NPR Coronavirus Updates

Coverage of the Coronavirus Crisis from NPR.org

Retailers had placed much hope on a big midsummer shopping spurt, but July proved to be somewhat lackluster, amid renewed lockdowns and new waves of coronavirus cases. Retail sales grew only 1.2% last month compared to June.

Lawmakers in California are rushing to create a new financial protection watchdog agency by the end of the month. They say it's needed because, under the Trump administration, the main federal regulator has been paralyzed.

And they say that during the pandemic that is leaving millions of Americans who are in dire financial straits more vulnerable to predatory lenders, get-out-of-debt-scams and other wrongdoing.

When everyone who tests positive for coronavirus in your community gets a call from a public health worker asking them about their contacts, and those contacts are then asked to quarantine, that can be a powerful way to keep the virus from spreading.

In a video statement released on Twitter, NCAA president Mark Emmert says, "We cannot, at this point, have fall NCAA championships." He says there are not enough schools participating because of coronavirus cancellations and season postponements.

This means there will no championships in any Division 1 collegiate sports with the possible exception of football. "If you don't have half the schools participating, you can't have a legitimate championship," he says.

The U.S. now has more than 5 million cases and 166,700 deaths from the coronavirus. And with flu season approaching, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned on Wednesday that things could get a lot more grim.

Robert Redfield said in an interview with WebMD that if Americans don't follow public health guidance, the country could be facing "the worst fall, from a public health perspective, we've ever had."

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