Global Reference Guide to the Coronavirus

By RBC Capital Markets, LLC
Published March 4, 2020 | 2 min read

As the number of cases of COVID-19 (“Coronavirus”) continues to multiply in China and around the world, our Global Equity Team developed a reference guide to companies in our coverage universe that have been or could be impacted by the coronavirus outbreak. Given this is a rapidly evolving situation, we are also leveraging RBC Elements to monitor updates in real-time.

Required Conflicts Disclosures

As the coronavirus continues its spread outside of China, there is no question that there will be extensive economic impact. The challenge is how we can help our clients predict the scope of the disruption in the global supply chain and identify the industries that will be impacted most.

To navigate these complex questions, we created a report to pinpoint over 445 companies globally by sector that have exposure to China, either through supply or demand impacts, or potential second derivative factors. Furthermore, once the effects of the coronavirus have passed, this report can be harnessed as a resource for investors looking to find opportunities for indirect exposure to China within our coverage universe.

Below is a snapshot of key themes that emerged in select sectors we covered in the report:



As we head into the spring and summer, the outlook for most retailers within the consumer space is stable. However, if the coronavirus continues to impact Chinese suppliers, inventories this fall may suffer.

For consumer discretionary companies – luxury and auto companies in particular – there is significant exposure to China and Asia, and downside risk to forecasts in Q1. Historically, companies tend to recovery quickly, but the scale of the outbreak introduces new uncertainty into economies and markets.



The full impact of the coronavirus may not be known for months, but it appears to resemble a giant pothole for energy markets amid curtailed demand conditions. We see headwinds to consensus earnings estimates for some global integrated companies, to the tune of 20-25% based on current forward curve commodity prices.

Elsewhere, in the Exploration & Production and Oilfield Equipment and Services industries, many companies have hedging in place for the first half of 2020, or have already expressed low expectations. To aggravate the outlook, if commodity prices remain weak, market risk will continue to multiply.


Banks and Insurance Companies

Softer sales are expected for some banks and insurance companies in our coverage, and record lows for the 10-year U.S. treasury yield may pressure net interest margins at some financial institutions.

In addition, event and travel coverage companies could take a hit as various airline and cruise ship cancellations continue to occur. In contrast, life insurance companies may benefit from the coronavirus outbreak because of increased public awareness to ensure coverage.

The Global Reference Guide to COVID-19 ("coronavirus") research report was authored by the RBC Global Equity Team. For more information about the full report, please contact your RBC sales representative for additional information.

For Required Conflicts Disclosures, click here. These disclosures are also available by sending a written request to RBC Capital Markets Research Publishing, P.O. Box 50, 200 Bay Street, Royal Bank Plaza, 29th Floor, South Tower, Toronto, Ontario M5J 2W7 or sending an email to

BanksCOVID-19ConsumerConsumer DiscretionaryCoronavirusGlobal IntegratedsLifecos