The coronavirus is still in the beginning. The U.S. economy has already eliminated 700,000 jobs in March. The Bureau of Labor Statistics announced the unsurprising news on Friday. The unemployment rate has now increased to 4.4%.
The stats are just a glance of the economic toll the pandemic is having on the country. The jobs report comes after weekly jobless claims have increased to 10 million over the last two weeks.
“The changes in these measures reflect the effects of the coronavirus (COVID-19) and efforts to contain it,” the bureau wrote. The service industry which includes food and bar establishments. The hospitality industry saw more than 400,000 job losses, which also highlighted declines employment in retail, health care, construction, professional services, and social assistance.
Justin Wolfers, an economics professor at the University of Michigan, warned that because data was gathered three weeks ago, the true unemployment figures are actually “much worse.”
That’s why the Labor Department had reported a record-breaking 3.3 jobless claims in the week ending on March 21, only for that figure to get eclipsed the following week with a staggering 6.6 million claims.
The steep plunge in employment marks the end of an almost decade-long run of job creation.
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