Local economist predicts impact of coronavirus

Published: Mar. 25, 2020 at 10:33 PM CDT
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972.6 billion lost in gross domestic product as well as the loss of 11.4 million jobs, this is what Dr. Ray Perryman and the Perryman Group in Waco are predicting the coronavirus will do to the United States economy.

"We have about a $20 trillion economy, so when you start talking about a trillion dollar loss to that economy, that's something that's pretty substantial," said Dr. Perryman

Dr. Perryman says in order to get his model, he and his team looked at several hundred industries, and how they have been impacted. They also looked at the economies of several other countries where the disease struck first, and also added in the recent stimulus package from the federal government. His advice for those in charge, remain flexible as to not damage the basic structure of the economy.

"If this thing abates pretty quickly and hopefully it will and the health professionals are working hard on that," said Dr. Perryman. "If it doesn't we may have to look back and extend this thing. This may not be the only stimulus bill we have to look at."

While the first stimulus bill has yet to take effect, people whose jobs were impacted by this disease still have to pay bills.

"So I am at a community college here," said Alexis Escobar, whose job at a Waco boutique was put on hold. "So for me it would be for the program I’m going to. So for me it would be better off, knowing my little pocket of money is being kept."

Because hopefully things can return back to normal soon, and Dr. Perryman believes the economy can as well, like it did for a time after the Spanish Flu epidemic in 1918.

"The decade right after that ended, we call that decade the Roaring 20's," said Dr. Perryman. "One of the most prosperous times in the history of the country. So you can come back relatively quickly from something like this."

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