Coronavirus’ public health impact is no joke to mess around with, but the anticipated economic threat is dramatically higher than the more obvious issue. For most of us, the biggest direct impact the novel COVID-19 may ever bring is by preventing us from doing the most basic adult activities like reporting to work, which can force our companies to identify us as an irrelevant asset, or worse, bankrupting the business entirely.
The financial markets have just been wiped out of trillions of dollars, and sad to say, this seems to be just the beginning.
As of this writing, the global death toll from COVID-19 is at 55,820 and more than 6,600 of those deaths came here from the US. But aside from those devastating numbers, it is bound to economically paralyze millions, primarily because the pandemic has created continuous stock market crashes, oil wars between Russia and the middle east, and another actual war in Syria that is looking to be another giant crisis.
In this illustration provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in January 2020 shows the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV). This virus was identified as the cause of an outbreak of respiratory illness first detected in Wuhan, China. (CDC via AP, File)
This moment could be when the strings that keep the global market together get undone and small entrepreneurs, startups, and growing businesses would be the ones taking the biggest blow.
While hunting the vaccine formula for fighting COVID-19 is crucial for everyone’s health, it is also very important, if not more important, to find the vaccine that our economy can use against the market pandemic. Suffering may come via illness and death, but it can also be felt when one’s not able to pay the bills or keep their home.
Smaller shops are particularly struggling as bigger suppliers’ stocks start to dry up, they are left without products to sell or materials to operate. Nationwide facility closures in China, the original epicenter of the virus, have driven a record low in the country’s manufacturing output. Now, because China is the world’s biggest exporter, them being responsible for a third of global manufacturing, China’s manufacturing problem is the world’s problem, despite the trade war amidst the White House and Beijing.
All of this adds up to the fear that governments all around the globe are seeing this as a mere health crisis, not an economic one. It is about time for economists to be given just as much attention as doctors, to prevent the real pandemic from spreading.
It is not hard to assume that Italy, the world’s ninth-largest economy, will face a massive recession as soon as their COVID-19 lockdown is over. It is also very easy to believe that it will directly impact its biggest trading partner, the United States of America. With two of the biggest players in the market, it is absurd to believe that this will not contribute to a global economic meltdown without immediate responses from the government.
China may have received most of the blow regarding the COVID-19 outbreak’s economic and social price, but they are most likely to see the silver lining with the US’s weakening economy.