Can Trump and Pelosi Pass This Stimulus?

stimulus package

Covid-19 has left many surviving patients (both young and old) in bad shape. Researchers are learning more about “Long Covid,” which leaves some patients with debilitating, varied symptoms months after the initial infection has cleared.

These include disorders in the brain, lungs, heart, stomach, liver, skin and other parts of the body.

Some symptoms can be serious, such as “brain fog” and extreme exhaustion. Other consequences are milder, such as the inability to taste or smell. 

The UK’s National Institute for Health Research said this: “A common theme is that symptoms arise in one physiological system then abate, only for symptoms to arise in a different system.”

The NIHR added, “The overwhelming message is that this is not a linear condition. Many [patients] suffer a roller coaster of symptoms moving around the body, from which they do not recover.”

A study of patients discharged from a Rome hospital found that 87% of patients were still experiencing at least one symptom two months after the onset of Covid-19. At least 55% of them had three or more symptoms, including fatigue, breathing difficulties and pain in joints and chest.

Another study by King’s College London, used data from its Covid Symptom Study app with 4 million regular contributors. It suggested that between 10% and 20% of infections led to complications lasting longer than a month.

Think about that. If around 10% of people with confirmed Covid-19 will suffer from Long Covid, that would mean nearly four million people worldwide. And rising every day.

The real key point is one from the NIHR study: “It feels as if this coronavirus is behaving quite differently to other viral infections like flu.”    

The Big News

China’s Economy Expands

China’s economy expanded 4.9% year over year in the third quarter. Industrial growth powered its recovery from the coronavirus pandemic. The expansion is a sharp turnaround from a historic decline (-6.8%) at the start of the year. Retail sales also recorded their best performance this year, rising 3.3% last month. In August, China’s retail sales added 0.5% after seven straight months of decline.    

Tuesday Deadline on Stimulus Package Talks

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi set a deadline for a stimulus package. She told the White House that it needs to make a deal on coronavirus aid and the stimulus package by Tuesday. That date would give Congress time to act before the election. She is set to speak with Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin today.

Eastern Europe’s Virus Problem

A strong second wave of coronavirus is surging through Eastern Europe. But that’s not the main problem. Many in the region fear that the lack of medical staff will be devastating. Years of underfunding and emigration has led to shortages of doctors. This will only add to pressure on already strained healthcare services.             

Sports Viewership Declines

One pandemic side effect seems to be a decline in viewership of televised sports. Viewership fell 50% for the NBA finals. And the NHL’s Stanley Cup finals, MLB’s division series and golf’s U.S. Open all saw declines in the range of 40%. One reason is that all these sports were competing for eyeballs at the same time. Another reason is likely the rise of streaming.

Doctors Throw ‘Kitchen Sink’ Into Covid Fight

Faced with an unfamiliar enemy, doctors treating coronavirus patients have had no choice but to reach for familiar pharmaceutical weapons. But so far few have proven effective. . .and then only for treating the severely ill. Intense efforts are now under way to bolster the arsenal, either by developing new treatments or re-purposing old ones. The WHO’s ongoing review of Covid-19 studies reports 1,905 randomized trials of potential treatments. Yet some of these are very small (fewer than 10 patients) and are unlikely to deliver robust conclusions.       

The Coronavirus Numbers

The United States has passed the level of 8 million coronavirus cases.  Here are the numbers from Monday at 8 a.m. ET from Johns Hopkins University:

  • 40,076,184 Infected Worldwide
  • 1,113,962 Deaths
  • 8,155,592 Infected in the U.S.
  • 219,676 Deaths in the U.S.

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What’s Next

Vaccine hopes, stimulus package hopes, earnings optimism, etc. Choose your favorite market story and apply it accordingly.

The truth is that the major indices are going nowhere at the moment.

Treasury yields have barely budged with the 10-year holding 0.77%. Gold is trading in the $1915 range. The dollar index sits in the middle of the 93.30-93.90 range.

Oil trades above $41 ahead of today’s OPEC meeting, which will discuss compliance with cuts. A full meeting will occur at the end of November. It could see OPEC+ put on hold plans to scale back production cuts to 5.8 million barrels per day from the current 7.7 million barrels per day.

One interesting side note was that China’s stock market is now the second biggest in the world. It hit a record valuation last week, surpassing $10 trillion in value.

Here in the U.S., the market is edging higher, but is still trapped in a range that will likely contain it until the election.

However, one area still stands out as being hot – the IPO market. A number of exciting companies continue to come to market, including  some in not-so-traditional ways.

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Yours in Health & Wealth,

Tony Daltorio

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