The Effects Continue

March 31, 2020
World Wide Reaction
No longer isolated to the travel and hospitality industries, the fallout from the virus is becoming widespread.

Each passing week, the measures which are implemented to slow the spread of the coronavirus are placing strains on the American and world-wide economy. It is no longer the travel industry which is in the forefront. Now all industries are being hit -- from retail to service industries. Those who are selling toilet paper or sanitizers can't get enough, but demand for most other goods and services will wane. The analysts who all predicted a mild downturn from this crisis are now resetting their forecasts.

Certainly, the government stimulus packages will help. We will note that this slowdown will be different from the 2008 financial crisis, as it is not being spearheaded by a collapse in the real estate markets. The slow recovery of the real estate industry meant a slow recovery for the nation as a whole. Today, real estate is on more solid footing with the average homeowner having more equity in their homes. That does not mean that the real estate sector will not be affected. And the longer the economic standstill goes on, the worse the effect will be.

Low interest rates will also help the recovery, as well as the fact that we are starting from a very low unemployment base. But unemployment will rise sharply from here. Speaking of employment, almost buried in the news is the fact that this week we will have a jobs report. There is a chance that this report will be affected by this crisis, but we don't think that the numbers will be a true reflection of what is happening right now, since the survey ended a few weeks ago.