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Why T-Mobile Stock Plunged Today

By Evan Niu, CFA - Mar 18, 2020 at 1:29PM

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The Un-carrier is closing 80% of its stores through the end of March in response to the coronavirus.

What happened

Shares of T-Mobile (TMUS 0.74%) have plunged today, down by 12% as of 12:30 p.m. EDT, as the broader market continues to tank due to the coronavirus pandemic. Here's all the latest coronavirus news for the Un-carrier.

So what

T-Mobile recently outlined the steps it was taking to curb the disease's spread. The wireless carrier will temporarily close 80% of its company-owned retail locations through the end of the month. The stores that will stay open will have reduced schedules and operate for only eight hours per day. Customer service centers will have reduced staffing and employees there will have greater distance between workstations to promote social distancing.

T-Mobile store in Times Square

T-Mobile will temporarily close 80% of its company-owned stores. Image source: T-Mobile.

The tech company had previously said it was removing all smartphone data caps to help consumers amid the crisis. T-Mobile is also using emergency access to borrow spectrum from other telecommunications companies in order to increase service capacity.

Now what

T-Mobile and Sprint (S) are preparing to close their megamerger. A federal court sided with T-Mobile and approved the deal last month after a multi-state lawsuit attempted to block the merger. The only remaining hurdle to clear was the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), which signed off on the deal last week.

T-Mobile warned of social media hoaxes that say T-Mobile is offering 60 days of free service, which is not true. Internet access and communication is paramount in times of crisis, and T-Mobile is doing its best to maintain service and coverage during the global pandemic.

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