March 17, 2020 / 4:17 PM / 18 days ago

Marriott starts furloughing tens of thousands of employees - WSJ

FILE PHOTO: A Marriott flag hangs at the entrance of the New York Marriott Downtown hotel in Manhattan, New York November 16, 2015. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly/File Photo

(Reuters) - The world’s biggest hotel operator Marriott International Inc (MAR.O) is starting to furlough what it expects will be tens of thousands of employees, amid hotel closings globally due to the virus outbreak, the Wall Street Journal reported on Tuesday.

While on furlough, Marriott will not pay salaries to its employees at some of its managed properties which it started shutting down last week, according to the report. (on.wsj.com/33rupxB)

The company is also trimming staff through furloughs at properties that are still operating, the WSJ said.

Marriott had about 174,000 employees at the end of 2019.

The staff reductions will include everyone from general managers to housekeepers, as layoffs or furloughs at the corporate level are still under discussion, according to the report.

Several of Marriott’s peers including Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc (HLT.N) have been forced to abandon their full-year financial outlooks due to a rise in cancellations of room bookings.

Although Marriott has not yet withdrawn its outlook, the company has warned the outbreak could significantly hurt its annual results and it was unable to estimate the full financial impact.

Marriott did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.

Reporting by Ankit Ajmera in Bengaluru; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli and Shounak Dasgupta

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