Special Report

State Economies Most Likely to Be Crippled by COVID-19

To slow the spread of the novel coronavirus and save lives, millions of Americans nationwide have been urged or ordered by their state or local government to stay at home. In addition to stay-at-home orders, many of which have now been in effect for at least a month, many states have also ordered the closure of nonessential businesses. The economic effects of these measures have begun to take a devastating toll. Close to 30 million Americans have filed for unemployment benefits since mid-March. 

While every American will feel the effects of the economic downturn to some degree, certain industries seem to be especially vulnerable. According to analysis by Moody’s Analytics, an economics research firm, these industries include leisure and hospitality, travel services, transportation and warehousing, and oil and gas extraction. Here is an in-depth look at the U.S. industries being devastated by the coronavirus

While not addressing the public health concern and fighting the pandemic could have come at a steep economic cost, the measures taken to fight the spread of the coronavirus have also come at a steep cost as much of the economy has effectively ground to a halt. In some states, more than 20% of the labor force has filed for unemployment, with million more layoffs announced each week. 

24/7 Wall St. created an index of the pandemic’s ongoing impact on each state’s economy, taking into account the number of COVID-19 cases per 10,000 residents, the share of employment in industries deemed high risk by Moody’s, new unemployment claims since mid-March and projected unemployment rates by state for July 2020 from the Economic Policy Institute, a nonpartisan, nonprofit think tank. 

Even as case numbers continue to rise in every state, stay-at-home orders set to expire in the coming week in some states, while others have explicitly announced plans to reopen parts of the economy in the near future. It is unclear how much of an impact reopening states will have on revitalizing local economies. For example, the decimation of global energy prices currently threatening independent oil and gas businesses will continue to impact those businesses even as states reopen.

Click here to see the state economies most likely to be hurt by COVID
Click here to read our methodology