The chapter analyses Obama’s main ideas in the field of economics; his reaction to the great recession; and his policies about international economic relations, industry and innovation, environment, education, and health (Obamacare). Obama’s policy during the great recession was, for some aspects, a neo-Keynesian one. He used a mix of expansionary fiscal and monetary policies, which reduced the depth and length of the slump and favored the US economic recovery, while the EU austerity policy led to a longer and more severe recession in several EU countries. In several aspects, Obama’s policies on the support to banks, insurance and automobile industry and on innovation, environment, education, and health care were positive and far-sighted. However, the tough opposition of interest groups and the Republican party on budgetary and health-care problems strongly reduced the amplitude of his measures and reforms. Moreover, his policies could only attenuate, but not solve or effectively tackle, some basic structural problems of the US economy, such as the fast deindustrialization of the country, the structural deficit in the balance of current accounts, the impoverishment of a part of the middle class, and the rise of economic and social inequalities.
KeywordsObama’s ideas on economics Obama economic policies in the great recession Obama’s fiscal package Obama’s industrial and innovation policies Obama’s energy and environmental policies Obamacare
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