Adults with Income Loss During COVID-19 Have Higher Rates of Anxiety and Depression

Xiaoyan Zhang

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The COVID-19 pandemic has created economic challenges including millions of people out of work and reporting economic pressure. Nationally, almost half (47%) of households reported experiencing a loss of employment income since March 13, 2020. These economic challenges might lead to mental health problems. The figure below shows the percentage of U.S. adults with symptoms of anxiety and depression among those who reported income loss vs. those with no income loss during the COVID-19 period. Forty-four percent of adults who lost employment income since COVID-19 began reported anxiety, compared with only 25% of those who did not lose employment income. Likewise, 37% of those who experienced income loss reported symptoms of depression, compared with 20% of those who did not experience income loss. While providing economic support to those who have lost income in the past year is critical, it is equally essential to provide resources to alleviate the mental health challenges that have come with COVID-19.

Data Source: U.S. Census Bureau’s Household Pulse Survey, N=77,122
 Notes: Mental health conditions were captured during the period of Feb. 3-Feb. 15, 2021.
Percentages are weighted to represent the U.S. population.

About the Author
Xiaoyan Zhang ( is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Human Development and Family Science and a Lerner Graduate Fellow at the Lerner Center for Public Health Promotion in the Maxwell School at Syracuse University.