In this week's wrapup, we'll talk about the threat of negative oil prices, the plight of sharing services in the time of social distancing, why the 3 week-long lockdown is necessary, India's food security woes, and why business uncertainty might be the biggest threat to economic recovery.
Let's get started!
The threat of negative oil prices
On Monday, we discussed the weird possibility of oil prices trending below zero.
The standoff between OPEC and Russia has caused a spike in oil production, and prices have been tumbling precipitously. And one Wall Street analyst predicts that if things continue this way, consumers may soon be paid to purchase oil. I know what you're think-"It's preposterous".
But that's not the case. It's a very real possibility
Still not convinced? Well, then you can read the full draft here.
Sharing services in the time of social distancing
On Tuesday, we talked about how long term isolation and fear of contagion can change consumer behaviour in the long term.
Covid-19 is forcing consumers to reevaluate everything they have been taking for granted- like touching foreign objects, coming into contact with strangers and being in enclosed spaces. So now that these things have become a potential health hazard, what does it mean for services like Uber, Airbnb and WeWork?
That was the big story 4 days ago and you can read about it here.
Why the 21-day lockdown is inevitable?
On Wednesday, we analysed why a lockdown may have been inevitable. When Prime Minister Modi announced his plans to impose a nationwide curfew, the entire nation went into a flurry, with several people asking "Is this the only way?"
These people contended that a lockdown is an excessive measure, and would cause irreparable damage to the economy. But then again, the human cost of not doing anything isn't acceptable either. So then we ask the most important question- is the lockdown condemning a large base of the population to poverty, or is it our only fighting chance?
Find out here.
Does India have enough food to go around?
On Thursday, we talked about food security in India. As India begins to brace itself for a lockdown, the Government is assuring citizens that food is one thing they don't have to worry about. They recently increased the monthly quota of subsidized foodgrains, and the Food Corporation of India has also stated that India has enough food to feed its poor for at least a year-and-a-half.
While that may be true, will this food reach those in need? That is the big question we tackled on Thursday and you can read about it here.
Business Uncertainty and the Ellsberg Paradox
On Friday, we discussed why uncertainty is bad for business. Right now, everyone is talking about the kind of economic recovery we might see once the threat of the virus abates. But perhaps it also makes sense for us to dwell on another major variable in the equation- uncertainty.
And to drive home this point we made use of the Ellsberg Paradox. Not following what we are talking about? Well, you can check out the full article here.
Catch you next weekend. Until then, stay home and stay safe.:)