One industry after another saw activity grind to a near halt in March as the pandemic broke out in the United States. Retailers contended with stores closed for weeks and shoppers too shellshocked to spend on anything but essentials; energy companies faced big declines in demand and, by extension, prices; health care companies dealt with the sector’s shift toward addressing COVID and away from more standard care—and the list goes on.
The result has been 610 bankruptcies as of Dec. 13, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence. That statistic is the highest it’s since 2012, according to the ratings agency and compares to 552 bankruptcies over the same period last year. (S&P tracks companies, private or publicly traded, with debt traded on the markets.)
Few sectors were spared by the pandemic-fueled recession, judging by the roster of 2020 bankruptcies. That list includes retailers such as J.C. Penney, Neiman Marcus, and J.Crew, car rental giant Hertz, mall operator CBL & Associates Properties, Internet provider Frontier Communications, oilfield services provider Superior Energy Services, and hospital operator Quorum Health. Read more…..
Chart of the Day
In honor of Labor Day, our latest interview with former Secretary of Labor Robert Reich reviews how the federal government should support the new virtual economy as we battle the coronavirus pandemic.