LiveCoronavirus in UK live blog: latest as UK economy shrinks at fastest pace since 2008 financial crisis

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Wednesday, 13th May 2020, 7:54 am
Updated Wednesday, 13th May 2020, 10:57 am

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Nurses who work at central London hospitals protest with placards outside Downing Street on May 13, calling for improved conditions and pay for nursing staff on the occasion of International Nurses Day 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic (Photo: TOLGA AKMEN/AFP via Getty Images)

Coronavirus live blog, May 13

Last updated: Wednesday, 13 May, 2020, 13:42

Keir Starmer asks PM to correct care home comments

Robert De Niro on Newsnight

In case you missed it, Rober De Niro had some choice words for President Trump and his handling of the coronavirus pandemic.

Starmer queries government's care home response at PMQs

Sky News post video showing packed public transport

The video has been criticised for portraying commuters as rule breakers, with many posters suggesting that commuters in London have no choice but to use public transport. 

Police have no powers to enforce 2-metre rule

Police have been told they have "no powers" to enforce two-metre social distancing in England.

Fresh guidelines issued by the College of Policing and the National Police Chiefs' Council urges officers to only enforce what is written in law and that "Government guidance is not enforceable, for example two-metre distancing, avoiding public transport or the wearing of face coverings in enclosed spaces".

Colleagues of Belly Mujinga speak out

Colleagues of Belly Mujinga have spoken of their own safety fears after the Victoria station staff member died with coronavirus after being spat at while on duty.

Gate worker Victor Bangura, 34, told PA: "We are all vulnerable".

He added: "I was very shocked. It is the last person I would expect it to happen to.

"She was a nice person, looked healthy, she was a mother. Imagine you see someone now like me and the next time they are dead.

"My whole body went into shock. I was very, very emotional.

"We are all vulnerable, in the same station, it could happen to any one of us."

Infections in Germany remain below 1,000

Focus has been turning to Germany in recent days, where the county's easing of lockdown measures had led to fears coronavirus could make something of a ‘comeback’.

The Robert Koch Institute for public health and disease control reported 933 new COVID-19 infections on Tuesday – an increase from 357 on Monday.

But despite this, and the country's ‘R’ rate recently rising above 1, the Robert Koch Institute said: "So far, we do not expect a renewed rising trend."

Last Thursday, Chancellor Angela Merkel outlined a scenario in which Germany may need to apply an “emergency brake” to re-impose restrictions.

The lockdown measures could be introduced again if a second wave of new infections were reported at a rate of 50 per 100,000 people.

March's economic drop the worst monthly fall since records began

More bleak economic analysis from the Office of National Statistics, who have announced that March saw the UK's economic output drop by 5.8%, the worst monthly fall since records began in 1997.

That means the drop is also greater than any month at the peak of 2008's financial crisis.

It's not particularly surprising, giving the all-reaching effects of the coronavirus crisis, but considering the UK's lockdown only began on 23 March, drops in the second quarter figures are likely to be even greater.

Jonathan Athow, an ONS statistician, said: “Nearly every aspect of the economy was hit in March. Services and construction saw record declines on the month with education, car sales and restaurants all falling substantially.”

Tui to cut 'potentially 8,000' jobs

As the effect of coronavirus continue to be felt particularly hard in the travel sector, Tui has announced it is preparing to cut up to 8,000 roles worldwide, calling Covid-19 the “greatest crisis” the industry has ever faced.

The UK’s biggest tour operator recorded losses of £747m in the first half of 2020.

Chief executive Fritz Joussen said: “We are targeting to permanently reduce our overhead cost base by 30% across the entire group.

“This will have an impact on potentially 8,000 roles globally that will either not be recruited or reduced."

Tui has been hit particularly hard by the crisis, which followed the grounding of its Boeing 737 Max planes, following two crashes involving Max models run by other airlines.

UK economy shrinks at fastest pace since 2008 financial crisis

The Office for National Statistics has revealed the economy contracted by 2% in the three months to March, following zero growth in the final quarter of 2019.

It's the fastest pace the UK economy has shrunk since the financial crisis, with the UK's dominant services sector suffering a record decline.

Analysts expect an even bigger slump in the second quarter, before the economy starts to recover.

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