First Advisor

J. Forrest Williams

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Economics and University Honors






COVID-19 (Disease) -- Economic aspects -- United States, COVID-19 (Disease) -- Mortality -- United States, COVID-19 Pandemic (2020- ), United States -- Economic policy -- 21st century, COVID-19 (Disease) -- Government policy -- United States




This inquiry seeks to establish the degree to which economic stimulus measures impact COVID-19 mortality rates. There appears to be an inverse correlation between domestic social spending and COVID-19 deaths. While confirmed infections are the most reliable predictor of mortality rates, trust in government is an important factor to consider when public compliance with health directives determines the degree of epidemiological risk in each country. Although most economists agree that stimulus monies directed to low-income individuals to prevent financial collapse were appropriate, there is some dissention with regard to the type and size of such cash infusions. Nonetheless, behavioral economists believe that any such payments ought to be large enough to incentivize compliance with lockdown and other containment measures. The COVID-19 pandemic is a historic event that will doubtless be analyzed from every angle; this inquiry seeks to contribute to that growing body of literature in hopes of guiding policymakers in achieving optimal outcomes through governmental spending measures in future emergencies.


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