How does COVID-19 unemployment compare to the Great Depression?

A garbage dumpster is painted with 'No Job No Rent' and the anarchy symbol in Providence, Rhode Island on May 4 2020. (Photo by Samuel Rigelhaupt / Sipa USA)No Use UK. No Use Germany.

The U.S. unemployment rate is now over 14%, according to the April jobs report, the highest it’s been since the Great Depression.  Brookings Senior Fellow Gary Burtless explains what’s different this time around, from the unprecedented rapidity of job losses to the economic support for people who have lost their jobs, and why that relief is critical to avoiding the long, drawn-out suffering of the Great Depression.

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Thanks to audio producer Gaston Reboredo, Chris McKenna, Fred Dews, Marie Wilken, and Camilo Ramirez for their support.

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