China reports 21 new cases

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Workers work at a vehicle chair manufacture factory in Lintong District of Xi’an, northwest China’s Shaanxi Province, Feb. 26, 2020.

Xinhua | Liu Xiao | Getty Images

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  • Global cases: At least 168,019, according to the latest figures from the World Health Organization
  • Global deaths: At least 6,610, according to the latest figures from the WHO

All times below are in Beijing time.

7:50 am: China reports 21 new cases, 13 additional deaths

China’s National Health Commission said as of Monday there were 21 new confirmed cases. Of those, 20 of them were attributed to travelers from overseas, bringing the total number of imported cases to 143. Another 13 people have died, 12 of them in Hubei province where the infection was first detected.

The total number of cases in China stands at 80,881, of which 68,679 were cured and 3,226 people died. — Yen Nee Lee

7:40 am: Malaysia closes borders, schools and businesses

Malaysia’s Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin said late Monday that the country will close its borders to travelers, shut schools and most businesses from Wednesday until March 31.

The announcement came after Malaysia reported an additional 125 coronavirus cases to bring its total to 553, the highest number in Southeast Asia. Of those, 42 have recovered. Malaysia hasn’t reported any deaths.

In a televised speech, Muhyiddin announced the closure of all schools and universities, as well as ordering most public and private enterprises to shut — except supermarkets, grocery stores and those providing “essential services” such as airports and defense.

Foreigners will not be allowed into the country and Malaysian residents will not be allowed to leave, said the prime minister. — Yen Nee Lee

All times below are in Eastern time.

7:12: Stock market leaders unite against calls to stop trading, saying it would only compound anxiety

The country may be prepared to shut its schools, concerts, sporting events, shops, and even bars and restaurants, but one industry that is deeply resistant to shutting down is Wall Street.

 “It is important for the markets to remain open, and for them to function in a fair and orderly manner, as they have been,” Stacey Cunningham, New York Stock Exchange president, tweeted out this afternoon.

She’s not alone. The directive to keep open the markets goes as high as Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin. “We intend to keep the markets open,” he said Friday on CNBC. “That’s a sign of confidence to people. There are people who want to come in and buy. We want to have markets open.” —Bob Pisani

4:02 pm: Dow closes nearly 3,000 points lower

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