Discussion Paper

Can Lessons from the Great Recession Guide Policy Responses to the Pandemic-Driven Economic Crisis?

Abstract: In a 1948 speech to the British House of Commons, Winston Churchill warned, "Those who fail to learn from history are condemned to repeat it." As the U.S. economy struggles to reopen safely and recover, what are the lessons from the Great Recession that might help guide how policymakers respond to the pandemic-driven economic crisis?1 What should we expect over the coming months and years as the nation struggles to restore its economy, which before the pandemic had finally achieved historically low unemployment levels? In June 2020, there is much that we do not know or would even attempt to predict. However, it is not too early to consider how our nation could respond to the crisis and how to avoid repeating the shortcomings of policy responses during and after the Great Recession.

Keywords: Great Recession; coronavirus;

JEL Classification: F62;


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Bibliographic Information

Provider: Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta

Part of Series: Workforce Currents

Publication Date: 2020-06-16

Number: 2020-05