York County Medicine Summer 2020 - 15

YO R K C O M E D S O C . O R G

FEATURE:

COVID-19 AND OUR
FUTURE ECONOMY

By: Wayne A. Wolfe, Adjunct Professor of Economics, Kings College, Wilkes-Barre, Pa.

R

ecently Paul Krugman, Ph.D., an American Economist
and distinguished Professor of Economics at the Graduate
Center of the City University of New York, Nobel Prize
Winner for Economics, and a columnist for The New York
Times has called the Covid-19 pandemic response an economic
"Corona Coma." This term highlights that our current situation
is very different from the Recession of 2008 and Depression
of 1929 because this time we put the Economy into a state of
intentional shut down to preserve life due to COVID-19. Now
the question is how to gradually bring the economy back.
The economic conditions during COVID-19 caused both
a supply side shock and demand side shock at the same time.
Economic models utilizing aggregate supply and aggregate
demand are usually helpful in analyzing such situations, but
during this pandemic are of somewhat limited value because they
presume a certain level of output which is not currently present.
Recognizing this, bringing back the economy must be done in a
coordinated manner to allow businesses to get back to business.

If not handled carefully the effects in terms of our economic life
could result in a longer recession possibly even depression-like
conditions. Though this situation is unique, I maintain a hopeful
optimism regarding the restart of the economy, already seeing
needed economic stimulus and the tools of monetary and fiscal
policy coming into play in coordinated fashion.
We will likely need many additional actions by both the
Federal Reserve as well as the Executive and Legislative Branches
of the Federal Government and informed decision making at
the State and Local Levels with regard to opening up areas for
commerce to recommence. Certain parts of the Economy will
likely restart in different places and recover at different times with
varying degrees of success. We will undoubtedly witness business
closures, bankruptcy, and reorganization of businesses of all types.
Given time however, we anticipate the resumption of our
Economy and share renewed hope for a brighter future and better
days ahead, but this is a long road, and will surely be difficult for
many before getting better.

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SUMMER 2020 | York County Medicine

15


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York County Medicine Summer 2020

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