The Morning Dispatch: U.S.-China Leaders Seek to Ease Tensions

Happy Wednesday! We wanted to give you an early heads up that there will not be a Morning Dispatch on Saturday, January 1, 2022 because a) it is a Saturday b) it is New Year’s Day and c) HBO Max’s just-announced Harry Potter 20th anniversary special debuts the night before.

Quick Hits: Today’s Top Stories

  • Pfizer announced on Tuesday it has formally requested Emergency Use Authorization from the Food and Drug Administration for its COVID-19 oral antiviral, Paxlovid, which it claims reduced the risk of hospitalization or death for high-risk adults by 89 percent in a clinical trial when taken within three days of the onset of symptoms. The Biden administration reportedly plans to spend about $5 billion stockpiling 10 million courses of the drug for the United States, while Pfizer said it will license the drug to a global health nonprofit so generic drugmakers can increase supply and bring down prices for low-income countries.

  • The U.S. Census Bureau reported Tuesday that retail sales increased 1.7 percent from September to October, a sign the American economic recovery is still going strong despite COVID-19 and inflationary concerns.

  • The Washington Post reported Tuesday that the Biden administration plans to announce the United States will engage in a diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing, with neither President Joe Biden nor any other top U.S. government officials attending the Games in response to the Chinese Communist Party’s human rights abuses. The move is not expected to affect American athletes planning to participate.

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