The past week has seen the United States break its own one-day case record four times, according data compiled by researchers at Johns Hopkins university.

In the seven days up to and including 1 July, the country, which has the highest number of cases and deaths worldwide, confirmed over 40,000 cases on four separate days.

Wednesday also saw cases rise by more than 50,000 for the first time in the US, with 51,200 confirmed in 24 hours.


The national increases come as the pandemic threatens people in a wider area of the country. Close to 10 times as many US counties meet the threshold to be considered a hotspot as during the previous peak, in April, the New York Times reported.

There are 2,739,230 known infections in the US, and there have been 128,743 deaths.

Brazil, second only to the US in terms of number of cases and deaths, has almost 1.5 million confirmed infections, after it added 48,105 new cases on Thursday. Cases there stand at 1,496,858, with deaths at 61,884. Brazil has reported more than 40,000 daily cases at least three times in the past week.

Mexico’s coronavirus outbreak also rose by a record 6,741 confirmed cases and 679 deaths on Thursday, putting the country’s death toll at 29,189. Reacting to a spike in virus cases reported in Arizona, the top health official in the neighbouring Mexican state of Sonora has asked Mexico’s federal government to temporarily close the border to non-essential visits from the US.

The United Nations has predicted that more than 2.7m businesses could go under and 8.5m jobs could be lost in Latin America due to the coronavirus crisis. The UN’s economic commission for the region said shops, hotels and restaurants, many of which are small- and medium-size businesses, will be hardest hit.


Australia’s state of Victoria is still struggling to contain a new outbreak, with 66 additional cases confirmed on Friday. The state health minister, Jenny Mikakos, said on Friday there was evidence of a “super spreader” in the Victorian outbreak. She said: “On Tuesday, I received a briefing of a genomic sequencing report that seemed to suggest that there seems to be a single source of infection for many of the cases that have gone across the northern and western suburbs of Melbourne. It appears to be even potentially a super spreader that has caused this upsurge in cases.”

In Tokyo, Japan, more 120 new cases were found on Friday, the Nikkei newspaper reported. On Thursday, the metropolis confirmed 107 new cases, the most in two months, but the government – eager to revive a slumping economy – said it was not planning to reimpose the emergency that was lifted on 25 May. Tokyo’s governor, Yuriko Koike, looks set cruise to victory in her bid for re-election on Sunday, buoyed by approval of her handling of the pandemic.

Tokyo accounts for nearly 6,400 of Japan’s approximately 19,000 cases.

South Korea reported 63 new coronavirus cases as of Thursday, most from domestic infections outside Seoul, triggering the return of tighter social distancing curbs in one city as the spectre of a second wave of the disease worried authorities. For the first time in almost two months, new daily cases from other cities surpassed those from Seoul area. The south-western city of Gwangju has recorded more than 50 cases in the past few days, prompting the suspension of operations at public facilities such as public libraries and museums.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un meanwhile praised what he described as his country’s “shining success” in holding off the pandemic, according to state-run KCNA news agency on Friday. The head of the totalitarian state spoke at a Workers’ party politburo meeting on Thursday discussing the impact of the virus, AFP reported.

Pyongyang has not confirmed a single case of the deadly disease but has imposed strict rules, including closing its borders and schools, and putting thousands of its people into isolation.

Analysts say the North is unlikely to have avoided infections, and that its ramshackle health system could struggle to cope with a major outbreak.


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