U.S. Economic Activity During the Early Weeks of the Sars-Cov-2 Outbreak

16 Pages Posted: 13 Apr 2020 Last revised: 20 Apr 2020

See all articles by Daniel J. Lewis

Daniel J. Lewis

Federal Reserve Banks - Federal Reserve Bank of New York

Karel Mertens

Federal Reserve Banks - Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas

James H. Stock

Harvard University - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS)

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Date Written: April 2020

Abstract

This paper describes a weekly economic index (WEI) developed to track the rapid economic developments associated with the response to the novel Coronavirus in the United States. The WEI shows a strong and sudden decline in economic activity starting in the week ending March 21, 2020. In the most recent week ending March 28, the WEI indicates economic activity has fallen further to -6.19% scaled to 4 quarter growth in GDP.

Suggested Citation

Lewis, Daniel J. and Mertens, Karel and Stock, James H., U.S. Economic Activity During the Early Weeks of the Sars-Cov-2 Outbreak (April 2020). NBER Working Paper No. w26954, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3574419

Daniel J. Lewis (Contact Author)

Federal Reserve Banks - Federal Reserve Bank of New York ( email )

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Karel Mertens

Federal Reserve Banks - Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas ( email )

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James H. Stock

Harvard University - Department of Economics ( email )

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National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) ( email )

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