Breakfast Briefing: 5 things for PR pros to know on Wednesday morning

Coronavirus' affect on airlines, quarterly earnings.

Here’s the latest on coronavirus: British Airways has suspended all flights to and from mainland China, effective immediately. Flights to Hong Kong will continue, according to The Wall Street Journal. Hours earlier, United Airlines also canceled some flights between the U.S. and China. The number of confirmed cases of coronavirus has surpassed that of SARS in the country in 2002 and 2003, according to the Associated Press. 

The spread of coronavirus in China is also affecting companies outside of the airline sector. Starbucks has shut down half of its stores in the country. The CEO of auto components manufacturer Robert Bosch has warned that the virus could affect its global supply chain, according to Reuters. Novartis’ CEO told CNBC that finding a vaccine could take more than a year. And coronavirus is being discussed on earnings calls on Wednesday morning, when 10% of the S&P 500 index is scheduled to report earnings, according to MarketWatch. 

Brands are taking a mostly cautious approach to reacting on social media and other channels to the death of basketball superstar Kobe Bryant, perhaps learning lessons from earlier flubs, according to The New York Times. One that did draw the ire of social media users was blockchain company The Tron Foundation, which called Bryant "a member of the Tron family," even though he only spoke at one of its events last year. 

Impeachment proceedings will take a potentially interesting turn on Wednesday when senators get their chance to ask questions of House of Representatives impeachment managers and the Trump defense team. There’s a catch: they have to submit written questions to be read aloud by Chief Justice John Roberts instead of asking themselves. Here are 12 possibilities, via Politico

Sometimes playing a notable political figure on Saturday Night Live is a boon for a comedian’s career, and sometimes it brings out the worst in people, as Aidy Bryant found out. The actress quit Twitter after she was bombarded with tribalist kind or very unkind comments every time she portrayed former White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, according to HuffPost. 

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