NBER

Julia Leather

Department of Economics
Nottingham University
Department of Economics, Nottingham University
United Kingdom

E-Mail: EmailAddress: hidden: you can email any NBER-related person as first underscore last at nber dot org
Institutional Affiliation: Nottingham University

NBER Working Papers and Publications

June 2020Economic Uncertainty Before and During the COVID-19 Pandemic
with David Altig, Scott R. Baker, Jose Maria Barrero, Nicholas Bloom, Philip Bunn, Scarlet Chen, Steven J. Davis, Brent H. Meyer, Emil Mihaylov, Paul Mizen, Nicholas B. Parker, Thomas Renault, Pawel Smietanka, Greg Thwaites: w27418
We consider several economic uncertainty indicators for the US and UK before and during the COVID-19 pandemic: implied stock market volatility, newspaper-based economic policy uncertainty, twitter chatter about economic uncertainty, subjective uncertainty about future business growth, and disagreement among professional forecasters about future GDP growth. Three results emerge. First, all indicators show huge uncertainty jumps in reaction to the pandemic and its economic fallout. Indeed, most indicators reach their highest values on record. Second, peak amplitudes differ greatly – from a rise of around 100% (relative to January 2020) in two-year implied volatility on the S&P 500 and subjective uncertainty around year-ahead sales for UK firms to a 20-fold rise in forecaster disagreement abo...

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