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CoronaVirus Herd Immunity and Flattening the Curve

Politics / Pandemic Mar 25, 2020 - 05:57 PM GMT

By: Nadeem_Walayat

Politics

The most probable reason why Britain and the US did nothing during February was due to both nations apparently following the "Herd Immunity" Protocol, which requires approx 60% of the population to become infected so that the virus is no longer able to spread to the remaining population as confirmed by the Chief Scientific Advisor to Boris Johnson's Government who publically stated this objective but refused to discuss the implied death toll.


UK Government Implements Coronavirus Herd Immunity Protocol, Plans for 1.4 Million Covid-19 Deaths

At even at a very conservative case fatality rate of 1% this would imply to expect 400,000 UK DEATHS! That is what likely the British government were planning for! Where an actual far higher case fatality rate of 3.5% would resolve to 1.4 million UK deaths! And this explains why the likes of the Cheltenham Festival went ahead UK schools remained open until the 20th of March.

The following graph illustrates various viral pandemic curves, where the red line is if little or no controls in terms of preventing spread of the virus are taken as was the case for the UK until the week beginning the 15th of March. With the Green line of what is achievable if significant measures are taken. Whilst the blue line is what is likely to happen in China, given that it nipped it's pandemic in the bud through use of extreme shutdown measures, which implies to expect the virus to return later this year in China, though at a much shallower trend trajectory and resulting peak, unless China aims to keep the country largely locked down until a vaccine or other effective treatments become available.

So given the news out of the UK and US this week, what is likely to happen next?

Well clearly if the trend continues then the UK and US are heading for a near total lock down which means the current exponential parabolic infections curves are unlikely to be sustained i.e. there is usually a 2-3 week lag between cause and effect of measures and the seriously ill showing up in hospitals.

What is the most probable outcome for the US and UK?

I think we are going to see a series of waves with diminishing peaks during the year as the government oscillates between lock downs and relaxed restrictions on the movement of people to manage the spread of the virus so that the healthcare system are better able to cope with the high numbers of seriously ill patients with the objective of building herd immunity in the general population, all without the heavy death toll that for Britain would have translated into at least 400,000 upto as many as 1.4 million deaths, with the US figures estimated at about 5 times Britains numbers, i.e. at least 2 million and to as high as 7.5 million.

So where this analysis is concerned we can discount the more extreme fear mongering projections that have become prevalent in the mainstream press such as the New York Times (https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/13/us/coronavirus-deaths-estimate.html) reporting CDC projections resolving to between 200,000 to 1.7 million American deaths this year from Covid-19. As the governments are just not going to allow for such death tolls to take place hence each passing day we are seeing ever tighter restrictions on the movement of people being announced which are trending towards enforced lock downs Italy style! So as to PREVENT where the UK and US were heading.

In this respect the NHS has started sending out letters to to 1.5 million vulnerable people warning them to self isolate for the next 12 weeks, which gives a good indication of how long the current cycle of infections is likely to run for before it dissipates back into the 'safe' zone i.e. there are going to be a lot of infections taking place over the next 2 months then tapering off in the third month, with the actual number of infected likely to run at 40 times the official number of those testing positive in the UK and a similar number for the US as both nations are taking the controlled herd immunity approach rather than containment.

So take this as a warning that if you really want to avoid becoming one of the infected herd try to isolate yourselves for at least the next 2 to 3 months, to get through this initial Big Wave of infections that carries the highest risk of death due to inability of the healthcare systems to cope

Case Fatality Rate Analysis

Lack of testing is the Achilles heel for most western nations as manifested in the percentage that test positive. For the lower the % testing positive then the greater the likelihood a nation has a grip on the pandemic. In which respect Italy despite having conducted more tests than the US and UK combined, nevertheless the fact that 26% test positive illustrates that Italy is STILL not testing enough to identify and isolate. Which goes a long way to explain what Italy continues to experience.

The rest of this extensive analysis that concludes in detailed Coronavirus trend forecasts for the UK and US, folowed by stock market implications of has first been made available to Patrons who support my work - US and UK Coronavirus Pandemic Projections and Trend Forecasts to End April 2020

  • Dark Pools of Capital Profiting from the Coronavirus CRASH
  • UK Coronavirus Infections Trend Trajectory Worse than Italy 
  • US Coronavirus Infections and Deaths Going Ballistic 
  • Herd Immunity and Flattening the Curve
  • Case Fatality Rate Analysis
  • Italy CFR and Infections Trend Analysis 
  • US and UK CFR
  • UK Coronavirus Trend forecast
  • United States Coronavirus Trend forecast
  • Vaccines and Treatments
  • CoronaVirus Forecast Stock Market Trend Implications

So for immediate first access to ALL of my analysis and trend forecasts then do consider becoming a Patron by supporting my work for just $3 per month. https://www.patreon.com/Nadeem_Walayat.

And ensure you are subscribed to my ALWAYS FREE newsletter for my next in-depth analysis.

Your Analyst

Nadeem Walayat

http://www.marketoracle.co.uk

Copyright © 2005-2020 Marketoracle.co.uk (Market Oracle Ltd). All rights reserved.

Nadeem Walayat has over 30 years experience of trading derivatives, portfolio management and analysing the financial markets, including one of few who both anticipated and Beat the 1987 Crash. Nadeem's forward looking analysis focuses on UK inflation, economy, interest rates and housing market. He is the author of five ebook's in the The Inflation Mega-Trend and Stocks Stealth Bull Market series that can be downloaded for Free.

Housing Markets Forecast 2014-2018The Stocks Stealth Bull Market 2013 and Beyond EbookThe Stocks Stealth Bull Market Update 2011 EbookThe Interest Rate Mega-Trend EbookThe Inflation Mega-trend Ebook

Nadeem is the Editor of The Market Oracle, a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication that presents in-depth analysis from over 1000 experienced analysts on a range of views of the probable direction of the financial markets, thus enabling our readers to arrive at an informed opinion on future market direction. http://www.marketoracle.co.uk

Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any trading losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisors before engaging in any trading activities.

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© 2005-2019 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


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