SINGAPORE -- The specter of COVID-19 looms over China's ongoing Lunar New Year holidays. The government discouraged the usual stampede of travelers heading home for family reunions. Businesses fear for their bottom lines. But 50,000 Beijingers received a small pick-me-up: 200 yuan ($31) in digital "red envelopes" they can use for shopping online or offline.
The authorities see this as a steppingstone to something much bigger.