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Germany seals off borders; Spain’s number of cases jumps almost 1,000

6:56 pm: Spain’s coronavirus cases rise to 8,744, death toll up at 297

The number of coronavirus cases in Spain has risen to 8,744 on Monday and the number of fatalities is up to 297, according to Fernando Simon, the head of the country’s health emergency center, Reuters reported. The previous tally was 7,753 cases on Sunday, with 288 fatalities.
Spanish ministers said earlier Monday that a state of emergency which has shut down much of the country will have to be extended beyond an initial 15-day period. The government is also considering closing borders. Spain is suffering Europe’s second-worst outbreak after Italy. — Ellyatt

6:21 pm: UK government asks manufacturers to make ventilators, health equipment

U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Monday will ask manufacturers to support production of essential medical equipment, such as ventilators, for the National Health Service, as the country prepares for the coronavirus outbreak to worsen.
“Preparing for the spread of the coronavirus outbreak is a national priority and we’re calling on the manufacturing industry and all those with relevant expertise who might be able to help to come together to help the country tackle this national crisis,” a Downing Street spokesperson said late Sunday.
“We need to step up production of vital equipment such as ventilators so that we can all help the most vulnerable, and we need businesses to come to us and help in this national effort.” — Ellyatt.

5:28 pm: Coronavirus impact will last at least until third quarter, Germany’s economy ministry says

The German economy ministry said the impact of the coronavirus meant it no longer expected an economic upswing in the first quarter, Reuters reported. The ministry added that the economy was unlikely to stabilize before the third quarter at the earliest.
“The strength and duration of the impact cannot yet reliably be forecast,” the ministry said. “But given the very rapid pace of developments we have to anticipate significant economic impacts.” 4:46 pm: European shares slide 8% and airline stocks tank as regional coronavirus shutdown widensEuropean markets plunged on Monday as much of the continent went into shutdown mode to prevent the spread of the new coronavirus.  The pan-European Stoxx 600 dropped 8% near the start of trading, travel and leisure stocks plummeting 14.3% to lead losses as all sectors and major bourses slid into the red. — Smith3:30 pm: Asia markets dive with Australia leading lossesAsia markets dived even after the Federal Reserve announced a massive monetary stimulus campaign to curb slower economic growth in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic.Australian markets led losses in Asia Pacific as it plunged nearly 10%. Mainland Chinese stocks dropped as well, with the Shanghai composite 3.4% lower, while the Shenzhen composite slipped 4.834% and the Shenzhen component plunged 5.34%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index also fell 4.38%. Overall, the MSCI Asia ex-Japan index declined around 5%. “Ironically, markets might have perceived the Fed’s response as panic, feeding into its own fears; especially as COVID-19 cases spike globally, prompting harder border controls,” Vishnu Varathan, head of economics and strategy at Mizuho Bank, wrote in a note2:40 pm: Australia’s two largest casinos to shut half their poker machinesMelbourne-based Crown Resorts, and Sydney’s Star Entertainment Group said they would ensure sufficient distance between gamblers by shutting half their poker machines, and limit the number of players at tables, according to a Reuters report.Those two companies operate more than 4,000 machines, mostly in Melbourne and Sydney, the report said. Crown shares closed down 11.22%, while shares of Star Entertainment Group plunged 23.57% by the close. 

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