Chinese officials on Monday announced that the death toll from the coronavirus has risen to 80, with nearly 2,800 cases confirmed in mainland China and several dozen more in countries such as the United States, Australia and Japan.
With over 57 million people in 15 cities across China on lockdown, the crisis is reportedly hitting the retail, travel and tourism industries particularly hard during the peak Lunar New Year season.
According to report, companies are following cues from officials, which means the pain could last past the holiday season.
Beijing has already extended the Lunar New Year holiday from January 30 to February 2 to try and prevent the spread of the virus. A government official told reporters Monday that authorities are considering a further extension.
Major companies said they are taking measures to try and contain the outbreak.
Starbucks (SBUX) announced over the weekend that it is closing shops and suspending delivery services in the city of Wuhan, the epicenter of the outbreak, and the wider Hubei Province. The coffee chain operates 90 shops in the central Chinese province, according to the company’s website.