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N.Y. State Faces Outbreaks; U.S. Cases Ticking Up: Virus Update

Passengers wearing protective masks ride the subway in New York, U.S., on Wednesday, June 10, 2020. New York streets got a little more congested this week as the city entered Phase 1 of its re-opening from the coronavirus-imposed lockdown. Photographer: Jeenah Moon/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The U.S. added almost 47,000 new cases, India recorded its biggest daily spike and Covid-19 infections worldwide surpassed 25 million, according to data collected by Johns Hopkins University and Bloomberg.

By Bloomberg News
Aug 30, 2020, 2:23 AM – Updated on Aug 30, 2020, 8:34 PM
Word Count: 1879
(Bloomberg) —

New York State reported a surge of infections in Buffalo and shut down a college campus for two weeks after blaming parties for an outbreak. California’s cases rose by the most in a week.

The U.K. added the most cases since early June amid slumping approval ratings for Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Conservative Party. Turkey increased taxes on imported cars in a bid to prop up its economy as the pandemic cuts into tourism and exports to the European Union.

Key Developments:
Global Tracker: Cases surpass 25 million; deaths exceed 843,200
FDA chief pledges data-driven Covid-19 vaccine review
India sets a daily record with 78,761 infections
Vaccine Tracker: Where we are in the race for protection?
Demand for online doctors forges $39 billion Sony-backed titan
U.K. Tories poll lead collapses on exam chaos, virus strategy
Subscribe 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.

U.S. vs. Europe Cases
California Has Most Cases in a Week (2:05 p.m. NY)
California reported 6,070 new virus cases on Sunday, the most in a week and more than the 14-day average of 5,596. There have been 699,909 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the state, according to the health department’s website. The number of deaths climbed by 71 to 12,905.

Florida Cases Slow, Deaths Rise (1 p.m. NY)
Florida reported 621,586 cumulative cases on Sunday, a 0.4% rise compared with an average daily increase of 0.5% in the previous seven days. Deaths among Florida residents reached 11,119, an increase of 162, more than the 148 reported the previous day, according to the state health department report, which includes data through Saturday.

FDA Head Pledges Transparent Vaccine Review (12:35 p.m. NY)
The head of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration promised that the review of a potential Covid-19 vaccine in the U.S. will be transparent to the public, with any clearance by the agency driven by data alone.

“We’ve said all along we’re not going to pre-judge what mechanism we’re going to use to authorize or approve a vaccine,” Commissioner Stephen Hahn said in an interview. “We’re going to let the data dictate that.”

Hahn apologized last week for overstating the benefits of blood plasma-based therapy during a news conference with President Donald Trump. “We are committed to being transparent because we realize this is very important to the American people,” he told Bloomberg News on Sunday.

New York Outbreaks Hit Buffalo, SUNY (12:30 p.m. NY)
Western New York state is seeing an outbreak of Covid-19 cases. Buffalo, a city of about 250,000 on the Canadian border, reported an infection rate of 5.5% yesterday, compared with the statewide rate of 0.69%, Governor Andrew Cuomo said on a call with reporters on Sunday.

The State University of New York’s Oneonta campus will be closed to instruction for two weeks after several large parties led to an outbreak. As of Sunday morning, 105 people are confirmed positive, representing about 3% of student and faculty on the campus, SUNY Chancellor Jim Malatras said.

New York state new cases rose 0.2% yesterday, slightly above seven-day average of 0.1%.

Arizona Cases, Deaths Slow (11:55 a.m. NY)
Arizona reported 374 cases Sunday, a 0.2% rise compared with the average 0.3% daily increase of the previous seven days. Total cases are now 201,661.

The state’s overall improvement from the Sun Belt’s summer spike was also reflected in the number of fatalities, with 23 reported on Sunday, down from 29 the previous day and the fourth day below 50. Total deaths are now 5,030.

Russian Cases Rise the Most in Two Weeks (11:15 NY)
Russia reported 4,980 new cases of Covid-19 in the past 24 hours, of which 695 were in Moscow. That was the biggest daily rise in about two weeks. There were 68 new deaths.

U.K. Cases Highest Since June (11 a.m. NY)
Cases in the U.K. rose by 1,715, the most since June 4 and well above the previous seven-day average of 1,164. That brings the total to 334,467. Just one person died from the virus, according to government figures reported Sunday.

German Anti-Virus Protests Continue (10:10 a.m. NY)
Protests against the German government’s coronavirus policies continued on Sunday, a day after demonstrations ended in clashes with the police. Leading German politicians expressed shock at far-right protesters breaking through fences and broke through to the stairs leading up to the Reichstag building in Berlin, which hosts the federal parliament.

Colleges Told to Keep Students on Campus (9 a.m. NY)
A consensus is building among public health experts that it’s better to keep university students on campus after a Covid-19 outbreak rather than send them home, as many are doing. It’s easier to isolate sick or exposed students and trace their contacts if they stay put, said Ravina Kullar, epidemiologist and spokesperson for Infectious Diseases Society of America. Sending students home risks exposing other people there as well as along the way, and makes contact tracing all but impossible.

Australia Sees Jobless Surge in Victoria (8:30 a.m. NY)
The coronavirus lockdown in Victoria, Australia’s second-most populous state, has caused an immediate slump in consumer spending and a surge in job losses. The number receiving unemployment benefits has risen by 27,600 since June 26, a 7.2% increase, and more than half of that total was recorded in the three weeks ended Aug. 21.

U.S. Adds 46,739 new cases (8 a.m. NY)
The daily number of U.S. coronavirus cases rose by 46,739, an 0.8% gain compared with an average increase of 0.7% over the previous seven days, according to data collected by Johns Hopkins University and Bloomberg.

An additional 971 deaths were reported, increasing the U.S. toll to 182,760, according to the data.

Iran Cases Drop to Three-Month Low (6:54 a.m. NY)
Iran reported 1,754 new coronavirus cases in the past 24 hours, the lowest number of daily infections in more than three months. Daily deaths also dropped for the seventh day in a row. The country has been observing public holidays since Saturday, with the government encouraging people to mark religious ceremonies at their homes and adhere to strict social distancing in public places.

Turkey Raises Import Tax on Cars (5:07 a.m. NY)
Turkey increased taxes on most imported cars in a bid to ease the deterioration in foreign trade caused by the pandemic. For the majority of automobiles imported to Turkey, the so-called special consumption tax was raised to 80% from 60%. The import duty on high-segment cars jumped to 220% from 160%. Turkey has pushed through a series of tax increases since the beginning of the pandemic to discourage imports while supporting domestic industries. The global economic slump has hit Turkey’s main export destinations, like the European Union, as well as its tourism industry.

Johnson’s Popularity Plunges (4:51 p.m. HK)
The popularity of Boris Johnson’s Conservative Party has collapsed over the past five months, according to an Opinium poll, losing a 26-point lead amid disapproval of the government’s handling of the coronavirus crisis and an education fiasco.

The Conservatives and the main opposition Labour Party are now tied at 40%, according to the poll. Johnson’s party has struggled amid criticism of his handling of the pandemic, which left Britain with the highest death toll in Europe, and an exam-results fiasco that upset parents and led to claims of incompetence. Grades were awarded to school-leavers for examinations they never sat.

Hungary, Jakarta Post Record Single-Day Spikes (4:50 p.m. HK)
Hungary posted record new cases for a single day, with the number of Covid-19 cases rising by 292, to a total of 5,961. The Hungarian cabinet has ordered to restrict entry into the country as of Sept. 1 for most foreigners and has set a two-week quarantine for locals returning home. Indonesia’s capital, Jakarta, also posted a record single-day spike of 1,094 new cases.

German Numbers Fall (3:21 p.m. HK)
Germany’s daily infections fell, while the infection rate rose above the critical threshold of one.

There were 709 new cases in the 24 hours through Sunday morning, taking the total to 242,835, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. That’s less than half of Saturday’s increase of 1,555. At the peak of the pandemic in the spring, Germany registered almost 7,000 new infections.

At the same time, the reproduction number — the average number of people infected by one person with the virus – rose to 1.04 on from 0.94 the previous day, according to the latest report from the RKI public health institute. It is the first time in six days that the number rose above the key threshold of one.

Sinopec Reports First Half-Year Loss (2:57 p.m. HK)
Sinopec posted its first-ever loss over a half-year as pandemic lockdowns and the oil price crash continue to weigh on the oil giant’s earnings even while China’s economy recovers. The company plans to boost refining output in the second half as the economy continues to revive after the pandemic. Sinopec forecast that it would process 130 million tons of crude in the second half, compared with 111 million in the first half.

India Sets Record (1:28 p.m. HK)
India set a single-day record of 78,761 cases, according to data from the Health Ministry. The U.S. had set the previous highest number of 77,638 on July 17, according to Agence-France Presse.

The total number of cases in India went past the 3.5-million mark and the death toll exceeded 63,000, according to government data.

India is third in the world behind the U.S. and Brazil in terms of infections and fourth for fatalities, according to Johns Hopkins data.

Egypt’s Warning and Dubai Schools (1:15 p.m. HK)
Egypt’s health minister warned that a second coronavirus wave could emerge due to dismissal of precautionary measures, according to Egypt Today.

Schools in the United Arab Emirates reopened Sunday with new precautionary measures set in place. Some Dubai schools decided to postpone campus reopening after being unable to carry out all required Covid-19 tests.

Hong Kong Registrations (11:35 a.m. HK)
Hong Kong has embarked on the world’s biggest experiment in voluntary testing. Radio Television Hong Kong said that as of 8 a.m. Sunday, 310,000 people had already signed up for the free virus test. The two-week effort aims to reach a high percentage of its 7 million residents. Government ministers on Sunday stepped up their campaign, urging people to sign up as soon as possible, RTHK reported. Officials said more than 40 testing sites had already been fully booked on the launch day of the tests – and authorities will decide whether or not to extend the program, depending on the public’s response.

Read: Hong Kong’s Free Virus Tests for All Is an Experiment in Trust

South Korea Has Fewer Additions (8:55 a.m. HK)
South Korea added 299 more coronavirus cases in 24 hours vs 323 a day earlier, raising the total tally to 19,699, according to data from Korea Centers for Disease Control & Prevention. Saturday’s numbers included 283 locally infected cases, most of them in Seoul. There were two more deaths, taking the total tally to 323.

–With assistance from Veronika Gulyas, David Verbeek, Thomas Kutty Abraham, Golnar Motevalli and Yueqi Yang.

© 2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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