The U.S. economy has lost a staggering 20.5 million jobs in April, by the novel coronavirus
The Labor Department’s closely watched monthly employment report on Friday also showed the unemployment rate surging to 14.7% last month, which is more than post-World War Two record of 10.8% in November 1982.
Though many of the jobs are likely to be recouped as large parts of the country reopen, the labor market carnage spells trouble for President Donald Trump’s bid for a second term in the White House in November’s election. The Trump administration has been criticized for its initial reaction to the pandemic.
Close to 76,000 COVID-19 deaths have been recorded in the United States, with confirmed infections nearing 1.3 million, according to a Reuters tally. With an eye on the Nov. 3 election,
Trump is pushing to reopen the economy even as health experts are issuing dire projections of deaths.
The jaw-dropping job losses in the last two months pushed nonfarm employment to its lowest level since February 2011. Job losses were across the board, with leisure and hospitality industry payrolls plunging 7.7 million. Restaurants and bars accounted for nearly three-quarters of the decline.
Ironically, healthcare employment declined by 1.4 million jobs, with decreases at offices of dentists, doctors, other health practitioners and hospitals.
Dentists have closed offices, while general practitioners and hospitals have seen a reduction in patient visits as people stay at home in fear of contracting the highly contagious virus. Hospitals
have also suspended elective surgeries to focus on the treatment of COVID-19 patients.
It’s our hope that the virus spread goes down for national lockdown to ease for the US economy to bounce back in earners.