Bank of America CEO: Economy Won't Fully Rebound Until 'Late Next Year'

Sunday - 26/04/2020 15:52
Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin offered a more optimistic assessment, saying that the economy would "really bounce back in July and August."

Brian Moynihan, the CEO of Bank of America, said on Sunday that analysts at his financial institution do not expect the economy to rebound to the level it was at prior to the coronavirus pandemic until late in 2021.

The U.S. economy has taken its biggest downturn in decades, as the pandemic has led state leaders across the country to order all but essential businesses to shut down in an effort to curb the spread of the coronavirus. Already, some 26.4 million workers have filed for unemployment in less than two months, a higher number than all the jobs created since the Great Recession of 2008 and 2009.

Appearing in an interview with CBS News' Face the Nation, Moynihan suggested that there will be a couple quarters of economic losses before the country returns to seeing growth.

"Our estimates, our experts think it's late next year when the economy gets back to the same size it was prior to this," the bank CEO explained. He noted that there are already some signs that certain businesses are starting to come back and spending has increased.

"That actually provides some hope that as the economy opens up in pieces and safely, you'll see that consumer spending continue to grow, which will help fuel the U.S. economy," Moynihan said. He suggested that the efforts from Congress to shore-up unemployment benefits, provide stimulus checks to most Americns, and offer assistance to struggling businesses appears to have had a positive impact.

In a separate interview with Fox News Sunday, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin optimistically predicted that Americans would start seeing the economy rebound over the summer.

"I think as we begin to reopen the economy in May and June, you're going to see the economy really bounce back in July and August, September," Mnuchin said. He noted that the government has already put an "unprecedented amount of fiscal relief into the economy."

Wall Street
The New York Stock Exchange building on Wall Street is photographed on April 20 in New York City

But an economic analysis from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), which was published on Friday, suggested that unemployment could remain close to 10 percent by the end of 2021. The report projected that unemployment is currently close to 14 percent and will rise to 16 percent.

To put that in perspective, during the peak of the Great Recession, unemployment rose to a high of 9.9 percent in 2009. Other economic experts have projected that unemployment could rise substantially higher, with some even suggesting it could hit 30 percent. The highest level of unemployment recorded in U.S. history came during the Great Depression, when it rose to 24.9 percent in 1933.


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