All that glitters is not gold, but who knew it would be iron ore that would shine through the darkness? Australia’s energy and resource industry has lost almost $7 billion from the pandemic economic contraction. However, the Industry Department’s quarterly outlook report shows iron ore and gold exports leading the light out of the tunnel. Released on Monday, the report forecasts annual outputs of $102.7 billion and $27.4 billion for iron ore and gold respectively. With comparatively high losses experienced by oil and coal exports, these forecasts highlight how Australia’s diverse export portfolio provides it with an enduring competitive edge.
Spirits are up when markets are up! The ASX 200 enjoyed a much missed week-long high, with a growth of 0.4% on Friday to close at 6057.9. These gains off a four-day streak which added a total of 2.6% to the market. Many of the big winners can be found in the tech and electronics industry, with Cochlear and WiseTech Global experiencing considerable growths of 5.9% and 4.3% respectively. Other rising shares included Wesfarmers and Bega Cheese, as consumers scramble to stock up on food and grocery staples amidst a second-wave panic.
Notably, these gains in the Australian market were experienced despite the fall in volumes supplied by an empty Wall Street in preparation for Independence Day. With celebrations of a long weekend ahead, US markets managed to close at an all-time high on Thursday in anticipation of an economic resuscitation. This coincides with announcements of the positive upshots of massive rehiring, where the addition of 4.8 million jobs in June has lowered the unemployment rate to 11.1% in the US.
Turning to travel news, a new report released by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) has been deeply sobering, foreshadowing falls of up to $4.8 trillion in international tourism. While Australia and New Zealand thankfully were not featured in the list of 15 hardest hit countries, the US and China have incurred the largest falls in travel revenues of over $100 billion each.
“Although some destinations have started slowly to open up, many are afraid of international travel or cannot afford it due to the economic crisis.”
Remember when COVID-19 burst your ‘bubble’ by shutting down all your travel plans? We finish this market recap with some good travel news! Tourism Minister Simon Birmingham has announced that potential ‘travel bubble’ plans to be instigated with New Zealand once the situation in Victoria has be alleviated. While plans for these lifted travel restrictions are still in the making, some idealistic forecasts place these early as September.