For the sixth consecutive week, a very high number (3.8 millions) of Americans filed for first-time unemployment. Three weeks before, initial jobless claims had jumped to 6.6 millions, and in the week after Easter, the number was at 4.4 millions. Since the middle of March, a total of around 30 million persons registered for jobless benefits.
Here is the report by the U.S. Department of Labor:
In an another report, the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) published a preliminary estimate for the size of the contraction of GDP in the first quarter of 2020. According to their numbers, GDP shrank by 4.8 percent in the first quarter (annualized). In the second quarter, the contraction of economic activity will be even more dramatic. One should expect a contraction of annualized 30 to 40 percent.
Here is the report by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA):
A so-called V-shaped recovery (so high economic growth after some of the measures to slow the spread of the coronavirus are lifted) is increasingly unlikely, but not completely unrealistic. I expect a subdued recovery. As I mentioned earlier, serious economic forecasts are not possible at the moment. I hope that next week, I might be in a position to attempt a preliminary assessment of the macroeconomic situation.