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Senior adviser to President Trump Jared Kushner told FOX Business' Gerry Baker that despite the gloomy April jobs figures, he’s optimistic an economic turnaround is coming soon as more states reopen after weeks of being locked down in an effort to stop the spread of the coronavirus.
“We’re starting to see people are opening up in a safe way,” he explained. “And I think you’ll see over the next couple of months confidence will start coming back as the disease is contained.”
Kushner’s comments to "WSJ at Large" came after the Labor Department reported 20.5 million Americans lost their jobs last month and the unemployment rate skyrocketed to the highest levels since the government began keeping those records after World War II. Kushner, who is also the president’s son-in-law, indicates the lockdown has really hurt.
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“The April numbers were not unexpected,” he noted. “It shows there’s a lot of hardship being imposed right now based on the policies to save as many lives as possible.”
Kushner knows there are calls for even more fiscal stimulus from Washington to boost the economy, but he says Trump hasn’t decided yet if that is needed, including aid to states facing financial hardship.
“First of all, he wants to see what the impact of the close to $3 trillion that we’ve already put into the economy,” he pointed out. “I think that’s already starting to get in. I think a lot of people have gotten their stimulus checks. We’ve seen a lot of data — some, obviously, is encouraging — and we want to see the results of the tremendous and historic programs that we put in place before we decide what we want to do in the next step.”
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He indicated, however, the White House remains focused on what those next steps might be.
“The president right now is looking at a lot of ideas, having a lot of discussions with his economic team, with outside advisers, and he’s got a lot of different plans that he can put in place, depending on where the data starts going,” he explained. “But the most important priority is getting the health crisis under control.“