1. A range of Australian companies are responding to the ongoing impact of the coronavirus. Blackmores went into a trading halt yesterday ahead of the release of its half-year results and outlook for the year ahead, and Australian Retailers Association CEO Russell Zimmerman told The Australian that the group was "hearing some retailers are being told that supply will be a few weeks late because of coronavirus".
2. There are now more than 40,000 confirmed cases of the coronavirus worldwide and a total of at least 910 death according to the latest figures. The World Health Organisation said that, according to Chinese data from the first 17,000 cases, 82% of patients present mild symptoms, 15% of cases are severe and 3% critical.
3. The United States' GDP during the first quarter will fall almost 1% during the first quarter of 2020 before mostly recovering in the second quarter according to forecasters surveyed by CNBC, who estimated a drop from 2.1% in Q4 2019 to 1.2% in Q1 2020, then 2.0% in Q2 2020.
4. Companies due to report today include Suncorp, Transurban, Beach Energy and Challenger.
5. At the start of the week in the US, the S&P 500 and Nasdaq both reached record highs, with the former rising 24.38 points or 0.73% to 3,352.09 and the later notching up a gain of 107.88 points or 1.13% to 9,628.39. The Dow Jones also rose on Monday, closing up 174.31 points or 0.60% to 29,276.82.
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