Scott Garrett, Trump's nominee for president of the Export-Import Bank, speaks during a Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee confirmation hearing on Nov. 1, 2017. Photo: Zach Gibson / Bloomberg via Getty Images

President Trump's nominee to head the Export-Import Bank, former New Jersey Rep. Scott Garrett, will likely be voted down by the Senate Banking Committee tomorrow morning. Four board nominations hang in the balance, with Ex-Im currently hobbled by its lack of a quorum.

That's good news for taxpayers, who subsidize the bank's export financing to U.S. corporations and discount credit to foreign governments. It's bad news for companies like Boeing, which has long been Ex-Im's largest beneficiary despite its market cap of nearly $177 billion.

Garrett has apparently failed to convince a majority of the committee that he would properly administer the bank he claimed "embodies the corruption of the free enterprise system." If he's blocked, the Trump administration has threatened to pull the other board nominees, leaving the bank barred from financing deals over $10 million and Boeing to fend for itself.

Already largely weaned from Ex-Im, the aviation giant has found a private-sector alternative: an alliance of insurers to provide loan and bond guarantees. In 2017 alone, the Aircraft Finance Insurance Consortium has supported more than $1 billion of new airplane deliveries. Meanwhile, Boeing has 661 firm orders for 2018, in addition to 6,600 backorders.

What's next: Whatever happens at Ex-Im, Boeing's shift is not likely to reverse. Per its latest finance outlook, the company expects commercial markets to remain healthy, with government export credit volume composing "a marginal share of aircraft financing."

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Fauci: Coronavirus task force to examine aerosolized spread


A sneeze. Photo: Maartje van Caspel/Getty Images

The White House coronavirus task force will examine more closely just how much SARS-CoV-2 might be transmitted via aerosols, and not just from droplets, NIAID director Anthony Fauci said Wednesday at an online forum sponsored by Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

Why it matters: The longer the coronavirus can remain infectious in the air, the more likely it can infect people, particularly indoors — leading to the possible need to alter air filtration and circulation within buildings.

The next wave to hit Main Street

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Call it the great retail wash. A wave of defaults, bankruptcies and evictions expected in cities across the U.S. is poised to remake the retail landscape across the country, but there may be some upside for consumers and small businesses.

Why it matters: Rather than an overnight descent into a collection of urban wastelands full of Starbucks, Amazon fulfillment centers, Chase bank branches and nothing else, the coronavirus pandemic and resulting retail apocalypse may just mean that, in major U.S. cities, less is more.

Coronavirus hotspots begin to improve

Data: The COVID Tracking Project, state health departments; Map: Andrew Witherspoon, Danielle Alberti, Sara Wise/Axios

Coronavirus infections are falling or holding steady in most of the country, including the hard-hit hotspots of Arizona, California and Florida.

The big picture: A decline in new infections is always good news, but don't be fooled: the U.S. still has a very long way to go to recover from this summer's surge.