The COVID Diaries: DCM originator 1
The following interview is with an Australian-based debt capital markets originator. It was conducted on 19 March 2020.
Are you working from home? If so, how challenging has the change been?
How close do you think the market will get to business as usual if we are in a period of social distancing for multiple months, including working from home and little or no face-to-face interaction?
"I think the idea is to be prepared for the long haul and then hope to be pleasantly surprised. I don’t think anyone can really have accurate foresight on this, though. It appears the economic impact will last significantly longer than the virus itself."
What other changes are you making in your personal and professional life?
There are a lot of ramifications to play out. I am still trying to go out and eat at local restaurants to support local businesses, but it is unclear whether this is the right thing to do from a health perspective, as the advice is changing daily.
I also have morning and afternoon nannies for the kids. With my husband and I both working from home, we don’t need them for as many hours, but we do not want to cut their salaries so we are still having them work full hours. This can be disruptive for the kids, though, because they don’t understand why their parents are around and spending all their time on the computer instead of with them.
It is disruptive for everyone – people’s lives have been turned upside down. One of my daughters spent a day learning remotely from home yesterday and they are going on school holidays a week early. We will be breaking out the board games this weekend and some bushwalks are in order!
How worried are you in general on the health and economic fronts?
Economically, I think it will take a very long time to recover. They are throwing everything they can at it but if you think about chains of people unable to work, the impact is going to be enormous and some of the commentary has turned from recession to depression.
At what point does the government start getting employed people and large companies to share the pain of all of this? We haven’t been in this situation before so it will be fascinating to see how it plays out.
What have been your most trusted and useful sources of information on COVID-19 developments?