business news in context, analysis with attitude

Random and illustrative stories about the global pandemic and how businesses and various business sectors are trying to recover from it, with brief, occasional, italicized and sometimes gratuitous commentary…

•  Here are the US Covid-19 coronavirus numbers:  35,213,594 total cases … 626,172 deaths … and 29,478,173 reported recoveries.

The global numbers:  193,557,076 total cases … 4,154,549 fatalities … and 175,837,854 reported recoveries.   (Source.)

•  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that 65.9 percent of the US population age 12 and older has received at least one dose of vaccine, with 57.1 percent being fully vaccinated.  In addition, 68.6 percent of the population age 18 and older has had one dose of vaccine, with 59.7 percent being fully vaccinated.

•  Newsweek reports that "four states are seeing a major spike in coronavirus cases as the highly transmissible Delta variant continues to spread across the nation.  Alaska, Florida, Mississippi and Arkansas have all seen a substantial upward trend in new cases over the past two weeks, according to data from Johns Hopkins.

"Over the last two weeks, new cases in Alaska have increased fourfold and fivefold in Florida."

•  The Washington Post reports the morning that federal health officials are saying that the "hyper-transmissible variant of the coronavirus is posing new challenges for the nation’s health system, urging millions of unvaccinated Americans to get shots to protect themselves and their communities.

"The delta variant, first detected in India, now represents more than 83 percent of cases circulating in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. People infected with the variant appear to carry a viral load that is more than 1,000 times that of those infected with earlier forms of the virus, allowing the virus to spread rapidly among unvaccinated people, scientists have found.

"'The delta variant is more aggressive and much more transmissible than previously circulating strains. It is one of the most infectious respiratory viruses we know of and that I have seen in my 20-year career,' CDC Director Rochelle Walensky told reporters.

"'We are yet at another pivotal moment in this pandemic, with cases rising again and some hospitals reaching their capacity in some areas,' Walensky added. 'We need to come together as one nation, unified in our resolve to protect the health of ourselves, our children, our community, our country and our future with the tools we have available'."

•  Axios reports that the National Football League (NFL) is encouraging players to get vaccinated by threatening forfeits and loss of game checks.

According to the story, "If a game can't be played due to an outbreak among unvaccinated players/staff this upcoming season — and the NFL can't find 'a suitable date to reschedule' — the team responsible will forfeit and both teams will lose their game checks.

"The NFL was able to reschedule all of the games it postponed in 2020, but it seems the league might not be willing to go to the same extremes — like playing on a Tuesday — this time around.

"If a forfeit occurs, the forfeiting team will be responsible for any shortfall in the league's revenue-sharing pool, and will also be subject to additional sanctions from the commissioner."

The bottom line, Axios writes:  "The NFL can't force players to get vaccinated, so it's doing the next best thing in an attempt to avoid outbreaks: making the lives of unvaccinated players very uncomfortable."