Global Economic Cardiac Arrest

3/17/2020

https://www.latimes.com/california/liveblog/coronavirus-live-updates-california-lockdown

The world has taken drastic action. If we look at the economy as a living organism, we have effectively swallowed a handful of sedatives. The economy is now in a somnambulant state and the pills are just kicking in.

This is no sleeping beauty fairy tale. As we slumber, the pulse of business is grinding to a halt. The necessary oxygen of money is not making its way to huge segments of the economy. Let’s take a moment to say farewell to devastated industries.

  • Farewell airlines (1900 establishments, $190 billion),
  • Farewell Hollywood ($136 billion 2018 global box office),
  • Farewell tourism,
  • Farewell theme parks (610 business, $20billion domestic),
  • Farewell Broadway (40 theatres, $1.7 billion),
  • Farewell cruiseships (26 million passengers, $45.6 billion),
  • Farewell Vegas ($59.6 billion),
  • Farewell hotels ($570 billion),
  • Farewell restaurants ($863 billion domestic),
  • Farewell movie theaters ($18.9 billion domestic),
  • Farewell nightlife,
  • Farewell NBA ($8 billion),
  • Farewell NHL ($5.09 billion),
  • Farewell March Madness,
  • Farewell 401K ($11.5 trillion market drop from the recent peak).

How long can we deprive these industries of any semblance of business as usual before they flatline? The longer the hibernation, the larger the wave of bankruptcies and defaults. Only those with a warchest of oxygen tanks are prepared for this long deprivation. How quickly can the feds get funds to these affected businesses? Which ones will be saved and which ones will be left twisting in the wind?

With businesses left without customers, the pink slips are coming. As usual, the first wave of layoffs will hit the most vulnerable employees. The front-line and blue collar employees who earn modest wages will be the first to bear the brunt of the economic crisis. These folks will be hard pressed to make ends meet without a paycheck. They will be faced with challenges in paying for the most essential needs including food, auto and rent.

With businesses and individuals lost incomes, many will not be able to meet their rent obligations. There are measures being considered to prevent landlords from evicting businesses impacted by the crisis. Who is going to pay these landlords? Will the federal and states offer a fund where landlords can claim their lost rental revenues?

The stock market was due for a correction. The stock market has ceded $11 trillion in value from its recent peaks. The worrisome news is that the downside may get worse. If fear takes over, the recovery point could be deep and long. Without secured retirement savings, seniors who have been living it up will curb their travel and entertainment budgets. These are the industries that need a sharp EKG shock most.

With the economy on pause, a recession is all but unavoidable. We have been through 2 recessions in the last 20 years, in 2001 when 9/11 combined with the dot-com crash and the 2008 housing crisis. The strength of the emerging economy of China helped to blunt those downturns and speed the recovery. This time China is also suffering. The other issue is that the length of this economic freeze is uncertain. We need strong leadership to provide guidance and get our economy back on track sooner than later. We are dealing with the challenge of managing our economy and our healthcare well-being. Currently one side of the challenge is dominating to the detriment of the other. We need to be more concerned about the destruction of the global economy. The longer oxygen is deprived from the system, the closer we risk turning a global recession into a deep depression. The economy is real. The economy matters.

CEO & Founder. Gogocater.