The steps taken in the US to counter the destruction of incomes and output caused by the Covid-19 lockdowns must be regarded as a resounding success. Real US output is now ahead of pre-Covid levels. By the end of the year GDP may well have surpassed that which may have been expected without the lockdowns.

It took lots of income relief — cheques in the post from Uncle Sam — supplemented by generous unemployment benefits and relief for businesses. The extra income means extra deposits with the US banks, to be spent later or exchanged for other financial assets: real estate, bitcoin or precious metals...

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