10.39pm EST


Here’s a summary of what we know so far today on the coronavirus outbreak:

361 people have died in China, one in the Philippines
Confirmed infections in China are 17,238 (official Chinese figures include Taiwan, Hong Kong Macao)
Outside of China, infections stand at more than 150 (for simplicity of comparison between the numbers, I have removed Taiwan [10], Hong Kong [15] and Macao [8] from this global figure)
China’s markets plunged on opening, on the first day of trading since the extended lunar new year. Shanghai fell 8.7%
A Qantas charter flight carrying Australian citizens has departed Wuhan
New Zealand has banned foreign travellers from China from entering
The new hospital in Wuhan, built to accomodate coronavirus patients, is due to open on Monday

at 10.39pm EST

10.20pm EST

The eastern Chinese city of Wenzhou in Zhejiang province on Sunday closed roads and confined people to their homes to try and stop the spread of the virus. Wenzhou, an industrial port city, is 800km (500 miles) from Wuhan, where the health emergency began. It has a population of around three million.

Passengers wearing protective faceasks sit as they arrive at the Beijing Capital International Airport. Photograph: Noel Celis/AFP via Getty Images

9.52pm EST

Three officials in China’s Zhejiang province are reported to have been “penalised for their negligence of duty after failing to report seven infected cases” of coronavirus, Chinese state media is reporting.

9.41pm EST

One source of figures on the deaths and infections from the coronavirus that we have been referring to is from Johns Hopkins University in the US. Its tracker shows Chinese and global cases of infections and deaths, including visual representations of the virus. Below is a snapshot of what it’s showing now. The headline figures are:

17,318 confirmed cases globally
362 deaths globally (all in China except one in Philippines)

It’s worth noting that they separate out cases in Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan, whereas the Chinese Health Commission groups them in their figure all under China.

Graph showing global infections from the coronavirus as collated by Johns Hopkins university. Photograph: Johns Hopkins University CSSE

at 9.42pm EST

9.40pm EST

China’s currency, the yuan, is also having a torrid time today. It has fallen back through the seven-to-the-dollar mark to trade at its lowest point since December.
The higher the number the weaker it is because, unlike with most other currencies, its movements tend to be expressed in yuan rather than the US dollar. For example, the Aussie dollar is usually quoted in US cents – today its standing at US66.9c.

Onshore #yuan and offshore yuan both break through 7/USD mark pic.twitter.com/0TcWVWeZTj

February 3, 2020

Tom Orlik
Yuan crashes through 7 to the dollar pic.twitter.com/qRUvDqSerW

February 3, 2020

9.22pm EST

Chinese commodities trading suspended

Trading in a whole range of commodities has been suspended in China after losses quickly exceeded the daily limit today.
The maximum level of losses, known as limit-down in trading parlance, was reached for iron ore, nickel, copper, eggs, palm oil, crude oil and other produce.

Global Times
China’s futures market slumped at the open on Mon, with iron ore, screw thread, crude oil, palm oil, eggs contracts falling their daily limit amid #coronavirus outbreak. Monday is the first trading day after Chinese spring festival holiday. pic.twitter.com/UDxbNQYa9K

February 3, 2020

9.19pm EST

Here are some images from the state broadcaster CGTN from inside the new hospital built to take coronavirus patients in Wuhan.

How does #China’s makeshift hospital, built within days to treat patients infected with #coronavirus in #Wuhan, look like?These images show the inside facility of Huoshenshan Hospital, which is set to open Monday with 1,400 medical staff, all from the PLA, and 1,000 beds pic.twitter.com/1T0MVANPFa

February 3, 2020

9.15pm EST

Back to the markets. The Shenzhen composite is down 9.13% and the yuan has been fixed at its lowest point this year in onshore trade.
The Shenzhen market is smaller than the Shanghai one and is made up of smaller, more tech-based companies. It makes the Shenzhen index more like the US Nasdaq.

Global Times
The Shenzhen index slumped 9.13% and the ChiNext index lost 8.23% despite a slew of efforts announced Sunday to assuage investors amid the spread of #coronavirus. pic.twitter.com/sXloMXpbNl

February 3, 2020

More bad new from China is that factory activity slowed in January, according to data in a closely watched survey released today.
The Caixin/Markit manufacturing purchasing managers’ index (PMI) eased to 51.1 from 51.5 in December, missing expectations but remaining above the 50-mark that separates growth from contraction for the sixth straight month. Analysts had expected a reading of 51.3.
Industrial profits also fell 6.3% on a year earlier to 588.39 billion yuan ($85.22 billion) in December, official data showed on Monday.

Trader Jim 🇬🇷 📈
#CoronaVirus #Shanghai $SSE https://t.co/TyiD7ZHF01

February 3, 2020

Tom Orlik
China markets playing catch up on a week of terrible virus news. Shanghai plummets at the open… pic.twitter.com/XCgca7m8CN

February 3, 2020

9.15pm EST

China’s acting ambassador to Israel apologised on Sunday after comparing the closure of several national borders to Chinese citizens amid fears of a new virus from China to the turning away of Jewish refugees during the Holocaust, the Associated Press reports.
Dai Yuming told reporters at an English-language press conference in Tel Aviv that the errors to limit or even ban entries of Chinese citizens reminded him of the old days, the old stories that happened in world war two, the Holocaust, the darkest days in human history.
The Chinese embassy in Israel later issued a statement saying there was no intention whatsoever to compare the Holocaust with the current situation and the efforts taken by the Israeli government to protect its citizens.
“We would like to apologise if someone understood our message the wrong way,” the embassy said.

The Jerusalem Post
#Chinese embassy apologizes for comparing border closure to Holocaust👉 https://t.co/SvKadC69GY https://t.co/IIjhQHemXK

February 2, 2020

9.08pm EST

While trading in Shanghai plunged on opening, Chinese state media is reporting that shares of Improve Medical, which make face masks, jumped 8.5%.

Global Times
#Facemask shares rose by nearly 8.5% in the first five minutes of trading on Mon morning. Shares of Improve Medical touched the trading ceiling. (File Photo) pic.twitter.com/MXyx2oN5Wo

February 3, 2020

8.58pm EST

You can read more on the Chinese stock market’s fall from Martin Farrer here, who says the fall is the biggest daily drop for five years as traders rushed to sell amid continued fears about the impact on the global economy of the coronavirus epidemic.
The benchmark Shanghai composite index fell 8.7% at the opening on Monday on a wave of negative sentiment that has built up for 10 days during the long market shutdown for the lunar new year.

at 8.58pm EST

8.34pm EST

Chinese shares plunge 8.7% at the opening

Stocks in Shanghai have fallen 8.7% at the opening.
The maximum allowed before trading is suspended for the day is 10%. So we could be in for a short day.

David Ingles
Chinese stocks post the single-biggest decline since the global financial crisis at the reopen.#CoronavirusOutbreak #China pic.twitter.com/I2QSXuCnlU

February 3, 2020

Trinh Nguyen
The PBOC injects 150bn to help but markets are in the deep red after a week of pent-up demand to buy/sell. This is one of the most volatile markets in the world but the downside trigger is -10% so won’t fall more than -10% on a day. So, get ready. Buckle up & enjoy the volatility

February 3, 2020

8.16pm EST

Deutsche Welle’s East Asia correspondent, William Yang, is reporting a Chinese ministry of environment statement that announced in order to prevent the virus from being spread via human excrement and waste water, they will monitor waste water from hospitals.

William Yang
And #China’s Ministry of Environment issued a statement late last night, announcing that in order to prevent the virus from being spread through human excrement and waste waters, they will monitor waster waters from hospitals and townships, regulate the processing of … pic.twitter.com/nZvB63oYWN

February 2, 2020

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