COVID-19 | Weekly Update

August 14, 2020

Friday, August 14th | COVID-19 Daily Update



There are over 235 new cases of COVID-19 infection in Portugal in the last 24 hours, according to The Portuguese General Directorate of Health (DGS) epidemiological bulletin. The confirmed cases increased from 53,548 to 53,783. The data also reveal the occurrence of two deaths from yesterday to today, bringing the total to 1,772 fatalities in the country. In the same period, 197 people recovered from the disease, increasing the total number to 39,374.



COVID-19 records the highest number of positive cases among the youngest population. About 56% of cases of infection in Portugal are under the age of 50 years old, being more expressive in men below that age.

More than 500 people were detained for failing to comply with the rules imposed to control the pandemic between March and August. 80% of the arrests made by the police authorities took place during the state of emergency, and more than 60% were people who were away from home and disrespected the confinement.

The “Festa do Avante!” is less than a month away, but the controversy over the capacity that will be allowed to guarantee safety conditions during pandemic times is increasingly tense. The PCP party has already published the rules of the event, which require the use of a mask and clarified that all activities would take place outdoors.



The World Health Organization (WHO) emergency director said yesterday that the eventual presence of the new coronavirus in chicken wings exported from Brazil should not be a reason to frighten the population and recalled that there is no evidence of contamination “through food”. 

Several medical associations warned yesterday that the Spanish healthcare system could collapse if stricter measures are not taken to halt the “continuing and worrying” increase in COVID-19 cases. The country recorded the highest number of infections since the end of May yesterday. The United Kingdom will again impose mandatory quarantine on people from France and the Netherlands, due to the increase in the number of people infected in these two countries. However, the Donald Trump administration announced yesterday that if an experimental vaccine against the new coronavirus is successful, it will be distributed free to Americans, reiterating that the authorization process will be carried out with the utmost scientific rigour. The country reached 167,029 deaths yesterday.

The African Center for Disease Control and Prevention indicated that a study on antibodies against coronavirus on the continent has started after evidence has been made public that reveals a higher number of infected people than indicated by official figures.

Two people who had recovered from COVID-19 in China months ago tested positive again for the new coronavirus, which raises concerns about the virus’s ability to remain and reactivate in people who had already been infected.



The Government of Nicaragua announced yesterday that it would produce, for local and international distribution, the Sputnik V vaccine, developed by Russia to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. The vaccine will start to be produced in September and has already been ordered by 20 countries.

A group of American researchers proved that the coronavirus spreads in aerosols and that the distance is less effective than previously thought. The study aimed to clarify a doubt that exists in the scientific community, to which the  World Health Organization had already warned.



The Portuguese economy shrank 16.3% in the second quarter of this year, compared to the same period last year, slightly less than that advanced by INE at the end of July. The new valuation reflects a record break dictated by the pandemic and is explained by the drop in exports and an unprecedented decrease in domestic demand. According to the INE, the employment downfall was at the expense of the poorest, with the highest wages growing by 14%. In all, 184 thousand workers from the lowest three salary groups were fired, and almost half of the Portuguese say they are saving less due to the impact of the pandemic. However, more than a third admitted that the health crisis is having a positive effect on their spending, according to a study released yesterday by Intrum. 


The mainland ports handled 11.9% less cargo in the first half, in year-on-year terms, according to a note from the Mobility and Transport Authority, at a time when COVID-19 paralyzed commercial activity worldwide.

Yesterday, the Government announced that the opening hours of commercial establishments in the Metropolitan Area of Lisbon might be modified by a decision of the mayors of the municipalities, leaving the obligation to open at 10 am and close at 20 pm.



The National Stock Exchange declined this morning for the second consecutive session, with the PSI-20 losing 0.08% and in line with the main European markets. Contributing to the pessimism of the markets are economic data from China, which were below expectations by economists.

Yesterday came to promise new historic highs for the Nasdaq Composite and the S&P 500, but the negative data about the pandemic in the USA scared the investors. Nevertheless, Wall Street recorded the most significant 100-day recovery since 1933.