(Reuters) - Officials beseeched Americans to stay at home and redouble efforts to curtail the pandemic, while governments across Europe tried to navigate a fine line between avoiding super-spreading the virus and allowing families to celebrate Christmas.
DEATHS AND INFECTIONS
- For an interactive graphic tracking the global spread of COVID-19, open here in an external browser.
- Eikon users, see COVID-19: MacroVitals here for a case tracker and summary of news.
- The UK’s four nations agreed to relax restrictions for Christmas, while Germany’s 16 federal states planned to allow gatherings of up to 10 people over Christmas and New Year.
- Spain will propose a “different” Christmas and New Year under restrictions with just six people at parties, and Italy’s prime minister warned citizens not to go skiing during the holidays.
- The European Union has struck a deal for up to 160 million doses of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine candidate, taking the EU’s potential stock of COVID-19 shots to nearly 2 billion.
- U.S. state and federal officials defended unpopular public health measures as record hospitalizations pushed healthcare professionals to the brink.
- U.S. officials plan to release 6.4 million COVID-19 vaccine doses nationwide in an initial distribution after the first one is cleared by regulators for emergency use.
- Eli Lilly and Co signed an agreement with the Canadian government to supply 26,000 doses of its COVID-19 antibody drug.
- Colombian first lady Maria Juliana Ruiz has tested positive, but is asymptomatic.
- Australia will lift more internal border curbs to boost tourism as it plans to obtain its first vaccines in March.
- Malaysia said it would close some factories of the world’s biggest rubber glove maker as more than 2,000 of its workers had tested positive.
MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA
- Iran plans to use foreign vaccines while also developing its own, President Hassan Rouhani said as new daily cases hit a record high.
- South Africa is going with the COVAX global COVID-19 vaccine distribution scheme, with a committed purchase for 10% of its population of 58 million, a senior health official said.
- Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine will cost less than $20 per person on international markets and Moscow aims to produce more than a billion doses at home and abroad next year, its backers and developers said.
- AstraZeneca must prove its claim that its potential vaccine has the lowest price of the main candidates so far, non-governmental organisation Medecins Sans Frontieres said.
- U.S. stocks rallied on Tuesday, with the Dow piercing the 30,000 level for the first time, as investors anticipated a 2021 economic recovery on progress on coronavirus vaccines and the formal clearance for President-elect Joe Biden’s transition to the White House.
- U.S. consumer confidence fell more than expected in November amid a widespread resurgence in new infections and business restrictions.
- Germany’s gross domestic product grew by a record 8.5% in the third quarter as Europe’s largest economy partly recovered from an unprecedented plunge caused by the first wave of the pandemic in spring, but the outlook is clouded by a second wave of infections and a partial lockdown.
- French business confidence dropped in November to a five-month low as the country entered a new coronavirus lockdown, hitting the services sector particularly hard.
Compiled by Devika Syamnth and Anita Kobylinska; Edited by Ed Osmond and Sriraj Kalluvila
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