The impact of COVID‐19 on small business owners: Evidence from the first three months after widespread social‐distancing restrictions PMC

How The Coronavirus Is Affecting Small Business

Turning to racial patterns, Figure3 displays the number of active business owners by major racial groups. The number of African‐American business owners plummeted from 1.1 million in February 2020 to 640,000 in April. The drop of 440,000 black business owners actively working in their businesses, representing 41% of the previous level, is disconcerting. Although there was a partial rebound, the number of actively working African‐American business owners remains 26% lower in May than that in February 2020, which is the largest drop for any major racial/ethnic group. The implications for lost income from having 41% of business owners not working in April, 26% not operating in May, and 19% not operating in June will have longer‐term negative consequences on savings and wealth.

New York City began the first phase of “unblocking” on June 8th, with more than 400,000 people back to work, and another five areas in New York State will enter the second phase of resumption of work. The UK started on June 1st, with schools in some areas resuming classes gradually, and “non-essential” retail stores resuming business one after another.

Hypothesis and analysis

This information will serve as a powerful advocacy tool in explaining to state legislators and local elected officials what types of resources are needed by small businesses to weather the storm. With thanks to our Main Street Network for encouraging participation in the survey, more than 5,850 small business owners responded. Respondents came from more than 1,000 places across the United States, including big cities like New York and Chicago and small towns like Blairsville, Georgia and Greybull, Wyoming. Nearly 40 percent of the small businesses represented in this survey operate in towns with fewer than 10,000 residents. The coronavirus (COVID-19) situation developed rapidly at the onset of 2020, leaving many small business owners uncertain about their future. Those we’ve spoken with expect the coronavirus to have a significant impact on their revenue.

Innovations adopted during the coronavirus crisis drive revenue and generate new opportunities. Find the latest news and insights on how employers are responding to potential changes to state and federal abortion laws, as well as members-only resources for supporting your employees. Communication can be the difference between a struggling business and a flourishing one.

  • The government should implement tax reductions and exemptions for SMEs, extend the tax payment period, and provide tax subsidies.
  • This pandemic’s spread has created a great challenge on different small businesses performance and peoples day-to-day activities, this will affect the country’s economy as well as the individual life of the society (Figs. 1, 2).
  • Researchers were able to see every single transaction that businesses and owners made on their accounts, which allowed them to classify spending into categories.
  • Since the pandemic began, it has also added part-time and contract workers in response to client need.
  • Latinx business owners had an “unfavorable” industry distribution partly placing them at higher risk of business activity losses.
  • Many small businesses are also finding it onerous keep up with constantly changing local guidelines, while others are deciding that no matter what their local officials say, it just is not safe to keep going.
  • The Small Business Pulse Survey is a voluntary survey that requests information of single-location employer businesses with between employees and receipts of $1,000 or more in the 50 states, District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.

Incorporated business owners realized a smaller drop in active business owners of 14% from February to April, and a smaller rebound of 3 percentage points in both May and June. The losses remain large, however, with 17% of unincorporated business owners and 11% of incorporated business owners not operating in May, and 9% of unincorporated and 7% of incorporated not operating in June.

The Coronavirus Pandemic

Although both groups of business owners experienced partial rebounds, the number of active business owners in essential industries was down by 10% in May and 5% in June, and the number in nonessential industries was down by 28% in May and 17% in June. Store fronts across the country had been closed due to COVID‐19 mandated restrictions especially in April. Retail trade showed a decline of 108,000 business owners in April representing 10% of February 2020 levels.

How The Coronavirus Is Affecting Small Business

This represents a shock to America’s small firms that has little parallel since the Great Depression of the 1930s. The study result suggest that many of these firms had little cash on hand toward the beginning of the pandemic, which means that they will either have to dramatically cut expenses, take on additional debt, or declare bankruptcy. This highlights the ways in which the immediacy of new funding might impact medium term outcomes. In response to the pandemic, about three-quarters of small businesses in hard-hit sectors, such as food service and entertainment, have had to take dramatic measures. That is, today business owners in these sectors are much more likely to have laid off employees, decreased employee hours, or suffered revenue losses since mid-April, compared to other sectors.

Pandemic sparks innovation for small businesses

A 10–15% loss of employment/livelihoods leading to a cumulative loss of perhaps 1.6–2.4 million jobs/livelihoods depending on the severity and duration of the crisis, mostly in urban areas. Can be used by the public to find small businesses and listing details such as hours of operation, services, social media profiles, and employment opportunities.

The company’s total shift to remote work has also enabled it to hire people outside of major cities to support its team-building activities, Alexis says, “which opened up a new talent pool. This is an exciting development for us.” “The pandemic has taught us that we’re providing an essential service, so we need to ensure that we can provide this service reliably no matter the circumstances.” Another show during the pandemic resulted in a $20,000 sale of a Tanzanite stone to a customer in Singapore. Many of the company’s customers are collectors who prefer uncut gems they can have customized. The company advertised the livestreams through its website, by e-mail and via social media.

Although Construction partially bounced back in May and June losses in business activity continued to be large. Although construction businesses experience a lot of swings in demand, it is not clear how many of these business owners will be able to come back over the next several months. When conditioning on working roughly 2 or 4 days/week, the losses are even larger (28% and 31%, respectively). Although incorporated businesses are more growth‐oriented and stable, they experienced a drop of 20% from February to April 2020. During the pandemic, the loss of a large number of employees has seriously affected the daily operations of the enterprise, and will accelerate the bankruptcy of enterprises to a certain extent. In addition, statistical results of relevant data show that remote work is popular during the pandemic.

Small Businesses in the Hardest-Hit Industries

The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, signed into law by President Joseph Biden last week, also provides New York State approximately $45 billion in fiscal relief to governmental entities and major institutions. New York State will receive $12.6 billion, New York City will receive $5.9 billion and other local governments will receive $4.9 billion. There is additional funding for K-12 education ($9.0 billion), higher education institutions ($2.6 billion) including the State and City Universities of New York, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority ($6.5 billion) and Medicaid reimbursement, among other programs.

How The Coronavirus Is Affecting Small Business

Female business ownership is substantially lower than male business ownership and female‐owned businesses have lower revenues, employees, and profits on average (U.S. Census Bureau,2016). The disproportionate losses in the first 3 months How The Coronavirus Is Affecting Small Business to the number of active female business owners will only further increase gender inequality in business ownership and perhaps broader economic inequality. Asian business owners show a similar pattern in April, but not in May and June.

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Although these platform policies will not likely impact your account, the pandemic and the resulting market changes will. Here are a few recommended strategies to prepare and adjust your accounts accordingly. WordStream by LOCALiQ is your go-to source for data and insights in the world of digital marketing. Check out our award-winning blog, free tools and other resources that make online advertising easy.

The government’s Paycheck Protection Program, rolled out in April and administered by the S.B.A., earmarked $660 billion of aid for small businesses, but stipulated that a loan would be forgiven only if most of it was used to pay employee wages for eight weeks. The rules were later relaxed, but in a sign of how many small-business owners did not feel confident that they would be on steady ground by the time repayment was due, roughly $130 billion of aid money remained untapped when the program ended in June. When experiencing a two-month loss in revenue, 86 percent of small businesses would need to apply mitigation measures to remain open, such as using the owner’s personal funds, taking out more debt, or reducing staff salaries. Figure 3 illustrates the composition of the industries that are likely to be affected by falling consumer demand or the mandated closure of nonessential businesses. In this scenario, with a few exceptions, the hardest-hit industries still account for the vast majority of the affected small businesses.

Mr. Tokheim, 58, watched his business fall off with growing unease, but it was only after a friendly chat with a retired college athletic director in May that the gravity of his situation hit home. He was already worried about the state of the virus in Nebraska, and whether there was enough tracking. Then the athletic director predicted that if college football was canceled for the year, it would be the end of Division I sports as a whole.

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How The Coronavirus Is Affecting Small Business

The research framework of this study, based on entrepreneurs’ perception of the impact of COVID-19 on enterprises, is shown in Fig 1. The theory and research hypotheses of this study are presented with referring to the Theory of Reasoned Action , the Technology Acceptance Model and the Theory of Planned Behavior . It isn’t just hitting small businesses either, as beginning on Christmas Eve, airlines worldwide began a trend of cancellations. Now, weeks later and thousands of flights have been cancelled — all due to inadequate numbers of employees to fill shifts.

RunPractical and real-world advice on how to run your business — from managing employees to keeping the books. To ensure the most secure and best overall experience on our website we recommend the latest versions of Chrome, Edge, Firefox, or Safari. “That leads to the optimism that despite all these headwinds …. that power of innovation, that power of entrepreneurs to solve problems and therefore, create businesses overwhelms the headwinds,” he added. “It took four months to bend the curve up during the pandemic,” Sullivan said.

How COVID-19 is Impacting Small Businesses and What You Can Do About It

A full-time MBA program for mid-career leaders eager to dedicate one year of discovery for a lifetime of impact. A 12-month program focused on applying the tools of modern data science, optimization and machine learning to solve real-world business problems. The pattern for younger and less educated workers is similar in the broader shutdown scenario, while non-Hispanic white workers are more likely to be affected because they are overly represented in the construction and manufacturing firms that are ordered to close in this scenario. 3 Types of SaaS Businesses Likely to Thrive in a Post-COVID World COVID-19 has changed our way of doing things, and even once the pandemic ends, we aren’t likely to go back to the way things were. But for four SaaS businesses—digital collaboration platforms, telemedicine, and gaming and media, that’s actually good news. Find the tools, resources, and support you need to help your business power on through the challenging days ahead. You can also check our officialDisaster Response and Recovery Resources for Small Businesses.

COVID-19 will have a greater impact on the financial status of SMEs, but establishing a functioning capital structure and ensuring sufficient cash flow will speed up the recovery process of enterprises and promote business development in the crisis. Based on the WHO’s report, the COVID-19 crisis was established in China in December 2019 and soon after became a global difficult pandemic. As of September 24, 2020, 213 countries and territories around the world were affecting, a total of 32,298,738 people infected, 984,974 deaths, and 23,820,147 patients recovered.

The Economic Toll of COVID-19 on Small Business

Immigrant business owners suffered a large drop of 36% in business activity, and female business owners suffered a disproportionate drop of 25%. The COVID-19 pandemic has affected the day-to-day lives of nearly of all Americans and has forced us to adapt and innovate as we transition into the new normal. One of the most impacted groups has been small businesses who faced the challenge of dwindling staff and customers while implementing new social distancing and public health practices. The drop in business activity from February to April for whites were also large at 1.8 million business owners, but smaller as a percentage of starting levels (17%).

The construct reliability of the latent variables is an evaluation standard for the inner quality in a structural equation model. If the construct reliability is higher than 0.7, the inner quality of the model is considered to be acceptable . The authors will use the model standardized regression weights to calculate the construct reliability, presented as ρc. Construct reliability of finance, market, employee, cost, policy and impact of COVID-19 were calculated at a suggested lower limit of 0.70 with Eq . There will be a negative relationship between government policy and negative impact of COVID-19.

Being forward-thinking and finding new ways to solve your customers’ problems can give you the edge for fighting the pandemic. Additionally, some businesses have reviewed their staffing policies by making their staff work alternate hours and shifts to reduce the risk of exposure to the pandemic. Changing your whole business model requires some gut, but flexibility is essential if you want to thrive during times of uncertainty. Efforts to provide small businesses relief from impacts of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic have developed. Cities like New York and Seattle will delay tax collections and make low-interest loans available. The Trump Administration has mirrored those proposed solutions, with the President announcing on March 10 that he would ask Congress to increase funding for the Small Business Administration lending program to $50 billion. For many small business owners, rising inflation means either increasing prices or taking a hit in profit.

The Small Business Index notched its highest reading since the pandemic started when the latest report was conducted in October. Optimism was assigned a score of 63, up from a record low of 39.5 in the second quarter of 2020. But Thompson said the entire experience, which included the draining of her savings and a personal emergency fund, made her even more determined to bring health and wellness to underserved communities — her company’s core mission. A new survey from Capital One Business found that many of the owners are exhausted.

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