More central banks raise the alarm over near-term economic impact of the coronavirus

Malaysia’s central bank on Wednesday said the first-quarter growth would be affected by the outbreak that spurred shutdowns in China in efforts to contain the coronavirus’ spread.

“The overall impact of the virus on the Malaysian economy will, however, depend on the duration and spread of the outbreak as well as policy responses by the authorities,” Bank Negara Malaysia said in a statement.

For its part, Malaysia has agreed to set up a joint working group with neighbor Singapore to coordinate responses to the virus outbreak.

Elsewhere, New Zealand’s central bank, which kept its official cash rate unchanged at 1 percent, said on Wednesday it assumed the overall economic impact in the country will be short and mostly concentrated in the first half of 2020.

Its Governor Adrian Orr forecasted around six weeks of disruption, with the assumption that some normalization would occur over March and that travel restrictions to China are lifted, Reuters reported.

Last week, the Philippine central bank warned of an “adverse impact” on economic activity and market sentiment in the near-term due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Source: CNBC