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


Republicans call the $600 unemployment boost a disincentive to work. Many experts disagree

Ioana Marinescu of the School of Social Policy & Practice weighed in on claims by Republican lawmakers that a $600 weekly unemployment benefit deters people from seeking work. “It doesn’t matter in the current state of the labor market,” she said. “It’s focusing on the wrong thing. It’s not relevant at all in the current context.”


Tax health insurance coverage to make it more affordable? That’s Greek to me

Mark V. Pauly of the Wharton School commented on a New Jersey proposal to impose a 2.5% tax on health insurance. “They want to tax insurance for middle-class people to subsidize it for low-income people? It would be much fairer to tax the income of higher income people than to tax their insurance, since spending on insurance does not grow that rapidly with income,” he said.


‘This is health care moonshot time’: Pandemic pulls Biden, Dems further left

PIK Professor Ezekiel Emanuel said, of public support for universal health care, “There’s been a shift toward more receptivity to bigger solutions to both of our biggest problems: coverage and affordability. But people’s thinking hasn’t caught up with the dire situation we’re in.”



A second Great Depression? Unemployment crisis hits big cities hard

Ioana Marinescu of the School of Social Policy & Practice spoke about the pandemic’s effects on the economies of major U.S. cities. “Los Angeles, sadly, is going through a new health crisis,” she said. “New York isn’t. And yet, the unemployment numbers are still so bad. That shows to me how scarring the effects of the coronavirus are.”


The New Yorker

The promising results of a citywide basic-income experiment

Amy Castro Baker of the School of Social Policy & Practice helped design a pilot study on universal basic income for Stockton, California, and has been studying the results of the experiment.



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.