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Omicron Variant

Explosion in COVID-19 Cases Disrupts Schools and Offices

AP News | Equities.com |

Some school systems around the U.S. extended their holiday break Monday or switched back to online instruction because of the explosion in COVID-19 cases, while others pressed ahead with in-person classes amid a seemingly growing sense that Americans will have to learn to co-exist with the virus.

Caught between pleas from teachers fearful of infection and parents who want their children in class, school districts in cities such as New York, Milwaukee, Chicago, Detroit and beyond found themselves in a difficult position midway through the academic year because of the super-contagious omicron variant.


Pfizer and Moderna Boosters Provide 'Significant Increase' in Protection From Omicron Variant: Study

Reuters | Equities.com |

Getting a third dose of either Pfizer-BioNTech's (PFE) or Moderna's (MRNA) COVID-19 vaccine offers a "significant increase" in protection against the Omicron variant in elderly people, according to a Danish study published on Wednesday.

The study, which is not yet peer-reviewed, investigated the effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines that use so-called mRNA technology against the Delta variant and the new, more infectious Omicron variant.


COVID-19 Deaths Hit 800,000 in US as Nation Prepares for Another Surge

Reuters | Equities.com |

The United States on Sunday reached 800,000 coronavirus-related deaths, according to a Reuters tally, as the nation braces for a potential surge in infections due to more time spent indoors with colder weather and the highly transmissible Omicron variant of the virus.

The milestone means the U.S. death toll from this one virus now exceeds the entire population of North Dakota.


Omicron Variant Reached Europe Earlier Than Previously Thought

AP News | Equities.com |

Economic powerhouses Japan and France reported their first cases of the omicron variant Tuesday, while new findings indicate the mutant coronavirus was already in Europe close to a week before South Africa sounded the alarm.

The Netherlands’ RIVM health institute disclosed that patient samples dating from Nov. 19 and 23 were found to contain the variant. It was last Wednesday, Nov. 24, that South African authorities reported the existence of the highly mutated virus to the World Health Organization.


Vaccine Stocks Soar Amid Omicron-Related Volatility

Reuters | Equities.com |

The emergence of a worrisome coronavirus variant is benefiting shares of vaccine makers Moderna Inc (MRNA), BioNTech (BNTX) and Pfizer (PFE) as investors search for winning bets in markets roiled by uncertainty in recent days.

Moderna shares have jumped 28% since last week when the variant, named Omicron, triggered global alarm. Shares of vaccine partners Pfizer and BioNtech have also climbed over that time, with Pfizer up 6% and U.S. shares of BioNTech jumping 15%, in contrast to a decline in the S&P 500 of 2.5%.


The Variant and Volatility

Tradier | Equities.com |

On the day after the Thanksgiving holiday in the US, news that another COVID-19 variant is emerging from South Africa roiled markets across all asset classes.


The Daily Fix, Nov. 29, 2021

Edward Kim | Equities.com |

On Tuesday, Nov. 29, 1910, American inventor Ernest Sirrine received US Patent number 976,939 for his “Street Traffic System,” an early innovation in traffic signaling.


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