Australian Government Stimulus- April 2020
The Australian government has announced three economic stimuli. The first was a $17.6 Billion stimulus on March 12, which will principally be delivered by lifting the threshold for business' instant asset write-offs to $150,000. The intention behind this policy was to buttress business confidence so they would retain workers. A grant of $750 was also made for all social security, veteran and other income support recipients and eligible concession card holders to support confidence and domestic demand in the economy.
The second stimulus was delivered on March 22, when the government announced a second major economic rescue package worth $66bn, including a $550 coronavirus supplement to jobseeker (formerly NewStart) payments and a second $750 payment to welfare recipients. Under the changes announced in the second package, the government will allow individuals “in financial stress” as a result of the coronavirus downturn to have limited access to their superannuation savings, in a move costing $1.2bn. The amount they can access will be capped at up to $10,000 of their superannuation in 2019-20 and a further $10,000 in 2020-21. The purpose behind this policy was to boost Aggregate Demand by keeping consumption high.
The third package announced on March 30 was a further $130Bn in stimulus, centred on a $1500/fortnight payment for employers to pass onto employees to keep them in work. This again is intended to maintain consumer spending so as to keep Aggregate Demand at adequate levels in coming months.