LAist highlighted recent research led by Paul Ong, director of UCLA Luskin’s Center for Neighborhood Knowledge (CNK), on the economic impact of anti-Asian rhetoric during the pandemic. Ong said harassment of Asian-Americans, including an informal boycott of Asian restaurants, increased after President Trump called COVID-19 the “China virus” and “kung flu.” Research by CNK, the UCLA Asian American Studies Center and Ong & Associates found that Asians and whites started out on similar financial footing before the pandemic — but between February and April, Asian American joblessness jumped ahead by 5%. The article also cited a Pew survey that found that 31% of Asian adults say they have been subject to slurs or jokes because of their race or ethnicity since the outbreak began. Ong called on the federal government to step in to discourage discrimination but added that he is disappointed by political leadership so far. The research was also cited in the Asian Journal.