retail 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…

•  In the US, there now have been total of 45,431,167 cases of Covid-19 coronavirus, resulting in 737,589 deaths and 34,997,968 reported recoveries.

Globally, there have been 239,596,468 cases, with 4,884,243 resultant fatalities and 216,943,969 reported recoveries.  (Source.)

•  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that 76.6 percent of the US population age 12 and older has received at least one dose of vaccine, with 66.2 percent being fully vaccinated.

The CDC also says that 11.9 percent of the population age 65 and older has received a vaccine booster shot.

•  The Wall Street Journal reports that Food and Drug Administration (FDA) staff has not taken a position on whether or not a Moderna booster is needed to prevent serious disease and death due to Covid-19 … The staffers’ review now goes to a committee of outside experts, who are scheduled to meet on Thursday and discuss whether the agency should authorize a Moderna booster shot.

"Despite the lack of a staff endorsement of a Pfizer booster, the agency later authorized an extra dose for seniors and some high-risk adults."

The Journal writes that "the staff said the third dose increased the antibody response sufficiently, one endpoint of the study. The extra dose, however, narrowly missed meeting the other study endpoint, of increasing antibody levels by a large magnitude and in a high enough percentage of study subjects."

•  From the New York Times, a story about how the US "will lift travel restrictions at the borders with Canada and Mexico starting in November for fully vaccinated travelers, reopening the doors of the United States to tourists and separated family members who have been sealed out of the country during the pandemic.

"Foreign travelers who provide proof of vaccination and are looking to visit families or friends or shop in the United States will be allowed to enter, senior administration officials said on Tuesday, weeks after the administration said it would soon lift a similar sweeping restriction on foreigners traveling to the country from overseas.

"The lifting of the bans will effectively mark the reopening of the United States to travelers and tourism, signaling a new phase in the recovery from the pandemic after the country closed its borders for nearly 19 months.  But the new requirements also indicate that the United States will welcome only visitors who are vaccinated."