The New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) has asked businesses to free up 75% of the in-office staff to curb the spread of the deadly coronavirus (Covid-19).

Banks have been asked to implement work from home policies.

However, DFS has made exceptions for essential service industries such as shipping, media, warehousing, grocery and food production, pharmacies, healthcare providers, utilities, and supply chain.

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo said: “We know what we have to do to contain the spread of this virus – reduce density and person to person contact – and based on new facts we are getting every day, we’re taking further steps to keep more New Yorkers at home while keeping essential services running.

“At the same time, we know there is going to be an economic impact across the state and we are taking new actions to support the thousands of New Yorkers and small businesses who are suffering.”

The DFS has also instructed mortgage lenders and banks to provide 90-day mortgage relief to impacted borrowers.

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This includes waived mortgage payments, ATM fees, late fees, overdraft fees, and credits cards fees.

Apart from reducing the workforce, DFS is also implementing new regulations to speed up the process of hospital admission and discharge.

Coronavirus cases have continued to swell in the US in recent days.

New York State has confirmed 1,769 additional cases of a novel coronavirus, bringing the statewide tally confirmed cases to 4,152.

The pandemic has so far claimed 10,000 lives and infected approximately 244,000 people globally.

Recently, US banking giant Wells Fargo asked employees globally to work from home.

Recently, JPMorgan asked employees around the world to work from home and many European banks shuttered hundreds of branches to curb the Covid-19 spread.

Earlier this month, major American banks imposed restrictions on international travel to immune their operations and Wells Fargo was also one of those banks.

The European Central Bank (ECB) also asked a majority of its 3,500 staff in Frankfurt to work from home to measure its coronavirus (COVID-19) preparations.

Last week, HSBC Bank sent more than 100 employees home after a worker from the research department tested positive for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

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