Reflections

Conflicting Data Muddies the U.S. Economic Outlook

Michael Monderer
Senior Analyst for Global Economics, Stratfor
Jun 10, 2020 | 17:06 GMT
A woman walks past closed shopfronts in what would be a normally busy fashion district in Los Angeles, California, on May 4, 2020.

A woman walks past closed shopfronts in what would be a normally busy fashion district in Los Angeles, California, on May 4, 2020. The U.S. economy has lost roughly 20 million jobs since the onset of the country’s COVID-19 outbreak in February.

(FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images)

The United States and other governments around the world face difficult policy decisions on fiscal stimulus amid great uncertainty regarding the course of their economies in light of the global COVID-19 crisis. But as evidenced by the conflicting data in the latest jobs report released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), it's proving difficult to find numbers and models that are both timely and use reliable data in order to gauge when economies will begin coming out of recovery on their own. Economic forecasts will be increasingly put under the microscope, making it important to understand what these predictions do and don't tell us....

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