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Judging the Economic Damage of the Pandemic: Economy Week Ahead By David Goodman Mar 22, 2020
 
Economies around the world will start to get a sense of the damage wrought by the coronavirus this week, as global central banks and governments continue their running battle to allay market fears over the scale of their response.

In the U.S., a Goldman Sachs analysis showed weekly filings for unemployment benefits are poised to surge to a record 2.25 million, up from 281,000, as business shut down because of coronavirus-containment efforts.

Purchasing manager indexes in Europe, the U.S. and Asia will be the first clear signs of the scale of the economic hit in those countries, and South Korean export numbers will be closely watched as a barometer for global commerce.

While traditional central bank calendars mean little in an age of emergency actions, the Bank of England, which has already cut interest rates twice this month, holds a scheduled meeting. Monetary policy announcements are also due from Colombia, Hungary and Nigeria.

Here’s what happened last week and below is our wrap of what else is coming up in the world economy.

U.S. and Canada
With no Fed speeches scheduled due to the virus outbreak, all eyes are on the economic data rolling in for signals of how deep the economic hit will be.

Thursday’s report on initial jobless claims for the week ended March 21 will be the first to show the depth and breadth of the pandemic on the U.S. labor market, with estimates running as high as 4 million -- almost 20 times the typical level in the past year. The IHS Markit PMI measures on Tuesday and Michigan consumer sentiment on Friday will give a sense of how shutdowns are hitting manufacturers and Americans’ opinions of the economy.

In Canada, where half a million people, or about 2.5% of the labor force, applied for jobless claims last week, consumer confidence data on Monday is likely to provide another sign the country may already be in a deep recession.

For more, read Bloomberg Economics’ full Week Ahead for the U.S.
Asia
After a week of extraordinary central bank and fiscal action across Asia, things are set to quieten a little -- at least according to the list of scheduled events. South Korean exports for the first 20 days of March will be closely watched on Monday as a barometer for global commerce, and Japan releases its PMI estimate a day later.

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Source: www.bloomberg.com
 
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