Covid-19 is self-evidently beyond the point of meaningful containment. Virologists and infectious disease experts have known for three weeks that this was highly probable, and certainly not a mere tail-risk as suggested by equity market pricing. We are now there.
The global economy may be heading for some sort of “sudden stop” in supply chains, trade flows and tourism more akin to the outbreak of the First World War than the Lehman or dotcom crises.
What happens or does not happen in Wuhan has been overtaken by events in Iran, Italy, the Pacific Rim and no doubt Africa as well if there were surveillance data.
The bond market is already signalling a downward lurch into global deflation. Yields on 10-year US Treasuries have fallen to all-time lows. Evercore ISI says zero yields are coming into “plausible” range.
Real GDP growth in China will “plummet” in Q1
A virologist at the forefront of coronavirus research has warned Australians to stock up on essentials to prepare for home quarantine and school and work closures when the new coronavirus sweeps through the country.
Associate Professor Ian Mackay from the University of Queensland said in his opinion a pandemic was inevitable and it was only a matter of time before SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes the deadly COVID-19, ripped through the Australian population.
“The virus is too well entrenched in many countries around the world,” he told 3AW’s Neil Mitchell.
“It’s coming. It’s just how long it takes to come. China has slowed things down so we’ve got time to prepare — we owe them for that — but it will get here eventually.”
Prof Mackay, who helped develop coronavirus tests for use in Australia, said the government had failed to advise citizens on how to prepare for “what’s coming”.
CORONAVIRUS UPDATE: UAE says ready for ‘worst case’ scenarios as coronavirus spreads in Middle East.
Coronavirus Spreads: Whisky & Spirits Industry To Lose 200 Million In 2020. Weird, you think people would be drinking more.