Europe’s Top Virus Repellers Can’t Dodge Pandemic’s Economic Hit

The European Union’s eastern wing outshone the west in containing Covid-19. The economic hit, however, is proving harder to dodge, Bloomberg News reported. Early social-distancing measures and speedy lockdowns helped minimize loss of life as fatalities in the likes of Spain and the U.K. soared. Boasting the bloc’s fewest deaths per capita was Slovakia, which closed its schools, shops and borders earlier than all member-states bar Italy. Slovakia, however, is at the wrong end of the economic rankings. While cheap labor and membership of the euro area has turned the nation of 5.4 million people into a buzzing hub for auto production, that rapidly became a disadvantage as lockdowns sapped global demand for cars and disrupted cross-border supply chains. Plunges in employment and gross domestic product aren’t much better than the countries worst-hit by the virus. Read more