Curfews in effect for Puget Sound cities; Inslee activates National Guard

Trump says he will make coronavirus statement Wednesday night

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President Donald Trump said he will address the nation Wednesday evening at 9 p.m. ET in the Oval Office to talk about the US response to the ongoing novel coronavirus outbreak.

"I'll be making a statement later on tonight as to what I decided to do and what our country will be doing," Trump said during a meeting Wednesday afternoon with banking leaders to discuss the economic effects of the virus.

"I'll be making some decisions. I've already made some decisions, actually, today, but I'll be making some other ones that are very important," he added.

Trump said the address would include economic and health announcements.

Trump would not say whether the US would issue additional travel restrictions on Europe, nor would he answer whether he would issue a national disaster declaration.

"We'll be talking about that later. All those things we're making a decision on," he added.

Speaking about the global impact of the virus and potential changes to US travel restrictions, Trump said: "We'll be starting some additional solutions."

"We made a great decision on China and Asia and they're healing ... we could start to think about getting back involved in that part of the world," Trump said, adding that Europe is in "very tough shape."

"(Europe is) having a tough time right now with the virus. And we'll be making various decisions," he said. "You'll be hearing about them ... tonight."

During the meeting with bankers in the Cabinet Room, Trump seemed to downplay the need for an economic stimulus, saying: "If we get rid of the problem quickly, everything solves itself, we don't need stimulus."

The bankers in the room also discussed the economic impacts. Citigroup's Michael Corbat said it is not a financial crisis. Stephen Schwarzman, CEO of Blackstone, said the virus "requires a mobilization."

Earlier Wednesday, the World Health Organization declared the novel coronavirus outbreak a pandemic.

There are 118,000 cases globally and more than 4,000 deaths, the agency said, and the virus has found a foothold on every continent except for Antarctica.

The White House is already proposing to Congress certain economic relief measures to help mitigate the coronavirus' economic effect.

In the weeks since the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite closed at all-time highs, the emergence of the coronavirus outbreak has disrupted global supply chains, triggered the cancellation of major conferences and public events and led companies to cancel travel plans and enact emergency work-from-home policies.

These disruptions have led to warnings of slowed economic activity and fears of a global recession, sending markets into a tailspin.

Since the market's high on February 19, the S&P 500 has fallen by 644.8 points, erasing more than half of the gains it had made since Trump was elected in 2016.

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