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People wearing protective masks are reflected in the window as a worker disinfects the door to prevent the spread of Covid-19 in Hudson, New York, U.S., on Sunday, June 28, 2020. As part of the phase 3 of reopening, the city of Hudson has implemented a "Shared Summer Streets" program that will allow businesses and pedestrians the space needed to operate with social distancing.

Coronavirus cases approach 11 million: Global virus update

People wearing protective masks are reflected in the window as a worker disinfects the door to prevent the spread of Covid-19 in Hudson, New York, U.S., on Sunday, June 28, 2020. As part of the phase 3 of reopening, the city of Hudson has implemented a "Shared Summer Streets" program that will allow businesses and pedestrians the space needed to operate with social distancing.

Key Developments:

  • Global Tracker: Global cases pass 10.7 million; Deaths top 516,700
  • Life, liberty and face masks: a virus preys on America
  • Retail apocalypse gets grimmer for U.K. landlords
  • Understanding the virus and its unanswered questions
  • COVID-19 isn’t killing cash. People are hoarding more of it
  • The post-pandemic hotel looks a lot like a cruise ship

US Mortgage Rates Fall to a Record Low for 30-Year Loans

Mortgage rates in the US have dropped to another record low — the fifth since the COVID-19 pandemic started rattling financial markets worldwide.

The average for a 30-year fixed loan was 3.07%, the lowest in almost 50 years of data-keeping by Freddie Mac. The previous record was 3.13%, which held for two weeks.

England’s Infection Rate Has Levelled Off: ONS  

An average of 0.04% of the community population, the equivalent of 25,000 people, had Covid-19 between June 14 and June 27, the Office for National Statistics estimated. The figure was 0.06% in the previous two-week period and more than 0.3% when the survey started in April. Estimates are based on tests performed on a sampling of people outside of hospitals, care homes and other institutional settings.

US June Jobs Rise Above-Forecast 4.8 Million

The rebound in the US labour market accelerated in June as broader reopenings spurred more hiring, though filings for unemployment benefits remained elevated last week as coronavirus cases picked up. Payrolls rose by 4.8 million in June after an upwardly revised 2.7 million gain in the prior month, according to a Labor Department report. The unemployment rate fell for a second month to 11.1%, still far above the pre-pandemic half-century low of 3.5%.

England’s Schools to Reopen From September

Restrictions on class sizes will be lifted to allow English schools, colleges and nurseries to fully reopen in September, at the start of the next academic year, Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said. Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s government is trying to persuade schools to return to normal, amid concerns that pupils are falling behind in their education and parents are unable to work effectively while educating their children.

EU Seeks to Secure Remdesivir Doses

The European Union is in negotiations with Gilead on the possibility of reserving a “sufficient number of doses” of remdesivir for the bloc’s member states, a European Commission spokesman told reporters.

Audi Sees Swift Profit Recovery From Next Year After Virus Hit

Audi expects earnings to rebound quickly as Volkswagen AG’s premium-car division boosts restructuring efforts under new Chief Executive Officer Markus Duesmann.

Operating profit should reach 4.2 billion euros ($4.7 billion) next year and almost 5.8 billion euros in 2022, with the latter topping pre-crisis levels, the German carmaker said on its website. The numbers are based on an analysis by PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Kazakhstan’s Leader for Life Recovers From Virus

Kazakhstan’s former President Nursultan Nazarbayev, 79, tested negative for coronavirus after contracting the disease last month, according to a statement on Twitter. Nazarbayev holds the title “leader of the nation” and is head of the Security Council for life even though he handpicked Kassym-Jomart Tokayev as his successor in March 2019.

China Vehicle Sales Rise for Third Month

Vehicle sales advanced for a third straight month in China, signalling that an economic rebound is gathering pace as the pandemic gradually abates in the country.

Sales of passenger cars such as sedans and SUVs, as well as commercial vehicles, increased 11% in June from a year earlier to 2.28 million units, the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers said Thursday in a statement, citing preliminary figures.

Fauci Sees Need for Multiple Vaccines

The world needs more than one vaccine to tackle the pandemic, said Anthony Fauci, director of the US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. Oxford’s vaccine project is currently ahead of others, Fauci told the BBC.

France Says Virus Contained

All indicators are showing the coronavirus is under control in France after the some 200 clusters identified since lockdown measures were loosened were contained, French Health Minister Olivier Veran said in an interview on RTL radio.

The government is putting in place new restrictions in French Guiana, where cases have increased and is increasing nationwide testing this week to around 300,000. Any reopening of night clubs would be problematic, Veran said.

Tokyo New Cases at Highest in Two Months

Tokyo found 107 new coronavirus cases on Thursday, the most since May 2. “We are at the stage where we must urge caution over the infection,” Governor Yuriko Koike said.

US Cases Top 50,000 for First Time Ever

US daily cases rose above 50,000 for the first time ever on the first day of July, according to data from Johns Hopkins University and Bloomberg News.

South Korea Confirms 54 Coronavirus Cases

South Korea found 54 more confirmed Covid-19 cases in 24 hours, raising the total tally to 12,904, according to data from Korea Centers for Disease Control & Prevention.

Of the new cases 44 were locally infected, while 10 were imported. The death toll remained unchanged at 282.