Sweden’s big mistake

Evening Briefing

President Donald Trump faces dwindling options to address nationwide unrest over American police killings of unarmed blacks after a backlash over his violent dispersal of a peaceful protest. The pre-curfew move outside the White House, in which police and military fired on civilians with stun grenades and tear gas, has drawn widespread condemnation. Trump's political support had already been slipping over his botched handling of the coronavirus, which has killed 107,000 Americans, greater than all Covid-19 deaths in the next three nations combined. The twin crises have created an opening for presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, but the former vice president has his own problems when it comes to the 2020 campaignJosh Petri and David E. Rovella

Bloomberg is mapping the pandemic globally and across America. For the latest news, sign up for our Covid-19 podcast and daily newsletter.

Here are today's top stories

U.S. public health officials weren't anticipating mass protests as they worked to reopen the nation after months of shutdowns. Some worry the demonstrations could lead to a new spike in cases, but the extent of any spread won't be known for weeks. Deaths in New York dropped to a 10-week low, while Brazil announced a record daily death toll, and Iran had a surge in infections. And in Sweden, the nation's top epidemiologist admitted his controversial strategy for addressing the virus was a mistake. With 43 deaths per 100,000 people, the country's mortality rate is among the highest in the world. Here's the latest.

Charges against fired Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin will be upgraded to second-degree murder in the killing of George Floyd, while three other fired officers are to be charged with aiding and abetting in his murder. The American Civil Liberties Union is suing the Minneapolis Police Department for violating the U.S. constitution by targeting journalists for attack during protests, including shooting at them with non-lethal weapons, in some cases causing permanent injury. Minnesota has also launched a civil rights investigation of the police department.

Defense Secretary Mark Esper may still be secure in his job despite publicly opposing the deployment of active-duty military to American cities, as Trump has threatened. The Pentagon had ordered a few hundred active military personnel to depart the Washington area, but later on Wednesday was reversed by Esper, leaving them near the nation's capital, and protesters. Here's the latest on the demonstrations.

A malaria drug touted by Trump as being able to ward off the coronavirus failed to offer patients any protection in the first scientifically rigorous study of its potential. The World Health Organization on Wednesday said it will resume recruiting patients for its own trial of the drug after questions arose about a study linking it to increased death and heart risks. Trump said he took the drug, though his doctor just declared him fit in a report that nevertheless shows him to be obese.

The Trump administration issued an order suspending passenger flights from China-based airlines, saying it was retaliation for Beijing barring American carriers from re-entering that market, in a continued escalation of tensions between the two nations. 

The pandemic isn't done pummeling the U.S. labor market. A second wave of job cuts is threatening white-collar workers. Close to 6 million jobs are potentially on the line, according to Bloomberg Economics.

The world's largest banks have issued billions of dollars in loans to sustainable businesses and taken some steps to restrict funding for some of world's worst polluters. But the greening of global finance hasn't reached the top levels of leadership. These are the other fossils in the boardroom

What you'll need to know tomorrow

  • Even vocal optimists are now skeptical of the neverending stock rally.
  • Vehicles are being used as a weapon against protesters.
  • Pilgrim's Pride CEO is charged in chicken price-fixing conspiracy.
  • Australia's 29-year run without a recession comes to an end.
  • This is the world's most expensive sibling rivalry.
  • Boris Johnson offers 3 million Hong Kong residents sanctuary.
  • Boutique gyms reopen with fewer customers and lots of disinfectant.

What you'll want to read tonight in Bloomberg Green

The Fast, Cheap, Scary Way to Cool the Planet

Congratulations. You've done everything humanly ­possible to cut carbon dioxide—to zero. But what if even that won't be enough? It's one of the most uncomfortable realizations in climate research. Inertia in the climate system implies that even if emissions stopped, temperatures and especially sea levels would continue to rise for a long time. The logical conclusion leads almost immediately to the specter of solar geoengineering, an attempt to use technology to reflect a portion of sunlight back into space. But we have no idea what the side effects may be.

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