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May report shows biggest jobs increase of all time, lower-than-expected unemployment rate


U.S. appears to be on road to recovery

Photo by OLIVIER DOULIERY/AFP via Getty Images

A surprisingly positive May jobs report showing the largest month-to-month job increase in history indicated that the United States appears to recovering from the COVID-19 outbreak from an economic as well as a health perspective, CNBC reported.

Despite being projected to decline by 8.3 million by some economists, non-farm payrolls actually increased by 2.5 million in May, a record turnaround after two of the most catastrophic unemployment months ever caused by COVID-19-related economic shutdowns.

The unemployment rate dropped from 14.7% in April to 13.3% in May, much better than the projected 19.5% unemployment projected by economists surveyed by Dow Jones. From CNBC:

As it turned out, May's numbers showed the U.S. may well be on the road to recovery after its fastest plunge in history.

"It seems the damage from the nationwide lockdown was not as severe or as lasting as we feared a month ago," said Scott Clemons, chief investment strategist at Brown Brothers Harriman.

President Donald Trump, whose re-election prospects may be at least somewhat dependent on the health of the economy, reacted positively to the jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

"It's a stupendous number," Trump wrote Friday morning on Twitter. "It's joyous, let's call it like it is. The market was right. It's stunning!

"It is a stunner by any stretch of the imagination," he wrote in a follow-up tweet.

The U.S. is still hovering around 1,000 reported coronavirus deaths each day, and roughly 20,000 new cases per day, but even the hardest-hit areas of the country are taking steps toward reopening.

The COVID-19 outlook in the U.S. is complicated some by the mass protests that have occurred across the country over the past week. Because of the incubation period for the virus, we won't know what impact those gatherings have on the spread of the virus for several weeks.

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