Here are the stories making headlines in sports and business on Thursday, August 6.
Clemson's On Top
For the second year in a row, the Clemson Tigers check as the top-ranked team in USA Today’s college football coaches poll.
Coached by Dabo Swinney and led by quarterback Trevor Lawrence, Clemson made it to last year’s National Championship game but were defeated by LSU.
Rounding out the Top 5 is Ohio State at No. 2, Alabama at No. 3, Georgia at No. 4 and the defending National Champions LSU Tigers at No. 5. That’s three teams from the SEC in the Top 5, one from the ACC and one from the Big Ten.
There are over 18.8 million cases of the virus worldwide, with over 708,000 deaths. The U.S. has 4.8 million cases with over 158,000 deaths. According to the COVID-19 Tracking Project, there were 52,265 new cases reported Wednesday. 681,537 new tests were reported. And 1,403 deaths were reported yesterday.
The Labor Department said that 1.186 million Americans filed first-time jobless claims for the week ended Aug. 1, down from a revised 1.434 million claims the week earlier, as U.S. employers stepped back up their efforts to reopen and rehire, despite renewed virus flare-ups in various states and cities.
Economists polled by FactSet had been expecting 1.3 million claims up to last Saturday.
Initial claims for jobless benefits have held roughly steady at more than 1.4 million a week since late June, according to the Labor Department.
In comparison, that’s far below the 6.5 million claims recorded in the first dark days of the pandemic but still well above the highest on record before this year, which was 695,000 in 1982.
The largest increases in initial claims for the week were in Virginia (+5,020), Nevada (+2,842), Missouri (+2,606), Indiana (+2,218), and New Jersey (+2,141), while the largest decreases were in California (-44,941), Georgia (-37,329), Florida (-17,514), Louisiana (-13,568), and Texas (-11,104).
Some positive news from Penn National Gaming (PENN) - Get Report as the company is reporting positive trends in demand for more sports gambling despite a 76% drop in revenue compared to their 2nd quarter from 2019.
Penn National operates 41 sportsbooks in 19 states and saw a massive uptick in handle in June and July. This was obviously expected considering the coronavirus quarantine shut down nearly every casino and sports in April and May.
Penn National CEO Jay Snowden said in a statement the company expects to launch Barstool’s Sports mobile wagering app in Pennsylvania next month in September and has plans to add additional states through the end of the year.