Coronavirus live updates: US confirms new case, Germany says its at the beginning of an epidemic

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All times below are in Eastern time.

  • Total confirmed cases: More than 81,000
  • Total deaths: At least 2,764

JetBlue is waiving cancellation and change fees for all flights booked from Thursday through March 11 for travel completed by June 1. “While authorities have not issued any travel restrictions to the locations we fly, we want to give our customers some peace of mind that we are ready to support them should the situation change,” said Joanna Geraghty, president and chief operating officer, JetBlue. The company said the policy change was made “given evolving coronavirus concerns.”

Germany is at the beginning of a coronavirus epidemic after new cases sprung up that can no longer be traced to the virus’s original source in China, Health Minister Jens Spahn said. A total of five new cases of coronavirus in the west and south of Germany — taking the country’s total to around 20 — meant the disease appeared to be moving to a new phase, Spahn told a news conference, urging health authorities and employers to review their pandemic planning. 

“The infection chains are partially no longer trackable, and that is a new thing,” Spahn said. “Large numbers of people have had contact with the patients, and that is a big change to the 16 patients we had until now where the chain could be traced back to the origin in China.”

 —Reuters

Online travel giant Booking Holdings said the outbreak of coronavirus will damp travel demand and drive down sales in the first quarter. The company, which operates Booking.com, airfare-search site Kayak.com and others said its revenue could fall by as much as 9% on the year in the first quarter. It expects travel bookings to drop by 10% to 15%. “The coronavirus has had a significant and negative impact across our business during the 1st quarter. It is not possible to predict where, and to what degree, outbreaks of the coronavirus will disrupt travel patterns,” the company said in an earnings filing. The company said its forecast included wider ranges than usual because of the “high level of uncertainty in forecasting the coronavirus and its associated impact on the company and the travel industry generally.” —Josephs

The 10-year Treasury yield turned lower after an initial bump higher, falling to a new record low amid heightened fears about the fast-spreading coronavirus and its effect on the global economy. The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note, which moves inversely to price, fell four basis points to a 1.302%, just below its last record low reached on Tuesday of 1.307%. The benchmark yield was about 3 basis points higher earlier in the session. The yield on the 30-year Treasury bond was also lower at 1.807%, near its record low. Investors sought the safety of U.S. government debt and fled riskier assets on fears that the deadly coronavirus will disrupt the global economy growth. The S&P 500 posted back-to-back losses of more than 3% this week, suffering its biggest two-day plunge since 2015. —Li

Source: https://www.cnbc.com/2020/02/26/coronavirus-latest-updates.html

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