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Virus Panic Tipped To Hit Economy

SYDNEY: Accounting outfit KPMG has tipped the coronavirus to result in an 0.9 percent hit to the Australian economy in 2020, with about 36 million workdays likely to be lost.

It suggests Australia’s economy could take almost a decade to recover, even after being cushioned by the Federal Government’s $17.6 billion stimulus package.

KPMG reckons businesses will be unable to operate at capacity, because of disease, and will continue to pull back orders.  And it warns that the potential for a fully-blown global economic crisis, while not imminent, “is now very real”.

Chief economist Brendan Rynne told the ABC’s AM program that business and consumer confidence is being rocked by shoppers stockpiling toilet paper and hand sanitiser, something fuelled by social media.

“There does need to be calm,” he said. “History tells us that pandemics are not unique but ultimately they pass.”

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