In a rare Oval Office address to the nation, President Donald Trump announced plans to ban travel from Europe for 30 days, beginning Friday, March 13.
After walking through other pre-announced efforts from the administration’s “unprecedented response to the coronavirus outbreak,” including coordination with health insurers to waive all co-payments, Trump focused his attention on Europe.
Trump said his “strong, but necessary action” will suspend all travel from Europe for the next month. However, Trump added that the ban will not include the United Kingdom. Trump said the ban is an effort to slow the spread of the deadly virus.
In addition to a new travel ban, Trump announced a series of planned economic measures including instructing the Small Business Association to provide economic loans and asking Congress to increase SBA’s budget by $50 billion.
After speculation throughout the day, Trump also announced that he is asking Congress to pass “immediate” payroll tax relief.
Wednesday saw the World Health Organization, or WHO, officially classify the coronavirus as a global pandemic. As of Wednesday night, over 1,200 cases and at least 37 deaths have been reported in the U.S.
The coronavirus has dominated the headlines across the media with news breaking late Wednesday evening that the NBA season will be postponed. In addition actor Tom Hanks tweeted that he and his wife Rita are being treated for the virus in Australia.
On Wall Street, the close of trading Wednesday saw the Dow Jones Industrial Average dip into bear market territory.
Dow futures dropped as much as 750 points following the president’s address as of 9:30 p.m. ET.
Catch up on the Latest Videos on TheStreet!