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While many experts are forecasting a speedy recovery, the reality is that this economic collapse will not be offset so easily, and that unemployment and the threat of extended lockdowns will continue to take an economic toll in the weeks and months ahead.
In this video, we are going to tell you just what to make of all this apparent good news, and the ways in which the data is incomplete or inaccurate. The official data released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics makes it seem as though only 17.75 million Americans are currently unemployed, but the number of Americans that are filing continuing claims for unemployment flies directly in the face of that statistic.
It is important to consider the primary cause for such a dramatic payroll increase. The number of Americans who were listed as “temporarily laid off” dropped by 4.8 million last month to a new total of 10.6 million, which means many employees were able to return to work as lockdowns lifted. This added onto a decrease in May of 2.7 million, signaling building momentum in the right direction. At the same time, however, permanent job losses actually increased in June when compared to the numbers from May. That figure jumped by 588,000 to a total of 2.883 million, marking the highest level in over six years.
Furthermore, the number of new filings for unemployment benefits again exceeded expectations, with 1.427 million claims recorded despite more moderate predictions of 1.38 million.
Continuing unemployment claims actually increased by 59,000 to 19.3 million, a sign that the pandemic is continuing to exert pressure on the economy. This is not an indication of a recovery in any way.
It is absurd that economists are continuing to tout a recovery even as the unemployment levels, although they are experiencing some improvement, continue to dwarf anything before experienced in American history.
The official data released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics makes it seem as though only 17.75 million Americans are currently unemployed, but the number of Americans that are filing continuing claims for unemployment flies directly in the face of that statistic.
As ZeroHedge.com noted, this exposes a serious discrepancy in the government data. While the Department of Labor reported that 19.29 American workers were on unemployment benefits, the Bureau of Labor Statistics released a figure that put the total number of unemployed workers at only 17.75 million. It just doesn’t add up. Going back over 50 years of data, the number of those on unemployment insurance has consistently been smaller than the total number of those without jobs, as it should be. That instantly undermines any credibility these new statistics claim to have.
Now, however, a second series of lockdowns is on its way, or at least a significant slowdown in the process of reopening. July will be a test of whether or not these spikes in cases can be managed efficiently and effectively enough to prevent further economic woes.
In fact, the restrictions may not be the only risk to the economy. When unemployment benefits expire at the end of July, that will be more than enough to push the US to new lows as citizens struggle to pay bills and buy groceries, let alone stimulate the economy through restaurant visits or hotel stays.
Already, it’s not looking good, as data compiled by Federal Reserve officials, economists, cell phone tracking companies, and employee time management firms indicates that economic activity has already begun to slow back down. Consumer confidence dipped also again last week, and foot traffic at retail locations experienced a downturn for the first time since early April. It might be smart to anticipate some rather bleak economic numbers to come out by the end of this month.
Americans are certainly feeling the anxiety and pessimism associated with negative news regarding both the health crisis and the economy. In a recent Gallup poll conducted from June 22-28, 65 percent of US adults said that the pandemic situation was getting worse, an increase of 48 percent from last week.
Moreover, 74 percent now expect the level of disruption to travel, school, work, and public events across the country to last through the end of this year (37 percent) or beyond (37 percent). In early May surveys, the number of Americans who thought the situation would go on for so long was less than half of the population.
During that time, around 40 million Americans lost their jobs, and at least 20 million of those remain unemployed to this day. Furthermore, income in the US fell to such low levels that federal tax revenues plummeted by over 50 percent year over year in April.
With high unemployment figures and serious uncertainty on the part of both consumers and businesses still plaguing the United States, we should prepare for the coming economic depression.
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