Stocks surge as President Trump declares national emergency to speed U.S. coronavirus response

In a press conference from the Rose Garden that began around 3:30 pm Eastern, stocks surged Friday after President Trump said that leaders of many large companies in the United States had agreed to help with widespread efforts to test for the COVID-19 coronavirus, and declared a national emergency that would free billions in funding for states and territories to fight the pandemic.

Stocks surge national emergency. Image: President Trump declares national emergency to speed U.S. coronavirus response
President Trump declares national emergency to speed U.S. coronavirus response

We’re announcing a new partnership with the private sector to vastly increase and accelerate our capacity to test for the coronavirus. We want to make sure that those who need a test can get a test very safely, quickly, and conveniently, but we don’t want people to take a test if we feel that they shouldn’t be doing it. And we don’t want everyone running out and taking, only if you have certain symptoms. – President Trump

Trump said Google has 1,700 engineers building a website for those who are concerned they have COVID-19. Users will fill out a questionnaire and, if deemed necessary, will be directed to a local drive-thru test site that the U.S. government is preparing to roll out across the country in partnership with the likes of Walmart, Target, Walgreens, CVS, etc.

The New York Times:

The S&P 500 rose more than 9 percent Friday, with most of the gains coming as government officials and business executives spoke at a news conference at the White House.

Mr. Trump said the administration was working with Google to develop a website to determine whether an individual needs a test — a move aimed at avoiding overwhelming the health system with people who are ill but do not necessarily need to be tested for coronavirus.

The chief executives of Walmart, Target and Walgreens all said they had agreed to make facilities available for testing.

Mr. Trump said he would waive interest on all student loans held by all government agencies. He also said that the energy secretary would be buying “large quantities of oil” to fill up the country’s strategic reserve.

President Trump declares national emergency:

Jonathan Shieber for TechCrunch:

Apple Inc. (AAPL) chart, 3/13/2020
Apple Inc. (AAPL) chart, 3/13/2020
In an announcement from the White House Friday afternoon, President Donald Trump said that he has announced an emergency declaration to free up more federal resources that states can access as they respond to the novel coronavirus outbreak.

The order also breaks some of the logjam that had stymied the ability of local and state health care organizations to conduct testing for the novel coronavirus… the authorization opens up state access to Medicaid more quickly than had happened under the Obama administration during its response to the swine flu outbreak. President Obama waited until October to issue an Emergency.

“We had some very old and obsolete rules,” the President said of the regulations that have been circumvented by the excecutive order. These rules will allow testing to ramp up across the country in state labs and private facilities.

MacDailyNews Take: The national emergency declaration, the COVID-19 testing plans, etc. seem to be well-received by the market. In the last 30 minutes of trading, after the president’s press conference began, shares of Apple surged from $256.22 to close at $277.97 and the Dow moved up from 21,747.52 to 23,185.62.


  1. Event recap:

    Trump congratulated himself about how much better the US handled the outbreak compared to every other country. A different message than last week when everyone in the administration had it all under control, but still the same old arrogance.

    Trump rambled on, then dodged simple press questions that should be part of any comprehensive plan.

    When asked if he took responsibility for firing the pandemic response team, Trump pretended he knew nothing. Instead he told the reporter it was a nasty question.

    The US coronavirus expert stood behind Trump, who himself shook hands with a Brazilian Mar-a-Lago visitor (who Trump vehemently denied knowing) who tested positive. The US expert touched his face then shook hands with Trump. The number of times everyone touched the same microphone, shook hands, etc. would be comical if not for, you know, basic hygiene precautions. Way to lead by example, guys.

    Trump declared he hasn’t been tested for coronavirus and believes that not everyone should be. Trump explicitly “accepts no responsibility whatsoever for delay in his response, the lack of test kits and the unfunding of the national health preparedness office.”

    How anyone can watch these bumbling idiots and decide this is the best leadership for his country is truly beyond logical.

    Let us hope that the extensive precautions will reduce the spread of the virus, because this administration simply didn’t get test kits distributed early enough to know where the next outbreak is blooming. We’ll all know soon enough.

    1. “We’ll all know soon enough.”

      The last sentence implies that you don’t really know what the bottom line is.

      My recommendation… settle yourself down…wait to determine the success or failure of what was proposed and put into motion today. Which by the way, didn’t seem like an ad hoc, mindless, or undeveloped plan. If what was proposed, is in fact real and concrete, it took many weeks to assemble…painful as it may be for you to accept.

      You seem rabid.

    2. Early in the press conference he said he will not be tested because people not displaying symptoms should not be tested, but after he was grilled on the subject by a reporter, he waffled a while and finally said that, yes, he would be tested. He is incapable of keeping his BS stories straight for a length of a mere five minutes.

  2. Leadership: Whatever happens, you’re responsible. If it doesn’t happen, you’re responsible.

    — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 8, 2013

    I alone can fix it. – Donald J. Trump. 2016

    On the testing debacle…
    “I don’t take responsibility at all,”. Donald J. Trump 2020

    We’re doomed.

  3. On Wednesday afternoon, Trump gathered with the CEOs of the largest US banks. Trump proposed a temporary payroll tax reduction. He then asked them what else needed to be done, clearly intended to see what stimulus would reverse the cratering stock market.

    Brian Moynihan of Bank of America offered words of wisdom: ”Take care of the health care problem: do more testing, build up the hospitals, and we’ll get through this.”

    Wednesday night, Trump tried to soothe markets, but his unpreparedness was painfully obvious. Up until this day, he hadn’t treated this as a domestic healthcare issue at all. He had thought shutting down direct flights to China after the Nov 17 2019 case in Wuhan was announced was all that was needed. Unfortunately, virus spreads exponentially without regard for borders.

    He wasn’t alone in this miscalculation, Iran and Italy were also unprepared. But how is that an excuse? The experts were ringing the alarm bells for several weeks. Former Trump administration staffers like Thomas Bossert, called the White House for days trying to alert Trump to the severity of the situation — to no avail. Bossert was a former staffer and therefore had been blackballed, Trump never took the call. Bossert had no choice but to go public, with the evil media. “We’re not going to fix this problem – we’re past the containment point,” he said during a press briefing March 4. “This evidence of human-to-human transmission, not someone who flew in with the disease, must then and only then, without overreaction, pull the trigger on aggressive community intervention – school closures, isolation, and cancellations of large events.” This presaged exactly what finally happened wednesday.

    Except of course that as of Wednesday, Trump still didn’t have an accurate status of COVID-19 test kits distribution. He made misstatements and directly contradicted his own words from the prior weeks. Worse, he ensured major financial impact to all travel related businesses by shutting down international flights to Europe.

    Today, two days later, the administration invoked the Stafford Act, allowing FEMA to provide direct assistance. After previously claiming that his administration didn’t think that more than $1.5 billion might be needed to address the health needs (one that he had previously declared contained), Trump now poured out up to $50 billion in emergency aid. Turns out an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

    Wikipedia, though certainly not an authority for the latest and most accurate information, has compiled a very good overview of the pandemic. It doesn’t flatter anybody. But it does, with evidence, show that his administration’s zeal for slashing government agencies with a hatchet instead of a scalpel left the CDC and the NIH in horrible shape. Assigning renowned healthcare expert Mike Pence to resolve it should not be reassuring to anyone.

    1. You’re going to be sooooooo disappointed if less than 15,000 people die,
      because you hate Trump more than you care about anything else.

      I know you’ll deny this, but no one will believe you.

      1. You issued a logical fallacy with ad homimem attack on him rarher than responding to the topic which is the president’s response. Please focus.

      2. That’s pure cynicism on your part.

        Face it, if the current administration was Johnny-on-the-spot with test kits, some lives might be saved. It would cost taxpayer money but at least we’d be able to accurately track the spread and manage resources to provide healthcare where it is needed, when it is needed.

        The feet-dragging may in fact not cost any lives, maybe hospitals will actually be able to cope. But you don’t know that and penny-pinching early does create additional risks to the well being of citizens.

        I invite you to point out where I advocated delaying healthcare response to save money, or anywhere where I expressed desire to see anyone suffer or die. I will wait your response.

        Meanwhile, you will easily be able to point out where your favorite president downplayed, delayed, denied, and squandered time. Because he’d already partially dismantled the very government agencies that were established to manage these situations, and he didn’t really care to spend a dime in the first quarter of 2020 to reestablish them. Cheap and stupid. Look how much money your leader saved you.

        1. Actually I try to look at any move either side makes in relationship to the issue, not how the media reports it or how I ‘feel’ at the moment.

          As much as I detested Obama’s overall running of our country I USUALLY (not always) tried to give him the benefit of the doubt in relationship to how the decision affected everyone overall, not just a political knee-jerk move to garner votes or funds.

          For instance, you won’t see me defending Trump’s decision to allow English air travel because I don’t get it. There may be a reason for it, but since he is not the best at explaining I’ll keep my powder dry.

          My issue with the Leftinistas and TDSers is they can’t stand ANYTHING he does, no goddam matter what it is. They hate HIM, even if he does something good for the country that is so obvious even Gov. Newsom acknowledges it.

          To me this shows some if not many hate Trump more than they care about the country, because if he DOES do something right they can’t stand it (and this includes most national media). I detest these people. I don’t expect them to pat him on the back but they can’t even shut up when he does something that’s needed for all of us.

          Do I like his personality? Not really. But he is the most effective president in decades to put the brakes on (even if just tapping them rather than pumping) many issues I feel strongly are degrading our country.

          He’s no Reagan personality wise or a Bush in the gosh-darn honesty type and sure not as politically cunning as Nixon but he DOES fire back at the asswipes in the media, something I wished the Bushes would’ve done and wanted Reagan to do more. Yes, I know when the media says something no matter how lame, misleading or an outright lie many of you love it because it fits your agenda. You look like fools believing all that Russia shit. How do you expect anyone to take the Left serious after the last four years of constantly falling for one hoax after another, including the current hoax of calling something a hoax.

          I sure miss the old-style Democrats. Seriously. And before you say the Republican’s have gone too far to the right, make a list of issues that divide out parties, look at those issues every decade for the past 40 years. They are pretty much the same that got Reagan in office while the Democrats have moved further left on immigration, abortion, religion, trade, taxes, health and pretty much any other issue you can name.

        1. The irony of YOU saying that is obviously beyond your comprehension so let me help-

          A) YOUR replies are almost always rhetorical and
          B) Facts don’t matter to you.

          1. Flailing and adhominem. Sad to see, TowerTone.

            Do yourself a favor and read the transcript of any Trump speech. Not the media biased reporting, not the sanitized press releases. Read the actual words coming from his mouth. If you are intelligent, as I believe you are, then you would have to notice he’s not dealing with a full deck. Wild generalizations, hubris, and bombastic delivery do not make up for the total lack of substance, logic, and empathy.

            Seriously, please read a speech and then come back and tell us why you would back this guy of all candidates?

            1. totally agree. the GOP has other better candidates, but the GOP MSM has been propping up the orange clown. huge mistake that we are all paying for now!

              need new political parties with new candidates!!!!

            2. Read? If you just read Obama’s speeches I doubt his deep voice, inflections, and obvious race would’ve swayed near as many people as watching him. That’s the physical attraction many had to him.

              With Trump, I don’t read the speeches and I don’t care much to watch them. As with most Conservatives I am more interested in what he DOES, and that is exactly why he is so popular with almost every facet of the Republican Party.

              Now by comparison, go back and read your comment, then apply it to Biden.
              Trump may seem pretty scatterbrained to many, but at least he HAS a brain….

            3. Towertone is no longer coherent. But whatabout Obama! I will forgive anything Trump does including treason because Obama stuttered!

              My local city council put in community pool and I don’t swim so SOCIALISM WHAAAAAAAAAAA!

              Don’t make me compromise on anything ever!!!! Orange is always good, Blue is always bad!!!!!

              Seek help along with dd and FirstFucked and Goeb already. Trump’s lie record alone disqualified him from being trustworthy years ago. Media reaction and what Limbaugh tells you are irrelevant. One month ago orange idiot claimed it was a seasonal flu and was contained. Now it is clear from expert reports that hospitals and disease centers in the USA have very little spare capacity to handle a pandemic. Why don’t you focus your whining on the state of medical supplies instead of whataboutism to defend the flat footed denialist orange chosen one.

  4. If 15,000 people die then that means if the administration had acted earlier that number would be half that. There is no contradicting the fact that Trump’s failure to act and to lead, and instead minimizing the threat because he thought it made him look bad, made whatever transpires from here on out worse. “It will go away, like a miracle,” will play in political ads right up until Election Day.

  5. People did not flip out during the Obama Pandemic with all the deaths. Now people are flipping out over less than a 10th of those numbers. They are fighting each other over simple supplies, act stupid by wearing tyvex suits to shop in. Keep going sheep! This has been warped and turned into a political pile of crap!

    1. The reason, as I understand it, is because H1N1 spread slowly enough that there wasn’t a massive run on the hospitals.

      As we have seen in China, Italy, and Iran, this coronavirus is different. People are literally dying in the streets in Italy and Iran because they cannot get a hospital bed or a respirator. Moreover, there is fear that this strain is mutating, but there’s not enough data to know yet.

      That’s the difference.

      Well, that and Apple News is available now to give you the latest and best information Tim has to offer.

    2. Let’s put things in perspective.

      This is the overflow from a hospital in Italy, today:

      Don’t fool yourself into believing the same virus couldn’t overwhelm your community. Wash your hands and take care of each other, ok?

    3. Pawpower, people are not “flipping out.” They are taking precautions against a very real threat to human life. In some cases, the cost of taking those precautions is so enormous that nobody would do it casually or because they are politically deranged. An example:

      Rice University in Houston is one of the best of its size in the country. Its biology program (founded by Julian Huxley) is ranked in the top ten in America, so they are obviously not being guided in their response to Covid-19 by the mass or social media. Since it opened over a century ago, Rice has had an emphasis on small classes and personal interaction between students and faculty. Essential to the Rice undergraduate experience for most of its history has been a residential college system that allows the majority of students to live and study within a small tight-knit community focused on learning.

      On Friday, the President of the University gave all the current students two weeks notice to find another place to live and vacate their colleges. There will be no classes during that period. Courses for the Spring Semester will be resumed in April exclusively by “distance learning” that will offer almost none of the interactivity that has been the hallmark of a Rice education since 1912. Science and engineering students will have no access to the labs. Liberal arts students will have no access to the library. Since Rice does not offer summer classes apart from directed research, the campus will effectively be closed for the next six months.

      The University would not do that if it did not think it necessary. So, no, this isn’t the f’ing flu!

      1. Blind panic, the Coronavirus19 is now a part of the human condition, and there will be new Coronaviruses coming out of clearing the rest of the tropical jungles of South America, Africa, and Southeast Asia. It is a question of when not if you get the virus. American farmers please plant new crops and milk the cows don’t give up……and run around farm yard like a chicken.

      1. Read it. It’s smoke and mirrors. When the red hat club looks at the pace of coronavirus test kits available now in the USA compared to anyone else, you’ll see why members of the administration are directly opposing the messages from El Cheeto.

        Limbaugh remains, as ever, a failed rock DJ who revived his Excrement in Broadcasting by crassly taking words out of context and presenting half truths using single data points.

        This isn’t a political issue. This is a health issue. Whenever anyone asks the fed, where can I get a test kit? , El Cheeto and his red hat club all whine in unison: nothing to see here ! Dem hoax!!!!

        You people are pathetic. Stop pandering to Wall Street and Limbaugh talking points, and tell people where to get tested when the time feel they need it. That is not a Dem question. That is a simple pandemic management question. The time for El Cheeto and Limbagh whataboutism is long past.

    1. Not just that. The site will only provide testing site information for San Francisco, not the entire US. Not to sound like a broken record, but every time the government misinforms the public, it erodes the trust and social cohesion that we need to get us through this.

      1. It’s the reckless nature of leaders drunk on power. So sure of themselves they casually toss tried and tested systems, ignore the science until it’s too late and blithely deny everything as though we are all cardboard cutouts with fixed grins.
        Our similarly drunkard denier ’the Johnson’, current leader of the Conservative party that has systematically and ruthlessly denied the funds necessary to run the NHS, pursuing unsuccessful public/private healthcare partnerships, all whilst imposing twelve successive years of austerity on the majority of the population not living in London. The NHS – possibly loved and cherished more than the monarchy, is now short 10,000 doctors, 40,000 nurses and auxiliary skills*, overloaded with the long term sick because they similarly starved social care, virtually no surplus intensive care facilities or the necessary equipment like ventilators, masks and qualified staff. The parallels are undeniable.
        When overwhelmed by the unfolding calamity, having done nothing for two months, ‘the Johnson’ baldly stated (I paraphrase) “it’s tough that lots of you will die”, quickly and hurriedly glossing over WHO concerns about “Herd immunity” ** and the lack of science behind the policy, announcing NO MORE CORONAVIRUS TESTING or information about numbers, hotspots or facilities. We are urged to just stay at home and phone for help “if things get bad”. It is no comfort that I am reminded of the Cold War nuclear Armageddon government advice to crawl into this nice comfy government black bag and hide under the stairs until it’s all over. With services here so stretched, it’s likely many will die at home, unsupported and alone if a lockdown is imposed. Callousness personified.
        My conservative MP has yet to reply to a letter sent early January asking about Coronavirus preparations. We have our own kakistocracy.

        Of course we did have those 10,000 doctors and 40,000 nurses and care staff but…well…BREXIT took care of that. Despite all the warnings, the conservatives carried out the “will of the people” over a period of four years and simply hobbled the NHS at a stroke. That worked out well then.
        ** My doctor daughter is only aware of ‘herd immunity’ developing after 3 virus mutations that allow a vaccine program to provide said immunity. But she’s only a virolog team member in an intensive care unit so probably fake science.
        Latest, All old people in the UK- the over 70s will be expected to remain at home for a period of 4 months. !!! I kid you not! Logically that means anyone in business over 70 cannot work! So I can’t walk up the hill to my new workshop with more filtrated ventilation than my local hospital – because 70! That’s absurd, I would lose the one person who keeps everything going, my refugee Palestinian machinery engineer and restoration skills leader. Because 70. A month I could understand but four?
        Yup, we’re doomed.

  6. Personally, I’m expecting at least 5 friends/coworkers to die from this, assuming that all of the containment & rate-slowing measures are successful.

    If not, then my personal expectation jumps to a dozen+.

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