Let me start with a general statement – t world is awash with cretins when it comes to any event that doesn’t involve watching reality TV, piss farting around on social media, waxing your genitals and shaving off your eyebrows and then drawing them 3cms higher than they were with a sharpie. There is no finer current example of this uber level fuckwittery than following any discussion anywhere on the current coronavirus outbreak – notice I didn’t say pandemic because it doesn’t qualify as such.
What is most amazing to me is how peoples brains drop out their anuses when they are confronted by anything that requires a modicum of rational thinking based upon data. We have everything from people on Twitter saying they are preparing for the global zombie apocalypse by hiding in their basement – no prizes for guessing they are American. To fund management research groups producing charts saying that coronavirus is following an exponential progression apparently showing that within a month everyone in the world will be infected so sell everything and pray. On a side note, I did a similar calculation decades ago regarding the population growth rate of Drosophila the most common form of fly used particularly in genetics and worked out that if every larvae made it to maturity and this cycle repeated for a year the mass of flies would be equal to that of the earth and would be accelerating out into space and a fair approximation of the speed of light. I might have missed it but I don’t think that happened. Simulations are not reality.
Much of this pseudoscientific mumbo jumbo and fear-mongering is being used to tell people what to do in the market. The interesting thing is we already have historical precedents for this ranging from the devastation of the Spanish Flu which came hot on the heels of the horror of the First World War to the continuing low-level presence of Swine Flu. What is interesting is that true pandemics have no impact on the market. as can be seen in the chart below (click on it for a larger version)
As always the market will do what the market will do which is generally ignore most things and go about its function of wealth transference.