Coronavirus live news: Europe leaders told to 'act urgently'; US nears 9m cases

Head of the European Commission warns EU hospitals ‘at risk of being overwhelmed’ by Covid; Japan passes 100,000 cases; China reports 25 symptomatic new cases, down from the day before.

6.46am GMT

Here are the key developments from the last few hours:

6.33am GMT

The British government will close the furlough scheme this weekend, with redundancies rising at the fastest rate on record and the second wave of Covid-19 pushing Britain’s economy to the brink of a double-dip recession, according to a Guardian analysis.

As the chancellor, Rishi Sunak, prepares to end the multibillion-pound coronavirus job retention scheme and launch a less generous replacement programme, early warning indicators show business activity faltering as local lockdowns take effect. The number of people losing their jobs is rising much faster than during the 2008 financial crisis, while the economic fightback from the March lockdown is gradually fading:

Related: Covid-19 second wave pushing UK to brink of double-dip recession

Continue reading… Source: The Guardian: Coronavirus live news: Europe leaders told to 'act urgently'; US nears 9m cases ———