Coronavirus live updates: stock markets plunge on global recession fears

With cases spiking sharply across Europe and emergency measures in place from California to Saudi Arabia, investors have sent shares tumbling. Follow all the developments live.

11.20pm GMT

In Sydney, Australia, Channel Nine is reporting that two Year 10 pupils at St Patrick’s Dundas in Sydney have tested positive for coronavirus.

We’ll have more on this shortly.

BREAKING: A boy and a girl in Year 10 at St Patrick’s Dundas have tested positive for Coronavirus. School working with NSW Health to figure out next steps. @9NewsAUS #CoronavirusOutbreak https://t.co/3IFpjKJpaI

11.17pm GMT

Global financial markets face a torrid day on Monday after the virus continued to threaten to spark a worldwide recession.

Australia has kicked off the day’s trading and the benchmark ASX200 down by 4.2% on Monday morning. The Nikkei in Tokyo opens in less than an hour with futures trade pointing to a 4.5% fall.

Brent crude oil futures have also plummeted to just over $33 after the Saudi decision to pump more oil at the weekend.

https://twitter.com/DavidInglesTV/status/1236788833733062656

This is proper March madness. S&P futures fall over 120 points early Monday in Asia. pic.twitter.com/cFpFXK95tl

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Budget: chancellor hints at looser purse strings for NHS and broadband

Rishi Sunak’s first budget on Wednesday is expected to offer measures to counter effects of coronavirus

Rishi Sunak, the chancellor, is expected to ease constraints on spending and borrowing in this week’s budget, as he sets out plans to help the economy withstand the impact of coronavirus.

Presenting his first budget on Wednesday, the new chancellor will make announcements including the confirmation of £5bn investment in faster broadband across the country — a policy from the Conservative manifesto.

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Health authorities check all passengers travelling from northern Italy – video

Italian health authorities were checking passengers getting off buses and trains from northern Italy and arriving in Salerno and Naples on Saturday. Other countries could soon follow Italy’s drastic containment measures as coronavirus threatens to continue its spread across Europe. Italy remains the epicentre of the viral outbreak in Europe, as more than a quarter of the country’s population is under quarantine

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International Women’s Day: asylum seekers protest at Turkish border

Women and children part of thousands who took to streets around world as some protests turn violent

Female asylum seekers have staged a demonstration at the Turkish border demanding to be let in to the EU as part of protests around the world on International Women’s Day.

All over the globe, thousands of women took to the streets, including South Americans campaigning for access to abortions and topless demonstrations in London and Paris.

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The Guardian view on the budget: the priorities have changed | Editorial

Boris Johnson made it all sound so easy during the election. But the pressure of the coronavirus outbreak means the dream of a big strategic budget is for the birds

Slogans can win elections. But slogans won’t cut it in government. Three months ago, Boris Johnson powered to a general election victory endlessly promising to “get Brexit done” and deliver on “the people’s priorities”. But this prime minister does not merely campaign in slogans. He tries to govern in them too. After last month’s reshuffle, the first cabinet meeting began with a demeaning to-and-fro exchange about the hospitals, police officers and nurses the new ministers were pledged to deliver. Every week, Mr Johnson breezes through prime minister’s questions with a similarly vacuous recitation. Having taken Britain out of the European Union (although this is emphatically not the same as getting Brexit done), Mr Johnson now tries to give the impression that restoring Britain’s public services also requires nothing more than a quick collective chant by him and his ministerial courtiers.

Democratic politics deserves better than this. Fortunately, events are starting to force Mr Johnson’s hand. The onward spread of the Covid-19 coronavirus clearly demands a different level of national leadership from the facetious version that the prime ministers has offered so far. The continuing impact of the winter floods, which found Mr Johnson wanting, presents a similarly long-term challenge for the government across the stricken regions of Britain. Next month, he may also face a more effective opposition leader than Jeremy Corbyn can ever manage to be in his lame duck phase.

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China is ill, but not only from coronavirus | Ai Weiwei

The regime’s power relies on intimidation and censorship. Right now, mistrust is a contagion it is struggling to control

In China, people from the city of Wuhan are jokingly referred to as “nine-headed birds” because of their habit of inveterate squabbling. In recent weeks, though, an eerie silence has descended on their world. Empty streets, empty malls. Everyone kept indoors. The government says 80,000 are infected by coronavirus, and 3,000 have died in China.

This pandemic has now spread to more than 100 countries and territories. Is the city just one big prison-hospital? News and rumour arrive round the clock online, but that dismal barrage in a sense only makes things worse. A few people can’t take the pressure, climb to a top floor and jump into black silence below.

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Coronavirus: Supermarkets ration toilet paper to prevent stockpiling

Other items include dried pasta, tinned vegetables, medications and hand gel

Supermarkets trying to prevent shoppers from stockpiling have put purchase limits on items including pasta, anti-bacterial wipes, hand soap, toilet paper and children’s medications.

Shelves across the country have been stripped of such goods after Public Health England urged members of the public to “plan ahead” in case they had to self-isolate for a couple of weeks.

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Coronavirus: Foreign Office advice over Italy confuses British holidaymakers

FCO still says travel to Lombardy is largely safe despite quarantine of 16m inhabitants

The Foreign Office is facing a backlash over its lack of clear advice for British people with holidays booked in northern Italy and those currently in areas locked down due to its escalating coronavirus crisis.

The department is still advising it is safe to travel to anywhere in Italy, apart from 10 towns where the outbreak originated, meaning flights are still scheduled to depart to Milan and others areas in Lombardy where 16 million Italians are in mandatory quarantine.

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