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Coronavirus: Free to read

Coronavirus: Week of Mar. 8 to Mar. 14, G-7 to discuss joint action in Monday video summit

Trump declares national emergency to allocate $50bn for virus response

French President Emmanuel Macron, left, and U.S. President Donald Trump at a 2019 G-7 Summit in France. Macron said the leaders will hold a virtual meeting on Monday to discuss the medical and economic responses to the virus outbreak..   © 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 132,758, according to the latest World Health Organization report issued on Friday. That was an increase of 7,499 from the previous day's report.

The worldwide death toll stood at 4,955, up by 342.

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

Here are the latest developments (Tokyo time):



Saturday, March 14

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.

11:36 a.m. Mainland China had 11 new confirmed cases of coronavirus infections on March 13, the country's National Health Commission said on Saturday, up from eight cases a day earlier. That brings the total number of confirmed cases in mainland China so far to 80,824. The death toll from the outbreak in mainland China had reached 3,189 as of the end of Friday, up by 13 from the previous day.

10:29 a.m. The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recorded 107 new coronavirus cases on Saturday compared with 110 a day earlier, taking the national tally to 8,086. In contrast, 204 patients were released from hospitals where they had been isolated for treatment. For the second day in a row, the daily number of recovered people exceeded that of new confirmed cases since South Korea's first patient was confirmed on January 20.

7:10 a.m. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau tells reporters that the Group of Seven will be taking joint action on the coronavirus. "In my conversations with my fellow G-7 leaders, we have agreed that it will be important for us to coordinate at a G-7 level to impact the global economy," he said. G-7 leaders are planning an 'extraordinary' leaders' summit by video-conference on Monday.

4:35 a.m. President Trump declares a national emergency over COVID-19, making $50 billion available to containment efforts.

4:25 a.m. Chinese billionaire and Alibaba co-founder Jack Ma said he will donate 500,000 coronavirus testing kits and 1 million masks to help the U.S. in its fight against the coronavirus.

3:40 a.m. Germany said it will shut most schools and kindergartens until after the Easter holiday in April, a measure designed to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

2:50 a.m. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is considering declaring a state of emergency under legislation just approved by the parliament, a move that would give authorities more options for curtailing its spread.

2:35 a.m. Brazilian President Jair Bolsonarom, who visited South Florida last week and dined with President Donald Trump, said he has tested negative for coronavirus, a day after his press secretary, who accompanied him on the trip, tested positive.

2:30 a.m. The World Health Organization says Europe is now the "new epicenter of the pandemic."

2:26 a.m. Spain said it would declare a 15-day state of emergency from Saturday, escalating its fight against the coronavirus, as some regions shut shops and church authorities cancelled at least two Easter parades.

2:20 a.m. Miami Mayor Francis Suarez has tested positive for the coronavirus, the mayor's office said. He is among the local and world leaders who attended a meeting last week with President Donald Trump and Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro.

Shelves previously filled with toilet paper stand empty at a Ralphs grocery store in Encinitas, California.   © Reuters

2:18 a.m. The Louvre museum in Paris said it will close until further notice.

2:15 a.m. The London Marathon has been postponed to October from April due to the coronavirus pandemic, the event organizer announced.

1:35 a.m. A 700-person brunch planned for Saturday at President Trump's Mar-a-Lago has been postponed, the organizers said.

1:26 a.m. The People's Bank of China said it will pump $80 billion into the economy by lowering the reserve requirements for banks, hoping to propel lending to cash-strapped smaller businesses.

1:20 a.m. Lousiana has postponed presidential primaries scheduled for April 4 because of coronavirus concerns, according to media reports. The Health Department has reported 19 cases in the state.

1:00 a.m. Group of Seven leaders plan to hold a video conference on Monday, Emmanuel Macron said. Coronavirus medical treatments as well as responses to the economic impact of the outbreak will be topics of discussion, according to the French President.

12:30 a.m. The Boston Marathon and golf's Masters Tournament join the list of sporting events canceled, and billionaire Warren Buffett tells shareholders not to attend Berkshire Hathaway's closely watched annual meeting slated for May 2.

12:05 a.m. The Trump administration takes new steps to increase access to coronavirus testing as ordinary Americans cope with empty store shelves, closed schools and other effects of the widening outbreak.

Friday, March 13

11:16 p.m. Next month's Vietnam Grand Prix 2020, slated to be the first Formula One auto racing event in the Southeast Asian nation, is postponed with no new date set.

10:32 p.m. U.S. stocks surge at the opening bell on the prospect of measures to shore up the American economy.

9:52 p.m. Greece's Olympic committee decides to suspend the remainder of the torch relay, which was to make its way to Tokyo, through the country to avoid attracting crowds that might be prone to coronavirus transmissions, Reuters reports.

The Olympic torch relay has been halted even before it leaves Greece, thanks to concerns over the new coronavirus.   © Reuters

8:25 p.m. The English Premier League suspends all soccer matches until at least April 4. The league says it plans to reschedule the fixtures once it is safe to do so.

8:21 p.m. Indian Premier League 2020, a mega cricket tournament due to get underway on March 29 with top players from around the world participating, has been suspended until April 15 amid concerns over the pandemic.

7:59 p.m. China's central bank cuts the required reserve ratio for the second time this year, releasing 550 billion yuan ($78.82 billion) to shore up the economy. Meanwhile, Airbnb-style room rental operators are still struggling to recover from lockdowns.

7:57 p.m. G-20 host Saudi Arabia postpones ministerial G-20 meetings due to the coronavirus outbreak. Some of the meetings will go ahead by teleconference.

7:15 p.m. European soccer's governing body postpones all club matches scheduled for next week, including the Champions League and Europa League.

7:13 p.m. Indonesia's confirmed death toll was four on Friday afternoon, and the total number of cases stood at 69. President Joko Widodo said the government is building a "large-scale" isolation facility for COVID-19 patients on Galang island, near Singapore, that is expected to be completed next week.

4:41 p.m. South Korea's Financial Services Commission announces it will ban all short-selling in the stock market for six months from Monday. It is the first time the regulator has prohibited short-selling since August 2011.

South Korea's temporary ban on short-selling is the country's first since 2011.   © Reuters

4:34 p.m. The Philippine Stock Exchange index clawed back early Friday losses, closing 1% higher at 5793.94 points after Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez instructed state-run pension funds to step up stock purchases. The recovery reduced the weekly drop to 14.4%.

4:24 p.m. Thailand's Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak orders an urgent meeting between the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET) to come up with measures to support the bourse after trading was halted for the second straight day on Friday.

3:39 p.m. South Korean President Moon Jae-in asked economic ministers to formulate unprecedented policies, saying this is an emergency that cannot be compared to the previous crises such as MERS and SARS. He spoke at a meeting with his finance minister, the Bank of Korea governor, industry minister and the financial regulator.

3:34 p.m. South Korea's benchmark Kospi closed down 3.47% at 1,770.74, recovering from an 8% morning drop. Pension funds boosted the index by buying stocks.

3:17 p.m. Amid the heavy sell-off, Philippine Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez instructed state-run pension funds, the Government Service Insurance System and the Social Security System, to double daily average stock purchases, local media reported.

3:01 p.m. The Nikkei Stock Average closed on Friday 6.08% down at 17,431.05 -- at its lowest level since November 2016.

2:12 p.m. Tourist associations in Thailand are axing Songkran (Thai New Year) celebrations in mid-April. The Tourism Authority of Thailand is hoping to move the festival to July instead and is awaiting government approval of this plan.

1:41 p.m. Hong Kong on Friday reported its fourth death from the coronavirus, an 80-year-old man who had a history of health problems, public broadcaster RTHK said. The man resided in the same building as a Buddhist temple, where a cluster of more than 12 cases had been traced.

The government said on Friday that of the city's 131 cases, and one probable case, 75 patients had been discharged.

1:37 p.m. Singapore will impose travel bans on visitors from Italy, France, Spain and Germany from 11.59 p.m. local time on Sunday. Singaporeans and long-term pass holders returning from the four countries will undergo a 14-day quarantine.

Authorities also announced that with immediate effect, Singapore will cease port calls for all cruise ships.

1:28 p.m. Indonesia on Friday announced a second stimulus package worth Rp 125 trillion ($8.36 billion) to cushion the impact from the coronavirus. This includes the relaxation of income tax for individuals and corporates, as well as import and export requirements for 19 industries. Payments of bank loans by micro, small and medium-sized enterprises are also to be eased.

This follows the first stimulus package which offered incentives to airlines and the tourism industry. Indonesia has now announced Rp 158.2 trillion worth of stimulus so far. Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati said the move will extend the budget deficit this year to 2.5%, from the previously set 1.76%.

1:27 p.m. Indian markets continued to plunge with the NSE Nifty falling 10% before a circuit breaker lead to a 45-minute halt in trade on Friday. The BSE Sensex tumbled over 3000 points or 9.43%. India follows Thailand, the Philippines and Indonesia in stopping trading.

12:40 p.m. The price of Bitcoin on Friday amid widespread market turmoil -- defying expectations from some advocates that cryptocurrencies would withstand shocks in traditional financial markets.

12:37 p.m. A Focus Economics survey of economists taken March 2-3 put the probability of a global recession over the next 12 months at more than 40%

12:28 p.m. Auto part markers in China's Hubei province are resuming production in an orderly manner, Chinese vice industry minister Xin Guobin said on Friday.Tru

12:26 p.m. Wuhan, the Chinese city at the center of the outbreak, reported five new cases on Friday, while no locally transmitted infections were reported in the rest of the country, the National Health Commission said.

To date, the total accumulated number of cases in mainland China is 80,813, with 3,176 deaths as of the end of Thursday.

12:25 p.m. Eli Lee, head of investment strategy at the Bank of Singapore, said the equity market breakdown was in part triggered by Trump's speech on U.S. virus countermeasures.

"Clearly, an inadequate government response to the virus outbreak in the current limited time window for effective response increases the odds of much greater contagion and a sharper negative impact from the outbreak," Lee wrote in an emailed note. "The equity markets have by now priced in at least a technical recession lasting two quarters, in our view."

12:22 p.m. Trading on Thailand's stock exchange was halted for 30 minutes on Friday after the SET index fell about 10%.

11:50 a.m. The Australian Grand Prix was canceled on Friday

11:45 a.m. The Indonesian Stock Exchange halted trading 15 minutes after the market opened after the IDX composite index fell 5%. It resumed trading 30 minutes later.

11:39 a.m. U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted after a phone call with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe that he told the Japanese leader the "just completed Olympic venue is magnificent." The call came a day after Trump said postponing the games would be better than having no spectators.

11:05 a.m. Sophie Gregoire Trudeau, wife of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, tested positive for the coronavirus. Trudeau himself is showing no symptoms but will stay in isolation for 14 days, according to his office.

10:47 a.m. Philippine Stock Exchange triggers circuit breaker for second straight day shortly after the market opened on Friday. The PSE index is currently down 10.43% after President Rodrigo Duterte imposed travel restrictions and a widespread quarantine in Metro Manila to fight the spread of the virus.

10:46 a.m. Bank of Japan, finance ministry and financial services agency are set to hold a meeting to discuss markets. The Nikkei Stock Average fell as much as 10% on Friday.

10:39 a.m. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index falls 7.4% at market open, falling into a bear market.

10:35 a.m. Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga says Tokyo is on track to host the 2020 Olympics.

10:14 a.m. South Korea confirmed 110 more infection cases, raising the total number to 7,979 with 67 deaths.

9:56 a.m. The Australian Formula One Grand Prix was canceled as part of the country's efforts to contain the new coronavirus. Australia has confirmed 126 cases of infection.

9:09 a.m. Japan's benchmark Nikkei index dropped 7% in early morning trade with the benchmark Nikkei stock index falling more than 1,300 points from the previous day's close, after New York City declared a state of emergency and U.S. stocks continued to crash.

6:40 a.m. Seattle-based Amazon has told all of its 750,000 employees around the world to work at home if possible to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

6:02 a.m. The Walt Disney Co. says it will close the Disneyland resort in Anaheim, California, beginning Saturday until the end of the month. This will mark the first time the properties have been closed since the terror attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.

3:17 a.m. India reported its first death from COVID-19. A 76-year-old man from Karnataka who visited Saudi Arabia died on March 10, the health ministry said. The man also had hypertension and asthma, it added.

3:16 a.m. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo tweeted that the state will ban gatherings with 500 people or more starting Friday at 5 p.m. For Broadway theaters in Manhattan, the rules go into effect Thursday at 5 p.m. Major cultural institutions in New York City including the Metropolitan Museum of Art have announced closures due to the coronavirus.

2:54 a.m. Major League Baseball is set to delay the start of the regular season and suspend spring training, ESPN reports.

2:30 a.m. The death toll in Italy, the hardest-hit European country, tops 1,000. Meanwhile, the U.S. Congress plans to delay its recess, which was supposed to begin next week.

1:43 a.m. President Donald Trump raises the possibility of delaying the Summer Olympics in Tokyo owing to the coronavirus pandemic.

12:20 a.m. America's widening coronavirus outbreak has emerged as a risk to Trump's reelection bid.

Thursday, March 12

11:39 p.m. Returning to Twitter, SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son Son pledges to donate 1 million masks.

10:30 p.m. U.S. stocks take another nose dive, tripping the market's circuit breaker again this week. The New York Stock Exchange's president tells CNBC there were no plans for now to close floor trading.

10:22 p.m. In a televised address Thursday night, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte suspends land, domestic air and sea travels to and from metropolitan Manila from March 15 to April 14.

9:55 p.m. Delhi's chief minister Arvind Kejriwal tells reporters that all movie theaters and schools in the Indian capital will be shut until March 31.

8:50 p.m. Iran said its total coronavirus infections have surpassed 10,000, Reuters reported. Authorities cited 1,075 new confirmed cases with 75 new deaths in the past 24 hours, bringing total infections to 10,075 and the death toll to 429 in the country of 81.1 million people.

8:40 p.m. U.S. Vice President Mike Pence gave a live TV interview in which he said the U.S. expects thousands more coronavirus cases and that officials are seeking to ramp up testing. He gave no details.

8:22 p.m. Thailand announced that it will suspend visa on arrival status for all eligible countries and regions, including China and India, effective Friday. The kingdom will also stop giving visa-free 30-day stays to visitors from Hong Kong, South Korea and Italy.

8:16 p.m. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted that no minister of his government will travel abroad in "upcoming days" without specifying the duration. He also urged people to avoid nonessential travel and large gatherings.

7:57 p.m. The Philippines reported three more confirmed cases, bringing its total to 52.

7:40 p.m. Europe's benchmark Stoxx 600 index fell 6.3% as it opened, hitting its lowest point since mid-2016, as investors remained rattled by U.S. President Donald Trump's dramatic travel restrictions, Reuters reported. The skid followed deep slides in Asian markets that triggered circuit breakers in Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines.

7:36 p.m. Kuwait announced that it will halt all commercial flights to and from the Gulf state starting Friday. The country also declared a string of public holidays lasting through March 26 and banned people from going to restaurants, cafes and malls. It is allowing only vital services to remain open, according to Kuwait state news agency Kuna.

5:50 p.m. The Indonesian Stock Exchange has also suspended trading temporarily after a fall of more than 5% in the benchmark JCI.

5:39 p.m. Hong Kong stocks plunged to close at a nearly three-year low with the Hang Seng Index falling 3.7% from the previous day's close.

5:17 p.m. The Stock Exchange of Thailand temporarily halted trading. A circuit breaker was triggered for the first time in 11 years, as the benchmark SET index fell by 10% on Thursday.

4:32 p.m. The Philippine Stock Exchange index plunged 9.7% to 5,736.27 points amid heightened fears over the rising number of confirmed local coronavirus cases ahead of President Rodrigo Duterte's national address tonight.

4:25 p.m. China's National Health Commission said the country has passed the peak of the coronavirus crisis after reporting just 15 new cases as of the end of Wednesday.

3:35 p.m. The virus caused Chinese auto sales in February to suffer a 79.1% fall, data from the country's biggest auto industry association showed.

3 p.m. Tokyo's benchmark Nikkei Stock Average closed Thursday's session at 18,559.63, down 856.43 points, or 4.41%, from the previous day's close.

2:40 p.m. The Australian government said it will to prevent the coronavirus pandemic from triggering a recession.

1:45 p.m. Bank of Japan Gov. Haruhiko Kuroda said the central bank "will take appropriate measures as needed in a timely manner without hesitation." Kuroda, who had just met with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, made the remark amid stock routs across Asia.

1:42 p.m. Greece reported its first death from a coronavirus infection. The victim is a 66-year-old man who had returned from a religious pilgrimage to Israel and Egypt in February.

1:40 p.m. China's Hubei Province, epicenter of a coronavirus outbreak, will allow industrial production to resume in some parts of the province and ease travel restrictions in those regions accordingly, Reuters reported. The new measures will apply to the cities of Qianjian and Shishou as well as the counties of Gongan and Zhuxi.

1:30 p.m. Tokyo Gov. Yuriko Koike said canceling the 2020 Olympics, a little more than four months away, is "not an option.'' Speaking after the WHO said the spread of the new coronavirus has become a pandemic, Koike conceded that it is unrealistic to say the WHO's decision will have no impact at all on the games' prospects.

12:45 p.m. The National Basketball Association, one of America's biggest professional sports leagues, announced the indefinite suspension of the season after a Utah Jazz player tested positive for the virus.

12:30 p.m. The Hang Seng Index shed 3.8% to 24,269.06 by noon in Hong Kong, heading for its lowest close since April, 2017.

11:50 a.m. China's National Health Commission said it had confirmed just 15 new infections on the mainland as of the end of Wednesday, with 11 additional deaths. The country's total number of cases stood at 80,793, with the death toll at 3,169.

A man wearing a face mask walks past an electronic board showing Japan's Nikkei share average in Tokyo. Stock markets in Asia are sliding in early trading on March 13, mirroring sharp falls on Wall Street following the WHO declaration that the new coronavirus is now a pandemic. (Photo by Kento Awashima)

11:30 a.m. The benchmark Nikkei stock index closed morning trading at 18,412, down over 5% or 1,003 points from the previous day's finish. The announcement of the U.S. ban on travel from Europe further hurt investor sentiment.

11:00 a.m. Oscar-winning actor Tom Hanks said on Twitter that he and his wife, actress Rita Wilson, have both tested positive for coronavirus. Hanks is currently in Australia for the preproduction stage of an Elvis Presley biopic, according to U.S. media.

10:45 a.m. Tokyo stocks extend losses after U.S. President Donald Trump announces 30-day European travel ban, with the benchmark Nikkei index dropping more than 800 points, or 4%. Hong Kong stocks also opened lower, with the Hang Seng Index dropping more than 2%.

10:36 a.m. South Korea confirmed 114 more cases, raising the total number to 7,869 with 66 deaths.

10:05 a.m. U.S. will suspend all travel from Europe other than the U.K. for 30 days to combat the coronavirus, President Donald Trump said in a televised address.

9:05 a.m. Japan's benchmark Nikkei Stock Average opens more than 2% lower, falling below 19,000 at one point on Thursday, following Wall Street's plunge overnight and the WHO declaring the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic. The yen hovering around 104.55 to the dollar.

7:40 a.m. Italy tightens lockdown imposed to combat the coronavirus, ordering bars, restaurants and beauty parlors to close. "We will only be able to see the effects of this great effort in a couple of weeks," said Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte.

5:31 a.m. Japan's central bank is expected to pledge that it is prepared to buy almost $60 billion a year in exchange traded funds to offset the economic and market turmoil caused by coronavirus fears.

5:00 a.m. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 1,464.94 points lower, or down 5.86%, at 23,553.22 in Wednesday trading. Investors were concerned about the lack of a clear stimulus plan in Washington and the designation of a pandemic by the WHO.

1:52 a.m. Boeing is suspending hiring as the outbreak roils the airline industry. "We're now facing a global economic disruption," CEO Dave Calhoun and CFO Greg Smith wrote to employees, according to CNBC.

1:50 a.m. Dow drops 1,300 points after WHO declares the coronavirus a pandemic.

1:30 a.m. World Health Organization chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus says the coronavirus is now "a pandemic."

1:27 a.m. U.S. President Trump's payroll tax cut plan to address the economic fallout from the outbreak has met resistance in Congress, sending U.S. stocks lower.

1:05 a.m. Starbucks will provide "catastrophe pay" to baristas in the U.S. exposed to the virus, covering up to 14 days.

12:35 a.m. U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Capitol Hill that the administration hopes to reach an initial agreement with Congress within 48 hours on a stimulus package to ease the economic stress caused by the coronavirus, particularly on the travel and hospitality sectors. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer said the vote for a coronavirus bill is planned for Thursday.

Wednesday, March 11

11:50 p.m. The Dow extends losses to 1,000 points as sell-off accelerates. Investors seemed disappointed that details of a U.S. stimulus package remained unclear.

10:30 p.m. U.S. stocks opened lower, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average down 700 points at the opening bell, largely erasing Tuesday's gains.

7:46 p.m. India's Health and Family Welfare Ministry on Wednesday confirmed 10 new cases of Coronavirus. With this, the total number of positive cases in the country now stands at 60, it said in a statement.

6:39 p.m. Philippines reports 16 new confirmed cases, bringing the total number to 49.

4:26 p.m. The Bank of England has announced that it will cut its policy rate by 50 basis points to 0.25% to help the U.K. through the coronavirus scare. It is the U.K. central bank's first rate cut in three and half years. In August 2016 it cut the rate after British voters narrowly elected to leave the European Union.

3:30 p.m. Indonesia reported its first death, a 53-year-old foreign national with underlying conditions. The country's health ministry has not officially announced the nationality of the deceased, but a source confirmed it was a British woman, traveling to Bali with her husband.

3:01 p.m. Japan's benchmark Nikkei stock index closed down 451 points, or 2.27%, on Wednesday, its lowest level since December 2018. The yen was trading at around 104.25 per U.S. dollar at 3 p.m. local time.

12:30 p.m. Coronavirus infections in the U.S. have reached 1,001 with 28 deaths according to Johns Hopkins University. Hard-hit New York state is closing down schools and churches in some areas.

11:26 a.m. Italy's coronavirus deaths jumped 36% to 631 on Tuesday with total infections rising 10% to 10,149 as the country became the second after China to surpass 10,000.

11:20 a.m. Japan's Panasonic will hold a welcoming ceremony for nearly 700 new employees scheduled for April 1 online instead of at the company's Osaka training facility.

10:36 a.m. Jamaica confirms its first case in a woman returning from the U.K. Bolivia confirms its first two cases, while Panama records its first death.

10:26 a.m. South Korea confirms 242 more cases, raising the total number to 7,755 with 60 deaths. A group infections in a Seoul call center raises worries over spread in the capital.

10:02 a.m. China's National Health Commission raised the total number of cases on the mainland to 80,778 as of the end of Tuesday, an increase of 24 from the previous day. The official mainland death toll is 3,158.

9:40 a.m. Australia announces a 2.4 billion Australian dollar ($1.56 billion) health package to contain the outbreak in the country.

9:04 a.m. Japan's benchmark Nikkei stock index opened 0.5% lower on Wednesday, following declines in U.S. equity futures. The yen was hovering around 105 per U.S. dollar.

A Metropolitan Transportation Authority worker disinfects a subway station in New York City on March 4.   © Reuters

8:38 a.m. British junior health minister Nadine Dorries said that she has tested positive for coronavirus and is self-isolating, Reuters reported.

8:33 a.m. U.S. Democratic presidential contenders Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders will have no live audience when they debate each other in Phoenix on Sunday due to health concerns over the coronavirus outbreak, party spokeswoman Xochitl Hinojosa said.

7:05 a.m. Turkey confirmed its first coronavirus case. The health minister said that a man contracted the virus while traveling to Europe.

5:38 a.m. Two weeks after the Japanese government called for canceling concerts and major sports events, experts still see the risk of a surge in new infections.

5:30 a.m. After an up and down trading day, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed more than 1,000 points higher Tuesday, one day after the market suffered the worst session since the financial crisis in 2008.

4:01 a.m. Toyota is scaling back production of Lexus luxury vehicles as sales plummet in China amid the outbreak.

3:56 a.m. U.S. President Donald Trump said he sees no need to be tested for the coronavirus. He recently came into contact with two lawmakers who have since gone into self-quarantine. They had attended a conference with a person who has tested positive. "I spoke to the White House doctor," Trump said, adding "He said he sees no reason to do it. There's no symptoms, no anything."

3:07 a.m. Portugal is suspending all passenger flights to and from Italy for 14 days starting Wednesday.

12:20 a.m. Greece will shut schools, universities and other educational facilities for two weeks, according to the health minister.

12:17 a.m. Japan's busiest bullet train line, connecting Tokyo and Osaka, saw ridership drop 56% in early March as the widening outbreak disrupted travel.

Tuesday, March 10

U.S. President Donald Trump, flanked by Vice President Mike Pence and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, speaks to reporters after meeting with Senate Republicans to discuss the response to the coronavirus outbreak.   © Reuters

11:11 p.m. Spain has banned public events with attendance of more than 1,000 people in Madrid and other hot zones, the health minister said.

8:46 p.m. The UAE has announced 15 new cases, bringing the total to 74.

8:41 p.m. Indonesia just reported eight new cases, bringing the total number to 27. Nearly half of the cases are from the same cluster -- a cafe that hosted a dance event in Jakarta.

8:18 p.m. Japan will bar entry from some regions of Italy starting Wednesday midnight, an immigration bureau official said at briefing.

8:12 p.m. Lebanon recorded its first death from the virus -- a 56-year-old man who local broadcasters said had been in quarantine since returning from Egypt.

7:41 p.m. Japan health ministry officials said the outbreak is currently "under control" but the government is still preparing for the worst. They said the country can run 6,000 tests a day and aims to raise the capacity to 7,000 by the end of the month. Japan currently has 498 active cases, including asymptomatic carriers, and the rate is increasing by about 30 a day.

5:20 p.m. The last of the converted hospitals set up in Wuhan to treat new coronavirus patients with mild symptoms was closed on Tuesday, according to the Paper, a news website backed by the Shanghai government.

A sports arena that served as a makeshift hospital receives a dose of disinfectant after the last group of patients was discharged on March 8, 2020.    © Reuters

4:42 p.m. Burkina Faso, Brunei, Cyprus, the Channel Islands, Mongolia and Brunei have reported their first cases, according to Reuters.

4:04 p.m. The Philippines reported 9 more confirmed cases, bringing its total to 33.

3:57 p.m. Jack Ma, founder of China's Alibaba Group Holding, donated 100,000 face masks to Tokyo, where the items have disappeared from drugstore shelves, the Tokyo Metropolitan Government said. China Construction Bank, meanwhile, has donated 50,000 face masks to Tokyo.

3:19 p.m. The International Table Tennis Federation postponed next month's ITTF World Tour Japan Open due to coronavirus concerns. The tournament had been scheduled for April 21 to April 26 in Kyushu. Many sports events in Japan, including professional, have been postponed.

3 p.m. Tokyo stocks rebounded after an early dive as investor sentiment recovered with new developments including news that U.S. President Donald Trump will discuss a payroll tax cut with congressional Republicans. The Nikkei Stock Average ended at 19,867, up 168 from the previous day's close.

12:30 p.m. Chinese President Xi Jinping visited Wuhan, the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak, for the first time since the epidemic started late last year, state media reported. The Hubei province government is studying plans to allow people in areas at a medium or low risk of contracting the coronavirus to start traveling, state media reported.

11:40 a.m. Bank of Japan Gov. Haruhiko Kuroda reiterated the central bank will "act appropriately as needed without hesitation," while revealing the BOJ's holdings of exchange-traded funds (ETF) may incur paper losses once the benchmark Nikkei Stock Average falls below 19,500. The Nikkei index ended the morning trading at 19,405, down 293 from the previous day's close.

11:30 a.m. Qantas Airways said it will cut its international capacity by almost 25% over the next six months and delay an order for Airbus A350 planes to deal with a decline in passenger demand caused by the coronavirus.

11:05 a.m. Panama reported its first coronavirus infection as a woman who had traveled from Spain tested positive for the virus in the Central American country. Her nationality was not disclosed.

10:28 a.m. South Korea confirmed 131 new cases, raising its total number to 7,513, with 54 deaths. The rate of daily new cases there has been slowing since the weekend.

9:39 a.m. Tokyo after a record one-day plunge in New York, with the benchmark Nikkei average dropping below 19,000 at one point in early morning trading.

9:20 a.m. China's National Health Commission said it had confirmed 19 new cases of infections in the mainland for Sunday, bringing the total number to 80,754. The official mainland death toll is 3,136, up 17 from a day earlier.

7. a.m. Israel will require all international arrivals -- citizens and foreign nationals alike -- to self-quarantine for 14 days as a precaution against the virus, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Monday. The country has 42 confirmed infections.

6:30 a.m. Italy's prime minister that had been confined to the north nationwide, telling people to stay home and seek permission before embarking on "essential travel." He added: "There won't be just a red zone. There will be Italy."

6:00 a.m. Futures point to another turbulent start for Asia-Pacific markets after a grim day to remember in U.S. trading.

4:37 a.m. The Grand Princess cruise ship, which is carrying a cluster of coronavirus cases, has arrived at a port in the San Francisco Bay Area, posing health authorities with the challenge of unloading passengers.

2:00 a.m. The coronavirus is closer to causing a pandemic, but it would be one that "could be controlled," said the World Health Organization's director-general, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

1:30 a.m. Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has canceled school in Metropolitan Manila from March 10 to March 14 as the number of confirmed cases climbed to 24 Monday night.

A worker disinfects a high school classroom in San Juan, Metro Manila, Philippines.   © Reuters

1:00 a.m. China has postponed its annual gathering of the Boao Forum for Asia, Beijing's answer to Davos, on fears of the coronavirus, Reuters reported.

12:30 a.m. U.S. schools should consider rescheduling or canceling study abroad programs, a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention official said.

Monday, March 9

11:50 p.m. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to Bangladesh on Mar. 17 has been canceled after coronavirus infections were confirmed there.

11:47 p.m. U.S. stocks nose-dived as plunging oil prices added to fears of the coronavirus' impact on the global economy. U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted: "Nothing is shut down, life & the economy go on."

10:06 p.m. Vietnam suspended visa-free travel for citizens of eight European countries on Monday after a sharp rise in infections in the Southeast Asian nation.

9:15 p.m. Hard-hit Iran has temporarily released about 70,000 prisoners in hopes of curbing the spread of the virus, Reuters reported, citing the head of the judiciary.

9:03 p.m. Indonesia confirmed 13 new cases today, bringing its total to 19. Malaysia announced another 18, raising its tally to 117. Malaysian Health Director-General Noor Hisham Abdullah told reporters that the country would emulate China and urge citizens who are unwell to stay home, while promoting good hygiene.

8:00 p.m. The Tokyo Olympics are still months away, but the outbreak is already disrupting one event: the torch lighting ceremony. Reuters reported that the event planned for Thursday in the ancient Greek town of Olympia will be held without spectators. Plans to send children from Japan to Greece for the ceremony had already been scrapped.

7:40 p.m. Germany has confirmed another 210 infections, Reuters reported, citing the Robert Koch Institute. This brings the European manufacturing powerhouse's case total to 1,112.

5:51 p.m. The number of confirmed cases in the Philippines has jumped to 20 from five last Friday, the country's health department said. President Rodrigo Duterte declared state of public health emergency on Sunday.

Tourists are seen at an almost empty Asiatique night market in Bangkok.   © Reuters

5:14 p.m. The Japanese professional baseball league has decided to postpone the season opener which had been scheduled on March 20. It is the first postponement of the opening since 2011 when a major earthquake and subsequent tsunami hit the country.

4:40 p.m. Japan Airlines said one of its cabin attendants has tested positive for coronavirus, Japan's latest confirmed infection. As of 10 p.m. on Sunday, Japan had confirmed 479 cases, in addition to 703 people from the cruise ship Diamond Princess.

3:50 p.m. The number of tourists visiting Thailand fell 44.3% in February from a year earlier due to the coronavirus, with visitors from China -- Thailand's biggest source of tourists -- tumbling 85.3%.

3 p.m. Tokyo stocks ended lower with the Nikkei average closing below 20,000 for the first time in 14 months. Bank of Japan Gov. Haruhiko Kuroda said before the close that the central bank "would take appropriate action as needed without hesitation," but failed to have an impact on the market.

12:30 p.m. Walt Disney Co.'s Shanghai Disneyland said it will partially resume operations at its resort, although the main theme park will remain closed due to coronavirus concerns. The theme park had been shut from Jan. 25.

12:10 p.m. The operator of cruise ship Costa Fortuna said it was heading to Singapore to end its journey on Tuesday as planned, after it was rejected from ports in Malaysia and Thailand over coronavirus fears, Reuters reported. Italian cruise line Costa Crociere said there were no suspected virus cases among its guests.

Medical workers in protective gears walk into a hospital facility to treat coronavirus patients in Daegu, South Korea on March 8.   © Reuters

11:30 a.m. Tokyo stocks plunged amid uncertainties over the virus, falling oil prices and a strengthening yen. The benchmark Nikkei closed morning trade at 19,437, down 1,276 points from Friday's close, while the safe-haven yen soared at one point to the 101-yen range against the dollar.

10:30 a.m. South Korea confirmed 367 new cases, raising the total in the country to 7,382 while the death toll stood at 50.

10:06 a.m. Mainland China outside Hubei Province reported no new locally transmitted cases on Sunday for the second straight day. Wuhan reported 36. The country recorded 40 new cases on Sunday -- down from 44 on Saturday -- and the lowest since the nation's health authority started publishing data on Jan. 20. Sunday's cases brought the total in China to 80,735, while 22 fatalities on the day upped the death toll to 3,119.

9:06 a.m. The cruise ship Grand Princess barred from returning to port in San Francisco due to a coronavirus outbreak on board will dock briefly at a nearby terminal in Oakland, where its 2,400 passengers will be unloaded and sent on to medical and quarantine sites elsewhere, California Governor Gavin Newsom told a news conference on Sunday. Nearly all 1,100 crew members will remain on board the vessel

2:45 a.m. Bangladesh on Sunday confirmed its first three cases of coronavirus in the south Asian country, said the Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research. The affected people, aged between 20 and 35, include two who returned home from Italy recently, IEDCR Director Meerjady Sabrina told reporters.

2:35 a.m. French health authorities reported three new coronavirus deaths on Sunday, taking the country's death toll from the outbreak to 19, as the number of reported infections also rose. The total number of confirmed cases came to 1,126 as of 1400 GMT on Sunday, public health officials said.

2:35 a.m. The death toll from an outbreak of coronavirus in Italy has leapt by 133 to 366, the Civil Protection Agency said on Sunday, by far the largest daily rise in fatalities since the outbreak came to light last month. The total number of cases in Italy leapt 25% to 7,375 from 5,883 on Saturday, Reuters reported.

Sunday, March 8

7:42 p.m. Iran's health ministry said on Sunday that total coronavirus cases have risen to 6,566, while the death toll has reached 194, according to state television, Reuters reported.

4:46 p.m. Chinese public opinion of Beijing's response to the new coronavirus has undergone a wild reversal in the weeks since the epidemic began, with online comments turning from bitter criticism into loud applause.

4:25 p.m. Italy imposed a virtual lockdown across a swathe of its wealthy north on Sunday, including the financial capital Milan, in a drastic new attempt to try to contain a rapidly growing outbreak of coronavirus. The unprecedented restrictions, which will impact some 16 million people and stay in force until April 3, were signed into law overnight by Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte.

3:52 p.m. The Maldives has curbed movement on several resort islands, authorities said on Sunday, after the country reported its first two cases of coronavirus. The two infected people, who are both staff at the Kuredu Island Resort, tested positive late on Saturday. They are believed to have caught the disease from an Italian tourist who has returned to Italy and tested positive there.

Serie A football game between AC Milan and Genoa is being played behind closed doors to spectators on March 8 as the number of coronavirus cases grow around the world.   © Reuters

3:22 p.m. Six people have died in the collapse of a hotel in the Chinese city of Quanzhou, the Ministry of Emergency Management said on Sunday, after state media said the place was being used to quarantine individuals under observation for the coronavirus.

9:54 a.m. Health authorities in mainland China on Sunday reported 44 new confirmed cases of the COVID-19 coronavirus by the end of March 7, a decrease from 99 the day prior. That brings the total number of confirmed cases in China to 80,695 by the end of March 7. Authorities reported 27 new deaths on March 7, down from 28 deaths on March 6.

3:49 a.m. Sixteen people in France have died from coronavirus, the head of the country's public health service, Jerome Salomon, said on Saturday, an increase of five since the previous toll, Reuters reported. France now has 949 confirmed cases of coronavirus, Salomon said.

Saturday, March 7

11:44 p.m. About 70 people were trapped on Saturday after a hotel being used for coronavirus quarantine collapsed in the Chinese city of Quanzhou in Fujian Province, the city's authority said on its website. The building collapsed at about 7:30 p.m. (1130 GMT) and 34 people were rescued in the following two hours, the Quanzhou authorities said.

11:33 p.m. The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the United Kingdom has risen to 206, a rise of 43, British health officials said on Saturday. So far in Britain, two patients who had confirmed positive for the virus have died.

11:10 p.m. Shanghai increased airport screening on Saturday as imported coronavirus infections from countries such as Italy and Iran emerge as the biggest source of new cases in China outside Hubei, the province where the outbreak originated, Reuters reported. Mainland China had 99 new confirmed cases on Friday, according to official data. Of the 25 that were outside Hubei, 24 came from outside China.

10:01 p.m. Pope Francis has canceled his main public appearances on Sunday and Wednesday to avoid crowds gathering to see him and will stream them on the internet from inside the Vatican because of the coronavirus outbreak in Italy. The 83-year-old pope canceled a Lent retreat for the first time in his papacy, but the Vatican has said he is suffering only from a cold that is "without symptoms related to other pathologies."

9:17 p.m. The leader of Italy's co-ruling Democratic Party Nicola Zingaretti said on Saturday he had tested positive for coronavirus, Reuters reported.

7:21 p.m. South Korea's coronavirus cases jumped to 7,041 on Saturday, up by 448 from the previous day, the death toll rose by two to 46, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC).

6:50 p.m. Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte will declare a public health emergency to help contain the spread of the coronavirus, after the country recorded its first case of community transmission, officials said on Saturday.

6:25 p.m. The Shincheonji Church of Jesus has come under the spotlight at home and abroad since the South Korean religious sect became a hotbed of the country's explosively spreading coronavirus outbreak. More than 1.2 million people have signed a petition on the presidential Blue House's website calling for the sect to be forcibly disbanded. But it is also pointed out that South Korean society itself is partly responsible for Shincheonji's rapid growth as it has failed to extend a helping hand to young people in distress.

2:18 p.m. China's exports fell 17.2% in January-February from the same period a year earlier, customs data showed on Saturday, marking the steepest fall since February 2019.

10:25 a.m. South Korea reported 483 new cases, bringing its total to 6,767 with 44 deaths.

9:30 a.m. China's National Health Commission confirmed 99 new mainland infections as of the end of Thursday, down from 143 cases a day earlier, bringing the total accumulated number to 80,651. The death toll climbed to 3,070, up by 28 from the previous day.

7:43 a.m. The Dow Jones industrial average ended Friday down 256 points after plunging almost 900 points earlier in the day. Investors continued to be concerned about the impact of the virus outbreak on supply chains and consumer demand, but White House adviser Larry Kudlow said that the administration was considering targeted measures to help the economy. The index eked out a small gain for the week.

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

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