Bassanese Bites: Going viral – February 03 2020

After a strong start to the year – with seemingly little to worry about – global stocks suffered a set back last week as the impact of the coronavirus began to take its toll.  While most commentators, myself included, suspect the virus will be ultimately contained within months (judging by the SARS outbreak of 2003), there’s no denying the grim reality that the outbreak will likely get worse before it gets better.  And the very measures required to contain the virus – such as travel restrictions – threaten to severely knock global growth in Q1.  See my detailed noted on the virus here.

As it stands, the coronavirus appears more easily spread, though less lethal than SARS. There are already more cases of infection (14k) than there were with the whole SARS outbreak (8k), and we’re likely still only in the early days, with the World Health Organisation only last week declaring a global heath emergency.  During the SARS outbreak, it took several more months from declaration of a WHO emergency until a stabilisation in the number of infected.

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