Coronavirus: How Bad Will It Get?

The official data on the spread of the Wuhan coronavirus continues to suggest a geometric growth rate.

Which explains why more and more infectious disease experts are now openly calling the virus a full-blown global pandemic.

So how bad might things get?

It's worth noting at this point that the data we do have, mostly from the Chinese government, is still scant and suspect. Many think the situation is China is worse than is being reported -- potentially much worse.

Frustratingly, the Western press seems bent on downplaying the coronavirus threat, many trying to convince us that the standard flu is more dangerous. Which is NOT true, at least in terms of survivability.

So, we must continue to educate ourselves as best we can.

Be sure to stay up-to-date on Peak Prosperity’s ongoing full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak by visiting here.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

Thank you for working late Chris and Adam…
Here in Shenzhen people are starting to arrive back from their LNY travel, I can see them from my deck. The city is very, very quiet, with the normal construction and traffic noise still greatly reduced. The city government is reporting daily, with 226 confirmed cases; 9 patients are in critical condition, 23 in severe condition and 5 have been discharged from hospital. There have been no deaths reported so far. (Large Boulder of salt, of course).
Businesses are to remain closed through the 9th, except for food supply and critical infrastructure. There are fire trucks driving around on the mostly vacant streets with loudspeakers to wear masks and stay home if possible. I’m not brave enough to head to the local hospitals like the VERY BRAVE Chinese men have done. On WeChat, most of my Chinese friends are either silent or spouting the Party Line…
I have installed Persicope onto my Twitter account (all behind the Chinese Firewall, which can be tunneled through using a VPN) - just in case things start getting hot OR they try to do forced evacuations, which I WILL NOT comply with willingly. At least it will be live streamed!

It takes on average 90 minutes to cremate an adult human, there are variables like the coffin type and size, and size of the remains, but on average it takes 90 minutes. If the Wuhan crematorium is running 24 hours a day with a single furnace they could cremate 16 bodies per day. They have 30 furnaces, so the theoretical maximum would be 480 bodies per day. That isn’t right, there would be down time for cleaning and cooling. An assumption of 200 per day would really be a low figure, I would consider realistic.
You should consider that they have 30 furnaces because of the natural death rate of the Wuhan area, so it might just be normal deaths, with a few extra’s pushing them into running after hours. The existing reported confirmed deaths in Wuhan added to the existing natural demand for the crematorium might be the cause of the running 24/7.
It’s not conclusive of anything other than the fact there is an increased death rate in Wuhan, which we already knew.

My primary source for “approved” news here is Caixin, which is a subscription news service in English (and Chinese). It is heavily focused on economic and financial news and I have been surprised over time at how they report critically on negative parts of the Chinese economy. Now - they are posting free articles about the virus with pretty darn honest viewpoints (it seems)…This one just now is particularly open and descriptive.

My brother was sick with a respiratory condition that didn’t seam like a cold or a flu. He had a cough and horse voice and sounded rundown for about the last week. He did have direct contact with an individual 10 days ago or so that was in asia and flew through china on the 15th. We spoke about the potential of him having Ncov. We laughed about the fact that if he did seek help, that they would ask him if had been traveled outside the country and if not they would dismiss him as just having a cold or flu. So, I am quite sure, unless you have had direct contact with someone known with the infection… no one will notice if you have Ncov. I am sure , until someone dies from a flu, this will go unnoticed mostly. ( and that might still be chalked up to the flu ) So, I do believe their are plenty of cases in the US from human to human contact. Just let the lag time catch up; you will need about 100 cases before you see a death. - Actually , that might not be true if to use the Philippines cases… 2 cases one death… They are clearly missing something.

I agree nordijack. In other words, how do we know it isn’t widespread here if it is only causing mild illness?
If we can’t test we won’t know. I have seen a few viral pneumonias and some very severe colds in the area but testing is limited on a good day because it isn’t necessary. Colds get better on their own. Holding my breath hoping that is the case.

Data not lining up inside and outside of China…
This could be for the simple reason that not enough time has passed such that new cases have not come to fruition yet, and the people who are infected outside of China and came from China simply had a Headstart as far as getting infected. The number of travelers is linear, but when these numbers of travelers then start infecting other people outside of China the numbers will start going up exponentially. How in the world does someone travel a very long distance in an airplane and airports and not infect other people? or, infect people for several days after they have arrived? My suspicion is that in about 10 to 14 days the cases outside of China are going to start going up exponentially in a very clear fashion. Hopefully I’m wrong.
Seems to me to be a good idea not to trust anything the CCP says. If they had reacted cautiously, the epidemic may be much smaller at this point, but given the R0, likely would have continued. CCP clearly cannot be trusted. Watch what they do (line up perhaps 100 police officers outside apartment complex where someone tests positive) and not what they say.

With all this talk about dubious numbers, I find it odd, that New York hasn’t confirmed a case yet.
The same goes for transportation super-hub Atlanta.

Now bird flu is in Hubei. If it recombines in a host it could have the transmission of nCov with the 50% mortality of H5N1.

In my experience, the “CoronaVirus Breaking News” twitter account needs to be taken with multiple grains of salt. They sacrifice accuracy and back-checking facts for speed releasing information. I’m not saying they are wrong in every case, but they’ve “reported” things that ended up being disproved.

virus may survive for 5 days on ‘smooth’ surfaces…are the planes being scrubbed sufficiently after flying to or from China?? are some of the infections being caused by hand to nose or eye after surface contact??? …will the airlines hire expensive cleaning crews??..I have my doubts…something to look into

The MSM (CBS morning news) broadcast the images of the body bags on the bus this morning. TPTB have acknowledged that the Chinese public health care system is collapsing. You have been warned, people. We may only have four to six weeks before things get really bad out here in the rest of the world. I am an ER nurse. The Swine Flu stressed the hospital I work at very hard. I do not want to believe that the American public health care system could collapse but I have to admit, in the face of the evidence, that it could happen. I am prepping for my people with the idea that I may be quarantined, get sick or die.
The next several months are going to be fascinating.
John G

China’s stock market dropped hard overnight. Down nearly 8%, with 90% of stocks closing ‘limit down’, the most the exchange will let a stock fall in a single day.
But here in the US “”“markets”"?
S&P up 1%. NASDAQ up 1.5%.
This is likely the PPT flexing its muscle and trying to convince investors “all is well”. IMO, this is akin to encouraging passersby into the lobby bar of a tall hi-rise, while refraining from telling them the floors above are aflame.
At what point do the partiers smell smoke and bolt for the exit? Is it when the number infected with the coronavirus is into the hundreds of thousands? Or when the many corporations with Asian supply chains and/or customers start issuing profit warnings?
We may not have long to wait for either.
And get this…TSLA up another 12% this morning!!! TSLA has gone from $423 to $724 just in 2020 alone. BTW, it was $180 back in May.

Right now I am watching CNBC with the volume down as I am working. I glance up every once a while to take a look. From what I’m seeing is they are downplaying this virus as much as they can. They just had the head of in NIH and reassuring phrases were coming across the bottom of the screen. “ This virus is not near as deadly SARS“, etc. I thought this was not the case. But, I don’t follow the details like that because to me they are irrelevant. In my mind SARS is bad and this virus is also very bad. So what’s the point with that statement?

So apparently the Plunge Protection Team also functions as the financial Plague Protection Team. Do they really have unlimited supply of digital dollars sufficient to keep these ““markets”” afloat when the nCoV’s societal and economic impacts become undeniably bad? Can they manage perception to the extent that it protects us from actual pandemic spread of this deadly virus? IMO, unless the PPT miraculously finds a way to print/press confidence (with the occasional bump-up with “new promising vaccine” pharma news), these ““markets”” are sure to come down very hard very soon.
Unfortunately, I think TPTB will find another crisis distraction in the middle east to pump up oil. I think the effect on the ““markets”” will be temporary, but possibly with very real human costs if our military “retaliation” happens to miss their (prewarned, evacuated–oops, not quite!) targets. What a mess!
Yes, indeed: Brace for (multiple) impacts! :-/

SARS was extremely deadly (10 percent fatality) but fewer confirmed cases(a little over 8000). People with SARS weren’t infectious until they were sick for a while. With this coronavirus people can infect others very easily and without symptoms, hence they aren’t quarantined in time.
They both bad in different ways. SARS has a higher fatality but was easier to contain. This coronavirus has many more opportunities to spread while people are still feeling well.
I think media people, as Chris may have said, may be trying to reassure themselves as well. It is pretty frightening.

Read the following last week, from what seems to be a reliable source.

“Our hospital is already the first-rated (medical level) in the country,” he said in the chat. “If a nurse, or a doctor is infected, just like SARS, it is unavoidable that people in the whole section are potentially infected too. You guys need to be prepared. The whole Orthopedics department of my hospital has been infected. No one is safe,” Dr. Sun warned the others in the group. “No one is going to add those numbers. Because many people died at home or ER, so their names won’t be added into the statistics,” he added in the group chat, referring to the announced official statistics. Still, information like this is only circulated in their inner circle, not to the public. At the time of this conversation, China had confirmed only 440 cases. The latest official statistics show that there are 5794 identified patients, 9239 suspected cases, and 132 deaths. According to the information shared by Dr. Huang, however, many doctors from ‘first-and second-grade hospitals’ in major cities along the southeast coast have reached a consensus. They believe that the definite number of infections is five to six times the number officially announced by China, including those who have not been confirmed. The number of deaths, they estimate, is two to three times the official announcement.