US records nearly 25,000 coronavirus deaths in July

A man walks past a retail store that is going out of business due to the Covid-19 pandemic in Winnetka, Illinois on June 23. (AP pic)

LOS ANGELES: US coronavirus deaths rose by almost 25,000 in July and cases doubled in at least 18 states during the month, according to a Reuters tally, dealing a crushing blow to hopes of quickly reopening the economy.

The US has recorded nearly 1.8 million new cases in July out of its total 4.5 million infections, an increase of 66% with many states yet to report on Friday. Deaths in July rose at least 19% to over 152,000 total.

The biggest increases were in Florida, with over 300,000 new cases in July, followed by California and Texas with about 250,000 each. Those three states also saw cases double in June.

Cases also more than doubled in Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee and West Virginia, according to the tally.

Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York had the lowest increases, with cases rising 7% or less.

The US shattered single day global records in July by reporting over 77,000 new cases on July 16. During the month, 33 out of 50 states had one-day record increases in cases and 19 set records for how much deaths rose in 24 hours, according to a Reuters tally.

After a rapid acceleration in cases, the outbreak appears to be stabilising in Arizona, Florida and Texas. Health officials are now concerned the outbreak has migrated to the Midwest from summer travel.

The news that more states could be hard hit by the virus comes a day after the US gross domestic product collapsed at a 32.9% annualised rate last quarter, the nation’s worst economic performance since the Great Depression.