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U.S. Coronavirus Cases Exceed Five Million

The Wall Street Journal. logo The Wall Street Journal. 8/9/2020 Shan Li, Lucy Craymer
a person in a blue cage © rory carroll/Reuters

The U.S. has surpassed five million confirmed cases of the coronavirus as some states saw sharp upticks while others showed signs that the spread of the virus was easing.

The U.S. continues to lead the world in number of confirmed cases, followed by Brazil with slightly more than three million and India with over two million, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. Globally the tally of coronavirus cases is closing in on 20 million.

The U.S. reported more than 56,000 new coronavirus cases Saturday, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

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President Trump on Saturday directed the federal government to provide $300 a week in additional payments to the unemployed and called on states to fund an extra $100 in weekly benefits. The measure was one of four the president signed to extend coronavirus aid after negotiators for the White House and Democrats in Congress failed to reach an accord.

On Saturday, the Mid-American Conference canceled its fall sports including football, becoming the first conference in the NCAA’s top tier to do so. Dozens of smaller universities already have canceled fall sports. The bigger conferences, including the Big Ten and Southeastern Conference, have canceled nonconference games and rearranged schedules so their member teams only play each other.

After slowing in June, the rate of Covid-19 deaths in nursing homes has begun to accelerate again, fueled by increases in states including Texas and Florida that saw coronavirus surges in the broader population, according to new federal data. Nursing homes reported 1,046 deaths in the week ended July 26, the most recent available data show. That marked a 14% increase from the previous week.

Teachers in states where in-person instruction is beginning are stocking up on face coverings, hoping to protect themselves and their students from the virus. Many states and school districts have said they would provide personal-protective equipment to those who need it, but some teachers say they haven’t received it yet and aren’t sure what will be distributed or when it will arrive.

Brazil faced a somber milestone on Saturday, with the country’s Covid-19 death toll poised to surpass 100,000 as the disease spreads widely beyond the megacities where it first gained a toehold and tears through smaller towns and rural areas.

China added 23 new coronavirus cases Saturday, down from 31 the previous day. Among Saturday’s new cases,15 local infections were detected in the western Xinjiang province while the rest were imported, said the country’s health ministry on Sunday.

South Korea reported 36 new cases Sunday, bringing the nation’s total to 14,598. More infections tied to church gatherings emerged, since the government lifted regulations banning religious gatherings apart from regular worship services July 24. Most of the locally transmitted infections this month occurred in the Seoul metropolitan area.

Japan’s second-wave outbreak, which began in July, worsened in several parts of the country over the weekend. The southern island of Okinawa, site of several U.S. military bases, recorded a record 159 cases Sunday, making it the worst-hit part of the country as a percentage of population. Nationwide on Saturday, the country recorded 1,532 cases, just short of a daily high, the government said Sunday.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Sunday reiterated that he didn’t want to revive a state of emergency that was lifted in May toward the end of the first wave. He said at a news conference in Nagasaki that he was worried about the impact on employment and the economy.

On Sunday morning, India reported 64,399 new cases of coronavirus in the country in the preceding 24 hours, the highest single-day increase and third day in a row of more than 60,000 new cases a day, taking the total confirmed cases to 2.15 million, according to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. It reported 861 new deaths due to the disease, with total deaths at 43,379. More than 68% of the infected—1.48 million people—have recovered from the disease to date.

At least 10 people, most of them Covid-19 patients, died in the southern Indian city of Vijayawada early Sunday when a fire broke out in a hotel that was turned into a covid facility, city’s commissioner of police said. There were 30 patients and 12 medical and hotel staff at the facility at the time of the fire, the police commissioner said.

Australia on Sunday recorded 17 coronavirus-related deaths, its highest one-day total. However, Australia’s Department of Health said the number of new cases in the country fell to its lowest level since July 29. Australia has reported 21,111 total cases since the pandemic began, with 295 deaths.

New Zealand, meanwhile, is celebrating 100 days since the last case of community transmission of Covid-19. It reported no new cases of Covid-19 Sunday, the fourth day of no new cases in quarantine.

Write to Shan Li at shan.li@wsj.com and Lucy Craymer at Lucy.Craymer@wsj.com

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