Global COVID-19 cases surge as the UK reopens

Saleha Riaz
·3-min read
LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 04: Police officers are seen breaking up a fight outside a pub in Soho on July 4, 2020 in London, United Kingdom. The UK Government announced that Pubs, Hotels and Restaurants can open from Saturday, July 4th providing they follow guidelines on social distancing and sanitising. (Photo by Peter Summers/Getty Images)
The UK government announced that pubs, hotels and restaurants can open from Saturday, 4 July providing they follow guidelines on social distancing and sanitising. Photo: by Peter Summers/Getty Images

Markets will be looking for signs that the reopening of restaurants, pubs and salons in the UK has given the economy a much-needed boost, while in the US weekly jobless claims continue to be the focus across the Atlantic.

The World Health Organization said on 5 July that member states reported more than 212,000 new confirmed cases of COVID-19, the highest single-day increase since the start of the pandemic.

It said the highest number of new infections was reported from the Americas region, which includes the US and Brazil, with almost 130,000 confirmed cases.

Some states in the US including Texas have reinstated lockdowns as infection rates hit new record highs.

Markets will also be keeping an eye out for other developments from this weekend:

Britain: Super Saturday, spending vouchers, BoE

Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson (L) and Britain's Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak use hand sanitizer on either side of a table football game as they visit Pizza Pilgrims in West India Quay, London Docklands on June 26, 2020 as the restaurant prepares to reopen on July 4 as coronavirus lockdown rules are eased. - The British government on Thursday unveiled plans to get the public out of indoor confinement and on to the streets to boost the economy after three months of coronavirus lockdown. Prime Minister Boris Johnson wants pubs and restaurants to be buzzing in the curtailed summer season, despite continued social distancing rules and restrictions. (Photo by Heathcliff O'Malley / POOL / AFP) (Photo by HEATHCLIFF O'MALLEY/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Britain's prime minister Boris Johnson and chancellor Rishi Sunak use hand sanitiser on either side of a table football. Photo: Heathcliff O'Malley / POOL / AFP via Getty Images

Things in Britain are looking up, as the weekend saw the reopening of many businesses in the hospitality sector. Health secretary Matt Hancock said the vast majority of people who went out on “Super Saturday” were “doing the right thing” and following social distancing.

Meanwhile, chancellor Rishi Sunak is expected to say the number of work coaches will double from 13,500 to 27,000 in a bid to try to help jobseekers back into employment.

The move will cost some £800m ($998.7m) and comes amid predictions of a major recession in the aftermath of the pandemic.

Sunak is also reportedly mulling plans to hand out vouchers of £500 for adults, and £250 for children to spend in sectors of the economy hit hardest by the virus.

Alongside this, the Sunday Times reported that Bank of England governor Andrew Bailey has warned lenders of the challenges of negative interest rates.

The letter said that negative rates were "one of the potential tools under active review" if the monetary policy committee decided that "more stimulus" was needed to hit the BoE's 2% inflation target.

New car sales and construction PMI data is expected 6 July.

Europe: Raft of key data

Construction PMI for June and retail sales for May will be out on 6 July.

The data will be used by investors to assess the extent of the rebound from April's lockdowns.

US: Jobless claims, second lockdowns

Businessman working on laptop from home wearing protective mask. COVID- 19. Coronavirus epidemic.
Photo: Getty

Weekly jobless claims (9 July) continue to be what markets are watching, even more so now that some states are reinstating lockdown.

ING analysts said that “if renewed containment measures make it unviable for businesses to operate then it will only add to the problems in the jobs market, which is why we should continue to closely follow the jobless claims numbers published each Thursday.”

Final Markit Services and Composite PMI for June is to be published 6 July along with a raft of ISM non-manufacturing data.

Total vehicles sales (7 July) and Core PPI (10 July) data for June is also expected next week.