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Ray Dalio, the billionaire founder of hedge fund behemoth Bridgewater Associates, sounded the alarm Thursday over the coronavirus crisis and said U.S. corporations will lose up to $4 trillion and President Trump needs to dramatically increase his stimulus plan.
Dalio’s comments come a day after Bill Ackman, another billionaire investor, called on the president to shut down the country for 30 days or “America will end as we know it.”
Few people understand the global economy like Dalio. He told CNBC that the coronavirus crisis is something not seen “in our lifetime.” He said there will be some who suffer “very big losses” and in order to soften the blow, the federal government needs to spend more money. “A lot more money.”
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell unveiled a sweeping economic rescue plan Thursday to pump $1,200 direct checks to taxpayers, $300 billion for small businesses to keep idled workers on payroll and $208 billion in loans to airlines and other industries.
The GOP leader’s effort builds on Trump’s request for Congress to “go big” as lawmakers race to craft a $1 trillion economic aid and stimulus package amid the pandemic crisis and nationwide shutdown that’s hurtling the country toward a likely recession.
Ray Dalio, founder of Bridgewater Associates LP, speaks during a panel discussion at the Bloomberg New Economy Forum in Beijing, China, on Thursday, Nov. 21, 2019. PHOTO: Takaaki Iwabu/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Dalio said the stimulus package should be, minimum, $1.5 trillion to $2 trillion.
The Federal Reserve put in motion two emergency lending programs Tuesday that were last deployed in response to the 2008 financial crisis, aiming to ease the flow of credit to businesses and households struggling amid the viral outbreak.
The first is intended to unclog a short-term lending market for what is known as “commercial paper.” The second is also intended to mostly assist the commercial paper market and allows a wider range of financial institutions to access short-term loans from the Fed — in this case investment banks and securities trading divisions of large banks. It also allows them to pledge a wider range of collateral in return for the loans. The funds will then mostly be used to purchase commercial paper.
“We’re living in a different world, like the 1930s in which 1930s, 1932, you have a devaluation of the dollar. You have the printing of money,” Dalio said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report