In an earlier piece, I highlighted the vulnerable industries and the wealth effect of crashing stock markets worldwide. At this stage in our high-tech world, it is sad to think we need to create a global recession to control the virus. In what follows, I look in more detail at the coming recession in the U.S. and question what U.S. policies should be.
The U.S. civilian work force is 164.2 million, with 158.0 million employed and 6.2 million unemployed for a 3.8% unemployment rate. What is likely to happen during the virus period? The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports there are 16.6 million employed in the leisure and hospitality sector. There are also 15.6 million employed in retail trade, with an additional 12.1 million employed in food services and drinking places.
All together, this totals 44.3 million. They are mostly closed down. So assume somewhat optimistically that only 50% of the jobs in these sectors are lost. The jobs lost would total 22.1 million. That…