This is CNBC’s 24-hour blog covering all the latest news on the coronavirus outbreak. All times below are in Eastern time. This live blog will be updated throughout the day as the news breaks.
- Global cases: More than 311,000
- Global deaths: At least 13,407
- U.S. cases: At least 26,747
- U.S. deaths: At least 340
The data above was compiled by Johns Hopkins University.
Pelosi signals disagreement over relief package: ‘From my standpoint, we’re apart’
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi speaks to the media during her weekly briefing March 12, 2020 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC.
Nicholas Kamm | AFP | Getty Images
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi signaled that she’s not on board with the Senate stimulus plan in negotiations to combat economic damage from the coronavirus pandemic.
“From my standpoint, we’re apart,” Pelosi told reporters in the Capitol when asked if she expects there to be a deal today.
Pelosi said there’s no bipartisan deal at this point, but that Democratic congressional leaders will be prepping their own legislation. “It’s on the Senate side now because that’s their deadline for a vote,” she said, “but we’ll be introducing our own bill and hopefully it’ll be compatible with what they discussed on the Senate.”
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer told reporters that “we need a bill that puts workers first, not corporations.” He declined to say if he supports the bill.
The stimulus package under negotiation will likely total more than $2 trillion, according to estimates from White House Economic Advisor Larry Kudlow. The Senate has been under pressure to finish a plan with the House and administration as quickly as possible.
Lawmakers this weekend are pushing to meet the Trump administration’s deadline for finishing the deal by Monday. There will be a 3 p.m. ET procedural vote on the Phase III bill later in the day. —Emma Newburger
3:21 pm: Trump declares major disaster in Washington state
President Donald Trump declared that a major disaster exists in Washington state, according to a statement from the White House.
He ordered federal assistance to supplement state, tribal, and local recovery efforts in areas affected by the coronavirus.
Local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations can receive federal funding for emergency protective measures, including direct federal assistance. There is also federal funding for affected individuals to receive crisis counseling in Washington state. —Hannah Miller
3:16 pm: Ohio, Louisiana become latest US states to declare lockdowns
Ohio and Louisiana became the latest states to announce broad lockdowns to slow the spread of the virus with nearly one in three Americans under orders to stay at home.
The two states join New York, California, Illinois, Connecticut, and New Jersey, home to 100 million Americans combined, as cases nationwide top 33,000 with at least 390 dead, according to a Reuters tally.
“Every piece of evidence that I can lay my hands on indicates that we’re at an absolutely crucial time in this war and what we do now will make all the difference in the world,” said Ohio Governor Mike DeWine. “What we do now will slow this invader. It will slow this invader so our health care system … will have time to treat casualties.”
Ohio has 351 cases and three deaths while Louisiana has 837 cases and 20 deaths, several in a senior care facility. —Reuters
2:32 pm: Olympic Committee increases ‘scenario-planning,’ holds off canceling
The International Olympic Committee announced that it is stepping up its scenario-planning for the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.
“These scenarios relate to modifying existing operational plans for the Games to go ahead on 24 July 2020, and also for changes to the start date of the Games,” the IOC said in a statement. “This step will allow better visibility of the rapidly changing development of the health situation around the world and in Japan.”
The IOC said that though the coronavirus situation is improving in Japan, the “dramatic increase in cases and new outbreaks” in other countries led it to make the decision to step up scenario-planning. The organization said that cancellation of the Olympics is currently not on its agenda. —Hannah Miller
2:55 pm: The government budget deficit is about to explode
Remember when people were all worked up over trillion-dollar government budget deficits? Those might seem like the good old days, once Congress and the White House finish up the coronavirus rescue package expected to be approved in the next few days.
Estimates of just how big the final bill would be vary, but it’s assured that it will be a historic moment for sheer fiscal force being exerted at a time of economic duress.
Administration statements over the past few days point to something on the order of $2 trillion in economic juice. By contrast, then-President Barack Obama ushered an $831 billion package through during the financial crisis.
That type of fiscal burden comes as the government already has chalked up $624.5 billion in red ink through just the first five months of the fiscal year, which started in October. That spending pace extrapolated through the full fiscal year would lead to a $1.5 trillion deficit, and that’s aside from any of the spending to combat the coronavirus. —Jeff Cox
2:29 pm: Sen. Rand Paul tests positive
Senator Rand Paul (R-KY)
Joshua Roberts | Reuters
Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., has tested positive for coronavirus. He is the first known U.S. senator to test positive.
“Senator Rand Paul has tested positive for COVID-19. He is feeling fine and is in quarantine,” Paul’s office wrote on Twitter. “He is asymptomatic and was tested out of an abundance of caution due to his extensive travel and events. He was not aware of any direct contact with any infected person.”
He expects to be back in the Senate after his quarantine period ends. No staff member has been in contact with Paul since his D.C. office began working remotely 10 days ago, according to the tweet. —Emma Newburger
2:26 pm: New York cases jump, accounting for about half of all US reported infections
2:10 pm: Chancellor Angela Merkel in quarantine after contact with doctor who tested positive
German Chancellor Angela Merkel arrives to make a press statement on the spread of the new coronavirus COVID-19 at the Chancellery, in Berlin on March 22, 2020.
Michael Kappeler | AFP | Getty Images
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has made the decision to self-quarantine in her home after having contact with a doctor who subsequently tested positive for the coronavirus.
Merkel was informed after a press conference Sunday that a doctor who administered a pneumococcal vaccine to her on Friday afternoon has tested positive for the virus, according to German government spokesman Steffen Seibert.
Merkel decided to immediately quarantine herself in her home, Seibert said. She will be tested regularly over the coming days and will continue to conduct her duties as chancellor from home.
Merkel’s decision to self-quarantine comes as the coronavirus pandemic continues to escalate across Europe, including in Germany. —Spencer Kimball
2:05 pm: Pentagon reports first death from the virus
The Pentagon confirmed that a contractor, who worked at the Defense Security Cooperation Agency, passed away on March 21, after testing positive for the coronavirus.
This is the first death within the Department of Defense.
“Our condolences go out to his family, friends and co-workers and we thank the medical professionals who worked to save his life in the face of this virus,” the Pentagon wrote in a statement. —Amanda Macias
1:55 pm: 3M to provide New York, Seattle with 500,000 N95 respirators
A worker restock popular 3M N95 particulate filtering face mask at a store in East Palo Alto, California, United States on January 26, 2020.
Yichuan Cao | NurPhoto | Getty Images
3M Chairman and CEO Mike Roman said the company will supply New York and Seattle with a half-million N95 respirator masks to address the ongoing shortage of health-care equipment.
“As I write this, more than 500,000 respirators are on the way from our South Dakota plant to two of the more critically impacted areas, New York and Seattle, with arrivals expected starting tomorrow,” Roman posted on LinkedIn.
Since the initial coronavirus outbreak, 3M has increased production levels of N95 respirators to the maximum capacity. In the U.S., 35 million respirators are produced per month and more than 90% are now designated for essential employees, such as health-care workers, and other industries, including energy, food, and pharmaceutical companies, according to Roman.
“We are working with the U.S. and other governments, investigating alternate manufacturing scenarios, and exploring coalitions with other companies to increase capacity further,” Roman said. —Alexandria White
1:23 pm: Germany bans meetings of more than two people in public
Germany tightened curbs on social interaction, including a ban on public meetings of more than two people, to slow the spread of the coronavirus.
“The great aim is to gain time in the fight against the virus,” Chancellor Angela Merkel told a press briefing.
For at least the next two weeks, people will not be allowed to form groups of more than two in public unless they live together in the same household or the gathering is work-related, she added.
As part of a bundle of stricter rules, restaurants can only offer takeaway services and hairdressers and beauty, massage and tattoo parlors must close. —Reuters
1:19 pm: Spanish opera singer Plácido Domingo tests positive
Spanish opera singer Plácido Domingo says he has become infected with the coronavirus.
The 79-year-old Domingo said in a post on his personal Facebook account that, “I feel it is my moral duty to announce to you that I have tested positive.”
The tenor says he and his family are in self-isolation and that he is feeling well despite having fever and a cough. —Associated Press
1:03 pm: FedEx CEO says he is not expecting to seek federal aid, or resort to layoffs
FedEx CEO Fred Smith said he doubts the company will be seeking any federal aid since business has increased amid the coronavirus pandemic. The company is also not expecting any layoffs, Smith said.
Forecasts indicate that as many as 3 million people will have filed for unemployment by next week.
“Our people are working very heavily on both the business-to-business side, moving things for hospitals and diagnostic labs, picking up specimens and getting them into the various locations where they can be tested,” Smith said on CBS’ “Face the Nation.”
FedEx, one of the largest shipping and logistics companies in the country, has seen delivery service demand surge as more Americans are shut in at home. Smith said there are “massive efforts” underway in facilities to socially distance employees and provide supplies like gloves and antiseptic swabs.
“We’re doing absolutely everything we can, cleaning our facilities prolifically,” he said.
Truckers and warehouse workers at FedEx and rival UPS are continuing to show up to work, even with coronavirus symptoms, out of fear of retaliation or punishment if they don’t, according to a New York Times report. —Emma Newburger
12:10 pm: Africa gets emergency medical supplies from China’s Jack Ma
Founder and former chairman of Alibaba Group Jack Ma attends the ‘Ma Yun Rural Teachers Prize’ awards show on January 21, 2018 in Sanya, Hainan province, China.
Wang HE | Getty Images
Africa has received a much-needed coronavirus care package from Chinese billionaire Jack Ma.
A cargo flight containing more than 6 million medical items arrived Sunday in Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa. The supplies from Ma, the founder of China’s e-commerce giant Alibaba, will be distributed to African countries in need of supplies to battle the spreading COVID-19 pandemic.
An Ethiopian Airlines cargo flight from Guangzhou, China arrived with 5.4 million face masks, 1.08 million testing kits, 40,000 sets of protective clothing and 60,000 protective face shields, according to Ethiopian officials and the Jack Ma Foundation.
Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed last week pledged to distribute the supplies to other countries in Africa. Ma has sent similar shipments of medical supplies to countries in Asia, Europe, North America, and Latin America. —Associated Press
11:59 am: New York state has more cases than France or South Korea as infections soar to 15,168
New York state now has more coronavirus cases than France or South Korea as the number of confirmed infections soared to 15,168, according to new data released by Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
The outbreak across the state is the worst in the United States. New York now has more COVID-19 cases than several countries struggling to manage their own caseloads, including France, South Korea, Switzerland, and the U.K., according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. Within the U.S., Washington state has the next highest number of cases at 1,647 followed by California with 1,518, according to a chart Cuomo presented at a press conference in Albany. —Dawn Kopecki
11:49 am: Air pollution falls as outbreak slows travel, but scientists warn of longer-term threat
The coronavirus pandemic is shutting down entire countries across the world, causing a significant decline in air pollution in major cities as heads of state implement stricter quarantines and travel restrictions.
The unintended air pollution declines from the virus outbreak are just temporary, experts say.
But the pandemic’s unintended climate impact offers a glimpse into how countries and corporations are equipped to handle the slower-moving but destructive climate change crisis. So far, researchers warn that the world is ill-prepared.
“As for the environmental benefits we see from the slowdown of day-to-day life and economic activity in terms of improving air quality and other slight benefits, it’s a good sign that our ecosystems are somewhat resilient if we don’t completely destroy them,” said Peter Gleick, a climate scientist and founder of the Pacific Institute in Berkeley, California. “But it would be nice if we could improve our environment without having to cripple our economy,” he added. —Emma Newburger
11:43 am: NY Gov. Cuomo says state to start clinical drug trial, authorizes temporary hospitals
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo speaks during his daily news conference amid the coronavirus outbreak on March 20, 2020 in New York City.
Bennett Raglin | Getty Images
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said he’s asked the federal government to nationalize the purchase of medical equipment and has signed off on several locations to build temporary hospitals to treat coronavirus patients across the state, which is the hardest hit in the U.S.
Cuomo said the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will build temporary hospitals in Stony Brook, Westbury, Westchester, New York, and the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York City, which will contain four federal hospitals with 250 beds each.
New York state is also running a clinical trial beginning Tuesday of a treatment regimen of hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin, two drugs that doctors in Africa and elsewhere say they’ve seen good results in fighting the virus.
Cuomo said the federal government needs to nationalize the purchase of needed medical supplies, adding that the shortage of personal protective gear like masks and life-saving equipment like respirators is leading to price gouging. Masks that used to cost 85 cents are now $7, “why because I’m competing against other states,” he said. —Dawn Kopecki
11:31 am: Merck to supply NYC health-care and front-line workers with 500,000 surgical masks
Merck said it will supply New York City with a half-million masks to address the severe shortage of health-care supplies.
“In response to the urgent need for personal protective equipment for health-care workers and other front-line responders battling the COVID-19 pandemic,” the drugmaker will be providing 500,000 masks, a company spokesperson told CNBC.
Merck specified that the masks are surgical masks, not N95 respirators. —Meg Tirrell
11:22 am: Companies should keep as many people employed as possible, Gary Cohn says
Gary Cohn, former chief economic adviser to President Donald Trump
Companies should keep as many people employed and on payroll as possible amid the pandemic, former White House economic advisor Gary Cohn said. He said that the economy will eventually bounce back and people should be able to return to work immediately rather than having to go through the re-hiring process.
“It would be a shame if we let people go, terminated them, put them on unemployment and then had to try to rehire them once we restarted the economy,” Cohn said on CBS’ “Face the Nation.”
The coronavirus crisis will likely result in layoffs on a scale that the U.S. has never seen before, with Bank of America forecasting that as of next week a total of 3 million people will have filed for unemployment. The numbers are expected to be so bad that the Trump administration has asked state officials to delay releasing precise figures.
Financing packages to help the economy recover from the pandemic would be worth $4 trillion, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Sunday. Part of that would include efforts between the Treasury and the Federal Reserve to provide liquidity to businesses. —Emma Newburger
10:45 am: FEMA unclear about mask quantity and distribution
FEMA administrator Pete Gaynor did not offer a solid timeline for when the national stockpile of masks will be distributed or give a number for how many masks are currently being shipped.
“We are shipping all those supplies to all the demands, to all the asks from the governors every day,” Gaynor said on ABC News’ “This Week.”
He said that there are still masks in the national stockpile, but that FEMA is prepared to “go to zero” to meet demand. He cited New York, Washington state, and California as critical hotspots where masks are being sent. —Hannah Miller
10:20 am: Illinois governor says states are competing for supplies — ‘It’s a Wild West out there’
Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker, alongside other lawmakers and stakeholders, announces a major step forward to legalize cannabis, at Black United Fund of Illinois, on Saturday May 4, 2019. The bill also looks to expunge thousands of class-4 felony marijuana convictions. (Abel Uribe/Chicago Tribune/TNS via Getty Images)
Abel Uribe | Tribune News Service | Getty Images
Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker said the state only received a fraction of supplies requested from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The shortage of supplies continues to result in states and countries compete against each other for critical personal protective equipment in the open market.
“This should have been a coordinated effort by the federal government…It’s a Wild West out there…Indeed we’re overpaying for PPE because of that competition,” Pritzker said on CNN’s “State of the Union.”
The governor also mentioned that there should have been a national stay at home order. Pritzker said he instituted one for his state because he has to protect the 12.7 million people that live in Illinois.
“It will work…Unless we tell people to stay home and to stop interacting in the way that they were, we’re going to see…tens of thousands of more deaths,” Pritzker said. —Alexandria White
10:08 am: Mnuchin working with Fed to provide $4 trillion in liquidity, trying to reach a deal today with Congress
Secretary of the Treasury Steve Mnuchin said the administration is working with the Federal Reserve to offer up to $4 trillion in liquidity financing that can be used to support the economy.
“We can lever up to $4 trillion to help everything from small businesses to big businesses to get through the next 90 to 120 days,” Mnuchin said on Fox News Sunday.
Mnuchin also said the administration is trying to reach a deal with Congress today regarding an economic relief package that could top $1.8 trillion. Highlights of the package include small business retention loans that would give businesses two weeks of cash flow, a direct deposit for Americans with the average deposit being $3,000 for a family of four and enhanced unemployment insurance for people laid off because of the coronavirus.
Hospitals would also receive approximately $110 billion in aid, according to Mnuchin. —Hannah Miller
About Covid19 signs are seen at the Times Square in New York City, United States on March 20, 2020.
Tayfun Coskun | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
9:25 am: Virus outbreak in NYC will worsen, de Blasio says
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said the coronavirus pandemic will worsen in the next few months and urged the federal government to employ the U.S. military to help combat the outbreak.
“The president will not lift a finger to help his hometown. … I can’t be blunt enough: If the president does not act, people will die who could have lived otherwise,” the mayor said on NBC News’ “Meet the Press.”
The mayor said that ventilators produced anywhere in the country should be sent to New York within the next 10 days. The state has become the most affected area in the country and is seeing a surge in cases every day.
A bulk of the cases are in New York City, which now accounts for about one-third of all cases in the country.
“Our federal government needs to be in this fight rather than on the sidelines,” de Blasio said. —Emma Newburger
8:39 am: Airlines tell Congress they need cash coronavirus aid or thousands will be furloughed
U.S. airlines on Saturday warned they will have to furlough workers unless Congress approves a $58 billion aid package that includes grants, not only loans, as the industry reels from the impact of coronavirus.
Senate Republicans last week proposed legislation that included a $58 billion in aid for passenger and cargo carriers, but in the form of loans airlines would later have to repay.
“Time is running out,” wrote the CEOs of Southwest, Delta, Alaska, American, United, JetBlue, Hawaiian, UPS Airlines and FedEx, and their lobbying group, Airlines for America, to congressional leaders. It was one in a series of grim messages from airline chiefs and labor unions this week about the abrupt collapse in bookings that coronavirus caused and the potential toll on workers. “Unless worker payroll protection grants are passed immediately, many of us will be forced to take draconian measures such as furloughs.”
U.S. airlines employ close to 750,000 people and airlines are now shrinking their international networks to the smallest in decades, cutting thousands of domestic flights, parking hundreds of jets and urging employees to take unpaid leave, in a bid to save cash as demand crumbles. —Leslie Josephs
7:42 am: Fed’s Bullard says shutdown is not a recession but an investment in survival
Olivia Michael | CNBC
In normal times massive unemployment and a collapse in economic output would be tragic.
This time, as the coronavirus cloisters millions of Americans and shuts down the U.S. economy, it should instead be saluted as an investment in public health that lays the groundwork for a rapid rebound.
That is the view of St. Louis Federal Reserve President James Bullard, who argues that a potential $2.5 trillion hit coming to the economy is both necessary and manageable if officials move fast and keep it simple. It may seem an unconventional view in a moment of global anxiety, but Bullard argues the shutdown measures now being rolled out are essential to shortening the course of the pandemic.
They must also be coupled with massive federal government support to sustain the population through its coming isolation and prime the economy to pick up where it left off.
To Bullard, that means: Match any lost wages. Match any lost business. No questions asked. —Reuters
6:51 am: Spain’s death toll passes 1,700, cases exceed 28,000
Spain’s death toll rose to 1,720 from a previous count of 1,326, according to multiple media reports citing the most recent health data, which also reported cases at 28,572 from a previous tally of 24,926. Spain is currently under a nationwide lockdown.
Spain’s prime minister is seeking to extend the country’s 15-day state of emergency, first declared on March 14, for a further 15 days to stem the spread of the coronavirus outbreak, which is the second-worst in Europe.
4:48 am: UK receives new ventilator prototypes, housing minister says
Manufacturing of new ventilators should start “quickly,” U.K. Housing Minister Robert Jenrick said Sunday, discussing the first of the new ventilator prototypes the country has received to help its health services fight the coronavirus pandemic.
“We’ve been overwhelmed with offers of support. There’s now a number of manufacturers who are working with us,” Jenrick told Sky News in an interview Sunday. There are currently 13,000 ventilators available for use by the country’s National Health Service, he said, but stressed that more are needed.
Read CNBC’s coverage from CNBC’s Asia-Pacific and Europe teams overnight here: Spain death toll passes 1,700, India begins curfew