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Weekly Roundup... 15 September, 2020

By Donna Ahern
Weekly Roundup... 15 September, 2020

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The trade sector in Sweden is set to lose €6.73 billion (SEK70 billion) in the second quarter of 2020, according to the latest Merchant Economy report released by the Swedish trade association, Svensk Handel. The loss is a result of the coronavirus pandemic, which also resulted in short-term layoffs for approximately 110,000 people in the country, the report added. It also found that notices of job termination increased by 220% year-on-year during the quarter. Sweden’s GDP dropped by 7.3% during this period, which is the largest decline since 1940. Total household consumption fell by 8.1% compared to the same period last year.

US supermarket chain Kroger Co said it expects full-year comparable sales to rise more than 13% after reporting better-than-expected quarterly results, driven by a surge in online grocery sales as customers cooked more at home during the COVID-19 pandemic. The virus outbreak has led to consumers cooking more meals at home, leading to rising demand for groceries and canned soups, as people work from home and classes at schools and colleges resume online, reports Reuters. The updated forecast for 2020 follows strong performance in the first half, and on expectations of sustained trends in food-at-home consumption, chief financial officer, Gary Millerchip said.

Ivory Coast plans to increase the fixed farmgate price paid to cocoa farmers by more than 21% to 1,000 CFA Francs ($1.84) per kilogram in the 2020/2021 season, sources from the country's Coffee and Cocoa Council (CCC) said on Thursday. In June 2019 Ivory Coast and Ghana established a price floor of $2,600 per tonne and a Living Income Differential (LID) of $400 per tonne, in order to tackle poverty among farmers. During a visit to Moronou region in the east of the country, President Alassane Ouattara, who is running for another term next October, announced that he had good news to announce to planters in October without giving more details. CCC sources confirmed President Ouattara will announce the price increase himself on 1 October in Yamoussoukro.

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