Publication: Debt, Division of Labor and Dwell Music – Actual-Time Economics


Aug. 24, 2020, 6:30 p.m. ET

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It’s another full week of economic data and political talk booked by the Republican National Convention earlier in the week and the Fed’s annual political retreat from Kansas City – virtual this time – at the end. Jeff Sparshott here to bring you the latest news.

That will be the day

As countries around the world increase spending on the new coronavirus, The national debt has risen to a level not seen since World War II. But after that war, the advanced economies quickly lowered debt, thanks in large part to rapid economic growth. The debt-to-GDP ratio fell by more than half to less than 50% by 1959. This time it will be more difficult due to demographics, technology and slower growth, says Josh Zumbrun.

In the optimistic time after the warBirth rates boomed, leading to an increase in household formation and a growing workforce. Circumstances were ripe to take advantage of electrification, suburbanization and improved medicine. While overcoming the virus could lead to optimism, it would be difficult to restore the post-WWII boom. Population growth has slowed in advanced economies, the workforce is shrinking as society ages, and productivity growth is slowing.


A K-shaped recovery

Covid-19 divides the American workforce. For many professionals, technology was a lifeline during the pandemic that enabled them to be productive at home. For many others, it’s a new dividing line that takes them further into the stagnant corners of the economy. What makes the situation worse for the hardest-hit workers and their families is that the pandemic is also hastening the arrival of Remote work and automation. It is a turbo boost for the adoption of technologies that some economists believe could further displace low-wage workers. This could also help explain the K-shape recovery observed by many experts, which now has two Americas: professionals who are mostly back to work, stock portfolios approaching new highs, and everyone else, writes Christopher Mims.

Many employers had hoped to bring employees back to the office after Work Day. But employee outcry and fear of breakouts have caused bosses to change course: in an August poll of 15 large employers that together employ around 2.6 million people, 57% said they had decided to postpone their work Back-to-work plans because of the recent increase in Covid-19 cases. Almost half of the respondents said they would take additional security measures for the reopening, e.g. For example, newly designed work areas and temperature tests, report Lauren Weber and Chip Cutter.

Companies get annoyed when vacation days go unused. With the pandemic ruining travel plans, many workers are reluctant to take time off. The employers disagree about what to do about it, report Anne Steele and Chip Cutter.

Live music capital of the world

The Covid-19 pandemic is bringing what industry insiders fear will be a debilitating blow to Austin, Texas. Live music scene. According to a June poll by the Austin Chamber of Commerce, two-thirds of the city’s owners expect the crisis to force them to close for good by the end of October. Many were struggling before the pandemic, when rent and other costs rose rapidly in the fast-growing Texas capital, says Elizabeth Findell.

The global tourism downturn hit airlines and hotel chains, hurting hospitality workers around the world. However, this is felt most clearly in the less developed countries of the world, where tourism plays an important role Drivers of economic development. Latin America and the Caribbean are among the regions that are most dependent on tourism. Small islands are particularly at risk, reports Santiago Pérez.

The number of new coronavirus infections in the United States reached his lowest level in more than two months. Infections are increasing across Europe and Spain is at the forefront of rebound. The country’s experience offers a cautionary story about how hard-won advances against the coronavirus pandemic can be undone.

Farmer’s Blues

After a growing season last year marked by heavy rainfall and bitter trade wars, U.S. farmers hoped 2020 would give them an opportunity to improve. Instead, the situation has worsened for many. Corn and soybean prices have not risen since the start of the year, when the signing of the US-China Phase 1 trade agreement gave farmers hope that export demand would drive prices. For many US farmers, the prospect of low grain prices is untenable, reports Kirk Maltais.


Friday brought some pretty solid US economic news. Data firm IHS Markit said its composite purchasing managers index, a measure of manufacturing and service activity, rose to an 18-month high in August, with both sectors rising sharply. According to the National Association of Realtors, home sales in July rose 24.7% from the previous month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of EUR 5.86 million. This was the strongest monthly profit ever recorded and the fastest sales pace since December 2006.


The US economy is not yet recovering. “Two-thirds of respondents (66%) believe that the US economy is currently in recession. Almost equal proportions of panellists expect the recession to occur in the second half of 2020 (35%) or sometime in 2021 ( 34%). 15% of respondents believe that the recession ended in Q2 2020 (Q2 2020), while 4% believe it will last until 2022 or later %) expects real GDP to regain importance in the fourth quarter of 2019 in the second quarter of 2022 or later, while 30% of respondents expect real GDP to return to the fourth quarter of 2019 level sometime in 2021 “stated the National Association for Business Economics in the latest poll of its members.


Real Time Economics has released a downloadable calendar with accurate forecast forecasts and analysis of the major US data releases. To add to your calendar please click here.

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