June 15 coronavirus news

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5:54 a.m. ET, June 15, 2020

British shoppers line up as stores reopen for the first time since March

Shoppers in England lined up outside stores across the country on Monday, as many non-essential retail outlets opened for the first time since March.

People formed long, socially-distanced queues outside businesses in Oxford Street, one of London's most popular shopping districts.

From Monday, retailers are allowed to open if they comply with the government's coronavirus-secure guidelines, which require customers to shop while keeping 2m apart. Changing rooms in clothes stores remain closed.

This week, as shops start reopening in England, remember to follow social distancing rules to protect yourself and others," UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Twitter.

CNN's Anna Stewart said many of those she had spoken to outside the Apple Store on London's Regent Street were seeking repairs or returns, rather than shopping for new products.

Businesses are bracing for dramatically lower footfall than before the Covid-19 pandemic began.

Bars, restaurants and pubs remain closed across the UK.

The UK has recorded more than 297,000 cases of coronavirus, according to Johns Hopkins University, making it the worst affected country in Europe.

WATCH:

5:41 a.m. ET, June 15, 2020

Do masks mask our emotions?

From CNN's Katie Hunt

England is the latest in a long list of countries to make mask wearing mandatory to slow down the spread of Covid-19, with face coverings compulsory on public transport starting Monday.

A police officer wears a face mask as he stands on the concourse at Waterloo Station in London on Monday, June 15, after new rules came into effect, making wearing face coverings on public transport compulsory.
A police officer wears a face mask as he stands on the concourse at Waterloo Station in London on Monday, June 15, after new rules came into effect, making wearing face coverings on public transport compulsory. Niklas Halle'n/AFP/Getty Images

Many more of us are opting to wear a mask while shopping, when meeting friends and to attend medical appointments — even if it's not required.

But how does wearing a mask shape how we interact or communicate with others?

A smile is an easy way to defuse social tensions, but is this still possible when a mask is covering the bottom half of our face? And will the emotions of the people we encounter be harder to decode?

CNN spoke to communications expert Ursula Hess, a psychologist and professor at Humboldt University of Berlin, who says it's wrong to assume masks will make it harder for us to interact.

Read more here.

5:24 a.m. ET, June 15, 2020

With online learning, class bullies fade to the background

From CNN's Lisa Selin Davis

The rapid transition to online school — for those who hadn't made that choice themselves — has come with many downsides, from increasing inequality to the "Covid slide," which has seen children lose some of this year's learning, becoming less prepared to advance.

But after millions of schoolchildren suddenly transferred to cyber school, some are finding a surprising upside: Complicated social dynamics can simplify, sometimes evaporate, as they learn online.

"During this pandemic, I have heard countless examples of good behaviors occurring, children exhibiting increased empathy for others," Stacey Kite, a professor in the College of Arts & Sciences at Johnson & Wales University, and an expert on bullying, said.
"Moreover, children who did not want to go to school because they were bullied are now flourishing with the online learning. They are also finding ways to connect with their peers through this mode, which may transfer into real friendships."

One reason: Absence makes the heart grow fonder. "Kids are craving their peers and they're missing people they weren't even that close with before," Graber said.

Read more here.

5:13 a.m. ET, June 15, 2020

Global stocks plunge as fears of a coronavirus surge grow in the US and China

From CNN's Clare Duffy, Laura He and Jill Disis

An electronic stock board shows Japan's Nikkei 225 index at a securities firm in Tokyo, on Monday, June 15.
An electronic stock board shows Japan's Nikkei 225 index at a securities firm in Tokyo, on Monday, June 15. Eugene Hoshiko/AP

Global stocks plunged Monday as the United States and China grappled with new coronavirus outbreaks, signaling that the pandemic isn't done wreaking havoc on the global economy.

  • Dow futures plunged more than 800 points, or 3.2%, extending losses ahead of the opening bell
  • S&P 500 futures dropped 3%
  • Nasdaq futures were down 2.3%

Markets across Asia also recorded steep declines, after Beijing recorded a fresh cluster of cases of the virus, originating in the city's largest wholesale food market.

China reported concerning economic data, suggesting that the recovery in the world's second largest economy is progressing slowly.

  • Japan's Nikkei ended down 3.5%
  • South Korea's Kospi lost 4.8%, closing out its worst day since March.
  • Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index fell 2.1%
  • China's Shanghai Composite declined 1%

And European markets broadly declined at open.

  • The FTSE 100 dropped 2.4% in London
  • Germany's DAX fell 2.5%
  • While France's CAC 40 declined 2.6%

Read more here:

4:46 a.m. ET, June 15, 2020

Why a second shutdown over coronavirus might be worse than the first -- and how to prevent it

From CNN's Holly Yan

It's an outcome no one wants, but could become a "harsh reality": a second wave of shutdowns.

Weeks after lifting stay-at-home orders, some US states are seeing record numbers of hospitalizations from Covid-19 as thousands more Americans get infected every day.

"We're going to have to face the harsh reality in some states that we may need to shut down again," said Dr. Jonathan Reiner, a professor at George Washington University School of Medicine.

And the second wave of state shutdowns could be more damaging than the first.

"Because of quarantine fatigue, because of the economic effects of quarantine, another round of shutdowns might have even larger effects on businesses that may be on the edge of not being able to stay solvent," said Dr. Christopher Murray, director of the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington.

How Americans can prevent another round of shutdowns:

While states try to revive the economy, the fate of this pandemic is largely up to individuals.

"People must observe the safety guidelines," top White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said. 

"Social distancing must be observed. Face coverings in key places must be observed."

Read the full story:

4:39 a.m. ET, June 15, 2020

Germany reports 4 new coronavirus deaths

From CNN's Stephanie Halasz

Germany recorded 192 new coronavirus cases and four deaths on Sunday, according to the Robert Koch Institute, the national agency for disease control and prevention.

The total number of confirmed cases in Germany now stands at 186,461 including 8,791 deaths, the institute said.

4:18 a.m. ET, June 15, 2020

Germany lifts travel warning for 27 European countries

CNN's Al Goodman, Ingrid Formanek and Laura Perez Maestro

Northbound traffic from Germany into Denmark queues at the border between the two countries near the town of Krusa on June 15.
Northbound traffic from Germany into Denmark queues at the border between the two countries near the town of Krusa on June 15. Claus Fisker/Ritzau Scanpix/AFP via Getty Images

Germany has lifted its travel warning for 27 countries in continental Europe.

Spain is not included in the list, but some German tourists can now travel to the popular Balearic island of Mallorca.

Frankfurt airport this morning remained quiet, however. Only two flights are leaving for Palma de Mallorca today the departure display showed, according to CNN affiliate n-tv. 

Spain’s Balearic Islands are set to see 10,900 German visitors in the second half of June in a “pilot project” to test tourism safety measures during the pandemic, the Balearic regional president said. 

The project starts on June 15 -- two weeks before the rest of Spain reopens for tourism -- and includes the islands of Mallorca, Ibiza, Menorca and Formentera.

3:57 a.m. ET, June 15, 2020

Guatemala declares "maximum alert" in four  regions as coronavirus cases surge 

From CNN's Daniel Silva Fernandez and Michelle Mendoza

Municipal firefighters disinfect each other outside the Hospital General de Enfermedades after transferring a patient in Guatemala City on June 12.
Municipal firefighters disinfect each other outside the Hospital General de Enfermedades after transferring a patient in Guatemala City on June 12. Johan Ordonez/AFP/Getty Images

Guatemala has declared a state of "maximum alert" in four administrative regions, the country's President Alejandro Giammattei announced Sunday. 

The alerts went into effect in the regions -- called departments -- of Guatemala, El Progreso, Sacatepéquez and San Marcos. It comes in response to the increase in coronavirus cases in those particular areas, the President said in an address to the nation.  

The new measures will last for 15 days and include full-day curfews on Sundays, and from 6 p.m. until 5 a.m. the rest of the week. Vehicles with odd and even number plates are only allowed to drive on alternate days. 

The entire country has been on a state of "high alert" since February 25. 

Guatemala has so far registered 384 coronavirus-related deaths, with 9,845 people infected with the virus, according to Johns Hopkins University data. 

3:31 a.m. ET, June 15, 2020

It's just past 8:30 a.m. in London and 3:30 p.m. in Beijing. Here's the latest on the pandemic

More than 7.9 million cases of the novel coronavirus have been confirmed worldwide, including at least 433,000 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University.

If you're just joining us, here's the latest developments.

  • Beijing cases linked to market: Since Thursday, the Chinese capital reported 79 coronavirus cases -- almost all of which are linked to a wholesale food market -- according to the National Health Commission, which has called the situation in the city “severe and uncertain.” Beijing shut down the Xinfadi wholesale food market, is tracking those who visited, and has sealed off several neighborhoods to control the outbreak.
  • France is easing more restrictions: President Emmanuel Macron said mainland France will lift all restrictions previously applied to businesses and transport from Monday. Macron also said France will follow the EU Commission recommendation of opening up borders on Monday.
  • Chinese company says experimental vaccine induces antibodies: A Chinese company says its experimental coronavirus vaccine caused the body to produce antibodies against the virus. Sinovac Biotech is testing the vaccine in more than 700 volunteers in an accelerated trial.
  • Clusters in Japan linked to young people: New research from Japan suggests that many coronavirus clusters outside of hospitals may have been started by people who are younger than 40 or don’t feel sick. The findings offer insight into who might be driving transmission of the virus.
  • Brazil cases rise: The Brazilian health ministry reported 17,110 new cases on Sunday, bringing the country’s total to 867,624. Brazil is Latin America's hardest-hit country, and one of the few large nations where Covid-19 cases, and death rates, are still rising.
  • Hong Kong Disneyland to reopen: And in lighter news, on June 18 the venue will become the world's second Disney park to reopen. It closed on January 26 and has remained shut since then, with a few exceptions -- namely its hotels and a few on-site restaurants. Shanghai Disneyland was the first Disney park to reopen.