Effects on the Economy has Divided Our Nation

May states are considering reopening their economy, due to the unemployment rate increase, but it might be too soon.

Effects on the Economy has Divided Our Nation

Natasha Kaimakis, Reporter

With COVID-19, the United States economy is falling into pieces. With more and more layoffs, the government is supporting more of its citizens. Even though this is repeated history, America is still not ready for the repercussions of this pandemic. 

Unemployment has historically been an issue for the United States. But since this crisis, it has only increased. At the beginning of the year, unemployment was only 3.6%. Just in the first week of May, it has skyrocketed to 16.5%. Even though this does not seem like much, in reality, it is 20.5 million people. It has not reached this level since the Great Depression in 1933. But even after, it still remained high until 1944. During the Great Depression, 24.5% of Americans were unemployed. The highest it has ever been. 

So how does unemployment affect the overall economy? With people earning less or nearly none, they are going to be spending less money on non-essential things. Which is hurting all types of businesses big and small. Furthermore, it causes more stress on people’s mental health, relationships, and more. 

Some may believe reopening the economy will be in America’s best interest. States like Alabama, Georgia, Texas, Louisiana, and a few others are doing this. With the population being low in those southern states, some believe risking COVID-19 is better than ruining their economies. But many experts say reopening will cause horrendous repercussions. 

“The push to reopen the economy is making a W-shaped recovery very much more likely,” said Jeffrey Frankel, professor of capital formation and growth at the Harvard Kennedy School.

Frankel is sure that opening states without a test, a vaccine, or a significant decline in infections will make quarantine last longer. 

The states understand that their citizens are going through hardship with this economy crashing, but is risking lives more important?