A Waymo self-driving Chrysler Pacifica minivan. Photo: Waymo

As it prepares to make its fully driverless cars (without a safety driver in the front seat) available for rides to the public this year, Waymo says it has ordered thousands of additional Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid minivans.

Why it matters: The self-driving car race continues at full speed. General Motors' Cruise recently said it will deploy its cars to the public in 2019, while ride-hailing services Uber and Lyft have been testing rides with passengers on smaller scales.

  • The fully driverless car rides will first be publicly available in Phoenix, and later in more cities. Waymo began testing its driverless cars there in November.
  • So far, Fiat Chrysler has provided Waymo with 600 such cars.

Go deeper: Axios took a ride in one of Waymo's self-driving minivans at its secret testing facility.

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Houston public health system CEO says coronavirus situation is "dire"

Houston's coronavirus situation is "dire, and it's getting worse, seems like, every day," Harris Health System CEO and President Dr. Esmail Porsa said Monday on MSNBC's "Morning Joe."

The big picture: Porsa said the region is seeing numbers related to the spread of the virus that are "disproportionately higher than anything we have experienced in the past." He noted that Lyndon B. Johnson Hospital's ICU is at 113% capacity, and 75% of its beds are coronavirus patients.

Fund managers start to board the stock bandwagon

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Asset managers at major U.S. investment firms are starting to get bullish with their clients, encouraging stock buying and trying not to get left behind right as the metrics on tech stocks rise back to highs not seen since the dot-com crash of 2000.

What's happening: Appetite for stocks is starting to return, but slowly as institutional money managers were overwhelmingly sitting on the sidelines in cash during April and May.

2 hours ago - World

China bans Cruz and Rubio over Xinjiang criticism

Photos: Graeme Jennings/Pool/Getty Images; Al Drago/Pool/Getty Images

China said Monday that it will ban entry to Sens. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Ted Cruz (R-Texas) over their criticisms of human rights abuses in Xinjiang, the AP reports.

The big picture: The move seems to be retaliatory after the U.S. announced sanctions on four Chinese officials for human rights abuses against Uighur Muslims and other ethnic minorities in the region last week.