22 Million Unemployed

Reopen the economy. It’s time for the carnage to end. How many of these people will die due to stress, lack of access to healthcare, suicide, etc.? How many more have their quality of life destroyed? These things matter. People getting sick and dying from Covid are important too, but they must not be the only people being considered when making public policy.

Protection measures against the coronavirus continued to tear through the employment ranks, with 5.245 million more Americans filing first-time claims for unemployment insurance last week, the Labor Department reported Thursday.

That brings the crisis total to just over 22 million, nearly wiping out all the job gains since the Great Recession.

The total was a bit worse than the 5 million expected from economists surveyed by Dow Jones.

Though the most recent count, for the week ended April 11, represented a drop from the previous two weeks, it showed that the damage to the U.S. labor market remains profound.

“As we fully know the current state of the labor market with mass waves of layoffs, the key question turns to how many of these people will be rehired when the economy starts to reopen,” said Peter Boockvar, chief investment officer at the Bleakley Group. “We can assume it will take a long time for that to happen but hopefully we’re getting closer to at least getting started.”