Since it first appeared in Wuhan, China, at the tail end of 2019, coronavirus has gone on to rage its way around the planet, leaving a trail of death and untold mayhem in its wake. Now, as we pass the first anniversary of the virus, the global death toll stands at around 1.7 million with 77.4 million reported cases worldwide.
However, as depressing as the statistics of illness from COVID-19 are, some might argue they’re just the tip of the iceberg and the worst effects of the virus are yet to come. It’s currently estimated that COVID-19 has caused 22 million job to be lost in the US alone (predicted to possibly reach 25 million) and, while nations face up to the worst economic fall-out since the Great Depression, it seems hard to imagine how or when things will ever return to our previous normal.
The statistics make for thoroughly depressing reading
Certainly, the promise offered by the mass roll-out of vaccines does signal glimmers of hope but it would surely be foolish to suggest a simple vaccine will offer an all-conquering panacea to the financial hardship that lies ahead for the many sacked workers around the world. Worse yet, the real depth of the situation is only now starting to become clear and all signs are that there could be worse to come:
- Joseph Briggs, an analyst at Goldman noted the majority of redundancies were, “highly concentrated in virus-sensitive industries” such as leisure, hospitality and retail. These jobs were already at the lower end of the pay ranking, making life even harder for those now out of work in these sectors.
- Despite furlough payments, American workers who earned less than $30 an hour are feeling the greatest overall financial impact.
- Consumer spending will continue to reduce through the winter months as the effects of surviving on a lower-income hit the bottom 25% of the earning scale.
- Experts also believe that unless the US Congress grants a further support package to stimulate the economy to the tune of $700 billion, the employment prospects of lower-income employees will look, “significantly worse”. However, it remains to be seen how long countries can keep just paying out-of-work staff.
- As a result of the pandemic, many companies have been turning to automation and Artificial Intelligence (AI) – and it’s working. While this might be great news for firms attempting to stay in business, it will sound the death knell for many previously secure careers. In truth, productivity has increased through the year by 4% despite the mass job losses.
Ways out if you’re in financial trouble
If you have found yourself in financial trouble as a result of the virus, it might be worth exploring a short-term loan to get through the worst days. Rather than committing to debt long-term, there are now multiple options for shorter length borrowing to tide you over. For example, read this awesome blog post on how to do car title loans in Oxford MS to get an idea of the services now available.
Many loan providers simply ask for a guarantee – typically your home, car or another high-value item – before supplying funds. While debt clearly isn’t ideal, there are times in all our lives when we need a little financial support and short-term borrowing might be just the help you need to meet outstanding bills, mortgage or rent payments.
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