Brazil Has Deadliest Day; NYC Keeps Reopening Plan: Virus Update

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo warned that mass protests against police violence could accelerate the spread of coronavirus and undo weeks of social-distancing efforts. Even with the unrest, New York City still plans to begin reopening Monday.

Tokyo issued analert to residents urging additional caution after a spike in new cases, while Hong Kong extendedprevention measures. Brazil reported arecord day of deaths.

French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire vowed not toraise taxes, even as the pandemic dealt abigger blow to the economy than expected. In the U.K., Prime Minister Boris Johnson plans to reset his government’s agenda with a financial statement and aspeech on the post-pandemic landscape. Meanwhile, the country’s statistics bodycriticized the government’s testing data.

Key Developments:

  • Virus Tracker: Cases pass 6.3 million; deaths exceed 378,000
  • Wall Street sendswine, masks to clients with steakhouses closed
  • NYCbusinesses crushed by Covid now face riots
  • Trump’s WHO exit threatenspolio, tuberculosis along with Covid
  • Social distancing is improving yourshopping experience
  • Closing factories theFrench way: A long, painful demise

Subscribe to a daily update on the virus from Bloomberg’s Prognosis team here. Click VRUS on the terminal for news and data on the coronavirus. For a look back at this week’s top stories from QuickTake, clickhere.

21,188 in U.S.Most new cases today

-9% Change in MSCI World Index of global stocks since Wuhan lockdown, Jan. 23

-1.​039 Change in U.S. treasury bond yield since Wuhan lockdown, Jan. 23

-4.​8% Global GDP Tracker (annualized), April

Brazil Reports Deadliest Day (6:45 a.m. HK)

Brazil reported a record 1,262 new deaths on Tuesday, bringing the number of fatalities to 31,199. There were also 28,936 new reported cases, pushing the country’s total to 555,383, behind only the U.S.

The nation of 210 million people has become an epicenter of the virus in the last few weeks. Brazil’s peak has not yet arrived, and “at the moment it is not possible to predict when it will arrive,” Michael Ryan, executive director of the World Health Organization’s Emergencies Program, said Monday.

Harvard Weighs Changes for Virus Era (6:20 a.m. HK)

Harvard University is weighing an array of options -- from disinfecting classrooms after each session to reducing the number of students sitting in lecture halls -- to cope with the coronavirus pandemic when it reopens, said President Lawrence Bacow.

The Cambridge, Massachusetts, school will also likely cancel some fall sports, he said, and is holding off a decision to resume instruction on campus as long as possible.

“Lots of things will be different when students come back,” Bacow said in an interview on Bloomberg Television with David Rubenstein. “The availability of classrooms will be a challenge.”

Journals Raise Concerns About Data in Covid Studies (5:15 p.m. NY)

Two prestigious medical journals said they have significantconcerns about a database that was used to look at how older drugs may work in the treatment of Covid-19.

The New England Journal of Medicine published an “expression of concern” about a study published by the journal on May 1 that looked at the use of heart drugs called ACE inhibitors in coronavirus patients. Later Tuesday the Lancet, a nearly 200-year-old U.K. medical journal, issued its own similar warning on a study about treating Covid-19 patients with the malaria drug hydroxychloroquine.

Both studies relied on data from a firm called Surgisphere Corp., which says it aggregates information from medical records around the globe. Last week, more more than 200 scientists signed a letter to the Lancet asking for greater transparency regarding the hospitals where patients’ medical records came from and the method of analysis, along with other issues.

Sapan Desai, Surgisphere’s chief executive officer, said the firm would have an outside group audit the data used in the Lancet study, and would give the authors of the New England Journal paper access to the underlying information so they can review its accuracy.

Zoom Sales Soars on Video Conference Use (5:30 p.m. NY)

Zoom Video Communications Inc. reported quarterlysales that more than doubled, leapfrogging analysts’ estimates, showing that a surge in demand for its video-conference service has translated into more paying customers. The company also doubled its annual revenue forecast.

U.S. Cases Rise 1.2% (4 p.m. NY)

Coronavirus cases in the U.S. increased 1.2% as compared with the same time Monday, to 1.82 million, according to data collected by Johns Hopkins University and Bloomberg News. That’s higher than Monday’s 1% rate, and in line with the average over the past seven days. Deaths rose 0.9% to 105,644.

  • New York cases rose 0.4% to 373,040, compared with an average increas of 0.3% over the past seven days.
  • Florida cases rose 1.1% to 57,447, compared with an average of 1.3% in the past seven days, according to the state’s health department. Deaths rose 2.8% to 2,530, the biggest jump since May 8.
  • California cases climbed 2% to 115,310 while deaths increased 0.8% to 4,286,according to the state’s website.
  • Texas cases rose 2.6% to 66,568, exceeding the seven-day average of 2.1%, according to state health department figures. Hospitalizations increased by 1% to 1,773 patients.

Tyson Foods Says 591 Plant Workers Test Positive (2:56 p.m. NY)

Tyson Foods said it would resume limited production on June 3 at an Iowa plant that had an outbreak of the coronavirus.

At the Storm Lake plant, 591 workers tested positive out of 2,303 that were tested, the company announced Tuesday. More than 75% of the positive cases are asymptomatic.

Separately, at the company’s Council Bluffs plant, 224 tested positive out of its 1,483 employees.

U.K. Minorities Face Higher Risk of Dying (12:37 p.m. NY)

People from ethnic minority groups in England face a higher risk of dying if they develop a serious case of Covid-19 than white patients, an analysis by Public Health England showed.

Males, people older than 80 years and those living in deprived areas are also more vulnerable, the agency said in a report published on Tuesday. The study didn’t take into account aggravating factors such as pre-existing medical conditions or obesity.

NYC Mayor Says City Will Still Reopen (11:38 a.m. NY)

Mayor Bill de Blasio still plans to begin reopening New York City on June 8, despite the unrest related to protests over the death of George Floyd and a curfew that will continue for the rest of the week.

“It’s hard to believe that just a few days ago, all we were talking about was the pandemic,” de Blasio said Tuesday. “The pandemic is still there and we must address that. We need to reopen this city.”

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Last week, the mayor estimated that 200,000 to 400,000 people will be returning to work in construction, manufacturing, wholesale and curbside retail during the first phase of the city’s reopening.

Eurostar Increases London-Paris Service (10:35 a.m. NY)

Eurostar has made a small increase to service due to a slight rise in demand, according to a representative for the high-speed rail service.

Eurostar has two trains a day in each direction on the Paris-London route Monday to Thursday and three trains on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. It maintains one train in each direction on the London-Brussels route.

Iceland Proceeds With Airport Testing (9:45 a.m. NY)

Iceland is proceeding with plans totest all incoming airline passengers for Covid-19 from June 15 in a bid to salvage tourism, its biggest export. The government’s announcement follows consultations with the country’s chief epidemiologist and a deal with DeCODE Genetics, which will assist with the testing facilities.

Separately, the Portuguese government said it’s in advanced talks with Germany about setting up an “air corridor” for tourists. The government also started talks about this with the U.K. last week, Economy Minister Pedro Siza Vieira said at a parliamentary hearing in Lisbon.

Tokyo Issues Virus Alert After Cases Spike (9:44 a.m. NY)

Tokyo issued analert to residents for the first time urging additional caution against the pandemic, after a spike in new cases. There were 34 new infections in the Japanese capital on Tuesday, the most in a single day in more than three weeks.

Governor Yuriko Koike triggered what she dubbed a “Tokyo Alert,” aiming to heighten residents’ awareness, which could lead to businesses in the capital again being asked to close their doors should a surge continue.

Lufthansa Introduces Mandatory Face Masks (9:35 a.m. NY)

Lufthansa is making it compulsory for people to wear face masks on its flights from June 8, according to a statement. Passengers must wear the masks when boarding, during the flight and when leaving the aircraft. Exceptions will be made for children under the age of 6 and for health reasons.

Top U.K. Statistics Official Questions Government Data (8:25 a.m. NY)

The U.K’s statistics bodycriticized the government’s coronavirus-testing data, saying it falls well short of expectations. In a letter Tuesday to Health Secretary Matt Hancock, David Norgrove, chair of the U.K. Statistics Authority, said that the “aim seems to be to show the largest possible number of tests,” which gives them “limited value” in terms of analysis.

“It is not surprising that given their inadequacy, data on testing are so widely criticized and often mistrusted,” he wrote.

Norway’s $10 Billion Oil Aid Package Set for a Boost (8:11 a.m. NY)

Norway’s opposition lawmakers are set tobeef up a 100 billion-krone ($10 billion) aid package for its ailing oil industry after executives complained the government’s proposal would do little to stimulate investments and save jobs.

The global oil industry has been hit hard by the Covid-19 outbreak, which reduced demand for crude when the market was already struggling with a glut. In Norway, western Europe’s biggest producer of oil and gas, companies are cutting spending just as the country faces a dearth of big projects in coming years.

U.K. Banking Giants to Back $18.8 Billion Small-Business Fund (7:05 a.m. NY)

An investment firm backed by thebiggest U.K. banks is working on a 15 billion-pound ($18.8 billion) fund to inject money into smaller companies that could struggle to repay debt they’ve taken on during the coronavirus outbreak.

The Business Growth Fund is in talks with the government and investors such as insurers and pension funds on proposals for a public-private fund to invest in viable companies that have received loans of as much as 5 million pounds under a government crisis program, according to Chief Executive Officer Stephen Welton. About 46,000 loans totaling nearly 9 billion pounds have been made under the program so far, according to Treasury data.

Italy’s Conte Urges National Renewal Before Travel Ban Expires (6:45 a.m. NY)

Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte marked Italy’s national day withan appeal to citizens to work together to revive the country, as his government prepares to lift restrictions on domestic travel from Wednesday.

With the number of new coronavirus cases continuing to decline, Italians will be allowed to travel freely around the country again, ending almost three months of confinement to their home region to limit transmission of the disease.

“Let’s combine and concentrate all our energy in the shared effort to pick ourselves up and begin again with maximum determination,” Conte said in a message posted Tuesday on Facebook.

— With assistance by Kara Wetzel

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