America ramped up its response to the coronavirus pandemic as more new Covid-19 infections were reported outside China for the first time.
The Federal Reserve took sweeping action to stem the US economic fallout of the worldwide outbreak that has sickened more than 168,000 people and left more than 6,500 dead.
The death toll in the United States was 68 and more than 3,500 have been infected.
Meanwhile, mainland China reported 16 new confirmed cases of coronavirus infections Sunday, the National Health Commission said on Monday, down from 20 a day earlier. Twelve of those cases were imported and there were 12 deaths, bringing the death toll to 3,213.
That brings the total number of confirmed cases in China to 80,860, while Hong Kong had 148 and Macau had 10.
The number of Covid-19 cases outside China was more than 86,000, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.
The World Health Organisation said Europe has become new epicentre of the pandemic. With 368 deaths, Italy’s grim figure was higher than any single-day toll reported in China.
China has touted the effectiveness of quarantining Wuhan and Hubei province since late January, along with measures to prevent large gatherings and limit travel across the country.
As the United States moved nearer to shutdown, the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention issued new nationwide guidance. It recommended that organisers cancel or postpone any in-person events gathering 50 people or more – with the exception of day-to-day activities in education or business – for at least the next eight weeks.