Coronavirus and the economy – what if it’s not as bad as we fear?

Smart Money: A viable vaccine could change everything for the global and domestic economies

What should we be doing to prepare, in case  a viable vaccine presents itself sooner rather than later? Image: iStock

What should we be doing to prepare, in case a viable vaccine presents itself sooner rather than later? Image: iStock

The race to produce a vaccine against Covid-19 is well and truly on. On its progress rests the outlook for the world economy and the fate of thousands of businesses internationally – and in Ireland. Without knowing whether a vaccine will appear, when it might be available and how well it will work, government policies to support businesses inevitably involves shooting in the dark. But it is worth asking the question – what should we be doing to prepare, in case the more optimistic scenario of a viable vaccine presents itself some time as we move into 2021? And how should policy remain flexible to cover as many possible outcomes as possible?

1. Forecasting in a fog

Pretty much all economic forecasters have given up trying to come up with precise estimates and instead are looking at “scenarios” involving various combinations of events – subsequent waves of the virus, the appearance of a vaccine and so on.

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