September 2021

Post n°229
Published on 09/28/2021

By Nicolas Chatelais

In 2020, the fall in GDP was less pronounced in the United States than in Europe. The restrictions on activity and travel – both imposed and voluntary - linked to the fight against the pandemic, which were greater in France/Italy/Spain, account for more than 40% of the gap with the United States. This factor was amplified by the difference in sectoral specialization (US digital advantage, weight of tourism in Europe). The difference in the level of fiscal support explains less than 20% of the gap.

Chart 1: Factors explaining the gap in GDP variation between the United States and Europe in 2020
Chart 1: Factors explaining the gap in GDP variation between the United States and Europe in 2020 Sources: IMF, national, author’s calculations