In early March, most economists expected the U.S. to take only a mild knock from the coronavirus. But in a sign of the pandemic’s scale and speed, many of those same experts are now warning that growth could fall by double-digits. The Federal Reserve of St. Louis estimates the nation’s jobless rate could hit a staggering 32% within months.
That would far exceed the high-water mark for unemployment during the Great Depression, when it reached 25% in 1933, four years after the stock market collapsed.
Now, the country’s gross domestic product — the monetary value of all goods and services — could fall as much as 40% on an annual basis, according to Capital Economics.