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Deutsche Post says coronavirus hit earnings by 60-70 million euros this month

BERLIN (Reuters) – Deutsche Post <DPWGn.DE> said on Friday that the coronavirus outbreak had wiped around 60-70 million euros ($65-$76 million) from its group earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) in February compared with its internal projections.

Coronavirus, which started in China and has since spread around the world, has killed almost 2,800 people and tens of thousands of people are infected. World share markets have crashed.

“In the past weeks, trade volumes have weakened, not only on the inbound and outbound China trade lanes but also in countries of Asia; constraints on industrial production are increasingly expected also outside of China,” the company said in the statement.

Citing global economic uncertainties, Deutsche Post said it would no longer pursue exploratory talks on possible partners for Streetscooter, its electric van business.

It predicted that decision would lead to one-off charges of 300-400 million euros for this financial year.

Regarding its 2020 guidance for group EBIT of more than 5 billion euros, it said this was “as of now excluding any still to be quantified effect induced by Corona implications, as well as the above mentioned charges related to the decision on StreetScooter.”

It said its forecast for group EBIT of a minimum of 5.3 billion euros in 2022 was not affected.

Shares in Deutsche Post were down 4% at 1236 GMT.

Deutsche Post reported 2019 group revenues of 63.3 billion euros and group EBIT of 4.128 billion euros, putting it within its announced range of 4-4.3 billion euros.

(Reporting by Michelle Martin; Editing by Riham Alkousaa and Elaine Hardcastle)