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Economic Recovery #3

  • Student debt nation
  • African economies
  • Paycheck protection
  • Small business struggles
Published every Friday


Debt Nation: The Faces and Lives Behind America’s Student Loan Crisis

I hadn’t realized that college was optional until my best friend told me our junior year of high school that she wasn’t taking the SAT. As a child, I’d spent nights and weekends with my mom in the library as she finished her Ph.D., and I saw the material differences it made in our lives when she got that degree. I spent the summer before high school traversing the state of Texas for my older brother’s campus visits. The question in my household wasn’t if I was going to college; it was where and how we would pay for it. It wasn’t until this moment in my junior year that I recognized how rare that certainty was.

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Editor’s Note:

Student debt to finance higher education has become a major issue in the U.S. and earned a place among policy discussions during the presidential race. But the loans are ultimately about the aspirations of individual people, as Slate tells here after collecting stories from hundreds of respondents.

The Independent (UK)

Opinion: Taxes will have to rise at some point, but right now we need the government to spend, spend, spend

Do taxes need to rise, or public spending be cut, to pay for the Covid-19 crisis? With government spending having caused a huge increase in public debt – now already over 100 per cent of national income – the argument on how and when it should be paid back is already raging.

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OC Register

Split roll initiative’s risks and negative side effects grow by the day

In November, Californians will vote on whether to increase commercial property taxes.

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Mail and Guardian (South Africa)

This time it’s different: African economies may not survive

It is hardly two months since the minister of finance, Tito Mboweni, in his budget speech confidently likened the South African economy to Aloe ferox, a plant that survives in arid conditions. It wins even when it seems the odds are against it, he said. He went on to reassure MPs that “the South African economy has won before and it will win again”.

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Editor’s Note:

Different countries of the world are facing the same crisis with coronavirus, but also particular issues. Here Eddie Rakabe looks at African countries dependent on sensitive sectors such as agriculture and tourism.

New York Times

As Europe’s Economies Reopen, Consumers Go on a Spending Spree

PARIS — Clémentine Sebert buzzed through an Ikea furniture store during her lunch break, filling her cart with decorative cushions, a new nightstand, lamps and a small rug. After being cooped up for two months during France’s coronavirus quarantine, she was back to work at the firm where she is a legal counselor — and ready to spend.

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Independent (Ireland)

The UK is streets ahead of Ireland in its economic response to Covid crisis

Despite a post-crisis recovery that has seen economic growth here beat levels seen in the rest of the European Union, the labour market here had some major weaknesses even before the pandemic hit, and they could make a recovery to full employment very hard.

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Quartz ($)

The US gave employers half a trillion dollars and has no idea how many jobs it saved

The US Paycheck Protection Program was designed by Congress and sold to the public as a way to protect American workers. But the no-collateral, low-interest loans came with no requirement for employers to preserve jobs.

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Associated Press

Small businesses around the world struggle to survive

Hour after hour in the dark, Chander Shekhar’s mind raced ahead to morning.

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USA Today

Will there be a second stimulus check? Americans face more money woes

The mother of two has run into delays applying for unemployment and food stamps in Portland, Oregon, after Grace Salon, a hair salon that specializes in cutting and coloring, was forced to shutter in March when the coronavirus pandemic hit.

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Editor’s Note:

The arrival of the pandemic has meant that applying for and receiving benefits is now a part of a much larger group of people’s lives. Here Jessica Menton looks at stimulus checks and unemployment in the US.

The Herald (Scotland)

Jeremy Peat: ‘Horrendous consequences for business, employment and household incomes’ in UK if second spike in coronavirus

Our understanding of the likely impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the Scottish economy continues to develop – slowly.

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