Concerns over economic fallout from resurging coronavirus infections, as well as dwindling hopes for U.S. fiscal stimulus, weighed on stocks around the globe overnight (see market data below). A record 22 U.S. states recorded more than 1,000 new daily COVID-19 cases, while Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said he did not expect to reach a deal on a coronavirus relief package before the presidential election. On the data front, the latest weekly jobless claims numbers will be released this morning, with another 825,000 Americans are expected to have filed for first-time unemployment insurance.
Germany posted its highest ever increase in confirmed COVID-19 cases over the past 24 hours and started reimposing restrictions on some of the biggest coronavirus hotspots such as Berlin. The French government meanwhile declared a public health state of emergency and announced a curfew for Paris and eight other big cities from Saturday. Italy has also surpassed its daily record for newly diagnosed coronavirus cases, while a debate is taking place in England over whether a country-wide “circuit breaker” lockdown is needed.
COVID-19 vaccines may not be initially recommended for children when they become available, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. So far, early clinical trials have only included non-pregnant adults, but participating groups continue to expand as companies recruit more people. Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) has already announced that it will enroll children as young as 12 in its late-stage COVID-19 vaccine trial, while AstraZeneca (NASDAQ:AZN) has said a sub-group of patients in its large trial will test children between five to 12.
Fastly (NYSE:FSLY) lost more than a quarter of its market value late Wednesday after the cloud software company lowered its Q3 revenue guidance to $70M-$71M (from $73.5M-$75.5M). It attributed the lowered estimate to reduced usage from its largest customer, likely video-sharing app TikTok (BDNCE), which is facing a possible ban in the U.S. Fastly, which increases the speed of content delivery over the internet, also suspended its full-year guidance, and said a new forecast would be issued when it reports earnings on Oct. 28
Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) has cut the price of the Model S for the second time this week, after EV startup Lucid Motors, led by former Tesla executive Peter Rawlinson, announced the base price of its upcoming Air EV would be $69,900 (after tax credits). “The gauntlet has been thrown down! The prophecy will be fulfilled. Model S price changes to $69,420 tonight!” Elon Musk wrote on Twitter (the price was previously reduced from $74,990 to $71,990). Lucid has projected that the base model of their sedan will deliver an EPA estimated range of 406 miles per single charge vs. 402 miles per charge on the Model S.
Go Deeper: Model S makes up around 5% of Tesla’s unit volume – Credit Suisse.
Virgin Galactic (NYSE:SPCE) has confirmed that it is on track to conduct its first suborbital spaceflight in the coming weeks from Spaceport America in New Mexico. The flight planning window opens on October 22, and will be the first of two missions that will complete testing of the SpaceShipTwo spacecraft system. If both flights succeed, Virgin Galactic expects to fly founder Sir Richard Branson in the first quarter of 2021, notching a milestone that will commence the company’s commercial tourism service.
Despite setting an October 15 deadline for reaching a trade “outline” with the EU, Prime Minister Boris Johnson is not walking away from negotiations. He’s apparently waiting for the conclusion of the two-day EU summit in Brussels that concludes Friday, and some even say the end of October or first few days of November is now the real deadline. The Brexit transition period is due to expire on December 31, at which point the U.K. will leave the single market without a trade agreement.
Go Deeper: Tougher coronavirus restrictions likely coming back to London.
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Originally published on MarketWatch