|"(...) Mortality and economic contraction during the 1918-1920 Great Influenza Epidemic provide plausible upper
bounds for outcomes under the coronavirus (COVID-19). Data for 43 countries imply flu-related deaths in 1918-
1920 of 39 million, 2.0 percent of world population, implying 150 million deaths when applied to current
population. Regressions with annual information on flu deaths 1918-1920 and war deaths during WWI imply flu-
generated economic declines for GDP and consumption in the typical country of 6 and 8 percent, respectively.
There is also some evidence that higher flu death rates decreased realized real returns on stocks and, especially,
on short-term government bills. (...)" |