Market Update – May 2020

 

Highlights:

  • Shutdowns, isolation, and social distancing measures have had a profound impact on consumer-facing sectors and have resulted in large spikes in unemployment.

  • Central banks around the world have embarked on unprecedented emergency lending and bond buying programs to combat the economic effects of the coronavirus.

  • The Bank of England forecasts UK GDP to contract by 14% in 2020, driven by a 25% decline in the June quarter, to be followed by a rapid recovery.

  • The Reserve Bank of Australia kept rates on hold at 0.25% at its May meeting and continued targeting the 3-year government bond yield at the same rate.

  • Growth in new coronavirus cases in Australia slowed significantly in April, although a second wave of infections could eventuate if restrictions are eased too quickly.

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