The pandemic grows slightly in the United States but is rapidly increasing in many European countries. China has only seen a handful of new cases in the past day.
The United States death count rose slightly (14.5%) to a total of 71.
The number of new infections per million citizens show that the virus is growing especially rapidly in Italy (59), Estonia (53), Luxembourg (37), Spain (36), Iceland (32), Malta (20), Norway (19), Austria (18), Slovenia (16), Netherlands (16), Switzerland (16), Germany (15), Belgium (15), and Iran (13).
The United States sits at 2.98 after seeing 965 new cases yesterday.
In the past 24 hours, New York State, New Jersey, and Connecticut banned gatherings of 50 or more. All non-essential businesses have been ordered closed. Casinos, gyms, and movie theaters all shuttered. Bars and restaurants limited to takeout and delivery only. New Jersey took it a step further and enacted a statewide curfew. Citizens cannot leave home between 8pm and 5am.
This comes on top of the entire New York City school system being shut down with no end date in sight.
The Governor of California did much of the same, told residents older than 65 to stay home. Bars closed.
As of today the White House says that no national curfew is being discussed.
The effects of the virus are slowly creeping into the judicial system. There have been reports of various courtrooms resorting to “virtual juror” protocols where a juror can participate from their home over telephone or video chat.
Even the Supreme Court postponed case arguments today.
What could make this tense moment in our history even more dystopian? How about the US Department of Health and Human Services suffering a cyberattack?
Sources inside the New York Mayor’s office say DeBlasio initially resisted harsher virus measured until staff members threatened to walk out.
The President may issue an executive order allowing American companies to legally sell facial masks intended for industrial use to hospitals until proper medical masks are widely available.
The EU is seriously considering shutting its borders to prevent any foreign nationals from entering the Schengen zone.
Instead of socially isolating, residents of Paris flocked to city parks. Now the Mayor of Paris is going to shut down those very parks.
Like many other European nations, Germany ordered the closure of all bars, shops and churches.
After seeing a huge jump in the number of cases in their country yesterday, Switzerland cancels parliament session.
Greece shut down shops and will quarantine all foreigners arriving to the country. Spain’s Civil Guards police force announced today they had seized 150,000 surgical masks from a factory.
Malaysia announced today that it is closing its borders and shutting down schools, universities, and shops. Turkey suspended mass prayers in Mosques, the northern third of The Philippines under quarantine.
Dubai closed bars and lounges through March.
Israel is putting its massive surveillance infrastructure to work to track who might’ve been exposed to COVID-19.
After playing cavalier initially, Egypt is finally taking decisive actions to fight COVID-19. Egypt announced today it has halting all air traffic.
We woke up to the news this morning that The Federal Reserve had slashed interest rates to near zero, bringing us back to a point not seen since the mortgage bubble in 2008.
The Fed will also buy at least $500B treasury securities (giving money to a lot of people who own federal bonds) and at least $200B in mortgage backed debt (federal government injects money to try and lower mortgage interest rates and keep them low).