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Current Research

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Economists from around the world are using real time data collection to better understand the impact the Covid-19 crisis is having on families, workers, firms and society, and how policies can help the recovery out of the crisis. Find out more about how these research teams are carrying out their projects, and what their findings are below.

Staying home saves lives, really!

As coronavirus disease (Covid-19) is spreading around the world, many national and local governments have imposed social restrictive measures to limit the spread of the virus. Such quarantine measures in different cities across the world have brought...
Primary Topic: Crime & policing
Lead investigator: Soheil Shayegh

More than words: leaders’ speech and risky behavior during a pandemic

How do political leader’s words and actions affect people’s behavior? We address this question in the context of Brazil by combining electoral data and geo-localized mobile phone data for more than 60 million devices throughout the entire country...
Lead investigator: Nicolas Ajzenman

Covid-19 pandemic, public attention, and policy responses

Despite all countries being affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, the government's' responses have varied extensively in terms of speed, policy content, as well as the level of compulsion. We explore to what extent differences in the timing of...
Lead investigator: Cevat Giray Aksoy

On the effects of Covid-19 on online labour markets: empirical evidence from Europe

In online labour market platforms, projects can be posted and completed anywhere in the world. They are – intensified by Covid-19 – at the core of the debate about the future of work and the conditions under which we work online. Using unique com...
Lead investigator: Frank Mueller-Langer

Market reactions to the arrival and containment of Covid-19: an event study

We study the short-term market reactions of US and European stocks during the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic. Employing an event study, we document that stocks react significantly negative to the announcement of the first death in a given country...
Primary Topic: Business, big & small
Secondary Topic: Prices & interest rates
Lead investigator: Thomas Heyden

The economic effects of Covid-19 containment measures

Many countries around the world have implemented stringent containment measures to halt the spread of the 2019 coronavirus disease (Covid-19) and limit the number of fatalities. Though crucial to slow the course of the pandemic, these measures entail...
Lead investigator: Pragyan Deb

Human behaviour, cultural narratives and the economy during and after Covid-19

This project focuses on the Culture-Based Development (CBD) aspects of the effect of the Covid-19 pandemic. It analyses cultural biases created through narratives and conveying old social constructs that generate socio-economic inequalities during an...
Primary Topic: Inequality & poverty
Secondary Topic: Health, physical & mental
Lead investigator: Annie Tubadji

The cost of staying open: voluntary social distancing and lockdowns in the us

In combating the spread of Covid-19, some governments have been reluctant to adopt lockdown policies due to their perceived economic costs. Such costs can, however, arise even in the absence of restrictive policies, if individuals' independent r...
Primary Topic: Recession & recovery
Lead investigator: David Van Dijcke

The sooner, the better: the early economic impact of non-pharmaceutical interventions during the Covid-19 pandemic

The size of the economic shocks triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic and the effects of the associated non-pharmaceutical interventions have not been fully assessed because the official economic indicators have not been published. This paper provides e...
Primary Topic: Recession & recovery
Lead investigator: Asli Demirgüç-Kunt

Covid-19, lockdown and health: the role of air pollution

This paper studies the impact of a prefecture’s lockdown measure in China (Out-side Hubei province), in response to the outbreak of Covid-19, on its air pollution and Covid-19 related health outcomes. In doing that, we use a difference-in-differenc...
Primary Topic: Health, physical & mental
Lead investigator: Linyuan Huang

Social connections with Covid-19-affected areas increase compliance with mobility restrictions

We study the role of social connections in households’ responses to mobility restrictions imposed amid the Covid-19 epidemic, using aggregated and anonymized Facebook data on social connections and mobile phone data for tracking movement. Measured ...
Primary Topic: Inequality & poverty
Secondary Topic: Families & households
Lead investigator: Ben Charoenwong

Nowcasting (real-time estimates of) aggregate economic activity and financial stability risks using national payment system data during Covid-19 outbreak.

Our goal is to construct a reliable measure to estimate the economic activity and financial stability risk in real time. We use a unique dataset obtained from the National Payment System (NPS) of the Bank of Russia. Dataset is updated daily and conta...
Primary Topic: Business, big & small
Lead investigator: Anna Burova

Daily monitoring of economic activity in North America by electricity consumption

Amid the Covid-19 outbreak, governments across the globe mandated lockdowns that brought economic activity to an abrupt halt. In normal times, to gauge about the level of economic activity, policymakers consider an extensive set of macroeconomic data...
Primary Topic: Recession & recovery
Secondary Topic: Jobs, work, pay & benefits
Lead investigator: Tatjana Dahlhaus

NSF-rapid: the Job Posting in Recession and Recovery (JPRR) project

The Job Posting in Recession and Recovery project will develop near real time indicators of labor demand for new workers by occupation, geographic area, and firms using job postings downloaded daily from company websites by a job search engine. The p...
Lead investigator: Erling Barth

Job search during the Covid-19 crisis

This paper measures the job-search responses to the Covid-19 pandemic using real-time data on vacancy postings and ad views on Sweden's largest online job board. First, vacancy postings drop by 40%, similar to the US. Second, job seekers respond...
Lead investigator: Lena Hensvik

Belief in science influences physical distancing in response to Covid-19 lockdown policies

Physical distancing reduces transmission risks and slows the spread of Covid-19. Local and regional governments in the United States have issued shelter-in-place policies to mandate physical distancing. Yet compliance with these policies is uneven an...
Lead investigator: David Van Dijcke

The Covid-19 pandemic and sovereign bond risk

Governments around the world are tackling the Covid-19 pandemic with a mix of public health, fiscal, macroprudential, monetary, or market-based policies. We aim to quantify the impact on European sovereign CDS spreads of the pandemic and the policy m...
Primary Topic: Prices & interest rates
Secondary Topic: Trade & supply chains
Lead investigator: Alin Marius Andries

The impact of shutdown policies on unemployment during a pandemic

We use high-frequency Google search data, combined with data on the announcement dates of nonpharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) during the Covid-19 pandemic in U.S. states, to isolate the impact of NPIs on unemployment in an event-study framework. E...
Lead investigator: Edward Kong

The effects of working from home on Covid-19 infections and production – a macroeconomic analysis for Germany

We study the impact of confinement on infection risk and on the German economy. We first document that regions whose industry structure allows for a large fraction of work to be done at home also experienced much fewer Covid-19 cases and fatalities. ...
Primary Topic: Business, big & small
Secondary Topic: Jobs, work, pay & benefits
Lead investigator: Harald Fadinger

Be kind: domestic violence and mental health during a strict Covid-19 lockdown

The proposed study is going to exploit timing of a nationwide Covid-19 lockdown to estimate the impacts of social distancing on domestic violence incidents and mental health referrals using administrative data in New Zealand. To estimate local averag...
Primary Topic: Health, physical & mental
Secondary Topic: Crime & policing
Lead investigator: Kabir Dasgupta