By Scott J. Brown, Ph.D., Raymond James
The broad range of economic data signal that a recession began in March. Real Gross Domestic Product (GDP, the total of final goods and services produced in our economy) is expected to have fallen in the advance estimate for 1Q20. The 2Q20 figures will show an unprecedented decline in activity. Weekly claims for unemployment benefits suggest that the pace of job losses has slowed in the last few weeks, but the pace has remained exceptionally high. One in seven U.S. workers has filed a claim in the last five weeks. Meanwhile, lawmakers in Washington approved another $484 billion in fiscal aid, bringing the total so far to about $3 trillion.