The United States Economy IS hurting….
And Donald Trump is about to leave office worried about himself as things get handed over to Joe Biden AGAIN like in 2009 when Biden came into office with President Obama….
The already sputtering economic rebound went into reverse in December, as employers laid off workers amid rising coronavirus cases and waning government aid.
U.S. employers cut 140,000 jobs in December, the Labor Department said Friday. It was the first net decline in payrolls since last spring’s mass layoffs, and though the December loss was nowhere near that scale, it represented a discouraging reversal for the once-promising recovery. The U.S. economy still has about 10 million fewer jobs than before the pandemic began.
The December losses were heavily concentrated in leisure and hospitality businesses, which have been hit especially hard by the pandemic. The industry cut nearly half a million jobs in December, while sectors less exposed to the pandemic continued to add workers.
The unemployment rate was unchanged at 6.7 percent, down sharply from its high of nearly 15 percent in April but still close to double the 3.5 percent rate in the same month a year earlier.
The new year won’t bring much relief, at least right away. The virus is still raging out of control, leading cities and states to reimpose restrictions on businesses and leading consumers to pull back on activities that could put them at risk. Many forecasters expect more weak economic data for January and February.
“I can’t see that the labor market is going to get a whole lot better until we get the pandemic under control,” said Erica Groshen, a Cornell University economist and a former commissioner of the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
The December data, the last of President Trump’s time in office, marks the end of a year of violent swings in the labor market. Employers cut 22 million jobs in March and April, then began rehiring furloughed workers en masse in May and June. By August, the economy had regained close to half of the lost jobs.
But momentum soon faded. Hiring has slowed every month since June, and the economy lost about nine million jobs in 2020 as a whole, the first calendar-year decline since 2010 and the worst on a percentage basis since the aftermath of World War II.
Congress last month passed a $900 billion relief package that will provide temporary support to households and businesses and could give a boost to the broader economy. And in the longer run, the arrival of coronavirus vaccines should allow the return of activity that has been suppressed by the pandemic.
But the vaccine and the aid came too late to prevent a sharp slowdown in growth….