What big skeletons and shortages of puppies have told us about the 2020 economy?

The result is often referred to as a ‘K-shaped economy’, in which the affluent rise rapidly, while those with less resources – and disproportionately black, Hispanic and female workers – experience the economic consequences of the pandemic. As the rich get richer and more mobile in the homework, they buy houses.

Many middle-class millennials who have lingered on the sidelines of the housing market for years have reported that the pandemic has hastened their buying plans. They were attracted by the Fed’s interest rate cuts tied to the pandemic, which made mortgage lending cheap, and by the possibility of more room.

Some millennials, who are exempted from office buildings by telecommuting arrangements, apparently aim for cities where single-family homes are relatively affordable – which some authors say are ‘Zoom’ towns. People about 21 to 40 years old, according to data from Ellie Mae, a mortgage software company, accounted for a large portion of the home loans in places like New Castle, Pa., And Frankfort, India. At the same time, rents have dropped in expensive cities like New York, San Francisco and Boston.

While people spent time at home, many decided to finally fix the back porch or renovate the garden – or to invest in stranger types of decor. The Home Depot and its competitors generally had a good year as America switched from spending to services to spending on goods as restaurants closed and distant vacations became off limits. But the home repair shop has seen the trend of goods-over-experiences on Halloween play out very well. The company offered a $ 300 giant skeleton that became a national sensation, sold out before October even began. People decorated the 12-foot frame for the holiday, to the delight of users on social media.

Skeletons are not the only domain where some Americans have decided that bigger might be better. A group of economists has been arguing for years that the United States is unnecessarily tackling its potential by trying to curb the federal deficit. They say resource constraints are the real limit on how much the U.S. government, which prints its own currency, can spend.

The idea – called modern monetary theory – attracted a lot of attention in 2020, especially as some Democratic presidential candidates promised comprehensive government spending programs. It even hit Hollywood. Actor and musician Ice Cube introduced in a tweet that America should be able to deal with problems like hunger and homelessness as it can squeeze cash. If the fans do not miss the point, he posts a follow-up photo from economist Stephanie Kelton’s book on theory, which appeared in 2020.

The well-known theory has many critics, and it clearly does not apply in Washington yet: deficits were central to the debate over a $ 900 billion aid package signed by President Trump on Sunday night. But the government’s debt increased rapidly during the year as Congress and the White House stepped in to quell the effects of the pandemic, so it looks like an era of greater spending is upon us.