Governments have been pumping cash into the system in an attempt to save the crashing economy. The Federal Reserve has pumped over $1 trillion, marking new levels of money printing.
If you are a resident of planet Earth, then your life has surely been impacted one way or another by the novel coronavirus. On a larger scale, however, the global economy has been the most touched by this health crisis. Here are the two indicators to look out for as we approach life after COVID-19.
The way money is handled, distributed and spent will forever change. Thousands of businesses in the U.S. have closed until further notice, disturbing the lives of over 100 million people and making never-before-seen unemployment rates. Late March, Donald Trump signed a $2 trillion emergency relief package to try to limit the economic damage caused by the pandemic. It is the largest rescue deal in U.S. history. Governments have been pumping cash into the system in an attempt to save the crashing economy. The Federal Reserve has pumped over $1 trillion, marking new levels of money printing. Along with cutting the benchmark interest rate to 0% and ensuring commercial banks continue giving loans. Eurozone countries have been doing the same thing in an attempt to delay the crash. On top of these monetary policies, the way people spend money is also bound to change. In fear of cash transferring the virus, use of money bills halves in Britain and stores around the world stopped accepting cash payments. This takes us to the next indicator to look for:
Naturally, with every crisis, trust is put into test. This happened in Venezuela when people used more Bitcoin than fiat money (cash). And so, a digital dollar is no longer a distant dream. Meanwhile, France is already moving with plans for a digital Euro. The Bitcoin is seen by its advocates as the digital version of gold. Meaning, a safe store of value, that withholds economic turbulences and can be trusted in times of trouble. However, others would argue that the bitcoin might not be the “safe haven” everyone expects it to be. The reason for this is that on March 12th, the Bitcoin dramatically plummeted from 8,000$ to 5,000$ equal to a 40% crash in the span of less than two days. The truth is, no one can predict whether people will lean towards a cryptocurrency or not. Times have never been more uncertain.
The overall cost on the global economy:
Aside from the tragic human consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, “the economic uncertainty it has sparked will likely cost the global economy $1 trillion in 2020”, the UN’s trade and development agency, UNCTAD, said.
Several countries will almost certainly go into recession, according to Richard Kozul-Wright, Director, Division on Globalization and Development Strategies. He indicated that the German economy is especially fragile, but the Italian economy and other parts of the continent are also facing serious concerns right now. Parts of the Southern American continent are also vulnerable when facing the crisis, Argentina in particular, according to Kozul-Wright.
To sum up, many questions are being asked, and no one hold the real answer to the near or far future. A perfect quote that sums up the time we are living today, was said by the Marxist revolutionary, Lenin a century ago:
“There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen.”
We are living in those weeks.