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Major Bankruptcies Accelerating. Through 22 May, 90 major U.S. corporations have gone bankrupt, Bloomberg reported, including Hertz, J.C. Penney, and Neiman Marcus. The current pace would yield 233 major corporate bankruptcies this year, a pace 68 percent above last year’s and 97 percent greater than in 2018.
The trend is young and accelerating, Bloomberg noted, indicating that 233 is likely to be a lower number than actually results.
Gamblers Switch Games. With casinos largely shut down and no live sporting events to bet on, gamblers are putting their chips into the U.S. stock market, according to the Financial Times.
When gaming houses and live sports resume, gamblers could return to their previous favorite venues. That could see a large amount of money drained quickly from American stock markets, implying a sudden plunge in overall stock prices.
Head of Canada’s Central Bank Says Recovery on Track. Stephen Poloz, governor of the Bank of Canada, said the country’s economy is performing in line with the bank’s best-case recovery scenario, which still likely will take at least a year for growth to return to its pre-pandemic pace.
Citing lines of shoppers outside stores that have reopened, he said consumer confidence seems to be strong enough to buoy Canada’s economy once lockdowns are lifted.
The bank has cut its interest rates three times since March to 0.25 percent and has begun a program to buy large amounts of government bonds.
Pier One Abandons Plan to Reopen. The import chain, founded in 1962, has given up its plan to reorganize under bankruptcy protection. The company will liquidate its remaining inventory and close all of its more than 500 stores.
The company closed almost half of its 940 shops when it filed for bankruptcy in February. The bankruptcy court gave the company permission to stop paying rent on its stores.
Pier One is accepting bids on its intellectual property until 1 July. The property will be auctioned off on 15 July.
Luke’s Lobster Reopens. The chain of 26 eateries spread across the U.S. and South Korea has reopened some U.S. locations for takeout. The restaurant has taped X’s on sidewalks showing customers where to stand as they queue in front of the Plexiglass-protected ordering window. Workers will be masked and gloved and must leave their cell phones in a basket by the door as they enter.
The chain reported bringing in $5,000 to $10,000 a day as it reopened, compared to its normal spring daily haul of $100,000.
 

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