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The grim reality. But an opportunity today

We start with projections:

40-70% of the U.S. population will get it. Soon we’ll be seeing 1,000 deaths a week. This is the biggest pandemic since the flu epidemic of 1918, which killed an estimated 50 million people — about one-fifth of the world’s population at that time caught it.

If you get this one, there’s no cure.

If you get really sick, you will need a hospital.

You won’t find one. Hence, you’ll suffer (and maybe recover) at home.

If you’re old and got health problems, you’ll die.

Italian doctors are already deciding whom they’ll save and whom they won’t.

American doctors will soon be making the same decisions, because we in America lack everything from hospital beds to ventilators (to keep you breathing).

Hence your only personal strategy is extreme caution. Obsessive hand washing. No face touching. Crowd avoidance. Self-isolation, Declare a personal family emergency.

Your future is in your hands. Your family’s future in your hands. You’d better be super aggressive.

Today the stock market is on a tear. You need to sell stocks you own which are still overpriced.

Next week stocks will decline.

Everyone and their uncle is forecasting a recession in 2020. Economists project negative second and third quarters. I bet the fourth quarter will also be negative.

We have a double economic whammy — the virus and oil-price War. Thank our great ally Saudi Arabia for the present oil war.

Check out any city today: You’ll find few pedestrians, little shopping. Who wants a new coat this month when you might die next month?.

You will find oodles of panic buying. Rice. Pasta. Beans. Water. Cleaning supplies And, of course, toilet paper. New disaster definition: No toilet paper. Did I tell you what we did for toilet paper in Indonesia in 1967. Fortunately we still had newspapers. Hard to wipe your tushy online!

Don’t forget. Sell stock today. God (or whoever) has given us a nice (though temporary) uptick.

I’m on my way out of New York for — at least — the next two weeks.  Ironically, the New York subway has been cleaned, disinfected and shined. Friends tell me it’s never looked so clean, or so empty.

See you Monday, or sooner. — Harry Newton

  • TomFromVa

    Yes, there undoubtedly will be more cases, and more deaths – maybe as many as we get from the flu every year – 61,000 in the 2018 flu season. Not only that, it will come back next winter.

    So yes, the US economy will suffer – but not as much as China and most other countries – and all that money has to go somewhere. So panic all you like – sell everything. I will be buying.

  • Angry_Dfns_Eng

    Harry, can you comment on the President’s Press Conference today?

  • Omer Acikel

    Harry,I have been reading your blog a while now, why are you panicking? You sounded worse than Hannity when he was mocking the reaction to COVID-19 early Feb. Comparison this to past epidemics won’t make a difference now since we don’t know a lot about it. This will pass. Unfortunately,some politics here, we have an incompetent liar person as president and things will hit us harder because of that. As for markets, these are wild swings: no matter what you do, you will feel fool. I am long term and buying when I see a company at a discount. I have not sold anything. Having said that, I don’t think the worse is over.

    • harrynewton

      What companies at a discount have you bought?

      • Omer Acikel

        Just today bought LADR @ $10.7, love dividends and slow growth in real estate. Bought Tesla @ $610 but that still kept going down (I own Nissan leaf i.e. poor man’s Tesla and believe in EV and rest of tech comes with it but don’t like Mr. Musk). Also bought QTEC (NASDQ index) @ $93. QTEC also has dropped more since but when set my price it came down from its peak around $108. When we talk about index funds we mostly refer S&P500 index funds. Most time periods I looked, NASDQ has done better.

  • gerryb

    Buying puts on the XLF 05/15/20 $20 strike puts–I think Harry is right. Bidding to buy the
    GDXJ 1/15/2021 $30 strike calls at a $3 limit–massive amounts of “helicopter money” is on the way.

  • gerryb

    It’s a good idea to be careful for a while; avoiding crowds, washing hands and not touching your face is easy enough. Stay safe and stick around along time for those beautiful grandchildren Harry.

  • Mike Nash

    Are you calling for selling all stocks we own or just the ones that are overpriced? Your sentence above is unclear. In the past when you’ve called for selling stocks it proved to be a great buying opportunity.

    • harrynewton

      I hope you’re right.

  • Anonymous

    Harry, Get your head straight. I’m really not sure what news you are watching but it’s putting you in a panic. Yesterday you said we will suffer worse than the great depression….Today the markets are rebounding. I’m sorry but you are wrong on this one. Thousands in the US are not going to die weekly. Sure, we may all get it but it will run it’s course, we get better and life continues on. Stop spreading panic!

    • harrynewton

      i hope you’re right.

      • John

        Do the opposite of of what Harry says and you will be a rich man👍

        • harrynewton

          It sounds like a strategy. I will try it.

    • Angry_Dfns_Eng

      IF everyone gets it eventually which they will, and the fatality rate is as expected, a million could die in next year. that would be thousands per week. we have 350 million people. that is a small fraction. But I doubt Harry is wrong.