World Coronavirus Dispatch: Do open schools spread the virus more?

Health workers wearing PPE kit check the temperature, blood oxygen screening of a child for COVID-19 symptoms at a residential building at Adarsh Nagar area of Malad, in Mumbai
US coronavirus deaths surpass 1,000 for fourth day in a row: The US recorded more than 1,000 coronavirus deaths on Friday for the fourth day in a row. The sustained increase in deaths comes after several weeks during which the coronavirus case count increased significantly. It surpassed 4 million this week. Read more here

Let’s look at global statistics:                                                    

Total Confirmed Cases: 1,57,46,452

Change Over Yesterday: 2,35,295

Total Deaths: 6,39,900

Total Recovered: 90,54,474

Nations hit with most cases: US (41,12,651), Brazil (22,87,475), India (13,37,024), Russia (8,05,332) and South Africa (4,21,996)

Nordic study suggests open schools don’t spread virus much: There was no measurable difference in the number of coronavirus cases among children in Sweden, where schools were left open, compared with neighbouring Finland, where schools were shut, according to the findings by Nordic scientists. Read more here

Dogs, with a few days of training, can identify Covid-19 infected persons: Eight dogs from Germany’s armed forces were trained for only a week and were able to accurately identify the virus with a 94 percent success rate, according to a pilot project led by the University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover. Read more here

Central London rents decline as vacation homes flood market: Rents for homes in central London had a record decline last month as landlords flooded the market with properties previously rented out through companies such as Airbnb. Houses in the city center rented for 7.4 percent  less than a year earlier in June. Read more here

Australian Open in January 2021: Tennis Australia chief executive Craig Tiley will be looking at the running of both the US Open and delayed French Open to help plan contingencies for the first Grand Slam tournament of 2021. He said the tournament has already decided on how the event will shape up in January — reduced seating due to social distancing, players in a secure bio-security “bubble” and the likelihood of no overseas spectators. Read more here

Schlumberger to slash 21,000 jobs as revenues plunge: The world’s biggest oilfield services company suffers $3.4 billion net loss after US shale collapse. It has now said it will cut 21,000 jobs—roughly a fifth of its workforce – as the collapse of US shale production has caused the demand to dry up. Read more here

French and German business sentiment rebound from pandemic hit: Europe’s economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic is gathering pace, according to a widely watched set of business surveys and IHS Markit, that found significant improvements in activity in both the services and manufacturing sectors. Services sector businesses across the Eurozone reported a substantial strengthening in July. Read more here

Specials

The supply chain to save the world is unprepared for a vaccine:
Already stretched thin by the pandemic, freight companies face problems ranging from shrinking capacity on container ships and cargo aircraft to a lack of visibility on when a vaccine will arrive. Shippers have struggled for years to reduce cumbersome paperwork and upgrade old technology that, unless addressed soon, will slow the relay race to transport fragile vials of medicine in unprecedented quantities. Making a vaccine quickly is hard enough but distributing one worldwide offers a host of other variables, and conflicting forces may work against the effort: The infrastructure powering the global economy is scaling down for a protracted downturn just as pharmaceutical companies need to scale up for the biggest and most consequential product launch in modern history. Read more here

In couture: custom face masks around the world: A slideshow

The week when everything changed for Trump: Two weeks ago the president was insisting that all schools had to reopen, or he would take away their funding. He's now saying that, for some of the worst hit cities, that wouldn't be appropriate - and appears much more empathetic towards parents wrestling with the decision about whether to allow their children resume in school education. And the really big U-turn came last night on the Republican Convention in Jacksonville, Florida. It was a stunning and painful reverse, and one the president made with the heaviest of hearts. What happened exactly? Read here


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