U.S. Economy Contracting “At Its Sharpest Pace Since World War Two” And “The Worst Is Yet To Come”

Fear of COVID-19 has unleashed economic chaos on a scale that has already surpassed anything that we witnessed during the last recession, and as you will see below, we are now being warned that “the worst is yet to come”.  Many Americans are hoping that things can start to return to normal as the U.S. economy “reopens” in the weeks ahead, but the truth is that we are still in the very early chapters of this crisis.  In fact, it is being estimated that we are only one-tenth of the way through this pandemic, and by “flattening the curve” we have actually extended the economic pain.  You see, the truth is that most Americans are going to end up catching this virus one way or another.  All of the “shelter-in-place” orders have temporarily slowed down the spread of this coronavirus, but once they are lifted it is inevitable that we will see new waves of people becoming infected.  And if you think that a vaccine will be the golden ticket that gets us out of this mess, you might want to reconsider that belief, because there has never been a successful vaccine for any coronavirus.  Of course it is possible that scientists could come up with something this time around, but if the virus mutates significantly that could render any potential vaccine absolutely useless.

In the days ahead, there will be a tremendous amount of debate about the correct way to fight this virus, but meanwhile the U.S. economy will continue to deteriorate.

In fact, Reuters is reporting that economists are now projecting that the U.S. economy is contracting “at its sharpest pace since World War Two”…

The deepening economic slump was also amplified by other data on Thursday showing manufacturing activity in the mid-Atlantic region plunged to levels last seen in 1980 and homebuilding tumbling by the most in 36 years in March.

The reports followed dismal reports on Wednesday of a record drop in retail sales in March and the biggest decline in factory output since 1946. Economists are predicting the economy, which they believe is already in recession, contracted in the first quarter at its sharpest pace since World War Two.

Yesterday, I documented the fact that we are in the midst of the largest tsunami of job losses in U.S. history by a very wide margin.

In fact, we are absolutely obliterating the old records, and that truly puts us in unchartered territory.  And as bad as things have already gotten, one prominent expert told Reuters that “the worst is yet to come”…

Economists are estimating the economy contracted as much as 10.8% in the first quarter, which would be the steepest drop in gross domestic product since 1947. They say the massive fiscal package will likely provide little cushion for the economy.

“The economy is in a downward spiral where job losses beget job losses and the federal government emergency relief checks will not be enough to turn the tide,” said Chris Rupkey, chief economist at MUFG in New York. “The recovery is looking less V-shaped by the day as the deeper we fall, the harder it will be for the nation to climb back out of this deep hole the pandemic has dug for the economy. The worst is yet to come.”

As areas around the country start “reopening for business”, some of the jobs that were lost will come back.

But the truth is that millions of those jobs are gone permanently, and large numbers of the businesses that were closed down will never open again.

For the foreseeable future, a lot of Americans are going to avoid going to restaurants, bars, movie theaters, shopping malls and other businesses that require close human interaction.  One expert that was interviewed by the Los Angeles Times says that for the next few years we need to accept the fact that the world “will be totally different than what we are used to”…

“The world that we are going to live in for at least the next two to three years will be totally different than what we are used to,” said Sung Won Sohn, president of SS Economics and professor at Loyola Marymount University.

“Because of the psychological shock that we have experienced, we are going to be more cautious, and we will probably spend less and save more, and we will have fewer contacts with other individuals,” he said. “We are going to be suspicious about things, [such as] whether people we are meeting have the virus and will the economy fall back down again.”

The fear that this pandemic has created is going to be with us for a very long time, and it is going to cause enormous shifts in economic behavior even after the U.S. starts “reopening”.

In an environment like this, very few people are buying vehicles, the housing market is already imploding all over the nation, and retailers are having a very difficult time envisioning any sort of a positive future for their industry at this point.

But at least we will all be getting big, fat socialist bailout checks from the government, right?

Actually, they won’t be that big, and for most Americans the checks will only get them through about one month.

So once that money is gone, will the federal government send us another round of “universal basic income” checks?

Now that they have gone down this rabbit hole, the federal government is in danger of sparking civil unrest if they don’t keep the checks coming.  In fact, Jim Rickards is entirely convinced that large scale “social disorder” is on the way…

Looting, burglary and violence in the midst of a state of emergency are the shape of things to come.

The veneer of civilization is paper-thin and easily torn. Most people don’t realize how fragile it is. But they’re going to learn that lesson, I’m afraid.

Expect social disorder to get worse long before it gets better.

Unfortunately, Rickards is right on point, and I have also been warning about “great civil unrest” for a very long time.  The delicately balanced debt-fueled prosperity that we had been enjoying for so many years has now been shattered, and things are going to get really ugly in this country.

And this coronavirus pandemic is not going away any time soon.  Over the last 24 hours, the number of confirmed cases in the U.S. has jumped by more than 30,000 and the death toll has risen by more than 2,400 even though most of the nation is currently shut down.

Ending the lockdowns will give a boost to the economy, but it will also cause the virus to start spreading faster, and once that happens we could see another round of lockdowns.

In the end, our battle with COVID-19 will not be over until the virus has swept through most of the population, and we are not going to reach that point for quite a while.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with all many people as we possibly can.

This Is The Worst Employment Collapse In U.S. History By A Very Wide Margin

We have never seen an “employment apocalypse” in the United States like we are witnessing right now, and it is not going to end any time soon.  Over the past several days, “coronavirus shutdowns” have officially been extended all over the nation, and the longer these shutdowns last the more jobs our economy is going to lose.  And because most Americans were living paycheck to paycheck before this pandemic hit us, many unemployed workers are already unable to pay their bills.  Yes, our authorities may be slowing down the spread of the virus, but in the process they have absolutely killed the economy.  On Thursday, I was stunned to learn that another 5.2 million Americans filed initial claims for unemployment benefits last week.  That brings the grand total for the last four weekly reports “to a staggering 22 million”

About 5.2 million people filed for unemployment benefits last week, the Labor Department said Thursday.  Jobless claims provide the best measure of layoffs across the country. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg had estimated that 5.5 million Americans would file initial applications for unemployment insurance last week.

That brings the total claims over the past four weeks to a staggering 22 million. By comparison, the labor market added 21.5 million jobs since the Great Recession.

Just think about that.

22 million jobs wiped out in one month.

And the true number of jobs lost is actually even higher, because not everyone that loses a job files for unemployment benefits.

Prior to this year, the highest number of initial claims for unemployment benefits during any four week period that we had ever witnessed was 2.7 million during the fall of 1982.

So 22 million in four weeks truly puts us in uncharted territory.  Just look at this chart.

We aren’t just beating the old records, we are absolutely obliterating them.

You know that things are really, really bad when even NBC News sounds just like The Economic Collapse Blog…

“The labor market is obviously very, very important, and has a high correlation with what is going on in the economy,” Jay Bryson, the acting chief economist at Wells Fargo, told NBC News. “It is showing us what I think we all know, that the economy is falling off a cliff at an unprecedented rate.”

In other words, the chief economist at Wells Fargo is saying that the U.S. economy is completely and utterly collapsing.

According to Zero Hedge, “we have lost 710 jobs for every confirmed US death from COVID-19 (30,985).”  Our politicians have prioritized saving lives over saving the economy, and many people out there seem convinced that was the right choice, but the economic devastation has been immense.

The socialist “stimulus payments” and unemployment benefits will help all of these unemployed workers temporarily, but the payments from the federal government are supposedly just a one time deal, and it won’t be too long before many states start running out of unemployment money

Six states — including New York, which has the highest number of cases in the US — can only fund up to 10 weeks of unemployment benefits from their state coffers before money runs out and they have to turn to the federal government for additional funding, according to a recent estimate from the Tax Foundation.

Another 15 state trust funds don’t meet the federal Department of Labor’s recommended minimum solvency standard, which requires being able to pay benefits for a year in an economic downturn similar to the Great Recession.

So what will the federal government do once we get to that point?

I imagine that Congress will eventually want to borrow and spend trillions more dollars that we don’t have, and it is likely that “conservatives” and “liberals” will both be quite eager to vote for another pork-filled bill.

But it is probably going to take some time for Congress to get through the process of passing another crazy spending package, and meanwhile deep economic suffering is erupting all over the nation.

On Thursday, vehicles were lined up for two miles in Miramar, Florida as needy individuals waited for hours to get handouts from a local food bank.  We are starting to see food lines like this all over the country, and if things are this bad already, what will things look like a few months from now?

The chief economist at Grant Thornton in Chicago is calling this “the deepest, fastest, most broad-based recession we’ve ever seen”, and I can’t argue with that assessment one bit.

For a moment, I would like for you to consider just a few of the economic news items that we have seen over the past few days…

-United Airlines has reduced its schedule of flights for May and June “by about 90%” as demand for air travel has absolutely plummeted.

-U.S. retail sales were down 8.7 percent in March.

-J.C. Penney is “considering bankruptcy”.

-Housing starts just collapsed by the most that we have seen in 36 years.

-The mayor of Los Angeles says that large gatherings in his city will likely be banned until 2021.

-Facebook has canceled all large events until June 2021.

-Chinese GDP just experienced the largest drop ever recorded.

Of course nearly every nation will soon report absolutely staggering declines in GDP.  The shutdowns have brought economic activity to a standstill all over the globe, and no region is immune.

The following is how the Daily Mail is describing the current state of global trade…

The coronavirus pandemic is crippling global trade because crews on transport ships have been stranded at sea for months and food processing plants have been forced to close, threatening to bring the world’s supply chain to a grinding halt.

Shipping workers at sea are denied entry into ports, truckers can’t get to work in some countries or are confronted with complications at borders, food plants are closing and farm harvests going to waste in the crisis.

Does that sound like a “perfect storm” to you?

Well, the truth is that it is just getting started.

Eventually this pandemic will subside, but now that all of the economic dominoes are starting to tumble it will be exceedingly difficult to reverse that momentum.

And as I pointed out the other day, most Americans are not likely to resume all of their normal daily activities once the restrictions are finally lifted, and fear of this virus is going to be a dominant economic force for the foreseeable future.

What all of this means is that we are facing incredible economic pain for the short-term, the mid-term and for a long time to come.

At this point, we should no longer speak of “economic collapse” as something that will happen in the future.

It is here.

It is now.

And it is going to get a lot worse.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with all many people as we possibly can.

Will You Resume Normal Daily Activities Once The Coronavirus Restrictions Are Finally Lifted?

COVID-19 has turned all of our lives upside down, and most people are quite eager for a return to normalcy.  But as you will see below, fear of the coronavirus is going to prevent the vast majority of Americans from immediately resuming all of their normal daily activities once the coronavirus restrictions have been lifted.  Every day there are more stories in the news about prominent individuals that have died from the virus, and the chilling testimonies of those that have wrestled with the virus and survived are extremely sobering.  Yes, most people that catch this virus will ultimately recover, but the fact that tens of thousands of Americans are dying is seriously scaring a lot of people.  And even though the “shelter-in-place” orders appear to be slowing the spread of the virus to a certain extent, the official U.S. death toll has actually doubled over the past week

U.S. deaths from the novel coronavirus topped 25,000 on Tuesday, doubling in one week, according to a Reuters tally, as officials debated how to reopen the economy without reigniting the outbreak.

The United States, with the world’s third-largest population, has recorded more fatalities from COVID-19 than any other country. There were a total of nearly 597,000 U.S. cases – three times more than any other country – with nearly 2 million reported cases globally.

And according to Worldometers.info, more than 2,200 Americans have died over the last 24 hours, and that would make this the deadliest day of this pandemic so far.

So it is easy to understand why so many people out there are deeply afraid of this virus.  Most of us don’t want to die, and COVID-19 can kill you.

In recent days, there has been a whole lot of talk about “reopening America”, and many are assuming that life will start to look somewhat normal once that happens.

But Gallup just conducted a survey in which they asked people if they would be “resuming their normal daily activities” once the restrictions are lifted, and these were the results

Americans remain hesitant about resuming their normal daily activities amid the COVID-19 outbreak according to a Gallup question first asked in late March and repeated in early April.

When asked how quickly they will return to their normal activities once the government lifts restrictions and businesses and schools start to reopen, the vast majority of Americans say they would wait and see what happens with the spread of the virus (71%) and another 10% would wait indefinitely. Just 20% say they would return to their normal activities immediately.

In other words, about 80 percent of the country is going to take a hesitant approach, and that has huge implications for our economy moving forward.

Of course all of the coronavirus restrictions are not going to be lifted any time soon anyway, and this is something that I discussed yesterday.

Today, California Governor Gavin Newsom set forth six specific conditions which must be met before the restrictions will be lifted in his state…

  1. The ability to monitor and protect our communities through testing, contact tracing, isolating, and supporting those who are positive or exposed.
  2. The ability to prevent infection in people who are at risk for more severe COVID-19.
  3. The ability of the hospital and health systems to handle surges.
  4. The ability to develop therapeutics to meet the demand.
  5. The ability for businesses, schools, and child care facilities to support physical distancing.
  6. The ability to determine when to reinstitute certain measures, such as the stay-at-home orders, if necessary.

Needless to say, California may continue to be locked down for an extended period of time to come.

But the longer that these shutdowns persist, the more impatient many Americans are going to become.

Already, we are starting to see protests pop up all over the nation.  For example, just check out what is happening in Michigan

At least 15,000 cars and trucks are expected to descend on Michigan’s state capital on Wednesday to protest what they’re calling Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s tyrannical new guidelines to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus in the state.

The so-called “drive-by” demonstration – in order to maintain social distancing — aims to bring traffic to a gridlock in Lansing and protest the “Stay Home, Stay Safe” executive order by Whitmer, a Democrat, mandating what businesses could stay home, what some businesses could sell and ordering people in her state against any gatherings – no matter the size or family ties.

I am seeing a lot of anger out there right now.  Business owners, workers and entrepreneurs are not being allowed to make a living and provide for their families, and I can certainly understand their frustration.

And the longer that things are shut down, the worse this economic downturn is going to become.  At this point, the IMF is projecting the worst performance for the global economy since the Great Depression of the 1930s

The global economy will this year likely suffer the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, the International Monetary Fund said Tuesday, as governments worldwide grapple with the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Washington-based organization now expects the global economy to contract by 3% in 2020. By contrast, in January it had forecast a global GDP (gross domestic product) expansion of 3.3% for this year.

Actually, I believe that the IMF’s projection is way too optimistic.

If global GDP only declines by 3 percent in 2020, that should be considered a rip-roaring success.

Now that the U.S. has become the epicenter for this pandemic, our nation is being hit particularly hard economically, and we are being warned that more than 2,000 cities “are anticipating major budget shortfalls this year”

More than 2,100 U.S. cities are anticipating major budget shortfalls this year and many are planning to slash programs and cut staff in response, according to a new survey of local officials released Tuesday, illustrating the widespread financial havoc threatened by the coronavirus pandemic.

The bleak outlook — shared by local governments representing roughly 93 million people nationwide — led some top mayors and other leaders to call for greater federal aid to protect cities now forced to choose between balancing their cash-strapped ledgers and sustaining the public services that residents need most.

Of course this is just only the beginning of the end.  All of the economic and financial bubbles are bursting, and this is going to cause severe distress on the national, state, local and community levels.

And as long as COVID-19 is still spreading somewhere, fear of the coronavirus is going to cause a lot of people to greatly alter their normal economic patterns.

So the truth is that we have a very long and very painful road ahead of us, and the months to come are going to make the last recession look like a Sunday picnic.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with all many people as we possibly can.

Now They Are Telling Us That Life In America Will Definitely Not Be Returning To Normal “For The Foreseeable Future”

If you thought that this pandemic would pass quickly and that life in America would soon return to “normal”, I am afraid that you are in for quite a shock.  Some of the restrictions currently in place will eventually be lifted, and efforts will be made to get people back to work, but life is still going to be radically different from what we had become accustomed to before COVID-19 started sweeping across the globe.  Authorities are telling us that there may be “rolling shutdowns” for up to 18 months, that social distancing guidelines will be necessary for a long time to come, and that this crisis will not ultimately be resolved until they can inject everyone with a vaccine.  If all of this greatly alarms you, please be assured that you are not alone.

In recent days there has been a tremendous amount of debate about when to “reopen the U.S. economy”, and organizations all along the political spectrum have drafted plans for how to do that.

Ezra Klein actually read quite a few of those plans, and he discovered that none of them would return our lives to normal “for the foreseeable future”

Over the past few days, I’ve been reading the major plans for what comes after social distancing. You can read them, too. There’s one from the right-leaning American Enterprise Institute, the left-leaning Center for American Progress, Harvard University’s Safra Center for Ethics, and Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Romer.

I thought, perhaps naively, that reading them would be a comfort — at least then I’d be able to imagine the path back to normal. But it wasn’t. In different ways, all these plans say the same thing: Even if you can imagine the herculean political, social, and economic changes necessary to manage our way through this crisis effectively, there is no normal for the foreseeable future. Until there’s a vaccine, the United States either needs economically ruinous levels of social distancing, a digital surveillance state of shocking size and scope, or a mass testing apparatus of even more shocking size and intrusiveness.

Over and over again, a “vaccine” is being touted as the golden ticket that will get us out of this mess.

The head of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, Neel Kashkari, is another prominent voice that is warning that there won’t be a return to normalcy until a vaccine comes along.  And until that time comes, he believes that we are potentially facing “an 18-month strategy of rolling shutdowns”

Kashkari, while acknowledging the downside of what a prolonged shutdown could mean for the economy, said the U.S., “barring some health-care miracle,” is looking at an 18-month strategy of rolling shutdowns based on what has happened in other countries.

“We could have these waves of flare-ups, controls, flare-ups and controls, until we actually get a therapy or a vaccine,” he said. “We need to find ways of getting the people who are healthy, who are at lower risk, back to work and then providing the assistance to those who are most at risk, who are going to need to be quarantined or isolated for the foreseeable future.”

In other words, Kashkari believes that all or part of the nation will be shut down over and over again whenever the number of coronavirus cases starts to spike too high.

Of course the WHO is eagerly looking forward to global vaccination as well, and the head of the WHO just told the media that he believes that this virus is ten times deadlier than the swine flu pandemic of 2009…

Coronavirus is ten times deadlier than the 2009 swine flu pandemic and a vaccine will be needed to halt it, the World Health Organisation has said.

WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told a virtual briefing from Geneva the organisation was constantly learning about the bug sweeping the globe.

Over and over again, officials are telling us that we are facing an 18 month timeframe until a vaccine will be ready.  Just check out what New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said during his press conference earlier today…

On Monday, governor Cuomo was joined on a conference call by the other Northeast governors. The recovery must be careful, incremental and guided by experts rather than politics, Cuomo said, and the pandemic won’t be truly “over” until a vaccine is available, which could take as long as 18 months. Ideally, a plan would also involve widespread testing, he said, to allow those without the virus – and those who have recovered and may now be resistant to it – to return to work first.

By the time 18 months goes by, most of the general population will be so desperate to feel safe from this virus that they will race out to get the vaccine as fast as they possibly can.

And until then, we can expect economic conditions to steadily deteriorate.

Yes, hopefully most businesses in the country will be allowed to reopen in a matter of weeks, but that doesn’t mean that the customers will come back.

Prior to this pandemic, we were already witnessing the worst “retail apocalypse” in U.S. history, and now one research firm is warning that an all-time record 15,000 stores could be permanently shuttered in 2020

Coresight Research predicts that 15,000 U.S. stores will permanently close this year, setting a new record and nearly doubling its earlier forecast of 8,000 store closings.

‘Retail has hung a closed sign on the door literally and metaphorically,’ Neil Saunders, managing director of GlobalData Retail, said.

Pretty soon, our communities are going to be absolutely littered with abandoned buildings, and “space available” signs will start popping up everywhere.

Meanwhile, millions upon millions of U.S. consumers will be falling on very hard times.  We are in the midst of the greatest spike in unemployment in all of American history, and the number of people taking advantage of the federal government’s mortgage forbearance program has gone through the roof

With unemployment claims hitting nearly 17 million over the last three weeks, the number of Americans applying for the government’s mortgage forbearance program under the COVID-19 relief plan spiked 73% for the week ending April 5 vs. the previous week – jumping from 2.73% to 3.74%, according to new data from the Mortgage Bankers Association.

For context, the total number of loans in forbearance was just 0.25% for the week of March 2 – an increase of 1,496% in just six weeks, with the number of borrowers in forbearance now topping 2 million according to CNBC.

Realizing that we are on the verge of another massive wave of mortgage defaults, mortgage lenders all over the nation are rapidly tightening standards.  JPMorgan is just one example

Over the weekend our skepticism was confirmed when Reuters reported that JPMorgan, the country’s largest lender by assets and which will kick off earnings season tomorrow, will raise borrowing standards this week for most new home loans as the bank “moves to mitigate lending risk stemming from the novel coronavirus disruption.”

Starting Tuesday, customers applying for a new mortgage will need a credit score of at least 700, and will be required to make a down payment equal to 20% of the home’s value (something which we thought was the norm after the last financial crisis, but apparently lending conditions had eased quite a bit in the past decade).

For a very long time I have been warning that the flow of credit would get really tight when the next crisis hit.

Now we are here, and Americans are going to have a much harder time getting loans to buy homes, vehicles or anything else.

Everything that I have been warning about in my books is beginning to transpire, and a tremendous amount of pain is ahead.

My hope is that all of the pain that is ahead will cause a mass awakening and America will turn in a more positive direction.

But to most people, the immediate future looks really bleak right now, and that is not going to change any time soon.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with all many people as we possibly can.

Deep Economic Suffering Has Erupted All Over America, But Guess Who The Federal Reserve Is Helping?

As millions upon millions of Americans lose their jobs in the greatest wave of unemployment in U.S. history, the Federal Reserve has decided that now is the time to spend trillions of newly created dollars in a desperate attempt to protect financial asset values.  In other words, as much of the country suddenly plunges into poverty, the Federal Reserve is working exceedingly hard to protect the wealth of the elite.  Approximately fifty percent of all stock market wealth is owned by the wealthiest one percent of all Americans, and the amount of stock market wealth owned by the poorest 50 percent of all Americans is so small that it really doesn’t matter.  And those running the Fed certainly understand that their reckless policies will create very painful inflation that will hit average American families extremely hard, but they don’t seem to care.  At this point, they figure that asset values must be protected at all costs, and that is going to continue to expand the absolutely massive gap between the rich and the poor in this country.

Over the past 3 weeks, more than 16 million Americans have filed new claims for unemployment benefits.

Prior to this year, the highest number that we had ever seen in any 3 week span in all of American history was about 2 million.

It is a collapse of unprecedented magnitude, and things have already gotten so bad that even “the Happiest Place on Earth” is conducting mass layoffs

Walt Disney World Resort will furlough 43,000 union workers while its theme parks remain closed as authorities restrict large gatherings due to the coronavirus pandemic, according to the Service Trades Council Union.

Because most U.S. workers live paycheck to paycheck, many of the newly unemployed have fallen on hard times very rapidly.  Food banks all over the nation are seeing an alarming surge in demand, and in many cities people are literally lining up before the sun rises in order to ensure that they will get some food

In many cities, lines outside food pantries have become glaring symbols of financial precarity, showing how quickly the pandemic has devastated working people’s finances.

In San Antonio, 10,000 families began arriving before dawn on Thursday at a now-shuttered swap meet hall to receive boxes of food. Normally, 200 to 400 families might show up during a normal food distribution.

For many other similar examples, please see my previous article entitled “America’s ‘Food Lines’ Are Being Measured In Miles As Desperation Sets In All Over The Country”.  Yes, things got bad during the last recession, but they were never as bad as we are witnessing now.  In fact, the CEO of Feeding America says that demand is already at the highest level that she has ever seen

‘I’ve never witnessed a system being more strained,’ Feeding America CEO Claire Babineaux-Fontenot said.

‘For the first time probably in our history, we’ve had to turn some people away,’ she said, not that ‘We don’t want to do that, ever.’

Unfortunately, this economic collapse is still in the very early chapters.  If you can believe it, JPMorgan is actually projecting that U.S. GDP “will fall by 40 percent” on an annualized basis during the second quarter

According to CNBC, JPMorgan economists are forecasting that the GDP will fall by 40 percent through the spring months. They also predict unemployment will reach 20 percent in April, with 25 million jobs lost overall.

Such a drop would be, by far, the worst in U.S. history. For context, according to Credit Suisse (via Business Insider), the worst quarterly drop of the 2008 crash was 8.4 percent.

And even once the “shelter-in-place” orders are finally lifted, that will not mean that things will go back to normal.  As Nobel-prize winning economist Robert Shiller has noted, fear of the coronavirus is going to cause many Americans to avoid restaurants, sporting events and other businesses where public interaction is required for a long time to come…

“The shortage of supplies is generating horrible news stories that put us all on edge,” said Shiller. “It may mean people won’t go to restaurants or sporting events in good numbers for years. You know the disease might not well be eradicated for several years from now.”

So the truth is that we are heading into a very deep economic depression, and the economic suffering in this country is going to be off the charts.

As events have begun to spiral out of control, the Federal Reserve has sprung into action on a scale unlike anything that we have ever seen before, and this has pushed the Fed’s balance sheet above 6 trillion dollars

The Federal Reserve’s balance sheet increased to a record $6.13 trillion this week as the central bank used its nearly unlimited buying power to soak up assets and keep markets functioning smoothly, even as efforts to contain the coronavirus pandemic cut deeply into employment and economic output.

In the four weeks since the Fed slashed interest rates to zero, restarted bond purchases and rolled out an unprecedented range of programs to limit the economic damage from the outbreak, the central bank’s balance sheet has jumped by about $1.7 trillion.

Let me try to put those numbers in perspective.

During QE3, the Fed’s balance sheet increased by 1.7 trillion dollars over the course of an entire year, and now the Fed has achieved that same feat in just four weeks.

What the Fed is doing is completely and utterly insane, but to a certain extent it is working.

Even though we are in the midst of the most dramatic unemployment spike in American history, last week was the best week for the stock market in decades thanks to the Fed.

Isn’t that nuts?

I know that this also sounds incredibly absurd, but last week’s surge actually pushed P/E values back near record highs.

In other words, stock prices are incredibly overvalued at this moment.

And if everything that we have already witnessed was not enough, on Thursday the Fed announced that it will now be spending trillions of dollars to voraciously buy up bonds of all types

The Federal Reserve is not leaving any corner of the U.S. bond market behind in this crisis.

There’s no other way to interpret the central bank’s sweeping measures announced Thursday, which together provide as much as $2.3 trillion in loans to support the economy. It will wade into the $3.9 trillion U.S. municipal-bond market to an unprecedented degree, can now purchase “fallen angel” bonds from companies that have recently lost their investment-grade ratings, and has expanded its Term Asset-Backed Securities Loan Facility to include top-rated commercial mortgage-backed securities and collateralized loan obligations.

In other words, moving forward we will no longer have a “bond market”.  What we will have is a Fed-manipulated sham in which the Fed picks winners and losers.

Of course many believe that it is only a matter of time before the Fed starts buying stocks as well.

Those that love free markets should be absolutely disgusted by all of this, because the Fed is coming up with lots of new ways to give handouts to the very wealthy.

Meanwhile, the poor are rapidly getting poorer.

But don’t worry too much, because you will soon receive your $1,200 socialist handout from the federal government.

Try not to spend it all in one place.

Needless to say, $1,200 won’t last very long in the hands of most Americans, and one recent survey found that “63% of respondents said they will need another check within the next three months”.

Like I warned from the very beginning, these sorts of direct payments set a very dangerous precedent, and if a Democrat wins the presidency in November they may become permanent.

That may sound really good to you, but what are you going to do when it gets to the point where you have to spend 500 dollars a week just to feed your family?

At that point many of you will also be lining up at the crack of dawn to receive whatever the food banks have available to give you

Outside of Pittsburgh, Danielle Small pulled up 90 minutes early to a food distribution, but found two long rows of cars already ahead of her. Money was getting tight after her boyfriend had to take a pay cut, and she decided to make her first trip to a food bank this week.

She said the line moved efficiently as cars pulled ahead in clusters of 10. After Ms. Small, 32, received a box filled with chicken fajita strips, preserved peaches, fruit, nuts and juice, she mouthed, “Thank you,” to the volunteers and drove away.

Millions of Americans driving nice vehicles and wearing nice clothes are suddenly being forced to spend hours waiting in food lines because fear of the coronavirus has crashed our economy.

A day of reckoning has finally arrived, and a lot more pain is on the way.

Sadly, many Americans will just go along with whatever “solutions” are proposed as long as it looks like they may provide short-term relief.  What remains of our free markets is being obliterated, Congress is openly embracing socialism, and our rights are being stripped away at a staggering rate, but most people don’t seem concerned by any of this.

Most people just want the pain to end and for life to go back to normal, but that is simply not going to happen.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with all many people as we possibly can.

Supplies Are Starting To Get Really Tight Nationwide As Food Distribution Systems Break Down

All across America, store shelves are emptying and people are becoming increasingly frustrated because they can’t get their hands on needed supplies.  Most Americans are blaming “hoarders” for the current mess, but it is actually much more complicated than that.  Normally, Americans get a lot of their food from restaurants.  In fact, during normal times 36 percent of all Americans eat at a fast food restaurant on any given day.  But now that approximately 75 percent of the U.S. is under some sort of a “shelter-in-place” order and most of our restaurants have shut down, things have completely changed.  Suddenly our grocery stores are being flooded with unexpected traffic, and many people are buying far more than usual in anticipation of a long pandemic.  Unfortunately, our food distribution systems were not designed to handle this sort of a surge, and things are really starting to get crazy out there.

I would like to share with you an excerpt from an email that I was sent recently.  It describes the chaos that grocery stores in Utah and Idaho have been experiencing…

When this virus became a problem that we as a nation could see as an imminent threat, Utah, because of its culture of food storage and preparing for disaster events seemed to “get the memo” first. The week of March 8th grocery sales more than doubled in Utah, up 218%. Many states stayed the same with increases in some. Idaho seemed to “get the memo” about four days later. We were out of water and TP four days after Utah. Then we were out of food staples about four days later. Next was produce following a pattern set by Utah four days earlier.

The problem for us in Idaho was this. The stores in Utah were emptied out then refilled twice by the warehouses before it hit Idaho. Many of these Utah stores have trucks delivering daily. So when it did hit Idaho the warehouses had been severely taxed. We had a hard time filling our store back up even one time. We missed three scheduled trucks that week alone. Then orders finally came they were first 50% of the order and have dropped to 20%. In normal circumstances we receive 98% of our orders and no canceled trucks. Now three weeks later, the warehouses in the Western United States have all been taxed. In turn, those warehouses have been taxing the food manufacturers. These food companies have emptied their facilities to fill the warehouses of the Western United States. The East Coast hasn’t seemed to “get the memo” yet. When they do what food will be left to fill their warehouses and grocery stores?

Food distribution and resources for the Eastern United States will be at great peril even if no hoarding there takes place. But of course it will.

Additionally the food culture of the East Coast and other urban areas is such that people keep very little food on hand. They often shop several times weekly for items if they cook at home. They don’t have big freezers full of meat, home canned vegetables in their storage rooms, gardens, or beans, wheat, and rice in buckets in the their basements.

With most of the country locked down, normal economic activity has come to a standstill, and it is going to become increasingly difficult for our warehouses to meet the demand that grocery stores are putting on them.

Meanwhile, our farmers are facing severe problems of their own.  The following comes from CNBC

The U.S.-China trade war sent scores of farmers out of business. Record flooding inundated farmland and destroyed harvests. And a blistering heat wave stunted crop growth in the Midwest.

Now, the coronavirus pandemic has dealt another blow to a vulnerable farm economy, sending crop and livestock prices tumbling and raising concerns about sudden labor shortages.

The chaos in the financial markets is likely to continue for the foreseeable future, and it is going to remain difficult for farm laborers to move around as long as “shelter-in-place” orders remain in effect on the state level.

Iowa farmer Robb Ewoldt told reporter Emma Newburger that “we’ve stopped saying it can’t get worse”, and he says that this coronavirus pandemic looks like it could be “the straw that broke the camel’s back”

“We were already under extreme financial pressure. With the virus sending the prices down — it’s getting to be the straw that broke the camel’s back,” said Iowa farmer Robb Ewoldt.

“We were hoping for something good this year, but this virus has stopped all our markets,” he said.

Of course this comes at a time when millions of Americans are losing their jobs and unemployment is shooting up to unthinkable levels.  Without any money coming in, many people are already turning to alternative sources of help in order to feed themselves and their families.

On Monday, hundreds of cars were lined up to get food from a food bank in Duquesne, Pennsylvania.  To many, this was eerily reminiscent of the “bread lines” during the Great Depression of the 1930s.

And it is also being reported that the number of people coming for free meals on Skid Row in Los Angeles has tripled since that city was locked down.

Sadly, these examples are likely only the tip of the iceberg of what we will see in the months ahead.

And it won’t just be the U.S. that is hurting.  The following comes from a Guardian article entitled “Coronavirus measures could cause global food shortage, UN warns”

Kazakhstan, for instance, according to a report from Bloomberg, has banned exports of wheat flour, of which it is one of the world’s biggest sources, as well as restrictions on buckwheat and vegetables including onions, carrots and potatoes. Vietnam, the world’s third biggest rice exporter, has temporarily suspended rice export contracts. Russia, the world’s biggest wheat exporter, may also threaten to restrict exports, as it has done before, and the position of the US is in doubt given Donald Trump’s eagerness for a trade war in other commodities.

If this pandemic stretches on for an extended period of time, food supplies are inevitably going to get even tighter.

So what can you do?

Well, perhaps you can start a garden this year if you don’t normally grow one.  Apparently this pandemic has sparked a tremendous amount of interest in gardening programs around the country…

Because of the coronavirus pandemic, more people are showing an interest in starting home gardens. Oregon State University‘s (OSU) Master Gardener program took notice of the growing interest.

To help citizens who want to grow their own food, the university kindly made their online vegetable gardening course free until the end of April. OSU’s post on Facebook has been shared over 21,000 times.

Food is only going to get more expensive from here on out, and growing your own food is a way to become more independent of the system.

But if you don’t have any seeds right now, you may want to hurry, because consumer demand is spiking

“It’s the largest volume of orders we have seen,” said Jere Gettle of Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds in Mansfield, Missouri. Peak seed-buying season for home gardeners is January to March, but the normal end-of-season decline in orders isn’t happening.

Customers are gravitating to vegetables high in nutrients, such as kale, spinach and other quick-to-grow leafy greens. “Spinach is off the charts,” said Jo-Anne van den Berg-Ohms of Kitchen Garden Seeds in Bantam, Connecticut.

For years, I have been warning people to get prepared for “the perfect storm” that was coming, but of course most people didn’t listen.

But now it is upon us.

Desperate people have been running out to the grocery stores to stock up on toilet paper only to find that they are limited to one or two packages if it is even available.

And now that “panic buying” of seeds has begun, it is probably only a matter of time before many stores start running out.

We have reached a major turning point in our history, and things are only going to get crazier.

Unfortunately, the vast majority of Americans still have absolutely no idea what is ahead of us…

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with all many people as we possibly can.

America Is Now The COVID-19 Epicenter: The U.S. Just Had 17,224 Newly Confirmed Coronavirus Cases In A Single Day!

As I write this article, headlines all over the globe are announcing the fact that the United States now has more confirmed coronavirus cases than anybody else in the world.  Two weeks ago anyone that would have predicted that the U.S. would be the world leader in confirmed cases by the end of the month would have been relentlessly mocked, but now it has actually happened, and experts are warning that the worst is yet to come.  On Thursday, 17,224 newly confirmed cases were added to the rapidly growing U.S. total.  If you can believe it, only six other countries have had more than 17,000 total confirmed cases over the course of this entire pandemic.  So the explosion of cases that we are witnessing in the U.S. right now is exceedingly alarming.

On March 1st, we learned that the state of New York had their very first confirmed case of the coronavirus.

Now there are tens of thousands of confirmed cases in the state, and things have already gotten so bad that more than one patient is being put on a single ventilator machine

At least one New York hospital has begun putting two patients on a single ventilator machine, an experimental crisis-mode protocol some doctors worry is too risky but others deemed necessary as the coronavirus outbreak strains medical resources.

The coronavirus causes a respiratory illness called COVID-19 that in severe cases can ravage the lungs. It has killed at least 281 people over a few weeks in New York City, which is struggling with one of the largest caseloads in the world at nearly 22,000 confirmed cases.

What we have watched transpire in New York over the past couple of weeks is absolutely unprecedented, and a top CDC official is warning that what we have seen there could soon start happening all over the country.

Just like in New York, cases in California have been doubling “every three to four days”, and this has officials in the state enormously concerned

If that rate holds, California hospitals could see a surge in patients in one to two weeks, Dr. Mark Ghaly, the state’s secretary of Health and Human Services, said during a Facebook news conference.

“We originally thought that it would be doubling every six to seven days; we see cases doubling every three to four days,” Ghaly said. “[We’re] watching that trend very, very closely.”

Sadly, the rate of growth is even faster in New Orleans, and it is expected that their hospitals will be completely overwhelmed by early April

New Orleans is on track to become the next coronavirus epicenter in the United States, dimming hopes that less densely populated and warmer-climate cities would escape the worst of the pandemic, and that summer months could see it wane.

The plight of New Orleans – with the world’s highest growth rate in coronavirus cases – also raises fears that the city may become a powerful catalyst in spreading the virus across the south of the country. Authorities have warned the number of cases in New Orleans could overwhelm its hospitals by April 4.

But so far less than 2,000 Americans have died during this pandemic.

If our healthcare system can’t handle what is taking place now, what is going to happen if tens of thousands of people start dying

The coronavirus pandemic could kill more than 81,000 people in the United States in the next four months and may not subside until June, according to a data analysis done by University of Washington School of Medicine.

The number of hospitalized patients is expected to peak nationally by the second week of April, though the peak may come later in some states. Some people could continue to die of the virus as late as July, although deaths should be below epidemic levels of 10 per day by June at the latest, according to the analysis.

Actually, I think that this projection is quite optimistic, but it sure would be nice if it was accurate.

So far, there have been no signs that this global pandemic is abating.  In recent days the numbers have actually accelerated, and many are wondering what will happen if we continue to see exponential growth in the weeks ahead.

On Thursday, the total number of confirmed cases in the entire world crossed the 500,000 mark for the first time.  As we race toward a million confirmed cases, it seems likely that lockdown orders will remain in place all over the globe.

This is the greatest public health crisis of our time, and it is already taking a tremendous emotional toll on people all over the planet.  On Thursday, I was absolutely horrified to read about a great tragedy that just happened in the United Kingdom

A 19-year-old woman in the UK has committed suicide after being “unable to cope with her world closing in” following the coronavirus lockdown.

Emily Owen, who suffered from high functioning autism, gave an eerily prescient warning to her family days before her death, saying that “more people will die from suicide during this than the virus itself.”

She died in hospital on Sunday after attempting suicide on March 18th. Owen’s family said that the suicide attempt was driven by the teen’s fears over social isolation.

Sadly, calls to suicide hotlines are absolutely soaring in the United States too.

This shouldn’t be happening, but right now so many people out there feel like they don’t have any hope.

If only they understood that hope is just a prayer away.

On March 6th, a Georgia man named Clay Bentley tested positive for the coronavirus.  At first it wasn’t too bad, but then his symptoms really started to get quite severe.

Eventually he felt like he “couldn’t breathe at all”, and he feared that “he was not going to survive”.

But when he was at his lowest moment, a miracle arrived

“I got to the point I couldn’t breathe at all. I had cold chills. I had no energy,” Bentley told Insider. “I’d go to stand up to walk up across the room, I couldn’t even go from a sitting to a standing position.”

Bentley said that by Wednesday night, he felt like he was not going to survive. He was in pain and struggling to breathe.

Then at 3 a.m., he felt a heavy pressure on his chest, Bentley described.

“I felt this man breathe life into my lungs,” he said.

Bentley says that God completely and totally healed him, and now he has a renewed passion to tell others about Jesus Christ.

If you believe that you have caught the virus, start praying and ask others to start praying for you as well.

God is the same yesterday, today and forever, and He will bring us through this horrible, horrible pandemic.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with all many people as we possibly can.

A Massive Surge Of Unemployment Like America Has Never Seen Before

The pace at which Americans are losing their jobs is absolutely breathtaking.  According to the Wall Street Journal, the largest number of new claims for unemployment benefits ever recorded in a single week prior to this year was 695,000 during the week that ended October 2nd, 1982.  So that means that what we are now witnessing is completely unprecedented.  About half the country is currently under some sort of a “shelter-in-place” order, and there has never been a nationwide shutdown of businesses anything like what we are currently experiencing.  Many are hoping that America will be able to “get back to normal” soon, but that all depends on the progression of this pandemic.  The number of newly confirmed cases in the U.S. spiked by more than 11,000 on Wednesday, and the number of new deaths continues to escalate at a very alarming rate.  Until those numbers start to improve, life is definitely not going to “get back to normal”.

In recent days, so many newly unemployed Americans have been trying to file for unemployment benefits that it has been crashing websites all over the country.  For example, a newly unemployed worker in Michigan named Aaron Garza never was able to file for benefits through Michigan’s unemployment website although he kept on trying throughout Monday and Tuesday

When Aaron Garza was dismissed this week from his job as a parts specialist at a Toyota dealership in Grand Rapids, Michigan, he joined a tidal wave of unemployed people swamping systems to help them and straining state finances to the breaking point.

On Monday, Garza went to Michigan’s unemployment website and tried logging on to apply for benefits electronically. After 30 minutes, he was able to sign on, but by the time a verification code was sent to his phone 25 minutes later, he had already given up. As of Tuesday afternoon, he still hadn’t been able to get through.

Last week, 108,000 workers filed for unemployment benefits in the state of Michigan.

That is 20 times more than normal.

Ouch.

In Louisiana, things are even worse.  If you can believe it, the number of people filing for unemployment benefits is more than 40 times higher than usual

In Louisiana alone, 71,000 people filed new unemployment applications last week, compared to the usual 1,400 or 1,500 people per week, said state labor secretary Ava Dejoie.

Louisiana has one of the highest per capita counts of coronavirus cases in the U.S. Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards has ordered nonessential businesses to close, limited restaurants to takeout and delivery, banned gatherings over 10 people and directed residents to remain at home.

And in California, Governor Gavin Newsom says that a million residents of his state have filed for benefits “just since March 13”

California Gov. Gavin Newsom said Wednesday that the state has seen 1 million unemployment claims in less than two weeks as the coronavirus pandemic has led to businesses being shut down across the state.

“We just passed the 1 million mark, in terms of the number of claims, just since March 13,” Newsom said.

On Thursday, we will get the latest weekly total for the nation as a whole.

At this point nobody is quite sure what to expect, but most forecasts are ranging between one million and four million

Economists have issued widely varying estimates of Thursday’s jobless claims total based on anecdotal reports by about 40 states to news outlets for the first few days of last week. Goldman Sachs estimated the national count will be about 2.25 million but said it could be as low as slightly more than 1 million. Morgan Stanley reckons about 3.4 million. Oxford Economics says about 4 million.

If we even hit the lowest edge of that range, it will absolutely shatter the old record that was set back in 1982.

Of course similar things are happening all over the world.  Approximately one-third of the entire population of the globe is currently under some sort of a lockdown order, and that means that hundreds of millions of workers are sitting at home not working.

Here in the United States, so many people are already absolutely sick and tired of being idle at home, but the truth is that it looks like this pandemic is just getting started.

In fact, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio believes that more than half of the residents of his city will eventually get the virus

More than half of New York City’s population can expect to be infected by the coronavirus, Mayor Bill de Blasio said. Most will suffer only a “mild experience,” but many will become very sick, and “we are going to lose some people,” he said. April will be tough and May tougher before the virus crisis eases, he said. The city has seen 192 deaths so far, and there are more than 17,000 confirmed cases of the virus.

“The world we knew is gone,” de Blasio said in a social media post. “And it’s not coming back, not for the next few months. That’s the blunt truth.”

If his projection is even close to accurate, that means that we are in for a very, very long battle with COVID-19.

A lot of people out there are still trying to downplay this pandemic, and that is a huge mistake.  The dead bodies are starting to pile up just like we saw in China, Iran and Italy, and already “New York City’s morgues are nearing capacity”

The Department of Homeland Security has been briefed that New York City’s morgues are nearing capacity, according to a department official and a second person familiar with the situation.

Officials were told that morgues in the city are expected to reach capacity next week, per the briefing. A third person familiar with the situation in New York said some of the city’s hospital morgues hit capacity in the past seven days. And a FEMA spokesperson told POLITICO that New York has asked for emergency mortuary assistance. Hawaii and North Carolina have asked for mortuary help as well, and the disaster response agency is currently reviewing the requests, according to the spokesperson.

You may have noticed that I have not said too much about what Congress is doing, and that is because any “stimulus package” is really not going to make that much of a difference.

Congress is not going to be able to make this pandemic go away, and they aren’t going to be able to convince people that are deathly afraid to leave their own homes to go out and spend money normally.

But thanks to Congress there will be a lot more money chasing a rapidly dwindling pool of goods and services in the days ahead, and that will eventually cause very painful inflation.

And if they are going to start handing out giant checks to everyone, they better keep on doing it all throughout this crisis.  Because as Gerald Celente has warned, what we are heading for is “the Greatest Depression”

“People are going to go bankrupt. You are going to see suicide rates increase. You are going to see crime escalate and people OD’ing on drugs because of depression…

Our leaders are totally closing down the economy. Again, this has never been done before. It’s not only Wall Street going down, Main Street went down simultaneously. That is unprecedented. Usually, the markets go down and then the ripple effects start hitting Main Street. This time–boom, they are both down…

It’s going to be worse than the Great Depression. It’s going to be the Greatest Depression.”

Sadly, one element of Celente’s warning is already coming to pass.  It is being reported that calls to the National Suicide Prevention Hotline have risen 300 percent

Isolation and anxiety over the coronavirus pandemic are taking a toll, with calls to a National Suicide Prevention Hotline call center rising 300 percent, KVLY reports.

Other suicide prevention services across the United States also have seen spikes in calls since the COVID-19 virus threw everyday life askew for millions.​​​​​

In this hour, people are going to need hope.

But trying to convince them that this virus does not exist is not giving them hope.

And those that are boldly proclaiming that this virus will magically go away very quickly are only giving people false hope.  When they later realize that they were lied to, that false hope will give way to even deeper depression and despair.

This virus is very real, and we are going to be battling this pandemic for an extended period of time.  But God knew all about this in advance, He is in control, and He will accomplish His purposes.

And God specifically has a plan for you and your family, but you have got to be willing to embrace it.  Your future is likely to look far different than you originally imagined, but with God’s help it can also be far greater than you originally imagined as well.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with all many people as we possibly can.

Here Are The Very Alarming Things That Scientists Have Just Discovered About This Coronavirus…

The biggest public health crisis of our time just continues to get worse.  The global death toll is rapidly approaching 20,000, and approximately a third of the world is currently under some sort of a lockdown order.  Needless to say, this is going to be absolutely devastating for the entire global economy.  Here in the United States, the spread of this virus continues to track along a trajectory that is very similar to what we witnessed in Italy.  If you doubt this, just check out this chart.  At this hour, the official death toll in the United States is up to 782, and only 378 victims have officially “recovered”.  But of course the vast majority of the 54,867 confirmed cases will not come to a final resolution for quite some time.  Sadly, the numbers that I just shared with you are likely to be much higher by the time most of you actually read this article.  This is a full-blown national emergency, and a lot of people out there are still not taking this crisis very seriously.

This is no ordinary virus.  It moves from person to person with incredible ease, and it is rapidly changing.  In fact, it has just been announced that scientists in Iceland “have found 40 mutations of the coronavirus”

Scientists in Iceland claim they have found 40 mutations of the coronavirus, which has left the world gripped in fear.

The mutations were discovered by analysing swabs of COVID-19 patients in Iceland, where almost 600 cases have been reported so far.

Using genetic sequencing, the researchers identified how many mutations the virus had accumulated.

Those sentences should send a chill up your spine, and this discovery may help to explain why we are seeing far higher death rates in the western world than we have in Asia so far.

Meanwhile, a professor in the United Kingdom is warning that a single person that has the virus can potentially infect “up to 59,000 others”

An intensive care specialist has described how one person with coronavirus could infect up to 59,000 others – as the virus is more than twice as infectious as flu.

Dr Hugh Montgomery, a professor of intensive care medicine at University College London, explained how the virus could be passed from one person to thousands as he called on Britons to heed advice on social distancing.

Previously, we have been told that someone can spread COVID-19 for many days before they even start exhibiting any symptoms.

That makes this the perfect “stealth virus” to spark a horrifying global pandemic.

And as I have discussed in previous articles, you don’t even have to encounter someone with the virus in order to become infected.

In fact, scientists have now discovered that this virus can linger on surfaces “for up to 17 days”

Researchers have made the startling discovering that a form of the coronavirus can linger around for more than two weeks.

Traces of new coronavirus were found on the Diamond Princess cruise ship on surfaces in cabins where people who were infected with the virus had stayed, for up to 17 days after they had left, according to a study released Monday along with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

I know that this information is hard to take.

But it is absolutely critical that we understand what we are dealing with.

Just like elsewhere, our healthcare system is about to be completely overwhelmed.  On his Twitter account, a New York City emergency room doctor named Craig Spencer has described what his shifts are already like each day

You’re notified of another really sick patient coming in. You rush over. They’re also extremely sick, vomiting. They need to be put on life support as well. You bring them back. Two patients, in rooms right next to each other, both getting a breathing tube. It’s not even 10am yet

For the rest of your shift, nearly every hour, you get paged:

Stat notification: Very sick patient, short of breath, fever. Oxygen 88%.

Stat notification: Low blood pressure, short of breath, low oxygen.

Stat notification: Low oxygen, can’t breath. Fever.

All day…

Sadly, this is what life is going to be like for emergency room doctors all across America for as long as this pandemic lasts.

And it is inevitable that a lot of those doctors will end up catching the virus themselves.  In fact, it is already happening

Healthcare workers across the United States are now testing positive for the coronavirus even as they man the front lines against the rapidly spreading pandemic.

The medical professionals who have tested positive for COVID-19 include two ER physicians at a Chicago suburban hospital, two doctors associated with Washington University, a doctor in Austin, Texas, as well as a doctor at a children’s hospital in Wisconsin.

I know that a lot of you out there are quite eager for life to return to “normal”, but that isn’t going to happen.

So far, the number of confirmed cases and the number of deaths in the United States are both ahead of even the most pessimistic early projections.

We should definitely be hopeful that the “social distancing” measures that have been put in place will help to “flatten the curve”, but even if that happens we still have a very long battle ahead of us.

In some countries that had supposedly “contained” the virus, we are already starting to see a stunning resurgence in cases as people bring the virus back in from other areas.

Expert after expert has assured us that most of the U.S. population will eventually catch COVID-19, and if it hits you really hard it will be a nightmarish ordeal that you will never forget.

Like so many others, I wish that this pandemic had not happened.

But it is here, and we have to deal with it.

According to a survey that was just conducted, 19 percent of Americans think that they might already have the virus.  If you are one of those people, please get the medical help that you need, and please reach out to those around you for prayer.

So many people out there have been getting really angry, but this is a time when we need to work together and all pull in the same direction.  This is truly a great challenge for this generation, and with God’s help we can get through it.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with all many people as we possibly can.

It’s Not “Just The Flu”: Here Is Why You Definitely DO NOT Want To Catch This Coronavirus…

Can you imagine being in “blinding pain” for weeks, constantly gasping for air as you feel like you are being suffocated, and screaming for mercy because you are in so much constant torment?  As you will see below, coronavirus survivors are telling us about their hellish ordeals, and they are warning us to do everything that we can to avoid this virus.  Of course they are the lucky ones.  As I detailed in another article, the global death toll has doubled over the past six days, and so far the very high death rate in the United States is extremely alarming.  So those that survive should consider themselves to be very fortunate, but many of those same individuals will be left with permanent lung damage.  This virus attacks the respiratory system with a ferocity that is shocking doctors, and those that are still attempting to claim that COVID-19 is “just like the flu” need to stop, because they are just making things worse.

Researchers have found that this virus has an incubation period of up to 24 days, and people can spread it around long before they are showing any symptoms.

And you don’t even have to encounter someone with the virus to catch it.  According to Bloomberg, new research has discovered that this virus can remain on surfaces “for as many as 17 days”…

Traces of new coronavirus were found on surfaces in cruise-ship cabins for as many as 17 days after passengers left, researchers said, though it wasn’t possible to determine whether they caused any infections.

Researchers looked at the rooms of infected passengers aboard the Diamond Princess, both those who showed symptoms and those who didn’t, according to a study Monday in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

When you combine those two factors, it makes COVID-19 nearly impossible to contain.

This is a major emergency, and it makes me angry that there are prominent voices out there that are still trying to downplay this pandemic.  As a result, many people are not taking proper precautions, and a lot of them are going to end up catching the virus.

If you are reading this and you still don’t think that COVID-19 is a big deal, please take a moment to consider the following five stories about coronavirus survivors…

#1 26-year-old Fiona Lowenstein

That night I woke up in the middle of the night with chills, vomiting, and shortness of breath. By Monday, I could barely speak more than a few words without feeling like I was gasping for air. I couldn’t walk to the bathroom without panting as if I’d run a mile. On Monday evening, I tried to eat, but found I couldn’t get enough oxygen while doing so. Any task that was at all anxiety-producing — even resetting my MyChart password to communicate with my doctor — left me desperate for oxygen.

#2 55-year-old Kevin Harris

“Imagine your lungs turning solid. It’s like suffocating without holding your nose,” said Harris, who owns an auto body shop and typically runs 5 miles every day.

“Every time I lay down, my breathing gets lower and lower. I thought my lungs would fail me. I was screaming for mercy and praying to God.”

#3 25-year-old Connor Reed

A Welshman who caught the coronavirus in China has described how the deadly disease hit him “like a train” leaving him “suffocating” and in blinding pain for weeks.

Connor Reed, from Llandudno, got ill while working as an English teacher in Wuhan.

The 25-year-old described how it started as “just a sniffle” on November 25 – a month before authorities officially announced the virus – but over the next three-and-a-half weeks he got increasingly ill and was unable to move.

#4 39-year-old Tara Jane Langston

‘It’s like having glass in your lungs, it’s hard to explain, but every breath is a battle.

‘It’s absolutely horrible and I wouldn’t want to go through anything like this ever again. I’d been ill for about five days before I was taken to hospital in an ambulance.

‘I’d originally been diagnosed with a chest infection and given antibiotics and advised to take ibuprofen and paracetamol. I was taking about eight ibuprofen a day and they now think that that exacerbated the problem.

#5 A 12-year-old girl in Georgia named Emma

Emma, a 12-year-old girl, is “fighting for her life” in an Atlanta hospital after testing positive for the coronavirus, according to her cousin.

Justin Anthony told CNN that Emma was diagnosed with pneumonia on March 15 and tested positive for coronavirus on Friday night. As of Saturday, she was on a ventilator and is currently in stable condition, Anthony said.

As you can see, this virus is not just hitting “old people” extremely hard.

But if you are above the age of 60, please understand that you at very high risk, and you need to stay away from public places for the foreseeable future.

I know that it can be hard to stay home day after day, but this is truly a very, very deadly virus.

At this point, even doctors and nurses are “scared to go to work”

Doctors and nurses on the front lines of the fight against the coronavirus in the United States say it’s “the first time” they’ve been scared to go to work. With a shortage of personal protective equipment, some have resorted to using bandanas to cover their faces.

“It’s the first time we’ve ever been truly scared to come to work, but despite being scared we are trained to save lives and we’re committed to doing that,” Dr. Cornelia Griggs, a surgeon in New York City, told “CBS This Morning.” “I’m embarrassed to say, but prior to this, my husband and I had never gotten around to writing a will, but this weekend that became one of our to-do list items.”

As I have been writing this article, over 2,000 more confirmed cases were added to the rapidly growing total here in the United States.  And as I discussed yesterday, it looks like the U.S. is going to have a very high death rate just like we are seeing in western European countries such as Italy and Spain.

So please take this pandemic very seriously.  A lot of Americans are going to die, and it is going to be a great national tragedy.

Please pray for those that have caught the virus and are deeply suffering.  It is in our darkest moments that we need a miracle the most, and there are a whole lot of people out there that need one right now.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with all many people as we possibly can.

Experts Warn Of A Complete And Utter Economic Meltdown As The Global Coronavirus Death Toll Explodes

Everyone that tried to tell us that this pandemic would fade away quickly has been proven dead wrong.  Right now, approximately 187 million Americans are under “shelter-in-place” orders as COVID-19 sweeps across the nation like wildfire.  There are now more than 43,000 confirmed cases in the U.S., but by the time many of you read this article that number is likely to be far higher.  But what is even more concerning is what we are seeing with the cases that have come to a final resolution one way or the other.  Of all U.S. cases that have been officially resolved, 553 patients have died and only 295 patients have recovered.  Over time, the number of patients that have officially recovered will eventually surpass the number that have died for a couple of reasons.  For one, some victims are dying in just a few days while it can take weeks for some patients to fully recover.  Secondly, more widespread testing will start to reveal more mild cases, and most of those mild cases will ultimately recover.  But without a doubt it is starting to appear that the U.S. will have a very high death rate like we are seeing in Italy, Spain and other western European nations.  Monday was the very first time that more than 100 Americans died in a single day, and it looks like the days ahead could be much, much worse.

Overall, the global death toll is rising at a pace that is very alarming.  It hit 16,000 on Monday, and that means it only took six days to double from 8,000.

If the death toll keeps doubling like that, we are going to be in very big trouble.

The number of confirmed cases is rising at an exponential rate as well, and on Monday the head of the WHO warned that this pandemic “is accelerating”

The coronavirus “pandemic is accelerating,” World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus warned Monday.

Almost every country in the world has reported cases, he announced in a Geneva press conference.

“It took 67 days from the first reported case to reach the first 100,000 cases. Eleven days for the second 100,000 and just four days for the third 100,000,” he said.

As I write this article, there are 260,133 open cases around the world and 118,947 closed cases.

Out of the closed cases, 86 percent of the victims have recovered and 14 percent of the victims have died.

To put that into perspective, the Spanish Flu pandemic that stretched from 1918 to 1920 had a death rate of less than 3 percent.

But even after everything that has transpired, there are still lots of Americans that are not taking this pandemic seriously.  I don’t understand this, because all of our medical authorities are warning us that the worst is yet to come.  In fact, Surgeon General Jerome Adams just told us that “it’s going to get bad” …

Surgeon General Jerome Adams warned Monday that the coronavirus outbreak will worsen this week and said people across the country are not taking the threat seriously enough.

“I want America to understand this week, it’s going to get bad,” Adams said in an interview on the “TODAY” show.

And as I have been warning for weeks, this pandemic is going to plunge the United States and the entire globe into a horrifying economic nightmare.

At this point, even CNN is using “the d-word”….

A global recession, once unthinkable in 2020, is now a foregone conclusion and some experts warn that the pandemic could drag the world’s economy into a depression. More bad news: The coronavirus outbreak may just be getting started.

Central banks and governments are now unleashing a tsunami of interest rate cuts, loan guarantees and new spending, tapping emergency powers to reassure investors, cushion the shock to companies and workers and preserve the foundations of a functioning economy for the future.

A month ago, most Americans wouldn’t have imagined that such a thing could be possible.

But now “the everything bubble” has burst and we have just witnessed the fastest 30 percent decline for the S&P 500 in all of U.S. history

Twenty-two days.

That’s all it took for the S&P 500 to fall 30% from its record high, the fastest drop of this magnitude in history.

The second, third and fourth quickest 30% pullbacks all occurred during the Great Depression era in 1934, 1931 and 1929, respectively, according to data from Bank of America Securities.

In the short-term, the good news for investors is that we should see a substantial bounce in stock prices this week, and that could especially be true when Congress finally gets around to passing their “stimulus” package.

But whether the market goes up or down in the short-term, it isn’t going to stop the complete and utter economic meltdown that is now unfolding.

According to billionaire Tom Barrack, the commercial mortgage market is on the precipice of a historic collapse…

Real estate investor Tom Barrack said the U.S. commercial-mortgage market is on the brink of collapse and predicted a “domino effect” of catastrophic economic consequences if banks and government don’t take prompt action to keep borrowers from defaulting.

Barrack, chairman and chief executive officer of Colony Capital Inc., warned in a white paper and in a subsequent interview on Bloomberg Television of a chain reaction of margin calls, mass foreclosures, evictions and, potentially, bank failures due to the coronavirus pandemic and consequent shutdown of much of the U.S. economy.

Sadly, Barrack is 100 percent correct.

All of the dominoes are going to fall, and it is going to be horrifying to watch.

Meanwhile, we could be on the verge of a shutdown “of virtually all passenger flights across the U.S.”

Major U.S. airlines are drafting plans for a potential voluntary shutdown of virtually all passenger flights across the U.S., according to industry and federal officials, as government agencies also consider ordering such a move and the nation’s air-traffic control system continues to be ravaged by the coronavirus contagion.

No final decisions have been made by the carriers or the White House, these officials said. As airlines struggle to keep aircraft flying with minimal passengers, various options are under consideration, these people said.

To me, this is something that is exceedingly difficult to imagine, but we will see things a lot stranger than this in the days ahead.

As America literally shuts down from coast to coast, the job losses are going to be absolutely staggering.  In fact, we are being warned to expect numbers that are unlike anything we have ever seen before

Upcoming weekly jobless claims will shatter the standards set even during the worst points of the financial crisis and the early-1980s recession, with Bank of America forecasting a total of 3 million when the number is released Thursday. Those figures are expected to be so bad, in fact, that the Trump administration, according to several media reports, has asked state officials to delay releasing precise counts.

If this pandemic stretches on for an extended period of time, we will very quickly surpass the unemployment levels that we witnessed during the Great Recession.

Back then, the unemployment rate didn’t exceed 10 percent, but now the head of the St. Louis Fed is warning that we may see a 30 percent unemployment rate in the second quarter

Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis President James Bullard predicted the U.S. unemployment rate may hit 30% in the second quarter because of shutdowns to combat the coronavirus, with an unprecedented 50% drop in gross domestic product.

Could things actually deteriorate that rapidly?

I sure hope not, because most American families are just barely scraping by

How long could you sustain your household if you were to stop earning income? If you are like most Americans, the answer is not for long. Only 40 percent of Americans can afford an unexpected $1,000 expense with their savings. In fact, nearly 80 percent of workers are living paycheck to paycheck. It is no surprise that the probability of an economic recession brought on by the coronavirus pandemic caused many to worry.

For years, many of us have been begging and pleading with people to get ready.  We warned that when things finally broke loose that events would move very quickly.  I even co-authored an entire book entitled “Get Prepared Now”, but now it is too late to get prepared in advance because a day of reckoning is now upon us.  I really like how Mike Adams of Natural News made this point

Over the last several days, I’ve been called by many people I haven’t heard from in years. Suddenly they’re interested in what I have to say, even though they ignored everything I said for the last decade. And they want to assure me they’re “fully prepared” with 2-3 weeks of food.

These are the same people who probably have four months’ worth of toilet paper, but only a 3-week supply of food.

I’m not even trying to educate them at this point. That day is long gone. Anyone who thinks “2-3 weeks of food” is going to carry them through a national food supply line collapse, a global consumer goods supply line collapse and a systemic, cascading finance and banking collapses is living in a land of sheer delusion.

A lot of the same people that didn’t listen and didn’t get prepared in advance are now trying to convince us that this crisis will soon be gone.

And it would be wonderful if they are right.

But at this moment the global numbers are rising rapidly with each passing hour, and the global economy is literally imploding all around us.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with all many people as we possibly can.

So Far, The Number Of Americans That Have Died From The Coronavirus Is Greater Than The Number That Have Recovered

The information that I am about to share with you is quite disturbing, and it has some very alarming implications.  One of the great mysteries of this coronavirus pandemic has been the widely varying death rates that we have been witnessing all over the world.  For example, South Korea has had 8,981 confirmed cases so far.  Of those cases that have been resolved one way or the other, 111 victims have died and 3,166 victims have recovered.  So that would seem to indicate a very low death rate in that nation.  But in Italy, things are very different.  Up to this point, there have been 59,138 confirmed cases.  Of the cases that have been resolved, 5,476 victims have died and 7,024 have recovered.  Needless to say, that would seem to indicate a very, very high death rate in Italy.

Nobody really knows why this is happening.  Scientists in China claim that there is more than one strain of the coronavirus and that one is more deadly than the other.  So it has been theorized that the strain hitting Italy and other European countries is different than the strain that is affecting South Korea.

Alternatively, there are some that believe that certain pain killers used in the western world greatly accelerate the multiplication of the virus, and this is something that I wrote about a few days ago.

But the truth is that we really don’t know for sure why death rates in different countries are so vastly different.

With that being said, let me share with you the latest numbers from the United States.

At this moment, there are 34,717 confirmed cases, but the vast majority of them will not be resolved for some time.

Of those cases that have reached a final resolution, 452 have died, and only 178 have recovered.

Over time, I expect the number that have recovered to eventually greatly surpass the number that have died, and there are a couple of reasons why I believe this.

For one, it can take many weeks to recover, but those that die can do so relatively quickly.

Secondly, expanded testing will ultimately reveal a lot more mild cases, and most of those mild cases will eventually recover.

Having said that, the numbers that the U.S. is reporting so far are nothing short of horrifying.

If most of the country eventually catches this virus, it looks like the death toll could be in the millions.  And at this point, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is warning that 80 percent of the population of his state will eventually become infected…

NEW York Governor Andrew Cuomo has warned that 80% of New York state’s population could become infected with the coronavirus and said the crisis could last as long as nine months.

Cuomo’s stark assessment came hours after Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin warned that the lockdown, currently impacting 80 million people across the country, could last 12 weeks.

Over the past few days, victims in New York City have been dying at a rate of more than one person an hour, and we are being told that New York hospitals are “like a war zone” right now.

Sadly, this is just the beginning.

Over on the west coast, things have gotten so bad in L.A. County that they have mostly given up on testing people

Los Angeles County health officials advised doctors to give up on testing patients in the hope of containing the coronavirus outbreak, instructing them to test patients only if a positive result could change how they would be treated.

The guidance, sent by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health to doctors on Thursday, was prompted by a crush of patients and shortage of tests, and could make it difficult to ever know precisely how many people in L.A. County contracted the virus.

In other words, we will no longer really have any idea how bad the outbreak is in the Los Angeles area from now on.

And without identifying those that are infected and making sure they are isolated, all hope of containing the pandemic in California is completely dead.

Of course many are hoping that the current “shelter-in-place” order in California will help slow down the spread of COVID-19, but what will happen when it ends?

At this point, many Californians are already getting restless.  In fact, Governor Gavin Newsom’s wife seems quite concerned that her family will “run out of toilet paper, paper towels, and Kleenex tomorrow”

Jennifer Siebel Newsom, the actress wife of Democratic California Gov. Gavin Newsom, sent out a tweet on Wednesday complaining that “we run out of toilet paper, paper towels, and Kleenex tomorrow.”

Her husband on Thursday ordered that all Californians stay in their homes except for certain essential excursions—on pain of being arrested.

The truth is that most Americans are simply not equipped to handle any sort of an extended crisis, and that appears to be what we are heading for.

On Sunday, the entire country was stunned when we learned that U.S. Senator Rand Paul has tested positive.  Let us be in prayer for him and his entire family.

But pretty soon so many famous people will be testing positive that we won’t be able to keep track of them all.  The attending physician of Congress believes that up to 150 million Americans will eventually become infected, and if that happens the virus will literally be everywhere.

That doesn’t mean that you should give up on trying to avoid COVID-19.  If you doubt the deadliness of this virus, I would like for you to consider what a medical worker in Louisiana is saying

“Reading about it in the news, I knew it was going to be bad, but we deal with the flu every year so I was thinking: Well, it’s probably not that much worse than the flu. But seeing patients with COVID-19 completely changed my perspective, and it’s a lot more frightening.”

“I have patients in their early 40s and, yeah, I was kind of shocked. I’m seeing people who look relatively healthy with a minimal health history, and they are completely wiped out, like they’ve been hit by a truck. This is knocking out what should be perfectly fit, healthy people. Patients will be on minimal support, on a little bit of oxygen, and then all of a sudden, they go into complete respiratory arrest, shut down and can’t breathe at all.”

I have heard from so many people out there that believe that this coronavirus is about the same as the flu.

What a huge mistake.

Coronavirus victims have told us stories of being curled up in a fetal position crying for mercy as “blinding pain” roars through their bodies.  As their lungs fill up with fluid, many report feeling like they can barely breathe for days on end.

The unlucky ones end up dead, but even many of the “lucky ones” end up with permanent lung damage.

Please do whatever you possibly can to boost your immune system now, because it looks like a large percentage of the population will be grappling with this virus at some point.

When New Jersey Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli was asked if she was worried about catching the virus, she warned that everyone will be infected eventually

“Are you worried,” I ask, “that you’ll get the coronavirus eventually?”

She smiles.

“I’m definitely going to get it. We all are,” Persichilli says matter-of-factly. “I’m just waiting.”

I don’t believe that is true, and I believe that there are many Americans that will never catch the virus.

But without a doubt it is sweeping across America at a speed that is absolutely breathtaking, and the death toll is ahead of even the most pessimistic projections that were originally issued.

A great plague has hit America, and we are still only in the very early chapters.

This is the moment in our history when everything starts changing, and the days ahead are going to be exceedingly challenging.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with all many people as we possibly can.

This Is Why People All Over America Are Scared To Death Of Being Tested For The Coronavirus…

How would you feel if you received a bill for more than $34,000 after being tested and treated for the coronavirus?  This pandemic is showing the entire world that the U.S. healthcare system is deeply, deeply broken, and there is no way that we can continue to go on like this.  If coronavirus testing is quick, inexpensive and widely available all over the rest of the globe, why can’t that be the case here too?  Democrats and Republicans have been fighting about fixing our healthcare system all the way back to the 1990s and they haven’t gotten the job done.  Now we have a system that is a complete and utter embarrassment, and it is about to be overwhelmed by the greatest public health crisis that any of us have ever seen.

Even under normal circumstances, most Americans are deathly afraid to go to the hospital because of what it will cost.

I have written about this numerous times before, but not even I would have imagined that getting tested and treated for coronavirus would cost more than $34,000

A woman in the United States says she was billed $34,927.43 after being tested and treated for the coronavirus, Time magazine reports.

When Danni Askini first came down with the symptoms of the virus — shortness of breath, a fever, a cough and migraines — she was told by a doctor to go to the emergency room. There, she was told she had pneumonia and could go home. She visited the emergency room two more times as her symptoms persisted and worsened before she was finally tested for the coronavirus. Three days later her results showed she had COVID-19.

How in the world is it possible for a bill to get that high?

As Danni pointed out, she now owes the hospital more than she paid for both of her college degrees.

Sadly, she is going to be far from alone.  According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, coronavirus victims all over America are going to get hit with extremely high medical bills…

A new analysis from the Kaiser Family Foundation estimates that the average cost of COVID-19 treatment for someone with employer insurance—and without complications—would be about $9,763. Someone whose treatment has complications may see bills about double that: $20,292. (The researchers came up with those numbers by examining average costs of hospital admissions for people with pneumonia.)

What this means is that if even a single member of your family catches the virus it could instantly wipe you out financially, and this is especially true if you do not have health insurance.

Congress has passed a bill which will now cover the cost of coronavirus testing, but the bad news is that “it doesn’t do anything to address the cost of treatment”

Public health experts predict that tens of thousands and possibly millions of people across the United States will likely need to be hospitalized for COVID-19 in the foreseeable future. And Congress has yet to address the problem. On March 18, it passed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which covers testing costs going forward, but it doesn’t do anything to address the cost of treatment.

For those that catch the virus, and officials are warning that will eventually be most of us, treatment is going to cost far, far more than testing will.

You may think that you will just tough things out at home, but if this virus hits you hard enough you will either go to the hospital or you will die.

For a moment, I would like for you to consider what a medical worker in Louisiana is saying about the patients that he is treating

“With our coronavirus patients, once they’re on ventilators, most need about the highest settings that we can do. About 90% oxygen, and 16 of PEEP, positive end-expiratory pressure, which keeps the lung inflated. This is nearly as high as I’ve ever seen. The level we’re at means we are running out of options.

“In my experience, this severity of ARDS is usually more typical of someone who has a near drowning experience — they have a bunch of dirty water in their lungs — or people who inhale caustic gas. Especially for it to have such an acute onset like that. I’ve never seen a microorganism or an infectious process cause such acute damage to the lungs so rapidly. That was what really shocked me.”

Many coronavirus victims have described being in a state where they constantly feel like they are drowning.

And this medical worker in Louisiana says that there is a really good reason for that, because the severe cases that he is treating are “essentially drowning in their own blood and fluids because their lungs are so full”

“When someone has an infection, I’m used to seeing the normal colors you’d associate with it: greens and yellows. The coronavirus patients with ARDS have been having a lot of secretions that are actually pink because they’re filled with blood cells that are leaking into their airways. They are essentially drowning in their own blood and fluids because their lungs are so full. So we’re constantly having to suction out the secretions every time we go into their rooms.”

For the moment, there are still enough ventilators in the U.S. for everyone, but we are still in the very early chapters of this pandemic.

Over in Europe, many hospitals are already being completely overwhelmed.  In Italy, one doctor is reporting that patients over the age of 60 are now being refused access to artificial respiratory machines

Peleg said that, from what he sees and hears in the hospital, the instructions are not to offer access to artificial respiratory machines to patients over 60 as such machines are limited in number.

When things get bad enough, doctors are going to have to make choices about who lives and who dies here too.

It is hoped that the measures that are being taken all over the nation will start to slow down the spread of this virus.

But millions of Americans continue to go to work each day, and many of them simply can’t afford not to work.

In fact, it is being reported that many delivery drivers continue reporting for work each day even though they are clearly very sick…

An increasing number of the workers sorting those boxes, loading them into trucks and then transporting and delivering them around the country have fallen sick.

They have coughs, sore throats, aches and fevers — symptoms consistent with the coronavirus. Yet they are still reporting for their shifts in crowded shipping facilities and warehouses and truck depots, fearful of what will happen if they don’t.

So the next time a delivery truck comes to your home, you may want to keep your distance.

We have never seen anything like this before.  The entire western world is shutting down simultaneously, and it is being estimated that nearly a billion people are now under lockdown orders

Close to one billion people worldwide were confined to their homes on Saturday as the global coronavirus death toll shot past 11,000 and US states rolled out lockdown measures already imposed across swathes of Europe.

The pandemic has completely upended lives across the planet, restricting movement, shutting schools and forcing millions to work from home.

Needless to say, this is going to be absolutely devastating for the economy.

If you can believe it, Morgan Stanley is now projecting a 30 percent decline in U.S. GDP on an annualized basis during the second quarter…

We now see 1Q GDP dropping by 2.4% as economic activity has come to a near standstill in March, followed by a record-breaking drop of 30.1% in 2Q. We estimate that March will also mark the first drop in nonfarm payrolls, down 700k. We expect a record-high unemployment rate, averaging 12.8% in 2Q.

We assume sharp declines in areas of consumer discretionary spending like travel, dining out, other services and motor vehicle spending among others. This will leave a large hole in consumer spending in 2Q, when we expect real personal consumption expenditures to contract at a 31% annualized pace.

And the president of the St. Louis Fed is being even more pessimistic

In an interview with Bloomberg, the president of the St. Louis Fed, predicted that U.S. unemployment rate may hit 30% in the second quarter because of shutdowns to combat the coronavirus, coupled with an unprecedented 50% drop in US GDP. That would be an outcome worse not only than every prior war the US has (officially) waged, but more than twice as dire as the worst days of the Great Depression.

It sure didn’t take much to plunge the U.S. into a horrifying economic depression.

Two months ago, everything seemed just fine to most people.

But now financial markets are crashing, workers are losing jobs at an unprecedented rate, and many of the businesses that are now being closed down will never open again.

Fear of the coronavirus has collapsed “the everything bubble”, and what we have experienced so far is just the beginning…

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with all many people as we possibly can.

More Than 70 Million Americans Have Been Locked Down So Far, And This Is Just The Beginning…

It seems like just yesterday that I was warning that the same sort of lockdowns that were occurring in Italy and China would soon be instituted here, and now it is actually happening.  As you will see below, more than 70 million Americans have already been locked down, and more states will likely follow suit in the days ahead.  Of course our politicians are attempting to put a positive spin on their directives by referring to them as “shelter-in-place” orders, and they are promising us that they are only “temporary”.  But less than 300 Americans have died during this pandemic so far, and many medical experts are warning that this is only the very beginning of this crisis.  As long as the number of confirmed cases and the death toll are both rising at an exponential rate, these “shelter-in place” orders will remain in effect, and Americans will become increasingly frustrated about having to remain in their own homes.

On Friday, two of the biggest states in the entire country decided that it was time to shut virtually everything down

The Governor of Illinois has announced a stay at home order, making it the latest state to shut down after New York and California as President Trump refuses to issue a national quarantine in the battle against coronavirus.

On Friday, NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo issued a total ban on non-essential businesses and warned there would be strict fines for any businesses that do not comply. It will go into effect on Sunday evening and is indefinite.

But of course some businesses will remain open.  The following is a list of some of the businesses in New York that are exempt from the order

  • Hospitals and medical services
  • Grocery Stores
  • Pharmacies 
  • Government workers 
  • Mass transit 
  • Some food services and restaurant delivery 
  • News organizations 
  • Cuomo said he does not know if laundromats apply 

The effectiveness of such an order is definitely open to debate.  As thousands upon thousands of New Yorkers circulate through local grocery stores and pharmacies, it is inevitable that the virus will continue to spread.

But at least doing this is better than nothing.

These orders by the governors of New York and Illinois came about 24 hours after California instituted similar measures

The stay home order is in place till further notice.

All dine-in restaurants, bars and clubs, gyms and fitness studios will be closed, according to the order. Public events and gatherings are also not allowed. Essential services will stay open, however, such as pharmacies, grocery stores, takeout and delivery restaurants, and banks.

This means that in just those three states alone, approximately 70 million Americans “are now under stay-at-home orders”

It means that between the three states, 70 million Americans are now under stay-at-home orders.

They are being told to only go out for exercise, to the grocery store or to seek medical care, and can pick up take-out from restaurants – so long as those restaurants can keep themselves afloat. Many have already closed their doors.

Wow.

In addition to California, New York and Illinois, the state of Connecticut has decided to lock down their citizens starting on Monday night, and Pennsylvania has ordered all businesses that are not “life-sustaining” to completely shut down.

We haven’t reached the point of a total “national lockdown” just yet, but it will sure start to feel like it as one state after another issues similar orders.

I am really struggling to find the words to describe how utterly devastating that this is going to be for the U.S. economy.  The number of people filing for unemployment benefits is absolutely exploding all over the country, and financial markets have been plunging as investors anticipate the economic nightmare that is coming.  For much more on this please see the article that I just posted entitled “This Was The Worst Week For The Stock Market Since 2008, And “Jobless Filings Are Growing Geometrically”.

Many are hoping that the lockdowns that are being instituted now will last for only a few weeks and then life can start to get back to normal.

But Italy has already been locked down for an extended period of time, and the number of people dying in that country just hit another daily record

Italy has recorded its highest day-to-day-rise in the number of deaths of people infected with the new coronavirus.

Civil Protection Chief Angelo Borrelli said Friday the country recorded 627 more deaths in the 24 hours since Italy surpassed China on Thursday as the nation with the most COVID-19-related deaths. The total now stands at 4,032.

And many Americans are simply too stubborn to follow these lockdown orders.

In fact, many Americans are too stupid to even use basic common sense.  Just check out the following example

The latest incident occurred in the Washington exurb of Purcellville, Virginia, some 55 miles from the White House.

According to a Purcellville Police Department report, “An incident occurred at a local grocery store involving juveniles reportedly coughing on produce, while filming themselves and posting it on social media.”

Are you kidding me?

Coughing on produce and then posting it on social media?

Some people will do anything to get attention.

I really do hope that more Americans start taking this pandemic seriously.  The number of confirmed cases in the U.S. will pass the 20,000 mark this weekend, and we just learned that a member of Vice-President Mike Pence’s staff has tested positive

A member of Vice President Mike Pence’s staff has tested positive for coronavirus, the White House said Friday, marking the first such infection within the top rungs of the administration.

Katie Miller, a spokeswoman for Pence, did not identify the staffer, nor did she say specifically where the individual worked. Pence is leading the administration’s coronavirus task force and has been a regular presence at the president’s side in recent weeks.

This pandemic is going to change life in America permanently, and the truth is that COVID-19 is just one element of “the perfect storm” that is now upon us.

Economic activity is coming to a screeching halt all over the nation, anger and frustration were already at extremely dangerous levels before this pandemic started, and if these lockdown orders stretch on for many months to come it is only a matter of time before we see tremendous civil unrest start to erupt.

Everything that we have been warning about for so long is starting to come to fruition, and the days ahead are going to be extremely challenging for all Americans.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with all many people as we possibly can.

This Was The Worst Week For The Stock Market Since 2008, And “Jobless Filings Are Growing Geometrically”

Just a few weeks ago everything seemed completely normal to most people, but now fear of the coronavirus has caused U.S. stock prices to absolutely implode.  The stock market crash of 2020 will forever be mentioned alongside the crashes of 1929, 1987 and 2008, and by the time it is over it could potentially end up being the largest of them all.  Close to a third of all stock market wealth in the entire country has already been wiped out, and many experts are warning that the worst is yet to come.  Of course the authorities are going to do their very best to try to prop up the market, but despite the most dramatic intervention by the Federal Reserve that we have ever witnessed, U.S. stocks just had their worst week since 2008

The Dow dropped more than 17% for the week, its biggest one-week fall since October 2008, when it slid 18.2%. The S&P 500 lost more than 13% week to date after dropping another 11.5% last week. The Nasdaq fell 12.6%. Both the S&P 500 and Nasdaq also had their worst weekly performances since the financial crisis in 2008.

And when you look at the numbers for the entire month so far, they are even more depressing

The Dow is down more than 24% for March and is currently on pace for its biggest one-month fall since September 1931. The S&P 500 has dropped 22% month to date and is headed for its worst monthly performance since May 1940.

Overall, the Dow Jones Industrial Average has fallen a whopping 35.2 percent from the all-time record high that we witnessed in February, and the S&P 500 has fallen 32.1 percent from the all-time record high that it set earlier this year.

In all of U.S. history, we have never seen a market crash of such speed and ferocity.

At this point, all of the stock market gains that we have witnessed since Donald Trump became president have been completely wiped out.

Ouch.

I know that many of you may find this difficult to believe, but stock prices are still substantially overvalued.

According to historical norms, stocks valuation ratios are still way too high, and so stocks still have a lot further to fall until they get back to “normal”.

Of course these aren’t “normal” times, and so there is no telling how far prices could eventually fall.

As financial markets continue to go wildly up and down, an increasing number of financial firms are inevitably going to get into very serious trouble.

On Friday, many were absolutely stunned when Ronin Capital completely imploded

Well, no more: according to CNBC’s Scott Wapner, one of the CME’s direct clearing firms was unable to meet its capital requirements on Friday, forcing the exchange to step in and invoke its “emergency protocols” to auction off the firm’s portfolios.

The firm in question: Ronin Capital, which on its website says “seeks the best and brightest people who embrace our Firm’s culture, and can thrive in a dynamic, entrepreneurial trading environment.” Apparently, that also meant being unable to quantify your risk exposure.

Sadly, what we have witnessed so far is just the beginning.

Meanwhile, the greatest corporate debt bubble in history appears as though it is about to burst in a major way.  According to Bloomberg, “the amount of distressed debt in the U.S. alone has doubled” over the past couple of weeks…

In less than two weeks, the amount of distressed debt in the U.S. alone has doubled to a half-trillion dollars as the collapse of oil prices and the fallout from the coronavirus shutters entire industries.

In all, U.S. corporate bonds that yield at least 10 percentage points above Treasuries, as well as loans that trade for less than 80 cents on the dollar, have swelled to $533 billion, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

But most ordinary Americans are not really too concerned about such matters.

What many Americans are worried about these days is whether or not they will actually have jobs next week.

As the U.S. literally shuts down from coast to coast, Americans are losing jobs at a pace that is mind blowing, and we are being told that state jobless claims “are growing geometrically”

State jobless filings are growing geometrically, a signal of how the national numbers will change when we have them. Last Monday, Colorado had 400 people apply for unemployment insurance. This Tuesday: 6,800. California has seen its daily filings jump from 2,000 to 80,000. Oregon went from 800 to 18,000. In Connecticut, nearly 2 percent of the state’s workers declared that they were newly jobless on a single day. Many other states are reporting the same kinds of figures.

When I first read those numbers, they took my breath away.

And since most workers in this country are living paycheck to paycheck, large numbers of them will almost instantly be struggling to pay their basic expenses once they are let go.

Sadly, more layoffs are coming, and we are now being warned to brace ourselves for job loss numbers that once would have been unthinkable

The first real bad U.S. economic data from the coronavirus outbreak was released on Thursday, as initial jobless claims surged 70,000 to 281,000, the highest level in 2.5 years.

But that is not anything compared with what is in store.

David Choi, an economist from Goldman Sachs, says initial claims for the week ending March 21 may jump to a seasonally adjusted 2.25 million.

Please pray for those that are losing their jobs, because most of them will not be able to find work for the foreseeable future.

What we are dealing with is not just another economic downturn.  In her most recent article, Annie Lowrey described this as an economic “shock” that is “more sudden and severe than anyone alive has ever experienced”…

What is happening is a shock to the American economy more sudden and severe than anyone alive has ever experienced. The unemployment rate climbed to its apex of 9.9 percent 23 months after the formal start of the Great Recession. Just a few weeks into the domestic coronavirus pandemic, and just days into the imposition of emergency measures to arrest it, nearly 20 percent of workers report that they have lost hours or lost their job. One payroll and scheduling processor suggests that 22 percent of work hours have evaporated for hourly employees, with three in 10 people who would normally show up for work not going as of Tuesday. Absent a strong governmental response, the unemployment rate seems certain to reach heights not seen since the Great Depression or even the miserable late 1800s.

So how bad could things ultimately get?

Well, Goldman Sachs is now forecasting that on an annualized basis U.S. GDP will plunge 24 percent in the second quarter

Goldman Sachs economists on Friday forecast an unprecedented 24% decline in second quarter gross domestic product, following a 6% decline in the first quarter, based on the economy’s sudden and historic shutdown as the country responds to the coronavirus pandemic.

If that projection is anywhere close to accurate, we are about to see economic suffering that will be off the charts.

Needless to say, cries for help from the federal government will soon become overwhelming.  At this point, even billionaires such as Ray Dalio are pleading for the government to do more

As the coronavirus spread Thursday, Bridgewater’s Ray Dalio said the outbreak will cost U.S. corporations up to $4 trillion, and “a lot of people are going to be broke.”

“What’s happening has not happened in our lifetime before. … What we have is a crisis,” the Bridgewater founder said on CNBC’s “Squawk Box.” “There will also be individuals who have very big losses. … There’s a need for the government to spend more money, a lot more money.”

So a broke government that is already 23.5 trillion dollars in debt is supposed to borrow and spend trillions more to bail everyone out?

Good luck with all that.

We have reached the beginning of the end.

We have reached a time when everyone and everything is going to be shaken, and life is never going to go back to the way it was before.

But as I keep stressing, now is not a time for fear.

With God’s help we can get through this, but God’s plan for your future may end up looking radically different from what your plan for the future would have looked like.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with all many people as we possibly can.

Why Are So Many People In Italy Dying Of The Coronavirus?

One of the great mysteries of this coronavirus pandemic has been the widely varying death rates that we have been witnessing all over the globe.  For example, the death rate in Italy has been many times higher than the death rate in South Korea, and that has greatly puzzled the experts.  Initially I thought that perhaps Italy was dealing with a different strain of the virus than South Korea was, and that may still turn out to be true once we learn more.  But another potential factor has emerged that I wanted to share with my readers, because it has to do with something that might be in your medicine cabinet right now.  Health authorities in Europe are now warning that ibuprofen may accelerate the multiplication of the virus, and they are instructing everyone not to use it.

On Saturday, the health minister of France sparked headlines all over the globe when he tweeted the following

“The taking of anti-inflammatories [ibuprofen, cortisone … ] could be a factor in aggravating the infection. In case of fever, take paracetamol. If you are already taking anti-inflammatory drugs, ask your doctor’s advice.”

Unfortunately, many people in Europe have been immediately reaching for ibuprofen once they get the virus because they want something that will help them deal with the pain.

In fact, researchers discovered that most Italians that developed serious complications once they caught the coronavirus had been taking ibuprofen at home

They studied why the disease pathway in Italy is more serious, finding that most patients took ibuprofen at home. Researchers joined the virus and ibuprofen in the laboratory and came to the conclusion that administering ibuprofen accelerates multiplication of the virus and is related to a more serious course of the disease. They recommend to avoid ibuprofen and to administer paracetamol, aspirin, diclofenac.

Consultant Pediatrician in London John Greenwood was quoted as saying: “We have just been sent a medical alert that no one is to use anti-inflammatories (e.g. Ibruprofen, Voltarol, naproxen, and others) for pain or high temperature. Use paracetamol instead. There seems to be a link between severe cases of COVID-19 affecting young people with no underlying illnesses and taking anti-inflammatories. Initial reports started coming from French doctors on Friday. This has been confirmed by infectious diseases consultants here – there are four young people in ICU in Cork who have no underlying illnesses – all were taking anti-inflammatories and there are concerns this has caused a more severe illness.”

This information needs to get out to everyone as quickly as possible, but so far the mainstream media in the United States has been very slow to pick up on this story.

And that is extremely unfortunate, because accurate information could make the difference between life and death in a lot of cases.

On Facebook, a British man named Dan Collins shared what happened when he gave his very young daughter ibuprofen to treat her coronavirus infection…

To those of you that have children please read

If your child has symptoms of corona virus, DO NOT give them ibuprofen

Amelia’s been unwell since Tuesday, cough, fever, cold. This morning she came into my room and got into my bed burning hot and not wanting to get up. Anyone that knows Amelia knows that this isn’t like her at all! Once she’s awake she’s awake and spends the day bouncing off the walls! We took her temperature and it was 38, along with every other symptom of corona virus, so called 111 who said they’d send out paramedics within 2 hours to check on her

We couldn’t get calpol anywhere in staple hill yesterday so got nurofen instead thinking nothing of it, within an hour of giving her nurofen she dropped dramatically. She was panting while trying to breathe, her heart rate was very rapid, she couldn’t keep her eyes open, couldn’t lift her head up, her body was shaking, she started being sick on herself and her temperature had risen to 39.4!

We called back up and they sent out an emergency ambulance, once the paramedics got here they managed to bring her temp and stats down a bit, they’re still higher than normal but not dangerous high anymore. Now she’s back on calpol she’s back to just being her poorly self. The paramedics only told us while here that were not to give her ibuprofen!

The paramedic said about self isolating and calling back if her temp rises that high again, so I asked if it’s just for the 7 days as it’s already been 5 days but they said that as she has all symptoms were to keep her isolated until all symptoms are gone.

So please don’t give them ibuprofen!

For those that aren’t familiar with “Nurofen”, the primary active ingredient it contains is ibuprofen.

If we don’t get the word out about this, a lot of otherwise mild cases could become very serious, and our hospitals will be even more overwhelmed.

In the United Kingdom, one doctor is already warning of a complete and utter national nightmare.  The following comes from an article entitled “I’m a Doctor in Britain. We’re Heading Into the Abyss.”

Ten days ago, I was asked to see a patient. I’m a respiratory specialist in an intensive-care unit at a hospital in London, so it wasn’t surprising that the patient needed a ventilator. It seemed fairly typical. But the patient turned out to have the coronavirus — our hospital’s first case and one of nearly 2,000 people who have so far tested positive in Britain. I hadn’t worn a mask. Soon I developed a cough.

Though I experienced neither fever nor breathlessness, I was told to self-isolate for 14 days. That’s where I am now, in self-isolation. And I’m not the only one from my hospital. After just one patient with Covid-19, a quarter of our junior staff are off with coughs and sniffles we would normally work through. A single case of the coronavirus has wreaked havoc in our hospital.

Of course the U.S. is facing a similar scenario.

In fact, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio just warned that his city “will run out of medical supplies” in just a matter of weeks…

New York City has recorded 1664 new cases of COVID-19 in a single day, taking the total number to 3615.

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the shocking statistic in a press conference held Thursday afternoon, with the official number soaring by over 1000 in the hours since state Governor Andrew Cuomo updated the public earlier in the morning.

He later told CNN that the city will run out of medical supplies in between two and three weeks if infections continue at the current rate.

And New York City pediatric surgeon Cornelia Griggs just wrote an open letter to the New York Times in which she proclaimed that “the sky is falling”, and she ominously warned that we are about to face an absolutely unprecedented public health crisis that we are not ready for

Alarmist is not a word anyone has ever used to describe me before. I’m a board-certified surgeon and critical care specialist who spent much of my training attending to traumas in the emergency room and doing the rounds at Harvard hospitals’ intensive care units. I’m now in my last four months of training as a pediatric surgeon in New York City. Part of my job entails waking in the middle of the night to rush to the children’s hospital to put babies on a form of life support called ECMO, a service required when a child’s lungs are failing even with maximum ventilator support. Scenarios that mimic end-stage Covid-19 are part of my job. Panic is not in my vocabulary; the emotion has been drilled out of me in nine years of training. This is different.

We are living in a global public health crisis moving at a speed and scale never witnessed by living generations. The cracks in our medical and financial systems are being splayed open like a gashing wound. No matter how this plays out, life will forever look a little different for all of us.

Anyone that is not taking this outbreak seriously at this point is just being delusional.

One patient that survived the virus says that she constantly felt like she had glass in her lungs, the Washington Post is projecting that 1.1 million Americans could die in a “worst-case scenario”, and the virus is now starting to make a big time comeback in countries where it was thought to be contained.

It appears that we are going to be fighting this virus for a long time to come, and it is absolutely critical that we get people the information that they desperately need.

Unfortunately, many in the mainstream media appear to be more concerned about what their advertisers will think, and that is extremely unfortunate.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with all many people as we possibly can.

Will This Be “Just A Recession” Or Will It Be “The Next Great Depression”?

As America slowly but surely shuts down from coast to coast, everyone is acknowledging the fact that we are heading into a very serious economic downturn.  Originally, many experts were warning that this coronavirus pandemic could spark a recession, but now some are actually starting to use the “d” word.  Yesterday, I wrote about the government planning document that envisions an 18 month pandemic, multiple “waves” of infections, and “critical shortages” of important supplies.  If that scenario actually plays out, what we will experience will be far, far worse than the “Great Recession” of 2008 and 2009.  So let us hope that a way can be found to slow down the spread of this virus.

At this point, many of our top minds are fearing the worst.  On Thursday, former White House economist Kevin Hassett warned CNN that we could actually see a repeat of the Great Depression…

The widespread shutdown of the American economy because of the coronavirus could spark a repeat of the Great Depression, former Trump economist Kevin Hassett told CNN on Thursday.

The startling warning from a former White House adviser comes as Wall Street banks say the United States faces an historic collapse in GDP and mounting job losses.

Just a few weeks ago, the mainstream media was full of talk about how bright the future looked for the U.S. economy.

But now Hassett is telling us that we could be about to witness the “worst jobs number you ever saw”

Hassett, who left the White House last year and is now a CNN commentator, predicted that when the April jobs report comes out it will be the “worst jobs number you ever saw,” with perhaps two million jobs lost.

That would easily surpass the worst jobs report of the Great Recession, when payrolls plunged by 800,000 during March 2009.

Could you imagine the panic that would cause on Wall Street if we actually do see a job loss of that magnitude?

Of course Hassett is not the only one using such strong language.  A former economic adviser to Barack Obama says that this pandemic “could do more damage to the economy than the financial crisis did”

Jason Furman was a top economic adviser to President Barack Obama, serving as deputy director of the National Economics Council from 2009 to 2013, and as chair of the Council of Economic Advisers from 2013 to 2017. He played a key role in designing the administration’s response to the financial crisis and Great Recession. He’s now a professor at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.

I’ve spoken with Furman often over the years, and to put it bluntly, I’ve never heard him as alarmed as on Thursday. He believes the coronavirus could do more damage to the economy than the financial crisis did, and that policymakers aren’t even close to designing a large enough response.

Sadly, he is likely to be entirely correct.

In fact, if this pandemic stretches on for many more months it will make what happened in 2008 look like a Sunday picnic.

For a long time I have been warning that a recession is coming, but I don’t have to warn about that any longer.  On Thursday, Bank of America boldly declared that the next recession is already here

Bank of America warned investors on Thursday that a coronavirus-induced recession is no longer avoidable — it’s already here.

“We are officially declaring that the economy has fallen into a recession … joining the rest of the world, and it is a deep plunge,” Bank of America U.S. economist Michelle Meyer wrote in a note. “Jobs will be lost, wealth will be destroyed and confidence depressed.”

If you can believe it, Bank of America is actually projecting that the U.S. economy will shrink by 12 percent on an annualized basis in the second quarter, and they are warning that more than 3 million jobs will be lost during this crisis…

Bank of America looked at the labor market as a way to understand the “magnitude of the economic shock.” The firm expects the unemployment rate to nearly double, with roughly 1 million jobs lost each month of the second quarter for a total of 3.5 million.

Actually, if we only lose 3.5 million jobs during the course of this pandemic that should be considered to be a rip-roaring success.

Never before in U.S. history have we witnessed such a widespread economic shutdown.  On Thursday, the governor of Pennsylvania actually ordered almost every business in the entire state to close up shop

Governor Tom Wolf ordered all non-life-sustaining businesses in Pennsylvania to close their physical locations by 8 p.m. Thursday in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Enforcement actions against businesses that do not close their physical locations will begin at 12:01 a.m. Saturday, the Wolf administration said in a press release.

That means that almost everyone is going to be staying home and virtually all economic activity in the state is going to come to a grinding halt.

There is a good chance that this will slow down the spread of the virus in Pennsylvania temporarily, but unless every other state does the same thing simultaneously, people from other states are just going to keep bringing the virus back in.

In Texas, Governor Greg Abbott just instituted a whole host of restrictions, but most businesses will continue operating normally

Gov. Greg Abbott issued an executive order limiting public gatherings to 10 people, shutting schools, prohibiting visitors to nursing homes and retirement communities and limiting bars and restaurants to take-out through April 3 in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19. He also recommended that non-essential state employees telework.

In California, about a third of the state is currently locked down, but the COVID-19 has just continued to spread.

In fact, Governor Gavin Newsom just told the press that he expects more than 25 million people to eventually become infected in his state alone

California estimates that more than half of the state — 25.5 million people — will get the new coronavirus over the next eight weeks, according to a letter sent by Gov. Gavin Newsom to U.S. President Donald Trump.

“In the last 24 hours, we had 126 new COVID-19 cases, a 21 percent increase. In some parts of our state, our case rate is doubling every four days,” Newsom wrote in a letter dated Wednesday. Newsom asked Trump to dispatch the USNS Mercy Hospital Ship to the Port of Los Angeles through Sept. 1 to help with the influx of expected cases.

Overall, the number of confirmed cases in the United States has dramatically escalated over the last 48 hours.

As long as the number of confirmed cases continues to explode, the lockdowns will persist and the restrictions on our freedoms will become more severe.

And if this pandemic does end up lasting for 18 months as the government is now projecting, it will paralyze our society to an extent that we have never seen before.

The U.S. economy has fallen off a cliff, and I have a feeling that it has a long, long way to go before it hits bottom.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with all many people as we possibly can.

Are You Ready To Have Your Civil Liberties Severely Restricted? Because That Is Where This Thing Is Headed…

One of the things that sets the United States apart from the rest of the world is that we are supposed to have certain civil liberties guaranteed to us by the U.S. Constitution.  Of course the U.S. Constitution has been absolutely trampled on by many of our leaders for decades, but most Americans still deeply cherish the basic rights which are enshrined in our founding document.  Unfortunately, many of our politicians are convinced that all of those rights can be taken away during a “national emergency”, and these days the bar for declaring a “national emergency” has been set very low.  Yes, this coronavirus pandemic is a major threat, and experts are warning that millions of Americans could die.  But in the process of fighting this virus, we don’t want to relinquish the freedoms that previous generations of Americans fought so hard to secure for us.  As history has demonstrated, once certain freedoms are gone they can be exceedingly difficult to get back.  We are now being warned that this pandemic could last 18 months or longer, and losing any of our freedoms for that long is absolutely unthinkable.

Unfortunately, some of our politicians are apparently thinking about the unthinkable.

I would like for you to consider something that California Governor Gavin Newsom just told the media very carefully

California Gov. Gavin Newsom in a Sunday presser said that martial law was not necessary to combat coronavirus in his state.

“If you want to establish a framework of martial law, which is ultimate authority and enforcement, we have the capacity to do that, but we are not feeling at this moment that is a necessity,” Newsom said.

At this moment?

Does that mean that later on it may become “a necessity”?

And why would he even dare to use the term “martial law” anyway?

Less than 200 Americans have died during this pandemic so far.  Yes, the numbers are rising rapidly, but no politician in their right mind should be allowing the term “martial law” to escape from their lips.

That is just going to freak everyone out and cause even more panic.

Without a doubt, citizens of California are already on edge due to the severe restrictions that have already been implemented.  In southern California, Orange County officials have decided to ban virtually all “public and private gatherings”

Orange County officials Tuesday took unprecedented action by banning all public and private gathers beyond those of a single household as jurisdictions across the world grapple with the spread of coronavirus.

County health officer Dr. Nicole Quick issued the order effective immediately prohibiting “all public and private gatherings of any number of people, including at places of work, occurring outside a single household or living space.”

And in northern California, nearly 8 million people have essentially been “locked down”

In Northern California, about 8 million people have been ordered to shelter in place. The Southern California city of Palm Springs issued a similar mandate.

In all one in four Californians live in an area where there is a stay at home when possible order.

Hopefully these measures will slow the spread of the virus.

But what if they don’t?

And unless the other 49 states enact similar lockdowns at the same time, people are going to keep bringing the virus back into the state.

At this point COVID-19 is spreading like wildfire all over the nation.  If you can believe it, even a couple members of Congress have now caught the virus

Two members of Congress, Reps. Mario Diaz-Balart and Ben McAdams, have tested positive for coronavirus in one day, causing other members who may have been exposed to go into self-quarantine and raising the question of whether there are more cases on Capitol Hill.

But most Americans still seem to believe that this pandemic isn’t actually that serious.

In fact, one new survey found that a whopping 62 percent of all Americans believe that the mainstream media “has exaggerated the threat of coronavirus”

62 percent of Americans believe that the media has exaggerated the threat of coronavirus, according to a new Pew Research poll.

The results of the survey found that 63 percent of Americans believe the CDC and public health officials have got the risk of COID-19 about right, with just 21 percent believing they have exaggerated the risks.

To me, the mainstream media was actually very slow to recognize the seriousness of this story.

If they had started warning people much earlier, we would be in far better shape today.

I keep trying to get people to understand that you do not want this virus.

If you doubt this, just consider the immense suffering that one survivor went through

“Imagine your lungs turning solid. It’s like suffocating without holding your nose,” said Harris who owns an auto body shop and typically run 5 miles every day.

“Every time I lay down my breathing gets lower and lower. I thought my lungs would fail me. I was screaming for mercy and praying to God.”

Does that sound like it is “just like the flu” to you?

Sadly, the truth is that we are just in the very early chapters of this pandemic.  According to Dr. Deborah Birx, it is likely that the number of confirmed cases inside the U.S. will “dramatically increase” over the next several days…

“We will see the number of people diagnosed dramatically increase over the next four to five days,” Dr. Deborah Birx, of the White House’s coronavirus task force, said at a news conference.

The number of cases in New York state grew by more than 1,200. More than 500 of those were in New York City.

And even though there are now more than 3,000 confirmed cases in the state of New York alone, Governor Andrew Cuomo is warning that he believes that the virus “is much more widespread than any of these numbers suggest”

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said there are likely “tens of thousands” of COVID-19 cases in the state by residents who never knew they had the illness.”

An increase in testing is “revealing more cases,” Cuomo said Wednesday on CNN’s “The Situation Room” with Wolf Blitzer. “I think it is much more widespread than any of these numbers suggest.”

So yes, this virus is a very serious threat and this pandemic requires a very strong national response.

However, we have got to find a way to fight this virus and maintain our constitutional rights at the same time.

I understand that it isn’t always going to be easy to find the right balance, and the temptation for our leaders to overreact is going to be overwhelming at times.

But defeating this virus won’t be any sort of a “victory” if we lose what it means to be Americans while we are doing it.

So let us battle COVID-19 with great courage, but let us also carefully guard our constitutional rights whenever they are threatened.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. This article may contain opinions on political matters, but it is not intended to promote the candidacy of any particular political candidate. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.

The U.S. Government Is Preparing For An 18 Month Pandemic And “Critical Shortages”

Are you prepared for the nationwide shutdown that is happening now to last for the next 18 months?  You may not believe that such a thing will happen, but the federal government apparently does.  A 100 page government plan marked “For Official Use Only // Not For Public Distribution or Release” was obtained by the New York Times, and it paints a very bleak picture of what is coming.  If the projections in this document are anywhere close to accurate, large numbers of Americans will die, the U.S. economy will completely implode, and we will see widespread civil unrest.  So let us pray that the assessments in this government plan turn out to be dead wrong.

According to the document, this coronavirus pandemic “will last 18 months or longer”

A federal government plan to combat the coronavirus warned policymakers last week that a pandemic “will last 18 months or longer” and could include “multiple waves,” resulting in widespread shortages that would strain consumers and the nation’s health care system.

The 100-page plan, dated Friday, the same day President Trump declared a national emergency, laid out a grim prognosis for the spread of the virus and outlined a response that would activate agencies across the government and potentially employ special presidential powers to mobilize the private sector.

I can’t even imagine what our country would look like if current conditions stretched into the middle of 2021.

As a nation, I don’t believe that we would be able to handle it.

The document also envisions that there will be “critical shortages”

“Shortages of products may occur, impacting health care, emergency services, and other elements of critical infrastructure,” the plan warned. “This includes potentially critical shortages of diagnostics, medical supplies (including PPE and pharmaceuticals), and staffing in some locations.” P.P.E. refers to personal protective equipment.

Of course there are already shortages of some drugs and of many basic consumer products such as toilet paper.

Sadly, things could soon get much worse.

Meanwhile, the overall economy continues to collapse at a staggering pace.  A former economic adviser to President Trump is now warning us that the U.S. economy could lose up to a million jobs this month alone

Kevin Hassett, who served as a top economic adviser to President Trump until last summer, said Monday that the United States economy could shed as many as one million jobs in March alone because of layoffs and hiring freezes related to the coronavirus.

“If you have normal job disruption, and hiring just stops,” Mr. Hassett said, “you’ll have the worst jobs number ever.”

But if this pandemic continues to escalate, a million jobs lost will just be a drop in the bucket.

In fact, the National Restaurant Association is now projecting that their industry will lose “between five and seven million jobs”

The National Restaurant Association is predicting the unprecedented carnage is only just beginning, on Wednesday writing a letter to the White House and Congress detailing an estimated $225 billion in sales will be wiped out over the next three months, crucially prompting the loss of between five and seven million jobs.

Remember, that is just one industry.

The retail industry is also being completely devastated as well, and we just learned that the largest operator of shopping malls in the United States is shutting them all down

Simon Property Group, the largest owner of shopping malls in the nation, is closing all of its malls and retail properties because of the coronavirus outbreak.

The closings start at 7 p.m. local time Wednesday and the malls are expected to end March 29, the Indianapolis-based company said in a news release.

Of course they won’t actually open back up on March 29th if this pandemic continues to get worse.

So far, COVID-19 has killed less than 200 Americans.

If our society is being this disrupted now, what will things be like if the death toll becomes 1,000 times larger?

For years, I have warned that our economy was extremely vulnerable, and now that is becoming exceedingly obvious to everyone.  It certainly didn’t take too much of a push to burst all the bubbles and send everyone into a severe panic, and now the economy is collapsing at a pace that is absolutely breathtaking.

According to NBC News, state unemployment websites all over the nation are crashing because so many people are suddenly applying for unemployment benefits…

Workers who have suddenly found themselves without a paycheck because of the growing coronavirus pandemic in the United States are now dealing with another frustration — state unemployment websites crashing because of high traffic.

From Oregon to New York and Washington, D.C., officials and Twitter users have highlighted the problem after the mass closing of restaurants, retail stores and other businesses as part of the effort to slow the spread of the virus.

Tomorrow morning most Americans will wake up assuming that their jobs are safe.  But right now an increasing number of people are being let go without any advance warning whatsoever.  Here is one example

Eileen Hanley was wrapping up her weekend and getting ready for the week ahead on Sunday evening when an email popped up in her inbox with the subject line “COVID-19 uncertainty.” It was from her boss at the small Manhattan law firm where she worked part time as a receptionist.

“We hope you are feeling well during this time,” the email began. Then it cut to the chase: The firm was losing revenue because of the outbreak, and it would have to eliminate “a number of positions,” including hers, “effective immediately.”

We have never seen anything like this before.

Things were tough during World War II, but it was actually a time when the country geared up and worked extremely hard to defeat the enemy.

But now economic activity all over America is being brought to a screeching halt.  In fact, we just learned that the three largest automakers have shut down all of their U.S. factories

Detroit’s Big Three automakers plan to temporarily close all U.S. factories as the coronavirus sweeps across the country.

The companies bowed to pressure from union leaders and employees who called for protection from the pandemic that’s spread to more than 212,000 people in nearly every country across the globe.

As a nation, we would survive a 30 day shutdown.

But if life doesn’t get back to normal for “18 months”, we are going to witness a societal meltdown of epic proportions.

This week, investor Bill Ackman told CNBC that “hell is coming”, and he warned that unless the entire country is shut down simultaneously for an extended period of time “America will end as we know it”…

“What’s scaring the American people and corporate America now is the gradual rollout,” Ackman told Scott Wapner on “Halftime Report” on Wednesday. “We need to shut it down now. … This is the only answer.”

“America will end as we know it. I’m sorry to say so, unless we take this option,” he said. Ackman added that if Trump saves the country from the coronavirus, he will get reelected in November.

I believe that he makes an excellent point, but I would take it one step further.

If the entire world shut down for 30 days, this pandemic would quickly be brought under control.  If only the U.S. shuts down, it is inevitable that the virus would keep coming back into the country as the pandemic continues raging elsewhere on the globe.

Of course we aren’t going to get the entire globe to agree to shut down simultaneously for 30 days.

So this outbreak will continue to spread and the case numbers will continue to grow.

For a long time I have been warning that something would come along that would burst all the bubbles and trigger a horrifying economic meltdown.

Now it is upon us, but now is not a time for fear.

With God’s help, we will get through this.

But life is not going to go back to the way it was before.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. This article may contain opinions on political matters, but it is not intended to promote the candidacy of any particular political candidate. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.

What Is Our Country Going To Look Like If Millions Of Americans Start Dying From The Coronavirus?

Experts are warning that hundreds of millions of people around the globe could eventually catch COVID-19, and if that actually happens, millions of people are going to die.  Globally, less than 10,000 people have died during this pandemic so far, and the level of fear we are witnessing is off the charts.  The entire western world is shutting down and people are freaking out like we have never been before.  So what is going to happen if the global death toll soon gets 100 times higher?  According to the CDC, in a “worst-case scenario” more than 200 million people could become infected in the United States alone…

According to The New York Times, a closed-door meeting was held last month among CDC officials and dozens of epidemic experts from around the world.

One of the CDC’s leading epidemiologists presented four scenarios – named A, B, C and D – to show possible ways the virus could spread throughout the US population.

The federal health agency projects that in the worst-case scenario, between 160 million and 214 million people would be sickened.

Do you think that our society is equipped to handle a crisis of that magnitude?

I certainly don’t.

Hopefully the measures that are now being taken will slow the spread of this virus.  Because if that does not happen, researchers at Imperial College London are projecting that 2.2 million Americans could die

The report is also influencing planning by the Trump administration. Deborah Birx, who serves as the coordinator of the White House coronavirus task force, cited the British analysis at a news conference Monday, saying her response team was especially focused on the report’s conclusion that an entire household should self-quarantine for 14 days if one of its members is stricken by the virus.

The Imperial College London group reported that if nothing was done by governments and individuals and the pandemic remained uncontrolled, 510,000 would die in Britain and 2.2 million in the United States over the course of the outbreak.

I really don’t understand why some people out there still refuse to take this pandemic seriously.

Now that this outbreak is completely out of control, it won’t be too long before COVID-19 is virtually everywhere.

According to a new study that was just conducted by scientists at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, this virus can remain “in the air for hours” and it can remain on surfaces for days…

The highly contagious novel coronavirus that has exploded into a global pandemic can remain viable and infectious in droplets in the air for hours and on surfaces up to days, according to a new study that should offer guidance to help people avoid contracting the respiratory illness called COVID-19.

So once this virus has spread to every community in the United States, there won’t be any public places that are safe.

It could be on the next surface that you touch, the next hand that you shake or in the next gulp of air that you breathe in.

According to the researchers, COVID-19 could still actually be detected on plastic and steel surfaces “after three days”

On plastic and stainless steel, viable virus could be detected after three days. On cardboard, the virus was not viable after 24 hours. On copper, it took 4 hours for the virus to become inactivated.

In terms of half-life, the research team found that it takes about 66 minutes for half the virus particles to lose function if they are in an aerosol droplet.

That means that after another hour and six minutes, three quarters of the virus particles will be essentially inactivated but 25% will still be viable.

Some people that get this virus only experience minor symptoms the entire time, and that is definitely good news.

But many others have been hit extremely hard.  Some survivors experienced “blinding pain” for weeks, and many felt like they were constantly being suffocated.

And even if you survive after going through all that, there is a good chance that your lungs could be permanently damaged for the rest of your life.  In fact, one Belgian doctor says that the lung damage that he has been witnessing is “nothing short of terrifying”

A Belgian doctor working to battle the coronavirus says he’s treated several seriously ill young patients — and their lung scans were “nothing short of terrifying,” according to reports.

Dr. Ignace Demeyer, who works at a hospital in Aalst, said an increasing number of people between the ages of 30 and 50 have presented with severe symptoms, despite having “blank medical records” that show no underlying conditions that would make them high-risk, the Brussels Times reported.

So please stay at home as much as possible in the coming days.

You do not want this virus.

Just like other countries, it appears that our medical system will soon be overwhelmed.  Already, hospitals across America are setting up tents and bringing doctors out of retirement in order to get ready for the expected surge in patients.

But if this virus starts spreading as wildly as it has in Italy, it won’t be nearly enough.  Just check out what is currently taking place in one northern Italian city

Funeral services are overwhelmed in Bergamo, the northern Italian city hit hardest by the coronavirus outbreak, with a crematorium operating 24 hours a day, The Washington Post reported on Monday.

There is now a waiting list for burials there, and coffins of the deceased awaiting services have overflowed two hospital morgues and a cemetery morgue, The Post reported.

Many would like to believe that the same thing won’t happen here, but the truth is that the United States is on the exact same trajectory as Italy.

We have maintained a pace that is approximately 10 days behind what is happening over there, and we had better hope that the measures that are being implemented now will alter this trend.

Back on March 5th, Mike Adams of Natural News released a model that projected that this virus will cause more than 2 million deaths in the U.S. by July 4th.

Instead of being too pessimistic, so far the actual numbers are exceeding the projections of his model by as much as 25 percent

Remember the original pandemic projection model we released on March 5th? That model, with details shown below, projected 2.1 million deaths in the United States by July 4th if aggressive steps weren’t taken to achieve strong social isolation (i.e. halting all domestic air travel, blocking public transport, etc.).

Fortunately for us all, President Trump and local mayors and governors have all taken various forms of action since that day, helping achieve some measure of social isolation. That means the original projection of 2.1 millions deaths is now obsolete, and that President Trump, through his actions, has probably saved many hundreds of thousands of lives.

However, we’re not out of the woods yet. And the number of fatalities being reported right now across America is actually exceeding my original projections by as much as 25%.

Personally, I think that we will see a complete and total national lockdown before the death toll gets to 100,000.

And a complete and total national lockdown would definitely change the trajectory of these numbers.

But for a moment, let’s consider what would happen if the model that Mike Adams released on March 5th continues to be accurate

By April 4th, 2020, if no travel restrictions are put in place:

  • 8,645 actively infected and transmitting on this day
  • 580 cumulative dead since day one, with 58 deaths on this day
  • 5,432 cumulative recovered since day one

By May 4th, 2020, if no travel restrictions are put in place:

  • 122,529 actively infected and transmitting on this day
  • 10,432 cumulative dead since day one, with 910 deaths on this day
  • 85,332 cumulative recovered since day one

By June 4th, 2020, if no travel restrictions are put in place:

  • 1.7 million actively infected and transmitting on this day
  • 153,000 cumulative dead since day one, with 12,960 deaths on this day
  • 1.2 million cumulative recovered since day one

By July 4th, 2020, if no travel restrictions are put in place:

  • 24.3 million actively infected and transmitting on this day
  • 2.16 million cumulative dead since day one, with 183,000 deaths on this day
  • 17.1 million cumulative recovered since day one

I don’t know if I have the words to describe the extreme fear and chaos that we would see if this many Americans really did end up dying in the months ahead.

We are talking about the potential for a societal collapse of epic proportions.

So let us pray for mercy, because right now we desperately need it.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. This article may contain opinions on political matters, but it is not intended to promote the candidacy of any particular political candidate. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.

The Coronavirus Collapse Is Here: Get Ready For The U.S. Unemployment Rate To Hit 20 Percent (Or Higher)

As communities all over America shut down in order to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus, job losses are already starting to rise to extremely alarming levels.  As you will see below, almost one out of every five households in the U.S. has already experienced “a layoff or a reduction in work hours” because of this pandemic.  Unfortunately, many experts are now anticipating that we could see one of the most dramatic spikes in the unemployment rate in American history in the months ahead.  In fact, it is being reported that Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin just told members of Congress that this crisis could actually push our unemployment rate up to 20 percent…

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin warned Republican senators Tuesday that the coronavirus pandemic could drive up US unemployment to 20%, a Republican Senate source told CNN.

Mnuchin’s comments came as he urged Republican senators to act on economic stimulus measures totaling $1 trillion designed to avert that kind of worst case scenario.

If this coronavirus pandemic is over by the end of this calendar year, I think that Mnuchin’s projection may be accurate.

But if if this pandemic stretches into 2021 or beyond, the U.S. unemployment rate will likely go quite a bit higher.

If you doubt this, just look at what has already happened

The coronavirus pandemic has already started to hit American pocketbooks, with nearly 1 in 5 households experiencing a layoff or a reduction in work hours, according to a new NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll.

As people stay home, avoid crowds and cancel plans to avoid spreading the disease, it’s rapidly causing a contraction in economic activity that is hurting a wide range of businesses.

To be more precise, the survey found that 18 percent of U.S. households have lost income already because of this pandemic.

But we are still only in the very early chapters of this crisis.  If employment is being hit this hard now, what is going to happen if millions of Americans eventually catch this virus?

And it could happen.  As I have discussed previously, the attending physician of the U.S. Congress believes that up to 150 million Americans will ultimately become infected.

Sadly, lower income Americans have been hit the hardest by this crisis so far

Lower-income workers were the most affected: A quarter of households making less than $50,000 had experienced cut hours or a job loss.

Most lower income Americans are living paycheck to paycheck and are just barely scraping by each month.

So if this pandemic doesn’t end relatively soon, it won’t be very long before millions of them are really, really hurting financially.

Needless to say, we are about to see a colossal spike in the number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits.  In fact, so many New Yorkers have been trying to apply that it actually crashed the website

A drastic move by Gov. Cuomo to close all of the state’s restaurants, bars, movie theaters, gyms and casinos by 8 p.m. Monday to contain the outbreak had suddenly jobless workers flooding the Department of Labor with applications for unemployment benefits.

So many people tried to apply that the website crashed several times throughout the day — while the DOL’s hotline was so jammed up that callers seeking aid could not get through to someone who could handle their claim.

And according to U.S. Senator Rob Portman, the number of people in Ohio filing for benefits jumped 592 percent in just one week

Senator Rob Portman, and Ohio Republican, said on Tuesday that he received new data on Ohio’s unemployment claims showing 45,000 claims this week compared to 6,500 last week, according to journalist Liz Skalka.

That’s a one-week increase of 592 percent.

Please let that number sink in for a moment.

592 percent.

We are going to see things that we have never seen before in the weeks and months to come, and the economic suffering is going to be off the charts.

At this point, even Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley are acknowledging that a recession has probably already begun, and one economist is now projecting that U.S. GDP will decline at a 10 percent annualized rate during the second quarter

We are only just beginning to see what the economic fallout from coronavirus will be.

And Wall Street economists are now throwing out some brutal forecasts for what economic data in the quarters ahead might hold.

“We now guesstimate that second quarter GDP will drop at a 10% annualized rate, after a 2% fall in Q1,” said Ian Shepherdson, chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics, in a note to clients on Monday night.

In a desperate attempt to prop up the economy, the Trump administration is proposing a stimulus package that will be somewhere in the neighborhood of a trillion dollars.

The following is how CNBC summarized what may be in that package…

  • $500 billion to $550 billion in direct payments or tax cuts
  • $200 billion to $300 billion in small business assistance
  • $50 billion to $100 billion in airline and industry relief

If Congress ultimately approves this package, apparently quite a bit of the money will be used to make direct payments to U.S. households.

According to Treasury Secretary Mnuchin, the American people “need cash now”

Potentially $250 billion of the package could go toward making direct payments to Americans, a White House official told The Wall Street Journal on Tuesday. Mnuchin said earlier Tuesday that the administration wants to get emergency funds in Americans’ pockets “immediately.”

“Americans need cash now,” Mnuchin said during a White House press briefing on the administration’s latest efforts to combat the disease. “I mean now in the next two weeks.”

Of course this would set an extremely dangerous precedent, and the federal government can’t afford this because it is already drowning in debt, and “helicopter money” is likely to cause significant inflation, but very few policy makers in Washington seem to be alarmed by such concerns.

If the federal government is going to do this during the very early chapters of this crisis, they better keep on doing it month after month, because the suffering is going to greatly escalate the longer this pandemic lasts.  If we get to the point where the payments are eventually cut off, it is likely that we will see a really big national temper tantrum.

And instead of sending out $1,000 to each adult, why not send out $10,000?  Better yet, why not make it $100,000?

I don’t know anyone that couldn’t use an extra $100,000 right now.

Needless to say, once we start going down this road it is just a matter of time before our money is completely and utterly worthless.

Our national economic nightmare has begun, and it is going to be absolutely horrifying.  I really like how Peter Schiff recently made this point…

This is the beginning of the end. This is how it starts. And believe me, when you see how this finishes, this is going to be unlike anything we have experienced.  I think we have passed that point of no return. It’s like we’ve already jumped off the top of the building, off the top of the Empire State Building. There’s no way to change our minds now. We’re going to hit that pavement. I can’t see any way we can avoid that. All we can do is brace for impact ourselves.”

For so long, so many of us have been warning that “the everything bubble” would burst and that the consequences would be extremely severe.

It turns out that fear of the coronavirus is the “black swan event” that finally burst that bubble, and now everything that we have been warning about is starting to unfold.

The coronavirus collapse is here, and the days ahead are going to be exceedingly challenging.  We are about to experience the consequences of decades of exceedingly foolish decisions, and those consequences are going to shake our society to the core.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. This article may contain opinions on political matters, but it is not intended to promote the candidacy of any particular political candidate. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.

“Do Not Call 9-1-1 Just Because You Ran Out Of Toilet Paper”

Did you ever imagine that you would see the day when police are being called out to protect trucks that are unloading shipments of toilet paper?  Well, in California this is actually happening.  At the Costco in Santa Maria, California police were seen guarding a truck as it unloaded a shipment of toilet paper on Saturday.  Thanks to the tremendous fear that the coronavirus pandemic is creating, toilet paper has become one of the hottest commodities in America all of a sudden.  Many retailers have already started to limit the amount of toilet paper that each customer can purchase, and shortages are becoming increasingly common.

So what should you do if you run out of toilet paper and can’t get anymore?

Well, apparently some people in Oregon have been calling 9-1-1 to voice their concerns.  The Newport Oregon Police Department posted the following message on their Facebook page two days ago…

It’s hard to believe that we even have to post this. Do not call 9-1-1 just because you ran out of toilet paper. You will survive without our assistance.

In fact, history offers many other options for you in your time of need if you cannot find a roll of your favorite soft, ultra plush two-ply citrus scented tissue.

Seamen used old rope and anchor lines soaked in salt water. Ancient Romans used a sea sponge on a stick, also soaked in salt water. We are a coastal town. We have an abundance of salt water available. Sea shells were also used.

Mayans used corn cobs. Colonial Americans also used the core of the cob. Farmers not only used corn cobs, but used pages from the Farmers Almanac. Many Americans took advantage of the numerous pages torn from free catalogs such as Sears and Roebuck. The Sears Christmas catalog, four times thicker than the normal catalog, could get a family of three wiped clean from December through Valentine’s Day; or Saint Patrick’s Day if they were frugal.

Then, of course, there are always alternatives to toilet paper. Grocery receipts, newspaper, cloth rags, lace, cotton balls, and that empty toilet paper roll sitting on the holder right now. Plus, there are a variety of leaves you can safely use. Mother Earth News magazine will even tell you how to make your own wipes using fifteen different leaves. When all else fails, you have magazine pages. Start saving those catalogs you get in the mail that you usually toss into the recycle bin. Be resourceful. Be patient. There is a TP shortage. This too shall pass. Just don’t call 9-1-1. We cannot bring you toilet paper.

I am glad that they approached this “crisis” with a sense of humor, but the reality of the matter is that this is starting to become a full-blown national problem.

At this point, even Amazon is having a very difficult time finding enough toilet paper

Those toilet paper and water shortages at your local markets and big-box retailers have affected Amazon, as well.

The company said over the weekend that it, too, is out of stock on many items, “especially in household staples categories,” and is working “around the clock” and bringing on “additional capacity” to deliver orders.

Ultimately, toilet paper is not essential for survival, and we could do just fine without out.

But what will happen if this pandemic stretches on for many more months and national food supplies start getting really tight?

Let us hope that we don’t get to that point any time soon, because it would spark nationwide panic on a scale that is absolutely unprecedented.

Sadly, most Americans could not last very long on what they currently have stored up in their homes.  If we have to go through an extended national lockdown like we have already seen in China or Italy, a lot of the exact same people that mocked us for “preparing” are going to find themselves in a very precarious position.

And in some areas, a lockdown has already occurred.  In fact, more than 6 million residents of northern California have now been ordered to “shelter in place”

Six Bay Area counties announced a “shelter in place” order for all residents on Monday — the strictest measure of its kind yet in the continental United States — directing everyone to stay inside their homes and away from others as much as possible for the next three weeks as public health officials desperately try to curb the rapid spread of coronavirus across the region.

The directive begins at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday and involves San Francisco, Santa Clara, San Mateo, Marin, Contra Costa and Alameda counties — a combined population of more than 6.7 million.

Most Bay Area residents will be just fine for a few days.

But what happens if this “shelter in place” order lasts for several months?

Over on the east coast, New York City has not been locked down yet, but the latest measures are a big step in that direction

The city that never sleeps has been forced to shut down its bars, restaurants, movie theaters and gyms, including those in New York City’s iconic Times Square, in a bid to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Photos of one of the most famous tourist attractions in the Big Apple show a relatively quiet scene with only a handful of people walking under Times Square’s bright lights on Monday.

The state of New York now has the most confirmed cases in the entire nation, and if this outbreak continues to spread wildly it is just a matter of time before a total lockdown is instituted.

At this point, the United States is on the exact same trajectory as Italy.  If this continues, the same things that are happening there will start happening here.

In the northern portion of the country, the death toll is becoming truly frightening.  In fact, we just learned that six Catholic priests have died from the virus in the city of Bergamo alone

At the heart of the European coronavirus crisis in northern Italy’s city of Bergamo, six Catholic priests have died during the past week from the disease and, as of Sunday, over 20 priests were hospitalized.

The Bishop of Bergamo, Francesco Beschi, confirmed this numbers speaking with the Italian TV news network Rainews24.

Anyone that has to deal with the public is going to be at great risk during this pandemic, and so it is vital not to underestimate the deadliness of this virus.

Just a few weeks ago there were zero cases in Bergamo, but now the city’s crematory has so many dead bodies it is unable to keep up

An Italian mayor says that his city’s crematory is now “unable to dispose of all the work it has to do,” as there have been so many bodies of those who have died due to the coronavirus.

Giorgio Gori — the mayor of Bergamo, Italy — says that it is no longer only the hospitals that are in a state of emergency but also the crematorium responsible for managing the bodies, according to a report by Il Giornale.

Doesn’t that sound eerily similar to what happened in Wuhan?

If we don’t get this outbreak under control somehow, the same thing will eventually happen in the United States too.

But most Americans still seem to believe that this virus is not a serious threat to them personally.  In fact, a brand new survey discovered that only 19 percent of Americans expect to catch COVID-19…

The survey of 502 people at least 18 years old shows that fear and panic doesn’t seem to be completely overtaking most households, but plenty of Americans are worried. In all, 19% of respondents think they’ll be diagnosed with coronavirus at some point.

Interestingly, nearly one in ten (9%) people went as far to admit they believe they have coronavirus right now.

Meanwhile, Goldman Sachs is projecting that half the U.S. population will eventually become infected.

A lot of people that are not taking this seriously will eventually get sick and die.

And this is especially true for those that are openly mocking this pandemic.  Right now, “the coronavirus challenge” is getting a lot of attention on social media for all the wrong reasons.

As a part of this challenge, people are literally licking toilet seats and doorknobs

No matter what’s at stake, please don’t try this challenge, folks.

There’s a brand new challenge introduced on TikTok where people are licking everyday items that are often for public use.

Yes, these include toilet seats and doorknobs.

How unbelievably stupid do you have to be to do something like that?

Unfortunately, this is yet another perfect example of how far our society has degenerated.

We have literally become an “idiocracy”, and we are sitting ducks for a deadly virus that is not going to show us any mercy whatsoever.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. This article may contain opinions on political matters, but it is not intended to promote the candidacy of any particular political candidate. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.

For The 3rd Time This Month, We Just Witnessed The Largest Single Day Point Crash In Stock Market History

We are literally witnessing history in the making.  For the third time in the last six trading sessions, we have witnessed the largest single day point crash in stock market history.  Let that sink in for a moment.  On March 9th, the Dow set a new record by falling 2,013 points.  Then on March 12th, the Dow set a new record again by falling 2,352 points.  Of course what happened on Monday was the biggest whopper of them all.  The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 2,997 points, and words like “carnage” and “devastation” don’t seem to be strong enough to convey that horror that took place.  To put all of this into perspective, the largest single day point crash during the last financial crisis was just 777 points.  That means that the crash that we witnessed on Monday was nearly four times as large as the worst single day point crash in 2008.

Of course all of this volatility is being driven by fear of the coronavirus.  Even though less than 100 Americans have died so far, investors are completely freaking out.

So what will happen if thousands or even millions of us start dying?

On a percentage basis, the nightmare that we watched unfold on Monday was the worst day for stocks since “Black Monday” in 1987

Stocks fell sharply Monday — with the Dow suffering its worst day since the “Black Monday” market crash in 1987 and its third-worst day ever — even after the Federal Reserve embarked on a massive monetary stimulus campaign to curb slower economic growth amid the coronavirus outbreak.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 2,997.10 points lower, or 12.9%, at 20,188.52. The 30-stock Dow was briefly down more than 3,000 points in the final minutes of trading. The S&P 500 dropped 12% to 2,386.13 — hitting its lowest level since December 2018 — while the Nasdaq Composite closed 12.3% lower at 6,904.59 in its worst day ever.

Overall, the Dow is now down more than 31 percent from the all-time high set earlier this year.

If you can believe it, all of the tremendous stock market gains that we have witnessed over the last three years have been completely wiped out in just 18 trading days.

Ouch.

Banking stocks were hit particularly hard once again on Monday.  Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase were each down more than 14 percent, Morgan Stanley was down more than 15 percent, and Citigroup was down more than 19 percent.

Remember, those are not figures for the entire year.

Those are figures for one day.

Of course the utter carnage was not just limited to stocks.  The following is how Zero Hedge summarized some of the other losses that we witnessed…

  • STOXX EUROPE 600 ENDS DOWN 4.9%, LOWEST CLOSE SINCE MID-2013
  • SOUTH AFRICA’S FTSE/JSE INDEX FALLS AS MUCH AS 12.2%, MOST EVER
  • MUNI BONDS EXTEND WORST ROUT SINCE 1987
  • COPPER SLUMPS AS MUCH AS 5.2% AMID WEAKENING RISK APPETITE
  • BRENT CRUDE OIL PLUNGES BELOW $30 FOR FIRST TIME SINCE 2016
  • SILVER PLUNGES TO 2011 LOWS
  • U.S. WHOLESALE GASOLINE PRICES PLUNGE 21%
  • HYG WORST DROP SINCE 2008
  • LQD WORST DROP SINCE 2008

The good news is that there is often a hefty rebound after a historic decline of this magnitude.  It appears that stock prices will likely shoot back up a good bit on Tuesday, and that will temporarily soothe a lot of frazzled nerves.

But this coronavirus pandemic is not going away any time soon.  Over the past couple of days, restaurants and bars have been shut down across the nation, schools have been shuttered for the foreseeable future, and it has been announced that the entire city of San Francisco will be locked down.

As virtually all forms of activity come to a standstill all over America, our economic numbers are going to absolutely collapse.

In fact, on Monday we got a sneak preview of what is coming

The New York Fed’s Empire State business conditions index plunged a record 34.4 points to -21.5 in March, the regional Fed bank said Monday. Economists had expected a reading of 4.8, according to a survey by Econoday. This is the lowest level since the financial crisis in 2009.

As we plunge into a truly horrifying economic downturn, businesses all over the country are already crying out for bailouts.

We are now being told that many airlines could be bankrupt by May, and a 50 billion dollar aid package for the industry has already been requested

US airlines slammed by the coronavirus are requesting an aid package from the federal government that could amount to about $50 billion, according to industry group Airlines for America.

The requested aid would be in the form of loans, grants and tax relief. The airlines are looking for up to $25 billion in grants for passenger air carriers and $4 billion in grants to cargo carriers, and the same amounts in loans or loan guarantees, Airlines for America outlined in a briefing document.

Meanwhile, thousands upon thousands of ordinary U.S. citizens are already losing their jobs.  For example, just check out what is currently transpiring in New York

New York’s unemployment website was overwhelmed Monday as the coronavirus pandemic put tens of thousands of people across the state out of work.

A drastic move by Gov. Cuomo to close all of the state’s restaurants, bars, movie theaters, gyms and casinos by 8 p.m. Monday to contain the outbreak had suddenly jobless workers flooding the Department of Labor with applications for unemployment benefits.

This will soon be happening all over the nation.

So how many jobs could ultimately be lost if this pandemic stretches on for quite a while?

According to Moody’s Analytics, millions of jobs are potentially at risk…

Nearly 80 million jobs in the US economy are at high or moderate risk today, according to analysis in the last week from Moody’s Analytics. That’s more than half of the 153 million jobs in the economy overall.

That doesn’t mean that all those jobs will be lost. But it’s probable that as many as 10 million of those workers could see some impact to their paychecks — either layoffs, furloughs, fewer hours or wage cuts, said Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics.

Needless to say, there is going to be enormous pressure for the federal government to “do something”, and U.S. Senator Mitt Romney has “joined a growing chorus of liberal and conservative economists” in calling for $1,000 to be given to every adult in America

On Monday, Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) joined a growing chorus of liberal and conservative economists are lining up behind a proposal published in the Wall Street Journal by Harvard professor Jason Furman, who chaired the Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) under President Obama, that calls for direct government payments of $1,000 to every American adult.

Why not make it $10,000?

We could all use some extra cash.

Of course once this sort of thing starts happening, it won’t be too long before a loaf of bread costs ten dollars and a gallon of milk costs 20 dollars.

Flooding the system with money at a time when economic activity is contracting very sharply will inevitably cause very painful inflation.

Unfortunately, at a moment like this short-term considerations are all that policy makers are really concerned about, and the American people will be demanding “relief”.

So we should fully expect lots of free money to be thrown around.  In fact, Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan announced on Monday that her city will provide “$5 million in grocery vouchers to help families impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic”.

But I must once again stress the fact that less than 100 Americans have died during this pandemic so far.

If things are getting this crazy already, what is our society going to look like a few months down the road?

According to the New York Times, nearly 7 million Americans could die in a “worst-case scenario”…

So far, the illness – known as COVID-19 – has sickened more than 4,200 people and killed 74.

But as a graphic from The New York Times shows, things could be much bleaker should overall infection rates and fatality rates rise.

In the worst-case scenario 6.99 million Americans would die from coronavirus – 2.74 million of them being those aged 80 and above.

We are just in the very early chapters of this “perfect storm”, and what we have experienced so far is nothing compared to what is coming.

If we can’t even handle the leading edge of this storm, what are we going to do when it really starts raging?

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. This article may contain opinions on political matters, but it is not intended to promote the candidacy of any particular political candidate. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.

“Where You Stop Is Where You Stay” – Domestic Travel Restrictions Are Being “Considered”

Is the United States on the verge of a complete and total “lockdown” like we have already seen in China, Italy and elsewhere?  As you will see below, the Trump administration has repeatedly brought up the possibility of “domestic travel restrictions”, and that means that this is something that is very seriously being considered.  The first step may be simply banning all non-essential domestic air travel, and that would be a major inconvenience for many Americans.  But beyond that, there is the possibility that we could see restrictions on all travel between states or even draconian restrictions on going out in public at all like we have already seen in China and Italy.  If we get to that point, where you are at that moment is where you will be staying, and I will be sharing more about this below.

But first, let’s review what the Trump administration has been telling the public about the possibility of “domestic travel restrictions”.  The following comes from a USA Today article that was posted on Saturday

President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence on Saturday said the government is considering domestic travel restrictions amid the coronavirus pandemic and added United Kingdom and Ireland to the Europe travel restrictions that went into effect late Friday.

They did not offer specifics on domestic flight restrictions but Trump said earlier in the week that they would be considered if “an area gets a little bit out of control” in terms of coronavirus cases.

I think that the phrase “is considering domestic travel restrictions” is pretty clear, and it should definitely send a chill up your spine.

Then on Sunday, a member of the administration said that officials are weighing “an outright halt to domestic air travel”

The Trump administration is weighing “all options” to curb the coronavirus outbreak in the U.S., including an outright halt to domestic air travel, a senior official said Sunday.

Such a drastic step hasn’t been taken since the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, and it would raise questions about U.S. airlines’ chances for survival without government support.

This came directly from acting secretary of the Department of Homeland Security Chad Wolf, and he went on to add that “all options remain on the table”

“We continue to look at all options and all options remain on the table,” said Chad Wolf, acting secretary of the Department of Homeland Security in a press briefing when asked about the possibility. He said the administration is following guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

So would “all options” also include banning all travel in and out of states where this pandemic is the worst?

Apparently so, and this is something that Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is actually asking for

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said the White House should consider restricting domestic travel from states that are seeing a rapid increase in coronavirus infections, saying the flow of people has made containment difficult.

He made the plea shortly before the state on Saturday announced its fourth death from the disease, a 77-year-old man from Lee County.

Could you imagine getting into your car and driving toward the next state only to be stopped at the border?

It could soon happen.

Hopefully we won’t get to that point, but this outbreak continues to spiral out of control.

And if the numbers just keep going up, it is inevitable that we will see things happen that would have been unthinkable only a few weeks ago.

At this point, even Dr. Anthony Fauci appears to be advocating some sort of a “national lockdown”

Asked by CNN’s Brianna Keilar on “State of the Union” if he’d like a “national lockdown” where people are being told they need to stay home and out of restaurants and bars, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, said he’d “like to see a dramatic diminution of the personal interaction that we see” in those places.

“Whatever it takes to do that, that’s what I’d like to see,” Fauci added.

As Americans, we don’t like to have our movements restricted.

And hopefully the Trump administration will choose not to go in that direction, but they have already restricted domestic travel for members of the military

A memo released Friday evening announced a ban on government-funded domestic travel for military members, Department of Defense civilians and their families, according to Stars and Stripes.

The Pentagon says Deputy Defense Secretary David Norquist has approved new travel restrictions on service members and Defense Department civilians assigned to military installations and surrounding areas within the United States and its territories.

And similar restrictions have been put into place for federal workers

As the coronavirus outbreak continues across the U.S., the White House has told federal agencies and executive departments to suspend all work travel unless it is absolutely necessary.

The White House Office of Management and Budget issued new guidance on Saturday telling federal workers that “only mission-critical travel is recommended at this time.”

With all that in mind, I would like for you to watch this video.  According to John Grimm, a Republican candidate for Kootenai County Sheriff, it appears quite likely that we could potentially see some sort of travel restrictions in the near future.  And if there is eventually some sort of a total lockdown, he is warning that “where you stop is where you stay”

So I hope that you are already at the place where you plan to ride out this pandemic.

If not, I would get there as quickly as possible.

Meanwhile, we continue to see major institutions shut down all over the country.

On Sunday, we learned that all schools in New York City will be shutting down “until at least April 20”

In a decision he described as “extraordinarily painful,” New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said Sunday that he is closing the city’s public schools on Monday until at least April 20.

The mayor said the city would make every attempt to reopen schools at that point, but that it’s possible schools could remain closed for the rest of the school year.

Also, several states announced on Sunday that all restaurants and bars will be forced to shut down for the foreseeable future.  Ohio was one of the first to make such an announcement

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine announced that he will be issuing an order to close all restaurants and bars beginning at 9:00 p.m. Sunday night.

“I’m aware that this will impact many, many good workers,” he said in a tweet. “I can’t tell you how sorry I am, but we will work to mitigate the suffering. It is our goal to get everyone through this.”

Most restaurants in this country are just barely scraping by financially, and many of those that are now being forced to close down may not ever open back up again.

Illinois is another one of the states that is closing down all restaurants and bars

Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker announced Sunday afternoon that all restaurants and bars in Illinois will be closed effective at the end of the business day on Monday, continuing through March 30, due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“I cannot let the gravity of the choices prevent us from taking the actions that the science and the experts say will keep people safe,” Pritzker said.

In areas of the country where this outbreak is already wildly out of control, the restaurants and bars might as well be closed down anyway.  Restaurant traffic in New York City and Seattle is down more than 60 percent, and the more this virus spreads the more people are going to be afraid to go out into public to do anything.

Just a few weeks ago our lives seemed so normal, but now our entire country is steadily shutting down from coast to coast.

And life is not going to return to normal any time soon, because the CDC just issued guidelines calling for the cancellation or the postponement of “any events with 50 or more attendees for the next eight weeks”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is urging people across the U.S. to cancel or postpone any events with 50 or more attendees for the next eight weeks, the agency said in revised guidance issued Sunday.

The CDC said individuals and organizations should reschedule large events and that gatherings of any size should be reconsidered unless organizers can protect vulnerable populations, ensure proper hand hygiene and social distancing.

In other words, everything that is being shut down right now is going to remain shut down for at least eight weeks.

I cannot even begin to describe how damaging that is going to be to our economy.

And what happens if this pandemic is still raging after eight weeks have passed?

The Spanish Flu pandemic lasted for three entire years.  There is no way that authorities could keep us all locked down for that long.

This pandemic is rapidly becoming a national nightmare, and it appears that our freedoms are about to be restricted in ways that most of us never thought possible.

America is on the verge of being locked down, and for many of us it truly will feel like we have been put in prison.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. This article may contain opinions on political matters, but it is not intended to promote the candidacy of any particular political candidate. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.

Did The Federal Reserve Just Purposely Try To Crash The Stock Market?

Unless the Federal Reserve is purposely attempting to spread panic on Wall Street, the decisions that the Fed just made don’t make any sense at all.  Back on March 3rd, the Federal Reserve announced an unscheduled emergency interest rate cut for the very first time since 2008.  Wall Street immediately interpreted that as a “panic move” and the Dow Jones Industrial Average ended the session down 785 points.  So Fed officials had to know what was going to happen once they announced an even bigger unscheduled emergency interest rate cut on Sunday.  Predictably, stock futures hit “limit down” very rapidly, and now investors are bracing for a week of tremendous carnage.

But this didn’t have to happen.  Yes, we witnessed three of the worst trading days in U.S. stock market history last week, but on Friday the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 1,985 points.  It was an absolutely epic rally, and if the Fed had not caused so much panic there may have been a good chance that the rally could have continued into next week.

In other words, U.S. stocks just had one of their best days ever, and there didn’t appear to be a need for any “emergency intervention” by the Fed.

If the Federal Reserve had just waited a couple of days until their normally monthly meeting, and if the Fed had just cut rates a quarter point, that would have likely been greeted by the markets with warm enthusiasm.

But instead, Fed officials decided to load up their bazooka and go for broke on Sunday.  In addition to using up all of their “interest rate ammunition” in one epic volley, the Fed also officially restarted quantitative easing

The Federal Reserve, saying “the coronavirus outbreak has harmed communities and disrupted economic activity in many countries, including the United States,” cut interest rates to essentially zero on Sunday and launched a massive $700 billion quantitative easing program to shelter the economy from the effects of the virus.

The new fed funds rate, used as a benchmark both for short-term lending for financial institutions and as a peg to many consume rates, will now be targeted at 0%-0.25% down from a target range of 1% to 1.25%.

These moves have “panic” written all over them, and investors immediately responded accordingly

Stock market futures hit “limit down” levels of 5% lower, a move made by the CME futures exchange to reduce panic in markets. No prices can trade below that threshold, only at higher prices than that down 5% limit.

Dow Jones Industrial average futures were off by more than 1,000 points, triggering the limit down level. S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 futures were also at their downside limits.

As I mentioned above, Fed officials saw what happened immediately after their March 3rd emergency rate cut, and so this sort of response by the markets should have been foreseeable.

As Wolf Richter has noted, these latest moves by the Fed were “the opposite of being confidence inspiring”…

The whole Sunday afternoon maneuver, on top of the mega shock-and-awe maneuvers Thursday and Friday reek of sheer and outright panic – and they’re the opposite of being confidence inspiring. That stock futures plunged after the Fed had effectively put its biggest tools to work shows how obvious this panic is.

So then why did the Fed pull the trigger if this was going to be the result?

It would seem that there are two obvious conclusions.  Either Fed officials are completely and utterly incompetent, or they were purposely trying to crash the stock market.

And now that the Federal Reserve is completely out of interest rate ammunition to fight any future economic downturn, the only weapon they have left is “helicopter money”.

As economic activity comes to a grinding standstill due to fear of the coronavirus, it appears to be inevitable that we will see tremendous inflation as the Fed floods the system with money.

In other words, there is going to be a whole lot more money chasing a lot fewer goods and services in the months to come.

Meanwhile, we are already starting to see a run on U.S. banks.  On Thursday, so many people were taking money out of a Bank of America branch in midtown Manhattan that it actually ran out of cash

As the stock market was having its worst day in 30 years on Thursday, customers at a Bank of America branch in Midtown Manhattan, the financial heart of New York, were lining up to take cash out of their accounts — sometimes tens of thousands of dollars at a time.

So many people sought huge sums that the bank branch, at 52nd Street and Park Avenue, temporarily ran out of $100 bills to fulfill large withdrawals, according to three people familiar with the branch’s operations. The shortage hit after a rash of requests for as much as $50,000, said two people who witnessed the rush.

And according to Zero Hedge, wealthy individuals in the Hamptons are doing the same thing…

As the ultra rich Snake Plisken out of the soon-to-be quarantined Manhattan – where at least one bank has are already run out of $100 bills – to fortify themselves against the viral zombie peasant hordes in their impregnable castles in the Hamptons, one thing they’re looking to hoard is cash, which has caused some substantial pressure on financial institutions in the area, according to Bloomberg. At least one New Yorker had his $30,000 cash withdrawal request denied at a Chase bank after being told the limit was $10,000. Meanwhile, bank employees said they were waiting on a “shipment of cash” to fulfill other requests that have been made exceeding the $10,000 amount.

Other branches in the area were unable to help in fulfilling the request, with the East Hampton branch reportedly telling the Southampton branch that it had “two massive withdrawal orders” of its own that it was trying to deal with.

Hopefully we won’t see similar scenes all over the country in the weeks ahead.

But without a doubt, panic continues to spread all over the globe.  The following examples come from CNN

A woman at an Australian supermarket allegedly pulls a knife on a man in a confrontation over toilet paper. A Singaporean student of Chinese ethnicity is beaten up on the streets of London and left with a fractured face. Protesters on the Indian Ocean island of Reunion welcome cruise passengers by hurling abuse and rocks at them.

The coronavirus risks bringing out the worst in humanity.

Yes, this virus is definitely bringing out the worst in humanity.

Here in the United States, two “panic shoppers” became so enraged with one another that they began hitting each other with broken wine bottles

A brawl erupted in a Georgia Sam’s Club packed with shoppers during which two feuding men slashed each other with broken wine bottles.

A second incident in a Costco in Brooklyn saw an employee pleading with two women to calm down after a screaming match began when carts collided in the mobbed store.

This is why it was so important to get prepared in advance.

For years I have been mocked for telling my readers to “get prepared”, but now those that did are going to be very thankful for the things that they have stored up.

If you are not prepared, you can go brave the giant crowds storming the stores if you wish, but at this point the big stores are going to be one of the very best places in the entire country to catch the virus.

I don’t know about you, but I am not eager to experience the “blinding pain” that survivors of COVID-19 have told us about.  So I would highly recommend avoiding big stores and other major public gathering places as much as possible.

We need to accept that life has changed for the foreseeable future.  According to Newt Gingrich, it is time for us to adopt a wartime mindset…

We should be planning for a worst-case pandemic and using the kind of intensity of implementation which served us so well in World War II. Getting enough ventilators, masks, intensive care units, treatment medications and aggressive community-wide testing are the minimum steps to saving lives and stopping the pandemic.

The Pence-led Coronavirus Task Force has begun to pull things together, but it should have a planning group that creates a worst-case projection and then devises the steps necessary to smother the pandemic and minimize its impact.

And this is also a time for prayer.  In fact, President Trump designated Sunday as a “National Day of Prayer”

President Donald Trump on Saturday declared Sunday, March 15, a “National Day of Prayer for All Americans Affected by the Coronavirus Pandemic and for our National Response Efforts.”

“I urge Americans of all faiths and religious traditions and backgrounds to offer prayers for all those affected, including people who have suffered harm or lost loved ones,” Trump said in his statement announcing the day of prayer.

Let us all hope that this pandemic passes as quickly as possible.

But the CDC just issued new guidelines that recommend that gatherings of 50 people or more not be held for the next eight weeks.

Of course most decision makers in this country will follow those guidelines, and so that means that our lives will not be getting back to normal for at least the next two months.

And it could be a whole lot longer than that.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. This article may contain opinions on political matters, but it is not intended to promote the candidacy of any particular political candidate. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.

Medical Expert: “There Are Probably 25 To 50 People Who Have The Virus For Every One Person Who Is Confirmed”

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to explode all over the globe, and authorities are warning that it is going to continue to get worse.  The number of confirmed cases outside of China roughly tripled once again this week, and if this outbreak continues to escalate at this pace there will be more than a million confirmed cases in less than a month.  But as bad as the official numbers are, the truth is that there are a whole lot more people walking around out there that have caught the virus but have not been tested.  In fact, a medical professor at Johns Hopkins University named Marty Makary believes that there are “probably 25 to 50 people who have the virus for every one person who is confirmed”

“Don’t believe the numbers when you see, even on our Johns Hopkins website, that 1,600 Americans have the virus,” he said. “No, that means 1,600 got the test, tested positive. There are probably 25 to 50 people who have the virus for every one person who is confirmed.”

He added: “I think we have between 50,000 and half a million cases right now walking around in the United States.”

If he is correct, and considering how easily this virus spreads from person to person, it isn’t going to be too long before this virus is everywhere.

Other health experts are also warning that the number of Americans that have become infected is already extremely high.  As I pointed out yesterday, Ohio Department of Health Director Amy Acton is convinced that the number of victims in her state is now above 100,000

Ohio health officials announced Thursday that the state has five known cases of the coronavirus, but one expert said that the number is likely much higher and estimated 100,000 undiagnosed cases.

Dr. Amy Acton, the director of the state’s health department, told reporters that the virus is “among us, but we can’t see it yet,” WBRB reported.

But of course what we have seen so far could just be the tip of the iceberg.

According to the New York Times, the CDC is projecting that up to 214 million Americans could eventually become infected…

Between 160 million and 214 million people in the United States could be infected over the course of the epidemic, according to one projection. That could last months or even over a year, with infections concentrated in shorter periods, staggered across time in different communities, experts said. As many as 200,000 to 1.7 million people could die.

Can you imagine how overwhelmed our healthcare system will be if that actually happens?

According to an analysis that was just conducted by USA Today, we could soon see 17 seriously ill coronavirus patients competing for each open hospital bed…

A USA TODAY analysis shows that if the nation sees a major spike, there could be almost six seriously ill patients for every existing hospital bed.

That analysis, based on data from the American Hospital Association, U.S. Census, CDC and World Health Organization, is conservative. For example, it assumes all 790,000 beds will be empty.

Since two thirds are not, the reality could be far worse: about 17 people competing for each open bed.

And we still have no idea how long this pandemic will last.

Many officials are hoping that it will be over in a matter of months, but what if lasts for three full years like the Spanish Flu pandemic did?

At this point, the entire western world is literally in the process of shutting down as fear of the coronavirus spreads like wildfire.  Many people are going to be deathly afraid to go out in public for the foreseeable future because this virus is so easy to catch.

It could be on the next surface that you touch, it could be on the next hand that you shake, and there is even the possibility that you could breathe it in during the next breath that you take.

Considering how many people our national leaders interact with on a daily basis, they are particularly vulnerable.  Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s wife has already tested positive for the virus, and Trudeau himself has gone into voluntary self-quarantine.

Here in the United States, President Trump says that he will “most likely” get tested soon after being exposed to someone that had the virus.  The following comes from ABC News

He also said he “most likely” will get tested himself, although he said he had no symptoms. “I think I will be,” he said. “Fairly soon, we’re working on that, we’re working out a schedule,” he responded to a reporter’s question, saying not because of any exposure he might have had, “but because I think I will do it anyway.” He had been photographed last weekend standing next to a Brazilian official who tested positive.

In addition, we just learned that Ivanka Trump is staying home for now after meeting with an Australian official that has tested positive

Ivanka Trump self-isolated at home on Friday, not going into the White House, after she was photographed with Australian Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton days before he tested positive for coronavirus.

The White House said Dutton was ‘asymptomatic’ during his interaction with the first daughter and Ivanka Trump, who serves as an adviser to President Donald Trump, is showing no symptoms, doesn’t need to self-quarantine and stayed home out of an abundance of caution.

Things are really starting to get crazy out there.

When COVID-19 originally starting sweeping across China, most Americans weren’t really too concerned about it, but now a brand new survey has found that about two-thirds of all Americans are worried about catching the virus…

Two-thirds of Americans are concerned that they or someone they know will be infected with the novel coronavirus, but in a country with a growing partisan divide, political tribalism is having a large impact when it comes to anxiety over the disease, according to a new ABC News/Ipsos poll released Friday.

Although unease over the coronavirus is high, it also strongly breaks along partisan lines. Among Democrats, 83% are concerned about getting coronavirus, including 47% who are very concerned, and among Republicans, 56% are concerned, including only 15% who are very concerned. Only 17% of Democrats are not concerned while a larger 44% of Republicans are not concerned.

Now that President Trump has officially declared a state of national emergency, hopefully that partisan divide will start to diminish.

This virus should not be treated like a political issue.  This is the biggest public health crisis of our time, and we all need to be taking it very seriously.

Of course some Americans are responding to this pandemic by completely “freaking out”

A panic-buying fever swept through the Big Apple Thursday, as mobs of freaked-out New Yorkers frantically scoured store shelves for any remaining supplies amid spreading coronavirus fears.

“We’re freaking out about it,” Monica Gang, 27, said as she braved the crowds at Trader Joe’s in Manhattan. “We came in here looking for rice, and there is no rice left. Rice crumbs are the only thing left. We don’t even know what to stock up on.”

But so far there are only about 2,000 confirmed cases in the U.S. and less than 100 people have died.

If this virus is causing this much fear now, what will our society look like if thousands (or even millions) of people start dying?

Let us continue to hope that this pandemic will eventually start to subside, but so far it has just continued to escalate week after week.

If something is not done to dramatically slow this virus down in the United States, soon the level of fear will be absolutely unprecedented.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. This article may contain opinions on political matters, but it is not intended to promote the candidacy of any particular political candidate. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.

The Number Of Coronavirus Cases In The United States Is Likely Far Higher Than We Are Being Told

Do more than 100,000 people in the state of Ohio already have the coronavirus?  As you will see below, that is what the top health official in the state believes.  It has become exceedingly clear that COVID-19 is spreading like wildfire all across the country, but because of the very limited testing that is taking place the official count of confirmed U.S. cases is still very low.  Even though South Korea has managed to test more than 140,000 of their citizens, the U.S. has still only been able to test about 10,000 people, and that is making our numbers appear far better than they should.  At this moment, there are still less than 2,000 confirmed cases in the United States, but that number will undoubtedly go much higher once testing starts ramping up.

For many of us, it is deeply frustrating not to have an accurate picture of what is really going on out there.

We don’t really know how widespread this pandemic has become in this nation, but some brave health officials are giving us their best guesses.

For example, Ohio Department of Health Director Amy Acton told reporters that she believes that more than 100,000 people have the coronavirus in her state…

Ohio Department of Health Director Amy Acton said at a press conference alongside Gov. Mike DeWine (R) that given that the virus is spreading in the community in Ohio, she estimates at least 1 percent of the population in the state has the virus.

“We know now, just the fact of community spread, says that at least 1 percent, at the very least, 1 percent of our population is carrying this virus in Ohio today,” Acton said. “We have 11.7 million people. So the math is over 100,000. So that just gives you a sense of how this virus spreads and is spreading quickly.”

If that number is anywhere close to accurate, that could mean that this virus has already spread to millions of Americans.

So let us hope that she is wrong.

But for now we don’t really know how badly this crisis has escalated because the CDC has not been testing enough people.  In fact, one top CDC official just admitted that the CDC only tested 77 people from Sunday to Wednesday morning…

“This is not a problem we can test our way out of,” said Stephen Redd, MD, head of the CDC’s Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response, in testimony on Wednesday. It was an admission that, in a nation of 320 million, testing every person will be impossible.

Redd also revealed in his testimony that the total number of people tested for the coronavirus by the CDC was 1,784. That means that, as of Wednesday morning, the CDC had tested only 77 people for the coronavirus since Sunday. According to a CDC spokesman, the number that had been tested as of Sunday was 1,707.

On average, the CDC has been doing less than 100 tests a day since this outbreak started.

Aren’t they supposed to be the very best at what they do?

What in the world is taking them so long?

State labs have been doing marginally better.  According to Yahoo News, so far they have tested 7,617 people…

So far, however, only 7,617 people have been tested in state laboratories, according to the COVID Tracking Project, a database that updates the test statistics from states and the federal government. (Some of those statistics don’t include negative tests, which means the number tested could be higher.)

But even if you add the state labs and the CDC together, we are still testing far, far fewer people that other big countries around the world.

This is the biggest public health crisis of any of our lifetimes, and they have completely dropped the ball.

According to Dr. Anthony Fauci, we should be able to do a lot better than this…

Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said the testing logjam constitutes a “failing” of the nation’s healthcare system.

When compared with other countries that have rigorous programs, Fauci said, “We’re not set up for that. Do I think we should be? Yes. But we’re not.”

Meanwhile, top experts continue to issue extremely ominous warnings.  For instance, the attending physician of the U.S. Congress has told lawmakers that up to 150 million Americans could eventually catch this virus

Congress’ in-house doctor told Capitol Hill staffers at a close-door meeting this week that he expects 70-150 million people in the U.S. — roughly a third of the country — to contract the coronavirus, two sources briefed on the meeting tell Axios.

Could you imagine what our country would look like if that actually happened?

Now that the virus is spreading so widely, any person that you interact with could potentially pass it to you.

At this point, there is even concern that President Donald Trump may have been exposed

Fabio Wajngarten, the press secretary for Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, tested positive for coronavirus on Thursday, two sources have told CNN. Bolsonaro’s health is being monitored.

It comes just days after Wajngarten met US President Donald Trump in Florida.

Trump was in close physical proximity with the Wajngarten Saturday night, two people familiar tell CNN.

Let us pray that Trump will be just fine.

But this just shows how vulnerable we are as a nation.  Nobody is truly safe, and the number of people carrying the virus is just going to keep rising with each passing day.

Up to this point, many people out there have been attempting to downplay this pandemic, and on Thursday Vice-President Pence publicly denounced the “irresponsible rhetoric” coming from those individuals…

Vice President Mike Pence said Thursday that there has been “irresponsible rhetoric” from people who have downplayed the seriousness of the U.S. coronavirus outbreak.

The death toll in Italy just crossed 1,000 for the very first time, and their healthcare system has been completely overwhelmed by coronavirus victims.

We are on the exact same trajectory as Italy, and anyone that is not taking this outbreak seriously is being very foolish.  In one of his most recent articles, Mike Adams did a great job of making this point…

The global death rate for concluded cases has now reached 6%, with 94% surviving. This rate of 6% is triple what most pundits have been claiming (2%), and it’s 60 times higher than the death rate of the seasonal flu (0.1%).

Yet there are still people running around saying, “this is no worse than the flu.”

Those people are, frankly, kinda stupid. Try to keep your distance from them, as they are quite likely to get infected (and maybe even die) since they will take no precautions to protect themselves (and will probably put others at risk with their own actions, too).

It is not wrong to hope that this pandemic will soon fade.

But sticking your head in the sand and pretending that it isn’t there isn’t going to do anyone any good.

We need to deal with reality, and reality is telling us that a deadly virus is sweeping across the globe at a staggering pace.

So let us pray for mercy, and let us also prepare for the very long battle that awaits us in the weeks and months ahead.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. This article may contain opinions on political matters, but it is not intended to promote the candidacy of any particular political candidate. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.

Get Ready For Your Lifestyle To Change Indefinitely Because Of This Coronavirus Pandemic

Fear of the coronavirus is causing shutdowns on a global scale like we have never seen before.  Just about every major sporting event that you can think of has been either canceled or postponed, schools and universities are keeping students away, global tourism is absolutely collapsing, churches are being shuttered, conferences and festivals are being taken off the calendar, businesses are asking workers to work from home, and even Disneyland is being closed down.  Over the past several days the wave of closings and cancellations has become an avalanche, and all of our lifestyles are going to be dramatically altered for the foreseeable future.

For the first few days, a lot of people are actually going to enjoy this “free vacation”.  After all, what kid doesn’t enjoy time off from school, and there are lots of Americans that relish the opportunity to work from home.

But as the weeks drag on and the economy grinds to a standstill, this “free vacation” will start evolving into a horror show.

The more this coronavirus spreads, the more restrictions we will see on human interaction throughout the western world, and that has very serious implications.

Yes, there is much that we can do through the Internet today, but most economic activity still requires at least some actual human interaction.  So when authorities restrict human interaction they are actually choking off trade.

I can’t think of too many other things that could trigger an economic collapse faster than a global pandemic could.  We had better pray that life will get back to normal in a few weeks, because a complete and utter economic nightmare is ahead if that does not happen.

Unfortunately, life is not likely to get back to normal any time soon.  The number of confirmed cases continues to grow at an exponential rate, and those that are getting infected now will be able to infect others for weeks to come

Researchers looking at cases in China say patients could spread the virus for up to 37 days after they start showing symptoms, according to the study published in the British medical journal The Lancet.

On average, survivors still had the virus in their respiratory system for about 20 days and could presumably continue to spread the disease, researchers found.

So how long will it be before this pandemic is finally over?

Will it be months?

Could it be years?

Don’t forget, the Spanish Flu pandemic lasted from January 1918 to December 1920.

I think that Wall Street is starting to grasp the reality of what we are potentially facing.  On Thursday, we witnessed the largest single day stock market point crash in American history.  The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 2,352 points, and that shattered the “old record” of 2,013 points that was just set on Monday.  Overall, the Dow was down 9.99 percent, and that was the biggest percentage decline since the nightmarish stock market crash of 1987.

Incredibly, European stocks did even worse on Thursday.  In fact, it was the worst day ever for stock markets in Europe.

We have never seen a time when the entire western world has been in the process of literally shutting down simultaneously.  The following is how a Slate article described what we are currently witnessing…

Virtually every activity that entails or facilitates in-person human interaction seems to be in the midst of a total meltdown as the coronavirus outbreak erases Americans’ desire to travel. The NBA, NHL, and MLB have suspended their seasons. Austin’s South by Southwest canceled this year’s festival and laid off a third of its staff. Amtrak says bookings are down 50 percent and cancelations are up 300 percent; its CEO is asking workers to take unpaid time off. Hotels in San Francisco are experiencing vacancy rates between 70 and 80 percent. Broadway goes dark on Thursday night. The CEOs of Southwest and JetBlue have both compared the impact of COVID-19 on air travel to 9/11. (That was before President Trump banned air travel from Europe on Wednesday night.) Universities, now emptying their campuses, have never tried online learning on this scale. White-collar companies like Amazon, Apple, and the New York Times (and Slate!) are asking employees to work from home for the foreseeable future.

On top of everything else, March Madness has been canceled for the first time ever

The NCAA will not crown a men’s or women’s basketball champion in 2020.

Conceding defeat to the COVID-19 virus and a cascade of uncertainty about how bad its ongoing spread might impact public health across the United States, the NCAA announced Thursday all its winter and spring championships have been canceled after a series of moves across multiple sports leagues that foreshadowed the eventual arrival at this decision.

I can’t even imagine the heartbreak that many of those athletes are feeling right now.

They have been training all of their lives to fight for a championship, and now that opportunity has been taken away.

Sadly, just about every major sporting event has either been canceled or will be canceled shortly.

Of course the business world has been thrown into chaos as well.  Companies all across America are going to great lengths to minimize human interaction, and all sorts of non-essential activities are being eliminated.

Even a New York seminar entitled “Doing Business Under Coronavirus” has been canceled because of the coronavirus.

In the days ahead, the list of public gatherings that are still happening will probably be much shorter than the list of public gatherings that have been canceled.

All of this is being done to save lives.

But in the process, it is going to absolutely kill the economy.

At this point, President Trump is even thinking about imposing “travel restrictions within the United States”

REPORTER: Are you considering travel restrictions within the United States, such as to Washington State or California? [Emphasis added]

TRUMP: We haven’t discussed that yet. Is it a possibility? Yes. If somebody gets a little bit out of control, if an area gets too hot. You see what they’re doing in New Rochelle, which is — which is good, frankly. It’s the right thing. But then it’s not enforced, it’s not very strong but people know that they’re being watched … New Rochelle, that’s a hotspot.

Can you imagine the giant temper tantrum that we would see if that actually happened?

Earlier today, the top headline on CNN was “America’s way of life changes indefinitely”, and for once they got it exactly right.

As long as this virus is spreading out of control, decision makers all over the western world are going to be afraid to resume normal activities.

Just think about it.  If you are a decision maker and you resume normal operations too quickly, someone could get sick and die.  Not only could that cost you your job, but it could also get you sued into oblivion.

In our overly litigious society, the threat of lawsuits is going to play a major factor in this crisis.  In fact, I am sure that some people are already in contact with their lawyers.

Hopefully the measures that are being taken will help to reduce the spread of this virus.  But as one of my good friends has pointed out, even if the U.S. was totally locked down for 30 days, this virus would just keep coming back into the U.S. from other countries that are not locked down.

So the truth is that we would need the entire globe to be completely locked down for an extended period of time to really defeat this pandemic, and that simply is not going to happen.

Many among the elite can see what is happening, and they are taking off in their private jets to their “holiday homes or specially prepared disaster bunkers”

Like hundreds of thousands of people across the world, the super-rich are preparing to self-isolate in the face of an escalation in the coronavirus crisis. But their plans extend far beyond stocking up on hand sanitiser and TV boxsets.

The world’s richest people are chartering private jets to set off for holiday homes or specially prepared disaster bunkers in countries that, so far, appear to have avoided the worst of the Covid-19 outbreak.

Of course most of us do not have that option.

Most of us are going to have to ride this thing out right where we are, and that reality is causing a lot of people to completely panic.  Just check out what is happening in New York

Panicked New Yorkers rushed to stock up on essentials forming long lines and clearing shelves of produce as Mayor Bill de Blasio declared a state of emergency in the city due the coronavirus outbreak.

He made the decision on Thursday afternoon saying the last 24 hours had been ‘very, very sobering’ and that the world had been turned ‘upside down’ in just a day.

The announcement immediately sparked furious panic shopping from New Yorkers as grocery stores across the city saw chaos and frantic stockpiling with residents fearing the worst.

Sadly, this is just the beginning.

As things go from bad to worse, we are likely to see fear and panic on a scale that is absolutely unprecedented.

But as I discussed yesterday, now is not a time for fear.

During any major crisis, cool heads and calm hearts are needed.  The days ahead are going to be full of challenges, and by God’s grace we shall do our very best to meet those challenges.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. This article may contain opinions on political matters, but it is not intended to promote the candidacy of any particular political candidate. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.

We Just Witnessed The Largest Single Day Stock Market Point Crash In History (Again)

It has happened again.  On Thursday the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 2,352 points, which was the largest single day stock market point crash in history.  Of course the old record only lasted for three days, because on Monday the Dow dropped 2,013 points.  And on Wednesday, we actually witnessed the third largest single day stock market point crash in history.  So the three worst days in the history of the U.S. stock market (on a point basis) have all happened this week.  On a percentage basis, the stunning decline that we witnessed on Thursday was the worst day for the Dow since the horrifying market crash of 1987.  Wall Street is in a tremendous state of panic right now, and nobody is quite sure when this will end.

Needless to say, this frenzy of selling is being driven by fear of the coronavirus

“The coronavirus is scary and people don’t know what to expect,” said Kathy Entwistle, senior vice president of wealth management at UBS. “It’s like the tsunami is coming. We know it’s going to hit any day and nobody knows what the outcome is going to be.”

In the last 48 hours, the NBA, the NHL, Major League Baseball and Major League Soccer have all suspended their seasons because of COVID-19.  Public gatherings of all sorts are being canceled or postponed all across America, and we are seeing “panic buying” at major retailers like Costco that is absolutely unprecedented.

But we still don’t know if this is going to evolve into a major pandemic that is going to kill millions of people.  Right now there are less than 1,400 confirmed cases in the U.S. and less than 100 deaths.

If we are witnessing this much panic now, what will happen if millions of people do actually start dying?

Stocks should not be falling this rapidly yet, but of course they should have never gotten so high in the first place.

And even after all the carnage that we have already witnessed, stocks are still extremely overvalued.

In order for stock valuation ratios to return to their long-term averages, we would need to see the market fall another 20 to 30 percent.

But if this coronavirus pandemic does eventually become what many are fearing, stock prices will eventually go way below their long-term averages.

These are very strange times, and I have a feeling that they are about to get a whole lot stranger.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. This article may contain opinions on political matters, but it is not intended to promote the candidacy of any particular political candidate. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.

The Entire Western World Is Starting To Shut Down As Authorities Brace For “Millions” Of Coronavirus Cases

Since the end of World War II, have we ever seen the entire globe gripped by so much fear?  This week, the number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. and Europe has absolutely exploded, and authorities all over the western world are rushing to shut down public gatherings of all kinds.  The NCAA has banned fans from upcoming tournament games, the NBA just suspended the entire season because a Utah Jazz player tested positive, and dozens of other sporting events have been canceled all over the planet.  In both the U.S. and Europe, schools are being shut down for weeks, some universities are telling their students not to come back for the rest of the semester, and a whole host of concerts, conferences, festivals and religious gatherings are either being postponed or canceled altogether.  We have never seen anything like this before, and the implications are staggering.

Keeping everyone at home for a few weeks is one thing.

But what is going to happen if this pandemic just keeps growing for the rest of this calendar year or even longer?

According to NBC News, the attending physician of Congress believes that “70 million to 150 million people in the United States will become infected”…

Dr. Brian Monahan, the attending physician of Congress and the U.S. Supreme Court, said he expects 70 million to 150 million people in the United States will become infected with COVID-19, NBC News reported Wednesday, citing two sources.

Monahan made the comments to Senate staff during a closed-door meeting Tuesday afternoon, according to NBC News.

Right now, there are less than 2,000 confirmed cases in this country and fear is off the charts.

Can you imagine the societal meltdown that will ensue if 70 million Americans get infected?

Dr. Anthony Fauci is also warning that we we should expect to see “more cases” and that things will continue to “get worse”

“I can say we will see more cases and things will get worse than they are right now,” Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told the House Oversight and Reform Committee on Wednesday at a hearing on the nation’s preparedness for the outbreak.

Unfortunately, these sorts of warnings don’t hit home for many Americans until someone that they personally love is affected.

But now that Tom Hanks and his wife have both tested positive, a lot of people that previously did not take this outbreak seriously are now officially freaking out.

Tom Hanks is one of the most greatly loved actors in America, and this is going to be the moment when a lot of Americans finally wake up and realize that this virus is definitely not “like the flu”.

Over in Europe, things are actually quite a bit worse than they are in the United States right now.  Just like Italy, Denmark has just locked down the entire country, and German Chancellor Angela Merkel continues to warn that 70 percent of the German population could eventually become infected

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has warned that up to 70% of the country’s population – some 58 million people – could contract the coronavirus.

Mrs Merkel made the stark prediction at a news conference on Wednesday alongside Health Minister Jens Spahn.

But it may take a couple of years to get to that number.

So what are we going to do?  Are we actually going to shut down the entire western world for the foreseeable future?

If you go look at the map that Johns Hopkins has put up, the numbers coming out of Europe right now are like something out of a science fiction movie.

And as I discussed yesterday, the U.S. is on the exact same trajectory.

This is definitely a virus that you want to avoid if at all possible.  In many instances it causes devastating damage to the lungs, and even if you survive your lungs may not ever fully recover.

One of the very first confirmed British cases said that the virus hit him “like a train” and had him “in blinding pain for weeks”.

Has the flu ever left you “in blinding pain for weeks”?

Of course not.

And he was one of the fortunate ones that survived.  For those that die, the suffering can be far worse.

I truly don’t understand why there are still people out there that are attempting to downplay this pandemic.  This is a truly insidious virus, and numerous experts are warning that it could eventually kill millions.

As I wrap up this article, I would like to share with you an excerpt from a firsthand account from an American that is right in the middle of the nightmare that is currently unfolding in Italy.  I think that you will find what Christina Higgins posted on her Facebook page to be quite sobering…

When Prime Minister Conte announced last night that the entire country, 60 million people, would go on lock down, the line that struck me most was “there is no more time.” Because to be clear, this national lock down, is a hail mary. What he means is that if the numbers of contagion do not start to go down, the system, Italy, will collapse.

Why? Today the ICUs in Lombardy are at capacity – more than capacity. They have begun to put ICU units in the hallways. If the numbers do not go down, the growth rate of contagion tells us that there will be thousands of people who in a matter of a week? two weeks? who will need care. What will happen when there are 100, or a 1000 people who need the hospital and only a few ICU places left?

On Monday a doctor wrote in the paper that they have begun to have to decide who lives and who dies when the patients show up in the emergency room, like what is done in war. This will only get worse.

There are a finite number of drs, nurses, medical staff and they are getting the virus. They have also been working non-stop, non-stop for days and days. What happens when the drs, nurses and medical staff are simply not able to care for the patients, when they are not there?

And finally for those who say that this is just something that happens to old people, starting yesterday the hospitals are reporting that younger and younger patients – 40, 45, 18, are coming in for treatment.

You have a chance to make a difference and stop the spread in your country. Push for the entire office to work at home today, cancel birthday parties, and other gatherings, stay home as much as you can. If you have a fever, any fever, stay home. Push for school closures, now. Anything you can do to stop the spread, because it is spreading in your communities – there is a two week incubation period – and if you do these things now you can buy your medical system time.

And for those who say it is not possible to close the schools, and do all these other things, locking down Italy was beyond anyone’s imagination a week ago.

Soon you will not have a choice, so do what you can now.

Please share.

No matter how many reassuring press conferences our leaders hold, and no matter what moves global central banks make, most people are going to want to avoid places where they could become infected as long as this virus keeps spreading.

If our normal lives are interrupted for a few weeks, it ultimately won’t be that big of a deal.

But if this crisis just keeps going month after month, it will quickly bring us to the brink of societal collapse.

Let us pray for a miracle, because we definitely need one right now.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. This article may contain opinions on political matters, but it is not intended to promote the candidacy of any particular political candidate. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.

Fear Of The Coronavirus Is Causing A Stock Market Apocalypse

In all of U.S. history, we have never seen the Dow Jones Industrial Average go from an all-time high to a bear market as quickly as we just did.  As I keep reminding my readers, the stock market is all about how investors view the future.  Early this year, extremely irrational optimism about the future pushed stock prices to the most overvalued levels that we have ever seen, but now things have completely changed.  Fear of the coronavirus has many investors fearing an imminent economic crisis, and we have seen volatility on Wall Street that is absolutely insane.  On Monday we witnessed the largest single day point decline in the history of the Dow, on Tuesday stocks came roaring back, and then on Wednesday we witnessed the second largest single day point decline in the history of the Dow.  As I have previously explained numerous times, we see huge waves of momentum during any stock market crash, and I am sure we will see many more as this current implosion continues to play out.

On Wednesday, the Dow closed at 23553.22, which represented a 20.3 percent decline from the peak on February 12th.

The bull market that began on March 9th, 2009 has finally ended, and U.S. stocks are off to their worst start for a year since the last financial crisis.

But less than 5,000 people around the globe have died from this virus so far.

If we are seeing this much fear now, what is going to happen if millions of people start dying?

Thankfully, the World Health Organization finally decided to officially label this outbreak a “pandemic” on Wednesday

World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus on Wednesday declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic as the global death toll rose above 4,500 and the number of confirmed cases neared 125,000.

“We have rung the alarm bell loud and clear,” Tedros said at a news conference. “We cannot say this loudly enough, or clearly enough, or often enough: All countries can still change the course of this pandemic.”

Of course that announcement really rattled investors and the Dow ended up falling 1,464 points.  Banking stocks were hit particularly hard.

But then later in the day we learned that President Trump would be addressing the nation at 9 PM eastern time, and investors were temporarily encouraged.

Unfortunately, investors didn’t seem to like what Trump had to say, and Dow futures immediately plummeted about 1,000 points afterwards.

On top of everything else, two major stories broke late Wednesday that shocked the entire nation.  We learned that Tom Hanks and his wife have tested positive for the coronavirus, and the entire NBA season was suspended because a Utah Jazz player now has the virus.

Needless to say, every horrifying headline is just going to cause even more chaos for the markets.

At this point, one Goldman Sachs analyst is projecting that the S&P 500 will likely fall quite a bit more in the days ahead

Goldman Sachs chief equity analyst David Kostin said Wednesday he expects the S&P 500 to hit a low of 2,450, more than 10% below its current closing level of 2,741. Kostin based his new view on a reduced expectation for S&P 500 earnings.

And another analyst believes that we are “only about halfway” to the bottom of the market…

“We can see the panic in the equity market,” said Jerry Braakman, chief investment officer of First American Trust. “The big question for most people is, are we at the bottom yet? I think we’re only about halfway there.”

Of course both of them are assuming that this coronavirus pandemic will not last for too much longer.

But what if they are wrong?

What if this pandemic lasts into next year or even longer?

As stocks fall, people are gobbling up gold and silver coins like crazy.  In fact, millions of Silver Eagles have been sold in recent days…

With the spread of the Global Contagion, the demand for physical precious metals has increased significantly.  According to the U.S. Mint’s newest update, another million Silver Eagles were sold over the past two days.  This brings to total Silver Eagle sales in March at 2.3 million, more than three times the previous month.

So if you have been waiting all this time for your silver coins to start appreciating in value, it may finally start paying off.

Meanwhile, we are already starting to see workers being laid off as much of the U.S. literally begins to shut down because of this virus.  The following comes from the Washington Post

At the Port of Los Angeles, 145 drivers have been laid off and others have been sent home without pay as massive ships from China stopped arriving and work dried up. At travel agencies in Atlanta and Los Angeles, several workers lost their jobs as bookings evaporated. Christie Lites, a stage-lighting company in Orlando, laid off more than 100 of its 500 workers nationwide this past week and likely will lay off 150 more, according to chief executive Huntly Christie. Meanwhile a hotel in Seattle is closing an entire department, a former employee said, and as many as 50 people lost their jobs after the South by Southwest festival in Austin got canceled.

Sadly, this is just the beginning.  If this crisis lasts long enough, eventually we will see layoffs that are absolutely unprecedented.

And the civil unrest that I keep warning about appears to be already starting as well.  Just check out what just happened at the University of Dayton

University of Dayton students took to the streets after the school canceled classes, on-campus events, and gatherings, and closed UD student housing. Over 1,000 students gathered on Lowes Street by late Tuesday, jumping on cars and throwing bottles at police the University of Dayton said in a written statement.

You can see a news report about this incident right here.  Of course if this pandemic continues to escalate the civil unrest will become much, much, much worse in the months ahead.

On Wednesday night, President Trump announced that travel from Europe would be suspended for 30 days.

That is certainly a step in the right direction, but at this point it isn’t going to make too much of a difference.

The virus is now in over 100 countries, and it is now spreading in almost every U.S. state.

And what most people don’t realize is that this pandemic is far from the only crisis we will be facing.  We have entered a time when we will be hit by one thing after another, and most Americans will not be able to handle it.

We are seeing so much fear out there right now, but this is not a time for fear.

This is a time for faith, and it is absolutely critical for you and your family to believe that you can get through this.

Anyone can shine during the best of times, but it is during the worst of times that we discover who we really are.

The days ahead are going to be extremely challenging, but they will also be a great opportunity to make a tremendous difference in a society that has been gripped by fear and that is starting to spin completely out of control.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. This article may contain opinions on political matters, but it is not intended to promote the candidacy of any particular political candidate. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.

U.S. Coronavirus Cases Double In Less Than 48 Hours, And “Everyone Else Will Be Italy In 9-14 Days Time”

What is our country going to look like if COVID-19 keeps spreading this rapidly?  The map that Johns Hopkins University is using to track the spread of this virus has become extremely popular, and I refer to it several times a day.  On Monday, I watched as the number of confirmed cases in the United States crossed the 500 mark, and then on Tuesday I was really shocked to see it jump up to 1,025.  In less than 48 hours, the number of confirmed cases more than doubled.  Needless to say, we are going to be in a whole lot of trouble if this keeps happening.  Of course the U.S. is far from alone.  This outbreak has gotten completely out of control all over the western world, and right now Europe is being hit harder than anyone else.

After analyzing the growth rates that we are currently seeing all over Europe, computer scientist Mark Handley declared that “everyone else will be Italy in 9-14 days time”

On Monday night, computer scientist Mark Handley, Professor of Networked Systems and part-time Roboticist at UCL in London, tweeted a graph showing how growth figures in other infected countries compare to Italy’s.

‘Everyone else will be Italy in 9-14 days time,’ Handley tweeted along with the data.

At this moment, the entire nation of Italy has been locked down.  If Handley is correct, we should expect to see this happen in a bunch of other countries before two more weeks are gone.

Of course Handley is not the only one making these sorts of projections.  Dr. John Crane of the University of Buffalo says that the U.S. is “on the exact same trajectory” as Italy…

He told DailyMail.com in an interview that the world had never seen anything like the outbreak and that the US seemed to be watching how Italy responded before making any drastic decisions of its own.

‘It looks like they’re on the exact same trajectory. Italy had an 11.5 day head start,’ he said, referring to the data.

We definitely do not want what is happening in Italy to happen here.

There are now more than 10,000 confirmed cases in Italy, the death toll is up to 631, and their healthcare system is being absolutely overwhelmed

Italian hospitals are so ‘overwhelmed’ by coronavirus that strokes are going untreated and elderly patients are not even being assessed, a doctor at the centre of the crisis has said – while another medic said people in the UK and US should be panicking more.

Doctors in Italy have been forced into life-or-death decisions over who should receive intensive care, with virus cases piling up around the country.

The same thing could soon start happening in the United States.

When there are too many people to treat, not everyone will be treated.

This is yet another reason why you want to stay away from public places so that you do not get this virus.

Here in the U.S., Dr. Anthony Fauci is urging an “all hands on deck” approach to fighting this virus…

Top national disease expert Anthony Fauci is urging the nation to take an ‘all hands on deck’ approach to the coronavirus – and urging officials to plan for immediate measures even in states that haven’t had cases show up yet.

‘It doesn’t matter if you’re in a state that has no cases or one case,’ Fauci said at a press briefing with Vice President Mike Pence Tuesday. ‘You have to start taking seriously what you can do now that if and when the infections will come – and they will come – sorry to say, sad to say, they will,’ he told reporters.

Like so many others, Fauci seems resigned to the fact that we are going to see a lot more cases in this country.

But where will we put them?  We only have a limited number of hospital beds, and those will fill up pretty quickly.

According to Washington Governor Jay Inslee, there could be 64,000 cases in his state alone by May

Confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus are swiftly ballooning across the United States, and President Trump’s former Homeland Security Adviser Thomas Bossert says time is running out to control the spread.

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D), who is overseeing one of the country’s largest clusters, said “if you do the math” there could be 64,000 cases of COVID-19 in the Evergreen State by May, while New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said the positive cases in the city are “coming in so intensely now” that public officials are struggling to keep up with them. He said he wasn’t in a position to give the media a “detailed case breakdown” because of the rapidly changing number.

Speaking of New York, a state of martial law has essentially been instituted in New Rochelle in a desperate attempt to contain the cluster that has erupted there

In New York, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the most rigorous actions to date to combat the spread in New Rochelle, which he described as the “most significant cluster in the country” and accounts for the lion’s share of the surging caseload in the tri-state area.

Those measures include deploying National Guard troops to a Health Department command post and setting up a satellite testing facility and one-mile, two-week containment area in the city. Public schools in that containment zone will be closed through March 25; National Guard troops will help clean surfaces and deliver food in that one-mile radius.

Unfortunately, it is only a matter of time before similar measures are put into place in communities all across the nation.

The months ahead are going to be extremely challenging for all of us, and so let us hope that this outbreak begins to subside as soon as possible.

We are already starting to see things happen that would have been unimaginable just a few weeks ago.  If you can believe it, colleges and universities all over America are choosing to cancel classes for the foreseeable future

A growing number of U.S. colleges have canceled in-person classes because of the coronavirus. The closures began in Washington state, and now include Harvard University, Columbia University, Princeton University, Rice University, Stanford University, Hofstra University, University of California, Berkeley, and the University of Washington, among others. As of midday Tuesday, more than half a million students are affected by the cancellations.

And you know that things must be really bad if Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders are canceling campaign rallies

Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden’s presidential campaigns canceled rallies set for Cleveland on Tuesday night due to coronavirus concerns, the first disruptions the outbreak has caused in the 2020 Democratic primary.

In separate announcements, the Democratic presidential contenders’ campaigns said they exercised caution about holding large public gatherings after hearing guidance from public health officials.

At this point, there is even talk that the Tokyo Olympics could be delayed for a year or two.

In the short-term, bringing public activity to a screeching halt all over the western world won’t hurt too much.

But what if this outbreak continues to keep growing month after month?

Right now, it looks like this virus is going to be with us for a long time to come.

In Spain, the number of confirmed cases tripled in just two days, and the number of confirmed cases in France rose 70 percent from Monday to Tuesday.

In the UK, it has been reported that the government is planning “to stockpile body bags”, and the fact that a member of the British Parliament has become a confirmed case made headlines all over the world

Health minister Nadine Dorries has tested positive for coronavirus and fears for Boris Johnson’s health have been sparked after she attended an event hosted by the Prime Minister at No 10 last week. Ms Dorries is understood to have fallen ill on Thursday and then over the weekend, the “classic symptoms” of the disease emerged.

But everything that I just shared with you pales in comparison to what just happened in Germany.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel reportedly told the German Parliament that 60 to 70 percent of the German population will eventually catch the virus

Angela Merkel says she expects around 60-70 percent of Germans will be infected with the coronavirus, which equates to about 53 million people.

Reportedly, the German Parliament fell completely silent when Merkel stated the number.

News outlet Bild reported the German Chancellor’s comments, which echoed numbers forecast by Berlin virologist Christian Drosten, who added that such a total could take 2 years or longer to reach.

If we eventually see similar numbers throughout the entire western world, the global economy will collapse, there will be great civil unrest all over the globe, and tens of millions of people will die.

Let us continue to hope that such a nightmare scenario can be avoided somehow.

But let us also prepare for an extended battle with this virus, because it certainly appears that COVID-19 is not going to disappear any time soon.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. This article may contain opinions on political matters, but it is not intended to promote the candidacy of any particular political candidate. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.

The U.S. Response To This Coronavirus Outbreak Has Been Horrifyingly Bad

What recourse do we have when our public health officials completely and utterly fail us?  I don’t know if we could have prevented COVID-19 from spreading widely in the United States even if everything had been done perfectly, but the truth is that we will never know.  When this outbreak first started, visitors from the affected areas were allowed to fly into the United States without being properly screened, and as you will see below this is still happening in many instances.  And once the virus started spreading on U.S. soil, we needed to immediately test any suspected cases so that we could isolate them as rapidly as possible.  But even though South Korea has managed to test more than 140,000 of their citizensless than 9,000 Americans have been tested so far…

The CDC revealed on Tuesday that 8,554 Americans have been tested for coronavirus, but the agency’s director says state and local health labs are understaffed and ill-equipped to keep up with crisis.

According to figures published on the CDC’s website on Tuesday, 3,698 tests had been done in its lab, and another 4,856 had been done in public health labs.

Can anyone out there explain why we can’t do at least as good as South Korea is doing?

So far, I haven’t found a single person that can explain this to me.

Even after everything that has transpired, victims at the very epicenter of the outbreak in the Seattle area that are “showing symptoms of the respiratory illness” are still not being tested

The Seattle-area nursing home at the epicenter of one of the biggest coronavirus outbreaks in the United States said on Monday it had no kits to test 65 employees showing symptoms of the respiratory illness that has killed at least 13 patients at the long-term care center.

The staff in question, representing more than a third of the Life Care Center’s 180 employees, are out sick with symptoms consistent with coronavirus, and a federal strike team of nurses and doctors is helping to care for 53 patients remaining in the center.

Are you kidding me?

This is the biggest public health crisis that any of us have ever seen, and the virus has already killed a bunch of residents at that particular nursing home, but we still don’t have enough kits to get those employees tested?

I don’t know if there are words that are strong enough to describe how badly our health officials have dropped the ball.

Do we have to wait until this crisis is over to fire every decision maker at the CDC and completely rebuild it from scratch?

To say that their performance has been “horrifyingly bad” is actually a tremendous understatement.

Of course the CDC is blaming their problems on a lack of funding

US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Dr. Robert Redfield said state and local public health labs are underequipped and understaffed.

“The truth is we’ve not invested, we’ve underinvested in the public health labs,” Redfield said at a House Appropriations hearing for the 2021 CDC budget.

“There’s not enough equipment, there’s not enough people, there’s not enough internal capacity, there’s no surge capacity,” Redfield added.

Actually, the CDC receives more than 6 billion dollars in federal funding every year, and much of that goes into paying their salaries.

There are “168 key employees at CDC who earn more than $200,000” a year, and those very highly paid experts were supposed to make sure that our country was ready for a pandemic like this.

Now we are at a tipping point.  The number of confirmed cases in the U.S. has more than doubled over the past 48 hours, and an expert that used to work in the White House is telling us that we are “10 days from our hospitals getting creamed”.

10 days.

And thanks to the devastating impact that this outbreak has had on the Chinese economy, there are 30 different drugs that are already in short supply, and that list will grow with each passing week.

At this juncture, it is going to be nearly impossible to get this virus under control in the United States.  In an article that he just posted, Mike Adams outlined the steps that would need to be taken if we were really serious about ending this outbreak…

  • Block all international flights into the USA from all countries
  • Close all borders and stop cross-border traffic
  • Shut down all domestic commercial air travel
  • Order all public schools, universities, government offices and churches to close
  • Cancel all public events, including concerts, conferences, etc.
  • Quarantine all US cities, block all highways in and out
  • Shut down all public transportation, including subways, buses, taxis and rail
  • Enact nationwide medical martial law and prevent people from leaving their homes or gathering in groups of any kind

Needless to say, the American people are not about to accept such measures, and Mike Adams acknowledges that it would be “a month of hell”

These efforts might achieve a 90% suppression factor, which would break the cycle of the coronavirus within 3-4 weeks.

In other words, America would have to endure a month of hell to stop the virus in its tracks.

So this virus will just keep spreading, and the number of confirmed cases will just keep on doubling.

Meanwhile, as I mentioned above, many travelers that are coming into the U.S. from countries where this outbreak is completely out of control are still not being properly screened

U.S. travelers arriving into John F. Kennedy International Airport from locked-down Italy revealed that many passengers are not having their temperatures taken, despite a widespread coronavirus outbreak in the European country.

In exclusive interviews with DailyMail.com on Tuesday afternoon, American travelers arriving back in the country from Rome said Italians remain ‘unfazed’ by the deadly outbreak and ‘are still out having fun’.

Considering the fact that the entire nation of Italy is now locked down, why are we still allowing flights from Italy to land here in the first place?

There are now more than 1,000 confirmed cases in the United States even though we have done such minimal testing.

As testing expands, the number of confirmed cases will rise rapidly, and that will cause the level of fear to dramatically escalate.

Already, Costco stores all over the country are being raided by desperate consumers when they open each day.  Just check out what happened at one Costco store in southern California on Monday morning

Shoppers were pictured lining up outside a Costco store in Burbank, California, on Monday morning, with a queue of people and their empty shopping karts snaking through the parking lot, waiting to rush in and emergency stockpile goods the second the doors opened.

One eager customer, Jeffrey Schaefer, 45, said the line of shoppers continued all along the side of the huge wholesale store building, through the parking lot and back up the sidewalk.

If our health officials had been on top of things from the very beginning, the outlook for the months ahead could have been very different.

But now we are being told that we are past the “containment” phase and that officials will simply try to do their best to “mitigate” the damage that this outbreak will do from this point forward.

This is a complete and utter nightmare, and it looks like we are still only in the very early chapters of it.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. This article may contain opinions on political matters, but it is not intended to promote the candidacy of any particular political candidate. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!