WASHINGTON (Reuters) – White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said on Monday there is no second wave of the coronavirus pandemic, even though there are some flare-ups in states such as Florida, and it is unlikely there will be widespread shutdowns across the country.
“There are some hotspots. We’re on it,” Kudlow said in an interview with CNBC. “We know how to deal with this stuff now. It’s come a long way since last winter and there is no second wave coming.”
Cities and states across the country this spring issued restrictive work-from-home and social distancing orders to try to slow the spread of the respiratory infection, keeping shoppers out of stores and driving up lay-offs. Then, as cases and deaths steadied or dropped in some places, some states that eased restrictions began to see a rise in infections, including Arizona and Florida that saw record numbers of new cases, generating fears about another chill to economic activity.
While the U.S. Congress has already passed three massive spending bills to support the economy and fight the novel coronavirus, it is working on another deal with the White House, which Kudlow said could be reached later this summer. The size of the new package, commonly called “Phase Four,” has not been determined and it may include state and local aid, Kudlow said. In general, he said, he would like any relief bill to move toward longer-term economic incentives.
(Reporting by Lisa Lambert and Susan Heavey; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)