Economic Outlook In W.Va. Better Than Expected

Jun 25, 2020

A panel of state and federal experts said while it’s still too early to tell what economic recovery in West Virginia will look like, the data is showing a better outlook than expected. 

Speaking at an online webinar Thursday, West Virginia University economist John Deskins said it’s possible that West Virginia will bounce back quickly in what economists call a “v-shaped” pattern. 

But it all depends on what happens in the next few months with consumer confidence and whether West Virginia will experience a second surge like is being seen in other states. 

West Virginia’s unemployment rate for April topped 15.9 percent. Experts projected that by the end of May, that number would peak. Instead, May unemployment numbers fell 3 percentage points to 12.9 percent.

Still, more than 250,000 unemployment claims have been processed in West Virginia since the pandemic forced widespread shutdowns in March. 3,600 more West Virignians filed for unemployment last week, according to federal data.

Appalachia Health News is a project of West Virginia Public Broadcasting, with support from Marshall Health and Charleston Area Medical Center.