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STATE WIDE–Indiana and America are recovering economically from the recession caused by the coronavirus pandemic, but the country still has a long way to go, says Purdue University Ag Economist Larry DeBoer, in an interview with IndyPolitics.

“We’re climbing out of the hole, but we’re still in the hole,” said DeBoer. “We’re growing again, apparently. But, we’re still way in the hole and the unemployment rate around 11 percent, while it is way better than it was a couple of months ago, is still the worst since the 1930s.”

DeBoer said that while “we’re moving in the right direction”, the recession was not necessarily self-imposed, as some people have labeled it.

“What was the alternative? I think that the virus itself caused the recession and what we did was try to head it off and maybe have a quicker, deeper, but shorter recession.”

DeBoer said that if the shutdowns had not happened than more people might’ve gotten sick. People would have stayed home anyway. The demand for products would have decreased and restaurants and hotels would likely have suffered in a more prolonged way.

He said a good example of that is with the economies of states that have opened back up early and are now seeing resurgences of the virus.

“Their recoveries are tailing off, it looks like, from some of the real-time data we’ve gotten,” he said.

DeBoer’s assessment of the attempt at heading off the virus is that “we didn’t make it”, citing the surges in the virus and the economies that have weakened with the surges.