Across the country, regardless of what they think about how the government should respond—or is responding—to the coronavirus pandemic, people are getting hit with the economic fallout. Literally millions of lost jobs mean that everyone is touched in some way, even if they’re fortunate enough to escape the actual illness.
But some places are being hit harder than others, and that’s true not just for those falling victim to COVID-19 but for those feeling the economic effects of all those businesses closing and all the layoffs from the ones still struggling to stay in business.
WalletHub has looked at the economic factors weighing on the economies of all 50 states and the District of Columbia, using data from the U.S. Census Bureau, U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, U.S. Department of Labor, U.S. Small Business Administration, Government Technology, BroadbandNow, Pew Research Center, National Association of State Budget Officers and Mercatus Center at George Mason University.
Among the factors it considered were the share of employment from small businesses; the share of workers with access to paid sick leave; and the increase in unemployment insurance claims. It also ranked them based on GDP generated by high-risk industries as a share of total state GDP.
Some states, because of the industries that play the largest role in their economies, are in real trouble, while others are better cushioned against the worst economic effects. Those risky industries are these:
- accommodation and food services
- entertainment and recreation
- retail trade
- mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction
- educational services
- real estate, rental and leasing
- other services not categorized
The gallery above shows the 5 states that are hardest hit by the coronavirus and the resulting recession/possible depression, and the 5 states that are in better positions economically to withstand the crisis.
Interestingly, in another study from Oxford Economics, The Hill reports that Florida occupied fourth place for most at risk, both because of its heavy reliance on tourism and retail sales and its elderly population. Additionally, it placed among the most economically at-risk states in a study by IHS Markit U.S. regional economist Karl Kuykendall, who said the state could lose as much as 8 percent of its jobs by the end of this year.