Posted on

A Second Economic Crisis for Biden, but a Different First Response

Mr. Biden has stressed that such aid will support increased consumer spending, but he and his team cast the goal of distributing the money in more human terms: to ensure as many Americans as possible avoid the scarring damage of homelessness, hunger and the virus itself.The Biden team and its allies are confident that, if they succeed, the economy will be poised for a roaring rebound. Other policymakers and forecasters, including Jerome H. Powell, the Federal Reserve chair, have predicted a swift rebound once the virus is under control.“The recovery from the Great Recession was delayed by years …

Read More

Posted on

The Markets’ Strange Disregard for the Chaos in Washington

UBS continued, “The tax hike is also likely to be smaller than the potential overall spending.” On balance, the report said, “With vaccination programs underway, we retain a positive longer-term outlook for equities.”Such analyses help to justify the upward trend of the stock market but don’t explain why the rally withstood the assault on the Capitol.Much as I hate to say so, I’m not yet confident that the country is on a clear path to safety and stability. Given the grave damage already inflicted on the United States, the risk of greater destruction can’t be …

Read More

Posted on

Markets Jump as Investors Bet on Growth

Investors were encouraged on Wednesday by the prospect that Democrats would have a unified government within weeks and usher in a wave of new spending to shore up the economy. Even as a mob stormed the U.S. Capitol, stocks ended the day higher.The violence broke out during proceedings to certify Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s Electoral College win, quickly escalating into chaotic scenes of rioters inside the building.The S&P 500 fell from its highest point of the day, after sliding from that peak in the moments after the Capitol was placed on lockdown, but it ended with …

Read More

Posted on

As Some Deficit Hawks Turn Dove, the New Politics of Debt Are on Display

And while running big deficits might have once stoked fears about inflation — as too many dollars chased too few goods — price gains have been too low for comfort for years. Add to that the emergency needs prompted by the pandemic, and even the Fed’s leader, who had long warned about the nation’s debt load, has said this is a reasonable time to spend money.“As a general rule, it is important to be on a sustainable fiscal path,” the Fed chair, Jerome H. Powell, a Republican, said at a news conference last month. “From my way of thinking …

Read More

Posted on

As Bills Pile Up, Many Anxiously Keep Tabs on the Stimulus Bill

“It’s the worst thing I could possibly imagine,” she said. “If you told me a year ago that the entire country would be suffering the way it is now, with no help from the government, I would have told you that would never happen. We live in America.”More than 20 million Americans are collecting unemployment benefits and the unemployment rate stands at 6.7 percent. A year ago, before the pandemic hit, the jobless rate touched 3.5 percent, tying a 50-year low.For those living on the edge, the recent political gamesmanship has been infuriating.“We don’t have time for them …

Read More

Posted on

How Heather Cox Richardson Became a Breakout Star on Substack

Dr. Richardson confounds many of the media’s assumptions about this moment. She built a huge and devoted following on Facebook, which is widely and often accurately viewed in media circles as a home of misinformation, and where most journalists don’t see their personal pages as meaningful channels for their work.Business & EconomyUpdated Dec. 23, 2020, 8:59 a.m. ETShe also contradicts the stereotype of Substack, which has become synonymous with offering new opportunities for individual writers to turn their social media followings into careers outside big media, and at times appears to be where purged ideological factions go to regroup. That’ …

Read More

Posted on

States Try to Rescue Small Businesses as U.S. Aid Is Snarled

Kirk Meurer was on track to have one of his best years ever in his business installing office furniture in the Cleveland area. But when companies began sending their workers home last spring, his business dried up practically overnight.“Even though we didn’t have to shut down like the restaurants and bars and the travel industries, it didn’t matter,” he said. “The business wasn’t there.”After some delays, Mr. Meurer got money through the federal Paycheck Protection Program, which he thought would be enough to sustain him until business rebounded. But as the pandemic dragged on and …

Read More

Posted on

Coronavirus Pandemic Upends Public Services and Jobs

The coronavirus pandemic has inflicted an economic battering on state and local governments, shrinking tax receipts by hundreds of billions of dollars. Now devastating budget cuts loom, threatening to cripple public services and pare work forces far beyond the 1.3 million jobs lost in eight months.Governors, mayors and county executives have pleaded for federal aid before the end of the year. Congressional Republicans have scorned such assistance, with the Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, calling it a “blue-state bailout.”But it turns out this budget crisis is colorblind. Six of the seven states that are expected to suffer …

Read More

Posted on

After Biden Win, Nation’s Republicans Fear the Economy Ahead

Optimism about the economy has taken a nosedive among Republicans. But the economy did not drive the change. The presidential election did.After President Trump’s loss to former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., more than 40 percent of Republicans who were polled for The New York Times said they expected their family to be worse off financially in a year’s time, up from 4 percent in October. Democrats expressed a rise in optimism — though not as sharp as the change in Republican sentiment.The new polling, by the online research firm SurveyMonkey, reaffirms the degree to which Americans’ confidence …

Read More

Posted on

Biden Faces a Balancing Act in Choosing Top Aides With Business Ties

WASHINGTON — Five years ago, Jeffrey D. Zients was the head of the Obama administration’s National Economic Council, working to push across the finish line a federal rule that would prevent financial advisers from taking advantage of retirees. He won praise from progressives for fending off fierce resistance from Wall Street and for fighting for consumer protections.These days, Mr. Zients is a co-chairman of President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s transition team who is being watched warily by members of Democratic Party’s left wing. Progressive advocacy groups such as the Revolving Door Project and Justice Democrats, concerned that …

Read More