Overseas Headlines – May 3, 2021

United States:

Biden’s Tax-and-Spend Plans Are Big, But Wealth Gaps Are Bigger

“President Joe Biden’s promise to start narrowing income and wealth gaps underpins every part of his economic program, from almost $4 trillion in spending plans to the biggest tax increase in a generation. But even these measures may struggle to make headway against the highest levels of inequality in the developed world. The U.S. wealth divide widened further during the pandemic, as the top 1% of households added $4 trillion in net worth.”



Europe Is Casting Aside Double-Dip Slump as Growth Restarts

“Europe’s economy is finally turning the corner from its worst crisis in the postwar period after a devastating double-dip recession. Grim confirmation on Friday of another slump in the first quarter still failed to dim prospects for the region that are as bright as they have been since the pandemic struck, with European Union-funded multi-year stimulus plans also finally taking form last week, and a growth pickup probably already under way.”



Hong Kong Ends Record Slump With Fastest Growth in a Decade

“Hong Kong’s economy finally turned the corner, posting its fastest growth since 2010 as the city makes a stronger recovery from the pandemic and social unrest before that. After declining for a record six quarters, gross domestic product surged 7.8% in the first quarter from a year earlier, advance data showed Monday, beating all estimates in a Bloomberg survey of economists. While that’s partly distorted by the low base a year ago when the economy was in lockdown, the quarter-on-quarter expansion, a better reflection of growth momentum, also outperformed, reaching 5.3%, well above an estimate of 0.7%.​”




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