While growing fears over the spread of a new type of coronavirus in Asia led to a fall in stock markets, data from the SARS virus in 2003 suggests that any detrimental economic impact from a potential epidemic is likely to be short-lived.
The Shanghai Composite index closed down 1.4% on Jan. 21 following confirmation from China that the virus could spread from person to person. The Hang Seng in Hong Kong dropped by 2.8%, while the South Korean KOSPI and Tokyo's Nikkei also declined before regaining some ground Jan. 22.
While the coronavirus contagion is still at an early stage, history suggests that such events rarely have long-lasting and widespread effects on the economy, according to a report by Capital Economics, whose analysts drew comparisons to the 2003 SARS epidemic that infected more than 8,000 people and was responsible for the deaths of about 700.
STORY: Economic impact of coronavirus likely to be small, SARS data suggests
CDC reports 1st US case of Chinese virus; NIH working with Moderna on vaccine
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed the first U.S. case of a novel coronavirus rapidly spreading through China, infecting about 300 people and killing at least six. The U.S. government is working on a vaccine.
WHO: New coronavirus not yet a global emergency but may become one later
A new coronavirus has infected about 830 people, mostly in China, killing at least 25. WHO officials said they expect more deaths to be reported before the virus is contained.
Healthcare companies are reporting 2019 fourth-quarter earnings. The S&P Global Market Intelligence Healthcare news team takes a look at companies' performance and expectations for the full year.
J&J looks to continuing M&A, portfolio strength to offset dip in Q4'19
"We'll be looking across all three of our segments, but we would expect there to be an ongoing cadence of M&A activity in those different areas," Johnson & Johnson CEO Alex Gorsky said on the pharmaceutical giant's Jan. 22 earnings call.
Abbott's medical devices business fuels Q4'19 organic sales growth
Abbott Laboratories ended 2019 with year-over-year organic sales growth of 8.5% in the fourth quarter, fueled once again by its medical devices and strong performance for the MitraClip product in the structural heart segment.
Biopharma expects solid core Q4'19 earnings despite pricing, competition shadows
Biopharma companies began reporting fourth-quarter and full-year earnings this week. Cowen analyst Steve Scala said in a Jan. 17 note that the industry's core would likely remain strong in 2020 but might not achieve the market status of years past.
In other news
Obesity drugs with fewer side effects; how edible soybean oil affects the brain
A study in mice honed in two neuron circuits that can curb appetite without accompanying nausea; consuming soybean oil can lead to neurological changes; and a combo therapy proves better than a single drug to treat an acute type of blood cancer.
Certain neurons can curb appetite without a feeling of nausea, a study in mice showed.
China's push for innovative drugs gets patent boost under trade deal with US
It remains to be seen how the new patent rules are implemented, one legal expert said. Implementation will be complex, as it involves different government departments and amendments to existing regulations, he added.
AstraZeneca invests $1B to eliminate emissions by 2025, be carbon-negative by 2030
The U.K. pharmaceutical company, which is set to move into its new headquarters later this year, will use renewable energy for power and heat and switch its fleet to electric cars.
GSK secures US FDA priority review for key pipeline blood cancer therapy
GlaxoSmithKline PLC said its lead experimental treatment for multiple myeloma has been granted a priority review by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, increasing the likelihood that it will be the first therapy of its kind on the market.
Supreme Court declines to decide fate of Obama health law before 2020 election
The U.S. Supreme Court denied Democrats' request to fast-track a review of a Republican lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act, meaning the fate of the law is unlikely to be known until after the 2020 elections.
Essential Healthcare is a weekly collection of critical developments across the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, healthcare provider, healthcare technology and medical equipment industries that draws on exclusive analysis and value-added content from the Healthcare News team at S&P Global Market Intelligence. Subscribe now to get Essential Healthcare delivered to your inbox every week.