Covid updates: Trump signs funding to avoid shutdown, Congress vote on stimulus deal expected Monday

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There is some good news this Sunday evening. Congress has agreed to a $900 billion stimulus deal after months of failed negotiations. The agreement will provide much needed financial lifelines to Americans struggling with the economic fallout from the Covid pandemic.

The House and Senate passed a measure to avoid a government shutdown that was set to go into effect at 12:01 a.m. ET, giving Congress another day to vote on the stimulus deal. They are also expected to vote Monday on a broader a measure that would fund the government through Sept. 2021.

Moderna's vaccine also started shipping Sunday to sites across the nation, with 5.9 million doses scheduled for delivery this week. The first shots of Moderna's vaccine will begin Monday.

Boxes containing the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine are prepared to be shipped at the McKesson distribution center in Olive Branch, Mississippi, U.S. December 20, 2020.
Paul Sancya | Reuters

As the federal government struggles to keep up with the current crisis, there is growing concern that a new threat is on the horizon. The United Kingdom has identified a new, more infectious strain of the virus, leading to lockdowns in London and causing E.U. nations to ban flights with Britain.

More than 2,500 deaths attributed to the virus were recorded in the U.S. on Saturday, and more than 196,000 new cases were reported, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

The toll from Covid-19 around the world continues to grow:

  • U.S. deaths: More than 317,000
  • U.S. infections: More than 17.8 million
  • Global deaths: More than 1.6 million
  • Global infections: More than 76.7 million

Here's what you need to know today: