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  • Drexel University's Paul Harrington on COVID-19 Labor Market and Recovery Outlook for RI

    Drexel University's Paul Harrington on COVID-19 Labor Market and Recovery Outlook for RI



    Chamber President Laurie White spoke earlier today with Paul Harrington, Director of the Center for Labor Markets and Policy at Drexel University.

    Paul provided the Chamber with a labor market analysis using the latest available data and discussed his thoughts on the local job market and what we should be thinking about over the next 12 to 18 months.
     

    Key Points
     
    • If Rhode Island is able to stay open and not need to shut down again, the chances of a strong economic recovery are high.
       
    • In the last two months, there have been high unemployment rates but not as many vacant jobs in the U.S. as would have been expected.
       
    • In February 2020, Rhode Island had an unemployment rate of 3.4% and in April, it spiked to 18.1%. The current unemployment rate is now around 12%.
    Quote of Note

    "The potential for a strong, sharp recovery is there. In the last two months, we've bounced back really well in Rhode Island. The question is, will we be able to continue that...If we are able to keep the status quo, and we're able to allow schools to be open and no more business shut downs, I'd be very optimistic about what's going to happen in the fall."
     
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