Washington Post

Here's another thing the pandemic has screwed up: economic forecasts

Worker collects used protective masks to be destroyed at recycling center, amid the coronavirus disease pandemic, in Surabaya. Foto: Antara Foto/Reuters/Ritzau Scanpix

Ian Shepherdson knew he was sticking his neck out. But last Thursday, he went public with a startling forecast: the next government labor market report would show that the U.S. economy had created 850,000 jobs in December.

Less than 24 hours later, it became clear that Shepherdson, the chief economist and founder of Pantheon Macroeconomics, had missed the mark and missed badly. Employers in the last month of the year actually had hired just 199,000 workers, less than one-fourth the number he predicted, according to the government's closely-watched monthly tally...

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