Jan 27, 2019

The geopolitical state of play for Venezuela

Adapted from a Bloomberg map; Map: Axios Visuals

Venezuela is shaping up to become a major geopolitical flashpoint, with both Russia and China opposing the U.S. stance in very strong terms.

The big picture: Along with a large chunk of the Western Hemisphere, the U.K. stands with the U.S. and has reportedly refused a request from the Maduro government to liquidate $1.2 billion of gold reserves held at the Bank of England.

Go deeper: Trump seizes chance to ratchet up pressure on Venezuela's Maduro

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Coronavirus spreads to more countries, and U.S. ups its case count

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

The novel coronavirus continues to spread to more nations, and the U.S. reports a doubling of its confirmed cases to 34 — while noting those are mostly due to repatriated citizens, emphasizing there's no "community spread" yet in the U.S. Meanwhile, Italy reported its first virus-related death on Friday.

The big picture: COVID-19 has now killed at least 2,251 people and infected almost 77,000 others, mostly in mainland China. New countries to announce infections recently include Israel, Lebanon and Iran.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 2 hours ago - Health

Wells Fargo agrees to pay $3 billion to settle consumer abuse charges

Clients use an ATM at a Wells Fargo Bank in Los Angeles, Calif. Photo: Ronen Tivony/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Wells Fargo agreed to a pay a combined $3 billion to the Justice Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday for opening millions of fake customer accounts between 2002 and 2016, the SEC said in a press release.

The big picture: The fine "is among the largest corporate penalties reached during the Trump administration," the Washington Post reports.