In times of economic uncertainty, good information can be an invaluable commodity. So we’ve been working on a way to channel it to you.
For many people, knowing what to do in our radically changing economy is like trying to figure out what to do when the power in your house stops working. You’re at home in lockdown, it’s late at night, and you stare helplessly at the dusty ancient circuit board, trying to figure out the correct switch to flick among the mess of fuses and cables and spiders.
Right now, with Covid-19 blowing the fuses of our economy, it’s started feeling a bit like that – cold and dark. Businesses are struggling, confidence is falling and it’s all compounded by the fact that no one knows just how long it will last.
So far the government and banks have done a lot to cushion the economic shock of Covid-19. The government has pledged a $12bn stimulus package, banks have offered customers home loan repayment deferrals (aka mortgage repayment holidays) and the Reserve Bank has cut the official cash rate and committed to purchasing $30bn of government bonds.
While that might be of comfort to some, it might not mean much to others who have little idea how all this might affect their jobs, their homes, their savings and their debts.
To help New Zealanders get their heads around it all, we’re launching a new series with our friends at Kiwibank offering their expertise to help guide you through what these new measures mean and how you can use them to steer through the economic storm.
Whether you’re a part of a large retail operation experiencing a massive slump in business, a small cafe looking to pay your rent or simply a first home buyer wondering what to do with your KiwiSaver, you’ll probably have many urgent questions. Send them to us, and with Kiwibank’s help we’ll do our best to answer them over the next four weeks.
No question is too simple or too arcane:
I run a popular restaurant and we’re seeing a huge downturn. How do I get my hands on a slice of the stimulus package?
Should I break my fixed-term mortgage rate to go on the super low floating rate?,
My business is under cashflow pressure. Should I get a business loan? What’s the best and fastest way to get a business loan approved?
There’s a lot of information out there and it can get really confusing, so these advice columns will be simple but informational, breaking down vague policies and instructions into something accessible and easy to follow. We’ve already seen how valuable this is for New Zealanders, with this story explaining the government’s Covid-19 wage subsidy scheme quickly becoming a vital resource for employees and employers.
Doubt is debilitating in the best of times. Clear advice will be one best tools to get through this difficult period.
The Spinoff Weekly compiles the best stories of the week – an essential guide to modern life in New Zealand, emailed out on Monday evenings.