Will the fifth wave threaten economic recovery?

Will the fifth wave threaten economic recovery?

The fifth wave of the Covid-19 raises fears of a recession in the eurozone. However, several indicators are expected to limit its impact.

Europe, once again the epicenter of the Kovid-19 epidemic, has been experiencing a new outbreak of pollution for weeks. Strict or partial detention has been imposed in Austria, Slovakia and the Netherlands to prevent mobility. In Germany, the scale of the fifth wave is equally alarming, with Chancellor Angela Merkel calling for “more restrictions”, arguing that “every day counts”.

France has not gotten there yet. But the government has decided to take stern action in the face of increasing number of cases. Health Minister Olivier Veron announced on Thursday that the validity of the health pass will be valid from January 15 until the booster dose of the vaccine against Kovid-19. It is hoped that this will be enough to protect the population and avoid drastic measures such as curfews or imprisonment.

What impact is possible?

According to some experts, this unprecedented situation after 21 months of health crisis will put a brake on the economic recovery, much stronger than expected within the old continent. Quoted by Oxford Economics Echoes The introduction of the sanitary pass in Germany, in addition to some of the restrictions adopted by Lander, is expected to affect consumption and, if the measures last for a month, the country’s GDP will lose 0.8 points in the fourth quarter.

According to Oxford Economics, the failure of the continent’s largest economy will “adversely affect 0.25% of Euro area GDP”. The imposition of stricter restrictions on the nine European countries most affected by the fifth wave (Austria, Germany, Belgium, Finland, Ireland, Greece, the Netherlands, Slovakia and Slovenia) will reduce the Eurozone’s GDP by 0.7 to 0.8 points. In the last three months of the year.

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Finally, the gloomy situation predicting new restrictions in the countries of southern Europe will lead to a decline in European GDP after + 2.2% in the fourth quarter. “Uncertainty is high, mainly reflecting the state of health, which is again a matter of considerable concern,” said Ignacio Visco, governor of the Bank of Italy.

“We are less poor”

Recognizing such a situation would certainly penalize France and southern European countries for relying more on services than those in northern India, while recent experience shows that health restrictions are primarily burdensome to the population. But it is better not to shoot the ambulance suddenly. The fifth wave is not comparable to the previous one, and there are many reasons for optimism.

First, France has shone with the dynamics of its operations in recent months. Contrary to initial predictions based on mid – 2022, French GDP returned to pre – crisis levels from the third quarter. That growth is now 6.6%. In a nutshell: If French GDP remains stable in the fourth quarter, growth in 2021 will still be 6.6%.

Other indicators that allow you to take the pulse of the French economy are reassuring: employment surpassed its 2019 levels, domestic sentiment remained stable in November, and the business climate improved on the same basis. Month (October compared to +2 points).

It should also be noted that each new wave of epidemics had less serious economic repercussions than the previous ones, and these prisons were adapted by incorporating lessons from past experiences. The “big difference” with this fifth wave is that “we have the vaccine, we’re starting treatments (…). Xavier Timbo, principal director of the French Observatory for Economic Concerns (OFCE), is even more optimistic. “I think we’re going through this fifth wave well.

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“Virus is the master of clocks again”

So while the slight slowdown in activity in the fourth quarter cannot be ruled out, a new economic downturn is not the most likely scenario at this stage: “Right now, we can not expect any repercussions. . After all, he urges us to be vigilant in the absence of our visibility: “The only subtle thing is that the virus has once again become the master of the clocks. We do not really know, the extent of its spread and its power.

However, there is a direct negative effect: “The return of the virus is the result of a concentration of savings”, underlines Benjamin Coreat. Uncertainty surrounding the fifth wave – with the emergence of a new variant in South Africa – puts an end to any hope that families will use the savings they have accumulated for a short time. By the end of the year, it will be around 200 200 billion. That is why “we must help freeze these savings, this is not a healthy situation,” notes Benjamin Coriott, who suggests the idea of ​​a collective guarantee to encourage the French to invest.

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