The Viral Upside – Episode 4

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Creative parents getting by anyway they can.

Mood: I can no longer maintain the 25-year ruse that I was born with blonde hair and long eyelashes.

Outfit: Pinky trackies & black jumper, that were clean until they had a run-in with an errant slice of vegemite toast.

Stimulus is Working to Rebound Markets

The ASX, Dow Jones and FTSE is predicted to rebound strongly over the coming days after worldwide governments announced unprecedented stimulus measures to keep people employed and households with income. One of the biggest boons, rightly or wrongly, has come from Trump’s announcement that the USA will only go into a hard, and fast, shut-down, with the country back in business by Easter. One of the medical professionals standing behind him rolled his eyes and put his head in his hands during the announcement, as Trump promoted a miracle cure that actually doesn’t exist. But Wall Street loves good news, even if it's ‘fake news’ and we all know there isn’t a banker amongst them who cares if people die.

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Trump's words: "There is a miracle cure, this is a ‘medical problem’ and everything’s fine!"

Medical Professionals <Facials>: "Run, run fast"

Nevertheless – we have never seen stimulus like this in human history, so people remain positive about its ability to cushion the blow of this global recession, given the scale. Commentators suggest that the moment that Australia’s case numbers slow down, the ASX will slowly rise, along with business confidence. And do I have some good news about that below!

Nobel Peace Prize winner reckons curve will flatten in the next couple of weeks

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Not sure if I'm right here, or just a happy idiot - but here is the graph pulled last night from the health.gov.au website and... is that a kink at the top of cumulative cases towards a flatter curve? I'm not a doctor, but I have two working eyes and that looks like a kink in the right direction?

I don’t know anyone at all with a Nobel Peace Prize, so I assume you’ve got to be way smarter than me to get hold of one. A guy called Peter Doherty with a Nobel Peace Prize on his mantle from his work in immune health, reckons we’ll start to see the benefits of all this social isolation in a ‘couple of weeks’. He’s predicting that we’ll see an upwards trajectory in the next week, and then numbers will slow – this is because the infections that occurred last week or the week before, won’t show until now, and won’t be tested for another 3-5 days as positive. 

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Peter Doherty reckons everyone needs to chill on refreshing online coronavirus case counters for a week. Including me. 

He also reports two vaccines have progressed to animal trails (to be followed with human trials) in the USA and in Brisbane – assuring everyone they are breaking the land speed record for getting a vaccine into market.

Upcoming plans to waive income tax withholding payments in Australia

The government is busy putting plans in place to waive income tax liabilities for payroll, which will have the effective impact of reducing staff overheads by 20% for most businesses, encouraging small businesses to retain staff and keep their hours up. Even though this sounds great, it doesn’t go as far as some of the other governments across the world – the UK is covering 80% of wages through the crisis, The Dutch and Danish Governments are covering 75% and 90% respectively during this time. Jacinda Ardern, my power-lady crush and NZ's Prime Minister, is paying each company a stipend of $550 per headcount provided they keep people on for 80% of their regular hours.

Scomo swatting away suggestions he’ll be paying everyone’s wages in a shutdown.

But Scomo has knocked back claims that Australia will put a similar structure in place – for a very practical reason – which is that the systems don’t currently exist to implement payments of this kind to business. He’s preferring to use the existing tax and payments systems (such as credits to income tax withholdings, payroll tax and GST payments), rather than build something quickly that probably won’t land well. I agree wholeheartedly with this assertion – because it has taken the Government 6 years to build the MyGov website to automate Centrelink’s service and that interface is the most unusable thing on the internet. It has the UIX efficacy of a dropped pie. Imagine how bad it could be if the Government’s developers built something in 3 weeks. Yuck.

Recession will be sharp & short if we back the SMEs

Small business stimulus is predicted to be the only way Australia will ride the wave of this recession and get out the other side quickly. Providing cash stimulus to the people (the way that Bug-Eyes Kevin 07 did), is usually the trick when you get a real recession with lagging fundamentals and a slow decline in demand - but that won’t work in this environment because there is nothing for people to spend it on. What the government is being called to do – is to provide the world’s biggest insurance policy to SMEs, allowing them to see through a couple of months with no revenue while maintain their workforces. The loss of thousands of small businesses would cause a long and lingering recession, but helping SMEs to get through a short, sharp and painful blip will mean we will recover faster on the other side.

BRING. IT. ON. SCOTTY!

Please stop talking, Gerry.

A new hashtag is trending on twitter, other than #KayneWestIsOverParty (two days ago the real phone call between Kanye and Taylor Swift was leaked online vindicating her in their 4 year feud – a win for us Swifties). But I digress - #BoycottHarveyNorman is trending after Australia’s richest garden gnome, Gerry Harvey, called the Coronavirus an ‘opportunity’ and instructed everyone to ‘relax’ and get back into his shops to re-commence buying his big TVs. No doubt it’s just another hectic day for his PR team putting out shareholder fires from the billionaires out-of-touch, self-serving drivel.

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Go home Gerry, you’re drunk.

Online search ramping up in construction (not going backwards).

Check out this graph from a tool called AHREFs. Its tracking keyword volumes being searched for that are relevant to our site (which is the largest catalogue of construction suppliers in the world) – it is a really good indication of all search demand in our industry. Check out that slope from Jan to March! That is the single biggest change in user behaviour we’ve seen since we opened our business, demonstrating what we’ve seen in our own data and analytics, and the 45% growth the system has experienced since January.

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Click here for The Viral Upside episode 3

Click here for The Viral Upside episode 2

Click here for The Viral Upside episode 1

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