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(Image: AAP/Lukas Coch)

Restrictions ease in Australia and around the world. But not everyone is ready. We try to unpack some of the numbers being thrown around about the economic costs of the pandemic. And while Australian journalists should not be clapped under any circumstances, in some countries they’re really risking it. 

Too many numbers

In a parallel universe, Josh Frydenberg is getting ready to deliver his budget today. Instead, we’re getting swamped by lots of big, scary numbers about how bad the economic impacts of the pandemic will be.

Yesterday, Deloitte Access Economics told us the budget deficit could blow out to a record $143 billion this year, and that unemployment won’t return to 5% till 2024. Meanwhile, modeling from accounting firm KPMG suggests a return to pre-COVID levels of economic activity won’t happen until early 2022.