Infrastructure Bill’s Boost to Economy Is Likely to Be Limited
WASHINGTON—The bipartisan infrastructure bill is unlikely to have a big impact on growth in the next few years, economists say. Longer term, though, investments in highways, ports and broadband could make the economy more efficient and productive.
The short-term boost to growth will be relatively limited for two reasons, economists say. For one, the bill represents just $550 billion in new spending—compared with nearly $6 trillion that Congress has approved in the past year-and-a-half to battle the Covid-19 pandemic and its economic fallout.
Second, the infrastructure spending will take place over five to 10 years starting in 2022, a longer timeline than pandemic-era initiatives like stimulus checks, extra unemployment benefits and small-business support programs. That will make its direct effects on employment and demand less noticeable.