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China Joins WHO Effort; Indonesia Cases Spike: Virus Update

(Bloomberg) — China joined a World Health Organization-backed initiative to ensure everyone across the globe is inoculated against Covid-19, without saying how much money it plans to put into the $18 billion project.Indonesia reported the highest increase of new cases since the start of the pandemic. Outbreaks from New Jersey to North Dakota strained health care in parts of the U.S., less than a month before the general election. European countries from Spain to Ukraine posted record increases in infections, while a court struck down new restrictions in Madrid.U.S. President Donald Trump — who’s back in the Oval Office — is able to return to public engagements on Saturday, his doctor said. Trump said he wants an emergency-use authorization “immediately” for the treatment he received.Key Developments:Global Tracker: Cases pass 36.4 million; deaths top 1.06 millionEven as cases rise in the Northeast, diners are still eating outThe pandemic fuels world’s first rise in extreme poverty since 1990sHow one of the world’s biggest slums stopped the coronavirusOne week at the White House was America’s pandemic in a microcosmSubscribe to a daily update on the virus from Bloomberg’s Prognosis team here. Click CVID on the terminal for global data on coronavirus cases and deaths.China Joins WHO’s Global Coronavirus Vaccine Program (9:01 a.m. HK)China joined the World Health Organization-backed Covax program, the country’s Foreign Ministry said Friday. The statement didn’t disclose how much money the nation will put into the effort that aspires to give lower-income countries the same access to vaccines as wealthier nations.China’s participation may help repair the country’s image over how it handled the initial outbreak in Wuhan, particularly since the Trump administration has refused to join Covax.White House Open to Bigger Stimulus Bill (5:55 a.m. HK)The White House shifted tack on Thursday, signaling that the administration is again leaning toward a large-scale stimulus bill after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi pushed back on the idea of individual measures for parts of the economy hit by the Covid-19 crisis.Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told Pelosi in a 40-minute call that Trump wants agreement on a comprehensive stimulus package, her spokesman said.Texas Hospitalizations Jump to Four-Week High (5:22 a.m. HK)Texas virus hospitalizations rose for a fourth straight day to 3,556, the highest since Sept. 10, according to state health department data. It’s the longest stretch of daily increases since July, when the state’s outbreak was at its worst.Despite the surge in raw numbers, the share of hospitalizations attributable to the pandemic was at 7.2% in data released Thursday. That figure has been less than 15% — Governor Greg Abbott’s declared threshold for reopening parts of the economy — for almost two months.Brazil, Argentina Add New Cases, Deaths (5:05 a.m. HK)Brazil added 27,750 cases, bringing the total to 5,028,444. The number of deaths reached 148,957 after adding 729 new fatalities, the Heath Ministry said. The country has four vaccines against Covid-19 that are in the final stage before applying for registration, it added.In Argentina, 15,454 new cases were reported, for a total of 856,369. The number of new deaths rose by 485 to 22,710, the government said.Suicide Spike in Japan Shows Covid Mental Health Toll (5 a.m. HK)Suicides rose in Japan in August due to an increase in women and school-aged children taking their own lives, a first glimpse into the consequences of the mental health strain brought about by Covid-19 around the globe.Spain Weighs State of Emergency for Madrid (4:49 p.m. NY)President Pedro Sanchez is calling for an extraordinary meeting with ministers on Friday to decree a 15-day state of emergency in Madrid, daily El Pais reported.South Dakota Deaths Reach Record (4:09 p.m. NY)South Dakota, facing one of the worst outbreaks in the U.S. as the virus batters the Midwest and Plains states, reported a record 14 deaths in a day.The state, which has imposed no restrictions such as mask mandates, had 536 new cases, a 2% rise, in line with the daily average over the previous seven days that raised the total to 26,441. Until early August, daily cases rarely breached 100.North Dakota Sets Record (3:40 p.m. NY)North Dakota’s new infections remained at a record with 531 new cases. The state, which is also without a mask-wearing requirement, had the most cases per capita in the U.S. in the past week, putting healthcare there under severe strain.“We’ve got some numbers that are still going in the wrong direction,” Governor Doug Burgum told reporters, according to the Bismarck Tribune.State data show only 13% of 1,831 beds available. The newspaper reported there were only 25 open intensive-case beds.NYC Will Close More Public Schools (2:25 p.m. NY)New York City is closing an additional 61 public schools, bringing to 169 the number shut to combat Covid-19 hot spots, Mayor Bill de Blasio said as opposition to community restrictions intensified in Orthodox Jewish areas.The earliest reopening would be Oct. 21, he said. Closings are now affecting about 10% of the city’s public schools.Positive cases statewide approached 2,000, the most since mid-May. The state conducted 145,811 tests on Wednesday, the highest since the beginning of the outbreak, Governor Andrew Cuomo said later Thursday. Of those tested, 1,836 were positive, the most since May 17.New Jersey Cases, Positive-Tests Spike (1:39 p.m. NY)New Jersey recorded 1,301 new cases, the most since May 19. It hadn’t exceeded 1,000 new cases in a single day since May 29. The statewide positivity rate is 3.69%, and the number of people hospitalized hit the highest since Aug. 5.Trump Wants Emergency Use of Drug ‘Immediately’ (1:33 p.m. NY)Trump says he wants emergency use authorization signed “immediately” for the Covid-19 treatment that he received.“We’re going to get it to you soon,” Trump said in recorded video posted on Twitter. “It’s totally safe.”Trump didn’t name specific drugs in his video. On Wednesday, he called Regeneron’s antibody cocktail a “cure” that was “key” to his recovery.France Records Spike, Expands Restrictions (11:54 a.m. NY)France reported 18,129 new coronavirus cases on Thursday and is placing more cities on maximum alert, with restrictions to expand beyond Paris and Marseille. The seven-day rolling average of new infections climbed to 13,448, the highest since the start of the outbreak.Authorities will raise the status in Lyon, France’s third-biggest city, as well as Lille, Saint-Etienne and Grenoble starting Saturday, as “the health situation continues to deteriorate in France,” Health Minister Olivier Veran said.The head of the Paris region health agency also asked local hospitals to activate crisis measures, which include postponing scheduled surgery.Italy Infections Jump (11:28 a.m. NY)Italy’s coronavirus cases jumped again on Thursday to 4,458, the most since April 11. That compares with the previous seven-day average of 2,726. Testing hit another daily record at 128,098 and 22 deaths related to Covid-19 were reported, bringing the total to 36,083.Patients in intensive care units rose by 21 to to 358. The mandatory use of masks indoors and on public transport, but also outdoors, came into effect this week.IMF: Lifting Lockdowns Won’t Help GDP (10:16 a.m. NY)Lifting lockdowns is unlikely to lead to a decisive and sustained economic boost as long as Covid-19 infections remain elevated, because people will probably keep avoiding social interactions out of fear of contracting the virus, the International Monetary Fund said.IMF research shows that while government lockdowns contributed significantly to the global recession, the slowdown was also driven in large part by people continuing to exercise voluntary social distancing, the fund said in a blog post Thursday.U.K. Plans Emergency Help for Business (9:24 a.m. NY)Boris Johnson’s administration has drawn up measures for British firms struggling to cope in areas forced into lockdowns. The U.K.’s top medical adviser held a special meeting for politicians from northern England and the Midlands to stress the sharp rise in cases, ahead of tougher new rules expected to be imposed next week.No firm date has been set for rolling out the package, and measures under discussion include closing pubs and restaurants in some parts of England where the virus is most prevalent, a person familiar with the matter said.Europe Hit by Wave of Record Daily Infections (9:20 a.m. NY)A number of European countries, including Austria, the Netherlands, Portugal, Romania and Slovenia, posted record new infections on Thursday.Local authorities are being pushed to take the lead in limiting late-night activity as national politicians fear that more wide-ranging measures could result in another collapse in economic activity.Sweden Keeps Crowd Limits in Place (8:39 a.m. NY)Sweden’s government postponed a decision to allow more people to attend sporting and cultural events following an increase in the number of infections.“Sweden is now at a crossroads — will we be able to stabilize, and preferably suppress transmission, or will we get an acceleration?” Health Minister Lena Hallengren said Thursday in Stockholm.J&J Reaches Deal With EU on Vaccine Supply (8:36 a.m. NY)Johnson & Johnson announced it has reached an agreement with the European Union to supply 200 million doses of its experimental Covid-19 vaccine following an approval or authorization from regulators. EU member states also have the option to secure as many as 200 million additional doses. Financial terms were not disclosed.J&J recently joined a handful of companies that has launched into late-stage human studies. In September, it begun dosing as many as 60,000 volunteers in a trial of its one-shot inoculation, which could yield results as soon as year-end, allowing the company to seek emergency authorization early next year.Eli Lilly Drug to Be Approved, Trump Says (8:35 a.m. NY)Eli Lilly’s antibody treatment for the coronavirus will be approved by the Food and Drug Administration, Trump said.Trump credited his recovery to a Regeneron “antibody cocktail” he was administered and said a similar drug under development by Eli Lilly would be approved. “I’m back because I’m a perfect physical specimen,” he said.Vaccine by Year-End ‘Unlikely,’ EU Agency Chief Says (7:33 a.m. NY)A Covid-19 vaccine is looking “unlikely” by year-end, according to the head of the European medicines regulator, even as the agency conducts accelerated reviews of two front-runners for a successful shot.“Technically, of course it’s possible. Practically it’s very difficult — it’s very unlikely,” said Guido Rasi, executive director of the European Medicines Agency, in an interview Thursday.U.S. New Cases, ICU Usage on the Rise: ABC (7:13 a.m. NY)The number of Covid-19 cases recorded and usage of intensive care units in the U.S. have both been going up in week-over-week comparisons, ABC News reports, citing an internal memo from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.Some 306,965 new cases were confirmed from Sept. 30-Oct. 6, a 4.8% increase from the previous week; 4,860 coronavirus-related deaths were recorded during the same period, a 4.6% decrease compared with the week prior, according to ABC. The memo says 23% of hospitals have more than 80% of beds full in their intensive care units, which compares with 17 to 18% during the pandemic’s summer peak.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.