15 de enero de 2021
ÚLTIMAS NOTICIAS:
English - News

US considering another stimulus package amid huge pandemic challenge

By Alfonso Fernandez

Washington, Jun 30 (efe-epa).- Top US economic authorities - Treasury Secretary and Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell - acknowledged on Tuesday in testimony before the House Financial Services Committee that given the enormous magnitude of the challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic it will be necessary to put together another fiscal stimulus package.

Saying that the Donald Trump administration is monitoring economic conditions closely, Mnuchin noted that certain sectors - like construction, are recovering quickly while others, like retail sales and travel, are feeling the long-term impact of the economic slowdown that could require additional aid.

"We are in a strong position to recover because the Trump administration worked with Congress on a bipartisan basis to pass legislation and provide liquidity to workers and markets in record time," Mnuchin told lawmakers, adding that the administration is ready to work with Congress in July to pass whatever legislation may be required.

On Wednesday, the current assistance package including additional funding for unemployment subsidies and hundreds of billions of dollars for small and medium businesses, expires, thus putting additional pressure on lawmakers amid a worsening pandemic situation.

The Fed cut interest rates to almost zero and launched a huge monetary stimulus program via liquidity injections and repurchasing of debt, while Congress in late March approved the largest fiscal aid package in US history, valued at more than $2.2 trillion.

Powell appeared along with Mnuchin, emphasizing that the road to US economic recovery is uncertain because a second wave of the coronavirus "could force people to withdraw" and "undermine public confidence which is what we need to get back to lots of kinds of economic activity that involve crowds."

"A full recovery is unlikely until people are confident that it is safe to re-engage in a broad range of activities," Powell said, adding that "the path forward will also depend on the policy actions taken at all levels of government to provide relief and to support the recovery for as long as needed."

The head of the US central bank added that the country has entered an important new phase earlier than expected, referring to the positive figures in recent weeks including a rise in consumer spending and the May unemployment report that was less negative than anticipated.

The appearance of the two officials comes amid a resurgence in Covid-19 infections across the US, with more than 40,000 daily cases being seen at present and a death toll that had topped 126,000, especially in the South and West during the process of gradually reopening the states' economies and easing up on restrictions imposed in late May to try and limit the spread of the coronavirus.

In fact, in several states, including heavily populated Texas and California, authorities have had to backpedal on their reopening plans given the recent spikes in infections there.

US economic activity was paralyzed for almost two months starting in mid-March due to the quarantine measures and movement restrictions to contain the virus.

The pandemic forced thousands of companies all around the country to close down temporarily or severely restrict their operations to hinder the spread of the virus, a situation that resulted in unemployment spiking from 3.5 percent at the beginning of this year to 14.7 percent in April, although in May it declined slightly to 13.3 percent.

The situation led - in the first quarter - to the biggest drop in GDP since the Great Recession more than a decade ago, a 5 percent decline in annualized terms.

EFE

Comentarios

Histórico de noticias
Argentina promulgates law making abortions easier to get

By Javier Castro Bugarin

Miami Beach holding festival showcasing tropical "Art Deco" legacy

By Ana Mengotti

Last year ties 2016 as hottest year in recorded history

Miami, Jan 14 (efe-epa).- Last year tied 2016 as the hottest year since records have been kept, according to a report published Thursday by NASA that...

Organized crime in Mexico selling fake Covid-19 vaccines

By Cristina Sanchez Reyes

Trump asks supporters to avoid violence before inauguration

(Updates with Trump's 2nd video statement)

Trump losing business support, putting future of his brand in danger

By Mario Villar

US Justice Dept. to charge several hundred in mob that invaded Congress

Washington, Jan 12 (efe-epa).- The US Department of Justice on Tuesday announced that it already has formally charged more than 70 people with assorted...

Brazil: China vaccine's 50.38 pct. effectiveness can halt pandemic

Sao Paulo, Jan 12 (efe-epa).- The anti-Covid vaccine developed by China's Sinovac pharmaceutical laboratory and which will be used and produced in Brazil is...

Congress calls for Trump impeachment despite Pence rejection

Update 1: Reworks lede, changes headline, adds info on impeachment attempt

US puts Cuba back on list of terrorism sponsors

Washington, Jan 11 (efe-epa).- The Donald Trump administration on Monday put Cuba back on the US list of sponsors of terrorism, from which that country had...

Twitter suspends more than 70,000 accounts sharing QAnon content

Washington, Jan 12 (efe-epa).- Twitter announced that it has suspended more than 70,000 accounts dedicated to sharing QAnon content following the attack on...

Buenos Aires: Argentine equine serum effective, safe for Covid-19 cases

Buenos Aires, Jan 11 (efe-epa).- The hyperimmune serum produced from horses in Argentina completed the last phase of its clinical studies and "demonstrated...

International tourism in Mexico down 45.6 pct. year-on-year in November

Mexico City, Jan 11 (efe-epa).- Mexico hosted 45.6 percent fewer international tourists last November than during the same month in 2019, with arrivals...

Mexico begins 2021 with legislative, economic battles with businessmen

By Pedro Pablo Cortes

Clamor growing for Trump to resign, but president remaining silent

By Alfonso Fernandez

Health brigades disinfecting Mexican homes

By Cristina Sanchez Reyes

Authorities investigating death of Miami MD who got virus vaccine

Miami, Jan 7 (efe-epa).- The Miami-Dade County Medical Examiner's Office is investigating the death of obstetrician-gynecologist Gregory Michael, who died...

Biden taps judge Obama tried to put on Supreme Court for US attorney general

Washington, Jan 7 (efe-epa).- President-elect Joe Biden announced Thursday his pick for US attorney general in his upcoming administration federal Judge...

Honduras needs 350K workers to harvest coffee during peak of season

Tegucigalpa, Jan 7 (efe-epa).- Honduras needs some 350,000 people to work temporarily helping bring in the 2020-2021 coffee harvest, which has been reduced...

Elon Musk surpasses Jeff Bezos as world's richest person

New York, Jan 7 (efe-epa).- The founder and CEO of Tesla, Elon Musk, on Thursday surpassed Amazon boss Jeff Bezos as the world's richest person, according...

Gigantic vulva sculpture sparks controversy in Brazil

By Waldheim Garcia Montoya

Powerful in Americas following "stay home" orders by going on vacation

By Claudia Polanco Yermanos

Three Kings Day buying in Mexico only at 50 pct. due to pandemic

By Miquel Muñoz

Brazil finds factor upping chance of being infected with UK virus strain

Rio de Janeiro, Jan 5 (efe-epa).- A group of Brazilian researchers has identified one of the factors that increases the possibility of infection by the...