Shakespeare’s Globe theatre in London is preparing to welcome visitors back next month to its guided tours and workshops, in line with the second stage of the UK government’s road map out of lockdown. The open-air theatre on the south bank of the Thames aims to re-open from April 13.

South Africa’s economy grew more than expected in the final three months of last year, extending its rebound from a second-quarter slump as coronavirus restrictions were eased further. GDP rose 1.5 per cent in the final three months of the year, or an annualised rate of 6.3 per cent, Statistics South Africa data showed.

The $1.9tn US stimulus programme will boost the economic recovery from the pandemic around the world, the OECD said on Tuesday, as it upgraded its outlook for global growth. The Paris-based international organisation said it expected a stronger rebound from last year’s historic recession than it previously forecast in November.

A Florida couple has pleaded guilty to filing fraudulent loan applications seeking more than $1.1m in US coronavirus relief, including by posing as farmers. Latoya Stanley, 38, and Johnny Philus, 33, of Miami, claimed they employed people on agricultural properties, which were actually the yards of their small residential homes. They will be sentenced on June 2.

A customer wears a mask outside a Peet’s Coffee & Tea store in San Francisco © Bloomberg

JDE Peet’s has forecast another “uncertain year” for 2021, adjusting its medium- to long-term targets as the coronavirus crisis has hit the coffee and tea group. “The long-lasting impacts of the pandemic are unclear,” said the Amsterdam-based group, which includes the Douwe Egberts, Kenco and Peet’s coffee brands. 

London’s Covent Garden has lost more than a quarter of its value because of coronavirus, which landlord Capital & Counties says will leave a lasting mark on the district. The area has been left deserted during the pandemic, and the valuation of the estate plunged by £771m over the course of 2020, down 27 per cent to £1.825bn.

Continental expects a “significant recovery” in the global car market this year despite the pandemic and the chips shortage, as the German car parts maker scrapped its dividend following a year of deep losses. The group posted a €718m pre-tax loss for 2020, on sales that fell 15 per cent to €37.7bn.

ITV has launched a further round of cost savings after facing a “challenging” advertising market that has been weighed down by the pandemic, but is showing signs of rapid improvement. The UK’s biggest commercial broadcaster finished the final quarter of 2020 with its total advertising up 3 per cent, the first growth it has reported since the start of the pandemic.Total revenues for 2020 fell 16 per cent to £2.8bn. 



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