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Pandemic Pulse

The COVID-19 pandemic is inflicting enormous human and economic costs in the Fifth Federal Reserve District, the U.S. and the world. These interactive charts represent a sample of the higher frequency indicators that economists at the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond are monitoring to understand the evolution of economic conditions during the pandemic.

Check back for updated data every Friday. (Please note that updates will not occur on Nov. 27 and Dec. 25.) Also, the indicators may change as conditions evolve.

Charts updated November 20, 2020

  • Open for Business

    Homebase is a company that provides scheduling, time keeping, and communication products to local businesses. The charts below show Homebase's data on hours worked and open businesses. (Please note that data is reported on a four-week lag.) The data sample is approximately 60,000 businesses, primarily in the restaurant, food/beverage and retail sectors, which employ approximately one million hourly employees. 

    Richmond Fed economists have used Homebase data in two reports published in April 2020 and May 2020.

  • The Unemployed

    Unemployment insurance claims represent the number of people who file for unemployment for the first time (initial claims) or in subsequent weeks (continued claims). The data are submitted by state employment commissions to the U.S. Department of Labor.

    For more details, read the Regional Matters posts on state unemployment insurance programs and the changes made to those programs during the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Help Wanted

    Job postings are gathered by Chmura Economics and Analytics from over 30,000 websites that include company sites and job aggregator sites. The charts below provide data on the change in postings at the state level and in select metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs).

  • At Home, On the Road

    Safegraph uses a sample of mobile devices to track the movement of individuals from "home" to places of interest and provides metrics for every Census Block in the United States. The charts below detail two changes in consumer behavior during the COVID-19 pandemic — the amount of time that individuals spend at home and the number of visits to points of interest since the beginning of March.


Other High-Frequency Indicators

From the Federal Reserve:


From Other Sources:

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