March 2, 2020 / 2:06 PM / a month ago

Goldman Sachs halts non-essential foreign business travel: memo

FILE PHOTO: The Goldman Sachs company logo is seen in the company's space on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, (NYSE) in New York, U.S., April 17, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid/File Photo

LONDON (Reuters) - Goldman Sachs Group Inc (GS.N) has told its staff that all non-essential international business travel should be postponed, according to a memo seen by Reuters.

The “precautionary measures” come as global businesses take more sweeping steps to help prevent the spread of coronavirus.

“Effective immediately, all non-essential international business travel should be postponed,” the memo said.

Until now most companies had focused on restricting travel to areas particularly affected by the virus such as mainland China, South Korea and Northern Italy, rather than imposing wider restrictions.

But as the number of cases grow in other countries, firms are looking at more blanket measures. Last Thursday JPMorgan (JPM.N) also said it was restricting all but essential international work travel.

Goldman Sachs added that any travel to and within all of Italy is now restricted. All of the firm’s staff who have traveled to mainland China, South Korea, Iran and Italy, or have been in close contact with individuals who have been to these countries, are required to self-isolate.

The spread of coronavirus outside of China has gone up in recent days, with cases in 53 countries and more than 100 deaths.

Reporting by Clara Denina; Editing by Rachel Armstrong

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