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Cribados masivos: a la caza del asintomático

Un cribado masivo en un pueblo de poco más de 700 habitantes: así pretenden atajar la incidencia del virus en Benifallet, Tarragona. De momento ya cuentan 14 positivos. Por prevención, las atracciones turísticas del pueblo permanecerán cerradas hasta conocer los resultados. Medidas similares toman en Sacramenia, Segovia... es una de las localidades con mayor incidencia del virus, por eso ha subvencionado pruebas PCR a sus casi 400 habitantes.En En Castilla y León hay 145 brotes activos, la Junta  ha notificado 584 nuevos casos. Preocupante porque las cifras andan muy cerca de las que conocíamos en marzo y abril.   Y al menos, durante los próximos 15 días, los bares y restaurantes en Lorca reducirán su aforo al 40% y los comercios cerrarán a las 22h. La localidad murciana ha registrado 24 nuevos casos en la última jornada, la tasa de incidencia aquí ya triplica la media regional. En Villamalea, Albacete, ya están confinados después de detectarse un foco tras una despedida de soltero. Y
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Janet Yellen speaks at a news conference in Washington, DC, in 2017, after announcing the Fed would raise interest rates. | Alex Wong/Getty Images Yellen will become the first woman to serve as treasury secretary in the US if confirmed. In 2014, Janet Yellen became the first woman to be named chair of the Federal Reserve. Six years later, she is poised to become the first woman treasury secretary of the United States. The Wall Street Journal on Monday reported that President-elect Joe Biden intends to nominate Yellen, 74, to head the Department of the Treasury. Several other outlets confirmed the news shortly after; Biden is expected to announce his intent to nominate Yellen and other Cabinet picks Tuesday. Biden’s pick is not necessarily a surprising one. 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As Sam Bell outlined in Politico in 2018, some people say that she was “too sanguine” about the potential for using regulations to stave off the next financial crisis, that she went too easy on Wells Fargo in the wake of its fake accounts scandal, or that she didn’t do enough to help smaller banks. “And yet on the critical issue at hand in her 2014 nomination — could we bring more unemployed workers back into the labor force without blowing things up for everyone? — she has been unquestionably vindicated,” Bell wrote. Some people have questioned the Fed’s decision to modestly raise interest rates under Yellen’s tenure, arguing that doing so prevented the economy from reaching its full potential and getting more people into the workforce. Of course, hindsight is 20/20. And at the Treasury Department, Yellen won’t have anything to do with interest rate decisions. “Just as she shied away from fiscal policy when she ran monetary policy, I think she’d shy away from monetary policy as treasury secretary,” Boltansky said. Progressives have also raised questions about her previous comments regarding the deficit, which she described as unsustainable. Other contenders on the shortlist for the Treasury spot included former Deputy Treasury Secretary Sarah Bloom Raskin; current Fed governor Lael Brainard; and Roger Ferguson, the CEO of the Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association of America (TIAA), a financial services company, among others. It is Biden who’s setting the agenda here, and the virus is at the top of his list Heading the Treasury Department is an important job — the department oversees the IRS; the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, which charters, regulates, and supervises national banks; and the US Mint, among other bureaus — and the secretary plays a key role in advising the president on economic issues. Leading up to Biden’s announcement, there was quite a bit of back-and-forth among more moderate and progressive Democrats regarding who the Treasury pick should be. Progressives championed figures such as Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Raskin, and pushed Biden to eschew anyone with perceived industry or Wall Street ties. Moderates, on the other hand, hoped for a figure viewed as less divisive than Warren, more along the lines of Ferguson or Brainard. But it is important to remember that the person chosen to run the Treasury Department reflects the Biden administration’s priorities, not the other way around, and will likely be in lockstep with the White House’s positioning on key issues. “The Treasury secretary and Biden will, at least publicly, be on the same page and deliver the same message,” wrote Ian Katz, director at Capital Alpha Partners, in a recent note to investors. “You will not see Biden, for example, criticizing sanctions against other countries that the Treasury Department is working on.” At least initially, that will mean the new secretary will work with Biden on his top priority: addressing the Covid-19 crisis. “They’re not going to be able to remake Treasury in their own image, Treasury will still be forced to triage, as every agency will, in fighting the virus,” Boltansky said. “Whoever’s in that role, they’re going to be a virus-fighter first and a treasury secretary second.” This could translate to the secretary trying to negotiate a new stimulus package with Congress, as current Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has done, to little success, under Trump. It could also mean an effort to refocus the department on renewing CARES Act programs, like restarting Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans for small businesses. Mnuchin recently decided to end lending programs put in place through the CARES Act, and asked the Fed to return funds earmarked for those programs. Biden’s team has been critical of the move. If those programs are restarted under the Biden administration — something that will become tougher if the funds are returned before Inauguration Day — the new secretary could oversee those as well. Biden has also emphasized the importance of reasserting America’s presence on the international stage, and Treasury has a role to play there. One can expect more attention to the international arena from a Biden Treasury Department than from Trump’s, and an effort to reaffirm international relationships. It’s possible, too, that the treasury secretary (or other members of the administration) could wind up playing multiple roles through the Vacancies Act, should Biden struggle to get his choices through the Senate confirmation process. Trump employed this strategy often, like when then-White House budget director Mick Mulvaney was acting head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. If confirmed, Yellen will find herself in one of the most powerful governmental positions within the American economy yet again, though in a different role. And she is expected to be particularly influential in the role. “Though all of the contenders [for Biden’s Treasury pick] would have Biden’s ear, we think Yellen’s voice would carry the most weight with the president and his advisers,” Katz wrote. “Not many people in the White House would want to debate economics with Yellen.”
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