U.S. Governor who are pushing to reopen their country after locking COVID-19 might want to look to Germany on Tuesday, where initial efforts to lift movement restrictions have led to an increased rate of coronavirus infections.
Head of the German Institute of Robert Koch for infectious diseases, Lothar Wieler, said the rate of reproduction of the virus has risen back to 1.0, which means that every infected person infects at least one another, on average. The reproduction rate drops to 0.7 at the peak of the lock and orders remain at home.
Germany is a country try to reopen gradually after extensive testing and contact tracing helped him reach one of the lowest death rates of the virus in the world, and death rates were far below other European countries.
“Let’s, as far as possible, stay at home, let’s stick to the reduction in contact,” Wieler told reporters at a press conference, Reuters reports.
The news came as President Donald Trump urged countries to “seriously consider” reopening public schools before the end of the academic year, Associated Press reports, although many have determined it is not safe to do so. Trump made comments on Monday’s call with the governor to discuss the steps needed to reopen the economy. None of the governors were called in to respond to the suggestion, according to the AP.
Several states announced plans to reopen with Georgia saying it would allow cinemas to reopen on Monday, and the restaurant has limited dining services, after hair salons, fitness centers, bowling arenas and tattoo parlors were allowed to reopen on Friday. Oklahoma also allows hair and nail salons, pet care and spas to reopen on Friday. Texas Governor Greg Abbott said executive orders remain at home which ended this week “have done their job.” Several other states have eased closure orders to allow certain businesses to reopen this week.
Latest case count
There are now 3.06 million cases of COVID-19 worldwide and at least 212,221 people have died, according to data collected by Johns Hopkins University. At least 906,358 people have recovered.
The US has the highest number of victims at 988,490 and the highest death toll at 56,256. New York remains the epicenter of the US earthquake with nearly 300,000 confirmed cases and nearly 25,000 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins data.
Spain has the highest number of cases in Europe at 232,128 and 23,822 deaths. Italy has 199,414 cases and 26,977 deaths, the highest number of deaths in Europe.
France has 166,036 cases and 23,327 deaths, while Germany has 158,758 cases and only 6,136 deaths.
The United Kingdom has 158,353 cases and 21,158 deaths. Turkey has 112,261 cases and 2,900 deaths, while Russia has passed Iran in the number of cases. Russia has 93,558 cases and 867 deaths, while Iran has 92,584 cases and 5,877 deaths. China, where the disease was first reported late last year, has 83,938 cases and 4,637 deaths.
Other countries that appear to have had the plague under control and are temporarily reopening include New Zealand and Australia. New Zealand ended the tight locking phase at midnight and now operates at Level 3, allowing several businesses to reopen. Prime Minister Jacinta Adern said residents can now travel to work, spend more time outside the home and order food that can be taken home, as reported by the Guardian.
What is the latest medical development?
A disappointing set of data from Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc.
clinical trials mid-stage testing Kevzara’s rheumatoid arthritis drug as a COVID-19 treatment underscores the ups and downs of the development of traditional medicine which has now been increased by a global pandemic, as MarketWatch Jaimy Lee reports.
Actemra, also an IL-6 inhibitor, reduces fever and additional oxygen requirements in COVID-19 patients. Regeneron and Sanofi are moving forward with a more limited Phase 3 trial that will only cover patients who are considered critical and will involve higher drug doses.
Analysts called the data disappointing but also noted the limitations of commercial opportunities that would arise if the drug was successful in trials. Data has not been “relevant for the REGN assessment since then [it is a] small commercial opportunity, “wrote ISI Evercore Josh Schimmer on Monday.
Quest Diagnostics Inc.
said it had developed a COVID-19 antibody testing program for consumers when requests for tests were approved by doctors. People can request online tests, doctors will review orders, and they can visit patient service centers to have their blood drawn.
The antibody test is believed to indicate whether someone has previously been infected with COVID-19, even if they have no symptoms at the time of infection; however, it is unclear whether antibodies promise immunity to future COVID-19 infection or if there is, how long the immunity lasts.
said on Monday new drug applications for vaccine candidates had been submitted to the US Food and Drug Administration and would be evaluated in a broader study if preliminary data looked promising. Phase 2 studies are expected to begin in the second quarter and will evaluate the safety and adverse reactions and immune responses of the two mRNA-1273 vaccinations administered 28 days apart, the company said.
The plan is to enroll 600 healthy adults and older adults in two groups. Participants will be followed up to 12 months after the second vaccination. The third phase can begin in the fall of 2020, the company said.
What did the company say?
and 3M Co. Post-it maker
among others. Pfizer beat estimates thanks to global sales of hospital products, some of which are used for intubation and supporting patients with mechanical ventilators. That was also helped by a 29% surge in sales of Eliquis blood thinners, which was driven by wholesale purchases of COVID-19 related.
Merck’s rival also exceeded estimates and the pandemic said it had an immaterial impact on revenue for the first quarter, although he estimated to take full-year revenue to $ 2.1 billion. Merck cuts the 2020 outlook for adjusted EPS to $ 5.17 to $ 5.37 – the FactSet consensus is $ 5.59 – and for revenue to $ 46.1 billion to $ 48.1 billion, below expectations of $ 48.8 billion.
Caterpillar has a profit that is higher than expected because many of its facilities around the world are considered important during the crisis. although some facilities were temporarily closed due to supply chain issues, weak customer demand and government regulations. By mid-April, around 75% of its production facilities continued to operate and some of the closed ones had been reopened.
3M, meanwhile, received a boost from requests for personal protective equipment.
IBM raised its quarterly dividend by one cent, and said it would not let the crisis end the 25-year increase in dividend increases.
This is the latest about what the company said about COVID-19:
• 3M reported first-quarter earnings and earnings that exceeded expectations, but said it was withdrawing its full-year outlook due to uncertainty caused by the pandemic. “In the first quarter we saw strong growth in personal safety, as well as in other areas of our portfolio experiencing high demand due to the pandemic,” Chief Executive Mike Roman said. “At the same time, we are experiencing weak demand in some end markets which are more affected by actions taken around the world to slow down the pandemic.”
• Caterpillar has taken action to reduce costs, cut discretionary costs, and defer a 2020 base salary increase and short-term incentive compensation plans for many employees and all senior executives. Caterpillar’s first quarter operations were considered important by many governments during this pandemic although some facilities were temporarily closed due to supply chain problems, weak customer demand and government regulations. By mid-April, around 75% of its production facilities continued to operate and some of the closed ones had been reopened. The company does not offer guidance for 2020. The company posted better-than-expected earnings for the last quarter but less than expected revenue.
• Chico’s FAS Inc.
announced plans to reopen the store on May 4. Chico’s portfolio includes the namesake chain, the White House Black Market, and Soma. Reopening will take place in three stages: first the company will use its stores to fulfill online orders, then buy-online-pickup-in-store using roadside pickups without contact and, finally, shop with appointments for all its brands. “We believe we will have several significant advantages over the next few months because the majority of our stores are under 3,500 square feet and are located in easily accessible shopping plazas,” said Chief Executive Bonnie Brooks. Chico has experienced double-digit digital growth over the past six weeks, driven by certain categories, including active and sleep. On April 27, Chico had approximately $ 103 million in cash and equivalent. Loans on an asset-based credit facility and by utilizing its own real estate can generate an additional $ 100 million in liquidity. The company also has a one-time liquidity benefit of $ 95 million under the CARES Act.
• Ecolab Inc.
beat revenue estimates for the first quarter, because growth in the health care and life sciences segments of the company offset weaknesses in upstream energy. “We have businesses with increasing demand (including Food & Beverage, Health, Food Retail, Life Sciences) and those with far less demand (including Institutional and Pest Removal),” Chief Executive Douglas Baker said in a statement. “We hope the main COVID-19 impact will be felt over the next several quarters and will be unprofitable in both our upper and lower lines for this year.” The company’s institutional business saw strong demand to clean and clean product sales, offset by demand for restaurants, lodging and entertainment facilities that were slow due to the pandemic. The company does not offer guidance for the second quarter or the full year.
• Harley-Davidson Inc.
missed revenue expectations for the first quarter but announced “aggressive cost management efforts” amid a pandemic. US motorcycle retail sales rose 6.6% “until the pandemic occurred in the US in mid-March” and ended down 15.5% for the full quarter. International retail sales fell 20.7%. The board approved a dividend of 2 cents per share for the second quarter, down from 38 cents in the first quarter. The company is currently undergoing “aggressive cost management efforts” including retiming product launches and temporarily reducing salaries for dealing with crises.
• Hawaiian Airlines holding company Hawaiian Holdings Inc.
received the first installment of a Payroll Support Program under the CARES Act of $ 146 million. That’s half of the expected total of $ 292.5 million. Under the PSP’s provisions, Hawaii agreed not to do voluntary leave or to cut salaries or employee benefits until September 30, to limit executive compensation until March 24, 2022 and to postpone dividend payments and share repurchases until September 30, 2021. Hawaii also agreed to issue warrants the US government to buy a total of 488,477 ordinary shares, or about 1.1% of the currently outstanding shares, at an exercise price of $ 11.82 per share.
• Merck reports first-quarter earnings and sales that exceeded expectations, but provided gloomy full-year prospects. The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on results is “immaterial,” but full-year revenue is expected to decrease by $ 2.1 billion, including the negative impact of $ 1.7 billion in the pharmaceutical business and the impact of $ 400 million on animal health. Merck cuts the 2020 outlook for adjusted EPS to $ 5.17 to $ 5.37 – FactSet consensus is $ 5.59 – and for revenues to $ 46.1 billion to $ 48.1 billion, below expectations of $ 48.8 billion
• Southwest Airlines Co.
announced a public offering of 55 million shares and convertible debt worth $ 1 billion. The stock offering represented 10.8% of the outstanding shares on April 24. Based on Monday’s closing price of $ 29.11, the stock offering will be worth around $ 1.6 billion. The company said the plan would be used for proceeds from offering shares and debt for public company needs. Earlier, Southwest posted first-quarter profit showing smaller than expected losses but lost revenue.
• Tesla Inc.
The Fremont, California plant will not reopen as soon as the San Francisco Bay Area authority extends regional shelter orders until the end of May. The news came after Tesla shares ended a regular Monday session up 10% on reports that the factory, the only US automaker in A.Sla, was preparing for the resumption of operations because the Bay Area closure order would expire next week. Tesla and local authorities argued about the plant, which was not considered important and closed at the end of March.
• Universal Health Services Inc.
lost profits and sales expectations for the first quarter because hospitals and other facilities saw fewer patients in the middle of a pandemic. “The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has an adverse material impact on our operations and financial results,” the company said. “The volume of patients in our acute care hospital and our behavioral health care facilities significantly decreased during the second half of March because various COVID-19 policies were implemented by our facilities and the federal and state governments,” he said. Because of uncertainty about the epidemic, the company withdrew its guidance.
• United Parcel Service Inc.
reported first-quarter earnings that fell below expectations despite beating income, and said it could not provide financial guidance given the uncertainty over the impact of the pandemic. UPS said they experienced “significant headwinds” from a pandemic on their customers, coupled with higher self-insurance accruals. UPS expects 2010 capital expenditure to be $ 1 billion lower than previously estimated, and defer share repurchases for the year.
• VF Corp.
will increase the wages of distribution center workers in the US and Canada until July. The company is also expanding payments and benefits to retail workers in closed stores throughout North America and Mexico until May 30. VF Corp. brand portfolio including Vans and The North Face.
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