We're in a K-Shaped Recovery, but What Is It?
Updated: Mar 30
With Americans receiving stimi after stimi and the stock market currently seeing all-time highs, it's easy to think everyone has come out of the recession on the upside. In truth, Americans and industries that were previously struggling will likely continue to struggle.
This is a K-shaped recovery. A K-shaped recovery essentially shows a post-recession scenario in which one segment of the economy begins to climb while another segment continues to suffer.
In 2020, the first K-shaped recovery was seen as a result of the pre-existing social and economic divides that were then compounded by the effects of COVID-19.
Looking at the aftermath of the recent pandemic, analysts are considering the COVID-19 recession to be the most unequal recession in modern U.S. history. The Americans hit hardest by the recession were low-income families, young adults, and Black and Hispanic Americans. Notably, those working in industries such as travel, entertainment, hospitality, and food services are struggling to keep their jobs or potentially lost them completely.
At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the richest 1% of Americans already owned 30% of the country's wealth, while the bottom 50% of Americans held less than 2%. With the effects of COVID-19 still taking place, it is likely the gargantuan disparity of wealth will continue to grow.