Other Countries Are Spending More Than Us On Coronavirus Rescue Packages

Congress recently passed a $2.2 trillion rescue package to deal with the economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. How does that compare to what other countries are doing? Here’s a very rough answer:

These comparisons are hard to make since every country had different safety net provisions in place even before the pandemic. It’s also hard to directly compare different kinds of assistance. Usually, though, media reports converge on something like “_____ passed a package worth $_____” and that’s the number I used.

This suggests that the US is likely to need a further stimulus bill, perhaps another $1-2 trillion. Luckily, the normal Republican reluctance to help the economy during a Democratic administration no longer applies, and Donald Trump is desperate for the biggest spending package he can get. I doubt he even cares what’s in it.

Another thing worth noting for lefties who are concerned/outraged/disgusted over the $500 billion corporate bailout that was part of the rescue bill: nearly every other country is doing the same thing. (The hardy capitalist Swiss are the exception.) Like it or not, it probably needs to be done if we want our economy to be ready for a bounceback when the pandemic is finally over. And remember: they’re just loans. We’ll get the money back eventually.

HERE ARE THE FACTS:

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ONE MORE QUICK THING:

Our fall fundraising drive is off to a rough start, and we very much need to raise $250,000 in the next couple of weeks. If you value the journalism you get from Mother Jones, please help us do it with a donation today.

As we wrote over the summer, traffic has been down at Mother Jones and a lot of sites with many people thinking news is less important now that Donald Trump is no longer president. But if you're reading this, you're not one of those people, and we're hoping we can rally support from folks like you who really get why our reporting matters right now. And that's how it's always worked: For 45 years now, a relatively small group of readers (compared to everyone we reach) who pitch in from time to time has allowed Mother Jones to do the type of journalism the moment demands and keep it free for everyone else.

Please pitch in with a donation during our fall fundraising drive if you can. We can't afford to come up short, and there's still a long way to go by November 5.

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