Cautious optimism on Wall Street, markets rise with aid hope

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks are closing with solid gains on Wall Street Thursday after shaking off a rocky start.

In this Wednesday, March 18, 2020, file photo, trader Gregory Rowe works at the New York Stock Exchange, in New York. The rapidly deteriorating health of the financial markets is being driven by a contagion of fear and uncertainty about a global pandemic that's infecting the economy in ways that seemed unfathomable just a month earlier. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

The trading was still bumpy but nothing like the wild swings seen in recent weeks.

The Dow Jones industrials gained almost 200 points, or 0.9%.

Investors were cautiously optimistic after seeing more steps by the Federal Reserve and other central banks as well as governments to support credit markets and the economy.

Still, the devastating impact of the coronavirus outbreak is starting to show itself in economic data.

The price of crude oil rebounded sharply after plummeting a day earlier.

Business Fallout: Airlines fear failure, delivery in demand

Germany’s Lufthansa said that airlines may fail without government assistance if the outbreak lasts for an extended time.

The airline has already slashed routes and frozen new hires. Domino’s Pizza says it is hiring approximately 10,000 workers in the U.S. to meet rising demand for delivery and carryout.

Domino’s said it needs delivery drivers, pizza makers, managers and truck drivers.

Marriott’s CEO, as well as the son of the hotel company’s founders, have forfeited their salary for the rest of the year as the hotel company tries to slash costs.

Possible help from Washington

Congress is working urgently to fashion a $1 trillion measure to prop up households and the U.S. economy amid the coronavirus outbreak.

The White House is proposing to send Americans first-round checks — potentially $3,000 for a family of four.

The fast-track effort is underway as the first two lawmakers tested positive for the COVID-19 virus.

Congress is facing calls to change its rules and allow for remote voting.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Thursday the checks to Americans would be $1,000 per adult and $500 per child.

He told Fox Business Network the payments be direct deposited into people’s accounts.

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