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Economics & Markets

What’s on the cards for Australia now that we have a second wave?

By Dr Shane Oliver
Head of Investment Strategy and Economics and Chief Economist, AMP Sydney, Australia

The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) had its August board meeting on Tuesday 4th, and though there were no real surprises, I think we can expect more out of the central bank in the coming months.

In its meeting, the RBA made mention of the situation unfolding in Victoria, which is sadly seeing COVID-19 infect more people in the state now than it did back at the pandemic’s initial outbreak in March and April. I think this is what will trigger further response from the central bank.

Source: covid19data.com.au
Source: covid19data.com.au

The stage four lockdown which has ensued in Victoria will dent Australia’s recovery, and the central bank has previously said it will do everything in in its power to support the economy through this period. As a result, I think we can expect more broad-based quantitative easing from the RBA.

The central bank has said it doesn’t want negative interest rates, though there is a possibility it could cut rates to 0.1%. It’s questionable whether this would really have much impact, but it remains a possibility. The RBA has also said it doesn’t want to directly finance government spending, or intervene in the foreign exchange market.

In addition to this, there will be more pressure on the federal government for stimulus, as growth takes more of a hit than forecast in the current quarter from the situation in Victoria. As such, we can expect more support measures from Canberra in the months ahead.

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While every care has been taken in the preparation of these articles, AMP Capital Investors Limited (ABN 59 001 777 591, AFSL 232497) makes no representation or warranty as to the accuracy or completeness of any statement in them including, without limitation, any forecasts. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance. Performance goals are merely goals. There is no guarantee that the strategy will achieve that level of performance. The information in this document contains statements that are the author’s beliefs and/or opinions. Any beliefs and/or opinions shared are as at the date shown and are subject to change without notice. These articles have been prepared for the purpose of providing general information, without taking account of any particular investor’s objectives, financial situation or needs. They should not be construed as investment advice or investment recommendations. An investor should, before making any investment decisions, consider the appropriateness of the information in this document, and seek professional advice, having regard to the investor’s objectives, financial situation and needs.

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