China's central bank said Sunday it will supply 1.2 trillion yuan (about $173.8 billion) to money markets the following day, as the country's government struggles to combat an outbreak of a new pneumonia-causing coronavirus.

Amid growing fears that the world's second-biggest economy will face a sharp downturn in the aftermath of the virus spread, the latest move by the People's Bank of China is apparently aimed at securing the stability of financial markets on Monday.

The Chinese economy has already slowed due largely to a nearly two-year-long tit-for-tat trade war with the United States, making it more difficult for the nation's smaller companies to raise capital, analysts say.

(Photo shows a department store in Beijing on Feb. 2, 2020.)

Financial markets in China will resume trading on Monday following the end of the extended Lunar New Year holiday that started on Jan. 24.

The new coronavirus -- first detected in the central Chinese city of Wuhan, known as a major business and transportation hub -- has infected more than 14,000 people and killed around 300 in China so far. The virus has been confirmed in over 20 countries.

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