Market Commentary

Unemployment Claims and Hope

Unemployment Claims and Hope

With the unemployment claims exploding to 3.28 million from the last week of 280,000. There is little doubt of how much damage our economy is facing due to the stay at home orders. Those numbers are not likely to fall for weeks.

However, reports out of Germany and the Netherlands seems to provide hope. In both countries, control of the virus apparently has been achieved. Though it is too early to make any firm conclusions they also report a much lower death rate than Italy, France or China. The German data show a .4% death rate while Italy is at 9.5% and France at 4.3%. That is a dramatic difference and one that needs to be investigated.

In the U.S., where testing is very late, there are no conclusions. One of the reasons given for Germany’s number is early and often testing which produces a larger denominator when dividing by the number of those that actually got the disease, but had mild symptoms, into those that died. The fraction is much smaller.

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