The $US2.3 trillion ($A3.0 trillion) COVID-19 aid and spending package signed by US President Donald Trump has buoyed the stock and oil markets, while more countries have detected their first cases of a new variant of the coronavirus.
* The distribution of an initial 200 million doses of the vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech across the European Union will be completed by September, a spokesman for the EU Commission said.
* Britain reported a record 41,385 new cases on Monday as a rapidly spreading variant increases infection rates and the holiday weekend impacted reporting. There were 357 new deaths.
* Some German districts will not use the vaccine received over the weekend over suspicion that the cold chain could have been interrupted during its delivery.
* Russia's first big international shipment of its vaccine - 300,000 doses sent to Argentina last week - consisted only of the first dose of the two-shot vaccine, which is easier to make than the second dose, sources told Reuters.
* Democrats in the US Congress will try to push through expanded $US2,000 ($A2,642) pandemic-relief payments for Americans after President Trump backed down from a fight with politicians that could have shut down the federal government.
* The US Transportation Security Administration said it screened 1.28 million passengers at airports on Sunday, the highest number since mid-March.
* Brazilian Vice-President Hamilton Mourao is taking the antimalarial drug hydroxychloroquine as part of an unproven treatment after contracting COVID-19, his office said.
* South Korean officials are vowing to speed up efforts to launch a public vaccination program as the country announced it had detected its first cases of the virus variant linked to a rapid rise in infections in Britain.
* International visitors will be barred from entering Indonesia for a two-week period to try to keep out the potentially more contagious 'UK variant'.
* A Chinese court handed down a four-year jail term to a citizen-journalist who reported from the central city of Wuhan at the peak of this year's outbreak on the grounds of "picking quarrels and provoking trouble", her lawyer said.
MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA
* Lebanon has secured about two million doses of Pfizer-BioNTech's vaccine, which will cover 20 per cent of the country's nationals, the health minister said.
* Saudi Arabia's interior ministry extended a ban on entry to the kingdom by air, land and sea for another week amid concerns over the new variant of the virus.
* South Africa's total infections topped a million on Sunday, days after another new variant of the virus - which UK officials have said appears to have mutated further than the variant in Britain - was confirmed in the country.
* Russia will begin trials of an antibody treatment for COVID-19 patients next year, according to the head of the Moscow institute that developed the country's first vaccine against the disease, Sputnik V.
* The Serum Institute of India, the local maker of the Oxford/AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine, said it expected the British and Indian governments to approve shots for emergency use within a few days.
* Global shares rose and US bond yields ticked higher on Monday after President Trump signed a $US2.3 trillion ($A3.0 trillion) spending package and as investors continued to celebrate a last-minute trade deal clinched between Britain and the European Union.