Month after dismal month, Americans have been inundated by an ever-rising tide of devastating numbers. Hundreds of thousands of deaths. Tens of million unemployed.
By mid-December, five in every 100 Americans — more than 16 million — had been infected by COVID-19.
Those numbers testify to a historic tragedy. But they don’t fully capture the multitude of ways, large and small, that the virus has upended and reconfigured everyday life in the U.S. Continue reading below the graph
For that, there are a host of other numbers. Some may be less familiar than others, yet all are just as telling in calculating the pandemic’s sweeping impact:
Miles that Americans did not drive because they were unemployed, working or studying from home and traveling less: 35.3 billion (through August)
School lunches and breakfasts that went unserved in March and April after schools were closed: 400 million
Number of people participating in meetings on Zoom each day last December: 10 million
Number of people participating daily in Zoom meetings by the end of March: 300 million
Employment rate of low-wage workers as the year nears its end, compared to January: down 20.3 percent
Employment rate of high-wage workers compared to January: up 0.2 percent
Sources: Federal Highway Administration; Sivak Applied Research; U.S. Government Accountability Office; Zoom Video Communications Inc.; Opportunity Insights using data from Womply, Affinity Solutions, Paychex Inc., Intuit Inc., Earnin and Kronos; Bureau of Transportation Statistics; International Air Transport Association; Transportation Security Administration; The Broadway League; Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis; Amazon.com Inc.; Internal Revenue Service; The Nielsen Company; GOJO Industries; American Dental Association; Major League Baseball.