BOOM as at 16th August 2020


BOOM has compared the excess death numbers in Europe from Covid 19 this year to the excess death numbers that occurred in the Influenza epidemic of 2017/2018.  Here are the facts of the comparison —

Influenza  — 178,575 Excess Deaths in the European Population (Winter 2017/2018)


Covid 19  — 177,545 Excess Deaths in Europe 2020 (Late Feb – Mid May)

The only conclusion that can be reached is that the European winter Influenza epidemic of 2017/18 caused approximately the same number of excess deaths as has occurred in the spike of excess deaths in Europe this year attributed to Covid 19.

That is a shocking comparison. So why has Covid 19 been given so much media attention and governmental reaction?  Why have our economies been savaged? Who has been advising our politicians?

Is this an epidemic of fear rather than an extraordinary epidemic?

EuroMOMO is a European mortality monitoring organization. It aims to detect and measure excess deaths related to seasonal influenza, other pandemics and other public health threats. It has collected many years of data and its website has excellent graphs showing death patterns over time. They show winter Influenza epidemics occurring every year causing spikes in death numbers (excess deaths).

Official national mortality statistics are provided weekly from the 24 European countries (including the UK)  in the EuroMOMO collaborative network. It is supported by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO), and hosted by Statens Serum Institut, Denmark.   Link:

The World Health Organization defines ‘excess mortality’ as:

“Mortality above what would be expected based on the non-crisis mortality rate in the population of interest. Excess mortality is thus mortality that is attributable to the crisis conditions. It can be expressed as a rate (the difference between observed and non-crisis mortality rates), or as a total number of excess deaths.”

To calculate ‘excess mortality’ in a given period they look at the number of people who died over that period, and compare it to the number they would have expected to have died. In other words, it is calculated as:

Excess Deaths = Observed Number of Deaths – (Minus) Expected Number of Deaths under Normal Conditions

In today’s analysis, BOOM used a slightly different methodology to calculate Excess Deaths numbers above an average of 50,000 Deaths per week from all causes. Why? Because 50,000 deaths per week seems to be a baseline in those nations throughout any year and using a static number allows us to compare different epidemics more easily.

Excess Deaths = Observed Number of Deaths – (Minus) 50,000 Deaths per week under Normal Conditions

The total death numbers are readily available on a weekly basis and the graphs at EuroMOMO show that there is normally a rough baseline of 50,000 deaths per week from all causes in those nations. Fluctuations above that figure occur during winter epidemics. It is these epidemics that are of interest in this discussion.

Looking at the EuroMOMO Excess Deaths statistics, so far this year 2020, BOOM has calculated there were 177,545 extra deaths above the baseline of 50,000 deaths per week in the 11 week spike period from week 9 in March to week 20 in May. The cause of most of those extra deaths is presumably Covid-19. 

Now — let’s make a comparison with the winter of 2017/18 when a bad Influenza epidemic hit Europe. All the excess deaths were presumably due to influenza (because Covid 19 was not a factor then). That influenza epidemic occurred from week 45 in 2017 to week 15 in 2018. The number of excess deaths above 50,000 per week during that period calculated by BOOM from the graphs supplied by EuroMOMO was 178,575

The total population of the 24 nations involved in the EuroMOMO dataset is approximately 477 Million. So, this year, just 0.037 % of the population have died from Covid (or with it).  Here are the summarized facts of the matter again from the BOOM analysis —

INFLUENZA  (Winter 2017/2018) — 178,575 Excess Deaths


COVID 19 (Late Feb – Mid May 2020) — 177,545Excess Deaths

Note: BOOM would like to thank the staff at EuroMOMO for their assistance to BOOM in regard to making this analysis.



Britain’s gross domestic product slumped by 21.7 percent year-on-year in the second quarter of 2020, the biggest fall since comparable records began in 1956. Compared to the previous quarter, it contracted by 20.4 percent in the second quarter of 2020. This is an economic disaster in real time. Unemployment numbers will surge to unimaginable levels for a very long time — all due to political foolishness, media fear campaigns and bizarre governmental responses to a virus that is now already ebbing away.

Statistics recently published by the Office for National Statistics in the UK show that influenza caused more deaths than Covid-19 from June 19th to July 31st. 

Over that seven-week period, 6,626 Britons in total were killed by flu or pneumonia – compared to 2,992 deaths attributed to Covid 19.

And the current death rate from influenza and pneumonia is now over 4 times greater than the death rate from Covid 19.



The Coronavirus has broken out spontaneously again in New Zealand after 102 days free of new cases. Four new cases with unknown transmission occurred in Auckland last week. The political response was immediate lock-down. Is that a panic reaction?

Then another four people tested positive, then another nine. Then the total rose to 30, then 56 and the health authorities were apparently perplexed. They have no idea where it came from. Note what BOOM said last week ….. before this happened.

“Viruses cannot be “controlled”, “contained in the near future”, “brought under control” or “eliminated” easily. This is magical thinking. The whole analysis seems underwritten by the assumption that this is a temporary event and that previous economic activity will return as a matter of course, sooner rather than later. False assumptions almost always lead to false conclusions.”


This is an excellent article on Covid 19 by Gail Tverberg — please read it. The title says it all — We Need To Change our Covid 19 Strategy.



The dancing panic also known as the dance epidemic of 1518 was a case of dancing mania that occurred in Strasbourg in Europe. Somewhere between 50 and 400 people took to dancing for days. Some reports indicated that deaths occurred.



Here is a list of Mass Hysteria in history. In view of what has happened with Covid 19, it is worth reading and is strangely fascinating.



Core CPI inflation rose last month in the United States by 0.6% compared to the previous month. Annualized that takes US Core inflation to 1.6%. The bond market dropped in price on this news, anticipating higher long term interest rates. This will steepen the sovereign bond yield curve further which is a positive development for the banking sector. Regional bank shares and large bank shares rose in response. And Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) also responded positively. Hopefully, these are all positive signs for the US economy going forward.

In economics, things work until they don’t. Until next week …………  Make your own conclusions, do your own research.  BOOM does not offer investment advice.

EMAIL: gerry {at}

Return to the BOOM Main Website –  BOOM Finance and Economics at



BANKS CREATE FRESH NEW MONEY OUT OF THIN AIR (but they always need a Borrower to do so)

Watch this short 15 minutes video and learn as Professor Richard Werner brilliantly explains how the banking system and financial sector really work.

How is Most New Money Created ?

LOANS CREATE DEPOSITS — that is how almost all new money is created in the economy (by commercial banks making loans).

From the Bank of England Quarterly Bulletin Q1 2014    —
“Whenever a bank makes a loan, it simultaneously creates a matching deposit in the borrower’s bank account, thereby creating new money.“Most money in the modern economy is in the form of bank deposits, which are created by commercial banks themselves”.

Youtube Video —


Paper:  Money in the Modern Economy  PDF —  CLICK HERE

Quarterly Bulletins Index

Most economists are unaware of this and even ignore the banking & finance sectors in their econometric models.

On 25th April 2017, the central bank of Germany, the Bundesbank, released a statement on this matter —

“In terms of volume, the majority of the money supply is made up of book money, which is created through transactions between banks and domestic customers. Sight deposits are an example of book money: sight deposits are created when a bank settles transactions with a customer, ie it grants a credit, say, or purchases an asset and credits the corresponding amount to the customer’s bank account in return. This means that banks can create book money just by making an accounting entry: according to the Bundesbank’s economists, “this refutes a popular misconception that banks act simply as intermediaries at the time of lending – i.e. that banks can only grant credit using funds placed with them previously as deposits by other customers”. By the same token, excess central bank reserves are not a necessary precondition for a bank to grant credit (and thus create money).”Reference: Reserve Bank of Australia (Australia’s central bank) has also contributed to the issue in a speech by Christopher Kent, the Assistant Governor on September 19th 2018.“…… the vast bulk of broad money consists of bank deposits”“Money can be created …….. when financial intermediaries make loans““In the first instance, the process of money creation requires a willing borrower.”“It’s also worth emphasizing that the process of money creation is not the result of the actions of any single bank – rather, the banking system as a whole acts to create money.”

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MOLS Denmark

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