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COVID-19: S&P Report Warns of Soaring APAC Unemployment


20 April 2020

S&P Global Ratings warned in a report that unemployment rates could rise well over 3 percentage points as the number of jobs shrinks. The People’s Bank of China cut its one-year rate to 3.85% and its five-year rate to 4.65%, its second cut in 2020.

Japan attempts to pass an increased economic stimulus package, and New Zealand reported a better-than-expected consumer price index. 

Asia Pacific


A S&P Global Ratings report warned that unemployment rates in Asia-Pacific could soar well over 3 percentage point as social distancing measures slashes job creation.

“Surging unemployment in Asia-Pacific would mean a shallower recovery once the pandemic is contained and, in some economies, credit stress for leveraged households. Historical data show that jobs lost are not easily won back,” Shaun Roache, S&P Global Ratings Asia-Pacific chief economist, said.

China’s central bank cut its one-year rate to 3.85% from 4.05%. The People’s Bank of China also cut its five-year rate to 4.65% from 4.75%. This is the second time this year that the PBOC has cut its rate so far this year. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe aims to pass a JPY 117.1 trillion ($1.088 trillion) economic stimulus package.

The package was boosted from JPY 108.2 trillion by expanding cash payouts. New Zealand announced a quarter on quarter consumer price index of 0.8% for the first quarter of 2020. This exceeded analyst forecasts of 0.4% prepared by. The country will also announce whether to extend or loosen its lockdown later in the day. 

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