Daily Memo: Coronavirus Rebounds and Relapses

The U.S. economy saw record growth, but warning lights are flashing everywhere.

U.S. economy clawing its way back. The U.S. economy is estimated to have grown 7.4 percent, or a record-breaking 33.1 percent at an annualized rate, in the third quarter compared to the previous quarter, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. This follows a record-breaking contraction in the second quarter of 31.4 percent annualized. These are big numbers, but the headline is that the recovery is far from over: The U.S. economy was 2.9 percent smaller in Q3 2020 than it was in Q3 2019 (and even further below its pre-coronavirus trendline), a new stimulus package is deadlocked in Congress, weekly unemployment claims are still above levels seen during the worst of the Great Recession, and major European economies are locking down again. Lockdown, reloaded. France and Germany on Wednesday announced monthlong national lockdowns to stem the spread of the coronavirus. In Germany, most nonessential businesses will close, but restaurants will still offer takeaway, schools will stay open and people can still leave their homes and meet a limited number of people from other households. France’s measures are more restrictive and reminiscent of measures in the spring; people will need certificates to move around outside, though schools and some factories will […]

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