Maines Paper idles 129 as coronavirus lockdown takes toll, pushing Memphis jobless rate over 11%
Greater Memphis’ jobs engine could pick up speed in the next few months, but for now, the coronavirus lockdown continues to batter the economy and push the region’s unemployment rate up to recession levels.
Layoffs have now idled at least 70,000 people in Greater Memphis since early March, putting an estimated 11% of the region’s workers on the unemployment rolls, according to The Commercial Appeal’s analysis of jobs data reported by Arkansas, Mississippi and Tennessee labor agencies.
“E-commerce, not shockingly, is doing great right now,” said Mason George, head of sales at IMC Companies, a Memphis-based logistics firm operating 2,000 trucks hauling freight from U.S. seaports.
Imports overall are trending up, a sign of U.S. economic recovery, although the trend line appears uneven from week to week, George said. Because the Memphis logistics sector depends on the strength of the U.S. economy, a national pickup favors this region, he noted.
“In Memphis, it’s looking like we’re going back to work earlier than in other parts of the country,” George said.
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Posted: April 30, 2020