Just How Bad Could a Coronavirus Recession Get?

Just How Bad Could a Coronavirus Recession Get?


Whether this week’s collapse of stock and oil prices will spiral into a much deeper economic crisis, perhaps even eclipsing that of 2008, depends on how the United States and other governments react.


The United States has now, belatedly, taken drastic actions on travel and announced some support for businesses. But these are too late to prevent the coronavirus from spreading and too little to stave off a deeper economic downturn.


Swamping the markets with liquidity, as was done in 2008, is not going to resolve the problem this time. The markets are already awash in cash, and as was again demonstrated in early March, further cuts in interest rates no longer translate into growth. What is needed now is leadership that focuses on the domestic challenges and seeks to build international cooperation — rather than scapegoating other countries.


Wide-ranging targeted interventions, including tax cuts for the lowest-income earners, would restore confidence and help working people and the businesses that could be devastated. However, national policies alone, adopted government by government, will not be enough to forestall a global catastrophe.


The world needs a coordinated economic response. Vulnerable governments that risk buckling under the strain of the pandemic require financial support to prevent the global health crisis from also becoming a financial crisis.



1.recession UK /rɪˈseʃən/ US /rɪˈseʃən/ n. 衰退(a difficult time when there is less trade, business activity etc in a country than usual)

2.collapse UK /kəˈlæps/ US /kəˈlæps/ n. 轰然倒下(if a building, wall etc collapses, it falls down suddenly, usually because it is weak or damaged);骤然下跌(a sudden decrease in the value of sth.)

3.spiral UK /ˈspaɪərəl/ US /ˈspaɪrəl/ vi. 急剧恶化(if a situation spirals, it gets worse, more violent etc in a way that cannot be controlled);螺旋上升或下降 Crime has spiraled out of control.


spiral n. 螺旋形

The company is in a downward spiral.


4.eclipse UK /ɪˈklɪps/ US /ɪˈklɪps/ vt. 使……相形见绌(overshadow) A eclipses B A使B相形见绌(A has become more important, powerful, famous etc than B so that B is no longer noticed)

The economy had eclipsed the environment as an election issue.


5.belatedly UK /bɪˈleɪtɪdli/ US /bɪˈleɪtɪdli/ adv. 晚出现地,迟来地;姗姗来迟地 belated adj. 迟来的(happening or arriving late)

a belated attempt 迟来的努力

belated recognition/realization 后知后觉

6.drastic UK /ˈdræstɪk/ US /ˈdræstɪk/ adj. 极端的,严厉的(extreme and sudden) drastic cuts in government spending


7.stave off 阻隔,延缓 She bought some fruit on the journey to stave off hunger.


8.downturn UK /ˈdaʊntɜːn/ US /ˈdaʊntɜːrn/ n. 下滑,低迷 a downturn in the auto industry


9.swamp UK /swɒmp/ US /swɑːmp/ vt. 淹没(overwhelm or flood with water) swamp … with … 用……淹没……

10.liquidity UK /lɪˈkwɪdəti/ US /lɪˈkwɪdəti/ n. 流动性 liquid n. 液体

11.awash UK /əˈwɒʃ/ US /əˈwɑːʃ/ adj. 泛滥的(containing too many things or people of a particular kind) awash with sth. = full of sth. 充满某物

All the pavements were awash with rubbish.


12.translate into 导致,造成(lead to)

13.scapegoat UK /ˈskeɪpɡəʊt/ US /ˈskeɪpɡoʊt/ vt. 使……成为替罪羔羊 scapegoat n. 替罪羔羊

14.devastate UK /ˈdevəsteɪt/ US /ˈdevəsteɪt/ vt. 毁灭,彻底摧毁(to damage something very badly or completely)

15.forestall UK /fɔːˈstɔːl/ US /fɔːrˈstɑːl/ vt. 阻止(to prevent something from happening or prevent someone from doing something by doing something first)

16.vulnerable UK /ˈvʌlnərəbəl/ US /ˈvʌlnərəbəl/ adj. 虚弱的,脆弱的(weak)

17.buckle UK /ˈbʌkəl/ US /ˈbʌkəl/ vi. 崩溃(used to describe a person who suffer a psychological collapse as a result of enormous stress or pressure)