Thrilling Thursday – 3,350 and Bust (again)!

Only 28,344 infected

That's 3,737 (15%) more than yesterday but "only" 565 dead, which is 14% more than yesterday so we're pretty stable in growth and that's a good thing though not a great thing.  Great is when it's going lower.   As I noted yesterday, you have to keep a close eye on infections OUTSIDE of China and that's now 259, up 43 (20%) since yesterday – that's the number that we will panic over if it keeps climbing but, otherwise, I guess we can try to ignore it like the rest of the market.  

There was a great article in Bloomber yesterday, headlined: "China Sacrifices a Province to Save the World from Coronavirus" and that's true.  The World is very lucky this virus started in China as it's doubtful any other country would have been able to lock down its citizenry the way China did, as fast as China did.  We're not out of the woods yet but, if we are – it's because China has a strong, authoritarian Government that controls almost every aspect of the lives of its citizens.  Think about that…

It's not just virus control China has been concerned about.  China has also thrown MASSIVE amounts of stimulus into the economy, into the banking system and into the markets and has ordered lenders not to put loans in default AND to keep making new loans – despite the chaos and uncertainty – another thing that is very unlikely to happen if one of the Western Nations is similarly affected.  

Yet our markets are marching along as if the virus is a one-time thing, even though it's the 4th big one of this century.  There was SARS in 2003, H1N1 in 2009 and MERS in 2012.  I think that merits at least considering the potential risks going forward, don't you?  A 2.5% pullback is all this outbreak warranted on the S&P, not to mention the Impeachment of Donald Trump and the ongoing Boeing Debacle, that's certainly going to put a dent in the US economy, which is only expected to grow 1.5% in Q1, except by the Atlanta Fed, who somehow sees 2.5% suddenly.

Maybe the Fed knows something we don't and maybe what they know is…
continue reading