Dow set to drop more than 300 points at the open as coronavirus cases outside China surge

Stock futures stateside pointed to sharp declines on Wall Street at the open on Monday as the number of coronavirus cases outside China surged.

As of 6:38 p.m. ET Sunday, Dow Jones Industrial Average futures were 323 points lower, pointing to an implied opening plunge of 316.41 points for the index on Monday. S&P 500 and Nasdaq futures also pointed to declines at Monday’s open.

The moves came as investors continue to watch developments surrounding the coronavirus outbreak that was first reported in China, but has spread rapidly in other countries especially South Korea and Italy, which reported a spike in the number of confirmed cases in recent days. On Sunday, Seoul raised its coronavirus alert to the “highest level,” with a recent jump bringing the total infected in the country to more than 600 — making it the country with the most cases outside mainland China.

Meanwhile, outside of Asia, Italy has been the worst affected country so far, with more than 130 reported cases and three deaths.

Fears surrounding the economic impact of the spread of the coronavirus led stocks on Wall Street to sharp losses on Friday, with the Dow dropping more than than 200 points and seeing its first close below 29,000 since Feb. 4. The S&P 500 slipped 1.1% to 3,337.75 while the Nasdaq Composite declined by 1.8% to 9,576.59.

Friday’s losses sent the major averages lower on a weekly basis for the first time in three weeks.

— CNBC’s Fred Imbert contributed to this report.

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