Economics

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Economics is a discipline concerned with the consumption, production, and transfer of wealth by and among individuals (microeconomics) and communities or nations (macroeconomics); subspecialties range from economic development and planning to health economics and international economic relations. RAND's many economists contribute to multidisciplinary research projects by exploring the intersections where economics informs social, military, and governmental policy decisions.

  • Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, U.S. President Donald Trump, and UAE Foreign Minister Abdullah bin Zayed sign the Abraham Accords in Washington, September 15, 2020, photo by Tom Brenner/Reuters

    Report

    The Abraham Accords Could Have Wide-Reaching Economic Benefits

    Mar 18, 2021

    The Abraham Accords between Israel and Muslim nations represent a possible new chapter in the region's development—away from conflict and toward a shared vision of economic prosperity. Israel's partners could gain 150,000 new jobs. And that could grow to 4 million new jobs over a decade if other nations join.

  • Game pieces atop stacks of coins of various heights, depicting income inequity, photo by Andrii Zastrozhnov/Getty Images

    Research Brief

    A New Approach to Measuring Income Inequality

    Apr 30, 2021

    A new method for measuring income inequality reveals that, from 1975 to 2018, the only group for which actual income gains exceeded U.S. GDP growth was the group near the 99th percentile of income distribution.

Explore Economics

  • Tables are marked off at J. Christopher's restaurant that now offers dine-in service on April 27, 2020 in Decatur, Georgia.

    Multimedia

    The Health and Economic Tradeoffs of Reopening America

    In this Call with the Experts podcast, RAND researchers consider the health and economic effects of relaxing social distancing restrictions.

    May 1, 2020

  • Protesters calling for rent payments to be canceled amid the outbreak of COVID-19, in Washington, D.C., April 25, 2020, photo by Erin Scott/Reuters

    Commentary

    Coronavirus and the Looming Crisis in Rental Housing

    Housing security is vital to individual and collective well-being. It's also a key component in the nation's economic performance. The looming coronavirus eviction crisis suggests the need to address the systemic problem of housing affordability and security now.

    Apr 30, 2020

  • The Pentago, in Arlington, VA, photo by Stocktrek Images/Getty Images

    Commentary

    Be Wary of Proposals for Less Defense Budget Transparency

    The Pentagon has asked Congress to end the requirement that it make public an unclassified version of the Future Years Defense Program—the department's budget plans for at least the next five years. Although some information needs to be classified, the value of transparency for public debate and oversight in a democracy outweighs the marginal intelligence gains to U.S. adversaries.

    Apr 29, 2020

  • Commercial trucks cross over the Ambassador Bridge at the international border crossing during the COVID-19 outbreak, in Detroit, Michigan, March 18, 2020, photo by Rebecca Cook/Reuters

    Commentary

    Supply Chain Disruptions Due to COVID-19 and Social Distancing

    There are significant epidemiological and economic risks and uncertainties with physical distancing policies put into effect in the United States to reduce the growth of COVID-19. We have estimated the economy-wide impacts of a set of these policies to provide a sense of their likely economic toll.

    Apr 28, 2020

  • Russian President Vladimir Putin takes part in a video link, held by leaders from the Group of 20 to discuss the coronavirus pandemic and its economic impacts, at his residence outside Moscow, Russia, March 26, 2020, photo by Alexei Druzhinin/Sputnik Photo Agency/Reuters

    Commentary

    How the Global Community Can Cooperate to Defeat COVID-19 and Recover

    The G20 met in an extraordinary virtual summit March 26 to discuss the shared global challenge of COVID-19. G20 countries could show the way for the rest of the world to cooperate on present challenges and prepare for public policy challenges moving forward.

    Apr 28, 2020

  • Residents carry boxes of free groceries distributed at a pop-up food pantry by the Massachusetts Army National Guard in Chelsea, Massachusetts, April 24, 2020, photo by Brian Snyder/Reuters

    Commentary

    The Second Wave of COVID Consequences

    Economists closely watch measures of consumer confidence because they are highly predictive economic indicators. New consumer data reveals likely long-term and prolonged economic fallout.

    Apr 24, 2020

  • New York Governor Andrew Cuomo speaks during a COVID-19 news conference at the Javits Center, New York City, March 27, 2020, photo by Jeenah Moon/Reuters

    Q&A

    Who Calls the Shots During a Pandemic, the U.S. Government or States? Q&A with RAND Experts

    The tension between the federal government and state and local authorities has highlighted a fundamental challenge of fighting the COVID-19 pandemic: Who's in charge?

    Apr 16, 2020

  • Coronavirus Pandemic Causes Climate Of Anxiety And Changing Routines In America

    Multimedia

    Who Has Jurisdiction Over a Pandemic, the U.S. Government or States?

    RAND experts discuss the recent buildup of tensions between the federal government and state and local authorities. When it comes to planning for and fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, who's in charge?

    Apr 15, 2020

  • Temporary closed signage is seen at a store in Manhattan following the outbreak of COVID-19, in New York City, March 15, 2020, photo by Jeenah Moon/Reuters

    Commentary

    The Danger of Converting a Health Crisis into a Financial Crisis

    The impulse to do something to help businesses right now is well-intended, but lending to companies that were highly leveraged pre-crisis is a risky bet. Assistance could be best directed toward sound enterprises that are likely to survive and contribute to boosting the economy in the coming years.

    Apr 13, 2020

  • An aerial view of the Pentagon building in Washington D.C., June 15, 2005, photo by Jason Reed/Reuters

    Commentary

    Defense Budget Implications of the COVID-19 Pandemic

    The COVID-19 pandemic is taking a dramatic toll on the U.S. economy. This could have significant medium-term implications for the U.S. defense budget. The U.S. Department of Defense will need to find efficiencies that are of at least the same magnitude as the recent sequestration.

    Apr 7, 2020

  • Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Chinese Vice President Wang Qishan hit a gong at the fourth Israel-China Joint Committee on Innovation Cooperation meeting in Jerusalem, October 24, 2018, photo by Ronen Zvulun/Reuters

    Report

    Security Risks of China's Investments in Israel

    Chinese investments in Israeli high-tech companies and major infrastructure projects present distinct concerns for Israel and the United States. They could lead to leaks of sensitive technology and cyberespionage. And these risks could affect the U.S.-Israel relationship.

    Apr 7, 2020

  • People wait in line to file for unemployment following an outbreak of COVID-19 at an Arkansas Workforce Center in Fort Smith, Arkansas, April 6, 2020, photo by Nick Oxford/Reuters

    Commentary

    Millions Need Unemployment Benefits. Unfortunately, the Delivery System Is Broken

    More than 10 million Americans filed for unemployment insurance in March as businesses closed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Washington's stimulus package enacted welcome measures to tide people over, but these temporary fixes don't address some serious structural problems.

    Apr 6, 2020

  • The U.S. Navy hospital ship Comfort passes the Statue of Liberty as it enters New York Harbor during the COVID-19 outbreak, March 30, 2020, photo by Mike Segar/Reuters

    Commentary

    After COVID-19: America Needs to Reengage with the World, Not Retreat

    The COVID-19 pandemic should lead to a further strengthening of the national and international response capacity. The alternative of erecting barriers and closing America off to the world would leave it more vulnerable to the next big shock.

    Apr 1, 2020

  • An empty market after a curfew was imposed to halt the spread of COVID-19 in the holy city of Najaf, Iraq, March 18, 2020

    Commentary

    Economic Consequences of COVID-19 in the Middle East: Implications for U.S. National Security

    The global COVID-19 pandemic will have a dramatic effect on economies across the globe. But the Middle East may be particularly affected, given the simultaneous fall in oil prices. The economic consequences of this pandemic are also likely to affect U.S. interests in the region.

    Apr 1, 2020

  • People walk around an almost empty Grand Central Terminal as the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak continues in New York City, U.S., March 29, 2020, photo by Eduardo Munoz/Reuters

    Commentary

    On the Horns of the COVID-19 Dilemma

    COVID-19 poses two dire threats to the United States: the potential deaths of many thousands of Americans, and the devastation of the $22 trillion annual economy. Protecting the health of as many people as possible by shutting down ordinary life seems completely justifiable, but that necessarily inflicts damage to the economy. This is truly a dilemma.

    Mar 30, 2020

  • Blog

    COVID-19 and the Economy, America's Blood Supply, 10 Years of the ACA: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on COVID-19 and the economy, strengthening the U.S. blood supply, 10 years of the Affordable Care Act, and more.

    Mar 27, 2020

  • U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and U.S. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer meet with Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin to wrap up work on coronavirus economic aid legislation, Washington, D.C., March 20, 2020, photo by Mary F. Calvert/Reuters

    Q&A

    The Economic Wallop of COVID-19: Q&A with RAND Experts

    As Washington continues to weigh economic responses to the COVID-19 pandemic, here are insights from RAND experts on how aid money might be best allocated, how this crisis compares to the 2008 recession, what business communities can do right now, and more.

    Mar 26, 2020

  • Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a meeting with public members in Sevastopol, Crimea March 18, 2020, photo by Alexei Druzhinin/Reuters

    Commentary

    Russia's Ties with the West Rhyme

    With Vladimir Putin seeking constitutional changes that could allow him to stay as president until the 2030s, Russia's strained relations with the West may persist. But if it chooses, Russia can chart a more dynamic future with closer Western ties.

    Mar 23, 2020

  • NYSE Closes Trading Floor, Moves To Fully Electronic Trading Amid Coronavirus Pandemic

    Multimedia

    The Economic Impacts of COVID-19

    In this Call with the Experts podcast, RAND researchers discuss the impacts the COVID-19 outbreak might have on the global economy and consider policy actions that could be taken to help facilitate rapid economic recovery.

    Mar 23, 2020

  • Blog

    Experts Discuss COVID-19: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on COVID-19, how the United States is responding to the coronavirus outbreak, the spread of misinformation during this time, and more.

    Mar 20, 2020