The Paycheck Protection Program, which was created as part of a $2.2 trillion relief package signed in March, was devised to help small businesses with fewer than 500 workers cover payrolls and overhead expenses while much of the economy was shuttered. When big publicly traded companies that had access to other forms of capital took out P.P.P. loans, the Trump administration publicly shamed them and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin urged them to repay the money, saying they could face criminal liability if they did not qualify for the loans.
But the rules of the program also allowed American subsidiaries of foreign-owned companies to apply for and receive loans.
The Horizon Advisory report, which analyzed public filings and loan data that was released by the Treasury Department in June, does not claim to be an exhaustive account of the more than five million loans that were initiated through the program. The data released by the Treasury Department, for instance, shared loan amounts in ranges only for businesses that borrowed more than $150,000, and information for private firms that took smaller loans was released only in aggregate.
Among the companies highlighted in the report were Continental Aerospace Technologies, which received a loan of up to $10 million, and Aviage Systems, which received a loan of up to $350,000. The companies are owned by Aviation Industry Corporation of China, a state-owned conglomerate that the Department of Defense classified this year as a Chinese military company.
HNA Group North America LLC and HNA Training Center NY, subsidiaries of China’s HNA Group, both received loans of up to $1 million. HNA Group specializes in real estate, aviation and financial services transactions and is part of the Fortune Global 500.
The Coronavirus Outbreak ›
Frequently Asked Questions
Updated July 27, 2020
Should I refinance my mortgage?
- It could be a good idea, because mortgage rates have never been lower. Refinancing requests have pushed mortgage applications to some of the highest levels since 2008, so be prepared to get in line. But defaults are also up, so if you’re thinking about buying a home, be aware that some lenders have tightened their standards.
What is school going to look like in September?
- It is unlikely that many schools will return to a normal schedule this fall, requiring the grind of online learning, makeshift child care and stunted workdays to continue. California’s two largest public school districts — Los Angeles and San Diego — said on July 13, that instruction will be remote-only in the fall, citing concerns that surging coronavirus infections in their areas pose too dire a risk for students and teachers. Together, the two districts enroll some 825,000 students. They are the largest in the country so far to abandon plans for even a partial physical return to classrooms when they reopen in August. For other districts, the solution won’t be an all-or-nothing approach. Many systems, including the nation’s largest, New York City, are devising hybrid plans that involve spending some days in classrooms and other days online. There’s no national policy on this yet, so check with your municipal school system regularly to see what is happening in your community.
Is the coronavirus airborne?
- The coronavirus can stay aloft for hours in tiny droplets in stagnant air, infecting people as they inhale, mounting scientific evidence suggests. This risk is highest in crowded indoor spaces with poor ventilation, and may help explain super-spreading events reported in meatpacking plants, churches and restaurants. It’s unclear how often the virus is spread via these tiny droplets, or aerosols, compared with larger droplets that are expelled when a sick person coughs or sneezes, or transmitted through contact with contaminated surfaces, said Linsey Marr, an aerosol expert at Virginia Tech. Aerosols are released even when a person without symptoms exhales, talks or sings, according to Dr. Marr and more than 200 other experts, who have outlined the evidence in an open letter to the World Health Organization.
What are the symptoms of coronavirus?
Does asymptomatic transmission of Covid-19 happen?
- So far, the evidence seems to show it does. A widely cited paper published in April suggests that people are most infectious about two days before the onset of coronavirus symptoms and estimated that 44 percent of new infections were a result of transmission from people who were not yet showing symptoms. Recently, a top expert at the World Health Organization stated that transmission of the coronavirus by people who did not have symptoms was “very rare,” but she later walked back that statement.
And BGI Americas Corporation, which is a subsidiary of the Chinese gene-testing giant BGI Group, took a loan of up to $1 million. The company, which is building a gene bank in Xinjiang, did return the money, however, after Axios reported on the loan.
Larger loans went to businesses that spanned critical sectors such as pharmaceuticals, defense, advanced manufacturing, electric cars and information technology. In each case, the United States was indirectly funding the kinds of corporations whose owners the Trump administration regularly accuses of intellectual property theft.