It is with grim fascination that I have been following the unfolding Covid-19 pandemic and its impact on the stockmarket. Fortunately I sold a significant portion of my investment portfolio at the end of February . Unfortunately , I did not sell the majority. What is in store for the period ahead? When will we reach the bottom?

The FT regularly updates it's graphic at https://www.ft.com/coronavirus-latest showing how the virus is spreading. This has shown a Chinese problem, spreading in a limited way to Asia, then to Italy and Iran, and then onwards throughout Europe and to the USA. I have also been following the Government briefings and was interested to hear Jenny Harries' explanation as to how the response is being framed based on the Imperial College report (https://www.imperial.ac.uk/media/imperial-college/medicine/sph/ide/gida-fellowships/Imperial-College-COVID19-NPI-modelling-16-03-2020.pdf). What I took away was the image of a sine wave in between two tramlines and the thinking that as the lockdown took effect with a lag, the pressure on the NHS would ease and so we would be able to relax the lockdown. It seemed that we could expect several cycles of this lockdown but this was not entirely clear. This led me to read an excellent FT Alphaville article by Jemina Kelly (https://ftalphaville.ft.com/20... -this is behind the paywall) and then the Imperial College report.


Weekend comments by Michael Gove and Jenny Harries point to longer timescales than the current three week lockdown. Michael Gove telling Sky that the lockdown may become more stringent and Dr Harries that it could be six months before UK life returns to normal.

The Imperial College report shows is the following graphic on page 12 which interestingly has a timeline attached (something that the Government answers during the briefing sessions have repeated ducked until this weekend):

This appears to indicate the statistical modelling of a rolling series of lockdowns of various lengths and shows that the current three week lockdown which began last week will run to the beginning of July when it will be eased (by relaxing social distancing of the under 70s and reopenning schools and universities) and then reimposed for two months, is eased again, .................. This continues until a vaccine is found.

Certain other actions are being taken by the Government and others which we might expect to change the analysis:

  1. have we added more ventilated hospital beds? The Nightingale Hospital programme seems to be…

Unlock this Article with a 14 day free trial

or Unlock with your email

Already have an account?
Login here