Afternoon Coffee: March jobs report beats expectations; Wastewater reservoir in Florida on brink of collapse; Europe expected to be hit hardest by Suez Canal disruption

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The Labor Department released its March jobs report Friday showing that job growth boomed in March at the fastest rate since last summer, according to CNBC.

Nonfarm payrolls increased by 916,000 for the month, and the unemployment rate fell to 6% from 6.2% in February. Stronger economic growth and an increasingly aggressive pace of vaccinations helped contribute to a surge in jobs for hospitality and construction, the article said. The numbers were better than expected — with economists expecting 675,000 jobs added and an unemployment rate of 6%.

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“It shows that the economy is healing, that those who lost their jobs are coming back into the workforce as the recovery continues and restrictions are lifted,” Quincy Krosby, Chief Market Strategist at Prudential Financial, told CNBC. “The only concern here is if we have another wave of Covid that leads to another round of closures.”

Wastewater reservoir in Florida is on the brink of collapse

A county near Tampa, Florida, is in a state of emergency, and residents are being evacuated because of a toxic wastewater reservoir that is on the brink of collapse, according to NBC News.

At least 316 homes were ordered to evacuate on Saturday after officials raised concerns that Piney Point Reservoir, sitting about 40 miles south of Tampa, could flood homes with 15 to 20 feet of water if it collapses. The reservoir holds a mixture of saltwater, fresh water, wastewater and fertilizer runoff, the article said.

Part of the retaining wall shifted laterally, meaning total structural collapse is possible. If that were to happen, 600 million gallons of water could leave the retention pool in minutes, the article said. Crews are working to move water out of the reservoir, but it could take more than a week. About 22,000 gallons of water are being discharged by the minute.

“Due to a possible breach of mixed saltwater from the south reservoir at the Piney Point facility, I have declared a State of Emergency for Manatee County to ensure resources are allocated for necessary response and recovery,” Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis wrote on Twitter.

Analysis shows Europe is likely to be the region hit hardest by Suez Canal disruption

As supply chain experts look to pick up the pieces after the recent Suez Canal blockage, analysis shows that Europe is expected to experience the largest disruption from the days-long issue, according to Supply Chain Dive.

Industries like eating and drinking, construction, wholesale trade, chemicals, health services, industrial and commercial machinery, metal production, and automotive repair are likely to see the biggest impacts. The article also reported that the United Kingdom, Germany, Belgium, France, the Netherlands, Italy, Switzerland, Spain, Turkey and Austria will probably take the brunt of the disruptions.

Additionally, the analysis found that US retailers like PVH, H&M and Walmart are among the list of most exposed for that region. Companies across industries and regions are addressing their inventories in transit to figure out the kinds of impacts they can expect.

"Is it going to transform everything in a negative way? No," James Owen, the CEO at H.B. Fuller, a manufacturer of adhesives and industrial sealants, said on the company's earnings call last week. "But it's an issue that we're watching very carefully. We're tracking exactly what materials that our suppliers have that might be on those ships."

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