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The coronavirus outbreak seems to be getting worse instead of getting better and the Asian markets have crashed in response to a 45% surge in confirmed cases.
For a few days now, the general atmosphere about the state of the coronavirus outbreak in China has been somewhat optimistic. This is because it was generally thought that the epidemic was slowly starting to resolve and might soon peak. However, a new development shows that the coronavirus epidemic is a lot worse and markets are tumbling response.
Coronavirus Crashes Markets Again
The number of confirmed coronavirus infections spiked by almost 15,000 as Chinese health authorities began to use a different method to test for infections. The news of the spike caused another plunge in Chinese markets and the rest of Asia by extension.
In mainland China, the Shanghai composite went down to 2,906.07, after falling 0.71%. A similar plunge was seen as the Shenzhen component dropped to 10,864.32, a 0.7% decline. The Shenzhen composite also declined by 0.769% and hit 1,771.61.
The Hang Seng index in Hong Kong also fell by 0.29%.
Furthermore, Japan’s Nikkei 225 closed at 23,827.73 after falling 0.14% with the Topix index falling 0.34% to 1,713.08.
In South Korea, the Kospi also ended the day lower at 2,232.96 after falling 0.24%
Coronavirus Development that Crashed Markets
Chinese authorities recently expanded methods for confirming new coronavirus cases. Before now, authorities only used ribonucleic acid (RNA) test to find the virus. The RNA test is used to identify the virus by specifically inspecting the person’s genetic sequence. The problem with this test is that it sometimes takes a few days to process. Apart from that, in some cases, the tests are not accurate.
Authorities have now started using computerized tomography (CT). These CT scans are a lot faster and can confirm cases through lung infections. After this new method was added, the Hubei province where the coronavirus originated, announced 14,840 new cases. The news seems to dampen earlier optimism that the virus was peaking. In response, markets all over Asia began to tumble.
Coronavirus So Far
This new development might have a bigger impact on the state of markets in China and Asia. This is because it might call into question, current efforts at trying to curb the epidemic. It also shines new light on the potential deadliness of the coronavirus.
So far the total number of confirmed cases in China is now slowly inching towards 60,000. Even the most optimistic reports are not very positive about the chances of a proper solution anytime soon. Outside of the problems China faces, Bloomberg also reports that the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention has also said that it’s coronavirus test kits are faulty.
China’s National Health Commission (NHC) says that there are currently 8,030 critical cases and a total of 1367 fatalities. Adding some respite, it also said that at least 5,911 people have successfully recovered with some of them already discharged. This gives some hope, however little, that China is making some progress.