While summer fairs and carnivals are mostly on hold, 2020 has taken us on a wild ride as the COVID-19 pandemic rocked the global economy in the first half of the year. The US economy slumped in March as housing regulations pushed unemployment to record highs, surpassing 2008 Great Financial Crisis (GCF) highs in just one month.
Unemployment in the United States hit 14.7% in April, well above the GFC’s 10.9% high.
Including part-time workers who wish to work full-time (the U-6 rate), unemployment reached 22.8% in April. Real GDP fell 5.0% in the first quarter of the year and 32.9% in the second quarter of the year, the worst decline on record. Politicians were quick to put a social network under the economy, once again surpassing GCF levels. The Fed’s balance sheet rose $ 3 trillion from March to May, more than double the amount during the GCF.
Interest rates first rose as lenders took on unexpected risks, and then fell globally as countries began to support their economies.
Yields on 10-year US Treasuries have remained below 1% since early March, the lowest rates on record.
But the US economy now has tools in place that it did not have in the past.
First, an e-commerce distribution network was already growing and could maintain a certain level of retail service despite the safe house rules in place. Consumers, however, have changed their shopping habits, drastically shifting from restaurant shopping to shopping , ditching clothing and department stores, and increasing their purchases at hardware, building supply, and garden stores. Overall, retail sales of clothing, furniture and other retail stores (GAFO) fell 29% from February to April, while electronic purchases rose 19%. 
Second, technology has made it possible for many office workers to continue working from home rather than the office.
Even schools rushed in and ended the year with at least some level of online education. While only 24% of college presidents expect students to return fully to campus in the fall , office building owners are prioritizing the implementation of new healthy housing initiatives to accommodate students. office tenants. Fortunately, a multitude of tech companies have developed systems that can dramatically improve the health and well-being of workplaces, starting with pre-entry wellness checks, contactless entry, social distance, low kitchens. tactile and vocal, self-cleaning and improved air filtering, among other systems. In addition, new tools for cybersecurity, home network security, human resources on the go, and remote collaboration improve remote work productivity. 
Just as quickly as the economy plunged lower in March, we saw a sharp, but partial, recovery in May and June.
The unemployment rate fell to 11.1 percent in June, with 7.5 million jobs returning. The largest employment gains occurred in several of the sectors hardest hit during the March-April recession, including sales of vehicles, clothing, furniture and sporting goods, dentists and hospitality . Transport and oil remain the most affected sectors. Retail sales followed a similar trend, with total retail and foodservice sales increasing 27% from April to June.
Unlike previous recessions, the housing market has remained relatively stable so far.
In fact, residential investment was one of the best-performing components of GDP growth in the first half of the year, down just 1.8% in the second quarter compared to a 23% drop in consumption of services. and 9.4% for export.  As single-family home sales volumes declined from March to May, home values continued to rise, mortgage rates declined and default rates remained low. New sales of single-family homes returned to January levels in June . Katy Perry gives birth, welcomes
In the multi-family market, employment rates remained high at 92% for class A  and 94% for class B. Class A employment fell by 50 basis points in the second quarter of 2020 , depending on two factors. First, new construction has increased the
Like the single-family home market, sales of multi-family properties fell sharply in May, although prices remained stable.
The volume of sales of apartments fell 81% from the previous year in May. However, the apartment sales volume of $ 3.1 billion was the highest of any property type, accounting for almost 32% of all property sales. The highest rates have fallen 10 basis points year-to-date  in the first half of the year, pushing house prices up 7.1% year-on-year in June, but a slight decrease of 0.3% compared to April in June . REIT prices rose 5.4% in the second quarter, but remain 28% below the October 2019 high. Dividend yields of 4.0% in June fell 21 basis points in the quarter, but they are well above the 2.8% level in October. 
The way forward is not yet clear. While we hope to continue riding the roller coaster
, several factors point to a slower recovery. First, the COVID-19 pandemic is not yet over.  The risk of recovery is further magnified by the uncertainty of federal policy and the ability of the pharmaceutical industry to create a vaccine and / or a cure. Transportation, nursing homes and oil jobs are still in decline. High unemployment rates will continue to put downward pressure on the consumption of goods and services, which will create contagion in other lagging sectors such as government and education (with the loss of tax revenues ) and technology sectors (for those who depend to some extent on advertising revenue). Meanwhile, low interest rates are expected to stay for some time, which should support house prices if demand holds. Ultimately, the unprecedented support provided to the economy by the federal government will have to be resolved.
– By Steve Theobald, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Walker & Dunlop. Walker & Dunlop is a content partner of REBusinessOnline. For more articles and news on Walker & Dunlop, click here.
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 In February 2020, restaurant sales ($ 54.1 million) were almost equal to grocery sales ($ 54.8 million). Restaurant sales fell to $ 27.8 million in April 2020, while grocery sales increased to $ 63.2 million.
 United States Census Bureau, Boosted monthly sales for retail and food services, by type of business.
 https://collegecrisis.shinyapps.io/dashboard/ from 24/7/20
 CB-Insights, “Reopening: The Tech Office in a Post-Covid World”, 2020.
 Bureau of Economic Analysis
 United States Census Bureau and US Department of Housing and Urban Development, New One Family Houses Sold: United States [HSN1F], retrieved from FRED, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis; https://fred.stlouisfed.org/series/HSN1F, July 30, 2020
 Class A defined as a property with a CoStar rating of 4 to 5 stars. Class B defined as a property of more than 25 units and CoStar classification of 1 to 3 stars. Source: CoStar.