America's economy just had the worst quarter since 2008

Posted April 29, 2020 8:34 a.m. EDT
Updated April 29, 2020 9:39 a.m. EDT

— The US economy contracted for the first time in nearly six years between January and March, as the coronavirus crisis put the world in a choke hold.

America's first-quarter GDP fell at a 4.8% annualized rate, the US Bureau of Economic Analysis reported on Wednesday.

It was the first contraction of the US economy since the first quarter of 2014, and the worst drop since the fourth quarter of 2008.

Consumer spending, the largest contributor to US GDP, declined at a 7.6% annualized rate, its deepest decline since the second quarter of 1980.

A possible treatment on the horizon

But, Gilead Sciences said on Wednesday that preliminary results of a coronavirus drug trial showed success, according to a report from CNBC The trial was done with patients who were hospitalized with COVID-19.

“These data are encouraging as they indicate that patients who received a shorter, 5-day course of remdesivir experienced similar clinical improvement as patients who received a 10-day treatment course,” said Aruna Subramanian, a lead investigator of the study to CNBC.

Future of US Economy

The economy came to a screeching halt in March, when businesses shut and stay-at-home orders were put in place across the country. That was enough to offset the economic activity in January and February.

In the current quarter, the economy is expected to contract even further. Even though some states are beginning to reopen, experts believe it will be some time until activity levels are back to what they were before the outbreak.

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