by Rick Ackerman
Friday’s nasty stock-market reversal was the most interesting we’ve seen in a long while. The ostensible cause of the selloff was mounting anxiety over the spread of the deadly coronavirus from China to the U.S. and elsewhere. Three cases have been reported so far in the U.S. and 2,000 worldwide, and although no one seems to expect a major outbreak in North America, it’s not hard to imagine a mere handful of new cases hobbling, for starters, the airline industry and an import/export sector that was expected to revive because of the recent trade deal. The spread of the disease in China may already have derailed the country’s tepid economic recovery, with a corresponding impact on energy markets that took a beating last week.