The number of people around the world who have contracted coronavirus has now exceeds 500,000, based on a count kept by Johns Hopkins University.
That comes as U.S. deaths from the pandemic have now topped 1,000, in another grim milestone for a global outbreak that is taking lives and wreaking havoc on economies and established routines of life. Worldwide, the death toll climbed past 23,000, according to Johns Hopkins' running count.
Nearly 3.3 million Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week — almost five times the previous record set in 1982 — amid a widespread shutdown caused by the virus. Layoffs are sure to accelerate as the U.S. economy sinks into a recession with revenue collapsing at restaurants, hotels, movie theaters, gyms and airlines.
Meanwhile, the human and economic toll of the lockdowns against the coronavirus mounted Thursday: India struggled to feed its multitudes and Italy shut down most of its industry.
Among other developments today:
- Stocks surged again on Wall Street even as the massive scale of the downturn slamming the economy becomes more apparent. The S&P 500 index is now up 17% since Monday. But 3,283,000 Americans filed unemployment claims as the pandemic shuttered businesses.
- More than a third of U.S. deaths were in New York. Dr. Anthony Fauci says other states need to start preparing now to take on outbreaks of this scale.
- But President Trump, eyeing easing of restrictions and getting businesses reopened, said the federal government may offer to categorize counties by high, medium, or low risk of virus spread.
- Texas Roadhouse CEO Kent Taylor is giving up his salary and bonus for the year to pay the steakhouse chain's front-line employees during the virus pandemic.
- A British company behind a 10-minute coronavirus antibody test, which will cost about a $1, has begun sending prototypes to laboratories for validation, which could be a game-changer in the fight against the pandemic.
- While much of daily life has ground to a halt to reduce the spread of the coronavirus, the Trump administration is resisting calls from judges and attorneys to stop in-person hearings and shutter all immigration courts.
- House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Congress will give final approval Friday to the $2.2 trillion economic rescue bill, a vote that would cap Congress’ tumultuous effort to rush the relief to a nation battered by the coronavirus.
For more summaries and full reports, please select from the articles below. Scroll further for helpful tips, a guide to coping, maps tracking virus spread, and live updates from verified social media accounts.
For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate fever and cough. It can cause more severe illness including pneumonia for some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems.
The vast majority of people recover from the new virus. According to the World Health Organization, people with mild illness recover in about two weeks, while those with more severe illness may take three to six weeks to recover.
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