TIMELINE-How the global coronavirus pandemic unfolded

    Sept 29 (Reuters) - Here are some key developments as the
novel coronavirus spread around the world:
    Dec. 31, 2019: China alerts the World Health Organization of
27 cases of "viral pneumonia" in the central city of Wuhan.
Authorities shut down a wet market in Wuhan the next day, after
discovering some patients were vendors or dealers.             
    Jan. 11, 2020: A 61-year-old man is reported as the first
death. Preliminary lab tests cited by Chinese state media point
to a new type of coronavirus.             
    Jan. 13: A Chinese woman is quarantined in Thailand, the
first detection of the virus outside China.             
    Jan. 15: Japan confirms its first case.             
    Jan. 20: South Korea confirms its first case.             
    Jan. 22: The WHO convenes an emergency meeting.
Director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus says the new
coronavirus does not yet constitute an international emergency.
    Jan. 23: China issues a lockdown for millions of people in
Wuhan and Hubei province as the death toll rises to 18.
    Jan. 24: The first cases in Europe are reported in France.
    Jan. 25: China bans wildlife trade, and extends the Lunar
New Year holiday for workers and schools. Hong Kong leader
Carrie Lam announces measures to limit links with China.
    Jan. 27: The United States warns against travel to China, a
day after five people who had been in Wuhan become the first
confirmed cases in America.             
    Jan. 30: The WHO declares the outbreak a public health
emergency of international concern.              
    Feb. 1: The United States, Singapore, Russia and Australia
ban foreign travelers who were recently in China.             
    Feb. 2: A 44-year-old man dies in the Philippines, the first
death outside China.              
    Feb. 3: Investors erase $393 billion from China's benchmark
stock index, selling the yuan and dumping commodities on the
first day of trade after the Lunar New Year break.             
    Feb. 4: Hong Kong reports its first death. Macau shutters
casinos. American Airlines Group         and United Airlines
Holdings Inc         suspend flights to Hong Kong.             
    Feb. 5: About 3,700 passengers are quarantined aboard the
Diamond Princess, a Carnival Corp         cruise liner, off
Japan. More than 700 passengers test positive and 14 die. The
quarantine lasts nearly a month.             
    Feb. 7: Li Wenliang, a Chinese ophthalmologist who had been
reprimanded for issuing an early warning about the Wuhan
outbreak, dies, triggering wide public mourning and rare
expressions of anger against the government.             
    Feb. 15: An elderly Chinese tourist hospitalized in France
is the first fatality reported in Europe.             
    Feb. 19: A spike in infections in South Korea linked to a
church congregation is declared a "super-spreading event."
             South Korea later seeks murder charges against
leaders of the Shincheonji Church.             
    Feb. 22: Italy seals off its hard-hit northern regions of
Lombardy and Veneto.             
    Feb. 25: The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
warns Americans to begin preparing for the virus to spread,
signaling a change in tone.             
    Feb. 26: The number of new infections inside China is
overtaken by those elsewhere for the first time. Italy and Iran
emerge as new epicenters.             
    Feb. 28: The S&P 500        suffers its biggest weekly drop
since the 2008 financial crisis on fears of a global recession.
More than $5 trillion is wiped from global market value.
    March 1: Two deaths are reported at a nursing home near
Seattle, thought to be the first in the United States at the
    March 3: In a surprise move, the U.S. Federal Reserve cuts
interest rates by half a percentage point to try to stem the
economic damage. Markets continue to fall.              
    March 6: The number of infected people exceeds 100,000
globally. Deaths top 3,400.             
    March 9: Crude oil prices plunge 25%, the biggest daily rout
since the 1991 Gulf War, as Saudi Arabia and Russia begin a
price war.             
    March 10: "The whole of Italy is closed now," reads a
headline in the Corriere della Sera newspaper after Rome imposes
the most severe controls on a Western nation since World War
    March 11: The Bank of England slashes interest rates by half
a percentage point. The British government unveils a budget
splurge designed to stave off a recession.             
    March 12: Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, 48, goes
into quarantine for two weeks after his wife, Sophie, tests
    March 13: U.S. President Donald Trump declares a national
emergency to free up $50 billion in federal aid.             
    March 14: France and Spain join Italy in imposing lockdowns
on tens of millions of people, Australia orders foreign
travelers to self-isolate, and other countries extend entry bans
to try to stop the spreading virus.             
    March 17: Brazil reports its first death. The European Union
bars outside travelers.               
    March 19: Italy's death toll overtakes China. Russia records
its first death. The virus has spread to more than 170
    March 20: California issues an unprecedented state-wide
"stay at home order" and New York closes non-essential
    March 24: The International Olympic Committee and Japan
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announce the postponement of the 2020
Summer Games.              India goes under lockdown.
    March 25: A $2 trillion coronavirus aid package, dubbed "the
largest rescue package in American history," is approved by
    March 27: South Africa starts nationwide lockdown. Kenya,
the Democratic Republic of Congo and other African countries try
to ringfence cities.             
    April 2: Global cases shoot past 1 million as deaths soar in
the United States and western Europe.             
    April 5: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, 55, is
admitted to hospital with coronavirus after suffering a fever
and cough. He is discharged on April 12.              
    April 7: Early data shows COVID-19 is killing African
Americans at a higher rate than the general U.S. population,
underscoring disparities in healthcare access.             
    April 8: Wuhan reopens. Its 11 million citizens can leave
their homes for the first time in months.             
    April 10: Global deaths reaches 100,000 and confirmed cases
exceed 1.6 million.             
    April 13: A handful of European countries begin to ease
restrictions. Spain restarts construction and manufacturing, 
while Austria and Italy allow certain stores to reopen. Danish
children can return to school.            
    April 14: Trump halts funding to the WHO over its handling
of the pandemic, drawing condemnation from infectious disease
    April 23: Trump says scientists should explore whether
injecting disinfectant might help COVID-19 patients, horrifying
doctors who worry some people will poison themselves with
    May 4: J. Crew Group Inc files for bankruptcy protection
after temporary store closures cost it almost $900 million in
sales.              In the following weeks, Neiman Marcus Group
and J.C. Penney Co Inc         would also be pushed to the
    May 8: The U.S. economy lost 20.5 million jobs in April, the
steepest plunge since the Great Depression. The unemployment
rate surges to 14.7%.              
    May 9: Avianca Holdings           , Latin America's
second-largest airline, files for bankruptcy.              It
would be followed by LATAM Airlines Group         , the
continent's largest carrier, on May 26.             
    May 11: Thousands of visitors stream into Shanghai
Disneyland, the first park reopened by Walt Disney Co.        
    May 13: The virus could become endemic like HIV and never go
away, the WHO says.             
    May 14: The United Nations warns of a looming mental illness
crisis as millions of people are surrounded by death and disease
and forced into isolation, poverty and anxiety.             
    May 18: Trump says he is taking hydroxychloroquine as a
preventive medicine despite medical warnings against the use of
the malaria drug.              Subsequent studies, including a
large multi-country trial by the WHO, find little benefit to
COVID-19 patients treated with the drug.             
    May 22: Brazil overtakes Russia to become the world No. 2 in
    May 25: George Floyd, a 46-year-old African American, dies
after a police officer kneels on his neck for nearly 9 minutes.
The incident triggers weeks of protests against racism and
police brutality around the world, and health experts warn the
demonstrations may help spread the virus.              
    May 29: Trump says he is terminating the U.S. relationship
with the WHO over its handling of the outbreak, accusing the UN
agency of becoming a puppet organization of China.             
    June 8: New Zealand lifts all social and economic
restrictions except border controls, one of the first countries
to return almost to pre-pandemic normality.              
    June 15: After 83 days of lockdown, England allows retail
stores to reopen.             
    June 19: Cases in Brazil top 1 million and deaths approach
50,000, a new nadir for the world's second worst-hit country.
    June 23: After more than 100 days of lockdown, New York City
residents can get haircuts, shop at reopened stores and dine
    June 28: Global deaths exceed 500,000 and confirmed cases
top 10 million.              
    July 4: England allows pubs, restaurants and hair salons to
reopen.              Spain's northeastern region of Catalonia
reimposes restrictions.             
    July 6: India overtakes Russia to become the No. 3 country
by infections, at nearly 700,000.             
    July 7: Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro says he tested
positive for the virus.              The WHO acknowledges there
is "evidence emerging" of airborne transmission, after
previously saying most droplets expelled from the nose and mouth
of an infected person quickly sink to the ground.             
    July 8: Australia's second-largest city, Melbourne, goes
back into lockdown.             
    July 21: Trump, in a shift in rhetoric, encourages Americans
to wear masks if they cannot maintain social distance and warns
the pandemic will get worse before it gets better.             
    July 25: Britain imposes a two-week quarantine on travellers
from Spain, throwing Europe's summer reopening into disarray.
    Aug. 5: As the global death toll tops 700,000, the WHO says
young people must curb their party instincts to help prevent new
    Aug. 6: Trump says a vaccine is possible before the Nov. 3
election.              Africa's cases surpass 1 million, with
South Africa accounting for more than half.             
    Aug. 10: Brazil's death toll tops 100,000, continuing to
climb as most cities reopen shops and dining.             
    Aug. 11: Russia becomes the first country to approve a
COVID-19 vaccine, after less than two months of human
    Aug. 18: The S&P 500 index        closes at a record
3,389.78 points, recovering completely from its February crash
and underlining the disconnect between a rally driven by
government stimulus spending and a recession-hit economy.
    Sept. 2: COVID-19 infections in Europe are back to levels
seen in March, the head of the EU's public health agency said.
    Sept. 7: India overtakes Brazil as the second-worst hit
country, with more than 4.2 million cases.             
    Sept. 6: AstraZeneca         suspends late-stage trials of
its experimental vaccine due to serious side effects in a
participant, casting doubts for an early rollout. Trials in
Britain resume less than a week later.             
    Sept. 18: European countries from Denmark to Spain and
Greece announce new restrictions after cases spike.             
    Sept. 22: Faced with fast-spreading infections, Britain
tells people to work from home, and bars and restaurants to
close early, but stops short of a full lockdown.             
    Sept. 23: Johnson & Johnson         begins trial of a
single-shot vaccine that, if proven effective, could simplify
distribution. Rivals from Moderna Inc         , Pfizer Inc
        and AstraZeneca all require two shots separated by
several weeks.             
    Sept. 29: Global deaths exceed 1 million. Deaths from
coronavirus-related illnesses have doubled from half a million
in just three months, led by fatalities in the United States,
Brazil and India.

 (Compiled by Tiffany Wu and Leela de Kretser; Editing by Daniel