Hope, yes, but "it's very easy to oversell" what easing we are seeing in the economic fallout from Covid-19, says regional economist Bill LaFayette.
Slivers of hope that the economic devastation caused by Covid-19 was easing began to appear in early May, when initial and continuing unemployment claims as a percentage of the 2019 average labor force started falling.
You can see that trend in the Breakdown graphic from the June issue of Columbus CEO here.
Meanwhile, in a report released May 15, the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia said forecasters predicted a faster recovery than some had anticipated starting in the third quarter and continuing into Q2 of next year.
“But of course nobody really knows because we just don’t have the numbers yet,” says Columbus economist Bill LaFayette, owner of Regionomics, noting that the University of Michigan’s consumer confidence index looked abysmal. “The unemployment numbers are small, tiny green shoots of recovery, and it’s very easy to oversell that. The numbers themselves are really awful numbers that we have never seen before, which kind of goes without saying.”
Sources: Ohio Labor Market Information Bureau, Employment and Training Administration, U.S. Department of Labor and Regionomics LLC