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Treasurer Forecasts 9.25% Jobless December Quarter

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has offered “harsh numbers” for a “harsh reality”, with local unemployment forecast to peak in the December quarter at 9.25% amidst the COVID19 pandemic.

“The coronavirus has had a significant impact on the budget bottom line,” said Mr Frydenberg.

Unemployment is projected to slip back to 8.75% in 2020/21.

The country’s budget deficit is forecast to balloon to a high last seen in around World War II, following a surge in government assistance to support individuals and businesses.

The 2020-21 budget deficit is expected notch $184.5 billion for the twelve months to 30 June 2021 – lower than the $230 billion figure predicted by NAB.

“The economic outlook remains very uncertain,” said Mr Frydenberg.

“These deficits reveal the real cost to the budget of protecting lives and livelihoods from the coronavirus.”

Net debt is forecast to hit A$677.1 billion in 2020/21, with GDP forecast to contract 2.5% in the period.

The news comes as Victoria continues to grapple with a resurgence in coronavirus conditions, notably impacting the state and national economy.

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