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April 03, 2020

Global Economy: Infecting growth

  • The rapid spread of the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) outside China has impacted economic activity severely, with travel restrictions and lockdowns taking effect
  • In most economies, the spread of the virus and depressed sentiments have fuelled uncertainty in financial markets. Central banks have responded with rate cuts and other monetary stimulus measures to stabilize volatile financial markets. In a few, fiscal stimulus too has been deployed

It is the last thing the sputtering global economy requires – a pandemic, which is stifling demand and supply, throttling economies, severing supply chains, and wreaking havoc on markets. With the rising number of Covid-19 cases worldwide, major agencies have revised downward their forecasts for economic growth for 2020. S&P Global has forecast a global recession for this year.


Central banks around the world have called for a coordinated response to the pandemic. The United States (US) Federal Reserve, Bank of England, People's Bank of China and Bank of Japan have already cut rates. Other central banks are expected to follow suit, as per media reports. Similarly, fiscal stimulus packages are in the offing, with the United Kingdom (UK) and Japan announcing tax breaks and credit incentives for businesses.