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Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Business News, Updates

Business News, Updates


Short-term Treasury yields just turned negative for the first time in 4.5 years amid the coronavirus pandemic

Posted: 25 Mar 2020 09:34 AM PDT

FILE PHOTO: Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) as the building prepares to close indefinitely due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in New York, U.S., March 20, 2020.  REUTERS/Lucas JacksonReuters

  • Yields on the one- and three-month US Treasury bills fell below zero on Wednesday. 
  • Investors have been rushing into bonds amid the coronavirus pandemic, sending yields to record lows. 
  • Japan, Germany, Denmark, France, and Sweden have had negative-yielding government debt for some time.
  • Read more on Business Insider.

Negative yields on government debt have landed in the US. 

On Wednesday, yields on both the one-month and three-month US Treasury bills fell below zero, joining a slew of government debt around the world with yields in negative territory. It was the first time both bills went negative at the same time since their yields briefly fell to -0.002% each four-and-a-half years ago, CNBC reported

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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After a friend my age died on my birthday, I bought life insurance — and even though my family said I shouldn't, I don't regret it

Posted: 25 Mar 2020 09:33 AM PDT

young couple in hospitalkupicoo/Getty Images

 

I spent the day I turned 42 in or near New York's Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center as my boyfriend's best friend, who I'd become friends with too, succumbed to the disease after a 12-year battle. It was an awful time, watching someone so beloved, with such a big personality, only a year younger than me, go so soon.

That he passed away on my birthday made ponder the big issues, namely life and death. I felt so helpless sitting in that waiting room, because I was. It was heartbreaking, and still is.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

NOW WATCH: Why fighting is allowed in pro hockey — and why the NHL has no plans to ban it

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A third of the global population is on coronavirus lockdown — here's our constantly updated list of countries and restrictions

Posted: 25 Mar 2020 09:33 AM PDT

FILE PHOTO: A police officer stands at New Delhi's border barricade during lockdown by the authorities to limit the spreading of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in New Delhi, India March 23, 2020. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi/File PhotoReuters

Countries around the world are implementing measures to slow the spread of the coronavirus, from national quarantines to school closures.

Before India went into lockdown, the Guardian estimated that 20% of the world's population is under some form of lockdown — and India's 1.3 billion citizens now join those at home. As of Wednesday, it's more than a third of the planet's population. 

The World Health Organization, which has officially declared the outbreak a pandemic, has called on "all countries to continue efforts that have been effective in limiting the number of cases and slowing the spread of the virus."

While "lockdown" isn't a technical term used by public-health officials, it can refer to anything from mandatory geographic quarantines to non-mandatory recommendations to stay at home, closures of certain types of businesses, or bans on events and gatherings, Lindsay Wiley, a health law professor at the Washington College of Law, told Vox.

Here are the countries and territories that have implemented mandatory mass quarantines and border closures so far.

South Africa will go into a 21-day lockdown on March 26.

Reuters

Only essential businesses will remain open, and soldiers and police will monitor the streets, Al Jazeera reported.

"While this measure will have a considerable impact on people's livelihoods, on the life of our society and on our economy, the human cost of delaying this action would be far, far greater," President Cyril Ramaphosa said, according to Al Jazeera.



New Zealand enacted a mandatory 14-day quarantine for all individuals entering the country. The country went on full lockdown on Wednesday.

Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images

New Zealand is to go into a month-long national lockdown on Wednesday as the number of cases in the country rose by almost 50%, the Guardian reported. 

The lockdown will only be partially eased after a month if case trends slow.

"I say to all New Zealanders: the government will do all it can to protect you. Now I'm asking you to do everything you can to protect all of us. Kiwis — go home," New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said, according to the Guardian.



Saudi Arabia locked down its capital and two holy cities on Wednesday.

Saudi Press Agency via Associated Press

Bloomberg reports that Ridayh, and Islamic holy cities Mecca and Medina, are under lockdown. Residents will not be allowed to enter or exit, and are subject to a curfew that's four hours longer.

Saudi Arabia already suspended international flights and closed mosques, schools, and restaurants; it also imposed a curfew.




See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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SEE ALSO: Coronavirus live updates: More than 169,000 people have been infected and over 6,500 have died. The US has reported 69 deaths. Here's everything we know.

DON'T MISS: What to buy if you're quarantined at home during the coronavirus outbreak

Boeing is expected to get billions of dollars in bailouts from the Senate, despite backlash over the 737 Max crisis and past stock buybacks (BA)

Posted: 25 Mar 2020 09:31 AM PDT

Boeing 777 787 factory tourBenjamin Zhang/Business Insider

  • The Senate coronavirus bailout being proposed on Wednesday includes billions of dollars for Boeing, according to a new report from The Washington Post.
  • A $17 billion loan provision for companies "critical to maintaining national security" doesn't mention Boeing by name, but was designed for the company, sources told the newspaper.
  • Boeing has been hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, but bailing out the troubled company remains controversial, despite its importance to the overall economy.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Boeing will receive billions of dollars from the Senate's $2 billion bailout package, which is due to be released later on Wednesday, The Washington Post reported.

The Senate package will include a $17 billion federal loan provision for businesses considered "critical to maintaining national security."

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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These 5 banks offer the most sought-after mobile features in the US

Posted: 25 Mar 2020 09:31 AM PDT

free site leaderboardBusiness Insider Intelligence

This is a preview of a research report from Business Insider Intelligence, Business Insider's premium research service. This report is exclusively available to enterprise subscribers. To learn more about getting access to this report, email Senior Account Executive Haydn Melia at hmelia@businessinsider.com, or inquire about our enterprise memberships.

Citibank, USAA, BBVA USA, Bank of America, and NFCU lead the US market in offering the most in-demand mobile features in 2019, according to Business Insider Intelligence's third annual US Mobile Banking Competitive Edge Study. 

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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Billionaire Bill Ackman details a $2 billion bet he just made that coronavirus will be a 'temporary but massive economic shock'

Posted: 25 Mar 2020 09:29 AM PDT

Bill Ackman, Ackman, William AckmanReuters/ Allen Fredrickson

  • Bill Ackman, the billionaire investor who manages Pershing Capital Square Management, said in a Wednesady letter to investors that as of Monday the firm had removed all of its hedges betting against the market.
  • That generated $2.6 billion in proceeds, compared with premiums and commissions of $27 million. "Substantially all" of the proceeds were reinvested, Ackman said.
  • Ackman also wrote that he believed the federal government would soon initiate a total US shutdown with a defined reopening date about 30 days later to combat the coronavirus pandemic. 
  • Read more on Business Insider.

The billionaire investor and Pershing Square Capital Management manager Bill Ackman gave further details Wednesday on the $2 billion bet he's making that the coronavirus pandemic will be a temporary shock.

As of Monday, Ackman's firm removed all of its hedges betting against the market, he said in a Wednesday letter to investors. That generated $2.6 billion in proceeds, compared with premiums and commissions of $27 million. 

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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Lawmakers are sounding the alarm on the coronavirus shuttering the USPS by June — and it could mean chaos for your Amazon deliveries

Posted: 25 Mar 2020 09:28 AM PDT

usps amazonJustin Sullivan/Getty Images

  • Two US representatives warned yesterday that the US Postal Service may cease regular operations as early as June.
  • The lawmakers came to this conclusion after briefings about plummeting mail volumes, and said the Postal Service "will not survive the summer without immediate [monetary] help."
  • This shutdown would be chaotic for Amazon, which heavily depends upon the USPS to deliver its packages. 
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

The US Postal Service could be kaput by June without financial help, according to a warning from two lawmakers on the committee with jurisdiction over the USPS.

That's not just bad news for all of the places that still like to send physical junk mail instead of just emailing it, but also Amazon, which still depends on USPS services. 

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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SEE ALSO: Morgan Stanley reveals that Amazon Logistics is 'cherry picking' the most lucrative delivery zip codes and leaving rural deliveries to the USPS — and it's a brilliant strategy to slash costs

DON'T MISS: The coronavirus outbreak could shut down the post office in less than 3 months, lawmakers say

Inside London during COVID-19 lockdown

Posted: 25 Mar 2020 09:26 AM PDT

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The UK reported 8,077 coronavirus cases and 422 deaths. Here's all we know about how the virus is spreading across Britain.

Posted: 25 Mar 2020 09:26 AM PDT

London Tube coronavirusREUTERS/Hannah McKay

  • March 24: The UK has reported 8,077 coronavirus cases and 422 deaths linked to the virus.
  • The NHS said on Tuesday that another 87 people across the UK have died.
  • Boris Johnson announced a series of strict new social distancing measures on Monday evening.
  • He has banned social events, closed all non-essential shops, and imposed rules on when people can leave their homes, among other things.
  • 93% of Brits support the new measures, according to a YouGov survey.
  • Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab has told all Brits travelling abroad to return to the UK.
  • Chancellor Rishi Sunak is set to announce new financial support for the self-employed on Thursday.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

A total of 8,077 people have been diagnosed with coronavirus in the UK and 422 people have died, the National Health Service said on Tuesday, March 24, after Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced a strict lockdown on the entire country.

The NHS said on Tuesday announced 87 further deaths across the country. Around a third (27) were in London.

Johnson on Monday evening unveiled a series of strict new rules which the British public must follow to combat the spread of the coronavirus. He warned people, "if too many people become seriously unwell at one time, the NHS will be unable to handle it — meaning more people are likely to die, not just from coronavirus but from other illnesses as well."

The prime minister said the government will:

  • Close all non-essential shops.
  • Ban all social events.
  • People will only be allowed to leave their homes for essentials, exercise, and work.
  • There will be a ban on public gatherings of more than two people.
  • The police will have the powers to fine people who do not comply with the rules.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab has urged Brits travelling abroad to return to the UK immediately.

All schools across the UK will be closed from this week onwards. 

Anyone with symptoms, or anyone who lives with someone experiencing symptoms, has been told to self-isolate at home for 14 days.

The coronavirus causes a respiratory disease known as COVID-19. More than 12,987 people have died and more than 305,145 others have been infected worldwide, mostly in China. Cases have been recorded in at least 105 countries.

For the latest global case total, death toll, and travel information, see Business Insider's live updates here.

Carry on reading below for the latest updates on how the virus is spreading across Britain.

Kieran Corcoran, Alison Millington, and Rachel Hosie contributed reporting to this post.

Coronavirus testing kits available in the UK 'within days'

Getty

Simple home-testing kits which indicate whether somebody has ever been infected with the coronavirus will available to order in the UK within days, Members of Parliament have been told.

Professor Sharon Peacock, director of the National Infection Service at Public Health England, told the UK parliament on Wednesday that the group had developed finger-prick tests which establish whether a person has ever been infected with the virus.

Read the full story here.



A 21-year-old woman with no pre-existing health conditions has died after testing positive for the coronavirus

REUTERS/Dylan Martinez

A 21-year-old woman in the UK, who had no underlying health complications, has died after contracting the coronavirus.

Chloe Middleton died on Saturday. She is believed to be the UK's youngest victim with no underlying health issues. Here's the full story.



London City Airport suspends all flights until the end of April

Simon Dawson/Reuters

London City Airport has announced that it has suspended all flights until the end of April as the UK continues to fight the spread of the coronavirus.




See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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Google will move its summer internship program to a virtual format this year in response to coronavirus

Posted: 25 Mar 2020 09:22 AM PDT

Google BikesGoogle

  • Google will be moving its summer internship to an online-only format in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
  • Interns will instead take part in virtual replications of the company's usual summer internship events.
  • The move comes as Google manages its vast and sprawling workforce in response to COVID-19.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Google has one of the most coveted summer internships in tech, but this year's interns will be swapping the "Noogler" hats for webcams as the entire program goes virtual, Business Insider has learned.

The company will be shifting its summer internship program to an entirely online experience, a result of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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SEE ALSO: Google recommends all North America employees work from home over coronavirus fears

Americans are fine with the Senate's coronavirus stimulus plan, but most want it to go much further

Posted: 25 Mar 2020 09:22 AM PDT

Nancy Pelosi and Mitch McConnell elbow bumpAP Photo/Susan Walsh

  • A new Insider poll shows Americans are feeling okay about the stimulus package coming out of the Senate, but even more approve of the House plan, which includes more funding and provisions for workers.
  • Out of 1,136 respondents to Insider's poll conducted on March 24, 48% approve of the Senate GOP plan, while 31% disapprove. The House Democrats plan saw 64% approve, 30% disapprove.
  • Twenty-eight percent of respondents prefer the Senate GOP plan, with 46% preferring the House Democrats' version, and 20% indicating they're indifferent between the two.
  • With Republicans in control of the Senate and many House members back in their districts, the tweaked Senate version is making its way through Congress and, eventually, onto President Donald Trump's desk.
  • The House Democrats' plan is slated to remain on the sidelines for now.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

A new Insider poll shows a plurality of Americans approve of the main elements in the $2 trillion stimulus plan emerging from the Senate.

However, an even greater share of the 1,136 respondents indicated they are satisfied with the farther-reaching plan put fort by House Democrats.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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One of Trump's visits to his Scotland resort cost taxpayers more than $950,000 in Secret Service fees

Posted: 25 Mar 2020 09:20 AM PDT

trump turnberryLeon Neal/Getty

  • A new report details expenses incurred during the president's trip to his Trump Turnberry Resort in Scotland in July 2018.
  • The report says that Secret Service agents racked up $950,000 in bills on airfare lodging, rental cars, overtime pay, and golf cart rentals. 
  • It remains unclear how many Secret Service agents accompanied Trump on the trip to Scotland for the trip.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Secret Service agents racked up a $950,000 bill on one of President Donald Trump's trips to his Scotland resort, according to a new report from the Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General (OIG).

The report, released last week and initially reported by CBS News, details the expenses incurred during the president's trip to his Trump Turnberry Resort in Scotland in July 2018.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

NOW WATCH: A law professor weighs in on how Trump could beat impeachment

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A simple coronavirus home-testing kit will soon be available to order on Amazon in the UK

Posted: 25 Mar 2020 09:14 AM PDT

finger prickGetty

  • Home-testing kits which indicate whether you have ever been infected with the coronavirus will be rolled out across the UK "within days," the UK Parliament has been told. 
  • Professor Sharon Peacock, director of the National Infection Service at Public Health England, said the group had developed simple finger-prick tests.
  • The tests will be available in chemists and online retailers like Amazon.
  • They could mean that thousands of workers can return to normal life much sooner than expected.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Simple home-testing kits which indicate whether somebody has ever been infected with the coronavirus will available to order in the UK within days, Members of Parliament have been told.

Professor Sharon Peacock, director of the National Infection Service at Public Health England, told the UK parliament on Wednesday that the group had developed finger-prick tests which establish whether a person has ever been infected with the virus.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

NOW WATCH: A law professor weighs in on how Trump could beat impeachment

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Michaels told employees they are 'essential' and must continue working 'for the makers' during the coronavirus outbreak. We got a look at the full memo.

Posted: 25 Mar 2020 09:13 AM PDT

Michaels StoresAP Photo/Douglas P. Pizak

  • In an internal memo obtained by Business Insider, Michaels told employees that stores will remain open in order to be "here for the makers" during the coronavirus outbreak.   
  • Though stores in select states have been mandated to close due to policies enacted by local officials, hundreds of Michaels stores currently remain in operation due to the company's claim that its employees are an "essential workforce." 
  • "I am so worried for my coworkers," a Michaels manager speaking on the condition of anonymity told Business Insider. "If I get sick I will likely recover without incident. My coworkers and other vulnerable people could die. We are expendable. Just a means to make money."
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

In a ploy to remain open during the coronavirus outbreak, Michaels is telling employees and state officials they are an "essential workforce" that is "here for the makers." 

In a memo sent to Michaels employees on March 19 and obtained by Business Insider, outgoing CEO Mark Cosby and incoming CEO Ashley Buchanan wrote that stores will stay open and deemed its employees "essential" during the pandemic. The executives wrote that its stores are "fundamental" to serving business owners, teachers, parents, and communities "looking to take their minds off a stressful reality."

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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SEE ALSO: In leaked memo, Michaels executives refuse to close stores and tell employees they must be 'here for the makers' amid the coronavirus

'I leave this ICU a changed person': A patient wrote a touching note on a hospital window thanking critical care medical workers

Posted: 25 Mar 2020 09:08 AM PDT

Nurses in the intensive care unit of MedStar St. Mary's Hospital dress in personal protective equipment before entering a patient's room March 24, 2020 in Leonardtown, Maryland. (Win McNamee:Getty Images)Win McNamee/Getty Images

  • Medical workers at the Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio, discovered a touching note from a patient written on a hospital room window.
  • "Today I leave this ICU a changed person," the patient wrote. "I watched some of you have good nights and some bad nights but what was consistent every night was that you care for people."
  • The hospital staff "were brought to tears" by the message, according to Gretchen Sacha, a pharmacist at the Cleveland Clinic.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

The coronavirus crisis has already put enormous stress on the United States, with hospital workers begging for more protective equipment and Americans looking toward their first federally mandated aid in the next several weeks. 

In the midst of it all, a patient at the Cleveland Clinic, in Ohio, left a note for hospital employees that gave them a message of deep appreciation, according to a pharmacist working there.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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New video shows Russia's Su-57 stealth fighter launching a missile from its side-weapon bay for the first time

Posted: 25 Mar 2020 09:03 AM PDT

Su-57Associated Press

  • A new promotional video for the Su-57 fighter jet released by the Russian Ministry of Defense seems to show the use of an air-to-air missile fitted inside the wing root bays.
  • The lack of a weapons-bay demonstration in the past created speculation that the it may have not be fully operational.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Russia has been actively working to expand the export potential for their Su-57 aircraft (NATO designation: "Felon"). A new video, just released by the Russian Ministry of Defense on their prolific official social network channels seems to serve that specific purpose: The footage shows the 5th generation aircraft from almost any angle, during taxiing, take off, formation and low-level flying, high-g maneuvering and landing.

Among all these interesting scenes, you also get a close up glimpse at the IFR (in-flight refueling) probe and, above all, at what appears to be the right side weapons bay.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

NOW WATCH: Here's a look at world's first stealth fighter jet, the F-117A Nighthawk, which was retired in 2008

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Cloth diapers are an eco-friendly alternative to disposable diapers — here's how to use them and what you need to buy

Posted: 25 Mar 2020 09:01 AM PDT

  How to use a cloth diaper

  • I was intimidated when I first started learning how to cloth diaper, but after a few weeks, I became a pro.
  • There are five main types of cloth diapers to choose from, but they all work pretty similarly. I prefer pocket diapers because they're the perfect mix of easy to use and affordable.
  • Perfecting your wash routine is a major component of having success with cloth diapers. Read more about how to use and wash diapers below.
  • Read more about the best cloth diapers in our buying guide.

Any time someone tells me I'm crazy or brave for using cloth diapers with my daughter Ellie, my response is that it's really not that bad. Honestly, it isn't. Yes, there was a learning curve at first, but once we got the kinks worked out, it's been smooth sailing ever since. We calculated that we've already saved over $1,000, and Ellie is only 14 months old. Watching her run around with her fluffy cloth diapers on is pretty much the cutest thing ever, too. 

Figuring out what diapers we wanted to use, how to use them, and how to wash them was overwhelming and intimidating at first. Thankfully, cloth diapers have come a long way from the ones my mom put me in in the 1980s. If you're just starting this journey, welcome to the cloth diaper family.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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Charli D'Amelio has taken over as TikTok's biggest star. These are the 40 most popular creators on the viral video app

Posted: 25 Mar 2020 09:00 AM PDT

tiktok starsSpencer X/YouTube; Charli D'Amelio/YouTube; Maury Phillips/Getty Images

  • TikTok is one of the most popular social platforms, particularly among Gen Z, where users can watch short-form video clips and create something that could go viral.
  • Some of the most popular creators have millions of followers who watch them lip-sync, dance, and produce comedy skits as they grow into high-profile influencers.
  • These are the 40 most popular TikTok stars, who found fame on the platform and racked millions of followers.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

The most popular figures on social media platforms like TikTok are well beyond mega-celebrity status in the eyes of their teen fans.

These TikTok stars claim millions of followers — many who are of part of Gen Z themselves — and found fame by creating short video clips lip-syncing to soundbites, showing off viral dances, and crafting comedy skits that get shared thousands of times. Even if you've never heard of the app, it's worth getting familiar with. TikTok has more than 1.5 billion all-time downloads, and its popularity and influence only continues to spread.

The hottest accounts on the 2-year-old TikTok don't have nearly as many followers as the top channels on the more established YouTube (where PewDiePie has blown past 100 million subscribers). However, TikTok can be credited as the launchpad for many of the memes and songs that dominate the internet and often cross over to mainstream popularity, including Lil Nas X's chart-smashing hit "Old Town Road."

At one point, a pair of German twins named Lisa and Lena had the most popular account on TikTok, but they deleted their account at the end of March 2019 to "break new ground." Now Charli D'Amelio has taken over the platform as its biggest creator.

Note that this list consists of independent creators who blew up online thanks to TikTok or its predecessor, Musical.ly. The rankings exclude accounts run by companies, and those from users who got famous first through other means — like former Vine stars Cameron Dallas and Zach King, and JoJo Siwa and Mackenzie Ziegler of "Dance Moms" fame.

These are the 40 biggest stars on TikTok:

40. Sky & Tami — 13.5 million

Sky and Tami/YouTube

Sky Odin and Tami Tomo are a couple from Spain who jointly run a TikTok account. They post videos dancing with their friends, playing pranks on each other, and showing behind-the-scenes views of how they create their more complex clips.



(Tied) 38. Joey Klaasen — 14.1 million

Joey Klaasen/YouTube

Before TikTok, Joey Klaasen may have only been known as the younger brother of Jon Klaasen, who gained fame as a member of a boy band on US version of "The X Factor." However, Joey Klaasen, 20, has since taken off on TikTok on his own, and recently signed with an up-and-coming talent agency called TalentX, the company behind collab house Swag LA.



(Tied) 38. Suraj Pal Singh — 14.1 million

Next Volume Productions/YouTube

Suraj Pal Singh is a TikTok star from India whose videos often comprise of comedic sketches and star his girlfriend, Yashi Tank, who has a respectable 7.6 million followers on her own account.




See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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SEE ALSO: How to use TikTok, the short-form video app Gen Z loves and that's ushering in a new era of influencers

The best hotels in Barcelona

Posted: 25 Mar 2020 09:00 AM PDT

  Best hotels in Barcelona 4X3

  • With its sunny Mediterranean climate, rich culture, architectural masterpieces, and urban beaches, Barcelona is a fantastic year-round destination.
  • Hundreds of hotels are available at every price point ranging from major international and Spanish hospitality brands, as well as independent boutique hotels, five-star luxury enclaves, funky lodging, and budget-friendly properties.
  • Entry-level rooms at popular hotels start as low as $100 per night, up to $350 for swankier digs. Our top hotels were selected based on our experience staying at local properties, as well as reviews and rankings from trusted traveler sites, and hotels with a central location that is well-suited to explore.
  • Read all Business Insider hotel reviews here.

A note from your Insider Reviews travel editor: Coronavirus has interrupted travel on a global scale forcing travelers to cancel and reassess plans in the coming weeks and months. We understand that right now is a challenging time to plan travel. But when this time passes and things return to normal, we know you'll be eager to explore the world again.

Whenever that happens for you, and we know it will, we hope our travel content helps you make informed, useful, and inspiring choices on the best places and hotels to book. So whether you use our reviews now, bookmark them for the future, or simply need an escape from the news, we'll continue to share the world with you. In the meantime, we encourage all travelers to stay safe, follow guidelines from the CDC website, and take precautions.

 

One of Europe's greatest cities, Barcelona teems with architectural masterpieces, innovative cuisine, and top-notch museums. Every neighborhood has its own distinct feel, from the moody medieval Gothic Quarter to the cozy casualness of seaside Barceloneta, and the grandeur of the historic Eixample district. The Catalan capital also provides plenty of opportunities to experience nature, with three miles of beachfront, a myriad of parks, and sweeping mountain ranges. 

As Barcelona surges in popularity — some 20 million tourists flooded this city of 1.5 million in 2019 — a new generation of hotels have sprung up across the city to meet the demand. Glassy new-builds now dot the skyline while landmark 19th-century buildings and former office towers have been converted into sleek, design-forward stays. Even the glorious grand dames have seen spiffy upgrades. Most Barcelona hotels feature historical architecture and rooftop terraces with bars, pools, and fantastic views.

Since moving here in 2017, I've welcomed friends and family from around the globe. Some are first-timers who want to be near the major sites — namely Gaudí's Sagrada Familia and Casa Batlló — others crave carefree beach time; some are repeat visitors wanting to see a more authentic side of the city.

Depending on what they want to do, their style preference, and always accounting for budget, I have compiled a fairly thorough list of hotel options — all of which I've personally visited, and often more than once. These are hip, budget-friendly, and at least three-stars.

Most are cozy, high-design boutiques in repurposed buildings, or contemporary luxury hotels with bright, spacious rooms. They are centrally located in the architecturally rich Eixample area, or a bit farther afield such as the buzzy, bar-filled districts of El Born and the Gothic. More recently, hotels have popped up in emerging neighborhoods like Poble Sec and Sants, offering an authentic Barcelona experience without as many crowds.

Hotel prices vary greatly depending on the location and the season. In the low winter season, some of the best luxury hotels offer rooms starting at around $200 per night. Even over Christmas, rates are inexpensive (Spain celebrates its holidays in early January).

Come spring, and continuing into the fall, rates surge. So if you're looking for a bargain, consider a hotel in a less-central area of the city, where you can score a four- or five-star room for under $250 even in high season. I've included a couple on this list that fit the bill.  

In addition to my own personal experience at every hotel and being mindful of budget, star rating, and location, I also selected properties based on feedback shared on trusted traveler sites such as Trip Advisor and Booking.com, and looked for key amenities and characteristics such as rooftops, pools, historic design and architecture, and other perks guests love.

Whether you seek a romantic getaway, a sightseeing family vacation, or a party atmosphere, these Barcelona hotels all offer good value and great design, with prices starting at around $100 per night. 

Traveling elsewhere? Read our list of the best hotels in other popular cities:

Keep reading to discover the best hotels in Barcelona, sorted by price from high to low.

Casa Bonay

Casa Bonay

Book Casa Bonay starting at $102 per night

If you fancy mingling with resident hipsters, this chic Eixample-area boutique hotel is the place you should do it. The ground-floor Libertine, a cavernous restaurant-lounge decked out with comfy sofas and leather armchairs, attracts digital creatives by day and fashionable locals by night. In warm weather, the beach shack-style rooftop bar is the place to hang, especially for its regular summer barbecues. Plus, an outpost of the wildly popular Satan's Coffee Corner is just off the entry courtyard.

Each room in the restored 19th-century building has a different layout but is similar in style, with high ceilings, beautifully preserved mosaic-tile floors, brightly colored bedspreads, and hand-woven paneling. Entry-level rooms measure 172 square feet and go up to 365 square feet for the largest courtyard room, complete with a sundeck. Nice touches include a mini-bar stocked with local drinks and snacks.

Trip Advisor Ranking: 84 out of 524

Booking.com Rating: 8.7 out of 10

Pros: This independently owned hotel feels at one with Barcelona and we love the buzzy, local vibe of its public spaces.

Cons: Entry-level rooms are situated off an interior passageway, which makes them extremely quiet, but they lack the views and outdoor space found in the higher categories. Also, note the one mobility-impaired room has no window.



Yurbban Trafalgar Hotel

Yurbban Trafalgar Hotel

Book Yurbban Trafalgar Hotel starting at $106 per night

A hip, affordable stay close to all the action, this three-star boutique feels much more like a four-star hotel and is one of my personal favorites.

El Born's buzzy bar and restaurant scene is steps away, but the hotel's quieter location at the edge of the neighborhood ensures a restful night's sleep. Rooms are on the cozy side, with few bells and whistles, but are sleekly designed with dark-wood floors, industrial lighting, and clever built-ins. You can spend a bit more for one with outdoor space, but you likely won't need it once you see the roof terrace. The 360-degree views up there are among the best of any hotel in the city. Though it's always open to guests, as is the sundeck and pool area, rooftop bar service operates seasonally.

The lobby lounge, artfully designed with contemporary velvet seating and eclectic artwork, offers plenty of space to spread out. The adjacent restaurant serves Catalan specialties, including an excellent breakfast buffet included in the room rate. 

Trip Advisor Ranking: 20 out of 524 hotels

Booking.com Rating: 9.3 out of 10

Pros: We love all the extra freebies including free self-service laundry, a hosted daily wine hour, complimentary loaner bikes, and free use of portable Wi-Fi devices so you can be connected anywhere in the city.

Cons: Rooms and bathrooms are small and there is little closet space.



Hotel Brummell

Hotel Brummell

Book Hotel Brummell starting at $114 per night

Set at the foot of Montjuïc Hill in the residential neighborhood of Poble Sec, this contemporary charmer offers a slice of authentic Barcelona that few tourists see. Staying here means you're just a few minutes' walk to the city's famous tapas street, Carrer de Blai, packed with dozens of affordable tapas joints — and the young, friendly front desk staff is always eager to share some local gems.

Wellness buffs will love the free unlimited yoga classes at the next-door Garage studio, and there's a complimentary weekly running session for guests and locals up nearby Montjuïc.

The airy, high-ceilinged lobby, decorated with an eclectic mix of modern furnishings and Asian antiques, is a great hangout spot, as is the roof terrace, complete with a plunge pool and sun loungers. Entry-level rooms are rather basic and quite petite, measuring just 130 to 160 square feet, but rooms are light-filled and minimalist with white walls, crisp linens, wood floors, and open-plan bathrooms. Two larger penthouses net you a private terrace with an outdoor bathtub, so you can literally soak in sea and mountain views.

Trip Advisor Ranking: 23 out of 524 hotels

Booking.com Rating: 9.3 out of 10

Pros: The unlimited complimentary yoga classes are a real treat, and we love the residential setting that feels like a true departure from most city hotels, while still being close enough to walk to the action.

Cons: Rooms skew small, and the open-plan bathroom isn't for the shy.  




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The future of retail in the US: industry trends and market trends

Posted: 25 Mar 2020 09:00 AM PDT

Retail sales volume was higher in 2019 than ever before — and it will only continue trending upward as the entire experience becomes more streamlined and frictionless for customers. However, the face of the industry is changing rapidly; Business Insider Intelligence recently reported that in 2019 ecommerce sales surpassed 10% of total retail sales for the first time ever.

us total retail sales.

The growing online trend impacts both e-tailers and brick-and-mortar sellers. Because merchants must embrace ecommerce to boost their own growth, the roles of solutions providers like BigCommerce and Shopify, as well as marketplaces like Amazon, could expand further in the coming years, due to their ability to help merchants without the resources to develop their own ecommerce platforms to begin selling online.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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