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Coronavirus: Free to read

Coronavirus: Week of Mar. 15 to Mar. 21, New York orders millions to stay indoors

Mainland China reports zero new local cases for 3rd day; worldwide total surges

A freeway sits almost empty in downtown Los Angeles, after California's Gov. Gavin Newsom issued an unprecedented statewide "stay at home order" directing the state's 40 million residents to hunker down in their homes for the foreseeable future during the global outbreak of coronavirus disease, in California, U.S., on March 20, 2020.   © Reuters

The Nikkei Asian Review is tracking the spread of the new coronavirus that originated in the central Chinese city of Wuhan.

Follow the latest updates.

Global cases have reached 234,073 according to the latest situation report issued by the World Health Organization on Friday. That was an increase of 24,247 from the previous day's report.

The worldwide death toll stood at 9,840, up by 1,061.

To see how the disease has spread, click this interactive virus tracker:

Here are the latest developments (Tokyo time):



Saturday, March 21

2:46 p.m. Jordan blows sirens at the start of a nationwide curfew on Saturday, limiting the mobility of its 10 million citizens indefinitely to combat the spread of coronavirus, Reuters reports.

2:45 p.m. The Philippines' health ministry on Saturday reports a 19th death related to coronavirus and says the number of confirmed cases has risen to 262 from 230 a day before. The government has placed more than half of the country's population under strict home quarantine to stem the spread of the coronavirus.

1:49 p.m. Thailand reports its largest daily increase in coronavirus infections on Saturday, with 89 new cases taking the national tally to 411. Taweesin Wisanuyothin, a Public Health Ministry spokesman, says the new cases are linked to earlier infections that occurred at a boxing match, an entertainment complex and a religious gathering in neighboring Malaysia.

1:09 p.m. Singapore reports two coronavirus-related deaths on Saturday, marking the city-state's first fatalities from the infection. The patients who died are a 75-year-old Singaporean woman and a 64-year-old Indonesian man, the health ministry says in a statement.

10:25 a.m. South Korea confirms 147 new coronavirus infections on Saturday, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The new cases bring the country's total to 8,799.

9:21 a.m. Mainland China reports zero locally transmitted cases of the coronavirus for a third day running, while the daily log of infections involving travelers arriving from other countries continues to rise, the country's National Health Commission says in a statement on Saturday. Mainland China had 41 new confirmed cases of coronavirus infections on Friday, all travelers from abroad. The total number of confirmed cases in mainland China reaches 81,008, after the death toll reached 3,255 as of the end of Friday.

5 a.m. U.S. stocks ended another week of tumultuous trading with the Dow Jones Industrial Average down 913 points, or 4.6%, to close at 19,173. The wider S&P 500 fell 4.3%, while the Nasdaq dropped 3.8%. The Dow has now erased its gains since Trump's inauguration, a rally the president has prided his administration on ahead of his reelection bid.

3:50 a.m. Italy reports 627 new coronavirus deaths, up from 427 the previous day.

3 a.m. The S&P 500 gives up early gains during choppy trading.

2:20 a.m. The Japanese government has decided not to extend its request for nationwide school closures.

1:45 a.m. U.S. President Donald Trump stops short of declaring a national lockdown but says the border with Mexico will close.

1:15 a.m. New York State Gov. Andrew Cuomo tells New Yorkers to stay indoors as much as possible and orders all nonessential businesses to keep all workers home. The drastic measures, slated to take effect Sunday night, come as the state confirmed more than 7,000 coronavirus cases.

Friday, March 20

11:49 p.m. The Bank of Thailand decides at an emergency meeting to cut its key interest rate to 0.75%, a historical low.

A sidewalk in Jarkata, where the governor has declared a state of emergency.

11:27 p.m. Jakarta Gov. Anies Baswedan declares a state of emergency for the Indonesian capital, urging businesses to allow employees to apply work from home for the next two weeks.

10:30 p.m. U.S. stocks open with a modest gain, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 rising less than 1%.

10:23 p.m. China's central bank has more firepower to fight the coronavirus-induced economic downturn than the Federal Reserve, argues Charles Haswell.

10:11 p.m. As the countdown to the Tokyo Games continues, the International Olympic Committee has no easy options for dealing with the coronavirus pandemic. Read more.

9:21 p.m. A mobile tracking app is being rolled out in Singapore to identify possible cases of COVID-19 as the citizens return from hotspots in Europe, the U.S. and elsewhere in Southeast Asia.

9 p.m. The Asian Development Bank has announced that its annual meeting of the board of governors, originally scheduled for May 2 to May 5, will be adjusted due to the coronavirus pandemic.

7:50 p.m. The United Arab Emirates suspends residents abroad from entering the country for a period of two weeks, according to the government news agency. The Gulf country announced 27 new cases Friday.

6:45 p.m. Malaysia reports 130 new positive cases, bringing the total to-date to 1,030. The government has instructed the army to guard the roads from Sunday, to assist police in preventing Malaysians from roaming around despite a restriction of movement order.

5:30 p.m. Indonesia's President Joko Widodo says a Jakarta apartment block consisting of 7,400 units that hosted athletes during the Asian Games 2018 will be converted to an isolation facility starting Saturday. He adds that Indonesia is importing Japan-developed flu drug Avigan and anti-Malaria drug chloroquine to treat COVID-19 patients.

Empty streets lead to the Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur after Malaysia announces a movement control order.   © Reuters

Meanwhile, Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati says in a "moderate" outbreak scenario, Indonesia's economic growth in 2020 could "stay above 4%". However, if the outbreak worsens -- including lockdowns and significant drop in trade -- and lasts for three to six months, it might drop to as low as "2.5% or even zero."

1:49 p.m. Hong Kong Express, the budget airline arm of Cathay Pacific Airways, is suspending all flight operations from March 23 to April 30, to conserve cash in the face of virus-related travel restrictions adopted by Hong Kong and other governments. Some 96% of staff are taking no-pay leave.

1:25 p.m. International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach says the IOC is "considering different scenarios" for this summer's Tokyo Games amid the outbreak of the new coronavirus, The New York Times reported Thursday.

12:50 p.m. The foreign ministers of Japan, China and South Korea hold a video conference on Friday on the response to the new coronavirus and agree to hold a trilateral health ministers' meeting soon, as well as to discuss information sharing on vaccine development.

12:22 p.m. The death toll from the new coronavirus has surpassed 10,000 worldwide, Johns Hopkins University said on Friday.

10:59 a.m. Asian stocks rise in a sign that some investors are returning to a risk appetite following overnight gains on Wall Street. The U.S. dollar's fall against a basket of currencies is putting it on course for its first drop in nine days. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index and South Korea's Kospi climb more than 2.5% each, the Shanghai Composite Index rises 1%, Australia's ASX/200 and Taiwan's main share index both increase more than 3.5%. Shares in Malaysia and Singapore each gain over 2%. The S&P 500 futures comes off its lows and is down 1%. Tokyo is closed for a holiday. Crude oil rises 2%, extending its record 24% gain on Thursday.

10:22 a.m. South Korea confirms 87 more cases, bringing the total number to 8,652, with 94 deaths.

10:19 a.m. Two Chinese fencing athletes, who were supposed to attend the Olympic qualifying trial, test positive on Friday and are now under treatment. They previously attended the Grand Prix Budapest Hungary, where three athletes from South Korea also were found to be infected with the coronavirus.

9:02 a.m. Hubei Province, the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak, reports zero new cases for the second consecutive day. Meanwhile, mainland China overall reports 39 new confirmed cases for Thursday, all of which were imported cases, bringing the total number in the country to 80,967. The mainland's death toll reaches 3,248, up three from the previous day.

5:15 a.m. The U.S. issued a Global Level 4 Health Advisory asking Americans not to travel overseas.

5:05 a.m. One month after the prime minister's dramatic move to close the nation's schools, Japan is slowly inching its way back to normalcy.

3 a.m. Italy's death toll from the coronavirus soars to 3,405, surpassing the number in China, where the outbreak first started.

2:48 a.m. The summit of Association of Southeast Asian Nations scheduled for April is postponed until late June, host nation Vietnam says.

1:21 a.m. Emerging market currencies are falling against the dollar as investors grow more risk adverse and central banks cut interest rates to support economies.

12:24 a.m. In a televised address, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi calls on the nation to support a public curfew on March 22 from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., during which no one should step outside, except those in essential services.

12:05 a.m. Former Malaysian leader Mahathir Mohamad is in self-quarantine after coming into close contact with a lawmaker who tested positive for COVID-19, local media report.

Thursday, March 19

11:19 p.m. Stock prices recover in New York after the Dow dropped 700 points at the opening bell. Concerns about the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic continue to dominate investor sentiment.

9:27 p.m. No international commercial passenger aircraft will be allowed to land in India for one week from March 22, according to a government statement.

8:42 p.m. India reports fourth coronavirus-linked death, in northern Punjab state. Confirmed cases stand at 167.

Travelers at New York's JFK International Airport. The State Department has asked citizens to not travel abroad.   © Reuters

6 p.m. Vietnam Airlines, Vietnam's flagship carrier, will suspend all international flights between March 25 and April 30, after already implementing suspensions to mainland China, Hong Kong and other destinations. Vietjet, the biggest Vietnamese budget carrier also announced it will suspend flights to ASEAN countries from March 20.

4:51 p.m. Indonesia hit another daily high with 82 new positive cases today, bringing the total to 309, which includes 25 deaths. That is a fatality rate of 8%, one of the highest globally.

4:15 p.m. The number of foreign visitors to Japan in February decreased 58% to 1.09 million from a year earlier, government annouced on Thursday, as the coronavirus pandemic takes a heavy toll.

12:50 p.m. Australia's central bank cut interest rates for a second time this month.

12:28 p.m. The Korea Exchange puts circuit break in the Kospi at 12:05 pm as the index falls 8.12%. The trading will resume in 20 minutes.

12:05 p.m. The Indonesia Stock Exchange also halts trading for 30 minutes this morning after index dropped 5%.

11:20 a.m. Japan's Suzuki Motor announces a two-week production suspension to begin Monday at its Hungarian plant. Suzuki has also halted motorbike production in the Philippines.

10:38 a.m. The Philippine Stock Exchange index plunges 12.4% as soon as the stock market reopens on Thurdsay after a two-day closure due to the lockdown in Luzon, triggering a circuit breaker anew.

10:21 a.m. South Korea confirms 152 more cases on Thursday, raising the total to 8,565 with 91 deaths. The new cases rise to three-digit number again as 97 more cases are reported in Daegu, epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak in the country.

10:14 a.m. Hubei Province, the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak, reports zero new cases for the first time since the outbreak began in December. Meanwhile, Mainland China reports 34 new confirmed cases for Wednesday, bringing the total number to 80,928. The mainland's death toll reaches 3,245, up 8 from the previous day.

9:15 a.m. Tokyo's main stock index gains over 400 points as trade opens, thanks to the European Central Bank's pledge to buy an additional 750 billion euros worth of bonds.

A member of the Military Emergency Unit sprays disinfectant to prevent the spread of the coronavirus disease at a hospital in Gijon, Spain, on March 18.   © Reuters

6:30 a.m. The New York Stock Exchange will temporarily close its trading floor and move to fully electronic trading on Monday as a precautionary step in addressing the outbreak.

5:29 a.m. Europe surpasses China in deaths according to a World Health Organization report, with Europe at 3,352 and China at 3,231 as of March 18.

5:27 a.m. Around half of the world's students are out of school due to closures resulting from the outbreak, according to UNESCO. The school closures in over 100 countries affect 850 million students, from preschool through university.

4:11 a.m. The pandemic has soured U.S.-China relations despite a break in trade tensions, as shown by Trump's war of words over whether to call the new coronavirus a "Chinese virus."

4:02 a.m. Read more about how a second wave of infections threatens to cancel China's hard-earned gains against the outbreak.

3:17 a.m. U.S. stocks' sell-off accelerates, with one prominent investor telling President Donald Trump that it is time to "shut down" America.

2:37 a.m. Honda becomes the first major automaker to halt U.S. production in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The Big Three Detroit automakers are doing the same, following a request by the United Auto Workers.

2 a.m. The promise shown by Fujifilm's Avigan drug has sparked a drive for other coronavirus cures.

1:46 a.m. U.S. budget airline JetBlue is in talks to delay a purchase of Airbus planes.

12:22 a.m Swedish furniture retailer IKEA is temporarily shuttering more stores as the coronavirus spreads, including to all 50 U.S. states. In contrast, it has reopened all stores in China except for its site in Wuhan.

Wednesday, March 18

10:42 p.m. Singapore will require a 14-day self-isolation period for anyone entering the country, starting Friday evening.

10:37 p.m. The U.S.-Canada border will close to nonessential traffic, tweets President Donald Trump.

10:31 p.m. The Dow Jones Industrial Average tumbles over 1,300 points at the opening bell, erasing the previous day's rebound and falling back below the 20,000 level. The broader S&P 500 fell about 130 points.

9:33 p.m. TSMC, the world's biggest contract chipmaker and sole supplier of iPhone core processor chips, says in a securities filing that one of its employees has tested positive for COVID-19.

8:38 p.m. Total cases worldwide surpass 200,000, according to the online tracker operated by Johns Hopkins University in the U.S.

A woman walks near the Arc de Triomphe following the announcement by France's prime minister to close restaurants, cinemas, nightclubs and other non-essential businesses.   © Reuters

8:05 p.m. Spain says cases in the country have hit 13,716 with 598 fatalities, according to local newspaper El Pais.

7:58 p.m. Mobile operator Vodafone has seen network traffic surge 50% in some markets due to the coronavirus, Reuters reported.

7:53 p.m. Ukraine imposes a state of emergency in and around the capital of Kiev.

7:51 p.m. Japan will expand its quarantine measures to include people coming from Iran, Egypt and most European countries.

7:10 p.m. Toyota Motor says it will stop operations at five plants in Europe, after having already halted factories in France and Spain. Its plants in Russia and Kazakhstan are still operating.

7:05 p.m. Samsung Electronics confirmed it will stick with its aggressive investment plans despite the coronavirus, saying chip demand remains strong.

7:01 p.m. Malaysia recorded 117 new cases, bringing the total to 790.

6:42 p.m. India said 276 of its citizens living abroad are infected: 255 in Iran, 12 in the UAE, five in Italy and one each in Hong Kong, Kuwait, Rwanda and Sri Lanka.

6:32 p.m. The Asian Development Bank announced a $6.5 billion package for developing countries to combat the coronavirus, including $3.6 billion to cover nationwide health and economic fallout from the pandemic, and $1.6 billion for small businesses, domestic and regional trade, and other companies directly affected.

6:23 p.m. Hong Kong reported 14 new cases on Wednesday, a daily high, bringing the total number to 181. Of these, 10 were people who had just returned from Europe.

A member of Indonesia's Red Cross sprays disinfectant inside a department store amid the spread of coronavirus in Jakarta.   © Reuters

6:09 p.m. Indonesia reported 55 new cases as of Wednesday noon, its largest daily increase. This brings the total to 227, including 19 deaths. The country's largest carrier, Lion Air Group, will suspend all flights between Malaysia, while subsidiary Malindo Air will continue domestic flights within Malaysia. Meanwhile, exports of antiseptics, surgical masks and protective gear for health personnel have been banned.

5:30 p.m. France could hope to begin seeing a slowdown of coronavirus infections in about eight to 12 days following the government's decision to lock down the country, health minister Olivier Veran told local media on Wednesday.

3 p.m. Tokyo stocks ended in negative territory on weak U.S. stock index futures, with the benchmark Nikkei average closing at 16,726.55, down 284.98 points from the previous day's close.

2:06 p.m. Thailand reported 35 more new coronavirus cases as of Wednesday, bringing the total to 212.

1:35 p.m. Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison declared a "human biosecurity emergency," which allows the government to close off regions, impose curfews and order people to quarantine. Morrison advised people to forgo overseas travel. The upgrade to a Level 4 advisory restricting travel abroad was accompanied by a ban on any nonessential indoor gatherings of more than 100 people.

1:30 p.m. Shares of Nichi-Iko Pharmaceutical went limit up in Tokyo after climbing 15% as investors reacted to a University of Tokyo announcement that Nafamostat, one of the company's drugs, potentially blocks the coronavirus' entry process into human cells. The possible inhibition works in the early stages of infection, the university said.

1:05 p.m. Vietnam has confirmed another case of coronavirus infection linked to an event at a mosque in Malaysia. The latest patient, who attended the 16,000-person gathering in Kuala Lumpur, returned to the country on March 4 on VietJet flight VJ826 from Kuala Lumpur, according to Vietnam's health ministry. Vietnam's total number of infections reached 67.

11:58 a.m. Taiwan will begin blocking all foreigners from entering except those with diplomatic visas or certain other documents. In addition, everyone coming from abroad must undergo a 14-day home quarantine. Taiwan's CDC also announced it will trace travelers back to March 5 through March 14 who have traveled to Europe or transferred airplanes in Dubai or Turkey. These arrivals will be told to report to local governments and start their home quarantine on the day they report.

11:40 a.m. Malaysia went into a two-week partial lockdown on Wednesday after coronavirus infections in the country spiked to the highest in Southeast Asia. Malaysia's close neighbors such as Singapore have been forced to take emergency measures to cushion the fallout from spread of the virus and the lockdown.

11:30 a.m. Mainland China reported 13 new confirmed cases for Tuesday, the country's National Health Commission said, bringing the total number to 80,894. The mainland's death toll reached 3,237, up 11 from the previous day.

11:02 a.m. South Korea confirmed 93 more cases, raising the total to 8,413 with 84 deaths.

11 a.m. Shares in Japan's Fujifilm opened at their daily limit. At 5,238, they were 15% higher than the previous day's close in Tokyo. The Chinese government said an influenza medicine developed by one of the company's group members had been found effective against the new coronavirus.

9:15 a.m. Tokyo stocks rose about 2% as trading opened and following a strong rebound on Wall Street; the benchmark Nikkei index gained more than 300 points at one time from the previous day's close.

8:52 a.m. Philippine financial markets are set to resume operations after being exempted from the enhanced quarantine measures imposed by the government. Fixed income trading resumes on Wednesday, with the Philippine Stock Exchange reopening on Thursday, with shortened trading hours until 1 p.m.

5:01 a.m. Japanese budget carrier Skymark Airlines will not relist on the Tokyo Stock Exchange this spring, Nikkei has learned.

5 a.m. U.S. stocks end on a high note, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average gaining just over 1,000 points, or 5%. The broader S&P 500 rose nearly 6%.

4:37 a.m. European Union leaders agree to shut the bloc's external borders for 30 days but make allowances for moving goods.

3:41 a.m. As Wall Street forecasters warn of a global recession, there are doubts over whether China has enough firepower to fight the economic slowdown.

2:45 a.m. Saudi Arabia tells mosques not to let in worshippers for their five daily prayers, as well as Friday prayers, Reuters reports.

2 a.m. The United Auto Workers trade union says it has asked America's Big Three automaker to halt their U.S. plants for two weeks.

1:17 a.m. U.S. stocks turned sharply higher after an update on stimulus measures, including cash payments, by President Donald Trump and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, with the Dow briefly extending gains 1,000 points.

12:49 a.m. Qantas Airways' drastic capacity cut shows that airlines' troubles are only becoming worse.

12:26 a.m. Japan is poised to ask travelers coming from Europe to quarantine themselves for two weeks now that the region has become a hot spot in the global coronavirus pandemic.

12:01 a.m. The International Olympic Committee says in a statement it remains fully committed to holding the Summer Olympics in Tokyo in four months' time. Meanwhile, some ask whether Japan needs the equivalent of America's CDC.

Tuesday, March 17

11:55 p.m. The Federal Reserve announces a new commercial paper funding facility to help credit flow to American businesses and households.

11:00 p.m. The rally in U.S. stocks loses steam, sending the Dow briefly below 20,000 for the first time since February 2017.

The New York Stock Exchange: U.S. markets have been highly volatile as the coronavirus continues to spread.   © Reuters

10:35 p.m. U.S. stocks rebound from Monday's historic sell-off, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 rising by as much as 2% after the opening bell Tuesday.

9:48 p.m. Thailand closed schools nationwide and entertainment facilities in the Bangkok area for 14 days to halt the spread of the virus.

9:20 p.m. Japanese public broadcaster NHK reported that foreign countries' national team training camps for the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games have been canceled or postponed in 16 cities across Japan due to concerns over the coronavirus outbreak.

9 p.m. Volkswagen Group, the world's biggest carmaker, is suspending production at factories across Europe as the coronavirus pandemic hits sales and disrupts supply chains, the company said on Tuesday.

8:49 p.m. The head of the Japan Football Association, Kozo Tashima, has tested positive for the new coronavirus. Tashima also holds a post at FIFA and serves as a vice president of the Japanese Olympic Committee.

8:35 p.m. China has authorized clinical trials on its first vaccine developed to combat the new coronavirus, according to a tweet posted by the ruling Communist Party's news outlet People's Daily. The tweet says, "Recombinant #COVID19 vaccine developed by medical team led by top PLA epidemiologist Chen Wei was approved to launch clinical trials" in China on Monday.

8:29 p.m. Vietnam will temporarily suspend its 15-30 day visa scheme for foreigners entering the country, and will quarantine all arrivals from ASEAN countries for 14 days. The government said the measures would take effect from 00:00 on March 18. The country already has entry restrictions for travelers from countries including China, Iran, South Korea, the U.K., and Schengen bloc countries such as Italy.

8:27 p.m. Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has declared a state of calamity in the entire country due to COVID-19, allowing the government to access "appropriate funds" including its Quick Response Fund, to step up the fight against the virus.

8:20 p.m. Indonesia reported 38 new cases on Tuesday, bringing the total to 172 -- including five deaths and nine people who have recovered.

7:58 p.m. Iran's death toll from the new coronavirus has increased to 988, with 135 deaths in the past 24 hours, Reuters reported, citing Iranian state television. The total number of infected also rose to 16,169, an increase of 1,178 within 24 hours, while 5,389 people who were infected have recovered.

7:55 p.m. Spain's government said on Tuesday that total cases of the disease had reached 11,178, with 491 fatalities, according to local newspaper El Pais.

6:51 p.m. Malaysia's Ministry of Health has confirmed two deaths related to COVID-19 in the country, including a 34-year-old and a 60-year-old. The ministry also announced 120 new positive cases of the disease today, bringing the total cases to date to 673.

6:23 p.m. Indonesia on Friday will expand its entry ban to travelers from six more territories: Britain, France, Germany, Spain, Switzerland and Vatican City. Travelers from China, South Korea, Iran and Italy are already restricted.

5:51 p.m. The Philippines reported 45 new cases of coronavirus, bringing the total to 187, as the country took strict measures to suspend all markets on Tuesday.

5:14 p.m. The Indonesia Stock Exchange is halting trading for 30 minutes after the Jakarta Composite Index plunged 5%.

5 p.m. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang objected to U.S. President Donald Trump calling the coronavirus a "Chinese virus" on Twitter, saying Beijing strongly opposes the "smear." The tweet says: "The United States will be powerfully supporting those industries, like Airlines and others, that are particularly affected by the Chinese Virus. We will be stronger than ever before!"

Verbal battles are heating up between Beijing and Washington as a Chinese government spokesman accuses the U.S. military of bringing the virus to Wuhan.

4:56 p.m. Taiwan confirmed 10 new infections, mostly in people with travel histories to Europe and elsewhere. The island's total cases now stand at 77. Taiwanese authorities also elevated Japan, Singapore, Thailand, three U.S. states and 20 other countries to a "third-grade warning." Travelers coming from these places must undergo a 14-day quarantine upon arriving in Taiwan.

4:40 p.m. Shanghai has added more countries to its quarantine requirement. Travelers who have been in the U.K., Switzerland, Sweden, Belgium, Norway, the Netherlands, Denmark or Austria in the previous 14 days are subject to a two-week quarantine on arrival. Already on the list are France, Spain, Germany, the U.S., South Korea, Italy and Iran.

3:05 p.m. The Indian Cultural Ministry has ordered closure of the Taj Mahal and other key monuments until Mar. 31, while private offices in Mumbai have been directed to ensure that there is no more than a 50% presence of employees. India on Tuesday reported its third coronavirus-linked death, in western Maharashtra state. The total number of positive cases in the country rose to 125, up by 11 from Monday night.

Taj Mahal, India's top tourism site, has been closed to visitors due to the new coronavirus spread.   © Reuters

3 p.m. Japan's benchmark Nikkei stock index recovered after falling 3% in early morning trade, closing the session at 17,011.53, up 9.49 points from the previous day's close.

2:26 p.m. Thailand added 30 new confirmed cases as of Tuesday, bringing the total to 177.

1:39 p.m. Japan's Fast Retailing has decided to temporarily close all 50 of its Uniqlo clothing stores in the U.S. due to the coronavirus outbreak. Meanwhile, most Uniqlo stores in China outside Hubei Province are now open.

1:20 p.m. Malaysia has postponed a three-day meeting of finance and central bank officials from APEC countries, scheduled to have started on Tuesday, to "protect the safety and health of all delegates as well as the secretariat" from the coronavirus transmission.

12:42 p.m. Cambodia reported 12 new cases of coronavirus, doubling its tally to 24, the heath ministry said. Of the new cases, 11 were people who had traveled to Malaysia for a religious event at a mosque.

11:46 a.m. All arrivals from foreign countries will be put under 14 days of home quarantine in Hong Kong starting Thursday, the city's chief executive Carrie Lam said. The government is strongly advising against nonessential travel and has issued a worldwide travel alert.

Staff members wearing protective suits register passengers in front of a check-in counter of Air China at Beijing Capital International Airport as the country is hit by an outbreak of the new coronavirus.   © Reuters

11:30 a.m. Mainland China had 21 new confirmed cases of coronavirus infection on Monday, the country's National Health Commission said. Of those, arriving in China from abroad. Only one case in China was reported, in Wuhan, the city where the outbreak first began late last year. Wuhan said that effective Tuesday it will require all overseas returnees to be centrally quarantined for 14 days at their own cost.

10:50 a.m. Japan's Nikkei stock index recovered from early losses, driven by hope that the Bank of Japan will buy more exchange-traded funds as promised on Monday.

10:32 a.m. South Korea confirmed 84 cases, raising the total number to 8,320 with 81 deaths. The number of isolated cases dropped to 6,838 after 264 patients were discharged. Meanwhile, the government is ready to approve a $15 billion stimulus.

10:14 a.m. New Zealand said it would pump NZ$12.1 billion ($7.31 billion) -- equivalent to 4% of GDP -- to stimulate the economy as disruptions from the coronavirus outbreak stir fears of a recession.

9:06 a.m. Japan's benchmark Nikkei index plunged 3% at the opening following Wall Street's worst day in three decades.

8:00 a.m. Six of the biggest counties in the San Francisco Bay Area ordered people to stay home, except for essential needs, to slow spread of the coronavirus. As of Monday morning, Bay Area counties were reporting 273 cases of infection, with six people having died of the respiratory illness in California, according to Reuters.

2:50 a.m. Canada closes its borders to all foreign nationals, except U.S. citizens. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who is under quarantine at his home, urges people to stay at home.

A police officer checks the body temperature of motorists at a checkpoint on the outskirts of Quezon City, Metro Manila, on March 16.   © Reuters

12:01 a.m. The Philippine Stock Exchange said it will suspend trading starting Tuesday "until further notice" after President Rodrigo Duterte placed the main Luzon Island, where Manila is located, under "enhanced community quarantine" until April 12.

Monday, March 16

11:37 p.m. Malaysia will introduce a complete lockdown from March 18, barring Malaysians from leaving the country and foreigners from entering. The measures will stay in place until the end of March.

10:38 p.m. The Dow Jones Industrial Average -- nearly 10% -- at the opening bell, while the S&P 500 dropped 220 points, or 8%, triggering a circuit breaker that halted trading for 15 minutes.

10:37 p.m. Egypt said it will suspend all flights to and from the country from March 19 to March 31.

9:20 p.m. Singapore confirmed 17 more cases, marking the city-state's biggest daily jump. The city-state has reported a total of 243 infections to date.

8:44 p.m. The Delhi government on Monday announced that the operation of all gyms, spas and nightclubs in the Indian capital will remain suspended until March 31. All gatherings, except weddings, will also be restricted to 50 people.

Separately, the national Health and Family Welfare Ministry updated the number of confirmed coronavirus cases in India to 114, an increase of four since Sunday night. Thirteen people have recovered so far, while two died last week.

Pupils sit in desks with yellow dividers set up as a measure against coronavirus (COVID-19) at Dajia Elementary school in Taipei on Friday.   © Reuters

8:25 p.m. Taiwan's Executive Yuan has banned all school students and teachers from going abroad this semester.

Taiwan also reported its highest daily increase of eight confirmed cases on Monday, elevating the number to 67.

8:18 p.m. Thailand reported 33 new confirmed cases of COVID-19, bringing the total to 147.

8:11 p.m. Philippine Senator Juan Miguel Zubiri said he tested positive for COVID-19, becoming the first lawmaker in the country to contract the virus. He said he is asymptomatic and has been under self-quarantine since Wednesday.

7:38 p.m. Indonesia reported 17 new cases on Monday, bringing the total to 134. Officials haven't updated the death toll from last week's five.

President Joko Widodo's call on Sunday to "work from home, study at home" created chaos for commuters on Monday in Jakarta after city Gov. Anies Baswedan instructed public transport operators to significantly reduce services.

Students and civil servants have been told to study and work from home, respectively, but many businesses in Jakarta still require their employees to come to office -- creating long lines at many bus stops and MRT stations during rush hour.

7:09 p.m. Some 125 new cases have been recorded in Malaysia today, bringing the total to 553.

Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin, who chaired the high-powered Economic Action Council on Monday, said the government will pump in 2 billion Ringgit ($464 million) for small scale rural development projects -- only for small- and medium-scale contractors.

The government has also agreed to pay 600 Ringgit monthly for a period of six months for those affected by retrenchment or forced unpaid leave. This initiative is expected to cost the government 120 million Ringgit and benefit some 33,000 Malaysian employees.

6:44 p.m. All visitors arriving in Macao, except those from Greater China including Hong Kong and Taiwan, will be subjected to 14 days of quarantine starting Tuesday.

5:10 p.m. European stock markets tumbled to start the day despite dramatic monetary easing steps taken by a host of central banks around the world. The FTSE 100 opened 4.7% lower, meaning the London blue-chip index is down more than 30% for the year. Germany's Dax and France's Cac 40 opened more than 4.6% lower.

4:50 p.m. The Bank of Korea cut the benchmark rate by 50 basis points to a record low of 0.75% in a bid to support the country's plunging stock market.

3 p.m. Tokyo stocks took a downturn as investors appeared unimpressed by the Bank of Japan's decision to expand its purchases of stocks, bonds and other financial assets. The benchmark Nikkei stock index ended the session at 17,002, down 2.46%, or 429 points from the previous day's close.

2:12 p.m. The Bank of Japan expanded its monetary stimulus at a hastily called one-day policy meeting on Monday, joining other central banks rushing to support a global economy hit by the spreading coronavirus.

12:30 p.m. New York City and Los Angeles said they will impose restrictions on eating and drinking establishments and close theaters and cinemas to slow the spread of the coronavirus. Restaurants, bars and cafes will only be able to sell food via takeout and delivery. The move came after New York City's public schools were told to close until at least April 20.

12:05 p.m. The number of visitors to Hong Kong fell more than 96% in February to 199,000, with a further drop expected in March, the Hong Kong Tourism Board has said. The board added it is working on a HK$400 million ($51 million) trade support plan to aid the city's battered tourism industry.

11 a.m. China's industrial output fell by 13.5% for the combined months of January and February from the same period a year earlier -- marking the sharpest drop in 30 years -- as the spread of the coronavirus disrupted supply chains and cooled demand.

10:42 a.m. The Philippine Stock Exchange opened 5.6% lower on Monday, the first business day of a 30-day lockdown of Metropolitan Manila to fight the spread of the new coronavirus.

Employees work on a car seat assembly line in Shanghai, China, in February. China's industrial output for the combined months of January and February shrank 13.5% from the same period last year, disrupted by the coronavirus.   © Reuters

10:34 a.m. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control recommended that events of 50 or more people over the next eight weeks be canceled or postponed for two months. The CDC's concerns included concerts, sporting events and weddings.

9:45 a.m. Mainland China had 16 new confirmed cases of coronavirus infections on Sunday, bringing the total number of cases to 80,860. The death toll in the mainland had reached 3,213, up by 14 from the previous day.

9 a.m. New Zealand's central bank cut interest rates by 75 basis points to a record low after an emergency meeting. The move, aimed at cushioning the impact of the pandemic, follows rate cuts by central banks around the world, including the U.S. Federal Reserve.

8:57 a.m. The Bank of Japan said it will hold an emergency policy meeting at noon on Monday to discuss monetary policy in light of recent economic and financial developments. The meeting will replace the scheduled rate review on March 18-19.

6:07 a.m. The U.S. Federal Reserve said it cut rates back to near zero, restarted bond buying and joined with other central banks to ensure liquidity in dollar lending to help put a floor under a rapidly disintegrating global economy amid the worsening coronavirus pandemic. The Fed's target range is now 0% to 0.25%, and it will buy at least $700 billion in Treasuries and mortgage-backed securities in coming weeks.

Sunday, March 15

9:30 p.m. Malaysia reported 190 new infection cases on Sunday, with most linked to a religious event at a mosque that was attended by 16,000 people from several countries. The 80% jump in cases from a day earlier brings the total number of infections to 428 -- the worst affected country in Southeast Asia.

8:34 p.m. The Beijing Municipality Government stepped up coronavirus preventive measures, requiring all visitors from abroad to be quarantined in centralized observation centers for 14 days, effective March 16. Individuals will be for the cost of their quarantine.

7:03 p.m. Singapore said all travelers entering the city-state who recently visited ASEAN countries, Japan, the U.K. and Switzerland will be required to stay home or at a hotel for 14 days, starting from Monday at 11:59 p.m.

4:26 p.m. Indonesian President Joko Widodo called on people to start "working from home, studying at home and praying at home," adding that cabinet members had undergone coronavirus testing on Sunday morning, after the for the virus. The country added 21 new positive cases, bringing the total confirmed to 117, including five deaths.

12:56 p.m. Australia will impose a 14-day self quarantine on all international arrivals from midnight Sunday in an attempt to contain the spread of coronavirus, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said.

9:55 a.m. China's National Health Commission said that the number of new coronavirus cases that came to mainland China from overseas surpassed the number of locally transmitted new infections for the second time on Saturday. Of 20 new cases confirmed on Saturday, 16 involved travelers entering China from overseas.

8:45 a.m. U.S. President Donald Trump tested negative for the coronavirus, his doctor said, as the president extended a travel ban to Britain and Ireland to contain the spread of the virus.

5:10 a.m. Spain put its 47 million people under partial lockdown on Saturday as part of a 15-day state of emergency to combat the coronavirus epidemic. Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said the virus crisis requires "extraordinary decisions."

5:00 a.m. Thousands of Philippine police started sealing the densely populated capital from most domestic travelers on Sunday as Manila, home to more than 12 million people, went under a lockdown to block the coronavirus spread.

A man, wearing a protective mask, waits outside of a polling station before voting during the first round of mayoral elections in Paris as France grapples with an outbreak of coronavirus disease.   © Reuters

3:56 a.m. France will shut shops, restaurants and entertainment facilities from Sunday, with its 67 million people told to stay home to help combat the spread of the coronavirus. The country's health authority said 91 people had died and almost 4,500 were now infected nationwide.

Saturday, March 14

11:15 p.m. Indonesia's Transport Minister Budi Karya Sumadi has been hospitalized and isolated in Jakarta after he contracted the new coronavirus, a senior government official told a news conference on Saturday.

8:15 p.m. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said the government will inject "necessary and sufficient" funds into the economy and use "unprecedented ideas" to bring back growth. The prime minister, however, stopped short of declaring a state of emergency, which he was empowered to do earlier this week under a new law.

4:30 p.m. Apple said late on Friday it will close all its retail stores outside greater China until March 27, to minimize risk of coronavirus transmission.

3:46 p.m. Indonesia's capital city, Jakarta, will close all schools and has ordered remote teaching for at least two weeks starting next week to slowdown the spread of the coronavirus, Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan told a news conference.

12:23 p.m. Saudi Arabia will suspend all international flights for two weeks, starting Sunday, to prevent the spread of coronavirus, state news agency SPA said on Saturday, citing an official source at interior ministry.

To catch up on earlier developments, see last week's latest updates.

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