Good evening, here are the coronavirus updates you need to know tonight.
- How Italy squandered an opportunity to control its COVID-19 cases and doomed itself to an open-close cycle
- Picard: With COVID-19, Canada is paying the price for being complacent
- Ottawa introduces long-awaited bill to provide businesses with direct access to rent relief
In Canada, there have been at least 240,263 cases reported. In the last week 20,050 new cases were announced, 7 per cent more than the previous week.
There have also been at least 199,515 recoveries and 10,208 deaths. Today, 29 new deaths were reported, compared to 43 yesterday.
Worldwide, there have been at least 46,509,786 cases confirmed and 1,200,080 deaths reported.
Sources: Canada data is compiled from government websites, Johns Hopkins and COVID-19 Canada Open Data Working Group; international data is from Johns Hopkins University.
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Coronavirus in Canada
- Ontario reported 948 new cases and seven deaths today. Also in the province, Rexall temporarily suspended its flu shot program over insufficient supplies. A million flu shots have been administered this year, the provincial Health Minister said today, up from 150,000 at the same time last year.
- In Manitoba, the Premier said he is considering implementing a curfew after almost 650 cases were reported over the weekend. Today, newly tightened restrictions came into force.
- In British Columbia, social media posts show downtown Vancouver streets crowded with partygoers on Halloween night, apparently flouting COVID-19 safety protocols.
In Ottawa, the federal government has introduced a bill to provide businesses with direct access to emergency rent relief, a month after announcing the new measure.
- The bill would also extend the federal emergency wage subsidy until June, 2021.
- The government’s previous rent relief program was widely criticized because it needed buy-in from landlords, many of whom did not participate.
- The new Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy is intended to allow commercial tenants to apply directly for rent and mortgage-interest support.
Coronavirus around the world
- Italy, the original European centre of the pandemic, squandered the opportunity to keep its COVID-19 cases under control. New infections have climbed tenfold since the start of October and are hitting 25,000 or more a day. By Monday, the Italian government was on the verge of announcing new restrictions that may fall just short of a full national lockdown.
- British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Monday defended his decision to impose a second lockdown in England, brushing aside criticism that weeks of delay have meant thousands more infections and hundreds of needless deaths.
- The International Monetary Fund on Monday warned Group of 20 major economies that the coronavirus crisis is not over and called on the United States and other countries to increase the amount of fiscal spending currently planned.
Coronavirus and business
Consumer sentiment is waning in Canada as COVID-19 cases rise and new lockdown measures are put in place, a worrying sign for an economic recovery that depends on robust spending by households.
- The Conference Board of Canada’s index of consumer confidence dropped 9.5 points in October to 74.1, the largest monthly decrease since April.
Also today: Real estate investors are increasingly trying to get out of closing on their newly built condos in Toronto and area. Since the pandemic started early this year, the rental vacancy rate in the Greater Toronto Area has reached its highest level in more than a decade.
And: Quebec’s aerospace sector is calling for financial support from the federal government after 4,300 jobs were lost in the province during the pandemic.
- André Picard: ‘“COVID is beating us,’ Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister said Monday. But he’s wrong: We are letting the virus beat us with our complacency and half-measures."
- Eileen Dooley: “It’s an interesting paradox. In ‘normal’ times, you might never have invited colleagues into where you live, or even shown them the outside of your house. But now, you regularly interact with them by video from your kitchen or dining room table, living room, spare bedroom, or home office.”
- Manitoba government urged to step in amid COVID-19 outbreak at Parkview Place care home.
- Rob Carrick’s 10-point checklist of things you should have done by now to protect or improve your money situation. Tips for minimizing damage to your credit score; how to manage retirement anxiety during difficult times; and things to think about if you’re considering home delivery.
- Here are the expectations for self-isolation; tips for managing anxiety and protecting your mental health; and what to do if you think you have the virus. Wash your hands. How to break a bad habit (like touching your face). Is flying safe?
- The best foods to eat to maintain an immune system-friendly diet; and how to keep a healthy diet while working from home; four eating tips when working from home; and five mistakes that might cause you to gain unwanted weight. Here are the essentials to stock up on and how to shop safely for groceries; the best pantry staples and how to stop stress-eating. What to cook with rhubarb (aside from pie).
- Here’s what you should do if you are newly laid off; how to apply for CERB, EI, and other financial benefits; how the CRA might identify CERB fraud; and other coronavirus and employment questions answered. What to do if your employees don’t return to work because they want to collect CERB.
Sources: Canada data are compiled from government websites, Johns Hopkins University and COVID-19 Canada Open Data Working Group; international data are from Johns Hopkins.