Scotland records 160 new cases overnight; Russia reports almost 5,000 new cases. This blog is closed. Follow the latest updates below.
We are closing this live blog now. You can stay up to date with all the latest developments on our continuing coverage of the coronavirus pandemic below.
Here’s a quick recap of the latest coronavirus developments from the last few hours.
- The United States exceeded 6m coronavirus infections, according to the Johns Hopkins University tracker. It currently sits on 6,009,899, with 183,258 deaths. The milestone comes amid rising infection in some Midwestern states, including Iowa, North Dakota, South Dakota and Minnesota.
- India’s former president Pranab Mukherjee died after testing positive. He was 84. Mukherjee had emergency surgery for a blood clot in his brain on 10 August at New Delhi’s army hospital research and referral after suffering a fall. The hospital said he had tested positive for coronavirus after the surgery and his condition was critical.
- France’s new Covid-19 infections shot up by 50% in August. France saw its highest monthly tally since the beginning of the outbreak earlier this year, while hospitalisations for the disease seem to be creeping up again.
- The United Arab Emirates recorded more than 500 daily Covid-19 infections, the highest number over a 24-hour period in nearly two months. The Gulf Arab state has reported 541 infections and two deaths, the highest since 683 cases were recorded on 5 July.
- The World Health Organization urged governments to engage with people demonstrating against Covid-19 restrictions. Asked about recent demonstrations in a number of countries, the WHO director general, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said it was important to “listen to what people are asking, what people are saying”.
- Russia neared 1m known cases, the fourth worst nominal caseload in the world. The country reported 4,993 new cases on Monday, bringing its nationwide tally to 995,319
- Australia has reported a record daily toll of 41 deaths from Covid-19, all in the state of Victoria. The southern state has been gripped by an outbreak that prompted a strict, stage-four lockdown. The Victorian Department of Health confirmed that 33 of the 41 new deaths were aged care residents who had died in the weeks leading up to 27 August but were only reported to the department by the facilities on Sunday. Next weekend the state premier will outline a plan for moving Melbourne out of stage-four lockdown.
- Hong Kong will start conducting mass coronavirus tests on Tuesday. The voluntary tests are part of an attempt to stamp out a third wave of infections that began in late June and saw the densely populated city reimpose economically painful social distancing measures.
That’s all from me Jessica Murray, I’m now handing over to my colleagues in Australia.
Next year’s GCSE and A-level exams could be pushed back to give pupils more time to study the syllabus, the England’s education secretary has said.
Gavin Williamson said England’s exams regulator, Ofqual, was working with the education sector to decide whether there should be a “short delay” to the exam timetable in 2021.
He told the Daily Telegraph:
I know there’s some concern about next year’s exams, and that’s why we’ve been working with Ofqual on changes we can make to help pupils when they take GCSEs and A-levels next year.
Ofqual will continue to work with the education sector and other stakeholders on whether there should be a short delay to the GCSE, A and AS-level exam timetable in 2021, with the aim of creating more teaching time.
Exam season usually begins in May, but the paper said sources suggested they could be pushed back to June and July – but they would not cut into the summer holidays.
Williamson’s comments – on the eve of many schools in England reopening to all pupils for the first time since March – follow a call from Labour for a delay to next year’s exams.
Shadow education secretary Kate Green said pupils entering Year 11 and 13 who have lost up to six months of teaching time face “a mountain to climb” unless the timetable is changed.
Ministers had warning after warning about problems with this year’s exam results, but allowed it to descend into a fiasco.
This is too important for Boris Johnson to leave until the last minute. Pupils heading back to school need clarity and certainty about the year ahead.
Paul Whiteman, general secretary of school leaders’ union NAHT, said:
Labour’s suggestion of a delay to help with ‘catch-up’ is worthy of serious consideration.
A delay is not without its problems, a consequential delay to the publication of results will put pressure on higher education providers such as universities and colleges as well as employers. All this will need to be dealt with.
AstraZeneca said it has begun to enrol 30,000 participants aged over 18 in a late-stage study to evaluate its Covid-19 vaccine candidate.
Participants are being randomised to receive two doses of either of the candidate, AZD1222, or a saline control, four weeks apart, with twice as many participants receiving the potential vaccine as the saline control, the company said.
The study is being funded by the US government, the London-listed company said.
Canada’s statistical agency is paying close attention to the “pot of cash” that Canadians have saved up amid the Covid-19 pandemic as it looks to understand who is saving and how that money may contribute to the shape of the recovery.
Prior to the pandemic, Canadians saved just 2-3% of their disposable income, but that jumped to 28.2% in the second quarter of this year, Greg Peterson, assistant chief statistician at Statistics Canada, told Reuters on Monday.
“There’s that pot of cash that’s basically sitting there and we’re interested in monitoring where that goes,” Peterson said. “It’s kind of a notable divergence from what we normally see.”
One of the main questions is whether the extra money will go toward paying down household debt or whether it will be spent on goods and services, Peterson said.
The economy is now showing signs of having put the worst behind it, and Canada’s real GDP is seen rebounding 3% in July, edging economic activity closer to pre-pandemic levels, data showed last week.
The jump in the savings rate came in the second quarter amid a unique set of circumstances: disposable incomes climbed sharply on higher government transfers – namely emergency wage benefits – while household spending fell amid Covid-19 shutdowns.
Hong Kong will start conducting mass coronavirus tests on Tuesday, a health scheme that has been swept up in the political debate dividing the city, where many remain deeply distrustful of both local leaders and China.
The voluntary tests are part of an attempt to stamp out a third wave of infections that began in late June and saw the densely populated city reimpose economically painful social distancing measures.
The programme has been hampered by a limited response due to the involvement of mainland Chinese testing firms and doctors – and swirling public mistrust of local authorities as Beijing cracks down on the city’s democracy movement.
Since registration began on Saturday, 510,000 people have signed up to take the free tests – around 7% of the city’s 7.5 million population.
More than half of all 141 community test centres across the city are fully booked for their first day on Tuesday.
But health experts advising the government have said as many as five million people might need to be tested for the scheme to comprehensively uncover hidden transmissions and end the current wave.
Hong Kong has recorded just over 4,800 infections since the virus first hit the city in late January but about 75% of those cases were detected since the start of July.
Tests will run for between a week and two weeks depending on public demand with numbers limited each day to reduce the risk of infection.
Authorities have billed the scheme as a benevolent public health initiative made possible with Chinese help.
Detroit turned an island park into a memorial garden on Monday as cars packed with grieving families slowly travelled past hundreds of photos of city residents who died from Covid-19.
Mayor Mike Duggan declared a Detroit Memorial Day to honour the 1,500-plus city victims of the pandemic. Hearses escorted by police led solemn processions around Belle Isle Park in the Detroit River after bells rang across the region at 8:45am.
“It is our hope that seeing these beautiful faces on the island today … will wake people up to the devastating effect of the pandemic,” said Rochelle Riley, Detroit’s director of arts and culture.
The memorial was designed to bring some peace to families whose loved ones didn’t have the funerals they deserved, Riley said. “But it may also force us to work harder to limit the number of COVID-19 deaths we’ll endure in the coming months.”
More than 900 photos submitted by families were turned into large posters and staked around Belle Isle, revealing the crushing breadth of the virus.
The pictures show people in better times: Darrin Adams at college graduation; Daniel Aldape catching a fish; Shirley Frank with an Elvis impersonator; Veronica Davis crossing the finish line at a race.
They had “dreams and plans and a story,” Michigan gov Gretchen Whitmer said at Belle Isle. “They weren’t finished yet.”
Detroit has roughly 7% of Michigan’s population but 23% of the state’s 6,400 Covid-19 deaths. The city is nearly 80% Black.
“The virus exposed deep inequities, from basic lack of access to health care or transportation or protections in the workplace,” Whitmer said. “These inequities hit people of colour in vulnerable communities the hardest.”
Algerian authorities said they will further ease a coronavirus lockdown from 1 September, including lifting a ban on some cultural activities such as reopening museums and libraries.
Nurseries will also be reopened at 50% of their capacity. The new steps will also end a paid leave for pregnant women and those with children under 14 years.
Algeria has already eased restrictions linked to the coronavirus, including reopening some businesses, mosques, leisure venues and beaches.
It has so far reported 44,494 infections and 1,510 deaths.
Zoom raised its annual revenue forecast by 30% after comfortably beating quarterly estimates on Monday, as it converts more of its huge free user base to paid subscriptions.
Shares of the company, which have surged almost four-fold this year, rose 5% after the bell. They hit a record high in regular trading.
Video-conferencing platforms, once used mostly as a technological substitute for in-person meetings, became a vital part of day-to-day life this year for people stuck at home under coronavirus restrictions, be it for work, school or socialising.
Zoom, however, has come under fire for its security and privacy shortfalls, prompting many companies and countries to curb the use of the platform.
The company said revenue rose 355% to $663.5m, above analysts’ average estimate of $500.5m.
Zoom said it now has 370,200 institutional customers with more than 10 employees, up about 458% from the same quarter last year.
The company, founded and headed by former Cisco manager Eric Yuan, raised its annual revenue target for fiscal year 2021 to the range of $2.37bn and $2.39bn, from $1.78bn to $1.80bn earlier.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said on Monday the number of coronavirus deaths had risen by 473 to 182,622 and reported 5,972,356 cases, an increase of 37,532 from its previous count.
The CDC figures do not necessarily reflect cases reported by individual states.
The World Health Organization has urged governments to engage with people demonstrating against Covid-19 restrictions and listen to their concerns, but stressed protesters needed to understand the virus is dangerous.
Asked about recent demonstrations in a number of countries against coronavirus restrictions, the WHO director general, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said it was important to “listen to what people are asking, what people are saying”.
“We should engage in an honest dialogue,” he told reporters, stressing though that demonstrators have a responsibility to ensure protests are safe.
“The virus is real. It is dangerous. It moves fast and it kills,” he said, insisting “we have to do everything to protect ourselves and to protect others”.
German police on Saturday halted a Berlin march of tens of thousands of people opposed to coronavirus restrictions in the biggest of several European protests against facemask rules and other anti-virus curbs.
Several hundred of the Berlin protesters then broke through barriers and a police cordon to storm Germany’s parliament, in a move German chancellor Angela Merkel condemned as “shameful”.
Speaking about the broader protests, the WHO emergencies chief, Dr Mike Ryan, pointed out that “epidemics and emergencies create strong emotions, and acceptance of measures is always very, very tough”.
It is really important that governments don’t overreact to people protesting against measures.
The real important thing to do is to enter into a dialogue with groups.