Amid the deadly COVID-19 global pandemic resulting in the shutting down of thousands of offices, restaurants, stores and schools, some 7.7 million people lost their jobs in the United States in April. The global outbreak had devastating effects on both human life and the economy.
On Tuesday, the Labor Department said in a report that job openings plummeted and hiring all but disappeared in April. The number of available jobs fell 16 per cent from March to 5 million. Hires declined by 31 per cent to 3.5 million.
April was followed by an even bleaker March where 11.5 million people lost their jobs, indicating that the US economy could take time to recover nearly a decade’s worth of gains that vanished in about 60 days. Hiring did rebound in May as 2.5 million jobs were added on the net, the government said in a separate report Friday.
The Tuesday report indicated how employers were quick to respond to the COVID-10 crisis by laying off employees in March. Although, this slowed the following month as consumer spending appeared to bottom out and even recover slightly. The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey, or JOLTS, details overall hiring and job separation figures, while the monthly jobs data reflect net changes.
There are 4.6 unemployed workers for each job opening, meaning it will likely take time for the economy to return to its pre-coronavirus health. The coming months could be challenging as monthly hiring was only at 60% of 2019’s average.
The highly infectious virus that originated in the Chinese city of Wuhan last year, resulted in the shutting down of business activities across the world, bringing the global economy into a standstill. Millions have lost their jobs and been pushed into the brink of poverty.