LONDON - Global cases of the new coronavirus have shot past 1 million with more than 54,000 fatalities, a Reuters tally showed on Friday, as death tolls soared in the United States and western Europe while the world economy nosedived.
DEATHS AND INFECTIONS
** Reported cases have surpassed 1.03 million globally and nearly 54,500 people have died, according to a Reuters tally.
** For an interactive graphic tracking the global spread, open tmsnrt.rs/3aIRuz7 in an external browser.
** U.S.-focused tracker with state-by-state and county map, open tmsnrt.rs/2w7hX9T in an external browser.
** Spain overtook Italy for the first time for the number of confirmed cases, but the overnight death toll fell from the previous day.
** Hospitals in Catalonia, Spain’s second worst-hit region, are at “maximum stress”, the regional leader said.
** Switzerland’s government boosted its powers to force firms to make more critical medical supplies.
** Scientific advisers to the Italian government said a reliable antibody blood test to find out who has already had the virus would give a better picture of Italy’s epidemic and could possibly be identified within days.
** The southerly region of Chechnya became the first in Russia to introduce a night curfew.
** Cases in Ireland’s nursing homes have increased four-fold in the space of a week.
** Britain’s prime minister, Boris Johnson, said on Friday he was remaining in isolation with mild symptoms, seven days after he was confirmed to be infected. Queen Elizabeth will make an extremely rare address to the nation on Sunday.
** A new hospital opened in London to provide thousands of extra beds, after being installed in a huge conference centre in just nine days. Britain’s health minister said the curve of deaths could peak on Easter Sunday.
** French high-school students have had their graduation exam, the “baccalaureat”, cancelled for first time since it was instituted two centuries ago under Napoleon.
** Poland is working on a smartphone app to help trace sufferers and mitigate the outbreak.
** Latvia reported its first death.
** U.S. House Speaker Pelosi said that $350 billion in already-passed coronavirus spending was not enough for small businesses, and she wants more money in next bill being developed now in the Democrat-run House.
** New York state suffered its deadliest single day with 562 deaths, Governor Andrew Cuomo said.
** New York City hospitals and morgues struggled to treat the severely ill and bury the dead, and San Francisco secured 4,500 rooms in its now-empty hotels for the homeless.
** Two Dutch ocean liners stuck at sea due to an onboard outbreak were allowed to dock in Florida.
** Canada has recorded almost 12,000 cases and the daily death toll jumped by almost 20%.
** Brazil faces a tense few weeks, with supplies of medical and protective equipment running low and shipments from China not expected to arrive for another month.
** Mexico’s deputy health minister said there were no plans for border closures, as Mexico’s death toll jumped to 50 from 37.
ASIA AND THE PACIFIC
** The top official in the central Chinese city of Wuhan, where the virus was first identified, warned residents to stay vigilant and avoid going out, even as the latest data showed a decline in new cases in mainland China and no new infections in the city.
** Confusion reigned in some Hong Kong pubs and bars after authorities ordered a two-week closure, with many food outlets uncertain if the latest restrictions applied to them.
** The U.S. sounded the alarm about a surge in cases in Japan, adding to a chorus of prominent domestic voices who have called for more decisive action.
** Taiwan and the United States discussed how to get “closer coordination” between the island and the World Health Organization during the outbreak, drawing a rebuke from China.
** Kyrgyzstan reported its first death.
MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA
** More than 2 million workers in Turkey have lost their jobs due to containment measures, the main opposition party said, as the government moved towards tightening curbs on movement.
** Israel locked down an ultra-Orthodox Jewish town badly affected by the virus.
** A United Nations official voiced concern over prisoners after reports of unrest in jails in countries including Iran, one of the worst hit in the world.
** Flight restrictions are hampering efforts to wipe out locust swarms threatening to devastate more crops in eastern Africa, the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization said.
** Coronavirus has infected more than 3,000 people in sub-Saharan Africa and killed about 100, prompting some of the world’s poorest countries to shut land and sea borders.
** Norway called for more money to help the Palestinian Territories get through the pandemic.
** Global stock markets sank following more signs that the COVID-19 pandemic would take a massive toll on economic growth, while oil prices continued to rally on hopes of a cut to global supply. [MKTS/GLOB]
** The global recession that economists polled by Reuters say is under way due to the coronavirus pandemic will be deeper than thought a few weeks ago, although most are clinging to hopes of a swift rebound.
** The impact of the coronavirus, and for some the oil market crash, are putting at least half a dozen countries at risk of having their debt downgraded to a ‘junk’ rating.
** The U.S. economy shed 701,000 jobs in March, ending a historic 113 straight months of employment growth.
** The Swiss government is doubling the size of its emergency loan scheme to $41 billion after being flooded by requests for help from businesses.
** Sri Lanka’s central bank cut its benchmark interest rates by a further 25 basis points, its second such reduction in three weeks.
** The head of Britain’s Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders urged the government to support car suppliers, some of which were set to run out of money within weeks.