This is CNBC’s live blog covering all the latest news on the coronavirus outbreak. This blog will be updated throughout the day as the news breaks.
- Global cases: At least 2,152,647.
- Global deaths: At least 143,802.
- Most cases reported: United States (667,801), Spain (184,948), Italy (168,941), France (147,091), and Germany (137,698).
The data above was compiled by Johns Hopkins University as of 8:05 a.m. Beijing time.
All times below are in Beijing time.
10:10 am: China says its economy shrank by 6.8% in the first quarter as the country battled coronavirus
China reported that its first quarter GDP contracted by 6.8% in 2020 from a year ago as the world’s second largest economy took a huge hit from the coronavirus outbreak, data from the National Bureau of Statistics of China showed.
The contraction in the first quarter would also be the first decline since at least 1992, when official quarterly GDP records started, according to Reuters. The world’s second largest economy came to standstill earlier this year as Beijing implemented large-scale shutdowns and quarantines to limit human contact in order to contain the coronavirus outbreak.
In the first quarter, retail sales in China fell 19% from a year ago while industrial production fell 8.4% in the same period, data from the bureau showed. — Huileng Tan, Evelyn Cheng
9:30 am: Mainland China reports 26 new cases, no new deaths
China’s National Health Commission (NHC) said there were 26 new confirmed cases as of April 16, of which 15 were attributed to travelers coming from overseas. That brings the country’s total to 82,367 cases, the NHC said.
No new deaths were reported, and the total number of fatalities remained at 3,342, according to the NHC.
Separately, there were 66 new asymptomatic cases, where people tested positive for the virus but did not show any symptoms. That brings its number of asymptomatic cases currently under medical observation to 1,038, the NHC said. — Weizhen Tan
9:05 am: Australia could keep coronavirus restrictions for another year, its prime minister says
Australia could keep imposing restrictions to curb the virus spread for another year, its Prime Minister Scott Morrison said, according to a Reuters report.
He said that some social distancing measures, such as requiring people to stand at least 1.5 meters apart, could be in place for several months more.
“Social distancing is something we should get very used to,” Morrison told radio station 3AW, according to the report. “It could be a year, but I’m not speculating about that.”
However, he pushed for the reopening of schools, citing medical advice that children are a low risk of transmission, said the report. — Weizhen Tan
8:35 am: Investors wait for China’s GDP data
China’s first-quarter GDP data, set to be released Friday morning, will be closely watched as economists assess the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. Efforts to contain the virus have hit China’s key manufacturing sectors and other parts of the economy badly.
A Reuters poll showed China’s economy is forecast to have shrunk 6.5% in the first quarter from a year ago. That would reverse a 6% expansion in the previous quarter and mark the first decline since at least 1992, according to Reuters. — Weizhen Tan
8:10 am: Singapore reports another record for daily new cases
Singapore reported 728 new cases as of noon on April 16, yet another daily record high this week and drastically higher than the previous high of 447 reported for Wednesday. This week, the Southeast Asian country has reported a spike in the number of infections after managing to keep numbers low earlier in the outbreak.
Most of the new cases were foreign workers who are housed in dormitories, at which several infection clusters have been found. The men, typically from other Asian countries, work mostly in the construction sector.
The number of fatalities overall in the city-state remained at 10, with the total number of cases now at 4,427. — Weizhen Tan
Foreign workers are seen outside their dormitory rooms at Cochrane Lodge II, which was declared as an isolation area on April 16, 2020 in Singapore.
Suhaimi Abdullah/Getty Images
All times below are in Eastern time.
6:58 pm: Dr. Deborah Birx outlines the White House’s plan to reopen the US economy
6:22 pm: Dow futures rip 700 points higher amid report Gilead drug showing effectiveness treating coronavirus
5:14 pm: Gilead stock surges after report says drug trial shows encouraging early results
Gilead Sciences shares surged by more than 10% in after-hours trading after an industry publication said Covid-19 patients being treated with the company’s antiviral drug Remdesivir appear to have “rapid recoveries in fever and respiratory symptoms.”
STAT News said a doctor running a Chicago-based hospital conducting a closely watched trial on the drug found that most of its patients had been discharged in less than a week.
There are no proven therapies to treat Covid-19, which has infected more than 2 million worldwide as of Thursday night, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.
Some health authorities in the U.S. and China have been using Remdesivir, which was tested as a possible treatment for the Ebola outbreak, in hopes that the drug can reduce the duration of the virus in patients. —Berkeley Lovelace Jr.