America stumbles; China trade surprises; Aussie confidence plunges; IMF paints a grim picture for next few years, UST 10yr yield at 0.74%; oil dumped but gold jumps; NZ$1 = 60.9 USc; TWI-5 = 66.7

America stumbles; China trade surprises; Aussie confidence plunges; IMF paints a grim picture for next few years, UST 10yr yield at 0.74%; oil dumped but gold jumps; NZ$1 = 60.9 USc; TWI-5 = 66.7

Here's our summary of key economic events overnight that affect New Zealand, with news the IMF is painting a bleak global economic outlook.

But first, already 4% of American home owners aren't making their mortgage payments, a proportion that is sure to grow fast. It was only 0.25% in early March. And a Trump appointee is blocking aid to home owners who are in trouble. We are looking at a banking crash as the Administration steers this sector into a wall.

Customs data in China for March has come in with some surprises, mostly positive. Exports fell -6.6% but that was much less than expected and a much smaller fall than in January and February. And imports also fell less than expected, down just -0.9%. In fact, imports from New Zealand surged in March compared with the prior two months. This data may be encouraging, but with China's export customers not buying, their overall situation will probably worsen from here.

Still, China's infrastructure stimulus spending is ramping up fast. A record number of excavators were sold nationwide in March, far outpacing the growth in previous stimulus periods. The momentum seems strong as shovel ready projects roll out fast. And iron ore prices have turned higher again.

Meanwhile, Australian business confidence has plunged to its lowest level ever, even worse than the 2008 GFC and their early 1990s recession, as Australia braces for a recession of "unprecedented speed and magnitude". New orders have collapsed. That's according to the March update of the NAB business confidence survey. Imagine what their April survey will show.

Meanwhile, Australia’s Treasury forecasts unemployment will almost double in the June quarter to 10% and would’ve gone to 15% if not for fiscal stimulus measures they have adopted.

Worldwide, the latest compilation of Covid-19 data is here. The global tally is now 1,970,200 and up +73,000 this time yesterday which is a slower rising tide. Now, 30% of all cases globally are in the US and they are up +16,000 since Saturday to 584,100. This is a slower rate of increase. The level of US cases that have recovered is unchanged at 7.5%. The number of UK cases is about to go through 100,000, putting them in league with the US, Spain, Italy, France and Germany. Germany is unique however with a very low death rate. Australia has now over 6500 cases, 4300 active, and the rise in infection is slowing quite quickly now, and deaths have stabilised at 61. Australia's recovery rate is now 34%.

Global deaths now exceed 125,000. The WHO is saying the pandemic has not yet peaked.

There are now 1366 Covid-19 cases identified in New Zealand, with another +17 new cases yesterday and lower than the +19 increase the day before. That is the lowest daily increase in more than three weeks, since March 22. The number of clusters is up to 15. Five people have died here now. There are now 15 people in hospital with the disease today, with three in ICU. Far more people recovered today (82) than were infected and our recovery rate is now up to 46% and rising fast.

Eight of the 10 safest places to ride out the coronavirus pandemic are in the Asia-Pacific region, according to new research released overnight. New Zealand is now ranked the sixth safest place, but that is a fall from third one week ago. Topping this list is Israel and Germany. Australia is now ranked ahead of us.

Equities are rising on the basis that the virus spread may be slowing. The S&P500 is up +3% so far today.

But the IMF is saying the economic effects of closed borders will linger much longer than investors expect, and the world will suffer a steep recession with the global economy falling -3% in 2020 with the only region managing any growth in 2020 to be "emerging and developing Asia" with India (+1.9%) and China (+1.0%) the key players. They see a massive -7.2% contraction in New Zealand this year, and worse than for the USA (-5.9%), Australia (-6.7%) and Japan (-5.2%). Essentially the IMF is saying New Zealand will be one of the worst hit nations economically even if we escape most of the direct virus impacts. They see 9.2% unemployment here this year and still 6.8% jobless next year. But the economic bounceback will come with economic growth of +5.9% in 2021 over 2020 - but still leaving us in the hole, lower by -1.3% going into 2022. It is going to be a long slog.

The UST 10yr yield is holding at just on 0.74%. Their 2-10 curve is little-changed today at +52 bps. Their 1-5 curve is slightly more positive at +19 bps, and their 3m-10yr curve is marginally steeper at +58 bps. The Aussie Govt 10yr yield is now at 0.94% and down -3 bps overnight. The China Govt 10yr is at 2.56% and unchanged overnight. The NZ Govt 10 yr yield is also virtually unchanged at 0.97%.

Gold is up strongly again today, up another US$19 to US$1,737/oz.

US oil prices are a lot softer today at just over US$20.50/bbl, a drop of -US$2.50. The Brent benchmark has dropped hard as well to at just under US$29.50/bbl. The OPEC/Russia output cut hasn't had any impact at all. There still is no demand.

The Kiwi dollar will open today marginally softer at 60.9 USc. On the cross rates we are much lower at 94.7 AUc and a drop of more than -¾c, while against the euro we are down almost -½c at 55.5 euro cents. That means the TWI-5 will start today at 66.7.

Bitcoin is now at US$6.927 and +2.3% up from this time yesterday. The bitcoin rate is charted in the exchange rate set below.

The easiest place to stay up with event risk today is by following our Economic Calendar here ».

Our exchange rate chart is here.

We welcome your help to improve our coverage of this issue. Any examples or experiences to relate? Any links to other news, data or research to shed more light on this? Any insight or views on what might happen next or what should happen next? Any errors to correct?

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Those safest places to ride out the pandemic interested me, wondering how Australia could be ahead of us. It's not just about not catching or limiting the spread of COVID19, it's about the impacts on the economy. so Aussie may have more infections and deaths, proportionately, but their economy shouldn't be hurt as bad. Not sure whether this analysis is sound. The pandemic certainly takes the covers off some clearly short sighted and foolish economic decisions that have been made in the last 40 or so years.

As to safe places, I think overall the safest would be some atoll in the middle of the pacific with NO traffic coming through it for a while. You'd have to be fairly self-sufficient and resilient, but better than cabin fever in the middle of a big city.

90% of people have lost the skills to be resliant and self provide now days. They would not survive any extended duration even with food on an island.
If we get elimination we become one of the safest places on the globe and we prosper from that.

They lost those skills through the push towards specialisation. It is one of the first things we should alter; teaching own-food-production and self-sufficiency. It just makes us more robust, capacitive, resilient.

That's what a lot of people had immediately post WW2 PDK. they all would have had some experience through the depression. It was also, I suspect, one of the reasons why residential sections in those days were size at 1/4 acre. Gave them room to have good sized gardens, run chickens, maybe have a goat and/or sheep. Self sufficiency epitomised!

The good old days, polio, TB, undeclared pandemics, world wars, genocide, oh, and the quarter acre pavlova paradise, with its hidden homophobia and domestic violence. Plus ça Change, Plus C'est La Même Chose.
I am lucky, though. Got an acre, solar, my own water. Can work from home without going crazy. Couldn’t imagine living in an apartment at the moment.

A good dose of this would put a few 'boomer haters' in their place. Poor little 'what about me' diddums.

Sorry no
the boomers took this solid grounding …. then pillaged every corner of the globe for their own consumption and went on a debt leverage binge to keep the party rolling... passive income streams anyone?
So no ... no good pointing the finger at the young

They and their parents lived through a hell of a lot. With an increased population came increased supply and demand that pushed everything higher. Somehow it was the 'biomers' problem that they landed in thos position.
How would have the younger generation have handled it? The want it now generation would have done a hell of a lot worse.
The up shot of all this is the younger ones are going to learn that the system dose not revolve around them and they can earn their done it hard stripes. Please keep the noise down, the boomers sucked it up quietly.

the ONLY thing the boomers sucked up was all the easy resources …
They then indebted the next generation to keep their passive income streams rolling …

Boomers are not self centered like the young ones of today. This is going to rip the young a new set of morrales. From my last few spins with this kind of event it sucks. Have fun, I will be buying and dealing with older generation.

"Boomers are not self centered like the young ones of today"

This simply doesn't compute with the track record …

think … debt buildup / leverage (ie pass the IOU) / lack of maintenance of infrastructure / planning / cushy pension schemes & refusal to put age up / no capital gains / multiple house ownership / pollution / consumption / travel / boomers versus their own parents re historical living standards and drawdown on natural capital … etc etc

The young are definitely soft & pampered and are in for a hell of a shock that a pixelated world is worthless … but there was no future paved for them anyway

Lucky you are. With population growth at record highs in NZ due to mass-immigration (while likely to dip for a year or two) your lucky situation is becoming less and less of an option for most. Enjoy it while it lasts.

Friends had grandson round over Xmas. Had mate with him, both in late 20s. Asked to stay for dinner, given bowl, get fork & dig up potatoes. Other lad incredulous, didn’t know spuds came like that. Knew all about difference one smart phone or Impreza to the other though. Go figure.

All fair comments about the good old days. Now these good new days - what about them? Clearly far more opportunities especially for women and the internet gives even the least of us access to all the worlds knowledge and both my wife and I are alive after illnesses that would most likely have killed us 30 years ago. But youth suicide, booming mental health issues, when surveyed women are much unhappier than 50 years ago, increasing drug addiction, etc. - something is not right with modern life and it is getting worse - maybe turning down the pace will do us good.

When I was flatting in Dn in order to avoid having to mow the lawn we got a sheep from an Uncles farm and put that on our back lawn. Haha. A month later, all the grass had long gone, sheep given back again. Greedy little sod.....

Sheep given back? Would've kept the sheep for costs of grazing it. Spit party.

How do we prosper when tourists (which represent over 6% of GDP) won't be able to get in? I'd say "prosper, relatively speaking".

We are small, that means we can move fast. We change and diversify. Just like the when the US dumped us for going Nuke free.

The world will get over this. People still want to see other countries, get winter sun, study overseas. Human aspirations to get the most out of our short time on this planet will likely have been heightened. If you’ve got a few billion spare, start up a no frills airline. Plenty of planes, staff and landing slots available, and aviation fuel is cheap, too.

I would rather have 94% of my GDP minus the tourists we do let in, plus the percentage of tourist serving GDP that used to go offshore with foreign workers . That would probably equate to us getting about 95-96% of pre Coronavirus GDP . If I had to cut my income to 95% of previrus income to get the far fewer tourist benefits, I and a lot of other people would be all for it!

the ONLY way to be unaffected is if you do not rely on / use a bank account

I would say the analysis is sound. The best places to ride out C-19 would consider quality and quality of healthcare. With 2,200 ICU beds in Aussie compared to 176 in NZ, along with better capability generally, one'd be much off in Straya.

3 ICU beds occupied, I think. No wonder Siousxie and her Banshies are having to rack up the volume on justifying the economy wrecking.

Watch the US banking issues cascade out across the world. We will not escape a similar situation and the banks will need to have a plan, but it will depend on where they have got their capital from.

Yep the IMF are already predicting that the global economy will contract by 3% this year as countries around the world shrink at the fastest pace in decades, the International Monetary Fund says. The IMF described the global decline as the worst since the Great Depression of the 1930s.
It said the pandemic had plunged the world into a "crisis like no other".


How convenient that they had Corona Virus to blame rather than their own competence.

Andrew, Have you seen the rate of infection it's scarily rapid, so of course it's going to do huge amounts of damage due to the now almost global lock downs. Check out this BBC article to see how coronvirus has spread. You should really look at the animated info graphic of how confirmed cases of coronavirus have spread (Scroll down the articles page). The most scary part is just how much the US is spinning out of control in comparison to the rest of the world. It's not surprising that Trump is trying to restrict virus testing, he knows it's going to dramatically effect his chances of getting re-elected if those figures continue to sky rocket.
BBC article: Coronavirus pandemic: Tracking the global outbreak


Andrew's still right CJ. The banking oligarchs will be able to blame COVID19 and avoid having to face the admission of their own greed and incompetence on this. thus they will retain their power, influence and privilege. Shame really, because they will just continue doing what they have always done - feather their own nests at everyone else's expense!


I'd use Burgerking as the pinup for how those sobs operate, covid gave them the ultimate escape route having finished hollowing the entity out.

Sure I don't doubt that and we've seen it many times before with the GFC and even recently with Westpac debacles. The thing to remember is it's not just us (NZ) it's global and we really need to get rid of this corona virus so Politicians and the banking oligarchs don't have that excuse any more.

Corona Virus? I thought only interest rates impacted the economy?

Exactly - our Aussie banks extracted capital (~$4.0-$4.5bn ann.) relentlessly back to their parents across the Tasman.

"...the public has been trained to think companies have been crippled by investment losses, when the biggest drain has really come via a relentless program of intentional extractions." - Matt Taibbi Link

The more the Fed's balance sheet expands, that tell us the bigger the "leak" must have been.

The central bank isn't *adding* $ to the system, it's trying to make up for what's already leaked out.

The more it does, the bigger the leak must've been. Link

Convenient indeed! Those Central Bankers must have thought all their Christmas’s had arrived once they realised that the coronavirus could be blamed for the economic disaster they had been trying to fight off and deny last year.....

You may well see McDonald's shares plummet after this outrageous behavior. BBC article: China McDonald's apologises for Guangzhou ban on black people. "McDonald's in China has apologised after a branch in the industrial city of Guangzhou barred black people from entering."


but it's not considered outrageous in China, our major trading partner.

Yes and that shameful on China's part. Apparently only last week, "Hundreds of Africans in Guangzhou were evicted from hotels and apartments after online rumours that coronavirus was spreading among African people, community leaders told the BBC".

perhaps we should stop selling them our food products until they agree to change?

Lol, wouldn't make any difference. They have a proven history of mobilizing their NZ/AUS based citizens to buy up large and send home.

Put lipstick on the pig and call it your wife as you fly back there hand-in-hoof?....

They just lock 'em up in the US.

The racial and ethnic makeup of U.S. prisons continues to look substantially different from the demographics of the country as a whole. In 2017, blacks represented 12% of the U.S. adult population but 33% of the sentenced prison population. Link

Careful Audaxes - "Māori make up only 14.6 percent of New Zealand's population, but a staggering 51 percent of its prison population."


Yes, appalling that so many accept these stats and wring their hands with complete disregard for any form of back story. The meek have inherited the earth it seems, it is not for them to question what they are told by those who would tell them what their truth should be.

Why is it that one sector of NZ's population is really good at doing what is required to not go to jail, but another sector is really crap at it? Answer that question, and we are halfway to the solution.

Not for long, though.

Ironic after they cried racism when Trump labelled the virus "China Virus" lol. Theyre so arrogant they can't see their own hypocrisy.

Trump has now withdrawn WHO funding until their role in Wuhan etc has been clarified. This is really just one part of the international powers that be coordinating pressure on China and its unsafe health environment. Former foreign ministers, Lord Hague UK, A. Downer Australia in the press with extremely strong statements that if China wants to be on the world stage they cannot export catastrophes like CV19 and expect to be accepted.

About time someone called them out


Watched breakfast this morning. SB was on saying that we need to move to LD3 soon as possible, giving the OZ experience as an example some balance with the other health issues that are going to arise from this, which so far the government has not acknowledged at all.
Then GR gets on, his argument was that the economy was going gang busters before CV19 and there is no reason why we can't bounce back after our LD4. ARE you kidding me...
1. No Tourism GR you're second biggest sector in the economy is no longer for at least 18 months.
2. Rental car companies, Entertainment venues, restaurants,
3. Airline industry crippled...

This one comment from him is very very scary...if this is what he and his adviser's think then we are in big trouble.


If we eleminate we can become the supplier of food and products to the world and recover faster than other countries. may want to have a look at the winter drought about to hit many parts of NZ unless there is some significant rain in the next few weeks..we will be lucky to feed ourselves.


yep it's a shocker, compounded by being unable to offload stock, PKE industry in Malaysia shut down. I am hunkering down for one hell of a winter, nearly a frost last night, snow on the hills.

We used to survive without PKE....? Maybe the climate is changing?

Milk and powder will be of improved taste without that crap.

Its not kind to steel either. It must have some corrosive qualities

Terrible timing for the drought, eh. I struggle to believe Auckland has gone this long without significant rain, given it's usually such a rainy place. Can only image how bad it is for some of the regions.

Forecast looks promising rain wise for next week.

I don't think that we'll have any trouble feeding ourselves with all of the stock that has to be slaughtered because of the drought. Oh and don't forget the rest of the world is not feeling particularly rich at the moment, so no massive prices for our products... the US farmers are dumping milk as we speak.

Reports coming out in the US that meat shortages on the way.

That's infrastructure breakdown,, happening in UK too.

The milk dumping is partly due to lack of trucks (the drivers have Corona virus or are refusing to work) and a lack of capacity to change from bulk food service packaging into smaller retail packs.

A bit like here with the flour situation.


But I thought the road to prosperity was taking out ever greater mortgages?? What is this 'supply of food and products' you speak of?


The case of Australia was the result of wishy-washy leadership and the state-federal system. Exactly what we would have got here from the likes of Soimon.
It was not some stroke of genius.

Given that as you say, our tourism sector is our second biggest, surely it makes sense to aim for elimination. I'm no expert, but I'd say no tourists are going to flood back until they are confident that the country is free from a potentially deadly, highly contagious virus for which no insurance will cover them.

I agree, but we won't let them in as other countries will not fully eliminate this, as we are trying to do. So the piece of the puzzle missing from GR is what/how are they going to substitute this in the meantime. To throw around cash and hope businesses will load themselves up with cheap debt to hang on to staff and keep paying reduced rentals (if landlord will drop his pants). Or are they going to create other jobs in other sectors of the economy until Tourism etc can get back on it;'s feet. So Far the only tool is cheap money and let them borrow and load ourselves up with debt...everything you try and tell your kids not to do in life.

or we come up with a system that they can prove they are recovered covid 19, many countries issue a card or cert to certify they are ok. maybe our customs could link to there database before they get on the plane here
in saying that some countries I would still be very careful with as fraud is part of there daily life

Who knows, maybe a holiday in our own country with a few of the trimmings on the side might become affordable again? For those who still have jobs.

Heres what we would have got from Ximon.
(3mins in) Ximon (my words) "JA must keep everyone working". JA, "No Ximon, I must keep everyone alive "

Every man and his dog knows we need to go to level 3 asap but there is a time and place. I take solace from the history of the Spanish Flu. God knows how many deaths, I have seen 50 million, yet soon after it fizzled out after a year and a half the world was roaring away, industry and property booming, the stock market (that no one on Interest rates I know) up 50%, and the world was rushing into the roaring 20s. That didnt end well but that's another story.

And dont say there was no debt then, WW1 had just ended and most countries were broke.


I think if we lost 50 - 200 million we might roar back to. But with only a few thousand deaths and a crippled global economy we will limp along until the next disease or famine. Brutal statement I know, but we did't solve the population explosion so now we pay the price.

Smalltown. This survey says that you are wrong. Are you perchance in an echo chamber where you aren't exposed to alternative views?

how many people on here took part in that survey?

Ginger - I must have chosen my words incorrectly. We need level 3 asap but I fully agree that 4 had to be extended as long as required. I was actually trying to push back against the increasing crescendo of noise from National, business and the like to go early.
The "time and place" I mentioned is when we go to 3...

With all due respect I think you are in a bit of an echo chamber.
Plenty of credible health experts are challenging the conventional wisdom.
Also, I would like to see that survey design. Of course almost everyone would agree to extend the lockdown if it came at no cost. But it will come at a cost.
Did the survey test that cost (such as the possibility of losing one's job)?
I bet it didn't.

I read at least 5 different news sources from both sides of the political spectrum from several english speaking countries, in addition to news from Russia, China, Middle East and the EU. I am myself not aligned to the left/right political narrative, which I reject. I go to science research for science information and learned to read medical journals at university... what suggestions do you have for me to lessen my echo chamber?

Several posts on this website in the last 2 days have quoted credible experts / specialists from Germany, the USA and NZ as questioning the conventional wisdom.
I am not necessarily saying you are 'wrong'. I am saying your contentions are debatable.

Hmmm...Who introduced those leading questions, and why? One important thing here: we, and by we I mean the people who work and create wealth, need to be wary of public sector people formulating policy. They don’t have skin in this game, and can impose whatever restrictions they like on us, knowing that when it’s all over, they will still have well paid jobs, homes and pensions. And too, there will be a radical cohort of the public sector who see the economic dislocation courtesy of Covid as a vehicle for societal change. I think, yes it’s my opinion, that elimination is impossible without a vaccine or economic pain that will blight a generation.

Well it's from Radio NZ, that public sector bastion that doesn't have an economically literate bone in it's body.

Yes, probably best to get all out "facts" and "opinions" from the Hoskins, Richardsons and Woodfords...

Back then was a world of relative abundance compared to now. Lots of low hanging fruit.

Huge high pressure oil wells to discover, oceans full of fish (and whales), 1.8 billion population, forests to be ripped down, chemical processes to employ.....etc. And also a biosphere relatively free from our waste products and absorbing our pollution.

After many decades of drawing down on natural capital, we have been in the era of diminishing returns for some time, in denial while running up debt and pretending all is ok.

We will not get out of this as we did in the early 1920s and I think the problems will show up in the financial system where people lack the confidence to take out bets on a marvellous and wonderful future that doesn’t exist.

Most are calling this a short term thing. I'm calling long and hard as bad as the early 1920's or even worse.
It is not contained. An anti virus is a long way off. Supply chains are falling apart. Debt levels are staggeringly high, the global population is to large and venerable, etc.

exactly right
Debt will collapse - which will seize any sort of functioning supply chain

He really worries me. Always has.

Correction: "There are now 1366 Covid-19 cases identified in New Zealand......*Nine* people have died here now." (still excellent reporting though on this Breakfast Briefing page given the early hours in which it is compiled - please keep up the good work DC - appreciated)

Yep and “a long slog” says it all.

We probably wouldnt have had any deaths from COVID19 if JA had closed the borders at the beginning correctly ie everyone in isolation coming in. We could have carried on and there wouldnt be as much concern of NZ's future economically. Its a whole lot of Blah and a case of a woman pushing her own boat but not understanding how to paddle it.

Captain hindsight to the rescue..

Followed closely by captain obvious

Jacinda was busy playing it down and continuing to cuddle everyone. Yes she should have locked down sooner. If there was a decent alternative she would be gone in the next election.

When they came out with their first criteria that the elderly & pre-existing to keep out of harms way why did they not then at that same time order the rest homes containing exactly those sort of people, to go into quarantine. That would have surely helped prevent the clusters and the deaths which we are seeing, the latter being the majority of them.

That was done by some rest homes off their own bat, without waiting for the Gubmint wallahs to make up their minds. We arrived back from TAS on March 10, with a dying mother-in-law in one such. Home (quite rightly) would not hear of us going to visit: we self-isolated till March 31. She died two days before lockdown (her time was up, no WuFlu involved), was cremated with no-one present (the very first such circumstance the funeral director had had to deal with, for which he was very grateful because there have been a lot since) , and the first we will see of what remains of her is when we pick up the ashes and organise a family get-together. Probably this time next year, when she would have been 100.

Condolences WM, not easy by any stretch those circumstances. We have one up north approaching 102 but doesn’t know that or much about anything else for that matter. At peace though, warm, safe hopefully, clean and well fed. Merciful really.

Surely when the Government comes out with that sort of criteria, places like Rest Homes who have their residents welfare at heart automatically go into quarantine.

Afraid not so. We asked those same questions of our subject rest home as to why not and were told because nobody has said we have to. You may recall too an earlier incident in Auckland of a nurse returning from Zimbabwe and going straight to work at a rest home. The excuse, this was before any government notices. Quite honestly this has been mismanagement of the highest order. Rest homes themselves given their very nature, elderly vulnerable residents, should have been alert and proactive, they are meant to be trained health professionals after all, from day one and the Government should have been onto checking that they were exactly that, and hardly as late as yesterday. And now we have clusters and mortality rates in these areas, when you didn’t need to be a rocket scientist to work out they needed priority of thought and action very early on.

You may have some clinical staff to satisfy the regulations, but most are the cheapest form of labour, and we know where that comes from.

Love to see you in her shoes (literally) many big calls as she had to make in the last 4 weeks. Sorry many of us just would not be capable and so easy to tap away here advice in hindsight. How about well done for saving many hundreds of lives?

I called it loud and proud well before time.
Shut down the boarders
Get prepared.

At present, we don't know if she can control it. If not Jacinda must go. She knew how bad it was and failed to act.
Yes well done to catch up because she failed to prepare but her actions of 'I will continue to hug everyone's damaged NZ and cost lives.

She's quite capable of Captain's Calls: remember O&G? This one should have suited the Caring persona very well and gotten her a few extra votes into the bargain. But that harsh mistress - history - won't judge the lack of such a call very kindly...

CCP imported more from us, that's good news, mostly Primary produce? - but they export started to take a hammering. This is still fluid moving situation. Let's see how the F.I.RE economy countries those of most targeted by CCP people movement/capital outflow into RE stands on this crisis. UK, OZ, NZ, US, Canada.

looks like China's rural economy is really in trouble, it's going to be an interesting watch to see if it goes the way of the USSR, or if they really can central plan their way out.

Evidence of it being in trouble? At least a Chinese peasant can feed his/her family; feeding the cities depends on society working and either commands or capitalism to distribute it.

Consumers in Jiangsu, Shanghai and Zhejiang Provinces began panic-buying rice in late March, causing prices to surge. Since then, China's news media have issued articles almost daily to dispel panic
Chinese officials were pondering how to offload inedible rice stockpiles next month to make ethanol and other industrial products.

The soaring food prices referred to by the "Working Together" author are missing from Chinese data--except for record-high meat prices that she fails to mention. Japonica rice prices--the target of the panic-buying in Jiangsu, Shanghai, and Zhejiang--crashed last year and have not recovered. National Bureau of Statistics wholesale averages have rice prices well below prices in 2019 and 2018.

Li said companies are throwing around money as they hoover up scarce piglets to restock farms. Companies will pay 2000-2200 yuan (roughly $300) for a 15-kilogram piglet, Li said. With the high cost of piglets, restarting a mid-sized farm can require a 10-million-yuan investment that is out of reach for family farms.

According to Caijing, many farmers in Henan already are already in debt, can't get credit, and are balking at the high prices for piglets. Meanwhile, big companies like Wens, Muyuan, and Zhengbang are getting infusions of capital from soaring stock prices and government aid. Individual farmers generally can't get bank loans, and persisting disease risks make them cautious about restocking their farms.

WHO like symptoms

23 June 2019, Rome – Qu Dongyu of China was elected Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) today.

Qu Dongyu received a total of 108 votes out of 191 cast, constituting a majority in the first round.

The election took place during the 41st session of the FAO Conference (22-29 June 2019), the highest governing body of the Organization.

Qu Dongyu, who was born in 1963, is currently Vice Minister of Agriculture and Rural Affairs of China.

Read his full CV here (page 15).

Qu Dongyu will be FAO's ninth Director-General since the Organization was founded on October 16, 1945.

The term of the new Director-General, who will succeed Brazil’s José Graziano da Silva, will start on 1 August 2019 and run to 31 July 2023.

The property next to my one in Ak here was going to be subdivided into 3 by its Chinese owner. Its on the market now. (No price listed). Worst time to list a property for sale. They must have had problems with finance, or maybe the numbers don't stack up any more given what the sale prices may be in a years time. Or lack of forecast demand.
There will be huge competition to sell houses over the coming year.

Do you mind sharing the link to the property for sale?

Do you mind sharing the link to the property for sale?


Ex to CCP, Jan was light month and Feb a shocker.

Is this code to some secret agent?

Ex to CCP, good deals in food production businesses coming up soon in NZ. stop. Strategy of spreading disease successful. stop.

Co-operating Beast Avoid Dulication Boot Unnatural

Oh and Trump has really lost it. I really can't see how anyone in their right mind would vote for him now.

BBC article: Coronavirus: Trump berates media at jaw-dropping briefing. "There are more than 23,000 Americans dead because of coronavirus and more than half a million infected - and remember that, in early March, Donald Trump was saying there were a handful of cases, but that would soon be down to zero."

I don't understand how they fail to realise that basically it is only NY that has been hit so far and others will follow with larger infection and death rates. It all seems like a cross your fingers approach.

Yep sadly it's not just NY anymore since it's rapidly spreading. Trump is trying to slow down testing because the number of cases is sky rocketing, and it makes him look bad.
Here's an article from Forbes that shows the spread by each US state. They do point out "There are a number of things to consider when looking at this data including the lack of early testing, the shortage of tests in the US, and the fact that they are trying to catch up to a situation that is changing rapidly." This chart show the spread from Jan 22 - April 4. Forbes:

South Dakota Republican Governor did nothing and now it's biting! Employers charging employees for face masks, and COVID19 running rampant through work places! Great place the US!

Re: IMF predictions. One has to wonder why they really bother. Particularly going to .1 of a decimal point.

There are so many unknown variables to be thrown into any predictive equation at the moment the results are fairly meaningless.

The rent and power are due.. Our "bubbles" must be expanded to include workmates and workplaces. This becomes (another) health and safety issue, get the bosses in to figure out how its going to work with shared spaces and client contact, and lets get back to it.

David Chaston

Because QE and monetary issuance becomes permanent is there any chance you can publish in the Morning Briefing a running tally of the various US programs - QE is well over $6 trillion and growing - Fed Balance Sheet

And can you create a list of stocks the Fed is buying to eliminate the guesswork of investment, ta.

That's the $60,000 question.

We can eliminate the debt at a keystroke and the sun will still rise tomorrow. The question is what the debt represents?

Yesterday a commentator cited the cheapness of oil, currently. What he failed to grasp was the fact that at that price, no future development is possible; there is not one oil-extraction proposal which turns a buck at $20-30 usd a barrel. And few indeed which make it below $80/barrel. And some we are currently using which have true costs higher than that. Governments (USA, Canada) will step in to prop extraction (it is not production, as economists tell us) up with debt, which will mask the fact that society can no longer afford itself.

So the next question is when will the debt-repayment potential be recognised as impossible in any timeframe? And what happens then?

Oil has no value unless it is been consumed
For that you need viable consumers …

The problem is leveraging further to ensure the masses appear viable …. but any idea that we have Capitalism in any sense is long gone

Repo and reverse repo still at record levels at the Fed. Liquidity issues not going away.

The rate of growth has flattened off considerably - graphic evidence here and here.

Flattened off, yes. Still higher than anything seen before last year.

There are many factors contributing to the Fed's balance sheet that are not related to QE created reserves. $1.88 trillion of currency in circulation being one of the bigger ones. This image presents a recent count of reserves associated with Fed QE asset purchases. Other factors can be seen here.


It's a real chuckle this lot, isn't it?!

The real economy, if that's indeed what we had before this mess, is at death door and on life supports, and yet the 'unreal' economy; the paper markets, stock market, asset revaluation markets of any kind, think that the dead economy is going to pay the bills that will come due.
Madness, if you ask me.
But, hey. "We" won't have to pay for it; those of "us" who've cause all the damage - our children will, and our children's children ( if they can afford to have them!)

Like China were ever going to report anything but good news!? LOLOLOLOL

Anybody who anything about the new investment Visa scheme touted in today's Herald ? 2,000 visas for high net worths investing 50mm+.

It's like some muppet wanted to reverse everything good about about the non resident residential property ban.

I think it's brilliant. We need out of the square ideas.
The proposal comes with a lot of conditions.

depends if they invest in business or just landbank

Bring them in by the plane load but make sure there is a minimum term investment condition.

It is almost OK. Just one tweak - not $50m investment which is money that can come and go and would distort whatever market it enters - make it a straight $50m donation to IRD. I'd prefer $100m.

Chinese March exports driven by orders in Dec/'Jan. We aren't going to see these numbers a cliff for another couple of months.

China exporters got no one to sell to now.
As one says 85% to 95% of factory products for export.

David, you wrote,"And a Trump appointee is blocking aid to home owners who are in trouble. We are looking at a banking crash as the Administration steers this sector into a wall."

David, is this accurate? The article you reference does not back up your reporting? Where does it state Calabria is a Trump appointee? he is part of the administration but you infer that he has been purposefully selected by Trump? Also, its not just Calabria's decision regarding the mortgage services bailout which is clearly stated in the article.

"To be sure, it’s not up to just Calabria whether mortgage services receive a bailout. That’s because the Fed and Treasury don’t need his sign-off to start a lending facility."

I'd like to hear from some of the property and mortgage commentators regarding this? How is America any different to New Zealand in this situation? There is a lot of talk about letting the market correct itself. Government bailouts are evidence of an immediate realization that lending practices (for housing) of financial services companies are unsustainable. Lets some fail because they all cannot be saved an nor should they be saved. Unproductive lending is a systemic failure of the banking system.

Unproductive lending is a systemic failure of the banking system.

Pretty much always I disagree with your comments - but not that one.

The problem is that exponential growth requires exponential growth in investment. The physical planet has increasingly been unable to support that, so we've gone more and more into forward betting and into upping the 'value' of existing items (houses are actually collections of embedded energy, decaying). Banks were stuck between a a dwindling pile of rocks, and a hard place. Set up for a prior regime, were banks.

But they will attempt to be the ones sitting on the remaining chairs when the music stops. Just like everyone else.

Glad to hear your happy PDK.

I only recall one disagreement regarding my comments on how death from despair in the US will cause more deaths than Coronavirus. With the reported levels of lost job claims in the US accelerating my comments of over a week ago may unfortunately be correct. I genuinely hope that NZ manage the recovery well.

I believe Kate who comments on this site also said something along the lines of;

I thought I would never say this but I hope trump gets re-elected so he can lie in the bed he has made.

I agree and think that our ‘leader’ should have the same opportunity and lay in the bed she has made. Maybe, or maybe she won’t have her eyes wide open to banking reform. Would she have the stomach for it?

If you believe treasury’s assumptions then we are staring down the barrel of serious social decline.

Agreed - The article rather suggests that Calabria is not playing Wall Street's game, but instead has identified that Fannie and Freddie have sufficient capital reserves to weather the storm, initially at least. From our perspective he should be applauded. It looks like Wall Street want him to bail them out rather than complying with the Federal Government's directive about not foreclosing on mortgages if holders are distressed. He might however be a little too optimistic about 'systemic issues', but that will depend on the lending criteria that the lenders had in place and how well they identified and rated risk.

Don't worry, the 'chosen one'...Donald...has it all under control...he was captain of the Titanic in case you didn't know...just ask him...there was no was all a hoax...fake news.....all will be well under king Donald....'you could not have a more perfect person in control of things'...his words, not mine...

NY has adjusted the way they count deaths at home with them now being counted as covid-19. Just to give you an idea deaths at home in New York are up 1100%. This is where NZ could have been without the lockdown.

Unfortunately people are still transacting in cash in the US so that's probably not helping. To give you an idea of how some shops are dealing with this the following image (note that it has not work safe language (NWS)).

CCP economic figures have been proven to be incorrect many times not worth using as basis for assumptions I wonder if their export figures allow for credits owed on faulty medical gear being returned or is it just buyer beware. NZ needs to be careful on presumptions that china will be our savior with buying lots of ag products Tony Abbot put it well years ago "China will buy our products while it is in their interests to do so " they will buy the cheapest they can get to feed their people or the pitchforks will come out the chinese have proved in the past they know how to use them for regime change . We are limited in our ability to utilise export streams compared to oz we should hope they get it right as oz is our best hope for export and tourism in the future .

Slightly off the topic of my post but the CCP figures are mostly nonsense. When we open for business many companies are going to find their work has gone and a lack of incoming orders or requests for pricing. I know the opposition parties are very interested in the earliest restart but they are out of touch by way of being in a privileged position for too long. If we go to alert level 2 many people will still be working from home which kills the places that supply lunch time food and petrol stations from lack of commuting.

The rest of the world is going to be in a lot of economic trouble even if we aren't internally.

but good business will also adapt, I watched a piece on Wuhan and they had a café where they waiter was in full hazmat gear and they bring your order to you outside, the cooks placed the order on the table then moved away for her to collect , if you think about how supermarkets are operating, then there is no reason a Harvey norman or the warehouse cant do the same thing.
also online and click and collect will become a bigger part of sales, tech can become a bigger part of selling.
retail shops will hate this as they like people in the shops as they always buy extra's on sighting the item

It will be different as you've indicated but many things won't be back to normal which will put a dent in spending. Although I can tell by my client emails that they are hanging out for the lockdown to end.

whilst I agree spending will decline, I can also see the nimble taking advantage and grabbing a bigger share of that spending, take fast food as an example
, pizza hut, dominios already have online ordering or an app, which a big proportion of their customers already use, they can change the way they operate to a click and collect offering rather than walk in, so they are already pretty well set up for what is to come
others have not pushed the online option as much mcdonalds , subway come to mind both have apps but who do you know that orders online

You're talking about Arkwright in " Open all hours"

I doubt the US with its strict federal codes regulation would allow ‘faulty’ medical devices to be imported at all. Any ‘faults’ that risk patient safety would cause the importer to lose its permit to import (revoked) immediately. Audits would ensue. Just because you see on the news engineers refitting jigs to manufacture ventilators and the like doesn’t mean the regulatory bodies are letting them loose on patients. Quite the opposite.
If your referring to consumables like masks then I doubt they ‘fault’ like a system. They are either rated for their purpose or not.

That Orange Banner Headline that has just popped up about high house prices makes me sick to the stomach...... High house prices “profits” and now home owners and investors are squealing that they can’t pay their mortgages because they do not have savings to see them through a month without income. If this doesn’t scream that the system is totally screwed then I don’t know what is. With any investment, which sadly housing is, the value of your investment can go up or down and there are severe consequences now for people who believed the you can’t lose with property mantra...... Very tough times ahead as every business and every household cannot be protected beyond the lockdown. Life lessons will be learnt the hard way......

One things for sure, Yvil gets credit where credit is due for a bang on prediction 6m+ in advance.

Yes Indeed he was spot on......

what exactly was his prediction? That March would be the peak? Have a look at teh past median price graphs, march is quite often the peak at the end of the summer selling months, then it drops off into winter, and starts picking up again later in the year in Aug/Sep

His prediction was that March would be a new record. He was roundly ridiculed by the usual suspects for quite some time. I certainly thought he was going to miss by a mile.

Just like March every year (except March 2019 which was off the back of AML Phase 2) for the past 8 years has been a new record.

The truth is the first casualty........
A well worn phrase, but ultimately proved correct again, when in the UK the "deaths" from Covid-19 are tallied from reports from hospitals, but now it comes out that they are not tallied (not included in the totals) when that death occurs at an aged care facility or retirement home and in the UK the single largest operator reports that in their assessment two thirds (66%) of all residences are currently infected and up to 300 deaths that have not been counted in the UK total have occurred in this environment in the last three weeks.
One wonders how many more will follow there, and here, in that environment

Economic forecasts are RENOWNED for being too optimistic.
It is always better next year, they always tell us.
Never are we told that next quarter or next year will be lower.
Only allowed to say one quarter, then everything will be fine in the garden again.
Ditto with recorded infection and deaths. These figures are NOT reliable and the reasons are rapidly coming out: nursing home deaths and in community not being counted. Infections depend on tests . if no one presents for tests or country does not do random tests, cannot know what real infection rate is.
BEWARE stats. Always question who compiled and on what basis.
Second wave will hit in June-August and opening, as they call it, will cause this.
No one knows how bad economic effect will become.
But it will be worse than 2008. Just let that sink in for a bit.
Revenue to government is FAR worse hit than forecast, in 2008.
That causes huge debt over-run

My medical surgery in Orewa just texted me to remind me they are open.
What does this suggest about who and how MANY GPs are testing??
The surgeries are empty.
So, you need to do random testing in community. About time they got onto this , if they want to know what is REALLY going on

Totally agree. At this point we should be doing max testing every day to get an idea of asymptomatic spread and sub-clinical infection. Requiring clinical signs makes no sense to me. Although an antibody test would be better suited, we don't have one so we should use the antigen test we do have.

Goebbels had a similar approach to fact

It tends to end badly, does self-justifying falsification.

This is why you cannot just accept what news tell you at 6pm in NZ, or elsewhere.

Family in Europe were saying that there are an unusually high number of elderly living in their own homes who are been found dead - of heart attack/strokes etc. They appear to be choosing not to seek medical help when needed, as they don't want to go to hospital and some have been stressed by not having family visit due to lockdown. They are not known to have had COVID and as their cause of death is heart attack etc they are not being recorded as COVID deaths.

Anyone remember this happening last year? How long has Covid-19 actually been here...

"Doctors have been unable to establish what is causing the illness, whose symptoms include chest pain, fatigue and shortness of breath."

Did Mr. Chaston even read the article that he referenced in his quote about Mark Calabria (who was selected by Mike Pence for his current position)?

And a Trump appointee is blocking aid to home owners who are in trouble. We are looking at a banking crash as the Administration steers this sector into a wall.

According to the linked article, the aid that is being withheld is aid to unregulated nonbank mortgage lenders, not home owners. Sadly, Mr. Chaston is reporting fake news.

Personally, I'm happy to skip the moral hazard approach this time around. All of the companies that spent so much of their free cash flow doing stock repurchases should be required to sell this stock prior to obtaining any aid. The US airlines spent an average of 95% of their free cash flow on stock repurchases over the past decade. This imprudent behavior should not be rewarded with a bailout. Similarly, unregulated lenders should show their prudent behavior before any bailout would be considered. The lending in recent years in the US has returned to irresponsible behavior. Why should these unregulated lenders get bailed out?

And why did Mr. Chaston misrepresent the denied aid to unregulated lenders as denying aid to borrowers in trouble?

Wow, just last night David Chaston wrote the below... if he had integrity, he would have written at that time that the "NZ Administration was looking at a banking crash as the NZ administration steers this sector into a wall" when writing this...

Non-bank lenders are pleading for Government support to "help them" provide working capital support for SMEs - just as the Australian Government has done. Here, non-bank lenders have been left out of the Business Finance Guarantee Scheme, just as building societies and credit unions have been left out of the mortgages deferrals scheme.


We need Sir JK to silent this IMF - use couple stash funds to silent them, they're very critical of NZ: