Of the full employment to more than three million unemployeds in just one week. The systemic shock of the coronavirus in the economy has begun to be quantified in the United States with the first data from job since the pandemic forced to severely restrict the country’s productive activity. According to work Department, 3.3 million Americans last week requested the unemployment benefit, a historical record, which quadruples the previous record recorded in 1982. Experts point out that the real figure is probably much higher because some of the websites and call centers available to request the benefit have collapsed in recent days due to the unusual traffic they have received. registered.
“It’s a butcher shop,” said University of Chicago economist Jacob Robbins. “And it will only make it worse.” The figure far exceeds what was seen during the Great Depression of the 30s of the last century and there are many economists who consider that the American economy has already entered informally into recession, even though not enough time has passed to chain two quarters of negative growth. The confinements of the population, the partial closure of borders and the measures of social distancing they have been fattened with important economic sectors such as restaurants, cinemas, gyms, airlines or hotels. Authorities fear that the sudden stop in activity will unleash a barrage of defaults due to the difficulties of a significant part of the population to face the payment of mortgages, university debt, credit cards or car letters.
Powell: USA, “could already be in recession”
The United States ended the month of February with a 3.5% unemployment, the lowest number in the last half century. The wages they had been increasing moderately for almost two years after a long period of stagnation. “We may already be in a recession & rdquor;, the president of the Federal Reserve said this morning, Jerome Powell. “The priority now is to control the virus in order to resume economic activity as soon as possible.” The Labor data does not include important sectors of the active population, such as freelancers, collaborative economy workers or students, who in many cases do not have the right to unemployment. The same is true of the millions of undocumented immigrants who work in the informal economy, from agriculture, to domestic service, restaurants or gardening.
“We have never seen such a drop before,” Keith Hall, economic adviser to the George Bush presidency, told the Wall Street Journal. “Not even during the Great Depression. It is as if we have entered a sudden Great recession& rdquor ;. Some economists predict that the number of unemployed could reach 40 million before May, a debacle that would be accompanied by a severe contraction of growth. The shining hecatomb unleashed by the covid-19 has forced Congress and the Federal Reserve to take extraordinary measures to inject liquidity into the pockets of Americans, businesses, and the financial system.
This past dawn the Senate passed the largest stimulus package in US history, a mammoth law to inject 2.2 trillion dollars In the economy. The law has yet to be processed in the House of Representatives to be endorsed by the president. Donald trump, but is expected to take effect before the end of the week. The stimulus includes direct payments to Americans, up to 1,200 per adult, as well as business loans or funds to strengthen the sanitary system.