Coronavirus live news: China reports highest infections in two months; US sees almost 500,000 cases in one week

Coronavirus live news: China reports highest infections in two months; US sees almost 500,000 cases in one weekOctober 28, 2020

French death toll is highest since April; Merkel warns German health system could be overwhelmed; Russia seeks accelerated registration from WHO for Sputnik V vaccine. Follow the latest updates

  • China sees highest cases in two months
  • US sees 500,000 cases in one week
  • Global survey shows widespread disapproval of Covid response
  • Pope Francis criticised for rarely wearing face masks
  • Survey uncovers widespread belief in ‘dangerous’ Covid claims

Global shares slipped on Wednesday as coronavirus infections grew at an alarming pace in the United States and Europe, while uncertainty over next week’s US elections added to a “risk off” tone.

MSCI’s ex-Japan Asia index dipped 0.15% in early trade while Japan’s Nikkei fell 0.6%.

Futures for U.S. S&P500, Dow Jones and Nasdaq all fell 0.5%-0.6% in Asian trade on Wednesday, rattled by a media report that French government may bring in a national lockdown from midnight on Thursday.

The United States, Russia, France and other countries have registered record numbers of infections in recent days, and European governments have introduced new curbs to try to rein in the fast-growing outbreaks. Data on Tuesday showed US consumer confidence unexpectedly fell in October, although other economic figures were mostly positive, with orders for key capital goods hitting a six-year high.

The fall in US stock futures came after a mixed session on Wall Street, where the S&P 500 lost 0.30% on virus worries while the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite added 0.64%.

Microsoft kicked off a slate of reporting from tech heavyweights by beating Wall Street estimates for quarterly revenue, buoyed by its flagship cloud computing business amid increased work-from-home arrangements. But its shares slipped 1.7% after the bell.

Apple Inc, Amazon.com, and Google-parent Alphabet are among major tech players reporting later this week.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Tuesday predicted a “tough winter” in the face of a second wave of Covid-19 infections engulfing much of the country, and called it a horrific national tragedy as deaths topped the 10,000 mark.

Canada’s case numbers have been rising, triggering new restrictions on public gatherings and indoor activities in several provinces. On Tuesday, Canada recorded 2,674 new cases, while there are now 10,001 deaths and a total of 222,887 cases.

“This sucks. It really, really does,” Trudeau told a news conference when asked about the fatigue Canadians feel after living amid the pandemic for more than seven months.

The comments marked a rare show of emotion and frustration from Trudeau, who has regularly given nationally televised briefings to reassure Canadians that his Liberal government is managing the crisis as best it can.

“What we are living through is a horrific national tragedy. Families have lost loved ones, been devastated by these tragedies, and we need to know that there are more tragedies to come,” Trudeau said.

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