As hysteria over the Coronavirus increases, many are starting to get concerned about its impact on business. Shares of Big Tech companies took a hit Monday after a surge in coronavirus cases renewed fears of a global economic slowdown. Companies such as Apple, Facebook, Amazon, Microsoft and Google lost more than $238 billion due to the Coronavirus outbreak.
Apple has the largest exposure to China, as it relies heavily on Chinese manufacturing plants for its top products and on Chinese consumers to buy iPhones. Apple, the most valuable public company in the world, saw more than $60 billion wiped off its $1.4 trillion market cap.
The company warned last week that it does not expect to meet its own guidance for the March quarter because of the impact of the coronavirus, which forced store closures in China, eroding customer traffic and disrupting its supply chain. Investors are signaling that they expect the outbreak to weigh on Apple’s tech rivals as well.
Microsoft also gave up nearly $60 billion, while Amazon’s and Google’s market caps shrank by more than $40 billion each. Facebook, the least valuable member of the group, surrendered more than $25 billion. Shares in all five tech titans slumped by at least four percent after coronavirus deaths were reported in Iran, Italy and South Korea.
For the first time since the outbreak began, there have been more cases of COVID-19 reported outside of China than from China, WHO said on Wednesday (Feb. 26). In the past 24 hours, there had been 459 cases reported outside China and 412 cases reported from China. There have also been about 81,187 confirmed coronavirus cases (primarily in mainland China), according to the Johns Hopkins virus dashboard. This could lead to more fears of crisis when it comes to worldwide businesses and the global economy.
All in all, the global panic of an epidemic is not only affecting people’s health, but it is also beginning to affect worldwide business and the stock market, especially when it comes to big tech stocks such as Apple, Facebook, Amazon, Microsoft and Google.