26 Mar 2020

Coronavirus: Senate agrees on $2 trillion relief package

From Morning Report, 7:28 am on 26 March 2020

It is a "wartime level of investment".

That's how the Senate republican leader, Mitch McConnell, described the colossal US$2 trillion stimulus package that's just been agreed between Senate leaders and the White House.

News of the deal, which still has to be approved by the Senate, saw Asian stock markets rise in early trading; buoyed at the prospect of billions of dollars of support for the US economy.

The Senate minority leader, Chuck Schumer, gave more details on what the proposed agreement would offer US workers.

Vast swathes of the US are in lockdown as the authorities try to counter the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.

President Trump told a briefing on Wednesday he thought Easter - the second weekend in April - presented a "beautiful timeline" to be able to reopen some sections of the country.

But with the number of infections surging, many are fearful the economy could remain stagnant for weeks to come, and there's been increasing pressure on politicians to agree an aid package.

Washington correspondent Simon Marks speaks to Corin Dann.