Equity markets tumble as coronavirus scare mounts; ECB holds, but to check strategy; EU consumer sentiment weak; Aussie part-time jobs rise; UST 10yr yield under 1.72%; oil drops sharply and gold up; NZ$1 = 65.8 USc; TWI-5 = 71.1

Equity markets tumble as coronavirus scare mounts; ECB holds, but to check strategy; EU consumer sentiment weak; Aussie part-time jobs rise; UST 10yr yield under 1.72%; oil drops sharply and gold up; NZ$1 = 65.8 USc; TWI-5 = 71.1

Here's our summary of key economic events overnight that affect New Zealand, with news of rapidly building economic consequences from the latest Chinese health scare.

Yesterday, the China coronavirus threat spooked Asian equity markets further with the Shanghai index down a whopping -2.8%, Hong Kong was down -1.5%, and Tokyo was down -1.0%. That carried on to European markets with most falling by -0.9% in the overnight sessions that have just ended. And Wall Street is realising how dependent it is on a healthy Chinese economy, with the S&P500 currently down -0.3% and falling. Some disappointing earnings aren't helping Wall Street either.

At the epicentre of the virus outbreak, Wuhan, an 11 mln person city is in lockdown and quarantined, public transport is closed, and Spring Festival travel plans of millions are in disarray. The virus has now been identified in five overseas countries; Thailand, Japan, South Korea, the US, and now Singapore.

In New York, there was another very big Fed repo transaction, two in fact, together amounting to US$75 bln overnight. But because of the expiry of earlier actions, the net was a pull-back in liquidity support.

A Chinese company has scooped up a huge stockpile of rare and critical tech minerals, for volumes far greater than the annual mined output of many.

The first ECB monetary policy review of 2020 has kept policy rates on hold, as expected. That means their zero and negative rates continue, and that they will keep on adding €20 bln per month in their QE program. The ECB is to review its mission, with broad scrutiny of their objectives and policy tools. Separately, the BIS says climate change could spark the next financial crisis.

The first survey of consumer sentiment in Europe was expected to show an 'improvement', being not as negative. But in fact, there was no change to the net negative levels at the end of 2019.

And France has revealed that its tech tax strategy has lured the US into the OECD BEPS arrangements, something the US was earlier very wary of.

In Australia, their unemployment rate fell to 5.1% seasonally adjusted, taking pressure off the RBA to cut interest rates when it meets next on February 4. The Aussie dollar rose on the news. (The actual jobless rate rose to 4.9% from 4.8% in November.) Their actual participation rate rose to 66.4% and a record high (at least, since 1978). Full time jobs were unchanged in December from November, but part time jobs rose by +29,000.

The UST 10yr yield is again softer today at just under 1.72% and that is a notable -5 bps fall, large in the world of benchmark bonds. Their 2-10 curve is now down to +23 bps. Their 1-5 curve is up at +9 bps. But their 3m-10yr curve is now under +20 bps. The Aussie Govt 10yr is at 1.09% and down another -2 bps from this time yesterday. The China Govt 10yr is continuing its realignment lower and is down another -4 bps at 3.03%. And the NZ Govt 10 yr is also lower, down -2 bps at 1.51%.

Gold is up +US$7 today at US$1,564/oz.

US oil prices are down sharply again today to now just over US$55/bbl while the Brent benchmark is lower at just under US$62/bbl. Over the past three days, the crude oil price has fallen more than -5% on demand fears.

The Kiwi dollar is a little softer today as the greenback rises and is now just on 65.8 USc. On the cross rates we are unchanged at 96.4 AUc. Against the euro we are marginally firmer at 59.6 euro cents. That leaves our TWI-5 at just on 71.1.

Bitcoin is much lower now after yesterday afternoon's drop, now at US$8,322 and a -3.8% drop. The bitcoin rate is charted in the exchange rate set below.

The easiest place to stay up with event risk today is by following our Economic Calendar here ».

Our exchange rate chart is here.

We welcome your help to improve our coverage of this issue. Any examples or experiences to relate? Any links to other news, data or research to shed more light on this? Any insight or views on what might happen next or what should happen next? Any errors to correct?

We welcome your comments below. If you are not already registered, please register to comment.

Remember we welcome robust, respectful and insightful debate. We don't welcome abusive or defamatory comments and will de-register those repeatedly making such comments. Our current comment policy is here.


Comment Filter

Highlight new comments in the last hr(s).

I hope their immune system is boosted?
"For example, hedgehogs and peacocks and wild rabbits and snakes, deer; crocodiles as well. Many of these wild animals, they're not necessarily caught in the wild - right? - so they can be farmed animals. They're just exotic food that's not very commonly found.
CHANG: And why are wild animals so popular as a delicacy in China?
SI: Eating wild animal is considered a symbol of wealth because they are more rare and expensive. And wild animals is also considered more natural and, thus, nutritious, compared to farmed meat. It's a belief in traditional Chinese medicine that it can boost the immune system, you know? Of course, some people eat wild animals just because they were driven by curiosity.

One would hope they would learn of the dangers of selling live exotic and unusual species in the midst of a fish market... Hygiene standards and appropriate holding conditions would be a start. Though lets not forget this is the same country that skins dogs alive in an annual 'festival', which while authorities distanced themselves from, they refuse to cease it completely. Old habits die hard.

China, playing with bio systems and unintended consequences

The Four Pests Campaign (Chinese: 除四害; pinyin: Chú Sì Hài), was one of the first actions taken in the Great Leap Forward in China from 1958 to 1962. The four pests to be eliminated were rats, flies, mosquitoes, and sparrows. The extermination of sparrows is also known as Smash Sparrows Campaign (Chinese: 打麻雀运动; pinyin: Dǎ Máquè Yùndòng) or Eliminate Sparrows Campaign (Chinese: 消灭麻雀运动; pinyin: Xiāomiè Máquè Yùndòng), which resulted in severe ecological imbalance, being one of the causes of the Great Chinese Famine. In 1960, Mao Zedong ended the campaign against sparrows and redirected the fourth focus to bed bugs.


The more I read about the history of the likes of China, Russia, Germany, and others under dictatorial individuals and communist committees the more I think that they would have been better off being fully colonised by Britain and by now have been given their independence, and been better off over the last couple of centuries.

Maybe X could comment and give us some historical context?

X still hasn't answered my question on his political party's housing policy ....

... meebee he is an imposter , as someone said , a stooge .... Sir Paul Cock-Daley or somesuch ....

He doesn't seem to answer questions which supports the theory it is a bot

Disgusting habits.
Setting the scene for these viruses.

"The first ECB monetary policy review of 2020 has kept policy rates on hold, as expected. That means their zero and negative rates continue" and CNN is reporting that the rich are beginning to pull their cash out of Swiss Banks because they don't like the negative interest rates. and tellingly one of the comments made by an investment officer for a private bank is that they are going out of their way to avoid charging large cash holders. So again the small players will bear the brunt of the costs. A big picture perspective when looking at this is that it is beginning to look like the banks have shot themselves in the foot as the big players are now saying it is cheaper and better to store the money themselves. How long will it take for this run to gather momentum?

I am a little worried that the average Chinese person is going to panic. Im seeing reports of people collapsing on the street although one looks like he's been hit by a brick from the building above him, fear takes hold and everything is lost. We all know that one of our biggest threats is a virus


So do I go to the sale and buy some more cattle, on a falling market, with this virus hanging around ,when cattle are so expensive and it's getting dry?

Fukashima showwd how dangerous panic is - 1,600 die from evacuation stress and none from radiation.

Has anyone died from Climate Change?

Here is some from BIS

It begins with the growing realisation that climate change is a source of financial (and price) instability: it is likely to generate physical risks related to climate damages, and transition risks related to potentially disordered mitigation strategies.

There is still considerable uncertainty on the effects of climate change and on the most urgent priorities. There will be winners and losers from climate change mitigation, exacerbating free rider problems.

We are already see free riders and opportunistic types, pinning their ears back.

Fantastic to see mention of disorderly mitigation strategies, and priorities requirement.

Time for the alarmist activits to stand down. Their job is over. Time for strategic thinkers and competent delivery talent to be mandated.

Three American firefighters killed in plane crash while aiding in Australian fires

Frazz read the link you post.

While a cause has not yet been determined, the Australian Transport Safety Bureau and state police have begun investigating the plane crash.

The plane crashed fighting the large Australian bushfires - what more do you want. The pilot was trying to work out what some of your posts mean and forgot to pull up?

The plane not to have crashed.
The investigation to be complete.

Not crashed? Was it faked?
The three US firefighters who died in the crash of their C-130 waterbombing aircraft in the Snowy Mountains yesterday have been identified as Captain Ian McBeth, First Officer Paul Hudson and Flight Engineer Rick DeMorgan Jr.

I want the plane not to have crashed.
It has crashed, therefore I want the investigation completed, so the cause is recorded.

Im pretty sure the climate didnt bring down the plane...

No Fire - No Plane in the air - no death. I am sure their family and friends won't be blaming pilot error.

Frazz do you use this much?


A factor is considered the root cause of a problem if removing it prevents the problem from recurring. A causal factor, conversely, is one that affects an event's outcome, but is not the root cause. Although removing a causal factor can benefit an outcome, it does not prevent its recurrence with certainty.

How many get killed in all the extreme storms that occur around the world Henry? You could put them down to Climate Change.

Depends if they died from climate change (are we assuming it would be that portion of climate change that is counted as man made, we are right).

You got any numbers?

Try 28 in the Philippines in the storm this last Christmas for a start. About a month ago. You are being disingenuous when you claim Climate Change hasn't killed anyone.

Murray, have you got the reference link? Thanks.

Now at 50 Henry. Try this - here

Not the best weather there.
Can't find the attribution to climate change, or man made climate change in the link.

Typhoon Phanfone, locally called Ursula, was the 21st cyclone this year to hit the storm-prone Philippines.

Many of the storms wipe out harvests, homes and infrastructure, keeping millions of people in perpetual poverty.

So you are saying climate change does not result in storms Henry? What is your rationale? Or is it just the cool aid you're drinking?

I "said" what I wrote and referred to your link.

1. Are you talking all climate change, or only man made climate change.

2. What definition and distinction are you using to define weather and climate change (see 1. above).

3. When you talk climate change are you discussing science or politics (and what are your boundaries between the two).

1. I don't think you can separate the two. As many correctly state the climate has always changed, but the degree to which it is anthropomorphically driven is as yet completely undetermined, although that determination is being refined ever more.
2. I base my definition on something I heard a Climate Scientist state during an interview some years ago "By the time we can state to a certainty, to what degree the changing climate is driven by human activity, it will be too late to do anything about it." Thus i suggest we have to act on the side of caution because the alternative is to bequest our children a planet that will be unlivable.
3. splitting hairs, over discussion points as you are doing is obfuscating and fundamentally a denial tactic that refuses to acknowledge science. An yes i am aware that science is often inexact and the theories are often wrong, but the evidence seems to support the theories and predictions, so doing nothing is like saying God will fix it. Well he won't! As for past civilisations we will kill ourselves, our children and grandchildren off, the planet will regenerate over 10s of thousands of years and a new civilisation will arise with yet another chance to show that we as a species have some modicum of intelligence that is better than the animals we share this planet with.

Murray, I appreciate the answers you have given.

Could I suggest you look at IPCC glossary of terms and stick to those definitions, talk about all the other things you mention but not call by the names of things with clear accepted science definitions.

Having you own definitions for things with accepted science definitions will make it seem like the whole world is against you. It's not.

Tip. People that exclude political concepts from science labels and definitions are usually supporters of science.
Maybe next time you want to call out what you feel is a science denier, maybe they just don't agree with/know of, your political or custom & personal definitions.

So what was the point of your comments and questions Henry? Were they an attempt at a put down, an effort to achieve some sort of intellectual superiority? Many of your comments come out as challenging popular opinions on climate change, which results in you coming across as a climate change denier. Are you? I shouldn't have to check the IPCC glossary to be able to have a reasoned debate. What I do accept is that the summary of facts as presented through the media indicates that the planet is warming. My own experience and recollections strongly support this.

There is no reasoned debate when you ascribe definitions to words and terms that are different to the definitions (science accepted definitions) that others use for those same words and terms.

Example when you see no different between weather and climate change.
Whatever you call climate change means nothing to other people who do use the accepted definitions of weather and climate change and are able to distinguish between weather and climate change.

Rather than reasoned debate you are just a NPC. Others just move on.

Same goes if you can't distinguish between political debate and science debate within the topic.

Are you sure temperature measurements are getting warmer. What temperature measurement data do you use.


Do you know that historical temperature measurements are adjusted by government agencies, prior years seem to be reduced and current years measurements increased.

Climate science people say and may have good science reasons to do this, or they may not.

Remember also temperature measurements, and historical records exist for America, Australia and parts of Europe. Not the rest of the world.

Without looking at the newspaper or mainstream media, what makes you think it is hotter here now than it has been?.

Remember the temperature graphs you often see are not absolute figures, they are derivatives, margins around the average or mean that sort of thing.

On temperature. Many temperature stations in US are now subject to heat island effect.

So at night temperature remains higher because of heat island.
This changes average temperature as the measuring equipment is kept warm by the urban environment it now finds itself in.

Climate science people say they know and they make adjustments, however often they make adjustments to already adjusted figures.

Fukushima. Cant spell it and where is your reasoning for throwing around wild ideas like noone died from radiation. Its like saying there were never any dinosaurs. Sheesh

Maybe 1.
And it sounds like a pre existing condition was helped along.


More people die installing solar panels on houses
More people died installing pink batts in Australia.

Believe what you want Henry. However I prefer to believe there is a very good reason a radiographer disappears behind a lead lined room and apron while they take xrays of you

Are you implying the two are connected.

If you think they are, that's fine. If you did it would demonstrate that reality is subjective. And on this point it doesn't matter if some people see the two connected or some people see no connection.

Thing is, now we see reality is subjective take that concept and apply it to other topics of the day.

Have a great weekend!.

Henry I have no idea what you mean. I worry that it might reflect badly on me but there you have it. You too have a great weekend and be careful in the sun. I wouldnt want you missing out on vital vitamin d, but it is a big radioactive ball of hazardous material. Be careful out there.

Sorry Belle - I have to make spelling mistakes or I will blow my cover and everyone, apart from PDK, will find out I am robot.

It's not so much he believes, but that he has to peddle what he has to peddle.

I'm guessing he's male and not very large.

But the thing that stands out like canine scrota about his kind, is that it is all peddled propaganda. There's a whole machine out there touting for the status-quo (not surprising, the status quo are obvious in the majority at any given time) but there would be no need to tout if it weren't in trouble. Methinks he doth protest and all that

... that's odd ... I envisaged Mr profile looking somewhat alike Jason Momoa .... with a book of advanced astrophysics in one hand , and a bag of gummi bears in the other ....

Must be that I'm a glass half full of craft beer bear ...

An interesting read Belle - about how wildlife is flourishing in Chernobyl and Fukoshima exclusion zones:


There's also quite a bit of evidence that the harm from radiation follows a J-shaped curve, where small doses are actually beneficial and large doses increasingly harmful:


No fighting in the war room!

Doris I was at school when 3 mile island had their accident. I studied it in depth. My friends father was a scientist brought to NZ to look into the possibility of building a plant here. He assured me nothing would ever go wrong with these things. Then 8 years later Chernobyl. Of which I again studied everything I could get my hands on. The program on Chernobyl last year was quite good. Perhaps if you havnt seen it you should take the time. We are fooling with stuff we cannot contain. And we havnt contained. And the mega billions required to keep a lid on Chernobyl is the folly we have brought ourselves by playing with this stuff.

"The Nuclear Navy has logged over 5,400 reactor years of accident-free operations and travelled over 130 million miles on nuclear energy, enough to circle the earth 3,200 times."

Unfortunately its the one accident that matters. Just one. Even more unfortunately there have been more than one. Once again feel free to go and sit in a water bath at Fukushima. They need to do something with them. I wonder why they dont just let it all go into the ocean. Its right there. Oh yeah it will kill everything. Silly me.

There's some suggestion those radium hot pools can be beneficial. But the jury's out, and caution required.
Maybe our use of mobile phones is giving us a good low level dose

The radioactive Taiwanese apartments were beneficial to health. "But a different approach can be derived from the observed health effects of the serendipitous contamination of 1700 apartments in Taiwan with cobalt-60 (T1/2 = 5.3 y). This experience indicates that chronic exposure of the whole body to low-dose-rate radiation, even accumulated to a high annual dose, may be beneficial to human health. Approximately 10,000 people occupied these buildings and received an average radiation dose of 0.4 Sv, unknowingly, during a 9–20 year period. They did not suffer a higher incidence of cancer mortality, as the LNT theory would predict. On the contrary, the incidence of cancer deaths in this population was greatly reduced—to about 3 per cent of the incidence of spontaneous cancer death in the general Taiwan public. In addition, the incidence of congenital malformations was also reduced—to about 7 per cent of the incidence in the general public. These observations appear to be compatible with the radiation hormesis model."

Feel free to go and sit in one of those water baths in Fukushima then

no sign of any rain for the north or the Waikato and given the volume of cattle to still be culled due to the poor timing of the drought and Christmas (bugger climate change.....), it looks like theres one hell of a lot of pain still to come.
We are dropping 50kgDM/ha/day (average pasture cover) and now hit 1600kg - this reminds me of the 1970's drought we used to see - the cricket plague will be happening next!!

Andrewj - buy more cattle AND a dairy farm while you are making good business decisions.
In a reference to the book Catch22 we may be about to see our government making a profit by buying eggs for 5c and selling them for 4c
Openly talking about buying BNZ back for $12b after letting it be sold years ago for how much $1.5b?.

With Bill Birch and Ruth Richardson, two hard-line privateers, holding powerful Cabinet positions it was inevitable the BNZ would be sold when the first offer appeared. National Australia Bank (NAB) spotted the opportunity and in mid-1992 made a cheeky offer at 80c a share.
The Crown and Fay Richwhite, who had been given a favourable deal in the Adbro restructuring, rushed to accept NAB's offer, which was worth $1.4 billion compared with the BNZ's estimated current value of about $7 billion.

Probably unsavoury and troublesome aspects in the BNZ management just had to be kept buried. Politically that is of course. WP made his stand, there was a cover up of the highest order he claimed, but to no avail. Conversely AirNZ was bailed out and retained in similar circumstances some years later. You would not be alone in thinking that that rationale should have applied to the BNZ too.

I will try again. First comment disappeared. No Aj you dont. You sit tight. Remember SARS. People retired to their homes in fear. Stopped eating out and our meat schedules tumbled. This has legs.
The weather. Its January. We have feb and mar to get through. No rain in sight. And soon we will need a lot of rain to turn this around. This also has legs.
Be patient. However I think I am preaching to the converted.

Spoilsport. Shared misery is misery reduced. I have a couple units of prime, been waiting to go since mid December. Eating valuable feed while dropping in value $25 a head a week, $150 and counting. How to make a small fortune, take a large fortune and go farming ..

Ah yes. I have lambs that by the end of the week will start shrinking if they havnt already. As the schedule plummets. Dont we all wish we had killed everything in november and could now pillage the store market. Dreams are free Wilco.

A bit off topic but you have a beautiful user name


.. as she's a farmer , you could call her the " Belle of the bull " ...

Thats harsh Gummy

... meant purely as a little play on the old refrain , " the Belle of the Ball " ..... best Gummy wishes to you ♡

Fielding was hot, got blown out, two tooth's were a hard sell yesterday down as low as 150$.good lambs made 130$ +

You will probably look back on that as a godsend Aj. Yvil I had the bestest heading dog called Belle. She got sick n died at only 2 years old. An infection around the outside of her lungs. Burying her hurt like hell. Oh and she was so pretty...

Oh dear, climate change referenced above.

Denier nonsense to follow.

Given the BIS, and every other financial institution couldn't predict the GFC, they should stay right out of deliberating about the weather.

" the Green Swan " .... OMG ... I fell asleep during the abstract ... and there's 115 more pages of this verbiage . ... it droned on & on & on .... I thought it was the new Labour Party 2020 election plan .... zzzzzzzzzzzzz .....

Did you predict the GFC then?

Yes, when I saw the CDO market seizure.

I am sure you starred in the "big short"...didn't think much of your drumming skills.

if the virus arrives in the next planeload of students then we arent ready for it,here in whangarei the hospital is overloaded now.took somebody to the emergency dept on tuesday afternoon that you would expect to be a quieter period.and there was a 4 hour plus waiting time and they were urging some to go to white cross where it was only two hours.

Coronavirus : Dr Lance O'Sullivan : worldwide response to this virus has been over the top , bordering on hysterical ....

Exactly. How many die from flu each year? A lot

Otago University has estimated that on average 500 NZrs die of flu viruses each year .... most vulnerable are the 65-79 age group .... men twice as vulnerable as women ... Maori 3.6 times more vulnerable than caucasians , Islanders 2.4 times ....

... if you're an over 65 years Maori man .... getcha flu jab next winter !

( to put it in perspective , our road toll last year was 353 killed )

The flu takes out the elderly and otherwise compromised individuals every year, A lot of deaths from the flu were those that we about to expire shortly anyway.

If this new virus is infectious and takes out otherwise healthy people it may be a serious problem. Sit back and watch, it may turn out to be another SARS and relatively insignificant, or it could be the modern black death. I wouldn't go jumping the gun and saying its harmless till we see exactly how potent it is, and frankly I wouldn't trust data coming out of China as far as I can kick it.

Good comment, hard not to agree. When we lived in the States there was a condition dubbed walking pneumonia. Symptoms were a hard cough, wheezy and headache, but you could still function and go to work alright. Yes appreciate contagious and all that. We knew several doctors and one thing expressed by them was, that up until the 1960/70’s the elderly were more or less expected to catch the flu, develop pneumonia alongside and pass on reasonably peacefully. Development of high powered effective antibiotics has interrupted that process undoubtedly.

The virus - not good but it will pass. Far from the apocalypse. A hiccup

I saw one newspaper warning its readers that this virus was not treatable with antibiotics, a very dire situation indeed.

No ship, Sherlock.

Rick no virus is treatable with antibiotics. But if one gets a bacterial infection of pneumonia along side a virus which happens a lot with flu and colds, that is treatable with antibiotics. Edited to say I think you were being facetious. Sorry

... some people reckon that antibiotics can make the flu symptoms worse , not better ... certainly , doctors who prescribe antibiotics where they're of no benefit are contributing towards the rise of superbugs ...

I'm a denier .... anti antibiotics !

Yeah, I was trying to point out the absurdity of the newspaper's account :) Maybe not as well as I could have.

I think we read so fast we miss some of the finer detail at first ;-)

GFC = Global Flu Crises ... or .. Gigantic Flu Con ...?

Yes Gummy just as man-made climate change is a hoax so is this virus alert...sigh..back to your craft beer or cool-aid juice

... the OTT hysteria is a hoax .... climate change itself is very real ... the coronavirus is very real ... the OTT headlines and share market drops are a hysterical response ....

Don't Panic !

Central banks join forces to market their plans to the public for competing head-on against banks, issuing a new form of digital money, similar to our current bank money, but issued by the central bank.

When will senior commercial bankers finally get it? Link


Its " Muscle Car Madness " weekend in Rangiora ... all the petrol head blokes will descend on the show grounds with their big grunty thumping beasts ... and their cars too ... there'll be tyre burn outs .... acres of chrome and wicked paint jobs ...

.... Gummy's gonna test the waters by wearing my Greta Thunberg " You've stolen my childhood " tee shirt ... should get a few larfs . .

When I worked for Stanchart in the UK and Central Africa , we were always told by the execs that the markets need direction , dont like surprises , prefer regulatory consistency and dont like being spooked

Now our stock markets were adrift this year so far , no real direction and low growth prospects .............now there is something to give them direction ............Coronavirus .

I would not bank on it having any real long term effect on the world economy , basically it will be much the same as 2019 .

There will be acres of column space in the media media and spin in the press , but its not the plague , and the damage, if any , will be contained

It's always such an amusing read, to skim thru the comments and see the Identity Politics playing out.

As Kevin Williamson notes, real discourse is a conversation between individuals. Anti-discourse consists of a pattern of attempts to lower the status of the other party.

Evidence-based research, right 'ere on Interest!

Except though we all have the decided advantage of masking our identity behind pseudonyms. That this allows some mischief is quite apparent, some it is suspected even have double identities which facilitates double talk and enhances such activity and as well the ability to tick ones own comments, probably. I mean in reality, would any decent town ever have appointed The Lone Ranger as sheriff?

They wouldn't have taught you this in today's history lesson:

1918 influenza pandemic
New Zealand’s worst disease disaster to date is the influenza pandemic of November 1918, which killed more than 50 million people worldwide, and 9,000 in New Zealand. No other recorded influenza pandemic has been so deadly – and nobody knows why it was so lethal.

It occurred in the wake of the First World War, when the movement of large numbers of troops by sea and rail greatly facilitated the spread of infection. Troops returning to New Zealand brought the virus from Europe. It reached epidemic proportions from late October, peaked in late November and was over by early December. Many people believed that the killer virus was brought to New Zealand by the passenger ship Niagara, which docked in Auckland on 12 October 1918 full of influenza sufferers. Prime Minister William Massey and Finance Minister Sir Joseph Ward were on board. Critics later argued that they arranged for the ship to be quarantined, but this was not the case, and the Niagara was later conclusively ruled out as the source of infection.

Perils of being the breadwinner
It has been suggested that the reason far more men than women died during the 1918 influenza pandemic is that men were typically the family breadwinners, so had to go out to work instead of staying home when sick to recover. Dairy farmers were at greater risk of collapsing or relapsing than other more sedentary professions, because they had to milk cows twice every day.

Symptoms exhibited by sufferers included chills, fever, runny nose, sore throat, coughs, headache and muscular pain. The real killer in 1918 was pneumonia – a secondary infection. The skin of some people who caught pneumonia darkened because of burst blood vessels. If the whole body became virtually black this often meant death was imminent. Later in life, sufferer Grace Stewart described her experience: ‘I was in bed for six weeks. My fingers and fingernails went black. My tongue was covered with some sort of fungus half an inch thick … The pain in the whole of my body was terrible.’1

Unlike in other countries, where male and female deaths were about equal, New Zealand death rates for males were double those for females in the worst-affected age groups. The official Māori death rate of 42.3 per 1,000 people was more than seven times that of the Pākehā population. It is an underestimate, given the incompleteness of Māori death registrations. The highest regional death rates were in Southland, King Country, Wellington and Auckland. Auckland city had the largest death toll at 1,128 (7.6 per 1,000). Nationwide, there were 135 children bereaved of both parents, while 6,415 children lost one parent.

"Those who ignore the lessons of history are doomed to repeat them." (my quote)
My message to this Government is do something now: Jacinda, you've had 2 years of photo opportunities now's the time to act!

Not much confidence in that happening Streetwise. Our pollies are so terrified of our trading status they are paralized.

Bit ironic that the only Chinese who are safe(from coronavirus) are Muslims in concentration camps.

This shows how fragile this connected world can be.

Hmm... so the world economy is just the stock markets?

What was holding the world economy hostage before the Chinese virus came along?

Did someone eat a black swan?

... the stockmarkets get all the glamour and notoriety ... but , the bond market is far far bigger .... watch it , to predict the future ...