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Bank of America says the recession is already here

(CNBC) Bank of America warned investors on Thursday that a coronavirus-induced recession is no longer avoidable — it’s already here.

“We are officially declaring that the economy has fallen into a recession … joining the rest of the world, and it is a deep plunge,” Bank of America U.S. economist Michelle Meyer wrote in a note. “Jobs will be lost, wealth will be destroyed and confidence depressed.”

The firm expects the economy to “collapse” in the second quarter, shrinking by 12%. GDP for the full year will contract by 0.8%, it said.

Bank of America looked at the labor market as a way to understand the “magnitude of the economic shock.” The firm expects the unemployment rate to nearly double, with roughly 1 million jobs lost each month of the second quarter for a total of 3.5 million.

The coronavirus outbreak has already sent global markets into a tailspin as travel comes to a near standstill and businesses shut their doors. The S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average are trading in bear market territory, and now sit around 30% below their all-time high levels from just last month. READ MORE

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