Leaders in the Chinese business community said foot traffic improved at varying degrees at local stores after Mayor Bill de Blasio ate a February 13 meal in front of reporters and local news cameras at the Royal Queen, a popular Chinese banquet hall in the Flushing neighborhood of Queens, New York. The mayor's gesture was an attempt to quell coronavirus fears after his office received reports of declining sales in Chinese neighborhoods. But business leaders said foot traffic took a nose dive again late last month after news broke that the virus spread from China to every populated continent on the planet.
On Wednesday, Center for Disease Control and Prevention health officials told reporters it was only a matter of time before the virus spreads throughout the United States. Their warnings were downplayed by President Donald Trump.