Stock market investors are suddenly scared by the rapidly increasing number of coronavirus cases in the United States.

Outbreaks of COVID-19 cases in the US USA They have delivered a new bowel control to the bulls on Wall Street, following an unprecedented rebound in the market from a coronavirus recession in March.

Cases in the South and West of the US USA They have accelerated and threaten to reverse or halt plans to reopen nearly frozen economies for months to limit the spread of the deadly contagion. In recent days, hospitalizations and infections have reemerged in places like California, with more than 7,000 new cases, through Tuesday, and in Arizona, where identified infections increased nearly 50% from the previous week, representing the highest increase of any country. state, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Read:Fauci says that in 40 years of dealing with viral outbreaks, he has never seen anything like COVID-19.

Almost 48% of all positive cases have occurred among people between the ages of 22 and 44, the newspaper reported.

While the rise in infections may not represent a “second wave,” experts say we’re still in the first wave in the United States, the equity market suffered its biggest sale since June 11 on Wednesday, with the DJIA Dow Jones Industrial Average,
the S&P 500 SPX index,
ending the session at least 2.6% lower and the Nasdaq COMP composite index,
breaking an eight-day winning streak.

In the course of this pandemic, market experts have transformed into chairside epidemiologists, who are forced to assess the implications of the growing wave of infections here and in other parts of the world. Thomas Lee, head of Fundstrat Global Advisors, in a research report dated June 23, said the biggest implications were for policy.

“This raises many questions, but the most important is the direction of the policy. Given the increase in COVID-19 cases, states and the US USA They need to mitigate transmission, also known as correct course, “Lee wrote.

On Tuesday, thirty-three states recorded a seven-day average of new cases that was higher than their average for the past two weeks, according to analysis of data added by The Wall Street Journal of Johns Hopkins University.

Ironically, high infections and group hospitalizations across the United States forced New York, formerly an epicenter of the global pandemic, to install a quarantine of travelers visiting from Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina. , Washington, Utah and Texas. . New York is implementing the 14-day quarantine protocol in coordination between Connecticut and New Jersey, states that have also seen cases stabilize in recent weeks.

Lee wrote that one of the fears for investors is that rising infections will force a more comprehensive restoration of stay-at-home orders, which are deemed politically and economically unpleasant after three months of such procedures in much of the world. .

“The last resort is to reestablish shelter at home,” Lee wrote. He said that “the best solution, probably, but also the most unpopular, is to require the use of masks.”

Lee included a list of 10 measures that could be implemented to reduce an increase in disease from the new coronavirus strain:

  1. Improved contact tracking (“vogue” but fails in the US)
  2. Enforce social distance
  3. Isolate the vulnerable (old and comorbid)
  4. Require masks (VERY POPULAR)
  5. Require disinfection measures
  6. Close corrupt establishments
  7. Monitor waste (fecal tests work, see our comment above)
  8. Close state borders
  9. Close international borders
  10. Revert / re-close status (ABSOLUTELY LAST RESOURCE)
  11. Several states, including Washington and California, require the use of facial coatings. “Until a vaccine or cure is developed, this will be one of our best defenses.” Washington Governor Jay Inslee said in a statement.
  12. On Tuesday, in a hearing in Congress, public health expert Dr. Anthony Fauci described the increase in cases as a “disturbing” development and promised to increase the tests, but also expressed hope about progress toward a vaccine.

It is unclear why certain states show outbreaks while others are, although experts say adherence to stricter social distancing protocols and public health policies has not been uniform across state borders.

In Arizona, some health professionals have linked the increase in cases in the Grand Canyon state to lifting orders to stay home too soon. Arizona facilitated its requests a month ago. Governor Doug Ducey has said he is not considering reinstating a shelter measure in place, even as cases increase.

Earlier this week, California hit a new record in the number of COVID-19-related hospitalizations, surpassing the previous peak in late April. Data as of Sunday showed that the state had 3,702 hospitalized, and the increase in infections is attributed there to the erosion of social estrangement, particularly when we entered midsummer.

Fundstrat’s Lee has attributed at least part of the surge in cases to a wave of national protests that erupted in late May and earlier this month after the murder of George Floyd.

Floyd, a handcuffed black man, died on May 25 after Derek Chauvin, a former white Minneapolis officer, was captured on video as he jabbed his knee in the neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds, even when Floyd said no. he could breathe and stopped moving. That action helped spark a wave of civil unrest over inequality in the US. USA And the treatment of African Americans in political custody.

However, the event was also followed by a massive reduction in social distancing measures.

“Each of the protests involved tens of thousands of Americans in close proximity for hours,” Lee wrote.

“What’s been going on in Houston? George Floyd is from the Third Ward in Houston and that neighborhood was the site of the first protests, ”added Lee, referring to the increasing cases in the most populous city in Texas.

Dr. Robert Quigley, senior vice president and regional medical director for International SOS, a travel safety and medical security company, said it is difficult to blame any state for the resurgence of cases.

“Even as an immunologist, I am struggling with some of the characteristics of this new virus and its behavior,” he said, referring to the highly contagious nature of the disease compared to other strains of the so-called coronavirus.

The strain was first identified in Wuhan, China in December and has infected more than nine million people worldwide. The World Health Organization currently estimates that 16% of people with COVID-19 are asymptomatic and can transmit the coronavirus, while other data shows that 40% of coronavirus transmissions are due to carriers showing no symptoms. of the illness. As a result, public health officials have advised people to keep a distance of six feet.

Read: The increase in coronavirus cases in some states is not part of a ‘second wave’

Quigley said it is important for states to impose restrictions and compel citizens to wear masks and adhere to proper disinfection procedures in order to have any hope of limiting the spread of the virus.

“What we do know is that if we comply with social distancing and universal precautions, without limiting ourselves to disinfecting our hands and wearing a mask at all possible times, the probability of transmitting the disease is significantly lower,” he said.

Dr. Jeremy Faust in an interview with CNBC on Wednesday said states and local governments should be more evidence-based in their decision-making about the pathogen. I think the lesson is that they should be “data based and not date based,” he said.

He also advocated measures that fully help reduce the spread of the contagion, including the use of facial covers.

“It helps a little … just because something is not perfect, doesn’t mean it doesn’t help,” he said of health measures to contain the disease.

Regarding the market downturn, Liz Ann Sonders, chief investment strategist at Charles Schwab, told MarketWatch by email that investors may have become too complacent about the epidemic and too optimistic that an economic recovery in the form of a V or fast.

“We probably had a hiatus due to the ‘hopium’ around the stronger economic data recently, but concerns are mounting (justifiably) about the economy’s ability to sustain a V-shaped recovery with rising cases,” he said. “Even if governments don’t shut things down again, it won’t prevent companies from doing so, or consumers from deciding to take refuge in place again,” he said.

Wednesday’s sell-off also comes amid growing concerns about the divergence between bustling tech stocks, which have received a boost from the long-term implications of the viral outbreak and cyclical stocks that are more sensitive to the economic outlook. .

“There is also some legitimate concern about stock valuations and how strong the recovery has been in recent months,” wrote Brian Price, chief investment manager at the Commonwealth Financial Network.

“The massive amount of monetary and fiscal stimulus that has been injected into the global economy was the main catalyst behind the market’s advance, but there appears to be ambiguity about the additional support. The reluctance to extend or offer additional stimuli could introduce a risk factor into the market that may not be fully appreciated at this time, “he said, referring to calls for more fiscal stimulus to help mitigate damage to companies during this public health crisis.