A service of the

Editorial

What Europe Expects of Post-Merkel Germany

Europe expects Germany’s likely new Chancellor, Olaf Scholz, to keep the Union together while adding more strategic vision to fight climate change, transform the European economy and navigate global politics. Scholz and his “traffic light” government will need a more strategic vision for Germany and Europe than the Merkel governments, but the same ability to find compromise and common European positions on thorny political issues. Merkel had a challenging decade of crisis to manage in her final terms. Scholz will not have it any easier.

Gender Gaps

COVID-19 and OECD Labour Markets

While the full impact of the COVID-19 crisis on jobs for both men and women is still playing out, the pandemic has definitely increased the burden of unpaid work, particularly on women. Monika Queisser looks at key indicators such as employment and unemployment rates as well as labour force participation to help determine the best policies to reduce risks of increasing gender inequalities and support the labour market participation of women.

Letter from America

Fulfilling U.S. Commitments to Its Afghan Allies

The world watched in horror as the Taliban marched into Kabul in August creating a panic-stricken exodus attempt by thousands of Afghans. While the U.S. did manage to evacuate 124,000 people before its final departure, it fell short of its goal of rescuing those who risked their lives to work for their mission. The United States now needs to honor its commitment to its Afghan allies and not only support their path to stability within the U.S., but also assist those allies it left behind, writes Julia Gelatt.

Editor's Choice

Fiscal Stimulus

Too much blood in terms of unemployment and sweat in terms of intellectual effort have been spent trying to determine the amount of fiscal space that economies have. Our policy focus instead, writes Adam S. Posen, should be on what to do with the fiscal space that almost all advanced economies (and a surprising number of emerging market economies) actually have.

Forum

The Impact of COVID-19 on Gender Equality in Europe

Gender differences in the labour market impacts of the pandemic pose new challenges to gender equality. In the absence of targeted policies to tackle these challenges, even the progress made thus far to narrow the gender gap is at risk of being rolled back. Has the pandemic created a “she-cession” adversely affecting women’s employment status? Has the pandemic also opened up new opportunities to correct structural gender inequalities? Which policies and company practices could help to achieve a more gender-equal recovery? The contributions in this Forum shed light on the pandemic’s direct effects on women and gender equality.

Euro area

Inflation Risk?

Inflation is on the rise again in the industrialised world. This has led to fears of a sustained surge in inflation. Paul de Grauwe argues that while such fears may make sense in the US, they do not in the eurozone, where the monetary-fiscal policy mix has been much less expansionary than in the US. The fear expressed by some that the monetary overhang from the large injections of liquidity through quantitative easing might lead to inflation in the eurozone does not stand up to scrutiny either.