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Pandemic effect on Nebraska economy at $1.5B and counting, report shows
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Pandemic effect on Nebraska economy at $1.5B and counting, report shows

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Capitol walk

Dustin Paris wears a mask as he walks past State Capitol in early April.

A report released Wednesday shows the Nebraska economy has lost more than $1.5 billion from the coronavirus pandemic.

The report, "The Economic Impact of COVID-19 on Nebraska's Economy: Third Cut," was prepared by economists Ernie Goss and Scott Strain and released in conjunction with The Platte Institute.

Nebraska's unemployment rate of 8.3% in April, the highest in the state's history, resulted in more than 92,000 job losses, according to the report, and more than $497 million in lost wages, salaries and self-employment income. On an annualized basis, that would result in a loss of more than $10 billion.

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The report also said state and local tax receipts are estimated to have declined by nearly $80 million through May 9. If this figure were annualized, state and local governments would experience a loss of $521 million.

Data released by the city of Lincoln this week showed that May sales tax collections, which reflect March receipts, were down nearly $290,000 from a year ago and nearly $700,000 from projections. City officials have predicted that June and July figures, which will reflect sales from April and May, will be down 40%.

The amount of the 1% occupation tax collected in April at SouthPointe Pavilions in Lincoln to help pay for the parking garage being built there was down 38% from a year ago, and it was the second-lowest monthly total since the tax went into effect in early 2017.

UNL economic indicator plunges for second straight month

Despite the large hit to the state's economy, Nebraska has fared better than most other states. Its April unemployment rate was the third-lowest in the country.

A separate report released Wednesday by payroll company ADP showed that 2.76 million jobs were lost in the U.S. in May, down sharply from 9.3 million lost in April.

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Reach the writer at 402-473-2647 or molberding@journalstar.com.

On Twitter @LincolnBizBuzz.

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Business reporter

Matt Olberding is a Lincoln native and University of Nebraska-Lincoln graduate who has been covering business for the Journal Star since 2005.

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