Health and Science

Germany faces further coronavirus outbreaks; Russia brushes off virus threat at military parade


Tokyo says it expects a "large number" of new cases as a new cluster surfaced at an office in Japan's capital city. Its governor said clusters in the workplace "have become a big problem lately."

White House coronavirus advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci told Congress Tuesday that some parts of the U.S. are seeing a "disturbing surge" of infections and he's concerned about the increased community spread. Top officials from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Food and Drug Administration and the Department of Health and Human Services are discussing what each agency has done in response to the coronavirus outbreak.

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 9.27 million
  • Global deaths: At least 477,807
  • U.S. cases: More than 2.34 million
  • U.S. deaths: At least 121,225
  • The data above was compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

Germany faces test over whether it can contain major outbreaks

10:00 a.m. London time: Germany has reported a further cluster of coronavirus cases at a slaughterhouse in Lower Saxony on Tuesday, the latest in a series of outbreaks seen in the country. Now, containing the potential spread of the virus is a top priority for Germany's authorities, who have so far attracted praise for their handling of the epidemic.

"The important thing now is to try and contain this outbreak and prevent it from entering the general population and making it unstoppable," Thomas Kamradt, president of the German Society for Immunology, told CNBC Wednesday.

Germany has reported a further outbreak of coronavirus cases at a slaughterhouse in Lower Saxony, the latest in a series of infections that have been seen in the country's meat-processing industry.

German media reported late Tuesday that the factory in Wildeshausen is the latest meat-processing plant to see an outbreak of the virus, with 23 workers testing positive. — Holly Ellyatt

Soldiers of the Bundeswehr dressed in full PPE prepare to take throat swab samples from local residents in the village of St. Vit following a Covid-19 outbreak at the nearby Toennies meat packaging plant during the coronavirus pandemic on June 23, 2020 near Guetersloh, Germany.
Sean Gallup

Moscow holds Victory Day parade, brushing off coronavirus threat 

09:30 a.m. London time: Russia is holding its annual Victory Day parade in Moscow on Wednesday, commemorating the 75th anniversary of Nazi Germany's capitulation in World War II.

The parade allows Russia to showcase its military personnel and equipment to the world but it also offers Russian President Vladimir Putin to cement Russian patriotism, and his power base.

This year's parade comes during an unprecedented global health crisis, and the event had to be rescheduled from its original date, on May 9, to June 24. But earlier Wednesday, Putin was seen greeting dignitaries with handshakes, despite Russia having the third-highest number of coronavirus cases in the world. — Holly Ellyatt

The coronavirus pandemic could drive demand for copper

08:00 a.m. London time: The coronavirus pandemic is expected to pave the way for "the age of copper," according to the director of energy, climate and resources at Eurasia Group.

The commodity, which is widely seen as a bellwether for the general state of the economy, has taken a hit during the coronavirus crisis.

Slumping demand drove prices down at the height of the pandemic in March. However, benchmark copper on the London Metal Exchange was trading around $5,909 per metric ton Tuesday, up 0.5%. That's close to its five-month high of $5,928 hit earlier this month, Reuters reported. — Chloe Taylor

New York City opens up beaches for swimming ahead of Independence Day weekend

2:30 p.m. (Singapore time) — Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that beaches in New York City will be opened to the public for swimming, ahead of the Independence Day weekend.

"The rumors are true: NYC beaches will open for swimming on July 1," de Blasio said in a tweet. "Let's keep playing it safe: social distance & face coverings, even at the beach!" — Weizhen Tan

Tokyo says its expects a 'large number' of new cases

1:25 p.m. (Singapore time) — A new cluster of infections has been found at an office in Japan's capital, prompting Tokyo's governor to warn that the city will register "quite a large number" of new cases on Wednesday, according to Reuters.

"Clusters in the workplace have become a big problem lately," said Governor Yuriko Koike. — Weizhen Tan

New York City will hold scattered July 4 fireworks shows this year

6:42 p.m. ET — New York City's fireworks display for July 4 will be different this year. The city is planning to hold a number of five-minute shows starting June 29, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced, according to the Wall Street Journal.

To prevent crowds from gathering to watch, the timing of the shows will not be announced, the Journal reported.

The shows will culminate in a grand finale on July 4, which will include fireworks over the Empire State Building and a NBC broadcast with musical guests, the Journal reported. Macy's is sponsoring the displays. —Michelle Gao

Dr. Fauci recommends states seeing surges should consider pausing reopening phases

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases, leaves after testifying during a House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing on the Trump Administration's Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic, on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC on Tuesday, June 23, 2020.
Kevin Dietsch | Pool via Reuters

6:26 p.m. ET— States like Arizona, Florida, Texas and others with growing coronavirus outbreaks might not need to shut down again like many did in March, White House coronavirus advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci said.

Instead, such states that have "a serious problem" might need to consider delaying, or rolling back, stages of reopening, he added.

"I wouldn't necessarily say an absolute shutdown, lockdown, but if someone is going from gateway to phase one to phase two and they get into trouble in phase 2, they may need to go back to phase 1," Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told members of Congress during a hearing before the House Energy and Commerce Committee. —Will Feuer

Arizona reports record single-day increase in cases ahead of Trump's visit

U.S. President Donald Trump waves as he tours a section of new U.S.-Mexico border wall built in San Luis, Arizona, June 23, 2020.
Carlos Barria | Reuters

4:45 p.m. ET — The coronavirus infected 3,593 people, another record in additional daily cases in Arizona, and killed an additional 42 people since Monday, bringing the states' death toll to 1,384, according to the Arizona Department of Health.

While the rise in daily case numbers could reflect a lag in data reporting or increased testing in certain locations throughout the state, Arizona is averaging about 2,500 daily new cases as of Monday, which is about a 94% increase since one week ago, according to a CNBC analysis of Johns Hopkins University data. The increase in cases comes as Trump travels to the state's border and to Phoenix, where he's scheduled to attend a campaign rally at a local church. Infectious disease experts have warned against large indoor gatherings, such as Trump's recent rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, as cases surge in the West and South. —Noah Higgins-Dunn

14% of business owners expect layoffs

4:09 p.m. ET — About 14% of business owners expect to lay off workers after using up funds through the Paycheck Protection Program, a forgivable loan program created by the CARES Act. 

White House officials have credited the program for the stark turnaround in employment last month, when 2.5 million Americans went back to work.

Recipients of the federal aid can only receive full loan forgiveness by rehiring laid-off or furloughed workers.

However, businesses are struggling even as states have begun reopening their economies. Absent additional funding authorized by federal lawmakers, the employment rebound seen in May could prove short-lived. —Greg Iacurci

Djokovic apologizes for hosting tennis matches where coronavirus spread

2:59 p.m. ET — Top-ranked tennis player Novak Djokovic apologized on Twitter for organizing a tennis exhibition series during the outbreak. Djokovic and his wife tested positive for the coronavirus after attending the tournament. 

Djokovic said he and other organizers believed health protocols were met and that the region had combated the virus well enough to gather, but "we were wrong and it was too soon." The Associated Press reported earlier Tuesday that social distancing was not maintained, as players were seen hugging each other.

"I can't express how sorry I am for this and for every case on infection," Djokovic said in an apology on Twitter. 

The Serbian player caught criticism for holding the series amid the pandemic. The third stage of the series, originally planned for next week in Bosnia, was canceled. 

Djokovic encouraged anyone who attended the series to get tested for the virus and practice social distancing. He and his wife will quarantine for five days. —Alex Harring

Fauci warns of serious symptoms in young people, disturbing surge in cases

Fauci: Parts of the US are seeing a 'disturbing surge' of Covid-19 cases
Fauci: Parts of the US are seeing a 'disturbing surge' of Covid-19 cases

2:53 p.m. ET — Dr. Anthony Fauci warned that health experts are seeing "more and more" coronavirus complications in young people while testifying during a House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing.

Though young people initially appeared to be spared from the virus' worst symptoms early on in the outbreak, Fauci said they are at risk for suffering "deleterious consequences," CNBC's Berkeley Lovelace Jr. reports.

Fauci's comments come as more young people fail to practice social-distancing measures and test positive for the virus.

The director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases also said that parts of the U.S. are experiencing a "disturbing surge" in coronavirus infections, Lovelace and CNBC's Will Feuer report.

Though some states, such as New York, have seen a decline in Covid-19 cases, others have seen rising case numbers that "reflect an increase in community spread," which Fauci called concerning. —Hannah Miller

Cities warn of infrastructure spending cuts, more layoffs 

2:39 p.m. ET — More than 700 cities across the U.S. plan to delay or cancel planned infrastructure projects after their responses to the coronavirus outbreak left budgets with unplugged holes, according to a National League of Cities survey.

A majority of cities plan to delay or cancel equipment purchases, which could stunt local commercial activity among businesses and add to the layoffs and furloughs already underway in one-third of cities that responded to the survey, which collected data from over 1,100 municipalities in all 50 states.

Most of the cities reported their largest unexpected cost over the last few months involved purchases of personal protective equipment and contracting disinfecting services to keep public buildings clean as they begin to open. The National League of Cities called on the federal government to provide more federal funding directly to municipalities, warning that if it didn't, the nation's economic recovery from Covid-19 could be threatened. —Noah Higgins-Dunn

White House considers shakeup at CDC over botched Covid-19 response, report says

CDC headquarters in Atlanta
Elijah Nouvelage | Bloomberg via Getty Images

2:15 p.m. ET — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is under heightened scrutiny by the White House as the Trump administration seeks to blame the agency for the bungled U.S. response to the coronavirus pandemic, a new report says.

Multiple senior administration officials told Politico that the CDC would undergo a performance review focusing focus on the agency's failure to deliver working tests in the early months of the pandemic.White House staffers have also discussed narrowing the CDC's mission or adding political appointees, Politico said. —Yelena Dzhanova

U.S. 7-day average of coronavirus cases surges 30% from week ago

1:40 p.m. ET — The seven-day average of daily new Covid-19 cases increased more than 30% compared with a week ago, according to a CNBC analysis of Johns Hopkins University data. Cases are growing by 5% or more in 26 states across the U.S., including Arizona, Texas, Florida and Montana.

Texas added 4,846 new cases on Monday bringing its seven-day average of daily new cases to 3,940, according to Hopkins' data. The state has seen more than 100% increase in its seven-day average compared with a week ago.

Arizona is averaging about 2,500 daily new cases as of Monday, which is about a 94% increase since one week ago. California saw a massive jump in its daily report of positive cases, adding 6,219 new cases, according to Hopkins' data. This new figure broke its previous single-day record of 4,084 new confirmed cases from last Thursday, according to the California Department of Health. Monday's number reported by county health departments across the state includes some caveats as some counties report multiple-day totals after not updating their case counts over the weekend. —Jasmine Kim

Sales of newly built homes show big increase, but meeting demand is a challenge

1:18 p.m. ET — Sales of newly built homes increased nearly 13% annually, according to the U.S. Census.

But single-family housing starts in May were close to 18% lower annually and building permits were down about 10%, leaving builders trying to meet the demand for construction, CNBC's Diana Olick reports.

Some homebuilders slowed operations in March, but saw a quick uptick of interest in April, despite still producing below demand levels. Homebuilders have added 226,000 jobs in May, according to Robert Dietz, chief economist at the National Association of Home Builders, but there was already a shortage of skilled workers before the pandemic. —Alex Harring

Some colleges cutting academic programs as schools take financial hit from Covid-19 closures

The University of Alaska Anchorage campus is shown in Anchorage, Alaska.
Yereth Rosen | Reuters

12:24 p.m. ET — As colleges and universities across the country face extreme financial distress, some institutions are cutting the academic programs that were once central to a well-rounded education.

In early June, the University of Alaska system announced it will cut 39 academic departments in all, including degree programs in sociology, creative writing, chemistry and environmental science.

In order to stay afloat going forward, more schools may have to shift their priorities away from the value of a liberal arts education and focus on degrees that have a direct return on investment, according to Robert Franek, editor in chief of The Princeton Review. —Jessica Dickler

As Trump blames rising cases on testing, data suggests the virus is spreading

Dr. Vincent Carrao draws blood from a patient for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) test at Palisades Oral Surgery, in Fort Lee, New Jersey, U.S., June 15, 2020. Picture taken June 15, 2020.
Brendan McDermid | Reuters

11:54 a.m. ET — President Donald Trump has continued to blame rising coronavirus cases on increased testing despite mounting evidence that the virus is spreading rapidly throughout some communities.

"Cases are going up in the U.S. because we are testing far more than any other country, and ever expanding," Trump tweeted early Tuesday. "With smaller testing we would show fewer cases!"

Citing a rise in many states that the percent of total tests coming back positive is on the rise, public health specialists and some politicians have pushed back, saying that infections, not just confirmed cases, are accelerating.

"Even with the testing increasing or being flat, the number of people testing positive is accelerating faster than that," Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican, told reporters last week. "You know that's evidence that there's transmission within those communities." —Will Feuer

Better care and younger patients could lower the mortality rate, Dr. Scott Gottlieb says

Former FDA chief Scott Gottlieb on Covid-19 spikes, promising treatments and more
Former FDA chief Scott Gottlieb on Covid-19 spikes, promising treatments and more

11:26 a.m. ET — As the coronavirus appears to infect mostly younger people in at least some states and doctors learn to provide better care for Covid-19 patients, the mortality rate of the disease will likely drop in the weeks ahead, former Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb told CNBC.

Young and otherwise healthy people are less likely to die of Covid-19, according to data compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. However, young people can still develop severe disease as well as die of the disease and scientists are still researching the long-term health effects of an infection.

"As the hospitals fill up with Covid patients, we're going to see how much the mortality rate declines as a function of it's a younger cohort, younger age cohort, but also we have better treatment," Gottlieb said on CNBC's "Squawk Box." "There's no question that we're going to preserve more life now that we have these therapeutic opportunities available to us." —Will Feuer

Delta CEO calls for a government mask-wearing mandate

10:01 a.m. ET — Major U.S. airlines now require passengers to wear masks on board in an effort to curb the spread of Covid-19, but enforcing it is tricky without a government mandate, Delta Air Lines' CEO Ed Bastian said. Right now, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends facial coverings like masks in places where it is difficult to socially distance, such as on airplanes.

"If you take your mask off, no ... we will not forcibly remove you from the plane," Bastian told Axios in an interview that aired Monday night. "If the government were to mandate it I think that would help. If the government mandated it then you can enforce it."

The government has "left it to the airlines to make those decisions." Last week, American Airlines said it is temporarily banning a passenger who refused to wear a mask, saying he can return when those face coverings are no longer required on flights. —Leslie Josephs

Tennis player Novak Djokovic tests positive after organizing exhibition series

A file photo dated June 5, 2016 shows Novak Djokovic of Serbia returns to Andy Murray of United Kingdom during the men's single final match at the French Open tennis tournament at Roland Garros Stadium in Paris, France on June 05, 2016.
Mustafa Yalcin | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images

9:57 a.m. ET — Top-ranked Serbian tennis player Novak Djokovic tested positive for the coronavirus after playing in a tennis exhibition series he organized, the Associated Press reported.

Djokovic became the fourth player to test positive following matches in Belgrade and Zadar, Croatia. Both Djokovic and his wife have tested positive.

There was no social distancing measures implemented at the matches as players were seen hugging each other, per the AP report. Djokovic has been criticized for hosting the exhibition amid health concerns with the pandemic.

Organizers of the Adria Tour confirmed to AP that the third stage of the series, originally planned next for next week in Bosnia, has been canceled. —Alex Harring

Stocks open solidly higher following brief China-U.S. trade deal scare overnight

9:38 a.m. ET — Stock futures recovered from earlier losses to trade higher at the open after White House trade advisor Peter Navarro clarified his remarks that suggested the U.S.-China trade deal is over.

Navarro quickly walked back his remarks. "My comments have been taken wildly out of context," he said in a statement. "They had nothing at all to do with the Phase I trade deal, which continues in place."

Dow Jones Industrial Average futures were up about 230 points at the start of trading. S&P 500 and Nasdaq-100 futures also traded higher. 

Stocks extended Monday's gains, despite unease surrounding the growing number of Covid-19 "hot spots" across the country. —Terri Cullen

University of Michigan pulls out of hosting presidential debate, citing health concerns

9:30 a.m. ET — The University of Michigan said it will be pulling out of its agreement with the Commission on Presidential Debates to host a general election presidential debate on its campus in the fall.

The debate will still take place on Oct. 15, but will instead be held in Miami at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade County, according to a statement by the commission.

The University of Michigan's decision to back out was rooted in concerns over the public health risks of bringing candidates, campaigns and the media to campus during the pandemic, the Detroit Free Press reported Monday, citing sources with direct knowledge of the matter.

University President Mark Schlissel wrote in a letter to the committee that hosting the debate is no longer feasible, given the public health and safety issues which accompany bringing so many visitors to the Ann Arbor, Mich. campus. —Alex Harring

Daily new cases in the U.S. trend upward

Sanofi CEO says the company could contribute two successful coronavirus vaccines

Sanofi CEO Paul Hudson on two-pronged approach to developing Covid-19 vaccine
Sanofi CEO Paul Hudson on two-pronged approach to developing Covid-19 vaccine

8:56 a.m. ET — Sanofi CEO Paul Hudson told CNBC both of the French drugmaker's vaccine pursuits could be successful in preventing Covid-19.

"The world needs billions of doses. We want to make sure every country, everybody that needs that protection, can get it," Hudson said on "Squawk Box." "We think we'll definitely play a part with one, and maybe even both of our vaccines."

Hudson's comments come after Sanofi announced a potential $2 billion deal with U.S. biotech firm Translate Bio to develop a Covid-19 vaccine. Sanofi has already entered a vaccine partnership with GlaxoSmithKline, a British pharmaceutical company.

Hudson touted Translate Bio's experience working on therapeutics using mRNA technology, which tells human cells to produce specified proteins in order to produce an immune response to a particular disease. The vaccine candidate from Sanofi and Translate Bio could be ready "later in 2021," Hudson said.

"One of the reasons why we went deeper into this collaboration was because they've been on mRNA for 10 years. They know how it make it scaled, which has never been done before with any other company. Once we've cracked it, which we think we will, we'll be able to get to large volumes very quickly," he said. —Kevin Stankiewicz

England pubs, restaurants and hotels to reopen on July 4

People are seen buying takeaway pints at a pub on Wandsworth Common on May 28 2020 in London, England.
Peter Summers | Getty Images

8:05 a.m. ET — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced England's pubs, restaurants and hotels will be permitted to reopen on July 4 as part of the country's next phase of a resumption of business, according to a Reuters report. 

"All hospitality indoors will be limited to table service and our guidance will encourage minimal staff and customer contact," he said in parliament, according to Reuters. "We will ask businesses to help NHS Test and Trace respond to any local outbreaks by collecting contact details from customers." —Sara Salinas

German district goes back into lockdown after outbreak at meat processing plant

A man speaks to foreign labourers inside an area secured by local police forces within an apartment complex used by the Toennies meat company to house labourers from eastern Europe during the coronavirus pandemic on June 20, 2020 in Verl near Guetersloh, Germany.
Alexander Koerner

7:13 a.m. ET — A district in Germany that has seen an acute outbreak of coronavirus cases at a meat-processing plant is being put back into lockdown, the premier of North Rhine-Westfalia said. 

State premier Armin Laschet said he was putting the district of Guetersloh, home to around 360,000 people, back under lockdown until June 30. The move comes after at least 1,000 workers at a meat processing plant in the area contracted Covid-19.

Germany has been lauded throughout the coronavirus crisis in Europe as a country that had seemingly managed to control the virus' spread, largely through an organized and early contact tracing system. Now, however, the country has seen a resurgence of cases due to several localized outbreaks in different parts of the country.

As well as the outbreak in Guetersloh, a large Covid-19 outbreak in the district of Goettingen in Lower Saxony was traced to family gatherings and another, in Magdeburg in the state of Saxony-Anhalt, emerged in several schools that are now closed. In Berlin, an outbreak of 85 cases has been linked to members of a religious community. —Holly Ellyatt

AstraZeneca's potential vaccine shows promise in pigs with two shots

AstraZeneca's building in Luton, Britain.
Tim Ireland | Xinhua News Agency | Getty Images

7:03 a.m. ET — AstraZeneca's potential coronavirus vaccine showed some promise in a trial of pigs, which found that two doses of the shot produced more antibodies than one dose. 

The research, which was published by The Pirbright Institute, suggests that a two-shot approach of the Oxford University-developed vaccine candidate might be most effective in preventing Covid-19 infection.

"The researchers saw a marked increase in neutralizing antibodies, which bind to the virus in a way that blocks infection," the Pirbright team said in a statement. However, the potential vaccine still must prove it's safe and effective in humans as well.

The potential vaccine, also known as AZD1222, is being developed in partnership between researchers at Oxford University and pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca. The candidate is already in human trials and the company previously said it hopes to have data on whether it's effective in preventing Covid-19 later this year. —Will Feuer

Read CNBC's previous coronavirus live coverage here: Chinese firm gets approval for potential vaccine trials; euro zone downturn eases