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 Dr. Rasmus reviews the facts re. surging 2nd wave of virus infections and hospitalizations in the USA and discusses whether it will precipitate a further weakening of the US economy in the second half of 2020 as well. As World Bank chief economist, Carnmen Reinhart, has recently warned: it is important to distinguish between a ‘Rebound’ and a ‘Recovery’. Rasmus explains the reopening of the US economy the past 6 weeks has produced what looks like a ‘rebound’ for historic depths of contraction during the 1st wave of the virus, February-April, but that it is not a recovery. 39m still unemployed by moderate estimates, work hours down 15%, personal incomes up but being significantly unspent, the CARES Act stimulus either already spent by households or loans being hoarded by big corps. amount to no added real stimulus. Fed forecasts for US GDP for 2nd quarter at -30.5% to -41.9% mean a very deep hole for the US economy to try to crawl out of. Rasmus reviews the current late June state of the US economy: consumption, business investment, trade, and government spending that shows a slowing of the deep contraction but a continued contraction nonetheless. Conclusion: despite reopening the economy and a 5.5% GDP stimulus in March the US is not poised for an accelerating ‘recovery’ but a modest ‘rebound’ at best. And a 2nd wave increases probability of another economic relapse in late 2020 or early 2021 if no real fiscal stimulus comes soon.

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