Health and Science

More states reopen bars, CA says hair salons and barbershops can reopen in most counties

The New York Stock Exchange partially reopens trading floor after two months of closure due to coronavirus
The NYSE partially reopens trading floor after closure due to coronavirus

U.S. coronavirus deaths are approaching 100,000, more than double that of any other country, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. Across the country, more states reopened bars and lifted retail restrictions as California Governor Gavin Newsom announced that hair salons and barber shops could reopen in most counties under new guidelines.

Merck, meanwhile, has entered the vaccine race, announcing Tuesday it has teamed up with research nonprofit IAVI to develop a potential candidate. 

The coverage on this live blog has ended — but for up-to-the-minute coverage on the coronavirus, visit the live blog from CNBC's U.S. team. 

  • Global cases: More than 5.58 million
  • Global deaths: At least 350,423
  • U.S. cases: More than 1.68 million
  • U.S. deaths: At least 98,902

The data above was compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

No-lockdown Sweden balks at the possibility it could be excluded as Nordics reopen borders

09:30 a.m. (London time): As Sweden's Nordic neighbors look to reopen borders and lift travel restrictions, worries over Stockholm's controversial coronavirus strategy (unlike its neighbors, Sweden did not impose a lockdown) has increased concerns that it could be excluded from those plans.

Sweden's Foreign Minister Ann Linde said that the EU had cautioned against discriminating when opening borders, and that any decision to exclude the country from an agreement between the Nordic states would be a political decision.

"It is a very complicated issue, and I think that all politicians in every country should also look at the long-term effect before they take very politically-motivated decisions," she told reporters at a briefing in Stockholm Tuesday. — Holly Ellyatt

Spain is deploying a basic income to ease economic hit from coronavirus

09:00 (London time): Some Spanish citizens are to receive additional financial help as the government pushes through the first nationwide basic income, but there are doubts whether the initiative will reduce high levels of unemployment and inequality in the country.

The Socialist-led coalition government will be spending about 3 billion euros ($3.29 billion) every year to support poorer citizens. The basic income is meant to reach 850,000 households and 2.5 million citizens. Spain has a population of about 46 million people.

The plan to install a basic income was a pre-electoral promise, but it was accelerated due to the coronavirus pandemic and its economic fallout. — Silvia Amaro

A logistics center in South Korea has authorities worried about a new outbreak

3:07 p.m. (Singapore time) – South Korean health authorities are concerned about the rise in new coronavirus cases linked to a logistics center in Bucheon, Yonhap News reported.

There were at least 36 virus cases linked to the facility as of Wednesday morning, Yonhap said, citing the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The first related case was said to have been confirmed on Sunday. Some 3,600 people linked to the logistics center are being tested, Yonhap said.

South Korea had one of the first major outbreaks outside China but a combination of strict social distancing measures and mass testing appeared to have contained the virus' spread in recent months. – Saheli Roy Choudhury

Italians embrace their freedom but crowded beaches and nightlife worry officials

2:59 p.m. (Singapore time) – Italy is one of the worst-affected European countries and after being in a strict lockdown, Italians are heading to the beaches and piazzas to celebrate their freedom. But, officials are warning that people are not paying enough attention to the dangers of a second wave of infection.

Regional Affairs Minister Francesco Boccia told La Stampa newspaper that if mass social gatherings continue, Italy will not be able to open up travel between regions, as expected in the next phase of lifting the lockdown. "I understand the young people, but we cannot cancel the efforts (made): at the end of the week the government will evaluate the situation based on the number of infections," Boccia said."

"We must not forget that we are still facing Covid-19 and so those who fuel a movida are betraying the sacrifices made by millions of Italians," he warned. – Holly Ellyatt, Saheli Roy Choudhury

Europe is set to unveil new stimulus package for coronavirus

2:36 p.m. (Singapore time) – The European Commission is due to announce its new stimulus package Wednesday in a bid to support markets in the region as the region struggles to recover in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. 

Today's proposal by European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen will be building on the plan unveiled by France and Germany last week.

The two countries suggested raising debt to support European economies, in a move that was significant as Germany previously opposed the notion of European debt. The move suggests that the EU could be heading toward a fiscal union, which will be important for the stability of the region. – Silvia Amaro

LA Mayor says retail stores can welcome shoppers if they meet county guidelines

9:28 a.m. (Singapore time) — Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said retail stores can restart their businesses again from Wednesday if they meet county guidelines, NBC Los Angeles reported.

Still, personal services like hair salons will not be allowed to reopen yet, while dine-in options at restaurants will still not be permitted, according to NBC Los Angeles.

Garcetti's announcement came after Gov. Gavin Newsom said California will allow most counties to reopen salons and barbershops with increased health modifications. — Saheli Roy Choudhury

Twitter fact-checks Trump, slaps warning labels on his tweets about mail-in ballots

U.S. President Donald Trump makes remarks during an event on protecting seniors with diabetes, in the Rose Garden at the White House on May 26, 2020 in Washington, DC.
Win McNamee | Getty Images

8:15 p.m. ET — President Trump's favorite social media platform, Twitter, for the first time Tuesday began fact-checking his posts by applying warning labels to two of his tweets that made misleading claims about mail-in voting.

In links attached to the labels, Twitter pushed back on multiple "unsubstantiated" claims made by Trump in the tweets. The links cited reporting by CNN, The Washington Post and other news outlets. Trump's critics have long called on Twitter to take action against Trump's use of the platform. Of the 18,000-plus false or misleading claims Trump has made as president, more than 3,300 of them were made in tweets, according to The Washington Post.

Trump on Tuesday night accused Twitter of interfering in the 2020 election by "saying my statement on Mail-In Ballots, which will lead to massive corruption and fraud, is incorrect."

"Twitter is completely stifling FREE SPEECH, and I, as President, will not allow it to happen!," he added in another tweet. —Kevin Breuninger, Dan Mangan

'Stay at home' tech stocks fall as some pandemic lockdowns end

Getty Images

7:45 p.m. — Stocks that once were boosted by consumers staying home faced pressure Tuesday, as investors became optimistic of a potential coronavirus vaccine and reopening of the economy.

Shares of Netflix, Shopify, Peloton and Zoom, all companies that once benefited from people sheltering in place across the country, closed lower. Netflix stock, which hit a 52-week high last week, closed down 3.4%. E-commerce platform Shopify, which supplies businesses with means to sell products online, dropped nearly 7% after reaching a 52-week high Tuesday. Shares of Peloton, a digital fitness company, dropped nearly 9%. Zoom, the videoconferencing software company that drew massive users, dropped more than 4%.

The idea that society may be reopening sooner rather than later could mean that consumers will return to some of their old habits, spending less time at home. —Jessica Bursztynsky

Katie Miller, press secretary for U.S. Vice President Mike Pence , helps prepare for the daily coronavirus task force briefing at the White House in Washington, U.S. March 10, 2020. Picture taken March 10, 2020.
Jonathan Ernst | Reuters

7:30 p.m. ET — Vice President Mike Pence's spokeswoman returned to work, sharing two bits of good news: She's tested negative repeatedly for the coronavirus and she's expecting a baby.

Katie Miller, who is Pence's press secretary, had been off from work since May 8, when she revealed she had tested positive for Covid-19.

Miller's diagnosis came a day after news broke that one of the personal valets who serves President Donald Trump had tested positive as well. In a Twitter post on Tuesday, Miller said that she is "Back at work today after three NEGATIVE COVID tests."

"Thank you to all my amazing doctors and everyone who reached out with support," wrote Miller. "I couldn't have done it without my amazing husband who took great care of his pregnant wife."

Miller is married to Stephen Miller, a senior advisor to Trump. —Dan Mangan

Domino's U.S. sales spike in April and May

Javanshir Hajizada gets ready for a bicycle delivery for Domino's Pizza, which is hiring drivers, on March 25, 2020 in Boston.
David L. Ryan | Boston Globe | Getty Images

7:01 p.m. ET — Domino's said that its domestic same-store sales climbed 14% during the first two months of its second quarter.

CEO Ritch Allison said that the pizza chain has benefited from the broader consumer shift to delivery and carryout, but it is uncertain how long that trend will continue.

Its international segment is under more pressure, as some markets still struggle with temporary store closures and operating limitations. —Amelia Lucas

Local TV stations air Amazon-produced segment on warehouse workers

6:47 p.m. ET — Local television stations are airing a segment produced by Amazon promoting its coronavirus safety measures.

The segment, which includes pre-recorded footage and interviews, promises to give outlets a "first look" at how it's keeping "its associates healthy and safe." It comes as Amazon faces mounting pressure from workers across the country to do more to protect them from catching the coronavirus.

An Amazon spokesperson told CNBC that the segment wasn't crafted to reframe the story about its warehouse working conditions. Annie Palmer

Cboe to reopen trading floor on June 8

An American flag flies outside the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) in Chicago, Illinois.
Jim Young | Bloomberg | Getty Images

6:30 p.m. ET — Cboe Global Markets plans to reopen its options trading floor in Chicago on June 8.

The company said it has developed safety protocols to protect traders and will reconfigure the trading floor layout, CNBC's Fred Imbert reports. Traders will also be required to wear masks and there will be medical screenings at building entry points. The floor has been closed for more than two months because of the pandemic. —Hannah Miller

Ford pauses production at Missouri plant

6 p.m. ET — Ford Motor partially paused production at its massive Kansas City Assembly plant in Missouri to deep clean a work area due to an employee being diagnosed with Covid-19.

The company halted production of the Ford Transit van for about an hour Tuesday, a company spokeswoman said. Production of the F-150 full-size pickup, which the plant also produces, was not impacted, she said.

Ford, in a statement said, officials notified people known to have been in close contact with the infected individual and asked them to self-quarantine for 14 days. "The safety of our workforce is our top priority. Working closely with the UAW and external experts in infectious disease and epidemiology, we have developed safety standards to protect our workforce," the company said.

"In this instance, our protocol calls for us to deep clean and disinfect the employees' work area, equipment, team area and the path that the employee took while at the plant today." The pause in operations is at least the fourth for Ford since beginning to restart production of its U.S. assembly plants on May 18. UAW members for the Detroit automakers are being paid during quarantine. The pay method may vary on a case by case basis and by company contract. —Michael Wayland

Google will give employees up to $1,000 for work-from-home expenses

Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai gestures during a session at the World Economic Forum annual meeting in Davos.
Fabrice Coffrini | AFP | Getty Images

5:45 p.m. ET — Google CEO Sundar Pichai told employees in an email that they will receive up to $1,000 to cover the cost of equipment to help them continue to work from home.

The message came alongside updates to Google's timeline for bringing its people back to offices. Pichai said Google will start reopening more of its facilities on July 6, suggesting that buildings would be about 10% occupied, and reach 30% occupancy in September. —Jordan Novet

Merck to approach vaccine in 'very aggressive fashion,' CEO says

5:30 p.m. ET — Pharmaceutical giant Merck plans to approach its coronavirus vaccine development "in a responsible" but "very aggressive fashion" as pressure mounts to find a vaccine to prevent Covid-19, the company's CEO told CNBC.

Merck CEO Kenneth Frazier stressed the importance of making a vaccine to prevent Covid-19 widely available, saying "until all of us are safe, none of us are safe." The coronavirus has shown "that it does not respect borders," spreading to both high and low-income countries, he said. Earlier in the day, Merck announced that it plans to work alongside nonprofit scientific research organization IAVI to develop a potential vaccine against the coronavirus.

Merck CEO on Covid-19 testing and vaccine development
Merck CEO on Covid-19 testing and vaccine development

Disney to submit reopening proposal

5 p.m. ET — Disney announced that Walt Disney World Resort executives will submit a reopening proposal on Wednesday to the Orange County Economic Recovery Task Force in Florida. The proposal plans for a phased reopening of the resort's theme parks.

The entertainment giant said earlier this month that it suffered a $1 billion loss in revenue during the second quarter after its parks, cruises and stores shuttered amid the pandemic.

Disney's U.S. parks have been closed since mid-March, but Shanghai Disneyland reopened May 11. —Hannah Miller

Disney to submit Florida reopening proposal to county officials tomorrow
Disney to submit Florida reopening proposal to county officials tomorrow

California to allow hair salons and barbershops to reopen in majority of state's counties, governor says

Michelle Harris gives a client a haircut at Rockabetty's Hair Parlor, in Yuba City, Calif., Monday, May 4, 2020. Monday was the first day businesses could open in Sutter County under a modified public health order.
Rich Pedroncelli | AP

4:30 p.m. ET — California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced the state will allow most counties to begin reopening hair salons and barbershops with increased health modifications.

California is currently in phase two of its reopening plan, which has allowed for the resumption of retail businesses and manufacturing jobs with modifications. Counties in the state that meet certain health criteria have been allowed to move further into the state's reopening plan.

Newsom said 47 of the state's 58 counties have "self-attested" to meeting the state's criteria to move further into phase two, and starting today they will be allowed to reopen barbershops and hair salons, he said. Some of California's largest counties, however, like San Francisco and Los Angeles counties, have not met the criteria to move further into reopening. Newsom has yet to lift restrictions on nail salons, bars and wineries, nightclubs and theme parks, among other businesses. —Noah Higgins-Dunn

More states reopen bars, lift retail restrictions

Owner Sarah Celek (red leggings) teaches a class at Pure Barre Cincinnati West as Ohio gyms and fitness centers reopen for business in the wake of the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Jason Whitman | NurPhoto via Getty Images

3:21 p.m. ET — Both West Virginia and Arkansas reopened bars as more states continue to lift coronavirus-related restrictions. Michigan also allowed retailers to welcome customers in their stores under certain restrictions, and Ohio opened gyms, fitness centers and pools with specific health protocols in place. For more on states' reopening progress, click here. —Hannah Miller

McConnell says Congress will decide on another coronavirus bill in the 'next few weeks'

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and Senator Lyndsey Graham (R-SC) arrive for a closed Senate Republican policy lunch meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump to discuss the response to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., May 19, 2020.
Yuri Gripas | Reuters

3:17 p.m. ET — Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Congress will likely decide whether to pass another coronavirus relief bill in the "next few weeks."

Lawmakers will "probably" have to approve another stimulus package, the Kentucky Republican said. GOP support for additional relief has grown in recent weeks, though Republicans have stressed that they want more targeted spending than the $3 trillion measure Democrats passed earlier this month.

McConnell once again said he wants to see liability protections for businesses and doctors included in any additional legislation. He signaled he could support relief for struggling state and local governments, but if it is targeted only for money lost and additional expenses accrued during the pandemic.

He did not address the possibility of another direct payment to Americans. Democrats included another check of up to $1,200 to individuals in their latest bill, and President Donald Trump has indicated he would back more direct payments. —Jacob Pramuk

Supreme Court steps into controversy over coronavirus in prisons

3:13 p.m. ET — The Supreme Court said it will not halt an order issued by a federal judge requiring the Bureau of Prisons to take steps to mitigate the spread of coronavirus at the Elkton Federal Correctional Institution in Ohio.

Nine inmates have died from Covid-19 at the facility, where the American Civil Liberties Union says prisoners are housed "cheek by jowl, in dormitory-style rooms of approximately 150 persons each." Last month, U.S. District Judge James Gwin ordered the Bureau of Prisons to identify and transfer inmates who are medically vulnerable to the virus, which disproportionately impacts the elderly and those with chronic conditions. 

The justices' decision came in an unsigned order and cited procedural reasons. Three of the court's conservatives, Justices Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito and Neil Gorsuch, said they would have granted the Justice Department's request to halt the order. —Tucker Higgins

Fed says millennials are taking a bigger hit from the economic shutdown

2:36 p.m. ET —Millennials are facing a particularly difficult economic struggle during the pandemic, according to a St. Louis Federal Reserve analysis. Specifically, those born between 1981 and 1996 have three specific challenges: leftover damage from the financial crisis, little financial cushion to withstand the unexpected hit to their wallets, and disproportionate unemployment impact.

"Millennials' financial fragility hurts not only these individuals, their families and others who rely on them but also the economy as a whole," Fed researcher Ana Kent wrote in a paper.

The news isn't all bad, though. Kent said that the situation could also present opportunities for millennials "to pause and rethink how to best achieve household financial stability and resilience against future financial blows." That's also happening against historically high levels of rescue and stimulus funds from policymakers. —Jeff Cox

Novavax's vaccine to be variably priced based on affordability, CEO says

2:04 p.m. ET — Vaccine development company Novavax plans to vary the price of its potential vaccine based on affordability, CEO Stanley Erck said.

"There's got to be broad distribution. There's got to be equitable access," he said on CNBC's "Squawk Alley." "There will certainly be tiered pricing depending upon affordability so that the vaccine can be used globally."

Novavax launched phase 1 clinical trials for its potential vaccine on Monday, the company said, and it hopes to release results in July. Erck said that if all goes to plan, the company could have its first doses ready for distribution by the end of the year. He added that the company hopes to produce "over a billion doses" by next year. —Will Feuer

Novavax CEO on the company's phase one Australia Covid-19 vaccine trial
Novavax CEO on the company's phase one Australia Covid-19 vaccine trial

Mercedes-Benz to allow remote work through 2020

1:55 p.m. ET — Mercedes-Benz is allowing employees at its U.S. headquarters near Atlanta to work remotely through at least the end of the year, the company confirmed.

The automaker joins companies such as Google, Facebook and Amazon in allowing employees to continue working from home through the end of the year due to the coronavirus pandemic.  

Mercedes-Benz USA CEO Nicholas Speeks told trade publication Automotive News that the company is able to "function effectively" while employees work remotely.

"Working remotely was the exception — for the foreseeable future, it will become the norm," he said.

The German automaker employs about 875 people at its 200,000 square-foot U.S. headquarters, which it opened in 2018. —Michael Wayland

Study warns Brazil's Covid-19 death toll could jump five-fold by August

1:44 p.m. ET — Brazil currently has the highest daily Covid-19 death rate in the world, and a new study has increased fears that the country could become a new hot spot in the pandemic.

The University of Washington study forecasts that Brazil's total death toll could jump by five times what it is now and reach 125,000 by early August, Reuters reports. Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has resisted implementing lockdown measures in the country. —Hannah Miller

Napa Valley wineries set to reopen with a 'new reality of wine tasting'

A Napa Valley welcome sign sits next to a vineyard, prior to California's Governor Gavin Newsom's effective immediately statewide "stay at home order", in the face of the fast-spreading pandemic coronavirus (COVID-19), outside of Napa, California.
Shannon Stapleton | Reuters

1:20 p.m. ET — The U.S. wine industry has been hit hard by Covid-19, with some analysts projecting the sector could lose nearly $6 billion as a result of the pandemic.

And California has taken the brunt of the impact. While some of the state's wineries have benefited from an uptick in demand at grocery stores, many have seen their total sales cut in half, due in large part to the crippling of the restaurant industry.

But now, with Napa Valley restaurants offering indoor dining once again and the region's wineries poised to reopen, some winery owners are cautiously optimistic about the months ahead. Customers may just need to get used to the new reality of wine tasting in a post-pandemic world.

"Almost all of our tastings will be taking place outside," said Emma Swain, CEO of St. Supery Estate Vineyards and Winery. "But, you're going to be spaced further apart, we're going to ask you to wear a mask when you're not tasting, we're going to have our team wearing masks, and so it's a little harder to be as friendly as we want to be."

Swain added the tastings will be poured for visitors to minimize close contact with their hosts, and the wine will be poured in "disposable materials." —J.R. Reed

Gov. Cuomo says New York economy won't 'just bounce back'

People wait to receive food at a food distribution site in the Brooklyn borough of New York, the United States, May 14, 2020.
Michael Nagle | Xinhua News Agency | Getty Images

12:40 p.m. ET — While New York has begun reopening some regions, the state's economy won't "just bounce back," according to Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

Cuomo said the state has lost thousands of small businesses and warned that residents will see pain in the new economy, CNBC's Berkeley Lovelace and Jasmine Kim report.

Cuomo also said he will meet with President Trump on Wednesday in Washington to discuss coronavirus response efforts and plans to jumpstart the economy, including ideas for large-scale infrastructure projects.

"I'm going to go to Washington tomorrow, scheduled to meet with the president to talk about a number of things, but this is one of the things I want to talk to the president about," Cuomo said during remarks at the New York Stock Exchange in Manhattan.

"You want to restart the economy? You want to reopen the economy? Let's do something creative, let's do it fast, let's put Americans back to work and let's make America better. It is common sense."

Cuomo's state has reported a multibillion-dollar revenue shortfall amid the pandemic. He laid out a number of infrastructure proposals, including an expansion of New York City's Subway tunnels, while noting that federal approval would be required for the plans to move forward.

The virus has infected more than 362,700 people and killed at least 29,220 in New York, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. —Hannah Miller, Kevin Breuninger

NY Gov. Cuomo says 'there will be winners and losers in this new economy' as state begins reopening
Cuomo says 'there will be winners and losers in this new economy' as state reopens

Nobel winner touts European recovery approach that paid a percentage of furloughed workers' income

European approach to pandemic better for economy than US measures, Nobel laureate says
Europe taking a better approach to pandemic than US, Nobel laureate says

12:10 p.m. ET — A Nobel laureate stated that European countries have better protected their economies amid the pandemic in comparison to the U.S.

Christopher Pissarides, professor of economics and political science at the London School of Economics and winner of the 2010 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences, told CNBC that the European approach is keeping workers more attached to their employers, which will help with recovery, CNBC's Chloe Taylor reports.

Countries like France, the U.K. and Ireland are paying a large percentage of furloughed workers' income, while the U.S. gave one-time payments to individuals and strengthened unemployment insurance. —Hannah Miller

NJ Gov. Murphy says professional sports teams may return to training and competition

10:46 a.m. ET — New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy said the state's professional sports teams may return to training and competition if their leagues choose to move in that direction.

The state has been in constant discussions with teams about necessary protocols to protect the health and safety of players, coaches, and personnel, Murphy said in a tweet. —Melodie Warner

Murphy tweet 

Consumer confidence unexpectedly rises in May

10:38 a.m. ET — Data released by The Conference Board showed U.S. consumer confidence unexpectedly rose in May as states slowly start to reopen.

The consumer confidence index rose to 86.6 this month from 85.7 in April. Economists expected a decline to 82.3 in May, according to Dow Jones.

Lynn Franco, senior director of economic indicators at The Conference Board, said "short-term expectations moderately increased as the gradual re-opening of the economy helped improve consumers' spirits."

Franco added, however, that consumers "remain concerned about their financial prospects." —Fred Imbert

Related Chairman Stephen Ross says a 'flood' of retail bankruptcies on the way

10:27 a.m. ET — Mall owner Related Companies Chairman Stephen Ross says the retail industry is one of the hardest hit by the coronavirus pandemic, as many businesses have been forced to temporarily close their doors. He joined CNBC to say he expects many will be forced into bankruptcy, following Neiman Marcus, J.C. Penney and J.Crew.

"You are going to have such a flood of cases going to the bankruptcy court," Ross said. "And these aren't really the type of bankruptcies that were induced by bad practices. It's really all driven by the pandemic."

Related owns the Hudson Yards mall and the Shops at Columbus Circle in New York City. Both of these properties have not yet been able to reopen. —Lauren Thomas 

Expect many post-pandemic bankruptcies, says Related Companies' Stephen Ross
Expect many post-pandemic bankruptcies, says Related Companies' Stephen Ross

Home prices gained strength in March as coronavirus shut down economy, S&P Case-Shiller says

10:03 a.m. ET — Home prices were still gaining steam in March, as the country began shutting down in the face of the coronavirus pandemic.

On a national level, prices in March rose 4.4% annually, up from 4.2% in February, according to the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller index.

The same cities continue to lead the gains, with Phoenix, Seattle and Charlotte seeing the highest year-over-year gains among the 19 cities (excluding Detroit for the month). Prices in Phoenix rose 8.2% annually, followed by Seattle with a 6.9% increase and Charlotte with a 5.8% increase. Price gains were smallest in Chicago, New York City and Dallas.

Prices are still being buoyed by a severe lack of homes for sale. There was already a shortage going into the coronavirus crisis, but then sellers began de-listing their properties, and potential sellers decided to wait. Total for-sale inventory at the end of March was down 10.2% compared with March 2019, according to the National Association of Realtors. —Diana Olick

The latest hot spots of new cases in the U.S.


S&P 500 back above 3,000 for the first time since early March

9:36 a.m. ET — Stocks surged as optimism grew about the reopening of the economy and a potential coronavirus vaccine. The S&P 500 rallied 2.2%, breaking above 3,000 for the first time since March 5. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose around 600 points, or 2.4%. The 30-stock average also traded at levels not seen since early March, jumping above 25,000. The Nasdaq Composite advanced 1.6%. 

Read stock market activity updates from CNBC's Fred Imbert and Yun Li. —Melodie Warner

Dentists consider investing in UV light products as they reopen

9:30 a.m. ET — As dentist offices reopen, some are considering using ultraviolet light technology to keep their practices clean and to help prevent their patients and staff from getting sick.

Manufacturers of UV light sanitizing equipment are seeing huge increases in business inquiries, particularly from dentists.

"We're getting calls, emails, hundreds and hundreds, if not thousands of requests on a daily basis," said Brett Messina, vice president of sales and marketing at Medical Illumination, which makes VidaShield, an air purifier that disinfects using UV light.

Though UV light has been proven effective against other coronaviruses, research is still ongoing regarding its impact on Covid-19. This new technology could also be an expensive investment for dental offices looking to recover profits from shut downs. —Hannah Miller

Memorial Day weekend boosts air travel to 13% of last year's levels

A sign reminding passengers to stay 6 feet apart is seen at a screening checkpoint at Orlando International Airport. The Transportation Security Administration has rolled out new guidelines for the screening of air passengers designed to decrease the chances that its officers are exposed to the coronavirus.
Paul Hennessy | SOPA Images | Getty Images

9:24 a.m. ET — Air travel reached a more than two-month high over Memorial Day weekend, but carriers have long to go before getting remotely close to last year's levels as the pandemic keeps a lid on demand.

Memorial Day kicks off the peak travel season of late spring and summer, which is usually the most lucrative time of year for U.S. carriers. More than 1.2 million people passed through checkpoints at U.S. airports from Friday through Monday, according to the Transportation Security Administration, about 13% of the numbers logged a year earlier.

U.S. airlines have slashed service and parked roughly half of their fleets as the virus and shelter-in-place orders devastated demand, but executives say they have turned a corner from the low point hit in April. Airlines are closely watching for a sustained pickup in demand beyond the holiday weekend. —Leslie Josephs

McLaren Group is laying off 25% of its workforce as coronavirus halts races, manufacturing and sales

The 2020 McLaren 600LT Spider
Mack Hogan | CNBC

9:18 a.m. ET — McLaren Group, which owns the Formula 1 team and supercar maker, plans to lay off 1,200 staff as part of a proposed restructuring. Roughly 25% of the luxury car maker's workforce stands to be affected.

The redundancies will be made across McLaren's applied, automotive and racing businesses worldwide. Some support and back office roles will also be affected. —Sam Shead

U.K. minister quits over top aide's lockdown trip

Dominic Cummings, special advisor for Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson, makes a statement at 10 Downing Street, following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease in London, Britain, May 25, 2020.
Jonathan Brady/Pool via Reuters

9:08 a.m. ET — A political crisis is brewing in the U.K. after Prime Minister Boris Johnson's closest aide defied calls to quit over an apparent breach of the country's coronavirus lockdown rules.

Dominic Cummings defended his decision on Monday to travel 260 miles from London to Durham, northern England, days after the U.K. went into lockdown in March. He said his trip to family in Durham was within the scope of the restrictions because he needed to seek child care in case he and his wife fell ill.

However, his explanation hasn't convinced everyone. On Tuesday, Scotland Minister Douglas Ross announced he was resigning from the government due to "events over the last few days." Ross said that, while he accepted that Cummings' statement on Monday "clarified" his actions, "these were decisions many others felt were not available to them." —Ryan Browne

Even amid coronavirus crisis, the number of students applying for financial aid drops

9:03 a.m. ET — The coronavirus crisis has made families suddenly feeling less confident about their ability to pay for college next year.

Fewer families have applied for financial aid and only a few more weeks remain until the June 30 deadline to submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid for the fall semester.

The FAFSA form is the gateway to all federal money, including loans, work-study and grants.

The number of applications is down 2.8% from last year, with roughly 55,000 fewer high school seniors applying, according to the National College Attainment Network. —Jessica Dickler

NYSE floor reopens two months after shuttering

7:55 a.m. ET — The trading floor at the New York Stock Exchange reopened Tuesday, welcoming back about 80 brokers after a two-month closure. 

Traders entering the floor will be required to take a temperature test and sign a legal document saying they understand the risks of returning. The stock exchange will bar entry to anyone who took public transportation. Read more about the floor's reopening and traders' sentiments around returning from CNBC's Bob Pisani—Sara Salinas

Hospitalizations tick up after states reopen, former FDA chief says

Former FDA chief Scott Gottlieb on how to approach summer activities amid Covid-19
Former FDA chief Gottlieb on how to approach summer activities amid Covid-19

7:16 a.m. ET — U.S. hospitalizations are on a gradual upswing now that every state has begun to reopen nonessential businesses and ease restrictions, former Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb told CNBC. 

"We now see a trend in an uptick in hospitalizations. It's a small uptick, but it is an uptick and it's unmistakable and it is probably a result of reopening," Gottlieb said on CNBC's "Squawk Box." "We are going to have to watch it."

Florida, Georgia, Virginia, Alabama, Maryland, Minnesota and others have all seen an increase in hospitalizations since beginning to reopen, Gottlieb said. He added that the "national trend is a small uptick." —Will Feuer

Disclosure: Scott Gottlieb is a CNBC contributor and is a member of the boards of Pfizer and biotech company Illumina.

Merck announces plans to develop coronavirus vaccine

7 a.m. ET — Merck announced that it has teamed up with research nonprofit IAVI to develop a potential vaccine against the coronavirus.

The vaccine candidate for Covid-19 is currently in preclinical development, the U.S. drugmaker said in a statement, with clinical studies expected to start later in the year.

If the vaccine is approved, Merck and IAVI said they would work together to make it "accessible and affordable" to people across the globe. Shares of Merck were up more than 3.5% in premarket trading. —Sam Meredith