Nov 20, 2020

Recent data does not tell the full story of the COVID economy

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In October, the U.S. built on earlier gains in retail spending and home construction. But the economic story does not stop there. Plus, is it time to pull back on some of the Fed's ability to fight financial emergencies?

Segments From this episode

Recently released economic data on October looks upbeat. Our pandemic reality does not.

Sure, there was strong growth in home construction and slight growth for retail sales, but that was October. Christopher Low, chief economist at FHN Financial, says that it seems "increasingly inevitable that the state and local restrictions on activity, which of course are already increasing, we'll have to tighten up enough that we're looking at some really significant growth speed bumps." There's positive vaccine news, yes, but Low says he thinks it's months before that translates into herd immunity.

Mnuchin moves to cut off Fed pandemic emergency lending program

Economist Karen Petrou says the Fed programs have fallen short, but that the Fed needs some facilities in the face of inaction from Congress.
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Federal Reserve Board Chair Jerome Powell testify during a Senate Banking Committee hearing on Capitol Hill on Sept. 24, 2020 in Washington.
Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Music from the episode

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The team

Nicole Childers Executive Producer
Victoria Craig Producer, BBC
Stephen Ryan Producer, BBC
Jonathan Frewin Producer, BBC
Daniel Shin Producer
Jay Siebold Engineer
Brian Allison Engineer
Alex Schroeder Digital producer
Meredith Garretson Producer
Erika Soderstrom Producer/Director