The United States topped 10 million cases Monday as global cases surpassed 50 million. The 10 million number was reached just 10 days after the U.S. reached 9 million cases. Pfizer and BioNTech announced trial data indicating their Covid-19 vaccine is more than 90% effective. The positive vaccine news and NBC projections that Democrat Joe Biden defeated incumbent Donald Trump in the U.S. presidential race bolstered a post-election market rally. President-elect Biden also announced the members of his coronavirus task force on Monday.
Here are some of the biggest developments Monday:
The following data was compiled by Johns Hopkins University:
- Global cases: More than 50.91 million
- Global deaths: At least 1.26 million
- U.S. cases: More than 10.11 million
- U.S. deaths: At least 238,251
Asia-Pacific airline and casino stocks soar on vaccine hopes
Airline and casino stocks in Asia-Pacific were among the big winners in Tuesday trade following the positive coronavirus vaccine update from Pfizer and BioNTech.
Citi Private Bank's David Bailin told CNBC he expects an "incredible rotation" away from defensive and "stay-at-home" shares toward cyclicals.
Still, Agathe Demarais of The Economist Intelligence Unit warned that "we're far from being out of the woods," with the global economic recovery still expected to be "slow and bumpy."
— Eustance Huang
Brazil suspends trials of potential vaccine being developed by Chinese biopharmaceutical firm
Clinical trials for a vaccine candidate being developed by Chinese biopharmaceutical firm Sinovac have been suspended by Brazil's health regulator, the Associated Press reported.
Sinovac's production partner in Brazil, state-run Butantan Institute, said it was surprised by the announcement, the AP reported.
The AP noted that Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has cast doubt on the prospective efficacy of the potential vaccine, CoronaVac.
The news agency noted that clinical trials are often temporarily halted, especially in studies involving thousands of participants as some can fall ill.
— Christine Wang
FDA clears Eli Lilly coronavirus drug for emergency use
The Food and Drug Administration approved Eli Lilly's monoclonal antibody drug bamlanivimab for emergency use.
The agency said the drug could be used for treating mild-to-moderate cases of Covid-19 in patients who are over the age of 12, according to a release.
In clinical trials, the Eli Lilly drug reduced hospitalizations or emergency room visits in patients at high risk for disease progression, the FDA said.
David Bossie, the person leading Trump's push to dispute the election outcome, tests positive for Covid-19
David Bossie, who is leading President Donald Trump's push to dispute the results of the 2020 election, is the latest person connected to Trump to test positive for the coronavirus, CNBC's Dan Mangan reported, citing NBC News.
Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson and White House chief of staff Mark Meadows also recently contracted cases of Covid-19.
Bossie, who is head of conservative group Citizens United, cannot be at the Trump campaign headquarters, nor in the Oval Office, and is no longer part of making decisions for the campaign in their legal challenges, NBC News reported.
SUNY's Thomas appointed lead principal investigator for Pfizer, BioNTech vaccine, Cuomo says
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that SUNY Upstate Medical University's Dr. Stephen Thomas, chief of infectious disease, was appointed the lead principal investigator for Pfizer's global Covid-19 vaccine trial.
As the lead principal investigator, Thomas will "support Pfizer and BioNTech as they prepare vaccine trial data for submission to regulatory agencies including the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, which is expected to happen later this month," a statement from Cuomo's office said.
"It's great news that Pfizer/BioNTech is seeing positive results from its vaccine trial, and I'm proud one of New York's foremost infectious disease experts has been selected to lead its worldwide vaccine trial," Cuomo said in the statement.
Pfizer vaccine a 'welcomed step' for travel industry
"TripAdvisor has long believed travel will recover with vigor as soon as a vaccine was widely available. Today's Pfizer news is a welcomed step in the right direction," Steve Kaufer, CEO of TripAdvisor, told CNBC over email.
In a statement, Carnival Corp. also touted the implications for the cruise industry. However, the company expressed some caution on the immediate impacts for resuming sailing.
"This is a very positive development for the world, and, of course, our company and our brands, as well as the cruise industry," the company told CNBC. "It is too early at this point to determine the impact this may have on the conditional sail order in the U.S., if any."
— Kevin Stankiewicz, Seema Mody
Vaccine news is positive for the economic outlook
With economic expectations pegged largely to the progress of stopping the coronavirus, Monday's news from Pfizer on its vaccine means the stronger likelihood of more growth ahead. "This is very good news in both the near term and also over the longer run," said PNC Financial chief economist Gus Faucher. Some economists caution that surging cases will still pressure the economy over the winter, but fiscal and monetary stimulus should help. – Jeff Cox
Coronavirus: California Gov. Gavin Newsom says cases, hospitalizations are ticking up as residents 'let their guard down'
California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Wednesday said the state's coronavirus positivity rate is increasing, as well as its rate of hospitalizations.
The governor, speaking to California residents, shared that the state's 14-day coronavirus positivity rate was 3.4 percent as of Sunday, referring to the percentage of tests performed that are positive. On Oct. 19, it was 2.5 percent. According to Newsom, the total number of tests has also increased in that period.
Governor Newsom said hospitalizations have also increased by 28.6 percent, representing about 4 percent of California's health system capacity. Admissions to intensive care are also up 27.3 percent, with patients taking up 11 percent of the total available beds. 20,000 ventilators are still available.
Newsom pointed out that these numbers are "sobering," but there are also some promising signs. "The total capacity we have built out (at hospitals) and the ability to test being substantially greater than even a few weeks ago," he said.
On Tuesday, Newsom said California will provide an update on any changes, or lack thereof, to the rules around establishments and public places remaining open or closed. But he said he anticipated that some counties will be "moving backwards and not forward."
Speaking of the positive news from the Pfizer vaccine trial, Newsom reminded residents that mass distribution is still a ways off. He said it won't be readily available until "well into the next year."
- Christina Farr
UK says it will have 10 million doses of Pfizer, BioNTech's vaccine by year end
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the U.K. had ordered 40 million doses of Pfizer and BioNTech's Covid-19 vaccine candidate and expects to have 10 million doses available by the end of 2020, pending regulatory approval, Reuters reports.
Johnson has said that the prospects of a vaccine are one cause for optimism that the situation will improve by spring, but said new lockdown rules in England still needed to be obeyed, Reuters reported.
"We have cleared one significant hurdle but there are several more to go before we know the vaccine can be used," Johnson said. "We absolutely cannot rely on this as a solution. The biggest mistake we could make now would be to slacken our resolve at such a critical moment."
Biden advisor Osterholm says U.S. is 'about to enter Covid hell'
Dr. Michael Osterholm, a newly appointed coronavirus advisor to President-elect Joe Biden, told CNBC that the pandemic in the U.S. will face its darkest period so far over the next three to four months.
The U.S. is reporting a record-high weekly average of roughly 108,736 cases every day, growing more than 33% compared with a week ago, according to a CNBC analysis of data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.
The country has "not even come close" to descending from its latest spike in cases, and hospitals are now being overrun, he added.
"What America has to understand is that we are about to enter Covid hell," Osterholm, director of the Center of Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, told CNBC's "Squawk Alley." — Noah Higgins-Dunn
U.S. coronavirus cases cross 10 million mark
The U.S. has now reported more than 10 million cases of Covid-19, a bleak milestone just 10 days after reaching the 9 million mark.
According to Johns Hopkins data, the total number of deaths is now at 237,742.
That comes as the U.S. sets record one-day spikes in cases, spurring some officials to reinstate restrictions in efforts to contain the coronavirus. "You have to be really worried what January is going to look like, what December is going to look like right now given the way this is rising," former FDA chief Scott Gottlieb told CNBC on Friday.
-- Riya Bhattacharjee, Christine Wang
Biden pleads with Americans to wear a mask
"Please, I implore you, wear a mask," Biden said. "Do it for yourself. Do it for your neighbor. A mask is not a political statement, but it is a good way to start pulling the country together."
Biden's remarks stand in stark contrast to those of President Donald Trump, who resisted wearing a mask in public for months at the start of the pandemic.
"I want to be very clear: The goal of mask-wearing is not to make your life less comfortable, or to take something away from you," Biden said. "It is to give something back to all of us, a normal life."
New Jersey governor announces series of Covid restrictions
New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy told CNBC's "Squawk Box" that he would announce new Covid-19 restrictions on businesses that will "shave at the edges" as the state tries to suppress climbing cases.
The Democrat governor also welcomed Pfizer's promising early Covid-19 vaccine data, saying it's "really really good news" for the long term.
Later Monday, Murphy announced those restrictions, including the stoppage of all interstate indoor youth sports, saying, "It is simply not safe for teams to be crossing state lines at this time to participate in indoor competitions."
HUD chief Ben Carson tests positive for Covid-19
Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson tested positive for Covid-19, according to NBC News.
Carson is the latest person in the administration to contract the virus, and his positive test comes less than a week after White House chief of staff Mark Meadows tested positive for Covid-19, CNBC's Kevin Breuninger reports.
Carson and Meadows both attended an in-person election night party at the White House last week, NBC confirmed.
President Donald Trump, first lady Melania Trump and several others in and around the administration contracted the coronavirus in early October.
Where the other Covid vaccines stand
Pfizer released positive early results from its phase three vaccine trial, saying its vaccine was more than 90% effective in preventing Covid-19 among volunteers who had no evidence of prior infection.
The phase three trials are the critical last step needed to get the vaccines submitted to the FDA for potential authorization. There are currently four U.S.-backed frontrunners in phase three: Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson's. A fifth drugmaker, Novavax, said it expects to begin its late-stage trial in the U.S. by the end of this month.
Pfizer and Moderna are slightly ahead of the other three companies and are seen as the likely companies to get the first approvals. Moderna announced last month that it had completed enrollment in its 30,000-person late-stage trial, and Pfizer is already delivering key results in its trial.
–Berkeley Lovelace Jr.