October 13 coronavirus news

By Jessie Yeung, Adam Renton, Emma Reynolds, Mike Hayes and Meg Wagner, CNN

Updated 12:00 a.m. ET, October 14, 2020
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11:16 a.m. ET, October 13, 2020

New York City test positivity rate is 1.90%, mayor says

From CNN's Sheena Jones

A medical worker takes a nasal swab sample to test for COVID-19 at the Brooklyn Health Medical Alliance urgent care pop up testing site on October 8 in New York City.
A medical worker takes a nasal swab sample to test for COVID-19 at the Brooklyn Health Medical Alliance urgent care pop up testing site on October 8 in New York City. Angela Weiss/AFP/Getty Images

The test positivity rate across New York City is 1.90%, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said Tuesday. 

The mayor did not immediately specify if this test positivity rate included the hotspot areas across the city.  

As of October 11, there were 520 confirmed Covid-19 cases across the city, according to de Blasio. 

At least 59 people were admitted to NYC Heath and Hospitals for Covid-19, according to data collected on October 11, the mayor said. 

NOTE: These numbers were released by the city of New York and may not line up exactly in real time with CNN’s database drawn from Johns Hopkins University and the Covid Tracking Project.

11:15 a.m. ET, October 13, 2020

US Army Chief of Staff back to work after quarantining 

From Ryan Browne

US Army Chief of Staff General James C McConville attends the opening ceremony of the Indo-Pacific Army Chiefs Conference meeting in Bangkok on September 9, 2019.
US Army Chief of Staff General James C McConville attends the opening ceremony of the Indo-Pacific Army Chiefs Conference meeting in Bangkok on September 9, 2019. Lillian Suwanrumpha/AFP/Getty Images

After self-quarantining for several days the US Army Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville has returned to work.

“I’ve been screened and tested multiple times,” McConville told reporters at the Pentagon Tuesday, adding “I’ve been cleared by the docs to come back in.”

McConville and other members of the Joint Chiefs, except the commandant of the Marine Corps, self-quarantined after attending a meeting attended by the Vice Commandant of the Coast Guard who tested positive for coronavirus.

The assistant commandant of the Marine Corps subsequently tested positive for the coronavirus.

11:03 a.m. ET, October 13, 2020

Senate majority leader will bring up bill to restart small business loan program next week

From CNN's Phil Mattingly

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell arrives at the Hart Senate Building on Capitol Hill on September 24 in Washington, DC. 
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell arrives at the Hart Senate Building on Capitol Hill on September 24 in Washington, DC.  Liz Lynch/Getty Images

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, in a statement Tuesday, announced Senate Republicans will attempt to move forward on a targeted bill to restart the small business loan program that served as a centerpiece of the coronavirus relief efforts when the Senate returns to session next week. 

“Republicans do not agree that nothing is better than something for working families,” McConnell said in the statement. “The American people need Democrats to stop blocking bipartisan funding and let us replenish the PPP before more Americans lose their jobs needlessly.”

The effort is likely to be blocked – Democratic leaders have repeatedly rejected piecemeal approaches to the next relief effort, including a roughly $300 billion Senate GOP relief bill, which Democrats voted unanimously against last month. Instead, they have insisted on a broad, comprehensive response to the twin economic and public health issues facing the country. 

Those negotiations, however, have remained at a stalemate for months. While President Donald Trump offered a momentary boost to the prospects of an agreement last week when he called for a “big” deal and proposed a $1.8 trillion offer, Speaker Nancy Pelosi has rejected the effort and the talks are once again stuck without a clear path forward. 

Pelosi, in a letter to her House Democratic colleagues Tuesday, listed off a myriad of significant issues with the latest Trump administration proposal. 

“Significant changes must be made to remedy the Trump proposal’s deficiencies,” Pelosi wrote to her colleagues. 

The Senate GOP move, which aides have said was under discussion for several days, follows a request to lawmakers from Treasury Sec. Steven Mnuchin and White House chief of staff Mark Meadows to pass a bill restarting the small business loan program, known as the Paycheck Protection Program. The program came to an end with roughly $130 billion in funds unspent. 

11:12 a.m. ET, October 13, 2020

Mayor de Blasio says testing numbers across New York City schools are "very encouraging"

From CNN's Sheena Jones

NYC Media
NYC Media

Covid-19 testing numbers in New York City Public Schools are “very encouraging,” New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said Tuesday. 

Out of 1,751 tests conducted across 56 schools in New York City on Friday, only one person tested positive, the mayor said. 

For Friday there was a 0.6% test positivity rate, the mayor said. 

The mayor went on to remind parents to sign their child’s testing consent form and send it to school or complete the form online.

11:05 a.m. ET, October 13, 2020

New York City is seeing a "leveling off" in Covid-19 cluster areas in Brooklyn and Queens, the mayor says

From CNN's Sheena Jones

People walk past closed stores in the Borough Park section of Brooklyn, New York City, on October 9.
People walk past closed stores in the Borough Park section of Brooklyn, New York City, on October 9. Angela Weiss/AFP/Getty Images

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said Tuesday the city is beginning to see a “leveling off” in the red zone cluster areas across Brooklyn and Queens.

The mayor said the city is days into the restrictions imposed in the red zone and “we are seeing some results.” 

“This is the week we can start changing the tide in those fundamental areas,” the mayor said. 

Very robust enforcement has begun and will deepen across those areas, de Blasio added. 

There were at least $150K in fines and over 100 summonses given out in the red, orange and yellow zone areas over the weekend, the mayor said. 

10:57 a.m. ET, October 13, 2020

Johnson & Johnson learned of “unexplained illness” in Phase 3 coronavirus trial on Sunday

From CNN'S Wes Bruer

A single-dose COVID-19 vaccine being developed by Johnson & Johnson is seen in September.
A single-dose COVID-19 vaccine being developed by Johnson & Johnson is seen in September. Cheryl Gerber/Courtesy of Johnson & Johnson via AP

Johnson & Johnson said Tuesday that it learned of the “unexplained illness,” which caused it to pause its Phase 3 coronavirus vaccine trial in the US, on Sunday and immediately informed the Data and Safety Monitoring Board, or DSMB, which monitors clinical trial developments.

The drugmaker said it did not know whether the volunteer who became ill had received the vaccine or placebo.

“We are now awaiting further medical information and evaluation, which we will then forward to the DSMB for further independent recommendations,” Mathai Mammen, Global Head of Research and Development at Janssen, said Tuesday on the company’s third quarter earnings call.
“It’s not at all unusual for unexpected illnesses to occur in large studies over their duration,” Mammen said. In some cases, these are called serious adverse events, or SAEs, and may have something or nothing to do with the drug or vaccine being investigated,” Mammen said.

Mammen said the company has “very little information right now” regarding the illness which paused the trial, but said that the DSMB has submitted a number of specific questions for them to answer.

As of Tuesday morning, the trial remains blinded, meaning that participants and those administering the vaccine candidates are unaware if they are receiving the vaccine or a placebo. Mammen added that the DSMB has the ability to unblind the study in order to investigate the unexplained illness if necessary.

Johnson & Johnson announced the clinical trial pause on Monday, making it the second Phase 3 coronavirus vaccine trial to be paused.

AstraZeneca’s vaccine trial was paused last month because of an a neurological complication in a volunteer in the UK. While the trial resumed there and in other countries, it remains paused in the United States while the US Food and Drug Administration investigated.

10:39 a.m. ET, October 13, 2020

Soccer superstar Ronaldo tests positive for coronavirus

From CNN’s Vasco Cotovio

Portugal's forward Cristiano Ronaldo warms up before a friendly football match between Portugal and Spain at the Jose Alvalade Stadium in Lisbon on October 7.
Portugal's forward Cristiano Ronaldo warms up before a friendly football match between Portugal and Spain at the Jose Alvalade Stadium in Lisbon on October 7. Carlos Costa/AFP/Getty Images

Soccer superstar Cristiano Ronaldo has tested positive for coronavirus, the Portuguese Football Federation said in a statement Tuesday.

“Cristiano Ronaldo has been released from working with the National Team after testing positive for Covid-19, so he will not be facing Sweden,” the statement said. 
“The Portuguese international is well, without symptoms, and in isolation."

“Following the positive case, the remaining players underwent new tests this Tuesday morning, all with negative results, and are available to [coach] Fernando Santos for this afternoon’s training session, at the Cidade do Futebol." 

“The game, part of the qualification phase of the League of Nations, is scheduled for Wednesday, at 19:45, in Alvalade,” the statement said.

11:10 a.m. ET, October 13, 2020

London mayor says tougher restrictions are “inevitable” in the coming days

From CNN's Amy Cassidy

The Mayor of London said it was “inevitable” the UK’s capital would meet the threshold for tougher coronavirus restrictions in the coming days.

Speaking to Sky News on Tuesday, Sadiq Khan said:

"All the indicators I have – hospital admissions, ICU occupancy, the numbers of older people with cases, the prevalence of the disease, the positivity – are all going the wrong direction.
“Which means, I'm afraid, it's inevitable over the course of the next few days London will have passed a trigger point to be in the second tier."

Like most of England, London is currently on “medium” alert – the lowest level of the government's new three-tier system announced Monday – meaning bars and restaurants are still open until 10 p.m. and up to six people from different households can meet indoors. 

The mayor is calling for the capital to be moved into the second tier “high” alert level, which would ban people from socializing with other households indoors. 

He added it should cover the whole city because people frequently travel between boroughs to work and study. 

The Liverpool City Region is currently the only part of England in the third tier and is on “very high” alert, with bars and pubs closed. This area is situated in the northwest of the country, which has the highest infection rate of 1,741 per 100,000 people. 

The current rate of infection in London is 695 per 100,000 people, according to government data. 

The UK’s Deputy Chief Medical Officer on Monday voiced “great concern” that the virus was spreading to southern parts of the country. 

Hear from London residents on how police are enforcing Covid-19 rules:

9:40 a.m. ET, October 13, 2020

Stocks open mixed

From CNN’s Anneken Tappe

People walk by the New York Stock Exchange in lower Manhattan on October 2 in New York City.
People walk by the New York Stock Exchange in lower Manhattan on October 2 in New York City. Spencer Platt/Getty Images

The US stock market was mixed at Tuesday’s opening bell in New York, with only the Nasdaq Composite starting the day in the green.

Tech stocks are in focus again as Apple is set to reveal its latest iPhone and Amazon’s Prime Day kicked off. 

Earnings season is upon us as America’s big banks reported third quarter results this morning. This – along with stimulus hopes, the election and the path of the pandemic – will keep investors on their toes for the coming weeks.

Here's where things opened:

  • The Dow opened 0.3%, or 80 points, lower.
  • The S&P 500 inched 0.1% lower.
  • The Nasdaq Composite rose 0.2%.