Builders and Manufacturers Could Lead This Recovery

October 5, 2020
Justin Fox - Bloomberg

Time to Make Some Stuff

The bounce-back from the pandemicession is still pretty tentative, and Friday morning’s jobs report may give us a better sense of just how tentative. But construction and manufacturing are already looking strong, writes Conor Sen, raising the possibility that this will be the first recovery in a long, long time to be led by the goods-producing sectors. That’s welcome news because it could mean big job gains even as other parts of the economy continue to be held back by Covid-19.

The housing market is booming because people who figure they’ll be working from home a lot need more space. With the supply of available houses on the low side even before the pandemic, that’s good news for those who know how to build them. Meanwhile, things are looking up for U.S. manufacturers due to a combination of pent-up consumer demand and a weak dollar. And though that weak dollar is frustrating for policy makers in the euro zone, argue Mark Gilbert and Marcus Ashworth, they need to resist the urge to start a currency war that could derail the global recovery.


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