Coronavirus live updates: South Korea reports 256 more cases, as total crosses 2,000

Health, Fitness & Food

A South Korean health worker sprays disinfectant as part of preventive measures against the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus, at a residential area near the Daegu branch of the Shincheonji Church of Jesus in Daegu on February 27, 2020.

JUNG YEON-JE | AFP via Getty Images

This is a live blog. Please check back for updates.

All times below are in Beijing time.

8:44 am: Companies report ‘major decrease’ in demand from China, survey finds

Many big companies say they’ve already taken a big hit in 2020 from the coronavirus with a “major decrease” in demand from China cited by 40% of chief financial officers responding to a flash survey of the CNBC Global CFO Council.

A majority of chief financial officers on the Global CFO Council say the coronavirus known as COVID-19 has created either a supply or demand effect on their business, but it is the demand drop from China that is the biggest impact. In all, 62.5% say they have seen a decrease in Chinese demand — 21.9% of companies surveyed described a “slight decrease” in demand.

The CNBC Global CFO Council represents some of the largest public and private companies in the world, collectively managing more than $5 trillion in market value across a wide variety of sectors. — Rosenbaum

7:58 am: China reports 44 additional deaths, most of them in Hubei

China’s National Health Commission reported 327 new confirmed cases and 44 additional deaths as of Feb. 27. Among the new confirmed cases of infection, 318 were reported in Hubei province, the epicenter of the outbreak, while 41 people also died there from illness related to the virus. Beijing also reported two deaths.

Altogether, China has 78,824 confirmed cases and the death toll was at 2,788. — Roy Choudhury

7:48 am: Moody’s says a pandemic would result in global and US recession in first half

Moody’s Analytics said in a Thursday note that there is a 40% chance that the coronavirus outbreak turns into a pandemic — when an epidemic spreads globally and affects a large number of people worldwide — and that if such a situation arises, then it would “result in global and U.S. recessions during the first half of this year.”

“The economy was already fragile before the outbreak and vulnerable to anything that did not stick to script,” Moody’s said, adding that the new virus which came out of nowhere is “way off script.” The ratings agency said that the virus poses downside risk to the U.S. economy and though there are limits to monetary policy, the Federal Reserve “may need (to) eventually step in.” That said, an emergency rate cut from the Fed is unlikely, Moody’s said. — Roy Choudhury

7:36 am: Global stock markets sold off, Dow fell almost 1,200 points

Global stock markets sold off on Thursday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average plummeting nearly 1,200 points — its biggest one-day point drop ever. U.S. stock indexes entered correction territory, alongside European shares. On Friday morning, futures pointed to declines in Japan as Australia’s ASX 200 dropped more than 3% in early trade.

“Extreme moves are forcing closure of long positions and uncertainty over the duration and economic impact of COVID-19 continues to grow,” analysts at ANZ Research wrote on Friday morning. “Uncertainty is rife, feeding volatility, but the simple maths as COVID-19’s spread outside China means worsening virus news to come.” — Roy Choudhury

All times below are in Eastern time.

6:03 pm: CDC to test more suspected cases after revising guidelines

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said it revised its guidelines to allow clinicians across the U.S. to test more people suspected of carrying the new coronavirus. Under the prior federal guidelines, clinicians could test suspected COVID-19 patients if they had traveled recently from China or had been in contact with someone known to be infected. Some lawmakers criticized the CDC’s previous guidance as too restrictive. The new guidelines, which were posted to the CDC’s website Thursday, appear to place more power in the hands of local health practitioners to determine who should get tested. —Feuer

4 pm: Goldman Sachs asks some clients to skip New York conference

Goldman Sachs is asking customers to skip a conference hosted by its investment bank next week if they’ve recently traveled to countries worst hit by the coronavirus. The warning, for Goldman’s eighth annual housing and consumer finance conference held at the bank’s New York headquarters, was just added to the event’s registration website. “In light of the recent outbreak of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, Goldman Sachs has enacted several precautionary measures to ensure the wellbeing of our clients and our people,” the bank said. —Son

Read CNBC’s coverage from the U.S. overnight: California monitoring 8,400 people; stocks continue free fall

— CNBC’s Eric Rosenbaum, William Feuer and Hugh Son contributed to this report.

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