As Latin America registers more than 5.5 million infections and more than 220,000 deaths from Covid-19 in mid-August – currently highest among the regions of world – it becomes important to ask why lockdowns there haven’t been more effective. After all, mobility restrictions have exacted a heavy economic toll, hurting businesses, eliminating jobs, and aggravating poverty and … [Read more...] about Have Lockdowns Been Effective in Latin America?
As Latin America and the Caribbean confronts one of the most severe economic downturns in its history, policymakers are looking ahead to what they must do in terms of fiscal and monetary policies to restore growth once the Covid-19 crisis passes. But one element that desperately needs more attention is the deep and chronic lack of trust in the region between citizens and … [Read more...] about The Elusive Quest for Growth: The Role of Trust
Natural disasters are different from pandemics. They cause death, displacement, and destruction of physical capital, and unlike a pandemic, their effects are brief and confined to the areas affected. The literature shows that natural disasters impact growth in the short term. But how quickly do countries recover? The outcomes are surprising, and they show how important social … [Read more...] about What Experiences with Natural Disasters Can Teach about Recovering from the Pandemic
It is no secret that in Latin America and the Caribbean, as in much of the world, women are less likely to be paid an equal wage or to be approved for a loan. This is shameful in and of itself. But it is difficult to know how much of the discrimination is due to structural factors and how much is simply a product of outright prejudice in male-dominated societies. In a recent … [Read more...] about How Gender Discrimination Stops Women from Getting Loans
The Covid-19 pandemic is different both in nature and in magnitude from the financial crises that have afflicted the region repeatedly in the past. However, the experience of previous crises can provide lessons to help make the recovery from the pandemic more vigorous. Specifically, we should learn from the successes of the Brady Plan of the 1990s, while avoiding the errors of … [Read more...] about Baker or Brady: Lessons of Past Financial Crises for the Pandemic Recovery