The pandemic was not only a sanitary crisis but produced a financial crisis as well, with the impact felt all over the world. In the United States alone, the proportion of people out of work hit a historical 8.9% according to the International Monetary Fund, signaling an end to a decade of jobs expansion. Apart from the increasing unemployment rate, millions of workers have also been put on government-supported job retention schemes as parts of the economy (tourism, hospitality) have come to a near standstill. Shops and restaurants closed their doors altogether or opened with low seating capacity and low demand to dine in. Nonessential travel evaporated, causing massive lost revenue for not only airlines and cruise ship operators but also smaller businesses that rely on tourism dollars. And that 8.9% was not the maximum, as the national unemployment rate climbed as high as 14.8% in April 2020 in many economies globally.
Those economic shockwaves were felt from Beijing to Madrid, creating a drag on the world’s economy that hasn’t been seen for decades. In October 2021, the International Monetary Fund revealed that the global economy contracted by 3.1% in 2020—the worst slide in recent memory.
With many variants of the viruses coming up one after another, this situation prolonged more than anybody would have expected at the beginning. Even though there are no more official measures in place right now, the effects of the pandemic will long be felt.