A new generalized confinement “would be catastrophic for European economies”

The broth, the cup … Whatever aquatic metaphor you use, the observation remains: the Covid-19 crisis has had a devastating impact on the economies, those of Europe in the lead. In the first half of 2020, the French gross domestic product (GDP) fell by almost 19% compared to the end of 2019, but Spain with −23% and the United Kingdom, with −22%, did worse than us. “These tumbles are unparalleled since the Second World War, or even since the crash of 1929”, summarizes Marc Touati, economist and president of the ACDEFI cabinet. By mid-2020, the level of French GDP had returned to that of 2002. In this generalized disaster, Italy hit rock bottom, with a level of national wealth down to that of… 1993!

Everywhere, the curves of this decrease followed those of containment: the countries that are doing the least well are those which have chosen to contain heavily, placing schools, businesses, hotels and other services or industries at a standstill. Conversely, countries like Germany, where confinement was shorter, and above all limited to certain Länder, limited the breakage: while during confinement, 90% of our construction sites were stopped, it was the case for only 25% of shipyards across the Rhine. Everywhere, vigorous stimulus policies and, above all, recourse to short-time work helped cushion the crisis: in April, at the heart of the first wave, 30 million French, Germans, Italians, Spaniards and English were on short-time work .

And now, what will happen in European countries? After a slight improvement this summer, France in particular has fallen back into recession since September. And the future is hardly more cheerful. “A global reconfinement would be catastrophic for the European economies, because all the companies which held out thanks to aid, to loans guaranteed by the State, will not be able to restart their production and therefore repay their debts, the risk of chain bankruptcies is therefore enormous ”, warns Marc Touati.

Meanwhile, China is recovering

“Such a decision would be fatal for many companies”, abounds the economist Stéphanie Villers, co-author with Henri Sternydiak of “Economic crisis of 2020. Towards a new world? »(Economica Publishing). Particularly in the countries of southern Europe, which are very weak, while German industry, known for its robustness, has already started to pick up. “The risk for the months, or even the years to come, is that there will be a caesura within the euro zone, the countries would then differ on the economic policy to be carried out, and the countries of the North, Scandinavia included, would balk at finance those in the South, ”she warns. After the economic danger, political uncertainty.

While on the other side of the world, where the first signs of the epidemic were observed, China, confined for a whole quarter, seems to have ruled out a new health threat and is recovering quickly. “In 2020, notes Stéphanie Villers, it will be the only G20 country to return to positive growth, of the order of 1%, against −9% for France for example. “

Bundesliga advises on investor entry

Dhe football Bundesliga will, according to FAZ information, discuss the idea of ​​opening up to international financial investors. According to information from financial circles, it is about a possible minority stake that private equity could acquire in the subsidiary Bundesliga International, which markets the rights abroad. The presidium of the German Football League (DFL) will speak about this on Thursday, as can be heard. One thing is clear: the decision would later be made by the clubs – and it would certainly not be made this year.

Klaus Max Smolka

According to insiders, the investment bank Nomura, which advised the DFL on another mission in the spring, would act as an adviser for such a scenario. At that time, it was about a bridging loan in the event that the Bundesliga season was finally canceled due to the corona. The DFL and Nomura declined to comment on request.


“To limit the epidemic”, by encouraging “to stay at home at the slightest symptom, the government should take charge of the days of deficiency”

Tribune. When an employee goes to the doctor and is issued a sick leave, he is not covered for all the days not worked. Civil servants must therefore pay for their first day off. Employees in the private sector pay out of their own pocket for the first three days of absence, unless their employer pays them additional compensation. These days of deficiency are of course intended to prevent employees “from abusing the system too much” by obtaining from unscrupulous doctors a sick leave “at the slightest small flu”.

With this in mind, employees who experience a loss of wages will think twice before putting a stop. To know if this objective is justified, we have a lot of research, the results of which are for once very consistent.

In France, three studies have shown, using three very different methods, that withdrawal days effectively limit short-term sick leave, particularly those of less than three days. However, they also increase sick leave of longer duration (one week or more), so that the total number of sick days is unchanged or even increased, and the gain for public finances is limited.

Other studies abroad lead to similar results. Two hypotheses are disputed to explain these results.

It is first possible that employees optimize their stoppages, by giving up more often to take short stops during “minor” health problems, but by stopping longer in more serious cases in order to cushion the loss of wages. linked to the waiting period.


However, it is also possible that the small infections of employees who give up their sick leave worsen due to lack of rest and ultimately require longer breaks. This second mechanism can even be multiplied for contagious diseases: by giving up their stoppage, some employees could transmit their infections to others who would then find themselves facing the same dilemma.

Whatever the dominant explanation, we know that the days of shortage encourage employees to go to work when they are sick. This presenteeism is attested by public health surveys in many countries: employees whose sick leaves are the least well covered report more going to work when they are sick.

More importantly: such behavior has consequences in terms of public health, for the people concerned, but also for the spread of epidemics. A study has shown that when an American state improves coverage for sick leave, epidemics subsequently spread less than in neighboring states!

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It’s up to all of us to humanize algorithms

“Desubériser, regain control”, under the direction of Florian Forestier.  Editions du Faubourg, 128 pages, 12.70 euros.

The book. The Covid-19 crisis has shown to what extent VTC drivers and delivery people are exposed to risks and little protected by law, in terms of health, economics and society. They are not employees and therefore do not have the right of withdrawal, nor do they benefit from the preventive and health protection actions that employers are legally required to carry out.

They are also very exposed and very little protected against economic risk. “The paradox of employment platforms is to put an innovative and powerful tool – the algorithm – at the service of a classic economic strategy, the key of which is too often cost reduction, the outsourcing of labor. ‘work and that of infrastructure’, we read in Desuberize, regain control (Editions du Faubourg), a collective work produced under the direction of a trained philosopher and curator at the BNF Florian Forestier.

In a world saturated with connected objects, our first instinct to face any need is to activate the corresponding service on a mobile phone: digital applications concern all our daily activities, but also work. The impact of this change is very differentiated.

If most platforms only have an indirect impact on work, it is on the other hand upset by digital services of delivery, transport, microwork, exchange of odd jobs, search for freelancers. . “Their common point is that they are employment platforms: work is at the heart of the service they provide. These are the subject of this book. “

Reputation and visibility

Can these platforms free themselves from the competition rules and social rules to which traditional players in the labor market are subject? The book also takes stock of the transformations that algorithms engender in terms of governance and work organization. “They [les plates-formes] lead to re-examine concepts as essential as the relationship with the employer, responsibility, protection, remuneration, etc. Because beyond the question of the status of these workers (employee or self-employed), there are questions of the new forms of subordination and constraints to which they are exposed. “

In the world of algorithmic governance, whether you are a delivery person, developer, coach or driver, you are subject to the diktat of reputation and visibility. The algorithm is in charge, which until then fell under the hierarchical authority or the contractual relationship. “These new management methods, so patent on the platforms, are gradually extending to everyone in the workplace: companies say they are“ liberated ”while also allowing themselves to be gained by algorithmic management. “

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The day on the stock exchanges in Asia

A passer-by is reflected in the display of the Tokyo Stock Exchange

The uncertainty of investors due to the rising coronavirus numbers are causing the Asian stock exchanges to fall.

(Photo: dpa)

Investors in Asia continued to be unsettled in view of the rapidly rising coronavirus numbers. Because of the rapidly growing infection rates in the USA and Europe, investors were reluctant to make larger investments. The United States, Russia, France and Germany have registered a record number of corona cases in the past few days and introduced new measures to get the second wave under control.

In Tokyo, the Nikkei index went 0.3 percent lower at 23,419 points from trading. The stock exchange in Shanghai, however, made up for initial losses and was 0.5 percent higher. The index of the most important companies in Shanghai and Shenzen rose by around one percent. Investors in the People’s Republic are counting on a rapid economic recovery after the pandemic. The course winners were mainly companies from the health sector. The MSCI index for Asian stocks outside of Japan rose 0.1 percent.

More: Dow Jones closes in the red – chip sector in view


Good budgets, but beware of management!

Finally the state government has approved some budgets for the year 2021. With a bit of delay on the usual deadline, but not much. The music of public statements is good: an end to austerity and compensatory policies for lost revenue due to the pandemic. It is the new orthodoxy, which is not discussed. Now it’s time to spend to fight depression caused by public health decisions.


They put a second-hand Louis Vuitton wallet with holes for sale for $ 9,000

In an online store, an offer appeared that surprised many of its customers: a second-hand brown Louis Vuitton luxury brand bag with holes and signature monograms.

“The bag has lived its life and minor flaws only reveal its history,” reads the product description, now priced at the Farfetch store at about $ 9,000.

This model was launched by the French fashion house together with the famous brand Comme Des Garcons in 2014. The peculiar design is the product of that collaboration, reported the RT portal.

However, potential buyers criticized the product on social media and labeled it a “pickpocket dream.”

An outraged shopper commented below the ad: “Put your phone and wallet in and watch them disappear. Plus, it will look like you tried to fix the bag with your bare hands and it went terribly wrong.”


Samsung boss Lee Kun-hee is dead

Samsung Electronics chairman Lee Kun-hee died this Sunday at age 78. The one who made the group a global telecommunications giant, had been bedridden since a heart attack in 2014.

“It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Lee Kun-hee, president of Samsung Electronics”, announces the group. “President Lee passed away on October 25 with his family, including Vice President Jay Y. Lee, by his side. The vice president, his son Lee Jae-yong, has been at the helm of the company since the 2014 health accident.

“President Lee was a true visionary who transformed Samsung by making a local company a world leader in innovation and industrial power,” the company praised. She adds that “her legacy will be eternal”. Under the leadership of Lee Kun-hee, Samsung has grown into the world’s largest producer of smartphones and chips. It is also a major global player in the field of semiconductors and LCD screens.

“Let’s change everything except our women and our children”

When Lee Kun-hee took over the chairmanship of the Samsung Group in 1987, founded by his father, a fruit and fish exporter, the company was already the country’s largest conglomerate. Its business sector ranged from consumer electronics to construction.

At the start of Lee Kun-hee’s presidency, Samsung was seen as a maker of low-quality and cheap products. “Let’s change everything except our women and our children,” he said in 1993. The company then wiped out its products and burned the 150,000 cell phones it had in stock. In meetings with his subordinates and in rare interviews, Lee Kun-hee has always stressed the importance of having bright minds. “In the era of limitless competition, winning or losing will depend on a small number of geniuses … A genius will feed 100,000 people,” he explained.

Sentenced to suspended sentence

Samsung is by far the largest of the South Korean conglomerates (the chaebols) that dominate the world’s 12th largest economy. The company’s overall turnover is equivalent to one-fifth of the country’s gross domestic product, making it crucial to the economic health of South Korea. The chaebols are accused of having opaque links with political power and of obstructing all competition.

Lee Kun-hee was convicted of corruption in 1996, then corruption and tax evasion in 2008. But he escaped jail, having been sentenced to a suspended sentence.

Her son Lee Jae-yong was sentenced to five years in prison in 2017 after being convicted of bribery and other offenses related to former President Park Geun-hye. Then he was cleared of the most serious charges on appeal and released a year later. This case is still ongoing.

telework is not mandatory

“Telework is not mandatory.” The labor lawyers consulted by ARA after the new mess that have been carried out this Tuesday by different government ministries have been so strict. Labor (ERC) has reiterated that remote work is mandatory since the decree published on October 16, while government spokeswoman Meritxell Budó and the Department of Business (JxCat) insisted that companies “only have the duty to promote “this modality.

“It is not mandatory because it is the responsibility of the Spanish government and both the new telework law and the Workers’ Statute and the Me Cuida plan itself they make it clear that this modality is voluntary, “say both the labor lawyer of the Ronda Collective, Natxo Parra, like the lawyers of Augusta Abogados.

In fact, the Secretary General of Labor, Josep Ginesta, has acknowledged that the Generalitat has no powers in labor matters to force companies to work remotely. However, it has been shielded in the fact that it is in has for companies to take measures to prevent the risk of contagion of covid-19 and, in this regard, has ensured that among these measures included in the decree of October 16 was already the obligation of telework. But he also added that non-compliance with the measure could lead to sanctions, although he did not specify which ones.

“If you read the text in question, however, in no case is there talk of mandatory,” the lawyers make clear. Specifically, the decree states: “People in charge of work centers, public and private, must adopt, among others, the following measures: promote organizational and technical measures to limit as much as possible the mobility of workers, prioritizing the distance work, teleworking or telematic meetings […]”. “Although it did include the word mandatory it would also be very debatable because the competencies are from Madrid “, add the two lawyers.

In fact, according to Parra, there are only two exceptions in which telework can be imposed and which includes the Me Cuida plan: “If the worker is part of the risk group and if there are conciliation problems because for example a minor has confined state, ”the lawyer details. This plan allows the working day to be made more flexible during the pandemic and is extended until 31 January.

Controversy within the government has erupted in the early hours of this Tuesday when the Minister of Labor, Chakir el Homrani, said in an interview with RAC1 that companies have an obligation to do telework. Shortly afterwards, presidential sources clarified this statement and indicated that the obligation is to “promote” this modality. And at noon the government spokeswoman made it clear that this area cannot be regulated in private companies because the Generalitat does not “have the powers”. He has also been self-critical in case citizens consider that some messages from the Government have raised doubts: “If so, it is certainly important to avoid confusing the population.”

Non-binding document

The mess between ministries comes the next day that the Labor Relations Council (formed by the Generalitat, the unions CCOO and UGT and the employers Foment and Pimec) insisted in a statement that all companies that could do telework should adapt s’hi.

Ten questions and answers about the new telecommuting law

Ten questions and answers about the new telecommuting law

“Companies have the obligation to limit the mobility of workers by adopting remote work and teleworking systems, as well as telematic meetings, in accordance with the measures decreed by the health authority, during its period of validity, and we remember that only when for the type of activity the face-to-face work is essential is mobility allowed “, recalled the organism, that does not have legal obligation, in a communiqué.

This Tuesday, however, both the employer Foment del Treball and the union UGT have issued an instant statement to companies to promote and prioritize telework, but in no case have spoken of mandatory. The UGT has also asked the Government not to add more confusion to workers in the current context.

Covid-19 breaks the taboo of telecommuting

Covid-19 breaks the taboo of telecommuting


the specter of bad loans looms over Europe again

DECRYPTION – Already noticeable since the start of the year, the rise in non-performing loans across Europe is “inevitable” in the months to come, experts warn.

Demonstration in front of the Cypriot presidential palace in Nicosia in April 2016. Opponents demanded to recover the money lost in March 2013, at the height of the financial crisis on the island.
Demonstration in front of the Cypriot presidential palace in Nicosia in April 2016. Opponents demanded to recover the money lost in March 2013, at the height of the financial crisis on the island. Historically, these risky loans have played an important role during the last decade in Europe.

Will the health crisis the 27 are going through be coupled with a financial crisis? For several months, the European institutions have been observing developments in the banking sector very closely, in order to ensure that it is not weakened by the economic situation as was the case at the start of the 2010s. an eye on the evolution of the curve of “NPLs” (for “non-performing loans“), These so-called” non-performing “loans that lead to banks’ balance sheets and reduce their ability to finance the economy. These have increased significantly since the start of the year in Europe, a trend that should continue in the coming months and worries the authorities.

Let us first recall what a non-performing loan is. The ECB and the Prudential Control and Resolution Authority (ACPR), which supervises the French banking and insurance sector, define them as a “loan for which the establishment is likely [l’ayant accordé] will not receive all or part of the

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