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'V,' 'U,' or 'W': What could be the shape of Michigan's economic recovery?

Businesses in Hamtramck, Michigan
Ian Freimuth
creative commons
Businesses in Hamtramck, Michigan

A longtime leader in Michigan’s business community is predicting it'll take a while for Michigan’s economy to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Doug Rothwell is the president of Business Leaders for Michigan and a former head of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. 

On a webinar produced by the Detroit Regional Chamber, Rothwell predicted Michigan’s economy will not have a quick 'V-shaped’ recovery.

“At best it’s going to be either a ‘U’ or even a ‘W’ shaped recovery where there may be some initial boost that we get when the gates are opened up here a little bit,” says Rothwell, “But then if there’s a second surge of the virus we may have to pull back.”

Rothwell expects it may take a couple years for Michigan’s economy to get back to “normal”.

He says Michigan is learning from how China and Germany have managed their economic recoveries.   Though Rothwell stresses what works elsewhere may not be right for Michigan.

This week, some Michigan manufacturers are slowly re-opening. 

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Public since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.
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