Sunday, July 19, 2020

Rubenstein Says Get Used to Deaths, Go Back to Work

Yahoo Finance reported:

The tradeoff between reopening the country and exacerbating the coronavirus outbreak is “the big problem we have right now in the economy,” says David Rubenstein, a billionaire investor who co-founded the private equity giant Carlyle Group.

Rubenstein predicted that everyday Americans will grow accustomed to heightened levels of sickness and death from the disease as the economy continues to reopen.

“It's going to have a lot of health consequences that we're going to live with and just accept as normal,” he says. “I think people are going to go back to work and tolerate 1,000 people dying a day.

In 1987, he co-founded a $5 million firm called Carlyle Group that now manages more than $200 billion in assets and runs offices on six continents.
The Carlyle Group recently invested in several companies tackling different aspects of the coronavirus outbreak.

“You have two ships passing in the night,” Rubenstein says. “While there's a desire to reopen, we also see the consequences of reopening.”

“I suspect we're just going to be tolerating more deaths than we normally would,” he says.
Carlyle stands to profit from the pandemic's proliferation.  Carlyle affiliates can help test for COVID antibodies (Ortho Clinical), assist with blood plasma collection (MAK Systems), produce antibody drug conjugate (Piramal Pharma Solutions), ensure the maximum hospital bill for COVID-19 patients (TrustHCS), make Ivermectin treatment (SeQuent Scientific) and make federal coronavirus purchasing something other than a carnival show (Unison).

Another ship on the sea is America's healthcare system.  Rubenstein's back to work solution means more people mixing, more opportunity for the highly transmissible COVID-19 virus to propagate.  More interaction, more cases.  More cases, more profits for Carlyle from its COVID-19 stable.

He did say more government funds for businesses will be coming, as well as layoffs.  How might Rubenstein's philanthropy help widespread suffering from unemployment or income inequality, which he said is worse than it has ever been?  Andy Serwer asled the question.  Rubenstein said nonprofits would need to change their business models, via consolidations and fewer offerings.  The billionaire did not say he would put his vast resources to solving the plight of people/blight from our economic implosion.

We know he doesn't want to pay more in taxes.  Rubenstein's track record is clear in that regard.

Update 7-21-20:  Serwer failed to ask the most basic question:  How does Carlyle plan to profit from COVID-19?  Carlyle co-CEO Glenn Youngkin plans to step down in September.  The news piece stated:  "Across the private equity industry, asset managers are trying to assure investors that their portfolios are not only well-positioned to ride through the economic carnage inflicted by Covid-19, but that they can capitalize on opportunities that might arise during the turmoil.

Update 8-11-20:   Republicans in Congress agree with Mr. Rubenstein that people should go back to work.