20 July 2020

ISA Coronavirus Update (20th of July)

Daily Summary

The number of diagnosed cases of the coronavirus worldwide now stands at nearly 14.7 million as the number of new cases found on a daily basis is now double what it was at the beginning of June.

More than 609,000 deaths around the world have now been attributed to the coronavirus, with an average of 5,000 fatalities being reported per day around the world in recent weeks.

An average of nearly 70,000 new cases of the coronavirus are being found in the United States on a daily basis.  In addition, the number of new fatalities linked to the coronavirus in the US has trended upwards in recent days.

There are now more than 3.8 million diagnosed cases of the coronavirus in Latin America, while more than 162,000 people have died from the virus in that region so far.  At this rate, Latin America will overtake Europe as the region with the most fatalities in the coming months.

The number of new cases of the coronavirus in South Africa has continued to rise sharply, and this suggests that other areas of Sub-Saharan Africa are also experiencing higher numbers of cases, although low testing levels mean that most of these cases are not being diagnosed.


Key Developments

China’s Economy Beats Expectations: China’s economy rebounded from its sharp fall in the first quarter of this year to grow by 3.2% on a year-on-year basis in the second quarter, beating expectations. This raised hopes that the world’s second-largest economy will generate some growth this year.


The Race for the Vaccine: There are currently at least 13 different vaccines being tested at the moment for the coronavirus. Three (Moderna, Oxford and Sinovac) are now in the third phase of testing, while two other Chinese-developed vaccines are now in the second phase of testing.


Trend to Watch

While unemployment rates have fallen from their peaks in countries where there was a spike in unemployment in previous months, it is feared that weak job creation levels could lead to higher rates of longer-term unemployment in the months ahead.


The Coming Days

The recent lockdown measures imposed in cities such as Hong Kong, Melbourne and Barcelona highlight the likelihood that many such disruptions will occur in major economic centers until a vaccine is developed and distributed around the world.