A notice requiring to wear face masks is seen outside a candy store near the Times Square in New York, the United States, July 4, 2020. (Xinhua/Wang Ying)

"If we all wore a mask, it would substantially mute the transmission of this disease, and we would grow faster. We would have a lower unemployment rate," said Robert Kaplan, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.

WASHINGTON, July 10 (Xinhua) -- Broad mask-wearing will be key to ensuring a faster U.S. economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, a senior U.S. Federal Reserve official said Friday.

"While monetary and fiscal policy have a key role to play, the primary economic policy from here is broad mask-wearing and good execution of these health care protocols," Robert Kaplan, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, said in an interview with Fox Business.

Pedestrians walk on a street in Los Angeles County, the United States, on July 4, 2020. (Xinhua)

"If we all wore a mask, it would substantially mute the transmission of this disease, and we would grow faster. We would have a lower unemployment rate," Kaplan said. "We'd be far less likely to slow some of our reopenings. But we've been uneven so far on our mask-wearing."

Although 20 states and Washington DC have implemented mandates requiring individuals to wear masks in public, there is no national mandate, according to Fox Business.

The Atlas statue is seen adorned with a face mask at Rockefeller Center in New York, the United States, on June 22, 2020. (Xinhua/Wang Ying)

Kaplan also said he expected the U.S. economy to shrink by 35 percent in the second quarter but projected it will grow in the third and fourth quarters, putting the economy on track to shrink by about 5 percent for the year.

The United States has set an all-time record for new COVID-19 cases for the third week in a row, confirming more than 367,000 new infections this week, while the number of hospitalizations and deaths has risen rapidly, according to the COVID Tracking Project.

The resurgence of COVID-19 cases across the country is threatening to derail the nascent economic recovery as many states have either paused or partially reversed their staged reopening plans.  ■

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