Last week, around three million people filed unemployment claims in the United States. This is what the Labor Department reported on Thursday. Thus, it brought the two-month tally to more than 36 million.
Since late March, the weekly count of new claims has been declining. Nevertheless, the Coronavirus pandemic caused job losses to continue to mount.
Michelle Meyer is head of the United States economics at Bank of America. She said that even with businesses reopening in some states, she doubts that callbacks to work will outnumber additional layoffs from other sectors. The slowdown has rippled beyond the early shutdowns in hospitality and retail to health care, professional business services, and manufacturing.
She added that it is a rolling shock, in some sense.
Jerome H. Powell is chair of the Federal Reserve. He said on Wednesday that Federal Reserve research being released on Thursday would show that in households making less than $40,000 a year, around 40 percent of those working in February lost their jobs in March.
Moreover, emergency federal relief and State unemployment insurance were supposed to tide households over during the shutdown. Nevertheless, several states are having a backlog of claims. Thus, applicants continue complaining of being unable to reach agencies of the overloaded country.
In early May, an online research firm, SurveyMonkey, held a poll for The New York Times. According to that poll, in recent weeks, more than half of those applying for unemployment benefits were unsuccessful.
There are signs that the global recovery from the pandemic of coronavirus will be painful and slow. Thus, on Thursday, global markets and United States stock futures fell.
The United States
The Federal Reserve chair Jerome H. Powell commented that the economy could be substantial in case American policymakers did not do more to support the economy. Thus, stocks dropped more than 2 percent. A day after, Wall Street was set to open slightly lower.
The United States government’s weekly report was about the number of workers that seek jobless benefits. Thus, the report showed that around 3 million people filed unemployment claims. It brought the total over the past two months above 36 million.
On Thursday, after a similarly dismal day in Asia, European stocks were about 3 percent lower.
The United States President Donald Trump had a combative-sounding tweet. Thus, markets had a reaction to this. Trump mentioned the temporary truce that Beijing and Washington struck in January, halting their nearly two-year trade war.
Prices for United States Treasury bonds tend to rise when investors are skittish. Thus, the rates were mostly higher. On futures markets, prices of oil were slightly more elevated. This was when the International Energy Agency reported a steadying in the oil markets.
Fatih Birol is the chief of the International Energy Agency. On Thursday, he said that he saw signs that things were gradually rebalancing in the oil market. The coronavirus pandemic ravaged the oil market. Nevertheless, the process of bringing supplies in line with demand was still fragile.
Mr. Birol discussed the monthly report of the agency. He said that this year would be most likely to be worst in the history of the oil market.
- Trading Instrument