US Stimulus, Tracking Apps, and China…

G’day all!

As another month slides away, here in Australia, our Anzac Day has come and gone, and an ‘unusual affair’ this year… No dawn services could be attended, no march to the memorials.  The Last Post playing through people’s radio’s and telly’s at 6:00am as some of us stood in our driveways or back yards…

I am confident that this will not be the last curve ball thrown at us this year due to the pandemic, but we are a resilient lot, rolling with the punches in general.

With some light at the end of the tunnel here in Australia, some states are starting to plan release of restrictions, with Australia and New Zealand as a whole, showing very low infection and mortality rates compared to a number of other countries.

The US however, are seeing very high rates, but still are looking to also release some restrictions in some states.  Generally, their political landscape is different, very state based, so as much as Donald would like to control it, the Governors of each state will do what they like anyway

Without being a conspiracy theorist though, I also believe that the ‘Big Oil’ companies will be lobbying HARD to congress to have the lockdown released so as to increase the demand for oil again.  These huge companies will be losing Billions of dollars a day with the oil price plummeting due to no demand. And volume levels are quickly exceeding storage capacities.

There is a real dichotomy within the US markets currently, with unemployment numbers at almost Great Depression levels, markets are still rising.  This could be due primarily to the size of the stimulus that the US is getting…

Examples are that most on unemployment are now receiving benefits exceeding their normal pay… Airlines have been given free grants and have been saved.

One major concern is that when the Coronavirus ends, the US will begin search for a culprit (in fact this has started already) and it has already the guilty actor, China.

The current pandemic to date, has costed the US more lives than Pearl Harbour and 9/11 put together. We all know how the other two ended; Pearl Harbor was the justification for the US entry into WWII; the events of 9/11 provoked the Iraq war, mayhaps on false pretences (weapon of mass destruction) – so a case could be built on correct premises – a virus lab in Wuhan. China may soon be named the new empire of evil, like USSR back in the 80’s under Reagan…

I feel Trump will also be doing everything in his power to get re-elected and his “China Bashing” will worsen.  Australia will be lucky if we do not get caught up in the fallout of this, being so heavily trade centric with China, and we would do well to use this opportunity to being unravelling this dependence. 

Freydenberg has already received pressure from China to “abandon” the investigation into the pandemic, interested to see how this plays out

Meantime, the AU government has release its tracking App this week.  Once again, I think that Mr Morrison needs to look at his advisors – using the terms ‘government’, ‘tracking’, and ‘app’ in the same sentence is always fraught with danger.

I am nervous though, as our government does not have a great track record on data security either, but I am curious to see how it goes.

In any case, these are strange times indeed.  I’m off to get another bowl of popcorn and watch all this unfold…

You got this!

Happy Investing all and have a great weekend!!