Weekly Economic Report
Was the Master of Media Manipulation behind the odd timing of the GDP data release on Wednesday? As the world waited for the 8:30 EST announcement of just how deeply the US economy had contracted in the first quarter, the report was delayed – and at that very moment upbeat news was released by Gilead about its drug Remdesivir. The company told us that their studies showed a five-day regimen was as effective as a ten-day dose – doubling the available supply – and that even better news would soon be released about the National Institute of Health’s survey – one month earlier than expected. The stock market exploded higher, and the fact that the economy shrank at a much greater than expected -4.8% annual rate was quickly in the rear-view mirror. Soon after, none other than Dr. Fauci announced -- from the Oval Office with the President and Dr. Birx nodding approval from behind -- that the NIH’s gold standard randomized double blind placebo study showed Remdesivir shortened time in hospital from 15 days to 11, and was suggestive of a 30% lower fatality rate. The President tried to inject upbeat news on vaccines, but the good doctor stuck to his script. The announcement of unexpected optimistic news, when caution abounded about GDP, resulted in a classic short squeeze as pessimist were forced to cover. Over the next two days, President Trump returned to China bashing and the market retreated, ending about 1% lower than pre-report Wednesday.