Some of the interesting stories, news and reflections from the week.
- Little old now, but DWP reporting 10x typical call volume and this was on top of the impacts we already saw in the financial and banking sector too.
- There has been massive uptake in the mortgage payment holiday scheme. With similar schemes now being formally launched for unsecured loans, motor finance, and short term loans.
- A US source, but it seems like the second-hand motor market is starting to see lower prices due to supply and demand. Likely to see this here in the UK, with implications on motor valuations and motor finance business models
- The business impact longer term could be potentially stark, however sectorally driven. Food, essentials will likely be ok, services less so, together with trade and banking…. at least this is what history tells us.
- Longer term, businesses are thinking about the exit strategy. Likely more automation and digitalisation. It seems increasingly likely however this will be an exit over a longer-term. This may indeed be the new normal for a while.
- It is still too early to see the impact of coronavirus in official UK employment stats, although, Univeral credit applications have increased and fears further increase once the Job Retention Scheme is over. Again this is likely to be sector-driven longer term, and in some areas, consumer confidence over their finances, for now, remains stable.
- The impact on health and the population has still been clear and tragic. There has been an argument over the accuracy of daily reported cases, and when you look at the data in more detail, the complexity increases (England data here). It is a tale of clusters (London and Birmingham) and also delays in reporting data.
- However, despite all of this noise, the final total numbers of recorded deaths were published which really showed the impact, and compared with norms it has been very material.
- We clearly need to be very careful releasing restrictions in order to minimise any resurgence risk. Again looking at history can be a warning, the second wave from the spanish flu being worst than the first.
- Lastly with so many of us now working at home, video calling in particular is becoming much more of the norm. Zoom is popular, albeit with some security concerns being expressed in some sectors. This is making us think about how we appear and interact online. It is apparently also important to ensure we get enough sleep, not just for our health, but also for the day of video calls too.
This is the roundup for this week… Have a good weekend.