Apple on Monday disclosed how the coronavirus that has gripped China was affecting its business, saying it was reducing its sales expectations for this quarter, which a month ago it had projected to be robust. Fears over the coronavirus’s impact on the global economy and business have been growing. As of Tuesday morning in China, over 72,000 people had been infected by the coronavirus and over 1,800 had died worldwide, officials reported. About three-quarters of a billion people in China are under some kind of lockdown orders, according to a New York Times analysis. Apple’s action on Monday “is the first of many we’re going to see around the coronavirus impact,” said Daniel Ives, managing director of equity research at Wedbush Securities.
Countries including Japan and Germany have already been grappling with slowing growth. Japan, which relies on a lucrative flow of Chinese tourists, as well as exports to the country’s enormous market of consumers, may potentially fall into a recession. And there are concerns the coronavirus could crimp Europe’s already weak growth. As the crisis over the virus has deepened, several large companies have indicated that their production may be hurt and that the damage may spill over into their financial results. China’s giant network of factories, which accounts for a quarter of the world’s manufacturing output, was sluggish in ramping up after the extended Lunar New Year holiday that the authorities imposed because of the outbreak.