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PM Concedes Omicron Will Slow Economic Recovery

As each day brings a new national record for COVID-19 virus cases, leading to mass worker shortages and stunted spending, the Prime Minister has conceded that the expected market rebound might not happen as quickly as anticipated.

“That will be the case for a while yet while omicron works its way through and moves to its peak, and that means it’s very tough for business,” Morrison said yesterday.

“We have two choices. We can push through, or you can lock down. The best possible medical advice is to push through.”

Morrison did indicate, however, that “more than $200 billion” of extra household savings will help the economy “surge back quite quickly” once the worst of this wave is over.

Until then, things are looking dire.

Goldman Sachs has forecast that between 24 and 76 million hours of work could be lost in January, due to isolation and positive cases.

“Our base case is around 38 million hours of work are lost in the month, equivalent to around 2 per cent of total hours worked across the entire economy,” Goldman’s Australia chief economist Andrew Boak said.


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