(Reuters) – 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.
** 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.
** British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he was remaining in isolation with mild symptoms, seven days after he was confirmed to be infected. Britain’s health minister said the curve of deaths could peak on Easter Sunday. Queen Elizabeth will make an extremely rare address to the nation on 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.
** It is too early for Germany to lift restrictions on people’s movement despite signs that the virus may be spreading at a slightly slower pace, Chancellor Angela Merkel said.
** Latvia reported its first death.
** In New York, the U.S. state hardest hit by the coronavirus, the total death toll was around the same as that on 9/11, when nearly 3,000 people, most of them at New York City’s World Trade Center, were killed in attacks on the United States.
Another hot spot, Louisiana, reported that the number of its deaths related to COVID-19 rose from 310 at noon on Thursday to 370 at noon on Friday.
** Total U.S. virus cases jumped to 239,279, while deaths rose to 5,443.
** Canadian officials blasted a move by President Donald Trump to block 3M Co’s (MMM.N) export of N95 respirator masks for use by doctors and nurses as the daily death toll jumped by almost 20%, with total infections nearing 12,000.
** Brazilians are increasingly against President Jair Bolsonaro’s handling of the outbreak and overwhelmingly support officials he has attacked for advocating social distancing measures, two polls showed.
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.
** Pakistani Muslims at a Karachi mosque clashed with baton-wielding police trying to enforce new curbs on gatherings to prevent Friday prayers and contain infections.
** The number of funerals in Jakarta rose sharply in March, a development the governor of Indonesia’s capital city said suggested that deaths from the new coronavirus may be higher than officially reported.
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.
** 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.
** Global stock markets sank on Friday following more signs that the COVID-19 pandemic would take a massive toll on economic growth. [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 pandemic has brought the global economy to a standstill and plunged the world into a recession that will be “way worse” than the global financial crisis a decade ago, the head of the International Monetary Fund said.
** 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, while U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Congress will work on another relief bill, with healthcare topping the list of priorities.
** Britain’s economy looks set for a slump that in the short term could be deeper than during the depression of the 1930s.