Coronavirus Analysis - Update - 6 April 2020
Equity markets around the world rose today on hopes that the coronavirus pandemic is slowing. A good moment to update my analysis numbers with a week's more data and see if this optimism is justified.
All figures sourced from wikipedia. See the individual analyses for links to the exact pages.
New coronavirus cases by date
Day 0 on the x-axis is the date of lockdown in each country, negative numbers are days before the lockdown, positive numbers count days through the lockdown.
Italy / Spain / France. 3 or 4 weeks into lockdown for these countries and the general trend is clearly downwards for new case numbers. The slow decline in Italy is caused by later outbreaks in different areas of the country offsetting a faster decline in Lombardy - the area most heavily hit by the coronavirus. For France the numbers are spiky but still generally decreasing.
UK / Germany. 2 weeks into lockdown and new case numbers appear to have flattened.
Coronavirus deaths by date
Coronavirus deaths by date. X-axis as for the charts above.
Numbers of deaths are decreasing in Italy and Spain. They are hopefully through the worst. For France the recent higher numbers comes from taking into account deaths outside of hospitals in care homes.
The UK and Germany have seen significant rises in numbers of deaths over the last week. These countries are heading into the third week of lockdown and numbers of deaths may still rise as the pattern of the number of deaths will lag the number of new cases by a week or two.
Total case numbers increase rate
An attempt to show how well the lockdown is working in each country by looking at how the rate of increase in total cases slows over time and comparing the pattern to the outbreak in China.
The Italy lockdown is working but over the last week this has been less efficient than that imposed in China. This is partly (but not wholly) due to the later outbreaks in different areas of Italy which continue to give rise to new cases. This raises an interesting question as to whether any lifting of the lockdown would be carried out regionally which would necessitate continued travel restrictions. If not the lockdown may need to be longer than that imposed in China.
For Spain the lockdown is progressing in line with China; it will be interesting to see whether the more stringent lockdown now applied in Spain will allow new cases to be reduced more swiftly than in Italy.
Overall the lockdowns do appear to be working and there is some cause for the optimism that the markets are reflecting. However, it does feel slightly premature, given the uncertainty as to how the lockdowns will be lifted, which industries will continue to be closed-down (travel, entertainment etc) and the potential risk of future outbreaks.
This is not financial advice obviously. Just some thoughts.