Tuesday, November 30News That Matters

Tag: Coronavirus Reopenings

As World Shuts Borders to Stop Omicron, Japan Offers a Cautionary Tale

Travel
TOKYO — With the emergence of the new Omicron variant of the coronavirus late last week, countries across the globe rushed to close their borders to travelers from southern Africa, even in the absence of scientific information about whether such measures were necessary or likely to be effective in stopping the virus’s spread.Japan has gone further than most other countries so far, announcing on Monday that the world’s third-largest economy would be closed off to travelers from everywhere.It is a familiar tactic for Japan. The country has barred tourists since early in the pandemic, even as most of the rest of the world started to travel again. And it had only tentatively opened this month to business travelers and students, despite recording the highest vaccination rate among the world’s l...

Wall Street Warms Up, Grudgingly, to Remote Work, Unthinkable Before Covid

Business
In private, many senior bank executives tasked with raising attendance among their direct reports expressed irritation. They said it was unfair for highly paid employees to keep working from home while others — like bank tellers or building workers — dutifully come in every day. Salaries at investment banks in the New York area averaged $438,450 in 2020, up 7.8 percent from the previous year, according to data from the office of the state comptroller, Thomas P. DiNapoli.Two senior executives, who declined to be identified discussing personnel matters, said they might push out subordinates who are not willing to come back to the office regularly. Another manager expressed frustration about a worker who refused to show up at the office, citing concern about the virus — even though the person...
Yannick Nézet-Séguin Is New York’s Conductor Now

Yannick Nézet-Séguin Is New York’s Conductor Now

LifeStyle
The set for “Porgy and Bess” had been pushed to the back of the Metropolitan Opera’s stage on a recent Wednesday morning, and in front, lines of chairs and music stands had been set up. The company’s orchestra and chorus were coming together for the first time with the cast of “Eurydice” — a recent adaptation of Sarah Ruhl’s wistful play, with music by Matthew Aucoin — to run through the score in what’s known as a sitzprobe.Inside the vast and almost empty Met auditorium, Peter Gelb, the company’s general manager, typed on his laptop near the back of the theater. Ruhl was in the house; Mary Zimmerman, the director of the production, which opens on Tuesday, watched, too. Aucoin dashed around, listening for balances.At breaks, he rushed down the aisle to the pit to confer with the leader of ...

What’s Next for Stocks Like Peloton and Zoom

Business
But in the first half of 2021, the fund sold out of that position and has built stakes in companies that are tied to infrastructure spending, home improvement and health care, and that Mr. Mintz thinks offer strong potential for growth over the near term.“When you’ve got this surge in reopenings, obviously you’ve got a number of companies doing very well, and industries,” he said, adding that as the economy improves, growth-focused investors don’t need to crowd into “just a handful of stocks.”Not every company that surged over the past 20 months has come back to earth.Etsy, for example, is up roughly 60 percent in 2021, as the company has been successful at converting those who went to the site for face coverings into repeat customers. And the online security company Zscaler — which soared...
New York City’s Cultural Resilience, Then and Now

New York City’s Cultural Resilience, Then and Now

LifeStyle
The cultural sector continues its cautious reopening this fall as theaters, museums, restaurants and other establishments recalibrate. Prognostications about the city’s wellness are ever changing — but this is hardly the first time that New York has weathered dire pronouncements about its vitality as one of the nation’s cultural capitals. The city has prevailed through many reinventions in decades past, and has consistently emerged with its artistic spirit, ingenuity and wellsprings of creativity intact.How did the city’s cultural landscape repair itself after setbacks from the economic and civic tumult in the 1970s, the challenges of crime and crumbling infrastructure in the 1980s and the ravages of the AIDs epidemic on the artistic community in the 1990s? What lessons can the arts leader...
The Worst of Both Worlds: Zooming From the Office

The Worst of Both Worlds: Zooming From the Office

Business
For months, the putt-putt course sat unused. The beanbag chairs lay empty. The kitchen whiteboard, above where the keg used to live, displayed in fading marker “Beers on Tap” from a happy hour in March 2020.But on a recent weekday, over in the common area was a sign of life — fresh bagels.As employees at the financial technology start-up CommonBond got Covid vaccines, and grew stir-crazy in their apartments, they started trickling back into the office.“We call it Work From Work Wednesday,” said Keryn Koch, who runs human resources at the company, which has 15,000 square feet of sunlit SoHo real estate.At one point, autumn had been billed across corporate America as the Great Office Reopening. The Delta variant intervened, and mandatory return-to-office plans turned optional. Still, many pe...

‘Be Nice to Tourists’: New York’s Arts Scene Needs International Visitors

LifeStyle
When many readers in Toronto, London, Paris and Hong Kong open their newspapers on Monday, they will be greeted with a full-page advertisement from the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.“We reopened in August 2020, but have been missing one critical thing — you, our international visitors,” the ad will say. “The Met is only The Met when it is being enjoyed daily by visitors from around the world.”The unusual display — museum officials say they do not believe they have ever run a global marketing campaign of this scope aimed at visitors so far from their Fifth Avenue home — is a signal of the thirst among New York arts institutions for foreign visitors to return. American borders reopened to international tourists this week for the first time since the early months of 2020. Their retur...

What Bosses Really Think About Returning to the Office

Business
People think about the office differently now — including the C.E.O.s who for so long kept a watchful eye on which workers were at their desks.Bosses who once relished face time have grown less attached to crowded elevators and overstuffed conference rooms. Executives who got promoted by putting in 15-hour days sitting in Aeron chairs under fluorescent lighting now accept that the workday can sometimes end at 3 p.m. or 11 p.m., depending on what is best for the employee. And C.E.O.s eager to attract young workers are adapting to changing norms, and realizing how nice more flexibility would have been earlier in their careers, when they had young children.And yet, after careers spent climbing the corporate ladder, many C.E.O.s can’t help but pine for the office, too.“I do miss meetings in wh...

N.F.L. Fines Green Bay Packers and Aaron Rodgers for Covid Violations

Sports
The N.F.L. has fined the Green Bay Packers $300,000 and two of its players, quarterback Aaron Rodgers and wide receiver Allen Lazard, $14,650 each for failing to follow the Covid-19 protocols agreed on by the league and players’ union.The penalties come about a week after Rodgers tested positive for the coronavirus and his subsequent public statements espousing false and unfounded claims about the Covid-19 vaccines and treatments. Those comments were condemned by public health officials and by some fellow athletes but the league’s decision focused on his compliance with the rules.Rodgers and Lazard, who is also unvaccinated, were penalized for attending a Halloween party even though the Covid-19 protocols prohibit unvaccinated players from gathering outside of the team facility in a group ...

U.S. Allows Vaccinated Foreign Travelers to Enter

Travel
“There are so many things to remember and organize,” she said as she sat on a bench in the departure terminal, refreshing her email feed every few minutes as she waited for her negative coronavirus test result. “It’s very stressful, but I know it’s going to be worth it when I see my children and meet my grandchildren,” she said, her eyes welling up with tears.Reyna Martinez, from Ensenada, in Mexico, crossed the border from Tijuana into California with her daughter for the first time in two years. She said she used to cross at least four times a year to see friends or go shopping. On Monday she was on her way to Long Beach, Calif., to visit a friend. “Who knows if they might close it again,” she said, speaking in Spanish. “I was worried if I didn’t go now, I might miss out. So here we are....