How Coronavirus Is Threatening More Than Just Supply and Demand

PALM BEACH, Florida, March 10, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Despite all the frantic worldwide research efforts, costing billions of dollars, to find a vaccine or some other effective treatment for the coronavirus, the answer still remains elusive. The virus is not only hurting people… but it is threatening business as well! A recent article in the Wall Street Journal described the situation this way: "Companies have endured financial meltdowns, civil wars and natural disasters. Now they are confronting a different kind of menace: a fast-spreading virus that has abruptly dented demand and supply across industries and continents. The novel coronavirus, which has infected more than 85,000 people, has swept through Asia and Europe, disrupted global travel and hobbled supply chains that churn out everything from smartphones to pharmaceuticals. In days, it went from pockets of woe to the top concern of chief executives world-wide.". It IS rapidly hitting the supply chain.  Active companies in the markets this week include Vuzix® Corporation (NASDAQ: VUZI), Facebook, Inc. (NASDAQ: FB), Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN), Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F), Walmart Inc. (NYSE: WMT).

The Washington Post reports that airlines, travel and cruise industries hurt by the coronavirus could get tax relief from the government. In the article, Economic adviser Larry Kudlow confirms the administration is considering "timely and targeted" intervention. It said: "The travel and tourism industries are facing their worst crisis since the 2001 terrorist attacks, prompting White House officials to consider deferring taxes for the cruise, travel and airline industries". Other supply giants will probably also be on that list. It continued: "The tax deferrals for the travel industry are being considered as airlines cut back on routes and warn about declining ticket sales. Hotel chains are struggling with vacancies in Asia and are bracing for similar waves in the United States. Business travel is falling, and trade shows, music festivals and conventions are being canceled from San Francisco to Chicago to Austin to Miami. Families and college students are reconsidering spring break excursions and distant summer plans… Other countries have already enacted tax relief for their hardest-hit industries.  It concluded: "White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow confirmed that the administration is considering "timely and targeted" federal interventions to help workers, businesses and industries most vulnerable economically to the outbreak."

Vuzix® Corporation (NASDAQ: VUZI) BREAKING NEWSVuzix to Provide Hands-Free Remote Support Incentives for Organizations Seeking to Implement Technology Solutions to Help Reduce Public Health Concerns - Vuzix® Corporation, ("Vuzix" or, the "Company"), a leading supplier of Smart Glasses and Augmented Reality (AR) technology and products, today announced that due to the current environment of travel restrictions due to global public health events and concerns, the Company has experienced a spike in inbound interest regarding remote support solutions coming from Japan and elsewhere around the world. To support companies that are responding to and operating in this crisis, Vuzix is pleased to offer a free one year smart glasses connector application for Zoom and Skype for Business to any customer that purchases a Vuzix smart glasses (M-Series or Blade Smart Glasses) during the month of March 2020. 

Many major corporations have enacted internal travel restriction policies. This is coming from the executive offices at some of the biggest corporations in America including Amazon, Google, Ford Motor Company and many others:

U.S. News reported "Some companies are moving to limit employees' travel, hoping to lessen the possibility of the coronavirus spreading through an office." Read more here: https://www.usnews.com/news/economy/articles/2020-03-03/twitter-amazon-google-among-businesses-guarding-against-coronavirus

In education:

According to the United Nations, as of Tuesday (March 3, 2020), 22 countries on three continents have closed schools because of the virus. As cases of coronavirus disease continue to be identified in countries around the world, the effort to stem its spread has kept some 290 million students home from school. Read more here: https://www.npr.org/sections/goatsandsoda/2020/03/05/812557984/as-schools-close-due-to-coronavirus-nearly-300-million-kids-arent-in-class

"Many of our global enterprise customers are faced with challenging and important decisions on the business continuity front as to how to effectively support their global operations and customers with minimal interruptions and are adopting our product's basic 'see what I see' video conferencing functionality. It can reduce the cost and risk of business travel while providing quality technical support to customers worldwide. Also to facilitate "remote teaching", teachers can stream in full HD what the teacher is seeing, from hands on lab experiments to cooking, while students are safely connected remotely over the internet," said Paul Travers, Vuzix President and Chief Executive Officer. "We have experienced a recent uptick in inbound interest in our remote support packages and smart glasses products, most notably with several new clients in Asia and more are seeking to implement. We have chosen to offer a full year of free smart glasses licenses for two of the most widely used business video calling applications to provide our customers with a simple plug and play solution for education to enterprise around the globe."  Read this entire release and more news for Vuzix® at:  https://www.financialnewsmedia.com/news-vuzi  

Additional recent developments include:

It was reported by NPR.org that Facebook, Inc. (NASDAQ: FB) and Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) are telling employees in the Seattle area to work from home as the business world tries to reduce risks from the spreading coronavirus.  Facebook said a contractor in one of its Seattle offices had been diagnosed with the disease caused by the virus. The worker was last in the office on Feb. 21, and Facebook has closed the office until March 9. The company is encouraging all employees in Seattle to work from home through the end of the month.

"We've notified our employees and are following the advice of public health officials to prioritize everyone's health and safety," a Facebook spokesperson said.  An Amazon employee at the company's Seattle headquarters has also contracted the virus, the company said.  "We are recommending that employees in Seattle/Bellevue who are able to work from home do so through the end of the month," an Amazon spokesperson said.

In an article found on Bloomberg.com Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F) as of March 4, the Company will restrict air travel for most of this month after two employees in China contracted the coronavirus.  The employees were quarantined after being diagnosed with the virus, officially named Covid-19, and they're recovering, Anderson Chan, a Ford spokesman, said in an email. He declined to reveal the employees' location, gender, ages or whether they were factory or office workers.

Effective Tuesday, Ford curbed non-essential business travel -- both international and domestic -- until March 27. The U.S. automaker joins multinational companies including Nestle SA and L'Oreal SA in limiting business trips in hopes of guarding employees against exposure to the virus that is slowing economies and sending markets into a tailspin.

And on YahooFINANCE it was reported Walmart Inc. (NYSE: WMT) recent warnings from Walmart, and Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL), two of Corporate America's biggest giants regarding coronavirus. The iPhone maker said on Monday that the virus' impact on demand — which forced it to shutter its stores in China — would undermine its revenue guidance for the first quarter.

Meanwhile, the retail giant, Walmart, also suggested the coronavirus could be a drag on the current quarter, after weak holiday sales caused the company to miss earnings forecasts.   The disease remains largely contained to the mainland and its immediate region, but China has yet to stem the rising tide of infections, with the domestic death toll rising to over 1,800 over the weekend

Meanwhile, a wide range of industries — including technology, retail, food and travel/leisure — are warning that the disease is hampering their ability to operate in the world's largest economy, which only recently brought its factories back online this week after the Lunar New Year break.

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