Coronavirus: when do we reach the bottom of the dip?

Just look at the statistics published by the federal government for the “Reinvermögen (Aktiven abzüglich Passiven, vor Berücksichtigung der Sozialabzüge)”.

About 25% of people have a declared taxable net worth of zero (or less).

About a third of people have 50k or less.

Statistically, half of that cue was either in debt or had saved only a couple thousand francs.

And if you saved >500k you already belong to the richest 10% of the country. To me, this is very impressive. How little people have, in a country as rich as this. And how little they seem to care.

Two weeks?! Damn.

My best wishes for a speedy recovery!


There is a strong difference with the French-speaking part again (now that the virus is in full fury here). I was just passing by in Fribourg yesterday and the streets were mostly empty.

I am thinking that once the situation gets better in the French-speaking part, it will start to hit the German-speaking part, and we will play a big ping-pong game with measures…

1 Like

I just read a report that in Bern there has been an influx of french-speaking customers in bars and restaurants.
This seems like quite a bad unintended consequence of shutting down restaurants in just one region/canton of Switzerland.


That’s a good point. And many people from Geneva are going to Vaud for shopping since they closed most shops in Geneva. And I know people that are now planning vacations in German-speaking part because hotels and restaurants are still open.

This is quite dumb and will definitely not help in the long-term.


Basel is shutting down bars and restaurants for 3 weeks from tomorrow on too.


The design, the quality, the brand appeal … they probably like it?!

Just as you like Porsche frames for your glasses or 200CHF-a-night hotel rooms (I’ve slept for much less in clean well-kept rooms in places such as central London or Toronto). Which brings us to… with the current COVID situation, many people likely have deferred or canceled their holidays abroad - so they have excess money to spend domestically on some luxury item they might have always wanted.


These are not products for the rich. They are for the poor who want to feel rich.


Those statistics use the tax value of assets. In my case, this is only ~2/3 of the market value in total.

That’s not how statistics work. You can’t say automatically that expensive shopgoers are like the average society.

It’s quite different to buy glasses for 300 chf or a book a hotel for 100 (200 shared between 2 people) and to buy an LV bag for 5000 chf.

I feel it’s like that, too. That’s why it feels funny to look at 20 people standing outside in line, like it used to be in communist Poland, only here they want to check out some 1000 chf shoes or sweater…

Unless I have further data on luxury shoppers (which I don’t) then I will of course make a simplifying assumption and treat them as average society. That’s exactly how statistics work.

You having a bad day? :wink:

Not really, I just don’t get your point. I basically asked: “I wonder what kind of people go to these shops” and you said “just look at the overall population statistics”. I think it’s a pretty weak assumption to believe that luxury shopgoers are a perfectly random sample of the whole society.

Anyway, I don’t see a problem for someone to splurge on luxury if he can afford it. I only start to scratch my head when you have to wait 30 minutes in cold outside the shop just to get in. It’s not like they need this expensive piece of apparel right now :wink:

And yet this should be the starting point of the investigation, that you could do using Bayes theorem.
Here is the hypothesis to test (let’s call it H) is “Is the kind of person waiting in line in front of Louis Vuitton more likely to be a rich person?”.
For the sake of the argument, let’s say that being rich is having a net worth of more than 1 million.
Without knowing anything about the person, the Vermögen tables tell you that the probability that a given person is rich is 15.43%, which translates into odds of 0.18.

Now you have an evidence (let’s call it E), i.e “I have seen this person wating in front of Louis Vuitton”. What does this evidence tells you? How can you update the odds?

  • Well, let’s say that if the person is poor, she has a 10% chance of going to Louis Vuitton (she has to save the money after all, which does not happen that often)
  • if this person is rich, there is a 30% chance that she will go to LV. (She can afford it, but maybe she thinks that she has better use for her money).

Then using Bayes theorem, the updated odds are:
New odds = Old odds * (30%/10%) = 0.54 , which means a probability of only 35%.
That means that the LV-goer is still likely to not be a rich person.

If you do not like formulas and are more of a visual person, this video from Julia Galef is fantastic and explains the concept much better than me:


The sad thing is that it only refers to Basel-Stadt and that Baselland has not followed… wtf :exploding_head:

Yeah not the first time they are not synced… (but then, not all the other cantons are either)
When friends went to IKEA in Pratteln couple of weeks back, seeing no one wearing a mask made them turn around instantly. :grin:

As others have said - there might be “gourmet migration” happening these days between cantons.

For sure - experienced it myself too.

Hopefully BL will follow shortly, otherwise considering the size of BS (vs. BL) it really makes little sense…

I wonder why the numbers are falling that fast without a lockdown.

Didn’t the Romandie part have measures pretty close to what france has? (Shops, bars and restaurants closed).

As far as I know, shops closed are only in Geneva, mandatory closure of bars and restaurants and very limited gatherings are wildly spread. So are mask mandates.

We’re basically trying to avoid superspreading events while keeping a functioning society as best as we can. I’m looking forward to us identifying better what measures have the most impact and which ones only have a marginal one.

Numbers should fall rapidly if R-value falls significantly below 1.

It seems that you don’t need to do that much for the R-value to fall from, let’s say, 1.4 to 0.8. But doing so makes all the difference.

I have seen the following changes that could cause such a drop:

  • Strong return to Homeoffice. Less interactions at work and commuting.
  • People actually wear masks. I’ve even peeked into living rooms where people wore masks while socialising.
  • People are again more hesitant to meet at all or to meet in larger groups.
  • Many people seem to meet outside, despite the cold (e.g. the woods in Bern are full of grilling families, as if it were summer).
  • Superspreader events should have been greatly reduced through the closing of clubs, concerts and other large events.
1 Like

No more yodel concerts in romandie, that must be it.