- The nation’s job market seems to be on track to defeat the pandemic, widening the professional skill set is crucial.
- Given the potentially positive signs emerging so far, the economic indicators deserve closer attention while gauging the nature and speed of recovery.
- Domestic travel with social distancing norms may aid in satiating travel hungry people.
- This may be the best time to engage in some guilty shopping or retail therapy to ease the mental stress.
- While market trends are under the scanner, you can up the game of financial management.
While the bloodbath of coronavirus pandemic brought the entire globe to its knees, Kiwi Land established its early safe haven status, outperforming others in containing the deadly spread of virus. However, looming fears of the second wave of infection persist, and it is important that we circle the wagons to ride through this storm.
While formulating a strategic digitisation plan is a matter of high priority for businesses, staying abreast with creative and flexible means of securing finances and taking decisive financial actions without freaking also comes to the crunch for survival. Besides, domestic travel plans, retail therapy, and healthy food and lifestyle will go a long way in dealing with mental and physical stress associated with this global health crisis.
Let us look at a five-point plan to guide you to sail through these unprecedented times:
- Widen Your Professional Skill Set: Labour Market is not that Bad
Data by Statistics NZ revealed a 12 per cent rise in the underutilization rate during June Quarter. The impact of wage and salary cuts was also evident on June quarter’s gross earnings, which were 0.9 per cent down on March quarter earnings.
While COVID-19 delivered a heavy blow to the labour market inducing massive lay-offs across industries, the nation’s job market seems to be on track to defeat the pandemic.
Statistics suggest a 0.8 per cent increase in the number of total filled jobs during June. Besides, the unemployment rate fell by 0.2 per cent points to 4.0 per cent during June quarter. Recently, Labour Party leader, Jacinda Ardern also unveiled over NZD 300 million assistance package to help jobless Kiwi Landers into jobs at a campaign launch in Auckland.
While you can expect a variation in demand for various jobs over the coming years, it is important to be smart with career moves. One must be prepared for a wage cut or job loss during the unprecedented crisis.
For people with lost jobs, it is advisable to keep your eyes and ears open for new jobs, look for online skill enhancement courses, along with freelance and contract-based job options. It is all about plugging your skills for what’s in demand these days and being flexible.
- Reboot Yourself with Economy: Expand Your Horizon on Where Economy is Heading
Latest update of the newly launched New Zealand Activity Index depicted 1 per cent annual dip in the economic activity in June 2020, as against 18 per cent and 6 per cent fall in April and May, respectively. The sharp bounce back was noted on the back of robust revival in electronic card spending, heavy traffic movements and manufacturing activity.
A recent review by S&P Global positioned NZ among the nations to flee from coronavirus crisis with less economic damage, strengthening its prospects to observe a potential V-shaped recovery from the downturn.
Given the potentially positive signs emerging so far, economic indicators deserve closer attention in the near term while gauging the nature and speed of recovery. While, the looming threat of second infection wave and its impact on business confidence, consumer sentiments and the labour market also need to be borne in mind.
- Solving The Conundrum of Travel Bubble: Watch for the Right Time for Planning Vacation
NZ PM Jacinda Ardern seems unlikely to execute trans-Tasman travel bubble with Australia anytime soon, as surging COVID-19 cases in New South Wales and Victoria have dashed the prospects of sooner reopening of overseas borders. However, a travel bubble with the Cook Islands might be announced shortly.
Though complete resumption of international travel seems less likely in the near term, the easiest and safest bet now would be to get into your car and take a road trip to enjoy resurgence.
Assuring safety and health standards while escaping from large group travels need to be on top priority for all holidaymakers. Maintaining social distance and carrying home-cooked meals and hygiene supplies are crucial to staying safe on-and-off road.
- Looking for Consumer Spending Lifts: Retail Therapy and Immune-Boosting Shopping on Cards
While easing restrictions persuaded shoppers to open their wallets stimulating ~16 per cent rise in electronic card spending in June 2020, ANZ-Roy Morgan Consumer Confidence Index remained steady in July at 104.3 points.
The unprecedented global health crisis has surely kept us on toes to boost our immune system and make a transition to a healthy lifestyle. Perhaps, with some control over the infection, this is the best time to engage in some guilty shopping or retail therapy to ease the mental stress.
- Your Investment Corner: While Market Trends are Under The Scanner, You Can Up the Game of Financial Management
While stock markets have bounced back post March 2020 crash, the resurgence in virus cases and sluggish global economic outlook seem to be presenting some potentially emerging bearish trends. This might be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for bargain hunters to tap high-quality businesses at bargain valuations.
Strategic portfolio rebalancing decisions and shift to safer avenues are critical in weathering the financial storm. Moreover, it is important to comprehensively assess finances and create a contingency fund by perhaps liquidating some assets. Debt management also plays a crucial role here. You may also wish to ‘Quarantine your money’ depending on your risk expectations and financial needs.
With social distancing befitting a new normal in the coronavirus era, it is all about boosting mental, physical, financial and economic hygiene and immunity to ensure sustainability during tough times.