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Global economic crisis felt in Pakistan: Daily

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Islamabad: The international impact of the stock market collapse was felt in Pakistan, said a daily here on Tuesday.

us-Stock1An editorial “Black August” in the News International said that following the panic in the international stock markets created by a slowdown of the Chinese economy, the Karachi Stock Exchange (KSE-100) plummeted by 1,300 points near the close of trading on Monday, down around 4 percent on a single day.

Analysts have blamed the panicking small investors and the exit of foreign investors from the market. Some suggest foreign investors made profits by selling Pakistani stocks as they suffered serious losses in other emerging markets.

The daily said that market capitalization fell by Rs.300 billion.

“In addition to the Chinese slowdown, the international downturn is also being attributed to the fall in international commodity prices, uncertainty over when US Federal Reserve might raise interest rates and the Greek economic collapse.”

The editorial said that the crisis started when the Chinese government decided to devalue the yuan by around 2 percent two weeks ago which sparked concerns over low growth in Chinese exports. Experts have now predicted that the devaluation of the Chinese currency is likely to flood the market with cash.

“The biggest impact was felt by Chinese stock markets where the Chinese Shanghai Composite index came down by 8.5 percent on Monday. This is the biggest one-day slump in China since 2007.”

“…The impact of what is being called ‘Black Monday’ is being felt across the globe with KSE-100 being a small part of the global collapse… While some observers are calling it a ‘correction’ in the global markets, Monday has shown an underlying instability in the global financial system,” said the daily.

The editorial went on to say that the three key nodes of the global economy are in a steady crisis. “Europe, the US and China are all facing serious problems.”

“There are no immediate remedies available in the stock market as the international impact of the collapse will be felt in Pakistan.”

It added that the month of August has wiped at least $5 trillion off the global economy.

“Is this a full-blown economic crisis?,” the daily asked and added: “It is too early to say.”

“But it does say something about the volatility of the global economy that a decrease in the value of the Chinese currency has set off questions about the entire economic recovery story that has been painted since the last global economic crisis in 2007,” it said.

(IANS)

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Reported Deaths from New Coronavirus Probably an Underestimation: WHO

WHO Expects Coronavirus Cases, Deaths to Escalate

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China Outbreak coronavirus
People wear masks to protect themselves from coronavirus on a street in Hong Kong. VOA

By Lisa Schlein

The World Health Organization says the number of reported cases and deaths from the new coronavirus is probably an underestimation. The latest reports put the number of confirmed cases at 830, including 26 deaths.

Most of the infections and all of the deaths have occurred in China. A small number of coronavirus cases have been reported in seven other countries, including the United States. All have been mild, and all of those patients have recovered.

World Health Organization spokesman Tarik Jasarevic says it is too early to draw conclusions about the severity of the coronavirus.

“Because at the beginning of any outbreak, you would focus more on the severe cases and you will have more of those and then maybe we are missing some mild cases because people will just be a little bit sick and will not be ever tested and they will recover,” Jasarevic said. “We may see more mild cases as surveillance intensifies. So, the issue is not really so much on numbers that we know that will go up.”

CHINA-HEALTH-VIRUS
People travelling for the Lunar New Year wear protective masks as they head to the departure area at the Beijing Capital International Airport in Beijing. VOA

Michael Ryan, the executive director of the WHO’s health emergencies program, says there is no particular treatment for this new pneumonia-like coronavirus.

“There have been a number of compounds that have been used in the fight against coronavirus, but it is very important to recognize that there is no recognized effective therapeutic against coronaviruses,” he said. “However, there are potential clinical trials that can be done with agents and that is what we are focused on right now — identifying other therapeutic agents and opportunities to test new drugs.”

Also Read- High-Protein Diets May Increase Heart Attack Risk: Study

On Thursday, a WHO expert committee decided not to declare the coronavirus a public health emergency of international concern. WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus noted the virus was an emergency in China, but had not yet become a global health emergency.

He did, however, add the WHO was ready to reconvene another emergency meeting to review the decision if the evolution of the epidemic warranted a re-examination. (VOA)