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A new issue has emerged with President Trump's 90-day hiring freeze: It's going to cause problems at the Food and Drug Administration, where they were supposed to start staffing up under the 21st Century Cures Act. A note from Credit Suisse concludes:

How the hiring authority and hiring freeze will play out together at the FDA is unclear. But it appears the agency won't be moving forward in the next few months with part of the law that allows it to be more competitive with the private sector in recruiting top scientists.

And in a statement Thursday, the Generic Pharmaceutical Association, or GPhA, said the FDA will need to fill a lot of positions to speed the review of new generic drugs: "A fully-resourced FDA is critical to reducing the backlog and making sure that patients have timely access to medicines."

Why it matters: Clearing the backlog of unapproved generic drugs is a key to most Republicans' proposals for dealing with rising drug prices — so you can expect to hear more about FDA staffing levels if the agency can't handle the load.

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Updated 53 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 11 a.m. ET: 12,294,117 — Total deaths: 555,531 — Total recoveries — 6,761,933Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 11 a.m. ET: 3,118,168 — Total deaths: 133,291 — Total recoveries: 969,111 — Total tested: 38,032,966Map.
  3. Public health: The U.S.' new default strategy: herd immunity.
  4. Business: The pandemic is driving a second jobs apocalypse.
  5. ✈️ Travel: Airlines say air quality, cleanliness lower risk.
  6. Sports: Sen. Richard Blumenthal calls on colleges to cancel fall sports.

Biden's big economic plan plays it down the middle for Democrats

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Joe Biden yesterday laid out the broad strokes of his economic policy platform, which seemingly is designed to not freak out centrists and not piss off progressives.

Why it matters: Biden has a better-than-even shot of becoming the next president, which means his tax plans could become everyone's tax bills.

Coronavirus surge punctures oil's recovery

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The growth of coronavirus cases is "casting a shadow" over oil's recovery despite the partial demand revival and supply cuts that have considerably tightened the market in recent months, the International Energy Agency said Friday.

Why it matters: IEA's monthly report confirms what analysts have seen coming for a long time: Failure to contain the virus is a huge threat to the market rebound that has seen prices grow, but remain at a perilous level for many companies.