New Yorkers are used to working hard. But with unemployment nearly doubling over the last year, many find they’re working harder than ever to keep their job, or just to find one.
A year ago, Lehman Brothers -one of the world’s biggest investment banks- collapsed, accelerating a severe financial crisis. Markets worldwide experienced one of their worst years in decades. Banks stopped lending to each other, slowing down the financial system.
But that’s only half the story: the financial crisis turned into an economic disaster, impacting the lives of millions.
We went to New York, the Ground Zero of finance, where the crisis began, to find out how ordinary people are doing. What we found is a city struggling to recover. It doesn’t show when you’re standing in the middle of Manhattan, but scratch the shiny surface and you’ll see the effects of a weak economy. Lionel, the cab driver in search of customers; Ravinda, the labourer eager for more hours on the factory floor; Amy, the unemployed financial expert forced to create her own job: these are the faces of New York’s economy.