data dump retail
(Image: AAP/Private Media)

Don’t let anyone tell you this government didn’t throw money at a problem. 

Government finance statistics out this week show a monumental rise in expenses, creating a chasm between revenue and expenses. JobSeeker and JobKeeper payments have been enormous. As have the twice-paid $750 shot-in-the-arm to pensioners.

Now, without question, they have design problems at the margin — casual employees, universities, etc — and phasing them out will be hard. But as large bore pipelines gushing $60 billion into the economy, they have been unparalleled.

One almost suspects the federal government has spent more than they would have if they realised how well the virus would be controlled in much of Australia. But even if it stopped now, the benefits of this Keynesian splurge will be felt for some time: monies being socked away in bank accounts now will be doled out slowly later, propping up household budgets and Australian businesses.

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey