Coronavirus updates: Connecticut rolls back reopening as virus surges; Regeneron's antibody drug will be in short supply

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The U.S.'s record spike in new coronavirus cases continued over the weekend, with more than 81,400 new infections recorded on Sunday. That nudges the seven-day average of new cases past 81,000 for the first time ever, according to a CNBC analysis of Johns Hopkins data. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's leading infectious disease expert, told the Washington Post in an interview Friday that the U.S. "could not possibly be positioned more poorly" heading into the winter.

Here are some of Monday's most important headlines:

The following data was compiled by Johns Hopkins University:

  • Global cases: More than 46.6 million
  • Global deaths: At least 1.2 million
  • U.S. cases: More than 9.2 million
  • U.S. deaths: At least 231,536

Nepal reopens to adventurers looking to scale Himalayas despite pandemic

Nepal reopened its peaks and trails to foreign adventure seekers in a bid to generate income for hundreds of thousands of workers, the Associated Press reported.

Some 800,000 people working in the tourism industry, including guides and porters have been left unemployed and without income for months due to the pandemic, the AP said.

Typically, visitors from abroad are a major source of income for Nepal.

The country will still impose certain restrictions and the people allowed in would mainly be limited to those attempting to climb or trek Nepal's famous peaks, according to the AP.

Saheli Roy Choudhury

Travel bubble between Hong Kong and Singapore may start in November

Hong Kong-Singapore travel bubble may start in November, finance secretary says
Hong Kong-Singapore travel bubble may start in November, finance secretary says

Leisure travel between Hong Kong and Singapore could resume this month, said Hong Kong's financial secretary Paul Chan.

"We're working hard with the Singaporean government. The target is to launch this as soon as possible within November, and the earlier, the better," he told CNBC's Emily Tan on Monday.

The two cities last month announced travel bubble plans that would eliminate quarantines and rely on coronavirus tests instead. Chan also said Hong Kong is in talks with 10 other countries about allowing similar travel arrangements.

"For example, Thailand, Japan — these are the countries that we have more advanced discussions with," he said, adding that the authorities are working "very hard" to expand the network of air travel bubbles with different jurisdictions.

—Abigail Ng

Connecticut rolls back reopening as virus surges

Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont announced that he is rolling back the reopening of the state from phase three to a modified phase two to try to bring the virus under control.

Under the new order, which Lamont said will take effect on Friday, restaurants will need to scale back their indoor capacity to 50%, from 75%. They will also need to close for indoor dining by 9:30 p.m., Lamont said.

Religious gatherings will be capped at 50% capacity or 100 people under the new restrictions and event venues will be capped at 25 people indoors and 50 people outdoors, he said.

The governor had been taking a local approach to restrictions, considering each town on its own. But he said Monday that the outbreak has gotten so severe and so widespread that statewide action is necessary, though he still hopes to avoid severe lockdowns like those announced last week in parts of Europe.

—Will Feuer

Manchester ambulance service declares 'major incident" due to high volume of calls

People walk past a sign about COVID-19, amid the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Manchester, Britain, October 23, 2020.
Phil Noble | Reuters

The ambulance service in Manchester, England has declared a 'major incident" due to a very high volume of calls, Reuters reported.

"We are exceptionally busy this evening," North West Ambulance Service said on Twitter. "We are trying our best to reach patients as soon as we possibly can."

A number of paramedics are isolating because of covid, the Manchester Evening News reported.

Greater Manchester is facing a lockdown under new rules imposed by British Prime Minister Boris Johnson after coronavirus cases in his country saw a major spike.

The area is currently at the "Very High" alert level, the highest of three levels in England's new tiered response to the pandemic, Reuters said.

Riya Bhattacharjee, Reuters

Daily new coronavirus cases per capita in the U.S.

Massachusetts announces new restrictions to curb virus

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker announced new restrictions on businesses and individuals aimed at reducing the spread of the coronavirus.

Cases of the virus are up 278% and hospitalizations are up by 145% since Labor Day, the governor said.

Under the new restrictions, certain businesses — including restaurants, bars, gyms, liquor stores and theaters — must close by 9:30 p.m. A new "Stay At Home Advisory" also instructs residents to remain home between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m., with some exceptions, such as grocery shopping, taking a walk and seeking medical care.

Baker also revised his state's order on face coverings to mandate their use in all public spaces even if social distancing is possible. He also capped the size of indoor private gatherings at 10 and outdoor gatherings at 25 under his revised order.

All restrictions take effect Friday.

—Will Feuer

Americans are still eager to shop even as pandemic stretches on, retail economist says

Americans are still eager to shop even as the pandemic stretches on, the National Retail Federation's chief economist Jack Kleinhenz said, according to CNBC's Melissa Repko.

Kleinhenz said that's a good sign for retailers banking on holiday sales.

"Strong growth in retail sales during the last few months points to the resiliency of consumers even in this disruptive pandemic environment," Kleinhenz said in the November issue of the trade group's Monthly Economic Review. "Taking in all the evidence available, the U.S. economic recovery has progressed more quickly than generally expected."

Sara Salinas

U.S. deaths hold steady even as hospitalizations rise

Governments have been incompetent in pandemic response, says 'Black Swan' author

Denial about coronavirus comes at a high cost, says scientific advisor
Denial about coronavirus comes at a high cost, says scientific advisor

Governments around the globe have failed significantly in responding to the pandemic, "Black Swan" author Nassim Taleb told CNBC. He specifically pointed to the inability to ramp up rapid testing on a widespread scale.

"I think this is a case study of government worldwide incompetence in dealing with a problem and denial," he said on "Squawk Box." "If we had instant, systematic testing, we wouldn't be here. We wouldn't be talking now about the pandemic," added Taleb, whose bestselling 2007 book warned of unlikely events and their potential for negative consequences.

Taleb,  a professor of risk engineering at New York University, said everyday citizens and government leaders have wrongly been assuming that vaccines and therapeutics to treat Covid-19 will be available sooner than expected. "This kind of denial is what is causing us to incur such a high cost, in GDP, in many things, even social life," he said.

Kevin Stankiewicz

Parent company of Friendly's Restaurants files for bankruptcy

FIC Restaurants, the parent company of Friendly's, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Sunday and announced its sale to Amici Partners Group.

CEO George Michel called the impact of the pandemic "catastrophic" to the company's business. Friendly's, which is best known for its ice cream, joins the legion of restaurants that have filed for bankruptcy in the wake of the pandemic, including Chuck E. Cheese's parent company and Ruby Tuesday.

—Amelia Lucas

U.S. manufacturing near a two-year high in October

October ISM manufacturing index sees best number since August
October ISM manufacturing index sees best number since August

Activity in the U.S. manufacturing sector picked up in October, with new orders climbing to their highest level in nearly 17 years as consumers shift their spending habits as the pandemic drags on, Reuters reports.

The Institute for Supply Management reported its index of national factory activity rose to 59.3 last month — the highest reading since November 2018 and following a 55.4 print in September, according to the wire service.

The pandemic has pulled spending away from services and toward long-lasting factory goods like motor vehicles and appliances that are helping buyers to adjust to the change in lifestyle, Reuters said. Spending on goods has now overtaken its pre-pandemic level.

Terri Cullen

Trump suggests he might try to fire Dr. Fauci after the election

Trump suggests he might try to fire Fauci after the election
Trump suggests he might try to fire Fauci after the election

President Donald Trump suggested he might seek to fire Dr. Anthony Fauci, a member of his coronavirus task force, after Election Day on Tuesday.

During a Miami-area campaign rally at Opa-Locka airport, a "Fire Fauci" chant broke out. In response to the chant, Trump said: "Don't tell anybody, but let me wait until a little bit after the election."

Fauci, an infectious-disease expert who is director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, has criticized Trump's repeated assertions that the U.S. fight against the virus was "rounding the turn."

Follow CNBC's Election 2020 live blog for real-time updates of the election between President Trump and Joe Biden, and other key races.

—Melodie Warner 

Dow opens more than 300 points higher as Wall Street rebounds from worst week since March

U.S. stocks opened higher on the first trading day of the month as traders tried to recover from a brutal week and braced themselves for Tuesday's U.S. presidential election, reports CNBC's Fred Imbert and Yun Li.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average traded up 355 points, or 1.3%. The S&P 500 gained 1.1% and the Nasdaq Composite advanced 0.9%.

—Melodie Warner 

Clorox sales surge 27% fueled by higher demand for cleaning products

Adam Jeffery | CNBC

Clorox said revenue during its fiscal first quarter climbed 27%, its largest quarterly increase since 1998.

Demand for the company's cleaning and disinfecting products fueled the spike in sales, but Clorox reported growth in its other categories as well. Its grilling business saw sales more than double as more consumers barbecued outside during the pandemic. The company's bags and wraps categories, which include Glad products, reported double-digit growth.

The company's stock was up more than 3% in premarket trading after it topped analyst estimates for earnings and revenue and raised its fiscal 2021 outlook.

Amelia Lucas

Why Regeneron's antibody drug will be in short supply

Why Regeneron's antibody drug will be in short supply
Why Regeneron's antibody drug will be in short supply

WHO chief will quarantine after potential exposure to Covid-19

Director General of the World Health Organization (WHO) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus attends a news conference on the situation of the coronavirus (COVID-2019), in Geneva, Switzerland.
Denis Balibouse | Reuters

The World Health Organization Director-General will self-quarantine after a potential exposure to Covid-19, the Associated Press reports.

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus tweeted late Sunday that he was identified as a contact of a person who tested positive for the virus, but that he is "well without symptoms."

—Sara Salinas

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