Most independent analysts were cautious about predicting the likely economic impact of the Sars outbreak. Salomon Smith Barney said China could lose 0.3 per cent GDP growth in 2003, from 7.6 per cent to 7.3 per cent. The US investment bank also warned that the outbreak might prompt foreign investors to 'start to consider diversification of investments sooner than we originally expected'. Even for a country as big as China, went on the report, some investors may realise that it is 'not wise to put all your eggs in one basket'.
BNP Paribas Peregrine said it was holding to its GDP growth forecast of 7.4 per cent, but any spread of the disease could cut that by up to 1 percentage point. The Standard & Poor's rating agency said China's economy could lose 0.5 per cent growth.