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Measuring the Effect of COVID-19 on U.S. Small Businesses: The Small Business Pulse Survey

Author

Listed:
  • Catherine Buffington
  • Carrie Dennis
  • Emin Dinlersoz
  • Lucia Foster
  • Shawn Klimek

Abstract

In response to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the Census Bureau developed and fielded an entirely new survey intended to measure the effect on small businesses. The Small Business Pulse Survey (SBPS) will run weekly from April 26 to June 27, 2020. Results from the SBPS will be published weekly through a visualization tool with downloadable data. We describe the motivation for SBPS, summarize how the content for the survey was developed, and discuss some of the initial results from the survey. We also describe future plans for the SBPS collections and for our research using the SBPS data. Estimates from the first week of the SBPS indicate large to moderate negative effects of COVID-19 on small businesses, and yet the majority expect to return to usual level of operations within the next six months. Reflecting the Census Bureau’s commitment to scientific inquiry and transparency, the micro data from the SBPS will be available to qualified researchers on approved projects in the Federal Statistical Research Data Center network.

Suggested Citation

  • Catherine Buffington & Carrie Dennis & Emin Dinlersoz & Lucia Foster & Shawn Klimek, 2020. "Measuring the Effect of COVID-19 on U.S. Small Businesses: The Small Business Pulse Survey," Working Papers 20-16, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  • Handle: RePEc:cen:wpaper:20-16
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    File URL: https://www2.census.gov/ces/wp/2020/CES-WP-20-16.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Ufuk Akcigit & Emin Dinlersoz & Jeremy Greenwood & Veronika Penciakova, 2019. "Synergizing Ventures," 2019 Meeting Papers 36, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    2. Daniel Lewis & Karel Mertens & James H. Stock, 2020. "U.S. Economic Activity During the Early Weeks of the SARS-Cov-2 Outbreak," NBER Working Papers 26954, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. John Haltiwanger & Ron S. Jarmin & Javier Miranda, 2013. "Who Creates Jobs? Small versus Large versus Young," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 95(2), pages 347-361, May.
    4. repec:fip:a00002:87896 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Daniel J. Lewis & Karel Mertens & James H. Stock & Mihir Trivedi, 2020. "Measuring Real Activity Using a Weekly Economic Index," Working Papers 2011, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, revised 02 Mar 2021.
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    Cited by:

    1. Leland Crane & Ryan Decker & Aaron Flaaen & Adrian Hamins-Puertolas & Christopher J. Kurz, 2020. "Business Exit During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Non-Traditional Measures in Historical Context," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2020-089, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    2. Ana Sequeira & Cristina Manteu & Nuno Monteiro, 2020. "The short-term impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Portuguese companies," Working Papers o202003, Banco de Portugal, Economics and Research Department.
    3. Alexis Louaas & Pierre Picard, 2020. "A Pandemic Business Interruption Insurance," CESifo Working Paper Series 8758, CESifo.
    4. Bloom, Nicholas & Bunn, Philip & Mizen, Paul & Smietanka, Pawel & Thwaites, Gregory, 2020. "The impact of Covid-19 on productivity," Bank of England working papers 900, Bank of England.
    5. Katharine G. Abraham & Ron S. Jarmin & Brian Moyer & Matthew D. Shapiro, 2020. "Big Data for Twenty-First Century Economic Statistics: The Future Is Now," NBER Chapters, in: Big Data for Twenty-First Century Economic Statistics, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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