Aims: The volatility of financial markets may cause substantial emotional and physical stress among investors. We hypothesize that this may have adverse effects on cardiovascular health. The Chinese stock markets were extremely volatile between 2006 and 2008. We, therefore, examined the relationship between daily change of the Shanghai Stock Exchange (SSE) Composite Index (referred as the Index) and coronary heart disease (CHD) deaths from 1 January 2006 to 31 December 2008 in Shanghai, the financial capital of China.
Methods and results: Daily death and stock performance data were collected from the Shanghai Center for Disease Control and Prevention and SSE, respectively. Data were analysed with over-dispersed generalized linear Poisson models, controlling for long-term and seasonal trends of CHD mortality, day of the week, Index closing value, weather conditions, and air pollution levels. We observed a U-shaped relationship between the Index change and CHD deaths: both rising and falling of the Index were associated with more deaths and the fewest deaths coincided with little or no change of the index. We also examined the absolute daily change of the Index in relation to CHD deaths: in a 1-day lag model, each 100-point change of the Index corresponded to 5.17% (95% confidence interval: 1.71, 8.63%) increase in CHD deaths. Further analysis showed that the association was stronger for out-of-hospital CHD death than for in-hospital death.
Conclusion: We found that CHD deaths fluctuated with daily stock changes in Shanghai, suggesting that stock volatility may adversely affect cardiovascular health.