the safety of traders and staff in the face of the coronavirus pandemic. The move ...

Asian stock markets, US futures sink after Fed's rate cut
ABC - 2020-03-17
In the Philippines, soldiers and police sealed off the crowded capital ... the S&P-ASX 200 fell to 5,468.8. The he Shanghai Composite Index retreated to 2,873.07 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng tumbled to 23,597.15. In Tokyo, the Nikkei 225 was little-changed at 17,726.98. The Kospi in Seoul declined 0.2% to 1,767.55 and Sydney's S&P-ASX 200 lost ...

Coronavirus updates: lockdowns in Malaysia and Philippines as global infections surpass China
Yahoo! News - 2020-03-17
Philippines imposes home quarantine on entire Luzon island The Philippines imposed ... Visitors from those countries are also barred except for special business or other occasions. After confirming six imported cases, Taiwan on Monday announced eight more new infections, all brought back by its nationals from overseas pleasure trips.

Go to big business: Help avert economic fallout
philstar.com - 2020-03-16
MANILA, Philippines -- Sen. Christopher "Bong" Go urged yesterday the private sector, particularly big businesses, to pitch in to cushion the adverse economic effects of the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). "I appeal to the private sector - industry players, business leaders, foundations and the like to join hands and ...

14 countries impose travel restrictions on Filipinos
Philippine Daily Inquirer - 2020-03-16
MANILA, Philippines -- The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) has advised Filipinos on travel restrictions in 14 countries to control the spread of COVID-19. As of March 14, the travel restrictions are those by Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Cook Islands, Bahrain, New Zealand, United Arab Emirates, Bhutan, Liberia, Kuwait, India, Israel, Palestine ...

Financial markets in turmoil over fear of virus lockdowns
seattlepi.com - 2020-03-16
Global stocks fell sharply Monday after central bank moves to shore up economic growth failed to dispel investor's fears over virus controls that are shutting down global business and travel. There were no glimmers of optimism: European and Asian stock indexes were down as much as 10%,

3 SPD cops caught drinking while on duty
philstar.com - 2020-03-16
MANILA, Philippines -- While authorities are busy manning quarantine checkpoints in Metro Manila, three police officers were caught drinking liquor while on duty at the Southern Police District (SPD) headquarters on Saturday night. SPD acting director Col. Emmanuel Peralta said he was conducting rounds within the police headquarters in Fort ...

PH defense, military execs check Russian helicopters for purchase
Philippine Daily Inquirer - 2020-03-16
MANILA, Philippines--Philippine defense and military officials were in Russia recently to inspect the heavy-lift helicopters that the Philippine military was reportedly planning to acquire. The Philippine delegation, who were in Moscow from March 3 to 7, included Assistant Defense Secretary Josue Gaverza Jr. and other Air Force officials, said ...

New PNP building to rise in Agusan town
philstar.com - 2020-03-16
MANILA, Philippines -- The construction of a new police station in Magallanes, Agusan del Norte has resumed, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) said yesterday. The three-story, 450-square meter building cost P12.31 million and its construction is being implemented by the DPWH-Region 13. The building will house the intelligence ...

BPI raises record P42 billion via bond issue
philstar.com - 2020-03-16
MANILA, Philippines -- Ayala-led Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) has raised a record P42 billion as it returned to the domestic debt market via the issuance of peso fixed-rate bonds early this month. The amount was more than eight times the original issue size of P5 billion and was higher than the record P40.1 billion raised by BDO ...

Roundup: Philippines expands lockdown to include entire Luzon island to contain COVID-19
China Internet Information Center - 2020-03-16
Philippine Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea said in a memorandum that "a strict ... But supermarkets, pharmacies and banks inside malls will be open for business. Schools have been shut down, prompting many students to head out of town to be with their families in their respective hometowns during the lockdown. To prevent person-to ...

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