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American Express Says No Coronavirus-Related Layoffs for Rest of 2020

American Express says it will not have any coronavirus-related layoffs for the rest of 2020.
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American Express  (AXP) - Get American Express Company Report said Friday that it would not have any coronavirus-related layoffs for the rest of the year.

The New York financial-services major said in a statement that it was paying workers who have been diagnosed with the coronavirus or placed into quarantine, who have household members who've been diagnosed, or whose family care arrangements have been affected by the virus. Those staffers need not use paid leave, AmEx said.

Workers enrolled in one of the company's U.S. medical plans receive coverage for all out-of-pocket medical- and pharmacy-service costs related to coronavirus testing and treatment.

In addition, American Express said it was working to enable small business customers to access the financial support provided under the SBA Paycheck Protection Program

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The $350 billion PPP is a government-backed loan effort to help small businesses keep workers on the payroll. The money is part of the $2 trillion rescue package Congress passed last week in response to the coronavirus pandemic. 

American Express said it was extending the amount of time merchants have to respond to a card holder dispute to 30 days worldwide for disputes received between March 1 and May 31. 

The company is also raising contactless transaction thresholds to reduce physical contact at the point of sale in 28 countries to date, with plans for additional countries over the next month.

American Express said it does not require merchants to collect or provide card members’ signatures at the point of sale.

Last month, American Express said it would freeze hiring after setting up more than 60,000 staffers to work from home due to the pandemic.