A unique recession amidst a global pandemic

The U.S. economy officially entered a recession in February as the viral pandemic started its sweep across the nation. Francis Diebold and Jesús Fernández-Villaverde share why this one is unprecedented, and what to expect in the coming months.

Kristen de Groot

How the COVID-19 lockdown is affecting India’s households

The lockdown in India coincides with an already-existing period of economic distress. A new study finds that nearly a third of all households will not be able to survive beyond a week without state assistance.

From Knowledge@Wharton

Building capacity to combat COVID-19 in Africa

Building capacity to combat COVID-19 in Africa. Wharton School students, along with the Zicklin Center for Business Ethics Research, are issuing a call for proposals for a new initiative designed to aid in the fight against the coronavirus.

Dee Patel

Will the pandemic cause food shortages?

Wharton’s Marshall Fisher examines what’s behind the supply chain disruptions in grocery stores, with suppliers experiencing production slowdowns due to the pandemic.

From Knowledge@Wharton

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In the News


Wharton’s Siegel sees inflation return, strong consumer spending in 2021

Jeremy Siegel of the Wharton School said 2020’s pandemic will lead to strong consumer spending in 2021. “This money in people’s accounts is going to be spent,” he said.


The Washington Post

How the IRS could begin to fix the tax gap

Natasha Sarin of the Law School and Wharton School and a Harvard University colleague wrote an op-ed about how the IRS can recoup billions in lost revenue by pursuing high-income non-filers.


Pandemic unemployment insurance is expiring soon. This economist has a fix for it

Ioana Marinescu of the School of Social Policy & Practice proposed transforming the soon-to-expire Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program into a basic income program that would support people as they return to work.



Unemployment rate reaches 14.7% – here’s what to watch

Jeremy Siegel of the Wharton School said future economic growth in the U.S. depends on the development of vaccines and treatments for COVID-19. “If we get therapeutics that reduce the severity of this disease to a bad flu or a vaccine that could inoculate the at-risk members of the community, again that reduces that fear, [then] I think 2021 can be a boom year,” he said.


Philadelphia Inquirer

Even the best case for coronavirus deaths is worse than Trump says, according to a new Wharton model

The Wharton School’s Kent Smetters commented on the School’s new Budget Model, which explores the health and economic effects of state reopenings. On the low end, the model predicts 2.3 million coronavirus cases and 117,000 deaths by the end of June. On the high end, the model predicts 8 million cases and 350,000 deaths by then. “If states fully reopen, that could be the worst-case number,” said Smetters.


The Washington Post

Economics, not politics, helps explain why coronavirus and other diseases started in China

PIK Professor Ezekiel Emanuel and Scott Moore of the School of Arts & Sciences wrote about why many highly infectious diseases appear to originate in China. “First, rapid development in highly biodiverse regions brings more people into contact with exotic animals and the viruses that lurk within them,” they wrote. “Second, ever-more-extensive transport, trade and communications links continue to shorten the distances between a potential pandemic hot spot and virtually any other point on the globe.”