Hard Numbers: Virus vs Economy, Trump vs Chinese journos, Red October at 30

Hard Numbers: Virus vs Economy, Trump vs Chinese journos, Red October at 30

0.5: Stock markets went into a tizzy on Tuesday after the Federal Reserve cut its main interest rate by half a percentage point in response to economic risks posed by the coronavirus outbreak. Allowing banks to borrow money more cheaply won't stop the spread of the disease, but it could limit some of the economic damage by shoring up market confidence.


30: The Hunt for Red October, a Cold War thriller about a renegade Soviet nuclear missile submarine, hit cinemas 30 years ago this week. At the time, five countries – the US, USSR, UK, France, and China – deployed nuclear weapons at sea. Today, India and North Korea have joined that group.

60: The Trump administration capped the number of journalists that major Chinese state-controlled news organizations can employ in the US. The move, in retaliation for Beijing's recent decision to expel three Wall Street Journal reporters from China, could send up to 60 Chinese journalists packing.

1.5: The OECD cut its global growth forecast to 2.4 percent for 2020 and warned that a "longer lasting and more intensive coronavirus outbreak" could slash growth nearly in half, to an annual rate of 1.5 percent. Either way, it would be the world's worst growth rate since the global financial crisis of 2008-2009.

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