White People Most Optimistic About Pandemic Economic Recovery
Forbes explored October 16th data from the Ipsos U.S. Consumer Confidence Weekly Tracker (data as of October 22nd was consistent with it) which found a nearly 10-point gap in the reported consumer confidence of white respondents (54.9) and non-white respondents (45.2), a gap that has been growing considerably since late September. While confidence for both groups increased last month over August levels, white Americans’ confidence has continued to climb, while non-white Americans’ confidence in their economic situation plummeted at the start of October. I have talked about how the racial gap in jobless aid has only been exacerbated since the expiration of the $600 unemployment benefits, and it is reasonable to assume that is certainly responsible for dimming views on their own pandemic economic recovery.
Overall jobs confidence, which measures how respondents feel about their job security and employment outlook, dropped by 1.2 points this week, measuring 53.5. That’s 16.2 points lower than the pre-pandemic level and nearly five points below the historical average since 2002.
Pandemic Economic Recovery For Non-White Workers
The unemployment rate for white workers in September was 7%. Meanwhile, the unemployment rate for Black workers was 12.1%, while Latinx workers saw a 10.3% unemployment rate. Although jobs confidence overall is at 53.5, jobs confidence for white respondents is 57.8. Compared to the jobs confidence level for non-white respondents, 45.4, that’s a difference of more than 12 points.
According to a recent study by NPR, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, a majority of Latino (72%), Black (60%) and Native American (55%) households report facing serious financial problems during the coronavirus outbreak, with just 27% of Asian and 36% of white households reporting the same struggle.
Need For Stimulus
Most recipients of the first stimulus payment used the money to save, pay off debt, and cover essential expenses, according to analysis from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Only 7.7% of the average payment was used to make non-essential purchases. While helpful, it looks like we won’t get it until 2021.