Coronavirus: Business & Economy Impact Tracker

As the coronavirus (also known as COVID-19) pandemic continues to spread globally, GCC along with its regional members and councils are continuing to work to analyze the business impact of the virus across each of our coverage areas.


A simple look at the stock market will tell you that coronavirus has led to a volatile economy, but there are numerous other factors at play. The initial outbreak of the coronavirus in China disrupted global supply chains. A record 3.28 million Americans filed for unemployment benefits in the week ending March 21, while in the UK 1.62 million people were unemployed as coronavirus-induced layoffs surge around the world. Even when the short-term effects end, the long-term economic impact will ripple for years.
More than 87% of all businesses are small businesses, and they employ about half the world’s workforce. Most small businesses lack the cash reserves to weather a month-long interruption, and forecasts indicate more than 2 million workers could lose their jobs in just one week as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. There’s also the possibility of a “startup depression,” wherein new companies don’t enter the job market because of the pandemic.
Hospitality and travel are two of the biggest industries impacted by COVID-19 thanks to travel cancellations, restaurant and bar closures, and low consumer confidence. Manufacturing and construction have largely held off on layoff decisions, but these industries could suffer the strain as consumer demand drops.
  • Leaders need to set and enforce work boundaries; violating these is one of the biggest energy drains.
  • They can help people see this time as a quest toward something new, not as a restitution of bygone days, and not as chaos to be muddled through.
  • Managers can encourage employees to take a zero-based approach to meetings, to help them choose which ones to attend.
  • And they can prioritize the work people do. Now is the time for organizations to finally tackle busyness and focus on the work that matters most. One global organization put a halt to new initiatives for a period of two months to allow for recovery, while another now examines which initiatives to “sunset” and how to intentionally limit the amount of work in progress.