Email of the day - on US COVID cases
Comment of the Day

January 07 2021

Commentary by Eoin Treacy

Email of the day - on US COVID cases

As a result of the violent rioting in Washington yesterday, by thousands of people under huge stress, a super-spreader event has almost certainly been generated. I note the daily tally of deaths yesterday in the US exceeded 4000. Not good!

Eoin Treacy's view

I totally agree and it seems like there are super-spreader events going on all the time. Since the UK variant of the virus has been found in an increasingly large number of countries, we have to assume it is much more pervasive than spotty testing highlights. Many countries now test for coronavirus but much fewer do the genetic testing necessary to identify variants. The USA for example doesn’t have a wide tracking system for mutations.

Living in Los Angeles, I see in the media that we are back under strict lockdown. I see no evidence of it on the street. The only difference is outdoor dining was banned. How can any lockdown be effective when nearly half of all workers are “essential”? When the logic of lockdowns is nonsensical it breeds noncompliance. Consumers tend to view lockdowns in name only as a signal to comply in name only. That’s the primary reason the trend of cases and deaths in California has not abated.

Despite the sorry outlook for superspreader events we cannot lose sight of the fact that every vaccine which has completed Phase III trials has more than sufficient efficacy to be released as a solution. The reality is that there may be a delay between hospitals do in fact become inundated and when the sufficient vaccines are made available. That’s likely to be a one to two-month phenomenon at worst and, even then, a lower percentage of people are dying from the virus today than back in April.

The Nasdaq Biotech Index continues to hold its breakout not least because the commercialisation of genetic solutions to pandemics is a mass proof of concept exercise that will open up a whole new sector for innovation.  

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