WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. economy could benefit if the nation were to “lock down really hard” for four to six weeks, a top Federal Reserve official said on Sunday, adding that Congress can well afford large sums for coronavirus relief efforts.
The economy, which in the second quarter suffered its biggest blow since the Great Depression, would be able to mount a robust recovery, but only if the virus were brought under control, Neel Kashkari, president of the Minneapolis Federal Reserve Bank, told CBS’ “Face the Nation.”
“If we don’t do that and we just have this raging virus spreading throughout the country with flare-ups and local lockdowns for the next year or two, which is entirely possible, we’re going to see many, many more business bankruptcies,” Kashkari said.
“That’s going to be a much slower recovery for all of us.”
(Bloomberg) — One of the world’s major credit-rating companies fired a warning shot regarding the U.S.’s worsening public finances on Friday, just as lawmakers in Washington contemplate spending more to combat the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic.
Fitch Ratings revised its outlook on the country’s credit score to negative from stable, citing a “deterioration in the U.S. public finances and the absence of a credible fiscal consolidation plan.” The country’s ranking remains AAA.
“High fiscal deficits and debt were already on a rising medium-term path even before the onset of the huge economic shock precipitated by the coronavirus,” Fitch said. “They have started to erode the traditional credit strengths of the U.S.”