Trump just touted a ‘super V’ economic rebound even as recovery shows signs of stalling

  • Trump touted a super-V shaped economic recovery on Tuesday, even as many economists say its slowing down instead.
  • “You look at the V, now I think it’s a super-V,” he said.
  • More small businesses are still laying off more workers than they are hiring, and unemployment claims still top one million five months into the pandemic.
  • Several large companies have also announced they’re eliminating tens of thousands of jobs in the coming weeks due to a steep fall in consumer demand stemming from the pandemic.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

President Donald Trump touted a “super-V” economic recovery on Tuesday, even as the recovery shows signs of stalling out in the absence of additional federal aid and unemployment claims still regularly top one million five months into the pandemic.

Before departing Andrews Air Force Base for Kenosha, Wisconsin, Trump hailed the booming stock market, calling it the “all-time highest” and saying the economy is doing “very well.”

“You look at the V, now I think it’s a super-V,” he said.

Trump and White House National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow both characterize the economic recovery as a V-shape, suggesting it’s a swift one that would fully restore the nation’s economic health in a short stretch of time.

But many economists say it’s slowing down instead, and they partly attribute it to the expiration of federal aid for individuals and small businesses. It also indicates the devastation stemming from the pandemic will take many years to undo.

Read more: MORGAN STANLEY: The government’s recession response has the stock market heading for a massive upheaval. Here’s your best strategy to capitalize on the shift.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics projected on Tuesday the employment rate would grow 0.4% over the coming decade, a slower pace compared to the years following the Great Recession.

Hiring lost steam in July and consumer confidence also fell to its lowest level in the pandemic last month. Jobless claims briefly dipped below one million in August before climbing up again. 

Over one million people filed for unemployment the prior week, the Labor Department reported on Thursday. And a larger share of small businesses continue to lay off more workers than they’re hiring, according to the latest Small Business Pulse Survey.

Several large companies have also recently announced they will layoff tens of thousands of workers in the coming weeks, The Wall Street Journal reported. Among them are Coca-Cola, Salesforce, and MGM Resorts. 

United Airlines and Delta say their layoffs will be permanent unless they receive another infusion of federal aid.

Daniel Sternberg, head of data science at Gusto, told The Journal “there’s not much evidence to suggest that there is going to be this massive bringing people back on the payrolls.”

During a House subcommittee hearing on the coronavirus, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin demurred when asked whether the US was in a V-shaped recovery.

Though he maintained the recovery was in good shape, Mnuchin said “there is more work to be done.. let’s not get lost on letters of the alphabet.. there are clearly parts of the economy that need more work.”

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