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People in Shenzhen, China, waiting at a train station on Jan. 22. Photo: Costfoto/Barcroft Media via Getty Images

The U.S. and Hong Kong both announced the first confirmed cases of coronavirus, and China's National Health Commission said the death toll from the virus has risen to nine, with 440 confirmed cases across 13 provinces.

Why it matters: "There's no question that economic activity in Asia will be affected as we head into one of the busiest travel weeks in China," BK Asset Management managing director of FX strategy Kathy Lien wrote in a note to clients late Tuesday.

  • With China's Lunar New Year holiday approaching, analysts at Goldman Sachs say that based on the damage from the SARS scare in 2003, a sustained outbreak could cut global GDP by significantly more than the 0.15% drop attributed to that outbreak.
  • "If the virus is not contained, the impact on consumer confidence could be significant," Lien said.

The big picture: The coronavirus could negatively impact markets from currencies to oil, as declining air travel and sentiment weaken demand across industries.

  • Goldman's commodities research team estimates that under conditions similar to 2003, oil prices could see negative shocks leading to a $3 per barrel decline, "although the initial high uncertainty could lead to a larger sell-off, as was the case in March 2003."
  • "These volumes are roughly 1.6x times larger than in 2003 given Asia’s significantly higher contribution to global growth and jet fuel demand."

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Read: Former Vice President Walter Mondale's last message

Photo courtesy of Mondale.

Former Vice President Walter Mondale wrote a farewell letter to his staff, sent upon his death on Monday, thanking them for years working together.

Dear Team,

Well my time has come. I am eager to rejoin Joan and Eleanor. Before I Go I wanted to let you know how much you mean to me. Never has a public servant had a better group of people working at their side!

Together we have accomplished so much and I know you will keep up the good fight.

Joe in the White House certainly helps.

I always knew it would be okay if I arrived some place and was greeted by one of you!

My best to all of you!

Fritz

Former Vice President Walter Mondale dies at 93

Walter Mondale, left, with former President Jimmy Carter in Jan. 2018 at the McNamara Alumni Center on the University of Minnesota's campus in Minneapolis. Photo: Anthony Souffle/Star Tribune via Getty Images

Walter Mondale, who transformed the role of U.S. vice president while serving under Jimmy Carter and was the Democratic nominee for president in 1984, died Monday at 93, according to a family spokesperson.

The big picture: President Biden, who was mentored by Mondale through the years, said in 2015 that the former vice president gave him a "roadmap" to successfully take on the job.

Scoop: U.S. ambassador refuses Kremlin push to leave Russia

U.S. Ambassador to Russia John Sullivan. Photo: Anton Novoderezhkin/TASS via Getty Images

The United States ambassador to Russia is refusing to leave the country after the Kremlin "advised" him to return home following new Biden administration sanctions, two sources briefed on the situation tell Axios.

Why it matters: John Sullivan, a respected diplomat who President Biden has, so far, retained from the Trump era, is at the center of one of the most important early tests of Biden's resolve.