10 million jobs out of the window
US initial jobless claims doubled to 6.65 million last week, from an already historically high 3.31 million the week before. This means that almost 10 million US workers have filed jobless claims in just two weeks. At this pace, nonfarm payrolls for April could reach 10 million as well, particularly since the March survey does not cover the past two weeks’ spike in initial jobless claims. This would send the US unemployment rate significantly north of 10%. Non-seasonal adjusted jobless claims were lower, at 5.82 million, yet today’s chart shows this number is just as unprecedented as the adjusted number. At this point, it is difficult to estimate how many of the lost jobs will be recouped once measures to contain the coronavirus are lifted, and what the permanent damage to the US economy will be. This strengthens our view that, for now, some caution on equity markets is warranted.
As a senior portfolio manager I use charts to illustrate financial issues every day. I tweet my favorites as @jsblokland and was named 'one of the 50 most important people for investors to follow in 2018' by MarketWatch.
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