The Journal Gazette
Wednesday, April 07, 2021 1:00 am


Vaccines to boost world economy

Staff, news services

The rollout of COVID-19 vaccines and vast sums of government aid will accelerate global economic growth to a record high this year in a rebound from the pandemic recession, the International Monetary Fund says in its latest forecast.

The 190-country lending agency said Tuesday it expects the world economy to expand 6% in 2021, up from the 5.5% it had forecast in January.

In 2022, the IMF predicts, international economic growth will decelerate to 4.4%, up from its January forecast of 4.2%.

The United States' economy is now forecast to expand 6.4% in 2021 and 3.5% in 2022.

The U.S. growth is being supported by President Joe Biden's $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package, while an acceleration in the administering of vaccines nationwide is beginning to let Americans in many states return to restaurants, bars and shops in larger numbers.

HUD low-income housing aid soars

Thanks to a pandemic-fueled mortgage boom, states will get nearly $700 million in federal grants from a special program for low-income housing, more than double the amount distributed last year.

It's a boost the Department of Housing and Urban Development says should produce a tangible leap forward in government low-income housing plans across the country.

The Housing Trust Fund, administered by HUD, will disburse the money to state governments for the construction, maintenance and restoration of low-income housing.

Each state must use 80% of each annual grant for rental housing, up to 10% for homeownership and the rest for administrative and planning costs.

The fund can be used by each state for acquisition, new construction, reconstruction or rehabilitation of properties.

Nominees sought for Torch Awards

The Better Business Bureau Serving Northern Indiana is accepting nominations for the 16th annual Torch Awards for Marketplace Ethics, officials announced Tuesday.

The Torch Awards are the premiere celebration of business ethics in northern Indiana, a news release said.

Businesses with exceptional ethics can nominate themselves or be nominated by an employee or member of the community.

All businesses, whether BBB accredited or non-accredited, are eligible to be nominated. Nominees must have been in business for at least one year, be A+ rated with the BBB and do business and reside in the local BBB's service area.

The deadline for nominations is July 7.

For more information, go online to or email

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