JEDE COVID-19 Update for June 23, 2020

MAJOR ANNOUNCEMENTS

DATA, SURVEYS, AND ANALYSES

  • Analysis of June Employment Numbers:  Beacon Economic released its monthly employment report, which links econometric predictions to data released by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics and the California Employment Development Department.  The Beacon Employment Report, released in partnership with the UC Riverside Business School Center for Forecasting, uses seasonally adjusted numbers to identify trends and insights within data.  As reported on Friday, California gained 140,000 jobs in May 2020, following a 2.4 million decrease in jobs in April 2020, resulting in a 16.3% unemployment rate.  In the analysis of this data, Christopher Thornberg, Founding Partner of Beacon Economics and Director of the UCR Center for Forecasting remains optimistic about the recovery, noting that the May data shows a bounce in employment even while major portions of the economy remain closed.  A clearer picture of the California economy will not be available until the June and July data is available.  https://beaconecon.com/publications/beacon-employment-report/   Among other findings, the report stated: 

    • The Construction sector led jobs gains in May, boosting payrolls by 75,000 positions. The strong month accounts for just over half the jobs lost in the Construction sector in recent months, with year-over-year growth now standing at a 6.9% decline.

    • Leisure and Hospitality also had a strong month, increasing payrolls by 64,800 in May. All of these new positions came from Accommodation and Food Services, which increased payrolls by 66,700. Despite the strong month, Leisure and Hospitality payrolls are down 43.9% from a year-over-year perspective. As parts of the economy continue to open, many of these jobs will return, but the impact of the public health mandated closures and capacity constraints mean that a significant number of the jobs in these sectors will come back more slowly.

  • Hazard Pay for Frontline Workers:  The Economic Policy Institute released survey findings in a new report, A Majority of Workers are Fearful of Coronavirus Infections at Work, Especially Black, Hispanic, and Low- And Middle-Income Workers.  Among other findings, the report states that only 30% of people working outside their home are receiving a wage increase or bonus of some kind to reflect the greater risks associated with the coronavirus pandemic.  The survey also found that Black (40.6%) and Hispanic (33.5%) workers are more likely to receive hazard pay than white workers (26.8%).  The report also draws on a Washington Post survey which found that 68% of workers were concerned about the possibility of getting sick and 58% of respondents reported being concerned about exposing members of their household to the coronavirus after being exposed at work.  https://www.epi.org/publication/covid-risks-and-hazard-pay/

  • Community Resilience Capacity:  US Census Bureau released data from its community resilience assessment, which combines certain data sets to assess the capacity of individuals and households to absorb, endure, and recover from the health, social, and economic impacts of a disaster such as a hurricane or pandemic.  The objective of the work is to aid stakeholders and public health officials in better modeling impacts and developing plans to reduce a disaster’s potential effects.  The assessment is based on 2018 data from the American Community Survey and information is available for each state and county.  https://www.census.gov/data/experimental-data-products/community-resilience-estimates.html   

  • Household Pulse Survey:  The US Census Bureau released results from its weekly (June 4, 2020 to June 9, 2020) Household Pulse Survey which found that unemployed younger adults from lower-income households had less confidence that they can pay the their next month’s rent or mortgage on time and suffer more mental anguish and food insecurity. 

  • Small Business Pulse Survey:  The US Census Bureau released results from its weekly (June 7, 2020 to June 13, 2020) Small Business Pulse Survey which found that 43.5% of California businesses who responded reported being impacted by the pandemic, which is 5.1% higher than the national average of 38.4%.  Nearly all (94.3%) reported not having missed any loan payments and 81.6% did not miss other payments (excluding loan payments) since March 2020.  More California businesses reported being closed for at least one day in the survey week, as compared to the national average, 30.1% vs. 21.8%.   The US Census will continue to publish weekly surveys through July 9, 2020.

  • Selected Data on COVID-19:  Governing regularly releases a list of current topic data with links for additional information.  A selection is provided below.   https://www.governing.com/daily-digit/?utm_term=MORE%20NUMBERS&utm_campaign=Smartphone%20Journalists%20Accelerate%20Push%20for%20Social%20Justice&utm_content=email&utm_source=Act-On+Software&utm_medium=email

    • 2.5 - The number of years before there will be a COVID-19 vaccine for everybody in the world, as predicted by Dr. David Nabarro, the WHO’s special envoy. “I would love it to be proved wrong.”

    • 1.5 million - The number of Americans that applied for unemployment assistance during the week ending on June 13.  While the total number of unemployed individuals is declining, some analysts are concerned there are still new jobless applicants.

    • 50% - The learning rate at which students in grades 3-8 are gaining math skills while learning from home. The same students are only experiencing reading gains of 70 percent during this period of e-learning.

    • 100,000 - The number of new coronavirus cases that are confirmed every day, as the virus continues to spread across the globe.

DISASTER- AND ECONOMIC JUSTICE-RELATED LEGISLATION

Changes to Main Street Program:  Brookings Institute makes recommendations on how to modify the Main Street Loan Program and acknowledges that while some of the recommendations will add risk to the $75 billion program, these changes are necessary in order to reach businesses in today’s marketplace.  https://www.brookings.edu/research/designing-the-main-street-lending-program-challenges-and-options/?utm_campaign=Economic%20Studies&utm_medium=email&utm_content=90078222&utm_source=hs_email  Among other recommendations, the report states the following:

 

o   The minimum loan size for the New Loan facility should be reduced to reach smaller borrowers and encourage smaller banks to participate in the program. Loans to smaller and less risky borrowers also should have lower spreads and streamlined paperwork requirements.

 

o   Banks should be allowed to extend loans to riskier borrowers if they retain a larger share of the loan to demonstrate their confidence in the credit.

 

o   The condition that the borrower make “commercially reasonable efforts to maintain its payroll and retain its employees” should be clarified, so that uncertainty about it does not limit take-up, or eliminated altogether to make it easier for borrowing firms to reorganize their businesses.

 

·         Infrastructure Bill Update:  The Council of Development Financial Agencies developed a section-by-section summary of HR 2 The INVEST in American Act.  https://www.cdfa.net/cdfa/cdfaweb.nsf/pages/116-HR2-Moving-Forward-Act-Summary.html/$file/Section%20by%20Section%20HR%202%20The%20Moving%20Forward%20Act%20FINAL.pdf  Highlights include, but are not limited to:  modifications to Qualified Small Issue Bonds & Agricultural Bonds, creations of Qualified Infrastructure Bonds (modeled after Build America Bonds), expands Exempt Facility Bonds for zero-emission vehicle infrastructure, increases the annual state volume cap on private activity bonds, permanently authorizes the New Markets Tax Credit program, and appropriates billions for broadband, water, hospitals, housing, and childcare.  Bill text:  https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/2/text

 

·         Paycheck Protection Program:  US Representative Craig introduced HR 7241 on June 18, 2020, to provide additional funding to the Paycheck Protection Program.  The bill is currently pending in the House Committee on Small Business.  https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/7241?s=1&r=60

 

·         Technical Assistance for Manufacturers on Cybersecurity:  US Representative Panetta introduced HR 7265 on June 18, 2020, which, as described by the Congressional Legislative Service, enhances the assistance provided by the Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership to small manufacturers in the defense industrial supply chain on matters relating to cybersecurity, and for other purposes.  The bill is currently pending in the House Committee on Armed Services.  https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/7265?s=2&r=36

 

·         Opportunity Funds and CDFI:  US Representative Meeks introduced HR 7262 on June 18, 2020, which, as described by the Congressional Legislative Service, allows qualified opportunity funds to invest in community development financial institutions.  The bill is currently pending in the House Committee on Ways and Means.  https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/7262?s=1&r=39

 

GRANTS

  • New Funding for Fresno Drive:  The James Irvine Foundation Board of Directors announced the awarding of 22 grants totaling $36.2 million. The grants included support for the Foundation’s three initiatives focused on working Californians (fair work, better careers, and priority communities), including a grant to the Tides Center to support organizational and leadership development among worker organizations in California through the Haas Leadership Initiatives. https://www.irvine.org/about/newsroom/the-james-irvine-board-of-directors-approves-36-2-million-in-grants-on-june-19-2020  Specific awards include, but are not limited to:

    • $15 million to the Central Valley Community Foundation for a three-year grant to support six core projects that improve economic mobility and job creation in Fresno as identified during the community's Developing the Region’s Inclusive and Vibrant Economy (DRIVE) initiative.

    • $4 million to the Latino Community Foundation for a three-year grant to advance inclusive economic planning and quality job creation efforts that focus on the Latinx community in Fresno and Salinas.

    • $1.5 million to the Center for Employment Opportunities for a two-year grant to improve economic mobility for formerly incarcerated Californians.

    • $600,000 to the Warehouse Worker Resource Center for a two-year grant for general operating support.

  • CSU Maritime Academy Wins:  The US Department of Energy announced the winners of the 4-day Collegiate Wind Competition challenge, including the CSU Maritime Academy.  To win, interdisciplinary teams of undergraduate students propose a unique solution to a complex wind energy project.  https://www.energy.gov/eere/collegiatewindcompetition/collegiate-wind-competition

  • High Performance Computing Awards:  The US Department of Energy announced the selection of 11 projects to receive $3.3 million in federal funding for cost-shared research and development under its High Performance Computing for Energy Innovation (HPC4EI) initiative.  According to the announcement, the projects will apply advanced modeling, simulation, and data analysis to improve manufacturing productivity and explore materials that can withstand extreme conditions.  https://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/USEERE/bulletins/2922dd2   HPC4EI awardees who will be partnering with California-based national laboratories, include: 

    • ArcelorMittal:   ArcelorMittal, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), and Argonne National Laboratory (ANL) will work together to develop the next generation of lightweight, advanced high-strength steels with the help of high performance computing and artificial intelligence to positively impact the US energy landscape during both production and use in a project titled, "Ab-initio Guided Design and Materials Informatics for Accelerated Product Development of Next Generation Advanced High Strength Steels."

    • Flawless PhotonicsFlawless Photonics and LLNL will simulate both the heated glass flow and nucleation and growth of crystal nuclei to find the drawing conditions that suppress the growth of light scattering crystalline defects in the fluoride glass optical fiber ZBLAN in a project titled, "Modeling and Simulation of the Manufacture of a Superior Fiber Optic Glass."

    • Guardian Glass, LLCGuardian Glass, LLC and LLNL will collaborate to reduce energy consumption in glassmaking by using computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations and machine learning in a project titled, "Rapid CFD Using Machine Learning Algorithms."

    • OxEon Energy, LLC:  OxEon Energy, LLC will partner with LLNL to reduce the number of reactor tubes in Fischer-Tropsch reactors in order to lower cost and increase performance in a project titled, "Topology Optimization of Fischer-Tropsch Reactor Design for Synthetic Fuel Production."

    • PPG Industries:  PPG Industries will partner with Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory to use high performance computing in the modeling of the paint drying process to enable energy savings through co-curing in a project titled, "Modeling Coating Flow and Dynamics During Drying."

UPDATE ON COVID-19 PROGRAMS

  • EIDL Update:  The SBA released program utilization information on the Economic Injury Disaster Loan.  As of June 21, 2020, 1.7 million loans have been approved in the US for a total of $113.3 billion.  In California, 300,636 loans have been approved for a total of $21 billion.  https://www.sba.gov/sites/default/files/2020-06/EIDL%20COVID-19%20Loan%206.21.20.pdf

  • PPP Update:  The SBA released program utilization information for the Payment Protection Program.   As of June 20, 2020, 4.6 million loans have been approved in the US for a total of $514.9 billion.  In California, 550,786 loans have been approved for a total of $67.1 billion.  https://www.sba.gov/sites/default/files/2020-06/PPP_Report_200620.pdf

  • Guidance on Required Minimum Distributions:  The Internal Revenue Service released guidance (Notice 2020-51) regarding required minimum distributions (RMD) in 2020 from certain retirement accounts.  The guidance outlines how individuals who have already taken distributions in 2020 have an opportunity to roll those funds back into a retirement account following the CARES Act RMD waiver for 2020.  Further, the 60-day rollover period for any RMDs already taken this year has been extended to August 31, 2020, to give taxpayers time to take advantage of this opportunity.  https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-drop/n-20-51.pdf

  • Great Plates Delivered:  The Great Plates Delivered program provides three meals a day to qualifying seniors.  FEMA just granted a 30-day extension to allow the program to continue to July 10.  As shown in the chart below, the demand for meals far exceeds the number of businesses under contract.  Interested restaurants and food providers are encouraged to fill out this form: https://state-of-california-agency.forms.fm/great-plates-delivered-food-provider-interest-form/forms/7917   

Great Plates Delivered (as of 6/22)
Letters of Intent Received from Local Administrators
53
DEMAND:  Estimated Weekly Individuals to be Served
1,026,553
Individuals Served This Week as of 6/18*
31,959
DEMAND:  Estimated Food Providers Required to Meet Demand
1,624
Food Providers Contracted as of 6/18*
582
*Data received from Great Plates Data Portal updated twice per week.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

 

 

 

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