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Up to 6 million white-collar workers could lose their jobs in another wave of cuts as coronavirus fallout spreads

Business Insider logo Business Insider 6/3/2020 Joseph Zeballos-Roig
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About 6  million higher-paid workers could lose their jobs as the pandemic's fallout slams other sectors of the economy, according to an estimate from Bloomberg Economics.

The figure includes supervisors employed at restaurants and hotels, as well as workers in real-estate and finance.

"It will get worse before it gets better— white-collar workers will now bear the brunt," Yelena Shulyatyeva, senior US economist at Bloomberg Economics, told the news outlet. She added a second wave of losses appears likely even as states start reopening their economies after a months-long shutdown.

So far, much of the pandemic has hit low-wage workers employed in high-contact industries. Nearly half of the 20 million jobs shed in April were among employees in retail, restaurants, and hotels.

"The pandemic is falling on those least able to bear its burdens," Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said at an online discussion hosted by Princeton University last week. 

He added: "It is low-paid workers in the service industries who are bearing the brunt of this, it is also women to an extraordinary degree."

But as businesses across hard-hit sectors continue grappling with an uncertain economic environment, they're scaling back efforts from expanding operations and hiring new employees.

That's dampening the prospects for a quick economic rebound for the immediate future, experts say.

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