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Tue Apr 28, 2020, 09:17 AM

African Americans bear the brunt of Covid-19's economic impact

Source: The Guardian

African Americans bear the brunt of Covid-19's economic impact

Pandemic spotlights racial disparities, with black workers expected to feature disproportionately in the 26m recent unemployment claims

Lauren Aratani and Dominic Rushe
Tue 28 Apr 2020 12.00 BST
Last modified on Tue 28 Apr 2020 12.01 BST

Just two months ago in the Cabinet Room of the White House, sitting at a table surrounded by a handful of his black supporters, Donald Trump once again praised his job creation record. “Black people right now are having the best, statistically, the best numbers that you’ve ever had, and it’s really an honor,” he said. “Nobody has done more for black people than I have. Nobody has done more.”

That was 27 February and Trump was also still claiming he had done an “incredible job” with the looming coronavirus pandemic. Now the virus has led 26 million Americans to file for unemployment. While the US Bureau of Labor Statistics will not release unemployment figures broken down by race until the beginning of next month, economists are certain that black Americans are suffering the brunt of Covid-19’s economic impact and will probably suffer the most dramatic consequences of the looming recession.

Even before Covid-19 hit the US in full force and as the overall unemployment rate hit record lows, black Americans had an unemployment rate that was almost twice the national rate.

In February 2020 when the overall unemployment rate was 3.5%, a 50-year-low, the black unemployment rate was 5.8%. The white unemployment rate was 3.1%.

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Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/apr/28/african-americans-unemployment-covid-19-economic-impact

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