Stiglitz’s 2022 Predictions

December 17, 2021

What next year’s economy could look like.

The Roosevelt Rundown features our top stories of the week.

The Year Ahead

Last week, Roosevelt’s Mike Konczal and Emily DiVito looked back on the year the American Rescue Plan made.

This week, Roosevelt Chief Economist Joseph Stiglitz looks ahead to 2022—predicting how today’s trends may evolve in the new year, and how the currently delayed Build Back Better Act could drive prosperity for decades. 

“The labor market has been disrupted like never before, and some of the changes might prove permanent,” Stiglitz writes. “Workers are demanding more, and this may finally tilt the balance of power toward labor after four decades of capital taking an ever-larger share of the economic pie.”

But as Stiglitz warns, in the absence of further investment, “the waning effect of earlier fiscal measures enacted around the world to mitigate the pandemic’s economic fallout might lead to a weakening of growth.”

Enter the Build Back Better Act. 

“. . . over the medium term (and possibly even the short term), the supply-side measures embedded in US President Joe Biden’s Build Back Better agenda are likely to help sustain growth,” he writes. 

“More and better daycare facilities will enable more women to join the labor force; doing more to control the pandemic will reduce fears about working and reopening schools; and investments in better infrastructure will reduce the costs of moving goods and people.”

Learn more about the opportunities and threats 2022 could bring in Stiglitz’s “No Wiggle Room Ahead.”

Beyond Racial Liberalism

“[F]or the past 50 years, the fight for racial justice in our country has really been weakened by an individualistic, race-neutral, colorblind conception of access and opportunity within a society that has been largely dominated by neoliberal economics,” Roosevelt’s Kyle Strickland told Pitchfork Economics this week. 

[T]he colorblind approach to our politics and our policymaking not only does not work, but it actually continues to perpetuate the injustices that we see, and we need transformative solutions.”

Listen to the full podcast, in which Strickland discusses his recent Roosevelt report (co-authored with Roosevelt President and CEO Felicia Wong), A New Paradigm for Justice and Democracy: Moving beyond the Twin Failures of Neoliberalism and Racial Liberalism.

What We’re Reading

Your Pocketbook Is Ruled by This Agency, and It’s in the Middle of a Huge Fight [co-authored by Roosevelt’s Mehrsa Baradaran]New York Times

Allowing the Expanded Child Tax Credit to Expire Would Be a Major Mistake – Vox

Wall Street Is Close to Triggering a Climate Financial CrisisBloomberg

The Striking Race Gap in Corporate AmericaWashington Post