The public health crisis around the world caused by the new coronavirus pandemic has also caused financial difficulties for tens of millions of people in the United States,media CNET reported. Some of these concerns have already emerged on Google’s search engine, where queries can be a window into what people are thinking. Google’s report, released Tuesday, analyzed search engine trends, and said inquiries about “new crown virus funding” in the U.S. surged 3,600 percent last month.
The federal government approved a $2 trillion stimulus package in late March that includes a $1,200 relief check for eligible Americans.
The number of people searching for the term “mortgage in a state of emergency” in the United States has tripled in the past week. Although several districts have issued full-house service orders and most of the country’s economy has been shut down, some states are still trying to ease the burden of a shortage of funds. In California, for example, Gov. Gavin Newsom last week announced a 90-day mortgage grace period.
“The outbreak has created economic chaos and uncertainty,” Google Trends reported. “When the U.S. responds to the pandemic, workers are already facing layoffs, pay cuts and mandatory or unpaid leave. (The vacation is confusing to Americans, too.) In the past week, Google’s search for “does an employee on vacation have health insurance?” has increased by more than 200 percent. )
Last week, data released by the Labor Department showed that the number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits soared to 3.28 million between March 14 and 21. Some economists believe that about 40 million Americans could lose their jobs by April.
Google controls about 90 percent of its web searches and runs more than a trillion searches a year. As a result, popular queries on search engines can give people a quick idea of what people think at a given point in time.