The ripple effect of COVID-19 on how we shop, work and shape our economy.
What To Know
America is the largest economy in the world & its influence is far-reaching.
Multiple economic reports this week reflect the statistical impact of COVID-19 on the U.S. economy.
Much of this data considered the first three months of 2020. Social distancing went into effect for only part of that period, in March.
What You Spend
A measure on consumer spending showed a significant drop in March – The biggest month-to-month drop on record.
Why It Matters: American spending fuels the overall U.S. economy. Economists estimate consumers are responsible for two-thirds or 70% of economic activity.
A measure of economic growth (GDP) showed a contracting or shrinking economy, rather than an expanding economy.
Why It Matters: Two consecutive quarters (a 3-month-period) of GDP commonly signals a recession. Before this drop, the U.S. had experienced the longest period of economic expansion in history.
The Job Market
More than 30M Americans have filed for unemployment in the last six week period.
Why It Matters: Jobs fuel spending, spending fuels the economy. One estimate shows 1 out of 5 workers impacted by COVID-19. While some may receive unemployment benefits, others may not and be excluded from these numbers.
Something To Consider
Economic data, in general, reflects the past – a snapshot in time.
By the time data shows a recession, America will have already been in it.
Likewise, a recovery won’t be noted until after it’s already underway.
April is the first full month the U.S. was under federal social distancing guidelines. A new jobs report will reveal the updated unemployment rate, considering April, on Friday, May 8th.
COVID-19 Making Masks The American Way: WATCH
COVID-19 And Your Money: READ
COVID-19 and Your Meat: READ
by Jenna Lee,