Earlier this month, billionaire investor Bill Ackman awoke from a nightmare about the coronavirus and took to Twitter to recommend a shutdown of the country before calling CNBC. This according to an article in Forbes.
“Hell is coming. Shut it down now,” he told CNBC in what the article described as a “frenzied 28-minute interview” in which Ackman advised the president to close the country for 30 days and shut the borders to stop the spread of the coronavirus. “There is a tsunami coming,” he said, warning that if dramatic measures were not taken, the country would experience a prolonged pandemic that would threaten many industries ranging from hotels, to restaurants, to real estate.
“What’s scaring the American people and corporate America now is the gradual roll-out,” Ackman argued in the interview, speaking of containment and distancing measures. “Capitalism does not work in an 18-month shutdown, capitalism can work in a 30-day shutdown.”
Ackman contended that the contagiousness of the coronavirus posed a serious threat and that millions would die without drastic measures being taken. He compared his proposed 30-day shut down to an extended Spring Break: “The president is not saying storm the beaches of Normandy. He’s saying go home, spend a month with your family.”
When Ackman went on the air with CNBC, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down over 1,000 points. The article notes, “It hit a circuit breaker as he spouted dark doom and gloom, then closed for 15 minutes. When it reopened, it was down 2,000-plus.”