Hyatt withdraws 2020 guidance due to coronavirus outbreak

Travel restrictions imposed by many companies due to virus' expansion contribute to the decision

The coronavirus which now has more than 90,000 cases worldwide, has forced Hyatt Hotels to withdraw its 2020 earnings outlook.

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In an announcement after the stock market closed Monday, Mark S. Hoplamazian, Hyatt’s president and CEO said, "while we remain unable at this time to quantify the full-year impact on our financial results, we believe it is appropriate to withdraw our previously announced 2020 outlook."

(Hyatt Hotel Corporation)

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Hyatt has already closed 26 properties in China, where it has operated for nearly 50 years while other hotels it has in the Middle Kingdom have been struggling with extremely low occupancy. Hyatt currently operates more than 85 hotels throughout Mainland China and Hong Kong.

Hyatt has previously announced an extensive cancelation policy where guests can postpone or cancel without a cancellation fee. But the continued expansion of the virus has seen dozens of businesses shut down travel globally for its employees.

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On Feb. 19, the company issued its original 2020 guidance along with its reported fourth-quarter earnings. In a statement at the time, the company said the effects of the coronavirus could not reasonably be estimated. Though, it did caution that the outbreak could play a significant role in its Greater China segment.

Since then, the coronavirus – which has been coded as COVID-19 – has infected more than 90,305 people and has caused 3,085 deaths at the time of publication, according to Johns Hopkins live tracker.

Outbreaks in Europe are in the thousands with Italy hit hardest with 2,036 confirmed cases. France, Germany, Spain, Switzerland and the U.K. have rising numbers among others. In North America, the U.S. has 101 confirmed cases with six deaths related to the respiratory illness in the state of Washington. Canada has 27 confirmed cases so far while Mexico has five.

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“We are very proud of what our colleagues in the Hyatt family are doing to provide care for our guests, customers, hotel owners, and the communities in which our hotels operate, as the impact of COVID-19 continues to be felt in an increasing number of communities around the world,” added, Hoplamazian, “It is in these types of circumstances that our purpose – to care for people so they can be their best – has the greatest impact.”