Yale School of Management

Posts by Unemployment

Unemployment Insurance and Short-Time Compensation in the US and abroad

June 11, 2020

To address the COVID-19 pandemic, governments around the world recently placed restrictions on business activities, in many cases ordering non-essential businesses to close and workers to stay at home. In many countries this led to a rapid decline in labor demand. In the US the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported the highest unemployment rate since the Great Depression in April with a national rate of 14.7, an 11 percentage point increase from the historical low of 3.5 percent reported two months before. Nevada reported the highest rate in the country at 28.2 percent, up from 6.3 percent in March, while the lowest rate was reported in Connecticut at 7.9 percent, still more than a twofold increase from 3.7 percent reported in March. In May, the labor market began to show the first signs of recovery as  some states reopened their economies; the unemployment rate dropped to 13.3 percent.

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Governments Provide SMEs with Relief for Non-Wage Fixed Costs

June 8, 2020

As countries adopt measures to respond to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, many are providing support to businesses for fixed costs. Fixed costs are those that do not change with the amount of product or services a firm provides. Though a small business may be able to decrease variable costs in response to diminished demand or a government-mandated suspension of operations, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) still face the ongoing burden of fixed costs.

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The Philippines Provides Support to Workers in the Informal Economy

May 13, 2020

The Philippines government has included a temporary short-term work program that aims to employ close to 1 million workers in the informal sector in its COVID-19 response package.The TUPAD #BKBK program provides temporary employment opportunities to workers in the informal sector, as these workers are particularly vulnerable to economic hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Government Support to Individuals and Households During Crises

April 20, 2020

Many countries are adopting programs to provide support to individuals in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, which has entailed unprecedented government-directed curtailment of economic activity. These programs are designed to provide cashflow support for individuals and households who may be struggling due to economic uncertainty and hardship. Measures to support individuals vary and either enhance cashflows or decrease required expenses. In the former category, countries have adopted measures to provide enhanced income support to the unemployed, direct payments to individuals, and favorable access to retirement savings. Tax cuts and filing extensions are examples of the latter. 

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