The surprising drop in unemployment last month caught many doomsayers off-guard, signaling the U.S. economy is capable of healing somewhat as pandemic lockdowns are lifted.
also are sounding more optimistic, as a recent report by
MediaPost EIC Joe Mandese highlighted yesterday, which spells good news for publishers.
The unemployment rate fell to about 13% in May as the economy added 2.5
million jobs — however, the Bureau of Labor Statistics later walked back those numbers, saying many people were incorrectly classified as employed. The real joblessness rate likely is higher,
but not nearly as bad as the 32% rate the Federal Reserve had predicted during the early days of the economy's induced coma.
Madison Avenue executives foresee a rebound in ad
spending in the next few months, with almost half of survey respondents predicting a rebound some time during the third quarter, according to Advertiser Perceptions. The survey indicates that May was
the bottom for ad industry, when only 3% of ad professionals said they were boosting media spending.
For publishers, that means opportunities to showcase how their print and
digital properties fit in advertisers' goals to boost business as they reopen. Some industries are ripe for greater promotional activity, including retailers, restaurants and other service
I suspect many people are ready to start shopping again, despite concerns about the coronavirus pandemic.
About 70% of people continued to shop at grocery
stores during the health crisis, according to a Harris Poll. That experience helped to train millions of people on how to follow safety procedures, such as wearing face masks and not getting too close
to other people when they're out in public.
Experts worry the pandemic will experience a resurgence in the fall, requiring another lockdown as flu season also starts up. But I
wonder whether health precautions, work-from-home arrangements and other measures will stymie a comeback in infectious diseases of all kinds.
The recent increase in coronavirus cases
in several states is worrisome, and ideally, we'll never see lockdowns again after getting caught flat-footed three months ago.