Roger Farmer's picture
Affiliation: 
University of Warwick
Credentials: 
Professor of Economics

Voting history

Lockdowns and UK Economic Performance

Question 3: Using not only the policy tools that have been part of the UK policy mix thus far but also policy tools implemented in other countries, to what extent does the government face a tradeoff between saving lives and preserving livelihoods? 

Answer:
Large tradeoff
Confidence level:
Very confident
Comment:
For better or worse, there is a difficult tradeoff here. The lives saved are predominantly the elderly and the sick. The livelihoods preserved are predominantly the poor and the young. I would add that lockdowns do not just affect livelihoods, they contribute to deaths through despair, suicide, and faliure to access medical care for otherwise treatable conditions.

Question 2: How much will the new lockdown measures introduced on Thursday November 5 hurt UK economic activity this year relative to a counterfactual with the milder measures adopted over the summer?

Answer:
Large damage
Confidence level:
Confident
Comment:
Large ... medium small? That's hard to assess. What is clear is that economic activity will be lower as a a consequence and the incidence will fall disproportionately on the poor.

Question 1: How much of the decline in GDP experienced to date would have been avoided in the absence of any lockdown measures or other policy interventions (such as fiscal support)?

Answer:
A substantial portion or the entire decline
Confidence level:
Extremely confident
Comment:
The incidence of Covid falls almost entirely on the elderly. At the risk of being misinterpreted the elderly do not contribute substantially to GDP. This is NOT a moral judgement of any kind. It is a statement of fact.

Should the ECB Reformulate its Inflation Objective?

Question 3: Which of the following best reflects your opinion on the following statement? “The ECB should explicitly recognize unemployment and/or economic growth as a secondary aim, secondary to its price stability mandate.”

Answer:
Neither agree nor disagree
Confidence level:
Extremely confident

The Economic Cost of School Closures

Question 3: To what extent will school closures increase gender inequality due to unequal gender distribution of the burden of school closures?

Answer:
To a small degree but persistently
Confidence level:
Confident
Comment:
I could foresee that reallocations of household tasks and gender based reallocations in corporate structures might have persistent effects on the way that adults choose to spend their time.

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